Here are the latest Back Bay and Midtown neighborhood notes:
Queer board game night
Queer board game night is back by popular demand on Saturday, Jan. 18 at Trident Booksellers & Café 338 Newbury St.
All queer-identifying folks and allies are welcome to gather to play board games (and grab dinner/drinks) from 6 to 8 p.m., at which point the evening will move into a mingling, hang-sesh with all your new friends.
For other information, visit tridentbookscafe.com.
Breathe, Mediate and Be Happy
The International Association of Human Values & Art of Living will present “Breathe, Mediate and Be Happy” from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 18 and Jan. 25 at Capital One Café, 799 Boylston St.
Experience being centered through the power of your own breath.
This event will include breathing exercises to calm your mind and find more energy, a guided meditation, and an introduction to the Art of Living Happiness program.
Visit eventbrite.com for more information and registration.
Winter Concert Series
The Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square will present the Winter Concert Series on the Mezzanine overlooking the Welcome Services Desk of the Johnson Building from 1 to 2:30 p.m. on select Saturdays:
Emily Gelineau (Jan. 18); DARQ Ensemble (Feb. 1); The Thistle Brothers (Feb. 22); Meghan Marshall (Feb. 29); LEW (Mar. 14); and The Ruta Beggars (Mar. 28).
Visit bpl.org/events to learn more about the performers.
The Bach Institute will be held at 11:30 a.m. on Saturdays through Jan. 18 at Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St.
Collaboration among Emmanuel Music, Oberlin College and Winsor Music, it promotes undergraduate and graduate students and young professionals from all over the world with the opportunity to explore and perform Bach cantata arias.
These rehearsals will be followed by a brown bag lunch (bring your own) and discussion.
Sunday Bach Cantatas will be held at the 10 a.m. service on the Sundays following the rehearsals.
An evening of Bach Arias and Cantata BMW 116 conducted by Ryan Turner will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 19.
All rehearsals and cantatas are free at attend. Visit emmanuelmusic.org for more information and to reserve a seat.
LEGO Movie 2
Families are invited to watch LEGO Movie 2 from 2 to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 19 at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square
Visit bpl.org/events for other information.
January Book Swap
The Trident Booksellers & Café, 338 Newbury St. will host a January Book Swap from 7 to 8 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 20.
Bring one to three books in good condition (no textbooks or mass markets) to swap with fellow attendees. Everyone will go home with a new book(s) to add to their collection. This will operate like a white elephant gift exchange.
Visit tridentbookscafe.com for other information.
‘Bouillon de lectures’ book club
The French Cultural Center, 53 Marlborough St. will host a book discussion from 6 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 21.
They invite you to judge a book by its cover for their January monthly book club, Bouillon de lectures: l’havit ne fait pas le moine. Come ready to discuss your expectations based on the cover and how they matched up with the story within.
This informal book club is free and open to the public. The discussion, recommended for intermediate to advanced speakers, will be moderated in French, offering participants an opportunity to practice their French.
Visit frenchculturalcenter.org for other information.
Introduction to Jewish Genealogy
The Research Services Department at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square will host an Introduction to Jewish Genealogy class from 6 to 7:30 on Wednesday, Jan. 22.
Carol Clingan – the chair of research projects at the Jewish Genealogical Society of Greater Boston – will talk about how to get started with research, describe the major types of records and the principal sources (both on line and in person) for finding them.
Visit pbl.org/events for required registration and other information.
Tai Chi for Wellness
Tai Chi for Wellness will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 23 at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square.
This program is an introduction to Tai Chi, an ancient exercise rooted in China, which consists of postures that are gentle and flowing. Movements are slow and repetitive and are coupled with a focus on the breath.
Visit pbl.org/events for other information.
Cold Moonlit Mountain Paint Nite
Unleash your inner artist at the Original Paint Nite at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 23 at the Trident Booksellers & Café, 338 Newbury St.
You’ll go from a blank canvas to a masterpiece of your own, with plenty of laughs along the way. Guided by a talented and entertaining artist, you’ll be amazed at what you create, and how much fun you have doing it.
Yaymaker events give you everything you need to get up, get out, and get making. Instruction is provided by an expert host, so no experience is required, and everything you need is supplied.
Visit yaymaker.com for tickets ($27 to $35). Visit tridentbookscafe.com for other information.
Artist reception and book making class
The Leica Gallery Boston, 74 Arlington St. will present the provocative work of the legendary American photographer, Ralph Gibson. “Selected Works 1966-2016” is an intimate glimpse of Gibson’s extensive career, featuring a collection of silver gelatin and color prints.
An artist reception and book signing will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 23.
Gibson will conduct a Leica Akademie three-day Book Making Master Class from Jan. 24 through Jan. 26.
Visit eventbrite.com for registration and other information.
Saks coat drive
Saks Fifth Avenue Boston, 800 Boylston St. is hosting a coat drive to benefit Women’s Lunch Place through Jan. 24. Women’s Lunch Place is a local nonprofit dedicated to providing day shelter and nutritious food to women experience homelessness or poverty.
Coats can be brought in during open hours: noon to 7 p.m. on Sundays; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Mondays through Saturdays.
Contact Saks at 617-262-8500.
Visit womenslunchplace.org to learn more.
Lunar New Year Story Time
Families with young children are invited to enjoy a Lunar New Year-themed story time from 11 to 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 25 at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square.
Visit library.org/events for other information.
Lunar New Year Craft
Children, 6 years and older, are invited to ring in the Year of the Rat with a make and take home craft from 3 to 3:45 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 25 at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square.
Visit library.org/events for other information.
A Celtic Sojourn
A Celtic Sojourn live broadcast will take place from 3 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 25 at the WGBH Studio at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square.
The first hour of the show will feature live performances by We Banjo 3, an Irish quartet.
Visit wgbh.org for other information.
Arlington Street Circle of Caring
Are you battling illness, struggling with isolation, caring for someone who is sick or dying, or coping with grief after a loss?
Visit the Circle of Caring at the Arlington Street Church, 351 Boylston St. at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 26 and join the community of support, peace, healing, and love.
Facilitator, Maureen Peterson calls on her significant personal experience to create a safe space for sharing stories and supporting one another through the crises of life.
Visit ascboston.org for other information.
Tai Chi for adults
Tai Chi for adults will be held from 10 to 10:50 p.m. on Fridays through Jan. 31 at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square.
Come and try this low impact exercise with Tai Chi instructor Deguange He (previously at Chinatown Branch).
Visit bpl.org/events for other information.
Family History Benefit Dinner
American Ancestors and New England Historic Genealogical Society will host a Family History Benefit Dinner featuring NPR’s Scott Simon with Sunnyside Plaza in conversation with Margaret M. Talcott, curator of the American Inspiration author series on Thursday, Jan. 30 at The Lenox Hotel, 61 Exeter. A reception will begin at 6 p.m. Dinner and the program will start at 7 p.m.
One of America's most admired writers and broadcasters, Scott Simon has reported from all fifty states, five continents, and ten wars; his books have chronicled character and characters, in war and peace, sports and art, tragedy and comedy.
In the afternoon, Simon will make a special appearance at the WGBH Studio at the Boston Public Library, where he’ll be interviewed live streaming by Craig LeMoult.
Visit americanancestors.org for registration and other details.
Boston Warm Day Center
The Boston Warm is an emergency relief day center held in the parish hall of the Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St. on Mondays and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Coordinated by Ecclesia Ministries (common cathedral), they extend hospitality to people in need of relief from the cold, warming the hearts of guests, volunteers, staff and other supporters. They provide snacks and coffee on Mondays and a warm lunch on Fridays.
Volunteer and financial support and other donations (food, coffee/water and paper goods; games, puzzles, cards, books and magazines) are welcome and necessary to enable them to keep the shelter open through the long winter months ahead. They also welcome clothing – men’s and women’s socks and underwear (all sizes), gloves and mittens, hats and coats.
Additionally, during the summer months, Boston Warm is at Old South Church, 645 Boylston St. on Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. offering a simple lunch, companionship, and a place to get out of the heat.
Visit emmanuelboston.org for other information, including links to volunteer or ways to make financial and/or other donations.
Back Bay Mobile Soup Kitchen
The Back Bay Mobile Soup Kitchen BBMSK (“Bumsk”) is a group of young adults who minister to the homeless on the streets of the Back Bay. They take sandwiches, fruit, socks, and Rosaries to distribute, and take time to listen to the stories of the men and women they encounter. Pope Francis has exhorted us not to adopt a “throw-away” culture that neglects people’s basic human need, and this is an answer to that call.
The group meets Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays at 6 p.m. on the front steps of the St. Clement Eucharistic Shrine, 1105 Boylston St.
They are always looking for volunteers to help. For more information, contact Eli at 703-638-2019 or visit omvusa.org for other information.
The Lyric Stage Company of Boston, 140 Clarendon St., presents “The Cake” through Feb. 9.
Conflict collides with confection when Della, a traditional Southern baker, reunites with her deceased best friend’s daughter, Jen, in preparation for Jen’s wedding. Della is forced to question her strongly-held beliefs when she is asked to bake Jen’s dream wedding cake for her and her future wife. Questions of morals, judgment, and family swirl around them all in this heartfelt and deliciously funny new play.
For show times, tickets and other information, visit lyricstage.com, email email@example.com or phone 617-585-5678.
Hardy Perennials Lunch and Carol Sing
Join the Hardy Perennials, a group of Trinity parishioners and friends, ages 59 and older, on the second Thursday of the month for fellowship, study, reflection, prayer and education.
After attending the 12:10 p.m. Eucharist in the Chapel (206 Clarendon St.), they gather for soup and bread. All are welcome to bring other items to share as well.
Visit trinitychurchboston.org for other information.
Climb to the Top MS: Boston 2020
Scrap the elevator and challenge yourself to an indoor vertical “5K at Climb to the Top Boston” from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, March 7 at 200 Clarendon (formerly known as the John Hancock Tower).
Gather your friends, family and colleagues (ages 5 and older) to conquer 1,200 steps/61 flights in New England’s tallest building with unparalleled views of Boston while raising critical funds to support people affected by MS and to make the world MS-free.
T-shirts and medals will be provided for all participants; prizes will be awarded for top fund-raisers; a post event party will follow.
Visit climbsboston.org for registration/donation/event details and/or to volunteer.
Library art and architecture tours
Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square offers free public tours from 11 a.m. to noon on most Wednesdays throughout the year for teens and adults, ages 13 and older.
The tours highlight the celebrated art and architecture of the Library’s McKim Building (1895), a designated National Historic Landmark, including the work of architect Charles Follen McKim and murals by John Singer Sargent, Pierre Puvis de Chavannes and Edwin Austin Abbey.
No appointment is necessary for parties smaller than eight people. For tours by appointment, call 617-536-5400.
For more information, including a full schedule of public tours and literature describing the architectural highlights, visit bpl.org/visit-central-library/art-tours.
A Choral Evensong is held at 5:45 p.m. every Wednesday at Trinity Church Boston, 206 Clarendon St.
Choral Evensong, Rite 1, offers 30-minutes of worship, prayer, scripture and reflection led by the Trinity Choristers youth singers.
To learn more about the Choristers, visit trinitychurchboston.org.
BGCB Annual Dinner 2020
The annual dinner hosted by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 6 at the Westin Boston Waterfront, 425 Summer St.
Each year, corporate and civic leaders gather for BGCB’s Annual Dinner to help build a better Boston. Attended by more than 800 people, Annual Dinner raises critical funds to support our city’s young people who need us the most. These funds immediately work to help their members succeed academically, make healthy choices, build strong character, and practice good citizenship.
Cocktails will be served at 5:30 p.m. The program will begin at 6:30 p.m.
Visit bgcb.org for tickets and sponsorships.
Boston Winter Ball
The 12th annual Boston Winter Ball will be held from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 8 at the Fairmont Copley Plaza Grand Ballroom, 128 Saint James Ave.
The Boston Winter Ball is the largest annual non-profit fundraiser that caters to social and civically minded young professionals in the Boston area and beyond with flowing beverages, small bites, high-energy live music and plenty of room to dance. Attendees travel in from across the country for this sell-out event to reunite with old friends, make new ones and participate in an evening of jubilation for a good cause.
There will also be a special pre-event dinner before the Ball.
The Boston Winter Ball will benefit the Corey C. Griffin Foundation and its many youth and healthcare programs.
Visit bostonwinterball.com for tickets and other information.
The Boston Gay Men’s Chorus will present “Cabaret” at Club Café, 209 Columbus Ave. from Feb. 21 through Feb. 23.
Ticket sales (for 21+) are underway for these fun, festive – and always a little risqué – fabulous nights out. Visit bgmc.org for show times, other details and tickets.
‘Create Eye Catching Acrylics’ workshop
A new studio workshop “Create Eye Catching Acrylics with Chis Firger” will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Mar. 18 through Friday, Mar. 20 at the Copley Society of Arts, 158 Newbury St.
During the workshop, Firger will share a variety of the techniques he used to create bold, dynamic, and eye-catching works with acrylic paint. For experienced painters and beginners alike, this class will explore subjects such as composition, brushwork, layering, even varnishing, all with the goal of bringing more life to each painting you work on.
Each day, students can expect a lesson and demonstrating from the artist in the morning, followed by painting and one-on-one instruction in the afternoon. Students will be responsible for bringing their own painting supplies, lunch, and reference photos.
Visit copleysociety.org for tickets ($250-$300) available through Mar. 10 and other information.
Trinity organ recitals
The Trinity Organ Recital Series will take place at 12:15 p.m. on Fridays through June 5 at the Trinity Church Boston, 206 Clarendon St.
This (almost) weekly series of 30-minute organ concerts featuring innovative programs by recitalists from across the United States and abroad.
There is no charge for admission; however, they invite a donation of $10.
For a schedule, visit trinitychurchboston.org.
Gibson House Museum tours
The Gibson House Museum at 137 Beacon St. is open year round for guided tours beginning promptly at 1, 2, and 3 p.m. from Wednesday through Sunday (except on noted holidays).
The Gibson House Museum offers visitors a glimpse into the lives of a well-to-do Boston family and its domestic staff from 1860 to 1954. The interior is filled with the family’s original furnishings– elegant wallpapers, imported carpets and an abundance of furniture, art, and family heirlooms. The working spaces, including a kitchen, laundry room and coal shed, also remain.
Visit thegibsonhouse.org for other information.
Stitching in the Spirit
The Stitching in the Spirit group will be held from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. on the third Saturday of each month in the PH Angel Room at Trinity Church Boston, 206 Clarendon St.
The Stitching in the Spirit group is a monthly gathering open to stitchers from all disciplines (knitting, quilting, needlepoint, etc.) as well as those who want to learn.
They come together to create scarves, mittens, prayer shawls, and other items for those in need of special care from within the parish as well as from the broader Boston community and across the country.
For more information, visit trinitychurchboston.org.
261 Fearless group run
The 261 Fearless Boston Run Club of Back Bay meets from 9 to 10 a.m. on Saturdays.
Women, ages 18 and older, are invited to an hour of social, fun running. Come to inspire or be inspired.
Walkers wanting to learn how to run, beginners and experienced runners are welcome.
There will be fun games and/or drills for warm-up and a group run led by one or more of the 261 certified coaches. The group runs focus on proper running technique for efficiency and injury prevention in a non-competitive, non-judgmental way.
Experience a group run for free; then have the opportunity to join for a minimal yearly fee thereafter. Locker room use (restroom, lockers, showers, towel, bodywash and blowdryer) is included.
The group meets at Healthworks Back Bay, 441 Stuart St., 2nd floor.
Variety of services at OSC
The Old South Church at 645 Boylston St. holds a variety of church services to meet the needs of the community. Here are a few of them:
First Worship (informal and vibrant) starts at 9 a.m. and the Festival Worship (grand and expressive) begins at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
A Healing Service (gentle and tender) starts at 10 a.m. on the second Sunday and Jazz Worship (with sax and soul) begins at 6 p.m. on Thursdays.
There are also a variety of children and youth programs from Godly Play and Children’s Music (interactive programs that include singing, playing music and play-acting) to youth groups (exploring life, faith and service).
Bible studies, small groups and special events are also held throughout the year.
To learn more, visit oldsouth.org.
MS Run Club
Join the Marathon Sports Boston Run Club every Wednesday from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. for a run around the Charles River.
The MS Run Clubs are free, all inclusive weekly events that begin at the store at 671 Boylston St. They’ll track your mileage, and as you hit significant milestones you’ll become eligible for a MS Running Group discount, unique members-only gear, and other great kickbacks.
For more information, visit marathonsports.com.
A Recovery Eucharist will be held from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Fridays in the Lindsey Chapel at Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St.
A healing service will include prayer, Eucharist and laying on of hands with a simpler service without the Eucharist being held on alternating Fridays.
These welcoming services are open to everyone, especially those who struggles with addiction and behavioral issues.
For more information, visit emmanuelboston.org.
The Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston St., hosts tours of the collections of the society at 10 a.m. on Saturdays.
Led by an MHS staff member or docent, the 90-minute tour focuses on the history and collections of the MHS.
The tour is free and open to the public. Reservations are not required for individuals or small groups. Parties of eight or more should contact the MHS.
Further information can be found at www.masshist.org or by calling 617-646-0560.
Bach Cantata Series
The Bach Cantata Series will be held on Sundays at 10 a.m. through May 10 at Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St.
Continuing their 49-year- old tradition, The Orchestra and Chorus of Emmanuel Music will present Bach’s astounding human document, in the liturgical setting for which it was intended, as well as other sacred works.
To learn more about the history of Bach cantatas and how Emmanuel Music presents them, visit emmanuelmusic.org.
The Mary Baker Eddy Library, 200 Massachusetts Ave. hosts story time at the Book Nook from 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. on the first and third Tuesdays of each month.
Young visitors listen to stories and engage in playful activities surrounding the theme of the book.
This event is recommended for bookworms, ages 5 years old and younger with adults.
No registration is needed.
For more information about this and other programs, visit marybakereddylibrary.org.
‘Born This Way’
The Boston Gay Men’s Chorus will present the world premiere of “A Peacock Amongst Pigeons” at the New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall, 30 Gainsborough St. on Mar. 14 and Mar. 15.
With vibrant costumes, animation and an original score from a Broadway composer, the award-winning story teaches the importance of celebrating our differences and learning to love the feathers we live in. The second act showcases music and stories that rejoice in how we are “Born This Way.”
Ticket sales (for 21+) are now underway for these fun, festive – and always a little risqué – fabulous nights out. Visit bgmc.org for show times, tickets and other details.
Freedom Trail Tour
The Freedom Trail Tour will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays through Mar. 31.
Join Boston by Foot and stroll the Freedom Trail’s ancient streets, past historic cemeteries and colonial stone houses all the while hearing tales of rebellion, war, and independence of a nation.
It is the epic stories of Boston’s rise and America’s birth.
The tour will meet outside the Park Street MBTA station on the Park Street side of the Boston Common and end at Faneuil Hall.
For more information and to reserve a spot on this “name your price tour,” visit freetoursbyfoot.com.
Emmanuel Church tour
For a taste of 19th century Boston and an eyeful of fine architecture in the oldest building on Newbury Street, schedule a free-guided tour of Emmanuel Church at 15 Newbury St.
This church is the home to thriving communities from Emmanuel Church and Central Reform Temple, Twelve-Step programs, ministries to homeless and dozens of music and performing-arts events from Emmanuel Music and other organizations.
Check out Emmanuelchurchboston.org for more information.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone Dylan Hillerbrand at 617-536-3355, ext. 21 to arrange a tour.
Esplanade run club
Marathon Sports, at 671 Boylston St., hosts a meet up every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. to go running with others. All ages and levels are welcome to join and choose between a 3-, 5-, or 8-mile run along the Esplanade or Charles River pathways.
Pre-registration is strongly encouraged in order to participate.
Visit marathonsports.com to pre-register and for more information.
These Marathon Sports meet ups run groups are partnered with The Esplanade Association at esplanadeassociation.org.
BTU homework help
The Boston Teachers Union will provide homework assistance for students in grades K-12 from 4 to 6 p.m. every day through May 28 at the Central Library in Copley Square.
There will be no assistance when Boston Public Schools are not in session (vacation week or snow days).
For more information, visit bpl.org/events.
Model room tours
The BPDA’s model room houses a 1:40 inch scale, physical, basswood model of Boston’s downtown and portions of Beacon Hill, the North End, Charlestown, Back Bay and the South Boston Waterfront.
Free tours are conducted in the BPDA Model Room at Boston City Hall, One City Hall Square, on the 9th Floor every Wednesday at 10 and 11 a.m. in two 30-minute sessions.
For more information, visit bostonplans.org.
For individuals or groups of up to 15 people, register at eventbrite.com.
For groups larger than 15 people email email@example.com to arrange a tour.
Since 1935, more than 10 million people have traversed the 30-foot glass bridge that spans the Mapparium, taking visitors to a unique spot: the middle of the world. This world-famous, three-story, painted-glass globe is one of the key attractions at the Mary Baker Eddy Library, 200 Massachusetts Ave.
The Mapparium’s three-dimensional perspective of the world of 1935 is enhanced by A World of Ideas, an original presentation that features a rich orchestration of words, music, and LED lights to illustrate how ideas have traversed time and geography and changed the world.
The Library is also showing a complementary exhibit, "The Mapparium: An Inside View," featuring never before made public letters, documents, and artifacts showcasing the construction, history, and significance of this magnificent architectural and artistic achievement.
The Mapparium® is available for view on a tour only. Tours of the Mapparium run every 20 minutes, lasting 15-20 minutes. The first tour of the day starts at 10:20 a.m., and the last tour starts at 4 p.m.
For more information, visit www.marybakereddylibrary.org/events-programs or phone 888-222-3711.