Back Bay - Midtown neighborhood notes

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This turkey explored the second-floor balconies on a residential building on Commonwealth Avenue.

Saturdays at Stoneman 

Join the Esplanade Association and Boston Music Project at the Stoneman Playground on the Esplanade for family-friendly music and movement programming for children and families of all ages.

Saturdays at Stoneman sessions will be 45 minutes long and take place on the hour from 10 a.m. to noon from July 17 through Aug. 21.

Each week, children will sing songs, dance to music, and enjoy storytime led by trained Boston Music Project teaching artists. Caregivers are encouraged to attend and take part in the music games with their children.

Visit www.eventbrite.com/e/saturdays-at-stoneman-tickets-161150376113 for more information and tickets.

We Sing: Boston                                                                   

The Boston Children’s Chorus, in partnership with the Friends of the Public Garden, will host "We Sing: Boston" - a summer series of community singing events in parks throughout the area.

 “We Sing: Boston” invites community members of all ages and skill levels to join in singing, games, prizes and socializing (following COVID guidelines) from 2 to 3:30 p.m. as follows:

– We Sing: Chelsea – 8 Clark Ave. – Saturday, July 17 and Aug. 7

– We Sing: Roxbury – Clifford Playground, 160 Norfolk Ave. – Sunday, July 18 and Sunday, Aug. 1 

– We Sing: Chinatown – Chin Park on The Greenway, Surface Road and Beach Street –

Saturday, July 24 and Sunday, Aug. 15 

– We Sing: Dorchester – Town Field, 1545 Dorchester Ave. - Sunday, July 25 and Sunday, Aug. 8

– We Sing: Mattapan – Hunt-Almont Park, 40 Almont S. – Saturday, July 31

– We Sing: Mattapan – Harambee Park, 930 Blue Hill Ave. – Saturday, Aug. 14 

This summer series will culminate with a special, city-wide event on the Boston Common in September.

Visit www.bostonchildrenschorus.org/our-programs/we-sing for more information and a link to register for each of the events.

Yoga for a Cause Yoga                                                                    

Stonewall Sports Boston has teamed up with Down Under School of Yoga to provide Yoga for a Cause.

The outdoor yoga classes will be held from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, July 18 at Roberto Clemente Field, 160 Park Dr. (Boston Fens).

Each session is $10. All proceeds will be donated to St. Francis House and Women's House Place, to support our local unsheltered neighbors. 

Visit https://stonewallboston.leagueapps.com/events/2325159-yoga-for-a-cause for more information and registration.

Gibson House Museum tours

The Gibson House Museum, 137 Beacon St. is a time capsule of domestic life from the mid-19th to early-20th centuries.

– The Museum will be open for tours at 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Fridays through Sundays

– New Specialty Tour – Upstairs, Downstairs: Domestic Service at the Gibson House

will be held at 11 a.m. on Sunday, July 18 and at 3 p.m. on Thursday, July 29.

Explore the lives of the young, Irish immigrant women who worked in domestic service in the Back Bay. Rarely seen spaces, including the coal shed (the last surviving coal shed in Back Bay) and the fifth-floor servant bedroom will be on view.

Visit www.thegibsonhouse.org for more information and reservations (prices vary).

Community Boating’s Summer Lawn & Dock Party

Community Boating (CBI), 21 David G. Mugar Way, has provided sailing for all in the heart of Boston for 75 years. They would love for everyone to celebrate with them at their Summer Lawn & Dock Party on from 2 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, July 18 as they kick off the events of this season.

People can get a drink from the bar while enjoying live music and taking in the breathtaking view of the Charles. Along with this, they will have ice cream, raffles and goodies from a food truck. Food is available for purchase, but two drink tickets are included with admission.

People will automatically be entered to win an adult program full year membership as well as a one-of-a-kind sea bag tote made with a CBI sail. Two winners will be pulled at 4:30 p.m.

All proceeds go towards their 75th anniversary $75,000 fundraising initiative to raise $75,000 in honor of their 75 years, and in support of their next 75 years.

Visit www.eventbrite.com/e/community-boatings-summer-lawn-dock-party-tickets-160013800585 for more information and tickets ($20-$40).

One World 2021 (virtual)

The Mary Baker Eddy Library’s 16th annual One World program – a series of free art and cultural events for children, ages 4 to 12 – will be held online from 10 a.m. to noon on Tuesdays through Aug. 17.

Each week participants will learn about a different corner of the globe with cultural activities from the nations of Mexico, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Philippines, Aotearoa (Māori, the indigenous Polynesian people of New Zealand), Greece and India. Events will include live performances, arts and crafts, storytimes, and other fun.

Visit www.marybakereddylibrary.org/kids-groups-families/one-world for more information and registration.

The race to save MLK’s life and win the 1960 election

Less than three weeks before the 1960 presidential election, 31-year-old Martin Luther King, Jr. was arrested at a sit-in in Atlanta. While King’s imprisonment was decried as a moral scandal in some quarters and celebrated in others, for the two presidential candidates - John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon - it was the ultimate October surprise: an emerging civil rights leader was languishing behind bars and the two campaigns raced to decide whether, and how, to respond. 

Nine Days is the first full recounting of an event that changed the course of one of the closest elections in American history.

At once a story of electoral machinations, moral courage, and, ultimately, the triumph of a future president’s better angels, Nine Days is a gripping tale with important lessons for this time.

Learn more when Stephen Kendrick talks with Larry Tye from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 20.

Visit https://masshist.org for more information and registration.

‘Plunder: A Memoir of Family Property and Nazi Treasure’

On a Fulbright Fellowship in Lithuania in 2010, Toronto native Menachem Kaiser traveled to Poland and there, in the village of Sosnowiec, he was inspired to take up his Holocaust-survivor grandfather’s former battle to reclaim the family’s apartment building.

His encounters with long-time residents of the building and with a Polish lawyer known as “The Killer” are intwined with a surprise discovery of a cousin’s secret memoir revered by a band of Silesian treasure seekers who believe it is an indispensable guidebook to Nazi plunder.

Hear about Kaiser’s extraordinary journey and exploration of the many issues surrounding inheritance, legacy and family history from 6 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 20.

Hosted by the Wyner Family Jewish Heritage Center at NEHGS, the event will be moderated by Dr. Bernice Lerner, author and senior scholar at Boston University's Center for Character and Social Responsibility.

Visit www.americanancestors.org for more information and Zoom registration.

Judith Heumann – Rolling Warrior and Being Heumann

The internationally-recognized disability rights activist (featured in the Oscar-Nominated Documentary Crip Camp) and leader of the Disability Rights Independent Living Movement Judith Heumann will share her journey of battling for equal access in an unequal world from 6 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 20.

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

River Fit: Sunrise Yoga with B/SPOKE

Join the Esplanade Association for Sunrise Yoga with B/SPOKE on Wednesdays from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. from July 21 through Sept. 8 on Fiedler Field on the Esplanade, part of the River Fit Summer Fitness Series.

B/SPOKE Yoga is a vinyasa based practice for all levels with an emphasis on music that ebbs and flows with each portion of the class. Each class will begin with guided breath work and end with a mindful moment that will allow participants to take the intention of class into their life. Bring a Yoga mat, if desired.

Register for RiverFit at www.eventbrite.com/e/river-fit-sunrise-yoga-with-bspoke-registration-162477714217.

Amicalement vôtre - en personne                                                   

The French Cultural Center will host its third edition of Amicalement vôtre from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. on Wednesday, July 21. This one is in person at the newly-opened Brasserie, a French-inspired eatery at 560 Harrison Ave. in the South End. Take French further and discover a new place in the area.

During this event, people will be seated at a table of two with the conversation partner they have chosen based on a quick survey done in advance. 

Registrations end on Sunday, July 18 for this in-person, indoor event. A special discount will be offered to anyone who stays at Brasserie for dinner on Wednesday, July 21.

Visit https://frenchculturalcenter.org/events/juillet-amicalement-votre-en-personne for more information and registration (Member: $30 | Non-Member: $38).

‘Skip the Small Talk’ at Trident

Do you wish you could have more of the kinds of late-night conversations where you feel safe talking about the things you care about?

“Skip the Small Talk” at the Trident Booksellers and Café, 338 Newbury St. will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, July 21.

The hosts will be offering cards with “big talk” conversational questions to get started, and there will be lots of structure to make sure that everyone talks with people and that it’s not awkward.

Visit www.tridentbookscafe.com/event/skip-small-talk-trident-27 for more information and registration ($16.50).

The Great Migration to New England

During the 1630s, the migration process to New England was evolving from a pre-planned, top-down system to a more spontaneous, bottom-up organization. This webinar, presented by Robert Charles Anderson, FASG from 3 to 4 p.m. on Thursday, July 22, will explore the evolution of the manner in which committed puritans moved from old England to New England, beginning with clandestine and illegal meetings known as conventicles, which gave rise to small groups or companies of families crossing the Atlantic together, resulting in the formation of new congregations and communities in the New World.

The group will study five different examples of this process, three led by ministers and two by laymen: Rev. John Wilson’s Sudbury company; Thomas Oliver’s Thorpe Achurch company; Rev. Thomas Hooker’s Braintree company; Edmund Hobart’s Hingham company; and Rev. Richard Blinman’s Welsh Marcher company.

Visit www.americanancestors.org for more information and Zoom registration.

River Fit: BollyX on the Esplanade

Join the Esplanade Association for River Fit: BollyX from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursdays from July 22 through Aug. 12 on Fiedler Field on the Esplanade, part of the River Fit Summer Fitness Series.

Experience a Bollywood-inspired, dance fitness program that combines fun choreography and calorie-burning workouts, with upbeat music from India and beyond. All levels are welcome.

Register for this program at www.eventbrite.com/e/river-fit-bollyx-on-the-esplanade-registration-162481760319.

Twilight Music Series                                                          

Take in the sights and sounds of a warm summer evening accompanied by a live musical performance in three Emerald Necklace parks: Charlesgate Park – corner of Beacon St. and Charlesgate East (Back Bay); Olmsted Park – Allerton Overlook (Brookline) and Jamaica Pond – Boathouse Bandstand (JP).

Performances will be held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 22, Aug. 19 and Aug. 26.

Visit www.emeraldnecklace.org/event/twilight-music-series for more information, including the artists.

Summer Dock Party

The Esplanade Association’s 10th annual Summer Dock Party will be held from 6:30 to 10 p.m. on Thursday, July 22. Set against the incomparable backdrop of the Charles River at sunset, as well as in the lovely Eliot Garden, the Summer Dock Party has become a social highlight for Bostonians.

Approximately 300 guests will enjoy a sunset dinner and drinks, as well as dancing to music provided by DJs of Boston on the docks at Community Boating, Inc.

The funds raised at this year’s event will support the Esplanade Association’s work to revitalize, enhance, program and maintain the park while providing the community with free summer programming.

Visit www.eventbrite.com/e/10th-annual-summer-dock-party-tickets-158741860177 for more information and reservations ($80-$100).

Learn Modern Calligraphy

Join Sip & Script® for a Night of Learning Calligraphy from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 22 at Trident Booksellers & Café, 338 Newbury St.

Whether you’re a stationery nerd, DIY Bride-to-be, or just a crafty individual, in this workshop people will get an introduction to modern calligraphy with a pointed dip pen and ink. They will cover all the basics and get guests ready to add those special lettered details to snail mail, wedding paper goods, home décor and more.

Class includes 1.5 hours of instruction and demonstration, their beginner’s calligraphy kit (two nibs, black ink pot, two letter guides, tracing paper and straight pen holder), and all materials to write on.

Visit https://sipandscript.com/event/modern-calligraphy-at-trident-booksellers-9 for more information and registration ($65).

Concerts in the Courtyard Series: Fabiola Mendez 

Join the Boston Public Library for a Latin and jazz performance by Fabiola Mendez from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, July 23 in the Courtyard of the Central Library in Copley Square. The program will also be broadcast to the BPL YouTube channel.

Visit bpl.org/events for more information.

River Fit: 'Froca Fridays

Join the Esplanade Association for ‘Froca Fridays at the Hatch Shell from 5:15 to 6:15 p.m. on Friday, July 23, Aug. 6 and Aug. 13, part of the River Fit Summer Fitness Series.

Sylver will guide participants through an hour of nonstop dance and choreography, allowing everyone to internalize the steps, feel the rhythms, and work up a sweat – celebrating each other's cultures. ‘Froca classes include steps and rhythms from Madagascar, Nigeria, Côte d'Ivoire, Congo, Ethiopia, Mali, Guinea, Ghana, Togo, Senegal, Trinidad, Jamaica, and more. 

Register at www.eventbrite.com/e/river-fit-froca-fridays-registration-162475850643.

River Fit: Lynx Saturday Workouts

Instructors from Lynx Fitness Club will lead participants through an hour-long high intensity interval training (HIIT) class that incorporates bodyweight strength training with high-intensity cardio bursts for maximum calorie burning effect, set to fun and upbeat music from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 24 through Aug. 14 on Fiedler Field on the Esplanade, part of the River Fit Summer Fitness Series.

Register at www.eventbrite.com/e/river-fit-lynx-saturday-workouts-registration-162472803529.

Evening garden stroll                      

An evening garden stroll will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, July 24 and Tuesday, Aug. 10 (Rain date: 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 11) starting at the Shattuck Visitor Center, 125 The Fenway.

Summer blooms, scented gardens and a leisurely stroll all combine to make this one-hour guided walk the perfect antidote to the workday.

Visit www.emeraldnecklace.org/event for more information and reservations.

Lions and Tigers and French, Oh My!                                          

Adventurers, join the French Cultural Center from 10:30 a.m. to noon on Saturday, July 24 at the Franklin Park Zoo in French. The French native speaker guide from the zoo, Audrey will reveal les secrets du zoo and answer all your questions. The group will meet at the Zebra entrance at 10:15 a.m.

Tickets allows people to arrive at 10 a.m. and stay as long as they wish after the tour.

Visit https://frenchculturalcenter.org/events/lions-and-tigers-and-french-oh-my for more information and registration (Member: $26; Child - 12 and under: $22 | Non-Member: $32; Child, 12 and under: $26).

Boston Baroque for Kids: ‘The Four Seasons’

Join Mia and her instrument friends on an adventure through “The Four Seasons,” a musical work by Antonio Vivaldi. The 20-minute animated stream is available free on demand from Boston Baroque through Saturday, July 25.

Visit https://baroque.boston/for-kids for more information and viewing.

Adaptive Sailing for Youth & Young Adults 

Adaptive Sports New England and Community Boating, 21 David Mugar Way, invite youth and young adults with a visual impairment and/or mobility impairment to sail from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Wednesdays through Aug. 25.

No experience is necessary. Participants can bring a sibling or friend along.

Registration is required at https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07ei2i4ogj51d9c923&oseq=&c=&ch= or contact joe.walsh@adaptivesportsne.org.

National Show: ‘Connected Land and Sea’

Coastal New England is the inspiration for Connected Land and Sea, recognizing the Copley Society of Art’s legacy in the region and reflecting the important intersections between the land and the sea.

Copley is honored to welcome the renowned marine artist Donald Demers as the jurist for the 2021 National Marine Art exhibition. With more than 450 submissions, Demers selections include a wide range of thematic interpretations from artists across the United States including Seattle, Venice, Santa Fe and Illinois.

The exhibition will be on view in the Upper Gallery at Copley Society of Art, 158 Newbury St. through Sunday, July 18.

Learn more at https://copleysociety.org/exhibition/national-show-connected-land-sea.

Sandy O'Connor - ‘A Tipping Point: An Artists Perspective on Climate’

A solo exhibition by Sandy O'Connor will be on view in the Back Bay Room at Copley Society of Art, 158 Newbury St. through Sunday, July 18.

The artwork comprises a series of eight watercolor landscapes titled, A Tipping Point: An Artist's Perspective on Climate Change on the Outer Cape.

Learn more at https://copleysociety.org/exhibition/sandy-oconnor-tipping-point.

Community Read Book Group: ‘Fair Play’                      

The Community Read Book Group for Adults will meet from 6 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 27.

The librarian will moderate the discussion of Fair Play by Tove Jansson.

Best known for the beloved children's series “The Moomins,” Jansson reveals more of herself in this series of connected short stories about the love and shared artistic life of two creative women. 

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

Family Book Group: ‘The Best at It’                                             

The librarian-moderated Family Book Group will meet from 4 to 5 p.m. on Thursday, July 29 to discuss the July Community Read – The Best at It by Maulik Pancholy.

Actor Maulik Pancholy draws from his own experiences in his debut novel about 12-year-old Rahul Kapoor, an Indian-American boy growing up in small-town Indiana who struggles to come to terms with his identity, including that he may be gay.

Go to bpl.org/events for more information and Zoom registration.

Lyric Stage To-Go: ‘The Walking Plays’                          

Let your imagination soar as you journey through Boston alongside these vivid characters and stories in The Walking Plays:

The six audio plays include On Paying Attention by David Valdes; Monster in the Sky by Ginger Lazarus; Kill the Dogs, Knock Them Over! by Liana Asim; In Any Face by Miranda Austen ADEkoje; Living Water by Melinda Lopez and Micah Rosegrant; and Monstrat Viam by Patrick Gabridge.

Visit www.lyricstage.com/to-go/walking-plays for more information and access to the plays.

Swan Boats operating

Enjoy a ride on the Swan Boats as they sail the waters of the Boston Public Garden. Swan Boats drivers will paddle passengers around the Public Garden Lagoon for a peaceful, 15-minute cruise.

Summer hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily through Labor Day

Visit https://swanboats.com/take-a-ride for more information and reservations (Tickets: Free to $4.50).

Community Boating kayak and stand-up paddleboard rentals

Community Boating offers an opportunity to view Boston from an angle rarely seen. Rent a kayak and explore the Charles River Basin and Frederick Law Olmstead esplanade lagoon system while enjoying breathtaking views of historic Back Bay, Beacon Hill, MIT and the Zakim and Longfellow bridges. Available through Sunday, Sept. 26.

Two-hour kayak (single or tandem) and stand-up-paddle-boards rentals are available for $32 per person plus taxes and fees. Membership includes kayaks and SUPs at no cost (not including Wicked Basic Sailing Pass).

Visit www.community-boating.org/rentals/kayak-paddling-rentals for more information and registration.

Boston Open Market at Copley Square

In partnership with the Friends of Copley Square, New England Open Markets will operate the Boston Open Market - a new weekly arts market held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays through Nov. 27.

Visit www.newenglandopenmarkets.com/events for more information.

Copley Square Farmers Market

The Copley Square Farmers Market – Boston's biggest and busiest farmers market featuring more than two dozen Massachusetts farmers offering a vibrant selection of local and delicious produce and meat – will be open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays through Tuesday, Nov. 23.

Accepts: SNAP, HIP & Nutrition Vouchers

Monday Mettā                      

Join Rev. Kim at the Arlington Street Church at noon on Mondays for a half hour of loving kindness meditation. She will give brief instructions, and the group will join in sending loving kindness to ourselves and to the world. No meditation experience necessary.

Join with video at https://zoom.us/j/8958866876 or participate by phone by dialing 929-436-2866. For either option, the meeting ID is always 895 886 6876.

Gay Men's Coffee Connections

Gay Men's Coffee Connections will meet at 5 p.m. on the first and third Monday of the month.

Feel free to listen or engage in discussion about experiences as gay men.

Visit ascboston.org for more information, including the week’s discussion prompt and the Zoom link.

BPL’s New Parent Group                                                                           

The Boston Public Library’s New Parent group will meet from 1 to 2 p.m. on Tuesdays through July 27 for an informal – and informative – program for families with infants, birth to 12 months.

It’s a great way to meet other new parents and learn from guest speakers.

Visit bpl.org/events for more information, including a weekly speaker/topic and Zoom registration.

The Buddhist book discussions and meditations

Buddha's Belly and Arlington Street Meditation Center (feel free to come to one or both) will meet via Zoom on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month.

6 p.m. Buddha's Belly: a book discussion group that explores a variety of books from Buddhist teachings. All are welcome.

7 p.m. Arlington Street Meditation Center: these gatherings include seated meditation, a brief reading from Buddhist teachings, and conversation. Beginners and experienced meditators from all traditions (or none!) are warmly welcome.

Visit www.ascboston.org for more information and links to attend.

Sunrise Yoga                                                                                                            

Join Anne Marie on the Community Boating dock (21 David G Mugar Way) for a free one-hour Kripalu-inspired slow flow class at 6:30 a.m. on Wednesdays through Aug. 25.

This class is appropriate for anyone who can access (and get up from) the earth. Modifications encouraged. This is an opportunity to move mindfully and breathe deeply from one of the most beautiful spots in the city. No sign up required, open to all.

Visit www.community-boating.org/calendar for more information.

Kundalini Yoga Class

Experience fun exercises and poses, breathing techniques, chanting, meditation and deep relaxation in this unique class at 6 p.m. on Wednesdays.

Moving energy through your body brings positive change and growth.

There is a $10 charge that goes to the Arlington Street Church.

Email office@ascboston.org for Zoom access. All are welcome.

A safe space for people of all colors

If you identify as a person of color, Old South Church invites you to a time of connecting, a moment of breath, a reprieve from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month. The group is open to people of all ages.

Visit www.oldsouth.org for more information and Zoom registration.

Virtual Jazz Coffee House                                                              

The Virtual Jazz Coffee House, featuring the Willie Sordillo Ensemble, will be livestreamed from the Old South Church in Boston from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursdays at livestream.com/oldsouth.

Music for Food concert series                                                         

In this time of crisis, neighbors who experience food-insecurity are among the hardest hit. In lieu of their regular concerts, Music for Food is presenting online performances to support multiple food pantries.

A weekly series of videos will be released at noon on Fridays on MFF’s YouTube Channel (www.youtube.com/channel/UCyL1hGegB4nbh71mB0tC_Lg). Each video features MFF Artists and friends from all over the world.

Friday Night Trivia

Trident Booksellers & Café, 338 Newbury St will host a weekly Trivia Night from 7 to 9 p.m. on Fridays.

The event will feature seven rounds of general knowledge trivia with a few wildcards along the way (follow on Instagram to get a sneak peak of the evening's categories) and excellent prizes for the top three teams. 

Visit www.tridentbookscafe.com/event/trivia-night-trident for more information.

LGBTQ Catholics Unite monthly meetings                                              

LGBTQ Catholics Unite meetings are held virtually at 1 p.m. on the fourth Sunday of the month. The meetings provide an opportunity for LGBTQ Catholics and friends to gather and openly discuss relevant topics, scripture, and current events and share faith experiences, thoughts, beliefs and feelings.

Hosted by the St. Cecilia Rainbow Ministry, they hope that all LGBTQ+ Catholics will know that “God loves you, God created you, God is on your side, Jesus cares about you, and the church is your home.” All, including allies, are welcome.

For more info on how to connect via Zoom, email stceciliarainbowministry@gmail.com.

BB Mom’s Group

The Mom’s Group is being revived for Moms in the Back Bay to meet and connect. Their goal is to offer support and be a resource for local Moms. When possible, outdoor events will be planned. 

For more information on joining, send an email to: info@nabbonline.org.

Future Readers Book Club/Events

The Boston Public Library hosts the Future Readers Club for children, ages five years and younger, and their caregivers, with a goal of reading 1,000 books together before the child begins kindergarten.

Register at bpl.org to keep track of the books you read together and earn badges for your young milestones at bostonpl.beanstack.org.

In addition, the BPL offers an assortment of programs as part of the Future Readers Club to engage children in stories, songs, finger play and crafts.

Visit bpl.org/events for more information and registration to each event.

BPL reading challenge                                                        

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.

Genealogy for the next generation                                                 

Several free, easy-to-do fun activities that will keep kids entertained and get them thinking about their family history are available at www.americanancestors.org/education/learning-resources/read/youth.

These exercises are designed to teach critical skills while encouraging kids to explore their personal connection to the past. Studies show that young people who know facts about their heritage have a stronger sense of self, which can help them perform better in school and life.

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 (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.

Boston Ballet videos                                     

Enjoy a variety of behind-the-scenes videos, virtual choreography, performance clips, and articles on www.bostonballet.org along with exclusive, ballet videos posted Mondays through Fridays at www.facebook.com/bostonballet and/or www.instagram.com/bostonballet.

Support Boston Ballet at www.bostonballet.org/Home/Support/Donate.

Free meals/food resource information                               

Boston Eats will provide free nutritious breakfast and lunch to city kids and youth – 18 years of age and under – through 2021. 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.

Contact Project Bread’s Food Source Hotline at 800-645-8333 if you need additional food resources.

Back Bay Mobile Soup Kitchen                                                      

The Back Bay Mobile Soup Kitchen BBMSK (“Bumsk”) is a group of young adults who minister to the homeless on the streets of Back Bay. They distribute sandwiches, fruit, socks and Rosaries and take time to listen to the stories of the men and women they encounter.

The group meets at 6 p.m. on Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays on the front steps of the St. Clement Eucharistic Shrine, 1105 Boylston St.

They are always looking for donations (money/gift cards, toiletries, socks, and supplies) and volunteers to help prepare and package the food.

Contact Eli at 703-638-2019 or visit www.omvusa.org/about/groups for more information.

BostonWarm/common art and common cathedral programs need help           

The drop-in center, BostonWarm; the art program, common art; and common cathedral, all under the umbrella of Ecclesia Ministries at Emmanuel Church (15 Newbury St.), needs partners to help them serve the increasing number of homeless and underserved during this critical time.

There are three specific ways that you can help make a difference:

1) Purchase supplies from BostonWarm and common art Amazon wish lists.

2) Donate individually wrapped homemade or purchased sandwiches, soft fruits, granola bars and water.

3) Donate your time, your treasures (donations) and your prayers – they are always welcomed and valued.

Visit www.commoncathedral.org for other information, including links to keep this mission alive.

Friday Night Supper Program needs servers, donations

The Friday Night Supper Program (FNSP) at the Arlington Street Church – the longest running program in Boston – has served more than 13,000 meals a year to more than 130 guests from all over Boston since 1984.

Donations make a difference in the lives of people in need, whether through philanthropic dollars or individual gifts of money, clothing, toiletries and gift cards.

FNSP is also looking for help to serve the onsite and “to go” meals.

Visit www.Fridaynightsupper.org for more information.

Support Women’s Lunch Place                                         

Women’s Lunch Place, 67 Newbury St. continues to serve women while maintaining all three of their core services areas – healthy meals, direct care and advocacy.

WLP is open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. from Monday to Saturday serving breakfast and lunch along with essential care packages.

Women’s Lunch Place needs donations – money, gift cards, toiletries, underwear and other basic necessities – to keep their mission going.

Visit www.womenslunchplace.org for more information.

Support the Esplanade Association                       

The Esplanade is the stretch of public green space that extends for three miles one way along the Boston shore of the Charles River from the Boston Museum of Science to the Boston University (BU) Bridge.

In addition to providing a beautiful natural landscape, the park is home to the iconic Hatch Memorial Shell, various historical monuments, recreational facilities and more than five miles of pathway for walking, running or biking.

Please consider making a donation to the Esplanade Association to help keep the green space thriving and the activities alive. All donations are tax deductible and people can use any means to send their support, including Donor Advised Funds.

Visit esplanade.org for more information and links to donate.

Support the parks – give the gift of membership                                                  

Give the gift of membership to ensure that the beloved parks – the Boston Common, Public Garden and Commonwealth Avenue Mall – remain icons of Boston and continue to receive the protection, care and management that they need.

Donations can be made at friendsofthepublicgarden.org.