Beacon Hill - West End neighborhood notes

Staff Writer
Link Boston Homes

5K walk, run

The 32nd annual AIDS Walk Boston will be held from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday, June 4 at the Hatch Memorial Shell, Storrow Drive.

Registration and check-in will be at 7:30 a.m. with the 5K run starting at 9:50 a.m. and the 10K walk at 10 a.m. The Wellness Festival, a post-walk celebration of healthy living, will run from 10:30 a.m. until 2 p.m., followed by the awards ceremony.

For more information, visit

Art walk

The 28th annual Beacon Hill Art Walk will be held from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, June 4, rain or shine. Starting at 135½ Charles St., at the corner of Cambridge and West Cedar streets, tour goers will be able to view a wonderful display of artwork throughout the North Slope.

Residents will open up their private gardens, alleyways and courtyards and allow artists to display and sell their work. More than 100 artists are expected to participate, with a variety of styles, media and subject matter. This is a wonderful chance for visitors to tour the private spaces of Beacon Hill while viewing original, handmade artwork.

Volunteer musicians will play in various gardens throughout the afternoon. The tour is free.

Visit for more information.

Jazz on the Common

The Berklee Summer in the City concert series will feature Zahili Gonzalez Zamora in concert underneath the fountain at noon from Monday to Friday, June 5 through 9, at the Brewer Plaza, Boston Common. An additional concert featuring the band Mixcla will be held at 5 p.m. on Thursday.

Zamora is immersed in the performance and production of traditional Cuban music as well as Latin jazz and other world music. Her performance venues have included the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola in New York and the Montreal International Jazz Festival.

Visit for further information.

Music of Vivaldi

A lunchtime concert will be held at 12:15 p.m. on Tuesday, June 6 at King’s Chapel, corner of School and Tremont streets.

Musicians from the Handel and Haydn Society will perform selections by Bach and Vivaldi.

A donation of $3 is requested; all contributions are given directly to the musicians.

Visit or call 617-227-2155 for more information.

Life of Nietzsche

The Boston Athenaeum, 10½ Beacon St., will host author Christopher Hamilton at noon on Tuesday, June 6.

Hamilton will discuss Nietzsche as a “Philosopher of Lightness and Dynamite.” He will trace the outlines of Nietzsche’s thought, exploring his most famous theories; eternal recurrence, the “Ubermensch,” slave revolt in morality and the death of God, as well as some lesser-known elements of his work.

This talk is free and open to the public.

Call 617-720-7600 or visit for further details.

British and American cultures

The Vilna Shul, 18 Phillips St., will present “The British Yiddish and Yankee Doodle Jews: Exploring Differences Between Two Cultural Traditions” at 6 p.m. on Thursday, June 8.

The community is invited to join in a riveting discussion on the differences between American and British Jewery with Rabbi Simon Taylor. Tickets are $18 and include conversation and appetizers and beers on the Vilna front plaza.

Visit or call 617-523-2324 to register and for more details.

Film festival

In celebration of Pride Month, the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St., will screen films from 3 to 5 p.m. on Wednesdays during June.

Featured will be the award-winning “The Kids are All Right” starring Annette Benning and Mark Ruffalo on June 7; “A Single Man” starring Colin Firth on June 14; “The Children’s Hour” with Audrey Hepburn and Shirley MacLaine on June 21 and the Oscar-winning “Brokeback Mountain” with Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal on June 28.

Call 617-523-3957 for further information.

Four generations

The Boston Athenaeum, 10½ Beacon St., will present the Poets’ Theatre in “Four Generations of the Adams Family” from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 8.

Massachusetts’ Adams family has left a priceless legacy of correspondence, speeches, histories and novels that reflect the birth pangs and moral struggles of the nation from the 18th to the late 19th centuries. Writings of John, Abigail, John Quincy, Charles Francis and Henry Adams reflect concerns about slavery, industry and democracy.

In this special performance, members of the Poets’ Theatre will bring to life the voices and interests of these four generations of influential Americans.

Admission is $25 for members and $30 for non-members.

Call 617-720-7600 or visit for further details and to register.

North Slope of Beacon Hill

Historic New England and Boston By Foot will present a tour of the North Slope of Beacon Hill from 2 to 4 p.m. on Sunday, June 11. Participants will meet at the Otis House Museum, 141 Cambridge St.

The tour will focus on the narrow streets and alleyways of the North Slope of Beacon Hill. Participants will learn how this colonial port district evolved from its once unsavory reputation to become a significant force in the abolitionist movement and home to various immigrant groups and institutions throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. The tour includes a visit to the Vilna Shul, a synagogue built in 1919 to be the home of a congregation of Jewish Lithuanian immigrants, which now serves as a Jewish cultural center.

Registration is recommended, by calling 617-994-5920. Tickets are $15 for members and $20 for non-members.

Visit or or call 617-367-2345 for more details.

Stronger together

Boston Pride will host a grassroots rally at 11 a.m. on Sunday, June 11 on Boston Common.

The Stronger Together rally is organized in solidarity with the Global Equality March for Unity and Pride in Washington, D.C. The speaking program will include grassroots organizers, LGBTQ activists and community leaders.

Attendees are encouraged to signup online for the rally at

Vilna and the Holocaust

The Vilna Shul, 18 Phillips St., will welcome genealogist Judy Baston in a talk about the Vilna Ghetto Library Program at 10 a.m. on Sunday, June 11.

During the Holocaust, the library in the Vilna Ghetto was a safe haven for Jews and a place to forget about the horrors around them. Internationally known genealogist Baston will give an in-depth look at life in the Vilna Ghetto and how reading provided a much-needed sanctuary.

This program is presented in partnership with the Jewish Genealogical Society of Greater Boston. Tickets are $18.

Visit or call 617-523-2324 to register and for more details.

Swan boats

The famous swan boats have returned to the Public Gardens. Spring hours of operation (now to June 20) are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. seven days a week, weather permitting.

Established in 1877, the swan boats are a family-owned and -operated business with a unique tradition and place in the history and beauty of the city. A ride on a swan boat lasts about 15 minutes and provides a picturesque voyage on the waters of the lagoon.

Tickets are $3 or $2 for seniors and $1.50 for children. For more information, call 617-522-1966 or visit

Contemporary art in Boston

A new exhibition that sheds light on contemporary art in Boston is on display at the Boston Athenaeum, 10½ Beacon St., now to Sept. 3.

This exciting exhibition will showcase contemporary prints, drawings, and photographs by New England artists. The works on display, drawings, watercolors, linocuts, lithographs, hand-toned silver gelatin prints, digital photographs, and more, reflect artistic interpretations of New England’s built and natural environment.

Further information can be found at or by calling 617-227-0270.

Photographs of the West End

The West End Museum, 150 Staniford St., is displaying a new exhibition “Under the Wrecking Ball: A West End Landlord” now to Aug. 31.

The exhibit features photographs from a collection donated by Ira Tarlin that depicts the West End at the time of demolition. Eli Tarlin, Ira’s father, was an original resident who came to own numerous properties in the neighborhood. The demise of the community, says the family, was also Eli’s demise.

The exhibit is free and open to the public. Call 617-416-0781 or go online to

Picturing Douglas

The Museum of African American History is presenting a new public exhibition “Picturing Frederick Douglass” at the African Meeting House, 46 Joy St., now through July 31.

Douglass was the most photographed American of the 19th century, more frequently photographed than Abraham Lincoln, and was immediately recognizable to millions in his own lifetime. Douglass used photography as a tool of reform and to elevate the image of the African-American in contradiction to the demeaning depictions of black life often seen in the 19th century.

Based on the book of the same name by Drs. John Stauffer and Zoe Trodd, co-curators of the exhibit, it features more than 90 objects, including historic photos, books, newspapers articles and original letters by Douglass.

Further information can be found by calling 617-725-0022, ext. 222 or online at