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Concord Conservatory Presents Boston Jazz Wisdom

CONCORD: Beginning March 30, Concord Art presents THIS EARTH, curated by Stefan Hagen. The exhibition brings together the  work of 31 artists from the Montello Foundation Artist Residency in Montello, Nevada. The show will be on view through May 7. 

Hagen’s Montello Foundation is a solitary residency  in the Nevada Desert for artists who foster our understanding of the fragility of nature and the need to protect it. The guiding principles of THIS EARTH are based on the artists’ various approaches and personal relationships to nature. Some artists work in the great tradition of observing nature as listeners and note-takers; others work with natural elements and materials, transforming them with their practice. Still others focus on the well-meaning yet devastating ways in which  humans impact the natural world. The works presented in the exhibition include  photography, painting, sculpture, poetry, video, puppetry, music, and fragrance. 

The exhibition resonates with themes from Concord’s history, as Henry David Thoreau’s response to his environment at Walden Pond has often been likened to an artist retreat or  residency. Like Thoreau, the Montello Foundation artists strive to understand their subject  matter through uninterrupted observation and experience; submersion in the environment  is critical to such retreats. Artists in the exhibition: Renate Aller, Lee Arnold, Bug Carlson, Margaret Cogswell, Concrete Temple Theatre, Elisabeth Condon, Blane De St. Croix, Ash Ferlito, Markus  Guschelbauer, Matthew Hamon, Rachel Harkai, Nicole Jean Hill, Michael Dax Iacovone,  James Kao, Laurie Lambrecht, Jeff Leake, SaraNoa Mark, Summer McCorkle, Evie  McKenna, Sara Morawetz, Mia Mulvey, Brie Ruais, Victoria Sambunaris, Jill Sebastian,  Diana Shpungin, Miho Suzuki, John Thayer, Lea  Thomas, Lea Titz, Patricia Watwood, and Audra Wolowiec. 

A catalog of the exhibition is available at Concord Art. For more information, contact katejames@concordart.org or nataliereiser@concord.org. You may also call Concord Art at (978) 369-2578.
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Concord Conservatory Presents Boston Jazz Wisdom

CONCORD: On March 24, Jazz percussion legend Ra-Kalam Bob Moses leads an all-star jazz concert at Concord Conservatory of Music (CCM), 1317 Main Street, at 7:30 pm. Experience live music with an evening of energetic, free-spirited, and innovative jazz. His colorful and multicultural music knows no boundaries. The all-star jazz line-up features Dave Bryant on piano, John Lockwood on bass, and CCM faculty member Tsuyoshi Honjo on saxophone. Purchase $25 General Admission tickets in advance from ConcordConservatory.org or
at the door. Email info@concordconservatory.org or call (978) 369-0010 for more information.

Ra Kalam Bob Moses is one of the world’s great musicians, composers, and drummers. As an adventurous drummer and composer, Bob Moses has played with an amazing list of stellar musicians, including Dave Liebman, Pat Metheny, Herbie Hancock, Bobby McFerrin, Dave Sanborn, Gary Burton, and many more over his career.

Bedford's JGMS Presents "Disney's Frozen Jr."

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BEDFORD: The John Glenn Middle School Performing Arts Department will present "Disney’s Frozen Jr.," which is based on the 2018 Broadway musical. It brings Elsa, Anna, and the magical land of Arendelle to life onstage, written by Jennifer Lee. The show features all of the memorable songs from the animated film with music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez.  The show runs March 30-April 1 in the JGMS auditorium. The production, led by director Aidan Tatar, features more than 100 students in the cast and crew. Appropriate for all audiences, the show runs 60 minutes with no intermission. Tickets are available online at www.showtix4u.com/events/23538. Tickets are $10 and a streamed show is available for purchase for the March 31 performance.  The online box office will close seven hours prior to each performance time, but tickets will be sold at the door if available. 

Umbrella Ceramics Studio Redesign & Expansion Project Launched

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CONCORD: The Umbrella Arts Education Program is excited to announce they are embarking on a significant redesign and expansion of their highly popular Umbrella Ceramics Studio Program. The program has experienced increased and robust demand since reopening in 2020, with classes reaching maximum capacity within hours of opening registration each semester, and storage space strained for our thriving independent studio community.
 
The redesign project aims at once to improve facilities, increase capacity to serve more students and artists, create more navigable space and access, and provide a better experience for all participants. Highlights of the expansion plan include:
 
  • Combine Room 107 with the existing classroom (Room 108) into one expanded classroom space to accommodate four additional pottery wheels, including an accessible wheel for students and artists of all abilities; a hand-building space; additional cubbies for students and artists; and an upgraded sink area. This larger classroom space will become the primary classroom for youth ceramics.
  • Combine Rooms 105 and 106 into one new large Ceramics Program space dedicated to the glazing process. The creation of this space will allow for added capacity for adult classes in the main studio.
  • Create two permanent studios and one “rotating” studio space on the first floor (Rooms 112 and 113) to host at least one annual Ceramic Teaching Artist-in-Residence who will augment and refresh our class offerings teaching staff, offer workshops and talks for the community, and show their work alongside the studio. 

The Umbrella is investigating contractors and funding options, with the goal to begin construction on July 1 with a completion date of August 15, 2023.  Additional community updates and input opportunities will be shared on TheUmbrellaArts.org in the months ahead. Sign up for their newsletter to receive updates!

PHOTO by David Rosen
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Bedford, MA Author Publishes Book on Black America

BEDFORD: "Introducing Democratic Socialism to America," a new book by Bedford's Eteri, has been released by Dorrance Publishing Co., Inc.  The book discusses Black Lives Matter, black capitalism and economic systems, resources and other wages, pandemic issues, and issues in Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, and America around the world. The book also discusses war and racism inside Americans today. For more information, visit  https://bookstore.dorrancepublishing.com/introducing-democratic-socialism-to-america.
 
Eteri has a perspective about society and characters and all. She is trying to live with love and by books, trying to give abilities and provide ability and development to people - mental, physiological, emotional, cognitive, and social. She also tries to give to outcomes and many other supports. Mental health problems can have a negative influence on homelessness, poverty, employment, safety, and the local economy. They may impact the productivity of local businesses and healthcare costs, impede the ability of children and youth to succeed in school, and lead to family and community disruption.
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EmerSong A Cappella Festival – April 1

CONCORD: The Auxiliary of Emerson Health is happy to announce the return of the EmerSong A Cappella Festival on April 1 at 7:30pm at 51 Walden. Invite your family and friends to enjoy this fun and entertaining community event. Musical groups include Concord Carlisle High School’s Take Notes, Tufts sQ!, Amherst College Zumbyes, MIT Ohms, BroadBand, and the Choi/Wright Family Quartet. Proceeds support inpatient and outpatient behavioral health services at Emerson Health. Tickets cost $30 each. For more information, visit www.emersonhealth.org/EmerSong.
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Long Live the Queen!: A Bus Tour of Acton, Concord, and Littleton Queen Anne Homes

ACTON/CONCORD/LITTLETON: Many Queen Anne buildings have stood the test of time and still grace the streets of these three towns over a hundred years later. On April 30 at 1pm, join Histoury as they explore the picturesque and playful style that reigned in the last decades of Queen Victoria’s era, glimpsing into the lives of many locals along the way. The Long Live the Queen! Bus tour is a one-time cultural experience in the Massachusetts area. Spots are very limited!

Histoury is an organization that brings to life architectural tours that are both entertaining and educational. Made up of experts in tourism and history preservation, our team creates one-time tours in the New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts areas that both inform and inspire!  For more information, visit https://histoury.org.

Concord Conservatory Presents Grammy-Award Winners The Okee Dokee Brothers

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CONCORD: Connect your kids to nature through music on April 1 at 2pm when Concord Conservatory presents the Grammy Award-winning Okee Dokee Brothers for one show only, bringing their new album "Brambletown" and all their fan-favorite songs for singing and dancing. The inspirational, infectious musical duo will perform at the Acton-Boxborough High School.

The Okee Dokee Brothers draw creativity from their incredible extensive outdoor experiences. With humor and heartfelt connections to nature, their songs teach and entertain audiences of all ages. The Minnesota Parent Magazine says, "The Okee Dokee Brothers are an absolute national treasure. These songs are just what the world needs right now." If you want to introduce your kids to great music with lyrics that embrace adventure and finding happiness, look no further than The Okee Dokee Brothers.

As childhood friends growing up in Colorado, Joe Mailander and Justin Lansing were always exploring the outdoors. Whether it was rafting down their neighborhood creek or discovering hiking trails through the Rocky Mountains, Joe and Justin were born adventurers, bringing their passion for the outdoors at the heart of their down-home and lively Americana Folk music. They have created their own unique sound with a touch of bluegrass, old-time, and folk.

Purchase $25 General Admission tickets in advance from ConcordConservatory.org or at the door (if not sold out). Email info@concordconservatory.org or call (978) 369-0010 to learn more about CCM.
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Bedford Police Department Announces Launch of Bedford Safe Campaign

BEDFORD: Chief John Fisher is pleased to announce that the Bedford Police Department, in collaboration with the Bedford Board of Health and the Bedford Health Department, has launched the Bedford Safe Campaign to raise awareness of the effects of gun violence. This campaign focuses on gun safety, awareness, and education in an effort to protect the community from gun violence.

The Police Department plans to partner with area law enforcement partners on an enhanced unwanted gun buyback event in June 2023. In addition to the gun buyback program, the Bedford Police Department now offers free gun safety kits/locks. These locks may also be acquired at the Health Department, Council on Aging (COA), and the Bedford Free Public Library.

The campaign will host a free community education forum on March 1 at the Bedford High School Auditorium, 9 Mudge Way from 7-8pm with a presentation on the topic of gun violence presented by the co-director of the Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Gun Violence Prevention.

"Gun violence is both a policing issue and a public health issue," Chief Fisher said. "We hope that this campaign will open dialogue on this topic, and led to a more informed and safer community."

A flyer regarding the campaign will be mailed to every household in Bedford. For details on the forum or questions about the campaign, residents are directed to visit the Bedford Safe Campaign website at www.bedfordma.gov/BedfordSafe or contact the Bedford Police Department at (781) 275-1212 or the Health Department at (781) 275-6507.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, call 988 to reach out to the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. Additionally, you can call or text 833-733-2445 to reach the Massachusetts Behavioral Health Helpline 24/7 for urgent care evaluation and connection to clinical services.
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An Intimate Musical Evening with Tony-Winner Laura Benanti

"Broadway wunderkind Laura Benanti isn't just a smashing vocalist; the woman is a comic genius...See her in any way you can!" - Kevin Taft, EDGE Media

CONCORD: The Umbrella Arts Center presents Tony Award-winner and five-time Tony Award nominee Laura Benanti in an intimate concert performance - two nights only, March 10 & 11 at 7:30pm. Hailed by The New York Times for her “effortless” vocals, and by the New York Post for her ability to “whip up laughs out of thin air,” Benanti first took Broadway by storm at the age of 18 as Maria in The Sound of Music, and has subsequently starred in ten more Broadway shows (musicals, straight plays, comedies and dramas) including Into the Woods, Nine (opposite Antonio Banderas), Gypsy (for which she won a Tony Award), She Loves Me, My Fair Lady, and Steve Martin’s Meteor Shower opposite Amy Schumer and Keegan Michael Key.

Benanti's flourishing television and film career have included widely acclaimed appearances on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert as Melania Trump, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tick, Tick... Boom! and roles on Hulu’s Life & Beth, Inside Amy Schumer, as well as Gossip Girl, Younger, Nashville, Supergirl, and the highly anticipated second season of The Gilded Age. In film, Benanti starred in Netflix’s Worth opposite Michael Keaton, Stanley Tucci and Amy Ryan, Here Today opposite Billy Crystal and Tiffany Haddish, and is currently filming the Sony Pictures comedy No Hard Feelings opposite Jennifer Lawrence and Matthew Broderick.

Also a book author and creator of the HBO Max special Homeschool Musical: Class of 2020 based on her viral social media movement: #sunshinesongs, Benanti released a self-titled audio album for Sony Music Masterworks and tours the world performing solo concerts alongside highly celebrated musicians and orchestras.

This engagement is an expansion of The Umbrella Concert Series, with recent sold-shows headlined by Lyle Lovett, Indigo Girls, Lake Street Dive, Ben Folds and Natalie Merchant. Purchase tickets at TheUmbrellaArts.org or (978) 371-0820 x209. The Umbrella is ADA accessible, and provides free parking and free admission to its visual arts galleries.
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Purim Mitzvah Masquerade Carnival & Purim Spiel at Kerem Shalom

CONCORD: Join Kerem Shalom of Concord for a Purim Mitzvah Masquerade on March 5, 2023, beginning at 1pm with a Children’s Purim Spiel and Sing-a-long, presented by students and Kerem Shalom faculty, followed by games for families with children at 1:30pm. Costumes are encouraged!  Enjoy Carnival Games, a Bouncy House, Snack Bag Packing, a Costume Parade, Crown Decorating, a Food Drive to Benefit Open Table, Tzedakah, Hamantaschen Sales to support KS’s Afghan Resettlement Initiative, and more! Suggested donation: $5/person (max $20/family).  For more information, visit keremshalom.org, located at 659 Elm Street.
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Open Studios Returns to The Umbrella

CONCORD: Studio Artists at The Umbrella Arts Center will open their doors March 18 and 19 to welcome the public into their recently renovated home at 40 Stow Street in the heart of the historic Concord Center Cultural District. A Concord tradition, Open Studios annually draws over a thousand visitors to The Umbrella, which houses more than 60 working artists skilled in a variety of fine and applied arts including ceramics, glass, fiber arts, jewelry making, illustration, mixed-media, painting, photography, printmaking, illustration, sculpture, woodworking, writing and more. Open Studios will take place between 12-5pm both days.

In addition to studio visits, there will be scheduled art demos in print-making, weaving, woodwork, oil painting and pottery, live music performed by Them City Ducks and Backwards Hats, as well as a Ceramics Studio Spring Sale and a mixed media visual art exhibition,

The Umbrella is ADA accessible with free public parking lot and street parking. Learn more at TheUmbrellaArts.org/Open-Studios.
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CONCORD: Brava to the Concord Park residents who recently participated in a Wool Needle Felting Portrait Class, a truly unique art form! (L to R): Julia Lea, Dotty Jenks, Ann Batogowski, Patty Gerty, Kathy Ferris, Tabby Burak, and Art instructor Magda Stilmant.
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Local Residents Earn Dean's List Honors from MassBay Community College

ACTON/CONCORD: The following local students have been named to the MassBay Community College Dean's List, achieving this outstanding academic honor for the fall 2022 semester.

* Hailey Martinez of Acton (01720), who studies Liberal Arts - Early Childhood Education.
* Elizabeth Alonzo of Acton (01720), who studies Cyber Security.
* Holly Lascko of Acton (01720), who studies General Studies.
* Frank Abbott of Acton (01720), who studies Biotechnology.
* Nell Larkin of Concord (01742), who studies International Business.
* Mildred Denisse Woodman of Concord (01742), who studies General Studies.

To be eligible for the MassBay Dean's List, students must complete at least six credits of college-level courses, be in good standing with the College, and earn a grade point average of 3.5 or higher.
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NFO Hosts Annual Conference in Concord

CONCORD: The National Folk Organization (NFO) will be holding their annual Conference in Concord this year. From March 29-April 1, look for presentations, workshops, networking and lots of dancing to various types of live music. If you have a passion for folk arts, meet, learn, and mingle with others that feel the same way. This year, there'll be a special focus on dance musicians speaking on the theme of musician/dancer communication. What do musicians and dancers need to know about each other to have successful events?  There'll also be a business meeting, reports on new NFO projects, and a little taste of Pourparler.

Meetings and presentations will be at the Trinitarian Congregational Church, 54 Walden Street. For the dance space, we have reserved the Concord Scout House, the well-loved contra dance hall, next door at 74 Walden Street. Neither venue has parking.

Full time registration includes all events and offers a discount for NFO members. Part time registration allows you to come by the day and covers breakfast and lunch but no evening activities. If you are local and just want to attend the evening dance parties, you can pay the host organizer at the door. Wednesday’s – Friday’s live music dance parties are $10 each; Saturday’s live music party is $20.

Consider inviting family and friends to attend the Awards Banquet on Saturday evening! $50 each. You can register for that under part time registration. It’s always a lovely affair.

For more information, visit tinyurl.com/nfo2023 or email nfoconfquestions@gmail.com.
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Local Chefs Take Center Kitchen for Open Table’s Chopped for Charity Gala

Evening to feature chefs’ cooking challenge, food and silent auction

CONCORD/MAYNARD: Open Table, the MetroWest charity dedicated to fighting hunger and building healthy communities, announced that acclaimed local chefs Ben Elliot of Concord’s Salt Box Kitchen, Matt Kenah of Acton-based WECO Hospitality, and Kelcy Scolnick of Winchester’s Wright-Locke Farm will compete at this year’s Chopped for Charity gala with television and radio personality Chef Joe Gatto as the Master of Ceremonies. Celebrity judges include Tiziana Dearing of WBUR Radio, Andy Husbands of The Smoke Shop BBQ, and Peter Malloy of Nashawtuc Country Club.

“The highlight of the evening is the fast-paced competition between the three chefs before an expert panel of judges,” said Norma Frye, Open Table BOD member and Chopped for Charity  Co-Chair. “The event will benefit Open Table’s mission to address hunger in our local community by offering a wide variety of healthy and culturally appropriate food choices in our pantry and meal programs.”

Chefs competing in the Chopped for Charity challenge:
 
  • Chef Ben Elliot – As chef, farmer, and owner of Concord’s Saltbox Farm, Saltbox Kitchen and Saltbox Catering, Ben oversees all elements of the farm-to-table journey – playing an active daily role in planting, harvesting, preparing and serving his cuisine. Prior to Saltbox Kitchen, Ben's 20-year career includes time spent at La Folie and the Fifth Floor under Chef Laurant Gras in San Francisco and Locke-Ober in Boston. More recently, he worked with chef Barbara Lynch in Boston as Chef de Cuisine at No.9 Park, opening Lynch’s demonstration kitchen Stir, and launching Lynch’s catering company 9 at Home as Chef de Cuisine.
  • Chef Matt Kenah – Matt Kenah is the Director of Culinary at Acton-based food delivery service WECO Hospitality. He leads the culinary teams in multiple kitchens and heads the test kitchen team in trying new dishes for WECO’s weekly menus. Starting as a dishwasher and moving up in the kitchen from line cook to head chef, Kenah worked in restaurants all over New England, becoming a key player at WECO when the meal delivery service began in 2020.     
  • Chef Kelcy Scolnick – Chef Kelcy is a Lowell-based chef and educator focusing on eating with the seasons and supporting her local community through private cooking classes and dinner parties. She is also the Farm Chef at Wright-Locke Farm in Winchester, MA, where she runs a variety of educational programming for people of all ages and creates delicious farm-to-table food experiences.

Experts seated at the Chopped for Charity judges’ table include:
 
  • Tiziana Dearing, host of Radio Boston on WBUR, has been a commentator and contributor to WBUR for more than a decade. Prior to joining the Radio Boston team, Tiziana was a professor at Boston College in the School of Social Work, where she taught social innovation and leadership. A longtime anti-poverty advocate, Tiziana also ran Boston Rising, a startup antipoverty fund working to end generational poverty in Boston and was the first woman president of Catholic Charities for the Archdiocese of Boston.
  • Andy Husbands is the award-winning chef, author and pitmaster behind The Smoke Shop BBQ, Boston’s acclaimed barbecue restaurants, and four-time winner of Boston Magazine’s “Best Barbecue” as well as The Improper Bostonian’s “Boston’s Best” Award for “Best Barbecue.”  Husbands drives awareness for No Kid Hungry, the nation’s leading childhood hunger relief organization, serving as honorary chair of its annual Taste of the Nation fundraiser. He is also a Vice President of the Massachusetts Restaurant Association, for which he was honored as MRA’s Chef of the Year in 2014, works closely with the Rodman Celebration for Kids, and is an avid volunteer at local women’s shelter, Rosie’s Place.
  • Peter Malloy is executive chef at Nashawtuc Country Club, where he has been a part of the culinary team for over 10 years. With a passion for food and an unwavering commitment to high-quality ingredients, he creates vibrant, memorable, and nourishing dishes for club events and private functions. Throughout his career, Peter has worked in some of the most prestigious kitchens in the area, having honed his mastery of classical French cooking techniques at the renowned Cambridge School of Culinary Arts.
  • Joe Gatto, master of ceremonies for the evening, is a private chef, culinary Instructor, author, and host of the cutting-edge cooking show From Scratch. His private-chef client list has included a star Boston Red Sox player and the CEO and founder of iRobot among others.

This year’s Chopped for Charity will be held at Concord's Nashawtuc Country Club on Friday, April 28. VIP tickets are $200 and include preferred seating, a private reception, meet the chefs, and a high-end spirit tasting. General Admission is $150 per person. Tickets are available at Opentable.org/chopped.

In addition to the chefs’ challenge, the gala will also feature raffle baskets, silent and live auctions, and a cash bar. A light meal will be provided, including delicious desserts from the Open Table kitchen. A VIP reception takes place from 5:30-6:30pm. Doors open for general admission at 6:30pm. 

The evening’s honorees will be Jill Block and Wade Rubenstein and, in memorium, community leader Debra Stark of Debra’s Natural Gourmet.

Open Table is a 501(c)(3) established in 1989. Its mission is to address hunger in the local community by providing healthy food in a welcoming environment while respecting the dignity and diversity of those served. For more information, visit: www.opentable.org
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FREE WORKSHOP - Art as Activism/Healing: Race and Racial Justice

CONCORD: Join artist and teacher Nayda A. Cuevas for two FREE workshops at Concord's Umbrella and see how she uses her art on a gallery wall to create a dialogue about race/identity. Cuevas will give a small presentation about different BIPOC figures and contemporary artists. In a safe and welcoming space, students will learn and discuss how other artists stand up to racial injustice and confront such issues as colonialism, stereotypes, slavery, racism, patriarchy, apartheid, and erasure of indigenous peoples and then create their own artwork to be exhibited at The Umbrella Arts Center in April 2023. As a group, discuss:

—How can I be visible in my community? Or how may a person of color feel invisible in their community?
—Has there been a time that you wished you could change something at home, school, or in your neighborhood?
—What artwork would you make to envision and create change?
—What kind of artwork would you make that shows who you are?

Workshops will be held March 4 and March 25 from 1-3pm. Please note artwork may be taken home to complete. Attendance to second workshop may be needed but not mandatory. For more information, contact stephanie@theumbrellaarts.org or register online at https://theumbrellaarts.org/class/free-workshop-art-activismhealing-race-and-racial-justice

Concord Conservatory Presents Music & Water Concert & Lecture

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CONCORD: On March 3 at 7:30pm, Concord Conservatory of Music partners with OARS and The Sudbury, Assabet and Concord Wild & Scenic River Stewardship Council to present "Music & Water." This evening of appreciation for the beauty of our local rivers and watersheds features a chamber music concert inspired by water and performed by the talented Concord Conservatory of Music faculty.

The many sounds of flowing water, a literal and metaphorical reflection of our world, arise in music from around the globe and throughout the centuries, creating organic patterns and connections between genre, time, and culture for us to explore. The concert will feature chamber music pieces evocative of and inspired by water by Takemitsu, Debussy, Franz Schubert, and others. CCM Faculty performers include Nicole Parks on violin, Susan Gottschalk on viola, Stephen Marotto on cello, Yoko Hagino on piano, and Justin Meyer on bass.

OARS is a non-profit organization whose mission is to protect, improve and preserve the Assabet, Sudbury, and Concord Rivers, their tributaries and watersheds, for public recreation, water supply, and wildlife habitat. Guest speaker Alison Field-Juma, Executive Director of OARS, will act as a guide and help explore local rivers.

General Admission tickets are $25. Kids under 18 are FREE. Purchase tickets in advance from ConcordConservatory.org or at the door. Email  info@concordconservatory.org or call (978) 369-0010 to learn more. Concord Conservatory of Music is located at 1317 Main Street in the West Concord Union
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The Miraculous from the Material with Professor Alan Lightman

Can We Build an Advanced Robot that Has Consciousness? 
 
CONCORD: Join Kerem Shalom of Concord for an online presentation by Kerem Shalom member Alan Lightman, focusing on the PBS series SEARCHING: Our Quest for Meaning in the Age of Science, (which aired last month) - February 26 from 10:30am–12pm. The series is based on several of Lightman's books. In his talk, he will explore a few of the large questions considered in the series:

· What does it mean to be human in a world of increasing science and technology?
· How can a system made of material atoms and molecules give rise to complex human experiences, like consciousness, falling in love, and awe?
· Can we create a conscious computer or organism in the lab and, if so, what moral and ethical responsibilities would we have?

Lightman will illustrate his talk with video clips from the series. In the clips, he will talk to Jack Szostak, a Nobel-Prize-winning biologist; Ruth Faden, a leading bioethicist at Johns Hopkins; Micah Greenstein, a rabbi in Memphis, Tennessee; the Dalai Lama; and BINA48, the most advanced android created to date.

Lightman is a Professor of the Practice of the Humanities at MIT, a novelist and essayist, a distinguished physicist, and social entrepreneur. In 2003 he founded the Harpswell Foundation, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower a new generation of women leaders in Southeast Asia. Alan has received numerous accolades and awards for his extensive creative work at the intersection of the sciences and the humanities.

See https://keremshalom.org/current-events/miraculous-from-materia-lightman/ to register. There is no fee to attend this online program.
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Find Out about Affordable, Reliable, Clean 21st Century Nuclear Energy

The climate crisis is no longer hypothetical. It has arrived. The fastest way to de-carbonize the planet and reduce use of fossil fuels is to incorporate more nuclear energy into the regional power grid. Energy educators are offering free public talks to groups of all kinds – schools, libraries, religious communities, as well as civic, service and environmental organizations in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, southern New Hampshire and Maine and northeastern Connecticut. 

Learn about modern safety procedures, the science and enormous power of uranium and thorium as a 21st century solution to meet the escalating world demand for electricity. Examine the fears underlying discussions of nuclear operations, waste and safety. Find out how modern nuclear reactors feed regional power grids with clean energy 24/7, and how other countries are developing this dense low-carbon energy source. Explore Eco-Nuclear Solutions, a non-partisan, volunteer, grassroots group of scientists, educators and environmentalists at www.eco-nuclearsolutions.org. To reserve a date to explore the potential of nuclear power, contact econuclearsolutions@gmail.com

The one-hour presentation is an introduction to nuclear energy and how it benefits the planet and the world’s people. Access to reliable affordable electricity is a gateway out of poverty, which typically leads to lower birth rates. Nuclear power is experiencing a renaissance as one of the most reliable, affordable and zero-carbon sources of electricity that requires minimal land. It is the only electricity generating technology that sequesters  and/or safely disposes of all byproducts which, along with its demonstrated reliability, makes it a rockstar to provide energy, the lifeblood of the world. The Seabrook, NH and Millstone, CT, nuclear plants provide 20% of electricity to the New England grid. Scientists and activists will share data, stories, slides and videos about the world’s drive for reliable, affordable and clean energy.

The team includes: David Butz, a self-educated living encyclopedia of nuclear energy, past, present and future; Carolyn McCreary, Ph.D, who served two terms on the Ayer Select Board and led the town to become a Green Community; Dale Levandier, Ph.D., a chemist with knowledge of nuclear physics; and other scientists and environmental activists.
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Show the Love: Donate Personal Care via The Rotary Club

CONCORD: The Rotary Club of Concord in collaboration with the Rotary Club of Acton is spearheading a donation drive for personal care items for Open Table Food Pantry. The following items are not covered by SNAP/food support programs so Open Table must purchase them for the individuals and families they serve. The following items are being collected: Diaper Sizes:  3, 4, 5, 6, Baby Wipes, Laundry Detergent, Dish Soap, Toothpaste, Shampoo. Items can be dropped off at any of the following LOCATIONS:
 
  • Action Unlimited, 100 Domino Dr., W. Concord
  • Coldwell Banker, 11 Main Street, Concord
  • Frame-ables, 111 Thoreau St, Concord (Open 10-4, Tues-Sat.)
  • Middlesex Bank, 64 Main St., Concord
  • Minuteman Arc, 35 Forest Ridge Road and 1269 Main St., W. Concord
  • Keller Williams, 200 Baker Ave. Suite 205, Concord
  • Enterprise Bank, 340 Great Rd., ACTON
 
The Rotary Club of Concord has a long-standing partnership with Open Table which supports food insecure households in 21 communities. Club members volunteer to help transport locally grown vegetables and grocery items and prepare meals for delivery and curbside pick-up.

The Concord Rotary Club is an active group of volunteers who raise money each year for scholarships for local students including sending 10 sophomore high school students to a Rotary sponsored Leadership weekend. Club members also volunteer their time in the community including: the Assabet Valley Boys and Girls Club, building beds for children who do not have beds, working with Habitat for Humanity and holding community events. The Club sponsors a Rotary Interact Club at the high school and Early Act clubs at Concord and Carlisle middle schools. In the past the Club has donated funds for Concord center war memorials, the USS Concord Bell Park and the beautiful tree for the Concord holiday tree lighting.

Rotary International is a service organization with a global network of 1.4 million members taking ACTION to provide clean water and sanitation, fight disease and hunger, support education and mothers and children and grow local economies. Rotary is a leader in working to eradicate polio worldwide. Responding to the war in Ukraine, Rotary International raised $15 million for humanitarian relief which was distributed in the form of disaster response grants. Rotarians continue to provide help in Ukraine through grants from the Rotary Foundation. Interested in learning more about the Rotary Club of Concord? Visit www.rotaryclubofconcord.org for more information.
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Start 2023 & Your Morning with the FBCOA

BEDFORD: Join the Friends of the Bedford Council on Aging (FBCOA) on February 28 at 10am for a delicious complimentary breakfast and friendship at the Council on Aging Senior Center, 12 Mudge Way. The FBCOA is a volunteer, multi-age, non-profit group that works to provide essential support and services for the seniors of Bedford and the Council on Aging.  If you are not already a member of the FBCOA, it is not too late to join. Annual FBCOA dues are $5 per person; $7 per family. Reservations are required and will close by February 22. Please call the COA to reserve your spot at (781) 275-6825.  For more information, visit www.facebook.com/FBCOA.
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GLCF Seeks Request for Proposals for 2023 Discretionary Grant Cycles

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LOWELL: The Greater Lowell Community Foundation will open its 2023 Discretionary Grant Cycles on February 1 and is seeking requests for proposals from nonprofit organizations. The Foundation will award $200,000 through the Discretionary Grant Cycle. Nonprofit organizations serving the communities of Acton, Ashby, Ayer, Bedford, Billerica, Burlington, Carlisle, Chelmsford, Concord, Dracut, Dunstable, Groton, Littleton, Lowell, Pepperell, Shirley, Tewksbury, Townsend, Tyngsboro, Westford, and Wilmington are invited to apply.

Grant funding from the Greater Lowell Community Foundation’s 2023 Discretionary Grants Program includes the following strategic funding categories:
 
  • Racial Equity and Inclusion (details below) - The Foundation will award multiple grants of up to $15,000 that focus on racial equity and inclusion. The grant funding should focus on one or more of the following goals:
    • Increase understanding of our community’s challenges with racial equity and race relations
    • Provide access to stories and diverse perspectives on the lived experience of racial inequity in Greater Lowell
    • Strengthen relationships among Greater Lowell residents, particularly across racial and ethnic groups
    •  Increase awareness of resources and best practices related to advancing racial equity
  • Leclair Elder Services - The Foundation will award five grants at $7,000 each to organizations that support services to seniors (55 years+) in our service area.
  • Children’s Services - This year, thanks to the generosity of our donors, GLCF will award seven grants at $7,500 each to projects that support services for children. The Foundation welcomes proposals that improve the quality of life for children and young adults (birth to age 22.)
Grant applications must be submitted by noon on March 3, 2023. Grant recipients will be announced in May. More information is available online at  www.glcfoundation.org.

For more information about the grant process, contact Sharon, GLCF Grants Coordinator with any questions at sharon@glcfoundation.org.

PHOTO: Clarendon Early Education Services received a 2022 Discretionary Children’s Grant to support their Comfort Kits for Foster Kids.
 
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"True Love" 13th Annual Valentine's Day Concert at First Parish

BEDFORD: Save the Date on February 12, 4 pm for "True Love" 13th Annual Valentine's Day Concert at First Parish Bedford UU, 75 The Great Road. Cynthia Mork, Ben Sears (vocals) and Bradford Conner (piano) will perform romantic favorites from the Great American Songbook including "Night and Day" and "I've Got You Under My Skin," as well as selections from "Kiss Me Kate" and "High Society". Special Guests Heinrich Christensen and Robert Winkley will play 4-hand piano works from Maurice Ravel, Paul Hindemith, Peter Warlock and Cole Porter. Scrumptious chocolate reception to follow! Suggested Donations Collected at the door: $20 adults $15 seniors and students, proceeds to benefit First Parish. Live streaming tickets available at tinyurl.com/uubedfordtruelove.
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Parent Ed Classes Offered thru Adult Ed at CCACE

CONCORD: Concord Carlisle Adult & Community Education (CCACE) is now offering parent education programs, previously offered through the Center for Parents and Teachers (CPT). Their goal is to continue to provide expert-led programs for ongoing and new challenges facing our children and families.
This winter they have four classes that address social media, bullying, pandemic effects and building resilience. All classes are online and full descriptions can be found at www.concordcarlisleace.org.

Want to understand how to use the recommended safety settings on your child’s smartphone? Check out Cell Phones & Parenting on Feb. 2nd. Improve your child’s social skills while reducing screen time with Bullying, Cyberbullying & the Effects of the Pandemic on Children Feb. 9th, led by Dr. Elizabeth Englander, a nationally recognized expert on cyberbullying, aggression and abuse online. In March, they will have Building Resilience & Managing Big Emotions with clinical psychologist Dr. Rachel Kramer (March 9) and Your Teens & Money with CCHS math teacher Laurie Fortunato (March 21).

For parents of preschool aged children, there’s a new monthly parenting group led by Allison Flynn, a licensed clinical psychologist with a specialty in child development and mental health.

To get information on these and other parenting programs offered through CCACE, visit their website or call (978) 318-1432.
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16 Adults Complete Carpentry, Welding, Robotics Evening Courses at Minuteman Technical Institute

Programs Are Tuition-Free for Many Students Thanks to Funding from Massachusetts Workforce Skills Cabinet Grants
 
LEXINGTON: Sixteen adults of a variety of ages and backgrounds were recently celebrated for completing programs in carpentry, welding, and robotics at Minuteman Technical Institute. The 15-week programs were tuition-free for most students thanks to Career Technical Initiative grant funding from the Massachusetts Workforce Skills Cabinet and the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium.
 
The Minuteman Regional Technical School District has received more than $3 million since 2020 in grants from the Workforce Skills Cabinet, which support high school and adult career technical education programming. The funds are used to help students, including those from under-represented backgrounds, work in career trades where there is a high demand for skilled workers.
 
The adult students and their families attended a “Signing Day” ceremony to celebrate their completion of the fall 2022 evening programs in carpentry (pre-apprentice), welding, and robotic technician. Many students brought their families as they signed ceremonial letters of commitment to build careers in their fields of study.
 
“Our incredible adult students are seeking rewarding careers in high-demand trades to build their futures for decades to come,” said Dr. Kathleen A. Dawson, Superintendent of the Minuteman Regional Technical School District. “From single moms pursuing carpentry to military veterans learning high-tech robotic skills, we welcome students from all backgrounds to help them reach their dreams. In the process, we are educating highly skilled professionals for our regional economy in trades where there are critical shortages of skilled workers.”

“Our adult students are truly committed and dedicated.” said Dr. Nancy Houle, Executive Director of Minuteman Technical Institute. “They often work full time jobs and take their courses in the evenings. We congratulate and celebrate these students for their accomplishments and for contributing to the growth of our regional economy.”

Carpentry (Pre-Apprentice) Program

The following students completed the Carpentry Pre-Apprentice program, which was hosted in collaboration with the North Atlantic States Carpenters Training Fund. They each earned the following industry-recognized credentials: OSHA-10 Safety, Hot Work, Fall Protection, Mobile Elevated Work Platform (MEWP), Scaffold Use Certification.
 
  • Alexa Cipkas of Norfolk
  • Nicole Crane of Saugus
  • Stephen Foley of Norwood
  • Kateri Gerald-Burns of Boston
  • Seikha Kim of Lowell
  • Lina Lopez of Revere
  • Nathan Oun of Dracut

The following students completed the Robotic Technician program. They each earned the following industry-recognized credentials: OSHA-10 Safety and Hot Work.
 
  • Raul Gonzalez of Lowell
  • Benjamin Judge of Malden
  • John Ko of Chelmsford
  • Michael Keating of Burlington
  • David Pardey of Millis

The following students completed the Welding program. They each earned the following industry-recognized credentials: American Welding Society (AWS) D1.1-Sheilded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW)-S.S, AWS-D1.1-Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW)-5.18, AWS D1.1-SMAW-Structural, Hot Work, and OSHA-30 Construction Safety.
 
  • Paul Damon of Chelmsford
  • Jacob Malkasian of Northbridge
  • Jacob Stuczynski of Northbridge
  • Luke Nichols of Woburn


PHOTO: Front row L-R: Instructors Garrett Rice and Tom Akers of the North Atlantic States Carpenters Training Fund;

Middle row: Students Lina Lopez of Revere, Nicole Crane of Saugus, Alexa Cipkas of Norfolk, Nathan Oun of Dracut, and Kateri Gerald-Burns of Boston;

Back row: Dennis Lassige, Regional Manager for North Atlantic States Regional Council of Carpenters; Stephen Foley of Norwood; Seikha Kim of Lowell; Chris Clifford, career counselor for MassHire South/West; Kevin Kelly, regional manager for Local Union 339; and Eric Martinez, recruitment officer for North Atlantic States Carpenters Training Fund.
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Bike Camp for Children with Special Needs – Registration Open

CONCORD/GROTON: Emerson Health’s Center for Rehabilitative and Sports Therapies is hosting its 6th annual camp for children and adults with special needs during April school vacation week - April 17-21, 2023. The camp is open to those who are at least eight years old, have a special need, and are able to walk without an assistive device. Trained counselors and spotters work individually with campers to teach them how to ride a conventional bike.

The iCan Bike camp will be held at the hockey rink at Lawrence Academy, 26 Powder House Road, Groton. Participants must be able to attend the same 75 minute daily session during each of the five days of camp. Parents and/or caregivers are required to stay during their camper's 75-minute session where they can observe in the spectator area. For more information and to register, please visit: https://icanshine.org/ican-bike-groton-ma/, or call (978) 589-6774, or email icanshinebike_rehab@emersonhosp.org.

The camp is run by iCan Shine, a national non-profit organization that teaches individuals with special needs to ride a conventional two-wheel bicycle through its iCan Bike program. Trained professionals, including pediatric physical therapists from Emerson Health, work closely with each camper using adapted bike equipment, to help them meet their goals of biking independently. With 75 minutes of daily instruction over five consecutive days, more than 80% of campers learn to bike independently by the end of camp, and nearly all campers make great progress towards biking on their own. 

“Riding a bike is one of the most exciting developmental milestones - it gives people a wonderful outlet for exercise and freedom and is an activity that families can enjoy together,” said Mary Evans, PT, pediatric therapist, Emerson Health. “We are excited to offer the bike camp to give people individualized instruction and the skills necessary to ride a bike on their own. We know the campers will make tremendous progress this year, as we have seen with hundreds of campers in prior years.”

Sponsors of this year’s bike camp are: The Auxiliary of Emerson Health, Lawrence Academy, Spring Hill Suites, Hilton Garden Inn Devens, Bay State Apparel, Cataldo Gift and Garden Shop, Goodale’s Bike store of Nashua, and The Bike Connector of Lowell.
 
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Concord Conservatory’s Summer Piano Camp July 17-21 at Concord Academy

CONCORD: Concord Conservatory of Music, in partnership with Concord Academy, will offer a week-long Summer Piano Camp from July 17-21 for aspiring young pianists. Rising 3rd-12th graders with at least two years of private lesson instruction can focus on developing their piano and musicianship skills this summer while meeting and playing with kids who share the same musical interests. Conservatory faculty will teach small group classes that focus on the development of musicianship skills. Classes include, but are not limited to, composition, music history, improvisation, rhythm and time, sight singing, and score reading. Each day the camp will culminate in a performance and talk by a guest artist. Campers will also have the opportunity to play for one another in an informal performance class, a master class, and in the final camp recital. Piano campers will end the week with a greater appreciation of music in a fun and low-stress environment—the perfect combination of music, outdoor fun, swimming, and friends. For questions about the Summer Piano Camp, email info@concordconservatory.org or call (978) 369-0010.

Concord Orchestra presents “The Vernacular Express”

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CONCORD: The Concord Orchestra presents “The Vernacular Express” at 8pm on January 28 and 3pm on January 29 at the Performing Arts Center at 51 Walden. The orchestra, directed by Eric Culver, performs Bernard Hoffer’s Fanfare for Dick, George Gershwin’s An American in Paris, Bernard Hoffer’s Kurt Weill Songbook, and Charles Ives’ Symphony No. 2. A pre-concert talk by the conductor is scheduled for Saturday at 7:15pm.

Guest conductor Eric Culver has been The Concord Orchestra’s consulting conductor during the process of finding a new music director. He has been active as a composer, pianist and conductor at New Stagecraft Theater Company in New York City, Huntington Theater in Boston, A.R.T. in Cambridge and Signature Theater in Arlington, Virginia. He is now in his fifth season conducting the Hanover Theater's full "Nutcracker" in Worcester.

The program “The Vernacular Express” celebrates American folk music, jazz, and musical theater. Charles Ives was influenced by composers such as Dvorak, Bartok and Tchaikovsky whose compositions are inspired by folk music of their native countries. His Symphony No. 2contains quotes from American hymns, spirituals, fiddle tunes, marching band tunes, and patriotic songs. George Gershwin’s jazz-influenced An American in Paris describes theexperience of an American strolling the streets of Paris, including the sounds of honking taxi horns.

Over the years, Bernard Hoffer has written several arrangements of standards from the Great American Songbook for The Concord Orchestra. This season, Jeffrey Korn performs Hoffer’s arrangement of songs of German-born American immigrant Kurt Weill. The audience will recognize Mack the Knife from The Threepenny Opera and will also enjoy rediscovering great tunes and fascinating lyrics from Broadway musicals first performed in the 1940s.

Vocalist Jeffrey Korn has appeared with the Boston Pops at Symphony Hall with John Williams and Yo-Yo Ma. He starred in the Off- Broadway hit “Forever Plaid” and the Off-Broadway Jewish musical comedy “That’s Life!” He has toured the US and Europe with his vocal quartet, “Where’s the Band? Acapella”.

Tickets for adults and seniors are $25. Admission for youth under 18 is free. Masks are required in the concert hall. Full immunization against COVID is strongly recommended, but proof of vaccination will not be required for attendance. For tickets and information, call (978) 369-4967 or visit www.concordorchestra.com.

Local Students Named to Dean's List at Fitchburg State

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FITCHBURG: Fitchburg State University President Richard S. Lapidus has announced the students who qualified for inclusion on the Dean’s List for the Fall 2022 semester. A student is placed on the Dean’s List for the semester if an average grade of 3.20 or better is attained, and the student is attending the university full time.  Congratulations to:

Acton / Boxborough / Maynard
Catherine Abrams
Yilver A. Aguilera

Zainabu A. Bosungmeh 
Joseph D. Ditavi
Abderrahmane Garchali 

Ryan B. Kidder 
Carl W. Lindberg
Kyle J. Lindfors

Jonah T. Sallese 
Zachary J. St John 
 
Ayer / Shirley / Groton / Harvard / Devens
Chassity P. Boo 
Kaitlyn M. Bremer 
Jonathan W. Bremer 
Hailey G. Burke 
Savannah D. Caldbeck
Matthew J. Carey 
Andrew T. Esielionis
Emily J. Hanson 
Kayla A. Holland 
Curtis J. Holmes
Kabriana T. Kien 
Ryleigh A. Levensailor 
Brady W. Madigan 
Deven J. Muldoon 
Eli Norton 
Mishayla S. Silver
Megan R. Strout
Mark K. Terhune 
Danielle M. Varner 
Jing Wang
Stephen T. Wells

Chelmsford / North Chelmsford
David E. Kelley 
McKenna G. Moore 
Sara Najm 
Karen A. O'Rourke
Seth E. Rigby

Concord / Carlisle / Bedford
David P. Eisenberg 
Shujiao Liu

Hudson / Stow
Brian K. Boland 
Emily Cristobal 
Molly J. Flanagan
Isaiah French

Emily G. Hallsworth 
Nicholas D. Solimine 
Cameron J. Sousa
Dale A. Sousa 
Courtney M. Walsh

Marlborough / Sudbury
Julia M. Barnes 
Ava E. Hannon 
Kaleigh A. Morales 
Nickolai Voskanian

Westford / Littleton 
Vincent A. Colavita 
Erick K. Gakuo 
Benjamin R. Golash 
Kyanah Long 
Nathan S. Martin 
Edith Masembe 
Adam E. Quinlan 
Alyssa K. Ramirez 
Asha L. Speller 
Benjamin G. Stormwind
Meaghan J. Walsh

Additionally, Fitchburg State University President Richard S. Lapidus has announced the names of students included on the President’s List for the Fall 2022 semester. The President’s List honors students for consistently high academic achievement. A student is named to the list after achieving a 3.75 average in each of three successive semesters.  Congratulations to:

Acton / Boxborough / Maynard
Owen C. Thayer
 
Chelmsford / North Chelmsford
Alyssa J. Fields
Emily F. Klein 
Sophia A. Piper

Learn more at fitchburgstate.edu.
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ParentChild+ Program now Available Locally

ACTON: ParentChild+ is a FREE home visiting program for families with young children to help parents prepare their child for preschool or kindergarten. First Connections recently received a grant to provide this program to families living in Acton, Bedford, Boxboro, Carlisle, Concord, Harvard, Lincoln, Littleton, Maynard, Sudbury and Westford. An Early Learning Specialist will visit your home twice per week with fun and engaging early learning experiences, including a high-quality book or toy that you can keep. Specialists model reading, conversations and play activities designed to promote language development, pre-literacy skills, and school readiness. Children can enter the program when they are 18-36 months old and participate for 46 weeks, excluding summer and holiday breaks. Families who lack transportation or the financial ability to attend playgroups or preschool will be prioritized to receive this service. Families whose children are watched by family members while they work are eligible, but children enrolled in preschool or child care outside of the home would not be eligible. This program has a 40-year track record of supporting early childhood success. Anyone interested in participating in this program can contact First Connections by emailing firstconnections@jri.org or calling/texting Debbie at (978) 505-4429.  
 
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Free Katherine Ou Organ Recital

BEDFORD: On Sunday, January 29 at 4pm, organist Katherine Ou will perform a solo recital at Lutheran Church of the Savior, 426 Davis Road.  Katherine has been serving as organist at the Church for two years, and began her training at the age of 13 in Waco, TX. The 45-minute program will include Pièce d'Orgue by Johann Sebastian Bach, Adagio from Organ Sonata no. 1 by Felix Mendelssohn, Chorale Partita on "Herzlich lieb hab' ich dich, O Herr" by Katherine Ou and Visions from Scripture by American composer Emma Lou Diemer. Admission is free, reservations are not required, and there will be a light reception following the concert.
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The Bedford Fix-it Shop Has New Hours

BEDFORD: The Bedford Fix It Shop is offering an additional day and time for item drop offs at the Council on Aging. The Fix-It Shop is accepting Fix It Shop drop offs from 10:30am-1:30pm on Saturdays and 9am-noon on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Bing in your item, fill out paperwork about yourself and the item, and the Fix It Shop will contact you with any questions. Please note, the shop does not accept pendulum or cuckoo clocks or anything containing gasoline.

The volunteers at the shop are capable, eager and waiting to fix, sharpen, repair, rewire, unstick, reglue and restore your household items and furniture. There is a minimum charge of $3 and parts are at an additional cost. Watch batteries are installed for only $5. If you have any questions for the shop please call the COA during the Shop’s Tuesday and Wednesday hours: Bedford Council on Aging, 12 Mudge Way - (781) 275-6825
Pam schuller

What Makes Me Tic: Comedy & Storytelling with a Message with Pamela Rae Schuller

CONCORD: Join Kerem Shalom of Concord as they kick off Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion month (JDAIM) with "What Makes Me Tic: Comedy & Storytelling with a Message" with Pamela Rae Schuller on February 4. The evening will begin with a Dessert and Cocktail Reception at 7pm, followed by the performance, with an ASL interpreter, at 8pm.

Schuller is an internationally known disability and mental health advocate and professional stand-up comedian known for her use of storytelling and comedy to inspire communities to a new understanding of inclusion. You may know her from BuzzFeed, Doctor Mike Videos, and NBC, or as one of the under 36 who is changing the face of the Jewish community. Schuller’s stories of growing up in a body she had no control over are engaging, powerful, a little bit heart-wrenching, and unapologetically funny.

Schuller has spoken and performed in seven countries, in every state in the U.S., and for more than 95,000 kids, teens, and professionals. She holds a BA in Psychology and Youth Outreach Through the Arts and an MA in Child Advocacy and Policy, as well as post Masters certificates in Executive Coaching and Leadership in the Digital Age. She has grown that skillset into a repertoire that teaches kids and teens to be proud of who they are, communities to be deeply inclusive, and corporate teams to be innovative and learn to make smart, bold moves.
Schuller doesn’t just “tolerate” what makes her different; she embraces it, loves it, and finds the funny in it… all while challenging her audiences to do the same.

The event takes place in-person, but for those whose circumstances do not allow for participating in-person, join this special evening of inclusion and understanding via Zoom. Registration is required for both in-person and online tickets. Register at https://keremshalom.org/current-events/schuller. Tickets are $18 if purchased by January 30; 
$25 if purchased after January 30 or at the door. The deadline for Zoom registration is February 2 at noon. The Zoom link will be sent to online participants on February 3. Contact the Kerem Shalom office at ksadmin@keremshalom.org or (978) 369-1223 with any questions.
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The Concord Players presents INDECENT 

CONCORD: Inspired by true events surrounding the 1923 Broadway debut of Sholem Asch's God of Vengeance, a play seen by some as a seminal work of Jewish culture and by others as an act of traitorous libel, The Concord Players are pleased to present Indecent. Pulitzer prize-winning Paula Vogel’s play is very topical for today’s world as it delves into love relationships, antisemitism, homophobia, the power of politics, and more while still providing light-hearted and comedic moments. Indecent opened on Broadway in 2017 to sensational reviews.  The production runs February 10-25 at The Performing Arts Center, 51 Walden Street.

Indecent charts the history of an incendiary drama and the path of the artists who risked their careers and lives to perform it.  This historic piece of Yiddish theater played to thousands across the capitals of Europe before making its Broadway debut in 1923, only to be shut down on opening night by the vice squad because it was “indecent”.

Making their directorial debut on the Concord stage, Shira Helena Gitlin is a Boston-based director, dramaturg, gender consultant, and musical theatre enthusiast. Despite the serious themes of Indecent, Gitlin also manages to bring out the light in the play, accentuating the joy of community in the story and how important it is for people to support each other.  Featuring in the cast are John Small; Dan Kelly; Kate Beattie; Michael Jay;
Aiden O’Neal; Judi Olson; Jon Linden; Wendy Linden; Joel Hersh; and Alison Butts.

Don’t miss this outstanding cast of actors, a script in Yiddish and English, and accomplished musicians performing live music of the era as The Concord Players present a multi-media event that is enlightening, soulful and moving.
Performances are February 10, 11, 17, 18, 24 and 25 at 8pm with a matinee at 2pm on February 19. This play has mature themes so parental guidance is recommended. For tickets and more information, including an introductory video and in-depth interview with the director, visit www.concordplayers.org, or call (978) 369-2990 and leave a message.

PHOTO: John Small & Kate Beattie in rehearsal.
Open table

More Love, Less Hunger: Concord Park Donates to Open Table

CONCORD: Concord Park, a Volunteers of America Senior Community, recently contributed 12 bags of gifts to Open Table’s “Family-to-Family Holiday Drive”. The bags were distributed to Concord and Maynard families in need prior to Christmas. “Partnering with OpenTable has been a wonderful experience,” shares Maryellen King, Concord Park’s Director of Community Relations. “Our residents and staff enjoyed creating donation bags to represent the 12 Days of Christmas, collecting a different themed item each day. We hope we can help Open Table in bringing “more love, less hunger” to our neighbors.” 

Learn more about Concord Park online at www.ConcordPark.org. Learn more about Open Table at www.OpenTable.org


Pictured from left to right: Natasha Heimrath, Executive Director at Concord Park; Alexandra DePalo, Executive Director at Open Table; and Maryellen King, Director of Community Relations at Concord Park
 

Concord Women’s Chorus Welcomes New Singers to Open Rehearsals & Auditions

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Choral ensemble invites women to join for spring season
 
CONCORD: Concord Women’s Chorus (CWC) invites new singers to join its ensemble at “Open Rehearsals” on January 17 and 24, 9:30am, at Trinity Episcopal Church, 81 Elm Street.  Artistic Director and Conductor Jane Ring Frank welcomes newcomers to join rehearsal, learn more about the spring concert season, and audition on January 24 immediately following rehearsal.  Rehearsals continue Tuesday mornings, 9:30 am to noon, also held at Trinity Episcopal Church, throughout the spring season.
 
CWC welcomes singers with prior choral experience including good sight-reading skills, solid intonation and vocal quality, responsiveness to direction and the ability to blend within an ensemble. For auditions, prospective members may be asked to sight-read a short passage and/or sing a familiar tune, arriving with a prepared solo is not necessary.  An information form is available to be printed in advance and brought to the audition at concordwomenschorus.org/wp/sing-with-us
 
Chorus members are expected to attend rehearsals and to participate in performing scheduled concerts. Since CWC values opportunities to collaborate and perform with other musical and cultural groups, additional commitments may become available during the season. The ensemble continues weekly rehearsals in preparation for its upcoming concert “Come Day, Come Night,” performing on May 13, 4pm, featuring a program of ‘love songs to boat songs,’ exploring the joys of a life well-lived. Emma Lou Diemer’s “When You Wake,” Gwyneth Walker’s “Love Shall Live Forever,” Z. Randall Stroope’s “Lux Aeterna,” Dan Forrest’s “Ubi Caritas,” Kevin Siegfried’s “Boat Song,” and Stephen Chatman’s “Love Songs,” – stirring works that reflect the textures and rhythms, joys and challenges of each new day.

CWC is committed to the safety of all and requires that all singers present proof of full Covid-19 vaccination, leadership will request proof of vaccination and booster by showing card upon arrival.  All participants are required to wear masks during rehearsals.

Concord Women's Chorus (CWC), based in Concord, Massachusetts, is a 45-singer ensemble fostering the power of women’s voices through song. Singers hail from Concord and the greater Boston area. Artistic Director Jane Ring Frank conducts the chorus performing a wide variety of choral music, ranging from early music to contemporary repertoire, with an emphasis on works written for women’s voices.
 
CWC’s commitment to the mastery and performance of a dynamic repertoire for women transforms the act of choral singing into an instrument for collaboration, education, and connection. The ensemble features confident singers who care deeply about creating, through women’s voices, a source of strength and inspiration for themselves, the audience, and the world around us. 

The chorus began in 1960 as the Concord Madrigals, a small group of women who expressed, through song, the strength of female community. Over the years the group has increased in size and capacity and greatly expanded its repertoire. In 2005, the Concord Madrigals became Concord Women’s Chorus, a name that reflects not only the evolution of the chorus but the abiding power of women’s voices.

In addition to concerts, CWC often engages in other performances and projects. The ensemble has engaged in several concert tours in the United States, Canada and Great Britain. For more information, performance details or to join Concord Women’s Chorus, email Chorus Manager Patsy Eickelberg at manager@concordwomenschorus.org, visit concordwomenschorus.org, or follow Concord Women’s Chorus on Facebook and Instagram.
 
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Enlightenment

Concord Conservatory Presents Music of the Enlightenment Lecture,

WEST CONCORD: Join Concord Conservatory of Music on January 12 at 7pm for Music of the Enlightenment Lecture presented by CCM faculty member and cellist Fabrizio Mazzetta. Discover major composers of the Enlightenment period as well as what breakthroughs and events impacted its music. You will have the opportunity to explore multiple examples of music compositions from the Enlightenment and how to interpret these beautiful pieces. Learn how the music of the Enlightenment evolved and aged through time and how it still affects today’s classical music world and beyond.

Purchase tickets in advance from ConcordConservatory.org or at the door ($10 General; FREE for kids 18 and under). Email info@concordconservatory.org or call (978) 369-0010 to learn more about CCM, located at 1317 Main Street in the West Concord Union Church.
Concord park ribbon cutting

Concord Park Showcases Newly Renovated Spaces at Grand Unveiling Celebration

CONCORD: Concord Park Senior Living, a Volunteers of America Massachusetts Senior Community, celebrated the Grand Unveiling of their major renovations project recently as residents, families, friends and staff gathered together to enjoy the new and updated rooms. The renovations include a new theater, fitness room, café, lounge, and an additional wing of apartments. To welcome these changes, an array of community partners, local officials, and executives spoke on the vital role that Concord Park has played in the greater community for the past 20 years, and what the senior community hopes to accomplish after ushering in these exciting changes. Noteworthy speakers included Charles Gagnon, President & CEO of Volunteers of America Massachusetts (VOAMASS), Tadd Clelland, President & CEO of Senior Living Residences, and MA State Representative Simon Cataldo. 

Senior Living Residences (SLR), based in New England, is the professional management company for Concord Park, along with 17 other communities throughout New England. Guided by their signature Right Values, SLR puts Resident Quality of Life at the forefront of all they do, and at the unveiling ceremony, SLR President & CEO Tadd Celland expressed the hope that these major renovations to residents’ favorite spaces, and the addition of some exciting new spaces, will aid in that effort.

The celebration continued with refreshments, conversation and live music. All of the guests were delighted by the incredible variety of food and drinks, which tied into a festive autumn theme. The culinary department, led by Executive Chef Misty Heldermon, provided the spread. To round out the event, Concord Park resident Julia Lea cut the official ribbon. The Concord Park community cannot wait to enjoy the new facets of the building for many years to come, and greatly appreciated the quality time spent with family, friends, local officials and community partners.
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Minuteman High School Auto Students Repair Vehicle for Woman in Need

LEXINGTON/CONCORD: Students in Minuteman High School’s Automotive Technology program unveiled a donated car they refurbished for a person in need thanks to a collaboration with Second Chance Cars, a non-profit organization based in Concord. It marked the eleventh vehicle that the Minuteman students repaired for Second Chance Cars over the past four years. The organization accepts donated vehicles and works with area career technical education high schools with automotive programs to repair them. The automobiles are then provided to veterans and people in need through zero-interest, low-cost loans. The students changed the brake pads, performed an oil change, and detailed the inside of the vehicle, among other work that was conducted.

“At Minuteman High School, we teach our students critical academic and career technical skills, but more importantly we teach them how to be good citizens,” said Dr. Kathleen A. Dawson, Superintendent of the Minuteman Regional Technical School District. “We are proud of the work of our students and overjoyed to see the positive impact their work is having on a person’s life.”

The recipient of the vehicle on Tuesday was Kiara Higgs, a single mother who lives in Springfield. Higgs works providing residential care to elderly people with medical issues. Higgs said she was having difficulty getting to and from work prior to receiving the vehicle and is excited about opportunities to do more activities with her 3-year-old child.

“Paying for rides [via Uber or taxi] back and forth to work is so expensive,” Higgs said. “Having this car, it’s really about the livelihood of me and my baby. We love to go hiking and spend time outside; now it’s easier to do that.”

“We’re trying to help people who want to get to work, get to work,” said Dan Holin, Executive Director of Second Chance Cars. “The students are critical in helping us do that.”

The Minuteman students are currently making repairs to three additional vehicles for Second Chance Cars.
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First Connections Playgroup at Bedford Public Library

BEDFORD: This winter First Connections will be facilitating a parent & child playgroup at Bedford Public Library on Mondays from 10-11am.  The Ages & Stages Playgroup for children 12-23 months in January will give them the opportunity to engage with toys and activities to support different areas of their development, including socializing with others. Each meeting will end with a circle time with songs and a story. The group is facilitated by an Early Childhood Educator. Infant siblings in a carrier are welcome. A grandparent or babysitter is welcome to bring the child to group. This is a free program that will be held from January 9-March 27 and registration is required by emailing lmatthews@jri.org.
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LSCO Begins 50th season with Masters of the Classics Concert 

LINCOLN/SUDBURY: The Lincoln-Sudbury Civic Orchestra opens its 50th season on January 8, under the leadership of  its gifted new conductor Alfonso Piacentini in a program of the classical masters Wolfgang Amadeus  Mozart, Ludwig von Beethoven and Felix Mendelssohn. The concert begins at 3pm.  

Maestro Piacentini (pictured) joins the orchestra for its first concert under his baton. Piacentini was appointed conductor following the departure of another emerging conducting star Luca Antonucci who directed the orchestra for three years. Antonucci left to pursue Doctor of Musical Arts in conducting at the University of Michigan. 

Maynard resident and Lexington music educator Chris Brainard is the newly appointed concertmaster in her first appearance in this role.  

Pianist Marvin Wolfthal joins the orchestra as soloist for the last piano concerto penned by Mozart, his  27th concerto. This is Mr. Wolfthal’s second appearance with LSCO.  Wolfthal was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut,  where he studied piano with Murray and Loretta Dranoff. He studied composition  at Columbia University with Charles Wuorinen and Harvey Sollberger and piano  with Claudio Arrau and Rafael de Silva. He was a founder of the Columbia  Chamber Players, which performed classics of early Twentieth Century music and  gave several first New York performances of works by major composers, including  Pierre Boulez.

The program opens with the overture Fingals Cave, originally published as The Hebrides by  Mendelssohn. His inspiration came during a visit to the Scottish island of Staffa, where he saw the  Fingal’s sea cave.  The last concerto for piano and orchestra, #27 in B flat major was composed in the last months of  Mozart’s short and tragic life. Soloist Marvin Wolfthal will introduce the work with comments from the  stage about its context in Mozart’s waning months. A short intermission will be taken. The second half of the program is Beethoven’s Symphony #1 in C  major, a landmark symphony in the development of the classical symphony form.

Lincoln-Sudbury Civic Orchestra,
The community orchestra of Lincoln Sudbury Regional High School, will perform January 8 at 3:30pm at 390 Lincoln Road in Sudbury.  For more information, visit www.lscivicorchestra.org  or email lscivicorchestra@gmail.com.
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Concord Chorus Open Rehearsals January 9, 16, 2023

CONCORD: Do you love to sing? The Concord Chorus, an auditioned chorus, will hold two Open Rehearsals on January 9 and 16, 7:30-10pm at Trinity Episcopal Church, 81 Elm Street. If you enjoy singing the classical repertoire, join us! The Concord Chorus is a wonderful group of welcoming people who enjoy singing and learning excellent and diverse choral repertoire and performing at the highest level. This spring’s performance on May 20 will include Joseph Haydn’s “Maria Theresa Mass” with professional soloists and orchestra. A friendly, ten-minute audition will consist of scales, ear and pitch memory exercises, and sight-reading in order to evaluate voice, ear, and reading abilities. A prepared piece is not required, but prior musical experience is expected. Under the leadership of its Music Director, Kevin Leong (pictured), the Concord Chorus invites you to share in a musical experience that will be fun, educational, and fulfilling.

At this time, all singers are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and have had at least one booster dose. Masks are also required. Interested singers are asked to email kleong@concordchorus.org in advance to set up an audition. Founded in 1946, the Concord Chorus performs several concerts of choral-orchestral and smaller works each season. For more information, please visit www.concordchorus.org

 
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Students Recognized at Minuteman High School

LEXINGTON: Minuteman High School recently recognized four students from Concord, Dedham, Lancaster, and Arlington with the Student of the Term Award. The award is based on nominations from teachers and highlights academic achievement, good character, and creating a positive school climate. One student is awarded per grade level. Overseen by Assistant Principal Brian Tildsley, the Students of the Term receive certificates and are awarded lunch with teachers and staff in the school’s student-operated restaurant, The District.

The list of the Students of the Term includes: 

Nathan Reed of Concord is a grade 9 student who is in the Freshman Career Exploratory Program. He was nominated by teachers for his “intelligence, politeness, and kindness.” Nathan has excelled academically and is mostly interested in pursuing the science-related career technical education majors at Minuteman. Nathan plays on the football and basketball teams, participates in the barbeque club, and enjoys video and board games.  

Caitlyn Turell of Dedham is a grade 10 student in the Environmental Science career major. She was nominated by her teachers for “being dedicated to Minuteman, displaying maturity, and is a constant pleasure to have in class.” Caitlyn performs well academically, and her favorite subject is math. She plays basketball and soccer. Caitlyn would like to become a marine biologist or pursue a career in a related field. 

Tyler Berard of Lancaster is a grade 11 student in the Metal Fabrication and Welding career major. He was noted by his teachers for his “consistent hard work, quiet determination, and respect for others.” Tyler enjoys hunting, fishing, and welding. He would like to pursue a career in the welding trade. 

Alice Dalton of Arlington is a grade 12 student in the Electrical Wiring career major. She was nominated by teachers for being “an articulate, hardscrabble leader who contributes to classes with an energetic personality.” Alice works for Cummings Properties through the Cooperative Education Program. Her favorite subject is math and she is a star player for the girls’ soccer, basketball, and softball teams. Alice would like to begin working as an electrical apprentice with a local union after graduation. 
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Action Holiday BINGO! Wrapping Up Soon

Have you been playing The Action's Winter BINGO! this season?  The game will be wrapping up soon, so be sure to dab your numbers, cross your fingers, and when you find yourself with a row completed horizontally, vertically or diagonally, copy or scan your cards and send them to "contest@actionunlimited.com" or 100-1 Domino Drive, Concord, MA 01742.  One winner will be drawn from all verified submissions.
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