News Briefs: Soccer and cider team up for Earth Day

  • by Cynthia Laird, News Editor
  • Wednesday April 17, 2024
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Bex Pezzullo, owner of Sincere Cider, has partnered with the Oakland Roots soccer club and Trees for Oakland in observance of Earth Day. Photo: Cynthia Laird
Bex Pezzullo, owner of Sincere Cider, has partnered with the Oakland Roots soccer club and Trees for Oakland in observance of Earth Day. Photo: Cynthia Laird

The Oakland Roots Sports Club, a professional soccer team in the East Bay city, has announced a partnership with the local queer-owned Sincere Cider company timed with Earth Day, which is formally observed Monday, April 22, but celebrated all month.

The Roots and the cidery have introduced Sincere Cider OAK, a unique oak-aged hard cider. In a move to support environmental sustainability, a portion of proceeds from every case sold will be contributed to Trees for Oakland, a local nonprofit dedicated to enhancing the city's urban forest. According to a news release, the initiative reflects a shared commitment to improving the local environment, with a focus on Oakland's most impacted neighborhoods.

Bex Pezzullo, a queer native Californian, started Sincere Cider several years ago, as the Bay Area Reporter noted in a September 2023 Business Briefing column. Sincere Cider crafts its beverages with a special blend of culinary apples and French wine yeast, the release noted, ensuring a perfectly blended flavor. Sincere's seasonal and limited releases have already supported the planting of over 2,000 trees in California wildfire burn scars, the release added.

These days, the product can be found in numerous retail stores, as well as at Oakland Roots soccer matches, which are being played at Cal State East Bay's Pioneer Stadium in Hayward this season. (The team plans to play home matches at the Oakland Coliseum in 2025.)

"By teaming up with Oakland Roots and our local retail partners for the release of OAK, I know we are all coming together to make a contribution to the urban forest and help repair the urban canopy throughout Oakland — a city we all love and are committed to supporting," Pezzullo stated.

Andrea Lepore, vice president of brand partnerships for the Roots and its women's team, Oakland Soul, added, "This Earth Day, we're inviting our fans to join us in our collaboration with a can of OAK cider to help plant trees and combat heat island effects in our most vulnerable neighborhoods."

Sincere Cider's OAK (5.9% alcohol by volume) will be available for a limited time at East Bay retailers, bars, and exclusively at the Oakland Roots home match Saturday, April 27, at 7 p.m. against the Colorado Springs Switchbacks. The team has designated the match its "Clean and Green Night."

For more information on Sincere Cider, go to For more information on the Oakland Roots, go to For more information about Trees for Oakland, go to

Rainbow flag virtual town hall postponed

The virtual town hall about the proposed landmarking of the giant rainbow flag at Castro and Market streets has been postponed until after a city panel reviews the plan.

The Gilbert Baker Foundation, which is spearheading the landmarking effort of Baker's oversized rainbow flag and flagpole at the gateway to the LGBTQ Castro neighborhood, had planned to hold the online meeting Thursday, April 25, as the B.A.R. previously reported.

However, Charley Beal, a gay man who is president of the foundation, informed the B.A.R. this week that the town hall likely will take place in May. The city's historic preservation commission is now expected to hear the proposal at its May 15 meeting, Beal stated in an email.

No new date for the town hall was given, but Beal stated it would be after the HPC meeting.

The B.A.R. reported earlier this month that the Board of Supervisors approved a resolution by gay District 8 Supervisor Rafael Mandelman to begin the city landmarking process for the flag. Baker, a gay man who co-created the first eight-color rainbow flag in 1978, is generally credited with turning the now-standard six-color banner into a worldwide symbol for LGBTQ rights. Baker died in 2017. He worked with former San Francisco mayor Willie Brown to have the oversize flag installed in the Castro in 1997, which marked the 20th anniversary of slain supervisor Harvey Milk's election to the board. Milk and then-mayor George Moscone were killed in their City Hall offices in November 1978 by disgruntled former supervisor Dan White.

Outdoor downtown SF arts celebration

Create, a free, outdoor immersive visual and performing arts celebration — spotlighting San Francisco's creative past, present, and future — will take place Thursday, April 25, from 4 to 8 p.m. at Landing at Leidesdorff, downtown's newest destination located at the intersection of Commercial and Leidesdorff streets.

The event is being hosted by the Downtown SF Partnership, which is supported by Mayor London Breed and the Office of Economic and Workforce Development. Create will pay tribute to the origins of the historic Montgomery Block building and surrounding downtown area, a news release stated. The Montgomery Block building was a historic building active from 1853-1959. The building was demolished and the Transamerica Pyramid building now sits there.

"Create is a true and necessary investment into downtown San Francisco's art scene," stated Robbie Silver, a bi man who's executive director of the Downtown SF Partnership. "By hosting a diverse set of performances and creators that invite public participation and highlight the area's existing cultural offerings, attendees can interact with the public realm in new, delightful ways."

Silver added that the partnership is dedicated to "bringing the resilient imagination and wonder of downtown to life."

The past will honor 1924 and include the Poetry Store, where poet Silvi Alcivar will create poems on-demand in three minutes or less; the Lords of Print screenshop; pianist Richelle Scales; and bandleader Jae Jackson.

The present will honor 2024 and feature dance from MotoR/dance; vocalist Jackie Chavez; and musician Aidan Moore.

The future will take a look at 3024 and include music spun by a DJ using a playlist sequence generated by artificial intelligence, and "A Robot Made It First," a tactile art experience for people with any level of vision capability.

For more information about Create, go to

Larkin Street Youth Services marks 40 years

Larkin Street Youth Services will mark its 40th anniversary with its 22nd annual Paving the Way gala Saturday, April 27, from 6 to 9:30 p.m. at the Four Seasons Hotel, 757 Market Street in San Francisco.

The event will honor Maryann Muduroglu, San Francisco's chief of protocol, with the nonprofit's Anne B. Stanton Award for her pivotal role in the success of Larkin Street's Rising Up campaign, a public-private partnership launched in 2019 with the city of San Francisco that is aimed at reducing youth homelessness. A news release stated that with Muduroglu's efforts, which included leveraging her network, the campaign helped 641 young people find a pathway out of homelessness.

Additionally, three young people from Larkin Street's programs will be recognized with the annual Going the Distance Awards for their significant progress toward overcoming homelessness.

Businessman and internet personality Nick Cho will emcee the event alongside Larkin Street program participant Averaii Dirks, the release noted.

The event includes a reception, silent and live auctions, seated dinner, and awards program. Tickets are $500. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.

Learn how to declutter at SF seminar

Matt Paxton, author, organizational guru, and host of PBS' "Legacy List," will appear at a seminar to discuss how people can downsize and declutter Thursday, April 25, from 2 to 4 p.m. at The Sequoias San Francisco, a senior living community located at 1400 Geary Boulevard.

According to a news release, Paxton helps people discover how personal belongings hold a wealth of memories. Items with a high sentimental value can hold people back from decluttering and downsizing. Paxton teaches attendees how to curate items and share their legacy through these meaningful possessions.

"An abundance of personal belongings can be challenging as you age," Paxton stated. "But when it comes to downsizing, it's easier to keep the memories and lose the stuff."

Following the presentation, appetizers and drinks will be served. Attendees can meet residents of The Sequoias and hear stories behind their legacy items.

The event is free but registration is required due to limited space. To sign up, go to

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