Worcester Weekly, Nov. 8-14

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There’s a lot going on in the city. Many of the events don’t need our help in drawing a crowd, but some do. Here’s our take on some of this week’s most worthwhile events.

Have an event you want considered? Send a link to info@worcester.ma

Sunday, Nov. 8 — Mass. Beauty & Barber Convention, 9 a.m.-9 p.m., DCU Center, 50 Foster St.  This is going to be a real blowout! Get it? No?! How about, This event figures to be a cut above. Nope? Given our particular follicular forecast, you can maybe forgive us for having trouble with the hair cutting and beauty puns. See, it’s been a while since we’ve needed to visit a proper barber shop. Maybe we should hit this convention, then, and take advantage of a number of classes and presentations on the industry’s finer points, from the basics of the work to business development.

There will also be entertainment, including a Barber Battle; community makeovers (for women living in homeless shelters) and “cuts for veterans.” Not to mention a visit from guest judge Miss Massachusetts USA 2015 Polikseni Manxhari of Holden. Should be shear excitement. [Nailed it!]

For more information:

Monday, Nov. 9 — The Worcester Review: Volume 36 launch event, 7 p.m., Rare Book Room, Goddard Library, Clark University, 950 Main St.  Enjoy selected readings from the 36th edition of this annual publication by the Worcester County Poetry Association, and a discussion of novelist Esther Forbes, who grew up in Worcester at the turn of the century (the one before Y2K, kids) and attended Bancroft School. More notably, Forbes was the author of “Johnny Tremain,” the seminal children’s book centering on life leading up to and during the Revolutionary War. Free and open to the public.

For more information:

Tuesday, Nov. 10 — “Robotics: What’s Next?” Venture Forum event, 5:30-8:30 p.m., Rubin Campus Center, WPI  The Venture Forum, a city group that works to support entrepreneurs in building successful tech businesses, continues its regular programming with this presentation that will explore the future of robotics, including robots designed specifically for consumer use and manufacturing and distribution. The event will include hands-on demonstrations and robotics experts Nick Pappas, vice president of MassVentures; John Kawola, CEO of Harvest Automation; Dr. Holly Yanco, director of the NERVE Center at UMass Lowell; and Kevin Harrington — hey, we know that guy! — co-founder of Neuron Robotics Cooperative and Technocopia.

Tickets are $15 for nonmembers. For Venture Forum Members and students, it’s free. [Students must register in advance; college ID will be requested at check-in; $5 registration fee for student walk-ins.]

For more information:

Wednesday, Nov. 11 Veterans Day parade, 11 a.m., steps off at Veterans Inc., 69 Grove St.  Just like we will never give up calling that arena on Foster Street the Centrum, this day will always be Armistice Day to us. (We’re also the kind of folks who ask for Coke even when we know it’s Pepsi.) The important thing today, though, is honoring all veterans through the years, from the original armistice of WWI to Eisenhower’s re-emphasis of the holiday after WWII, from the aging and still-struggling Vietnam vet population to the men and women returning from the Middle East and Afghanistan. Today, we remember their courage, sacrifice, and examples of altruism and service.

The city’s ceremonies actually begin with an 8 a.m. pancake breakfast at Veterans Inc., and include a noon ceremony at City Hall, where the parade ends, and a 2 p.m. wreath-laying at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Green Hill Park.

For more information:

Thursday, Nov. 12 — “Torture, Trauma, and the Moral Injuries of War,” 7:30 p.m., Razzo Hall, Traina Center for the Arts, 92 Downing St., Clark University  Lt. Col. Bill Edmonds, a decorated counterterrorism and counterinsurgency expert, is the author of “God is Not Here: A Soldier’s Struggle with Torture, Trauma, and the Moral Injuries of War.” At the height of the Iraqi insurgency in 2005 the colonel was assigned to train and supervise Iraqi armed forces, and through his role in international military interrogations, he found himself submerged in the worst of humanity, conflicted and disillusioned. His insight is compelling testimony to the realities of war.

For more information:

Friday, Nov. 13 The Short, Short Story Film Festival, 7-11 p.m., Sprinkler Factory, 38 Harlow St.  No time for a short story, documentary or an especially insightful tweet? No sweat. Get on down to the Sprinkler Factory and broaden your time-strapped horizons with a pair of distinct programs featuring sets of short films no longer than six minutes. The films are divided into “Heartstrings” and “Headtrips,” designed to prompt viewers to explore the fragility of human bonds, mortality and self-acceptance (heartstrings); and tales of unforeseen outcomes, surreality and satirical looks at human weakness (headtrips).

The show runs an identical program Saturday, Nov. 14. Suggested donation is $10.

For more information:

Saturday, Nov. 14 YOU Ball Gala for Kids, 6 p.m., Mechanics Hall, 321 Main St.  YOU Inc. is in its fifth decade of providing a wide range of services for children and their families in and around Worcester. Its programs support more than 13,000 individuals, according to the agency’s website. That level of service requires many things, not least of which is the mighty dollar. So, consider joining Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito and founding CEO Moe Boisvert at Mechanics Hall for an evening of dinner, dancing and fundraising to support the organization’s many future success stories. Tickets are $85, or $800 for a table of 10.

For more information:

Saturday, Nov. 14  —  Torathon 2015: Our Global Jewish Journey, 5:15-10 p.m., Congregation Beth Israel, 15 Jamesbury Drive  Our musical taste ranges from Simon & Garfunkel to Kanye West, but forgive us if we’re not completely up to speed on this genre. We assume because the location is not the Palladium we can leave the jeans and earplugs at home. “The area’s top Jewish musicians present a Tribute concert marking the 5th anniversary yartzeit of Debbie Friedman, America’s leading singer and songwriter of Jewish religious songs and melodies,” the site reads.

For more information:

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