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QUICK BITE
Café Vanak's Eggplant spread.

Long-awaited Persian spot Café Vanak finally opens in Belmont

Halal Iranian and Middle Eastern specialties are on the menu, with many kebabs and perfect rice with a splash of saffron.

KEEPS ON GIVING
Mass Audubon’s Joppa Flats center in Newburyport is a great winter spot for the birdwatchers in your life.

Give the gift of belonging: Memberships to nonprofits pay dividends all year

With so many traditional holiday gift items hung up somewhere in the supply chain pipeline, this might be the time to opt for wrapping-optional gifts that open the doors to experiences all year long.

TRAVEL TROUBLESHOOTER

He missed his drop-off by a few miles. Thrifty charged him $932.

Matt Oyen dropped off his Thrifty rental car less than 4 miles from the right place. The cost: $932. Is that fair?

TRAVEL
Grace Wright, then 10, of Ferndale, Wash., and Jamie Selda, a guide with Extremely Canadian in Whistler, British Columbia, backcountry ski behind the Kees and Claire Hut, a new wilderness hut in the Spearhead Range several miles from Whistler-Blackcomb Ski Resort. The hut is named after Kees Brenninkmeyer from New Bedford, Mass., and Claire Dixon of Kamloops, B.C., two skiers who died while alpine touring in Canada’s Rocky Mountains.

US travelers can finally visit this new Whistler hut — if they can handle the trek to it

The Kees and Claire Hut, a wilderness hut in British Columbia’s Spearhead Range, is now open year-round.

Adult survivors of abuse must be heard

Advice from Amy Dickinson.

love letters
Love Letters

I’m writing Love Letters to get her back

"She’s now living with a new boyfriend in California."

GETTING SALTY
Meg Peters owns Crosby's Coffeehouse in Wrentham.

After a pregnancy loss, an idea for a new business began to percolate

We spoke with Meg Peters of Crosby’s Coffeehouse about her "overall reconsideration of life. You know: What is happiness? What is joy? What is success?"

HERE, THERE, AND EVERYWHERE
Turn your holiday shopping chores into a vacation with the Portland Harbor Hotel’s special package, Shopping State of Mind.

Shop-and-stay savings in Maine, a splurge in St. Lucia, and a jacket for your legs

Travel news you can use.


THE VIP LOUNGE
Javier Muñoz and Lin-Manuel Miranda appeared at the launch of CODE (RED) to Fight COVID on Oct. 13 in New York City.

Javier Muñoz on getting to the Arctic, packing nice clothes, and his deep love of Puerto Rico

We caught up with the actor, who will star in “Wild: A Musical Becoming,” at the American Repertory Theatre Dec. 5-Jan. 2., to talk about all things travel.

Drunken stepdaughter makes tragedy worse

Advice from Amy Dickinson.

Bird sightings on Cape Cod

Recent sightings on Cape Cod as reported to Mass Audubon.

It is safe to say Matt Judon won't be eating mac and cheese when he gathers for Thanksgiving on Thursday.

Patriots LB Matt Judon wants you to know there’s no place for mac and cheese at his Thanksgiving: ‘It’s not that good’

The 29-year-old newcomer unleashed a no-holds-barred tirade against macaroni and cheese, even though his family loves it.

John Michael Higgins as Principal Ronald Toddman in "Saved by the Bell."

John Michael Higgins on ‘Saved by the Bell,’ Letterman, and that time he shaved his head for ‘Seinfeld’

The character actor is “the new Mr. Belding” on Peacock’s reboot of “Saved by the Bell,” which is entering season two.

The Chokladballer is a chocolate oatmeal treat from Sweden.

For young chefs, eat2explore opens up a world of possibilities

Family cooking kits combine world cuisine preparation with cultural discovery.

Microplane’s new Mason Jar Lid Grater Set, which include a medium ribbon and fine graters.

Microplane grater makes your Mason jars even more essential

New tool fits into wide-mouth canning jars to catch shavings.

Saved by the 90s is coming to Big Night Live the day after Thanksgiving on Nov. 26.

Your high school mixtape called and you’re going out this Friday

Led by Berklee College of Music grads, the nationally touring night of nostalgia and cover bands bring a way-back playlist to life.