Man drives van into water at marina

An elderly man drove his van into the Bay at the Berkeley Marina on March 21, authorities said.

The man was not hurt and was able to climb out of the van before emergency crews arrived, said Berkeley Fire Department Deputy Chief Avery Webb. The man was leaving the parking lot on Sewall Drive near HS Lordships restaurant at 12:03 a.m. when he somehow ended up in the water, authorities said.

A tow truck pulled the van, which was partially submerged, out of the water.

Art entries wanted for city exhibition

The city is seeking entries for the annual Civic Center Art Exhibition, which will feature works of about 30 artists at the Martin Luther King Civic Center Building at 2180 Milvia St. from mid-2014 to mid-2015.

Submissions are open to artists living or working in Berkeley and the deadline to enter is April 18.

Works will be selected for the exhibition by a jury and will be displayed in public areas of the building.

Entry is free and selected artists will receive a $150 honorarium.

The exhibition is hosted by the Berkeley Art Center, Kala Art Institute, the Civic Arts Commission and Civic Arts Coordinator. Details and an application are online at berkeleyart.slideroom.com.

Benefit gala to feature Sheen, Brosnahan

Actor and activist Martin Sheen and trial attorney James Brosnahan will discuss their work on behalf of social justice in the United States at a benefit for Options Recovery Services from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. March 28 in the auditorium of the Veterans Building, 1931 Center St.

The evening includes a buffet dinner and a silent auction featuring original artwork by Jim Brosnahan and Martin Sheen's signed memoir "Along The Way: The Journey of a Father and Son."

Tickets are $50, available by calling 510-666-9552 or online at www.optionsrecoveryservices.org. Proceeds will help Options Recovery Services expand programs to a larger building downtown.

Annual BAHA house and garden tour set

Tickets are now available for the 39th annual Spring House Tour and Garden Reception hosted by the Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association from 1 to 5 p.m. May 4.

This year's edition of the popular tour focuses on Maybeck's Rose Walk and "will feature an eclectic mix of artistic and charming houses designed by Berkeley's most notable architects, including Bernard Maybeck; John Galen Howard; Julia Morgan; Ernest Coxhead; Walter H. Ratcliff, Jr.; Sidney, Noble and Archie Newsom; and William I. Garren," among others, as well as hidden gardens along the way.

Tour cost, which includes a map, illustrated guide book and refreshment, is $45 general, $35 BAHA members. Tickets and details available at berkeleyheritage.com.

Women's History event to honor Skinner

Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, will be the guest of honor at the free National Women's History Month celebration at 1 p.m. March 28 in the planetarium at Contra Costa College, 2640 Mission Bell Drive in San Pablo.

The event, co-hosted by the West Contra Costa Branch of the American Association of University Women, is themed "Celebrating Women of Character, Courage and Commitment."

A reception with refreshments will follow the program. Details: www.westcontracosta-ca.aauw.net.

Bay Festival returning at Berkeley Marina

The waterfront will celebrate Earth Day with live entertainment, environmental education and activities for all ages at the Bay Festival from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 12 at the Berkeley Marina.

Activities will include free sailboat rides with the Cal Sailing Club and paddling lessons in the Berkeley Dragon Boat.

The stage at Shorebird Park will feature children's singer Gary Lapow, juggler Dana Smith, Lee Waterman and Jazz Caliente and The Bay Area Back Pages.

The park will also have booths with community and environmental education groups, recreational activities, food vendors and more.

Adventure Playground will also be open for the enjoyment of children.

For more details visit www.ci.berkeley.ca.us/BayFestival/.

One-stop emergency readiness event set

The Berkeley Fire Department and its Community Emergency Response Team program will hold a free emergency preparedness fair at the North Berkeley BART station from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 26.

The event will have information, resources and learning activities for all ages, training exercises, pet preparedness, a blood drive, emergency supply vendors, live music and prize drawings.

For more details visit www.cityofberkeley.info/prepfair.

-- David DeBolt and Chris Treadway