Events: January 29 - February 4, 2014
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Sean Strub Books Inc., 2275 Market, SF; www.booksinc.net. 7:30pm, free. The author discusses Body Counts: A Memoir of Politics, Sex, AIDS, and Survival.
"Playland After Dark" Playland-Not-at-the-Beach, 10979 San Pablo, El Cerrito; www.playland-not-at-the-beach.org. 6-10pm, $10. Adults (18 and up) get full run of Playland's pinball and carnival games, plus board games galore and unique exhibits.
Lunar Chinese New Year Festival on Fourth Street Near 1780 Fourth St, Berk; www.teance.com, www.fourthstreet.com. Noon-4pm, free. Welcome the Year of the Horse with Chinese Opera vignettes by Kei Lun Martial Arts, traditional lion dancing, drummers, and more.
"Sam & Max: A Look Back with Steve Purcell" Cartoon Art Museum, 655 Mission, SF; www.cartoonart.org. 4-5pm, free (reception, 7-9pm, $5). Booksigning celebrating The Collected Sam & Max: Surfin' the Highway. The later reception also includes Purcell in person and a chance to check out the Cartoon Art Museum's Sam & Max exhibit, as well as the concurrent exhibits "Grains of Sand: 25 Years of the Sandman" and "Searle in America."
"Peralta Hacienda Saturday Kids Club" Peralta Hacienda Historical Park, 2465 34th Ave, Oakl; www.peraltahacienda.org. 2:30-5pm, free. Ongoing through May 31. Outdoorsy games, sports, and team-building fun for kids, who can learn about Ohlone Native American life, make crafts using dyes drawn from local plants, and go birdwatching, to name just a few of the offered activities.
Art Peterson Emerald Tablet, 80 Fresno, SF; www.emtab.org. 2-5pm, free. The author reads from Why Is That Bridge Orange? San Francisco for the Curious.
"Sick Plant Clinic" UC Botanical Garden, 200 Centennial, Berk; events.berkeley.edu. 9am-noon, free. Feeling like a green-thumb failure? Bring your ailing plants (covered or in a container) for diagnosis by volunteer plant pathologists and entomologists at this long-standing monthly event.
Gene Luen Yang SF Public Library, Latino/Hispanic Community Meeting Room, 100 Larkin, SF; www.sfpl.org. 2-3:30pm, free. The two-time National Book Award finalist discusses and signs his latest work, graphic novel Boxers & Saints: A Historical Duology of the Boxer Rebellion.
Exploratorium free day Exploratorium, Pier 15, SF; www.exploratorium.edu. 10am-5pm, free. Regular adult admission is $25, so here's your chance to check out (for free!) the science museum's six exhibit galleries, including a Bay Observatory, and other attractions.
"Poetry Unbound #9" Art House Gallery, 2905 Shattuck, Berk; berkeleyarthouse.wordpress.com. 5:15pm, $5 donation (no one turned away for lack of funds). With Paradise, Jan Steckel, and Martin Heimstra, followed by a brief open mic. Hosts are Clive Matson and Richard Loranger.
Colin Meloy and Carson Ellis Booksmith, 1644 Haight, SF; www.booksmith.com. 7pm, $5 (advance tickets at www.brownpapertickets.com). Portland, Ore.-based author Meloy (also known at the lead singer and songwriter of the Decemberists) and illustrator Ellis — real-life partners and parents to two sons — share their latest literary collaboration, fantasy epic Wildwood Imperium: The Wildwood Chronicles, Part III. *