Back Bay - Midtown neighborhood notes

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People enjoy sitting near the fountain in Copley Square on a nice summer day.

Family Flicks at Prudential Center

Enjoy free, family-friendly movies on Prudential Center’s South Garden on Saturdays in July and August as follows:

July 16: Shrek | July 23: The Parent Trap | July 30: Luca | Aug. 6: Space Jam |

Aug. 13: Tangled | Aug. 20: Sing 2 | Aug. 27: Trolls: World Tour

All movies will start at dusk. Picnic blankets and low beach chairs are welcomed. 

Go to www.prudentialcenter.com/experiences/events/family-flicks for more information.

Guided Esplanade Stories Tour

Join the Esplanade Association for a fascinating tour about the stories that occurred on the Esplanade and surrounding neighborhood at 6 p.m. on Monday, July 18.

The guided tour lasts about an hour-and-a-half and covers about a mile of the Esplanade.

Visit www.eventbrite.com/e/guided-esplanade-stories-tours-tickets-266413689517 for more information and registration (Suggested donation: $10).

River Fit Series 2022

River Fit consists of a variety of outdoor fitness classes - including dance fitness classes, high-intensity interval training, and yoga - that are taught for a range of experience levels and abilities.

Classes will be held at 6 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays and at 7:30 a.m. on Wednesdays and Fridays through Sept. 9.

Visit https://esplanade.org/events for more information.

MHS Film Club: ‘Between the Lines’

Join Ned Hinkle and Ivy Moylan from the Brattle Theatre for a discussion of 1977’s “Between the Lines,” starring John Heard, Lindsay Crouse and Jeff Goldblum from 6 to 7 p.m. on Monday, July 18.

The movie follows an underground newspaper in Boston on the verge of corporate takeover.

Visit www.masshist.org/events/mhs-film-club-between-lines for more information and Zoom registration.

Donate Blood at Old South Church                                   

The American Red Cross will hold a blood drive from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, July 20 at the Old South Church, 645 Boylston St.

Visit www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/find-drive or phone 1-800­-RED CROSS (1-800­-733-2767) to reserve a space.

Berklee’s Summer in the City Concert Series: Pinheiro & Coury

Pinheiro & Coury will perform at the Prudential Center South Garden from noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, July 20, as part of Berklee's Summer in the City concert series.

Visit https://college.berklee.edu/events/summer for more information.

‘Trading Freedom: How Trade with China Defined Early America’

Dael Norwood details US trade with China from the late 18th through the 19th centuries - a critical period in America’s self-definition as a capitalist nation - and shows how global commerce was central to the articulation of that national identity. 

Deftly weaving together interdisciplinary threads from the worlds of commerce, foreign policy, and immigration, Trading Freedom thoroughly dismantles the idea that American engagement with China is anything new.

This program will be held at and livestreamed from the Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston St. from 6 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, July 20.

An in-person reception will start at 5:30 p.m. 

Visit www.masshist.org/events for more information and registration (In person: $10 | Virtual, 

MHS Members or EBT Cardholders: Free).

Creating Your New Dream Life in France

Have you dreamed of moving to France but have no idea where to start? Many people have the desire of living in France for a year or relocating permanently, but don't know where to start or understand how to navigate the process and they quickly get overwhelmed by the bureaucracy and give up.

During this talk from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 20 at the French Cultural Center, 53 Marlborough St., Allison Grand Lounes will provide attendees with great tips on how to smoothly plan their move from the States to France.

The presentation (in English) will be followed by a Q&A session with a book signing and a glass of wine.

Visit https://frenchculturalcenter.org/events for more information and reservations (Member: $10 | Non-member: $15).

Boston Landmarks Orchestra: Telling Tales

The Boston Landmarks Orchestra, conducted by Christopher Wilkins, will present a family-friendly concert at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, July 20 at the DCR Hatch Memorial Shell.

The program will include Prelude Concert: Four Strings Academy with Landmarks Orchestra Principal Strings | Bedřich Smetana, “The Moldau” from Ma Vlast (My Fatherland) | Ethyl Smyth, The Wreckers Overture | Paul Dukas, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice | Hector Berlioz, Symphonie fantastique. 

Visit www.landmarksorchestra.org/events/current-season/telling-tales for more information.

11th Annual Summer Dock Party

Set against the incomparable backdrop of the Charles River at sunset as well as in the lovely Eliot Garden, the 11th snnual Summer Dock Party will be held from 6:30 to 10 p.m. on Thursday, July 21. Enjoy a sunset dinner and drinks as well as dancing to a live DJ at Community Boating, 21 David G Mugar Way.

The funds raised will support the Esplanade Association’s work to revitalize and maintain the park while providing free summer programming.

Visit www.eventbrite.com/e/11th-annual-summer-dock-party-tickets-311790633177 for more information and tickets ($100-$125).

Music and Movement at Stoneman Playground

Join the Esplanade Association and Boston Music Project at the Stoneman Playground on the Esplanade for music and movement programming for children and families of all ages from 10 a.m. to noon on Fridays through Sept. 2.

Visit https://esplanade.org/musicandmovement for more information.

National Show: ‘Crossing Borders’

The Copley Society of Art will present this year’s national show: “Crossing Borders” featuring artists from across the United States at the Co|So Gallery, 158 Newbury St. through Saturday, Aug. 20.

Artworks in the exhibition explore how art assists people in seeing the world through multiple perspectives, celebrating diverse visual representations, and embracing the power of discovery.

Crossing Borders features a range of styles and mediums including oil painting, photography, watercolor and encaustic.

Visit https://copleysociety.org/exhibition/national-show-crossing-borders for more information.

Fit on the Garden

Instructors from Under Armour will lead free high-energy fitness classes at Prudential Center South Garden, 800 Boylston St. from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesdays through Aug. 23.

Go to https://underarmourevents.com/fitonthegarden2022/PRU for more information and registration.

Summer Yoga at the BPL

A relaxing yoga class will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. on Tuesdays through Aug. 30 at the Central Library in Copley Square

In this yoga class, expect a beginner one-hour yoga flow with plenty of options and modifications for all bodies and ability levels, sponsored by the Hands and Heart Center.

Visit bpl.org/events for more information and registration.

Boston Parks Summer Fitness Series: Virtual Classes

Free fitness classes will be held in neighborhood parks and on Zoom through Saturday, Oct 1.

Here are the virtual classes:

– Virtual Dance Fit: Mondays from 5 to 6 p.m.

– Virtual HIIT Training: Tuesdays from 7 to 8 a.m.

– Pre- and Postnatal Friendly Barre from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesdays

– Fit Fusion: 6:30 to 7:30 a.m. on Thursdays

– Virtual Chair Yoga: Fridays from noon to 1 p.m.

– Virtual Zumba: Saturdays from 10 to 11 a.m.

– Virtual Yoga: Sundays from 6 to 7 p.m.

Visit boston.gov/fitness for full details/schedule and Eventbrite registration. 

Community Boating on the Charles River 2022

Rent a kayak or paddleboard at Community Boating Boston, 21 David G Mugar Way and explore the Charles River Basin and Frederick Law Olmstead esplanade lagoon system while enjoying breathtaking views of historic Back Bay, Beacon Hill, MIT and the Zakim and Longfellow bridges. Sailing for all since 1946.

Visit www.community-boating.org/rentals/welcome for more information.

BCYF Summer Program Registration is Open

A variety of land and pool programs will be offered at the BCYF community centers across the city this summer.

Go to Boston.gov/BCYF-Registration for more details and registration.

Boston Summer Camp Listings

For a comprehensive listing of and links to Boston Summer Camps – Art, Sports, Academic and Specialty – visit https://bostonsummercamps.com.

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 bpl.org to keep track of the books you read together and earn badges for your young milestones at bostonpl.beanstack.org.

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 bpl.org/events for more information and registration for each event.

Boston By Foot tours

BBF offers a variety of daily tours throughout the neighborhoods for adults, little ones, and/or families.

Visit www.bostonbyfoot.org for the schedule and tickets ($8 to $17).

Swan Boat Rides

Take a leisurely lagoon ride aboard the iconic Swan Boats while immersing in the blooming botany of Boston’s famous Public Garden.

Summer Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Labor Day, Sept. 5 (weather permitting)

Visit https://swanboats.com for tickets (Adults: $4.50 | Seniors: $4 | Children, ages 2 to 15: $3 | Under 2 yrs.: Free) and other details.

Copley Square Farmers Market

The Copley Square Farmers Market will be open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays through Nov. 12. The market sits across from the Boston Public Library at 139 James St.

The Copley Square Farmers Market - Boston’s biggest, busiest and longest running market - will feature more than three dozen Massachusetts farmers and good producers offering a vibrant selection of produce, proteins, baked goods, ready-to-eat meals, alongside a host of other locally made products.

Vendors accepts cash/credit/debit cards/WIC/Senior coupons/EBT cards/HIP incentives.

Visit www.massfarmersmarkets.org/copley for more information.

Boston Open Market at Copley Square

The Boston Open Market at Copley Square at 560 Boylston St. - featuring 85 local artists, crafters, designers, makers and vintage dealers - will be open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays through Sept. 24.

Visit www.newenglandopenmarkets.com for more information.

BPDA's Model Room is open

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.

Visit the model room on the 9th floor of Boston City Hall at One City Hall Square - open to the public from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays.

Visit www.bostonplans.org/about-us/model-room for more information.

Tiffany stained-glass window tour

Experience the resplendent beauty and history of the 16 Tiffany opalescent stained-glass windows - the largest collection of its kind in any one church - at Arlington Street Church, 20 Arlington St. The Tiffany Center is open for self-guided and guided tours from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.

Visit www.asctiffany.org/visit for more information and tickets.

Monday Mettā                      

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

Visit www.ascboston.org for more information, including the Zoom link.

The Buddhist book discussions and meditations

Buddha's Belly and Arlington Street Meditation Center (feel free to go 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 www.ascboston.org for more information and links to attend.

Kundalini Yoga Classes

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.

Visit www.ascboston.org for more information and Zoom link ($10).

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 www.oldsouth.org/jazz.

​Friday Night Trivia

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

Visit www.tridentbookscafe.com for more information.

LGBTQ Catholics Unite monthly meetings (hybrid)                                           

LGBTQ Catholics Unite meetings will be held in the St. Cecilia Church Community Room, 18 Belvidere St. and on Zoom 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.

Email stceciliarainbowministry@gmail.com for more info on how to connect via Zoom.

Poetry Open Mic Night

Join Trident Booksellers & Café, 338 Newbury St. for a fun evening of open mic poetry from 7 to 9 p.m. on Sundays.

Bring your own works and perform them in front of a supportive crowd; or read someone else’s work (give credit where due). There's no better place to find your voice and share it with the world. Sign-up list opens at 6:30 p.m.

Visit www.tridentbookscafe.com/events 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 www.boston.gov/departments/boston-centers-youth-families for more information and registration.

Give Blood at MGH Blood Donor Center

The Massachusetts General Hospital Blood Donor Center, 55 Fruit St. (GRJ 120) will be 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 www.massgeneral.org/blood-donor/contact for more information and to schedule an appointment.

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 www.americanancestors.org/education/learning-resources/read/youth.

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 www.bigsister.org.

Boston Ballet Videos                                    

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

Support Boston Ballet at www.bostonballet.org/Home/Support/Donate.

Food Access and Resources Information                          

The Mayor's Office of Food Access works to improve the accessibility and affordability of healthy food that reflects the diversity of the residents of Boston.

– Visit www.boston.gov/departments/food-access for a list of programs and initiatives, including food pantries, soup kitchens, farmers markets, school meal and summer eats sites, among others.

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

– Visit www.projectbread.org/get-help or contact Project Bread’s Food Source Hotline at 800-645-8333 if you need additional food resources.

Friday Night Supper Program – Needs Help

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 www.Fridaynightsupper.org for more information.

Support The Boston Parks 50th Anniversary Capital Campaign   

Help support three transformative projects in all three parks by making a donation to the 50th Anniversary Capital Campaign.

Donations will support enhancements that will invite and inspire visitors to the Public Garden, Commonwealth Avenue Mall and Boston Common for years to come.

Go to friendsofthepublicgarden.org/50th for more information and donation links.

Support BostonWarm/Common Art and Common Cathedral

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 www.commoncathedral.org 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 through 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 www.womenslunchplace.org 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 esplanade.org for more information and links to donate.