March 2013 Newsletter


 Newsletter | March 2013

Did You Know?

You can learn tricks on a BMX bike at our Mobile Rec Day?

March Over to Upper Noe

Tots Concerts Are Back!
Mobile Rec Moves In On UNRC
Why Is the Auditorium Closed Sometimes?
Register Twice in March
Weedier Days Ahead
Canine Corner
Volunteer Opportunities


yacuba_mod 3Tots Concerts Are Back!

Saturday morning Tot Concerts resume March 16 at 10 a.m., when West African musician Yacouba Diarra gets the little ones dancing to his n’goni, a stringed instrument made from a dried gourd. (Check out Diarra on YouTube.)

Concert Maestro Richard Hildreth, who is also responsible for music at the Saturday Noe Valley Farmer’s Market, hopes to host some of our concerts outside in the playground. Weather permitting, that’s where Diarra will play, ending at noon.

mobile_rec 2
Mobile Rec Moves In On UNRC
Prepare to climb the walls and ride the rails Saturday, March 9, from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., when Upper Noe hosts Mobile Rec, a new program from the Recreation and Parks Department.

Staff will be on hand to help young climbers scale the 30-foot rock wall—three at a time.

Any kid who knows how to ride a bike can take it to the next level and learn BMX tricks on the ramps and rails provided.

Please consider helping Ladybug Gardeners for an hour or so while your kids get out and play! The need is desperate. See story below. 

There will also be an Imagination Station, large foam block pieces ready to be turned into anything a child’s imagination can create. Bring whatever equipment you have or borrow at the center. Learn more at

Why Is the Auditorium Closed Sometimes?

It’s raining and you’ve got a restless toddler, so you figure you’ll take him to the auditorium free-play at Upper Noe. Except that the auditorium is closed and will be for a while. What to do?

You might consider dropping in on a class. Baby & Me, Express It and Simply Fun are open to drop-in guests. (Baby & Me and Express It last an hour and cost $5 per class. Express It lasts an hour and a half and costs $7.50.)

Let’s say you don’t want a class. What now?

Toy car


Head over to Eureka Valley Rec Center, 100 Collingwood St. (near Diamond and 18th streets), which has a dedicated tot room open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday to Thursday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays.

For an exhaustive list of citywide options for children of all ages, visit

On the weekend, Upper Noe's auditorium and gym are closed when they have been rented. Sometimes it’s a tot birthday party, sometimes it’s a private futsal league. The decision is based on numbers rather than department income, said Facility Coordinator Cheryl Woltjen, who has counted heads.

“When I tally it we get maybe at the most 12 people, and only for a couple of hours,” she said of free-play Saturdays. “If you have a party, you have 10 to 20 people plus their parents. You’re serving a bigger population.” Both spaces can be rented on Saturdays and Sundays. To see prices and processes, visit the department's permits and reservations page.

Spring 2013 guideRegister Twice in March
Register March 2 for spring classes and March 16 for summer camps, both at 10 a.m. Check out Upper Noe's offerings on our website.

You can enroll for any class at any recreation center or you can register online at Click the "Browse Programs" tab, go to the bottom of the lefthand column and choose "Advanced Search." Select all courses. When the listings pop up, a pull-down menu on the upper righthand side allows you to narrow choices by facility.

You must have a Family Account to register online. Click here to create a Family Account.

Summer 2013 catalog
Finally, you can register in person at Rec and Park Headquarters in Golden Gate Park: McLaren Lodge, 501 Stanyan Street (at Fell). Call 415-831-6800 for help.

Scholarships are available to eligible San Francisco residents through the Recreation Scholarship Fund. To find out if you are eligible, please email the department at or call (415) 831-6800 during business hours. For more information, visit the scholarship page of the department's website.

Weedier Days Ahead
The Ladybug Gardeners need volunteers to get down and dirty between 9 a.m. and noon on Saturday, March 9, which coincides with Mobile Rec Day.

weed 3


Staff can teach your kid to rock climb while you give an hour of time toward making our landscape weed- and trash-free!

After a series of gardening days that attracted few to no volunteers, the Recreation and Parks Department has had to cut the once-a-month Saturday gardener who directed the work.

Lead Ladybug Joan Lionberger said she appreciates the compliments she gets on her work there, but would appreciate volunteers even more. Ladybugs will now meet quarterly: March 9, June 8, September 14 and December 14. To reach her, please email

Find an egg, pet a bunny and play carnival games at this year’s Spring Eggstravaganza Saturday, March 30, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Sharon Meadow in Golden Gate Park.

Tickets cost $8 (credit cards accepted) and can be purchased in advance—a real time-saver, as the entrance lines get rather long. Last year’s event drew about 4,000 people.

And yes, the city’s fire, police and park departments will face off over the barbeque, so there will be plenty to eat. (Rib sales benefit the park department’s scholarship fund.)

For more information visit or call 415-831-6800.
Canine Corner
by Friends' Chris Faust  

While Coco and Phoebe dance away sunny days in Joby's Run, some of us have work to do. Join us and the Ladybug Gardeners on Saturday, March 9 at 9 a.m. for a joyful morning of weeding and grooming and other chores that make Upper Noe a great place to be!

Volunteers Needed

• 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) 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 contact us at info (at)

• 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)

Community Events

March 9
Ladybug Gardeners

9 a.m. to noon
Recreation Center grounds

Spiffy up the grounds for spring! Bring gloves and tools if you have them.

March 9
Mobile Rec

10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Recreation Center grounds

Learn to climb the rock wall or do tricks on a BMX bike. Bring gear if you have it, but we will also provide.

March 16
Tot Concert

10 a.m. to noon
Recreation Center playground

The little ones jam to the West African beat of Yacouba Diarra.

March 20
Community Recreation Council

6:30 p.m.
Recreation Center kitchen

Help shape programming and priorities at Upper Noe.

Outside the Center

March 9
Summer Resource Fair

10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Everett Middle School
450 Church Street

Learn about summer camps, summer jobs, summer classes and more.

March 30
Spring Eggstravaganza

11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Golden Gate Park

Carnival rides, egg hunts, rib cook-offs and more fun in Sharon Meadow.

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 (
Friends of the Noe Valley Recreation Center

Friends of Noe Valley Recreation Center