Picks of the Week: Ghost tours and plenty more in the last week of September

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Happy Monday, Berkeley.

Monday’s a full moon — the harvest moon, to be precise — and it’ll be quite the show. You could sit outside in a lawn chair and enjoy the last warm weather of the season while you stargaze, or you could stay in and keep an eye out through your window as you watch an appropriately themed movie: “Moon,” maybe, or even “Apollo 13.” Or for a spiritual experience, the Nyingma Institute will be hosting a full moon prayer and meditation session from 6:15 p.m. to 6:45 p.m., centered on the Vajra Guru Mantra.

This full moon also marks various festivities across Asia: the Mid-Autumn Festival in China and Vietnam; Chuseok in Korea; and Tsukimi in Japan. So if you head into Chinatown to celebrate with mooncakes or if you bring some dango to eat while you watch The National play at the Hearst Greek Theatre, keep an eye on the sky Monday.

Tuesday is National One-Hit Wonder Day. So make a playlist with some classics, including “Come On Eileen” by Dexys Midnight Runners, “Kung Fu Fighting” by Carl Douglas and “Take On Me” by a-ha. For more playlist inspiration, check out Playlist Diaries, a bimonthly newsletter from the team behind Flash Thrive, including a former arts & entertainment editor at The Daily Californian, Rosemarie Alejandrino. Playlist Diaries offers a curated, themed playlist every two weeks — you can subscribe here.

Keep one of these playlists playing as you exercise your civic duty — Tuesday is also National Voter Registration Day. You can register to vote in California here so that you’re ready for the November elections. If you’re unsure of how to vote or overwhelmed by the slate of candidates, check out the Daily Cal’s primary election endorsements here, and stay tuned for the November endorsements as well.

Now while I do love podcasts, I’ve never been one for audiobooks. But maybe this will change Wednesday, when British author Preti Taneja will be reading from her new book at City Lights Booksellers & Publishers in San Francisco, starting at 7 p.m. The novel, “We That Are Young,” is a retelling of Shakespeare’s “King Lear” as set in present-day India. After the event, head a couple blocks down the street to Bask for a late dinner. The restaurant serves Basque-style tapas in a charming, if noisy, setting — be sure to order the incredibly buttery patatas bravas, as well as any of the three varieties of croquette.

After eating tapas to your heart’s content, Thursday’s a good day to explore Berkeley, food-style. Head to your favorite beverage joint for a chai latte, then set out to find the perfect baguette. While local spots such as Fournee Bakery and Acme Bread Company are always solid, I have a feeling that Oakland’s Starter Bakery might give them a run for their money, if you’re willing to travel a little farther. For dinner, take your loaf down to Willard Park for a quick picnic. You could accompany it with some pork rillettes from The Local Butcher Shop and a round of your favorite soft cheese, or maybe some vegan turkey and beet coleslaw from The Butcher’s Son.

Then Friday, catch a screening on the opening night of the 2018 Japan Film Festival of San Francisco. At 7:15 p.m., Naoko Yamada’s “Liz and the Blue Bird” will be playing — it’s an emotional anime about two high-school musicians who are forced to confront their impending separation. The film kicks off the 10-day festival, which lasts until Oct. 7. Highlights include a variety of animated short films and the award-winning “Dear Etranger.”

And even though it’s still just September, it’s never too early to get in the Halloween spirit. So on Saturday, head back into San Francisco for the San Francisco Ghost Hunt Walking Tour, which starts at 7 p.m. For $20 each, you and your friends can stroll around the city’s most haunted spots with magician and storyteller Christian Cagigal — just make sure to reserve your tickets by 6 p.m. the day of the tour. Even if you don’t believe in the paranormal, the tour will offer fantastic views of the city in a classic Victorian-style neighborhood.

Stay out late Saturday, then sleep in Sunday. If you missed your chance to see singer-songwriter Cat Power accompany The National at the band’s second concert Tuesday, fear not: You can see all the cats you want Sunday. Berkeley Humane has about 15 cats available for adoption, which you can visit from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. If you do decide to adopt, the fees can be as low as $50 for cats older than 7 years old. But if you’re not quite ready to make that commitment, you can get your fill of cat cuddles at Cat Town, a nonprofit in Oakland that provides foster homes and adoption services for felines. Just $10 gets you access to the Cat Zone, where you can play with some of the adoptable cats — you can even bring in drinks and treats for yourself or a cat from the RAWR Coffee Bar.

And while you’re frolicking with felines, check out the Daily Cal’s impact issue on transfer students. Learn about the transfer experience through a column by literature beat reporter Charlie Kruse on finding his identity through film. And read Areyon Jolivette’s think piece on how transfer students don’t get the representation they deserve in college movies.

Of course, if you have anything you want to tell me, please email away: [email protected]. I’ll be as thrilled as Cher at a surprise birthday party.

Until next time.

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Contact Ketki Samel at [email protected]. Tweet her at @ketkisamel.