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Early risers who go on the East Bay Regional Park District’s Meet the Solstice Sun hike could see dawn spreading from Mt. Diablo. Photo: Daniel Parks

HERE COMES THE SUN According to the forecast, daybreak on Saturday won’t be as cold as some recent mornings. That will be welcome news for the hearty souls who join the Meet the Solstice Sun hike, organized by the East Bay Regional Park District. The hope is to greet the morning sun on the shortest day of the year. Bring your own coffee! The hike, from the Tilden Nature Area’s Environmental Education Center, starts at 6:15 a.m. and returns by 8:30 a.m. No registration and spaces are unlimited. Further information call (510) 544-3249. 

Laurie Lewis

HOLIDAY REVUE Laurie Lewis hosts an “exuberant family holiday celebration” for the Freight & Salvage’s holiday revue at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 21. Some of the Bay Area’s hottest performers are on stage, donating their services in support of the Freight, including Suzy Thompson, Keith Little & the Little Band, Claudia Russell & Bruce Kaplan, and Tom Rozum playing with host Lewis. The Freight promises the music will set the longest night of the year alight. Tickets $20.50 in advance, $22.50 on the door. Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, 2020 Addison St.


SOLSTICE SING ON SOLSTICE Local women’s vocal group Solstice perform an eclectic mix of holiday songs at Subterranean Art House on Saturday, Dec. 21 at 8 p.m. The works range from the Spanish Renaissance — “A un nino llorando al hielo” — to the Charlie Brown Christmas special to Paul Simon’s “Hazy Shade of Winter.” The six members of Solstice will “ease you into the peace and warmth of the season.” Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door ($15 for students and seniors in advance). Subterranean Art House, 2179 Bancroft Way.

Xerocomellus engelii

MAGIC MUSHROOMS John Taylor, chair of Berkeley’s Division of Microbiology, is speaking on Saturday, Dec. 21 at 11 a.m. on “The Kingdom Fungi: Diversity, Society and Models for Evolution.” Taylor and his colleagues do work on the molecular evolution of fungi. With DNA sequencing, they developed means of recognizing species of fungi and inferring fungal bio-geographical history. Whole genome sequencing has let them find new sources of genetic variation in fungi, and whole genome sequencing of populations of fungi has let them study the process that builds the Tree of Life, that is, the splitting of populations and their adaptation at the level of single genes. The talk will be in Room 100 in the Genetics and Plant Biology Building on the northwest corner of the UC Berkeley campus. Free admission, first come, first served.

HALLELUJAH We recommended the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra’s performance of Handel’s Messiah last week. Now you have a chance to sing yourself in the annual Sing-Along Messiah at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley on Sunday, Dec. 22 at 6 p.m. Tickets are $15, $10 for students and seniors from Brown Paper Tickets. Scores are available for a $10 deposit, or bring your own. Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley, 1 Lawson Rd., Kensington.

Check out Berkeleyside’s event calendar for many more events, and make sure to post your community happenings there too.

Lance Knobel (Berkeleyside co-founder) has been a journalist for nearly 40 years. Much of his career was in business journalism. He was editor-in-chief of both Management Today, the leading business magazine...