Johnny’s List of Quirky Boston Events: 05/15/06

I’m bored, so I’m doing it early this week.

Going straight to the weird! The Ancient Fishweir Project is a recreation of a native american fish-trapping device… basically a long dam of branches used to trap fish when the tide flows out. Along the Charles Street edge of the Boston Common, you can view it now, or visit the closing ceremony Thu May 21st at 12pm.

What? Not weird enough for you? OK — how about the Civil War Encampment in Amesbury, MA, May 20-21. Amesbury is way north of the Mason-Dixon line, but they aren’t letting that stop them from re-enacting the US Civil War anyhow. 270 Main Street in Amesbury, 10am-4pm.

Still not weird enough? OK, how about the Medeival German Festival, May 21. This one’s out in Western Massachusetts in “Feeding Hills”, which sounds Lovecraftian, doesn’t it. What kind of evil hills are out there, feeding on people? 176 Garden Street. 11am-5pm. Swordplay theatre, medeival musical, costuming, archery, kids events. While you’re out there, hit up Six Flags New England.

Some activities are self-parodying. Boston Asthma Walk, May 20th, Artesani Park, Soldiers Field Road, Brighton MA. It’s only a 3.1 mile walk along the Charles River. Registration starts at 8:30am. Walk at 10am. Hopefully next year they’ll sponsor the Asthma Marathon or the Asthma Special Olympics.

Apparently somebody didn’t get tht memo, because the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, which looks much bigger and better organized, is also happening… May 20-21, Starts at UMass Boston Campus, or 800-510-WALK. I’ve been told it’s a great event, very uplifting, especially if you go with family.

I revisited the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton over the weekend, and it is really worth seeing, if you are going to be south of Boston. There is something about handcrafts that are very accessible to the layman. You really want to touch everything (and are occasionally allowed to).

Also I went to the Boston Children’s Museum. I don’t have any kids, but I’m a big kid at heart. It was fun to people watch but if you don’t have kids, skip it. Unlike the Boston Museum of Science, the exhibits are too small and simplistic even for joyful adults to get anything from them. However, I did learn that in March, June, and October the museum has family sleepovers. The next one is June 9-10, costing $28/person. (Battleship Cove also has sleepovers, does anyone know of any others?).

This weekend, May 21, is the “World Martial Arts – Karate Tournament”, in Boston. I’m not particularly interested in sports, but I liked the movie The Karate Kid so I might make an exception.

Newton and Brookline probably consider themselves rivals. They’re both affluent upscale communities. I would give the nod though to Newton as being the larger art community. Both have open studios this weekend, May 20-21. and

Apparently the SOWA Art Walk didn’t care that there are two conflicting open studios this weekend. With that kind of fuck-it attitude, why schedule the walk in rainy May? I mean, once you decide that conflicts don’t matter, isn’t that sort of liberating and why not then just choose August? Anyway the SOWA Art Walk is also happening this week, it is a cleverly titled Yet Another Open Studio, and probably better than either of the other two, because it will involve a greater percentage of professional rather than wannabe artists. Saturday and Sunday May 20-21 from 11:00am to 6:00pm.

Finally, if you are ever out shopping at the Natick Mall, Shoppers World, that area in Framingham/Natick, stop by Jordan’s Furniture to check out their New Orleans exhibit. It’s a bunch of singing dancing animatronics. It’s more surreal than actually “good”. But surreal can enliven your day and add a little magic. 🙂

I have posted a new Johnny’s Activity List at
which is the most complete New England activities list anywhere (for the things I care about, like festivals, museums, off beat events).