The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley, weekend of Aug. 10-12

A scene from last year’s Desi Comedy Fest. It return to the Freight & Salvage on Sunday night. Photo: Courtesy Desi Comedy Fest

DESI COMEDY FEST The Berkeley stop of the fifth annual Desi Comedy Fest – the biggest South Asian comedy festival in the country – is Sunday at the Freight & Salvage. The festival features over 30 South Asian comedians from all over the US with diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds. Bay Area-based Indian-born comedians, Samson Koletka and Abhay Nadkarni created the festival, and are partnering this year with The Times of India Group, India’s largest media conglomerate. Nadkarni noted, “2018 has not been such a good year for the Indian reputations: Aziz Ansari was in the news for the wrong reasons, Ajit Pai revoked Net Neutrality, there’s a group called Hindus for Trump, and Trump pardoned Dinesh D’Souza thinking he is Hindu. We just want to show America that Indians still contribute in a positive way #NotAllIndians.” “Where else can you find Indians and Pakistanis sitting together and laughing,” said Koletkar. Sunday, Aug. 12, Freight & Salvage, 2020 Addison St.

MUSIC IN THE PARK The city’s free series of outdoor concerts continues Saturday at Ohlone Park Baseball Field. The focus this Saturday is on jazz and R&B from local Bay Area artists and bands. The festival atmosphere is supplemented with vendors, food and a kid’s zone with bubble station, bounce house, face painting and much more. Saturday, Aug. 11, 2-5 p.m., Ohlone Park Baseball Field, Sacramento Street, between Hearst and Francisco.

LIBRARY PARTY When the late Charles Austin began carrying a clipboard around his neighborhood, gathering signatures in support of renaming the South Branch library after civil rights leader Tarea Hall Pittman, he didn’t know the advocacy would prompt a years-long debate over renaming Berkeley libraries — and later over signage. Now, Pittman’s name finally graces the building at Russell Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Way, and displays inside the library provide more information about the former NAACP leader and radio host. The branch is holding a renaming celebration block party Saturday with live music and Mexican food. Saturday, Aug. 11, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Tarea Hall Pittman South Branch Library, 1901 Russell St.

LGBTQ FAMILY DAY Berkeley families come in all shapes, sizes and structures, so it’s no surprise Somos Familia is holding its annual Día de la Familia, or Family Day Celebration, here at Strawberry Creek Park. The event celebrates LGBTQ families and allies, promising food and “FUN.” The colorful event graphic on Facebook includes a piñata, but we’re not making any promises. Saturday, Aug. 11, 4:30-8:30 p.m., Strawberry Creek Park, 1260 Allston Way.


FREDDIE MCGREGOR On Sunday night, Reggae pioneer Freddie McGregor brings his “True to My Roots” tour to Cornerstone. McGregor “continues to be a living pillar of the scene with his conscious lyrics, Philly-Soul style, and dedication to touring for over 50 years.” McGregor cites Stevie Wonder, Bob Marley, Alton Ellis, Ken Boothe, Bob Andy and many others as key influences. Sunday, Aug. 12, 8:30 p.m., Cornerstone, 2367 Shattuck Ave.

Don’t miss these other events covered on Berkeleyside:

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