Downtown - Fort Point - Leather District - Seaport neighborhood notes

Staff Writer
Link Boston Homes

MLK’s final sermons

Boston’s best future is inextricably connected to our ability to address the complexities of structural racism. This racism is grounded in Boston’s history that begin at the institutionalization of slavery during the city’s history. The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, who lived in Boston for years, challenged racism with an attitude of brotherly love and sisterly affection.

The New Democracy Coalition will gather outside Faneuil Hall at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 17 to reflect on King’s challenge.

At the conclusion of the one-hour all-faith gathering, the group will listen to one of MLK’s final sermons with candles lit.

All are welcome to join this event.

Visit for more information.

Design for Aging: Furniture design and specification for seniors

Furniture selection and design can seem fun, but it has a large technical aspect especially when designing for the senior population. While it is fun, it can be tedious, stressful and extremely detail oriented. Good design seems simple, but an incredible amount of thought goes into specifying furniture for senior living clients. Choosing furnishings that have the aesthetic client desires while providing the practical/utilitarian uses that the piece will serve is an often-overlooked art.

Join the DFA committee for a discussion on senior living furniture design and specifications from 5:15 to 6:45 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 19. Hear directly from interior design experts Kathy Laduca, senior interior designer at DiMella Shaffer, and Marcy Stefura, founder of Stefura and Associates, as well as specialized furniture distributers and manufacturers representatives from Creative Office Pavilion and Direct Supply, about what it takes to get the furniture right.

The presentation will be followed by an open discussion with all attendees. Make sure you are comfortable in your seat!

Visit for more information and Zoom registration.

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 for more information and Zoom registration.

How to create amazing presentations in 90 minutes

Whether you use Powerpoint, Keynote, or anything else, the principles of a killer slide deck are the same.

Jordan Lomax (Director at The Social Lab), will present an online workshop from 7:30 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 20 that takes participants through the basics of amazing slide design with simple design principles and easy to follow steps for making your own master templates. Suited to anyone who needs to make presentations for clients, colleagues or customers or startups pitching for funding.

Participants will learn: Framing - Basic presentation structure; Style - How to build your own presentation theme; Pitfalls - Common mistakes to avoid; and Hacks - Top tips for giving your presentation that extra magic.

Go to boston/180028 for more information and Zoom registration ($30).

BSA Awards Gala

The BSA Awards Gala will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 21. Don't miss this annual celebration – this year the Gala is virtual, free to attend and open to the public.

After a particularly difficult year during which designers nevertheless managed to create excellent work, it’s time to toast all that the BSA community has achieved, and all that it has to look forward to.

Go to for more information and Zoom reservations.

‘Ethics in Design: What 2020 Taught Us’

2020 served to shine a light on the many ways ethical gaps and dark patterns have crept into our systems. From uncontrollable propaganda on Facebook to unwanted surveillance and data collection, the systems created are failing in real time, and affecting our society in vast and devastating ways.

As designers, there is a moral obligation to create something that has a positive impact on the world. What designers decide to design (or not design), who they choose to include or ignore, and what segments of society are deemed an “edge case”.

An array of speakers who will discuss some of today’s most concerning ethical design problems and what society can do to ensure positive change going forward in an online discussion slated from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 21.

Visit for more information and Zoom registration.

Career shift: Find work you love

Do you feel stuck in a career you no longer love? Do you long to do meaningful work, but are not sure what it might be? Are you ready to find the career of your dreams, but don't see a clear path forward?

If you answer yes to one of these questions, then this workshop is for you.

In this experiential and interactive workshop slated from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 23, people will learn three keys to identifying the career they can love. Discover the path to the work that is uniquely tailored to you, your talents and passions and the first steps you need to take toward it.


- Learn simple and powerful steps you can use right away to start down the path to find the Career you'll absolutely love.

- Engage with exercises to help you clarify your career path

- Learn about a simple formula for making career decisions that will serve you for the rest of your life

- Gain insights into your own personal career happiness

- Learn tips to follow through your career dreams despite fears

Go to for more information and Zoom registration.

Chinese brush painting for adults: Four seasons

Learn to paint the four seasons, each distinguished by its own temperature, weather patterns, plants and animals.

Relax, create and meditate with Chinese brush painting from 2 to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 23, Feb. 27, March 27 and April 24.

The online classes will be taught in Mandarin, English-friendly.

Go to for more information and registration ($15 per class without supplies | $35 per class includes supplies picked up at Pao Arts Center or mailed at additional cost).

Meet the Instruments series

Join the NEP (New England Philharmonic) and the Boston Children’s Museum for their annual Meet the Instruments series–virtually!

In this virtual series, kids learn about the different families of musical instruments and how those instruments fit together to make an orchestra. Each segment will introduce to a new family of instruments – strings, brass, and woodwinds – as the talented musicians from NEP share their instruments and their passion for making music.

Visit the Boston Children’s Museum YouTube Page to enjoy the series.

Learning Circle: Learning English grammar

The Boston Public Library will present a learning circle series that seeks to help participants learn and/or review English grammar by following VOA everyday grammar: How Americans use English grammar in everyday conversation.

Participants will go through each week's course materials, ask questions, and engage in small group discussions at these weekly Zoom sessions.

The program will be offered from 1 to 2 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 25 and Feb. 1.

Visit for more information and registration.

‘Celebrating What Unites Us!’ virtual cooking series

The “Celebrating What Unites Us!” virtual cooking series will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesdays as follows:

Jan. 27 – Haley House Bakery Café Signature Dishes

Feb. 10 – French Cuisine

Feb. 24 – African Heritage Cuisine

March 24 – Seafood

April 21 – Flavorful Flatbreads: Cultural Variations on a theme

During each session a chef will show people how to prepare a delicious meal, celebrating the cultural heritage of many residents of Boston and beyond.

This program is hosted by Oldways in collaboration with Age-Friendly Boston and Friends of Armenian Heritage Park on The Greenway to keep people connected and coming together.

Visit to register for Zoom link, recipes and more details.

(UN)CONFINED exhibition

The (UN)CONFINED exhibit, a collection of work by 17 printmakers, painters and sculptors, explores feelings caused not only by the pandemic quarantine, but also by figurative and literal boundaries. The exhibition will be on view through Tuesday, Feb. 23 at the FPAC Gallery, 300 Summer St.

An opening reception will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28.

Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Fridays and by appointment.

The artists are members of Shepherd & Maudsleigh Studio, a community of colleagues who have supported each other through the Covid-19 pandemic.

Visit to learn more.

Community Read Book Group

Join friends, family and fellow Yearlong Reading Challenge participants at the Boston Public Library 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28 to discuss the January community read for adults – An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz. The discussion will be moderated by a librarian and will take place on Zoom.

People do not need to be participating in the Reading Together challenge in order to take part in this book group, but are urged to join. Learn about the different monthly challenges, get recommendations for books to read and find other ways to connect with the reading community online.

Go to for more information and registration.

Downtown Holiday Magic

“Downtown Holiday Magic” brings light, art and joy to downtown crossing through Sunday, Jan. 31.

“Stage Windows” boasts unique storefront displays commissioned from some of Boston’s top performing arts organizations. Installations by Boston’s Black Math celebrate Winter Solstice along Washington Street. Festive decorations and a socially-distanced Santa create a fun, safe place for families.

The “Stage Windows” project includes:

- Commonwealth Shakespeare Company will install a projection-based design for an audio performance of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” Location: 467 Washington St.

- Boston Ballet will create a one-of-a-kind infinite jewel box design highlighting the sets and gorgeous handmade costumes that make its version of “The Nutcracker” one of the country’s biggest and most popular. 101 Arch Street; viewable at the corner of Summer and Hawley Streets

- Huntington Theatre Company will build a forward-looking, fantasy New Year’s Eve installation festooned with clocks and calendars. 481 Washington St.

- Cambridge’s legendary Revels troupe will bring an international, fantastical twist to a Winter Solstice theme, with a scene that includes some of the group’s iconic props, costumes and music. 395 Washington St.

The Black Math designs features:

Black Math, the Downtown Boston-based design firm will transform the Downtown Crossing floral kiosk into a glowing, three-dimensional lantern that will light up the intersection of Winter and Washington Streets, in celebration of the Winter Solstice and turn the Downtown Crossing Steps on Washington Street into a 3-D tableau of the harvest sun, with iconic and mythic figures heralding the arrival of winter. Both sites are planned with augmented reality experiences, including photo filters and digital stickers that encourage social media posting and participation.

Boston BID beautification showcase:

The streets will dazzle with lights, holiday flora, wreaths, and more. Along Summer Street, 24 holiday trees, topping 8 feet each, will twinkle to guide viewers along the pedestrian plaza which will complement the Macy’s Christmas tree and window decorations.

Tasteful Boston public art series:

“Tasteful Boston,” a recently installed public art series, features utility boxes throughout the District painted with fresh, colorful imagery celebrating the unique history of Boston’s culinary scene. A map of the sites is available at

Go to for more information.

‘That Which Was Will Come Again’ exhibition

Stop by the Gallery at the Atlantic Wharf to view the latest art exhibit in partnership with FPAC, That Which Was Will Come Again, on display through Friday, Feb. 5.

In the early months of the pandemic, four visual artists banded together to form Circle Art, a supportive community intended to inspire and encourage each other’s artistic vision. In this exhibit, the four artists share their ties to the natural world and convey a sense of hope and belief that art has healing powers for us all.

For more information visit and/or


Excited to give it a curl?

Curling Lanes on the Seaport Common will be open daily and bookable online or in-person in 30-minute increments for up to two hours. Lanes may have up to 12 people (6 on each side). Check in at the Guest Services Gondola for your reservation and to pick up equipment. All equipment will be fully sanitized between use, and sanitizer wipes are available at both curling lanes. Masks must be worn at all times. Signage will be available on-site with curling rules and tips.

Curling hours: Mondays – Fridays: 4 to 9; Saturdays: noon to 9 p.m.; Sundays: noon to 8 p.m. through Sunday, Feb. 28.

This activity is free and open to the public.

Go to for more information.

Donate blood

Help save a life by donating blood with the American Red Cross. Every blood donation will be complimentary tested for the coronavirus antibody.

Give blood at the Boston Blood Donation Center, 274 Tremont St. The Center is open from 7 a.m. to 8:15 p.m. – time slots vary by day.

Sign up at or phone 1-800¬-RED CROSS (1-800¬-733-2767).

Bulfinch Crossing projection ‘Float’

“Float” is a visual animation (with color, light and sound) that seamlessly integrates onto the beams and ceiling of the underpass of Bulfinch Crossing (Government Center Garage underpass at 1 Congress St.), transforming the underutilized space into an art exhibit.

The art installation can be viewed on foot, bike or from the safety of your car from dusk to dawn through Spring 2021. All visitors should practice city and state recommendations on social distancing.

Additional information can be found at:

Virtual ICA

While the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) at 25 Harbor Shore Drive has temporarily closed its doors to the public, you can continue to connect to art and artists remotely with virtual programs, at-home art activities for kids and families, and by shopping online at the ICA store.

Visit for more information.

Operation ABLE

Operation ABLE, 174 Portland St. (Fifth Floor) provides employment services and training programs to job seekers from economically, racially and occupationally diverse backgrounds.

All services at Operation ABLE are being conducted remotely, including distance learning, coaching, and wrap-around services. Class enrollments are open for computer skills training and Health Care and Social Services training, among others.

Visit for more information and registration.

BHN scavenger hunts

“Explore Boston Harbor: A Waterfront-Wide Scavenger Hunt,” presented by Boston Harbor Now and their partners, will run through the winter in four locations: Charlestown, Downtown Boston, East Boston and South Boston.

Go to to start the hunt.

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 for more information, including the Zoom link.

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 under. No ID or registration required.

Visit 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 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.

Boston Children’s Museum virtual tour and resources

Children can plot their next museum adventure by navigating past fun spots like the three-story New Balance Foundation Climb on the first floor and the Construction Zone on the third floor.

Among the resources are BCM Home Edition weekly activities that families can do together and 100 Ways to Play – from cooking and crafting (such as origami, beading, paper dolls and accessories), to imagination and observation games, to exploring and movement activities.

The “Big & Little” podcast for adults, about families, kids, and our world, explores relevant topics ranging from play, learning, creativity, resilience, and health through interviews with people from varied professions and who have different perspectives and experiences.

Visit and/or follow their social media accounts for more information.

Boston Public Market

Boston Public Market is an urban, indoor, year-round marketplace at 100 Hanover St. featuring 35 New England artisans and food producers who offer locally-sourced fresh foods, prepared meals, crafts, and specialty items.

Boston Public Market also has online ordering and same or next day delivery service.

BPM winter hours: Wednesdays-Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. following health and safety protocols.

Check Instagram for frequent updates.

Visit for more information, including special events.

Virtual Revolutionary Spaces

The Old State House and Old South Meeting House have a new website and will offer virtual experiences, including new exhibits and programs, readings, community conversations and performances.

Reflecting Attucks at the Old State House is a temporary exhibit exploring the life and legacy of Crispus Attucks, a man of African and Native descent who was the first to fall in the Boston Massacre, an act of protest widely viewed as a turning point on the road to American Revolution. This exhibit will be on view through March, 2021.

Subscribe to their newsletter and follow them on social media.

Visit for more information.

The Boston Cyclists Union

The Boston Cyclists Union invites people to get involved and join a working group or committee.

Volunteer working groups (Activist Group and Programming Group) meet monthly and play an important role in planning and organizing the Bike Union programs and campaigns. Participation in these groups offers a more active, “on-the-ground” influence than traditional volunteer opportunities.

The three board committees (Development, Finance and Operations, and Governance) support the staff in long-term planning and strategy. Each committee meets monthly.

All meetings are open to all interested parties. Dates and locations along with other information can be found on their website at

St. Francis House

St. Francis House, 39 Boylston St. – the largest day shelter in Massachusetts – continues to welcome more than 500 poor and homeless men and women a day for emergency refuge services.

Here are ways you can help support the St. Francis House mission:

- Make a gift to the SFH COVID-19 Emergency Fund

- Donate disposable masks, homemade masks, and materials for staff to make masks.

- Support their basic services by purchasing clothing and toiletries for their guests through their Amazon Wishlist.

Your gift has the power to rebuild lives; St. Francis House is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization; all donations are tax deductible.

Visit to learn more, including links to support their mission.

‘i’m yours: Encounters with Art in Our Times’

On view at the Institute of Contemporary Art through May 23, i’m yours: Encounters with Art in Our Times celebrates the power of experiencing art in person. This exhibition, which borrows its title from a Henry Taylor painting in the ICA collection, is conceived as an invitation to visitors to create a personal connection with works of art.

Collaboratively and virtually organized in the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic and social unrest, i’m yours is presented within a dramatic, raw architectural space as a series of small galleries, each offering a different artistic perspective to emphasize that the stories museums may tell through art are never fixed but always in process.

Comprising unique encounters with new acquisitions and iconic works from the ICA’s collection, the exhibition’s groupings, or scenes, address a range of topics, including ideas of home and history, social and material transformation and frames of identity in portraiture and sculpture.

Including works by Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Kader Attia, Firelei Báez, Louise Bourgeois, Nan Goldin, Simone Leigh, Doris Salcedo and many others, i’m yours sparks wonder, encourages questions, challenges assumptions and provides a space for reflection.

Shop AFH

Artists for Humanity has a limited-edition collection – in addition to one of the largest collections of teen-created fine art in Boston and perhaps the nation – that amplifies AFH teen artists' creative expression during these pivotal times, providing them a platform for shaping how society moves forward to create a better, more equitable world.

Visit for more information, including links to purchase their artworks. Reduced shipping rates are available.

You can also peruse your daily dose of art on Instagram @AFHBoston.

Support ICA

If you’ve enjoyed ICA’s free Thursday Nights, Holiday Mondays, talks, tours, film screenings and family programs – or would like to see more of them – consider a small donation of $5 or more today. Your support helps keeps programs such as these free and accessible to all.

Here is the Exchange Conference Center on the Boston Fish Pier.