Bernal Celebrates the Summer of Love

The Summer of Love was the theme for this year’s annual Fiesta on the Hill.

The neighborhood street fair raised close to $50,000 for the Bernal Heights’ Neighborhood Center(BNHC).

Bernal local Michael Minson said, “It’s a highlight of living in the neighborhood. The BNHC makes this event into a great gathering that really reflects our community.” The street fair carried the vibe of the eclectic community that makes Beral so unique. It had about fifty booths with neighbors and friends dancing in the streets.

Here are five highlights that show the creativity and diversity in Bernal Heights.



1) The Camera Obscura:

Right outside Pinhole Coffee, was a replica of a 16th century Camera Obscura. In the 16th century, these were portable buildings that functioned as aids for draftsman and painters. They become the prototype for the modern-day camera.

The design of this one had people to enter in one of two front doors. Inside, you would go behind a blackout curtain to a small screen (table) sitting beneath a hole in the ceiling.



The hole in the ceiling held a rotating angled mirror. The light passed through the hole and projected an image from outside on a screen (this one was a table) that is parallel to the hole. There was a handle that you turned to get the mirror in the ceiling to move around and reflect different parts of the outside on the screen.

Here’s what that looked like:



2) Get your photo booth on with Keller Williams

Down the block, we were brought right back to the 21st Century by the neighbors at Keller Williamswith their modern-day version of a photo booth. This one was complete with iPads to see yourself as they took your photo and accessoriesto dress up in.



3) Line drawing, street peddling muralist Amos Goldbaum



Artist and Bernal Heights neighbor Amos Goldbaum was selling his apparel. His “Bernal over Cortland” mural on the wall outside of Pinhole coffee. Among other places in the San Francisco, he’s recently decorated the new Wise Sons Bagel in Hayes Valley.


What’s more fun for kids than the teacup ride right after they’ve eaten lunch and loads of sugar? The teacups were spinning kids right round all afternoon.

5) Music, music and more music…



There was everything from Cuban to choir music. The neighbors were dancing in the streets to some hot salsa tunes by the Aldelante Salsa Band, Fito Reinoso and his Cuban songs and the Bayonics Reggae Band. Along with the SF Jazz High School All-Stars Quintet and the SF Community Center Music Senior Choir.

If you missed this one, the Fiesta on the Hill is an annual event in Bernal. You can head to the BNHC website to make sure you have the next one on your calendar!


Jen Baxter is a writer, photographer and San Francisco native. She tells stories encouraging people to be more independent, aware and creative. You can find other interesting articles at or follow her on Instagram @JenBaxterSF