Planning session on University Village

The next public hearing meeting on the University Village project in Albany will be at the Planning Commission meeting at 6 p.m. Dec. 11 at City Hall, 1000 San Pablo Ave.

The primary focus of the study session will be the latest design revisions to the senior housing project and grocery store plans.

Free program to feature noted conservationists

The next event in the Bay Currents speaker series will feature conservationists Kenneth Brower and Malcolm Margolin at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9 in conversation discussing the history of the Raker Act that was passed 100 years ago and allowed the damming of Hetch Hetchy Valley in Yosemite National Park.

The talk in the Edith Stone Room at the Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave., starts with a 7 p.m. social period. The event is free, but seating is limited.

Holiday Arts Festival returns at RAC

The Richmond Art Center, 2540 Barrett Ave., holds its 52nd annual Holiday Arts Festival this from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Dec. 8.

Handmade items ideal for gift giving or home decor and starting at less than $20 will be available for browsing in a winterland setting featuring live music, a cafe will offer food and wine, and a silent auction will feature East Bay experiences and fine art. Admission is free. Details: www.therac.org.


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'White Christmas' screening at Cerrito

The next Cerrito Classic at the Rialto Cinemas Cerrito, 10070 San Pablo Ave., is "White Christmas," the 1954 holiday musical starring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen at 10 a.m. Dec. 14.

Admission is free with your donation of a new, unwrapped toy or game suitable for ages 0-12 for the annual Richmond/El Firefighters Toy Program.

Winter concerts set at El Cerrito High School

The El Cerrito High School music program holds its first Winter Concert at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 13 in the Performing Arts Center, 540 Ashbury Ave.

The program will feature seasonal selections played by the school's Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Workshop, Jazz Lab and Jazz Combo.

A second concert with the Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band and Wind Symphony will be held at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 19 in the Performing Arts Center.

Garden club holding holiday luncheon

The annual El Cerrito Garden Club Christmas Luncheon is at 11:30 a.m. Dec. 12 at the Community Center, 7007 Moeser Lane. Entertainment will be by vocalists Michelle Voilleque and Mark Walstrom.

The cost per person is $22 and guests are welcome, but reservations are required, by calling Marion Kent at 510-236-4421.

Swing and sway with the Albany Jazz Band

The Albany Jazz Band will play a free concert of timeless tunes from the big band era from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Dec. 8 at the Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave. Details: www.albanyjazzband.org.

Women's Hall of Fame candidates sought

The Contra Costa Commission for Women is seeking nominees this month for consideration to to honor at its next Hall of Fame induction in the spring. The program annually honors women who are considered leaders or change agents, or have otherwise "made a significant difference in the lives of those in their community."

Categories for honors include Women Demonstrating Leadership, Women Creating Community, Women Working for Justice, Women Preserving the Environment, Women Improving Health Care, Women Contributing to the Arts, and Women Innovating in Science/Technology.

The deadline for suggesting candidates has been extended but should be made as soon as possible. Details and a nomination form are available by going online to www.womenscommission.com and clicking on Hall of Fame under the Projects tab. A list of past winners is also available. A form and details can also be obtained by sending an email to info@womenscommission.com.

Shadi documentary can be viewed online

The new documentary "Sundar Shadi's Gifts" can now be streamed from the City of El Cerrito website at ca-elcerrito.civicplus.com/MediaCenter.aspx and will soon be available to borrow from the El Cerrito Library, 6510 Stockton Ave., or rent at Silver Screen Video at El Cerrito Plaza.

Annual holiday market has a local focus

A holiday market to benefit the Albany Senior Center, 846 Masonic Ave., will have gift items, entertainment and food available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 7.

Admission is free. There will also be a bake sale, lunches sold by the Friends of Albany Seniors and entertainment by singers, instrumentalists and a recorder ensemble.

Arts and Crafts Fair at Albany Middle School

Admission is free to the fifth annual Arts and Crafts Fair at Albany Middle School, 1259 Brighton Ave., from noon to 3 p.m. Dec. 8. There will be works by students and adults for sale, baked goods and musical entertainment and proceeds benefit school programs.

-- Chris Treadway