Early 2014 is a fine time to take to the ice or explore an art or writing class offered in town. There are also plenty of lectures planned for the next few weeks.

Alameda South Shore Center has announced that it will share proceeds from some ticket sales at the Little Ice Rink this month to help Alameda schools. Jamestown, the company that owns South Shore, and its ice-rink partner, Perforce Foundation, are asking community members to come out at 6 and 8 p.m. Monday and Tuesday.

The Parent Teacher Associations that will benefit from these fundraiser skate sessions include those affiliated with the Academy of Alameda, Alameda High, Alameda Science & Technical Institute, Amelia Earhart, Bay Farm, Edison, Encinal, Franklin, Haight, Lincoln, Lum, Maya Lin, NEA, Otis, Paden, Ruby Bridges and Wood.

The Little Ice Rink will be open through Monday, Jan. 20. From Monday through Thursday, skaters can take to the ice from 3 to 10 p.m. From Friday through Sunday, the rink is open from noon to 10 p.m. The venue also hosts Stroller Skates at 2 p.m. every Tuesday.

The Frank Bette Center for the Arts says it has a full slate of classes and activities planned for the year. It is hosting its Déjà Vu Silent Auction fundraiser through Jan. 25 at 1601 Paru St., with a closing-bid gala set for 6 to 8 p.m. Jan. 25.

Classes at the center are being offered over the next few weeks in botanical drawing, bird painting and drawing, illusion drawing, photography, watercolor painting, poetry, Italian and more (see www.frankbettecenter.org). Plus, from 7 to 9 p.m. on the second Wednesday of each month (beginning Feb. 12), the center will host an art talk by a local expert.

Rhythmix: Alameda Backyard Growers invites community members to a discussion about backyard fruit trees from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 14 at Rhythmix Cultural Works, 2513 Blanding Ave.

The speaker is Igor Lacan, an environmental horticulture adviser at the University of California. The group also wants the community to know that they will begin meeting on the second Monday of the month on March 10 at the same time and location.

Library events: The Alameda Free Library is hosting an exhibit of paintings by Benny Alba, who was inspired by the rain, sleet, snow and other weather she encountered during a drive from Idaho to the Bay Area.

A reception for Alba will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Main Library.

Artists from the Museum of Children's Art will be at the Main Library from 2 to 3 p.m. Jan. 18 for a kid's workshop. Adults and children 10 and older are invited to a special one-hour performance of "Julius Caesar" at 2 p.m. Jan. 25.

The play is being produced and presented by the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival.

Members of the Alameda Public Affairs Forum will present a discussion on Tibet's struggle for freedom, led by Giovanni Vassalo, head of the Bay Area Friends of Tibet. The event will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday in the conference room of the Alameda Main Library.

Refreshments and a potluck are offered at 6:30 p.m.; the event is free, though donations are requested.

Last, but not least, be sure to stop by artist Sylvia Chesson's exhibit of fused glass Japanese scrolls, up in the art gallery next to See's Candies at South Shore through Jan. 31. Chesson is a new member of the Alameda Art Association and is hosting a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday.

Janet Levaux also writes the Alameda Journal Blog at www.ibabuzz.com/alamedajournal.