San Ramon and Danville take on San Francisco on KGO

Reporter debates anchors on merits of local life

My recent story -- "25 reasons NOT to go to San Francisco" got some play across the bay today as I defended this area on KGO.

I think I won.

Chris Brecher took San Francisco's side as we rolled through the top few reasons. While I pointed out that there's free parking everywhere here, Chris said there is free parking to be found in the city. She wouldn't say where, though -- probably afraid she'd lose her spot.

"Danville has free parking, to which I have one word in response -- BART," Brecher said. I told her that BART runs both ways, and I'd even pick my San Francisco friends up at the nearest station.

It's worth mentioning that Bret Burkhart lives here and was on my side from the start.

"I agree with everything you say, Glenn," he told me on the air. Burkhart lives in what Brecher described as "low-rent Danville," meaning San Ramon. Sorry, San Ramoners; I'd complain to KGO if I were you.

Number three -- the local weather --I won hands down.

"Danville has great weather, and that is correct. But Danville didn't do anything to make that," Brecher told me. Ouch.

I also scored on number four -- that people are nicer here.

"I'm not saying people aren't nice in San Francisco, but because it's an international city, you get a lot of snooty sales people," I told Brecher, with Burkhart agreeing.

In the end, both the afternoon KGO co-hosts also agreed that this area is a lot more family friendly than the city.

"The fourth of July parade is just terrific and is one of the reasons we picked to move nearby," Burkhart said.

Brecher even admitted she'd been to San Ramon's Art and Wind Festival -- she thought it was the Art and Wine Festival.

Let me say for the record that I love San Francisco. It's truly an international city, and I go there all the time. But I also love the East Bay and this area in particular. I just wish my friends from the city would come down to visit me from time to time instead of always asking me to schlep to them.


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Posted by Ralph N. Shirlet
a resident of another community
on Dec 29, 2010 at 7:17 am

Dear Glenn,

Your article caused me to go to Danville yesterday instead my usual walks in Walnut Creek. I found parking behind Rick's Picks and started walking. Unlike WC where the cosmopolitan spirit is on display and welcoming, Danville was deathly quiet. A few store clerks were sitting alone in their shops and welcomed a moment's conversation, "What's happening in Danville today?" Each, in one manner or another, said, "little or nothing!"

I walked the length of Danville to the Livery and back to Trader Joes. There can only be two reasons to not visit San Francisco, or Walnut Creek for that matter. Do not go if you are adverse to excitement and entertainment.

The ROFL in Ralph N. Shirlet

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Posted by Lillian
a resident of Danville
on Dec 29, 2010 at 8:52 am

I was raised in San Francisco (never Frisco) and it's so different than Danville. They are completely different and really can't be compared. One can never get the variety of foods, people etc. that one can get in SF. Danville is a nice place to raise a family and that's what we did, but we still went to the City for many cultural things, such as the museums, the shows, the different ethnic restaurants and festivals, etc.

Two very different experiences that can't compared. Walnut Creek is also very different from Danville. Danville is a quiet little town. I'm surprised that people don't go to SF more often because for some it's such a "long" trip. I know people that have to stay in SF overnight because the trip is too far away. In fact, I know some people that don't go to SF at all. They are missing out on a beautiful city experience.

Anyway, I love SF and always will. However, Danville is a nice place to raise a family.

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Posted by Treebeard
a resident of Danville
on Dec 29, 2010 at 9:15 am

I'll never spend money in a "sanctuary city."

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Posted by Ralph N. Shirlet
a resident of another community
on Dec 29, 2010 at 9:51 am

Dear Glenn,

This exchange does make for smiles.

There seems to be some political issue for forum's pseudonyms that keeps them from enjoying San Francisco. It must be why Stockton exists, don't you think?

There is a sign on the wall of a restaurant in Frisco Texas that reads, "Frisco is in TEXAS, the world is in San Francisco!" As I traveled throughout ASIA and in Europe, I would respond that I am from the San Francisco Bay Area. The response always brings a great desire by my foreign hosts to come to our City and we have this exceptional attraction a short BART ride away.

Earlier this month, I parked in the lower Haight and took a Saturday Afternoon walk throughout the neighborhoods. The people, places and food were an inviting, entertaining way to spend a lovely Saturday afternoon. By comparison,if Danville did not have a parade once a year I have to wonder if anyone beyond its borders would know it exists? Certainly a morning walk in Danville makes me wonder if anyone lives there.

Thanks for ROFL with Ralph N. Shirlet

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Posted by SF Native
a resident of Danville
on Dec 29, 2010 at 11:28 am

As a SF native, who never ventured to the east bay until the late 90's, it was quite a shock to move to Danville. The change in climate and culture was the biggest shock. But the schools and atmosphere made it an inviting place to raise a family.

San Francisco will always be home to me, but I've learned to love my adopted town and I can even tolerate the heat now. I never shopped at snooty stores in SF, so I've always run into friendly folks there. Although, remember most of the snooty people are probably transplants from other places!

So even though I get teary eyed every time I drive over the bridge and see my beautiful city, I'm just as eager to return to my lovely town. Trust me, there are plenty of snooty people in this area, but it's easy to find genuine folks here too.

We are so lucky to live in the Bay Area!

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Posted by Redman
a resident of San Ramon
on Dec 29, 2010 at 11:32 am

I get more exercise walking in the city as I also need to navigate around the sleeping homeless. Give me Danville or low rent Danville almost any day

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Posted by David McGrath
a resident of Danville
on Dec 29, 2010 at 12:58 pm

I'm a third generation San Francisco native who moved to Danville in 1975 and , like Lillian and SF Native, did so to raise a family. We were certainly not disappointed by the good schools and safe communities, but still go frequently to "The City" for museums and concerts and the many "bargain bites". San Francisco is a world class city, a notch below NY, London, Rome and Paris, but just a notch.

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Posted by Bret Burkhart
a resident of San Ramon
on Dec 29, 2010 at 8:55 pm


You were so gracious to play with us on the air. Like I said, I agree with all your points. And David brings up a great point: San Francisco is a world class city. But, when we moved here 2 years ago, we chose this area for the very reasons you pointed out. The added bonus was the friendly people.

Look no further than my recent effort to find some last minute gifts for Christmas. I showed up at Molly's Pup-Purr-ee an hour before it was scheduled to open in downtown Danville and the shop keeper actually let me in. That's kindness.

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Posted by J. Dillard
a resident of Danville
on Dec 30, 2010 at 2:30 am

When I first moved to Danville from San Jose…my neighbor told me something that offended me at first…..but now I understand… He told me " We do not like to really publicize our town we want to keep it local" as an outsider I was like….wow….but now I understand. Hey all keep away from Danville….San Francisco is a better place to visit.

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Posted by TSR
a resident of Danville
on Dec 30, 2010 at 10:02 am

$48 parking ticket in S.F. for not turning my tires into the curb on a shallow hill. Cancelled my Boulevard reservation and went local instead

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Posted by Rick Pshaw
a resident of Danville
on Dec 30, 2010 at 6:02 pm

David McGrath:

You said, "San Francisco is a world class city, a notch below NY, London, Rome and Paris, but just a notch."

"Notch" has several meanings and I choose to use the most obvious one.

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Posted by Pete
a resident of Danville
on Jan 7, 2011 at 9:50 am

Both are great places and frankly I am shocked that people would lobby to NOT go to San Francisco. They are clearly short sighted local minded individuals with and adgenda. We love living and raising our family in Danville and take every excuse to expose ourselves and our children to the diversity, history, and culture of San Francisco.

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Posted by Andrea Scolari
a resident of Diablo
on Jan 7, 2011 at 11:47 am

As a third generation San Franciscan, I love Danville. The city does have some things we do not. Cockroaches and body lice are common on Muni now. Derelicts that accost you in broad daylight have been elevated to sainthood. Get a ticket for not having a license plate on the front of your car. Be sure you sit in the front of BART for some basic safety against the socially challenged. Inhale the aroma of stale urine. The city has changed and not for the better over the years. Ah diversity!

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Posted by C. R. Mudgeon
a resident of Danville
on Jan 10, 2011 at 3:19 pm

I like living in Danville, but always enjoy going into the City, whether it is for a nice meal, a museum, a play or musical, or showing visiting friends around. I have to admit, however, that while I enjoy the pace of the city at times, I don't think I would want to deal with the traffic, and other hassles of urban living, on a daily basis.

I DO think that Danville provides a better environment for raising kids, and generally better schools, etc., but that taking your kids into the city frequently should be part of their "raising".

Both of our kids are now grown, and as young adults both have lived in urban areas, and are if anything more at home in a city environment than I am.

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