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Monitor Notes: Inspired Voting, Plastic Pollution, New Parks, Accessible Transit, Green Cooking

Welcome to Monitor Notes, a weekly roundup of news items, event announcements, and updates on past Bay Area Monitor articles.


Voting Matters

“Did you vote ‘Yes’ on that one?” “And remember, Grandma said to vote ‘No’ on the other one.” So went a breakfast chat with my 10-year-old daughter last week as a stream of TV proposition ads during the morning news cued her to ask about my ballot. Only two sips into my coffee, I wasn’t feeling very articulate, but her genuine curiosity was so inviting that we dove into a discussion about my voting decisions. Granted, she moved three minutes later to other topics, like whether it was a good day to wear shorts or leggings. But I drank the rest of my coffee that morning feeling inspired by her budding recognition about how we can make our voices heard. Staff members at the League of Women Voters of the U.S. also are opening up about their voting experiences in the October 13 “Why We Vote” blog. Check it out! Do you have a past or present voting story to share? Tell us about it on Facebook or Twitter.

In other voting updates, listen to the most recent Environmental Concerns talk with LWV Berkeley-Albany-Emeryville for information on local environmental ballot measures, an overview about the presidential candidate’s climate platforms, and a Green New Deal video by a group of elder women climate activists.


Inside the Plastic Story

LWV Napa County is hosting a panel discussion about the “Story of Plastic,” a film that looks at the “man-made crisis” of plastic pollution and the worldwide effects on the health of our planet and people. Watch the film on your own over the next week and make a reservation to attend the panel discussion and Q&A on October 28 from 7 to 8:15 p.m. The film is presented by The Story of Stuff Project, a Berkeley nonprofit the Monitor previously interviewed for views on the threat of microplastic to the San Francisco Bay. Feeling spooked by all this talk about plastic pollution? Environmental nonprofit Heal the Bay is encouraging people to try at-home Halloween challenges this year. Think sustainable costumes that don’t come in plastic packaging.


New Park Opens

A 45-acre shoreline park is opening and you can watch the virtual dedication this morning at 10:30. Judge John Sutter Regional Shoreline, named after the East Bay civic and environmental leader, is located at the Bay Bridge’s eastern touchdown. It has lots of features for residents nearby to explore. That includes a walking trail to a 600-foot observation pier and improved bike and pedestrian access to the Alex Zuckermann Bay Bridge Trail. Wondering where other recreational areas may surface going forward? The San Francisco Examiner reported on efforts to make the Great Highway into a city park.


Shifting Gears

Berkeley’s Center for Independent Living is hosting an October 28 webinar at 11 a.m. about how Bay Area public transit is adapting to COVID-19 with accessibility in mind. A panel, including professionals representing BART, AC Transit, Capital Corridor, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, and the nonprofit Seamless Bay Area, will answer questions about topics like reducing the spread of COVID-19 and important ADA and accessibility regulations that have been implemented. As transit agencies consider the needs of all riders, they continue to face crippling financial challenges, the ramifications of which the East Bay Express laid out in a recent article.


Cooks in the Kitchen

Join nonprofit Acterra on Sunday, November 1 from 4 to 5 p.m. for a “Holiday reFresh” event in which Bay Area chefs will share recipes to curb climate change. Chefs from Brown Sugar Kitchen, Café Ohlone, Mister Jiu’s, and Nick’s On Grand, among others, will give live demonstrations on how to prepare their favorite plant-based holiday dishes. Tips for waste reduction and induction cooking also will be shared during the Bay Area Air Quality Management District-sponsored event. Warming up to the idea? Click here for the full list of chefs and to register. The Monitor’s Leslie Stewart will cook up more information on the links between food and the climate for her next article in the December edition of the magazine.


Monitor Notes is produced by Cecily O’Connor. To receive it by email, scroll to the bottom of this page, enter your email address in the box under “RECEIVE EMAIL UPDATES,” and click the red “SIGN UP” button.


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