Dorchester neighborhood notes
Neponset River Walk
Enjoy the fresh air along the beautiful Neponset River while getting your body moving. Join a BNC Teacher Naturalist from 1 to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 13 for an easy to moderate walk through some of Dorchester's beautiful city parks as participants experience the stress-relieving benefits of nature and learn something new about our wildlife neighbors.
This flat walk is about 2.5 miles and will be taken at a slow to moderate pace – following safety guidelines, including wearing a mask. Meet at Joseph Finnigan Park.
Go to massaudubon.org/program-catalog/boston-nature-center/76276-neponset-river-walk for more information and registration (Members: Adult $10, Child $10 | Nonmembers: Adult - $12, Child - $12).
Souper Bowl XIII
The 13th annual Haley House Souper Bowl will be held virtually on Sunday, Feb. 14.
A ticket will include a quart of soup – select from a variety made by local chefs; a handmade, one-of-a kind, ceramic bowl made by MassArt CACP and Clay for Change; fresh bread from Iggy's; and the Zoom link to the virtual program at 5 p.m.
Enjoy add-ons such as beer, wine and their classic chocolate chip cookies to round out the meal, as well as Haley House merchandise.
The fun Souper Bowl packages can be picked up at Haley House Bakery Cafe in Roxbury at a pre-selected time to enjoy safely at home.
All proceeds benefit the Haley House Soup Kitchen, Food Pantry and Live-In Community, 23 Dartmouth St. in South End and Haley House Bakery Café and Catering, 12 Dade St. in Roxbury.
Visit haleyhouse.org/updates/souperbowl13 for more information and tickets (starting at $40) – on sale now.
During ZOOcation week – Monday, Feb. 15 through Friday, Feb. 19 – get close to some amazing ambassador animals, right from the comfort of your own couch.
Join the zoo virtually from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. for a wild week of animal encounters and educator-led crafts and activities (themes change daily), live from both Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo.
Go to zoonewengland.org/engage/zoocation-week for more information and daily tickets ($40 member; $45 nonmember).
Harboring at Home: An Evening with Oompa
Join Boston Harbor Now and AfroDesiaCity for the second installment of their virtual arts series from 7 to 8 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 15.
This program includes a video performance and audience Q&A with poet & rapper, Oompa.
Go to eventbrite.com/e/harboring-at-home-an-evening-with-oompa-tickets-137305403157 for more information and registration.
Castle of Our Skins: ‘My Favorite Things’
Taylor Lena McTootle and Castle of Our Skins (Boston’s concert and educational series dedicated to celebrating Black artistry) will present "My Favorite Things,” a delightful way to introduce young learners (elementary-school-aged) to various genres and styles of music from 1 to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 16.
Visit bpl.org/events for more information and Zoom registration.
Benkadi Drum and Dance
With vivid costumes, the multicultural Benkadi Drum and Dance group will perform new dances showcasing traditional West African rhythms and movements from 11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 17.
Join the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum Celebrate Series as a folktale comes to life before your very eyes.
Visit www.eventbrite.com/e/celebrate-with-benkadi-drum-and-dance-registration-135730273903 for more information and registration.
ARC needs blood – critical shortage
The American Red Cross is urging people to make a blood donation to help maintain their supply amid the pandemic. Help save a life by donating blood!
A blood drive will be held from 1 to 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 17 at VFW, 500 Morton St. in Dorchester Center.
Every blood donation will be complimentary tested for the coronavirus antibody.
Sign up at www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/find-drive or phone 1-800¬-RED CROSS (1-800¬-733-2767).
Communiversity: ‘Standing with the City, Standing Up to the Times’
University of Massachusetts Boston Office of Community Partnerships' Annual Fireside Chat 2021 with UMass Boston faculty and organizational leaders across Boston will be held from 9:30 to 11 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 18, facilitated by Kenneth Cooper, Senior Editor for GBH News.
The fireside chat will be an opportunity to deepen the dialogue about community-based partnerships, the role of the university in the greater community and how we as a community can stand together during these unprecedented times.
This event is free and open to all.
Visit eventbrite.com/e/communiversity-standing-with-the-city-standing-up-to-the-times-tickets-136443087949 for more information and registration.
Teen Book Discussion Group: ‘Reverie’
The Teen Book Discussion Group will meet from 3 to 4 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 18 to discuss the fantasy novel Reverie by Ryan La Sala.
Teens are encouraged to join the conversation and make book recommendations whether or not you have read the chosen book. This teen librarian led monthly group is part of the year-long #ReadingTogether challenge.
Visit bpl.org/events for more information, including the book synopsis and how to join on Twitch.
Stone Social Impact Forum
Acclaimed environmental activist, MacArthur “genius” grant recipient and author Catherine Coleman Flowers, founding director of the Center for Rural Enterprise and Environmental Justice, will headline the virtual Stone Social Impact Forum - a signature series highlighting civic change agents who advance social change and innovatively address areas of inequality in our society.
Catherine Coleman Flowers will share her journey in environmental activism and how she broadens the scope of environmental justice to include issues specific to disenfranchised rural communities by galvanizing policy and research to redress failing infrastructure that perpetuates socioeconomic disparities across the United States from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 18.
Visit emkinstitute.org for more information and Zoom registration.
Kanopy Club: ‘Daughters of the Dust’ (1991)
Daughters of the Dust: At the dawn of the 20th century, a multi-generational family in the Gullah community on the Sea Islands off of South Carolina - former West African slaves who adopted many of their ancestors' Yoruba traditions - struggle to maintain their cultural heritage and folklore while contemplating a migration to the mainland - even further from their roots.
Watch the film on Kanopy; then join the Boston Public Library from 7 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 18 for a discussion.
Visit bpl.org/events for more information and Zoom registration.
Interactive Biology Exploration with Model Organism Zoo
Learn how the human body works with real biologists. This Zoom session accompanies a hybrid virtual activity kit developed by Model Organism Zoo, a Harvard graduate student-run science outreach program.
Kit registrants will receive virtual instructions and use common materials to perform at-home experiments that explore the digestive, circulatory, and nervous systems. Then, a team of scientist volunteers will meet with registrants online from 2 to 3:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 19 for an interactive activity session. Ideal for ages 9-12.
Need experiment supplies? Get them from select libraries before the event.
Visit bpl.org/events for more information and registration.
Virtual Harpoon Shamrock Splash
Save the Harbor/Save the Bay’s first ever Virtual Harpoon Shamrock Splash will be held through Friday, March 12.
They’re challenging everyone to come up with creative ways to “splash” from wherever they are. So, grab a bucket of cold water, a cup of ice, fill up your bathtub, or find another fun, safe and creative way to polar plunge - all of the money raised goes to the Better Beaches Program.
With registration, people get Harpoon beer, a Splash koozie and entry into a raffle to win round trip flights on JetBlue.
During February, they will be awarding weekly fundraising prizes. Raise more money to win more prizes.
Get cold for a great cause… Visit shamrocksplash.org/default.asp for more information and registration.
BPL Reading Challenge
As the pandemic drags on and Boston residents remain cooped up in their homes, the Boston Public Library invites readers throughout the city to participate in “Reading Together.”
In the challenge, each month has a distinct theme and participants are asked to read a book tied to the theme.
The library offers recommended book lists for the monthly themes for adults, teens and children at bpl.org/yearlong. Participant patrons can track their progress as well.
Visit bpl.org for more information.
Facebook Live Story Time: Tuesday Tales
Join the Children’s Library team for a live-streamed story time for children, ages 2 to 4 years of age, from 10:30 to 11 a.m. on Tuesdays on www.facebook.com/BPLchildren.
Visit bpl.org/events for more information.
Dorchester New Parents Group
A new parents’ group, hosted by Jewish Family & Children’s Service (JF&CS), will be held from noon to 12:45 p.m. on Tuesdays and from 5 to 5:45 p.m. on Wednesdays through March 18. Parents with a baby under the age of three are invited to attend.
The parent groups provide safe and nurturing spaces for parents and their babies to give and receive support.
Visit jfcsboston.org for more information and Zoom registration.
Fitness classes at BGC of Dorchester
The Boys and Girls Club of Dorchester will offer fitness classes in-person at CrossFit Body+Fuel, 89 Pearl St. in Braintree (for Youth 10 to 18) at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays (following COVID protocols) and virtually over Zoom at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesdays.
Contact Brendan at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to register.
LRC: Self-Care Series
Self-care is important to maintaining a healthy relationship with yourself. It means doing things to take care of your mind, body and soul by engaging in activities that promote well-being and reduce stress. Doing so enhances the ability to live fully, vibrantly and effectively. The practice of self-care also reminds people that their needs are valid and a priority.
Join this facilitated living room conversations from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesdays through Feb. 24.
Visit bpl.org/events for more information, including the weekly topics, and Zoom registration.
Little Groove concerts
Little Groove will host a concert from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Wednesdays, hosted by the Charlestown and Grove Hall branches of the Boston Public Library. There will be lots of music, song and dance.
Little Groove classes are a wonderful way to help children have fun and also learn and reach important developmental milestones. Little Groove has a group of teachers who all sing and play guitar and each activity has a learning objective. Little Groove classes specialize in children from 3 months up to 4 years of age.
Visit bpl.org/events for the more information and Zoom registration.
Virtual Baby Cafés
The BMC Baby Café at Codman Square Health Center will virtually meet from 2 to 4 p.m. on Wednesdays.
This group is staffed by Jenny Weaver, RN, IBCLC and peer counselors who have extensive experience counseling moms with lactation and infant concerns. Limited translation for Haitian Creole speakers is available.
Visit www.codman.org/event/virtual-baby-cafes for more information and registration.
Tweens, ages 8-12, are invited to join librarians for games and activities from 4 to 4:45 p.m. on Thursdays over Zoom. There will be something different every week. It’s a great way to hang out with kids your age.
Visit bpl.org/events for more information and Zoom registration.
BPL online Homework Assistance Program (HAP)
The Boston Public Library offers online homework help, mentorship and afterschool activities provided by trained high-achieving high school students from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Mondays through Thursdays through May 14 (except during school holidays and vacations).
Students in grades K-8 are welcome on a drop-in basis, no registration required.
Visit bpl.org/events for more information, including the Zoom link.
Tune in on Facebook at 1:30 p.m. for #ZooToYou: a daily dose of animal cuteness, chats with the care staff, crafts and activities to do at home, and lots more.
Visit the Kids’ Corner for more fun at zoonewengland.org.
DAP: ‘Power to the People’
Join the Dorchester Art Project (DAP) on IG Live from 4 to 5 p.m. on Sundays for “Power to the People.”
DAPS mission is “to empower the Black community by acknowledging the importance of supporting Black-owned businesses and returning power back to the people.”
‘The Happiness Project’: Book discussion for a happier life
In Gretchen Rubin’s book, The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle and Generally Have More Fun, the author chronicles her adventures during the 12 months she spent test-driving the wisdom of the ages, current scientific research and lessons from popular culture about how to be happier.
Rather than uprooting herself, Rubin focused on improving her life as it was. Each month she tackled a new set of resolutions: give proofs of love, ask for help, find more fun, keep a gratitude notebook, forget about the results. She immersed herself in principles set forth by all manner of experts from Epicurus to Thoreau, Oprah to the Dalai Lama – to see what worked for her and what didn’t.
Following the book discussion that took place in January, the participants will meet monthly to discuss their personal resolutions, swap ideas, build enthusiasm, give encouragement, and – perhaps most importantly – hold each other accountable. Being part of a group is a terrific way to build friendships, have fun and figure out ways to make yourself happier.
The group will meet from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays as follows:
- March 3: Personal commandments
- April 7: Inspiration
- May 5: Happy memories
Visit bpl.org/events for more information and Zoom registration.
Virtual Winter Farmers Market
Dorchester Winter Farmers Market has gone virtual. Get farm-fresh food delivered to your door through Thursday, March 25.
Visit dorchesterwinterfarmersmarket.org to order and to learn about food assistance and the City of Boston’s Coupon Program. SNAP/HIP benefits accepted.
Free healthy meals to go
Codman Academy is offering free, homemade, hot meals to-go for anyone who has a child under 21 years old at home. Community members, students and families are welcome to as many meals (breakfast and lunch items) as they need to feed their family for that day. No ID required.
Meals can be picked up from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Codman Academy main entrance on Epping Street. When you arrive, phone 617-287-0700, ext. 175. Someone from the kitchen staff will come meet you.
For more information, email Anthony Travers at email@example.com.
The Daily Table
The Daily Table is a nonprofit community store and kitchen with a mission of making healthy food affordable to everyone.
The Daily Table source nutritious, delicious food options at prices that every budget can afford, including grab-n-go, ready-to-eat meals from their kitchen.
The Daily Table offers delivery and in-store pick up at the same prices as their stores.
Store locations: 450 Washington St., Dorchester; 2201 Washington St., Roxbury; 684 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge (recent opening)
Store hours: Monday to Saturday: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sunday noon to 7 p.m.
Customers 60+ hours begin at 9 a.m. Mondays through Saturdays; 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Visit dailytable.org for more information.
Community Fridges in and around Boston
Community Fridges are meant to help people fill gaps for their food-insecure neighbors that are not being addressed by the state. They’re stocked with groceries by members of the community and can be accessed at no cost by anyone who needs food. They operate on a “take what you need, give what you can” basis, but organizers stress that contributing food to a fridge is not a precondition for taking food. The fridges will be stocked through the winter months (or beyond).
Community Fridges in The Boston Area per www.thebostoncalendar.com:
– Allston Community Fridge at 1 N Beacon, Allston
– Cambridge Community Fridge at 52 Church St., Cambridge
– Dorchester Community Fridge at 1471 Dorchester Ave., Dorchester
– Jamaica Plain Community Fridge at 366 Centre St., Jamaica Plain
– Lynn Community Fridge at TBA
– Mattapan Community Fridge at 1290 Bluehill Ave., Mattapan
– Roslindale Community Fridge at 4140 Washington St., Roslindale
– Somerville Community Fridge at 35 Prospect St., Somerville
Read more about Community Fridges in and around the Boston area at boston.eater.com/2020/10/2/21497298/boston-community-fridges-free-food-aid.
Kroc Community Center update
Salvation Army-Kroc Corps Community Center, 650 Dudley St., is open following health and safety guidelines. Check the status as they intermittently close due to COVID spikes.
The Center has a fitness floor, cardio loft and expanded cycling studio in the gymnasium. Access to the fitness areas is by reservations only.
The Kroc Playground is open; The Water Park is closed.
The Salvation Army’s social services, food pantry and meal distribution efforts are ongoing. If you need assistance, including food or other resources, call their Social Service Department at 617-318-6940 or email Social Services Ministries Manager, Lurena Hood at
Everyone is welcome to attend their Sunday worship service at 11 a.m. livestreamed on Facebook.
Visit https://bostonkroc.salvationarmy.org for more information.
JP Flea Market
Shop online at the JP Flea Market to support local artists and small businesses.
Go to jpfixandflea.com/upcoming-events.html to view a fine assortment of treasures –
local honey, records, jewelry, pipes, pottery, art, kids’ books, vintage clothing and accessories, teas, hand-printed apparel, candles, printed cards, handmade knits, bags, zines, woodwork, crystals, handmade soaps, organic dog treats, prints, patches, hand-stitched wallets, baskets, home décor, children's clothing, body-care and more – available from the vendors who are located in a variety of Boston neighborhoods and beyond.
Free ‘grab-and-go’ meals/food resource information
Boston Eats will continue to provide free nutritious breakfast and lunch to city kids and youth –
18 years of age and younger. No ID or registration required.
Visit www.boston.gov/departments/food-access/boston-eats or phone 1-800-645-8333 for a list of meal locations and other information. A list of food pantries and soup kitchens is also included.
Visit foodpantries.org for a list of current food pantries, food closets, food banks, soup kitchens, congregate meal locations, food boxes, vouchers, etc.
If you need additional food resources, contact Project Bread’s Food Source Hotline at 800-645-8333.
Zoos are open
Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo are open for a roarin’ good time following COVID guidelines.
At each park, guests will be invited to experience an Outdoor Safari Walk, a one-way trail through many of the zoo exhibits. Some of the buildings may be closed. The playground and play stations are open.
Online reservations and timed tickets that can be scanned are required for your visit.
Zoo winter hours: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily (Oct. 1-March 31)
Virtual tours and activities will continue.
Visit zoonewengland.org to learn more about the re-opening procedures before you visit.
Chez-Vous GoFundMe fundraiser
The Chez-Vous Rollerskating Rink (11 Rhoades St.) has been a staple in Boston for more than 85 years, providing memories and entertainment for families of all ages.
The rollerskating rink, which has been closed since March, has established a crowdsourced
Gofundme fundraiser to sustain them until they are allowed to re-open, coming together again as one big family. All donations (no matter how large or small) are greatly appreciated.
To learn more about this family-fun establishment and to make a donation, visit chezvousrollerrink.com. For more information, phone 617-825-6877.
Emotion Revolution exhibition
Emotion Revolution is a virtual multimedia exhibition curated by student Mary Morris Evans and co-produced by Dorchester Art Project and Northeastern University’s College of Art, Media, and Design.
To view, go to emotionrevolutionshow.com.
Rainbow Peace Flag Project/City Peace Project
The mission of the Rainbow Peace Flag Project is to extend kindness and caring across national borders, with love that includes people of all sexualities, genders, abilities, religions, races and cultures, and to condemn acts of violence and hatred, embracing peaceful dialogue instead.
The City Peace Project (part of the Rainbow Peace Flag Project) – an effort of individuals and local groups in Dorchester, Roxbury and Mattapan to share the message of peace, inclusivity and non-violence – is inviting people to display Peace Flags at homes, spiritual institutions, schools, businesses and throughout their communities.
This is an ambitious effort and they welcome all who would like to volunteer to help package, distribute, promote, display, and share their story of why this symbol is important for them, their family, loved ones or community.
Donations are accepted, but not required to receive a flag or flag display.
Go to commonstreet.org/rainbow-peace-flag-project for more information.
Suicide survivor support group
DeeDee’s Cry will host an ongoing weekly support group for suicide survivors. If you are a suicide attempt survivor seeking a safe, non-judgmental place to talk about the feelings that led you to attempt and the impact that your attempt had on your life visit DeeDeesCry.com to sign up.
DeeDee's Cry provide resources and programs to increase mental health awareness and suicide prevention in communities of color.
DeeDee’s Cry is located in Roxbury and is associated with Louis D. Brown Peace Institute in Dorchester.
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 award-winning (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.
All Dorchester Sports & Leadership (ADLS) provides quality programming for youth, ages 5-18, helping them to build self-esteem, leadership skills and healthy lifestyles through athletic and academic achievement.
ADLS programs are currently open with limited activities following strict health and safety guidelines.
Register to participate, to learn, to play, to volunteer, to mentor, to coach at alldorchestersports.org or phone 617-287-1601.
BGC of Dorchester @ Home
Boys and Girls Clubs of Dorchester provides all after-school programs such as Academics, Arts and Music, Character & Leadership and Healthy Lifestyles on their Facebook and YouTube platforms in an interactive setting.
Go to bgcdorchester.org for more information and registration.
EMK Institute programs and activities for at home fun
Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate at Columbia Point features a variety of interests for the family to enjoy.
While video highlights from the Institute, including Getting to the Point programs and Year in Review 2019 among other items can be found on YouTube, links to a variety of activities can be found on their website.
Make a Difference activities encourages young people to think about how they can make a difference in their communities and in the world; About the Senate activities are for children and families to learn more about the work Senators do, how they work together, and some traditions they follow; Youth Action Guides include resources for teens on how to get involved with important issues facing the nation and the world; and Issue Investigations explore different perspectives that shape the debate on current policy issues before Congress.
Visit emkinstitute.org for more information, including quick links to YouTube and the activities.
JFK Library and Museum digital content and curriculum
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum adds a weekly digest of digital content for families to enjoy, including curriculum and content that parents and educators can easily incorporate into their daily lessons for K-12 students.
The Library and Museum remains closed at this time
Visit jfklibrary.org for more details.
Catholic Charities Archdiocese of Boston ` `
Catholic Charities Archdiocese of Boston provides a comprehensive array of services for people in need.
Please consider donating food, gift cards or hygiene products to keep their food pantries and basic needs operations open and fully stocked.
Phone their Administrative Offices at 617-464-8500 for donation guidelines.
Visit www.ccab.org for a list of places that they service along with more information.
Franklin Park Zoo seeks donations
Although the Franklin Park Zoo is partially open, donations to the “All Our Animals Fund” can still be made to keep the Zoo’s mission alive, to provide vital care to their animals and maintain the Zoo’s infrastructure.
Visit zoonewengland.org for more information, including ways to donate.
The Neighborhood Aid Network
The Neighborhood Aid Network, coordinated by The Human Network Institute at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, has a simple goal: To provide a central place where neighborhood digital platforms can aggregate and standardize and where volunteers receive information and training.
Visit www.humannetworkinitiative.com/neighborhoods for more information.