BEGINNER’S PARKOUR CLASS Most Berkeleyside readers know the ins and outs of our city. So why not take a weekend to explore familiar terrain from a new vantage point: upside-down, in the air, or rolling over it. SFParkour hosts monthly introductory classes, which occasionally — such as this Saturday, Jan. 10 — take place at UC Berkeley. Parkour is a sport that involves moving quickly and creatively through obstacles in an urban environment. Participants in the class will learn the philosophy of parkour, safety tips, and the basic moves. Everyone is welcome, but attendees under 16 need parental permission. Wear comfortable clothes and running shoes, and meet at Mulford Hall (north of University Drive) at 12 p.m.
THE MANSON FAMILY AND CULTS Many of the major cults of the 20th century have strong ties to the Bay Area. Tonight at La Peña, a psychologist will delve into the history of one of the most notorious, and will discuss the motives and mechanisms that lead people to join and remain in cults. The speaker Patrick O’Reilly, clinical psychologist and author of a book on cults, briefly joined one himself to conduct research. The Bay Area Skeptics are hosting The Manson Family, Cults, and the Psychology of Commitment, a free event from 7:30 p.m. – 9 p.m. at 3105 Shattuck Ave.
BERKELEY: CITY OF THE BLIND Berkeley’s history of blind advocacy and community-building is long and rich, yet often under the radar of sighted people. Everyone is invited to get a glimpse into this vibrant past on Saturday, Jan. 10 at an evening of storytelling by some of the city’s many blind residents. Find out which major blind consumer organizations began in Berkeley, learn the story of a UC Berkeley blind professor, and hear from Berkeley’s blind about what they expect and are working toward in the future. One of the organizers and storytellers was recently featured in the New York Times. Berkeley: City of the Blind is hosted by the Holman Society, which promotes discussion of blindness. Admission to the event is sliding scale, and it begins at 8 p.m. (doors at 7:30) at the East Bay Center for the Blind (2928 Adeline St.).
CHORUS SINGS BACH Attendees of the Holiday Tree Lighting ceremony downtown last month caught the Berkeley Community Chorus & Orchestra (BCCO), a group that performs classic works for free around town. The 220-member chorus is back this weekend at the Berkeley Community Theater (1930 Allston Way) with a spirited rendition of Bach’s St. John Passion. BCCO will perform the dramatic piece in English, with the choruses and arias sung in the original German. There will be two shows, on Saturday, Jan. 10 and Sunday, Jan. 11 at 4:30 p.m., each featuring five soloists. The director is the accomplished Ming Luke.
EBOLA IN WEST AFRICA Media coverage of the Ebola epidemic ranges from nonchalant to sensational. It’s not always easy to figure out what’s going on, and what the news means globally and locally. On Saturday, Jan. 10, Art Reingold, UC Berkeley Professor of Public Health, will attempt to give a thorough and scientific summary of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa and the current conditions, including the status of response efforts and developments in treatments. The free event, which lasts from 2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m., is the first in an upcoming series of science talks at the Berkeley Public Library (Central branch).
Don’t miss this other event featured on Berkeleyside:
Philip Gelb: Popping up vegan in West Berkeley
Check out Berkeleyside’s event calendar for many more events, and make sure to post your own community happenings.