It's probably time to get those reusable canvas bags ready for your shopping trips -- if you're not using them already.

An ordinance regulating single-use bags (paper and plastic alike) is being prepared for cities in West Contra Costa by RecycleMore, the joint powers authority officially known as West County Integrated Waste Management.

The ordinance "would prohibit the free distribution of single-use carryout paper and plastic bags at the point of sale (i.e., checkout) for all retail establishments except restaurants and nonprofit charitable reuse organizations. An exception to the ban on single-use bags would be made for paper bags containing at least 40 percent recycled content, as long as the retail establishment charges at least five cents for each bag."

A similar regulation took effect at the beginning of the year in Alameda County, where merchants now charge customers for paper shopping bags if they don't bring their own reusable container.

A draft environmental impact report has been prepared and is open for public comment through March 4. Copies of the report are available at the Recyclemore offices at 1 Alvarado Square in San Pablo, and at the planning department offices in El Cerrito, Hercules, Pinole, Richmond and San Pablo. The ordinance would be in effect in those cities as well as unincorporated areas in West County.

The report is also online at www.recyclemore.com.

THEATER PERFORMANCE: A re-imagining of Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" in terms of young people in modern day Richmond is the basis of "Te's Harmony," an original spoken-word theater piece that will be presented at 6 p.m. Feb. 9 in the Performing Arts Center at El Cerrito High School, 540 Ashbury Ave.

The presentation by RAW Talent, the creative arts department of the Making Waves education program in Richmond, "mixes Shakespearean verse with spoken word and Richmond vernacular to create a heartbreaking and humorous social commentary on the challenges and possibilities faced by Richmond today."

Tickets will be available at the door or in advance at http://tesharmony.eventbrite.com.

WEST COUNTY NOTES: This year's Black History Celebration at the Richmond Memorial Auditorium and Convention Center, 403 Civic Center Plaza, is 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Feb. 8. The evening includes entertainment, dinner, a fashion show and silent auction. Tickets are $15 each, available at the Richmond Senior Center, 2525 Macdonald Ave., or by calling 510-307-8085.

  • The next El Cerrito Trail Trekkers walk ventures outside the city limits to explore architecture on the UC Berkeley campus and surrounding area on Feb. 8. Walkers will meet at 10 a.m. at the downtown Berkeley BART Station plaza at Shattuck and Center streets. The "Berkeley Architecture: from Medieval to Modern" outing is free and people should bring a light lunch or a snack.

  • Saint Mary's College High School is holding its Winter Dance Concert at 7 p.m. Feb. 8 in the auditorium on the campus at 1294 Albina Ave. Admission is free.

  • "Blossoms and Thorns," the acclaimed documentary by Ken Kokka, about the experiences of Japanese American flower growers in El Cerrito and Richmond during World War II, is screening at 2 p.m. Thursdays at the Rosie the Riveter Visitor Education Center, 1414 Harbour Way South in Richmond.

    The free 45-minute program includes the 20-minute film and a talk and question-and-answer with a representative of the Japanese American Citizens League. Details: 510-232-3108.

  • Ryan Coogler, the Richmond resident who won the prestigious 2013 Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize for his film "Fruitvale," about the life and death of Oscar Grant, is a 2003 graduate of Saint Mary's College High School.

    Contact Chris Treadway at 510-262-2784 or ctreadway@bayareanewsgroup.com.