Good Sunday Dec. 20, 2009

Love God Heal Earth
By The Rev. Canon Sally B. Bingham ($17.95)
The environmental minister for San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral and the Episcopal Diocese of California has compiled a book of essays by 21 religious leaders of various faiths about humans’ sacred duty to address global warning and protect the natural world.

49ers at Eagles
10 a.m., KTVU (Ch. 2)
Alex Smith and the 49ers, who are clinging to slim playoff hopes, head east to take on the high-flying Philadelphia Eagles, who sit atop the NFC East.

College football: Southern Mississippi and Middle Tennessee square off in the New Orleans Bowl. [5:30 p.m., The Superdome, New Orleans, ESPN]
NFL: Brett Favre and the Minnesota Vikings try and take another step toward clinching the NFC North when they face the Carolina Panthers. [5:20 p.m., Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, N.C., NBC]

Greens: Winter vegetable hash is chef Annie Somerville’s featured brunch dish today. Ingredients include Yellow Finn potatoes, parsnips, butternut squash, yams, peppers and caramelized onions. It is served with poached eggs, chimichurri and a warm buttermilk biscuit. [10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Fort Mason Center, S.F.; (415) 771-6222]

Raphael House: Volunteers are needed to decorate and wrap fruit bread. [1 to 4 p.m., 1065 Sutter St. S.F.; RSVP:]

Surfrider Foundation: Volunteers are needed to clean up Ocean Beach. [10 a.m. to noon, S.F. location; details:, or (415) 561-4751]

Swing and blues: The Brian Setzer Orchestra, specializing in swing and blues, presents its “Christmas Rocks” extravaganza. Lavay Smith and Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers open the evening. [8 p.m., Warfield, 982 Market St., S.F.]

Gospel Christmas: “Black Nativity,” the toe-tapping gospel musical, has returned for the holidays. Featured performers include recording artist Debra Henderson. [4 p.m., Marines’ Memorial Theatre, 609 Sutter St., S.F.]

Dickens’ tale: American Conservatory Theater presents “A Christmas Carol,” its annual production based on Charles Dickens’ classic about the transformation of mean miser Scrooge. [1 and 5:30 p.m., A.C.T., 415 Geary St., S.F.]

Sowing circle: The Exploratorium holds its Solstice Seed Swap. Artists and urban gardeners Bill Basquin, Johunna Grayson and Greta Snider present seeds, a 3-D slide show and seed-swap history. [3 p.m., 3601 Lyon St., S.F.]

Animal kingdom
Gifts for the animals: “Winter Goes Wild” at the San Francisco Zoo. Animals receive winter-themed toys and treats during this festive occasion. [10 a.m. to 4 p.m., 1 Zoo Road, S.F.]

Sugarplum season: S.F. Ballet presents “Nutcracker,” with choreography by Helgi Tomasson, music by Tchaikovsky, and all the storybook characters. [2 and 7 p.m., War Memorial Opera House, 301 Van Ness Ave., S.F.]

Holiday trees
Tree lots: Holiday trees are for sale at lots run by, and benefiting, the Delancey Street Foundation. [8 a.m. to 9 p.m.; five S.F. sites: 2198 Market St.; 1599 Bryant St.; 380 Fell St.; 2601 Van Ness Ave; and Pier 32, Embarcadero]

Sports and recreation
Ice rink: The holiday ice-skating rink is open in Union Square. Skaters can enjoy the rink through Jan. 18. [10 a.m. to 10 p.m., Post and Powell streets, S.F.]


Winter ballet: Dancers’ Group and Bayer Ballet Academy present “Winter Fairy Tale,” performed by students with professional guest dancers. [5 p.m., Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, 500 Castro St., Mountain View]

Comic whodunit: “Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘The 39 Steps’” brings a Hitchcock film mixed with a spy novel to the stage. Four actors play more than 150 zany characters. [2 and 7:30 p.m., Curran Theatre, 445 Geary St., S.F.]

Gay story: New Conservatory Theatre Center presents “Beautiful Thing,” Jonathan Harvey’s play about two young men in love and a mother whose love is tested when she learns about the relationship. [8 p.m., 25 Van Ness Ave., S.F.]

Life before Dorothy: “Wicked” continues at the Orpheum Theatre. The hit musical tells the story of Oz’s two best-known witches, in their early years. [2 p.m., 1192 Market St., S.F.]

Hitchcock series: The Castro Theatre is hosting “Hitch for the Holidays,” a series of Alfred Hitchcock films. “North by Northwest” and “The 39 Steps” screen as a double feature today. [429 Castro St., S.F.; (415) 621-6120]

Family concert: The San Francisco Symphony presents “Music for Families” — a shorter concert of kid-friendly classical music with take-home materials. [2 p.m., Davies Symphony Hall, 201 Van Ness Ave., S.F.]

Circus arts
Circus show: Cirque du Soleil is in town. “Ovo,” the circus company’s latest show, immerses audiences in an insect world. [1 and 5 p.m., under the big top, AT&T Park, Third Street and Terry A. Francois Boulevard, S.F.]

Flamenco company: Yaelisa and Caminos Flamencos debut “Canciones 2,” a Spanish-flavored dance and music concert that expands the boundaries of flamenco. [3 p.m., Cowell Theater, Fort Mason Center, S.F.]

Little city: The Conservatory of Flowers presents “Golden Gate Express Garden Railway,” an exhibit featuring a model train and mini San Francisco landmarks made from recycled materials. [9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Golden Gate Park, S.F.]

‘Patriotism and Prejudice’: Tour looks at Japanese-American soldiers trained here for intelligence work and sent to war as their families were interned. [1 p.m.; Crissy Field Center, 603 Mason St., Presidio of S.F.; RSVP: (415) 561-4323]

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