Oakland Grown.org Blog

Supporting Oakland's Local Independent Businesses and Artists

Groups get out the word to shop locally ,


Andrew S. Ross    Sunday, March 28, 2010

We’re excited at Oakland Grown to have been highlighted along with Buy Local Berkeley, San Francisco Locally Owned Merchants Alliance, Hometown Peninsula Independent Business Alliance, SFMade and the East Bay Express in this SF Gate article. Jeff Milchen, co-founder of the American Independent Business Alliance, recently brought together an amazing group of folks to discuss how to strengthen the collective power of our groups in the Northern California region.  I’m looking forward to participating in future gatherings. Read more about the who, what and why below.

~tina tamale


“Everyone there learned a lot from each other,” said Erin Kilmer-Neel, a board member of the Oakland Merchants Leadership Forum, which runs the recently begun Oakland Grown drive. “To find out how others structure their campaigns and solve certain problems was really helpful.”

How real?: The movement has a lot of believers. The independent business alliance, founded in 2001, has 65 affiliates and is working with dozens of other shop-local groups and, more recently, with independent trade organizations. “I think we’re seeing this escalate rapidly,” said the group’s director, Jennifer Rockne.

read more here


Bank bailouts fuel Move Your Money campaign ,

Oakland Tribune  by Angela Woodall

Even though alternative outlets have benefited from government bailout money and pursued similar interests to the very banks from which they are trying to distance themselves, credit unions and community banks increasingly are hailed as a welcome alternative to the “too big to fail” institutions blamed for risky transactions that put their profits over their customers’ security.

read more here


4th Annual Oakland Indie Awards – It’s nomination time! ,

More info at http://oaklandunwrapped.org/indies/

Please take a few minutes to nominate the Oakland
business or artist(s) that inspired you this year.

Nominations Due by March 24

Click here

Save the date!
Come to the Awards Party May 14

Cheer on the winners as you enjoy food from
over 20 different Oakland restaurants, local beer, wine, tea,
coffee, and chocolate, DJ spinning Oakland music,
cool products from Oakland Unwrapped stores, and more!

Friday, May 14, 2010
5:30 – 9:00pm

Jack London Pavilion
(Formerly Barnes & Noble)
98 Broadway, Oakland


Early Bird Tickets
$15 each or 2 for $25

After April 1
$20 each

Buy Tickets here

Getting there:

Bike valet
by East Bay Bicycle Coalition

Available in Jack London Square

Accessible by Multiple AC Transit Lines

Docks at Jack London

Spread the Word!

Indie Awards on Facebook
Find the Indies on Facebook

Sponsor the Event!

Help support this inspiring event, and get
exposure in front of Oakland lovers, businesses,
nonprofits, policy makers, bankers, investors, and more!
See our sponsor details and packet here


Opportunities available prior to and day of event!
Contact Andrea Walker for more details.
510.663.2253 x301

Support the Oakland community when you shop
Oakland Unwrapped!: Oakland’s Online Marketplace

Thank you to our sponsors!


Move to Amend ,

Filed under: Community Wealth and Ownership,Ideas,Leaders and Activists — Tina Tamale Ramos @ 10:25 am

“We the corporations”

On January 21, 2010, with its ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the Supreme Court ruled that corporations are persons, entitled by the U.S. Constitution to buy elections and run our government. Human beings are people; corporations are legal fictions. The Supreme Court is misguided in principle, and wrong on the law. In a democracy, the people rule.

We Move to Amend.

We, the People of the United States of America, reject the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United, and move to amend our Constitution to:

  • Firmly establish that money is not speech, and that human beings, not corporations, are persons entitled to constitutional rights.
  • Guarantee the right to vote and to participate, and to have our votes and participation count.
  • Protect local communities, their economies, and democracies against illegitimate “preemption” actions by global, national, and state governments.

Signed by 40,395 and counting . . .

To read more and to sign the petition, go here


H&M and Wal-Mart destroy and trash unsold goods ,

Filed under: Community Wealth and Ownership,Green / Sustainable,Leaders and Activists — Tina Tamale Ramos @ 9:05 am

Shine by Yahoo Fashion + Beauty by Joanna Douglas

Cynthia Magnus holds up unworn, destroyed clothing she found in the garbage. Photo by Suzanne DeChillo/New York Times

This week the New York Times reported a disheartening story about two of the largest retail chains. You see, instead of taking unsold items to sample sales or donating them to people in need, H&M and Wal-Mart have been throwing them out in giant trash bags. And in the case that someone may stumble on these bags and try to keep or re-sell the items, these companies have gone ahead and slashed up garments, cut off the sleeves of coats, and sliced holes in shoes so they are unwearable.

read more here


Huge thanks to all who gave to the Blogoaksphere Food Drive! ,

Filed under: Community Wealth and Ownership,Food and Drink,Leaders and Activists,News — Tina Tamale Ramos @ 12:36 pm

ABetterOakland.com by V Smoothe

If you didn’t donate earlier this month, and are now wishing you had, go for it! The Food Bank set a goal of raising a total of $200,000 from their virtual food drive for the holiday season, and right now, they’re only at $123,541.53. So please, help if you can.

I also want to extend a huge thanks to all the bloggers who participated in the virtual food drive, either with posts asking their readers to donate or by placing donation buttons on their sidebars (and in several cases, both). It feels so nice to do something together. I’m hoping that next year we can do it again (or maybe pick a different cause to raise money for, who knows) and have even more blogs participate! Anyway, big thanks to participating blogs Living in the O, Future Oakland, City Homestead, Today in Montclair, Rebuilding Oaktown, Diary of an Oakland Shopgirl, Back to Oakland, Oakland Grown, and Welcome to the Prescott-Oakland Point Neighborhood. I was totally terrified when I first set up the virtual food drive that nobody would donate and no other blogs would want to do it, so getting so much participation just thrilled me. Thank you all so much!

read more here


Express Launches a New Beer and Live Music Venue

EastBayExpress.com by Robert Gannon

The East Bay Express is sticking its toe into the beer and entertainment business with the launch of EBX Bleeding Heart Lager and Club X. In keeping with the newspaper’s commitment to localism, the beer is brewed a few blocks from the Express’ office, and the 500-capacity club is conveniently located downstairs from the paper’s headquarters.

read more here


Oakland’s local shops brim with holiday cheer ,

Ariel Gallegos, in Nathan & Co on Piedmont Avenue, says shopping local is one of her values. (by Emilie Raguso)

OaklandLocal.com by Emilie Raguso

Oakland merchants are making it easy to buy unique goodies this season with extended hours, a thriving online marketplace and holiday shopping events galore.

This Friday, for example, from 6 to 8 p.m., more than 100 Oakland shops will join in a citywide Open House to celebrate the season. Shoppers around Lakeshore will find carriage rides and face painting. Merchants from Fruitvale to Rockridge, all around Lake Merritt, uptown, downtown, Montclair, Laurel and East MacArthur Boulevard will offer refreshments, specials and entertainment.

read more here


CBS Video: Holiday Buy Night Day 1 ,

Day 1 (Thursday 12/10/09)

Featuring a profile of Yazi Rose clothing and spotlighting Oaklandish and Oakland Unwrapped c0-founder Erin Kilmer-Neel!

Reported by Sherri Hu:


Join us for Day2 TONGHT Friday 12/11/09 from 5-10pm in the Jack London Market



A national movement of foodies, farmers, parents and educators is pushing for better school food ,

From left, 5th graders at ACE Charter School Noemy Lopez, Dominick Fuentes and Cesar Lopez enjoy their lunch, which is prepared by Oakland based Revolution Foods, on Sep. 1, 2009 in San Jose. Photo from the Mercury News

Check out this Mercury News article highlighting the new movement to make school lunches fresh, healthy and affordable. Also included, the Oakland based company, Revolution Foods, leading the pack delivering fun and nutritious food to our children.