The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley, weekend of Aug. 11-13

Reggae greats The Abyssinians – Donald Manning, Bernard Collins and David Morrison – play Ashkenaz on Saturday night. Photo: Courtesy The Abyssinians.

THE ABYSSINIANS The roots harmony vocals trio the Abyssinians return to Ashkenaz on Saturday night for the first time since 2007. The group was founded by Donald Manning, Bernard Collins and Linford Manning in 1968. Their 1969 release “Satta Massagana,” a Rastafarian hymn based on the Ethiopian Amharic language, launched them into the ranks of Reggae music greats. In 2004, Donald Manning and Bernard Collins reformed the group with singer David Morrison. Saturday, Aug. 12, 9:30 p.m., Ashkenaz, 1317 San Pablo Ave.

DESI COMEDY FEST Desi Comedy Fest is the largest annual South Asian comedy festival in America, and the tour reaches the Freight & Salvage on Sunday night. The festival’s vision is to showcase the funniest South Asian comedians and create a unique live comedy experience for the South Asian diaspora. Among the comics expected on Sunday night are San Franciscans Abhay Nadkarni and Dhaya Lakshminarayanan, Karmen Naidoo from South Africa, Kritarth Srinivasan from Bangalore, and Berkeley’s own Sureni Weerasekera. Sunday, Aug. 13, 7 p.m., Freight & Salvage, 2020 Addison St.

BERKELEY HIGH BIOTECH A public exhibition at Berkeley High on Saturday will offer a chance to observe the summer accomplishments of young scientists in one of the high school’s most successful career-training programs, the Biotech Academy. Students have been working in biotechnology laboratories, doing field work for county offices of environmental health and working on water quality with EBMUD among other placements. Nearly 60 students, mostly from BHS, are included in the exhibition. Saturday, Aug. 12, 12:30 p.m., Berkeley High cafeteria, Building D, 1980 Allston Way.

LAWN BOWLING OPEN HOUSE Berkeley Lawn Bowling Club will hold an open house and neighborhood bowl on Sunday afternoon. The club says, “Lawn bowls is a sport for all ages. It’s low impact, outdoors, equally enjoyable for men and women, and requires finesse more than force.” Wear flat-sole tennis shoes to try it out, and enjoy the snacks on offer. Sunday, Aug. 13, Berkeley Lawn Bowling Club, 2270 Acton St.


Obit, a documentary about the New York Times’ obituary section, is at BAMPFA on Sunday at 5 p.m.

OBIT There seems no end to the number of wonderful documentaries spawned at the New York Times. Think Page One (about the newsroom) and Wordplay (about the crossword). Now there’s Obit. It covers the small team of journalists on the obituaries desk. Filmmaker Vanessa Gould conceived the project after being interviewed by a Times staff writer following the death of a friend. Friday, Aug. 11, 8:30 p.m. and Sunday, Aug. 13, 5 p.m., BAMPFA, 2155 Center St.