And so -- we move to the East Bay with our message: Today, the first of 15,000 "No Halloween in the Castro" flyers & posters aimed at encouraging people in the East & South Bay to stay "home for halloween" began hitting the streets. KRON Channel 4 and KTVU Channel 2 were quick to pick up on the scene outside Berkeley High School, one of several locations the campaign reached today. By mid-afternoon, the "Daily Californian" (on-campus paper for UC Berkeley and the surrounding area) had called to do an interview RE: the campaign. In the next week, at least an additional 45,000 will help us spread the word.
And still -- there are those who are encouraging people to come to the Castro.
This baffles me.
I can understand people not wanting the party to be cancelled (I'm not happy that the increased violence in years past, including 9 shootings last year have led it to be cancelled). I can understand people not liking the campaign. I can even understand people debating how we should deal with NEXT year's Halloween. However, what I do not understand are people and groups who fly in the face of official city policy and the advice of every public safety official in San Francisco and still "encourage" people to "come on down" to an event that has been deemed unsafe and which the vast majority of Castro residents do not want.
I can't imagine anything more reckless than such advice.
However, we'll keep on keeping on and letting people know that the Halloween party in the Castro has been cancelled. Most residents who live-and-work in the Castro do NOT want it to continue.
An update on this week's efforts:
The “HomeForHalloween” flyer / poster distribution campaign kicked off: 2000 posters, and 15,000 double-sided color posters (in English and Spanish) are being distributed in the East & South Bays, with an emphasis on colleges and other school areas.
The "Home for Halloween / No Halloween in the Castro" banner under the Castro Theatre marquee has become "the" back-drop for the evening newscasts (Thank you friends at Castro Theatre!).
As of now, 25 Castro businesses & bars have agreed to close early, including the Twin Peaks Bar and Castro Theatre, both of whom are “blacking out” their lights at 6pm on Halloween evening for a special TV live-shot to be broadcast around the Bay Area just in case some haven't gotten the message: "This Halloween, stay home for Halloween, the Castro is NOT where it's happening!"
The “HomeForHalloween” Online Video Contest started this week, and has already been mentioned in at least four media outlets: Bay Times (10/18/07); San Francisco Daily (10/18/07), San Francisco Examiner (10/17/07) and KRON-TV (10/17/07). Aimed at youth throughout the Bay Area around the theme of a Halloween event in their home community ( ie, NOT the Castro), the winning videos will be awarded $ 1000 for first prize; $ 500 for second prize; and two $ 250 third prize winners. These videos – up to one minute in length – will be distributed and hosted on the “HomeforHalloween” website in the days immediately prior to October 31.
“HomeForHalloween” PSAs (Public Service Announcements) continue to run on several Bay Area TV stations, while the radio PSAs are currently running on all Clear Channel Radio stations, the largest radio group in the Bay Area .
Web banner distribution of the HomeForHalloween.com web banner/welink continues on several dozen websites including links from community groups such as the Gay Mens Chorus and Bettyslist; major media sites such as KCBS Radio, KRON TV and KGO TV. Oh - and today -- a "link" from the VERY fun Halloween Night Group, "Chinatown Ghost Tours."
Special “in cab” flyers are in production and will be distributed to EVERY TAXI in San Francisco on Halloween night. These double sided flyers – handed to everyone who gets in a cab saying “take me to Castro” – announce not only that the Castro party has been cancelled, but list alternative events in other parts of the City to re-direct their taxi ride.
Whew - no wonder we're two days behind on our blogging! :-)
All of us are proud to be of assistance to the Mayor’s Office, the San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau, the SFPD, all City / Public Safety Departments, and most especially, to our fellow residents and business owners in the Castro. We feel that this campaign is getting the word out broadly and will continue to grow. Our goal is very simple: a safe Halloween in the Castro and every neighborhood.
If you oppose us, at LEAST admit that we're all on the same side: wanting a safe Halloween for everyone.