Archive for the 'Area Events' Category

Cambridge Public Library Opening

Cambridge Public Library Opening  I couldn’t help but wonder when I drove down Broadway the other night – Is the Cambridge Public Library finally open? It was brightly lit and looked beautiful. If I knew how to take a picture in the dark (turns out I don’t) I’d have it here.  Instead a 1915 postcard view of the library is below.

It’s been a long time coming. The main branch of the library closed in March 2005. It reopened in temporary quarters in the Longfellow School in June 2005 where it remained through January 2009. The branch libraries have done a tremendous job over these many, many months but a city the size of Cambridge needs its main library.

Cambridge Public Library in 1915

Cambridge Public Library in 1915

The Cambridge Public Library opened in 1889. The Richardsonian Romanesque building was designed by architect Henry Van Brunt and built on land donated to the city by Frederick H. Rindge. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The original building has been restored and a dramatic new addition constructed.

Cambridge Public Library Opening

There will be an Open House and Ribbon Cutting at the new Main Library at 449 Broadway on Thursday, October 29, 2009 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. The official ceremony begins at 6:00 p.m begins and is sold out. The library received requests from more than 500 potential attendees but the auditorium seats only 200.  People are encouraged to attend the open house and the library may have loudspeakers outside the auditorium.

The library opens for business on Sunday, November 8th. Hours that day will be 2 to 5:00 p.m. Thereafter, the library will be open its regular hours:

  • Monday – Thursday 9 – 9 – Children’s Room closes at 7:00 pm
  • Friday & Saturday 9 – 5
  • Sunday 1 – 5 (November through April)

It will be all hands on deck at the newly reopened Main Branch – all the branch libraries will be closed for the week of November 9 to 14.

The Cambridge Public Library is at 449 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02138.

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Concord Festival of Authors – Two Weeks for Book Lovers

I was showing property out in the ‘burbs this weekend and grabbed a copy of the Concord Journal to accompany my quick lunch at New London Style Pizza (if I ever get to have a last meal it will be their Italian grinder – for 30 years it’s been my favorite). The Journal had a supplement about the Concord Festival of Authors and I’m amazed by how much will be going on.

The Concord Festival of Authors runs from October 21 to November 8, 2009.  There are events in Concord, Lincoln and Lowell and most are free (though donations are welcomed).  All sorts of community groups, local businesses and nonprofits are taking part in the festival.

Here’s just a sample of what’s on the schedule:

Howard Dean in Cambridge

Howard Dean in Cambridge

Howard Dean is the opening speaker on Wednesday, October 21st at 2:30 p.m. at the Emerson Umbrella.  Dean is on the lecture circuit for his new book, Howard Dean’s Prescription for Real Healthcare Reform.  We heard him speak in Cambridge a few weeks ago and it was superb.

Verrill Farm presents Chef Fest: A Food Tasting and Book Signing on Saturday, October 24th from noon to 2 p.m.  It’s a great chance to visit the Verrill’s beautiful new stand.  Participants include:

  • Steve Johnson – Executive Chef and owner of Rendezvous in Central Square
  • Peter Davis – Executive Chef at Henrietta’s Table in Cambridge and author of Fresh and Honest
  • Catherine Walters – author of Raising the Salad Bar
  • Lisa Zwirn – author of Christmas Cookies
  • Clara Silverstein – author of The Boston Chef’s Table

Mystery Night takes place on Friday, October 30th at 7:30 p.m. at the Concord Libary.  Hallie Ephron, author of the “On Crime” book review column in the Globe is the Mistress of Ceremonies and authors include:

  • Katherine Hall Page – The Body In the Sleigh
  • Mary-Ann Tirone Smith and Jere Smith – Dirty Water: A Red Sox Mystery
  • Thomas H. Cook – The Fate of Katherine Carr
Orchard House Concord

Orchard House Concord

Harriet Reisen, author of Lousia May Alcott: The Woman Behind Little Women, will be at the Concord Bookshop on Sunday, November 1st at 3:00 p.m.

John Wargo, author of Green Intelligence: Creating Environments that Protect Human Health will be at the Wannalancit Mills, UMass Lowell on Friday, November 6th at 7:00 p.m. in an appearance sponsored by the Lowell Parks and Conservation Trust and the Toxics Use Reduction Institute at UMass Lowell.

This is just a fraction of what’s planned for the Concord Festival of Authors.  There are more than 20 events scheduled. More information and the full schedule can be found at the festival’s website.

The Thoreau Farm Trust included this quote in the Festival supplement – it’s a sentiment that rings true for book lovers –

“Books are the treasured wealth of the world and the fit inheiritance of generations and nations”

– Henry David Thoreau

Categories: Area Events

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Danehy Park Family Day

Danehy Park in North Cambridge

Danehy Park in North Cambridge

Saturday, September 26, 2009 is the the 14th Annual Danehy Park Family Day.  It promises to be a nice, if a bit nippy, day.  Better bring a sweater!

Fun for the whole family including:

  • Roving performers
  • Arts and crafts
  • Music
  • Kite flying
  • Amusement rides
  • Food
  • Children’s stage
  • Free gifts

Danehy Park Family Day takes place on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2009 from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm.

From Harvard Square take the #74 bus. From Central Square take the #83 bus.  Shuttle buses will run from the Alewife T station.

Danehy Park is located on Sherman Street in North Cambridge.

Categories: Area Events

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New Cambridge Youth Center on Huron Ave

New Youth Center on Huron Avenue

New Youth Center on Huron Avenue

New Cambridge Youth Center  When my coworker and I drove by 680 Huron Ave – the VFW post across from Fresh Pond – we marveled at the dramatic renovation.  Sure seemed like an expensive redo for the VFW.

Turns out it’s the new Mayor Sheila Doyle Russell Youth and Community Center.  It was completed this June and programs began at the youth center in July.  Features of the new facility include:

  • Full size gym with an NCAA sized basketball court
  • Fitness room
  • Teaching kitchen
  • 20 station computer learning and homework center
  • Performance room with stage
  • Arts and crafts room
  • Community meeting room
  • Open lounge areas
The center is named for Sheila Doyle Russell, former Cambridge mayor and advocate for youth.

The center is named for Sheila Doyle Russell, former Cambridge mayor and advocate for youth.

Sure doesn’t resemble the youth center of my teens!  That building, now condos actually, was old, dark and unrenovated.  Its biggest claim to fame were the foosball tables.  And the lack of lights.

There’s a Dedication Ceremony for the new West Cambridge youth center scheduled for Friday, September 25, 2009 from 6 to 8 pm.  At the ceremony you’ll get a chance to view the permanent art installation by Michael Oatman, The Cantabridgians.  Oatman created video portraits of 23 West Cambridge residents that can be viewed on three large monitors on the second floor.  I remember seeing a flyer in Armando’s seeking subjects for the videos so it will be fun to see how it turned out.

The new West Cambridge Youth Center is located at 680 Huron Avenue, Cambridge MA 02138.

Categories: Area Events, Living Here
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If This House Could Talk – Cambridgeport History Day

We spotted this sign in Cambridgeport at 202 Hamilton Street the other day. It’s an early entrant in the If This House Could Talk event being held in in the neighborhood on Saturday, October 3, 2009 as part of Cambridgeport History Day.

Early entrant in the If This House Could Talk project for Cambridgeport History Day

Early entrant in the If This House Could Talk project for Cambridgeport History Day

The Cambridgeport History Project is encouraging residents to post signs in front of their houses that tell details of the house’s history – from years ago or from modern times. On October 3rd neighbors are invited to walk around the neighborhood and learn more about the history of Cambridgeport- and about their neighbors. These early signs are a teaser of sorts for the October event.

Since I’m always interested in Cambridge’s rich literary history I was psyched to see that this sign was about a Cambridge author, Jill Rena Bloom.

Bloom wrote several works of non-fiction including Help Me to Help My Child, HMOs: The Revolution in Health Care, and Uncommon Boston which she wrote with co-author Susan Berk.

Bloom also wrote romances under the penname Jillian Blake. Her Silhouette and Harlequin romances included:

  • Diana’s Folly
  • East Side, West Side
  • Water Dancer
  • Sullivan vs. Sullivan
  • A Vision to Share

For more information about Cambridgeport History Day you can contact Cathie Zusy at 617-868-0489 or [email protected]

And if you’d like to live in the neighborhood  –


Categories: Area Events
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Oliver Wendell Holmes Day in Cambridge

Bigelow Chapel - Mount Auburn Cemetery - Cambridge MA

Bigelow Chapel - Mount Auburn Cemetery - Cambridge MA

This Saturday is going to be a busy day – the Camera Obscura in Somerville in the afternoon and in the morning – it’s the 200th birthday celebration for Oliver Wendell Holmes

Physician, poet, professor, and writer, Holmes was part of the literary scene in Cambridge and Boston and his friends included Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and James Russel Lowell.  On a side note – if you haven’t read Matthew Pearl’s mystery novel, The Dante Club, in which Holmes and his poet friends are major characters, you’re in for a treat.

The City of Boston and the City of Cambridge have declared Saturday, August 29th Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes Day.

Holmes was born in Cambridge and is buried at Mount Auburn Cemetery.  On Saturday several events are planned at Mount Auburn.  There will be a performance with Dr. Holmes portrayed by actor Wendell Refior and a lecture about Holmes by Dr. Charles S. Bryan.  A wreath will be laid at Holmes’ grave.

The ceremony takes place at the Bigelow Chapel in Mount Auburn Cemetery on Saturday, August 29, 2009 from 10 am to noon.

 Where we love is home – home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts.
Oliver Wendell Holmes

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Powderhouse Park in Somerville – Camera Obscura

Note:  The camera obscura has been postponed due to the bad weather this weekend. Since tomorrow (Sunday the 30th) looks iffy too the camera obscura will be rescheduled for another weekend.  Details to follow when available.

This Saturday the Powderhouse at Nathan Tufts Park in Somerville will be turned into a camera obscura by artist Annie Smidt

Huh?  What the heck is a camera obscura?

Tour in Powderhouse Park Somerville Mass

Tour in Powderhouse Park Somerville Mass

Latin for “dark room”, the term is used to describe the phenomenon in which light coming through a very small hole into a dark box or room casts an upside down image on the opposite wall.

Knowledge of this phenomenon dates to the 5th Century BC.  Mentioned by Aristotle and by da Vinci, the camera obscura, a term first used by Kepler in the early 1600s, eventually led to the development of photography.

The event this Saturday is reminiscent of the cameras obscura that could be find in parks and resorts in the late 1800s and early 1900s to amuse and fascinate tourists.

On Saturday, Smidt will turn the Powderhouse into a giant camera and take photographs of visitors to the park. Visitors will also be allowed inside the powderhouse to see how the process works.

When: Saturday, August 29, 2009 from 1 to 4 pm

Where: Nathan Tufts Park at the Powderhouse Rotary in Somerville MA

Raindate: Sunday, August 30, 2009 from 1 to 4 pm

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Howard Dean Lecture in Cambridge – Prescription for Real Healthcare Reform

One of the things I love about living in a college town like Cambridge is that there are so many opportunities to attend lectures on a myriad of topics. 

Now that I’ve bought my tickets I can post about an exciting upcoming lecture.  Former Vermont governor and Chairman of the Democratic National Committee Howard Dean will be in Cambridge next month for a timely discussion about his new book Prescription for Real Healthcare Reform.

The appearance is sponsored by the Harvard Book Store and takes place at the First Parish Church Meetinghouse in Harvard Square on the corner of Mass Ave and Church Street on Tuesday, September 8, 2009 at 7:00 pm.

Tickets are $5 and went on sale today.  Order Howard Dean’s book, buy tickets and get more info at the Harvard Book Store’s website.

Categories: Area Events
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