Library revamps online presence

The Berkeley Public Library, after consulting staff and the public, has gone live with a new website at www.berkeleypubliclibrary.org and is seeking feedback on changes that were made to meet changing needs of patrons.

"The site was made with mobile users in mind and adapts to tablets and mobile devices easily, without requiring an app," the library said in an announcement.

"We really want to get away from the monolithic redesign process and have the ability to adapt the navigation and presentation of our site when we get feedback from our users, and this new site allows us to do this easily," said Alicia Abramson, Manager of Information Technology and Technical Services for the Library.

The site seeks to assist needs of users of all interests and provide convenient access to downloadable e-books and audiobooks; streaming music; the Discover & Go program providing free or reduced price tickets to Bay Area museums and other cultural venues; digital magazines; focused content for young people; personalized book recommendations created by librarians; information on reserving community meeting rooms and announcing library events.

An online survey about the new site is at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/BPL2014redesign. For more details on the redesign call 510-981-6131.

Assembly members holding open house


Advertisement

Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, and Assemblyman Rob Bonta, D-Oakland, are inviting constituents to an open house at their district offices from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Feb. 13 at the Elihu M. Harris State Building, 1515 Clay St. in Oakland.

The event is a chance to meet the staff of the elected officials and learn about services available to the community. For details call 510-286-1400.

Exhibit spotlights '50s, '60s poets and artists

"Rebels, Hipsters, and Visionaries, Bay Area Poets and Artists, 1950s and '60s," a new exhibition of works by poets and artists of the period, is at the Firehouse Art Co., 1790 Shattuck Ave., through Feb. 15.

Related events will include a screening of "Venice West and the LA Scene" by Mary Kerr at 7 p.m. Feb. 7 (admission $5), and the Zan Stewart Band performing at 7 p.m. Feb. 15 (admission $7 to $10).

Details: 510-593-0733.

Free Covered California education event

Learn about the government health care program and get questions answered about Covered California at a free event at 2 p.m. Feb. 7 at the Claremont Branch Library at 2940 Benvenue Ave.

There will be time for participants to ask questions of a Covered California certified educator. For more details call 510-981-6280.

'The Music Man' is marching to town

Professor Harold Hill and the classic musical "The Music Man" will be on stage from Feb. 13 to March 23 in a production by Berkeley Playhouse at the Julia Morgan Theater, 2640 College Ave. Marissa Wolf directs, with music direction by Kevin Roland and choreography by Matthew McCoy. Performances are at 7 p.m. Fridays, 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. Saturdays and noon and 5 p.m. Sundays. There is also a performance at 7 p.m. on March 20.

For tickets or more details visit www.berkeleyplayhouse.org or call 510-845-8542, ext. x351.

Senior centers hosting Red and White Ball

The North and South Berkeley senior centers are teaming to host a Valentine's Day Red and White Senior Ball for ages 55 and older from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 14 at the South Berkeley Senior Center, 2939 Ellis St. Advance tickets are $5 if purchased by Feb. 7, and $7 afterward or at the door. Details: 510-981-5170.

Intergenerational knitting group to meet

"Ewe" Can Knit at Berkeley Public Library is an intergenerational group knitting hour for the whole family from 3:15 to 4:45 p.m. Feb. 8 in the fourth floor Story Room at the Central Library, 2090 Kittredge St. All skill levels are welcome at the free monthly program for ages 8 and older, which will also meet March 8 and April 5. Details: 510-981-6236.

Homeless Art Show runs through April 18

An exhibit of artworks by and for the homeless runs through April 18 at Expressions Art Gallery, 2035 Ashby Ave. The Homeless Art Show features creations by more than 60 artists on display and available for sale.

The show is a collaborative effort of the gallery, community artists and nonprofit organizations that work with the homeless, including BOSS and St. Mary's Center.

Sales or tax deductible donations "will support the nonprofit organizations that have helped make this show possible and who have enabled these artists to use this opportunity to become recognized as local artists and create a better future for themselves through their art."

The city is a co-sponsor of the exhibit and also contributed funds toward the cost of art supplies.

Gallery hours are noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and noon to 3 p.m. Sunday. Details: 510-644-4930.

-- Chris Treadway