Beacon Hill - West End neighborhood notes

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This child is having fun in the Frog Pond at Boston Common on a hot day.

Ring out the bells                                                         

At 11 a.m. on the 11th day of each month, bells, shofars and noisemakers all over the world are sounding to call attention to the 11th hour climate crisis of climate change (

Join the various members of King’s Chapel, 58 Tremont St. as they ring the Paul Revere and Son bell and hold up signs on the church grounds as a Call to Action against Climate Change at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 11.  

Visit for more information.

Walking Tour – The Old West End: Boston’s Lost Neighborhood                    

The West End Museum’s history buff Jim Briand will explore the history of three West End buildings that survived urban renewal, but are likely to be lost to development in 2021-2022: The West End House, Winchell School and one of the last original brick tenements and what they tell us about education, immigrant assimilation and day-to-day living in the tight confines of the old West End.

The 90-minute tours will take place at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 11.

Visit for more information and registration (The West End Museum Members: $5 | General Admission: $10).

2021 BHCA Fall HillFest                                                                

2021 BHCA Fall HillFest will be held from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 12 on the flat of Mt. Vernon Street.

This fun, family-friendly neighborhood celebration will include the annual participation of nonprofit members, with kid’s games and information about their missions, as well as live music, the famous dog show, hot dogs, beer, ice cream, and many other surprises.

Visit for more information.

Beacon Hill Village presents Anthony Sammarco

Anthony Sammarco will discuss his new book Beacon Hill Through Time – a deep dive into the history of Beacon Hill’s curious topography and iconic red brick row houses that has embraced people of all walks of life since the 19th century.

Sammarco will go beyond stereotypical depictions in chronicling the rich histories of the African American, Jewish immigrant and Boston Brahmin communities that have populated this Trimount of Boston over the last centuries.

To register for this virtual program slated for 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 13, go to Free and open to the public. 

Lecture: Dante at the Athenæum

Christian Dupont, in collaboration with the Friends of the Italian Cultural Center, Boston, will present “Dante at the Athenæum” from 7 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 14 onsite and on Zoom. A reception will follow.

Commemorating the 700th anniversary of the death of Dante Alighieri - the medieval Florentine poet, philosopher and statesman whose pioneering vernacular Italian epic, the Divine Comedy, remains a classic of world literature - this excursion through the Athenæum’s collections will reveal how members, curators and benefactors have responded to Dante and his works, and contributed to the broader reception of Dante in America since the early 19th century.

Sculptures and stained glass, paintings and engravings, rare books and artists’ books, travel diaries and letters - each offers its unique witness to the enrapturing embrace of Dante’s vision of Hell, Purgatory and Paradise.

A selection of Dantean highlights from the Athenæum’s collections will be displayed in the Long Room from September through December. 

Visit for more information and registration. In-Person Tickets: Members - $10 and Visitors - $15 | Virtual Tickets: Members, Partners And VESP Holders - Free and Visitors - $5).

An environmental protest from Beatie Wolfe

Join the Museum of Science for an evening with art rebel Beatie Wolfe and her groundbreaking installation “From Green to Red,” an environmental protest piece about human impact on the planet, built using 800,000 years of historic NASA climate data.

Born out of a song that Wolfe wrote in 2006 after seeing An Inconvenient Truth, she created a stirring visualization of the increasing CO2 concentration in the Earth’s atmosphere that asks if it is too late to turn back.

Named one of Wired Magazine’s “22 people changing the world,” with this work, Wolfe reimagines the music video format (and protest song), taking people on an interactive journey through the planet’s timeline to activate awareness around the climate crisis. Recently previewed at the Nobel Prize Summit followed by the premiere unveiling at the London Design Biennale, Wolfe brings the piece to Boston for one night only ahead of it being exhibited at the UN’s global climate summit COP26.

This Reno Family Foundation Symposium will be held from 7:30 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 14.

Visit for more information and registration.

‘From Scollay Square to the Combat Zone’

Boston historian and author Anthony Sammarco will discuss his new book, The Other Red Line: Washington Street, From Scollay Square to the Combat Zone at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 15.

Learn the steamy details about Boston’s two adult entertainment districts, at a special presentation at The West End Museum, 150 Staniford St. Suite 7.

Visit for more information and registration (donation).

ARC Blood Drive at Big Night Entertainment Group

The Big Night Entertainment Group will host a blood drive from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 16 and Sept. 23 at 110 Causeway St.

Visit or phone 1-800­-RED CROSS (1-800­-733-2767) to reserve a space.

BraveSpace: Ethical Storytelling

“BraveSpace: Ethical Storytelling” is designed to connect young professionals of color in the fields of communications, PR, marketing, social media, nonprofit management, human services, healthcare and other positions that use storytelling and narratives in their work, particularly with vulnerable populations.

Join this event to learn about the concepts of ethical storytelling and partake in an interactive dialogue about how negative narratives affect lived experiences from 1 to 2:30 on Thursday, Sept. 16 at the Museum of African American History, 46 Joy St. 

Visit for more information and registration.

Museum Day                                                                                                            

Museum Day is a one-day event in which participating museums and cultural institutions across the country provide free entry to anyone presenting a Museum Day ticket. Participants are allowed to download one ticket per email address. The ticket provides free general admission on Saturday, September 18, for two people.

Boston attractions include:

– Gibson House Museum,137 Beacon St., from 1 to 4 p.m.

Experience the house through a guided tour that interpret class and culture through the stories and objects of the people who lived and worked there. 

– Nichols House Museum, 55 Mount Vernon St., from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Stroll through the house’s period rooms at your own pace. Experience an 1804 Bulfinch townhouse, Augustus Saint-Gaudens sculptures, and Japanese woodblock prints. Encounter stories of family, staff and Boston’s historic Beacon Hill neighborhood. 

Visit for more information and tickets.

Black Voices: 19th-century Black Writers on Beacon Hill                      

On both the north and south sides of Beacon Hill in the 1800s, writers and writing were essential to everyday life. 

On the South Slope, the life of the wealthy white literati was lively and productive, with wide-ranging subjects that became the basis for a golden age of American literature. 

On the North Slope, the center of Boston’s free Black community, Black writers, although influenced by their South Slope neighbors, were laser-focused on the great topic of the era, slavery. 

On this tour, attendees will meet some of the Black thinkers and writers who made their mark on literary and political history. They were people of color who - for some part of their lives - called Boston home. 

The tour guides will share their names and their stories of truth, passion, bravery and hope from 2 to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 18.

Visit for more information and registration (prices vary).

MOS Sci-Fi Book Club                                                                                                        

The Science Fiction Book Club for adults will meet from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 21 to discuss Speak by Louisa Hall (virtually, of course).

Visit for more information and registration.

Operation ABLE                                                                                                     

Operation ABLE (174 Portland St.) provides employment services and training programs to job seekers from economically, racially and occupationally diverse backgrounds and for those over 55 years of age.

All services, including distance learning, coaching, and wrap-around services, are being conducted remotely. Class enrollments are open for Computer Skills, Medical, Health Care and Social Services training, among others.

Visit for more information and registration.

BBF Beacon Hill Walking Tours

From the golden dome of the State House to the elegant homes of Louisburg Square, the Boston By Foot Beacon Hill tours travel picturesque streets, highlighting examples of early American architecture with particular emphasis on the work of Charles Bulfinch. Experience Beacon Hill’s ornate past, from its rural beginnings to the vision of the Mount Vernon Proprietors, while walking among this historic collection of Federal and Greek Revival row houses.

Participants will also hear the stories of Boston’s prominent citizens who have called Beacon Hill their home.

Tours are offered at 6 p.m. on select weeknights and at 2 p.m. on Saturdays through October.

Visit for more information and reservations (Adults: $15 | Child: $8 | Child under 6: Free).

Simple morning meditation practice

Beacon Hill Friends holds a simple meditation practice that helps reduce stress and ease you into the morning. The meditation is 15 minutes long and begins and ends with a brief introduction to the practice. Orientation for newcomers begins at 8 a.m., and the practice begins at 8:10 a.m. on weekdays. 

Join once or join regularly – this meditation is free and open to the public.

Go to for more information and the Zoom link.

‘MIDWEEK: Experiments in Faithfulness’

The Beacon Hill Friends will host MIDWEEK: Experiments in Faithfulness from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesdays. This facilitated spiritual practice with Quaker flavor and an experimental ethos is open to everyone.

Go to for more information about the facilitators and the practices they offer along with program details and Zoom registration. These closed-captioned programs are free, although donations to support their work are welcome.

Parks Fitness: Yoga at The Boston Common Frog Pond                        

Yoga with Friends of The Public Garden will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursdays through Sept. 30 on Boston Common Frog Pond, 38 Beacon St.

Visit for more information and registration.


If you are separated or divorced and need healing, the Park Street Church invites you to attend DivorceCare, a 13-week support group, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursdays through Dec. 16 via Zoom.

You’ll find a warm, caring environment and will come to see the group as an oasis in this difficult season of life. There are three key elements to this experience: video seminar, group discussion and a personal workbook.

Each Biblically-based session is self-contained. Unless you’ve been there, it’s hard to understand the hurt that comes from separation and divorce. That’s why many of friends and family might not fully understand what you are going through and may not know how to best help you.

If you are interested in attending, please register by emailing to receive the link for the meeting.  

heart journaling drop-in sessions

Beacon Hill Friends invite you to join heart journaling sessions from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursdays through Sept. 23.

In a nurturing and supportive environment, explore the wisdom of your own inner landscape and the power of art journaling to help process life. Each session is designed as a collective and spiritual experience in which deep themes of life emerge. 

Through the flow of each session, and silently witnessing each other, experience the invitation to shift perspectives and gain insights. 

Visit for more information and registration ($125/series | $25 per session).

Boston Common Frog Pond Carousel operating

The Boston Common Frog Pond Carousel is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.

Tickets: $3/ride | 10 Ride Card: $25.

Visit for more information

Run to Home Base                                                                             

The Run to Home Base, presented by Raytheon Technologies, is a unique 9K run and 5K run/walk through scenic Boston, ending with a once-in-a-lifetime experience of finishing the race by crossing Fenway Park’s famed home plate.

The event will be held on Saturday, Sept. 25. The opening ceremony will begin at 7 a.m. and the race will start at 8 a.m.

Friends and family can watch participants from the stands at Fenway, with food, entertainment and fun family activities in the concourse of America’s Most Beloved Ballpark.

The Run to Home Base is their most critical, annual fundraiser providing vital funds for the clinical care and support for our Veterans and their Families who are impacted by the invisible wounds of war. 

Visit for more information and registration.

Boston By Foot tours and Architectural Cruises  

Boston By Foot has resumed their in-person public walking tours as well as the popular 

Architecture Cruises, presented in partnership with the Charles Riverboat Company, through Oct. 31.

Visit for more information, including a full schedule and list of tours/prices.

Tour the Nichols House Museum

The Nichols House Museum 1804 Federal townhouse, 55 Mount Vernon St., was home to landscape gardener, suffragist and pacifist Rose Standish Nichols and her family. Their home and its original art and furnishings provide a glimpse into life on historic Beacon Hill from the mid-19th to mid-20th century. The museum educates and inspires the public through innovative tours and programs.

The 45-minute tours take place between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturdays through Oct. 30 with advanced reservation.

Visit for more information and tickets (free to $12)

Black Heritage Trail® Tour

Join a park ranger from the National Parks of Boston to explore the rich history of Beacon Hill's 19th century Black community. Tours will be held at various times from Wednesdays through Sundays through Oct. 23. The tour begins at the Massachusetts 54th Regiment Memorial (24 Beacon St.) and ends at the Museum of African American History, covering about 1.4 miles.

The Black Heritage Trail® showcases residences and community buildings associated with a Black community that thrived on, and near, the north slope of Beacon Hill before, during and after the American Civil War.

Throughout that time, this community struggled and organized for equal rights and access to equal education. Community members championed the movement to abolish slavery and even housed freedom seekers on their journey along the Underground Railroad.

Visit for more information and reservations.

BCYF programs and services                                                         

The Boston Center for Youth and Families offers a variety of arts and computer activities, recreational programs, virtual field trips, workshops and services both remotely and in person for children, youth, individuals and families at 36 facilities, including community centers and pools.

Visit for more information and registration.

MOS experience onsite/online

The Museum of Science has reopened following health and safety guidelines – face coverings and reservations are required for admission.

Highlights of your visit can include permanent and temporary exhibits and a variety of shows in the Planetarium and newly refurbished Mugar Omni Theater.

MOS at home also offers an array of programs and events. Schedules change weekly and may include a weekly STEM challenge, virtual planetarium visits, live animal visits, science stories, science-related question and answer panels, and Sub-space events.

Visit for more information and reservations.

The West End Museum open

The West End Museum, 150 Staniford St. (Unit 7) is open from noon to 5 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays.

The Museum offers in-person, virtual, and strolling tours and hosts events.

Visit for more information.

Boston Athenæum online/onsite     

Boston Athenæum offers many activities online (some free of charge), serving their members, the Boston community and beyond. They also offer tours of the first floor of their landmark building and artworks from the special collections.

Visit for more information.

Museum of African American History online/onsite                   

The Museum of African American History, 46 Joy St. will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Mondays through Saturdays.

Visit for ticket and scheduling information along with virtual programs and events.

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 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

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 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 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.

Neighbors in Need/Neighbors in Deed                   

There are times when we could all use a helping hand and other times when we could lend one, and that’s the underlying sentiment behind Neighbors in Need/Neighbors in Deed (NIN NID) – a program that connects St. Joseph’s parishioners with neighbors who could use a little assistance or just some cheering up.

If you are in need of anything – or are willing to assist them in outreach – please email or call the office at 617-523-4342 with your name, phone number, email, and a list of items needed, or availability to serve.

Old West Church Community Lunch/Dinner

Everyone is invited to the community meals at the Old West Church at 131 Cambridge St. – served rain or shine and holidays, too. While these meals primarily serve people who are housing insecure or elderly, it’s for anyone.

The Community Lunch is served from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Community Dinner is served from 5 to 6 p.m. on Mondays.

During the pandemic, the meals are served to go. Everyone is welcome to come by and grab a hot meal to takeaway.

Visit for more information.

Wednesday Night Supper Club – ‘Takeout Meal in a Sack’

The Wednesday Night Supper Club is held from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Paulist Center Auditorium, 5 Park St. Place. At this time, they have shifted to a “takeout meal in a sack.”

The Paulist Center volunteers have been serving more than 200 people a week who don’t have access to a good hot meal. The program has been running for more than 50 years. 

Visit to volunteer to help out in any way (cook, serve, clean up; donate supplies, food or money; etc.) or for more information.

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