Dorchester neighborhood notes

Staff Writer
Link Boston Homes

Stop Motion Animation (on Zoom)

Kids, ages 7-12 years and their families, are invited to join Librarians Maggie and Rebecca on Zoom from 1 to 1:45 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 6 for a hands-on intro to Stop Motion animation.

Download the Stop Motion Studio app ( and they'll show you how to use it to tell your own tales. No experience necessary.

Email Librarian Maggie ( by Dec. 5 with your child's name and age to receive the Zoom link for this program.

Visit for more information.

Peace First Labs for Teen Changemakers

For young people who are ready to make change, Peace First Labs is a powerful way to start their journey. Guided by a young leader from the Peace First team, working alongside (and learning from) a group of their peers, young people will use Peace First’s tools from 3 to 4 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 7 to develop projects that can solve an injustice in their community.

By the end of the session, young people will have a finished product - a project concept or a compassionate insight - that they can submit to the Peace First Challenge.

At the end of the session, the facilitator will show participants how they can join the Peace First community and access support to turn their ideas into action.

This event will be virtual and conducted via Zoom through the Boston Public Library. Go to to register for the Zoom link.

Facebook Live: Story and a craft

What will people create today? Children, ages 4 to 8, are invited to join the Boston Public Library for a live-streamed story time and craft from 3 to 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 8 and Dec. 22 at www/

Winter Craft-Along (on Zoom)

Gather the whole family and join the Boston Public Library on Zoom to create fun winter-themed crafts to give as gifts or enjoy for yourself from 4 to 4:45 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 9.

Work on one of the sample projects or socialize with while trying a project of your own.

These crafts will work for children of all ages. Instructions with suggested crafting materials will be sent to all registered participants.

Visit for registration.

Brighter Connected: Public Art

Brighter Connected will bring the light of Hanukkah to eight Boston-area neighborhood windows on Wednesday, Dec. 9 through Friday, Dec. 18 through works of art created in partnership between a local artist and the community.

Historically, the Brighter installation series has been installed at the Museum of Fine Art as part of Hanukkah: The Festival of Lights. This year, they're taking it out of the museum and bringing it into the community - in line with the mitzvah (good deed) of “publicizing the miracle” of the oil that lasted eight days.

Through these eight works of art (designed and installed for socially distanced viewing), they will highlight the Hanukkah story, connecting it to the present-day miracles of the strength, resiliency and vibrancy of the Boston community.

For more information, including a mapped list of the eight places to view, go to

‘Our Words, Our Power’ – Activist writing for teens

Marching and protesting are powerful and necessary ways to promote change and writing has also been a force for change for centuries across the globe. Learn how to shape outrage through writing that uncovers, explores, calls out and spotlights issues that you want to advance in this world to make it better.

The Roxbury, Mattapan and Grove Hall branches, in partnership with Grub Street Center for Creative Writing, will present a workshop - facilitated by author Maria Pinto from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 10 on Zoom.

Visit for more information and registration.

Tween Time

Kids, ages 8-12 years old, are invited to join librarians for puzzles, games and different projects from 4 to 5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 10 and Dec. 17.

This program is a great way to spend an hour and virtually hang out with kids around Boston.

Visit for more information and Zoom registration.

Kanopy Club: ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’ (2017)

The Man Who Invented Christmas is the story of the magical journey that led to the creation of Ebenezer Scrooge (Christopher Plummer), Tiny Tim and other classic characters from A Christmas Carol. Charles Dickens (Dan Stevens) mixed real-life inspirations with his vivid imagination to conjure up unforgettable characters and a timeless tale, forever changing the holiday season.

Watch the film on Kanopy, then join the Boston Public Library from 7 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 10 for a discussion on Zoom.

Visit for more information and registration.

Moving images: An artful afternoon with Black N' Animated

Black N' Animated, both a consortium of Black professionals working in the animation industry as well as a popular podcast, is coming together from noon to 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 12 on the Boston Public Library Teen Services Twitch channel.

This teens-only event will feature an honest discussion with Black animators currently working at Disney and Marvel as well as a live, real-time drawing demo by guest artists Kellye Perdue and Wynton Redmond. Teens can ask questions - and maybe even influence the artists' demos - all in real time.

Whether you're a teen interested in becoming a professional animator or a wicked otaku looking to nerd out for 90 minutes, join the Boston Public Library for this window into a fascinating artistic world.

No registration is necessary; simply visit at the event time or follow on Twitch early to receive notification of upcoming entertaining teen-oriented events.

Visit for more information and (optional) registration.

2020 Marine Toys for Tots Campaign

The US Marine Corps Reserve (Greater Boston) will be collecting new, unwrapped toys as Christmas gifts for those children less fortunate in the counties of Suffolk, Norfolk and Northern Plymouth.

Toys can be dropped off at the Toys for Tots Warehouse at 21 Drydock Ave., 8th Floor, Boston; at any State Police barracks, fire stations or police departments; and at an array of host sites listed on their website.

Donations via check should be mailed to: Toys for Tots Coordinator, 21 Drydock Ave., Box 21-810W, Boston, MA 02210. You can also make a donation online.

All donations should be submitted through Tuesday, Dec. 15 to ensure enough time to complete sorting and distribution prior to Christmas.

Due to the size of the area they serve, they provide toys exclusively to churches, qualified charitable organizations and social service agencies. Individual families can register at any of the types of places listed above and request toys from the program.

Go to for more information, including the link to donate and the list of host sites.

‘Girls Who Code’

Girls in Grades 3 through 5, come together weekly to learn simple computer programming, make new friends and learn to change the world with computer science.

“Girls Who Code” is a free eight-week after-school Zoom club, taught by computer whiz Jennifer Greenberg.

Join for all eight classes being held from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Mondays through Dec. 7.

Those interested in registering should email Librarian Rebecca at

Facebook Live Story Time: Tuesday Tales

Join the Children’s Library team for a live-streamed story time for children, ages 2 to 4 years old, from 10:30 to 11 a.m. on Tuesdays through Dec. 29 at

Visit for more information.

Dorchester New Parents Group

A new parents group, hosted by Jewish Family & Children’s Service (JF&CS), will be held from noon to 12:45 p.m. on Tuesdays and from 5 to 5:45 p.m. on Wednesdays through March 18. Parents with a baby under the age of three are invited to attend.

The parent groups provide safe and nurturing spaces for parents and their babies to give and receive support.

Visit for more information and required Zoom registration.

Pajama Story Time

Grab your coziest PJs and a favorite stuffed animal and join Librarian Rebecca for end-of-day stories, songs and movement from 6 to 6:45 p.m. on Thursdays. Wind down with a cozy craft inspired by the reading. This story time is ideal for toddlers, preschoolers and early elementary kids.

Email Librarian Rebecca ( with your child's name and age to register and receive a link to the Boston Public Library’s Zoom room.

Fitness classes at BGC of Dorchester

The Boys and Girls Club of Dorchester will offer fitness classes in-person at CrossFit Body+Fuel, 89 Pearl St. in Braintree (for Youth 10 to 18) at 3:30 on Tuesdays and Thursdays (following COVID protocols) and virtually over Zoom at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesdays.

Contact Brendan at for more information or to register.

Online Homework Assistance Program

The Boston Public Library Homework Assistance Program is available from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Mondays through Thursdays. Open to K-8, no registration required.

Visit for more information.

#ZooToYou/Kids’ Corner

Tune in on Facebook at 1:30 p.m. for #ZooToYou: a daily dose of animal cuteness, chats with the care staff, crafts and activities to do at home, and lots more.

Visit the Kids’ Corner for more fun at

Franklin Park Golf Course Walking Group

The Franklin Park Golf Course Walking Group will be held from 9 to 10 a.m. on Saturdays through Dec. 19.

Get outdoors and enjoy the scenic views in Franklin Park. The group will meet at the William Devine Golf Course Clubhouse, One Circuit Drive.

For information on cancellations, check Twitter at @healthyboston and @bostonparksdept or phone 617-635-4505.

Visit for more information and registration.

DAP: ‘Power of the People’

Join the Dorchester Art Project (DAP) on IG Live from 4 to 5 p.m. on Sundays for “Power of the People.”

DAPS mission is “to empower the Black community by acknowledging the importance of supporting Black-owned businesses and returning power back to the people.”

Ladies Paint Night

Building Our Lives Together As One will host a fun night of socializing and creativity with wine and light dinner while producing a personal work of art to take home from 5 to 8 p.m. on Sundays through Dec. 13. (The location – Harvard Street area of Dorchester – will be provided with payment confirmation.)

Building Our Lives Together As One is a non-profit organization dedicated to inspiring community members to feel empowered, educated and motivated to actively pursue community betterment. Proceeds will benefit Building Our Lives Together As One programs.

Go to for more information and registration ($15).

Me2/Boston Orchestra/*Flute Choir

Me2/ is a welcoming, multi-generational, inclusive classical music organization. Their focus is on a supportive music-making environment and stigma-erasing performances for all ability levels. There is no audition and no participation fee to join.

The Me2/Boston Orchestra rehearsals are held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Mondays from September through May of each year. Rehearsals are currently held in the community room at VietAID in Dorchester. Ronald Braunstein is the Conductor.

The Me2/Boston Flute Choir rehearsals (*new this year) will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on

Wednesdays from late September through May of each year. Rehearsal space is generously provided by Flutistry Boston, 801 Tremont St. Eileen Yarrison is the Director.

New members are accepted at various points throughout the season. If you are interested in joining the orchestra and/or Flute Choir, please email Caroline at They would love to have you check out a rehearsal or jump right in.

Learn more at

JP Holiday Flea Market

Shop online at the JP Flea Market to support local artists and small businesses.

Go to to view a fine assortment of treasures –

local honey, records, jewelry, pipes, pottery, art, kids’ books, vintage clothing and accessories, teas, hand-printed apparel, candles, printed cards, handmade knits, bags, zines, woodwork, crystals, handmade soaps, organic dog treats, prints, patches, hand-stitched wallets, baskets, home décor, children's clothing, body-care and more – available from the 2020 Vendors who are located in a variety of Boston neighborhoods and beyond.

Facebook Live: Story and a Snack

Follow along with the Boston Public Library staff from 3:30 to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 15 and Dec. 29 as they share stories and show people how to cook up a delicious snack.

Find them on

YMCA of Greater Boston fall preview

The YMCA of Greater Boston is offering all members and non-members an opportunity to preview their Fall 2020 programs with a free preview week at all 13 YMCA of Greater Boston branches. The fall preview will provide parents and children the opportunity to experience a program with the Y and see how fun and safe it can be.

Fall programing will run through December and will consist of two sessions. Each session will include soccer, basketball, t-ball, sports sampler, swim lessons, semi- private & private swim and physical education. The Jr. Celtics skills and drills program is back and will run for 10 weeks through Dec. 20.

All sports clinics and group swim lessons will be included in family memberships through the end of the year. Members of the East Boston YMCA can take advantage of group swim lessons at any other YMCA of Greater Boston locations.

For more information about memberships, visit

Registration for all YMCA fall programs can be booked online at Financial assistance is available to those who qualify.

Chez-Vous fundraiser

The Chez-Vous Rollerskating Rink (11 Rhoades St.) has been a staple in Boston for more than 85 years, providing memories and entertainment for families of all ages.

The rollerskating rink, which has been closed since March, has established a new crowdsourced Gofundme fundraiser to sustain them until they are allowed to re-open, coming together again as one big family.

All donations (no matter how large or small) are greatly appreciated:

For further information, call 617-825-6877.

Free ‘grab-and-go’ meals/food resource information

Boston Eats will continue to provide free nutritious breakfast and lunch to city kids and youth –

18 years of age and under – through Thursday, Dec. 31. No ID or registration required.

Visit or phone 1-800-645-8333 for a list of meal locations and other information. A list of food pantries and soup kitchens are also included.

Visit for a list of current food pantries, food closets, food banks, soup kitchens, congregate meal locations, food boxes, vouchers, etc.

If you need additional food resources, contact Project Bread’s Food Source Hotline at 800-645-8333.

Emotion Revolution exhibition

Emotion Revolution is a virtual multimedia exhibition curated by student curator Mary Morris Evans and co-produced by Dorchester Art Project and Northeastern University’s College of Art, Media, and Design.

To view, go to

Rainbow Peace Flag Project/City Peace Project

The mission of the Rainbow Peace Flag Project is to extend kindness and caring across national borders, with love that includes people of all sexualities, genders, abilities, religions, races and cultures, and to condemn acts of violence and hatred, embracing peaceful dialogue instead.

The City Peace Project (part of the Rainbow Peace Flag Project) – an effort of individuals and local groups in Dorchester, Roxbury and Mattapan to share the message of peace, inclusivity and non-violence – is inviting people to display Peace Flags at homes, spiritual institutions, schools, businesses and throughout their communities.

This is an ambitious effort and they welcome all who would like to volunteer to help package, distribute, promote, display, and share their story of why this symbol is important for them, their family, loved ones or community.

Donations are accepted, but not required to receive a flag or flag display.

Request for flags or offers to volunteer can be sent to

Donations can be made at

Suicide survivor support group

DeeDee’s Cry will host an ongoing weekly support group for suicide survivors. If you are a suicide attempt survivor seeking a safe, non-judgmental place to talk about the feelings that led you to attempt and the impact that your attempt had on your life visit to sign up.

DeeDee's Cry provide resources and programs to increase mental health awareness and suicide prevention in communities of color.

DeeDee’s Cry is located in Roxbury and is associated with Louis D. Brown Peace Institute in Dorchester.

Big Sister mentoring

Since 1951, the Big Sister Association of Greater Boston continues to make and support one-to-one mentoring relationships between thousands of women and girls each year.

The Big Sister professional staff matches a girl between the ages of 7 and 15 with a woman who is at least 20 years old, based on shared preferences and interests and continues to provide award-winning (virtual) support and guidance to each Big Sister, Little Sister, and Little sister’s family.

To learn more about how to become a Big Sister or to enroll a girl to become a Little Sister, visit

Visit Boston National Historical Park sites

Boston National Historical Park tells the story of the events that led to the American Revolution and the Navy that kept the nation strong. Many of the historic sites that make up Boston National Historical Park can be found along the Freedom Trail.

In downtown Boston, the Old South Meeting House, Old State House, Faneuil Hall, the Paul Revere House and Old North Church bring to life the American ideals of freedom of speech, religion, government, and self-determination.

In Charlestown, visit the Bunker Hill Monument, the site of the first major battle of the American Revolution. Nearby is the Charlestown Navy Yard, one of the nation's first naval shipyards and home to USS Constitution, the oldest commissioned warship afloat in the world.

Located in South Boston and separate from the Freedom Trail, Dorchester Heights is significant for its role in the evacuation of the British from Boston during the Revolutionary War.

Visit for more information.

Courageous Sailing

Courageous Sailing is a nonprofit community sailing and youth development organization committed to providing people of all ages and backgrounds with opportunities to learn, sail and enjoy Boston Harbor.

The Courageous Sailing Centers are located at Pier 4, Charlestown Navy Yard; UMass Boston Dorchester Campus; and at the Jamaica Pond Boat House, 507 Jamaicaway in Jamaica Plain.

To learn more about the Adult Programming; Youth Programming Components (Summer Youth Programs, STEM Resources and After School Sailing); and the Courageous at Home and Courageous Together activities and events, visit and/or follow them on their social media platforms.

ADLS programs

All Dorchester Sports & Leadership (ADLS) provides quality programming for youth, ages 5-18, helping them to build self-esteem, leadership skills and healthy lifestyles through athletic and academic achievement.

ADLS programs are currently open with limited activities following strict health and safety guidelines.

Register to participate, to learn, to play, to volunteer, to mentor, to coach at or phone 617-287-1601.

BGC of Dorchester @ Home

Boys and Girls Clubs of Dorchester provides all after-school programs such as Academics, Arts and Music, Character & Leadership and Healthy Lifestyles on their Facebook and YouTube platforms in an interactive setting.

Go to for more information and registration.

Kroc Community Center is open

Salvation Army-Kroc Corps Community Center, 650 Dudley St. is open following health and safety guidelines.

The exercise room, which has all new equipment, and the weight room will be staffed and some fitness classes will be scheduled. The Kroc Playground is open. Book time slots for upcoming fun.

The Salvation Army has distributed more than 7.1 million meals across Massachusetts since March thanks to our generous supporters. Their social services, food pantry and meal distribution efforts are ongoing.

Everyone is welcome to attend their Sunday worship service at 11 a.m.

Visit for more information.

EMK Institute programs and activities

Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate at Columbia Point features a variety of interests for the family to enjoy.

While video highlights from the Institute, including Getting to the Point programs and Year in Review 2019 among other items can be found on You Tube, links to a variety of activities can be found on their website.

Make a Difference activities encourages young people to think about how they can make a difference in their communities and in the world; About the Senate activities are for children and families to learn more about the work Senators do, how they work together, and some traditions they follow; Youth Action Guides include resources for teens on how to get involved with important issues facing the nation and the world; and Issue Investigations explore different perspectives that shape the debate on current policy issues before Congress.

Visit for more information, including quick links to You Tube and the activities.

EMK Institute is open

The Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate on Columbia Point in Dorchester has reopened for small group reservations following strict health and safety protocol.

The institute will feature new virtual and online public and educational programs dealing with issues of critical importance right now across the United States, including voting and social justice.

Fall programming will be complemented by new virtual field trips, conversations and tours with Institute staff made available to students, teachers and groups on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Educational experiences at the Institute, such as Today’s Vote and The Citizen’s Senate, along with its exhibits, will use digital devices, immersive role playing and simulation to teach civics and inspire the next generation of leaders.

Visit for more information.

JFK Library and Museum digital content and curriculum

John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum is adding a weekly digest of digital content for families to enjoy, including curriculum and content that parents and educators can easily incorporate into their daily lessons for K-12 students.

Visit for more details.

Commonwealth Museum is open

Commonwealth Museum, 220 Morrissey Blvd. will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays following COVID-19 guidelines. Admission is free.

There will be a maximum capacity of four people in the Treasures Gallery and Museum Theater; all other galleries and exhibits currently remain closed.

"The Commonwealth Museum brings the story to life with state-of-the-art interactive exhibits. Its dramatic ‘treasures gallery’ holds the great historic documents that protect our liberties. Spend an hour or an afternoon and share our common heritage." – William Francis Galvin, Secretary of the Commonwealth via the Commonwealth Museum.

For more information, visit

Zoos are open

Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo are open for a roarin’ good time following COVID guidelines.

At each park, guests will be invited to experience an Outdoor Safari Walk, a one-way trail through many of the zoo exhibits. The playground and play stations are open.

Online reservations and timed tickets that can be scanned are required for your visit.

Zoo Winter Hours: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily (Oct. 1-March 31)

Virtual tours and activities will continue.

Visit to learn more about the re-opening procedures before you visit.

Catholic Charities Archdiocese of Boston ` `

Catholic Charities Archdiocese of Boston provides a comprehensive array of services for people in need.

Please consider donating food, gift cards or hygiene products to keep their food pantries and basic needs operations open and fully stocked.

Phone their Administrative Offices at 617-464-8500 for donation guidelines.

Visit for a list of places that they service along with more information.

Franklin Park Zoo seeks donations

Although the Franklin Park Zoo is partially open, donations to the “All Our Animals Fund” can still be made to keep the Zoo’s mission alive, to provide vital care to their animals and maintain the Zoo’s infrastructure.

Visit for more information, including ways to donate.

The Neighborhood Aid Network

The Neighborhood Aid Network, coordinated by The Human Network Institute at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, has a simple goal: To provide a central place where neighborhood digital platforms can aggregate and standardize and where volunteers receive information and training.

Visit for more information.

Blindfolded schoolchildren smash a Christmas piñata in Dorchester in 1971. Learn more from Digital Commonwealth at