Being a tourist in your own city and state can be a ton of fun. With my new job, where one of my responsibilities is planning press and trade visits to promote Massachusetts, I am learning a ton of information about both Boston and the rest of Massachusetts pretty much on a daily basis, and it makes me love living here even more. The weather could be a little better, but otherwise, it’s just one of my favorite places to be.
This past Thursday, I finally took a proper tour of the Boston Tea Party Museum. You may remember the cool cocktail party I went to there during the Boston Cocktail Summit where we got to see parts of the space while sipping "Liberty Libations”. This time around, I got to see all of the special effects and to be part of December 16, 1773. The tour is incredibly interesting, and the special effects definitely brought on the kid in me; there are some surprises along the way!
On Thursday I also learned about the speaker series that’s coming up at the museum. We have quite the history here in Boston, and the Tea Party Museum is a great place to experience it an interactive, engaging way. I’ve included details on the series for those history buffs out there. For those of us who only think about food, there’s also that.
Do you have a favorite attraction or place in your home city that you would promote to out-of-town guests?
February 2013 – John & Abigail Adams Love Letters and Chocolate
What was love like during Colonial America? The enduring love letters of John and Abigail Adams provide an insightful picture of 18th-century American life in the Boston area and beyond. These intimate letters also reveal the intellectually and emotionally fulfilling relationship between them that lasted 54 years and withstood historical upheavals, long periods apart, and personal tragedies. Their iconic personalities come to life as actors from the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum read a selection of letters and reveal, in the words of John and Abigail Adams, their teasing humor and their undying love and respect for each other.
Tickets also includes a tasting of new Fixx Chocolates created by Nicole Coady formerly head Pastry Chef at Finale Desserterie & Bakery. Her new line of chocolates will be launched to the public for the first time at the Valentine’s Day evening on Thurs., Feb. 14, 2013. Each program also includes a brief history and explanation of the significance of chocolate around Valentine’s Day along with a choice of sparkling wine or cabernet sauvignon to toast this romantic holiday.
Dates: Thurs., Feb. 14 & Fri., Feb. 15, 2013
Time: 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
March 2013 – The History of Ship Building in New England with Master Shipwright Leon Poindexter
Ship building is one of the oldest industries in the United States with roots in the earliest New England colonial settlements. Leon Poindexter, a master shipwright of several historic vessels and consultant to maritime museums around the world, will be discussing the history of ship building in New England. Mr. Poindexter learned his trade from some of the last of the “old timers” who worked in the famed shipyards of Essex and Cape Ann, Mass. With more than 30 years experience, he builds, repairs and restores large traditionally built historic wooden sailing vessels and their rigs. Some of his vessels are on the National Register of Historic Places. In addition to recreating the Beaver and Eleanor for the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum in Gloucester, Mass., Mr. Poindexter has worked on many other important ships, including the USS Constitution and the Bounty. He was the master shipwright in recreating the HMS Surprise, used in the Academy Award-winning movie “Master and Commander” starring Russell Crowe.
The afternoon will also entail singing of authentic Colonial sea shanty songs taught and led by actors at the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum. Also included in the ticket price is clam chowder, corn bread and beer/other beverages.
Date: Sat., March 16, 2013
Time: 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Price: $35/ticket (adult)/ $15 (children aged 17 & under)
April 2013 (Patriot’s Day) – Defiance of the Patriots with Tufts University Associate Professor of History Benjamin Carp
Following the 10 a.m. unveiling of a new statue honoring Patriot Samuel Adams at the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum, Benjamin Carp, Tufts University Associate Professor of History and author of the award-winning book Defiance of the Patriots: The Boston Tea Party and the Making of America, will be illuminating the myths, little known historical facts, the unique city life of 18th-century Boston and the global and local political ramifications of an iconic event in America’s tempestuous past which was the Boston Tea Party. Professor Carp is an expert in the area of Colonial, Revolutionary and early America history and is the official historian for the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum. His book will be available for sale and Professor Carp will sign copies at both sessions. Tickets also include tea and pastries.
Date: Patriot’s Day – Fri., April 19, 2013
Time: 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. & 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
May 2013 – Okakura Kakuzo and The Book of Tea with Tea Expert Bruce Richardson
In 1906 in turn-of-the century Boston, The Book of Tea was written by Okakura Kakuzo, the Japanese-born Curator of Asian Arts at the Museum of Fine Arts. The small, esoteric book beautifully described the role of tea as the international cup of humanity. Okakura emerged as one of the great thinkers of the early 20th-century and was greatly responsible for interpreting Eastern philosophy to Western cultures. Author and leading tea historian, Bruce Richardson served as editor of the 2011 edition of Okakura Kakuzo’s classic work. More than a century later, this book is still beloved the world over. Mr. Richardson will explain how Okakura’s philosophy continues to inspire today’s tea and art culture. He will share the fascinating stories of the relationships between Okakura and notable Boston Brahmins such as Isabella Stewart Gardner, John LaFarge, Ernest Fenollosa, and John Singer Sargent, as well as the philosopher’s influence upon American artists Georgia O’Keeffe and Frank Lloyd Wright.
Mr. Richardson has been educating Americans in the art of celebrating the communal cup of tea for more than 20 years. He is the author of a dozen books on tea, including the National Trust of England’s reference book, The New Tea Companion and regularly visits tea venues across Great Britain and North America in his unending quest to discover new locations for the latest editions of his books The Great Tea Rooms of Britain and The Great Tea Rooms of America. Mr. Richardson also serves as Tea Master for The Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum. His books will be for sale and he will sign copies at both sessions.
The event will include tea time pastries and a tasting of Abigail’s Blend, the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum’s signature blend of historic 1773 Chinese teas designed by Mr. Richardson.
Dates/Times: Fri., May 3, 2013 – 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Sat., May 4, 2013 – 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.