Back Bay - Midtown neighborhood notes

Link Boston Homes
The reflection of the old Hancock Building can be seen in the newer Hancock Tower on a gloomy day in Boston.

Thanksgiving baking class with Bravo Maine

Pastry lovers, join chef Jasmine from Bravo Maine, for a fun, interactive and delicious morning. In this baking class, people will learn to prepare a tarte tatin from scratch as well as a homemade crème chantilly. 

Jasmine will guide people step by step, answer all questions and show some of her baking tips. Their cultural manager will tell more about the story behind the tarte tatin and other “culinary failures” that turned out to be huge successes.

The event will be held in English from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Nov. 13 via Zoom.

Visit for more information and registration (Member: $13 | Non-member: $19).

‘Show Me the Picture: The Story of Jim Marshall’ film screening

Join the owner of Jim Marshall Estate, Amelia Davis, for an exclusive film screening of “Show Me the Picture: The Story of Jim Marshall” followed by a conversation with Davis and a special guest on the stories behind the pictures. This complimentary screening will be followed by an artist talk and a book signing with Davis. The event will be held from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 13 at Leica Gallery Boston, 74 Arlington St.

An outsider with attitude, “Show Me the Picture: The Story of Jim Marshall,” the award-winning documentary chronicles the infamous photographer’s life behind and outside the camera. A child of immigrants and a life battling inner demons, Jim fought his way to become one of the most trusted mavericks behind a lens throughout the 1960s and ‘70s. A passion for capturing the decisive moment resulted in some of the most iconic images in music history from Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, Janis Joplin and Miles Davis.

Visit for mor information and registration.

Point/Counterpoint: Fuguing in Renaissance Music

Enjoy a vibrant selection of Renaissance counterpoint from the wind ensemble Piffaro, presented by the Boston Early Music Festival (BEMF) at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 14 at the First Lutheran Church, Boston at 299 Berkeley St.

This virtual premiere will be held at 8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 26, available to watch through Dec. 9.

Virtual tickets will be included free with all in-person tickets or can purchased on their own. In-Person tickets: $30 to $80; Virtual tickets: $15.

View for more information and tickets.

Troubadours 2021: Live in concert

Medieval poetry and contemporary music blend together for a vibrant cultural smashup of jazz, hip-hop, classical European and more at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 14 at Emmanuel Church in Boston, 15 Newbury St., presented by Cappella Clausura.

Go to for more information and tickets ($10 - $35).

Barre en français

French instructor Chloé Mizuta will guide participants in a barre class that focuses on strength, core stability, flexibility, muscle control, posture and breathing from 9 to 10 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 15 and Nov. 29 via Zoom. All levels of French and barre are welcome.

Visit for more information and reservations (Member: $8; Non-member: $12).

AA/NEGHS: ‘The Yiddish of Yankeeland’ and ‘Intro to Heraldry’

The American Ancestors/NEGHS will hold two online courses as follows:

– “The Yiddish of Yankeeland: The Jews of Boston and America, 1840–1924”

Dr. Aaron Welt will present the live broadcasts from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 16, and Nov. 23 ($85)

– Introduction to Heraldry for Genealogists

Joseph McMillan and Nathaniel Lane Taylor, FASG will present the live broadcasts from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 17 ($85).

Visit for more information and Zoom registration.

Bonsai bar

Trident Booksellers and Café, 338 Newbury St. will host a two-hour bonsai class at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 16 that teaches about the art of bonsai and lets people create their own bonsai tree.

Every attendee will be able to select their own bonsai tree and pot and be provided with the tools to prune, pot and design the tree under the instruction of a bonsai expert.

Visit for more information and reservations ($50).

Beyond the Page: The Other Black Girl (Virtual)

Join author Zakiya Dalila Harris for GBH’s Beyond the Page event when she will discuss her novel, The Other Black Girl, a dynamic thriller infused with sly social commentary that will keep readers on the edge of their seats until the very last twist.

This event will be moderated by Tenijah Hamilton, Program Manager at NOVA from 7 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday Nov. 16.

Go to for more information and Zoom registration.

Singers Night

Each semester 120 to 180 Berklee voice students audition for the opportunity to be cast in Singers Night, one of the Voice Department's premier shows.

Join them at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 16 at the Berklee Performance Center, 136 Massachusetts Ave. for this high-energy concert featuring the students who were chosen during this process, performing solo and in small groups.

Visit for more information and tickets ($10 in advance; $15 day of show | with Berklee ID: Free in advance; $5 day of show).

ARC Blood Drive at Boston Public Library

Help end the critical shortage status by donating blood with the Red Cross from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18 at the Boston Public Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St.

Visit or phone 1-800­-RED CROSS (1-800­-733-2767) to reserve a space.

Community Read Book Group for Adults: ‘Krik? Krak!’

The Boston Public Library Community Read Book Group for Adults will meet from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18.

The librarian will moderate the discussion of Krik? Krak! by Edwidge Danticat.

In a collection of interrelated short stories, Danticat examines the lives of ordinary Haitians, particularly those struggling to survive under the brutal Duvalier regime. 

Visit for more information and Zoom registration.

Entertain in Julia Child-Style 

The holidays are fast approaching, offering many opportunities for cooking. It’s a perfect time to learn “What would Julia Child do?”

Join GBH from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18 for a virtual conversation about Julia’s life and legacy and get inspired this holiday season to entertain with Julia Child-style. They will be joined by author and chef Jacques Pépin, and Julia's great nephew Alex Prud'homme.

Go to for more information and tickets.

Chair yoga for older adults with YogaHub

Join the Boston Public Library from 2 to 3 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 18 for an online chair yoga class with YogaHub.

Chair yoga for older adults is a gentle form of yoga that is practiced while sitting on a chair or standing using a chair for support. Participants will learn calming postures and breathing techniques to open energy channels, release tension and alleviate pain.

This type of yoga helps to improve physical comfort, cultivate balance and move easily through daily activities.

Visit for more information and Zoom registration.

Understanding boundaries and jurisdictions

Understanding where your ancestors are living at a given time can be a loaded question - and to answer it completely, you need to know the broader geo-political and historical context. And as records are most often arranged by place, the “where” becomes especially important for family historians.

In this webinar from 3 to 4 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18, Genealogist Hallie Borstel will demonstrate how to research boundary changes and understand jurisdictional levels using maps, primary and secondary sources, and other records.

Visit for more information and registration.

Teen Book Discussion Group: ‘Furia’                                           

The Boston Public Library Teen Book Discussion Group will meet from 3 to 4 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18 to discuss Furia by Yamile Saied Méndez.

A Reese Witherspoon YA Book Club pick, this book follows 17-year-old Camila Hassan, a rising soccer star in Rosario, Argentina. Camila dreams of playing professionally, in defiance of her fathers' wishes and at the risk of her budding romance with international soccer phenom and her childhood friend, Diego.

Visit for more information the link to Twitch.

An evening with the Society of American Historians prize winners

Since its founding in 1939, the Society of American Historians has worked “to promote literary distinction in the writing of history” by conferring membership and honoring outstanding works. 

The 64th annual Francis Parkman Prize, awarded to Christopher Tomlins for “In the Matter of Nat Turner: A Speculative History,” recognizes “literary merit” in a nonfiction book that “makes an important contribution to the history of what is now the United States.”

Afia Atakora’s novel, “Conjure Woman,” is the 15th winner of the SAH’s biennial Prize for Historical Fiction, which recognizes narrative skill and authentic portrayal of the past. 

Brianna Nofil’s “Detention Power: Jails, Camps and the Origins of Immigrant Incarceration, 1900-2002,” received the 61st Allan Nevins Prize for a doctoral dissertation.

Megan Marshall, herself a Parkman Prize winner, will interview the authors on their work and aims as historical writers from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18.

Visit for more information and Zoom registration.

Kanopy Club: ‘Tickled’

Following the Year-long Reading Challenge's November theme of “An Author Born Outside the United States,” the Boston Public Library invites everyone to watch the film, “Tickled” (2017, R) on Kanopy then join the Zoom discussion from 7 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18.

Visit for more information, including synopsis, and Zoom registration.

Group Author Event: Poetry Readings & Signings

Trident Booksellers and Café, 338 Newbury St. will host a reading and discussion featuring three poets, Judson Evans, Gale Batchelder and Susan Berger-Jones, as they share their poetry collaboration "Chalk Song" from 7 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18.

Visit for more information.

Beethoven Septet Goes Modern

This concert will include Beethoven's famous Septet and the premiere of commissions by Heather Stebbins & Diana Rodriguez, played by Sound Icon and Windsor Music at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18 at Goethe-Institut Boston, 170 Beacon St.

Visit for more information and registration.

Family Book Group: ‘Listen, Slowly’

The librarian-moderated Family Book Group will meet from 4 to 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 19 to discuss the November Community Read – “Listen, Slowly” by Thanhhà Lại.

In this coming-of-age story, a preteen girl from California spends the summer in Vietnam with her grandmother and slowly discovers more about her own roots.

Go to for more information and Zoom registration.

Chamber Series 2: ‘a legacy of fearless song’

Chameleon Arts Ensemble of Boston will present “a legacy of fearless song” featuring the works of Beethoven, Shostakovich, Haas, & Part at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 20 and at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 21 at First Church in Boston, 66 Marlborough St.

Go to for more information, including the program, and tickets ($22 to $49).

‘Sisters of the Brush and Palette: Women Artists of the Guild’

The Guild of Boston Artists will present “Sisters of the Brush and Palette: Woman Artists of the Guild” at its Newbury Street gallery through Saturday, Nov. 27.

In this moment rich with discourse concerning diversity and gender equity in every industry, this exhibition celebrates the significant contributions of the Guild's contemporary female members to the cultural life of the city of Boston.

Visit for more information and reservations.

‘The Last Five Years’

The Lyric Stage Company of Boston, 140 Clarendon St. will present “The Last Five Years” on select days and times from Friday, Nov. 12 through Sunday, Dec. 5.

A young couple falls in - and out - of love in this intimate musical told from two chronological points of view: Cathy tells her story backwards while Jamie tells his story forward.

Visit for more information and tickets ($10-$80).

Holiday Small Works 2021                                                 

The Copley Society of Art, 158 Newbury St. will present Holiday Small Works, featuring work from their membership of more than 300 artists through Friday, Dec. 24.

This traditional holiday show offers affordably priced small works in a variety of media including paintings, photographs, sculptures and mixed media. Pieces from Co|So’s Holiday Small Works are perfect additions to growing art collections, as well as thoughtful and unique gifts for the holidays.

Visit for more information.

Critical shortage of blood at MGH Blood Donor Center – please give

The Massachusetts General Hospital Blood Donor Center, 55 Fruit St. (GRJ 120) is open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Tuesdays through Thursdays and from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Fridays.

Visit for more information and to schedule an appointment.

Future Readers Book Club/Events

The Boston Public Library hosts the Future Readers Club for children, ages five years and younger, and their caregivers, with a goal of reading 1,000 books together before the child begins kindergarten.

Register at to keep track of the books you read together and earn badges for your young milestones at

In addition, the BPL offers an assortment of programs as part of the Future Readers Club to engage children in stories, songs, finger play and crafts.

Visit for more information and registration to each event.

Monday Mettā                      

Join Rev. Kim at the Arlington Street Church at noon on Mondays for a half hour of loving kindness meditation. She will give brief instructions, and the group will join in sending loving kindness to ourselves and to the world. No meditation experience necessary.

Join with video at or participate by phone by dialing 929-436-2866. For either option, the meeting ID is always 895 886 6876.

Gay Men's Coffee Connections

Gay Men's Coffee Connections will meet at 5 p.m. on the first and third Monday of the month.

Feel free to listen or engage in discussion about experiences as gay men.

Visit for more information, including the week’s discussion prompt and the Zoom link.

The Buddhist book discussions and meditations

Buddha's Belly and Arlington Street Meditation Center (feel free to come to one or both) will meet via Zoom on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month.

– Buddha's Belly at 6 p.m.: a book discussion group that explores a variety of books from Buddhist teachings. All are welcome.

– Arlington Street Meditation Center at 7 p.m.: these gatherings include seated meditation, a brief reading from Buddhist teachings, and conversation. Beginners and experienced meditators from all traditions (or none!) are warmly welcome.

Visit for more information and links to attend.

Back Bay Chorale ESL Chorus                              

Do you love music or enjoy singing? Do you want to learn English and sing with new friends? The E.S.L. Singing Group will meet from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on (most) Tuesdays through Dec. 7 on Zoom and/or at the Central Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square.

Associate Conductor Katherine Chan from the Back Bay Chorale will teach basic singing skills and songs in English.

At the end of each class, participants will have the opportunity to practice English conversation skills and develop friendships. No singing experience required.

Go to or for more information and (Zoom) registration.

Kundalini Yoga Class

Experience fun exercises and poses, breathing techniques, chanting, meditation and deep relaxation in this unique class at 6 p.m. on Wednesdays. Moving energy through your body brings positive change and growth. All are welcome.

There is a $10 charge that goes to the Arlington Street Church.

Email for Zoom access. 

A safe space for people of all colors

If you identify as a person of color, Old South Church invites you to a time of connecting, a moment of breath, a reprieve from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month. The group is open to people of all ages.

Visit for more information and Zoom registration.

Virtual Jazz Coffee House                                                              

The Virtual Jazz Coffee House, featuring the Willie Sordillo Ensemble, will be livestreamed from the Old South Church in Boston from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursdays at

Friday Night Trivia

Trident Booksellers & Café, 338 Newbury St will host a weekly Trivia Night from 7 to 9 p.m. on Fridays.

The event will feature seven rounds of general knowledge trivia with a few wildcards along the way (follow on Instagram to get a sneak peak of the evening's categories) and excellent prizes for the top three teams. 

Visit for more information.

Queer Board Game Night

Trident Booksellers and Café, 338 Newbury St., will host a board game night from 7 to 9 p.m. on Saturdays in November for all queer-identifying folks and allies.

Visit for more information.

Bach Cantata Series at Emmanuel Church                      

Continuing their 50-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.

The performances can be enjoyed in person at the Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St. at 10 a.m. on Sundays through May 15 with a live stream option.

To learn more about the history of Bach cantatas and how Emmanuel Music presents them, visit

LGBTQ Catholics Unite monthly meetings                                              

LGBTQ Catholics Unite meetings are held virtually at 1 p.m. on the fourth Sunday of the month. The meetings provide an opportunity for LGBTQ Catholics and friends to gather and openly discuss relevant topics, scripture, and current events and share faith experiences, thoughts, beliefs and feelings.

Hosted by the St. Cecilia Rainbow Ministry, they hope that all LGBTQ+ Catholics will know that “God loves you, God created you, God is on your side, Jesus cares about you, and the church is your home.” All, including allies, are welcome.

For more info on how to connect via Zoom, email

Tiffany stained-glass windows

The Tiffany Education Center at the Arlington Street Church, 20 Arlington St. offers self-guided tours with an audio guide as well as docent-guided tours. Experience the resplendent beauty and history of the 16 Tiffany opalescent stained-glass windows – the largest Tiffany window collection of its kind in any one church.

The visitors center will be open from 1 to 4 p.m. on Sundays and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Mondays through Saturdays (closed Tuesdays). Group tours are also available.

Visit for more information.

Boston Open Market at Copley Square

In partnership with the Friends of Copley Square, New England Open Markets will operate the Boston Open Market - a new weekly arts market held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays through Nov. 27.

Visit for more information.

Copley Square Farmers Market

The Copley Square Farmers Market – Boston's biggest and busiest farmers market featuring more than two dozen Massachusetts farmers offering a vibrant selection of local and delicious produce and meat – will be open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays through Tuesday, Nov. 23.

Accepts: SNAP, HIP & Nutrition Vouchers

BPL reading challenge                                                        

The Boston Public Library invites readers throughout the city to participate in “Reading Together.” In the challenge, each month has a distinct theme and participants are asked to read a book tied to the theme.

The library offers recommended book lists for the monthly themes for adults, teens and children at Participant patrons can track their progress as well.

Visit for more information.

BCYF programs and services                                                         

The Boston Center for Youth and Families offers a variety of arts and computer activities,

recreational programs, virtual field trips, workshops and services both remotely and in person for children, youth, individuals and families at 36 facilities, including community centers and pools.

Visit for more information and registration.

Genealogy for the next generation                                                 

Several free, easy-to-do fun activities that will keep kids entertained and get them thinking about their family history are available at

These exercises are designed to teach critical skills while encouraging kids to explore their personal connection to the past. Studies show that young people who know facts about their heritage have a stronger sense of self, which can help them perform better in school and life.

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 (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

Boston Ballet videos                                     

Enjoy a variety of behind-the-scenes videos, virtual choreography, performance clips, and articles on along with exclusive, ballet videos posted Mondays through Fridays at and/or

Support Boston Ballet at

Free meals/food resource information                               

Boston Eats will provide free nutritious breakfast and lunch to city kids and youth – 18 years of age and under – through 2021. No ID or registration required.

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

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

Contact Project Bread’s Food Source Hotline at 800-645-8333 if you need additional food resources.

Friday Night Supper Program – needs help for and with onsite/to-go meals

The Friday Night Supper Program (FNSP) at the Arlington Street Church – the longest running program in Boston – has served more than 13,000 meals a year to more than 130 guests from all over Boston since 1984.

FNSP offers seated, family-style dinners at the church at 5 p.m. on Fridays or hot to-go meals for those who prefer or if room reaches its limited capacity due to the pandemic.

The Clothing Closet will also be opened every other Friday.

Donations make a difference in the lives of people in need, whether through philanthropic dollars or individual gifts of money, clothing, toiletries and gift cards.

FNSP is also looking for help to serve the onsite and “to go” meals.

Visit for more information.

Support BostonWarm/common art and common cathedral programs 

The drop-in center, BostonWarm; the art program, common art; and common cathedral, all under the umbrella of Ecclesia Ministries at Emmanuel Church (15 Newbury St.), needs partners to help them serve the increasing number of homeless and underserved during this critical time.

There are three specific ways that you can help make a difference:

1) Purchase supplies from BostonWarm and common art Amazon wish lists.

2) Donate individually wrapped homemade or purchased sandwiches, soft fruits, granola bars and water.

3) Donate your time, your treasures (donations) and your prayers – they are always welcomed and valued.

Visit for other information, including links to keep this mission alive.

Support Women’s Lunch Place                                         

Women’s Lunch Place, 67 Newbury St. continues to serve women while maintaining all three of their core services areas – healthy meals, direct care and advocacy.

WLP is open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. from Monday to Saturday serving breakfast and lunch along with essential care packages.

Women’s Lunch Place needs donations – money, gift cards, toiletries, underwear and other basic necessities – to keep their mission going.

Visit for more information.

Support the Esplanade Association                       

The Esplanade is the stretch of public green space that extends for three miles one way along the Boston shore of the Charles River from the Boston Museum of Science to the Boston University (BU) Bridge.

In addition to providing a beautiful natural landscape, the park is home to the iconic Hatch Memorial Shell, various historical monuments, recreational facilities and more than five miles of pathway for walking, running or biking.

Please consider making a donation to the Esplanade Association to help keep the green space thriving and the activities alive. All donations are tax deductible and people can use any means to send their support, including Donor Advised Funds.

Visit for more information and links to donate.

Support the parks – give the gift of membership                                                  

Give the gift of membership to ensure that the beloved parks – the Boston Common, Public Garden and Commonwealth Avenue Mall – remain icons of Boston and continue to receive the protection, care and management that they need.

Donations can be made at