Charlestown - Navy Yard neighborhood notes

Staff Writer
Link Boston Homes

Play festival

The Charlestown Working Theatre and Theater on Fire will present “The Cabinet of Curiosities” now through May 27 at the theater, 442 Bunker Hill St.

This is a festival of new and experimental works created and adapted by Boston-based artists and companies. It will feature one-act and full-length pieces from Imaginary Beasts, Anthem Theatre, Heart and Dagger Production, Massachusetts Theater Experiment, Ingrid Oslund, Fool’s Journey and many more.

Tickets are $15.

Visit or call 617-242-3285 for a complete schedule of performances and to purchase tickets.

Watercolor painting

The Charlestown Branch Library, 179 Main St., will offer an introduction to watercolor painting class from 1:30 to 3 p.m. on Mondays, May 15 and 22.

Local artist Elisa Solignac will lead the free workshops for adults focusing on one or two basic watercolor techniques or effects. Participants will work on simple compositions, portraits, landscapes and abstracts. This will be an opportunity for beginners to learn the basics of watercolors and for more experienced painters to improve their techniques in a fun and relaxed workshop.

Space is limited. For further details and to register, visit the library, call 617-242-1248 or send an email to

Coffee with a cop

The community is invited to meet with Boston police officers and neighbors to enjoy coffee and conversation from 9 to 10 a.m. on Wednesday, May 17 at the Grasshopper Café, 229 Bunker Hill St.

There will be no speeches or agenda, just a chance to ask questions, voice concerns and get to know the officers in the neighborhood. The Boston Police Activities/Athletic League is sponsoring this event.

Call 617-343-4345 for more information.

Bunker Hill history

The Charlestown Preservation Society and the National Park Service will host a lecture, “Beyond the Square,” from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 17 in the education room of the Bunker Hill Museum, 43 Monument Square.

The talk will focus on the events of June 17, 1776 at Bunker Hill, from the landing of the British ships at what is now the Navy Yard to troop movements and skirmishes across acres of mud pits, stone fences and farmland where neighborhoods and housing developments now stand.

Admission is free and refreshments will be served. This talk is part of Boston Preservation Month programming.

Call 617-242-4198 or send an email to for more details.

Music at the library

Members of the North End Music and Performing Arts Center will host a musical program and interactive petting zoo at 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 18 at the Charlestown Branch Library, 179 Main St.

The Eureka Musicians Ensemble and NEMPAC instructors will demonstrate instruments of all shapes and sizes and let children try them out. From violins to clarinets to trumpets and drums, kids will be able to touch, play and learn about instruments of all types. All ages are welcome.

Call 617-242-1248 for further information.

Sea chanteys

The USS Constitution Museum, Charlestown Navy Yard, will host the “Chantey Sing!” sing-along of chanteys and maritime songs from 2 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, May 21.

The Northeast Chantey Sing will host an afternoon of contemporary and historic maritime music that tells of the history of battles, the mystery and science of the weather and the romance of family and patriotism that spurred a sailor out to sea.

Between songs, visitors can check out the 1812 Discovery Center and its exhibits, games and interactive programming. The program is presented in cooperation with the Boston National Historical Park and Northeast (and MIT) Chantey Sing.

Call 617-426-1812 or visit for more information.

‘Old Ironsides’ open house

The USS Constitution Museum, Building 12, Charlestown Navy Yard, will host the Boarding Party and Collections Open House from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, May 24.

The evening will include sea-worthy libations from Privateer Rum and delicious appetizers. Attendees can explore artifacts from the collection to celebrate the museum’s 41st anniversary. Artifacts include paintings, letters, rare books, armory and more.

Attendees can cast their vote in the seventh annual Privateer Rum challenge as local bartenders return to compete in creating the evening’s favorite rum cocktail

Tickets are $40 for members and $50 for non-members. Reservations should be made by May 17.

Call 617-426-1812 or visit to purchase tickets and for more information.

Student art

Bunker Hill Community College, 250 New Rutherford Ave., is displaying the annual visual and media arts department’s senior show now through Friday, June 16 in the Mary L. Fifield Gallery.

Students in the visual and media arts will display their end-of-year work, including paintings, sculpture, mixed media, photography and more.

Gallery hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.

Visit or call 617-228-2093 for more information.

Ecosystem science

The Charlestown Branch Library, 179 Main St., will host the New England ecosystem science program at 4 p.m. on Wednesdays, now to May 31.

Children will look at local habitats to understand them better and see what can be done to support wildlife. They will consider what kinds of animals live locally, what these creatures need and which ones only visit for a short time.

Reservations are required as space is limited. This program is suited for children in grades 1-3.

To reserve a spot, call 617-242-1248.

‘Old Ironsides’ hours

The oldest commissioned warship afloat, the USS Constitution, is now in its spring hours of operation.

“Old Ironsides” will be open to the public free of charge from 2:30 to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays through Fridays, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. The ship is closed on Mondays.

Now located in Dry Dock 1 in Charlestown Navy Yard for a multi-year planned restoration period, the 217-year-old warship is open to the public.

Visitors will be able to board Constitution and explore the ship’s top (spar) deck only, as its lower decks will be off limits due to the extensive restoration work being conducted.

At the ship, visitors can interact with active duty crewmembers of Constitution and take photos by the ship’s wheel and bell.

To board USS Constitution, all visitors age 18 and older must show a valid state or federal-issued photo I.D. or passport.

After boarding Old Ironsides, visitors are encouraged to explore the USS Constitution Museum, located adjacent to Dry Dock 1. The museum is open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Those interested in following the progress of Constitution’s restoration work are encouraged to visit the museum’s blog at

For more news and information, visit or call 617-242-7511

Marine museum

The Boston Marine Society at Building No. 32, Charlestown Navy Yard, is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Mondays through Fridays.

The society hosts a large collection of art and artifacts depicting maritime history and life on the sea, as well as a research library, detailing the history of sailing and marine commerce and the history of one of the oldest and most important ports in the country.

Its website includes selected objects from its collection and the history of the organization. Visit or call 617-242-0522 for more information.

Diorama display

The Bunker Hill Monument Museum, 45 Monument Square, is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Located on the Freedom Trail, the museum displays the history of the construction of the Bunker Hill Monument as well as a diorama of the historic battle. A cyclorama shows a 360-degree view of the battlefield.

The Charlestown Historical Society keeps its archives in this building, which once served as the neighborhood’s public library.