We’re used to seeing gardens, walls, and even pavements claimed as public canvases. But fire hydrants? Where most cities say no, the town of Brisbane (population 4,647) has for decades said a resounding yes. Citizens of the little enclave on San Bruno Mountain, situated just south of San Francisco, gather biennially to paint whimsical, eye-catching designs on more than 50 hydrants. Grab a bite at the local coffee shop—easy to find, as there’s only one in town—and treat yourself to a few hours of hydrant spotting along the hilly streets, which boast panoramic views of the entire Bay Area. brisbaneca.org•
This article appears in the Fall 2021 issue of Alta Journal.