Your Stories: When did you Fall For The Bay?

We all have our story of when we fell for the Bay. For many of us, our love of the Bay is linked closely with a specific place or view. Loving the Bay is part of our daily lives, driving us to keep the Bay beautiful and healthy for our children and grandchildren to enjoy.

It’s those special moments that make us fall for the Bay over and over again—when we stop in our tracks to take in a beautiful view or go out of our way to catch a glimpse of the water. That’s what our Fall For The Bay gala is all about—celebrating our love for the Bay, and in doing so, furthering our efforts to protect and restore it.

To mark the occasion, we asked you to share your stories of how you fell for the Bay. Below are a few of our favorites. Congratulations to Jasmine Worrell, the winner of our Fall for the Bay story contest, who will receive two complimentary tickets to our gala.

A breathtaking view of the Bay and the majestic Palace of Fine Arts
A breathtaking view of the Bay and the majestic Palace of Fine Arts

“I grew up only an hour away from our Bay, however in the valley where summer temperatures are often in the hundreds, I longed for cooler weekends closer to our coast. Some of my fondest childhood memories of the Bay are escaping the valley’s hot summer temps for the cool sea breeze & majestic view at Crissy Field, picnicking at the Palace of Fine Arts, and afternoons at (the former) Exploratorium. It was more than 30 years ago that I first fell in love with our beautiful Bay!” –Jasmine Worrell, Oakland

Here are a few other stories we loved:

“Moved from Calgary, Alberta, Canada because of The Bay. When we were first dating, we flew to San Francisco for a weekend holiday. The plan was to drive up valley and tour wineries all weekend but as serendipity would have it, there was an accident on Highway 29 and traffic was still for hours because someone hit a power box so we turned around and drove around the Bay all weekend. We had lunch in Sausalito and while sitting at a Horizons restaurant, we made a pact to move here. We took pictures of places we would come back to and 15 years later, here we are. We miss our Canadian friends but they visit lots. We have company all the time!” –Sandy S.

“I fell in love with the Bay when I had the opportunity to test piloting a two-person craft from Oakland Airport out towards the Golden Gate Bridge. We followed the shore north then turned around and came back over the Bay. The waters were calm, the air was clear. The month was August.  Immediately following, I drove out to the coast to watch the sunset.” –Teresa D.

“We moved here in 1969 and bought a home up in the El Cerrito hills with a bay view. I remember taking my young children on a tour of the bayside where there were huge wooden sculptures and still have a photo of them in front of it. We had wonderful times exploring the area.” –Natalie Z.

Come celebrate your love for San Francisco Bay at our Fall For The Bay gala, this September 26th at the Golden Gate Club in the Presidio. This special event will help fund critical work to make the Bay more vibrant than ever. Ticket sales close September 24th, so RSVP today. We hope to see you there.

PS- How did you fall for the Bay? Tell us in the comments below.

Guest Post | Why I wrote Down by the Bay

East Palo Alto shoreline
“End of shoreline,” East Palo Alto, 2004 (Photo: Jared Farmer)

Matthew Morse Booker is the author of Down by the Bay: San Francisco’s History Between The Tides and guest speaker at our Fall For The Bay event on September 26.

A fence separating power pylons and restored marsh in East Palo Alto. Sunrise behind the rusting molasses tanks at Point Molate. Striped bass rolling off the Albany dump. Strange, wonderful, whimsical driftwood sculptures on the mudflats at Temescal Creek.

This was the bay I knew as a child. Not empty open water or the distant hills but the rich, muddy shore teeming with life. San Francisco Bay is neither a wilderness nor a wasteland. The place between land and sea is impure and fertile, productive and profoundly transformed. It is both the West’s most ecologically important estuary and its densest city. But how did it get this way?

I wrote Down by the Bay to find out why Californians worked to make San Francisco Bay into a factory in the nineteenth century and then worked to protect the remaining marshes in the twentieth century. Today we struggle to balance the needs of the region’s seven million residents and its birds, fish, and grasslands. But why should we care about the parts of the world that are not wilderness? Because, I found, the people of the bay decided to live in the world they made, rather than imagining themselves outside of it.

Save the Bay is a big part of that momentous shift. Its founders responded to threats to everyday, nearby nature—the bay margin that seemed so disposable in the 1950s. They recognized the beauty in the bay as it is, not just in the imaginary bay of the time before people. This is a story about the bay that makes sense of its past. And it is a vision of the world that we can live in.

Matthew Morse Booker

Matthew Morse Booker was born in Berkeley, and grew up on the lower Russian River in Sonoma County, California. A graduate of UC Berkeley, Booker completed an M.S. at Oregon and returned to San Francisco Bay to do his Ph.D. at Stanford University. Since 2004 Booker and his family have resided in ancestral Booker country, where he teaches at North Carolina State University. He is the author of Down by the Bay: San Francisco’s History Between The Tides.  He can be contacted at matthew.booker(at)


Board Profile | Paul A. Stone

Paul Stone and daughter
Paul with his daughter, Mary, as they get ready to swim the Alcatraz Race.

Meet Save The Bay Board Member Paul A. Stone, Patent Attorney and Chief Operating Officer at 5AM Ventures. Paul is originally from Oconomowoc, Wisconsin.

How long have you been a member of Save The Bay’s Board of Directors?

Almost two years.

Do you have a favorite Bay site or experience?

Sailing underneath the Golden Gate Bridge.

How did you get involved with Save The Bay?

I learned about Save The Bay through a colleague. I was immediately interested in the organization’s issues and felt aligned with what Save The Bay was trying to accomplish.

What is the best thing about being a board member at Save The Bay?

Getting exposed to interesting and important issues, and being a part of the breadth and depth of experience that the other board members and Save The Bay staff bring to the table to address such issues.

If you could be one Bay plant or animal, what would it be and why?

A porpoise that gets to swim in and out of the Bay!

Who is your environmental hero?

Chief Seattle, who said “We do not inherit this Earth from our ancestors; rather, we borrow it from our children”

What is your favorite thing about the San Francisco Bay Area?

The diversity and mix of the climate, topography, and people.

What is one thing you do each day to protect the environment?

As a board member I try to think about and/or do something for Save The Bay every day. I also stay aware of waste creation and recycle every day.

Tell us about your role as Co-Chair for Save The Bay’s 2013 fundraising event, Fall for the Bay.

As a Co-Chair I believe this is an event that helps us showcase the Bay. I love that it will be a night of celebrating the organization’s efforts to protect and enhance the environment of the Bay. We need to do all we can to keep this gem healthy, for the environmental aspect as well as the economic value a thriving Bay brings to our communities.

Put on your party shoes!

Fall for the BayPut on your party shoes, mark your calendars for September 26th, and come celebrate San Francisco Bay and the magic of life on the bay. Save the Bay is throwing a sure-to-be-fun party at the Presidio’s Golden Gate Club, overlooking the water.

Watch the sun go down as you mingle with other environmentally minded friends and cohorts in the middle of San Francisco’s own national park, a former military base steeped in history.

There’ll be live music by a jazz band, and a variety of gourmet beverages plus hors d’hoeuvres provided by Jane Hammond Events.

Don’t miss the opportunity to meet environmental historian Matthew Morse Booker whose book Down by the Bay: San Francisco’s History Between the Tides has just been published to rave reviews.

Additionally, there’ll be a treasure trove of silent auction items. You can count on a panoply of numerous restaurant options, weekend getaways, sailing classes and kayak tours to choose from.

Look ahead. Talk it up. Buy tickets and bring friends.

 — Molly Hooper, Event Host Committee Co-chair

Molly Hooper has been a member of Save The Bay since 2005.  Molly and her husband John run Oz Farm which is managed as a sustainable working forest as well as an organic farm and retreat center.  Molly is passionate about protecting and restoring San Francisco Bay especially in the light of threats from sea level rise due to climate change. 

Place your bids for the Bay

Tug boat
Join us at Fall for the Bay on Sept 26th and bid on a tug boat trip on the Bay with geologist Doris Sloan.

Laissez les bons temps rouler! Well, maybe it’s not Mardi Gras, but we guarantee a good time at Fall for the Bay, Save the Bay’s 2013 gala event at the Golden Gate Club in the Presidio.

Come hobnob with special guests – well-known writers, Bay restoration and environmental experts, corporate and civic leaders.

Test your bidding strategies and take home an auction trophy.  How about:

  • a long weekend at a home in Ashland with OSF theater tickets, and gift certificates for top restaurants
  • a six-hour tour of San Francisco Bay aboard the Nordic tug Eternity with guest guide Doris Sloan, the premier expert on the geology of the Bay Area
  • a ride for 10 aboard a San Francisco fire engine with Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White!

And these are just three of the many, many great items: other special weekend adventures, sailing lessons, library wines, high-end restaurant dinners, and tickets galore including some special behind-the scenes tours to theaters, Giants games, symphony, museums, and zoos.

Oh, and don’t forget the evening’s great food, wines, music, and programming. Do come and let the good times roll!

— Sandy Linder, Save The Bay Board of Directors and Fall for the Bay Host Committee