Posts Tagged ‘Indie Awards’

Oakland Indie Awards

Friday, August 26th, 2011

The 5th Annual Oakland Indie Awards were a smashing success! On May 13th, Oaklanders honored local artists and small businesses at the Indie Awards. Check out photos of the event at The Oakland Indie Awards encourages people to recognize the community, economic, environmental, and political impact of supporting Oakland’s locally-owned businesses and artists instead of chain stores. It also provides rare opportunities for recognition for the small businesses and artists that make Oakland such a wonderful, creative place. Finally, it’s a chance for Oaklanders to just celebrate Oakland by enjoying Oakland food, wine, chocolate and music.

Congratulations to the Indie Awards winners:

This event would not have been possible without the support of our committed sponsors including: Mattmar Group, Coblentz, Patch, Duffy & Bass, Uptown Apartments, Dan Carroll and Stasia Obremskey, Pete Higgins and Leslie Magid, Blue Heron Catering Company, SuperPrint, Exploratorium, Jack London Square, California Waste Solutions, First Solar, YMCA of the East Bay, City of Oakland, Urban Legends Winery, East Bay Community Foundation, Ron Beller and Jennifer Moses Family Foundation, Bay Area Derby Girls, Oakland Outlaws, AnewAmerica, Kipp and Sara Howard, Nancy Neel, and Bruce and Susan Kelley.

Give Something Back - Indie award winner is local office supply company

Friday, August 26th, 2011

Did you know that you can buy office supplies locally and for less than the big box stores? Give Something Back is a local office supply company that provides full service, free nationwide delivery and a low price promise. It also happens to be a 2011 Indie Award winner!

What’s even better is that Give Something Back donates 75% of their net earnings to a variety of nonprofits in the West. By purchasing supplies from Give Something Back, you are supporting a local business and you can even vote on which nonprofits receive donations. Learn more about give something back at

ReliaTech - Indie Award nominee fixes your computers while providing job training

Friday, August 26th, 2011

ReliaTech is a local computer service and e-waste recycling organization that offers reliable and reasonably priced computer service by certified technicians. They offer carry-in service at the San Pablo and San Francisco stores, and on-site service throughout the Bay Area. ReliaTech has a “No Fix, No Fee” guarantee and also offers discounts to nonprofits.

ReliaTech is the nonprofit social enterprise of The Stride Center, which is a social venture nonprofit empowering economic self-sufficiency for individuals and communities in the San Francisco Bay Area. ReliaTech provides on-the-job training for Stride Center participants and hires graduates of the program. All of Reliatech interns and employees are chosen and trained for their ability to treat every customer with respect and dignity. Learn more at

Solar on the White House

Monday, June 21st, 2010

sungevity-logoAll the finalists at the Oakland Indie Awards were proud businesses and artists of Oakland that do wonderful things here in our community.  But some go beyond our East Bay city-some do work that impacts the United States as a whole.

Sungevity is one of those nominees.  Sungevity is a solar panel business based in Jack London Square that allows clients to lease solar panels for their roof as well as purchase them.  In doing so, Sungevity hopes to democratize solar panels by providing access to solar energy to a wider-based clientele.  Sungevity hopes this will make solar panels more widely used throughout the United States.

globama-logoAnother way Sungevity is working to spread interest and awareness about solar panels is to get them back on the White House.  Solar panels used to be on the White House during the Carter administration, but came down during the first Bush administration.  Sungevity wants to get them back on.  They sent a letter to the Obamas and started a website,, where you can learn more and sign a petition to get involved.  According to Sungevity, the goal of this campaign and petition is “to drive awareness of the ease and affordability now available to homeowners and the dramatic effects it can have on not only slowing global warming, but also saving consumers money on their monthly power bill.”

You can learn more about Sungevity on their website.  And to learn about their push to get solar on the White House, check out

Oaklanders Celebrate Indie Awards in Style

Friday, June 18th, 2010

0274_500wideOn Friday, May 14th, Oaklanders celebrated the people and businesses that make the city great at OneCalifornia Foundation’s 4th Annual Oakland Indie Awards.  Hosted in partnership with the East Bay Express, the annual awards program is a celebration of all things Oakland and an opportunity to highlight the positive social and environmental impact of Oakland’s independent businesses and artists. The program was kicked off by keynote speaker Michael Kieschnick, Co-Founder, President and CEO of CREDO Mobile / Working Assets. 

The 2010 Indie Award Winners Are:

Neighborhood Dynamo: Uptown Body and Fender, a woman-owned body shop that focuses on the emotional well-being of its customers and hosts community events and fundraisers free to local non-profits at its stunning body shop in Oakland’s Uptown district.

Newbie: Snap Judgment, the new Oakland-based NPR program and multi-media company that offers a new voice in storytelling, showcasing Oakland’s diversity and telling stories that “drop listeners into another person’s skin”.

Youth Empowerment: Oaklandish, the extremely popular design and screen-printing company that celebrates all-things Oakland through its apparel and supports the city’s youth through innovation award grants.

0001_500widePillar: Peerless Coffee, the 86-year-old family-owned specialty coffee company that provides specialty blends to some of the Bay Area’s most esteemed restaurants, offers scholarships to Berkeley students, helps develop the communities that grow their coffee, and was one of the first businesses to be certified green by the Alameda County Green Business program.

Innovator: Natural Home Cleaning Professionals, the eco-friendly co-op that provides healthy worker-owner cleaning employment opportunities for immigrant women in Oakland and the Bay Area.

Ripple Effect: BayVAN and Compound Gallery, the arts organizations that founded the nationally-recognized Plaid Friday, the independent business’ answer to Black Friday that encourages people to do their holiday shopping at local indie businesses.

Greenie: Ryan Duke, an independent industrial designer that creatively re-uses reclaimed materials to build essential products to improve lives including refugees in the U.S. and individuals in developing countries.

Oakland Soul: Joyce Gordon Gallery, the downtown-Oakland based commercial fine art gallery that seeks to open doors and share the perspectives of the Bay Area’s diverse artist population, as well as those of international artists.

0205_500wide-croppedPlease visit for more information about the winners and for pictures!

In addition to seeing the winners being announced and awarded, party guests sampled food, wine, chocolate and beer from as many as 30 food producers and restaurants, explored a selection of locally-made items from over 50 artists and retailers, and thanks to the generosity of DJ Mama L, listened to music from Oakland musicians, past and present. 

Thank you to everyone that came out to celebrate with us and we’ll see you at the 5th Annual next year!!

Entrez! Open House: Come Inside and Have a Look Around

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

entrez-small_1“Please feel free to jump on the Fatboy,” says Marie Deleris, owner of Entrez! Open House, a gifts, housewares and furniture boutique in uptown Oakland. I try to suppress my revulsion at the thought of crushing an overweight toddler, but my face betrays me. She notices and quickly adds, “it’s a beanbag chair!” Relieved, I go inside under the pretense of perusing the store’s offerings with every intention of double-checking the oven behind the front counter to make sure Hansel isn’t peeking out at me. Now, fully pacified, I am able to relax and take in my surroundings. Upon taking my first glance around Entrez!, I was afraid I had just been poked in the eyes with a kaleidoscope—in a good way. The store erupts with color and wild designs, shelves are stocked with neat gadgets, and there is a kitchen in the showroom, the island of which serves as the checkout counter.

You’re probably thinking, “Man, that store sounds nuttier than squirrel poop.”

Maybe you’re right, but the pervading thing on my mind while there was, “This place is so cool! Why don’t I have more colorful stuff decorating my place! Why haven’t I been shopping here!?” It sounds like my sentiment is in line with Marie’s customers’, from whom she hears at least once a day that her store is a “getaway” or a “sanctuary”. Entrez! has become the place for many toiling in downtown Oakland to escape from the workplace and let off some steam. This is a result of many things, all of which add up to one very cool, very unorthodox, design store.

Marie Deleris came to America from Paris six years ago to improve her English, and she never went back. While looking for opportunities that would allow her to extend her visa, Marie’s friends would keep commenting on her knack for design. She took their compliments to heart and ran with them, the result being Entrez! Open House. Marie comes from a family that was always interested in interiors, and she says it’s very important to have a good home, a relaxing place to return to at the end of the day. Her store is a microcosm of the environment Marie envisions for her customers. At Entrez! you are allowed to pick up and touch everything, and sit on the furniture. Besides being important to test drive a chair before you buy, this really makes the store much more homey and friendly, a stark contrast to other design galleries where the pieces are reserved strictly for visual enjoyment.

Marie wants her customers to feel at home in Entrez!, the kitchen on the showroom floor helps, and her trust in her customers has been rewarded—in three years only one piece has been broken. This is a testament to the durability of the products that Entrez! carries. Marie likes the idea of things that will last forever, as the most sustainable products are the ones that never need be replaced. One of the most popular lines at the store is Elbow Grease Designs, currently a selection of bags made from recycled convention banners and other recycled materials, made by Oakland’s own Jenny Hurth.

Along with the home and the environment, community is also important. When Entrez! first opened, Marie would see the same people walking past her doors every day on their way from their lattes to work and back. Three years later, the neighborhood is a host to joggers and families pushing strollers on the weekends, and there are new faces coming through to check out all of the cool new stores that have opened on the block. And now those people who trudged past Entrez! every morning are the regulars who stop by to relax and have a coffee or eat their lunch on the tables out in front. This trend in revitalization has not gone unnoticed, as Entrez! was named the Neighborhood Dynamo Oakland Indie Award winner for the Uptown district in 2007.

To help lure people downtown, and probably more just for fun, Tammy at Entrez! hosts Neighbor Knit Meetings twice a month, and Marie holds a French conversation night monthly; every October Entrez! invites people to its pumpkin carving extravaganza, with the one rule that pumpkins must be cleaned out on the sidewalk and the innards disposed of before moving the pumpkins inside to carve.

This summer, Entrez! is also holding a summer design series so that anyone interested can learn more about design and design companies. The first of three lectures, given by a representative from Alessi, has already past, but you can still make it out for the last two: Entrez! will be hosting Kartell on August 13th, and Iittala on September 4th. Click here for more information on the summer design series.

With so much going on at Entrez! Open House you should definitely stop by and check it out for yourself. Marie and her staff are a lot of fun to hang out with, so drop by and share your lunch hour with them, and please, feel free to jump on the Fatboy.

To learn more about Entrez! Open House, visit their website. And to see more independent Oakland businesses online, check out the Oakland Unwrapped website.

Awaken Cafe: Greenie Award Winner listed on Oakland Unwrapped!

Monday, June 1st, 2009

The Bar at Awaken Cafe

The Bar at Awaken Cafe

For OneCalifornia Foundation, all nominees, finalists, and winners at the Indie Awards are winners because their work ties into the work of the foundation: helping to create this vibrant, diverse, and thriving community that is Oakland! We love the work these businesses and artists do, and think it’s great when it just so happens that their work intertwines with ours! This year, the winner of the Greenie Award was Awaken Café–who, besides brewing a mean latte, serving tasty organic treats, and supporting local musicians and artists, sells their coffee and so much more on our online marketplace, Oakland Unwrapped!


Awaken Café opened its doors last year, but it took lots of hard work and conscious community investigating to bring this community-oriented and eco-conscious café to fruition. (more…)

Oakland Celebrates Local Businesses and Artists with the Indie Awards!

Monday, June 1st, 2009

Greenie Award Winners from 2008 and 2009 with OneCalifornia Foundation's Andrea Walker

Greenie Award Winners from 2008 and 2009 with OneCalifornia Foundation's Andrea Walker

On May 15th, Oaklanders and Oakland supporters from all over turned out for OneCalifornia Foundation’s 3rd Annual Oakland Indie Awards, celebrating Oakland’s innovative, socially- and environmentally-responsible businesses and artists. The evening was full of Oakland food, drinks, goods, artists, authors, and music, exhibiting all that Oakland has to offer. And, of course, there were the awards themselves!

Inside the Crucible, an industrial arts training center with a warehouse that can be transformed from classrooms to party central over the course of a few hours, local Oakland businesses and restaurateurs set out samples of their wares and tastes of their food and drink for attendees. (more…)