Boston Herald

Raise a glass to Oktoberfest fun

If you love fun, festivals and maybe a little beer, you know what this time of year means: Oktoberfest.

Greater Boston and New England at large is at no shortage of Oktoberfest choices. From cityscape to mountainside to overlooking the sea, you can find the perfect Octoberfest for you.

While Oktoberfest is centered around great brews, it’s not just about the beer. Great Octoberfests marry brewing an …

Boston Globe

Joe’s Pizza, a New York classic, is now open in Harvard Square until 3 a.m.

Who said local nightlife was dead?

A closeup of a Joe's Pizza slice.
A closeup of a Joe’s Pizza slice.

Greenwich Village classic Joe’s Pizza is now open at 3 Brattle St. in Harvard Square, says partner Pino Vitale.

Owner Joe Pozzuoli (who, coincidentally, was actually born in Boston) told the Globe in February that he hopes to stay in the neighborhood long term. “This is a special corner,” he says.

He describes Joe’s as a “classic New York slice: We’re tried and true, with an old-style, authentic recipe. We’re not trying to change the game. It will be identical to what we’ve been serving since 1975,” he says.

The shop will have about 30 seats, with al fresco seating in warm weather. And Pozzuoli says you can’t go wrong with the classic cheese slice.

Students should be satisfied: The place is open late. Visit Sunday through Wednesday from 10 a.m. until 2 a.m., and Thursday through Saturday until 3 a.m.

Cambridge Day

Painted Burro and Jaho coffee and wine are near long-awaited openings in Harvard and Central

Repairs and renovations are complete at a Painted Burro location in Cambridge’s Harvard Square. (Photo: Tom Meek)

Two of Cambridge’s longest-awaited eateries showed signs of life Thursday, winning approvals from the city’s License Commission: The Painted Burro, an upscale Mexican restaurant that said in January 2022 it was coming to Harvard Square; and a Jaho Coffee Roaster & Wine Bar expected in Central Square since March 2020.

The Painted Burro replaces the Border Cafe at a 32 Church St. site empty since a fire on Dec. 1, 2019 – an incident prompting the main concern of the three-member commission board.

Boston Globe

A memorable missive from the ‘legal department’ at ‘Car Talk’

A check for 2 cents to Robert Skole from the law firm of Dewey, Cheetham & Howe.
A check for 2 cents to Robert Skole from the law firm of Dewey, Cheetham & Howe.ROBERT SKOLE

It’s great that the “Car Talk” gang’s Dewey, Cheetham & Howe window is being preserved in Harvard Square (“Preserved: One window into a madcap past,” Page A1, Sept. 12). But the name is more than a gag, and to illustrate this, I have a check for 2 cents from “Car Talk” that bears the name of that fictional law firm.

When “Car Talk” could be heard on Swedish radio some years ago, I wrote a story in a Swedish technical weekly, Ny Teknik, in April 1999 under the headline “Car Talk drabbar Sverige” (Car Talk strikes Sweden). Without my permission, “Car Talk” ran my story on the show’s website. I wrote to them, saying that although my accountant insisted anything on the “Car Talk” website wasn’t worth 2 cents, I disagreed, and I enclosed an invoice for 2 cents.

A few days later, I received the attached BankBoston check for 2 cents, from Dewey, Cheetham & Howe, covering “Reprint Permission.”

As you can see, I never cashed the check, which probably threw Dewey, Cheetham & Howe’s financial statements into confusion for years.

Robert Skole


Readers Digest

Why you should visit Boston this autumn

The autumn months bring with them a treasure trove of cultural events in the Greater Boston area. Though it’s not an exhaustive list, here are some that we think should be top of mind if you’re visiting in September, October, or November: Indigenous People’s Day celebrations; Harvard Square Oktoberfest; Cambridge Science Festival; Boston Ballet Fall Experience; and Boston Public Market Harvest Party. They’re a mix of free and ticketed events, some family friendly and some better for adults. But whatever the celebration, we’re confident your time in Boston will be well-spent.

The Boston Sun

Five Back Bay Actors Star in the Tony Award-Winning Musical, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Back Bay actors, Joy Clark, Eva Colliou, Ana Viveros, Alan Cid, and Klara LaGuardia, star in Moonbox Productions’ upcoming production of the Tony-Award-winning musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, by Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler.  Directed and co-produced by Ryan Mardesich with musical direction by Dan Ryan and choreography by Joy Clark, Sweeney Todd opens October 13th and runs through November 5th at the new Arrow Street Arts performance venue located at 2 Arrow Street in Cambridge.  Tickets are $65 with Pay-What-You-Wish options available at 

Moonbox Productions’ Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is a Brechtian take on this Sondheim classic. After being wrongfully imprisoned by the corrupt justice system, Sweeney Todd returns home to London to seek his revenge and save his daughter, Johanna. Aided by his meat-pie baking neighbor Mrs. Lovett, Sweeney comes to a much darker conclusion – we all deserve to die. Together, they wreak havoc on Fleet Street and serve up the hottest – and most unsettling – pies in London.  Witness Moonbox’s new take on the modern myth, the parable of power, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street. 

The cast of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street includes Davron Monroe* (Sweeney Todd), Joy Clark* (Mrs. Lovett), Caitlin Zerra Rose (Beggar Woman), Todd Yard (Judge), Meagan Lewis-Michelson (Beadle), Ethan DePuy (Pirelli/Fogg), Eli Douglas (Toby), Dallas Austin Jimmar (Anthony), Eva Colliou (Johanna), Ana Viveros (Ensemble), Ciaran D’Hondt (Ensemble), Abigail Whitney Smith (Ensemble), Alexander Lyons (Ensemble), Tim Lawton (Ensemble), Todd McNeel Jr. (Ensemble), Alan Cid (Swing), Brandon Lee (Swing), and Klara La Guardia (Swing). (*Member of Actors’ Equity Association)

Sweeney Todd will be the first presentation at Arrow Street Arts’ renovated and expanded venue in Harvard Square.  The venue is in the midst of a major renovation, and Moonbox, a resident company at ASA, will produce the musical during a break in the construction schedule.  The facility’s full opening is planned for Spring 2024.

“What an exciting way to kick off our thirteenth season!” says Producer Sharman Altshuler.  “Sweeney Todd is such an exceptional piece of musical theater, and to be able to present it during the Halloween season is especially thrilling!  Deepest thanks to Arrow Street Arts for pausing their renovations to let us present this show in their fabulous black box space – a perfect spot for this production, and a great opportunity for the community to get a sneak peek into this renovated venue, which will be an incredible asset to the arts community in and around Cambridge,” said Altshuler.


Storied jazz club Regattabar is back in full swing with grand reopening

Regattabar, where giants such as Sonny Rollins, Dizzy Gillespie and Herbie Hancock have all played, has been closed for more than three years. That changes Friday, when the iconic jazz club reopens after a years-long hiatus due to COVID-19.

The venue, which is located in the Charles Hotel in Cambridge, first opened in 1985. Alex Attia, general manager of the Charles Hotel, said he is excited for the 220-seat capacity space to reopen its doors — and so are longtime patrons.

“We’ve gotten a minimum of a dozen emails a month from regulars, both artists and customers, that are looking forward to getting back to the Regattabar,” he said. “That’s what I’m really excited about.”

The Boston-area jazz scene has had a gap in recent years: Ryles Jazz Club shuttered in 2018, and Wally’s Cafe and Jazz Club in the South End didn’t reopen after the pandemic until late last year.

“Unfortunately we lost a lot of jazz venues,” Attia said. “It’s important for us to continue with the jazz concept. We were able to cultivate a really great list of artists and a great community of jazz lovers.”

The grand reopening event on Sept. 15 will feature a performance by saxophonist and Blue Note recording artist Walter Smith III.

Smith, who is also chair of woodwinds at Berklee College of Music, said Regattabar was his favorite place to attend shows when he was a student in Boston — and that Boston has been missing the club’s unique programming.

Boston Globe

Rodney’s reopens in Harvard Square; train-based festival honoring dead poets celebrates Sylvia Plath; Massachusetts Book Award honorees announced

Rodney’s reopens in Harvard Square

Rodney’s occupied a central spot in Central Square for over two decades, a singular shop for used books, vintage posters, and sturdy bookshelves for sale, but the end of a lease just as the pandemic began forced the place to close, and a bank took over the space. Owner Shaw Taylor said at the time that he’d be keeping his eye out for another good home for the bookstore, and he found one recently in Cambridge. Rodney’s reopened earlier this month in Harvard Square, taking over the space previously occupied by Raven Used Books at 23 Church St. (Raven, which had occupied the space since 2015, recently moved to Shelburne Falls in Western Mass.) The new Rodney’s is smaller than the Central Square location, about a third of the size, which will mean a tighter focus on books, with a basement area for keeping stock. Rodney’s got its start in Hyannis in 1996 before Shaw moved the business to Cambridge in 2000. Shaw named the store after his dog, who died the same year the Hyannis shop opened. On the day of its opening, a handwritten sign in the window read “Welcome! Open today while still working hard to organize and alphabetize.” Rodney’s is open Monday-Saturday noon-9 p.m. and Sunday noon-8 p.m.

Boston Globe

After a long pause, Regattabar’s reopening brings jazz back to Harvard Square

For many Boston jazz fans, the question of whether the Regattabar would ever present music again seemed open and shut. Like every other music venue in the area, it was closed by the pandemic in March 2020. But as, one by one, entertainment venues started booking shows, it remained shuttered. A full year after crosstown rival Scullers Jazz Club had reopened, and jazz artists were showing up at City Winery and the Crystal Ballroom, the Regattabar remained dark.

“Like most businesses that closed during the pandemic, there were phases where we thought: Maybe it’s time,” says Alex Attia. As general manager of the Charles Hotel and Charles Square complex in Harvard Square, Attia was responsible not only for the Regattabar, but also the hotel and three restaurants — loosely categorized in business parlance under the moniker “hospitality industry,” one of the hardest-hit sectors during the pandemic.

The Crimson

Rodney’s Bookstore Turns a New Page in Harvard Square

Rodney’s Bookstore opened in Harvard Square at 23 Church St. on Sept. 1.

Rodney’s Bookstore opened in Harvard Square at 23 Church St. on Sept. 1. By Tracy Jiang

Nearly three years after closing in Central Square in 2020, Rodney’s Bookstore has found its new home in Harvard Square.

Located on 23 Church St., Rodney’s replaces Raven Used Books as the only used bookstore in Harvard Square.

After shuttering the Central Square location, Shaw Taylor, owner of Rodney’s Bookstore, spent the last few years collecting “tens of thousands” of books before settling on Harvard Square as the bookstore’s next home.

Named after Taylor’s dog, Rodney’s Bookstore first opened in Cape Cod in 1996 before branching out to Central Square — and briefly to Brookline. Now, the Harvard Square storefront remains the sole location, and the focus is “to keep fresh books in the store,” according to Taylor.

“I just have to be good about replacing what sells, so there’s always new things to look at,” Taylor added.

The store opened on Sept. 1 and is still in “its early stages,” according to Ethan Gaffney, an employee of the bookstore and Taylor’s nephew.

“It just needs to be a little more organized,” Gaffney added.

While the Central Square branch was larger and allowed for more variety of books to be displayed, Gaffney said “the foot traffic is a lot better” in the new location.

“Everyone in the community has really welcomed us with open arms,” Gaffney added. “We just hope we’re here for a long time.”