Regional Brief

Spring plant sale

The Middlesex Conservation District will be holding its annual Spring Plant Sale on April 25 (3-6 p.m.) and April 26 (8 a.m. to noon) at the 4H Fairgrounds, 51 South Chelmsford Road, Westford. All items may be ordered in advance for best selection through March 31; the sale features tree and shrub seedling, perennials, fruits, groundcovers and garden supplies (cow manure, rain barrels, compost bins, etc.). To place an order please visit http://www.middlesexconservation.org/ and click on "Spring Plant Sale," or call 978 692 9395 to request a catalog. All proceeds benefit the district's conservation programs, protecting soils and waters in Middlesex County.

Calendar

SATURDAY, FEB. 15

Gardeners Exchange: Join the Gardeners Exchange for "Native Plants: Right Plant, Right Place," with garden designer Ellen Souza at the Lunenburg Library, 10:30 a.m. to noon. Find out which native plants are most suitable for the various conditions in your yard. The presenter, owner of Turkey Hill Brook Farm, is a garden coach and author of "The Green Garden: A New England Guide to Planning, Planting & Maintaining the Eco-friendly Habitat Garden." First-time nonmembers free with pre-registration. Call 978-448-9311 to pre-register or for more information.

SUNDAY, FEB. 16

Animal Adventures!: 1-2 p.m., Fruitlands Museum, 102 Prospect Hill Road, Harvard. Children under 14, $5; adult members $10; adult nonmembers $15; Includes admission to WinterFest. Meet a menagerie of critters from New England and beyond when Animal Adventures comes back to Fruitlands. Learn about behavior, habitat and conservation in this interactive program. Space is limited. To register, call 978-456-3924 ext. 291 or email programming@fruitlands.org.

Organ recital: Simon Johnson, the organist and assistant director of music at St. Paul's Cathedral in London, will present an organ recital at Groton School at 4 p.m. Admission is free and the public is welcome. Johnson was scheduled to perform at Groton School last year but had to cancel because he was asked to play at Margaret Thatcher's funeral. His Groton School recital will include a diverse repertoire of 20th-century and contemporary, baroque and romantic pieces, all designed to showcase Groton's historic Aeolian-Skinner organ, a prototype of the "American Classic" organ. Last March, Johnson accompanied the Groton School Choir during a performance at St. Paul's Cathedral in London.

TUESDAY, FEB. 18

Family Pajama Jam: Musical story hour for young families at Indian Hill Music School. Come dressed in your pajamas to sing, dance, play instruments, and hear stories: 6:30-7:30 p.m., Indian Hill Music School, 36 King St., Littleton. FREE admission. Learn more at 978-486-9524 or www.indianhillmusic.org. This event is sponsored by DCU for Kids.

"Carrying On" for suicide survivors: The next meeting of the support group "Carrying On" will be held from 7-9 p.m. in the Great Room of the Parish House of First Parish Unitarian Church on Powder House Row in Groton. Anyone who has survived the loss of a loved one to suicide is welcome to attend this meeting. "Carrying On" was formed in the spring of 2010 as a peer led support group for people who had lost a loved one through suicide. We strive to provide a safe place to talk about those we have lost and to provide a supportive environment to help each other heal. Refreshments are served. Anyone with an interest in the subject matter is welcome. For any additional information call Steve or Deb Boczenowski at 978.448.5013.

TUESDAY, FEB. 18 and

WEDNESDAY, FEB. 19

NRWA Winter Explorations: February Vacation Program: Come explore the exciting winter world with us! The Nashua River Watershed Association invites children ages 7 to 10 from all communities to join us for "Winter Explorations" during February vacation week. The program runs on Tuesday, Feb. 18 and Wednesday, Feb. 19, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the NRWA River Resource Center at 592 Main St. in Groton. We'll build snow forts, look for signs of animals, try some outdoor science experiments, and have fun investigating nature's surprises. Environmental scientist Mary Marro will help children learn that there is a lot to see in the winter! Sign up for one day or attend both days. The fee is $45/day for NRWA members; $55/day for nonmembers. Pre-registration is required. To pre-register, or for more information, please contact Mary Marro, NRWA at 978-448-0299, or email MaryM@NashuaRiverWatershed.org.

THURSDAY, FEB. 20

'Bach's Lunch' concert: Indian Hill Music School's free monthly concert series presents folk music from around the world with cellist Aristides Rivas and friends. Two shows: 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., 36 King St., Littleton. Coffee, tea and cookies served; bring your lunch. FREE admission. Reserve a table at 978-486-9524 ext. 116. Learn more at www.indianhillmusic.org.

Depression and suicide prevention: 7 p.m., Community Forum at Trinity Chapel, Shirley. All are welcome to come and join in the discussion. Learn the risk factors, understand the causes and symptoms, and learn how and where to get help. The session will be held at Trinity Chapel, 186 Center Rd., Shirley, beginning with gathering and refreshments, followed by the presentation and discussion from 7:30-9 p.m.

FRIDAY, FEB. 21

Images of multiculturalism film and discussion series: 7 p.m., Littleton First Church Unitarian. The films "Model Minority: Do the Math and the Bus Line and the Color Line" will be shown in the vestry, 19 Foster St., Littleton, followed by a lively discussion and refreshments. This film series explores the lives and experiences of the "other" and expands our awareness of our neighbors as well as nearby and often marginalized individuals and groups.

SATURDAY, FEB. 22

Indoor flea market: "One man's trash is another man's treasure." 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Trinity Chapel, 188 Center Road, Shirley. Free admission, light lunch available.

SUNDAY, FEB. 23

Orchestra showcase: Join us for lunch before the concert, 12:45 p.m., Indian Hill Music, Littleton. Menu: Zesty Lemon Caesar Salad, Vegetable Lasagna Supreme, Tomato Provencal, Tiramisu -- $25 per person; advanced reservation required. Phone orders due by Feb. 14 at 5 p.m.; online orders due by Monday, Feb. 17 at 5 p.m., 978-486-9524 ext. 116. At Littleton High School -- know the score: 2 p.m.; concert: 3 p.m.

MWCC Hosting FAFSA Day: Mount Wachusett Community College will host FAFSA Day Massachusetts at 1 p.m. at its Gardner campus, 444 Green St. The annual event provides free assistance to students and families seeking to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The FAFSA is the federally required form for all students seeking federal or state financial aid for higher education. Students and parents should each bring the following information: A FAFSA Personal Identification Number (PIN); Social Security Number; driver's license number; most recent federal tax return; most recent W-2 or year-end pay stub; untaxed income records; bank statement(s); business and investment records; and an alien registration card for non-US citizens. Students who were born before Jan. 1, 1991 do not need to bring parental information. Registration is strongly encouraged; visit www.fafsaday.org or call 978-630-9169.

TUESDAY, FEB. 25

How to go to college...without going broke!: College Planning Services will present a FREE dinner seminar on college financing at the Westford Regency Inn, 219 Littleton Road, Westford, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. You will learn tips on how to maximize your free scholarship money and which colleges have the most scholarship money to distribute. Reservations are required. Space is limited. Please sign up at www.CollegePlanningServices.org or call John DeLorey of College Planning Services at 978-462-1666.

THURSDAY, FEB. 27

Birds: The epic adventures of a Massachusetts bird photographer: 6:30-8 P.M., Hazen Memorial Library, 3 Keady Way, Shirley. Narrated slideshow by award-winning wildlife photographer Peter Cristoph sponsored by the Friends of Oxbow National Wildlife Refuge in conjunction with the Shirley Conservation Commission. For information, contact Rona at 978-779-2259. Donations are suggested. Coming up in March...

Science of Building Things: Construction is fun and we'd like to share the science behind engineering structures, as well as what we might learn from some of nature's engineers. The Nashua River Watershed Association invites young engineers to join us for the "Science of Building Things" on Saturday, March 1, from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m., at the NRWA River Resource Center at 592 Main St. in Groton. We'll build things out of dough, snow, Legos, wood, paper, fabric, ice cubes, and much more. We will experiment with building things both inside and outside the River Resource Center. Science Saturday is open to children from all communities ages 7 to 11. The fee is $20 for NRWA members; $25 for nonmembers. For siblings who wish to attend, pay full price for the first child, half- price for the second. Pre-registration is required; contact Mary Marro at 978-448-0299 or email MaryM@NashuaRiverWatershed.org.

Concert at the Healing Garden: The Virginia Thurston Healing Garden will hold a "Concert at the Garden" on Sunday, March 9, at 3 p.m. The Garden welcomes Harmonie Transverse, a flute ensemble of up to 14 members playing piccolo, C Flute, G Alto Flute, Bass Flute and Contra Bass Flute. The Healing Garden is located at 145 Bolton Road in Harvard and offers support, educational and therapeutic services to those affected by cancer. Admission is $10 for Garden members, $15 for nonmembers. All proceeds benefit the services of the Healing Garden. Visit www.healinggarden.net for event updates or cancellations.

Love in Motion benefit concert

Friday, March 14, 7 p.m.

Free admission, Ashby Elementary School, Main Street, Ashby

The "Love in Motion" benefit concert brings together the members of the community of Ashby and the surrounding towns to raise funds for the Roland Barrette Care Fund and the Ashby Food Pantry.

The evening is jam-packed with events that include 50 raffle items, silent art auction, silent auction for "Muppets" style puppets, refreshments and live music by "The Shift."

The Roland Barrette Care Fund was established to provide financial resources to Roland Barrette, a resident of Ashby who was injured in November while volunteering his time to fix the backboards on the town basketball court.

The Ashby Food Pantry is just starting up again, and is in need of nonperishable food items to take care of those in need in town. After opening in February, it will provide services to Ashby residents twice per month, on the second and fourth Tuesdays from 6-7:30 p.m. They are handicapped-accessible and located in the Ashby Town Hall.

For information or to donate to the benefit, please call Debbie at 978-906-5081 or email Scherrie at scherrie@sanctuaryashby.org.