Forget more livable streets this Saturday unless you're thinking streets of the "living dead." NOPA opens its blocks to ghouls, spooks, and ghosts in the late afternoon and into Halloween night for the annual scary NOPNA block party.
Spooky times begin at 4 pm for the Kid's Halloween Party at Green Chile Kitchen, McAllister and Baker Streets. Dancing, games, snacks, and surprise guests await costumed kids. And little ones especially decked out definitely want to enter the costume contest at 5:15. Afterwards, everyone gets to join the neighborhood parade led by D5 Supe Ross Mirkarimi with a take-off from the restaurant to head up Baker to McAllister and then proceed west to Lyon before returning.
And there's more scary fun. After the parade, two blocks of Grove Street (from Central to Baker) and two blocks of Lyon Street (Fulton to Hayes) will be car-free and open for the Ghoulish Grove Street Block Party for trick or treating and swapping ghost stories.*
Last year 75 kids joined the devilish fun, and BIKE NOPA has learned that the Haunted Garden at 1635 Grove will be bigger and scarier this year. Kids, you've got to bring a parent with you.
Chief event organizer Leela Gill invites everyone to join the fun, including single adults without kids of their own. "Providing a safe, car-free place for children to trick or treat for a few hours -- all within walking distance of their homes -- is just one more way we can come together as a community. Parents don't have to get into their cars and drive to another neighborhood. Kids enjoy seeing their neighborhood friends. And adults of all ages can't help but smile when they see the little ones walking down the street in their costumes. Simply put, it's fun for everyone!"
NOPNA's annual Halloween Party (and block party)
Saturday, Oct. 31, starts 4pm, extends into the night
4pm: meet at Green Chile Kitchen, 18o1 McAllister @ Baker (formerly Cafe Proust)
5:15: costume contest at restaurant
5:30: parade from McAllister to Lyon and back
Post-parade party into the night on Grove (Baker to Central) and Lyon (Fulton to Hayes)
Trevor Logan and his staff at Green Chile Kitchen will be ready to serve great burritos (for purchase) for all hungry ghosts and goblins and even their uncostumed friends. Jennifer Rosdail will provide treats for kids after the party.
* Several years ago when I interviewed NOPA residents for a series of "Historic House Profiles" many confided that they shared their homes, willingly or not, with spirits.