Get out and enjoy Oakland

14 Jan

UPDATE: The economic forum tonight has been postponed due to the protest scheduled in front of City Hall for Oscar Grant. I’ll post the new date and time of the forum when it is rescheduled.

There are a lot of great events going on in Oakland in the next week. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to get out and have a good time (if I could ever recover from this nasty cold).

Tonight, there are two very different options – you can check out a forum about the economy presented by several Oakland politicians or you can can watch a ballet that features fire performances. Council President Jane Brunner, Mayor Ron Dellums and Assembly Member Sandre Swanson are hosting a roundtable discussion titled, “A Progressive Perspective on the Economic Crisis.” I think I’ll stop by after work to see what insight they have to share, but I can’t help but think that this will be a somewhat depressing event (unless of course one of them has a miracle solution they haven’t yet shared with us).

If you’re looking for something more artistic and fantastical, the “Dracul: Prince of Fire” fire ballet at the Crucible might be a better option. I haven’t seen this particular production yet, but I’ve always been astounded by the Crucible’s fire arts performances. Oaklander Online checked out the dress rehearsal and “was blown away by the pyrotechnics and aerial choreography. It’s so much more than fire eating and pirouettes; it’s a cast that does double duty as dancers and acrobats.” Sounds good to me. You can catch Dracul Wednesday-Saturday nights this week – I have tickets for the Friday night show.

On Friday night, head to downtown Oakland to support local businesses, many of which were vandalized last Wednesday. Some Oaklanders at Yelp are planning to show their support by shopping, eating, and drinking at these businesses. The plans still sound a bit nebulous, but check out the Yelp page for details.

If you missed the Art Murmur earlier this month, there are two great opportunities to appreciate art this Saturday. Johansson Projects is hosting an artist’s reception for its new exhibition, Collective Compulsions: The Winter Group Show in the afternoon and early evening. When that’s over, hop on the AC Transit 1 bus down to Blow Salon in Berkeley for their new art opening. There’s unfortunately no info about it on their website, but it’s from 7pm – 10pm. The show features six talented artists, and there will be plenty of wine and beer to enjoy.

Whatever you do this week though, save some energy for the Barack n Roll inauguration party hosted by the East Bay Young Dems at Z Bar next Tuesday evening. We’ll be replaying Obama’s inaugural address, and DJs will be spinning well into the night. Arrive early, as there will be free drinks for the first 150 guests.

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