It’s 7:10 a.m. and 40°, headed to a high of 51°. Rain is in the forecast for late tonight — there’s a 70 percent chance we’ll have a downpour before the wee hours tomorrow. Details for the next 10 days are here.

Remembrances and tributes to the former South African president Nelson Mandela continue today as the world learns of his death yesterday at the age of 95. His funeral is planned for next week and is expected to be the largest gathering of world leaders in history, according to MSNBC. South African Airlines announced it will add flights to transport thousands of mourners to the service. The Nelson Mandela Foundation announced the official schedule for the “laying to rest” of Mandela here. In today’s Chronicle, Joe Garofoli provides a bit of historical context on Mandela’s connections and visits to the Bay Area over the years.

Valencia Street merchants are prepping for tonight’s Block Party. From 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., 50 stores are staying open late and offering discounts and free refreshments to shoppers. You’ll find live jazz, a D.J. playing holiday dance music and lots of seasonal cheer, with a focus on local connections.

From 6:30 to 9:30 tonight, Mission art gallery Secession Art & Design is holding its yearly holiday party. Those looking for the creations of independent, local designers will find more than 50 of ’em at 3361 Mission Street. The Secession folks are also throwing a party, so look for refreshments and entertainment.

Fans of the historic Mission bar Pop’s will be happy to know the new owner plans to keep things the way they are. Mission Mission gives the lowdown on the 24th Street watering hole.

Happy Friday!

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Greta Mart is a Bay Area-based newspaper reporter and freelance writer, and currently a student at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. From 2005 to 2012 she was a staff reporter at two community newspapers in WA and CA, and has contributed to several Bay Area and Seattle area newspapers, as well as Pacific Yachting and Italy's Gulliver and La Republicca's D magazines. Greta holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Massachusetts at Boston and studied history at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland. She lives aboard her sailboat at the Berkeley Marina.

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