The Week

A Bake-sale vs. a Buffet
Gar Smith
A Bake-sale vs. a Buffet


Bake Sale Generates Debate, Peaceful Protests

By Jeff Shuttleworth (BCN)
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 10:47:00 AM

A bake sale by Berkeley College Republicans yesterday that was aimed at satirizing race-based admissions generated heated debates and counter-protests but no major problems. -more-

Baked Goods and Arguments Retailed on Sproul Plaza

By Steven Finacom
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 10:20:00 AM
The “bake sale” table was a crowded center of discussion and debate much of the day.

Demonstrations come and go on the UC Berkeley campus. They’re sometimes amusing, periodically profound, occasionally irritating. For half a century they’ve been a fixture of Sproul Plaza and have become so commonplace that most don’t attract extensive attention. -more-

Flash: Berkeley City Manager Phil Kamlarz
to Retire on November 30

By Becky O'Malley
Monday September 26, 2011 - 10:38:00 PM

Berkeley City Manager Phil Kamlarz will retire at the end of November after 36 years as a City of Berkeley employee. He has been City Manager for 8 years, succeeding Weldon Rucker, under whom he served as Deputy City Manager. It has been widely rumored that the baton will again be passed to a City Hall insider, in this case to Deputy City Manager Christine Daniel. -more-

Report on Berkeley City Employee Costs, Proposed Savings and Action Plan Released:
An Updated Comparison of 12 Greater Bay Area Cities

Tuesday September 27, 2011 - 11:03:00 AM

The Berkeley Budget SOS organization has prepared and forwarded to the Berkeley City Council a report and updated analysis of costs for city employee salaries, benefits and overtime/other cash payments for 12 Bay Area cities, including the City of Berkeley. It is based on the Public Employees Database (PED) and data provided directly to Berkeley Budget SOS by City of Berkeley staff.

According to the report, in all categories Berkeley ranks significantly above the 12 city average, and in some cases is the highest of all cities in the survey.

The analysis estimates that the City of Berkeley could realize annual recurring savings of $68 Million to $100 Million if the aggregate of employee costs were reduced to that of the regional average.

As a means of achieving this goal Berkeley Budget SOS proposes the implementation of a 10-Point Action Plan.

The full text of the report can be seen here. -more-

UC Berkeley Groups Debate Affirmative Action at Campus Bake Sale

By Hannah Albarazi1 (BCN)
Tuesday September 27, 2011 - 04:58:00 PM

Republican students at UC Berkeley are holding a controversial "Increase Diversity Bake Sale" on campus today to highlight their opposition to state Senate Bill 185. -more-

Alta Bates Summit, Nurses' Union Dispute Responsibility for Patient's Death after Replacement Administers Wrong Medication

By Jeff Shuttleworth (BCN)
Tuesday September 27, 2011 - 07:35:00 AM

Hospital officials and union leaders traded blame yesterday for the death of a patient at Alta Bates Summit Medical Center in Oakland early Saturday due to a medical error by a replacement nurse. -more-

"Parking Day" Comes to Berkeley

By Steven Finacom
Tuesday September 27, 2011 - 08:30:00 AM
The Nina Haft & Company dance group organized a series of performances at Allston and Shattuck on Park(ing) Day, against a backdrop of recycled art.

“Park(ing) Day” came to Berkeley on September 16, 2011. The annual worldwide event originated in San Francisco in 2005 when the Rebar design studio temporarily turned a parking space into a mini-park, with turf, seating, and a boxed tree. It was a statement about creating “temporary public spaces” where the car is dominant, and/or urban outdoor space is scarce. -more-

Green Schoolyards: Creating A Greener Generation©

By Stevanne Auerbach, PhD
Monday September 26, 2011 - 10:44:00 PM

"Every school a garden, every child a gardener, every plant a learning experience"—Kid Grow Australia

The typical schoolyard of unappealing, hard, grey, uneven, and usually broken asphalt fosters little interaction or playfulness and does nothing to connect children with nature, play, or learning. In addition there is great concern about the substantial rise in child obesity and diabetes throughout the country and the amount of time children are bound up by electronics, and not in contact with nature. It’s vital that we help kids to be better informed and more aware of the food they eat, to get them outdoors, and be more active.

Gardening is about all of this plus it fosters imagination and optimism. The idea that you plant a tiny seed and it turns into a plant is magical in itself. Last week a new light appeared that is prominently working to shift drab grey to bright green and moving towards creating a new generation that is closer attuned to nature and the environment.

Engaging Our Grounds, the first International Green Schoolyard Conference in the United States was held September 16-18, 2011 with events held in San Francisco and Berkeley, California. The three-day conference brought together a world of designers, architects, landscape architects, teachers, administrators, parents, publishers, and gardening experts to share and learn about programs already thriving as models in Australia, Canada, England, Germany, Japan, Sweden, and here in the Bay Area. The sponsors for the event included Bay Tree Design—a landscape architecture and planning firm, based in Berkeley; the San Francisco Green Schoolyard Alliance—a non-profit, focused on San Francisco schools; and Architects/Designers/Planners for Social Responsibility (ADPSR)/New Village Press—a green building non-profit and publisher. Several dozen exhibitors provided valuable information and resource materials on the event’s opening night in San Francisco. -more-

Patient at Alta Bates Summit Dies from Lethal Dose Allegedly Given by Temporary Nurse

By Bay City News
Monday September 26, 2011 - 11:13:00 AM

Police are investigating the death of a patient at an Oakland hospital who appears to have been given a lethal dose of medication by a replacement nurse. -more-

Unofficial Mayor of Telegraph Released from Jail Saturday

by Ted Friedman
Monday September 26, 2011 - 11:34:00 AM

The unofficial mayor of Telegraph, who was busted last week for interfering with a cop outside Caffe Mediterraneum was back on the ave late Saturday after the Alameda County district attorney refused to charge him with resisting arrest. -more-

Early Rain on Telegraph Stroll

By Ted Friedman
Monday September 26, 2011 - 07:47:00 AM
We're so outta here. We're going to Beaverton, Oregon; notice the glistening walk

A little unexpected September rain sprinkled a stroll on Telegraph avenue Sunday.

It wasn't a stroll--the way Solano stroll is--and it wasn't a music festival, but as event organizer Al Geyer, 63, put it, "there'll be a little strolling and a little music, and a little strolling into businesses; the street will not be closed." -more-

UC Berkeley Graduates Detained in Iran Expected to Return to U.S. Today

By Bay City News
Sunday September 25, 2011 - 11:13:00 AM

Two University of California at Berkeley graduates who were detained in Iran on espionage charges for more than two years are expected to return to the United States today, after spending three days in Oman following their release from Iran. -more-

Nurses at Alta Bates in Berkeley and Other Hospitals Told to Stay Away Until Thursday

By Sara Gaiser (BCN)
Friday September 23, 2011 - 04:05:00 PM

A nursing strike at Bay Area hospitals is over today, but participating nurses at Sutter hospitals and Children's Hospital in Oakland have been told they cannot report back to work before Tuesday, officials said today. -more-

Two Arrested During Protests on UC Berkeley Campus

By Patricia Decker (BCN)
Friday September 23, 2011 - 12:17:00 PM

Two people were arrested on the University of California at Berkeley campus Thursday night during protests of the UC system's proposed plan to hike tuition by as much as $10,000 per year.

Students and other demonstrators gathered at noon in Sproul Plaza to express their frustration over the university's plan to require more money from students because of wavering funding support from Sacramento. -more-

Fall Budget and Fee Protests Begin at UC Berkeley

By Steven Finacom
Friday September 23, 2011 - 12:05:00 AM

Student, staff, and community demonstrators kicked off a fall season of budget cut and fee increase protest at the UC Berkeley campus on Thursday, September 22, 2011, with a modest but spirited noontime rally, followed by a march through campus and occupation of classrooms.

At day’s end some of the group was gathered, watched by campus police, in part of Tolman Hall, the sprawling Education / Psychology building in the northwest corner of the campus along Hearst Avenue.

I watched part of the Sproul Plaza demonstration and march that fell during my lunch hour. An array of speakers focused on placing the campus protests in the context of national efforts to stop budget cuts, protect labor rights, and reverse growing economic inequality in the United States.

I arrived when Professor of Geography Dick Walker was speaking. “This is not a pay for play institution”, he told the crowd. “It is a public institution.” -more-

9/11 in the Comics

By Gar Smith
Friday September 23, 2011 - 08:26:00 AM

Commentary on the 9/11 Anniversary wasn't confined to the news pages and editorial section of our daily papers. It also flew smack into the middle of the Sunday comics. The various ways America's mainstream cartoonists addressed the anniversary tells us something about how the nation continues to process the trauma of that day. In most cases, the response was a retreat into unquestioning patriotism; in other cases, there was simply a sense of fatigue; in a few rare instances, there were surprising expressions of dissent. -more-

New: Protesters in Berkeley March against Tuition Hikes, Occupy Classrooms

By Scott Morris (BCN)
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 06:13:00 PM

Dozens of protesters are occupying Tolman Hall on the University of California at Berkeley campus today, and there has been at least one confrontation with a university police officer involving pepper spray, according to police and protest organizers. -more-

Press Release: Bayer Biotech Workers in Berkeley Send Company a Stinging Rebuke

From Craig Merrilees, ILWU
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 06:33:00 PM

Workers at Bayer’s pharmaceutical plant in Berkeley cast ballots yesterday in an election that sent the company a stinging rebuke for refusing to provide employees with job security after company officials took millions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies that were supposed to protect well-paying jobs. -more-

New: "Unofficial Mayor" of Telegraph Busted for "Interfering" with a Cop As Medheads Get Front-Row Seats

By Ted Friedman
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 02:33:00 PM

He was the unofficial "mayor of Telegraph", with a list of friends as long as his waist- length silver hair and lanky frame. Dubbed in a Planet piece, "a good samaritan" who broke up a chain-whipping in People's Park in May, he may have tried to samaritan the wrong man Tuesday. -more-

Updated: California Nurses Strike at Alta Bates Hospital in Berkeley and Elsewhere

By Laura Dixon, Bay City News Service
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 11:47:00 AM

Tens of thousands of Northern and Central California nurses are striking today to protest hospitals' proposed labor concessions and other grievances that they say are unnecessary and unwarranted.

As picketing RNs in the Bay Area held rallies and marches, hospital officials said their facilities are still functional with the aid of replacement nurses and those who have crossed the picket lines in the 24-hour strike.

Nurses are striking at the region's two largest hospital chains, Kaiser Permanente and Sutter Health(including Alta Bates Hospital in Berkeley), and at Children's Hospital in Oakland, among other hospitals. -more-

Nurses Strike Throughout California

By Bay City News Service
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 10:03:00 AM

Some 23,000 registered nurses throughout much of the state are expected to rally during a one-day strike today in a bid for RN rights -more-

Just Another Berkeley South Side Crime Story: Who Killed People's Park Activist Gina Sasso?

by Ted Friedman
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 07:59:00 AM

The thirty grieving friends who attended Gina Sasso's 50th birthday party Friday were greeted at the door by Gina's three-year old "granddaughter," who gleefully announced, "it's Gina's birthday; it's Gina's birthday." Sasso died May 25 of complications of pneumonia. But "she" returned from the grave to appear later at the party. -more-

Mark Coyote

By John Curl
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 09:57:00 AM
Mark Coyote

This year’s Berkeley Indigenous People’s Day Pow Wow, on Saturday, October 8, is dedicated to the memory of Mark Gorrell who, with his wife Nancy, for two decades worked for the rights of native people and all people, and made profound contributions to the origin, celebration, and meaning of Indigenous Peoples Day, but now has walked on. -more-


The Editor's Back Fence

Yet Another Schedule Update

Sunday September 25, 2011 - 12:21:00 PM

Some days not much happens, so we've decided only to publish "new issues" when there's a critical mass of new stories. That won't necessarily be every day, especially on weekends. This current issue covers both Saturday and Sunday, for example, though it has Saturday's date, September 24.

And there are now four (4) ways to check for what you've missed: scrolling back day by day with the "Previous Issue" button at the top left of the page; getting a list of stories with lede paragraphs by using "The Week" button; getting complete stories in a list with the "Full Text" button; and using the links on the lower righthand side of the home page. -more-

Speak Out on Issues for Tuesday's Berkeley City Council Meeting

By Becky O'Malley
Saturday September 24, 2011 - 04:23:00 PM

As a resident of District 8, I received the following (slightly abridged) communication from my councilmember, Gordon Wozniak:

At its Sept 27th meeting the Berkeley City Council will consider a number of important issues. For residents who are unable to attend the Council meeting, but wish to provide input to the Council, Councilmember Wozniak has posted five agenda issues on the Open Town Hall website.:

Should the Berkeley City Council adopt a Resolution authorizing dollar amounts for the following relocation payments referenced in Section 13.84.070 of the revised ordinance: 1) per diem payments of $120 for a single person household, $135 for a two-person household and $166 per day for a household of three or more persons; 2) dislocation allowance of $400; 3) fixed payment for moving costs of $300; 4) fixed payment for storage costs of $200; and 5) reimbursement for pet boarding costs up to a maximum of $50 per day for dogs and $20 per day for cats?

Should the City Council refer to the City Manager consideration of establishing an ordinance like LA's to limit harassment?

Should the City Council refer to the City Manager consideration of the establishment of a DUI ordinance similar to one in Oakley, CA where those convicted of a DUI must pay for all city expenses due to their DUI crime?

Should the City Council Support the United Farm Workers Petition to End the Secure Communities Program?

Should the City Council refer to the Planning Commission a Zoning Ordinance amendment to allow automobile dealers to become a legal conforming use on South Shattuck Ave, including the ability to lease or purchase additional property if necessary?

If you have anything to say on any of these issues, you're invited to send your signed opinions of any length to -more-

New Feature: "The Week" Button

Friday September 23, 2011 - 08:26:00 AM

Under the new Planet schedule, we start entering each day's news every morning in a new issue. After that, new articles are added to the issue all day long.

To find out what happened yesterday and in the last seven days, click on "The Week" button to find links to all articles posted in the past week. The "Full Text" button makes it possible to scroll back through a week's worth of complete articles. -more-

About the New Schedule

Thursday September 22, 2011 - 10:08:00 AM

If you haven't looked at for a few days, you might be surprised to find that for the past week we've been launching a new "issue" almost daily, on an irregular basis as copy is submitted. One benefit of this plan is that you can read our sometimes lengthy, sometimes challenging pieces thoroughly on the day we put them online. Several readers have told us that the long, long Wednesday issues can be too much of a good thing, so that they never get around to reading everything.

As always, you can read previous issues, including the several which have appeared this week, by clicking backwards using the "Previous Issue" button on the top left side of the page.

And as you read these pieces, you should always be aware that comments long and short can be submitted to Long ones will be posted as "commentaries", short ones grouped under Letters. We do require you to sign your real name unless you can give us a good reason for believing that real, serious harm would come to you if you do so. -more-


Cartoon Page: BOUNCE: Internet Gnomes

By Joseph Young
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 10:09:00 PM

Cartoon Page: Bake-sale vs. Buffet

By Gar Smith
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 02:42:00 PM

Cartoon Page: Odd Bodkins: The Miracle

Dan O'Neill
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 02:21:00 PM

Public Comment

Press Release: UC Students Stand for Diversity, Reject Affirmative Action Bake Sale, Push for SB185

From Darius L. Kemp, Director of Organizing and Communications
Monday September 26, 2011 - 11:06:00 PM

UC students on 10 UC campuses are organizing a day of action on Tuesday September 27th to call Governor Brown to express their support for Senate Bill 185. The UCSA Day of Action for SB 185 will be one of the largest call-in days for SB 185 with a goal of over 1,100 calls to the Governor. In response to our day of action, the Berkeley College Republicans have organized a deeply offensive “Bake Sale,” which misrepresents SB 185 and does nothing to further a constructive dialogue or positive campus climate.

“SB 185 allows the UC and CSU to consider race, ethnicity, gender and other relevant factors during the admissions process. Having knowledge of an individual applicant’s racial or ethnic background will allow the University to have a more accurate understanding of a person’s background and make a more informed admission decision. UC students strongly support this bill, and will be taking action to let the Governor know that we expect him to sign it,” says Claudia Magana, UCSA President. -more-

Why the Berkeley College Republicans are Wrong

By Thomas Lord
Monday September 26, 2011 - 08:02:00 AM

The Berkeley College Republicans have taken a strong stance against a proposed law that would allow, among other things, race to be taken into consideration during the admissions process. They say on a Facebook event page: "The Berkeley College Republicans firmly believe measuring any admit's merit based on race is intrinsically racist."

In this note I'll show that their belief is wrong. Not only is the use of race in admissions not intrinsically racist - the failure to consider race and other similar factors is intrinsically racist. This is not some subjective interpretation of histories of oppression. This is not some radical ideological interpretation of "fairness". Rather, I'll point out some ways in which if race is not considered, some minority students who are objectively more qualified are likely to be turned away in favor of white students who are objectively less qualified. -more-

Perry's Claim to Fame

By Ron Lowe
Monday September 26, 2011 - 04:01:00 PM

A quick snapshot of Rick Perry, leading contender as the Republican presidential nominee. 139 countries (72% of the countries in the world) have abolished the death penalty in law or practice. What is Rick Perry's claim to fame? Perry has presided over 234 executions, a record number, while governor of Texas. -more-

Join "Tax the Rich" Demonstration in Berkeley on Monday Evening

By Julia Ross
Sunday September 25, 2011 - 10:56:00 AM

One Monday, September 26, at 6:00 pm, there will be another gathering in Berkeley in front of the closed Oaks Theater on Solano Ave. to demonstrate to Tax The Rich. Please join us. Bring a "Tax The Rich" sign if you can. Our numbers are growing, as are the thousands that are camped out on Wall Street in New York City. -more-

Response to "Laura's Law in A Nutshell"

By Jack Bragen
Sunday September 25, 2011 - 11:05:00 AM

Court-ordered, intensive, outpatient treatment. What would this look like in practice? Well, a couple of beefy guys would restrain a psychiatric patient, and a nurse would shoot antipsychotic medication into the person’s ass. It would not be a pretty sight. The side effects of the medication come later. Will the workers have the time to remain on site for the next twelve hours to monitor side effects? Doubtful. If the person is having muscle spasms or rigidity, or perhaps neuroleptic malignant syndrome, who do they call for help? Who will answer when they call? -more-

New: Letters

Thursday September 22, 2011 - 06:34:00 PM

Conn Hallinan's Article -more-


My Commonplace Book (a diary of excerpts copied from printed books, with comments added by the reader.)

By Dorothy Bryant
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 11:31:00 AM

A fine artistic production expresses the vision, the conviction, and the insistent presence of one person. It is best when it is undiluted by artistic cooperation, when it is not characterized by any of the seven (or more) deadly virtues: fair-minded, well-balanced, accommodating, unassertive, cooperative, and so forth. —from A Life, by Elia Kazan (1909-2003), Distinguished actor/director -more-

On Mental Illness: Cigarettes, Coffee and Metabolic Syndrome

By Jack Bragen
Tuesday September 27, 2011 - 11:01:00 AM

There is a statistic that says the lifespan of persons with severe mental illness is twenty to thirty years less than average. Being a person with mental illness carries with it a number of severe health risks. Additionally, we are less likely to receive lifesaving medical treatments. Physicians may not be as aggressive about treating our health problems. -more-

Setting Limits With Obama

By Bob Burnett
Saturday September 24, 2011 - 04:03:00 PM

Barack Obama has been a disappointment but in 2012 Americans will either vote for him or a Republican Neanderthal. To stay in the White House Obama will need our support. That’s an opportunity to set limits, to make specific demands. Here are four suggestions.

Jobs: In the most recent New York times/CBS News poll 59 percent of respondents were most concerned about the economy and jobs. President Obama must focus on his jobs plan because every American who wants to work should be able to find a decent job with a living wage. -more-

New: Dispatches From The Edge: Arms, China & the Obama Administration

By Conn Hallinan
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 12:43:00 PM

The recent decision by the Obama Administration to sell $5.8 billion in arms to Taiwan is a bit of a head scratcher, rather like the hunter who goes into the woods with one bullet. Seeing a deer to his left and a turkey to his right, he shoots in the middle. It will annoy Taipei, irritate Beijing, stir up the China bashers in the U.S., and increase tensions in a region of the world that is already pretty tense. -more-

New: Laura's Law in a Nutshell

By Ralph E. Stone
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 02:36:00 PM

Laura Wilcox, a 19-year old sophomore from Haverford College, was working at Nevada County's public mental health clinic during her winter break from college. On January 10, 2001, she and two other people were shot to death by Scott Harlan Thorpe, a 41-year old mental patient who resisted his family's attempt to seek treatment. Thorpe was found incompetent to stand trial and was sent to Atascadero State Hospital and was later transferred to California's Napa State Hospital. -more-

Senior Power… The Only Disease

By Helen Rippier Wheeler
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 11:43:00 AM

Alzheimer’s disease (AD,) the only disease among the top 10 causes of death for Americans that has no known cure or treatment, already affects an estimated 5.4 million Americans, at a cost of $183 billion a year. -more-

My Commonplace Book (a diary of excerpts copied from printed books, with comments added by the reader.)

By Dorothy Bryant
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 11:49:00 AM

The works of a man, bury them under what guano-mountains and obscene owl-droppings you will, do not perish, cannot perish. What of Heroism, what of Eternal Light was in a man and his Life, is with very great exactness added to the Eternities, remains forever a new divine portion of the Sum of Things.

—Thomas Carlyle (1795—1881), prolific essayist, satirist, historian -more-

New: On Mental Illness: Something for Nothing

By Jack Bragen
Thursday September 22, 2011 - 10:53:00 AM

I spent most of my life with my mind dominated by magical thinking, and this caused me to have a lot of problems. My mind seemed to be on a different wavelength than those of other people’s. Without knowing it, I had a poor grasp of reality. When I made mistakes, ones that could create bad consequences, my mind didn’t acknowledge those mistakes. The rule was that my mind had to believe that everything was always O.K., and my perceptions of the world were warped to conform to that. Partly, I lived in a world of wishful thinking. Also, I was protecting my mind from the often upsetting nature of the truth. -more-

Arts & Events

Opera Review: Gounod's Romeo et Juliette at Livermore Valley Opera

By Ken Bullock
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 10:08:00 AM

Charles Gounod--best-known for his Faust--had a different sense of adapting Shakespeare to opera than Verdi. It's closer to Delacroix's renderings of Hamlet. In Romeo et Juliette, now at Livermore Valley Opera, the sprawling action and passion is concentrated into a few scenes of melodic, lyrical grace. -more-

Film Review: Raul Ruiz's Mysteries of Lisbon at Shattuck Cinemas

By Ken Bullock
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 10:01:00 AM

Raul Ruiz's extraordinary and original films have been shown at the Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley, notably a retrospective during the San Francisco Film Festival in 1984, and a program of short films, with Ruiz's appearance, in the 90s. Time Regained, his 1999 adaptation of Proust's final novel, with Catherine Deneuve, Emmanuelle beart and John Malkovitch, among others, is maybe his best-known work, one hailed on release as high among postwar masterpieces. -more-

Book Review: Heart of a Soldier

Reviewed by Dorothy Snodgrass
Wednesday September 28, 2011 - 10:25:00 AM

This September marked the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 World Trade Center attack, the worst attack in American history! Who can forget the horrific images of the burning Towers, people jumping out of windows, and dazed workers who managed to escape the building, soot-covered but uninjured, running through the rubble covering the ground? -more-

Free Speech Day Is October 1! Two Unique Ways to Celebrate

By Gar Smith
Tuesday September 27, 2011 - 04:44:00 PM

As the raging debates over a student Republican "bake sale" in Sproul Plaza demonstrate, the exercise of free speech is alive and well on the UC Berkeley campus. But there was a time when staging any kind of student demonstration intended to influence a governor's vote on a pending bill would have been illegal. -more-

"Jobs Not Cuts" Rally in Oakland October 15

By Zipporah Collins
Tuesday September 27, 2011 - 04:15:00 PM

A coalition of workers, educators, students, seniors, environmentalists, peace activists, religious progressives, and other social justice activists from throughout the Bay Area plan to march and rally for jobs, not budget cuts, and other people-serving actions in Oakland on Saturday, Oct. 15. -more-

Despite Rain, the Show Goes On at Free Cal Performances Day

By Steven Finacom
Monday September 26, 2011 - 07:45:00 AM
Cal students in the Bare Troupe group performed show tunes at Sather Gate. They were among several student singing groups featured during the day.

The first rain storm of the season dampened the morning of the second annual Cal Performances “Free For All” on the UC Berkeley campus and drove many of the attendees and some of the shows inside. But by mid-afternoon the sun was coming out and thousands of spectators had made their way to dozens of free events spread out over several concert halls, auditoriums, and plazas.

The all day, second annual, September 25, 2011 event showcased performances from Gamelan Sari Raras to African music and dance, to Cal spirit songs and improvisational clowning. No tickets were needed, and seating was first come, first served. -more-

Berkeley Arts Festival Concerts this week

Monday September 26, 2011 - 07:43:00 AM

Thursday, September 29, 8 pm Mark Miller/Henry Kaiser/Allen Whitman, drums, guitar, bass Improvisation $10-$20 -more-

Farmageddon: America's War Against Small Farmers

Reviewed by Gar Smith
Sunday September 25, 2011 - 11:55:00 AM
The film "Farmageddon" is screening at SF's Roxie Theatre and the Rafael Theatre in San Rafael--see review below in "Arts & Events".

Farmageddon is screening at SF's Roxie Theatre and the Rafael Theatre in San Rafael

The first-person stories related in Kristin Canty's new documentary, Farmageddon, may sound like people recounting the post-trauma shock of a drug-raid but these "perps" are not pot-growers or drug-smugglers, they are family farmers and members of organic produce buying clubs. -more-

Architecture, Dance, Music in Berkeley This Weekend

By Steven Finacom
Friday September 23, 2011 - 10:38:00 AM

Dance, music, historic architecture and culture in general are on tap in Berkeley for this weekend, September 24-25, 2011.

On Saturday evening there’s a special chance to see the interior of the National Landmark First Church of Christ, Scientist, and hear from an author with a new book about the architect, Bernard Maybeck. Maybeck’s granddaughter will also be there to share family stories.

Sunday, the creative impulses of Cal Performances scatter and sparkle around the UC Berkeley campus in the second annual “Free for All,” with a day of gratis performances in several indoor and outdoor venues. -more-