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Friday, October 7, 2011

Weekender: The Top Things to Do Over the Next Three Days in the East Bay

Fri, Oct 7, 2011 at 6:00 AM

Provided you're not atoning, this is what's up for the weekend:

5th Annual Estria Invitational Graffiti Battle Finals
Graffiti artists live by their monikers, the combination of letters and shapes they repeat and perfect upon wall or canvas. But at the final competition of the Estria Invitational Graffiti Battle — which has garnered finalists from preliminary battles in New York, Los Angeles, and Honolulu — twenty artists (including last year's king, Vyal) will eschew their coveted names, creating full-scale pieces around a surprise word. The works will be judged by pioneering graffiti artist Estria Miyashiro and two other well-known writers. If all that graff gives you the itch, sign up for the open blackbook competition during the event. At DeFremery Park (1651 Adeline St., Oakland) on Saturday, Oct. 8. 11 a.m.-6 p.m., free. 510-698-6640 or EstriaBattle.com. — Cassie Harwood

Rockridge Out and About Festival and Picnic In the Street
Rockridge used to be the center of East Bay high-end restaurant culture, but no more. All through the last decade, the neighborhood grew older, better off — same thing that happened to Berkeley's Gourmet Ghetto the decade before that — and things got stuffy. Oakland's fun center shifted to Uptown, a setting more thrilling, more awesomely urban than the low, orderly storefronts of College Avenue. The Great Recession bit hard in Rockridge. The Water Lounge and Raw Bar space is still empty; so is Citron (a recent report suggested À Côté owner Jack Knowles has plans to open a casual place there called Next Door, though the launch date is probably sometime in the second half of 2012, at the earliest). This Sunday, though, Rockridge will be bustling again, with the side-by-side recurrence on October 9 of the Rockridge Out and About Festival and Market Hall merchants' Picnic In the Street. Out and About will close College to car traffic between Alcatraz and Manila, with bands at the main stage, a wellness tent, a place for kids, and even a runway for fashion shows. Meanwhile for Picnic, Market Hall is packing a chefs' stage with local talent: urban farmer Novella Carpenter, cookbook author Rosetta Costantino, and Oliveto owner and Community Grains pitchman Bob Klein — sort of new West Oakland meets classy old Rockridge. Market Hall tenants will sling food and drink, including iced drinks from the guys of Highwire Coffee Roasters (formerly known as Peaberry's), burgers from Marin Sun Farms, pulled pork sandwiches from The Pasta Shop, and spit-roasted porchetta from Oliveto. Picnic In the Street happens along College Avenue between Shafter and Ocean View. Both events are free (bring cash for food and drink!), and run from noon to 6 p.m. — John Birdsall

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Smashing Pumpkins
If one thing can be said about the Smashing Pumpkins, it's that the erstwhile grunge outfit has phenomenal staying power, albeit in slightly different iterations. (We've now reached version 3.0.) It's also inspired a lot of diehard fans, from the kids who rocked Siamese Dream in their Walkmen and built Geocities sites devoted to hot bassist du jour D'arcy Wretzky (who was later replaced by the similarly hot Melissa Auf derMaur, who was eventually supplanted by Nicole Fiorentino). Despite all the internal fighting and personnel changes, Smashing Pumpkins retained a consistent sound for two decades, due, in large part, to Billy Corgan's inimitable growly falsetto. That's not to mention he's a fabulous songwriter. Songs like "Disarm," "Tonight, Tonight," "1979," and the bubbly make-out tune "Today" have the same wonderfully earworm-y quality that they did on first release. And the older, die-hard fans will certainly show up to the Pumpkins' much-anticipated East Bay concert this week, if only for nostalgia's sake. At The Fox Theatre (1807 Telegraph Ave., Oakland) on Friday, Oct. 7. 7 p.m., $45. TheFoxOakland.com. — Rachel Swan

Rock Wall Wine Company Presents Food Truck Frenzy Part 3: Blue Angels Edition
Welcome your favorite aeronautical acrobats, the Blue Angels, back to the Bay Area on Saturday, Oct. 8, as Rock Wall Winery (2301 Monarch St., Suite 300, Alameda) hosts Food Truck Frenzy, Part 3: Blue Angels Edition. Food trucks from all over the Bay Area park at the winery's forty-thousand-square-foot site to offer meals and desserts that you can pair with award-winning Rock Wall wines while watching the planes defy gravity as a DJ supplies the beats. Noon, $5 (extra for food and drinks). 510-522-5700 or RockWallWines.com. — Anneli Rufus

Peter Bjorn and John
Even though this trio's group name comes off sounding like the partners in a Viking law firm, Peter, Bjorn, and John are actually a Swedish indie pop act best for the 2006 hit "Young Folks" and its recognizable whistling accompaniment. And while there's no gimmickry like that on PB&J's sixth full-length, GimmeSome, there's a vitality reverberating throughout, whether it's the faux punk of "Breaker Breaker," minimalist kraut-rock of "I Know You Don't Love Me," or the peppy new wave power-pop of "Dig a Little Deeper." At Oakland's New Parish (579 18th St., Oakland) on Oct. 7. 9 p.m., $10-$25. The NewParish.com — Dave Gil de Rubio

Update, 11:20: Jaykay, Peter Bjorn and John has been canceled. Per the New Parish website, refunds are available at point of purchase. (Thanks for the tip, commenter Nat!)



Plus...

Get your cheapskate on: This is how much we love you guys: Here are our searchable listings of every single free event happening in the East Bay this weekend.

Waste some time: Slow-motion chipmunk!!

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Feed Us: Got any East Bay news, events, video, or miscellany we should know about? Holler at us at Ellen.Cushing@EastBayExpress.com.

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