North Shore Bloggers Consortium: Picks of the Weekend

Need a break from Thanksgiving grocery shopping?  From cleaning your house so your relatives have a comfortable place to gather?  From the stress all of this induces?  How about checking out of the madness and checking in to one of these:

Catch the last few days of my friend Christine Johnson’s art show!  The Women in the Wild en plein air painting group winds up its exhibit at the Newburyport Art Association. The artists’ new exhibit titled “Water” is on display through Nov. 21 in the galleries at 65 Water St.

Women in the Wild consists of Susan Hebenstreit of Merrimac, Christine Molitor Johnson of Amesbury, Susan Spellman of Newburyport and Joanne Gauthier of Hudson, N.H.  Call the art association at 978-465-8769 or visit for hours and directions.

The Nock Middle School in Newburyport hosts one big name concert every year, and this year Aimee Mann gets her turn.  As her promotional material states, “From her work in the 80’s with MTV favorite Til Tuesday through her acclaimed solo discs “Whatever” and “I’m With Stupid” in the 90s, Aimee Mann has always been at the forefront of contemporary songwriters.”

Mann appears on Friday, November 19 at 8 pm. Please present e-receipt for admission. This venue is general admission seating.  Check ticket availability and make purchases online at:

The Nock Middle School auditorium is located at 70 Low Street, Newburyport.

Alan Khazei, co-founder of the well-known City Year youth program and former senatorial candidate, will speak at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Newburyport on Saturday as part of a discussion series promoted by Stir the Pot, an organization established by Jeff Bard “to integrate more socially conscious food choices into everyday life and help supply food for those in need.”

Khazei has recently published a book, Big Citizenship: How Pragmatic Idealism Can Bring Out the Best in America, and copies will be on sale Saturday.  Khazei will conduct a book signing after his 45-minute talk.

The talk takes place on Saturday, Nov. 20, at 10 a.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 26 Pleasant St., Newburyport.  This event is free and open to the public.

Methuen’s 17th Annual Festival of Trees begins on November 20 and runs through December 4.  A fundraiser to support the restoration of the Tenney Gatehouse in Methuen, the Festival of Trees has become a huge force working for historic preservation in Methuen and the Merrimack Valley.  Billed as “a magical event held annually…to celebrate the spirit of the holiday season,” the proceeds “provide funding to preserve (the) heritage and the monuments that make Methuen and the other Merrimack Valley communities so unique.”  Two weeks’ worth of events intended to support this mission will take place in Methuen and environs.

Festival hours are: weekdays 5:00 pm-9:00 pm, and weekends 10:00 am-9:00 pm.  Special hours include: Closed on Thanksgiving Day; events reopen Friday, November 26, and run from 10:00 am-9:00 pm.  Admission is $8.00 for adults, while children 12 and under are free.

For event highlights and locations, visit