14th Annual Winter Carnival in Harvard Square

The Harvard Square Business Association welcomes you to attend Winter Carnival 2024! The temperatures may be dropping but we are gearing up for some of the most highly anticipated events of the year, including the Taste of Chocolate Festival and the “Some Like it Hot” Chili Cook-off.  In addition to these signature events, there are festivities happening in our restaurants, stores and cultural institutions.
January 11th – 14th  

Harvard Square welcomes the return of the 21st annual Boston Celtic Music Festival, known as BCMFest, from January 11-14. Presented by Passim, a Cambridge-based non-profit that supports a vibrant music community through Club Passim, the Passim School of Music, artist grants and outreach initiatives.   The 2024 festival will showcase Greater Boston’s deep tradition of music, song and dance from Irish, Scottish, Cape Breton, Quebecois and other Celtic communities. BCMFest features acts that are traditional as well as others that draw on contemporary sounds and ideas; full-time, professional touring acts as well as local session musicians; highlighting performers from across the generations. For a full schedule of all locations and to purchase tickets, click here.
Thursday, January 11th, 7pm-9pm. $30 / Members $25
First Round @ Club Passim  

Joey Abarta, Jenna Moynihan, and Neil Pearlman & the Wallbreakers  

Friday, January 12th, 7pm-9pm. $30 / Members $25
Roots & Branches @ Club Passim  

Mariel Vandersteel, Casey Murray & Molly Tucker, and Triga  

Sunday, January 14th, 10am-2pm.  free admission

Live Music Brunch with Mrs. Wilberforce @ Club Passim  

Sunday, January 14th, various times.  
various registration prices workshops @ Passim School of Music
SOURCE Restaurants  
Locals First Menu Offerings
Through February 29th  

For the second year in a row, SOURCE Harvard Square is expanding its culinary offerings for the months of January & February, Sunday thru Thursday evenings. Come experience Chef Kevorkian’s beautiful Pan-Seared Monkfish with truffled wild mushroom farrotto, or Steak Frites with a delicious Henry Bain sauce, as well as other incredible offerings. For a glimpse at some of the other dishes being offered please follow this link.  

We look forward to serving you.
Vico Style
$24 Days
Tuesdays – Thursdays in January
To welcome 2024, Vico Style is offering $24 days on Tuesdays-Thursdays in January (Jan 9-11, Jan 16-18, Jan 22-25, and Jan 30-31)!   

Enjoy select clothing items for $24, while supplies last.
Smoke Shop BBQ 
Heaven’s Door Whiskey Dinner
January 12th

Our Whiskey Dinner Series kicks off 2024 with big news! Heaven’s Door Whiskey is joining our whiskey dinner series. Heaven’s Door Spirits, co created by Bob Dylan (yes, THE Bob Dylan), has become one of the fastest growing super premium whiskeys in the U.S., and has earned tremendous accolades such as #1 Consumers Choice Bourbon (San Francisco World Spirits Competition), and one of the Best Bourbons of the Century (Robb Report).   Heaven’s Door National Ambassador Austin Millspaugh is coming through the Boston area (in advance of Heaven’s Door new Kentucky distillery opening this Spring) and we are lucky enough to have him host this dinner with us. We will taste three of Heaven’s Door’s Spirits: our very own private barrel, one of Heaven’s Door’s highest rated bourbon’s, Ascension, and a very special 10-year aged bottle. Plus, guests will receive a special surprise at the end of this dinner from Heaven’s Door. Price: $70. Purchase tickets here.
Spirits Education from Heaven’s Door National Ambassador Austin Millspaugh
3-Flight tasting: Ascension, 10 Year Aged, Smoke Shop Private Barrel
Custom event cocktail: Paper Plane    
Appetizers, BBQ dinner, and dessert
The Brattle Theatre
Belmont World Film’s Family Festival January 15th
Since 2002, Belmont World Film’s Family Film Festival has been a must-attend event for families in the Greater Boston area with children ages 3-12, offering the opportunity to view some of the world’s most significant films for children as they were meant to be seen – on a big screen as a shared experience with others – as well as opening a window into the lives of children in other countries. Purchase tickets here.

10:30am – Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Shorts Program
11:45am – Titina
1:30pm – Dancing Queen
3:30pm – Kung Fu Lion
Cambridge Forum
Is the American Century Over? 
January 16th

At the beginning of an uncertain New Year, Cambridge Forum considers America’s position on the international stage with the help of Joseph Nye, one of the country’s foremost thinkers on American foreign policy. For the past eight decades, we have lived in “the American Century” – a period during which the US has enjoyed unrivalled global power – be it political, economic or military. Born on the cusp of this new era, Nye has spent a lifetime illuminating our understanding of the changing contours of America power and world affairs. His many books on the nature of power and political leadership have earned him his reputation as one of the most current and influential world scholars.   

To sign up for Zoom, please follow this link.  
Cambridge Center for Adult Education
Storytelling Workshop 9 Wednesdays beginning January 17th 

What’s your story? Get introduced to the art of storytelling structure and receive tips on using humor, building drama, and connecting to your audience. Each participant will have several opportunities to write and present five and ten-minute true stories, much like the stories from The Moth. All performances will be followed with in-depth comments and discussion. Everyone is welcome, from beginners to practiced storytellers.  

Instructor: Andrea Aptecker Originally $275.00 – now $247.50 (as part of a cross promotion with Club Passim)
Register here.
Grolier Poetry Bookshop  
January 17th, 25th, 31st
      January 17th   Poetry Reading: Julia Lisella, J.D. Scrimgeour and Lynne Viti with an introduction by Richard Hoffman.

In person sign up link.
Virtual sign up link.
    January 25th   Poetry Reading: Launch of Hanging Loose Issue #114 and Pablo Medina’s new collection of poems (published by Hanging Loose) with an introduction by Mark Pawlak.

In person sign up link.
Virtual sign up link.
      January 31st   Poetry Reading: Martha Collins and Nguyen Ba Chung present the work of Tuệ Sỹ with an introduction by Fred Marchant.

In person sign up link.
Virtual sign up link.
Blue Heron
Renaissance Portraits
January 20th 

Musical portraits of popes & nobles, lovers & spouses, patrons & friends, & theatrical personalities including a cocky cook & a desperately self-absorbed lover. Music by Ciconia, Du Fay, Binchois, Busnoys, Isaac & others.   Free pre-concert talk by Jodi Cranston (Boston University) at 2:15 pm. Doors and box office open at 2 pm.  

Tickets available here.
American Repertory Theater
Real Women Have Curves
Through January 21st

The theater that premiered Waitress and Jagged Little Pill brings to the stage an empowering story that explores the immigrant experience, friendship, and big dreams. Created by an award-winning team of Latine artists, Real Women Have Curves: The Musical is a show that celebrates living life out loud.

Summer 1987, Boyle Heights, Los Angeles. After eighteen years under the roof of her immigrant parents, Ana is ready to spread her wings. Her dreams of college and a career in New York City are bursting at the seams, but her family’s expectations would keep her home, working at their garment factory. Is it worth sacrificing the dreams of her family, who have sacrificed everything for her? Based on the play by Josefina López that inspired the iconic hit film, Real Women Have Curves: The Musical is an empowering new show that explores life’s unexpected curves.  

Tickets available here.
New School of Music  
FREE Trial Classes
January 22nd – 27th
We have a variety of classes for all ages–from babies to adults–and for all levels from beginner to advanced. Programs for children include Musical Playdates for the very youngest musicians and their caregivers, Ukulele, Piano, plus two choruses. For adults we have Songwriting, Flute Ensemble and a chamber music program for all instrumentalists at any level!  

Check out our website and sign up for a free trial lesson today!
Harvard Art Museum
Museums at Night | 5 – 9pm
Join us for an evening of art, fun, food, and more! This event is free and open to everyone. Gather with friends and mingle inside our Italian-inspired courtyard while taking in the smooth sounds from DJ C-Zone. Browse the museum shop and chat over a snack or drink for purchase from local vendors.This month we feature local favorite Jack’s Abby.  

There are over 50 galleries to explore and new exhibitions, Wolf Vostell: Dé-coll/age Is Your Life and Picasso: War, Combat, and Revolution.  

Check out the event and register.
Bonde Fine Wine Shop
Bonde Fine Wine Shop
Wine Bingo Nights
January 25th, February 22nd, and March 14th 
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Come join us for Bingo Night at Bonde! On the last Thursday of the month, Bertil, aka MC Corky, will host a wine-themed bingo in the shop, with education and wine tasting thrown in too. The set of topics picked out for the board will dictate what topics we cover that night. If you get a bingo, you get a prize!  
1/25/24 – USA Wine Regions
2/22/24 – French Grapes
3/14/24 – Aromas  

Get tickets
The Brattle Theatre
The Brattle Theatre
Nightingale Vocal Ensemble – Photoplay
January 26th
In a sequel to their groundbreaking 2023 album COMPOSITION SPED UP, Nightingale Vocal Ensemble presents PHOTOPLAY. An ensemble of 9 virtuoso singers will spontaneously improvise soundtracks to a variety of short films. The films will range from early silent pictures (including primordial experiments in animation and abstraction) to contemporary works and the winners of Nightingale’s 2024 Short Film Contest. Through free improvisation, Nightingale will create a truly unique live experience of immediately visceral expression.  

Commonwealth Wine School  
The Hills are Alive! Alpine Wine & Cheese Pairings 
January 26th

For centuries, mountain dairy farmers have made cheese as a way to preserve milk for consumption during the lean months, resulting in some of the oldest (and best) cheeses in the world, full of flavor and incredible complexity. The wines of these regions are just as magnificent. Intense and flavorful, they are the perfect companions.  

Join wine & cheese educator (and alpinhorn specialist) Adam Centamore for an evening learning about all the alps have to offer. You’ll sample special cheeses from the idyllic French Jura, the rugged Italian Alps, the rolling pastures of Switzerland, and elsewhere while learning why they are so special while sipping on unique wines from these same regions, perfectly paired in ways that would make the Von Trapps burst out in song.  

It’s a special chance to experience a truly wonderful wine and cheese culture. Grab some edelweiss and don your lederhosen. The hills are alive with Alpine wine and cheese!  

Tickets are $100.
The Taste of Chocolate Weekend
The Taste of Chocolate Weekend
January 26th – 28th
Warm, dark, sweet and decadent! Harvard Square’s finest restaurants and cafes will embark on a three-day chocolate extravaganza! Our restaurants will feature chocolate desserts and cocktails while Harvard Square retailers will dazzle you with scrumptious chocolate specials and deals. For you brave and hardy chocolate lovers, our famous tasty sampling of chocolate goodies from Harvard Square’s finest purveyors will be presented on Saturday, January 27th from 1pm – 2pm on (location TBD) for all to enjoy. Entertainment, chocolate and more!
BREATHE Cambridge  
“Intro To Yoga” Workshop
January 27th
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During this 90 minute workshop we invite yoga students of ALL LEVELS to embark on a journey of self discovery and empowerment, and to take more control of their yoga practice.  

Price: $25  

Book the workshop here.
The Sinclair
January 27th

TORRES is the pseudonym of Mackenzie Scott. She was born January 23, 1991, and lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her wife Jenna, stepson Silas, and puppy Sylvia. She has been releasing albums and performing as TORRES since 2013. What an enormous room is TORRES’ sixth studio album (her third with Merge). It was recorded in September and October 2022 at Stadium Heights Sound in Durham, North Carolina. It was engineered by Ryan Pickett, produced by Mackenzie Scott and Sarah Jaffe, mixed by TJ Allen in Bristol, UK, and mastered by Heba Kadry in NYC. The album contains 10 songs. Mackenzie wrote all of them. Sarah played bass guitar, synths, drums, organ, and piano. Mackenzie sang vocals, played guitar, bass, synths, organ, piano, and programmed drums. Additional synth bass, tambourine, and shakers were played by TJ Allen.  

Purchase tickets
Cambridge Center for Adult Education  
“Ô, abre alas, que eu quero passar”:
Brazilian Carnival in Literature and Other Arts
6 Tuesdays beginning January 30th
This class will explore the Brazilian Carnival and its manifestations in literature, cinema, and other arts. We will discuss the cultural importance of this event for the country as a way of rewriting history by listening to famous sambas while analyzing the aesthetics of the festivity. We will also see how Carnival is depicted in literature by authors such as Machado de Assis, João do Rio, Manuel Bandeira, and Clarice Lispector. The class is recommended for students with intermediate or advanced levels of Portuguese.  

Instructor: Marcela Filizola.
Price: 190$.
Register here.
Life Alive  
30 Plant Challenge
Through January 31st
This January, celebrate positive eating and enrich your gut health with Life Alive Cafe’s 30 Plant Challenge. View the challenge details and learn how a diet rich in plant diversity can help the gut regulate blood sugar regulation, boost immunity and balance your mood at lifealive.com/30plants.  

To give the new year an energizing jumpstart, the chefs at Life Alive Cafe have created the Plant Power Bowl with a whopping 30 whole, diverse plants all in one dish. Delight in this Southwest BBQ-inspired bowl’s smoky-chili flavors, roasted brussels and hot honey slaw, topped with salsa verde and crunchy seeds.
Hasty Pudding Theatricals  
Man and Woman of the Year Events
February – Dates TBD
Every year, the Hasty Pudding Theatricals bestows the Man of the Year (MOY) and Woman of the Year (WOY) awards on performers who have made lasting and impressive contributions to the world of entertainment.  

The Woman of the Year award dates back to 1951 with our first honoree Gertrude Lawrence. Since then, recipients have included the likes of Elizabeth Taylor, three-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep, Halle Berry, Sandra Bullock and Anne Hathaway. We’ve also honored First Lady Mamie Eisenhower and comedy legends, like Lucille Ball.  

The Man of the Year Award began in 1967 with Bob Hope and the subsequent recipients list reads like a who’s who of Hollywood’s leading men: Sean Connery, Tom Hanks, Robert De Niro, Robert Downey Jr., Justin Timberlake, and James Franco to name just a few.
Bonde Fine Wine Shop
Wine Trivia Night
February 1st and March 7th 
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Come join us at Wine Trivia Night at Bonde! The questions will cover not just wine, but also wine in culture, too. We will form the trivia teams so you can meet someone new—embrace the “bond” in Bonde. The winning team will win a prize!  

2/1 – California
3/7 – Grapes
Ken Schaphorst Big Band Featuring Dominque Eade and Ran Blake
February 5th
68752KenRanDom2 image   One of the leading lights of Boston’s jazz scene for over 20 years, noted composer and New England Conservatory (NEC) Jazz Studies Chair, Ken Schaphorst, kicks off Big Band Mondays, Regattabar’s new monthly series, with his all-star 17-piece ensemble. Featuring longtime collaborators Ran Blake (piano) and Dominique Eade (voice), along with an opening set by the award-winning NEC Jazz Orchestra, this promises to be a special night!  

Purchase tickets here.
The Sinclair
Jaime Wyatt
February 6th
p image Hailed by Pitchfork as one of the “most exciting and skillful storytellers” working today, Jaime Wyatt is the kind of generational talent whose raw, honest lyricism is matched only by the power of her huge, unmistakable voice. Wyatt first began turning heads with her breakout 2017 debut, Felony Blues, which chronicled her now much-publicized battle with addiction and transformative journey through the criminal justice system. Wyatt’s 2020 follow-up, Neon Cross, tackled even more profoundly personal revelations. Both records arrived to universal acclaim, with NPR praising Wyatt’s “remarkable voice” and Rolling Stone lauding her “lush, layered, and complex” performances.  

Get tickets here.
Some Like it Hot Chili Cook-off
February 10th
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It is with great anticipation that the Harvard Square Business Association announces the return of the 14th Annual Some Like it Hot Chili Cookoff. This free chili tasting party will take place Saturday, February 10th on Brattle Plaza (in front of Bluestone Lane at 27 Brattle Street) from 1:30pm – 3:00pm and will be hotter and spicier than ever before!   Some of Harvard Square’s most popular restaurants will be making batches of chili for this fun and festive event. Taste them all and vote for your favorite! The restaurant with the most votes will be awarded with the highly coveted Harvard Square Chili Pot!
Superbowl LVIII
February 11th

Find your spot to watch the big game! Restaurant promotions coming soon!
Lovin’ the Square Valentine’s Events
February 10th – 14th
This year’s Valentine’s events will feature fabulous food and drinks from Harvard Square’s restaurants, romantic and fun deals from our retailers and variety of intimate, cozy and entertaining things to do in our cultural icons. More information coming soon.
Commonwealth Wine School
Fantastic Wines & Where to Find Them
February 16th
Wine production is often focused on the “big six” grapes. They grow vigorously in many climates and produce delicious wines. These great wines come from some of the most well known and loved wine regions around the globe. Which means…  

It’s time for something completely different! Grapes you’ve never had before! Regions you didn’t know made wine! New wine styles emerging from around the world, and landing on your local store shelves! Wine educator Christina Kach has a little magic up her sleeves for this class. Join her as she brings you along on a bewitching experience of amazing and unique wines. *Accio Fun!*  

Tickets are $85.
The Brattle Theatre  
The Bugs Bunny Film Festival
February 16th – February 25th
bugs-bunny-rabbit-of-seville-1-e1640110506215 image   A Brattle Tradition!  

With more than 25 editions under our belts, you’d think we’d be getting tired of the Wascally Wabbit and his crew of hilarious oddballs… Nope! It’s still one of our favorite programs to put together each year. We can’t wait to see you for another round of classic cartoon comedies on the big screen in 35mm!  

For tickets and more information, click here.
The Studio at Arrow Street Arts
Moonbox Productions Presents The Manic Monologues
February 16th – February 25th 
Moonbox Productions, winner of numerous IRNE and Elliot Norton Awards, is thrilled to present The Manic Monologues by Zachery Burton and Elisa Hofmeister. Directed by Brad Reinking, The Manic Monologues opens on February 16th and runs until February 25th at the Studio at Arrow Street Arts. Tickets are $45 and are available at www.arrowstarts.org. Pay what you wish options are available at the box office. (Press performances are Friday, February 16th at 8pm, Saturday, February 17that 2pm and 8pm and Sunday, February 18th at 3pm.)  

Burton and Hofmeister wrote The Manic Monologues in the wake of Burton’s 2017 bipolar diagnosis while a doctoral student at Stanford University. The play brings to life incredible stories — stories that will challenge and inform your ideas about what it means to be touched by a mental health condition. These true, lived experiences come from diverse and resilient people living across the world. These brave individuals have things to say about struggle and pain, but also triumph and joy. They are moving. They are human. And they are not ashamed.  

The cast of The Manic Monologues includes Mal Malme*, Ethan DePuy, Liza Giangrande, Cidalia Santos, Katie Kendrick, and Cristhian Mancinas Garcia. (*Member of Actors’ Equity Association).  

Purchase tickets here.
American Repertory Theater
Becoming a Man
February 16th – March 10th
When we change, can the people we love come with us? For fifty years, P. Carl lived as a girl and then a queer woman, building a career and a loving marriage while waiting to realize himself in full. When he decides to affirm his gender at a pivotal political moment in America, his transition puts everything—family, career, friendships—at stake. Adapted from P. Carl’s acclaimed memoir and co-directed by Diane Paulus and P. Carl, Becoming a Man is a story about the courage—and the community—we need to become ourselves.  

Tickets available here.
Commonwealth Wine School  
Basque-ing in Cheese and Cider
February 23rd
For hundreds of years, the people of the Basque Country have been growing and producing some of the finest cheese and cider on the planet. Located in the northeastern corner of the Iberian Peninsula, the cool breezes from the northern Bay of Biscay create the perfect environment for bright, tangy cheese and ciders with mouthwatering levels of acidity and freshness. These traditions have persevered through to today, as the local communities have stayed true to their practices, and continue to make both their cheeses and ciders in small batches using time honored techniques.  

Join wine & cheese educator (and Basque Buff) Adam Centamore and Certified Pommelier™ Tim Powers for an evening exploration of the traditional cuisine and beverages from the Basque Country, including samples from both sides of the French/Spanish border. These samples will range from earthy and nutty brebis cheeses to wild fermented sagardoa cider, and more!  

This Iberian expedition is not to be missed, so join us for a wonderful journey through Basque history, culture, and cuisine as we celebrate the release of the newest vintage of Basque ciders. Txotx!  

Tickets are $100
Bonde Fine Wine Shop  
Winemaker Night: Westport Rivers Winery – Wine Tasting Class
February 29th 
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Enjoy an evening with our hometown winemaker Marco Montez of Westport Rivers. In this 90 minute tasting class, he’ll share his story, his wines, & his take on the future of the ever-changing wine world on the east coast.  

Purchase tickets here.
Arrow Street Arts
Arrow Street Arts Launch Festival
March – Dates TBD
Arrow Street Arts will celebrate the opening of its new venue in Harvard Square with a week-long launch festival in late March 2024. Produced by Cambridge-based organization, Liars and Believers (LaB), the festival will feature a wide variety of performances, events, and public workshops celebrating the vibrant diversity of the Greater Boston performing arts community. To date, over 200 applications have been received ranging from music to dance to theater to circus.   

More information coming soon.
Dine Out Boston in Harvard Square  
March TBD
Dine Out Boston is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of delicious deals at participating restaurants offering indoor or outdoor dining options, with many offering takeout and delivery service.  

Dine Out Boston formerly known as Restaurant Week Boston® is brought to you by Meet Boston twice a year, providing locals and visitors an opportunity to sample area restaurants at special prices. Participating restaurants offer prix fixe menus for lunch and dinner.  

Diners can choose from old favorites to the latest culinary hot spots, from nationally-known chain restaurants to local chef-owned bistros, from Asian or Latin fare to French, Italian, seafood, tapas and sushi, from the award-winning restaurants of Boston and Cambridge to the gourmet gems in the suburbs north, west and south of the city. So, get your taste buds ready!  

Cambridge Center for Adult Education
Couple’s Cooking: Korean Kitchen
March 1st
One of the most healthful Asian cuisines, delicious Korean cuisine features mainly vegetables and harmonized sauces. In this hands-on class, we will make delicious chicken bibimbap, a rice bowl with chicken, seasoned spinach, cucumber salad, kimchi, egg, and delicious sauce. We’ll also make Korean Japchae, sweet potato noodles stir-fried with vegetables. We’ll finish the class with delicious poached apples with ginger. Price is per pair.  

Instructor: Ploy Khunisorn
Price: $200 (The cost of tuition includes all food materials and fees).  

Register here
George Coleman
March 1st & 2nd
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A member of the Miles Davis Quintet, NEA Jazz Master and tenor saxophone giant George Coleman is featured on many historic recordings, including Seven Steps to Heaven and Maiden Voyage.  

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to see a living legend!  

Purchase tickets here
Harvard Art Museum
LaToya M. Hobbs: It’s Time
March 1st – July 21st

Immerse yourself in a day in the life of a contemporary artist through a tour de force of monumental printmaking.  

Follow the link for more information.
Harvard Art Museum  
Future Minded: New Works in the Collection
March 1st – July 21st

This exhibition highlights a selection of works acquired in recent years that exemplify the Harvard Art Museums’ collecting vision and strategies. Nearly all are on display for the first time.  

Follow the link for more information.
The Sinclair
Red Baraat
March 15th

Red Baraat is a pioneering band from Brooklyn, New York. Conceived by dhol player Sunny Jain, the group has drawn worldwide praise for its singular sound, a merging of hard driving North Indian bhangra with elements of hip-hop, jazz and raw punk energy. Created with no less a purposeful agenda than manifesting joy and unity in all people, Red Baraat’s spirit is worn brightly on its sweaty and hard-worked sleeve.  

Get tickets here.
Union Square Donuts
Through March 17th

Come in and enjoy our seasonal donut specials at Union Square Donuts located on 15 JFK Street in Harvard Square. In the upcoming months, we look forward to sharing our donut specials for Valentine’s Day, the 2024 Super Bowl, and St. Patrick’s Day! For Valentine’s Day enjoy our Vanilla Heart-shaped French Cruller, Valentine’s Day Funfetti, Chocolate Covered Strawberry, Red Velvet Cake, Valentine’s Sprinkles, Black Forest, and Dark Chocolate Raspberry-filled! For St. Patrick’s Day we will be running specials such as Shamrock Sprinkles, Grasshopper Bar, Irish Cream Cinnamon Roll, and Jameson Cold Brew. As always, our donut classics and specials are available to order in-store, or ahead of time online at unionsquaredonuts.com. Starting 1/22 show us your Harvard ID for a 5% discount on your order! (Discount available for any in-person order at our 15 JFK location only).