news, gossip and scenes

Popo End Happy Hour Early for Dolores Park

In Mission Dolores on August 20, 2009 at 5:57 pm

Update- August 28, 2009 at 5:54 pm

I just spoke with captain Stephen Tacchini at Mission Station by phone. He says he was misquoted by the officers who started writing citations for public drinking in the park a few weeks back. “They were not told by me to start issuing citations for drinking in the park.”  He says the policy is to “advise people about the City park alcohol policy.”  Some of the motor bike patrols were misinformed, he said.
Yes, they are patrolling the park more often lately, but his main concern is curbing drug sales. And yes, his officers are enforcing the 10 pm curfew.
He said nothing about dampening spirits.


At 5 pm this evening I spotted two  patrol officers issuing citations for public drinking to two men sitting on the lawn just above Gay Beach off 20th street. These guys were neither obviously drunk, rowdy or committing any other nuisance.
The officers told me that Mission Station Chief, Steve Tacchini had issued new orders this morning ordering the drinking in Dolores Park to be brought under control. “Park neighbors had come to him complaining” the officer said.


Setting up at 19th street for a sunning weekend in Dolores Park

Setting up at 19th street for a sunny weekend in Dolores Park

Up till today, officers patrolling the park have told me they would not issue citations unless the offender was noticeably drunk, belligerent or violent. Public urination was another quick ticket to court. Captain Tacchini told a group of Mission Dolores Neighbors at a August 7 meeting in Supervisor Bevan Dufty’s office that I attende, that while violence would not be tolerated, citing people for drinking and smoking in Dolores was not a priority. Something must have happened in the two weeks to have changed his mind.

  1. were their drinks in a brown paper bag?

  2. I think I saw brown bags. The cop said that he knew they would not be able to cite every drinker in the park, but “once they saw us issuing citations, people would put the alcohol away.” Maybe a little discretion will help.
    All I would like to see guys, is for everyone to take all your crap away with you. Including cigi buts, beer caps. bubbly cages, the works. It’s getting a little thick out there on the lawn.

  3. I bet if people did a better job of picking up their trash and not thrashing the park and the neighborhood, the vast majority of the neighbors would stop complaining…

  4. Bingo! From what I am hearing, the complaints are abut the condition of the park, the entry area around 18th, the lawns. It’s not all our fault. the irrigation is busted, the turf is mostly weeds and is just weak and old. But if we can help the gardeners out by keeping the crap off the lawn. “Leave no trace” I was told when we went camping as a kid. This is what we need here. Leave it as you found it.

  5. 8 people were cited for drinking with a group I was with yesterday. No one was drunk or disturbing the piece and we cleaned up all of our trash. A warning might have been more appropriate, since drinking in the park has gone unchecked for YEARS.

  6. Allison, do you know what the fine is for this? Do you have to appear in court?

  7. I’ve heard that its just a fine, no court appearance or anything, I don’t know for sure though. From the SFPD website:

    “Drinking in public, including carrying alcohol in an open container, is illegal, period.

    The violation is punishable with a $77 fine…”

  8. Avi, thanks. Good leg work. I am going to try to talk with the station chief this week and get the whole story.

  9. hey, plug in band from yesterday, two times through “All Along the Watchtower” is probably enough. If you’ve already taken two laps through your material, that’s probably a good sign that you can stop playing…

  10. Hey Chalkman,
    I hate to insult you but::
    That was New Lease playing, they have milleniums of material.
    They just got back on a Red Eye from Osaka and are touring with Ronnie Wood’s new band

    The second version of Watchtower was a special request from Rudy Colombini of North Beach’s URS. Before you pick up your “dildo” shaped pen, start to know your local heroes and start saying nice things about rock because it probably might have gotten you laid if you ever picked up an instrument instead of scouring the “casual encounters” section of Craigslist ads.

    Ever heard of SOUNDCHECK?- get a life man, those guys rocked your narrow minded world for free and you probably were telling people that you hired that band for your birthday party, or better yet, your 100th “no strings attached” Craigslist encounter in Delores Park.
    Didn’t mean to slam you but you should waste your time listening to some Stones, Dylan or your poor mother.

  11. Scott, thank you for your kind and thoughtful comment. Please give us a heads up next time such a monumental historic event goes down in Dolores. It is hard for us to tell dreck from shinola, when we are trying to deal with life and noise drifts through the window.

  12. Fuck all the yuppies who move in next to Dolores Park and then complain it’s a public entertainment space. Those of us who couldn’t afford the million dollar real estate are still members of this community that greatly benefits from having publiuc recreation spaces where you can open a beer and enjoy free entertainment. These assholes have gone so far as to petition the park to limit events to 1-2 a month rather than 3-4 in the summer. This is insane we should have plenty of free entertainment in this city which improves our community and brings people together. The whole idea of “park overuse” is equally asinine, it’s not a wildlife preserve it’s a park put in there for people to enjoy.

  13. Yes Ashley, “we should have plenty of free entertainment in this city which improves our community and brings people together.” And I am a big proponent of having as many events in the park as practical. But let me defend the concept of park overuse, Excessive heavy use wears out the turf and too many very loud events are not fair to the neighborhood. We can hear most large amplified events for blocks. Let’s mix in some smaller events, Rotate the wear on the grass. Move them about the park and about the city.
    Yes, this is dense urban area and the park is an oasis of green that needs some protection and care.

  14. Can I just say that I am renter who lives on the park, makes a very modest income in education, and not a “yuppie” with a stock portfolio. Asking people to be considerate of noise, trash, and broken glass isn’t coming from a place of crazy entitlement.

  15. Scott Robinson: Local heroes? Please! and really who gives a crap about Rudy or the URS(for anybody who doesn’t know, it’s the ‘unauthorized rolling stones’ freaking stones COVER band…zzz) definitely NOT hero material…as for touring with Ronnie Wood, cool, but really, so what? Hero by proxy? I don’t think so. I’d much rather see a unheard Latino punk rock trio then that.

    Ashley: As somebody who has lived on Dolores facing the park for over a decade I say 1-2 events a month is more than enough. It’s about as dense as urban living gets without having to cram thousands more inconsiderate litterbugs into the same place. Please tell me where you live and I will be happy to send the homeless folks who sort the bottles after the events over so they can camp out under your window or maybe you have a nice niche by your front door where I could send some drunk dude over to take a piss…and no I don’t own one of the million dollar homes you are so obviously envious of… I say more people can truly enjoy the park WITHOUT as many events. (movie nights excepted)

    My observation is that Park use has gone WAY up in the last decade…last 3 yrs even…and the wear and tear really shows. And while I’m at it what can we do to get rid of the AWFUL Jesus freak music horror show? Talk about unwelcome…

  16. jcw: I live around the corner from you and I completely agree with you. Thanks for putting it so clearly and I wish it made more sense to others.

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