Welcome to the Lexington Neighbors & Newcomers

Lexington Neighbors & Newcomers is a social organization of Lexington (Massachusetts) residents, and offers a wide array of activities such as book groups, cocktail parties, museum visits, game nights, coffee talks, charitable projects, mens’ pub nights, walking groups, and more. We also endeavor to be a source of helpful information and social contacts in your new (or old) hometown!

August Special Edition Newsletter

Hello Neighbors & Newcomers,

Well we just couldn’t stay quiet this summer, as the team continues to plan fun events for you that we wanted to share. We had a great turnout and fabulous time in July with local author, Weina Dai Randel, discussing her latest book.Next week, please join us for a ladies’ night pool party! And of course continue to save the date for our LNN Caribbean Night in September! You can also always check the Lexington Neighbors & Newcomers Members Facebook group to get the latest updates. Have a wonderful rest of your summer, and we’ll be back next month!
Best Wishes,
Rachel Brownell, LNN Secretary

Summer Ladies’ Night
Tuesday, August 16 at 7pm

Join us for a Summer Ladies’ Night on Tuesday 16 August, 7 – 9:30pm. We will meet at Sheila Tweeddale’s lovely yard with pool. 

Bring a drink and dish to share. Wear your bathing suit as we will be enjoying the pool and hot tub. A powder bath is available if needed.

Please RSVP to Saskia by Sunday 14 August. We are looking forward to seeing you on Tuesday!

Save the Date: LNN Caribbean Night
Saturday, September 17th 6:30 – 9:30pm
(Rain date: Sunday, Sept 18th 5-7pm)

Mark your calendar and plan to join us for music, food and dancing at the LNN Caribbean Night on Saturday, September 17th 6:30 – 9:30pm! (Rain date: Sunday, September 18th 5-7pm) Register via email to Saskia.

July 2022 Special Edition Newsletter

Hello Neighbors & Newcomers,

We hope your summer is off to a fabulous start! Though we said there would be no further newsletters this season, we did want to bring you this shortened special edition to call attention to a bonus book club event with a local author this month! We also have a sneak peek at next season’s books, as well as some additional reading suggestions from members that might make your summer reading list. Finally, please save the date for our LNN Party in September! You can also always check the Lexington Neighbors & Newcomers Members Facebook group to get the latest updates.

Best Wishes,
Rachel Brownell, LNN Secretary

Book Club
Thursday, July 21 at 7pm

Happy Summer, LNN Members!

We are excited to announce that we are having an extra summer Book Club meeting this month on July 21st! This evening will be particularly fun as we have arranged for our local Lexington author to come who is also an LNN member!! Some of you may know Weina Dai Randel from the walking group or other events. She will be discussing her most recent book, The Last Rose of Shanghai: A Novel.

Brief Description
In Japanese-occupied Shanghai, two people from different cultures are drawn together by fate and the freedom of music…

1940. Aiyi Shao is a young heiress and the owner of a formerly popular and glamorous Shanghai nightclub. Ernest Reismann is a penniless Jewish refugee driven out of Germany, an outsider searching for shelter in a city wary of strangers. He loses nearly all hope until he crosses paths with Aiyi. When she hires Ernest to play piano at her club, her defiance of custom causes a sensation. His instant fame makes Aiyi’s club once again the hottest spot in Shanghai. Soon they realize they share more than a passion for jazz―but their differences seem insurmountable, and Aiyi is engaged to another man.

As the war escalates, Aiyi and Ernest find themselves torn apart, and their choices between love and survival grow more desperate. In the face of overwhelming odds, a chain of events is set in motion that will change both their lives forever.

From the electrifying jazz clubs to the impoverished streets of a city under siege, The Last Rose of Shanghai is a timeless, sweeping story of love and redemption.

About the Author
Weina Dai Randel is the award-winning author of three novels, The Last Rose of Shanghai, The Moon in the Palace and The Empress of Bright Moon, a historical duology about Wu Zetian. Weina is the winner of the RWA RITA Award, a National Jewish Book Awards finalist, a Goodreads Choice Award semifinalist, and an RT Book Reviewers Choice Award nominee. Her books have been translated into eleven languages.

Born in China, Weina came to the United States at twenty-four, when she switched to English and began to speak, write and dream in her second language. She holds an MA in English from Texas Woman’s University in Denton, Texas. She has worked as the subject-matter expert for Southern New Hampshire University’s MFA program and as an adjunct professor for Eastfield College. Interviews with Weina have appeared on WFAA’s Good Morning Texas and in such publications as World Literature Today, China Daily, The Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, Los Angeles Review of Books, and RT Book Reviews. After living in Texas for years, Weina now resides in Boston with her loving husband, two children, and a family of chipmunks in the backyard.

If you are interested in joining us for this event, please RSVP to lexnnbookclub@gmail.com by July 18th. On the morning of July 21th, we will email the address of our host to all attendees. Please bring a drink of your choice and/or snacks to share.

Sneak Peek: Next Season’s Book List

Based on your suggestions and votes, here is our book list for next season (in no particular order):

  • “Lessons in Chemistry” by Bonnie Garmus
  • “The Dictionary of Lost Words” by Pip Williams
  • “Pachinko” by Min Jin Lee
  • “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents” by Isabel Wilkerson
  • “Violeta” by Isabel Allende
  • “The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector’s Story” by Hyeonseo Lee
  • “The Reading List” by Sara Nisha Adams
  • “The Invention of Wings” by Sue Monk Kidd
  • “The Paris Apartment” by Lucy Foley
  • “All My Rage” by Sabaa Tahir

Additional Book Suggestions

In case you are looking for some summer reading, we thought we would also share some of the suggested books from our book club survey that didn’t quite make the top 10 for next season.

  • “The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration” by Isabel Wilkerson
  • “The Orientalist” by Tom Reiss
  • “Last Boat Out of Shanghai” by Helen Zia
  • “The Guncle” by Steven Rowley
  • “The Paris Library” by Janet Skeslien Charles
  • “How the Word Is Passed” by Clint Smith
  • “The Art Forger” by Barbara A. Shapiro
  • “The Lincoln Highway” by Amor Towles
  • “Breath from Salt” by Bijal P. Trivedi
  • “The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue” by V. E. Schwab
  • “The Rent Collector” by Camron Wright
  • “Nine Perfect Strangers” by Liane Moriarty
  • “The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek” by Kim Michele Richardson
  • “The Things We Cannot Say” by Kelly Rimmer
  • “The Candy House” by Jennifer Egan
  • “By The Lake” by John McGahern
  • “The Plot” by Jean Hanff Korelitz
  • “The Fifth Season” by N.K. Jemisin
  • “Beautiful World, Where Are You” by Sally Rooney
  • “The Great CEO Within: The Tactical Guide to Company Building” by Matt Mochary
  • “My Name is Red” by Orhan Pamuk
  • “Fates and Furies” by Lauren Groff
  • “Free Love” by Tessa Hadley

Save the Date: LNN Party

Mark your calendar and plan to join us at our LNN Party on Saturday, September 17th 6:30 – 9:30pm. (Rain date: Sunday, September 18th 5-7pm)

We are finalizing the details and will communicate more at a later date, but we wanted to ensure you could plan accordingly, as this is sure to be a great event!

June 2022 Newsletter

Hello Neighbors & Newcomers,

We are thrilled to wrap up our season with an assortment of great events this month, including book club, ladies’ and lads’ nights, coffee talk, lunch bunch, and our great walking & biking groups. We do want to let you all know, however, that we will be cancelling our summer party due to too many conflicting events and scheduling challenges in the coming weeks. We will instead look forward to a fabulous celebration when we come back together in the fall! Stay tuned for more details.

As indicated last month, some board members will be leaving their positions at the end of this month. Positions still open include book club co-chair, Facebook admin, and dog meet-up organizer, plus additional events committee and at-large positions. Members interested in getting more involved should reach out to lncexecs@lexington-newcomers.org to learn more! Special thanks to Debbie Fortin for leading the walking group to date, and welcome to Kelly Reynolds, our new walking group lead.

Note that this will be our last Newsletter of the season as we take our summer hiatus. We look forward to reconnecting in the fall and hearing about everyone’s wonderful summer adventures!We always welcome your ideas and feedback. Any questions or comments, feel free to email us at lncexecs@lexington-newcomers.org or post ideas/thoughts to the Lexington Neighbors & Newcomers Members Facebook group.

Kindly,
Tania Bojanowski, LNN President & Rachel Brownell, LNN Secretary

Upcoming Events

Book Club
Thursday, June 9 at 7pm

Fellow bookworms, join us on Thursday June 9th, for a lively chat about “Such a Fun Age” by Kiley Reid, our June Book Club selection.

A striking and surprising debut novel from an exhilarating new voice, Such a Fun Age is a page-turning and big-hearted story about race and privilege, set around a young black babysitter, her well-intentioned employer, and a surprising connection that threatens to undo them both.  

With empathy and piercing social commentary, Such a Fun Age explores the stickiness of transactional relationships, what it means to make someone “family,” and the complicated reality of being a grown up. 

RSVP by June 8th to lexnnbookclub@gmail.com. On the morning of June 9th, we will email the time of the meeting and the address of our host to all attendees.  Please bring a drink of your choice and/or snacks to share.

Ladies’ Night
Thursday, June 16 7-9pm

The ladies of LNN take on Mighty Squirrel Brewing Co. (Waltham) this month! To ensure you get any updates, please RSVP to Rikke.

Lads’ Night

Lads’ Night continues its adventures this month! Email Derek to be added to the Lex Mecs distribution list to find out more details about this and future outings.

Biking Group
Wednesdays at 9:30am

Group will ride Lexington-Concord-Lexington on Bedford bike path – Battle Road loop (20 miles) with a coffee/chat break in Concord (for good measure) in the middle. All levels welcome. Please reach out to Alexia to express interest in this or future bike rides (she may also have a couple of bikes to spare if needed). Event is targeted for Wednesdays and will be adjusted (timing, weather, location, length) as needed based on demand.

Coffee Talk
Tuesday, June 21 at 10:30am

Join us for coffee and great company. Please RSVP to Jen to express interest so that you can receive location details and any necessary updates!

Lunch Bunch
Thursday, June 23 at 12pm

Join the crew for a fun lunch out at Seasons 52 (Burlington)! Please RSVP by June 22 8pm to Carol.

Walking Group
Tuesdays at 9:30am

Weekly location will be sent to the walking group email distribution prior to the hike. Please reach out to Debbie with questions.

Community Events

  • To stay up to date on the latest news in between newsletters, please join our Facebook group!
  • Enjoy the Lexington Education Foundation’s Celebration for Education Weekend
  • Join your friends at Lexington Historical Society’s upcoming All Jazzed Up! Gala on Saturday, June 18, 6 – 10 PM.  Explore the sights and sounds of the ‘Roaring 20s’ at the Society’s 2022 fundraiser for the future Depot transformation. Learn more & get tickets here.
  • Take advantage of amazing local summer offerings:

The Lexington Farmers’ Market is back! 

May 2022 Newsletter

Hello Neighbors & Newcomers,

As the sun starts to join us on a daily basis, we are eager to enjoy meeting together more and more outside. And we already did, having a nice evening outside at the Ladies’ night at Revolution Hall, enjoying biking, walking, and more. Please check out our activities of the month down below, and don’t forget to respond to our book club survey for next season as well.

For June, we plan to hold a beach-themed Garden Party on the 17th (more details below), so please mark your calendar! We want to make this party very special – stay tuned for more information.

As indicated last month, some board members will be leaving their position at the end of this season, wrapping up in June. Thank you to Debbie Fortin to taking care of the walking group, to Priyanka Dhaul for her creative skills on our Facebook page, and to Kim Cramer for leading the Book Club! We are looking to replace these positions, find someone to take the reins on bringing back dog meet-up, and get additional volunteers to organize parties/events with Helena and Saskia. This is a lot of fun, does not take too much time, and is a great way to get to meet our Lexington community. If you are interested, please contact us at lncexecs@lexington-newcomers.org to learn more!

I also want to take opportunity to thank our entire board for all their work this year.

  • Helena Wennbo and Saskia Houwing for leading our events committee, putting on such fun ladies’ nights, parties, and special events. As well as Lara Kallander for her support on the events committee and taking charge of our popular Bunco Nights.
  • Carol Colwell for Lunch Bunch
  • Jen Oriel for Coffee Talk
  • Liliana Kondracki and Kim Cramer for the Book Club
  • Rikke Bitsch-Norhave for Membership
  • Mary Reynolds for taking care of our finances as Treasurer
  • Rachel Brownell as Secretary
  • Prianka Dhaul as Facebook Admin
  • Derek Reynolds for hosting Lads’ Nights
  • And also, Alexia Duc, Mary Carmichael, Andrea Parrella, and Pam Richter

We always welcome your ideas and feedback. Any questions or comments, feel free to email us at lncexecs@lexington-newcomers.org or post ideas/thoughts to the Lexington Neighbors & Newcomers Members Facebook group.

Kindly,
Tania Bojanowski, LNN President & Rachel Brownell, LNN Secretary

Upcoming Events

Bunco Night
Wednesday, May 11 7-10pm

Join us again in May as Bunco Night returns this month! Please RSVP to Lara to ensure you receive the latest updates.

Biking Group
Wednesdays at 9:30am

Group will ride Lexington-Concord-Lexington on Bedford bike path – Battle Road loop (20 miles) with a coffee/chat break in Concord (for good measure) in the middle. All levels welcome but would recommend against fancy road bikes at this time (dirt paths will be saggy). Instead any hybrid bike will do! Please reach out to Alexia to express interest in this or future bike rides (she may also have a couple of bikes to spare if needed). Event is targeted for Wednesdays and will be adjusted (timing, weather, location, length) as needed based on demand.

Ladies’ Night
Thursday, May 19 5-9pm

The ladies of LNN venture to a new spot this month, Row 34! Feel free to join early for some appetizers at the Raw Bar, or pop in later for a drink. We do have limited seats available, so please RSVP to Saskia by May 17th and let her know if you’ll be planning to attend for food around 5pm or just drinks closer to 7pm. 

Lads’ Night

Lads’ Night continues its adventures this month! Email Derek to be added to the Lex Mecs distribution list to find out more details about this and future outings.

Coffee Talk
Monday, May 23 at 10:30am

Join us for coffee and great company. Please RSVP to Jen to express interest so that you can receive location details and any necessary updates!

Lunch Bunch
Thursday, May 26 at 12pm

Join our awesome lunch bunch crew in May. Please RSVP by May 20 to Carol, and she will share more details as the date approaches.

Walking Group
Tuesdays at 9:30am

Walking group is seeking a new lead to help coordinate walks! Please reach out to Debbie with interest in the walks and/or leading the walking group in the future.

Book Club
Thursday, May 12 at 7pm

May’s Book Club will be on Thursday, May 12th, 2022 and we will be discussing “Tell The Wolves I’m Home” by Carol Rifka Brunt. 

1987. The only person who has ever truly understood fourteen-year-old June Elbus is her uncle, the renowned painter Finn Weiss. Shy at school and distant from her older sister, June can be herself only in Finn’s company; he is her godfather, confidant, and best friend. So when he dies, far too young, of a mysterious illness her mother can barely speak about, June’s world is turned upside down.

But Finn’s death brings a surprise acquaintance into June’s life. At the funeral, June notices a strange man lingering just beyond the crowd. A few days later, she receives a package in the mail containing a beautiful teapot she recognizes from Finn’s apartment, and a note from Toby, the stranger, asking for an opportunity to meet. As the two begin to spend time together, June realizes she’s not the only one who misses Finn, and that this unexpected friend just might be the one she needs the most.

RSVP by May 11th to lexnnbookclub@gmail.com. On the morning of May 12th, we will email the time of the meeting and the address of our host to all.  Please bring a drink of your choice and/or snacks to share.

And don’t forget to vote on all the great possibilities of books for next season by filling out the survey

SAVE THE DATE: LNN Summer Party
Friday, June 17 6:30-9:30 (Sunday rain date)
 Join us to celebrate the start of summer at our LNN Summer Party!! Our summer party takes place on Friday night, June 17th 6.30 – 9.30pm. (Rain date: Sunday, June 19th 5-7pm) Where: Member’s backyard. Details follow after registration. 
What to bring: your own beverage of choice, and, if you prefer to sit, a beach chair or beach mat. While LNN is not permitted to purchase alcoholic beverages for members, we will offer tapas and non-alcoholic beverages. Dress Code: BEACH. Registration: RSVP to Tania We are looking forward to seeing all of you in June!!

Additional Upcoming Events

  • If you have hobbies or activities that you would like to share with other LNN members, please reach out to Helena to share more information and discuss the possibility of hosting an event!

Announcements

April Newsletter 2022

Hello Neighbors & Newcomers,

Spring is here, and we have started to enjoy meeting together again!  We had a great turnout at the spring party at Aloft, Lads’ night, Ladies’ night, Lunch bunch, Book club, walking group, coffee talk…and these are just our standing activities! It takes a village to organize all these events, and we would like to let you all know that we would love if you wanted to be more involved. There will be some board positions coming available for next term, so please email lncexecs@lexington-newcomers.org to learn more!

In April, we invite you to dance Bachata and Salsa. Yes, this is a first, thanks to Saskia and Helena! We also have many favorites on the calendar again in April.

Some of you may encounter difficulty receiving our Newsletter, as it sometimes goes into a spam/promotions filter. Usually searching your inbox for “[month] Newsletter” after the 1st Sunday of the month should allow you to find it, or you can always check the website or Facebook for the content as well.

We always welcome your ideas and feedback. Any questions or comments, feel free to email us at lncexecs@lexington-newcomers.org or post ideas/thoughts to the Lexington Neighbors & Newcomers Members Facebook group.

Kindly,
Your Newcomers & Neighbors Board

Bachata/Salsa Party @ Havana Club
Saturday, April 30 8pm

Join us on 4/30 for a Saturday Night Bachata/Salsa Party! 
We start with a beginner class at 9pm. At 10pm the party starts. Admission will be covered by LNN. Please note that this event is open to the public as well.
Of course we want you to enjoy connecting with your fellow Lexington Neighbors and Newcomers, so we will meet at 8pm for a drink at Havana Club before we kick off the dancing.
Some people have made reservations to dine at Little Donkey before the dancing (6pm). Everyone is on their own to make reservations as desired. http://www.littledonkeybos.com

Please let Saskia know if you plan to attend, so we can be on the look out for you! 

Event Details

  • 9-10pm Bachata/Salsa Lessons (Beginner and Intermediate Lessons)
  • 10-2am Bachata/Salsa Dance Party

Please note that the Saturday Night Bachata/Salsa parties (and lessons) are 21+ (no exceptions). Parties have a zero tolerance policy toward bad behavior.

  • Dress Code: Smart Casual to Elegant (no work boots etc.)
  • Beer, Wine, Mixed Drinks, etc. available at Bar
  • No partner required
  • Beginners very welcome
  • No need to pre-register
  • Covid safety: Open to all fully vaccinated individuals. (Vax card or photo on phone can serve as proof.)

Music Format: 70% bachata, 25% salsa, 5% merengue/cha chaDirections to 288 Green St, Central Sq, Cambridge
Walking (from Red Line’s Central Stop): From Mass Ave take a left on Prospect St then a left on Green St. It is a one minute walk.

Driving: Take Storrow or Memorial Drive to River St, then turn right on Mass Ave, turn right on Pearl St, and turn right again on Green St.

Parking: There is a large, inexpensive ($2.25/hr, maximum $9/night) parking garage right next door – you can’t miss it!

Biking Group
Wednesdays, April 6/13/27 at 9:30am

Group will ride Lexington-Concord-Lexington on Bedford bike path – Battle Road loop (20 miles) with a coffee/chat break in Concord (for good measure) in the middle. All levels welcome but would recommend against fancy road bikes at this time (dirt paths will be saggy). Instead any hybrid bike will do! Please reach out to Alexia to express interest in this or future bike rides (she may also have a couple of bikes to spare if needed). Event is targeted for Wednesdays (the 6th, 13th, and 27th) and will be adjusted (timing, weather, location, length) as needed based on demand.

Ladies’ Night
Wednesday, April 13 7-10pm

Meet up with the ladies of LNN at Revolution Hall! Please RSVP to Saskia to ensure you receive the latest updates. Feel free to bring along a friend who might be interested in LNN as well!

Lads’ Night

Lads’ Night ventures to The Gaff on Moody St this month! Email Derek to be added to the Lex Mecs distribution list to find out more details about this and future outings.

Coffee Talk
Monday, April 25 @ 10:30am

Join us at Peet’s Coffee downtown this month for a drink and great company. Please RSVP to Jen to express interest so that you can receive updates in case anything changes!

Lunch Bunch
Thursday, April 28 at 12pm

Join us at The Painted Burro – Waltham for April lunch bunch. Please RSVP by April 25th to Carol! If you want to take a sneak peek at all the delicious options, please find the menu and more info on the restaurant’s website.

Walking Group
Tuesdays at 9:30am

Weekly location will be sent to the walking group email distribution prior to the hike. Please reach out to Debbie with questions!

Book Club
Thursday, April 14 at 7pm

April’s Book Club will be on Thursday, April 14th, 2022 and we will be reviewing “Anxious People” by Fredrik Backman.

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove comes a poignant comedy about a crime that never took place, a would-be bank robber who disappears into thin air, and eight extremely anxious strangers 
who find they have more in common than they ever imagined.

Viewing an apartment normally doesn’t turn into a life-or-death situation, but this particular open house becomes just that when a failed bank robber bursts in and takes everyone in the apartment hostage. As the pressure mounts, the eight strangers begin slowly opening up to one another and reveal long-hidden truths.

Rich with Fredrik Backman’s “pitch-perfect dialogue and an unparalleled understanding of human nature” (Shelf Awareness), Anxious People’s whimsical plot serves up unforgettable insights into the human condition and a gentle reminder to be compassionate to all the anxious people we encounter every day.

In order to ensure everyone’s health and comfort in an in-person gathering, we are suggesting that all participants take a Covid home test on the day of Book Club. This is not mandatory nor is proof of test required to attend.

RSVP by April 13th to lexnnbookclub@gmail.com. On the morning of April 14th, we will email the time of the meeting and the address of our host to all.  Please bring a drink of your choice and/or snacks to share.

Additional Upcoming Events

If you have hobbies or activities that you would like to share with other LNN members, please reach out to Helena to share more information and discuss the possibility of hosting an event!

Announcements

  • To stay up to date on the latest news in between newsletters, please join our Facebook group!
  • Don’t forget about the Small Yet Mighty Winter Market (Lexington Farmers’ Market) with one date remaining (April 16th) in the winter season. And stay tuned for the Regular Season Market to gear back up starting in May! https://www.lexingtonfarmersmarket.org/
  • Lexington Symphony has some great upcoming events to check out. Learn more and buy tickets on their website.
  • April 9 @ 3pm: Concert for Families – A Musical Journey Through Time! Featuring a special performance by a local 10-year-old violin prodigy. (Note: This concert for all ages is the field trip typically enjoyed by all Lexington 3rd graders pre-pandemic. All of the instruments are introduced as they join the orchestra in this engaging, interactive program. If you have a current 3rd or 4th grader, this is a chance for the whole family to see the program they weren’t able to attend when field trips were not possible. And no matter your age, if you’ve always wanted to know more about orchestras, now’s your chance!)
  • April 30 @ 7:30pm: Spring POPS! MUSIC, MOVIES, AND MEDIA
  • Consider some Spring cleaning to benefit the community. Lexington Human Services Department in Partnership with Catie’s Closet is hosting a Spring Clothing Drive for Local Kids. Click the photo to learn more.