Daily Archives: May 3, 2012


The Berkeley Wire: 05.03.12

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Hits, put-outs and a Garbanzo tournament victory

Team Zonta Garbanzos, who won last Saturday's mid-season tournament. Photo: ABGSL
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By Bora Reed

Bora Reed, an Albany Berkeley Girls Softball League parent and the league’s reporter coordinator recently wrote to Berkeleyside wondering if we would publish game reports. “Why not?” was our reply. Here’s the first: 

The Albany Berkeley Girls Softball League season is well under way, with girls grades 1-8 building skills, learning teamwork and having fun. Berkeleyside provided one perspective on the league from Moneyball author Michael Lewis in December. Below is a report of the Older Division’s mid-season tournament last Saturday, along with a few reports from games in the Middle and Younger Divisions. Special thanks to the team of embedded reporters for the game write-ups.

Zonta Garbanzos Win Mid-Season Tournament

Zonta Clubs’ Garbanzos girls softball squad jumped to an early commanding lead from the get-go in their first game on Saturday against the Friedman-Brueggemeyer Fantastic Flying Frying Pans with one run each scored by Zinnia Thewlis, Grace Rusin, Dylan Kurzgul and Anne Mugler. The four-run lead was held throughout the four-inning game thanks to sharp pitching from Zinnia and Grace and deft fielding skills of Claire McNally and Griffen Campbell. … Continue reading »

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Dianne Reeves, a regal figure in jazz world, plays Berkeley

Dianne Reeves plays Cal Performances xxxx. Photo: Christian Lantry
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It’s been at least two generations since jazz stars took on aristocratic titles, otherwise Dianne Reeves would surely be known as The Queen. The gorgeous singer with an even more glorious voice is one of jazz’s most regal figures, an artist who embodies the music’s enduring values of elegance, class and improvisational poise (which isn’t to say that she can’t get earthy when the music requires a little grit).

She’s a performer with a gift for transforming any space she inhabits into her living room, where she spins evocative tails for her listeners. Over the years I’ve seen her tear the roof off little theaters and mesmerize the Hollywood Bowl, where she put together events for several years as the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s first head of jazz programming.

“Small, large, it doesn’t make a difference,” says Reeves, 55, who plays Friday at Zellerbach Hall for Cal Performances with her longtime pianist and music direcotr Peter Martin, bassist Reginald Veal, drummer Terreon Gully, and Brazilian guitar master Romero Lubambo. “No matter where you are, it’s all the same place when it comes to communicating with an audience.” … Continue reading »

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Renovated Claremont library branch opens Saturday

The exterior of the refurbished Claremont Library. Photo: Frances Dinkelspiel
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After a year of construction, the refurbished Claremont Branch of the Berkeley Public Library will reopen Saturday May 5 at 1 pm with music, food, and greetings by a host of dignitaries.

“We’re so proud of it,” said Donna Corbeil, director of the library. “We are so excited.”

The renovation of the branch paid attention to historical details while installing state-of-the-art equipment that brings the building into the 21st century. The original 1924 entrance has been turned into a huge glass reading nook and the wooden furnishings have been redone, giving the main reading room a classic feel.

There are new computers in the reading room (eight for adults and three for children), an automated book-sorting system, a new heating and cooling system that should better control the library’s temperature and ventilation, and flat screens to see movies, get database training, or develop computer apps. … Continue reading »

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Bomb threat closes several Berkeley streets Wednesday

Several streets, including Le Roy and Le Conte were blocked during last night's suspected bomb threat
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Police blocked several streets and prevented people getting into their homes Wednesday night on the north side of the UC Berkeley campus after a man reported hearing a ticking in his van and said he was concerned about a possible bomb.

The 20-year-old man called the Berkeley police at 7:36 pm to report a ticking sound in his van which was parked, unlocked, near Le Roy and Le Conte avenues. The man, who lives in the 2500 block of Le Conte Avenue, said he had recently fired an employee and the employee had made some threats.

Due to the circumstances, the BPD Watch Commander directed that the area be cordoned off for safety and activated the BPD EOD (Explosive Ordinance Device) to respond, according to the Berkeley Police. The Watch Commander also directed personnel to activate the Berkeley Emergency Notification System (BENS), to advise community members of the possible explosive device and to remain in their homes. BPD officers evacuated community members from homes adjacent to the van. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley buildings are winners in architecture awards

McGee house
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The San Francisco chapter of the American Institute of Architects recently announced the winners of its 2012 Design Awards, and four Berkeley projects were awarded in the progam, from a total of 26 across the Bay Area.

Mark Cavagnero Associates won a Merit Award in the Interior Architecture category for their renovation of UC Berkeley’s Durant Hall. Leger Wanaselja Architecture received a Merit award in the Energy and Sustainability category for the partners’ own home, the McGee Salvage House on McGee Street in central Berkeley. In the same category, Noll & Tam Architects won a citation award for the YMCA-PG&E Teen Center in downtown Berkeley. And Diller Scofidio + Renfro/EHDD Architecture received a Merit award in the Unbuilt Design category for their designs for the forthcoming Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive.

John King, Urban Design Critic at the San Francisco Chronicle said Berkeley did particularly well this year. “This is a large number for Berkeley.” But he cautions that this doesn’t necessarily mean an affirmation of shifting Berkeley design trends. … Continue reading »

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UC Berkeley on Occupy the Farm: ‘Time is running out’

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Update: 9:24 am: The Dean of UC Berkeley’s College of Natural Resources, J. Keith Gilless, says he is willing to facilitate a meaningful dialogue about the future of the Gill Tract but a constructive dialogue cannot take place while the site is occupied and CNR staff need to prepare the site for this year’s research activities.

In a message Gilless sent out to his faculty this morning at 8:22am, Gilless wrote: “I firmly believe that biology research and a well-organized metropolitan agriculture program could ultimately not just co-exist on the site, but benefit from interaction… The only way we can move forward to reconcile the needs and aspirations of everyone is for the current occupation to end so that CNR’s staff can prepare the site.”

He concluded: “As dean, I cannot be a party to any resolution to this unfortunate conflict that does not respect the academic freedom of CNR’s biologists to conduct their research, or in which I relinquish the rights of my faculty and students now or in the future to help chart the course of the University’s research, teaching, and extension activities. … Continue reading »

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