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.
JEWISH MUSIC MASH-UP How often do you get the chance to see a concert featuring a rabbi and a Christian gospel choir? Sunday sees the kick-off for the fourth Netivot Shalom Music Festival. Previously an annual event, the festival now hosts five monthly Sunday concerts featuring local artists performing a diverse array of Jewish music. It is a grass-roots effort, organized totally by volunteers, say the organizers, and they favor concerts with a twist, hence the mash-up on Jan. 20 which includes Rabbi Menachem Creditor. March 17 includes a klezmer band and two jazz big bands; and April 14 features a Grammy-winning Boys Choir, a black Jew by Choice who sings Yiddish music, and a beautiful young opera singer. Congregation Netivot Shalom is on University Ave. For more details, visit their website.
A lustful eunuch intent on revenge. A Persian princess seeking to bend an empire to her will. A bloodthirsty Shah with a jones for opium and a deadly streak of paranoia. Anita Amirrezvani’s second novel, Equal of the Sun (Scribner) is a beautifully crafted tale based upon the intrigues that followed the death of Tahmasb Shah, who ruled the Persian Empire from 1524-76. Amirrizvani reads from “Equal of the Sun” at Mrs. Dalloway’s in the Elmwood tonight at 7:30 p.m.
PREPARE TO BE BEWITCHED Thaisa Frank’s short fiction has been captivating readers for decades, even before the publication of her highly regarded and widely translated novel Heidegger’s Glasses. Now Frank has collected 61 old and new stories in Enchantment: New and Selected Stories, published this week by Berkeley’s Counterpoint Press. As Booklist puts it:”The title of this collection hints at its contents — delectable stories with touches of the surreal as well as many plot twists and surprises. From short-short story to novella, each narrative demonstrates mastery of the genre.” Frank will be reading from Enchantment at Mrs. Dalloway’s on College Avenue at 7:30 pm on Friday, July 13.
Book lovers around the world are planning to give away millions of books on April 23 – and they are looking for Berkeley readers to help them.
The two days of Caltopia were quite a whirl for students, faculty and staff, as well as for exhibitors like Berkeleyside. From the tens of thousands who passed through the self-proclaimed “greatest days on planet Earth”, we were able to have conversations about local news with hundreds of people, we launched OneNews/Berkeleyside, our exciting new citizen journalism app, and we even found some potential new journalists.
UC Berkeley freshmen, some looking dazed, others excited, as well as more blasé seniors, turned out in their thousands on Sunday for Day One of Caltopia, the self-described “two greatest days on the planet”.
All Berkeley Unified School District schools stand to benefit from book lovers this weekend with a discount initiative offered by independent book store Mrs Dalloway’s.
A decade ago, and fresh out of North Carolina, Kara Hammond landed a gig at Café Fanny, a tiny slip of a place in North Berkeley opened 25 years ago by, oh, a certain famous local chef.