Porchfest June 18; deadline passes

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Porchfest is one of Arlington Center for the Arts' signature programs, a grass-roots music festival where bands play on front porches across town.

Audiences walk, bike or drive around town, enjoying free outdoor music, performances, and visual arts exhibits.

The deadline to register for Porchfest hosting or performing is Sunday, May 15.

Event date: Saturday, June 18, from noon to 6 (rain date June 19). Read more about Porchfest here!

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A-Town film fest May 22

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UPDATED May 8: 2022 A-Town Film Festival presented by Arlington Community Media, Inc (ACMi) 

Screening May 22 the Regent Theatre. 

Read more here >> 

Blue Jean Ball held; Play Time honored

Blue Jean Ball, Arlington's favorite party is to return in person to celebrate connection and community on Saturday, April 30, from 7:30 to 10:30.

ACA logoThe party and fund-raiser includes live music by Mike Duke & the SoulTwisters, dancing, awards, socializing and an irresistible silent auction at the newly renovated Arlington Community Center at 27 Maple St., ACA's home.

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Live preview of cultural-district audio tour held

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Join those involved at Whittemore Park, in front of the Cyrus E. Dallin Museum, 611 Mass. Ave., at Mystic Street, for a live preview of the of the newArlington Cultural District (ACD) audio tour, set for Saturday May 7, from 9:30 to 11 a.m.  Cost is $15 per person, payable on site.

We will explore the eastern half of the Mass. Ave. “cultural corridor” between Whittemore Park in Arlington Center and the Fox Library in East Arlington. The tour will be led by Ed Gordon, Old Schwamb Mill program director and ACD audio tour author and narrator.

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ACA: '21 Blue Jean Ball held

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UPDATED, April 10: TheArlington Center for the Arts' staff and board are busy planning all of the exciting details of this year's annual Blue Jean Ball celebration, set for 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 10.

This year's event will include many of your favorite elements including live music, dancing, awards, socializing and an irresistible silent auction -- all from the comfort of your living room.

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'20 online Chairful fund-raiser concludes

UPDATED, Aug. 29: Chairful Where You Sit, a one-day outdoor art installation and fund-raiser for the Arlington Commission for Arts & Culture, traditionally coincides with Porchfest and takes place in a festive gathering at historic Uncle Sam Plaza, in the heart of the Arlington Center Cultural District.

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See more photos >>

An auction of artistically transformed chairs and other small furniture items rescued from basements and curbs has supported public art in Arlington since 2012, and saved more than 400 chairs from landfill. New this year are artistically revamped small furniture items, such as side tables in addition to chairs.

Because of Covid-19, the event originally planned for June 7 was postponed and reenvisioned as an online event -- to be held as an auction from Monday, Aug. 24, through 9 p.m. Monday, Sept. 7. Bidding will remain open for a week, and winning bidder will need to be able to pick up the pieces with a car from the artists' homes.

As of 3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 29, $3,530 had been raised.

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New artistic director at Cantilena Chorale

 Cantilena Chorale Cantilena logowelcomes its  new artistic director, Elinor (Ellie) A. Armsby, a Newton native who has been active as a choral conductor and clinician in Massachusetts and the Philadelphia area for more than 20 years.

In addition, she serves as music director at First Church in Marlborough UCC. When she is not conducting or composing, Ellie is the owner and president of Hildegard Publishing Co., expanding the catalog of music written by women across the centuries.

Read more about Ellie here >>

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Dallin Art Museum succeeds despite pandemic

Dallin Art Museum co-founder James McGough welcomes you.
Dallin Art Museum co-founder James McGough welcomes you.

The Dallin Museum reopened in August, and visitors are again treated to engaging experiences with our wonderful docents. The museum recently hired its first part-time, paid docent manager ― and can now expand its docent program, and promote the museum more widely as a community resource and tourist destination.

In response to the pandemic, the museum developed a robust slate of programming to extend its reach beyond the museum’s walls:

  • The art and architecture walking tour of Arlington Center, held monthly from May through September, attracted about 30 attendees per tour, many new to the museum. About half patronized local restaurants post-tour, demonstrating the museum’s positive economic impact in the community.
  • Virtual talks on the Paul Revere monument, Storrow Memorial, Sculpture for Justice and Female Strength and Sculpture, and two new Dallin paintings attracted more than 650 viewers across the country. The museum’s online presence also expanded through the redesign of its website,, as well as a new online gift shop and Wikipedia entries for Dallin’s public works. The museum’s active and strategic social media engagement has dramatically increased our followers across all platforms.
  • Given the centrality of Indigenous peoples in Dallin’s life, the museum increased its efforts to uplift their experiences and perspectives. The museum supported the Arlington Human Rights Commission’s Indigenous Peoples Day campaign and, in honor of the newly adopted holiday, hosted a virtual conversation with Ute Elder Forrest Cuch on trauma and healing. The museum is also innovating a new program to supply art materials to children in Indigenous communities in Utah that have been disproportionately affected by Covid.

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As 2 new Dallin paintings unveiled, an explanation

Dallin Self-Portrait
'Dallin's Self-Portrait'

Experience the unveiling of not one ― but two ― recently acquired and restored Cyrus Dallin paintings.

At 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16, Dallin Museum Director/Curator Heather Leavell is the host for a Zoom presentation of “Mrs. Hall’s Letter” and Dallin’s “Self-Portrait,” the only two-dimensional likeness by the artist known to exist.

Register at the Dallin website, under Programs & Events, click the event’s registration link >> 

The event is free, but donations are welcome.

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'Remembrance of Climate Futures in Arlington' at Fox

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UPDATED Nov. 2: An open-air celebration of "Remembrance of Climate Futures in Arlington""Remembrance of Climate Futures in Arlington" drew an estimated 100 people on Sunday, Oct. 31, an event delayed a day by rain. outside the Edith M. Fox Library, 175 Mass. Ave., East Arlington

The public art project displays the contributions of dedicated AHS student interns who worked on it through the summer with artist Tom Starr, ACAC Public Art Curator Cecily Miller and APS Green Teams coordinator Rachel Oliveri.

Families, town and state elected officials, representatives of environmental and arts organizations, and others cheered on speakers, including Starr and the organizers, Jenny Raitt from town planning, APS Superintendent Dr. Liz Holman, Alan Linov of Arlington Community Electricity, Stephanie Marlin-Curiel of ACAC and especially the students themselves, who spoke passionately about their research and concerns for urgently addressing climate change. 

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Menotomy Rocks pandemic exhibit closes with music, poetry

Reflections with Nilou Mouchhala at Menotomy Rocks

A fall celebration and community gathering was held Saturday, Oct. 23, from 2 to 3 p.m. (rain date: Oct 24). The closing event for "Reflecting on our Pandemic Experience," above, at Menotomy Rocks Park.

Join us for poetry, music and conversation in an inspiring setting: an evocative art installation – woven into a beautiful pine forest – that invites you to reflect on Arlington's experiences of the pandemic.

Experience the installation before it closes in mid-November and meet the artist Nilou Moochhala.

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