Plymouth’s Burial Hill history tour series returns next month with a program based on the theme of “Democracy in Action: Plymouth’s Town Meeting.” Led by Anne Mason, the executive director of the town’s Antiquarian Society, the tour will take place on Saturday, April 1, beginning at 1 p.m. Plymouth’s Burial Hill, the town’s first cemetery, includes more than 2,000 headstones and monuments dating from 1681 to 1957 and providing records of local residents across three centuries.
The Pilgrims held the first town meeting in Plymouth in 1622, then called “Court Day.” According to the Massachusetts Historical Society, Governor William Bradford held the meeting to divide land among families. Other new Massachusetts towns followed the Plymouth example and held annual town meetings as well. Town Meeting remains Plymouth’s local form of government today.
Themed Burial Hill tours will take place on the first Saturday of every month through November. They are free and no registration is required. Participants meet at the ancient burial ground on School Street, adjacent to Plymouth’s historic First Parish Church. Tours begin at the top of Burial Hill and last for about an hour.
Upcoming tours will treat the themes of “Marms & Mentors: Plymouth’s Early Teachers” in May, led by Donna Curtin, executive director of Pilgrim Hall Museum; “Creatures Great & Small: Animals in Plymouth’s Past” in June; and “Coming to America: Immigrant Stories on Burial Hill” in July. For more information, go to pilgrimhall.org/
While cemeteries fascinate, gardens revitalize. The Company Theatre in Norwell is staging “The Secret Garden,” an award-winning musical based on Frances Hodgson Burnett’s classic novel. Set in the early 1900s, the play follows the life of an orphaned English girl sent from India to England where she discovers an abandoned garden that teaches her the wonder and beauty of the natural cycle. Directed by Company Theatre co-founder Zoe Bradford, the show features a full orchestra, enchanting scenery, and some live animals.
The character of Dickon, an English “animal-charming teenager,” is played by Tim Bevens of Hingham, who “will be acting alongside live animals, including a pair of Nigerian Dwarf goats,” Bradford said. “‘The Secret Garden’” is a hauntingly beautiful tale, a Victorian ghost story, and a love letter to the promise of spring and hope renewed,” she said.
Performances continue on Sunday, March 19, and run through Sunday, April 2, including evening and matinée performances. General admission tickets are $48 and premium seating tickets are $56. For tickets and performance times, go to companytheatre.com or call the box office at 781-871-2787.
Live entertainment extends to Duxbury, where the South Shore Folk Music Club presents a “coffeehouse” evening with singer-songwriters Sparrow Blue and an open mic for volunteer performers at the club’s performance space at First Parish Church, 842 Tremont St. The coffeehouse takes place on Saturday, March 25, beginning at 7 p.m. Consisting of acoustic roots songwriters Katy Boc and Todd Nickerson, Sparrow Blue “features fiddle, guitars, mandolin, banjo, harmonica and sweet, vocal harmonies,” the club organizers said. “Their music blends folk, country, bluegrass and old-time influences together with well-crafted songwriting, to paint a musical picture of times gone by, hope, hard times and new beginnings.”
The evening’s open mic welcomes “all kinds of music and spoken word” performance. Participants can sign up when the club’s doors open at 6:30 p.m. Admission costs $9 for club members, $10 for nonmembers.
In Plymouth, the live music performance series Project Arts Plymouth will hold a benefit in support of the nonprofit organization’s director and founder Mike Landers, who is recovering from a “life-altering stroke” suffered four months ago. Under Landers’ direction, Project Arts has produced a long-running, free live music series each summer on the Plymouth waterfront. The benefit will support his family’s expenses during the recovery period. Comedian Christine Hurley will emcee the event scheduled for Friday, March 31, from 6 to 11 p.m. at Plymouth Memorial Hall, 83 Court St. The evening will offer live music, light hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar, raffles, and auctions. To sponsor the benefit or contribute an auction item, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
The newly renamed Dedham Museum & Archive is currently housing “a unique World War II exhibit based entirely on materials (from letters to guns) lent by Dedham descendants of service men and women.” To mount the exhibit, the town’s historical society asked community members to share stories and material from their family members who served abroad or on the home front. More than 40 families loaned personal items that belonged to service members, including letters, memorabilia, uniforms, medals, scrapbooks, trinkets, “war trophies,” and other remembrances. These contributions, organizers said, tell the town’s war stories.
Located at 612 High St., the museum is open Tuesday through Friday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The exhibit will continue through Memorial Day. For more information, go to dedhamhistorical.org.
Robert Knox can be reached at email@example.com.