Back Bay - Midtown neighborhood notes

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Restoration work continues on the Christian Science Mother Church.

The American Revolution from Two Perspectives: A Debate

Gordon Wood and Woody Holton are both distinguished scholars of the American Revolution. But they approach the founding very differently, as seen from their just-published books: Power and Liberty: Constitutionalism in the American Revolution (Woods) and Liberty Is Sweet: The Hidden History of the American Revolution (Holton).

Join them as they debate their conflicting interpretations from 3 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23.

The event will be held in-person at Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston St. and streamed online via Zoom. A pre-program reception will begin at 2:30 p.m.

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

(Members and Fellows + EBT or Connectorcare cardholders: Free | Non-members: $20).

MBCC’s LGBTQ+ virtual dance

Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition (MBCC) will host their 24th annual LGBTQ+ Dance: Party for Prevention virtually from 6 to 9:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23.

The event will feature a guest appearance with long-time environmental activist, actress and comedian Lily Tomlin, music with DJ Jodi Entertainment and dance lessons with Liz Nania, the founder and director of OUT to Dance.

Go to https://mbcc.org/events/2021-party-for-prevention for more information and tickets (Sliding Scale: $10 to $45).

Boston Conservatory Orchestra: ‘These Worlds in Us’

As everyone hopes to rise out of the difficult period in the pandemic, they reflect on the collective trauma and celebrate a return to the music-making that inspires people each day.

Join Boston Conservatory Orchestra in this journey of darkness to light, featuring Missy Mazzoli’s powerful These Worlds in Us, Johannes Brahms’s pastoral Symphony No. 2, plus a trio of operatic selections led by graduate conducting candidate Francesco Gennaro.

The concert will be held 8 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23 at Saint Cecilia Parish, 18 Belvidere St.

Go to www.berklee.edu/events/orchestra-these-worlds-in-us for more information and tickets ($15 | with Berklee ID: Free - ticket required).

Chamber Series 1: ‘as the seasons return’

Chameleon Arts Ensemble of Boston will present Chamber Series 1: as the seasons return at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23 and at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 24 at the First Church in Boston, 66 Marlborough St.    

Pastoral scenes, languid dreams, fantasy and filigree occupy their 24th season opener with a grand return to in-person concerts and the art form we love.

Visit www.chameleonarts.org for more information, including the program, and tickets ($22-$49).

Chamber Music Festival: ‘Folktales and Myths’

Emmanuel Music will present the Chamber Music Festival taking on the enchanting theme of Folktales & Myths and exploring storytelling through classical music.

Featuring compositions by living composers Gabriela Lena Frank, Julian Grant and John Harbison, along with pieces by Bach, this two-day chamber festival continues the long tradition of using music as a tool for storytelling, passing down myths and folktales throughout time. 

The concerts will be held at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23 and at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 24 at Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St. The event will also be livestreamed.

Visit emmanuelmusic.org for more information and registration (Pay What You Wish: $0-$100).

‘Ralph S. Jacobs: Recent Works’

The Guild of Boston Artists will present “Ralph S. Jacobs: Recent Works” through Saturday, Oct. 23 at their Newbury Street gallery. The show will feature a beguiling collection of the artists newest still-life and landscape paintings.

Visit www.guildofbostonartists.org/events for more information.

ARC Blood Drive at  222 Berkeley St.                                                       

A blood drive will be held at 222 Berkeley St. at 222 Berkeley St. from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 25.

Visit www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/donation-time or phone 1-800­-RED CROSS (1-800­-733-2767) to reserve a space.

At Home in the World: American Jewish Women Abroad, 1865-1940

Join the Wyner Family Jewish Heritage Center (JHC) and Dr. Melissa R. Klapper from 6 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 26 for this exploration of the lives and travel experiences of American Jewish women in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Interweaving stories about women represented in the JHC’s own archives, Dr. Klapper will discuss how at a time of prescribed roles for women, American Jewish women discovered independence and self-actualization as they traveled around the world.

Visit https://hubs.americanancestors.org/wyner-lecture-home-world for more information and registration.

Fantastic Books and Where to Find Them Book Group

Geared toward young adults in their 20s and 30s, the Fantastic Books and Where to Find Them Book Group at the Central Library in Copley Square will meet online from 6 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 26 to discuss The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.

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

Seeing the Revolution from beyond the Atlantic coast

Join historian Kathleen DuVal from 7 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 26 as she takes attendees on a journey through geographies of the American Revolution that are often omitted from the popular imagination of this time period.

Visit www.eventbrite.com/e/kathleen-duval-on-seeing-the-revolution-from-beyond-the-atlantic-coast-tickets-159874680473 for more information and registration.

Book Tasters

Looking for a new book, a recipe or just something to do? Join the Boston Public Library Book Tasters from 4 to 4:45 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 27.

The group will talk books, then craft, play games and chat over Zoom. At the end of the session, participants will get a new recipe to try at home. Come for the book review, stay for the fun.

The group is aimed for kids in grades 4 through 6; Families welcome.

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

Disability activism: A historical perspective

The disabilities rights movement, like many rights movements, has been complex, coming from a variety of different perspectives, but at its heart, it has been a movement for justice, equal opportunities and reasonable accommodations. Massachusetts has played a unique role in this struggle and this conversation will aim to introduce the story of disability activism in Massachusetts.

Through a moderated, roundtable discussion from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 27, a panel of current activists and historians of this movement will explore their experiences, their inspirations, the history of the movement and what they hope to see in the future of disability activism.

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

Author Talk: Reece Jones ‘White Borders’

Join the Boston Public Library in partnership with the Norman B. Leventhal Map & Education Center for an online author talk with Reece Jones from 6 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 27.

White Borders: The History of Race and Immigration in the United States from Chinese Exclusion to the Border Wall shows that immigration laws in the US have always been motivated by racial exclusion and the desire to save the idea of a white America.

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

Hawktail

Hawktail will perform at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 27 at the Red Room at Cafe 939, 939 Boylston St.

Hawktail is the instrumental acoustic quartet of fiddler Brittany Haas, bassist Paul Kowert, guitarist Jordan Tice and mandolinist Dominick Leslie.

Though at first glance Hawktail looks like a superpicker side-project, their all-original music is cohesive and unique, distinguishing them as an ensemble with a sound built from the ground up. 

Visit www.berklee.edu/events/hawktail for more information and tickets ($25 - Advance | $28 - Door).

Fall Together

The Harmony and Jazz Composition Department will present its 37th annual concert featuring new music by jazz composition faculty at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 27 at the Berklee Performance Center, 136 Massachusetts Ave.

The music is always diverse, with interesting, extended compositions performed by a faculty jazz orchestra, featuring some of Berklee's best instrumentalists.

Go to www.berklee.edu/events/fall-together-1 for more information and tickets ($10 in advance; $15 day of show | with Berklee ID: Free in advance; $5 day of show).

Courtyard Costume Parade

Preschoolers are invited to wear a costume and show off their style as the group marches around the courtyard and listens to a fall themed story from 2 to 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 28 at the Central Library in Copley Square. (Weather permitting)

Visit bpl.org/events for more information.

Charlesgate Park tour                                                                     

Join the Emerald Necklace Conservancy for a tour of Charlesgate Park from 11 a.m. to noon on Friday, Oct. 29.

Charlesgate is the start of Frederick Law Olmsted’s Emerald Necklace. Learn about the park’s history as well as present restoration efforts designed to repair park access issues, improve the water quality of Muddy River and create new park amenities.

Visit www.emeraldnecklace.org/calendar for more information and registration.

The Stones Speak

Tip toe through the tombstones of Boston’s oldest burying grounds – the Kings Chapel Burying Ground (1630) and Granary Burying Ground (1660) - with genealogist, historian and author David Allen Lambert from 3 to 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 29.

Lambert will lead the group to the final resting place of Boston’s early leaders and notables, including John Winthrop, John Cotton, and Mary Chilton; Revolutionary War-era patriots Paul Revere, Samuel Adams, John Hancock and Robert Treat Paine; and Charles Ewer - the first president of New England Historic Genealogical Society. Hear of these Bostonians’ contributions to American history, their continued influence on today’s society and about the stones and carved symbols that adorn their eternal homes.

Go to https://my.americanancestors.org/1673/1802 for more information and registration ($25).

‘Sisters of the Brush and Palette: Women Artists of the Guild’

The Guild of Boston Artists will present “Sisters of the Brush and Palette: Woman Artists of the Guild” at its Newbury Street gallery from Saturday, Oct. 30 through Saturday, Nov. 27.

In this moment rich with discourse concerning diversity and gender equity in every industry, this exhibition celebrates the significant contributions of the Guild's contemporary female members to the cultural life of the city of Boston.

The Guild's women artists bring immense skill, considered thought and unflagging passion to their work and have found enduring success within an organization that was built on the belief in the democracy of art.

An opening reception will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 30.

An artist panel will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 6. The featured artists will discuss their various paths within the profession while touching on their role as women artists and offering their opinions on issues of inclusion and gender equity in the arts.

Visit www.guildofbostonartists.org/events for more information and reservations.

Virtual pumpkin carving contest

The Boston Parks and Recreation Department will celebrate the spooky season with a pumpkin carving contest. Boston residents of all ages can participate in the online competition using photo submissions welcomed through Halloween, Sunday, Oct. 31.

Find contest rules and enter your jack-o’-lantern into the contest at Boston.gov/ Pumpkins. Winners of each of the three categories: Most Creative, Scariest and Boston Parks-themed will receive a $75 gift basket courtesy of the farm families who own Cabot Creamery Co-operative.

Remember to compost your pumpkins.

Critical shortage of blood at MGH Blood Donor Center – please give

The Massachusetts General Hospital Blood Donor Center, 55 Fruit St. (GRJ 120) is open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Tuesdays through Thursdays and from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Fridays.

Visit www.massgeneral.org/blood-donor/contact for more information and to schedule an appointment.

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.

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.

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.

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

– Arlington Street Meditation Center at 7 p.m.: 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.

Back Bay Chorale ESL Chorus                              

Do you love music or enjoy singing? Do you want to learn English and sing with new friends? The E.S.L. Singing Group will meet from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on (most) Tuesdays through Dec. 7 on Zoom and/or at the Central Library, 700 Boylston St. in Copley Square.

Associate Conductor Katherine Chan from the Back Bay Chorale will teach basic singing skills and songs in English.

At the end of each class, participants will have the opportunity to practice English conversation skills and develop friendships. No singing experience required.

Go to https://bbcboston.org/bridges/esl or bpl.org/events for more information and (Zoom) registration.

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. All are welcome.

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

Email office@ascboston.org for Zoom access. 

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 www.oldsouth.org/jazz.

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.

Bach Cantata Series at Emmanuel Church                      

Continuing their 50-year-old tradition, the orchestra and chorus of Emmanuel Music will present Bach’s astounding human document in the liturgical setting for which it was intended, as well as other sacred works.

The performances can be enjoyed in person at the Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St. at 10 a.m. on Sundays through May 15 with a live stream option.

To learn more about the history of Bach cantatas and how Emmanuel Music presents them, visit emmanuelmusic.org.

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.

Tiffany stained-glass windows

The Tiffany Education Center at the Arlington Street Church, 20 Arlington St. offers self-guided tours with an audio guide as well as docent-guided tours. Experience the resplendent beauty and history of the 16 Tiffany opalescent stained-glass windows – the largest Tiffany window collection of its kind in any one church.

The visitors center will be open from 1 to 4 p.m. on Sundays and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Mondays through Saturdays (closed Tuesdays). Group tours are also available.

Visit www.asctiffany.org/visit for more information.

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

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.

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 www.boston.gov/departments/boston-centers-youth-families for more information and registration.

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.

Friday Night Supper Program – needs help for and with onsite/to-go meals

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.

FNSP offers seated, family-style dinners at the church at 5 p.m. on Fridays or hot to-go meals for those who prefer or if room reaches its limited capacity due to the pandemic.

The Clothing Closet will also be opened every other Friday.

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 BostonWarm/common art and common cathedral programs 

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.

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.