Museums make merry, Covid or not

Posted on November 19, 2020 by

Despite the pandemic, museums ‘round the region are decking their halls for the holidays and giving visitors a reason to celebrate. 

Worcester Art Museum celebrates the holidays with music, art and more

  At the Concord Museum, “Family Trees: A Celebration of Children’s Literature” celebrates its 25thanniversary November 25-January 3. Organized by the museum’s Guild of Volunteers as a benefit for its education initiatives, the time-honored tradition features several dozen trees, each thematically decorated based on a children’s book. Some are contemporary and some are classic, but each is beautiful and timely.

  Closed only on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, the trees are on view seven days a week, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., but only by pre-reserved timed tickets available at The timed ticket ensures that occupancy levels remain low for comfort and safety. Visitors are asked to wear masks and keep a 6-foot social distance.

  Special events include art-making with honorary chair Nicole Tadgell, an award-winning illustrator on December. It is free and live-streamed but advance registration is required at the website. A virtual weekend with some of the accomplished authors and illustrators whose books are featured takes place December 11-13. You can watch videos, read stories and do art all weekend long. Free but registration is required at

  Museum benefit admission is $15 adult; $10 senior: $6 child (ages 5-18). Members are free.

  The Worcester Art Museum gets merry and bright for the holidays and celebrates on Sundays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from November 27-January 3. Featured are new, artful decorations inspired by the WAM collection and by Worcester’s past and present, including a Worcester Heroes tree with ornaments made by community partners. The trees are designed and decorated by Sally Jablonski of Herbert E. Berg Florist. Admission is by timed ticket only.

  Other festive programming for kids and adults takes place through the season, including music on Sundays, December 6 and 20. There will also a virtual Hanukkah celebration, ice art and a puppet show. 

  The museum shop is open December 1-24 for gift-giving needs, but a reservation, obtained online, is required to visit the shop if don’t already have tickets for the galleries. 

  Tickets are $18 adults; $14 seniors and students with current ID; free for members and children 17 and under. Visit

Gallery notes  

MUSEUM HONORED: Concord Museum’s new virtual exhibit “The Shot Heard Round the World” has been recognized by the U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission as an expression of the America 250 vision to inspire the American spirit. America 250 is the multiyear initiative leading to the 250thanniversary of American independence in 2026. The microsite of the virtual exhibit can be found at

 Z NOTES: Gallery Z, 167 Market Street, features Donna Howard’s colorful, whimsical floral paintings in its main gallery show “The Summer That Wasn’t.”  In addition, the gallery is holding its Basket Full’o Art raffle of 6 art-filled baskets. Included are a gift card to the café, various art from co-op artists and a personalized travel mug. Tickets are $10 each. Visit for info.

Tom Gill

ARTIST OF THE MONTH: Tom Gill, a well-known New England artist with roots in Lowell and Chelmsford, is the first Artist of the Month at the Whistler House Museum of Art.  Gill was also a rock musician in the ‘80s and developed his own unique style of painting. “I feel like I’m making music when I’m painting — and that’s why there’s rhythm in my paintings,” he says. The result is always loose and impressive with harmonious colors that interplay with light. Gill is a valued member of the Lowell Art Association. His painting are available for purchase and may be viewed online at For info on participating in the Artist of the Month program, contact

MAKING ART: Claire Gagnon is offering several two- or three-week painting classes in December, either on-line or in her studio in the Brush Gallery, 256 Market St., Lowell. They include drawing/acrylic painting and watercolor painting. Contact her at or call at 617-901-3873 for details…Colleen Sgroi just started an on-line watercolor class this week that runs for four weeks. Visit her website at for info.

Nancye Tuttle’s email address is

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