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New Life for The UC Theatre

The benighted and newly engaged couple of Brad and Janet, the doomed Dr. Frank-N-Furter, and the rest of the zany crew from Transsexual, Transylvania, are headed back to Berkeley. The UC Theatre on University Avenue, which hosted the longest running sequence of The Rocky Horror Picture Show midnight screenings, is going to open its doors again after 14 years, and the interactive, costumed late-night romp will once again be welcome, says David Mayeri, the board president of the nonprofit group behind the theater’s resurrection. But film will be only a small part of the offerings on tap at the new UC, which closed its doors in 2001 when Landmark Theatres balked at investing more than $1 million for seismic upgrades.

Form and Function in Home Design

Design rules our lives, especially the furniture and décor that fill our homes. Imagine if you could outfit your surroundings with one-of-a-kind designs that felt more like works of art, replacing a scratched up rocking chair with a sleek, simple stool or whimsical bench. Wouldn’t daily life be just a little better?

Wesley Watkins Uses Jazz to Teach Democracy

Back in 2009, at a White House music series event, Michelle Obama reiterated an old idea when she told guests, "There is no better example of democracy than a jazz ensemble." Oakland native Wesley J. Watkins IV turned the idea into a new way to educate students.

The new BAM/PFA

Whether you’re running a museum or a pizzeria, location is paramount. Currently nestled adjacent to the UC Berkeley campus, the Berkeley Art Museum is perfectly accessible and yet a tad out of the way, unless you’re student or faculty member. Same goes for the affiliated Pacific Film Archive, displaced from the BAM building some years ago due to seismic concerns and ensconced in a theater a few blocks west. Hence the excitement, from audiences and curators alike, about BAM/PFA’s new $100-plus-million home reuniting the two that is under construction in downtown Berkeley at the site of a former UC printing plant.

This Month's Highlights

Dragon Boat Fest, Alameda Tourneys, Fan Alert, and Star Trails and Cocktails.

Oakland Bars Ban Google Glass

On a busy Saturday night at Oakland’s Dogwood bar, a cozy Uptown haven of tasty cocktails with an accompanying buzz of conversation, a man stood on a chair peering down through his cell phone to get a good group shot of his companions. Click, click.

Survey Complaints on Best Of

Keep those comments coming.

Positive Comments About Best Of

Let the Oakland lovefest begin.

Centerforce Gives Oakland Youth Court New Life

When Cleveland Mitchell first learned in 2011 that Oakland’s McCullum Youth Court was losing funding and on the verge of closing its doors, he could hardly contain his disappointment. Having been involved with the court for years, first in 2005 as a 13-year-old juvenile delinquent and then throughout high school as a volunteer staff member, Mitchell had personally witnessed the nonprofit diversion program help hundreds of kids in Alameda County. In 2012, when the youth court officially shut down, Mitchell was totally dismayed and flabbergasted that one of Oakland’s most prominent youth diversion programs could have been allowed to deteriorate. “I couldn’t believe it was over,” Mitchell says. “I thought it was something that deserved to be more praised and more wanted than it was.”

Pollinate Farm & Garden Thrives

Ethnic and cultural diversity prevail in Oakland. Take the Fruitvale and Dimond districts, where hip apparel store Oaklandish recently opened next to an old-fashioned butcher shop that’s been there for decades. In the same vicinity, an authentic Filipino restaurant operates near a grocery store that sells almost exclusively imported Mexican goods. That’s Oakland.