Monday Nights at McGreevy’s

Beat Monday Blues with a Free Comedy Show

WhereMcGreevy’s Sports Bar – Google Map Directions
When: Every Monday night, Doors at 7:00 p.m., Comedy show 8:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.
How Much: FREE
Note: Ages +21, even if you don’t plan on drinking, bring your ID to get in the door

After that miserable Monday, a comedy show is just what you need. Laugh off the fact that you made it through the first work-day of the week… and forget that there are four left.

The comedy show is a new addition to the sports bar’s weekly events, with its debut on March 7, 2016. Although new, the event is gaining quick popularity. By 8:00 p.m. there was only standing room available.

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I graciously accepted a standing position after sitting at a desk all day and embraced the comedic relief. As typical with comedy, the jokes got a little dirty, so this wouldn’t be an event I would take my mom to.

John Paul Rivera is performing tonight. He first got into comedy when he was a kid and his mother did stand-up.

“It’s a lot of fun, it’s great to make people laugh, hang out with your friends, and have a good time, look at how much fun people are having right now!” said Rivera.

It’s true, I could barely hear Rivera over the belly laughs and chatty crowd. It was a welcomed change after sitting on a silent T ride with 100 people staring at their phones.

When asked what his favorite part was about performing, Rivera unsurprisingly made a joke…I think.

“Probably the free drinks that come my way,” said Rivera. “That’s a huge part of it.”

Scroll to 1:30 to see Rivera literally grab the mic.

 

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The Clubhouse

The opening of a fun, new event space in Somerville

Where: The Clubhouse – 471 Somerville Ave – Directions
When: Saturday, April 9, 3:00-5:00 p.m.  – Stay tuned for upcoming events here!

The Clubhouse opened it’s garage doors this Saturday with a Masters Tournament viewing party. Men showed up in pastel colored pants and women sported polos with their collars popped. Just weeks before, this building was filled with cars, paint, and grease.

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The building on Somerville Ave. used to be an auto body shop. The owners of the property don’t plan to tear it down for another couple of years, so in the meantime, Chas Wagner has an 18 month lease on it. He wants The Clubhouse to be a creative and playful space, a combination of sports and art.

“Clubhouses have a fun, playful connotation to them,” said Wagner. “Takes you back to your childhood, being creative, and a little goofy. It’s not meant to be that serious.”

Not only is the inside spacious with big garage doors to open up in the summer time, but there’s also a lot of outdoor space. They plan to have games like shuffle board and Kan Jam, in edition to the basketball court.

Inside there’s a large room with a projector for sports games, a retail pop-up shop room, and a mini bar set up.

Anne Sholley, a friend of Wagners, attended the event on Saturday and has high hopes for The Clubhouse.

“I think it’s important to create these third spaces where it’s not your home and it’s not your work,” said Sholley. “It’s a place where you can relax a little bit, meet people outside of a bar setting, which I think is a novel concept for a lot of people. And make it more healthy, active lifestyle oriented.”

 

Co-Founder of The Boston Calendar

Sean O’Connor, curator of events that don’t suck

I find most of the Boston activities I feature on Never Have I Ever from The Boston Calendar- Events That Don’t Suck. It’s a great compilation of unique, fun, low-cost events geared towards young adults. On Saturday, I got to meet one of the masterminds behind this goldmine.

Sean O’Connor was browsing Reddit Boston in Spring 2013 when he saw a post by a Redditor, asking someone to create a website where people could post cool and unique events in Boston.

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Sean O’Connor says that meaningful connections with people of different background has been the greatest reward from The Boston Calendar. Photo by Cat Trudell.

O’Connor answered the call. He and co-founder Saurav Bhattacharyya started working on the website in March and in July 2013 they launched The Boston Calendar.

“Reviews were through the roof, people loved it,” said O’Connor. “At the time, there wasn’t a good place to find out about things to do in Boston. There was nothing really geared towards cost-conscious Millennials.”

At first O’Connor and Bhattacharyya posted all the events themselves, but now most of the content is user generated.

“We call it crowd curation in that we are relying on the users to curate the event discovery process from a content end on the website,” said O’Connor. “It’s really a representation of everyone who lives in Boston and what’s happening around the city.”

In the future, The Boston Calendar hopes to open in more cities. They just launched The Philly Calendar this year.

The Boston Calendar isn’t just a full-time job to O’Connor, he says it’s been an amazingly rewarding experience to meet new people with different ethnic and cultural backgrounds and share stories.

“The most important thing in life is to meet new people and to understand different cultures and humanity a little bit better,” said O’Connor. “And this has offered me the opportunity to do so.”

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O’Connor, the creator of the offbeat, under-publicized events calendar, commented that sometimes events help millennials put down the devices they’re so attached to and make real human connections.

Wicked Queer

The 32nd Annual Boston LGBT Film Festival: Screening of Carol

Where: Paramount Center, The Bright Family Screening RoomDirections
When: 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 5 – Wicked Queer Boston LGBT Film Festival Schedule
How Much: This event is free, other Wicked Queer events may have a ticket price

Wicked Queer is the name of the 10-day LGBT Film Festival in Boston. It kicked off on March 31st and will run until April 10th.

I went to see the screening of the movie Carol at Emerson’s Bright Family Screening Room at the Paramount on Tuesday night.

By 6:45 p.m., the lobby at the Paramount had a long line weaving around the room. Stephanie Morrison and Amanda Wade came from work to see the movie.

“I wanted to see the movie anyways so it was very convenient that it was here, and it was free!” said Morrison.

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The Bright Family Screening Room was at capacity by 7:00 p.m. Photo by Cat Trudell.

This is the 32nd annual Boston LGBT Film Festival, making it the fourth oldest in North America. It was founded in 1984 by film programmer George Mansour.

The festival’s mission is to “foster a greater sense of awareness and diversity among the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities and allied audiences.”

 

The 5k Bur-Run

A fun 3-mile run with no pressure and free dinner

Where: The Burren, Somerville Pub – Google Map Directions
When: Every Monday night at 6:45 p.m.
How Much: Free!

In typical April-in-New-England fashion, it was 30 degrees and snowing when I showed up at the  Bur-Run 5K on Monday night.

Bur-Run is a play on words for the 5K that starts and ends at The Burren pub in Somerville, but on this Monday night, the Burrrr part held extra significance.

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Post-race beef stew and beers at The Burren’s Monday night 5k. Photo by Cat Trudell.

Although I’m complaining about the cold weather, I’m glad I did it. It was a fun thing to do in Boston and everyone was welcoming and friendly. Despite the snow, ten people showed up to run.

“I was new to Boston and I was looking for a way to branch out and meet new people,” said Barb Summers. “I like to run and it’s nice to force me to run, especially on days like this”

The Bur-Run 5K is organized by the Somerville Road Runners. They also hosts a free 4 mile run at 7:15 p.m. on Thursdays, starting at Casey’s tavern in Somerville.

“I think people get intimidated by joining a running club, but it’s a super wide mixture of people who are not serious at all, to people who are serious, slow people, fast people, which is nice. The joke is we’re a drinking club with a running problem.” said Summers.

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Seth Maleri and Paul Venuti help orgranize the Monday night run. Photo by Cat Trudell.

The organizers of the Monday night run, Seth Maleri and Paul Venuti, agree that the vibe is laid back and judgement free.

“You have nothing to lose,” said Venuti. “It’s a fun course, you get free food at the end, and you can buy a beer if you want.”

Insider tip: The group meets in the basement of The Burren, so when you get there, go downstairs and meet up with the crew. They’ll give you a reflective vest if you don’t have your own. You sign in, and then you’re off by 7:00 p.m.

Shout out to Barb Summers for being my guiding light in the snow, and helping me navigate the 3 mile course.

A Unique Twist on Pizza and Bowling

Organic Flatbread Pizza and Candlepin Bowling

Where: Flatbread Company, SomervilleGoogle Map Directions
When: Opened every day 10:00 a.m.- 11:30 p.m. (Sunday closes at 10:30 p.m.)
How Much: Bowling is $25 per lane per hour, $2 shoe rental. Food menu with prices.

The Flatbread Company in Somerville buzzed with chatter and the clinking of bowling balls and pins on Friday night.

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Sangria and Raspberry Fizz at the Flatbread bar. Photo by Cat Trudell.

It was so busy, we weren’t able to get a bowling lane. In order to make a reservation for a lane, you have to have at least eight people. Gather a group of friends and make a reservation if you’re going on a busy weekend night. I will have to go back to try the unique candlepin bowling.

That didn’t ruin our experience. We headed over to the bar and enjoyed some tasty, locally-sourced drinks while we waited for our table in the dining area. As a party of five, we were seated within minutes.

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The Somerville Community Flatbread with caramelized onions and mushrooms. Photo by Cat Trudell.

 

I would have waited an eternity to taste the flatbread pizza. It was divine.

The Flatbread Company started in 1998 in Amesbury, Massachusetts with a mission to make real food, served by real people, in a real environment. Since then, they have opened 12 locations in the northeast, including one in Canada.

Flatbread Company took over the Somerville space from the Sacco’s Bowling Family who opened it in 1939. The Sacco’s had owned 18 other bowling alleys in the area, and this was their last location still open. Flatbread Company bought the building and preserved 10 of the 15 bowling lanes, changed the pool room into a dining area, and built two clay, wood-fired pizza ovens.

The marriage of the old school bowling alley and locally sustainable restaurant is beautiful. They even invited the community to help lay down the bricks for the ovens when they transformed the building in 2010.

It’s safe to say, the community has embraced the new ownership.

Geeks Who Drink Trivia

Tuesday Trivia Night at Common Ground

Where:Common Ground, Allston – Google map directions
When: 
Tuesdays, 8-10pm – Check out other locations
How Much
: Free entry

Fifteen teams battled out eight rounds of trivia at Common Ground in Allston last Tuesday night. The atmosphere was friendly, boisterous, and excitable.

Corey Heady has hosted Geeks Who Drink trivia night at Common Ground for the last three years. He says the crowd on Tuesday nights has grown from five teams to 12-15 teams.

“It’s not about what you know, it’s about what you can figure out,” said Heady. “Guessing answers is a lot more important. It’s fun. You guess, you drink, and you have a good time.”

It’s free to play trivia. You can choose to purchase a beverage or some brain food… nachos or tator tots?

Corey Heady strongly recommends the Ronald Palmer, an alcoholic version of the iced tea beverage, made by the bartender, Ronald. That might be a trivia question.

AnitiGravity Aerial Yoga

 A unique experience: Gravity-defying Yoga

Where: Swet Studio – Google Map Directions
When: Daily classes, click here for the schedule
How Much: $28 for three classes, check online for current prices

Aerial yoga is one of the coolest fitness classes I’ve ever taken. I couldn’t suppress my giddy smile as I climbed into the silk hammock at Swet Studio on Friday night.

Swet Studio’s AntiGravity FUNdamentals is a 60-minute beginners class for the silk hammock apparatus. We started by getting into a simple sitting position and transitioned to laying down on our backs into floating savasana. The hammock material is thin but long enough to extend from your head to your toes. The instructor reassured us that the material is strong enough to hold a baby elephant.

It was such a foreign and welcomed feeling of weightlessness. The silk material is so thin that you feel like your floating in the air.

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Kerry Cotter and Lauren Wilkes hang upside down for a picture after class.

Don’t be intimidated by this class. The instructor, Jennifer Heynh, safely led us step-by-step into some really fun positions. I would have never thought I’d be able to swing upside down, but Heynh easily led us in to each pose.

“A lot of people are super super nervous,” said Heynh. “And then once they get comfortable, the joy of seeing them relax is amazing.”

AntiGravity is the trademarked name of the company that makes the hammock. Since 1991, Christopher Harrison has produced more than 400 entertainment productions using AntiGravity. He realized that the hammock had health benefits, so he created a device for the general public and now it’s popping up in gyms in over 30 countries.

This class was a welcomed change from my normal fitness routine and a unique thing to do in Boston. I didn’t get an intense workout, but it was a refreshingly new experience. I will be trying the Levitation class next!

Bright Lights Presents: Room

A Soldout Event at Paramount

Where: Paramount Center: Bright Family Screening RoomDirections
When: 7 p.m., Every Tuesday & Thursday during the semester – Upcoming events
How Much: The Bright Lights series is FREE and open to the public

Bright Lights is a screening and talk series presented by Emerson College’s Department of Visual and Media Arts. Their mission is to “provide engaging visual media related events to the Emerson College community as well as the wider Boston community.”All the events are free and open to the public.

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The Paramount Center is mixed-use residential, academic, and performance venue. The Bright Family Screening Room  seats 170 people and features digital video projection equipment.

The cool thing about this film series is that after every screening, there’s a discussion. Sometimes a panel of experts or special guests come in to help lead the dialogue.

Every show starts at 7 p.m. and they run whenever Emerson College is in session.

On Tuesday, March 15th, I went to see the screening of Room, an Academy Award (and basically every other award) winning film directed by Lenny Abrahamson that came out in early 2016. The Bright Family Screening Room was packed! The event sold out before 7pm.

So, insider tip: show up 30 minutes early if it’s a popular film. A line will form in the lower lobby area, and at 6:45 p.m. they’ll start letting people up to the fourth floor theatre. No actual tickets are issued.

The film was great–a dramatic story of how far a mother’s love extends. As expected, Brie Larson wowed me and Jacob Tremblay stole my heart. I’m positive he will be the next generation’s Ryan Gosling.

Check out the Bright Lights upcoming events and Facebook page to find something that interests you.

 

Harpoon St.Patrick’s Festival 2016

An early start to the St.Patricks Day festivities in Boston

Where: Harpoon Brewery, BostonGoogle Map Directions
When: 1:00-7:00 p.m., Saturday, March 5 – Future Harpoon events and festivals
How Much: $25- Entrance into the festival, souvenir pint glass, first beer

Harpoon Brewery knows how to throw a party. On Saturday they hosted hundreds of beer fans for their St.Patrick’s Festival 2016. For 25 dollars you gained entrance, a plastic pint glass, and one beer ticket.

Insider tip: The line grows quickly. If you don’t get there early, you could wait hours to get in. Get there by 12:00 p.m. Or become a Friend of Harpoon and you’ll be able to buy an early bird ticket online and skip the line. Best. Decision. I. Ever. Made.

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Cheers above the Harpoon St.Patrick’s Festival 2016. Photo from Harpoon’s Instagram.

It was cold on Saturday, but the Brewery had large heated tents, and plenty of beer. There were live bands playing all day, showcasing bagpipes and plenty of men in kilts. It was a great way to kick off the St. Patrick’s celebrations in Boston.

The brewery is right on the waterfront, in the same renovated warehouse where the company brewed its first Harpoon Ale in 1987.

Harpoon hosts a lot events in Boston, and around the US. The brewery has two big festivals left in Boston in 2016: HarpoonFest in May and it’s original festival, Octoberfest. Check them out!