Weekend sideshow activity — where dozens of cars come together and do donuts in intersections, much to the delight of onlookers who could also get killed if anything went wrong — is typically relegated to the East Bay and suburbs. But early Sunday morning, there was a kind of sideshow convention in San Francisco that moved its way across the city.
Things started just after midnight at Candlestick Point, as the Examiner and other reports. And there seemed to be some coordinated movements to multiple other specific locations — subsequent early morning sideshows then broke out at Loomis Street and Barneveld Avenue in the Bayview, 23rd and Dolores in the Mission, Market and Clayton streets in Eureka Valley/Upper Market, and 30th and Geary in the Outer Richmond. Below you can see a denizen of Upper Market getting to watch and tweet his first sideshow, at 1:48 a.m. Sunday.
I hope you all enjoy my first live sideshow as much as I did @ Clayton & Market St. 1:48am 2/23/20 pic.twitter.com/ETaUPcgNPG— it me (@EricLymanHah) February 23, 2020
As KRON4 reports, despite the very ostentatious show, no citations were issued by SF cops, and no arrests were made. But the SFPD is saying that about 50 to 100 cars appeared to be participating, and the department is working on identifying license plates — and anyone with information is asked to contact them.
Sideshows have been a prevalent problem/form of homegrown entertainment around the Bay Area going back several decades — with the tell-tale tire marks of donuts gracing many an Oakland intersection. And spates of sideshows often accompany nice weather — the beginning of spring, in early April last year, brought an uptick in sideshow activity in the East Bay, for instance, which continued for several consecutive weekends and led to a well publicized crackdown by Oakland police. And upticks in sideshows were once a favorite topic of erstwhile Bay Area bad-behavior reporter Stanley Roberts.
Back in October 2016, during Fleet Week weekend, dozens of dirtbikers shut down the Golden Gate Bridge with a sideshow while on the same day several cars shut down I-880 near the Coliseum doing donuts in the middle of the freeway.
The Instagram account @bayareamovement tends to cover the biggest local sideshows, though they don't yet have any videos of Sunday morning's shows. They do however have this cautionary video about an onlooker/cellphone cameraman who gets tapped by a car careening out of control in a donut, only to stand up, say, "I got that shit good," and then get fully, possibly catastrophically knocked off his feet as the car comes around a second time. Yes, sideshows are dangerous for everyone involved.