The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley this weekend, June 14-16 (Thursday too!)

outdoor film screen of Berkeley Art Museum
BAMPFA will be screening movies on its huge outdoor screen throughout the summer. Photo: Courtesy BAMPFA

BAMPFA OUTDOOR FILM SCREENINGS Get your weekend activities started early when the Berkeley Art Museum Pacific Film Archive launches a series of free Thursday night outdoor film screenings. First is Stop Making Sense, a Jonathan Demme film that tells the story of the Talking Heads and the band’s rise to stardom. The movie, which starts at 7 p.m., is considered by many to be the greatest rock concert film of all time. The film is part of BAMPFA’s “It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll” summer series which includes many films at its indoor cinema. The other outdoor films include A Hard’s Day’s Night with The Beatles on July 11 at 7 p.m. and Monterey Pop, on Aug. 8 at 7 p.m. The outdoor screen is on Addison Street near Oxford. Bring chairs and blankets.

PEGASUS BOOKS TURNS 50! 1969 was a momentous year in Berkeley as evidenced by all the 50th-anniversary celebrations taking place this year. Pegasus Books was founded then and is holding a series of events all week to mark its half-century mark. On Friday at its Shattuck Avenue store, Steve Wasserman, publisher and executive director of Heyday, will discuss The Battle for People’s Park, Berkeley 1969 by Tom Dalzell, a picture-rich account of one of Berkeley’s seminal historical events. On Saturday, also downtown, Pegasus will switch gears to discuss water conservation as Obi Kaufman stops by to sign copies of his new book, The State of Water: Understanding California’s Most Precious Resource. In the book, Kaufman offers nine perspectives on ways California can support its enormous agricultural capabilities while preserving its most precious resource, keeping both preservation and ethics in mind. Sunday’s event will feature a dramatic performance of a Walt Whitman poem that promises to raise Walt from the dead and provide new insight into the beauty of his work. 50-year anniversary events are also planned for Pegasus Books on Solano Avenue. See the full schedule.  

JAZZ FOR FATHER’S DAY Looking to jazz up your Father’s Day with some music? Look no further than The Electric Squeezebox Orchestra’s upcoming performance. The ESO is a genre-bending 17-piece band led by trumpeter Erik Jekabson featuring premiere musicians, composers and arrangers. These California Jazz Conservatory resident artists will be playing a whole host of original music every Sunday this June at 5:30 p.m. You never know what guest the band might sub in to play with them, but you can expect to hear experimental jazz at its finest. Check them out at California Jazz Conservatory’s Rendon Hall at 2040 Addison St. Tickets are $10-$15.

BUCOLIC SCENES OF THE BAY AREA It can be hard to fully appreciate the beauty of the place we call home. But Historic Views of San Francisco Bay and The Golden Gate” reminds us not to take for granted the Bay’s natural beauty but rather to celebrate and appreciate it. North Point Gallery at 2247 Fifth St. is exhibiting rare and important 19th- and early 20th-century paintings depicting scenes of Bay Area nature, the waterfront, and the lives of workers. The exhibition, which continues through June 29, includes paintings by W.A. Coulter, Gideon Jacques Denny, Marianne Mathieu, Charles Dormon Robinson, Theodore Wores, Raymond Dabb Yelland, and more. Some paintings will be on loan from private collections and not for sale. The gallery is open Thursdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.


SHARE YOUR TALENT Are you a budding artist with no platform to get your work out there? Maybe you would simply like to hear some local musicians or storytellers from your community share their work. “Hardly Strictly Acoustic Jam” is undoubtedly the perfect place for this. This Friday, the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists is hosting an acoustic “Open Mic” for anyone to come to share their music, a poem or story, or maybe even a delicious snack with other budding artists. Get feedback on your art, connect with other like-minded people, and help cultivate a community of supportive and talented artists who simply want to get their stuff out there! The event is from 7-9 p.m. at 1924 Cedar St. Suggested donation is from $5-$20 but no one will be turned away.

Don’t miss these other events featured on Berkeleyside:

Northern California’s longest-running Juneteenth Festival returns Sunday
Big Screen Berkeley: ‘American Woman’ with Naomi Watts
Money and politics in Washington is savagely assessed in ‘Kings’ by Shotgun Players
The world premiere of ‘Kiss My Aztec!’ wows at Berkeley Rep