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
San Francisco's pastel charms and mysterious, fog-shrouded ambience have attracted filmmakers for generations, even before Erich von Stroheim shot Greed here in 1922, but few movies have captured the city's wraithlike spirit and impassive beauty as well as Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo.
The last few years have been tough for the S.F. Circus Center. There were leadership changes, a mysterious closure, and a surge in competition from other schools (some run by alumni). But the organization that spawned the Bay Area's flourishing circus scene isn't going away. They're firing back with a value package unmet by the upstart schools. The new unlimited program allows students to pay $155-$199 per month and train as often as they like. It's not totally unlimited: Students can take up to two classes per day, for a maximum of 50 per month, and a few classes have wait lists. But with classes seven days a week, and teachers like Mr. Lu Yi of the famed Nanjing Acrobatic Troupe on staff, it's still the best deal under the big top.