San Francisco/Southeast San Francisco

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Introduction

Southeast San Francisco is made up of several mostly residential neighborhoods of San Francisco bounded on the north and west by I-280, the 101 highway, and 16th Street, the east by the San Francisco Bay, and on the south by the city limits.

Bayview-Hunter's Point is bounded roughly by Cesar Chavez to the north, the 101 freeway to the west, and the San Francisco Bay to the east. When the Navy closed the Naval Shipyard (the site of the first dry-dock on the West Coast and a major population draw), it also cut the jobs that the Shipyard provided. As jobs left, crime rose, and Hunters Point is now one of the worst neighborhoods of the city. It is however turning around slowly, and people who live there say it's not as bad as it was 10 years ago. New apartments are being built and the Muni Metro (public transit) has been extended.

Dogpatch is a diverse neighborhood on the eastern edge of Potrero Hill, recognized as a historic district by the city in 2003.

The Excelsior is part of the area known as the Outer Mission. The district is a mostly residential and filled with working-class neighborhoods.

Portolá is a mostly residential district bounded by 101, 280, University Ave and Mansell St.

Potrero Hill is a district located east of the Mission District and south of SoMa. It is bordered on the north by 16th Street, on the west by Potrero Avenue (U.S. Route 101), and on the south by Cesar Chavez Street.

Visitacion Valley is a district bordered roughly by John McLaren Park to the west, Mansell Boulevard to the north, Bayview Hill and Candlestick Cove to the east, and the San Francisco/San Mateo County line to the south.

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Sights and Activities

Anchor Steam Brewery, 1705 Mariposa St (at De Haro), ☏ +1-415-863-8350. Tours by reservation only.
Bayview Opera House, 4705 Third St (between Newcomb and Oakdale), ☏ +1-415-824-0386. A wooden structure built in 1888 and now used as a community meeting center.
Bayview Hill Park. Overlooking Candlestick Park, this park has great panoramic views of the bay, however it's not one of San Francisco's better maintained parks.
Candlestick Point State Recreation Area, 1150 Carroll Ave (east of Ingalls), ☏ +1-415-671-0145. Right on the Bay is this actually very nice and undervisited park. It's very green, actually has functioning benches and BBQ pits, and a small fishing pier. You are also likely to spot windsurfers who come to this windy spot on the Bay.
Heron's Head Park, Pier 98 (off Jennings St). A 24-acre restored wetland at the base of the Hunters Point Power Plant.
The EcoCenter at Heron's Head Park, Pier 98, ✉ peggy.lopipero@mail.ccsf.edu. Wed, Fri, Sat, 9:30AM thru 3:30PM. A house built to demonstrate cutting-edge environmentally sustainable design. Come see a real implementation of a solar electricity system, a rain collection system, a black(toilet) water treatment system, and more.

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Events and Festivals

Holidays

  • New Year’s Eve - The US celebrates the outgoing of the old year and incoming of the New Year quite dramatically. Every state boasts its own parties to ring in the New Year, but none is more extravagant than New York’s Time Square, which sees people overflowing into the neighboring restaurants, bars, parks, beaches, and neighborhoods.
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day (officially Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. and sometimes referred to as MLK Day) is an American federal holiday marking the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. It is observed on the third Monday of January each year, which is around King's birthday, January 15. The holiday is similar to holidays set under the Uniform Monday Holiday Act. The earliest Monday for this holiday is January 15 and the latest is January 21. King was the chief spokesperson for nonviolent activism in the Civil Rights Movement, which successfully protested racial discrimination in federal and state law.
  • St Patrick’s Day - March 17 celebrates the US’s large Irish population. Many cities around the country boast boisterous parades and Irish-themed parties, especially New York and Chicago, where the river is dyed green. Be wary of the drunkenness that dominates as this is definitely a party-day.
  • Memorial Day - Memorial Day is an important holiday throughout the United States, but not for crazy festivities. Parades commemorating wartime heroes are often held and the day is also the ‘unofficial’ start of summer. Most visitors follow the crowds to parks and beaches, which are capped off with informal BBQs.
  • Independence Day - Also known as the Fourth of July, Independence Day celebrates the US’s break from the British during the 18th century. Barbecues, street parties, beach trips, and weekend getaways are commonplace to appreciate freedom.
  • Labor Day is a public holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. It honors the American labor movement and the contributions that workers have made to the strength, prosperity, laws, and well-being of the country. It is the Monday of the long weekend known as Labor Day Weekend. It is recognized as a federal holiday. Beginning in the late 19th century, as the trade union and labor movements grew, trade unionists proposed that a day be set aside to celebrate labor.
  • Halloween - Halloween is a fun holiday on October 31 for all generations to dress up in costumes and relive their youth. Children walk around the neighborhood trick-or-treating for candy, while adults attend parties. Other seasonal events include haunted houses, pumpkin farms and carving, and corn mazes.
  • Thanksgiving - On the fourth Thursday in November, Thanksgiving is held in almost every home in the US. Tourists will have a hard time finding anything to do as the country essentially shuts down in observation. A typical Thanksgiving meal consists of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie commemorating the original Pilgrim’s feast at Plymouth Rock.
  • Christmas - On December 25, Christians celebrate Christmas as the pinnacle of their calendar by attending church and opening gifts from Santa Claus. Almost everything shuts down to promote family togetherness. The northern regions hope to experience a “white Christmas,” with trees and festive lights blanketed by snow.

Sport

  • Super Bowl Sunday - the world’s most watched sporting event and one of the highest grossing TV days of the year, Superbowl Sunday is a spectacular extravaganza. Held the first Sunday in February, the Superbowl is the final playoff game between the NFL’s top two teams. The venue rotates every year around America, yet the local parties seem to remain. Pubs, bars and restaurants are great places to enjoy the Superbowl or locals throw their own parties with different variations of betting.
  • The World Series is the annual championship series of Major League Baseball (MLB) in North America, contested since 1903 between the American League (AL) champion team and the National League (NL) champion team. The winner of the World Series championship is determined through a best-of-seven playoff, and the winning team is awarded the Commissioner's Trophy. As the series is played during the fall season in North America, it is sometimes referred to as the Fall Classic.

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Getting There

The MUNI Metro serves several neighborhoods of Southeast San Francisco. The T -Third line light rail runs the length of 3rd Street from Downtown through Potrero Hill and Bayview-Hunters Point to its southern terminus at Bay Shore Blvd and Sunnydale Avenue in Visitacion Valley. On the other side of Southeast San Francisco, the J , K and M lines meet up at the Balboa Park BART station near Ingleside. The M and K lines run west through Ingleside, while the J line runs north through Noe Valley and the Castro.

BART, the regional metro system, stops at the Balboa Park station as well as the Glen Park station (also serviced by MUNI Metro J line) just to the north, before continuing on through the Mission district to Downtown and across the bay. Caltrain, a commuter rail running south from Downtown to San Jose, has two stops in Southeast San Francisco: the 22nd Street station on Pennsylvania and 22nd Streets, and the Bayshore station on Tunnel Avenue south of Bayshore Blvd, near the end of the MUNI Metro T line.

The area is also serviced by the 9-San Bruno, 14-Mission, 19-Polk, 22-Fillmore, 23-Monterey, 24-Divisadero, 29-Sunset, 43-Masonic, 44-O'Shaughnessy, 48-Quintara/24th Street, 49-Mission/Van Ness, 52-Excelsior, 54-Felton and 56-Rutland MUNI bus lines.

By car, I-280 and the 101 Highway provide easy freeway access to the area.

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Eat

Old Clam House, 299 Bayshore Blvd (at Oakdale), ☏ +1-415-826-4880. Established in 1861. Start your meal with clam broth and sourdough bread.
Roadhouse Coffee Company, 5191 3rd St (between Shafter Ave & Thomas Ave). Coffee, and a variety of sandwiches.
Sorrento Delicatessen, 4763 Mission St (between Leo and Russia), ☏ +1-415-587-2277. Local business with great salami.
Hard Knox Cafe, 2526 3rd St (at 22nd), ☏ +1-415-648-3770. M-Sa 11AM-9PM, Su 11AM-5PM. Casual soul food; oxtail, ribs, fried chicken, etc.
7-Mile House, 2800 Bayshore Blvd (at Geneva), ☏ +1-415-467-2343. M-Th 11:30AM-10PM, F-Sa 11:30AM-2AM. The 7-Mile House is a historic landmark and a great place to get some food. During the days of the gold rush, the 7-mile house served as a resting post for horse coaches travelling from San Francisco (Embarcadero) to San Jose. This was a place to rest your horses, get some beer and share stories of finding gold. Today, the place boasts an authentic gold rush decor, great beer and burgers and live music most days of the week.
Goat Hill Pizza, 300 Connecticut St (between 18th St & 19th St), ☏ +1-415-641-1440. Su–Th 11:30AM-10PM, F–Sa 11:30AM-10:30PM. Great family pizza place. $14-26.
Plow, 1299 18th St, ☏ +1-415-821-7569. popular place for brunch.

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Drink

Bottom of the Hill, 1233 17th St (at Missouri), ☏ +1-415-621-4455. Sa-Th 8:30PM-2AM, F 4PM-2AM. Chosen by Rolling Stone magazine (RS 813) as "the best place to hear live music in San Francisco", the Bottom of the Hill presents some of the finest original artists, seven nights a week. It has a full bar and a kitchen and also features a nice patio area to escape the crowd and have a smoke.
Farley's Coffee and Newsstand, 1315 18th St (at Texas), ☏ +1-415-648-1545, ✉ info@farleyscoffee.com. M-F 6:30AM-10PM, Sa 7:30AM-10PM, Su 8AM-10PM. A 15+ year institution in Potrero Hill. Roger (the owner) is a conscientious-objector to cafe wi-fi, so don't expect any. But do expect sociable strangers, shelves-full of community sketchbooks, a pile of tattered old board-games, the best newsstand outside of Civic Center, old Hell's Angels guys socializing with Armani clad architects, delicious coffee drinks, a toy bin for the kids, and dog-friendly folks outside to pet your dog while you're inside.
Blooms Saloon, 1318 18th St (between Missouri and Texas), ☏ +1-415-552-6707. M-Sa 11:30AM-1:30AM, Su 10AM-1:30AM. One of the few remaining true blue-collar watering holes around, this is very much a neighborhood bar and a great place to go to watch baseball and football games. No around-the-shoulder cuffed-sweaters, khaki pants, or tassle-loafer wearin' folks in this joint, but lots of friendly folks, and during Giants or 49ers games, cheers and boos can be heard from a good block away. One of the best views in the city is from out the back porch, which regrettably is now only open during the day. Not a quiet bar, but the back seating area is a good place to meet friends for a 'mellow' beer and chit-chat after dinner or work. All of the sports watching and local gossip takes place up towards the front. Friendly staff; no airheads allowed.
Magnolia Brewing Company, 665 22nd St (Also entrance 2505 3rd St), ☏ +1-415-864-7468. Located in an old warehouse, good selection of beers and food.

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Sleep

There are few lodging opportunities in this area, and those that are here are often run-down motels along the main streets which unfortunately have a reputation for attracting drug dealers, crime, and general uncleanliness of the motels themselves; not to mention that they are far from the city's main attractions. There are some very affordable and generally nicer accommodations closer to the tourist neighborhoods and just south in Daly City.

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Keep Connected

Internet

There is a very small internet bar/cafe culture in the USA. Even then most of the internet bars/cafes tend be located in major urban centers. Accessible WiFi networks, however, are common. The most generally useful WiFi spots are in coffee shops, fast-food chains, and bookshops, but also restaurants and hotels more and more have a network to connect on. Some of them might require you to buy something and you might need a password too, especially in hotels.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

The general emergency phone number is 911. The USA has a great landline phone system that is easy to use. The country code for the U.S. is +1. The rest of the telephone number consists of 10 digits: a 3-digit area code, and a 7-digit number. Any small grocery store or pharmacy has pre paid domestic or international phone cards. These phone cards are very cheap and offer good rates. The once ubiquitous pay phone is now much harder to find. Likely locations include in or near stores and restaurants, and near bus stops. The cellphone network in the states is slowly getting better but is still not as good when compared to other western countries. Cell phones tend to operate using different frequencies (850 MHz and 1900 MHz) from those used elsewhere in the world (2100 MHz). This used to prevent most foreign phones from working in America. Phones must be tri- or quad-band to work in the U.S. Fortunately, technology has meant that most phones should now be able to pick up one of the U.S. networks. Prepaid phones and top-up cards can be purchased at mobile phone boutiques and at many discount, electronics, office supply and convenience stores. A very basic handset with some credit can be had for under $40.

Post

The US Postal Service is a very good and well priced mail system. There are post offices in every small and large town for sending packages internationally or domestically. Although some might keep longer hours, most are open at least between 9:00am and 5:00pm. If wanting to send a letter or postcard it is best just to leave it in a blue mail box with the proper postage. First-class international airmail postcards and letters (up 28.5 grams) cost $1.10. There are also private postal services like FedEx, UPS, TNT and DHL, which might be better value sometimes and are generally very quick and reliable too.

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This is version 1. Last edited at 13:54 on Sep 18, 19 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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