Register for Spring Classes
Field of Dreams
Summer Camp Preview
Coming Attraction: March Movie
Camp Mather Getaway
Lily Holbrook Plays for the Tots
Register for Spring Classes
Spring classes begin the week of March 12, and come March 3, you can register for a growing number of choices for all ages at Upper Noe.
In addition to the regular favorites like Moovin’ and Groovin’ and Fairy Tale Frolics, tots will have two new options: Petite Bakers and Aikido. Bakers will be open to children ages three to four who want to stir things up in the facility’s little-used kitchen on Wednesdays from 10:30 a.m. to noon.
“The thing with little kids is that they want to chop something, stir something or break something,” said Facility Coordinator Cheryl Woltjen. “If you can find recipes that have 12 eggs, you’re set!”
For those who want to wiggle rather than whisk, Aikido will be offered from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. on Tuesdays for three- to five-year-olds. The class emphasizes movement using the principles of Aikido, a martial art focused on mindfulness and movement rather than on fighting.
Older children will also have their pick between sports and arts. Both Futsol (indoor soccer) on Tuesdays and indoor basketball on Thursdays will divide children ages 6 to 12 into older and younger age groups to practice skills and drills.
Then on Fridays from 2:30 to 4:30, students can play theater games in a class called “So You Think You Can Act?”
Two hours later, adults can take the stage for an improvisational comedy class from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
The new classes are in addition to what was offered in the winter, Woltjen said. That means classes like Tango for seniors and Muy Thai for adults and tweens will continue as well.
“We haven’t had to cancel anything,” she said.
Register for classes in person at the center or online at www.sfreconline.org starting March 3.
Field of Dreams
Upper Noe is fielding two Spring Youth Baseball teams, both of which filled the day registration opened on Jan. 27, said Facility Coordinator Cheryl Wotljen.
The teams meet on Tuesdays, with the Kindergarteners starting at 3:30 p.m. and the first- and second-grade students starting an hour later. They will play other teams in the department’s league.
Though other sites still have openings, some players want to swing the bat at Upper Noe only, Woltjen said.
“People should sign up for the waitlist because the department might be able to add more teams,” she said. Interested parents should call Woltjen directly at 415-970-8061.
Summer Camp Preview
The Recreation and Parks Department’s venerated Pacific Art Camp comes to Upper Noe Recreation Center this summer for four two-week sessions of dance, theater, art and music.
Children ages 6 to 12 will be divided by age into groups that rotate among the four disciplines, said Clove Galilee, the department’s program coordinator for dance and theater. A fifth one-week half-day session for children ages 5 and 6 will happen August 6 to 10.
A Parents Night Recital Showcase and Art Exhibition caps each session.
“Each age group performs everything they’ve learned,” she said. “It’s a unique camp.”
There’s plenty to show off. The children make color wheels and self portraits as part of an art curriculum that includes learning about the color spectrum and negative space. In dance they have a chance to choreograph as well as dance to someone else’s tune. They sing rock and a capella in music, and in theater, they create plays and skits.
Each of the four teachers is a specialist in a particular fine art, Galilee said.
“This is our first time at Upper Noe,” she said. “I think we’re going to hit a whole new group of kids, which will be exciting.”
Children must attend both weeks of their camp session, which costs $250 for city residents. Sessions start June 4, June 18, July 9 and July 23. Camp hours are Monday to Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Extended care, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., is available for $160 for the two weeks.
These tween-age children may use the playground during their lunch break from noon to 1 p.m. and sometimes in the pre- and after-care hours, said Jenny Rogers, a Cultural Arts Supervisor with the department.
“Our PAC kids are 7 to 12 and would not be allowed to use the equipment designated for use only by younger children,” she said. “We plan to have organized activities during our Pre-Care & After-Care, so it will definitely not be all playground time.”
See a complete catalog of camps at www.sfreconline.com starting Monday, February 6. Registration begins at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 17. You can register online or in person at Upper Noe Recreation Center.
Coming Attraction: March Movie
March 10 will be Movie Night at Upper Noe, thanks to volunteer Allison Muir, who arranged for the free screening of the original “Parent Trap.”
Muir, a recent transplant from the Balboa Park neighborhood, serves on Upper Noe’s Community Recreation Council, and she hatched her idea at the November meeting. The Community Recreation Council, composed of local residents, works with SF Recreation and Parks to determine programming and events at Upper Noe.
“Upper Noe was one of the big draws of why we bought our house here,” said Muir, who has two children ages one and two. “Since I have little kids, I wanted to make sure there were good things there and that I was contributing.”
She chose the original version of the movie, which stars Hayley Mills and Maureen O’Hara, because she has fond memories of watching the G-rated film with her sisters as a child. She also knew the film could appeal to parents.
“It has a separate story line that’s more adult about divorce and romance as well as having those ‘tween aspects,” said Muir.
What’s more, the story begins at a summer camp. Since registration for Recreation and Parks Department summer camps begins the following Saturday, there will be camp information available in the auditorium before the movie, she said.
“It’s a kick-off for summer camp!” she said.
The evening will start with live music from The Funicellos, a group of groovy dads—including Muir’s husband—who took their name from Annette Funicello, a popular cast member of the Mickey Mouse Club in the 1950s.
As it happens, Annette Funicello and Frankie Avalon sing the opening credits to “The Parent Trap,” and Muir hopes the band will play the theme song and more at 6 p.m. as movie go-ers arrive and grab their popcorn. There will also be cartoons before the movie.
The evening is hosted by Friends of Noe Valley Recreation Center. As with the tot concerts, donations are encouraged. March’s tot concert itself will be moved to March 17 to accommodate the arrangements that need to be made for the film, said Kate Haug of Friends.
Camp Mather Getaway
Registration for the Camp Mather lottery ends February 5, leaving hundreds of San Francisco residents crossing their fingers in the hopes of being chosen for a cabin or tent space at the rustic week-long summer camp.
“It’s such a great tradition,” said Tanya Shadoan, whose family has gone every year since 2009. The scenery is beautiful, the internet-free atmosphere is relaxing and she always runs into people she knows while meeting new folks, too.
Perhaps best of all, her two daughters, Olivia in fourth grade and Zoe in sixth, love the independence they have there.
“Bikes are ditched everywhere. Nothing is locked. It’s all very safe and very communal,” said the San Francisco native. “People look out for each other’s kids, too.”
Because the cabins are unlocked and meals are prepared by camp staff, the children come and go as they please. During the day they jump on their bikes and head to the many activities offered by the camp: archery, swimming, hiking, ping pong and campfire fun, for example. There are crafts, two talent shows, a bingo night and movie night and a party at the end of the week.
The site is also 45 minutes from the Yosemite, and Shadoan’s family has biked the valley floor and floated the Merced River. Whether with family friends, her parents or her children’s school buddies, Shadoan and her husband Andy Ferguson have enjoyed their visits, and they hope for many more as their children grow.
“I love to see the teenagers who you would think wouldn’t be caught dead going to a family camp with their parents,” she said. They hang out with their friends, buying ice-cream at the general store late at night and pal-ing around. “They love it because they’ve gone since they were kids,” she said. And then she crossed her fingers for good luck.
For information about Camp Mather, including lottery details, facilities and cost, please visit http://sfrecpark.org/CampMather.aspx.
Plays for the Tots
Sweet-tongued Lily Holbrook will sing for the tots at this month’s second Saturday concert on February 11, from 9 to 11 a.m. in Upper Noe Recreation Center’s auditorium.
“I have some songs lined up, and I’m planning on learning a couple of new songs,” said Holbrook, an East Coast native who is studying childhood development.
She plays cover songs, too.
“Kids really respond to Cat Stevens,” she said. Holbrook plays guitar while singing, so making the wheels on the bus go ’round mid-song can be challenging, but she is coming up with alternatives.
She has lived as a musician for the past 14 years, and her three albums have a full band and an edginess to them. The first, “Running From the Sky,” has been described as a somber fairy tale. “They weren’t written with kids in mind, but they work,” she said. Plus, her acoustic sets are more folky, she said.
Tot Rock is sponsored by The Friends of Noe Valley Recreation Center through community donations. All families with children under the age of 5 welcome.
• Serve as a greeter for the free concerts. The Friends of Noe Valley Rec Center need a “friend” to help us greet families during our monthly free concert. Let them know about our mailing list and introduce them to our small group. Our greeters hand out flyers and accept donations for the concert series. The next opportunity will be February 11 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Even volunteering for one hour would make a big difference!
• Help advise the city on what classes should be offered at the Upper Noe Rec Center. Serve a term on the Upper Noe Recreation Center’s Community Recreation Council and help shape programming at the Center. A teen member is still needed! Please contact Cheryl Woltjen at 970-8061. The form is available on our website and at the center. Please either drop it off or mail it to: Cheryl Woltjen, UNRC, 295 Day Street, SF, 94131.
• Distribute our new Friends of NVRC postcard. This newsletter is distributed to nearly 1,000 “friends.” Make sure interested neighbors know about our group by helping distribute our informational postcard around the neighborhood. Please email molly (at) noevalleyreccenter.com if you know of a good shop or cafe to distribute the postcards. Or you could help put them somewhere frequented by park users.
• Lead a new event. Are you interested in organizing a new event at the Center? Maybe a game night or movie night? Please let us know.
• Develop a new plan for the sandbox area or some other park addition. If you know of a person who wants to help re-imagine and re-engineer the sandbox area, please let us know. We are also looking for someone who could add a new creative addition to the park. We have limited space, but we’d love to see a new activity area or artistic addition to the park. The Friends group is looking for suggestions.
• Garden at the Park. Help keep the park beautiful by volunteering with the Ladybug Gardeners on the second Saturday of every month. All ages welcome, no experience necessary. Even an hour would be a big help! Please contact us at info (at) noevalleyreccenter.com.
9 to 11 a.m.
Recreation Center auditorium
Lily Holbrook let’s loose for the little ones.
9 a.m. to noon
Recreation Center grounds
Turn weeds into plants each month with the Ladybug Gardeners. Please bring gloves and a trowel. Lead Ladybug Joan Lionberger has gloves, projects and things to see for the kids, too.
Community Recreation Council
Recreation Center kitchen
Help shape programming and priorities at Upper Noe
Outside the Center:
Friends of Noe Valley
Thursday, February 16
James Lick Middle School library 1220 Noe Street at 25th.
Help plan future events, including the popular annual Garden Tour.
Thanks for your interest and support of your park! Please contact us with any questions or suggestions. Let us know about any community events you are planning at the park so we can promote them. Please forward this newsletter to your friends and neighbors who use the Noe Valley Recreation Center. We want this newsletter to help build the park community — please help us connect with members of the community.
Enjoy your Park!
Molly Sterkel (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Friends of the Noe Valley Recreation Center