Brrrrr, it's cold

  • Polar Bear Plunge, noon Jan. 1, Pleasant Hill Aquatic Park, 147 Gregory Lane. Start new year with plunge in unheated pool. Coffee, hot chocolate. $20 at door. 925-682-0896, www.pleasanthillrec.com.

  • Ice Berg Swim for ages 10, older, 9 a.m. Jan. 5, Rankin Aquatic Center, 100 Buckley St., Martinez. Doughnuts, bagels, hot beverages. Costumes encouraged. $6 at door. Proceeds benefit swim programs. R.S.V.P. 925-372-3510.

    Writers meet

    n

    Mt. Diablo Branch California Writers Club meets 8:30 a.m. Jan. 12, Zio Fraedo's Restaurant, 611 Gregory Lane, Pleasant Hill. Author, writing teacher Connie Hale's workshop "Creative Use of Language in Fiction and Non-Fiction." $34 members, $40 nonmembers. 925-934-5677, jeaniegpops@comcast.net.

    Muir story time

  • John Muir National Historic Site story time continues 1 p.m. Jan. 6, and first Sundays, John Muir House, 4202 Alhambra Ave., Martinez. Hear some of Muir's greatest adventure stories. Free. 925-228-8860.

    Crab feed

  • Boys & Girls Club of Diablo Valley Crab Feed, 6 p.m. Jan. 12, 1301 Alhambra Ave. Martinez. Raffles, balloon pop, no-host bar, dancing. $50. Proceeds benefit club programs. Tickets: 925-228-3896, ext. 102, www.bgcdv.org.

    Got e-waste?

    n

    Free e-waste drop-off 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Jan. 5, Diablo Valley College, 321 Golf Course Road, Pleasant Hill. Computers, printers, TVs, cameras, copiers. For list of acceptable items: 866-335-3373, http://noewaste.com/calendar.php.

    Winter kids activities

  • Winter Mini Camp 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Jan. 2-4, Nancy Boyd Recreation Room, 90 Church St., Martinez. Crafts, games, cooking, tennis, sports, theme activities for ages 4-11. $18-$20 per day, $48-$51 for three-day session. 925-372-3510.

    Love to sing?

  • Walnut Creek Chorus open house 7 p.m. Jan. 14, 7-9 p.m., Trinity Lutheran Church, 2317 Buena Vista Ave., Walnut Creek. Seeks singers for upcoming concerts. No formal audition. walnutcreekchorus@gmail.com.

    Free tax preparation

  • Appointments begin Jan. 9 for free tax preparation starting in February for those whose income does not exceed $50,000.

  • Pleasant Hill: 925-405-6011

  • Pacheco: 925-709-4525

    n

    Martinez: 925-370-8770

    General information: 925-726-3199, visit www.earnitkeepitsaveit.org. Participants must bring Social Security card or ITIN letter for all individuals listed on return; Photo ID for yourself, spouse; copies of W-2, 1098, 1099 forms; other income, deductions; 2011 tax return.

    Introduction to sewing

  • Pleasant Hill Senior Center offers basic sewing class noon Jan. 2, 233 Gregory Lane. Learn to hem, make basic repairs, more. Bring binder to store written instructions. Cutting, measuring tools provided. $20. R.S.V.P. 925-798-8788.

    Laughs for a cause

  • Stand Up for Animals Comedy Night 7:30 p.m. Jan. 4, Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek. Comedians Mark Pitta, more. Benefits ARF. $60. Tickets: 925-943-7469, www.lesherartscenter.org, www.arf.net.

    Items included on a space-available basis. Email record@bayareanewsgroup.com or fax 925-943-8362.