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Felecia Gaston Publishes New Book on Marin City

Felecia Gaston, the founder and director of Performing Stars of Marin, and The Marin City Historical and Preservation Society, will be promoting her new book, “a brand new start…this is home – The Story of World War II Marinship and the Legacy of Marin City.” Gaston will be in conversation with Cheryl Popp on Tuesday, April 25 at 6:00 p.m. at Sausalito Books by The Bay, 100 Bay St. in Sausalito.

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Cover of book, left, and portrait of Felecia Gaston, right, at the Bartolini Gallery. Photo courtesy of Felecia Gaston.
Cover of book, left, and portrait of Felecia Gaston, right, at the Bartolini Gallery. Photo courtesy of Felecia Gaston.

By Godfrey Lee

Felecia Gaston, the founder and director of Performing Stars of Marin, and The Marin City Historical and Preservation Society, will be promoting her new book, “a brand new start…this is home – The Story of World War II Marinship and the Legacy of Marin City.”

Gaston will be in conversation with Cheryl Popp on Tuesday, April 25 at 6:00 p.m. at Sausalito Books by The Bay, 100 Bay St. in Sausalito.

“A brand new start…this is home” is a commemorative book for the Marin City 80 celebration, and includes “historical images, excerpts of oral histories, archival news, headlines and documents that have been previously published,” said Gaston.

It reveals the untold stories, experiences, and what the Black people in Marin City had endured for 80 years, and highlights the community’s dignity, character, and pride from the 1940s to the present.

The book also talks about the “influences and infringements from outsiders who have historically and continue to impose their vision for the community…and portrays the strength and tenacity of local advocates who wanted to decide their destiny,”

The book begins by casting back to the original inhabitants, the Coast Miwok Indians to the Azorean Portuguese of Southern Marin, Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor leading to the United States entry into WWII, the Bechtel Corporation’s contract to build the Liberty ships, and the people from near and far who did the work.

Gaston writes about the Marin Housing Authority building temporary homes in 1942, the beginning of a community in Marin City, outside developers, the Ku Klux Klan’s cross burning in Marin City, what the Marin Civic Center was proposing for the future of the land in Marin City in 1952, and how people such as Supervisor Vera Schultz, Mary Summers, Aaron Green, Lawrence Livingston, Jr., Lawrence Halprin, and John Carl Warnecke help to plan and shape Marin City.

The book references Marin City’s Black business owners from 1950s to the present, a professional sports archive, local entertainment groups, and individual entertainers such as George Duke, Tupac Amaru Shakur, Rap Group 51.50 Illegally Insane, and Evard “Avar the Star” Auxila.

The book narrative continues with the legacy of the Black Panthers in Marin City, Geronimo Pratt, the Marin City Community Festivals from 1975 to 1989, the Blues, the Jazz & Soul Festivals in The Park from 1998 to 2012, the Tuskegee Airmen and Veterans’ Day Celebrations, George “Rocky” Graham Park of 2015, Golden Gate Village in 2017, and the Trump Caravan, coronavirus pandemic, George Floyd protests, and the U.S. Census in 2020.

Gaston writes that Marin City community has tackled the “interconnected issues of systemic racism, housing inequity, gentrification, the collapse of the middle class, and (its) resilience.”

She says that after celebrating Marin City’s 80th birthday, now is time introduce the Marin City Historical and Preservation Society in order to recognize her legacy, preserve her history and “contribute to the community’s growing vitality, richly deserved by the many residents who have invested deeply in this unique historical enclave.”

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Activism

Oakland Post: Week of June 12-18, 2024

The printed Weekly Edition of the Oakland Post: Week of June 12-18, 2024

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Art

Mayor Breed, Actor Morris Chestnut Attend S.F.’s Indie Night Film Festival

On June 1, the acclaimed Los Angeles-based Indie Night Film Festival arrived at the Kabuki Theater in San Francisco. San Francisco native Dave Brown, Founder and CEO of the Indie Night Film Festival, has a vision for the film industry that is squarely focused on promoting the many talented producers, actors, and designers contributing to this billion-dollar industry. The festival has been running for 12 years and it’s only up from here, he says.

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(Left to Right) Dave Brown, CEO, Indie Night Festival, San Francisco Mayor London Breed, and actor Morris Chestnut. Photo by Y’Anad Burrell
(Left to Right) Dave Brown, CEO, Indie Night Festival, San Francisco Mayor London Breed, and actor Morris Chestnut. Photo by Y’Anad Burrell

By Y’Anad Burrell

On June 1, the acclaimed Los Angeles-based Indie Night Film Festival arrived at the Kabuki Theater in San Francisco.

San Francisco native Dave Brown, Founder and CEO of the Indie Night Film Festival, has a vision for the film industry that is squarely focused on promoting the many talented producers, actors, and designers contributing to this billion-dollar industry.  The festival has been running for 12 years and it’s only up from here, he says.

A weekly celebration of cinematic artistry designed to elevate emerging talent while providing a platform for networking and collaboration, entrepreneur Dave Brown created Indie Night to bridge gaps within the filmmaking community by fostering connections between like-minded individuals worldwide. The Indie Film Festival currently has over 450 film submissions worldwide, and its cinematic vault only continues to grow.

The festival showcased over 10 short films and trailers, and featured Faces of the “City: Fighting for the Soul of America,” produced by veteran actor Tisha Campbell.  This film is about the vibrancy and legacy of San Francisco. The festival also previewed “When It Reigns,” a trailer by Oakland’s burgeoning filmmaker Jamaica René.

Indie films have not just challenged traditional cinematic norms; they’ve shattered them. These films offer unique storytelling perspectives and push creative boundaries in truly inspiring ways. With their smaller budgets and independent spirit, they often tackle unconventional subjects and portray diverse characters, providing a refreshing alternative to mainstream cinema. As a result, indie films have resonated with audiences seeking an escape from formulaic blockbusters and are increasingly celebrated for their authenticity and originality.

Organizers say the mission of Indie Night is to elevate the craft of independent artists and creators. It also provides a venue for them to showcase their work, network, and exchange information with new and established creatives. It creates a community that values and supports independent art.

For more about the Indie Night Film Festival, visit www.indienightfilmfestival.com.

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Bay Area

Sen. Wiener, Mayor Breed Announce Bill to Shut Down Fencing of Stolen Goods

On June 3, San Francisco Mayor London N. Breed joined State Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) to announce a bill aiming to combat fencing, the sale of stolen goods. Authored by Wiener and sponsored by Breed, Senate Bill (SB) 925 would allow San Francisco to create permitting requirements to regulate the sale of items commonly obtained through retail theft and impose criminal penalties for those who engage in this practice.

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By Oakland Post Staff

On June 3, San Francisco Mayor London N. Breed joined State Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) to announce a bill aiming to combat fencing, the sale of stolen goods.

Authored by Wiener and sponsored by Breed, Senate Bill (SB) 925 would allow San Francisco to create permitting requirements to regulate the sale of items commonly obtained through retail theft and impose criminal penalties for those who engage in this practice.

“The sale of stolen items in San Francisco has created unsafe street conditions and health and safety hazards that have negatively impacted residents, businesses, City workers, and legitimate street vendors,” states a statement released by the mayor’s office.

San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) Chief Bill Scott praised the effort.

“I want to thank Mayor Breed and Senator Wiener for identifying new ways to combat the illegal fencing of stolen goods. This will help our hard-working officers continue to make progress in cracking down on retail theft,” said Scott.

Under the legislation, San Francisco can require vendors to obtain a permit to be able to sell items deemed as frequently stolen by asking for documentation that the merchandise was obtained legitimately, such as showing proof of purchase.

The legislation also establishes that those in violation would receive an infraction for the first two offenses and an infraction or a misdemeanor and up to six months in county jail for the third offense.

Under this bill, people can still:

  • Sell goods with a permit
  • Sell prepared food with a permit
  • Sell goods on the list of frequently stolen items with a permit and proof of purchase.

“In San Francisco we are working hard to make our streets safer and more welcoming for all. SB 925 would greatly help us get a handle on the sale of stolen goods, all while taking a narrow approach that specifically targets bad actors,” said Breed.

Wiener says the cultural richness of San Francisco and the livelihoods of legitimate street vendors are threatened when bad actors are allowed to openly sell stolen goods on the city’s streets.

“With this bill we’re taking a balanced approach that respects the critical role street vending plays in our community while holding fencing operations accountable for the disruption they cause. It’s critical that everyone feel safe on our streets, including street vendors and neighborhood residents,” said Wiener.

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