The Ingleside: Your next vacation destination!

Posted on March 8, 2010

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No fun to be had on Ocean Avenue?

Oh my the Ingleside. This neighborhood went from a race track, to a poppin’ part of town, to a residential cut-thru. The glitz and playground fun that San Francisco brings, seems to stop at Noe Valley and unfortunately most of San Francisco knows this. The map above (a search of attractions from SF’s tourist site) illustrates this.

I work at a café in Pacific Heights. Last week, I talked to a patron about earthquakes (which I am now an expert about). I told her about my podcast and the subsequent story I wrote on it for Newswire21, but she stopped me and asked a question.

Wait, Where is the Ingleside?

Almost stunned, I stopped and glanced back, which I think made her a bit uncomfortable. I told her Ocean Avenue is the main corridor. “Do you know where that is?,” I asked. She said no. I then asked her if she knew were City College was. She nodded, but it was almost an unsure  “I’m-just-doing-this-to-not-seem-like-an-imbecile” kinda look. I told her it was close to SF State to which she exclaimed “OH!,” but it made me think: Why do people never come to this part of town?

If you look at Ocean Avenue, it’s rather barren while the rest of the city is painted with red tourist attractions. But The Ingleside used to be a the place to be back in San Francisco’s heyday.

A Brief History

  • You know the GAP store on Powell and Market? (Yeah, THIS gap). It’s nice and all, but GAP’s first jump into consumer apparel was in 1969 as a counter-culture clothing and record store. And where was it? Ocean Avenue, on the side of El Rey Theatre (another Ingleside Landmark). It’s actually kind of ridiculous to fathom this, but really, Ocean Avenue was once a vibrant and well regarded commercial street. A quick aside* Many activist in the Ingleside want to turn El Rey Theatre into a memorial for Gap and make it a community center for Ingleside residents. They want the Fisher Foundation to donate cash for this. I hope this goes through!
  • You know AT&T Park? Well, The Ingleside Race track was the place for sports.
  • Ingleside Bootleggers (via FoundSF)

    You can still see it today at Urbano Drive. It’s one of the only places in the city where you stay on the same street as you walk it! It’s a great loop for running or biking! and if you turn on Entrada Court you’ll find a…

  • …a huge Sundial in the middle of the Terraces neighborhood. It’s inspiration for the logo!

You always know the time in the Ingleside!

***

The Ingleside won my heart. So much that I made a blog about it. There’s real people, real history and as Max noted in my interview, this is a place to escape the craziness that is SF.

I hope all of this goes to show that the magical city of San Francisco doesn’t stop in The Mission or SoMa. We’re people out here too!

Do you have favorite places in the Ingleside? Let me know in the comments! Let’s get a definitive list of sites going!

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