{510} Family Faves with Hip Mama, Michelle Cruz Gonzales - 510 Families
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{510} Family Faves with Hip Mama, Michelle Cruz Gonzales

{510} Family Faves: Michelle is a Hip Mama

I’m excited to bring you one more in our series project profiling contributors to Bay Area-based parenting magazines, Rad Dad & Hip Mama. Visit the respective websites to purchase and read everything from childcare swaps tips to sex-positive parenting. Michelle Cruz Gonzales is the sixth in our continuing series.

Michelle teaches English/Creative Writing at Las Positas College; she was a 2013 Listen To Your Mother San Francisco cast member ; she blogs at Pretty Bold Mexican Girl and was also the drummer of the 90’s Bay Area female punk band Spitboy. And she is the mother to a son, Luis Manuel, age twelve.

See her family on the cover of the 20th anniversary issue of Hip Mama Magazine (above) and read her picks for East Bay parents (below).

Where did you live before the East Bay?
I was born in LA, grew up in Tuolumne CA, but I’ve lived in the Bay Area since 1987. My husband is from Colima, Mexico, and he moved to the Bay Area around the same time.

What is your neighborhood known for?
We live in Sheffield Village, in Oakland, right on the border of San Leandro. Our neighborhood, a historic landmark, is probably best known for having a super racist history. No non-white people were allowed to spend the night in “the village” in the 1940’s. It’s a real nice place to live now and it’s really pretty.

What is your favorite activity for one on one time with your son?
On a walk around the neighborhood with the dogs – he tells me things he wouldn’t tell me when at home when we go on walks.

There’s an awful lot to do outdoors, lakes, hiking trails, great parks for kids and dogs, mountains and the Bay.

What has been your favorite kid birthday party?
Sulpher Creek Nature Center in Hayward

What’s your favorite family dinner out?
We like Tsuru Sushi in San Leandro.

What is a great kid-friendly feature of your neighborhood?
Zocalo Coffeehouse is totally kid-, work-, and community friendly!

{510} Family Faves: Michelle is a Hip Mama

What discovery do you want to tell every new-in-town parent about? 
Oakland School For the Arts, my son will be going there in the fall. Even though the only way to get in is by auditioning, everyone we met there, students and administrators, were so encouraging and welcoming through every step of the process.

What amazing camp has your son done?

Art Beat Rock Camp and Chabot Day Camp – outside all day!

What’s your favorite date night?
Nick’s Lounge in Berkeley for Saturday Night Special. I love seeing mi marido’s face when I read something inspired by him at the open mic.

What is your favorite alone-time destination?
Alameda County Library in Castro Valley because they have a great craft book selection and comfortable chairs.

Do you have a favorite Bay Area daytrip?
Probably just going to the City to visit friends and to eat Mexican food or to drive somewhere for a literary reading.

Thanks so much, Michelle, I like Zocalo, too, but my drum skills are pathetic. Be on the lookout for more {510} Family Faves features from the writers of Rad Dad and Hip Mama.

[Photo provided by Michelle Cruz Gonzales, all rights reserved]

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