The School Committee meets Tuesday, Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m. in the Ripley Building and the School Building Committee meets Wednesday, Dec. 12 at 7 p.m. in the high school library. For a complete rundown of meetings, go here.
Eighth annual Channukah festival and party. Sunday, Dec. 9 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. At the Acton Concord Chabad Center: The Concord Scout House, 74 Walden Street, 978-929-2513 or www.actonconcordchabad.org. Featuring game booths, arts and crafts, face painting, prizes, a juggling performance by The Jim Show, a silent auction, a Menorah lighting, hot dogs, latkes, drinks, a raffle, music, and more. Admission fee of $7 per person includes all game booths for unlimited times, face painting, the arts and crafts project, and The Jim Show.
Concord Shoppers’ Night, Thursday, Dec.13, 5 to 8 p.m. Concord Chamber of Commerce: 978-369-3120. Shops open for holiday shopping with refreshments, holiday specials, and entertainment. Strolling carolers. Special drawings for prizes and Gift of Concord gift certificates.
And speaking of unique gifts, two spots worth the drive include the store at the DeCordova Museum, 51 Sandy Pond Road in Lincoln, and the Samuel Fitch House at 91 Power Road in Westford. DeCordova features work by local artists as well as children’s toys and books, jewelry, and household accessories. The Samuel Fitch House’s barn, featuring unique works by area artisans with an emphasis on “up-cycling,” or recycling found objects and recreating them into beautiful and useful items. Open Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m.
At the Orchard House, 399 Lexington Road, take in the warm holiday beauty of the home of the Alcotts on Dec. 8, 9, 15, and 16 from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturdays and 1 to 4 p.m. on Sundays. Orchard House will be decorated for the holidays with the tasteful, festive simplicity that the Alcotts were noted for and come alive for the young and young-at-heart through evocative Living History portrayers. The program is suitable for all ages. Activities for children and families and take-home mementos provided. (Reserved ticket tours scheduled hourly at quarter past the hour). Adults: $12; seniors/college students: $10; youths (6 - 17 years): $8; children (ages 2 - 5 years): $4; under age 2: free. Members: 20-percent off individual ticket prices. Family rate (two adults and up to four youths): $30. Advance reservations are strongly suggested and require pre-payment.
Amahl! What’s Christmas without the beloved Menotti opera, “Amahl and the Night Visitors"? Dec. 16, at 2 and 4 p.m. A Friends of the Performing Arts in Concord production of the poignant one-act opera, includes dancing shepherds, a chorus, and orchestra conducted by Alan Yost. Soloists include Julia Shneyderman, Robin Farnsley, Ray Bauwens, Brad Amidon, Craig Tata, and Michael Prichard. Tickets are $20/$15. Call 978-369-7911 or buy tickets online.
From Nov. 21 to Jan. 1, 2013, bring the family and take in the Concord Museum Trees exhibit, where beloved children’s books are brought to life as Christmas tree decorations. Visit here for more information. The annual exhibit has become a town favorite.
For an extra-special treat for the youngsters, go to the Nutcracker Suite “by and for children” from Nov. 26 to Dec. 21 at the Friends of the Performing Arts in Concord, 51 Walden St. Directed by Helena Doohovskoy, the performance features creative productions with movement and arts, intertwined to inspire young minds and hearts. Learning opportunities available for Junior Assistants (fourth grade through high school). Check the website for schedules. For 3-year-olds to fourth graders.
Library events: Concord police officer Sylvia Toumayan (the town's K-9 officer) is the guest reader for a special story hour on Monday, Dec. 10 at 10 a.m. at the Main Library. She will read "Officer Buckle and Gloria" by Peggy Rathmann and then introduce her own K-9 dog, Charik, to the group.
Tuesday Morning Book Group will read "Mr. Ives' Christmas" by Oscar Hijuelos, the first Hispanic writer to win the Pulitzer Prize, on Dec. 11 at 9:30 a.m. in the Trustees Room. Open to all.
The next Weekend Poetry Reading will feature Josh Bell on Sunday, Dec.16, at 3 p.m. in the Trustees Room. He is the author of the collection "No Planets Strike" (2005). Bell will be reading his latest work, followed by a book-signing. Sponsored by the Friends of the Concord Free Public Library. Open to all.
Sacred and Secular. Saturday, Dec. 15 at 4 and 7:30 p.m. The Concord Chorus--at Middlesex School Memorial Chapel, 1400 Lowell Road, 978-287-6150. A seasonal program of sacred and secular music by Brahms, Mendelssohn, Randall Thompson, and John Rutter. The concert will also feature the exquisite "Oseh shalom bimromav" by Westborough native Michael Schachter. With Christmas carols and works for organ, this concert promises to be a delightful start to the holiday season. General admission is $25; seniors: $20; children and students: $10.
Weekend Poetry Series: Josh Bell. Sunday, Dec. 16 at 3 p.m.
Concord Free Public Library - 129 Main Street - 978-505-2214 - www.concordlibrary.org. Come hear the edgy poetry of "one of the most tonally versatile young poets working today," according to Tanya Larkin of the Boston Book Review. Free and open to the public; book signing and reception to follow. Brought to you by the Friends of the Concord Free Public Library.
The Concord Band holds its holiday concert on Dec. 7 and 8 at 8 p.m. Selections of the season, festive music from different countries, and an audience sing-along. Rene Pfister, guest vocalist. Table seating and light refreshments, an appearance by Santa and a holiday raffle. Tickets are $25/$15. If either evening concert is cancelled because of inclement weather, a concert will be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 9.
The Concord Museum is holding its second annual Holiday House Tour on Saturday, Dec. 8 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., featuring six of Concord’s most beautiful private homes that will be professionally decorated in the holiday spirit by local and well-known interior designers. Guests will tour ground-floor rooms in the homes with each house decorated in a different holiday theme. From Colonial to Victorian to Shingle Style and more, the houses present a variety of charming interiors sure to delight. Tickets may be purchased through Dec. 6: $40 Members, $45 non-members; after Dec. 6 or day of: $50. No refunds; no photography.
Concord Elks Annual Holiday Dinner
The Concord Elks will again provide a wonderful roast beef dinner with all the trimmings at no cost to Concord seniors on Sunday, Dec. 9. Doors open at 11:30 a.m. and the meal will be served at noon. Limit 160 people. You must call the COA by noon on Friday, Dec. 7 to make a reservation. The COA will provide van service, so please let them know if you require transportation when you call (978-318-3020). This event is at the Concord Elks on Baker Avenue.
Concord Friends of the Aging Senior Christmas Celebration
The Concord Friends of the Aging are pleased to invite all Concord seniors to attend a Christmas Party at the Maynard Elks Hall, 34 Powdermill Road, Maynard, on Wednesday, Dec. 12 at noon. A three-course, sit-down dinner will be served. There will be entertainment, gifts, and holiday cheer. The event is free to all Concord seniors. Please call the COA to sign up so that they have a meal count. Also, please let the COA know if you need a ride. All are welcome as there is plenty of room. Please come to celebrate the holiday season!
Council on Aging events at 1276 Main Street:
Movie on Dec. 7: Housesitter is a 1992 romantic comedy film directed by Frank Oz, starring Steve Martin and Goldie Hawn. The premise involves a woman with con-artist tendencies who worms her way into the life of a reserved architect by claiming to be his wife. Many of you will recognize the yellow house, a beautiful Concord residence.
Another movie on Dec. 21: The holiday season would not be complete without a showing of Holiday Inn! Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire star as a popular nightclub song-and-dance team who purchase a rustic New England farm and convert it into an inn, which they open to the public only on holidays. This delightful film includes many beautiful songs, including Oscar-winning “White Christmas.”
Please join us and reminisce. There is no need to sign up.
Boxwood Tree Workshop with Terry Abdalian Tuesday, Dec. 11 at 10:30 a.m.: Because this was such a big hit last year, Terry has agreed to come back to the COA to lead a workshop on making and decorating holiday boxwood trees. The COA will have all the materials for you including the boxwood branches, oasis, containers, and decorations. Register early as attendance is limited to 10. Participants should bring their own clippers. The cost is $10 per person.
Gary Hylander presents “The Christmas Carol”, Tuesday, Dec. 11 at 2 p.m.: Come for a lively discussion about Dickens’ "A Christmas Carol" by this terrific speaker. Dr. Gary Highlander earned his PhD at Boston College. He is an independent scholar who specializes in American history. He is a visiting professor at Framingham State University, is on staff at the BU School of Education, and is a specialist for the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is a frequent lecturer at historical societies, senior living centers, and civic and professional organizations. This lecture is offered free of charge due to the generosity of the Concord Friends of the Aging.
Trinity Church Pipe Organ Concert, Lunch at Durgin Park, and Shopping at Quincy Market, Friday, Dec. 14: Jump on the COA van to travel to Boston to enjoy a lovely pipe organ concert, lunch, and holiday shopping! The group will leave HWCC at 11:00 a.m. and arrive in Copley Square before noon to get seats for the Trinity Church organ concert. Following the concert they will be transported to Quincy Market where they will have lunch at 1:45 p.m. at Durgin Park, and then spend an hour or so afterwards holiday shopping. Please note: There is no charge for the organ concert. Due to the 12:15 p.m. concert time, the group will be having lunch later than usual. Participants should either eat a late breakfast or bring a snack for the van. The group will arrive back in Concord by 5 p.m. Please call the COA at 978-318-3020 to reserve your spot. The cost of the van is $3 per person.
Please plan to join Nancy Webber, a Nationally Registered Yoga Instructor and Certified Arthritis Foundation Instructor, for 60 minutes of Candlelight Yoga. Nancy will lead the class in a gentle yoga practice designed to increase flexibility and reduce stress. Please bring an exercise mat, large beach towel or blanket, and a small towel. Dress in comfy, loose layers. People of all shapes and sizes are welcome. No prior yoga experience is necessary. With enough interest, the class will be offered twice each month (roughly every other week) on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the HWCC. The fee per person, payable to the instructor, is $5 per class. Come try out the first class on Wednesday, Dec. 12 at 6:30 p.m. The class needs a minimum of 12 people to run. Please call to sign-up!
Shopping Trip to the Burlington Mall, Monday, Dec.10: Join the COA for a shopping trip to the Burlington Mall on Monday, Dec. 10. The van will leave the HWCC at 9 a.m., and will be leaving Burlington at 12:30 p.m. for the trip back to Concord. Spend the morning doing some Christmas shopping! We need a minimum of six people to run this trip, please call to sign-up. Van fee is $3 per person.
Betsy Levinson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.