Beacon Hill - West End neighborhood notes

Staff Writer
Link Boston Homes
A family rides a dog sled passed the State House after 13 inches of snow fell on Feb. 20, 1945. Learn more from Digital Commonwealth at

HEARTbombing: Spread the Preservation Love for Amrheins

Valentine's Day is approaching and that means only one thing – it's time to dust off those markers and share some love via Heart Bombs – for old buildings from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 15 at Amrheins, 80 Broadway.

What are heart bombs? They are valentines and love letters to historic places, local landmarks, and places both safe and threatened that are important to our communities.

The Alliance and the Young Advisors of the Boston Preservation Alliance will share their love for one of Boston's venerable institutions – Amrheins, which dates to 1890 and is the oldest bar in South Boston. It's also the oldest hand-carved bar in America and home to Boston's very first draft beer pump.

Join them to craft some love for American history and pristinely poured pints. They’ll bring the supplies, you bring the creativity.

Visit, or to learn more.

‘The Old Howard Theatre’ exhibit

“The Old Howard Theatre” exhibit will be on view through Feb. 15 at the West End Museum (150 Staniford St.) in celebration of Boston’s oldest playhouse, which once stood at the heart of Scollay Square.

For more information, visit

Klezmer Jam

The Boston Synagogue, 55 Martha Rd. will host a Klezmer Jam at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 16.

Klezmer Jam a fun evening of instrumental collaborations, singing, dancing or listening. If you play an instrument, bring it – or just hang out. Experience the exuberance, contagious energy, passion and joy that is Klezmer.

Light refreshments will be served.

Suggested donation: $5.

Visit for other information.

Frog Pond skating

The Frog Pond on Boston Common is open for skating. Hours are 10 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. on Mondays, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Tuesdays through Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sundays.

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

Black History Month films

The February Film Series will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. on Wednesdays at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

In honor of Black History Month the following movies will be shown: “I Am Not Your Negro” (2016) on Feb. 19; and “If Beale Street Could Talk” (2019) on Feb. 26.

Visit for other information.

Guided Winter Walk on the Esplanade

Join the Esplanade Association for a Winter Walk on the Esplanade from 10 to 11:20 a.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 19.

Get outside and stretch your legs while learning about the fascinating history of Boston’s premier riverside park. There are countless stories behind the Charles River Esplanade and the guides want to share them with you. The walk will cover about a mile of the Esplanade.

The group will meet at Community Boating Inc., 21 David G Mugar Way.

A suggested donation of $10 would support the Esplanade Association’s work to revitalize, enhance, program and maintain the Charles River Esplanade. Visit to learn more.

EmpowerHER: Black Women in the Arts

EmpowerHER: Black Women in the Arts will be presented from 6 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 19 at the Boston Athenæum, 10½ Beacon St.

Join an artful conversation with three preeminent leaders catalyzing change in Boston to make cultural landscape more inclusive and supportive of Black women artist.

Representing backgrounds ranging from music and museums, to the public art sector and philanthropy, these experts and advocates will explore their views on the importance of necessity of the work they’re doing to empower Black women artists.

Free and open to the public.

Visit for required registration and additional details.

West End lecture

The West End Museum, 150 Staniford St. will present “Urban Renewal & the People of the West End Demolition” from 7 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 19.

Explore the story of the clearance and redevelopment of the West End and the people at the heart of those events. The rich mix of families that filled the dense, winding streets of the neighborhood comprised about 7,500 residents from more than 20 different ethnic and racial groups, including Italian, Jewish, Irish, and African-American. Their backgrounds, hopes, and aspirations will be considered along with the vision for the city and the motivations of the key players who sought to build a new, supposedly better Boston by tearing down the West End.

This is the first lecture in the series “Reflections on Boston’s West End: The Origins & Lessons of Urban Renewal” which will run through Nov. 18.

Pre-registration is required at

Series: $120; $60 - Museum members/students; individual sessions - $20 each; $10 - Museum members/students.

‘The Divas Experience’

Enjoy an entirely new way to appreciate the sounds of Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, and others during “The Divas Experience” at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays during February under the Charles Hayden Planetarium dome at the Museum of Science.

This musical experience engages audiences in a sensory journey full of innovation, artistry, and imagination set to a pulsating soundtrack of music’s greatest icons.

Visit for tickets (21+) and other information.

Seniors Connect: Recognizing Anxiety & Depression

All Seniors are invited to enjoy coffee and babka at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20 at the monthly Senior Connect program at the Vilna Shul, Boston’s Center for Jewish Culture, 18 Phillips St.

Dr. Anyah Prasad will talk about ways to recognize anxiety, one of the most common, yet underdiagnosed and undertreated mental health problems among older adults. She will also talk about some of the environmental factors that either contribute to or protect against anxiety and public health interventions to address anxiety.

Visit for registration and other details.

Children’s Winter Festival

The Children’s Winter Festival 2020 will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20 at the Boston Common.

This year’s festival will feature various winter attractions including a 45-foot-long Toboggan Tunnel mountainous adventure, a Snow Mazing maze, Snowzilla Jr. (an inflatable winter-themed slide), and a three-car Trackless Train.

Some of the hands-on games will include Giant Connect4, Giant Horseshoes, Baggo, and Inflatable Skeeball.

There will also be music, family Zumba, giveaways, treats, crafts and lots of other fun.

For more information, visit or call the Parks and Recreation Department at 617-635-4505.

Book Discussion Group: 'Parable of the Sower'

The Book Discussion Group will meet from 3 to 4 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20 at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St. to discuss the Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler (1994).

The book deals with issues relevant today such as climate change, survival, and ways of deepening our humanity.

Visit to learn more.

HOH Kabbalat Shabbat

Laugh into Shabbat with Havurah on the Hill and Comedian Noam Shuster-Eliassi at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 21 at the Vilna Shul, Boston’s Center for Jewish Culture, 18 Phillips St.

As the New Jewish Comedian of the Year, Noam will talk about her rise to fame through comedy and how she sees her role as a comedian in Israel-Palestinian relations today.

6:30 p.m.: Appetizers and Schmoosing; 7 p.m.: Shabbat Services; 8:15 p.m.: Featured Speaker and Shabbat Dinner

This is a young adult program designed for people in their 20s and 30s.

Visit for tickets ($12) and registration along with other details.

Community breakfast

The Paulist Center Boston, 5 Park St. serves a community breakfast to the homeless of Boston from 9 to 10 a.m. on the third Saturday of the month in the Auditorium.

If you are interested in attending or volunteering, visit for more information or just show up.

‘Who Killed Vincent Chin?’ screening

The screening of “Who Killed Vincent Chin?” will be held from 1 to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22 at the Boston Athenæum, 10½ Beacon St.

This Academy-Award nominated film is a powerful statement about racism in working-class America. It relates the stark facts of Vincent Chin’s brutal murder. A 27-year old Chinese-American, Chin was celebrating his last days of bachelorhood in a Detroit bar. An argument broke out between him and Ron Ebens, a Chrysler Motors foreman. Ebens shouted ethnic insults, the fight moved outside, and before onlookers, Ebens bludgeoned Chin to death with a baseball bat. In the ensuing trial, Ebens was let off with a suspended sentence and a small fine.

Outrage filled the Asian-American community to the point where they organized an unprecedented civil rights protest. His bereaved mother, brought up to be self-effacing, successfully led a nationwide crusade for a retrial. This tragic story is interwoven with the whole fabric of timely social concerns. It addresses issues such as the failure of our judicial system to value every citizen’s rights equally, the collapse of the automobile industry under pressure from Japanese imports, and the souring of the American dream for the blue collar worker.

This documentary film is in conjunction with the “Required Reading: Reimagining a Colonial Library” exhibition and gallery talks through Mar. 14.

Registration is not required. Members are free; Non-members are free with admission ($10).

Visit for other information.

A History of African-American Cycling

Author Lorenz Finison will give a talk combining material from his first two books, Boston’s Cycling Craze and Boston’s 20th Century Bicycling Renaissance, capturing the 100-year trajectory of black cycling life in Boston, from 4 to 6 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22 at the West End Museum, 150 Staniford St. (entrance on Lomasney Way).

Finison will discuss African-American cycling from tricycling and high wheel racers in the 1880s to the all-black Riverside Cycle Club and the West End’s own Kittie Knox in the1890s to Ned Chandler, a noted Barbadian immigrant racer in the 1910s and 20s at the Revere track, and the cycling commuters of the 1960s and 70s. Their failures and successes are all shown along with historic pictures, news clips, and bicycling music.

Visit for required registration ($10; free for members) and other information.

We Care Club

The We Care Club will meet from 3:30 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 23, Mar. 22, and May 17 at The Vilna Shul, 18 Phillips St.

This interactive family program combines literature and learning with hands-on philanthropy.

Visit for more information.

King’s Chapel concerts

The King’s Chapel Concert Series will be held at 5 p.m. at King’s Chapel Parish House, 64 Beacon St.

The Sunday series will include “Sonata” on Feb. 23 and G.F. Handel’s “Alexander’s Feast” on Mar. 29.

The doors will open at 4:30 p.m.

For more information and tickets, visit

Sherry Eskin’s StoryTime

Toddlers and their families are invited to join Sherry Eskin for StoryTime from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. through Feb. 26 at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

Intended for individual child-caregiver pairs, come prepared to engage with your child(ren) with developmentally-appropriate songs, stories, and lots of movement.

Visit for other information.

Roaring 20s Extravaganza!

A Roaring 20s Extravaganza will be held from 8 p.m. to midnight on Saturday, Feb. 29 at The Westin Copley Place, Boston at 10 Huntington Ave.

This welcoming event is open to all young adults, ages 21 through 40, hosted by the St. Cecelia’s Young Adults and Paulist Center Young Adults.

Tickets are $40 available at and will include a night of music, dancing and fun. Since Prohibition is over this time around, one drink is included with your ticket.

Celebrate African-American Patriots

Celebrate the African-American patriots that played a vital role in the start of the American Revolution in Boston and in the formation of our country at 12:45 p.m. on select Saturdays and Sundays in February during a 90-minute, one-mile tour.

Led by an 18th-century costumed guide, visitors view history through the eyes of African-American revolutionaries such as Crispus Attucks, Phillis Wheatley, Prince Hall, Peter Salem, among others.

Visit for tickets ($0 to $14) and other information.

‘Reimagining a Colonial Library’ exhibit

The “Required Reading: Reimagining a Colonial Library” exhibition: a full-scale replica of a unique Colonial Revival bookcase, a faithful copy of a seventeenth-century “bookpress” and leather-bound books emulating those in the historic King’s Chapel Library will be on view at the Boston Athenæum 10½ Beacon St. through Mar. 14.

Visit for more information.

Uncommon Movement

Uncommon Movement, a free fitness class, is held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays at Boston Common, Soldiers and Sailors Monument, 139 Tremont St.

These year-round, outdoor calisthenics-type workouts are good for all fitness levels.

Get weird; learn fitness; make friends.

Visit for other details.

ESL conversation group

Come practice speaking English with a facilitated conversation group from noon to 1:30 p.m. on (most) Tuesdays at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

Visit for other information.

Wellness Wednesday

A weekly wellness series, hosted by Eadem Arbor, The Yogis of Peace in Boston, is held from 1 to 1:30 p.m. on Wednesdays at WeWork, One Beacon St.

Unplug from the mental and physical strain of work/life and reconnect with yourself with a 30-minute guided meditation, returning to work/life feeling grounded, renewed, and therefore more productive.

Visit for other details.

Wednesday Night Supper Club

The Wednesday Night Supper Club is held from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Paulist Center Auditorium, 5 Park St. Place.

The Paulist Center volunteers have been serving more than 200 people a week who don’t have access to a good hot meal for 50 years.

If you would like to volunteer to help out in any way (cook, serve, clean up; donation of supplies, food or money; etc.), visit for more information.

Second Saturday Crafts

Second Saturday Crafts will be held at 2:30 p.m. at the Boston Athenæum at 10½ Beacon St.

Free and open-to-everyone, this drop-in craft time will have fun projects to make and take home.

Registration is not required.

For more information about this and other programs, visit

Pajama Palooza

PJ Library will present the “Havdalah Lights, Havdalah Nights Pajama Palooza” at 5 p.m. on Mar. 14, Apr. 11 and May 9 at The Vilna Shul, 18 Phillips St.

Put on your cutest pajamas as Ellen Allard helps us sing bye-bye to the sweetness of Shabbat and hello to a brand new week. Come prepared to dance, sing and jump for joy!

Visit for more information.

MGH ‘Me and My Baby’ support group

A “Me and My Baby” support group will be held from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on (most) Tuesdays at the Massachusetts General Hospital, 55 Fruit St.

The weekly group for pregnant women, new mothers and their families led by MGH nurses and lactation consultants provide an all-inclusive, friendly and supportive environment to discuss questions regarding breastfeeding, newborn care, adjusting to parenthood and breast pump use.

Visit for other information.

New Moms Group

A New Moms Group will meet from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on (most) Thursdays at the Nazzaro Community Center, 30 North Bennet St. and at the North End Branch Library, 25 Parmenter St. during the summer.

This is a safe, supportive and welcoming place to come and meet other new mothers in the neighborhood. They talk about everything from diapers, to nursing, to sleep deprivation and all the other exciting and challenging happenings – and sometimes overwhelming transitions – in their new chapter of life.

This is a drop-in group – with no late comers – so arrive anytime that works for you. The group includes mothers from the North End, Waterfront, West End, Beacon Hill, Seaport, Charlestown neighborhoods and beyond. Babies (infants to 12 months) are welcome, also.

Visit, email, or phone 781-639-6002 for other information.

African Meeting House talks

The Boston African American National Historic Site Rangers provide interpretive historic talks at the African Meeting House everyday on the hour, beginning at 11 a.m. with the last talk starting at 3 p.m.

These programs look at the rich history of the African American community on Beacon Hill in the 19th century with a focus on the abolition movement, the Underground Railroad, and the early struggles for equal rights in Boston.

Programs are free with admission to the Museum of African American History, 46 Joy St.

Adults: $10; Students/Seniors (62+) 8; Members and children, ages 12 and under, are free.

Visit and/or for other information.

King’s Chapel Art & Architecture Tour

The King’s Chapel Art & Architecture Tour (58 Tremont St.) is held at 10:15 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Mondays through Saturdays and at 4 p.m. on Sundays.

Guests will explore both floors of the sanctuary to discover the stories the building shares about its history focusing on themes of continuity and change throughout King's Chapel's 332 year history.

For other information and tickets ($2 to $5), visit

Prayer Circle

A Prayer Circle is held at noon on Fridays at St. John’s Chapel at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, 138 Tremont St.

Everyone is welcome to come and pray, or be silent, and/or sit and talk for a while.

Visit for more information.

Yoga for Adults

A gentle yoga class for adults of all ages who prefer slow, low-impact exercises will be held from 2 to 2:45 p.m. on Tuesdays at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

Visit for other information.

Chinese-Style Mahjong

Chinese-Style Mahjong will be played from 2 to 4 p.m. on the second and fourth Fridays of the month at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

Mahjong is a tile-based game that originated in China during the Qing dynasty. It is commonly played by four players. While similar to the Western card game rummy, it uses 144 tiles instead of cards. Instructors are Likam Lie and Nancy Martin.

For more information, visit or phone 617-523-3957.

Jum’ah Muslim Friday Prayer group

The Jum’ah Muslim Friday Prayer group will meet from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. on Fridays at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, 138 Tremont St.

Visit for other information.

Young Adults Cafes

The Park Street Church, One Park St., offers Young Adult Cafes from 7 to 9 p.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

The Tuesday café is primarily comprised of young adults in their late 20s and 30s while the Wednesday café is designed for youth in their early 20s. Both are open to young adults in the Greater Boston area.

The evenings include fellowship around a meal (usually pizza, but occasionally home-cooked), a time of worship and small group Bible Study.

If you're interested in checking this out, there is no need for you to sign up anywhere; all you have to do is show up and enter Park Street Church on Tuesdays or Wednesdays at 7 p.m. (through the side entrance, the glass doors) and the welcome table will get to know you and help you get oriented.

For more information, visit or email Zane at

Black Seed Writers Group

The Black Seed Writers Group will meet every Tuesday from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. in Upper Sproat Hall at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul at 138 Tremont St. to produce a steady stream of poetry, protest, memoire, prayer and reportage which will be featured in “The Pilgrim” literary magazine showcasing the work of hundreds of homeless, transitional and recently-housed writers.

For more information, visit

Visitor Story Time

Visitor Story Time will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Fridays at the Boston Athenæum 10½ Beacon St.

The first half hour will include favorite stories, rhymes, songs and games. The second half will incorporate time for making a take-home craft, helping to feed the fish and meeting new friends.

Story time is a great opportunity to discover new books, try new activities and explore the Children’s Library.

All ages are welcome. This program is free for all children under age 13. Other non-members are free with admission ($10). Registration is not required.

For more information about this and other events, visit

Job seekers

An information session is held from 10 to 11 a.m. on Wednesdays at Operation A.B.L.E. (174 Portland St. 5th Floor) for job seekers, those underemployed, in career transition and military veterans to talk about available programs and services.

Pre-registration is preferred, but walk-ins are welcomed.

For more information, visit or phone 617-542-4180.

SCSEP information sessions

If you are an income eligible job seeker, age 55 years or older from Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk, Suffolk and Worcester counties, you can attend an information session to learn about the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) at 10 a.m. on most Fridays at Operation ABLE, 174 Portland St. (5th Floor).

This is an earn-while-you learn program which can led to a return to the regular workforce.

Pre-registration at is encouraged; walk-ins are welcome.

P3 Boston

Young adults and young professionals are invited to attend P3 Boston – Prayer, Penance, Pub – which will meet on the second and fourth Monday of each month.

Adorations & Confession will be held at 7 p.m. followed by Meditation and Benediction at 7:30 p.m. at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, 68 William Cardinal O’Connell Way.

The group will then gather at 8:15 p.m. at the Hill Tavern, 228 Cambridge St. for socialization.

For more information, visit

Jazz exhibitions

The Museum of African American History (46 Joy St.) celebrates Boston’s rich jazz history with two new exhibitions – “Jazz Scene in Boston: Telling the Local Story” and “Jazz Greats: Classic Photographs from the Bank of America Collection” – that will be on display through Mar. 30.

A sizeable collection of photographs, handbills, posters and memorabilia capture the images of the legendary artists and notable personalities and the reactions of the audiences from varied genres in music and dance in a variety of settings from the 1920s through the 1980s.

For more information, visit

College gathering

The Park Street Church College Community will meet from 7:30 to 9:15 p.m. on the third Friday of each month at the Park Street Church, One Park St.

There will be student bands, peers sharing about their lives and what is happening on campus, and Christ-centered talks by guest speakers for all students enrolled at one of the 24 Boston colleges.

For more information, visit


Tai-Chi classes will be held from 5 to 6 p.m. on Thursdays at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

For more information on this low impact energy exercise class with yang-style tai chi instructor Arthur Soohoo, email or phone 617-523-3957.

‘Book Club for the Curious’

The Museum of Science hosts a “Book Club for the Curious” at 5:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of the month.

Created at the Museum of Science, Boston and presented in partnership with the CIC, this reading group is designed especially for those who are interested in science and technology and how it impacts society.

For more information about this free book club, visit or phone 617-723-2500.

MS Esplanade Run Club

Marathon Sports, at 671 Boylston St., hosts a meet up every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. to go running with others. All ages and levels are welcome to join and choose between a 3-, 5-, or 8-mile run along the Esplanade or Charles River pathways.

Pre-registration is strongly encouraged in order to participate.

Visit to pre-register and for more information.

These Marathon Sports meet ups run groups are partnered with The Esplanade Association at

Coloring for adults

“Color Your World,” coloring for adults, will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. on Fridays 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 further details, call 617-523-3957.

Evolve Bootcamp

The Evolve Bootcamp will meet on the Boston Common at the Boston Public Garden entrance (84 Beacon St. between Charles and Arlington streets, across from Cheers) from 6 to 7 for an early Friday morning run.

Join the gang and challenge yourself with fun-filled, functional fitness training outdoors.

The Evolve Bootcamp, Boston Common location boasts a surrounding terrain full of variety. In this class you will experience dynamic workouts fueled and inspired by a city environment that includes steep hills, stairs, fields, urban obstacles and more. Rain or shine, expect the unexpected.

For more information and to sign up, go to

Monday lunch

The Cathedral Church of St. Paul, 138 Tremont St., hosts The Monday Lunch program from 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. in Sproat Hall.

The Monday Lunch program has been serving a freshly cooked hot lunch every week for 30 years. Everyone is welcome, regardless of your situation.

Volunteers are welcome to join the team as well.

For more information, visit

Freedom Trail Tour

The Freedom Trail Tour will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays through Mar. 31.

Join Boston by Foot and stroll the Freedom Trail’s ancient streets, past historic cemeteries and colonial stone houses all the while hearing tales of rebellion, war, and independence of a nation.

It is the epic stories of Boston’s rise and America’s birth.

The tour will meet outside the Park Street MBTA station on the Park Street side of the Boston Common and end at Faneuil Hall.

For more information and to reserve a spot on this “name your price tour,” visit

Model room tours

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.

Free tours are conducted in the BPDA Model Room at Boston City Hall, One City Hall Square, on the 9th Floor every Wednesday at 10 and 11 a.m. in two 30-minute sessions.

For more information, visit

For individuals or groups of up to 15 people, register at

For groups larger than 15 people email to arrange a tour.

Walk to the Sea

The Walk to the Sea encompasses four centuries of Boston history.

Beginning at the State House on Beacon Hill, overlooking Boston Common, the walk passes among historic landmarks and skyscrapers. The Walk crosses ground that, centuries earlier, was not ground at all, but an active harbor.

Boston's history is tied to the sea, whose smells and sounds once pervaded the town. The Walk from summit to sea, spanning one mile and descending 100 feet, brings that history to life.

Mayor Thomas Menino dedicated the Norman B. Leventhal Walk to the Sea in 2008.

For more information, visit

BTU homework help

The Boston Teachers Union will provide homework assistance for students in grades K-12 from 4 to 6 p.m. on Thursdays through May 28 at the West End Branch Library, 151 Cambridge St.

There will be no assistance when Boston Public Schools are not in session (vacation week or snow days).

For more information, visit