August 18, 2019 | News and Notes from FOFW

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Friends and neighbors:

A few things to bring to your attention…

Coins yes, bricks no: We find all manner of things in the fountain at times: rubber ducks, a wedding ring, an occasional fish, and lots of coins tossed in for good luck. Mostly benign and harmless stuff. But this week half a brick showed up in one of the bowls. There was no apparent damage done, but there easily could have been. Please refrain from tossing anything potentially harmful in the fountain (and please alert us if you see such a thing occur). Repairs can be costly and take it out of service for significant amounts of time. Help us avoid that, please. Thanks.

Only a drill: The historic Fountain at the Circle was a key site in another recent historic event: a wildfire evacuation drill held Sunday, Aug. 11. The drill was aimed at residents in the Northeast Berkeley hills. A firefighter stationed at The Circle played an alert about the drill over a loudspeaker that directed anyone taking part to “evacuation centers” at Live Oak and James Kenney parks. It’s not clear how many people took part, but there was no traffic jam seen on The Circle that day. A good reminder, though, that tens of thousands of cars pass through The Circle every day in non-emergency situations, so an actual evacuation could be challenging unless we all keep our cool.

Volunteer, donate, join!: When you pass through The Circle on weekends, you might notice our banner hung on a fence along the south side. It’s just there as a different, quieter sort of alert: a reminder that Friends of the Fountain and Walk needs your help to meet its mission of ensuring the continued preservation of the historic fountain and Fountain Walk. It’s friends and neighbors who volunteer their time or provide financial support that make possible the mission of FOFW — ensuring the preservation of the historic fountain and walk. So next time you visit The Circle, make your next stop our website:

Coming attractions: The annual Solano Stroll takes place Sunday, Sept. 8. FOFW will be in evidence, with handouts being distributed at the booths of three of our fellow historical organizations. Look for them at the tables manned by the Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association, the Berkeley Historical Society and the Berkeley Path Wanderers Association. And tell your friends: the fountain and walk are just a 5- to 10-minute walk away from the top of Solano — a nice break from the crowds at the Stroll. … And keep an eye out for a coming announcement of a program FOFW will present this fall in partnership with Northbrae Community Church. The November event at the church will focus on both the ongoing work of FOFW and the legacy of architect John Hudson Thomas, designer of the original Northbrae church building and many fine homes in Northbrae and beyond.

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