By Sophie Cannon, deputy arts & entertainment editor
Thursday, Nov. 17
Thanksgiving isn’t the only cool Thursday this month. The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum celebrates every third Thursday of the month with a night-time social event. This event’s theme is “Connect”, and to exemplify that theme, there will be hands-on art-making stations, conversation starters and other opportunities to connect with yourself and others throughout the night. There will also be a cash bar and a snack, drink and dinner cafe open during the event. Advance tickets are being sold here, so plan ahead, especially if you are coming with a bigger group. 5:30 – 9 p.m.; 25 Evans Way, Boston; $5 – $15.
Friday, Nov. 18
Tokyo street fashion meets the fashionable Newbury Street as the clothing store UNIQLO makes its grand debut on Nov. 18. Celebrate the store front’s opening in style with giveaways, live music, free activities and more. To start the morning off, the first 100 customers in line will receive a gift card with a value ranging from $5 to $100. From noon to 5 p.m., iHeartRadio will be performing a live show inside the store. From 4 to 8 enjoy free matcha tea and calligraphy demonstrations. Throughout the day check in for freebees and other giveaway opportunities. 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.; 341 Newbury St, Boston; free.
Saturday, Nov. 19
Let’s skip Thanksgiving and get right to the good stuff; time to decorate the tree! Join Boston holiday lovers at Faneuil Hall for the annual Tree Lighting Spectacular. Enjoy a live broadcast and entertainment from WBZ-TV, as well as other festivities throughout the afternoon to prepare you for the main attraction at the 8 p.m. lighting of the enormous tree. At 3 p.m., bands will start the party. The current lineup includes The Revels Singers, Scullers Jazz Club and the Them Apples Band and more. After the tree is lit up and the confetti cannons have cooled off, The Sugarbabies Band will perform a concert from 9 – 10 p.m. 3 – 9 p.m.; Faneuil Hall Market; free.
Sunday, Nov. 20
Spread the love throughout Boston on Sunday to celebrate Boston Gratitude Day. Everyone could use a little appreciation, and Boston Common is helping you give thanks to those who have impacted you this year. Celebrate with free apple cider doughnuts, live music and free hugs. Bring your friends and enjoy the rest of what Boston Common has to offer. If you can’t attend the event, you can still embrace the holiday spirit and send someone a free gift from www.forward.gift. Regardless, make sure to tell someone you love them, hold a door open and share a smile. Noon – 1 p.m.; Boston Common; free.
Monday, Nov. 21
Are you the next WebMD? Are you interested in learning more about the founder and director of Northeastern’s Wellness Technology Research Group? Andrea Grimes Parker, Ph.D., and assistant professor in both the College of Computer and Information Science and the Bouve College of Health Sciences, will be speaking about her experiences in the field and how her research has helped shape Northeastern’s tech-savvy Wellness Technology program. With an ecological approach and an eye on the socio-cultural factors that play into our health decisions, Parker will provide a fascinating look at this modern enterprise that has the chance to save lives through technology. Noon – 1 p.m.; 177 Huntington Ave., 12th Floor, Room #1205; free.
Tuesday, Nov. 22
From Super Mario to Cards Against Humanity, Player 1/Player 2 at Laugh Boston calls for all gamer girls and guys to come out and get together. The event is a gaming event self entitled as the ultimate social gaming experience. Ticket holders are invited to stay the entire evening, and non-ticket holders are invited to come for the first hour for free gaming and refreshments. As the event goes on, gamers will take a break to listen to a series of speakers, podcasts and other online gaming news surrounding the gaming world. There will also be a live podcast recording. To close out the night, open gaming will resume with more food and drinks. You can purchase tickets here if you plan to stay the whole night. 7 – 11:55 p.m.; 425 Summer St., Boston; free before 8 p.m., $10 after 8 p.m.
Wednesday, Nov 23
Detox before you dig in for your Thanksgiving feast this Wednesday with a barre workout. Blissful Barre is an event put on by Studio U, one of the best multi-purpose workout studios in Boston. This workout is a heated barre detox, so be prepared to sweat it out to pump-up music in an upbeat and motivational environment. This class costs $5 if you bring a canned good to donate to charity, and you can register here. If you happen to be a member of Studio U, the class only costs you one canned good. The food will be donated to Newton Food Pantry this year, so you can feel good about your body and your soul after leaving. 1 – 2 p.m.; 1065 Commonwealth Ave, Boston; $5 plus a canned good for charity.
Photo Courtesy Putneypics, Creative Commons