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Mar 28

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Community Comes Together To Celebrate San Francisco’s Garden District

The Portola community turned out in good numbers to show their pride.  All photos by Arthur Koch. 

As we reported several weeks back and as you may have already noticed, a prominent mural has popped up almost over night. The new sign which was created by the Portola Urban Greening Committee (P.U.G.), welcomes visitors and residents to “San Francisco’s Garden District.”  It was publicly unveiled Saturday (3/11) during a well attended dedication event complete with a three piece band playing along with the hum of the freeway. Speeches honoring the Portola’s commitment to  community building and the preservation of history were given by District 9 Supervisor Hillary Ronen and State Assemblymember David Chiu.   The event became a bit of a Portola social hour as neighbors connected over refreshments while mingling between displays highlighting the agricultural history of the neighborhood.  The mural itself, which dominates the side of Ruth’s Children’s Shoppe (2469 San Bruno Ave.), was designed by Artist Caitlyn Galloway and painted by New Bohemia Signs. Jean Harrell, the owner of Ruth’s, was overjoyed with the end result and large community turn out for the event.  Saying that she has “waited and prayed for over 10 years for this project to happen in one form or another.”  The project, of course, could never have gotten off the ground without Jean’s sign-off and dedication to the community or without the collaborative efforts of the P.U.G. committee who championed the project and pulled the team together.

Community volunteers weeding and clearing the ground for the new garden prior to the event. 

As we noted in a previous post, the sign element is only phase 1 of this project. The second phase is now in the works as community volunteers from P.U.G have been clearing the land below the sign. Over the next several months they will be installing a new garden to compliment the mural and further build the garden district identity. They will once again be helped by Jean from Ruth’s Children’s Shoppe, who has generously donated the use of her water connection to establish and maintain the garden. If you would like to know more about P.U.G. please check their website or email the program manager Lucia Pohlman directly.  lucia@sfgreenhouses.org . There will be upcoming volunteer work days in April that need volunteers and she would love to hear your ideas on how to further green and beautify the Portola.

Community volunteers clearing the ground below the sign for a new garden.

The band plays in the background as neighbors take part in activities and learn about the Garden District’s history.

From the left, Luke Spray (San Bruno Ave. Corridor Manager, Hillary Ronen (San Francisco District 9 Supervisor & Portola Resident), Lucia Pohlman (Portola Urban Greening Coordinator), State Assemblymember David Chiu.

On the right, Jean Harrell, the owner of Ruth’s Children’s Shoppe, smiles on as the project she has dreamed about, finally becomes a reality.

Permanent link to this article: http://portolaplanet.com/2017/03/community-comes-together-celebrate-san-franciscos-garden-district/

1 comment

  1. Kris

    I love the sign! It’s really beautiful! Thank you so much!
    Can we please pressure wash the sidewalks? Have storefronts clean up or give them money to paint and less signage?
    But the neighborhood is starting to look so much better!

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