The Weekend Catch-Up: The Bay Bridge Goes Dark, But Still Glows

Also: What do you think should be the unofficial animal of San Francisco?

On a somber Sunday evening slicked with rain and pushed by cold winds, The Bay Lights went dark on the western span of the Bay Bridge almost ten years to the date they first debuted. The reasons were varied, but it ultimately came down to finances and maintenance time.


Even though the public has been reasonably assured the lights would be back on sometime this fall — Illuminate, the nonprofit behind The Bay Lights and other local art installations is calling for donations to see The Bay Lights 360, which will include a host of upgrades and the ability to see the lights further out, to fruition — nothing’s for sure.

And when they did eventually go dark (without a helpful countdown; without an orchestra of horns), people gathered around the Ferry Building were only left with the captured pictures residing in their phones.

It was a cementing, unceremonious experience. One could’ve easily missed them shutting off; we almost did. Nevertheless, we left content and grateful… though immediately nostalgic for the nights punctuated by passings under the illuminated bridge. But as we saw, parts of the bridge still glow.

LEDs aside, what else transpired over the weekend? Let’s take a look.

  • The San Francisco Chronicle is asking for votes on what should be the unofficial animal of San Francisco. TotalSF, a podcast hosted by the newspapers’ Peter Hartlaub, is holding a poll that includes sixteen examples of local fauna — i.e. the San Francisco garter snake and Cal Academy’s Claude the albino alligator — with voting ending at 12:01 a.m. this Friday. More info
  • The beloved radio DJ Jeffrey Vandergrift, a.k.a. “JV,” is still missing. Following his wife’s update given last week regarding his unlikely hood to return home, KRON4 recently hosted a remembrance segment on an installment of its morning show; JV continues to be considered a missing person by the SFPD. More info. 
  • Mount Tamalpais got (more) snow! ABC7 meteorologist Drew Tuma tweeted out a stunning image of the white-capped mountain… which might be susceptible to flooding later this week as an atmospheric river descends on California. More info
  • So… Twitter had an internal crash… again. On Monday morning, Elon Musk’s Twitter wouldn’t load outside websites and had issues showing on-platform media; over the weekend, anecdotal cases of retweets not showing up and issues with the social media platform’s “Circle” product were also reported. More info.

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