{510} Family Faves with Hip Mama, Airial Clark - 510 Families
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{510} Family Faves with Hip Mama, Airial Clark

{510} Family Faves: Airial is a Hip Mama

We’re going strong on a very cool project profiling different contributors to two Bay Area-based parenting magazines, Rad Dad & Hip Mama. Visit the respective websites to purchase and read everything from sex-positive parenting tips to childcare swaps. This is the fifth in our continuing series.

Today’s guest is Airial Clark, MA, a writer, storyteller and sexuality educator based in Oakland, CA. She writes about the intersections of parenting and sexuality for multiple media outlets such as The San Francisco Bay Guardian, Oakland Local, Shades Magazine and Rad Dad. We are thrilled to share her East Bay picks for parents

How old are your children?
Ethan is 14 and Clinton is 12.

Where did you live before you moved here?
We have lived up and down the West Coast from Seattle to Sacramento, but have been in the East Bay for 10 years now. First to Berkeley, then to Oakland. We’ve lived in the Adam’s Point neighborhood for 6 years.

What’s something about your life as a parent in the East Bay that you think is notable to your friends in other cities?
We can walk to anything we want. Like, just down the street from us is the Lakeview public library and a large playground. The boys spent many summers running back and forth between a well stocked children’s library and a playground full of neighborhood kids. We can walk to cafes, art galleries, grocery stores and a kick ass burrito shop. People remember each other and treat everyone like neighbors.

What’s your favorite place for one on one kid time?
Paddling around Lake Merritt. It’s super cheap to rent a canoe for a few hours. It’s a little surreal to be in a boat in the center of a city. But we have great conversations just paddling around the water.

Do you have a regular Saturday morning ritual?
The Grand Lake farmers market on Saturday mornings is our ritual, it’s just down the block from us. We’ve been going for so long now, the vendors know us and we know them. We run into our friends and their kids, it’s a big community gathering spot. I buy all of my art there too. Being able to purchase art directly from the artist feels amazing.

What’s your go-to treat yourself outing?
The Foot Spa and Tea Bar on Grand Ave. They specialize in reflexology. So good. And you can do tea tasting too.

What’s the best Bay Area daytrip?
The kids will probably say a trip to Six Flags in Vallejo is their favorite. They’re old enough now to wander the park without me. So a day there with their friends is probably the best day ever.

What amazing class has your child has been a part of?
My elder son has started crew with Artemis Rowing. They actually row out on the Alameda-Oakland estuary! It is an amazing program. I’m so impressed with the coaches for making this sort of elite, exclusive sport available to more kids. I would never have imagined this to exist in Oakland. Plus, my kid gets to spend time out on the water. How many people live in the Bay Area and never interact with the Bay itself?

Thanks so much, Airial, I have to visit that farmers’ market still! Be on the lookout for more {510} Family Faves features from the writers of Rad Dad and Hip Mama.

[Photo by Airial Clark, all rights reserved]

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