Salem State’s virtual Darwin Festival

Salem State University’s annual festival in celebration of Charles Darwin’s birthday will be held virtually Feb. 7 — 11, with a week of lectures. In its 43rd year, The Darwin Festival is a community-oriented event for scientists and non-scientists alike. This year’s festival features two webinars daily, one at 11 a.m. and one at 2 p.m., with additional talks at 7 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday. Topics include the impact of microaggressions and racism on health, bioindicators of climate change in New England waters, the role of restoration in preserving plant biodiversity, using science to guide public schools’ pandemic response and investigating FDA-approved anti-tumor drugs. Registration is required and is free. Visit for a full list of topics, and webinar registration links.

Holocaust Remembrance Day today

The community is invited to commemorate International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Thursday, Jan. 27, at 7:30 p.m. on Zoom. This year’s commemoration is dedicated to the memory of the 1.5 million Jewish children murdered during the Holocaust. The featured speaker will be Michael Gruenbaum, survivor of Terezin and author of “Somewhere There is Still a Sun.” The guest moderator will be Josh Kraft, president of Kraft Family Philanthropies. Visit to register for the Zoom link.

Salem distributes rapid COVID tests

Salem, in collaboration with NSCH (Salem Family Health Center) is distributing remaining COVID test kits to Salem residents in need. Test kits are distributed by Health Department staff on the following schedule, subject to availability. If kits run out, dates will be canceled until additional test kits are available to the city: Remaining dates are: Thursday, Jan. 27, 9 a.m. to noon, 401 Bridge St., and Thursday, Jan. 27, 3 to 6:30 p.m., 135 Lafayette St. Limit is up to two kits — a total of four rapid tests — per household. Proof of Salem residency required; no proof of citizenship or insurance. Questions?

Middleton Republican Caucus Feb. 9

The Middleton Republican Town Committee will caucus on Wednesday, Feb. 9, at 6 p.m. at the Flint Public Library, 1 S Main St, Middleton, for the May 21 Massachusetts Republican Convention. All Middleton residents registered as Republican on or before Dec. 31, 2021, are invited.

Modern square dancing classes

The Riverside Square Dance Club invites you to join the fun at Middleton Congregational Church, 66 Maple St (Rt. 62) Middleton. Classes begin Thursday, Feb. 10 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. and run for 10 weeks at a cost of $85 per person. Dance like everyone’s watching! Its social, physical, mental and fun all. For more information visit, find us on Facebook, or call 978-468-2004. Please note, during this time, masks are ra must!

Seven Times Salt at St. Andrew’s

Boston-based band Seven Times Salt, an English concert specializing in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century music, will perform at the Church of St. Andrew in Marblehead Feb. 20 at 7 p.m. (Snow date, Feb. 27.) The concert, “Banbury Ale,” brings the best of the Elizabethan pub scene to the present day, with drinking songs, love ballads, rustic catches and country dances from around the British Isles performed with period instruments and dialect. Tickets $20; advance purchase at: Seats are limited for social distancing. Masks a must. St. Andrew’s handicapped and located at i135 Lafayette St. (Rte. 114) in Marblehead, near Salem,

Salem’s Employee Incentive Program

Salem has launched a new round of its Employee Incentive Program, this time focusing on supporting hiring and retaining front-line workers in those businesses covered by the Board of Health’s Dec. 22, 2021 order requiring proof of vaccination for public entry. The program will provide $500 per qualifying employee who must be in an eligible type of work for a business subject to the proof of vaccination order. They must be on the payroll of the business between Jan. 15 and Feb. 4, and must remain employed at the business for at least six consecutive weeks working at least 30 total hours over the course of the six weeks. For a list of eligible types of work and covered categories of business, additional program requirements, and the link to apply, please visit Applications must be submitted before noon on Monday, Feb. 7.

Conversation with Chanan Weissman

Lappin Foundation invites the community to join us for a conversation with Chanan Weissman, White House liaison to the American Jewish Community on Monday, Feb. 7, at 7:30 p.m. on Zoom. The program will be moderated by Jeremy Burton, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston. The program is free and everyone is welcome. Register at For more information contact Susan Feinstein at 978-740-4431 or email

Unpacking today’s toxic culture

The community is invited to a presentation by Danika Manso-Brown and Phil Fogelman, education directors at ADL New England on Wednesday, Feb. 9, at 7:30 p.m., on Zoom. Join us for an exploration of historical and contemporary antisemitism, racism and other forms of systemic oppression. Community members will develop tools to respond to bias and proactively create equitable and inclusive spaces. This program is free and everyone is welcome. Register at For more information contact Susan Feinstein at 978-740-4431 or email

Castle Hill by Firelight

This nighttime outing is just for grownups who want to warm up by a crackling fire pit while they savor hot cocktails from the 1634 Meadery, and munch on empanadas and chili, with live music and a light show. Admission includes onsite parking, entertainment, food, and 1 drink ticket. Additional drinks may be purchased onsite. This event is entirely outdoors and the Great House will not be open. Ages 21 and older, please. Where: Castle Hill on the Crane Estate, 290 Argilla Rd., Ipswich: When: Fridays, February 11 and 18 and Saturdays, February 12 and 19. Tickets available for 6 pm –7:30 pm or 8 pm –9:30 p.m., Trustees Member: $40. Nonmember: $50. Advance reservations are recommended and can be made through

Sweets help out education

Throughout the month of February, CurlyGirl Candy Shop at 140 Washington Street, Salem, features Salem Education Foundation fundraiser. Buy a lollipop for $1 and 90 cents will go to SEF to help fund creative grants designed by teachers and to support other activities in Salem district schools and Salem Academy.

Hamilton Hall Lecture Series

In its 76th year, the Hamilton Hall Lecture Series on world affairs continues hosting internationally respected speakers. This season the series will be held virtually. Each lecture will be held on eight Thursdays at 11 a.m. during February and March. An audience Q&A is an important part of each lecture, and each lectured will be replayed the following Sunday at 5 p.m. For registration and purchase of tickets, visit: Speakers each week are as follows:

Feb. 3, 11 a.m. (replay Feb. 6, 5 p.m.) — Stephen Walt, Robert and Renée Belfer Professor of International Affairs, Kennedy School, Harvard University —“President Biden’s Foreign Policy: Is America Really Back?”

Feb. 10, 11 a.m. (replay Feb 13, 5 p.m.) — Kiersten E. Todt, Chief of Staff, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, — “The Cybersecurity Threat Landscape: An Opportunity for Operational Collaboration”

Feb. 17, 11 a.m. (replay Feb. 20, 5 p.m.) — Rachel Kyte, The Fletcher School, Tufts University“ — When Climate Change Changes Everything, Everything Must Change”

Feb. 24, 11 a.m. (replay Feb. 27, 5 p.m.) — Robert Kuttner, Professor of Public Policy, Heller School, Brandeis University; Co-Editor, The American Prospect— “The China Challenge: Economics, Geopolitics, Climate”

March 3, 11 a.m. (replay March 6, 5 p.m.)— Thomas M. Nichols, Author; Contributing Writer, The Atlantic — “Our Own Worst Enemy: The Assault from Within on Modern Democracy”

March 10, 11 a.m. (replay March 13, 5 p.m.)— Andrew Bacevich, President, Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft — “After the Apocalypse”

March 17, 11 a.m. (replay March 20, 5 p.m.) — Sung-Yoon Lee, Kim Koo-Korea Foundation Professor of Korean Studies and Assistant Professor, The Fletcher School, Tufts University — “The Rise of Kim Yo Jong, North Korea’s First Sister: The Kim Siblings’ Grand Scheme”

March 24, 11 a.m. (replay March 27, 5 p.m.) — Geoffrey Kemp, Director, Regional Security Programs, Center for the National Interest, Washington, D. C. — “Game Changes in the Middle East”

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