Stitch Modern. The East Bay Modern Quilt Guild presents Stitch Modern, featuring beautiful, modern quilts handmade by members. Noon to 3 p.m. Feb. 8 through Feb. 24. Piedmont Center For The Arts, 801 Magnolia Ave., Piedmont. Free. 510-499-8177, eastbaymodernquiltguild.wordpress.com.

Stitch Modern Family Day. Family Day at Stitch Modern features fun with textiles, including a scavenger hunt, fun crafts, and snacks. Noon to 2:30 p.m. Feb. 10. Piedmont Center For The Arts, 801 Magnolia Ave., Piedmont. Free. 510-499-8177, eastbaymodernquiltguild.wordpress.com.

Toddler Storytime. Songs, active rhymes and stories especially for ages 18 months to 3 years. 10:30 a.m. Saturdays. Melrose Branch Library, 4805 Foothill Blvd., Oakland. 510-535-5623, www.oaklandlibrary.org.

Chess at the Library. A weekly chess program offers instruction for beginners and a place for patrons of all ages and levels to play with each other. 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays. César E. Chávez Branch, 3301 E. 12th St., Oakland. 510-535-5620, www.oaklandlibrary.org.

Off the Hook Knitting Group. The Melrose Knitting Group meets the second and fourth Saturday every month. 3 to 5 p.m. Melrose Branch Library, 4805 Foothill Blvd., Oakland. 510-535-5623, www.oaklandlibrary.org.

Native Plants in a California Garden. Master Gardener Rebecca Schoenenberger shares her experience designing, installing and maintaining California native plant gardens at this talk about easy-to-grow native plants for the home garden. 2 to 3:30 p.m. Feb. 9. Martin Luther King Jr. Branch Library, 6833 International Blvd., Oakland. Free. 408-282-3105, mastergardeners.org/scc.html.

Author J. Douglas Allen-Taylor. A reading with J. Douglas Allen-Taylor and his novel "Sugaree Rising," set in the South Carolina coastal area Lowcountry in the late Depression years. 6 p.m. Feb. 9. Laurel Book Store, 4100 MacArthur Blvd., Oakland. 510-531-2073, www.laurelbookstore.com.

Author Ishmael Reed. "Going Too Far: Essays About America's Nervous Breadown," a reading and book signing by legendary and outspoken author Ishmael Reed. 6:30 to 8 p.m. Feb. 9. Marcus Books, 3900 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Oakland. Free. 510-652-2344.

Public Blood Drive. The American Red Cross holds a public blood drive. 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 10. Temple Beth Abraham, 327 MacArthur Blvd., Oakland. 800-733-2767, redcrossblood.org.

Lesbian Romance Authors. Meet lesbian romance authors Karin Kallmaker, author of "Love By the Numbers," and Mary Griggs, author of "Crash Stop." Local chocolates and beverages served. 6:30 p.m. Feb. 14. Laurel Book Store, 4100 MacArthur Blvd., Oakland. 510-531-2073, www.laurelbookstore.com.

Anthony T. Browder Lecture. Historian/scholar/author Anthony T. Browder discusses "Nile Valley Contributions to Civilization," the African contributions to the rudiments of civilization. 6:30 to 8 p.m. Feb. 15. Marcus Books, 3900 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Oakland. Free. 510-652-2344.

All About Snakes. Local historian Ernest Chann addresses the Year of the Snake and what it will portend, and shares Chinese folk tales featuring snakes. 1:30 p.m. Feb. 16. Asian Library, 388 Ninth St., Oakland. 510-238-3400.

California Writers Club. The Berkeley Branch of the California Writers Club presents Kathleen Curtis Wilson, author and weaver-historian, speaking on "A Weaver's Path to Publication." 2 to 4 p.m. Feb. 17. Oakland Public Library, Main Branch, 125 14th St., Oakland. Free. 238-3134, www.cwc-berkeley.org.

Superior Court Volunteers Needed. Alameda County Superior Court needs eager volunteers to support the information kiosks in the Oakland, Hayward, and Fremont courthouses. Training provided. Call for details 510-891-6921 or jsalerno@alameda.courts.ca.gov.