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A regional nature exploration program recommends “going to the chapel” – St. Catherine’s Chapel Park, that is, in Manomet. The “2024 Explore South Shore” feature researched and written by Kezia Bacon for the North and South Rivers Watershed Association, features several sites in Plymouth, including the St. Catherine’s park and the Davis-Douglas Farm in South Plymouth.

The sites included in the watershed association’s yearly round-up of inviting nature walks are highlighted to encourage people to visit and take walks in the region’s many parks and nature preserves.

St. Catherine’s Chapel Park is “not new,” said Bacon, the association’s nature writer, “but new to us.” It’s described as a “pleasant, grassy two-acre park that offers a quarter-mile of crushed stone walking paths, numerous benches, and interpretive signage depicting the history of White Horse Beach and Manomet.”

Public parking is available at 95 White Horse Road.

“I was covering Manomet,” Bacon said, “and drove by and saw it. It was by chance.”

“Along the walkway there are beautiful full-color placards with local information,” she said. “Just by walking around you can learn a lot of history.” Bacon took photos of informational placards displayed in the St. Catherine’s Chapel Park, and also checked out some “fresh air options” in Manomet and the South Plymouth area.

“This land is within the region of the Wampanoag tribe, who in earlier times maintained a fishing weir at the mouth of Bartlett’s Pond, nearby,” Bacon wrote for the North and South Rivers Watershed Association website. “Its outlet to the sea is sometimes known as Herring Brook. The name ‘Manomet’ has been interpreted to mean ‘bearing of a burden,’ possibly referring to the baskets used by the Wampanoag on trails between their settlements at Patuxet (Plymouth) and Cape Cod.”

Bacon gleaned the park’s history from the interpretive signage within the park, she said. St. Catherine’s Chapel was sanctified in 1924 as a “mission” for Plymouth’s St. Peter’s Church, but later was connected to the nearby St. Bonaventure Parish. When that church doubled its size in 2011, the chapel was sold and demolished.

European settlement of the “Manomet Ponds” region dates to 1639. A “sparse network” of farms and fishermen’s homes was explored by summer visitors two centuries later, followed by inns and shops. White Horse Road was laid out in 1882 and paved in 1922. Taylor Road, begun in 1912, was connected to Manomet Point Road in 1935

Bacon’s description of South Shore places to visit – 543 of them in all now listed and described on the watershed’s website – also includes the South Plymouth Davis-Douglas Farm property, described as “the gateway to the 230 acres of woodlands collectively known as the Davis-Douglas Conservation Area.” That area encompasses Emery Preserve West, Six Ponds East Conservation Area, the Plymouth Conservation land that stands between them, and Emery Preserve East.

The Davis-Douglas Farm property also features an office that serves as the headquarters for Wildlands Trust, a function space, a community garden, and trails.

Bacon’s nature exploration column “Get Outdoors,” offers daily online posts. The column covers the entire South Shore region, Bacon said, “up to Quincy and Abington, and down to Plymouth and Carver.”

For recent posts, see her column here

Coming Up:

Pilgrim Hall Museum is celebrating its 200th anniversary this month. Credit: (Photo by Wes Ennis)

The Pilgrim Society will launch its celebration of the 200th anniversary year of Pilgrim Hall Museum with a free weekend of special activities on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 27-28.

A historic Plymouth landmark, Pilgrim Hall was constructed in 1824 as the headquarters of the Pilgrim Society, founded in 1820. The building was designed primarily to serve as a meeting hall – a place for lectures and dinners. Its architect, Alexander Parris, who was fond of the Greek Revival style, is best known for designing Quincy Market in Boston.

Today, the expanded museum houses the country’s largest collection of Pilgrim possessions as well as a changing exhibition gallery. Located at 75 Court St. downtown, it is the oldest continuously operating public museum in the country.

This month, the public is invited to enjoy free admission and a host of special activities from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Jan. 27 and 28. Pilgrim Hall’s “Hometown Salute” will include musical performances, children’s programs, treasure hunts for all ages, and an opportunity to share local memories of Plymouth.

Activities on Saturday include “Hometown Favorites.” Share your favorite Plymouth photograph, document, or memory to add to a digital community collection. Bring in a photograph, letter or other scannable material that reflects “what Plymouth means to you,” or come with a brief story to be recorded and archived.

From 2 to 4 p.m. “Music in the Hall” will invite visitors to enjoy local musicians and light refreshments in the museum’s original gathering place. And at 2 p.m. the Cordage Ensemble will feature clarinetist Marguerite Levin and players on flute, oboe, and bassoon in a program of new and classic chamber music.

On Sunday at 10 a.m., the “Wampanoag Coloring Book Workshop” presented by the Herring Pond Wampanoag Tribe and The Community Arts Collaborative will feature a newly launched coloring book consisting of stories from the Herring Pond Wampanoag, illustrated by artist and tribal member Quincy Harding. Enjoy readings, coloring, crafts, songs, and other activities for families and youngsters presented by tribal members and local artists.

At 11 a.m., “Jill & The Beanstalk” will be performed by Rosalita’s Puppet Show. Puppeteer Charlotte Ann Dore presents an original adaptation of the famous fairytale in a show including handmade marionettes and opportunities for interaction with children aged 3 to 9.

At 2 p.m. music educator David Coffin will present “Music in The Hall: Life at Sea,” featuring the voices of sailors, whalers, and fishermen in a participatory program that reveals the life they pursued at sea. All ages welcome.

And at 3 p.m., local singer-songwriter Abigail Vail will showcase her original country-style compositions on guitar.

This week and beyond

Monday, Jan. 22

Uva Wine Bar, at 46 Main St., hosts “Metal emboss workshop – sailboat,” an invitation to create your own unique metal embossing. An instructor will teach participants the necessary skills from 7 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $40 and can be purchased here.

Plymouth Public Library hosts author Jennifer Keishin in an online celebration from 7 to 8 p.m. of her new book, “So Fetch.” Published on Jan. 16, the book is described as the story of one of the most iconic teen comedies of all time, “Mean Girls.” Register here.

Tuesday, Jan. 23

Plymouth library hosts “Books and Babies” from 11 to 11:30 a.m. This program engages babies and their caregivers in 30 minutes of stories, bounces, fingerplays, and songs. Disguised as a fun way to spend time with your baby in a group setting, this program actually focuses on early literacy practices that will help your baby get ready to read.

Plymouth G Pub, 101 Carver Road, offers free comedy with Mike Murray and Friends, from 7 to 8 p.m., in the taproom.

Uh-oh, it sounds like the experts want us to retire. A virtual “author talk about retirement” will be offered by Rajiv Nagaich, author of “Your Retirement: Dream or Disaster,” an elder law attorney and retirement planning expert. The event will be hosted by Plymouth Public library from 2 to 3 p.m. We foresee naps in lawn chairs while waiting for our turn on the pickle ball court. Register here.

Wednesday, Jan. 24

Steve Dubin will lead a free workshop on being a podcast guest at the library on Jan. 24. Credit: (Photo by Steve Mason)

“Be a Podcast Guest Star,” a free workshop led by Steve Dubin of Plymouth-based PR Works, takes place from 9 to 10 a.m. at the Plymouth Area Chamber of Commerce, 100 Armstrong Road. Participants are asked to RSVP.

Inspired by Benjamin Franklin’s Junto club, the Plymouth Library’s Philosophy Group addresses a different philosophical question at each session. Discussion will take place in a casual setting with no judgement, in the library’s craft room from 6 to 8 p.m. “If you’re interested in improving yourself and the world around you,” the library says, “this is the group for you!”

Thursday, Jan. 25

Plymouth library hosts Preschool Storytime from 11 to 11:30 a.m. The half-hour story program gives parents, caregivers, and children ages 3 to 5 the opportunity to enjoy books, songs, rhymes, and movement activities together while reinforcing skills that help children get ready to read. While the program is aimed at ages 3 to 5, children of all ages welcome. No registration necessary.

From Thursday, Jan. 25 to Sunday, Jan. 28, at 7 p.m. Plymouth G Pub, 101 Carver Road, will be hosting “Australian Open Encore Broadcast Watch Parties.” More information here.

Friday, Jan. 26

Singer-songwriter Antje Duvekot of Somerville will perform at The Spire, 25 ½ Court St., at 8 p.m. Tickets are $22.50 to $25. To purchase, visit The Spire.

Live bands perform at Plymouth G Pub, 101 Carver Road, on Friday and Saturday nights from 9 p.m. to midnight. Tonight, it’s The Common Good Band. There’s no cover charge.

Saturday, Jan. 27

The Pilgrim Society will launch its celebration of the 200th anniversary year of Pilgrim Hall Museum with a free weekend of special activities on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 27-28. See the earlier item in this column for more details.

The Knickerbocker All-Stars, a nine-piece band, will perform at The Spire at 8 p.m. The band celebrates music of the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s, including rhythm & blues, jump blues, swing, blues and soul, all of which made the Knickerbocker Music Center a mecca of dance music since its beginnings in Westerly, R.I. Tickets are $19.80 to $22. Visit the Spire to purchase them.

Sunday, Jan. 28

The Shady Roosters are at The Spire on Jan. 28.

IndieFerm Brewing presents“The Shady Roosters” at the Spire, from 2 to 5 p.m. The group has been together for about 25 years mainly under the name Lonesome Jukebox. Tickets are $5, cash-only, and sold only at the door.

Monday, Jan. 29

The Manomet branch library hosts a storytime from 10:30 to 11 a.m., for parents, caregivers, and children ages 6 and under to enjoy books, songs, rhymes, and movement activities. No registration required.

Tuesday, Jan. 30

Plymouth library hosts a virtual author’s talk by Dr. Robert Lustig, a pediatric neuroendocrinologist, from 2 to 3 p.m. His book, “Metabolical: The Lure and the Lies of Processed Food, Nutrition, and Modern Medicine,” weaves the interconnected strands of nutrition, health and disease, medicine, environment, and society into a new approach. Here’s the link.

“Changing Tides” will be the topic of the library’s teen sustainability club on Jan. 30. Credit: (Stock image)

“Changing Tides,” Plymouth library’s teen sustainability club for ages 8 to 13 meets from 6 to 7 p.m. The group will discuss current topics about sustainability (local to global) and enjoy fun activities and crafts.

Wednesday, Jan. 31

The Wednesday Night Writing Group meets Jan. 31 at the library. Credit: (Stock image)

Plymouth library hosts the Wednesday Night Writing Group from 6 to 8 p.m. in the library’s board room. Writing prompts will help get writers started. Bring your favorite pens and paper (or laptop). The group meets every other Wednesday.

Thursday, Feb. 1

Plimoth Patuxet Museums Director of Colonial Interpretation & Training Malka Benjamin offers a behind-the-scenes peek at how museums turn arcane 17th-century primary sources into powerful personal encounters with history. The online presentation takes place from 12 to 1 p.m. Free for museum members; $10 for others. Get tickets here.

Friday, Feb 2

Plymouth Library hosts “Wild About Reading: Sustainable Storytime” from4:30 to 5:15 p.m. in the library’s Fehlow meeting room. Different stories and activities will be offered each month to teach children about environmentalism and encourage a lifelong love of nature and the outdoors. Registration required. Storytime books are picked for ages 5-9. Registration opens at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 19.

Comedian Karen Morgan will be at The Spire on Feb. 2. Credit: (Karen Morgan)

Comedian Karen Morgan, a former trial attorney who began her professional comedy career on Nickelodeon Television’s “Search for the Funniest Mom in America,” performs at The Spire from 8 to 10 p.m. Tickets run from $22.50 to $25. Get them here.

Saturday, Feb. 3

Put puzzles together at the Manomet branch of the library on Feb. 3. Credit: (Stock image)

The Manomet branch library hosts an afternoon of putting together new puzzles and swapping old ones from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Bring a puzzle or use the library’s. Light refreshments, including coffee and cocoa, will be served. It’s free.

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