Elsewhere in the City neighborhood notes

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The Custom Tower in McKinley Square in the Financial District neighborhood shines at night.

Spring Fling at the Zoos                                                                              

Spring is in bloom and everyone is invited to celebrate at Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, April 3.

Watch as animals receive some tasty seasonal enrichment that’s sure to add an extra spring to their step. While exploring, be on the lookout for other sure signs of spring: hidden flowers placed around the Zoo as part of a mobile scavenger hunt.

Visit www.zoonewengland.org/engage/spring-fling for more information and tickets (Event included with general admission).

Boston Youth Poet Laureate program for teens

As people strive to live in the now, the past hold truths that can them make conscious choices in the present and plan with vision for the future. In this workshop from 3:30 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, April 3, poets will be crafting their versions of a memory lane.

Participants should come prepared to write two poems, one for a free write and the other answering a prompt. Be a part of a stroll down memory lane as you write and share your progress and visions through poetry. 

Visit bpl.org/events for more information and Zoom registration. 

Riot Improv: Songs to Scenes                                                 

Witness an eclectic and hilarious mix of improv comedy and live music from 8 to 9:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 3.

These monthly events will feature an amazing singer songwriter then Riot Improv (Rozzie Square Theater) will spin their lyrics and melodies into raucous comedy.

All performances are now virtual. Visit theriottheater.com/full-schedule.html for more information and registration (0-$15) to receive the Zoom link.

Spring Bird Walk    

Join a BNC Teacher Naturalist at Boston Nature Center and Wildlife Sanctuary, 500 Walk Hill St. in Mattapan to observe resident birds and spring migrants in a unique urban habitat that is a favorite stomping ground for many bird species. Local bird enthusiasts will help the group find and identify birds through field marks, sounds, and behaviors. Birders of all levels will enjoy these guided walks.

The walks will be offered from 7 to 9 a.m. on Sunday, April 4, April 25 and May 15 and on Saturday, April 10, May 1 and May 8 following COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Go to https://www.massaudubon.org/program-catalog/boston-nature-center/77354-spring-bird-walk for more information and registration (Members: $4 | Nonmembers: $6).

Habits of the Rabbit

Rabbits are everywhere. Join the Boston Nature Center and Wildlife Sanctuary, 500 Walk Hill St. in Mattapan from 10:30 a.m. to noon on Sunday, April 4 to find out why rabbits have such big ears and feet and what they like to eat besides carrots.

The group will explore the meadow and forest looking for tracks and signs, play some rabbit games and learn some of the fun and interesting habits of the rabbit.

This program is composed of activities for children, ages 5-12 with an accompanying adult, following COVID-19 safety guidelines. Activities may include: songs, crafts, running games and explorations.

Visit https://www.massaudubon.org/program-catalog/boston-nature-center/77349-habits-of-the-rabbit for more information and registration (Members: Adult $10, Child $10 | Nonmembers: Adult - $13, Child - $13).

Virtual spring dance parties with Mini Movers Studio                           

Join Mini Movers Studio from 11 a.m. to noon on Tuesday, April 6, April 13 and April 27 for virtual spring dance parties.

During each session, the group will read a spring-themed book, learn some dance moves, and do other fun activities together. This program is intended for children ages 3-5 and their families or caregivers, including older siblings. 

Visit bpl.org/events for more information and Zoom registration.

Matt Heaton - Musical concert                                                                   

The Roxbury, Grove Hall and Charlestown Branch Libraries will host an 11-week series, “TWINKLE TWINKLE: Performers, Songs, Stories & Crafts” for children, ages 0-5, from 11 to 11:30 a.m. on Wednesdays through June 9.

Matt Heaton will kick off the series with a musical concert on April 7.

Matt Heaton songs are a mix of rockabilly, surf, American roots and Irish traditional music, delivered with a wry sense of humor and a sincere sense of fun for all ages.

The performance will be available on Zoom and will also be streamed on Facebook Live via the Roxbury Branch of the Boston Public Library FB page.

Visit bpl.org/events for more information and registration.

Tai Chi for Wellness                                                                                    

Join the Boston Public Library and Eddie Watkins from 2 to 3 p.m. on Thursday, April 8 for an online introduction to Tai Chi, an ancient exercise rooted in China that consists of gentle and flowing postures. Movements are slow and repetitive and are coupled with a focus on the breath.

Visit bpl.org/events more information and Zoom registration.

Formerly Known as Food &) Book Club: ‘Followers’ by Megan Angelo

The (FKA Food &) Book Club – now online – will meet from 7 to 8 p.m. on the second Thursday of the month to share dishes – separately – tied to a theme of the selected book.

On April 8, the group will explore the themes of social media, celebrity and status-seeking in the uncomfortably close-to-real-life, post-apocalyptic future envisioned by Megan Angelo in her novel Followers.

This electrifying and fast-paced story "follows" the lives of two ambitious friends, the dark choices they make, and the stunning moment that changes the world as they know it forever. At home, the group will be sharing foods that are considered trendy and Insta-worthy.

Pick up copies at the Egleston Square Branch, or use an online version, and meet up to discuss the book, foods, or anything else the group stumbles upon.

Visit bpl.org/events for other details, including the link to join the meeting.

Reading the Rainbow                                                         

Reading the Rainbow – a Boston Public Library online-exclusive book group geared towards members of the LGBTQ+ community – will meet from 4 to 5 p.m. on second Friday of the month.

Join the group on April 9 for a lively discussion of Amber Dawn's Sodom Road Exit.

Visit https://bpl.bibliocommons.com/events/603cddeab8fa66a708384d98 for more information and registration.

Brighton Outdoor Winter Farmers Market

Shop fresh produce, meat, fish, bread and pastries, coffee and more at the Brighton Outdoor Winter Farmers Market, PSF Community Center Parking Lot, 640 Washington St., Oak Square from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 10.

Produce vendors accept HIP/SNAP.

Masks and social distancing are required.

Riot X: Live-ish 30 virtual plays in your real world                                

Riot X (The Rozzie Square Theater) has metamorphosed their monthly live show caterpillar into a beautiful video butterfly.

Watch it virtually flutter its wings spectacularly with a tantalizing hybrid of brand-new live plays, brand-new video plays, and brand-new-ish other video plays at 8 p.m. on Saturday, April 10.

Visit theriottheater.com/full-schedule.html for more information and registration (0-$15) to receive the Zoom link.

Eighth Annual Artemis Circle Spring Luncheon

Artemis Circle, Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston’s women’s leadership group, will come together virtually from noon to 1 p.m. on Monday, April 12 to support Club members and families this spring.

Join them for a virtual Club tour, hear from inspiring speakers and connect with like-minded women.

Visit https://www.bgcb.org/artemislunch for more information, including sponsorships, donations and tickets.

Run Wild with Zoo New England's First Virtual 5K Series                    

On your mark, get set … Run Wild with Zoo New England’s first virtual 5K series.

Join the pack and set out for a run, walk or stroll on a route of your choosing while providing support for Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo’s animals.

The first race, “Run Wild 5K.” will take place in April (registration is open).

The second race, “Run Wilder 5K & 10K,” will take place in July (registration opens May 1)

The third race, “Run Wildest 5K, 10K, Half Marathon,” will take place in October (registration opens Aug. 1).

Registration costs $30 to enter an individual race or $75 to register for the Run Wild series.

Visit www.zoonewengland.org/engage/run-wild-virtual-5k-series for more information and registration.

‘The Fire Never Goes Out’  

The Boston Public Library Teen Book Discussion Group will meet from 3 to 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 15 to discuss the graphic memoir, The Fire Never Goes Out by Noelle Stevenson.

Visit https://bpl.bibliocommons.com/events/5fe1127a316797310b3f8ef1 for more information, including the book synopsis and link to Twitch.

Trivia for Cheaters                                                                

Trivia for Cheaters, the competition that invites you to cheat, drink and be merry – all for a good cause will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 15.

Meredith Goldstein of The Boston Globe will set the tone for the evening as participants join together to raise $30,000 to provide students with the resources to advocate for themselves, make their voices heard, and become published authors through 826 Boston’s free writing programs.

A twist on pub trivia, participants are encouraged to register as teams and fundraise to unlock helpful cheats that will give them a leg up on the competition. Speed and accuracy will also determine how quickly you’ll climb the leaderboard. 

Each member of the winning trivia team will receive a free class to learn the art of the handmade dumpling with Mei Mei, two-time winner of Boston’s Best Dumplings from Boston Magazine, so sign up now!

Visit https://826boston.org/news/trivia-for-cheaters for more information and registration.

BGMC: ENCORE 2021 Gala                                 

Heart thumping ...  Hooves stomping ...  Hopes rising ...  And They’re Off!

The Boston Gay Men’s Chorus’s (BGMC’s) signature fundraiser is going virtual this year – live from the Regent Theatre on Saturday, May 1. The pre-show will begin at 6:30 p.m. and the live stream will start at 7 p.m.

A silent auction will begin at 8 a.m. on Thursday, April 22 and will close at 7 p.m. as the live stream begins. The live auction will take place during the live stream.

Catherine Peterson, Immediate Past Chair of Chorus America and Executive Director of ArtsBoston, will host this fun and interactive live experience that includes amazing and diverse entertainment, including music, comedy, a hat competition and more.

Some ticket packages will include the BGMC pod-pack with food, decor and everything to make ENCORE 2021 fabulous.

Go to https://www.bgmc.org/2021/03/04/encore-2021-gala/ for more information and tickets.

Waterworks Museum World Water Day Virtual Race               

World Water Day celebrates the importance of freshwater in our lives. The people at the Metropolitan Waterworks Museum are committed to telling the stories of the struggles to access safe water in history and how people are still working to combat this issue today.

With water at the heart of many present and future global concerns, this Museum aims to not only share how we can learn from the experiences in the past, but to shine a light on the many water challenges being faced today as well as the tools we can use to tackle them.

Please support this non-profit museum and mission by participating in their World Water Day Virtual Race. All proceeds will support museum programs, operations and exhibits.

Participants can select the 1K, 5K, or 10K distance to be completed anytime through Sunday, April 25. The walkers and runners can time themselves and submit their results online.

Go to waterworksmuseum.org/events for more information and registration ($29).

25th Annual Mother's Day Walk for Peace

The Mother's Day Walk for Peace is a beloved Boston tradition and celebration of the potential to create more peaceful communities. It is the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute’s (LDBPI) largest fundraising event to grow and sustain services, advocacy and training. 

This year’s virtual walk is all about celebration and remembrance of 25 years of walking for love, unity, faith, hope, courage, justice and forgiveness while honoring lives impacted by homicide. 

Join the 25 Days of Walking, beginning in April, leading up to the online broadcast at 9 a.m. on Sunday, May 9.

Visit https://www.mothersdaywalk4peace.org for more information and registration. 

Donate blood and save a child’s life

Donating blood is the easiest way to save a child's life. Donate blood or platelets at the Children's Blood Donor Center at 333 Longwood Ave. – an independent collection facility serving the needs of the pediatric patients in the Longwood Medical Area.

Appointments preferred, but walk-ins are welcome (subject to staffing and availability) during hours of operation (every day except Mondays).

To schedule an appointment, go to www.halfpints.childrenshospital.org or phone 617-355-6677.

Critical shortage at Kraft Family Blood Donor Center

The Kraft Family Blood Donor Center at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital is approaching a critical shortage of Type-O positive and negative whole blood.

When you donate blood or platelets at the Donor Center or Blood Mobile you are making a life-saving difference for patients in need.

Visit https://www.brighamandwomens.org/patients-and-families/blood-donation/blood-donation-center or phone 617-632-3206 for more information and/or schedule an appointment.

Virtual Roslindale ‘Open Mike’                                                                 

Roslindale “Open Mike” Nights will be held at 7 p.m. on the second and fourth Mondays.

Interesting in performing? There’s a link to sign up. Performers will use Zoom.

The audience can watch the live or recorded performance on the new Roslindale “Open Mike” YouTube channel. 

Visit roslindaleopenmike.org for more information, including all links.

Virtual Story Time                                                                          

Join Librarian Claire to explore a different theme every week in an interactive online story time from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Tuesdays through May 25. Ideal for children, ages 2-4.

The group will read books and sing songs together, followed by an optional group craft and show-and-tell session.

Optional related book bundles, song sheets and/or craft kits can be picked up at Egleston Square Branch Library (2044 Columbus Ave., Roxbury) during BPL To Go hours.

Visit bpl.org/events and/or email cgross@bpl.org for more information and Zoom link.

Bookmatch Duo on Facebook Live                                                

Join Bookmatch Duo on Facebook Live from 7 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesdays for an as-long-as-we're-cooped-up.

Bookmatch Duo plays a range of original, traditional and contemporary instrumental music, including old-time, blues, ragtime, bluegrass, waltzes, contra dance tunes and English country dance tunes.

Visit www.facebook.com/BookmatchDuoMusic for more information.

Friday Unwind: Gentle Yoga

Unwind with Gentle Yoga – sponsored by Hands to Heart Center and the Boston Public Library – will be held from 4 to 5 p.m. on Fridays.

The yoga classes are geared for beginners with plenty of options and modifications for all bodies and ability levels.

The class will be live-streamed on YouTube/Hand to Heart Center – Yoga for the People.

People can also get the link at bpl.org/online events. The recorded sessions will remain online.

Home: Poetry reading, open mic and workshop series                            

Home is a poetry reading, open mic and workshop series led by Boston Poet Laureate Porsha Olayiwola. A featured reader and brief open mic will be held from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. on the first Friday of the month followed by a writing workshop from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. the following Saturday through June 4. Anthony Febo will host the readings and open mics. Home will culminate in a Roxbury poetry festival in the summer of 2021.

Go to www.boston.gov/calendar/home-poetry-reading-and-open-mic-series for more information, including a roster of readers and workshop themes, and registration.

Activist Kids Book Club                                                      

The Kid Activist Book Club will meet from 4 to 5 p.m. on Saturdays through April 17.

Throughout the 26-weeks, the group will focus on a different page in A is for Activist, read other picture books about the issues and movements discussed in the book, learn about kid activists throughout history and today, and talk about what everyone can do to make the world a little more just. This group is best for kids, ages six and up.

Questions can be directed to the Roslindale Branch Children's Librarian Miss Celeste at cchaudhri@bpl.org.

Visit bpl.org/events for more information and registration.

Free virtual tutoring at RYP

The Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry (UUUM) partners with local colleges and universities and members of the community to provide free quality, comprehensive and accessible tutoring in all core subjects, including mathematics, science, ELA, modern foreign languages and social studies from 2 to 7 p.m. on Mondays through Thursdays. They also offer additional college prep support.

If you are interested in this virtual Roxbury afterschool youth program (RYP), contact PTAM@UUUM.org.

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.

Virtual YMCA                                                                     

Go anytime, anywhere with your all-access pass to health and fitness from the YMCA of Greater Boston which includes access to all YMCAs across the Commonwealth. 

Get the full YMCA GO experience for free!

Go to ymcago.org for more information and registration.

Ethos Live                                                                             

Ethos hosts an online Wellness on the Web program. Health and wellness presentations, conversations with elected officials, exercise classes and other activities will be streamed regularly on their website and social media platforms.

Visit ethocare.org for more information and quick links to the programs.

Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston onsite/online

Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston provides in-person day-time learning support during school hours and in-person and virtual interactive after-school programs such as academics, arts and music, character & leadership and healthy lifestyles on their Facebook and YouTube platforms.

Go to bgcb.org for more information and registration.

The Reggie Lewis Center virtual classes                           

The Reggie Lewis Center at the Roxbury Community College offers virtual fitness classes to help you stay physically and mentally active and fit during these challenging times.

Visit rcc.mass.edu/reggie-lewis for a full class listing and registration instructions, or contact David Jordan at djordan@rcc.mass.edu or 857-701-1707 for more information ($90 per class | Seniors - $30 per class).

#ZooToYou/Kids’ Corner and onsite fun            

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 online for more fun.

Franklin Park and Stone zoos are open for a roarin’ good time following COVID guidelines and online reservations. Virtual tours and other activities will continue.

Visit zoonewengland.org to learn more about the re-opening procedures before you visit.

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.

Free ‘grab-and-go’ meals/food resource information                              

Boston Eats provides free nutritious breakfast and lunch to city kids and youth – 18 years of age and under. 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. A list of food pantries and soup kitchens, along with other information 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.

A-B Community Supper – take out

The Brighton Allston Congregational Church, UCC at 404 Washington St. in Brighton serves take out suppers outside from 4:30 to 6 p.m. on Wednesdays. Bags of fruit, vegetables, breads, and desserts will also be available.

Visit brightonucc.org, phone 617-254-4046 or email baccoffice@verizon.net for more information.

A-B Food Pantry – Open

The Allston Brighton Food Pantry at the Brighton Allston Congregational Church, UCC at 404 Washington St. in Brighton is open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the second and fourth Saturdays.

Visit abfoodpantry.com and/or brightonucc.org for more information, including ways to volunteer or make a donation.

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 sources 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 the stores.

Store locations: 450 Washington St., Dorchester; 2201 Washington St., Roxbury; 684 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge (recent opening)

Store hours: Mon–Sat: 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.

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 toiletries 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 more information, including a list of places that they service.

Support Haley House & Haley House Bakery Café

During this period of social distancing, here are a few ways you can continue to support the Haley House community:

- Donate to their Emergency Fund – Since they switched their soup kitchen (23 Dartmouth St. in the South End) to take out, members of the Live-In Community have served more than 1,000 meals each week. Funds will be used to purchase food and materials for their take-out meals and as emergency support for their staff.

- Purchase Gift Cards or Order Take Out/Delivery at Haley House Bakery Cafe (12 Dade St. Roxbury) – Make sure to follow them on social media for live-streamed events and ways to support artists through virtual programming.

- Donate Non-Perishable Food or Sanitizing Items – See the list of in-kind donations and/or Amazon Charity Lists.

For more than 54 years, the Haley House has and continues to believe in #FoodWithPurpose and the #PowerOfCommunity. Visit http://haleyhouse.org/covid19response for more details.

MTW book/textile donations (drop offs and pickups) and online purchases

More Than Words stores are still accepting donations of books, CDs, DVDs, and video games along with gently used clothing and shoes to keep their youth-run business in operation. Monetary donations are also appreciated. Donations can be dropped off at one of their facilities or donation bins or can be scheduled for a contactless pickup.

You can also shop online for books, music, home goods and décor, collectibles, and other fine products.

All donations are fully tax deductible. Every donation and purchase support their mission to empower youth!

Visit mtwyouth.org for more details, including the locations and links to purchase items.

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 https://commonstreet.org/rainbow-peace-flag-project for more information.

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.

Suicide survivor support group                                                                              

DeeDee’s Cry hosts 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.

Roxbury artist directory

The first edition of Roxbury Artist Amplification Project's Artist Directory features 17 Roxbury-based artists of color and offers a sample of their paintings, photographs, handmade jewelry, fiber art, journals, children's books and much more.

To peruse and purchase some incredible local art, the artist directory is available to download at uuum.org/arts-and-humanities-programming.

Connect with nature          

Many of the trails in the Audubon sanctuaries are open (with specific guidelines) and a list of trails with trail maps by region are available for your enjoyment. 

The Boston Nature Center (Mattapan) and other Audubon properties have a variety of onsite and online programs for children, youth and adults.

Find out what Mother Nature has in store for the coming weeks with Mass Audubon’s monthly guide to the natural world.

Visit massaudobon.org to learn more.

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.

A-B Thrift Shop – Temporarily closed

The Thrift Shop at the Brighton Allston Congregational Church, UCC at 404 Washington St. in Brighton, is usually open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesdays and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays, but it is now temporarily closed.

Visit brightonucc.org, phone 617-254-4046 or email baccoffice@verizon.net for more information.