The most fun you’ll have with a calendar of events all week. And you just might learn something, too.
Sunday, Nov. 26 — 35th annual Holiday Festival of Crafts, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Worcester Center for Crafts, 25 Sagamore Road Still nursing that shiner from your unsuccessful Wal-Mart tussle for the last available Nintendo Switch on Black Friday? Soothe those wounds on Sunday, which marks the end of a three-day run for this “buy local” Worcester tradition that features the handmade goods of more than 60 artisans from across New England.
A $5 donation is requested (free for children under 12); the indoor event offers free parking and an on-site cafe. Complete your holiday shopping early and safely — we can almost guarantee no hand-to-hand combat for the wares on sale.
Wednesday. Nov. 29 — Brown Bag Concert: “All that (Holiday) Jazz,” Noon-1 p.m., Mechanics Hall, 321 Main St. ’Tis the season to be jazzy, and Wednesday’s installment of the lunchtime Brown Bag Concert Series featuring the WPI Big Band — with organists Lucia Falco, William Ness and Hook Organ impresario Will Sherwood — promises a “powerful mix of jazz with a twist.”
The 33-year-old series is always free, and always enjoyable. Bring your own lunch or buy one on the premises, and savor a syncopated take on some holiday classics.
Thursday, Nov. 30 — Worcester Chamber Music Society’s “A Bach Baroque Christmas,” 7:30-9:30 p.m., Worcester Historical Museum, 30 Elm St. We’re going for baroque as our yuletide musical journey continues: This one is highlighted by a pair of Johann Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos as part of a spirits-raising family concert.
Featured instrumentalists are Tracy Kraus, flute; Rohan Gregory, violin; Peter Sulski, viola; and Ariana Falk on cello. Guest participants are violinist Jesse Holstein and Andrus Madsen on the harpsichord.
Tickets are $36 for adults; college students pay $12 and it’s free for those under 17. EBT card-holders can attend for $5 by securing a discount code.
Friday, Dec 1 — Lecture: “A Radical Solution to the Race Problem,” 3:30-5 p.m., Rehm Library, College of the Holy Cross, 1 College St. We interrupt this week’s musical melange to take on this unfortunately too-timely topic. University of Pennsylvania assistant professor of philosophy Quayshawn Spencer leads a lecture and followup discussion that focuses on what he terms “the biological meaning applied to race when used by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget in reporting jobs, college loans, mortgages, etc., to defend [the] metaphysical position of radical racial pluralism.”
Spencer’s “Radical Solution” attempts to quash the view that “folk racial classification has no biological basis.” The talk is free and open to the public.
Saturday, Dec. 2 — Worcester Chorus presents “Handel’s Messiah,” 8-10 p.m., Mechanics Hall, 321 Main St. Hallelujah — we’re back to the music. No holiday season is complete without taking in the Worcester Chorus of Music Worcester’s annual ode to Handel’s masterwork. The event also features a full orchestra and The Festival Singers, a group of area vocal students being coached by the Worcester Chorus.
Acclaimed soloists Helen Karloski (alto), Jennifer Ferrand-Kelly (soprano), Kirk Bobkowksi (tenor) and Stephan Barnicle (bass) will also perform. Maestro and WPI director of choral activities Joshua Rohde will lead a pre-concert talk at 7 p.m.
Adult tickets start at $49; $17.50 for students and $7.50 for youths.