"I Like My Bike Night," First Friday of the month, 9 p.m. This monthly series brings bicycle innovators, enthusiasts, artists and organizations together under one roof, as well as encourages regular Ashkenaz show-goers to leave their cars in the driveway and arrive at the venue by bicycle instead. $8-$25.
1317 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley. (510) 525-5054, www.ashkenaz.com.<
BAY AREA FREE BOOK EXCHANGE
"Free Books," Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Donate your unwanted books and receive new titles for free.
10520 San Pablo Ave., El Cerrito. (510) 526-1941, www.bayareafreebookexchange.com.<
CALIFORNIA GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY AND LIBRARY
"California Genealogical Society and Library Free First Saturday," 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Event takes place on the first Saturday of every month, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Trace and compile your family history at this month's open house event. Free. www.calgensoc.org.
2201 Broadway, Suite LL2, Oakland. (510) 663-1358.<
"Ay Carumba," May 24, 6 p.m. Celebrate a centuries-old love affair with the true agave nectar. $48-$56. www.commonwealthclub.org.
4039 Piedmont Ave., Oakland. (510) 985-1202, www.barcesar.com.<
CHABOT SPACE AND SCIENCE CENTER State-of-the-art facility unifying science education activities around astronomy. Enjoy interactive exhibits, hands-on activities, indoor stargazing, outdoor telescope viewing and films.
ASK JEEVES PLANETARIUM -- The planetarium features one of the most advanced star projectors in the world. A daily planetarium show is included with general admission. Call for current show schedule.
"The Search for Life: Are We Alone?" A voyage from the ocean deep to the outer reaches of the cosmos in search of life, narrated by Harrison Ford.
"Secret of the Cardboard Rocket," Take a journey through the solar system with two young adventurers who turn an old cardboard box into a rocket. Recommended for ages 5-10.
"Sunshine," A 15-minute planetarium show for children ages 5 and under. In the show, Sunshine, a lovable animated cartoon of the Sun, urges the children to sing and play along with his tricks. In the process, he introduces the colors of the day sky and the other suns of the night sky. Free with regular general admission.
"Immersive Space: Fly Through the Cosmos," Fridays, 8 p.m. Experience the "digital universe'' in a new full-dome system. Travel to the nearest star and beyond in seconds.
"Black Holes: The Other Side of Infinity," Take a ride to the inside of a massive black hole and learn about the latest scientific evidence, which suggests that black holes are real. Narrated by Liam Neeson. Suitable for age 12 and older. Free with General Admission ticket.
"Tales Of The Maya Skies," "Tales of the Maya Skies'' is a new full-dome planetarium show that explores the cosmology of the ancient Maya, along with their culture and their contributions to astronomy. Starts November 21.
"The Sky Tonight," Saturdays, 8 p.m. Take a live tour of the starry sky overhead on the night of your visit. The show includes a look at constellations, planets and special celestial objects.
"Sonic Vision," Friday-Saturday, 9:15 p.m. This show uses the latest digital technology to illuminate the planetarium with colorful computer-generated imagery set to today's popular music, including Radiohead, U2, David Bowie, Coldplay, Moby and more.
"Astronaut," What does it take to be part of the exploration of space? Experience a rocket launch from inside the body of an astronaut. Explore the amazing worlds of inner and outer space, from floating around the International Space Station to maneuvering through microscopic regions of the human body. Narrated by Ewan McGregor. 25 min.
"Space NOW!", Each week, this real-time ride through constellations, stars, and planets will reflect current happenings in our sky. Space NOW! will also tie in activities going on throughout the center. This is Chabot's first daytime guided tour of the universe.
CHALLENGER LEARNING CENTER -- "Escape from the Red Planet," a cooperative venture for families and groups of up to 14 people, age 8 and up. The scenario on this one hour mission: You are the crew of a shuttle to Mars that has been severely damaged in a crash landing. Your replacement crew is gone, the worst dust storm ever recorded on Mars approaches, and air, food, and water are extremely low. The mission: get the shuttle working again and into orbit before the dust storm hits. Reservations required. Children age 8-12 must be accompanied by an adult; not appropriate for children under age 8. $12-$15; Does not include general admission to the Center. Reservations: (510) 336-7421.
SPECIAL EVENTS --
"Connecting Maya Culture and Astronomy," May 29, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Experience a full day of excitement highlighting the cultural relationship of the May with astronomy with hands-on activities, performances, food, music and more. "Tales of the Maya Skies" will run all day in English, Spanish and Mayan. Free with General Admission.
SPECIAL EXHIBITS --
"Chabot Observatories: A View to the Stars," This new permanent exhibit honors the 123-year history of Chabot and its telescopes. The observatory is one of the oldest public observatories in the United States. The exhibit covers the three different sites of the observatory over its history as well as how its historic telescopes continue to be operated today. Included are informative graphic panels, multimedia kiosks, interactive computer programs, hands-on stations, and historic artifacts.
TIEN MEGADOME SCIENCE THEATER -- A 70-foot dome-screen auditorium. Show times subject to change. Call for current show schedule. Price with paid general admission is $6-$7. Theater only: $7-$8. (510) 336-7373, www.ticketweb.com.
"The Human Body," This show explores the daily biological processes that go on in the human body without our control and often without our notice. This amazing story is revealed in detail on the giant screen.
"The Living Sea," The film celebrates the beauty, power and importance of the ocean. Produced in association with The National Maritime Center, the Ocean Film Network and Dr. Robert Ballard.
"Forces of Nature," This film showcases the awesome spectacle of earthquakes, volcanoes, and severe storms as scientists continue their quests to understand how these natural disasters are triggered.
"Cosmic Voyage," A breathtaking journey through time and space. Zoom from the surface of the Earth to the largest observable structures of the Universe and back down to the sub-nuclear realm, a guided tour across some 42 orders of magnitude. Explore some of the greatest scientific theories, many of which have never before been visualized on film.
"Dinosaurs Alive," A global adventure of science and discovery, featuring the earliest dinosaurs of the Triassic Period to the monsters of the Cretaceous, "reincarnated" life-sized for the giant screen. Audiences will journey with some of the world's preeminent paleontologists as they uncover evidence that the descendents of dinosaurs still walk (or fly) among us. From the exotic, trackless expanses and sand dunes of Mongolia's Gobi Desert to the dramatic sandstone buttes of New Mexico, the film will follow American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) paleontologists as they explore some of the greatest dinosaur finds in history.
Center Admission: $9-$13; free children under 3; Movies and evening planetarium shows: $6-$8. Telescope viewing only: free. Wednesday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. 10000 Skyline Blvd., Oakland. (510) 336-7300, www.chabotspace.org.<
"Going Out of Business Sale," through May 22. All used books are 50% off. 30% price reduction off everything else in stock.
5433 D Clayton Road, Clayton. (925) 673-3325.<
DUNSMUIR HOUSE AND GARDENS HISTORIC ESTATE Nestled in the Oakland hills, the 50-acre Dunsmuir House and Gardens estate includes the 37-room Neoclassical Revival Dunsmuir Mansion, built by coal and lumber baron Alexander Dunsmuir for his bride. Restored outbuildings set amid landscaped gardens surround the mansion.
ESTATE GROUNDS -- Self-Guided Grounds Tours are available yearround. The 50 acres of gardens and grounds at the mansion are open to the public for walking Tuesday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Booklets and maps of the grounds are available at the Dinkelspiel House. Free.
GUIDED TOURS -- Docent-led tours are available on the first Sunday of each month at 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. (except for July) and Wednesdays at 11 a.m. $5 adults, $4 seniors and juniors (11-16), children 11 and under free.
Dunsmuir House and Gardens, 2960 Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland. (510) 615-5555, www.dunsmuir.org.<
FRANK OGAWA PLAZA
"Oakland Artisan Marketplace," Fridays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. The City of Oakland and Cultural Arts & Marketing Department presents a weekly market featuring fine arts and crafts of local artists. Free. (510) 238-4948, www.oaklandartisanmarketplace.org.
14th Street and Broadway, Oakland. <
JACK LONDON AQUATIC CENTER
"Oakland Artisan Marketplace,"' Saturdays, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sundays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. The City of Oakland and Cultural Arts & Marketing Department presents a weekly market featuring fine arts and crafts of local artists. Free. (510) 238-4948, www.oaklandartisanmarketplace.org.
115 Embarcadero, Oakland. <
JACK LONDON SQUARE
"Urban Couture Fashion/Art Expo," May 22, Expo 1 p.m.; Fashion show, 7 p.m. Explore fashion designs workshops, community art exhibits, education and emerging artists.
"Pacific Coast Farmers' Market Cooking Demonstration," May 30, 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Join the Pacific Coast Farmers' Market Association and Chef Sim Peyron for a special cooking demonstration that utilizes fresh seasonal ingredients that can be purchased at the Market from local farmers who produce just-harvested, sustainable and delicious products.
Foot of Broadway, Oakland. (866) 295-9853, www.jacklondonsquare.com.<
LA PENA CULTURAL CENTER
Andres Alejandro, May 21, 8 p.m. $13-$15.
Bang Data, May 22, 8:30 p.m. $10.
"Revolutionary Ecology," May 23, 7 p.m. Program recognizes the 20th anniversary of the bomb attack on Earth First with activist Judi Bari with speakers, music and film. Free.
"La Chismosa," May 29, 8 p.m. Adelina takes up hilarious stereotypes and even creates new ones. $15-$18.
3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. (510) 849-2568, www.lapena.org.<
UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
"Annual Food Bazaar," May 30, Noon-4 p.m. Enjoy homemade Japanese cuisine, a silent auction, handicrafts, entertainment and game booths for families.
809 2nd St, Brentwood. (925) 634-3093.<
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY PACIFIC FILM ARCHIVE Exploring cinema from the Bay Area and cultures around the world, the Pacific Film Archive offers daily film screenings, including rare and rediscovered prints of movie classics; new and historic works by world famous directors; restored silent films with live musical accompaniment; retrospectives; and new and experimental works. Check Web site for a full schedule of films.
"First Impressions: Free First Thursdays," first Thursday of every month. Special tours and movie presentations. Admission is free.
Single feature: $5-$8; Double feature: $9-$12 general. PFA Theater, 2575 Bancroft Way, Berkeley. (510) 642-5249, www.bampfa.berkeley.edu.<
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY, MORRISON LIBRARY
"Lunch Poems," First Thursday of the month, 12:10-12:50 p.m.
2600 Bancroft Way, Berkeley. (510) 642-3671.<
USS HORNET MUSEUM Come aboard this World War II aircraft carrier that has been converted into a floating museum. The Hornet, launched in 1943, is 899 feet long and 27 stories high. During World War II she was never hit by an enemy strike or plane and holds the Navy record for number of enemy planes shot down in a week. In 1969 the Hornet recovered the Apollo 11 space capsule containing the first men to walk on the moon, and later recovered Apollo 12. In 1991 the Hornet was designated a National Historic Landmark and is now docked at the same pier she sailed from in 1944. Today, visitors can tour the massive ship, view World War II-era warplanes and experience a simulated aircraft launch from the carrier's deck. Exhibits are being added on an ongoing basis. Allow two to three hours for a visit. Wear comfortable shoes and be prepared to climb steep stairs or ladders. Dress in layers as the ship can be cold. Arrive no later than 2 p.m. to sign up for the engine room and other docent-led tours. Children under age 12 are not allowed in the Engine Room or the Combat Information Center.
ONGOING EVENTS --
"Limited Access Day," Due to ship maintenance, tours of the navigation bridge and the engine room are not available. Tuesdays.
"Flight Deck Fun," A former Landing Signal Officer will show children how to bring in a fighter plane for a landing on the deck then let them try the signals themselves. Times vary. Free with regular Museum admission.
"Protestant Divine Services," Hornet chaplain John Berger conducts church services aboard The Hornet in the Wardroom Lounge. Everyone is welcome and refreshments are served immediately following the service. Sundays, 11 a.m.
SPECIAL EVENTS -- Closed on New Year's Day.
"Flashlight Tour," Receive a special tour of areas aboard the ship that have not yet been opened to the public or that have limited access during the day.
"Living Ship Day," Experience an aircraft carrier in action, with simulated flight operations as aircraft are lifted to the flight deck and placed in launch position. Some former crewmembers will be on hand.
"Family Day," Discounted admission for families of four with a further discount for additional family members. Access to some of the areas may be limited due to ship maintenance. Every Tuesday. $20 for family of four; $5 for each additional family member.
$6-$14; free children age 4 and under with a paying adult. Daily, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Pier 3 (enter on Atlantic Avenue), Alameda Point, Alameda. (510) 521-8448, www.uss-hornet.org.<