August 27, 2008

Martinez Event Features Works of Plein Air Artists


SCENE ON THE STRAIT, a major art festival featuring works by many talented East Bay plein air artists, has its 12th annual outing from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Martinez Regional Shoreline.

Parking and admission are free. Food and drink are available for sale and live music adds to the ambience.

The festival is sponsored by the Carquinez Regional Environmental Education Center (CREEC) and the East Bay Regional Park District.

Proceeds from the sale of paintings at the show support the work of CREEC in preserving and protecting Carquinez Strait. CREEC is a non-profit organization that provides environmental education and work experience for at-risk teenagers.

For more information, visit or phone 510-787- 9772. Martinez Regional Shoreline is located at the end of Ferry Street, across the railroad tracks from downtown Martinez.

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Bug hunters and would-be comedians will enjoy a couple of programs led by naturalist Meg Platt Saturday at Tilden Nature Area in Berkeley.

From 10:30 a.m. to noon, Meg will lead a bug hunt for all ages, roaming the nature area with nets and bug boxes. No insects will be harmed in the process.

Then from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Meg will lead a nature walk around Jewel Lake, enlivened by nature-themed jokes provided by the participants. Bring a joke to share.

Both programs are free of charge and reservations are not necessary. Meet at the Environmental Education Center at the north end of Central Park Drive. For more information, phone the center at 510-525-2233.

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Also on Saturday, naturalist Gail Broesder plans a more strenuous hike from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at Redwood Regional Park in Oakland. Designed for ages 6 and up, it's a mostly shady walk from the top of the ridge to the creek and back, starting at Skyline Gate on Skyline Boulevard.

Reservations are not needed. For more information, phone 510-521- 6887.

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Kids ages 4 through 7, accompanied by an adult, will enjoy the children's storytime walk with naturalist Michael Charnofsky, set for 10:30 a.m. to noon on Sunday at Temescal Regional Recreation Area. The program starts with a walk in search of Temescal's animal residents, concludes with some stories about animals in their homes.

Temescal is at the junction of Highways 13 and 24 in Oakland. Meet by the south entrance playground.

Then from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Michael will lead an earthquake and history walk at Temescal, which is right on the Hayward Fault. The program's geared for ages 10 and up. Meet at the lawn area by the north entrance.

Both programs are free of charge, though Temescal has a parking fee of $5 per vehicle when the kiosk is attended. For more information and directions, phone 510-521-6887.

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Popular local and national Cajun/Zydeco bands will showcase their talents at the annual Cajun-Zydeco Music Festival, at Ardenwood Historic Farm in Fremont. It's earlier this year, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 23.

Scheduled performers include Roy Carrier and the Night Rockers, Andre Thierry and Zydeco Magic, Guyland Leday and The Zydeco Family and Friends, Queen Ida and her Zydeco Band, and the Creole Bells.

Besides the music, there will be dance lessons, Cajun and Creole food for sale, specialty vendors, and Ardenwood's historic farm activities. Ardenwood is located at 34600 Ardenwood Boulevard, just north of Highway 84 in Fremont.

Today's the last day that discount advance tickets will be available: $16 for adults, $2 for youngsters aged 4 through 15, and free for 3 and under. For advance tickets, phone 1-888-EBPARKS and select option 2, then 3, or go online to

Ned McKay can be reached at [email protected]

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