The self-proclaimed second-funniest magician in the Bay Area, Ash K. the Pretty Good entertains audiences of all ages with magic shows ranging from house parties to corporate events. In 2010, he was voted the Best Arts and Entertainment/Theatre performer on the San Francisco Chronicle's Baylist, which he celebrated by turning every section in the newspaper into the funnies. His more popular routines include sleight-of-hand magic, a 10-minute comedic tour of San Francisco?s major landmarks, and kid-friendly tricks at birthday parties that include take-home gifts for guests. Click here to see a video of Ash in action.
He also offers music education, specializing in orchestral music and jazz classes for kids. The magician's business partner, a former Education Director of the Berkeley Symphony Orchestra, provides programming services such as script-writing and set design for orchestras, chamber groups, and retired Chipmunk trios.
Members of City Carshare, the company reports on its website, drive 50% less than individual car owners, annually saving more than 20 million pounds of CO2 from entering the atmosphere. This is exactly what the local nonprofit had in mind in 2001 when they opened more than 200 Bay Area lots full of fuel-efficient, alternative-fuel, and electric cars and sleighs pulled by Virginia creeper. These vehicles are the linchpin in their two-fold social commitment to creating healthy urban spaces and strong communities.
The first part of that is relatively straightforward: fewer cars on the road mean less congestion and smog and reduced demand for parking lots that could be transformed into parks that grow into concrete jungles. The company defrays the high monetary costs of car ownership by providing insurance coverage, 24-hour roadside assistance, and all the fuel your vehicle needs to get on the road. To foster a sense of community, they hook members up with a private ride-sharing program and entice them to explore the city via their key fob, which unlocks perks at other local businesses. Their mission is backed by a global network of transportation visionaries in the international CarSharing Association, of which City Carshare is a founding member.
The next time you're on the roof of a five-story building, look down at the ground, and you'll get a rough idea of just how high people climb at Touchstone Climbing. The gym's seven locations feature lead walls that rise as high as 50 feet off the ground, though height isn't the only dimension that makes the space feel immense. Each spot has at least 11,000 square feet of climbing terrain, not to mention as much as 3,000 square feet of bouldering.
To prevent newcomers from feeling intimidated by the magnitude of the environment, the gym holds introductory classes. During these sessions, participants learn the basic techniques they'll need if they want to conquer the gym's crack systems and boulder problems. The classes are also an opportunity for students to scope out the terrain features at each location, such as Diablo Rock Gym's steep prow, which juts out crookedly like a thumbs up from a dizzy ballerina. While they're at it, the visitors might notice something else: the social nature of the gym. As the San Francisco Chronicle recounts, the fact that lead climbs require two people means that climbers are constantly asking around for new partners and chatting back and forth as they ascend.
Each location also boasts a weight room, cardio machines, and a studio space for everything from yoga to spinning to core classes.
Master goldsmith Alan Revere founded The Revere Academy in 1979, creating a space where gifted metalsmiths could pass on their skills to burgeoning jewelry-makers. Today, more than a dozen expert instructors form the faculty, introducing hobbyists and hopeful professionals alike to the fundamentals. The facilities include magnified video feeds that broadcast larger-than-life demonstrations of the teacher performing small and delicate processes, a feat that once required each student to bring their own periscope to class. In the tool room, students will find a blasting unit, magnetic polisher, and other essentials needed to bring their bejeweled creations to shimmering fruition.
Live Fit Gym is much more than an athletic club—it's a wellness club where workouts are just the tip of the iceberg of health. The one-stop oasis features amenities that combine the best of the spa and fitness worlds, with its three locations offering healing treatments such as acupuncture, massage therapy, facials, and chiropractic services. And, more than earning the "gym" in its name, the spot boasts cardio equipment and free weights along with a variety of group classes. Core training and yoga sessions focus on creating toned, flexible forms, while unique offerings including samba workouts combine boot-camp cardio with boot-stomping tunes.
Delirium cocktail lounge and bar welcomes revelers under its retro neon sign into darkened interiors for late-night libations and themed music nights. Weekly events see appearances by oft-recurring guest DJs who swaddle guests' ears in throbbing spins of electronic, ska, and punk anthems. Bartenders stir up eclectic vodka and whiskey cocktails at a marble-sided bar, while guests cavort across the tile floor, surrounded by graffiti décor and bathed in soft blue light. Delirium also hosts recurring events such as comedy nights, crock-pot offerings, and a complimentary afternoon barbecue on Saturday, Sunday, and any day when the barbecue stork drops by.