Boulevard Bites

by Sheila D'Amico

### "Peace in Oakland." That was Rich Bolecek's reply to Judit Korosmezei when she asked him, "What's your goal?" Rich is director and founder of the Discovery Science Center, on High St. near Brookdale Park, a place for kids from 6 to 18. "One day, the kids on the streets would be asking 'What's that bird? What's the name of that tree?''A few years later'many of them would'be messed up'in drugs and crime, some of them dead." Rich wanted to find a way not to lose the kids.'

Jean Quan kicks off her campaign for mayor. Photo by Tim Chapman.

Frank Williams, who might have been one of the lost kids, found his way to the Center,'spending many afternoons constructing science projects. He eventually participated in the Mayor's Summer Jobs program, worked as an assistant, and is now one of the core staff members. He'runs the woodshop. Rich thinks it's great that Frank is there for the kids who often come to him for advice with their problems. We think Rich is great, and the program—funded primarily by grants and donations—is, too. You can see what the kids at the Discovery Science Center are up to on May 22, when Rich opens the doors to attendees of the Multi-NCPC picnic. (See calendar.)

### Kudos to chief copyeditor, Anne Fox. Anne, ?a professional editor, has been acknowledged in yet another book. Author David Chura thanks Anne for helping with queries and proposals and for her gentle nudging for I Don't Wish Nobody to Have a Life Like Mine: Tales of Kids in Adult Lockup. A Metro volunteer for more than 20 years, Anne and her coterie of copyeditors keep our writers on the grammar, punctuation, and stylistic strait and narrow.

### Although it's not within the Metro geographical limits, readers might want to know that the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) reopens on May 1 with a two-day "free to the public" celebration. OMCA says the art and history galleries have been transformed to better tell the story of California. The Museum is at 1000 Oak St.'

### City Auditor Courtney Ruby has been appearing before community groups explaining the function of the Auditor's office, especially the Office's three tools of Performance Audits, Recommendations, and Fraud & Waste Prevention. At a Melrose High Hopes NCPC meeting, the conversation turned to cost cutting. One participant asked the Auditor what the city's core services were. That, she responded, is something that we need to ask the Council. So, we pass that suggestion along. City expenditures have to be cut. Should those cuts be made "across the board"? Or should the city define core services and cut accordingly? It's great to have conversations on listservs and blogs, but we also have to get out in the metaphorical "forum." That means, go to council and committee meetings and make your political wishes known to your elected officials. (The Auditor's Fraud, Waste, & Abuse hotline is (888) 329-6390.)

### On the electoral front, District 4 Councilmember Jean Quan officially kicked off her campaign for mayor of Oakland at the end of April. City elections will be in November. Meanwhile, California's State Primary Election is June 8. Still time to learn about the candidates and to read ballot measures and find out what they are really saying. You can't count on political ads to give you the full story.