Five Reasons to Leave the House This Weekend

Check out five fun events happening in Boston this weekend, including Wine Riot, ice skating, and a conversation with Henry David Thoreau.

Photo by  Howard Walfish on Flickr.

Wine Riot. / Photo by Howard Walfish on Flickr

A Conversation with Henry David Thoreau

What was life like for Henry David Thoreau? This weekend, just ask him! Thoreau, portrayed by historian Richard Smith, will visit the Old South Meeting House on Friday. The notable Transcendentalist will answer your questions about his time at Walden Pond and in Boston as well as read selections of his writings. Tea and cookies will be served at noon, with Thoreau to join soon after. “One of the most unique things about the event is not just the fact that you have this actor portraying a well-known literary figure, but how it ties into the history of the building.” says Lauren Reddy, director of marketing events at the Old South Meeting House. “The literary history here, and being a member of the newly formed Literary Cultural District, brings it more to life than if you were going to a bookstore.”

$6, Friday, October 24, 12 p.m., Old South Meeting House, 310 Washington St.,

BBF at the French Cultural Center

As a part of the 6th annual Boston Book Festival, the French Cultural Center will host conversations with three French authors, both in English and in French. Jean-Claude Redonnet will present his books Héritages Francophones and Les Monologues de Jeanne Amiel. Physical chemist Hervé This will speak about molecular cuisine in his book Note-by-Note Cooking. And French philosopher Marc Crépon from the ENS will discuss his book The Thought of Death and the Memory of War with Yale professor Jay Winter. “This weekend at the French Cultural Center there will be molecular cuisine, philosophy of war, francophone heritages, among other topics to explore,” says Catheline van den Branden, president and executive director of the French Cultural Center. “You don’t need to speak French to enjoy [it], and we’re always delighted to welcome new visitors to our community.”

Saturday, October 25, 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., French Cultural Center, 53 Marlborough St.,

Wine Riot Boston

Calling all oenophiles: Wine Riot is coming! A spin on traditional wine tasting, Wine Riot gives attendees tastes of hundreds of new wines. Crash courses on wine tips and tricks and interactive booths make for a delicious and educational experience. The event’s description boasts, “Fueling your night of conquest is a tireless DJ, photo booth, temporary tattoos, and a few thousand of your closest friends.” The event also includes an app which can track the wines you like most and will show you where to buy them later.

$60 general admission, Friday, October 24, through Sunday, October 26, Park Plaza Castle, 130 Columbus Ave., see riot schedule at

Boston Vegetarian Food Festival

The city’s two-day Vegetarian Food Fest is back. Peruse and sample 120 natural vegetarian food exhibitors, check out natural grocery store exhibits, learn about ways to help animals and the environment, listen to cookbook authors, and see a few cooking demos. Best of all, it’s free. Organized by the Boston Vegetarian Society, the festival is the longest running one of its kind in the U.S.

Saturday, October 25, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sunday, October 26, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Reggie Lewis Athletic Center, 1350 Tremont St,

Ice: Dance 2014

Rated by the New York Times as one of the top 10 theatre picks in New York City, Ice Theatre of New York is coming to Boston. World-class figure skaters and ice dancers will perform at the Skating Club of Boston, featuring new choreographed pieces including work by Emmy-winning choreographer Chucky Klapow. “People are used to seeing figure skating in a competitive aspect or more of a Disney on Ice kind of thing, but this show is actually more of a combination of figure skating, dance, and even a little bit of theatre, so it’s really unique,” says Jimmy Morgan, the web and social media coordinator for the Skating Club of Boston. “Being a figure skater myself, I’ve never even really seen a show like this before.”

$25 general admission, Saturday, October 25, 7:30 p.m., Skating Club of Boston, 1240 Soldiers Field Road,