When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
In the past 30 years, light artists have reimagined an art form that has always had the ability to turn the night sky, or a simple window, into luminescence. Last fall, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts turned its southern glass wall into a parade of sound-sensing lights, Lightswarm, that changes with the movements of nearby people and things. Future Cities Lab, the San Francisco design company behind Lightswarm, has originated another notable light sculpture. Located by the YBCA's steps at 701 Mission, Murmur Wall will light up in arresting ways as it incorporates local trending search engine results and social media postings. Onlookers can offer their own contributions, which will feed into the Murmur Wall's data stream and light up the sculpture. What's trending in San Francisco? If you're walking by the YBCA, you can see firsthand — at least through light patterns that reflect the city's volatile internet habits.
Murmur Wall debuts Thursday at 6 p.m. and continues through May 31, 2017, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F. Free; 415-978-2700 or ybca.org. More
It's not like the Pistahan Festival doesn't have a lot going on. Au contraire it's a grand, sprawling, sensory overload of an outdoor Filipino culture celebration, complete with the San Francisco Filipino American Jazz Festival embedded in it. An art pavilion displays fine art in conjunction with local galleries, a heritage area shows folk artifacts from private collections, and attendees can learn traditional dance moves or watch as any of several local companies perform. Kids get a crafty spot all to themselves, which includes storytelling. But it's the food we can't stop thinking about, particularly the two eating contests. The longanisa- and balut-eating competitions seem like opposite ends of the competitive eating spectrum: The former, a spicy pork sausage, sounds delicious, while the latter involves something halfway between an egg and a chicken, and we don't want any. Then there's the adobo cook-off, lumpia, lechon, and of course, extra complicated halo-halo.
Aug. 8-9, 11 a.m., 2009