cable-car.jpgSan Francisco’s University Club is paying tribute to cable car operators today, providing them with free lunches along their routes.

The club, founded in 1890 by a collection of educational institutions, is dedicated to fellowship and community service.

Part of that devotion to the city, assistant club manager Julie Garrett said, includes honoring those who came before them.

“It’s a historical tradition honoring the fact that, yes, we’ve been here for over a hundred years, but they’ve been here longer,” she said.

The lunches are packed with a thank-you note acknowledging the operators’ contributions to the history San Francisco.

“I think that it shows the cable car driver that we appreciate what they do,” Garrett said.

“They are the city’s ambassadors–they are tour guides, they handle safety issues, they are a very invaluable part of the community,” she said. “They are continually doing a lot more than what is in their job description.”

The lunches will be doled out on the northeast corner of California and Powell streets, where the Powell-Mason, Powell-Hyde and California cable car lines intersect.

“The cable cars stop right in front of the club to pick up passengers and drop them off,” Garret said. “That’s when we run out the boxed lunch and thank them for everything they do.”

Garrett said that the tradition is eagerly anticipated by cable car operators each year.

“They love it,” Garrett said. “I know they’ve been looking forward to it. I ride the cable car every day and some of the drivers know that I work here and have been asking about it.”
The club planned to begin handing out the lunches at 10:30 a.m.

Kristen Peters, Bay City News

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