July 4th fireworks at the 2015 Berkeley celebrations. Photo: Pete Rosos

FOURTH OF JULY One of Berkeley’s major annual events takes place again at the Berkeley Marina, all day on Tuesday, July 4. From noon to 10 p.m., there are all kinds of free family fun in an alcohol-free environment culminating with fantastic fireworks. Among the highlights: free dragon boat rides, free photo booth, live entertainment on several stages, pony rides, petting zoo, giant wavy slide, and all sorts of food from stalls and gourmet food trucks. And, of course, fireworks that start at 9:35 p.m. Parking at the marina is $15 for the day, or you can ride your bike and use the free valet parking, walk, or take public transit. Berkeleyside is a proud sponsor of the day.

SPLENDOUR (FREE TICKETS) Aurora Theatre has just opened its the Bay Area premier production of Abi Morgan’s Splendour. Timely and relevant, Splendour focuses on four women awaiting the arrival of an embattled dictator. The Aurora is offering Berkeleyside readers a pair of free tickets for the performance on Saturday, July 8. Just answer the one-question quiz successfully to enter a drawing for the free tickets. We’ll pick the winner on Wednesday, July 5 after the noon deadline. Splendour is at the Aurora Theatre, 2081 Addison St., through July 23.

PHANTOGRAM New York duo Phantogram – Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter – come to the Greek on Saturday, with music from their second full-length album. Here’s what they say: “The album is the duo’s latest take on their signature genre-bending vibe of electro-hip hop and rock.” It catches the ear quickly, melding hazy dream pop, dark atmospheres, and head-knocking rhythms into a compelling, original sound. Phantogram are paired on Saturday with trio Miike Snow. Saturday, July 1, 7 p.m., Greek Theatre, 2001 Gayley Rd.

SERGEY MUSAELYAN Russian pianist Sergey Musaelyan performs a heavyweight program of three great sonatas on Friday night at the Hillside Club. He opens with Beethoven’s “Tempest” sonata, No. 17 in D minor and follows with Prokofiev’s 7th sonata in B-flat major. That should satisfy most people, but Musaelyan closes with Liszt’s titanic B minor sonata. Hold onto your hats! Friday, June 30, 8 p.m., Hillside Club, 2286 Cedar St.

SF MIME TROUPE The San Francisco Mime Troupe opens its free summer season this Saturday and Sunday at Cedar Rose Park. The summer production is Walls, which asks the question: “How can a nation of immigrants declare war on immigration?” The answer? “Fear!” It tells the story of an ICE agent “who knows how to stoke fear to keep her country safe.” The Tony-winning group is in its 58th season. Saturday, July 1 and Sunday, July 2, 1:30 p.m., Cedar Rose Park, 1300 Rose St.

Don’t miss these other events covered on Berkeleyside:

At BAMPFA: Retrospective of surrealist and abstractionist Charles Howard 
Powerful and profound: ‘brownsville song (b-side for trey)’ by Shotgun Players
Celebrating the ‘greatest conga player of his generation’ in Berkeley
Big Screen Berkeley: ‘Moka’

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...