The Valley Arts and Lectures program will bring free events to the community of the San Geronimo Valley Community Center. Valley Arts and Lectures is an outlet for all of the wonderful free events that the San Geronimo Valley Community Center offers to the community through our Human Services, Youth and Arts & Events programs. There are two criteria for an event to be part of VAL: they are always free and are open to all community members.

Upcoming Events

The SGVCC Arts and Lecture Series presents:

Valley Sustainability, You and Your Power

Friday, March 6, 2020
7 pm

Presenters include:

MCE Clean Energy

Sunrise Youth Movement

“Resilient Neighborhoods”, Tamra Peters

You will discover how you can easily go to 100% green power now!

You will hear from local youth on the frontline of Climate Change.

Learn about inspiring ways to join with others to reduce your carbon footprint—for the Valley—for the Earth.

Join us Friday, March 6th at 7 pm.



Past Events

Movie Night

Monday, October 14, 2019
6:30 pm

Marinship Memories: A documentary by Joan Lisetor and Al Ardelle

From 1942 to 1945, 75,000 workers descended on Southern Marin to build ships in the newly built shipyard on the Sausalito shore that operated 24 hours a day. Marin City was constructed to house workers, many of them black and from the South.

According to Rodessa Battle “Everybody was thinking about getting the boys back home, and you pretty much had your mind focused on ending the war. It was kind of like we were all one family working for the same goal. That’s where Marin City got started.”

Marinship Memories {2009} is the personal stories of those workers – Rodessa Battle, Annie Small, Ollie Hector and Lee Oscar White – that formed the basis of this documentary on Marin’s wartime contribution and the community formed in the process.      (Ref: Marin IJ)

Writer-producer, Joan Lisetor. Director-videographer, Al Ardelle.


6350 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., San Geronimo

Film followed by a group discussion.

Host: Debra Amerson & Larry Rippee


Monday, March 4, 2019

6pm FREE

Artist Film Series

Genghis Blues

Please join us on Monday, March 4, 6:00 pm at the San Geronimo Valley Community Center for a free viewing of Genghis Blues.

At once whimsical and profound, “Genghis Blues” chronicles the journey of blind blues legend Paul Pena, as he discovers the ancient art of Tuvan throat singing and participates in the national competition.

Pena, blind and recently widowed, makes the arduous journey to Tannu Tuva, in central Asia, where nomadic people throat sing more than one note simultaneously, using vocal harmonics. Singing in the deep, rumbling Kargyraa style, Pena gives inspired performances at the festiva

l, composes songs in Tuvan, washes his face in sacred rivers, expresses the disorientation of blindness in foreign surroundings, and makes a human connection with everyone he meets– J. Hailey.

Director Roko Belic’s brand of freestyle filmmaking brings an infectious energy to this documentary, which is both a powerful, personal portrait of a musician and the story of a unique cultural exchange.

Movie Night

Monday, January 28, 2019
6pm FREE

Artist Film Series

Georgia O’Keeffe

While there are numerous documentaries about the iconoclastic modernist painter Georgia O’Keeffe, there has been a dearth of dramatized renditions of her life. Maybe the waiting has not been in vain, because we now have this lovely and respectable biopic courtesy of director Bob Balaban. Georgia O’Keeffe stars Joan Allen as Georgia, and Jeremy Irons as the astute yet eccentric gallerist and artist Alfred Steiglitz. Though the couple’s artistic reign was extensive and highly influential, the crux of this film’s narrative centers on Georgia and Alfred’s tumultuous love affair.

While Georgia O’Keeffe is a drama and not an art historical documentary, it does give one a solid sense of the period’s intellectual climate. It focuses chronologically on the latter half of O’Keeffe’s life, when she discovers solace and inspiration in Taos and Abiquiu, New Mexico. In the end, the film is also a tender portrait of a liberated woman who was a protofeminist and a fierce talent. –Trinie Dalton

The film was shot entirely on location in and around Santa Fe, New Mexico. The producers worked closely with the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, specifically with curator and leading scholar on O’Keeffe, Barbara Buhler Lynes, to make sure issues of accuracy and content were done with sensitivity and attention to detail. Over seventy original paintings and drawings by O’Keeffe were permitted to be used in the film. Moreover, the filmmakers were given permission to film at O’Keeffe’s home in Ghost Ranch, near of Abiquiú, New Mexico, the first time a film company was given that privilege. Lead actress Joan Allen also took painting lessons for the film.

Directed by Bob Balaban


Artist Film Series

Take Me to the River

A documentary about the soul of American music. The film follows the recording of a new album  featuring legends from Stax records and Memphis mentoring and passing on their musical magic to stars and artists of today.

Following multiple generations of award-winning Memphis and Mississippi Delta musicians through the creative process of recording a historic new album, to re-imagine the utopia of racial, gender and generational collaboration of Memphis in its heyday. Featuring Terrence Howard, Mavis Staples, William Bell, Charlie Musselwhite, Bobby “Blue” Bland, Snoop Dog, Otis Clay, Lil P-Nut, Yo Gotti, Bobby Rush, Frayser Boy, The North Mississippi All-Stars and many more.

Directed by Martin Shore

Film followed by a group dialogue.

Host: Debra Amerson & Larry Rippee


Movie Night

Loving Vincent

A year after the death of the artist, Vincent van Gogh, Postman Roulin gets his slacker son, Armand, to hand deliver the artist’s final letter written to his now late brother, Theo, to some worthy recipient after multiple failed postal delivery attempts. Although disdainful of this seemingly pointless chore, Armand travels to Auvers-sur-Oise where a purported close companion to Vincent, Dr. Gachet, lives. Having to wait until the doctor returns from business, Armand meets many of the people of that village who not only knew Vincent, but were apparently also models and inspirations for his art. In doing so, Armond becomes increasingly fascinated in the psyche and fate of Van Gogh as numerous suspicious details fail to add up. However, as Armond digs further, he comes to realize that Vincent’s troubled life is as much a matter of interpretation as his paintings and there are no easy answers for a man whose work and tragedy would only be truly appreciated in the future.

In a story depicted in oil painted animation.

Directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman.

Yoga of Sound—Opening the Heart through Sacred Sound and Improv Chanting with Brian Ott

Yoga of Sound—Opening the Heart through Sacred Sound and Improv Chanting

Chanting, relatively unknown in the West, has been an essential part of yoga from the beginning. Vibration from the voice (with a little help from the harmonium) is a time-honored tool for opening the heart and experiencing peace, joy and insight.

Join us in a fun exploration of sound to call and open the heart. We will use sound in three, simple ways—through pure sound vibration, through chanting the divine names, and through prayer (or intention) for the happiness and peace of all beings.

Our sessions will be a spontaneous, co-creation. Sometimes we will be chanting the same thing, sometimes we won’t. No experience or singing voice required. While weaving our hearts and voices together, with love and intention, something powerful happens. We are grateful to share this gift, and have a space in which we can all sing, chant and pray for world peace together in our community.

Brian teaches mindfulness classes at Lagunitas School, and has a master’s in psychology. He co-founded “Chanting for World Peace” (, and regularly co-hosts “Sound of the Heart” chanting events in San Geronimo Valley, and Fairfax.

FEE: Free, but donations welcome for charity.

THURSDAYS: 6:30-7:45pm, with the option for meditation afterwards for those interested

Please bring your own cushion if you like to sit on the floor.

Contact Brian: 415 794-0664

Movie Night

Monday, September 25, 2017


Attention West Marin Arts Community

Artist Film Series

Pollock is a 2000 biographical film which tells the life story of American abstract expressionist painter Jackson Pollock. It stars Ed Harris, Marcia Gay Harden, Jennifer Connelly, Robert Knott, Bud Cort, Molly Regan and Sada Thompson.   Directed by Ed Harris.

Marcia Gay Harden won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for portraying Lee Krasner, Pollock’s wife. Ed Harris received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor for his portrayal of Pollock. The film was a long-term personal project for Harris. After his father gave him a copy of Pollock’s biography, he started thinking about the project, which took almost 10 years to bring to fruition. Ed Harris did all the painting seen in the film.

“Ed Harris’s powerful biographical film ‘Pollock’ may be the first movie about a painter to transcend the gushy cliches found in movies that try to unravel the mysteries of artistic creation. It helps, of course, that Jackson Pollock, the Abstract Expressionist giant whom Mr. Harris portrays with a riveting blend of pent-up passion and unleashed physicality, threw his entire body into his work” –Stephen Holden, New York Times

Film followed by a group dialogue.  Host: Debra Amerson & Larry Rippee


Free admission

Phil Ochs: There But For Future

Sunday, March 19, 2017
5:30 pm Potluck, 6:15 pm Film

Featuring a special screening of the feature length documentary plus an in-person interview with San Geronimo Valley resident Meegan Ochs Potter, Phil Ochs’s daughter. Meegan is an elected member of the Lagunitas School Board of Trustees. She works for the American Civil Liberties Union (Southern California).

“…Ochs’s music could at least help Americans who care about the future of liberal democracy to grapple with the difficult work that lies ahead. As he once wrote: “One good song with a message can bring a point more deeply to more people than a thousand rallies.”
Richard Just
Washington Post, January 24, 2017

About the Event

5:30 pm: Potluck Dinner Bring a dish and/or a nonalcoholic beverage to share.

5:30 – 6:15pm – Eating, schmoozing and networking

6:15 – 8:00 – Screening of There But Go Fortune

8:00 – 8:30 – Interview with Meegan Ochs Potter

8:30 —- Community Discussion — Ways to Become Engaged and Stay Involved

This is a FREE community event. It’s also an opportunity to make a donation to the ACLU or another social justice non-profit organization of your choice.

Children 10 years and older are welcome and encouraged to attend this event with their parents. Parents are advised that the film includes segments about suicide.

For more information about the event contact Suzanne Sadowsky at 415-488-4861 or


“Before the Flood” with Leonardo DiCaprio, actor/environmentalist

Friday, March 24, 2017
7 pm


The science is clear. The future is not.

Before the Flood presents a riveting account of the dramatic changes now occurring around the world due to climate change, as well as the actions we as individuals and as a society can take to prevent the disruption of life on our planet. The film follows DiCaprio as he travels to five continents and the Arctic speaking to scientists, world leaders, activists and local residents to gain a deeper understanding of this complex issue and investigate concrete solutions. It shows how interconnected the fate of all humanity is – but also the power we all possess as individuals to build a better future for our planet.

This documentary is engaging, thought-provoking and hopeful

 Past Events


Thursday, March 16, 2017
7 pm


A Valley Arts & Lectures Event

Leaving the Valley for Boston’s Roxbury district, local filmmakers Tom and Amy Valens intimately explore how support, collaboration, and autonomy for teachers creates a school where young people of many backgrounds and abilities flourish. They take us to Mission Hill Pilot School, a vibrant urban village, alive with curiosity and empathy, for GOOD MORNING MISSION HILL: the freedom to teach, the freedom to learn.

“We must keep a vision of what else is possible, otherwise we will all march in lockstep with the testing mania. GOOD MORNING MISSION HILL gives us that vision” Diane Ravitch research professor at New York University‘s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, and former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Education.

GOOD MORNING MISSION HILL is a remarkable and inspiring film. In this repressive era of mandated standards and testing, we see a whole school community of children, teachers, and parents thriving in an atmosphere of collaboration and trust…What you see in this film is real learning: kids make meaningful connections they won’t forget.” Nancy Carlsson-Paige, founder of Defending The Early Years, author, and professor emerita of Lesley University’s school of education.

“It captures what schools can and should look like better than anything I could say in a lecture.” Alfie Kohn, highly regarded speaker on parenting and education, and author of The Schools Our Children Deserve among other books.

The hour-long film has played on many public television stations, following in the footsteps of the filmmakers’ earlier documentary, AUGUST TO JUNE, which was filmed in the San Geronimo Open Classroom.

More information and a trailer are on the film’s website

Walk across Spain

Wednesday, February 1, 2017
6:30 pm

The LOFT in the San Geronimo Community Gym

The Camino de Santiago is a 500 mile pilgrimage beginning in southern France, crossing the Pyrenees and the width of northern Spain, culminating at the Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela.

Please join Jeff Davidson, Anne Faught and Susan Doyle for a presentation, slide show, short video and conversation about their experiences, the history of this Unesco World Heritage Site and the tradition of pilgrimage. Last year, 260,000 pilgrims from around the world walked this ancient path including several SGV residents (we especially hope you will join us).

Relaxing Concert Sessions

We are Juan and Janine, a married couple playing music together since the first day we met in Australia in 2008.

Since 2012 we share our love and passion for music as the Duo SEVAMANTRA, in which we are creating harmony with our voices, playing guitar, harmonium and bansuri.

We would like to invite you to a one-hour relaxing concert every 1st Wednesday of the month, which includes human tuning forks, chanting and deep listening. We believe that in this stressful times, where everyone is running from one thing to the next and is always in a hurry, it is important to offer a moment to relax and re-connect to our hearts.

“Our music has been our medicine that keeps us listening to ourselves and we wish the same to all the people that come to our Relaxing Concerts and listen to our music. We thrive with the music and receive so many benefits out of it.”

– Sevamantra-

First Wednesday of the month

7:00 – 8:00pm

FREE (donations welcome)