Here are the latest Jamaica Plain neighborhood notes:

Santa paws

The MSPCA will host the annual Homeless for the Holidays winter gift and bake sale from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 8 and 9 at 350 South Huntington Ave.

The sale will include gifts for furry friends, including homemade treats, toys, collars, leashes, furniture and accessories as well as goodies from Boston’s best bakeries.

All proceeds benefit the MSPCA Animal Care and Adoption Center.

Visit or call 617-524-5708 for more details.

Nativity story

JP Concerts and the Open Theatre Projects will present the dramatic libretto “Child of Light: The Christmas Miracle of St. Francis” by James Mathews Grant at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8 at St. John’s Church, located on the corner of Revere Street and Roanoke Avenue.

The Nova Cantatae Ensemble will perform Grant’s libretto based on St. Francis of Assisi’s celebration of the Nativity in 1223 in Greccio, Italy. “Child of Light” is the first of a larger work in the form of three sacred operas entitled “Triptych.”

The ensemble is a chamber scale operatic group of vocalists and instrumentalists focusing on the performance of a series of contemporary sacred operas composed by Grant.

Tickets are $20 general admission, $15 for seniors, students and members and are available online or at the door.

For more information, visit or call 617-874-4009.

Traveling tide pools

Educators from the New England Aquarium will visit the BCYF Curtis Hall Community Center, 20 South St., from 1 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 9.

Kids can see and touch hermit crabs, snails, clams, oysters, sea stars and more and learn all about these creatures found in local New England waters. Admission is free.

For more information, call 617-635-5195 or visit

Winter wellness walk

The Arnold Arboretum, 125 Arborway, will offer a free winter wellness walk from 1 to 1:45 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 9. Walkers will meet at the Hunnewell Visitor Center.

Participants will take a brisk walk and stay healthy and connected to the arboretum at a time when the landscape is pared down to its beautiful bones. This walk emphasizes fitness along with information on seasonal highlights. Winter tours are geared to adults and led by trained arboretum docents. Participants should dress appropriately and bring water.

Call 617-384-5277 or go online at to register for this free program.

Holidays with Haydn

The Loring-Greenough House, 12 South St., will present “Hear Ye, Hear Ye: Holidays with Haydn,” a chamber music concert, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 9.

This special chamber music concert in celebration of the holiday season will feature students from the Walnut Hill School for the Arts. The works of Haydn will be featured, with a little Mozart, too. A festive reception with light refreshments will follow.

Tickets are $15.

Further information can be found at or by calling 617-524-3158.

Poetry readings

The Jamaica Pond Poets will host the Chapter and Verse reading series at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 14 at the Loring-Greenough House, 12 South St.

Poets Jonathan Aibel, Ellen Steinbaum and Ewa Yarborough will read from their latest works. A reception with refreshments and a chance to chat with the writers will follow. A donation of $5 is requested.

Visit for more information.

Winter concert

The Boston City Singers will perform in the Winter Stars Concert at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 15 at the Hope Central Church, 85 Seaverns Ave.

Several divisions of the singers will perform in the holiday spirit, including the Jamaica Plain Kodaly singing class, training chorus and Boston City Singers Carolers.

Visit or call 617-265-6700 for further information.

Community Christmas sing-along

JP Concerts will present a community Christmas concert at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 15 at St. John’s Episcopal Church, 7 Revere St.

The Bostonians will host an evening of seasonal favorite and lesser-known masterpieces. The audience can add their voices to the popular Christmas Carol sing-along.

The Bostonians is a repertory ensemble of superb New England vocal and instrumental artists founded in 2003 by Richard Conrad. Tickets are $15 general admission, $10 for seniors, students and members and $5 for children under aged 12.

Call 617-874-4009 or visit for more information.

Ornament workshop

The Eliot School of Fine and Applied Arts, 24 Eliot St., will offer a holiday ornament workshop for children from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 16.

The hands-on art-making workshop is suitable for all ages. Festivities will also include musical entertainment and light refreshments. A donation of $5 is suggested.

Call 617-524-3313 or visit to register and for more details.

Wreaths for sale

The Loring-Greenough House, 12 South St., will host its annual holiday wreath sales from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and noon to 4 p.m. on Sundays, now through Dec. 16.

Handmade wreaths will be sold to benefit the house’s community-building and conservations efforts.

Visit or call 617-524-3158 for more information.

Botanical artist on display

The Arnold Arboretum is displaying the artwork of Regina Gardner Milan in the Hunnewell Building, 125 Arborway, now through Feb. 3.

Milan spent a year of discovery at the arboretum and captured the botanical jewels of each season – early larches, spring blossoms, fall acorns, autumn leaves – in her exquisite paintings. Nature holds an allure to Milan, who finds that observing nature often produces scenes of larger-than-life beauty. The arboretum’s exhibition magnifies nature’s productions, fully illuminating the elegance of plant life as small as a seedpod.

Milan received a Certificate of Botanical Illustration with distinction from the Society of Botanical Artists in London, where she also received the President’s Award. She has exhibited in many juried shows throughout the U.S. and the world.

Call 617-384-5209 or send an email to for further information.