Every Friday, the Launching Pad (2649 Russell St., Berkeley) hosts the Friday Night Launch, featuring spiritually focused spoken word, discussions, and music for young adults. The events start at 7 p.m. and are free, although donations are accepted; there's a group vegetarian dinner available at 6 p.m., too. 510-859-3150 or LaunchingPadBerkeley.comfree/donation
As California releases more inmates to relieve overcrowding, Oakland and San Francisco have developed innovative programs to deal with the influx. But there are many challenges ahead.