Lowell is noted for its refurbished mills, cobblestone streets, National Park and museums and galleries.
But it has its share of appealing green spaces and flowering gardens, too, welcoming visitors on summer days.
Several are on view on Saturday, July 19, in a special Lowell Garden tour. Sponsored by the Whistler House Museum of Art and Lowell Philharmonic Orchestra, the self-guided tour lasts from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and features meditative and cutting gardens, whimsical sculptures, carved tree trunks, funerary art and a few believe-it-or-not plant oddities. The tour begins in lovely Whistler Park, adjacent to the Whistler House, 243 Worthen St., Lowell. Here you can purchase your program and take off. Visit whistlerhouse.org or call 978-452-7641.
- FRESH AIR FRIDAYS: Celebrating its third season, Fresh Air Fridays returns to Lowell each Friday from 2-6 p.m., beginning July 25 through the end of August, on the lower end of Market Street. Local artists will share and sell photography, paintings, soap, jewelry, glass, and other homemade products from several tents. Buskers will entertain and interaction is encouraged. The endeavor is a project of Arts League of Lowell, Cultural Organization of Lowell and Brew'd Awakening Coffeehaus.
- FABULOUS FIBERS: Lowell's American Textile History Museum and New England Quilt Museum have opened new exhibits this summer that pay tribute to the fiber arts in all their glory. At the ATHM it's Fiberart International, a juried exhibit from the Fiberarts Guild of Pittsburgh. Featured are 79 works by established and emerging artists that provide an opportunity to see current trends and innovations in this constantly evolving medium. On through Oct. 26. Visit athm.org for info. The NEQM presents Down by the Old Mill Stream, Rhode Island Quilts & Historic Fashions, on view through Oct. 5, an exhibit that explores how the new textile technology in the late 18th and 19th centuries benefited and inspired Rhode Island quilt makers. It features rare quilts, garments and related objects from the University of Rhode Island's Historic Textile and Costume Collection. Visit neqm.org for details.
- ICONIC SUMMER: The Museum of Russian Icons, 203 Union St., Clinton, hosts screenings this week of The Return of the Icon, one of its most popular gallery videos. The film tells the story of the Tikhvin Icon of the Mother of God, one of the most revered icons in the Russian Orthodox Church, and its journey into exile from war-torn Russia, then through Eastern Europe to safety in the U.S. and its return in the summer of 2004 to the restored monastery in Tikhvin. Screenings are on Thursday, July 17, at 3 and 5 p.m., and Saturday, July 19, at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Free with admission. And at the museum on Thursday, July 24, at 6 p.m., Eamon McCarthy Earls will lecture on "Cold War New England: How One Region Fought to Keep the Cold War from Getting Hot," in conjunction with the current exhibit Darker Shades of Red: Soviet Propaganda Art from the Cold War Era. $7, members; $10, non-members. Advance registration suggested at 978-598-5000, ext. 21.
- BASKETS GALORE: Fruitlands Museum, Prospect Hill Road, Harvard, presents Basket Weekend on Saturday and Sunday, July 26-27. Discover the museum's extensive basket collection in the Native American, Shaker and Fruitlands Farmhouse museums. In addition, there will be gallery tours, lectures, children's crafts and basket makers on hand, selling their wares and demonstrating. Visit fruitlands.org or call 978-456-3924 for details.
Nancye Tuttle's email address is email@example.com.