Tag Archives: Berkeley events

Couples say ‘I do’ in Berkeley Valentine’s Day celebration

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Kelly Ross and Alyssa Journey were married in downtown Berkeley on Friday Feb. 14, but it was fluke that it happened at all. The couple, from Little Rock, Ark., was traveling to New York with plans to get married when their flight was cancelled. They rerouted to San Francisco and happened to see on Facebook that Berkeley was holding a mass wedding on Valentine’s Day. They decided to head here to tie the knot.

Ross and Journey were one of several couples, straight and gay, who were wed or who renewed their vows at a mass celebration at BART Plaza in downtown on Friday.

The event was orchestrated by the Downtown Berkeley Association on the first Valentine’s Day since the repeal of Defense of Marriage Act and the overturn of Proposition 8. … Continue reading »

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A life in clave: Josh Jones keeps the beat

Josh Jones
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Josh Jones has had a fair share of glory. An early product of the Berkeley Unified School District’s jazz education program, he’s toured and recorded with jazz legends, helped spark the Bay Area’s acid jazz scene in the 1990s, and worked with hip hop icons like Tupac Shakur, Digital Underground, and Too Short. But his most important work has taken place away from the spotlight, teaching young musicians about the intricacies of swing, funk, and clave, the essential pulse of much Afro-Cuban music.

On Friday night he leads the Josh Jones Latin Jazz Orchestra at La Peña, an annual event for an ongoing rehearsal band that he launched around the turn of the century. His connection to the cultural center goes back to grade school days when he was drawn to La Peña by the regular presence of Cuban music workshops and bands. About 13 years ago he applied for a California Arts Council grant to support an array of classes he wanted to teach, covering salsa, hop hop, hand percussion and drum kit. … Continue reading »

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In Berkeley: Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow

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You knew it was cold, but did you know there was snow in Berkeley? At least there was at the Gourmet Ghetto’s annual Snow Day on Sunday. Berkeleyside contributing photographer Nancy Rubin stopped by and captured a lot of children — and a fair few adults — having a lot of fun. … Continue reading »

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Let in snow: Kids, adults come out to play in Berkeley

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Never let it be said it doesn’t snow in Berkeley. Kids turned out in their warm fleeces and mittens on Sunday to enjoy a winter wonderland on Snow Day in the Gourmet Ghetto. The Snow Queen paid a visit to the transformed parking lot near Virginia Street, there were holiday crafts, and warm cider and cookies courtesy of Andronico’s Community Market. The event was organized by the North Shattuck AssociationWilliam Newton dropped by and took these photos.  … Continue reading »

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Berkeley’s Himalayan Fair: Still a big draw in its 28th year

Himalayan Fair crowd
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This weekend, Live Oak Park came alive with the Himalayan Fair, a two-day celebration of the art, food, and culture of Tibet, Nepal, Pakistan, Burma, and India, among other countries.

Berkeley resident and scientist Arlene Blum founded the Fair in 1984 after she spent an inspirational year in the Himalayas: “I trekked across the Himalayan mountain ranges and saw incredible festivals everywhere,” she said, speaking at the booth she was running at the fair. “I even saw the Dalai Lama giving a speech. After this year of festivals, I came back and wanted to share them with the people of Berkeley.” … Continue reading »

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