Tag Archives: Berkeley Public Library

The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley this weekend

Photo: Nyingma Institute.
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‘SUPER CINEMA’ AT THE BERKELEY PUBLIC LIBRARY  The Berkeley Public Library’s free film series “Super Cinema” continues, starting July 5. Each month on Friday afternoons at 3 p.m., the library explores a different theme. This Friday’s theme is ‘Resisting Injustice’, in honor of the recent Supreme Court rulings on marriage equality. Kick back and watch “Stonewall Uprising”, a great movie that tells the whole story of the June 1969 riots in New York City that sparked the gay rights movement. Central Library in the 3rd floor Community Meeting Room. 2090 Kittredge (at Shattuck). More details at Berkeley Public Library online. … Continue reading »

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Pat Mullan, recommended music gigs in Berkeley

JuniusCourtneyBigBand
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The Berkeley Public Library might seem like unpromising territory to develop a thriving practice as a jazz trombonist, concert presenter, and all-around East Bay mover and shaker, but Pat Mullan is an expert at creating spaces for the culture she loves. She spent a quarter century ensconced at the downtown branch, where she found numerous ways to bring jazz into the stacks. But since retiring seven years ago, Mullan has poured her energy into the hard swinging 19-piece Junius Courtney Big Band, which performs a program focusing on the music of Thelonious Monk tonight at Yoshi’s with powerhouse guest vocalist Zoe Ellis (Berkeley High class of ‘88). On Friday, Mullan brings her unusual trombone quartet Trombonga to the Westside Café on Ninth Street.

When she first started playing with the Courtney Big Band in the early 1980s the ensemble had faded from view after decades as an East Bay institution under the leadership of its namesake New Orleans-born Berkeley-based trumpeter. She quickly arranged for the band to perform at the library, and started calling around for other gigs. Her dogged efforts have kept the ensemble together, working regularly with biannual showcase concerts at Yoshi’s. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley Public Library South Branch: The opening

The South Branch of the Berkeley Public Library opened in May 2013. Photo: Richard Friedman
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Saturday May 11 saw the official opening of the new South Branch of the Berkeley Public Library on MLK Jr. Way and Russell St.

The library, designed by architects Field Paoli at a cost of $6.5 million, includes the city’s Tool Lending Library. It is significantly larger than the old library building and energy efficient. Supporters, library-goers and Berkeley government officials turned out in force to mark the occasion. … Continue reading »

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New South Branch library to open in Berkeley on Saturday

Officials will gather at 12:30 p.m. May 11 to officially open the new  South Branch library. This is the entrance. Photo: Frances Dinkelspiel
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It was four days to D-Day and the place was hopping.

Painters rolled on a last coat of paint. IT guys fiddled with computer wire while architects strolled around looking for last minute glitches. Carpenters nailed sheets of plywood to a storage area.

In just a few hours, the new South Branch of the Berkeley Public Library was set to open. And, while the bulk of the construction was done, there were numerous small things that hadn’t been completely finished, like the landscaping, shelving all the books, installing all the computers, and the final build-out of the Tool Library.

“We have a lot to do in the next few days but we are feeling good about it,” Donna Corbeil, the city librarian, said on Tuesday. When pressed, though, about whether it would be finished, she took a long pause before answering with a resounding “Yes!” … Continue reading »

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Architecture

Berkeley firm, project win AIA SF architecture awards

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The American Institute of Architecture San Francisco announced the winners of its annual Design Awards on Friday and two Berkeley names made the grade.

The renovation of Berkeley’s North Branch Library on The Alameda, by San Francisco firm Architectural Resources Group and Tom Eliot Fisch, earned a Merit Award for Historic Preservation. “This publicly funded project preserved, expanded, and updated the City of Berkeley’s beloved 1936 North Branch Library on The Alameda,” AIA SF wrote in its award list. “The $4.5 million, LEED Silver project included rehabilitation of 5,700 sq ft of historic spaces and a new 3,900 sq ft addition and was completed in 2012.”

It was the second architecture award for the North Branch Library this month. It was also one of nine Berkeley buildings recognized for representing the best recent design work in Berkeley by Berkeley Design Advocates in early April. … Continue reading »

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News

New South Branch of Berkeley library to open on May 11

This picture of the southern exterior is taken looking east from the corner of Russell and Martin Luther King Jr. Way. Photo: Berkeley Public Libray
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Fourteen months after it was closed and torn down, the new South Branch of the Berkeley Public Library will reopen on Saturday May 11.

At 12:30 p.m. local officials and library supporters will gather for a ribbon cutting ceremony at 1901 Russell Street, right at the intersection of MLK. After that, the library will be open for normal business until 5:00 p.m.

When patrons walk inside the new 8,700 square foot, $6.5 million building, they will see something completely different from the award-winning, but clumsily remodeled, old South Branch building. The ceilings are higher, there are more windows, there are dedicated spaces for computers and other multimedia equipment, as well as more lounge chairs. Copper artwork by artist Gina Dominguez is displayed throughout the building. Solar panels will reduce heating costs.

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Architecture

Nine Berkeley buildings win ‘design excellence’ awards

UCB - Stadium and SAHPC6
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Nine buildings have been singled out as representing the best new design work in Berkeley for 2010-2012. Berkeley Design Advocates, a volunteer group of architects and urban planners, selected three UC Berkeley buildings, a restaurant, a senior home, two retail spaces — one newly built, one restored — a wine store, and the renovation of a branch library from a list of 15 submissions, and handed out the award certificates at a ceremony on Thursday, March 28. (See the 2013 Awards Brochure for full details.)

This year threw up a particularly impressive crop of winners, according to Anthony Bruzzone, President of BDA, who said that two years ago, with the recession having put the kibosh on many construction projects, the group was concerned it might have no buildings to consider at all in 2013. … Continue reading »

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Events

The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley this weekend

BORP wheelchair basketball
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MARCH MADNESS, BORP STYLE The annual Northern California Hoops Classic wheelchair basketball tournament runs all weekend at the James Kenney Recreation Center, 1720 8th Street. Hosted by the Bay Area Outreach & Recreation Program (BORP), Berkeley’s own BORP All-Stars — an adult team — and BORP Bay Cruisers — a youth team and the reigning West Coast Conference champions — are among the teams competing. Games run from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, Mar. 23 (nine games) and from 9 a.m. to noon on Sunday, Mar. 24 (four games). Admission free.

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MASH UP AT BAM How does this sound: “The lyrics of Bob Dylan set to the music of Prince? Or the lyrics of Prince set to the music of Bob Dylan?” That’s the promise of this week’s L@te event on Friday, Mar. 22 at BAM, Positively Alphabet Street. PC Munoz’s Singing Blood does the mash up of folk and funk. Also on offer is Schumann’s First String Quartet and a video piece from Christopher Ariza. Tickets are $7 and doors open at 5 p.m. for the 7:30 p.m. performance.  … Continue reading »

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The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley this weekend

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BOONA CHEEMA For decades Boona Cheema has been a fixture on the Berkeley scene, a recognized leader in the struggle to end homelessness in the city as well as state and national levels. (Read a profile in the San Francisco Chronicle.) On Saturday, Cheema will hand over the directorship of housing and services provider BOSS (Building Opportunities for Self-Sufficiency), where she has served for 35 years, to incoming Executive Director Donald Frazier. Frazier, formerly with Center Point in San Francisco, takes the reins on March 1. The handing over of the baton will be part of “Booma Cheema’s Goodbye Gala: From The Heart: A Legacy of Love…And New Beginnings,” with food and drinks from local restaurants, and music by Fua Dia Congo, Duniya Dance Company. Saturday Feb. 23, 2013, 6:00-9:00 pm, at Uptown Body & Fender, 401 26th Street in Oakland ($5 valet parking). Tickets $125 ($60 nonprofit, $35 low income). Visit BOSS online for details. Or by phone (510) 649-1930 x 222. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley artist Vita Wells makes books fly at main library

Berkeley Library Art Installation 6/10
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Berkeley artist Vita Wells‘s newly installed work, Flights of Mind, spans three levels of the atrium of Berkeley’s main Public Library, and it literally makes books fly.

The installation features some two hundred altered, sculpted books suspended and airborne, as if flying in a spectacular natural formation, throughout a large portion of library building. The work was created for — and much admired at — Saturday’s Berkeley Public Library Foundation Authors Dinner (which we reported on earlier today). And now it is open to the general public to view, for free, for the next two weeks, through Feb. 24. … Continue reading »

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Local stars come out for the Berkeley Public Library

BPLF Authors Dinner 2013 - Berkeley CA.
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By Mal Warwick

Who knew? Former Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart isn’t just a musician. It turns out he’s also a musicologist of considerable note, and he’s collaborating with neurologists to conduct research on the potential use of rhythm to reawaken brain function in people with dementia. Hart’s brief conversation in the spotlight with Event Chair Linda Schacht Gage at Saturday’s 11th Annual Berkeley Public Library Foundation Authors Dinner was the hit of the evening. Yes, Hart writes books on his research, too, and he was one of thirty recently published authors honored at the dinner.

Running a close second as a crowd-pleaser was Sam Barry, a San Francisco humorist, the brother of Pulitzer-Prize-winning humorist Dave Barry, whom he closely resembles and whose greetings he passed along. Sam Barry was recently a candidate for Mayor of San Francisco, running under the slogan, “How bad could he be?” But there’s more. Barry is also a virtuoso on the harmonica, and one short command performance led to an electrifying encore that left smiles stretching all across the room. … Continue reading »

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Children read in the company of dogs at Berkeley Library

PAWs to Read 1/10 2/5/13
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The popular Paws to Read program started up at the Berkeley Public Library’s North Branch on Tuesday this week, and Berkeleyside photo intern Kaia Diringer dropped by to capture the event.

The program, which runs weekly through March 12, sees children in grades kindergarten through five reading aloud to a gentle dog provided by TherapyPets, a nonprofit all volunteer organization based in Oakland.

Paws to Read allows children to practice oral fluency, spend time with a friendly dog, and have fun. “The goal is to help build a child’s self-esteem and confidence, as well as foster a fondness for reading,” the library said in a statement. Other Bay Area communities have successful Paws to Read programs. … Continue reading »

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Library

Berkeley Library wants your feedback to improve services

South Branch Library under construction 2 of 3 1.24.13 Photo: Tracey Taylor
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The Berkeley Public Library has set up a 25-question survey to get the scoop from local residents about how they see and use library programs, events and facilities.

Through Feb. 19, Berkeley library users can fill out the brief online survey or a paper version of the survey at all library locations. (Take the online survey here.)

According to a notice sent Wednesday from Councilman Max Anderson‘s office, the library “will be seeking community input on how to improve Library services and communications.” … Continue reading »

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