october 11
Feeling Like Natural Women Barriers between nature and culture break down at "Refiguring Nature: Women in the Landscape," a women's group photography show. Through digitally altered panoramic landscapes and platinum palladium prints, each of the 14 artists expands on earlier work (like Anne Brigman's nude self-portraits in the wilderness), offering a personal interpretation of human connection to the landscape. The exhibit opens with a reception at 5:30 p.m. at SF Camerawork, 115 Natoma, S.F. Admission is free; call 764-1001.

Sankai Juku Knows Butoh The payoff is longer in coming than many Americans are used to, but with Japanese butoh troupe Sankai Juku, it does come. Butoh, a precise and uncluttered kind of theatrical dance that seems to inhabit a realm beyond both genres, evolved as a post-war cultural reaction against Western movement and Kabuki excess. Sankai Juku offers a visually rich new work, Yuragi (In a Space of Perpetual Motion), which explores movement in nature and the body's duet with gravity. The show begins at 8 p.m. (also on Saturday) at Zellerbach Hall, Bancroft and Telegraph, Berkeley. Admission is $20-36; call (510) 642-9988.

october 12
Climb Every Mountain The Greenbelt Alliance wants ambulatory types, from weekend walkers to hard-core climbing enthusiasts, to take a hike for "Peak Experience," a fund-raiser for the Greenbelt Alliance's drive to protect open spaces. Experienced naturalists will lead hikes of varying degrees of difficulty at various Bay Area locations, from the easy four-mile trek on Brushy Peak to the spirit-crushing ascent up Mt. Diablo. Climbs begin at various times, and hikers are asked to contribute at least $20; call (800) 543-GREE to register.

Point of Many Returns The Potrero Hill Festival may have an old-fashioned appeal, but the view from that section of the city usually presents something new. The festival begins with an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast and continues throughout the day with entertainment by groups like the Soul Fire Band and the Girls Club Dancers. Motorized cable cars offer neighborhood tours and Shagtime Dance Instruction gives swing dance lessons. Handmade crafts and homemade food complete the picture. The breakfast runs 8:30-11 a.m. at the Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro, S.F. Admission is $5. Regular events begin at 11 a.m. at the Daniel Webster schoolyard, Missouri and 20th St., S.F. Admission is free; call 826-8080.

Making Sense of Chaos The deconstruction of the Central Freeway may be a pain in the chassis to most locals, but Hayes Valley dwellers are embracing it, and the tearing down of neighborhood public housing as well, with the "Demolition Days Sidewalk Sale." Residents will be holding yard sales in front of their homes, and browsers will have the chance to hear from community leaders and peruse drawings of redesigned parks, new housing developments, and plans for the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center. Events begin at 9 a.m. in Hayes Valley, roughly bounded by Octavia, Buchanan, Oak, and Hermann streets, S.F. Admission is free; call 431-8102.

october 13
We Go Polo History may tell us where Marco Polo went, but what was he thinking during his travels? "I'd rather be Kolo dancing," perhaps? The Marco Polo Festival celebrates the explorer's Eastern European roots with performing arts and traditional foods from his Croatian home base, and from countries on his route. The Slavonian Traveling Band and the Bosnian and Herzegovinian Center Dancers are among the scheduled performers. The festival begins with Kolo dance workshops at 2 p.m.; performances begin at 4 p.m. at the Slavonic Cultural Center, 60 Onondaga, S.F. Admission is free-$10; call 586-0934.

Tickle a Turntable Consider this an early Christmas shopping omen: Thousands of donated used records -- mostly classical, but also including pop, rock, jazz, and folk -- will be sold for $1-2 a pop at the Giant LP Sale, a benefit for the San Francisco Conservatory of Music scholarship fund. The sale begins at 10:30 a.m. at the conservatory's Music Rack, 1201 Ortega, S.F. Admission is free; call 759-3440.

Greasy Good Times Get all your white trash needs met at Greaseball '96, a daylong rockabilly barbecue and block party. National music acts the Guanabatz, the Jitters, Chrome Addicts, and the Hooligans, among many others, will be parked alongside the hot rods and customized cars, as on-site barbers and tattooists spruce folks up. The fun begins at noon at the DNA Lounge, 375 11th St., S.F. Admission is $15-20; call 263-6884.

Drink It In Dr. Loco's Rockin' Jalapeno Band and Culture Clash join the cast of musicians, comedians, and poets slated to perform at Drink Cultura, a benefit and tribute to Jose Antonio Burciaga, an influential Chicano author/artist stricken with cancer. Proceeds will benefit the Burciaga Trust for seriously ill Latino artists. The event begins at 8 p.m. at Brava Theater Center, 2789 24th St., S.F. Admission is $10-20; call 826-8009.

october 14
Legacy on Loan The rare jades, textiles, ceramics, paintings, and lacquers of "Splendors of Imperial China: Treasures From the National Palace Museum, Taipei" have finally come west, but it's not the first time these pieces have traveled. The nearly 350 items, spanning over 4,000 years of Chinese history, were passed among dynasties from the Northern Sung period (960-1127) to the last emperor from the Forbidden City in 1924, after which they were carefully smuggled across the country during wartime to avoid theft. Highlights include life-size imperial portraits and miniature treasure boxes. The exhibit opens 10 a.m. (the exhibit's only Monday showing) at the Asian Art Museum, Golden Gate Park, S.F. Admission is free-$9.50; call 776-1999.

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