Johnny’s List of Quirky Boston Events: 04/26/07

Hi all,

Here’s what’s weird this week in New England.

At MIT they have this thing called the “Baker House Piano Drop”. Somehow every year they manage to find an old piano, and drop it from the dorm roof. I am not kidding. 6pm today, Thu Apr 26. Preceded by a BBQ. Baker House dorm at MIT, Cambridge. Use the MIT map to find the dorm at

Also weird, there will be a re-enactment of 19th century singing troupe which appeared at rallies for social causes such as slavery abolition and women’s suffrage. Hutchinson Family Singers, Apr 28-29, Edwards Church, 297 Main St. Northampton, MA.

Speaking of anti-everything, how about anti-creationism. Come check out the Great Tennessee Monkey Trial, also known as the Scopes Trial, Apr 26-27. Stars Ed Asner (Mary Tyler Moore Show) and John de Lancie (Q from Star Trek). I heard this on NPR and it sounds good. New Bedford, MA. Also Concord, NH, Apr 29-30.

As if by cue, this is the last weekend to see “Darwin” at the Museum of Science, Boston.

Speaking of the Museum of Science, Boston, apparently they are having some kind of robot musical performance Fri Apr 27, see 7pm, 8:30pm.

Have you ever seen aerial silk? That’s the Cirque du Soleil stuff where acrobats climb, hang from, and swoop around on long strands of silk rather than ropes. It also features “Emperor Norton’s Stationary Marching Band”. Anyway I’m really not sure what to make of this, but it’s my job to bring you the weird and here it is. There’s going to be a performance Apr 29, 5:30pm at Spontaneous Celebrations, 45 Danforth St., Jamaica Plain, MA. Also see

Here’s another one I’m not sure quite what to make of. Some geeks at Harvard are converting Gund Hall, a 400-person lecture hall, into a gaming extravaganza. Play the WII, play DDR, play with others, play with yourself. Um, by yourself. Apr 28. Gund Hall, at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, Harvard, at the corner of Quincy and Camrbidge Streets in Cambridge.

I can never resist listing the SCA events. Where else can you go to see geeks (and I am one) bopping each other with phony swords? Or to take part in a Renaiassance-style feast or learn quilting? I’m sure it’s worth stopping by. SCA May Day is one of 2 largest SCA Boston events for medeival re-enactment. Fencing, fighting, potluck, dance. 10am-10pm. Brandeis University, 415 South Street, Waltham, MA,

It’s Annual Kite Day at Bose Mountain, Apr 29. That’s in Framingham.

Yet another Open Studios is taking place, this time it’s the Brookline Open Studios, Apr 28 & 29. It’s a fun way to spend the day walking around, meeting local artists as they open their homes and private studios to the public. Oh, and of course most of the art is for sale.

The Charles River May Day Festival is May 1. It’s always May 1, whether that’s a weekend or not, because that’s how May Day works apparently. Fortunately, even if you have to work May 1st you can still attend because they have conveniently scheduled it at dawn. Dawn in the morning, not the other dawn. I actually do not have a website for this, anyone have it? But I have Basically there is folk dancing at dawn, at the Weeks footbridge, Charles River, that’s by the JFK St Bridge, followed by a small parade to Harvard Square.

Alvin Ailey Dance Theater has their annual performance this weekend and I’ve always wanted to catch it. Apr 26-29, Wang Theater, (800) 447-7400.

It’s officially Spring thanks to the Nantucket Daffodil Festival, Apr 27-29, Nantucket Island, 508-228-1700. 10,000 attend, but so what? It’s just a good excuse to see the island. Cape Air, 800-352-0714, Nantucker Airlines 800-635-8787, Island Airlines 800-248-7779, or ferry from Cape Cod. Annual Antique and Classic Car Parade, and the Annual Tailgate Picnic, as well as activities such as hiking, fishing, bird watching, and seal cruises. Right now the weather’s not suppoesd to be in the 60s but rent a bicycle and you’ll make your own heat.

After being closed for repairs, the Bunker Hill Monument is open for viewing. I’ve never been, but I have read that the fighting there during the American Revolutionary War was incompetent on both sides. Essentially the Americans put themselves on a peninsula and could easily have been cut off. If the British had been competent, the revolution would have ended and today we’d all be speaking English.

Oh wait.

Heads up, Tracy Morgan, one of many former Saturday Night Live comedians comes to the Comedy Connection May 4 and May 6, Comedy Connection, 245 Quincy Market Place, Boston, MA. And you can check out Jason Alexander, who played Costanza on Seinfeld, as part of the Huntington Theatre Company’s 2007 Spotlight Spectacular. Google it.

The Boston College Arts Festival is Apr 26-28,, Boston College, Brighton MA.

The Run of the Charles Canoe and Kayak Race is Apr 29, Herter Park, Soldiers Field Road, Brighton, MA. 508-698-6810. This is not an exclusive event where you just watch, go ahead and join 1,800 others in this race!

Theatre stuff, Confessions of a Mormon Boy is a play about a transition from super Christian to druggie loser to getting-his-act-back-together. Doesn’t seem to be overly religious in tone. Check it out. Apr 25-May 19, BCA Plaza Theatre, 539 Tremont St, Boston, MA. 617-933-8600.

Also “The Wild Party” looks good, sort of a Great Gatsby without the tragedy. Set in the 1920s.New Repertory Theatre, Arsenal Center for the Arts, 200 Dexter Ave, Watertown, MA.

Also also, “The Ego and the Oracle” looks pretty good, it’s at Jimmy Tingle’s Off-Broadway, Apr 27-29. Basically someone in the audience asks a question about something big in their life, what should they do, and the comedians respond with a song about it. I think. It’s a little hard to tell what this is. But I’ve been to Jimmy’s, it’ll be good.

Also x 3, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, by Stephen Sondheim, Apr 27-May 5, MTG Musical Theatre Guild,

I keep finding more stuff here. The Marriage of Figaro, Shubert Theatre. Google it.

Ongoing stuff, Boston Cyberarts Festival to May 6,; Cambridge Science Festival to Apr 29,; Boston Turkish Film Festival to May 11,; Independent Film Festival to Apr 30,

Finally, some info on sailing, canoeing, kayaking.

— The MIT Sailing Center (on Mem drive near the Mass Ave Bridge) has free sailing courses Wednesday evenings. With an MIT athletic card and two free classes of training (anyone in the community can buy them) you can take their boats out anytime.

— There is also Community Boating in Boston at, Spot Pond Boating in Stoneham at,

— My personal favorite is Charles River Canoe & Kayak, out in Newton,

— Some of these that I’ve listed are more the canoe & kayak than the sailing. The good news, no training or certification is needed to take a canoe out. And for an urban guy like me it’s weird and good to see that the Charles River becomes more wilderness-like as you get out West.

— Finally, there are a ton of state parks that allow boating, canoeing, have rentals, etc. See them at

Sailing and canoeing aren’t exactly “events”, but they are regular fun stuff and I list a lot of that in my big spreadsheet at

If that doesn’t hold you for a week, I don’t know what would.