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DETAILED DRAWINGS UC Botanical Garden is hosting its fifth annual exhibition of botanical drawings by regional artists. These intricately drawn pictures by members of the Northern California Society of Botanical Artists are surprisingly detailed and lifelike. They range from drawings of tree branches to delicate flowers to leafy greens. There will be an opening reception Saturday from 4-6 p.m. for artists and garden members. (Parking will be tight). The exhibit is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. (The drawing of a native coffee berry above is by Maria Cecilia Freeman.)

DON’T BE SCAMMED Credit card and identity fraud are on the rise. In the last few weeks both Target and Neiman Marcus announced that hackers had accessed thousands of PIN and credit card numbers of customers. Others get scammed when they insert their cards into gas pumps that have been booby-trapped with skimmers. The California Public Utilities Commission is hosting a free safety fair at Berkeley City College on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to teach people how to lessen their chances of being ripped off. There will be representatives from the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office, the Food and Drug Administration, the US Postal Service, the Social Security Administration and other agencies to offer tips on protection. The main part of the fair is a fraud and scam workshop from  10 a.m. to noon. Berkeley City College is at 2050 Center St.

BALANCE DEFYING The Peking Acrobats will give three of their pretzel-twisting, balance defying, performances at Zellerbach Auditorium this weekend as part of Cal Performances. These acrobats undergo years of rigorous training in China and travel around the world to perform. This weekend they will balance a human pyramid on top of a moving bicycle, walk on wire, juggle, and tumble. They will be accompanied by live musicians playing traditional Chinese instruments.  Performances are at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday Jan. 25 and 3 p.m. Sunday Jan. 26. Tickets start at $22.

FRUIT GALORE California might be locked in the worst drought in its recorded history, but that’s no excuse to ignore your garden. Biofuel Oasis is holding a winter fruit tree pruning class on Sunday to teach the fundamentals of trees that grow well in this region, including plum, pear, apple, citrus, persimmon and more. The workshop, which will be held in a private garden, will be hands on with 20 different varieties to prune. The class will also review which trees do best in this climate.  The class is $35 and is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

THE EMBRACE OF FAMILY Welcome to Miz Pat’s house, a brothel where mystery, murder, and family collide. For one night only on Sunday Jan 26, Jovelyn Richards and Luisah Teish will perform In the House of the Mothers: An Interactive Visit with Miz Pat and the Voudou Queen at La Peña Cultural Center at 3105 Shattuck Avenue. The play, which also features live music and audience participation, is directed by Stephanie Anne Johnson. The performance is at 7 p.m. and tickets cost $15.

Don’t miss these other events recently featured on Berkeleyside:

Foolish hearts: Peter Eldridge and Matt Aronoff
Michael Pollan, Raj Patel head up new edible course
Big Screen Berkeley: Satyajit Ray retrospective at Pacific Film Archive

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

Berkeleyside staff

Berkeleyside is Berkeley, California’s independently-owned local news site. Learn more about the Berkeleyside team. Questions?...