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Best Way to Maintain Punk Rock Roots While Adapting to New Surroundings 

Needles & Pens

3253 16th St., 415-255-1534
When it first opened on 16th Street in 2003, Needles & Pens was the greatest little punk rock store in San Francisco. It had zines! Tiny art shows! And Maximum Rock & Roll photography exhibits! Above all else, it was an establishment that supported a DIY ethic. Then Needles & Pens moved to Valencia and 23rd streets, relocating to a bigger, brighter space that made us worry it, too, was succumbing to gentrification. All of a sudden, Needles & Pens had window displays that didn’t look like happy accidents. It started to look like … a boutique. Never fear, Needles & Pens’ punk rock sensibility did not get lost in the move. If anything, it got more punk rocker-y, thanks to a bigger space for art and more shelf room for hand crafted awesomeness. Needles & Pens, despite its new, clean, modern veneer, is standing firm in the face of the gentrification of the Mission.

(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)


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