Screw your courage to the sticking place…

It’s been awhile since I did a YOUR WEEKEND round-up of select events in New Bedford – which used to be a regular feature of this blog. But since this weekend promises to be epic, I thought it a good time to jump back into the fray.

I was also persuaded to revisit YOUR WEEKEND due to the fact that I received something rare in my inbox this past week. A professionally-written press release for “Shakespeare in Buttonwood” from Korey Pimental. In a Communications-challenged city, it was a welcome sight  – and nice to know that at least UMass Dartmouth does something right by its Communications students! (Pimental is a recent grad.)

Anyway, let’s ease into things with…a picnic…

An AHA! Fun-Raiser

THURSDAY, AUG. 16

AHA! Director Lee Heald had a simple idea last summer that turned into something quite special. A bring-your-own-picnic at Haskell Public Gardens. It turned into a terrific community evening last year; every table was full and it was a pleasant happening with pleasant people in a pleasant place. Nothing wrong with that – in fact, there’s a lot right about that.

Tonight, it’s happening again from 6:00-8:00 p.m., again at Haskell, the sweet gem of a spot off Shawmut Avenue. $20 gets you a seat at the table, you bring a basket. In case you’re challenged in the kitchen, The Baker will be on hand with some treats for sale.

You can reserve a spot here – but do it quickly. The only thing slow about the night is the bluegrass band performing, Slow Boat Home.

Operation Clean Sweep

SATURDAY, AUG. 18

Groundwork! member, Mindy Wallis is into trash – as in, picking it up off our streets. It’s quite possible she’s volunteered for every neighborhood clean-up event since moving to the city a couple of years ago!

She’s at it again today – and wants to spread the word. Today’s Operation Clean Sweep kicks off from Servpro at 1476 Purchase Street at 8:30 a.m. It’s being co-hosted by Veterans Transition House & Anne Whiting Real Estate. If you’d like to lend a hand – and walk-ins are welcome – know the following: FREE breakfast; FREE T-Shirt; FREE Re-usable water bottle; FREE lunch by Domino’s Pizza; Gloves and tools provided; and Community Service hours provided.

Need more info to be persuaded? Find it here.

3rd EyE meets SUPERFLAT

THROUGH SATURDAY, AUG. 18

You’d have to be living under a rock if you aren’t aware that what is going to make this weekend epic is the the 20th edition of the 3rd EyE Open – the homegrown, amazing hip hop music and dance festival.

Over 60 performers will be on stages throughout the downtown – and this year, there’s something new: SUPERFLAT, the public art group, will be holding their first mural festival at the same time. Indeed, the street art got underway in Wings Court and overlooking Custom House Square Park on Wednesday and runs through Saturday.

I write all about it in this week’s Coastin’ State of the Arts column, so follow this link to discover all the details!

Screw your courage to the sticking place.

SATURDAY, AUG. 18 & SUNDAY, AUG. 19

Finally, here’s how Korey Pimental made the lives of Arts & Entertainment editors throughout Southcoast easier…lightly edited because old dogs can still teach young pups a trick or two. ;-)

Shakespeare in Buttonwood, New Bedford’s free Shakespeare event, returns for a three-performance run of the classic tragedy, Macbeth in Buttonwood Park. The tale of what happens when misguided ambition gets swept up in matters of fate marks the program’s second year, preceding the inaugural dystopian production of Romeo & Juliet last summer.

Shakespeare in Buttonwood’s Macbeth will run for three performances: Saturday, August 18 at 1:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. and Sunday, August 19 at 1:00 p.m. (NOTE: SATURDAY’S PERFORMANCES HAVE BEEN MOVED TO GALLERY X, 169 WILLIAM STREET, DUE TO THE LIKELY CHANCE OF SOME RAIN TODAY.)The show will take place at the Buttonwood Park baseball diamond, behind the Lawler Library. Audience members are encouraged to bring a blanket or a lawn chair as seating will not be provided. For more information, visit Shakespeare in Buttonwood presents Macbeth on Facebook.

“Last year, Shakespeare in Buttonwood launched with a unique vision of what Romeo & Juliet looked like to us as a company. This year, at least aesthetically, feels more like what a traditional production of this piece would be. However, we are still putting our own spin on the show.” Korey Pimental, Artistic Director of Glass Horse Project, states.

Continuing Shakespeare in Buttonwood with another tragedy was purely logistical, he continued, noting that Shakespeare’s tragedies are the ones most frequently read in schools and the texts the general population seems to remember best.

He adds, “I think why the tragedies are so well-known, both as great pieces of literature and great pieces of drama, is because they start off with a larger than life problem or anxiety that no one can figure out how to resolve and by the end, everyone has learned a lesson. It shows how mutable and possible of change humanity really is.”

Macbeth tells the story of a Scottish general and his quest for absolute power after a prophecy predicts his reign as king. Director Alyssa Steen, who played scene-stealing Mercutio in last year’s Romeo & Juliet, says “Macbeth is one of the greatest tragedies ever written and performed. It shows a darker truth to human nature; despite magic, or outside influence, the choice to act is ultimately up to the individual.”

This year’s production keeps the story in its original setting, opting to instead play up the fantastical and grittier elements of the Bard’s famous tragedy. Audience members can expect to see kilts and more traditional weaponry in the fight choreography, a staunch contrast from the unique weapons last year’s fights called for.

Garrett Olson, Glass Horse’s resident fight choreographer and fight and safety director adds, “I am thrilled and proud of the hard work our actors have done to create these very exciting and believable fights.”

The cast has been hard at work since the end of May, rehearsing every Saturday at the New Bedford Free Public Library—two hours in the morning for those involved in stage combat and an additional four hours to rehearse the show itself.

Leeandra Booth, who makes her Shakespeare in Buttonwood debut with Macbeth as both the gentlewoman and Third Witch acknowledges the level of commitment the cast has for the project by chiming in, “we are a group of hardworking individuals.”

The cast in total is made up of twelve total actors, with a large majority of the company taking on more than one role – as was common practice in Shakespeare’s time. The acting company of Macbeth spans a wide range in both age and experience. Some members of the company are trying Shakespeare for the first time, while others in the company have been acting for decades, both in community and professional settings.

This year’s production of Macbeth also marks the second year of collaboration between the City of New Bedford, New Bedford Free Public Library, New Bedford Department of Parks, Recreation, & Beaches, and local fringe theatre company, The Glass Horse Project.

This program is supported in part by a grant from the New Bedford, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, & Westport cultural councils, local agencies which are supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.

What a difference a year makes…

File photo from the 2017 South Coast Pride – which returns to Buttonwood Park this Sat. June 2, 2018.

Last year at this time, I wrote a blog post entitled, “New Bedford gets its PRIDE back.” It was about the return of the city’s LGBTQ Pride Festival after taking a few years hiatus.

I wrote then, “While New Bedford is certainly home to a wonderful LGBTQ community, it hasn’t been a particularly visible or vibrant one – but that may finally be beginning to change for the better and to the city’s benefit.”

On the eve of tomorrow’s LGTBQ Pride Festival – Saturday, June 2, once again in Buttonwood Park – it’s fair to say those words no longer apply.

For, in the past year, the LGBTQ community has indeed been visible and is achieving a level of vibrancy it’s probably never enjoyed in New Bedford before.

During the past year, the organization South Coast LGBTQ Network has led the way under the amazing leadership of Traci Welch.

It launched a weekly Facebook Live show via New Bedford Guide that provides a great forum for discussion of issues pertaining to or affecting the gay community.

The group NB AGLY, which offers support to at-risk LGTBQ youth, launched a weekly Pride Cafe at its downtown headquarters, which supporters got to visit during an AHA! New Bedford open house evening.

And numerous other events have succeeded in creating an ongoing platform for the LGBTQ community – which includes just plain fun events, too. Like the monthly Drag Brunches at Incognito Bar & Grill on Acushnet Avenue. And, more happenings at LePlace, New Bedford’s LGBTQ bar in the Hicks-Logan gateway neighborhood.

That’s not only a good thing for the gay community, but for the city. It underscores the fact that New Bedford is a fully-functional city that embraces, values and empowers the diversity within it.

A Pride Festival showcases that – and Groundwork! is proud to be one of the sponsors of this year’s festival.

South Coast Pride begins at 9:30 a.m. in Buttonwood Park and continues until 4:00 p.m. On the day’s list of activities is Yoga in the Park with Jeff Costa – right at 9:30 – followed by a wellness walk and then entertainment (like Sister Funk), vendors, family friendly activities, food and more.

A pre-Pride party happens Friday night at Incognito (1606 Acushnet Avenue) and an after-Pride party happens at LePlace (20 Kenyon Street), both 21+

There’s certainly more to be done to ensure equality for everyone, regardless of sexual preference or gender, in New Bedford and society.

But on Saturday, we can all take pride in the knowledge that the city has come a long way recently in a short amount of time – mirroring the positive direction New Bedford is going in generally.

That’s no coincidence – it’s the rainbow after the rain.

The Last Weekend

Faithful readers! This is the final YOUR WEEKEND for awhile.

The world isn’t ending, North Korea (or the White House) hasn’t gone nuclear, and the streets are still unpaved in New Bedford. So no worries; Hell hasn’t frozen over.

It’s just that we’re switching up the format of the blog posts here at Groundwork over the summer. Instead of a weekly round-up of events, yours truly will be writing a New Bedford Now weekly status report featuring all sorts of goodies beginning next week.

For events, we recommend following the Coastin’ Facebook group, which you can join here.

So, until the mood strikes again, let’s enjoy our last YOUR WEEKEND together…

Duende

FRIDAY, MAY 18 – Duende – an exhibition by Tracy Barbosa, opens tonight right here at Groundwork! The artist writes, “Traditionally meant to describe dance and music, “Duende” describes an artful moment which cannot be recaptured. It is fleeting, searing, and poetic. Though glass is static, it is in constant flux with its location. Light and color play with glass all day. No moment is ever the same. Hence the namesake of her glass studio practice.” The multi-media show’s reception, free and open to the public tonight from 6:00-9:00 p.m., features work that “utilizes peripheral post-industrial landscapes along with an alphabet of personal archetypal imagery to create paintings on canvas and glass which stir the inner relationships between man, memory, and nature.”

Belly Dance

SATURDAY, MAY 19 – Carabiner’s Climbing & Fitness hosts “Fundamentals of Belly Dance” today from 1:00-3:00 p.m. “What is Belly Dance?” they ask. “During this two hour workshop, we will explore fundamental movements of Middle Eastern dance as well as the movement’s regional variation,” they reply. This workshop is beginner oriented, however all levels of experience are welcomed to join and create an encouraging environment. $15 for Carabiner’s members; $25 for non-members. Carabiner’s is at 328 Parker Street, NB.

World Fiddle Day

Warming up for World Fiddle Day at Hatch Street Studios

SUNDAY, MAY 20 – Old Time Fiddle Session will be hosting a multi-cultural, interactive, traditional music event called “World Fiddle Day” at Hatch Street Studios (88 Hatch Street, NB) today. The event runs from 12:30 to 5:30 pm and includes open playing opportunities for musicians, children’s activities, vendors, workshops, dancing, and a full schedule of performances by traditional fiddle music acts. In celebration of the world’s diverse fiddling traditions, featured performances include Old-Time American, Canadian, Cape Verdean, European, Gypsy, and Yiddish offerings. Cape Verdean fiddler John Miranda and Australian fiddler Mark Russel will be bringing the more distant traditions to New Bedford, while New England style caller Louisa Pugh will help reinforce native roots. It’s also the organizer, Jeff Angeley’s birthday today! So wish him well.

YOUR WEEKEND

God of Carnage

FRIDAY, MAY 11 – YOUR THEATRE’s production of “God of Carnage” is onstage at 136 Rivet Street tonight and on various dates through May 20. Press info goes like this: Often described as a farcical comedy of manners – without manners, God Of Carnage centers on a playground altercation between eleven-year-old boys which brings together two sets of Brooklyn parents for a meeting to resolve the matter. At first, diplomatic niceties are observed, but as the meeting progresses, and the rum flows, tensions emerge and the gloves come off, leaving the couples with more than just their liberal principles in tatters.” Oh, boy. Curtain at 7:30 p.m. tonight. Get tickets and see the full schedule here.

Sen. Warren comes to town

SATURDAY, MAY 12 – U. S. Senator Elizabeth Warren holds a town hall meeting today from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. at Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational-Technical High School off Ashley Boulevard. Here’s the official PR: Elizabeth Warren will be hosting a town hall in New Bedford on Saturday, and you are invited! She’ll be talking and answering questions about how she’s holding the Trump Administration accountable and fighting for Massachusetts families in the Senate. 

“Doors open at 11:00 AM, and the event will begin at 12:00 Noon. Admission is first come, first served. We’re sorry, but signs/posters will not be permitted inside the event. This event is free and open to the public, but RSVP here.”

SUPERFLAT @ Hatch

SATURDAY, MAY 12 – The mural arts super-group, SUPERFLAT visits Hatch Street Studios along with 3rd EyE Unlimited during the buildings first, Second Saturdays monthly Open Studios. Each month at 88 Hatch Street, expect a variety of open art studios, music, educational sessions, special events, and guest artists. Happens from noon – 5:00 p.m. and it is free to attend.

Mother’s Day

SUNDAY, MAY 13 – It’s Mother’s Day – and you already know what to do. BRUNCH!!! We’re big fans of mothers here at Groundwork! Every member has one or more. So, to all of them from all of us…HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!

From Comics to Cryptocurrency: YOUR WEEKEND

New Bedford gets SUPERFLAT

FRIDAY, MAY 4 – The mural arts project, SUPERFLAT – hatched at Groundwork! – moves out and takes it to the streets tonight with a launch along the Acushnet Avenue fence in downtown New Bedford behind the BCC building. Come by from 5:00-9:00 p.m. tonight to catch some street artists at work – then bid on it at the newly opened Co-Creative Center around the corner at 137 Union Street. You can read more about in my State of the Arts column on Southcoast Today here.

Get stuffed at Viva Portugal!

SATURDAY, MAY 5 – Viva Portugal flew in under the radar a few years ago – a simple street festival downtown outside the Zeiterion Theater to celebrate Portuguese culture. Only in its third year, Viva Portugal has become a much-anticipated happening in early May that signifies the full flowering of spring – and a great day to stuff yourself on delicious Portuguese food. This writer is a fastidious eater – but Viva Portugal hits all the culinary buttons with fish, favas, cacoila, rice pudding, sweet bread and more in a relaxed city setting with terrific music on the street. Come hungry from 1:00-7:00 p.m. today!

BOOM! Free Comic Book Day

SATURDAY, MAY 5 – Almost as far north (in New Bedford) as the Fortress of Solitude, the city’s very own comic book store New England Comics can be found on Acushnet Avenue at what was once Lunds Corner. Today, they and comic books stores across North American celebrate FREE COMIC BOOK DAY – an industry event to help bring new readers into independent comics stores. It happens from 10:30 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. – and in New Bedford special guests Mike Lilly, DC/Marvel Artist and Bob Almond, Veteran Industry Inker, will be appearing from 11-6.

Taking it to the mat

SUNDAY, MAY 6 – The action is all ringside in New Bedford’s Ward 3 tonight when TRP (Top Rope Productions) Live Wrestling returns to the city at New Bedford Inns & Suites (500 Hathaway Road) from 5:00-9:00 p.m. This writer is heading out with the Fabulous Cardoos sisters (as in Shelley and Miriam) to check out the spandex and steroids. Get your own tickets here.

Let’s talk about cryptocurrency

BONUS PICK: Wednesday, May 9 – Join us right here at Groundwork! (1213 Purchase Street, NB) for the first in a series of “salon” evenings. These events will feature a facilitated discussion around a specific topic, led by subject matter experts. Enjoy beer, wine and snacks, learn something new, and meet people in a casual environment. Tickets are $15 at the door and $10 in advance. (FREE for Groundwork! members; get yourself a community membership for $30 a month and get into this and future member events for free, too!)

On the agenda tonight: Cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies are quickly disrupting many industries including the finance and technology sectors and beyond. Dig deep into the subject with hosts Nicole Pupillo and Nick Briguglio. Get tickets and learn more here.

YOUR WEEKEND: Kiss me as if it were the last time…

Five Boroughs of Hip Hop

FRIDAY, APRIL 27 – Start the weekend tonight from 10:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. by taking a tour of the FIVE BOROUGHS of HIP HOP with DJ Jules Flava at Incognito (1606 Acushnet Avenue, NB; 21+/ Proper Dress). Memory Lane brings you the sounds of 94.5FM’s DJ Jules Flava tonight – and if it’s too late for you to jam, remember that the bar opens at 4:00 p.m. and Incognito serves dinner from 5-10:00 p.m.

Ropefest!

SATURDAY, APRIL 28 – Few cities boast an event as unique as ROPEFEST – the annual celebration of…rope that takes place at R & W Rope company off Church Street, NB. From 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., enjoy 20-40% off store merchandise and the following:
· Marine rope and hardware for traditional, performance and cruising
· Rock climbing, arborist and safety gear
· Crafting, knot tying and bushcraft rope and cord
· Sporting and tactical supplies
· Exhibits, demonstrations and activities
· Rock Climbing wall
· LIVE MUSIC with Sharks Come Cruisin’
R & W Rope can be found at 39 Tarklin Place.

We’ll always have Paris…

SATURDAY, APRIL 28 – Mayor Mitchell’s Classic Movie Series brings the legendary CASABLANCA to the Zeiterion Theatre screen today at 2:00 p.m. This writer’s favorite movie – with Citizen Kane coming in a close second – CASABLANCA on the big screen is like letters of transit out of everyday life and into immortality. Come see it; it’s free, too!

LGBTQ Film Series wraps it up

SUNDAY, APRIL 29 – The LGBTQ Winter Film Series ends it runs at the Whaling National Historic Park today at 2:00 p.m. with a free screening of the documentary, “How to Survive a Plague.” It looks at the work of Act Up and their activism in bringing HIV and AIDS awareness into the mainstream during the early years of the health crisis. During the event, there will be a a Testing Van parked in Carter’s parking lot that will provide free on site HIV testing. The theater is located at 33 William Street, NB.

Ezekiel’s Wheels in concert

SUNDAY, APRIL 29 – The Tifereth Israel Congregation (139 Brownell Avenue, NB) hosts the internationally-acclaimed Ezekiel’s Wheels in concert this evening at 7:00 p.m. Ezekiel’s Wheels “improvise with the intimacy of chamber music and the intensity of a rowdy dance band. Their engaging contemporary interpretation of Jewish music is irresistible…” Tickets: $10 adults; $5 kids; $25 families, Register by calling: (508) 997-3171 or email: office@tinewbedford.org. And, give them a listen at the link below….

YOUR WEEKEND

Paint Night!

FRIDAY, APRIL 20 – The Lofts at Wamsutta Place, the former textile mill turning into residential lofts,  launches a Paint Night tonight in the building from 6:00-9:00 p.m. They note that there’s no experience necessary and they’ll provide all the paint supplies and food. Tickets are $20, and residents can pick up tickets at the leasing office and bring a friend. Space is limited.

Earth Day Cleanup

SATURDAY, APRIL 21 – The Earth Day Cleanup that was the subject of a full blog post (HERE) happens today beginning at 8:30 a.m. Register here, and then meet right off Acushnet Avenue behind Cotali Mar restaurant to start the Big Sweep!

Record Store Day

SATURDAY, APRIL 21 – Go vinyl today as the nation celebrates Record Store Day. Locally, that happens at Purchase Street Records at 767 Purchase Street beginning at 10:00 a.m. What do they have in store for you? “Early Bird Specials! Storewide discounts! Exclusive Record Store Day Releases! Giveaways courtesy of Paul & AL & 94 WHJY!” You know they will do it up right – all the way until 7:00 p.m. tonight!

Drag Bingo!

SATURDAY, APRIL 21 – The Queens of the Southcoast take it over to the Fairhaven VFW Post 2892 tonight for a night of DRAG BINGO. Join them for a an evening full of bingo games, performances and lots of laughs, they promise. Tickets are $25 in advance/$30 at the door. Contact Kristin via call/text at 508-560-3135 to get some or for group inquiries.

Let’s Dance!

SATURDAY, APRIL 21 – Performance artist Andy Anello of The Ropeworks in the city’s north end branches out from his quarterly Lunar Teeth happenings to host a NEW MOON DANCE party downtown tonight. Come to Yoga on Union, 1 Johnny Cake Hill, NB to groove to “House Music + Soul, Electro, Boogie, and Disco.” $5 door charge; and Andy wants you to know: This party is radically inclusive and open to all.” It happens from 9:00 p.m. to midnight.

Remembering Leonard Cohen

SUNDAY, APRIL 22 – New Bedford’s First Unitarian Church at the corner of Union and Eighth Streets remembers the legacy of troubadour Leonard Cohen during their annual Folk Music Mass this morning at 11:00 a.m. They write, “Experience the life and times of a musical icon through his music, then help the party continue by hanging out with the performers for an informal music jam, while indulging in luscious baked goods to benefit the musical projects and programs of the church. The concert itself is by freewill donation, so what’s not to like?” Hallelujah, we say.

Songs in the key of YOUR WEEKEND

Fizz Friday

FRIDAY, APRIL 13 – The ever-inventive Shelley Cardoos always has something new and different on tap at Hippo, the artisan gift boutique at 741 Purchase Street – and tonight is no exception. Head on over for Fizz Friday – “Come to the shop for our first Seltzer Tasting Night! We’ll be offering up tastings of some seltzers chosen by our resident Fizz Queen Shelley Cardoos,” they write. “We’re also working on some snack pairings, so bring some friends, or come alone and meet some new peeps, and be a part of the fizz fun.” This event is free, although they’ll be putting out a donation jar if you’re feeling generous to help cover the cost of drinks and snacks.

Adrift & In Stillness

FRIDAY, APRIL 13 – S & G Project Gallery at 88 Hatch Street (Hatch Street Studios) opens their new season with “Adrift & In Stillness,” botanical expressions by Deb Ehrens. The opening reception for her work takes place from 7:00-10:00 p.m. tonight at the gallery, in Room 308. S & G writes, “Deb Ehrens uses her camera to create contemplative and painterly imagery. Deb lives in Dartmouth, MA and is a Juried Artist Member of the Cape Cod Art Center and Exhibiting Member of the Providence Center for Photographic Arts.”

Open House at Butch’s

SATURDAY, APRIL 14 – Head back to Hatch Street Studios – this time in the side building at 90 Hatch Street – for Butch McCarthy’s Open Art Studio day. The artist will be present from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., and is looking forward to showing you where the magic happens!

X-Rated @ The X

SATURDAY, APRIL 14 – Before you get too excited, we’re talking comedy not peep shows tonight at Gallery X, 169 William Street, NB! Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and the show starts at 6:30 p.m.; $8 admission. Your host for the bawdy laughs will be Nick Anthony, who we are assured has hand-picked some hilarious comedians from around New England to give you some excellent entertainment. Here’s the line-up: HEADLINER: Alan Fitzgerald (Marshfield, MA) with: Chris; Thomas (Cleveland, OH/Boston, MA); Nicole Auclair (Providence, RI); Aaron Collins (Attleboro, MA); Alex Medeiros (New Bedford, MA); and Adrian Morse (Raynham, MA).

Welcome to Steveland

SUNDAY, APRIL 15 – Head to the groovy Doug’s House of Harmony at 818 Kempton Street, NB and be welcomed to Steveland: A tribute to Stevie Wonder tonight from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Here’s the deal: presented by Paul “Newby” Grace, Steveland consists of a seven piece live band and includes four vocalists, Paul Newby Grace, Joe Medina, Chris Waters and Ray Wills; Ed Oliver on bass, guitarist Marc Leishman and drummer, Dan Raposa.Newby is an avid Stevie Wonder fan and states, “Stevie Wonder has been a great inspiration to me all throughout my musical career. I’m passionate about his music and it’s always been a dream of mine to form a tribute band in his honor.” Tickets are $15.00 at door. Advance tickets are $10.00 and available at Doug’s House of Harmony, or Symphony Music Shop, 94 State Rd. North Dartmouth.

Financial Planning 101

BONUS PICK: WEDNESDAY, APRIL 18 – If you’ve recovered from doing your taxes, then you’re invited to Groundwork!, at 1213 Purchase Street, NB, today to prepare yourself for next year! In this lunch time workshop (noon – 1:00 p.m.), Nick Briguglio, Business Mentor and Independent Financial Consultant, will break down the key components of a healthy financial strategy, including healthcare, budgeting, and saving for retirement. There will also be plenty of opportunity for Q+A. You are welcome to bring your own lunch! The event is free for Groundwork! Members, and only $5 (+ Eventbrite fee) for non-members. Get tickets here.

YOUR WEEKEND: Vintage women, quahog bling and more…

Vintage Women

FRIDAY, APRIL 6 – The artisan gift shop, HIPPO at 741 Purchase Streets hosts artist Amanda Laurel Atkins tonight from 7:00-9:00 p.m. for a special painting workshop. They explain, “Join Massachusetts artist Amanda Laurel Atkins for a night of painting vintage-inspired women! Based on Amanda’s style of portraiture, this workshop will walk you through creating your own canvas portrait of a fictional woman (or yourself, or a loved one) in a retro 1950s fashion.” $35 per person; all supplies included with light refreshments provided. No refunds, no walk-ins. Space is limited so attendees should reserve and pay for a spot in advance. Tickets available here.

Hip-Hop meets strings

FRIDAY, APRIL 6 – “Black Violins” returns to the Zeiterion Theatre stage tonight at 8:00 p.m. The group describes themselves as, “Hip hop meets strings in a groundbreaking collaboration between Wil Baptiste and Kevin ‘Kev Marcus’ Sylvester, known together as Black Violin.” The classically-trained duo return to The Z with their  band and “signature blend of hip-hop, rock, R&B, classical, and bluegrass music that has struck a chord with audiences around the world.” Tickets can be purchased here.

Wellness Walk returns to Buttonwood!

SATURDAY, APRIL 7 – The New Bedford Wellness Initiative’s popular Buttonwood Park walk returns for the season – and their fourth year today at 9:00 a.m. Meet and walk with them from the zoo entrance – and prepare yourself for a special treat this morning; the Southcoast Brass Band will be on hand to kick off the season! Dogs are welcome on the walk, too. No word about cats. Or bears.

Their Finest Hour

SATURDAY, APRIL 7 – Finest Hour Athletics celebrates their one year anniversary downtown at 763 Purchase Street today beginning at 10:00 a.m. with new gear, special edition products, raffles and more. The fitness apparel store joined a community on the block which also includes Purchase Street Records, the classic Your Father’s Mustache, and the artisan gift shop, Hippo. (There is even a witch store, too.) It’s good company to be in! Come visit them all today.

Jonathan Perry

Quahog Bling

SUNDAY, APRIL 8 – Come meet and check out the work of New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center’s artist-in-residence, Jonathan Perry today at noon as he demonstrates traditional quahog jewelry making. A member of the Aquinnah Wampanoag Tribe, Jonathan is a traditional singer, dancer, speaker, and carver. He draws his designs from the raw materials and uses the materials and knowledge handed down from his ancestors to express his understanding of the natural world as well as the changes over time since Creation. The center can be found at 38 Bethel Street, downtown NB.

YOUR WEEKEND bound and fried

Good Friday Fish Fry

FRIDAY, MARCH 30 – It’s the last Friday of Lent – so, if you’re feeling especially Catholic (no matter your religion or lack thereof)  go old school New Bedford and jump into a large plate of Fish & Chips! Dillon’s on County Street, the Dogg House on Coggeshall, Angelo’s Orchid Diner on Rockdale Avenue, Yor Dogg Mil on Kempton Street and Horta’s on Cove are all great, inexpensive places to find the fry and fries.

Tomfoolery!

Beginning FRIDAY, MARCH 30 – The Collective NB returns to the Gallery X stage – for a night of “Tomfoolery!” The night of laughs features live theatre, music, art and the comic styling of the one and only Funny Please. Doors at 7:30; performance begins at 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $15. Make reservations at TheCollectiveNB@gmail.com. Gallery X is found at 169 William Street, NB. The show runs Friday and Saturday, March 31.

Stoneburning bookbinding pop-up

SATURDAY, MARCH 31 – The artisan gift boutique, HIPPO at 741 Purchase Street always has interesting inventory – and frequently hosts special events like today’s bookbinding pop-up that equally reflect its creativity. Ignore the dig on Union Street and head over from noon-4:00 p.m. for a pre-Easter pop-up with Lacy Stoneburner of Stoneburner Bookbinding. Stoneburner Bookbinding, based in Milton, Massachusetts, offers handmade journals, photograph albums, custom books and book-inspired jewelry. Owner Lacy Stoneburner will be at Hippo to help you turn the pages – and debut some of her Spring designs.

The impact of Rt. 18 on New Bedford

SATURDAY, MARCH 31 – As a final engagement of David Higgins’ artist residency with the New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park, he’ll be set up to demonstrate the results of his three-month research into the transformation of a New Bedford neighborhood into present day Route 18. Drop in any time during the window of 2-4pm and learn some history through objects with the artist. We’ve heard good things about this – and look forward to checking it out today! Come on down to 33 William Street, NB and join us.

A different kind of movie night…

SATURDAY, MARCH 31 – What would  Star Wars be without the stirring music we associate with its opening screen scroll? Tonight at the Zeiterion Theatre, New Bedford Symphony Orchestra Music Director, Yaniv Dinur, returns to the stage with the orchestra to perform familiar theme songs from these popular films: James Bond, Cinema Paradiso, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, Lord of the Rings, Back to the Future, Superman, Schindler’s List, Psycho, Vertigo, La La Land, The Godfather, and Star Wars. Showtime is 7:30 P.M. check www.nbsymphony.org for details.

Easter

SUNDAY, APRIL 1 – Happy Easter! It’s the most pagan of religious holidays, so eat ham, search for candy or simply walk barefoot through the park to celebrate Spring! But watch out for bunnies; they’re shifty characters.

UMass Transportation Forum

BONUS PICK: Thursday, April 5 – Interested in a discussion about how public transportation can and should be improved throughout Southeastern Massachusetts? We knew you would be! Then get yourself to the MASSPIRG Transportation Forum today at 4:00 p.m. on the UMass Dartmouth campus (in the lIberal Arts building, Room 208). You can RSVP and get more info from Matt Casale at mcasale@masspirg.org. Oh – and take the SRTA No. 9 Fall River to teh campus if you really want to get into the spirit of the discussion!