Beacon Hill - West End neighborhood notes

Staff Writer
Link Boston Homes
The Old West Church is a historic church, located at 131 Cambridge St. in the West End. This historic building was designed in 1806 by architect Asher Benjamin. It is considered one of his finest works.

Science for kids

Dr. Can-Do Science will present “Magnet Exploration” from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Monday, April 2 and Wednesday, April 11 at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

Toddlers and preschoolers can join Dr. Can-Do Science to experiment with a variety of magnets and learn how magnets attract and repel one another and how they interact with a variety of familiar objects.

Admission is free.

Register by email to or call 617-523-3957.

Anti-Semitism in Europe

The Boston Athenaeum, 10½ Beacon St., will welcome guest speaker E.M. Rose in a talk, “The Murder of William of Norwich” at noon on Tuesday, April 3.

In 1144, the mutilated body of a young apprentice was discovered, and a story spread that it was a ritual murder by Jews in imitation of the Crucifixion as a mockery of Christianity. Rose’s book “The Murder of William of Norwich: The Origins of the Blood Libel in Medieval Europe,” provides answers to why this blood libel emerged when it did and how it was able to gain widespread acceptance, laying the foundation for anti-Semitic myths that continue to the present.

Admission is free with museum admission.

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

Saxophone duo

King’s Chapel, located at the corner of School and Tremont streets, will welcome the Decho Ensemble in concert at 12:15 p.m. on Tuesday, April 3.

The saxophone duo of Jacob Swanson and Sarah Marchitelli will perform selections by Telemann, Deemer, Fulton and Melits.

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

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

Poetry slam

The fourth annual high school poetry slam competition will be held from 7:30 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, April 4 at Fisher College’s Alumni Hall, 116 Beacon St.

Teams from Boston-area high schools including Boston Arts Academy and Urban Science Academy will compete. The event will be emceed by Alex Charalambides, Massachusetts coordinator of “Louder Than a Bomb.”

Admission is free. For more details and a schedule, visit

Gallery talk and tour

The Boston Athenaeum, 10½ Beacon St., will host an up close tour “Portraits of the Artist” at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, April 4.

Docent Pam Ikauniks will lead a tour and discussion of the portraits and work of American sculptors John Frazee and Horatio Greenough. Visitors can explore examples of the artists’ neoclassical works to discover their contributions to American art.

Admission is free for members and $10 for non-members.

Reservations are recommended, as space is limited, at or by calling 617-227-0270.

Celebrating Opening Day

The West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St., will celebrate the return of baseball to Fenway Park with a series of baseball films from 3 to 5 p.m. on Wednesdays during April.

The library will screen “The Jackie Robinson Story” on April 4; “Bull Durham” starring Kevin Costner and Susan Sarandon on April 11; “The Rookie” starring Dennis Quaid on April 18 and “Money Ball” with Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill on April 25.

Admission is free. Call 617-523-3957 for further details.

Musical evening

Emmanuel Music will present “Rising from the Dark” at the Boston Athenaeum, 10½ Beacon St., from 6 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 4.

Flutist Vanessa Holroyd, violist Daniel Dona and harpist Franziska Huhn will perform works by C.P.E. Bach, Debussy’s “Sonata for Flute, Harp and Viola” and Toru Takemitsu’s “And then I knew t’was rain.”

Tickets are $20 for members and $30 for non-members.

Visit or call 617-227-0270 to purchase tickets and for fui.

Building community

“Building Community,” the Vilna Shul’s annual tribute event, will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 8 at the Vilna Shul, 18 Phillips St.

Attendees will enjoy dinner, drinks, live performances by Ari B. and Longy School of Music performers, an exciting auction with WBZ's Jordan Rich and delicious dessert inside the nearly 100-year-old historic Jewish landmark building.

The evening will honor Marilyn Okonow and Karen and Gilbert Winn.

For more information, call 617-523-2324 or email

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.”

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

Coloring for adults

“Color Your World,” coloring for adults, will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. on Fridays during April at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

Studies have shown the relaxing benefits of coloring for adults as well as children. Patrons are invited to drop in and enjoy a relaxing afternoon coloring. Coloring pages, pencils, crayons and markers will be provided.

For more details, call 617-523-3957.

Frog Pond skating

The Frog Pond on Boston Common is open for skating from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sundays through Thursdays (except Mondays when the rink closes at 3:45 p.m.) and from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Admission is based on skater’s height and is $6 for those over 58 inches and free for those under. Season passes are available. Skate rentals are $5 for children, ages 13 and under, $12 for those ages 14 and older. Lockers are also available.

The Frog Pond continues freestyle skating on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 7:45 to 9:45 a.m. for $12 a session. There are no rentals during this time.

For more information, call 617-635-2120 or visit

Picturing Douglass

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 March 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