Calendar

Programs & Events

September

Wednesdays, September 7 & 14, 11am – 3pm
Office Al Fresco
The Museum invites you to bring your laptop and latest project to the deck of our historic house, overlooking the rose garden. Let the sound of bird song and the smell of roses inspire your work. We’ll provide power outlets, free WiFi access, a chair and table, plus access to the restrooms from 11am to 3pm each Wednesday until the season ends. Cold water is available for sale inside the mansion. There’s no charge for using our Office Al Fresco, but if any users want to donate to the cause, we’ll invest it back into the program.

To guarantee your space, use our Appointlet booking system. Work stations are made available on a first-come, first served basis. Book today.

Thursday, September 8, 5pm – 7pm
The Five Pillars of Hip Hop
A Partnership between New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park & 3rd Eye Youth Empowerment

This is the last of five monthly events exploring the Pillars of Hip Hop (mcing, djing, b-people, graffiti, knowledge) through performance, visual art, and sharing. Find out more about the Five Pillars, and the history and origin of these traditions. The event in the garden includes live music, spoken word and art. Know a young person who might be interested in participating in this event? Drop a line to Third Eye at: info@3rdEyEUnlimited.org. This event is free as part of AHA Night and is open to all ages.

Sunday, September 11, 1pm: Tea / 2pm: Film Screening
Downton Abbey  SOLD OUT!
This special event is a partnership between Cinema New Bedford, Rotch-Jones-Duff House, and New Bedford Food Tours.
Spend a Sunday afternoon in the 1920s. Your day starts in the RJD historic garden, with an English-style tea service under the tent, including tea and desserts from As It Crumbles. Explore the RJD Mansion and learn more about both the “upstairs” and “downstairs” residents during the early 20th Century. Watch the first DOWNTON ABBEY film from the beloved series at 2pm in the parlors of the mansion. Tickets to this Yorkshire Experience include the film screening, Yorkshire tea, desserts, sandwiches and Museum admission. 

DOWNTON ABBEY (2019) is a historical drama film written by Julian Fellowes, series creator and writer of the television series of the same name. The film continues the storyline from the series, with much of the original cast returning. Post-Edwardian period dress is highly encouraged!

Thursday, September 15, 11:30am – noon
Family Storytime
In Partnership with the New Bedford Free Public Library
Meet in the mansion parlors, or garden, for an engaging half hour of stories for the whole family. After the stories, take home a family fun craft kit to collaborate and create together! RJD Family Storytime will run every third Thursday of the month, through November. Open to all ages with accompanying adult. Free.

Thursday, September 15, 5pm
Annual Meeting & Reception
Join the museum’s staff, board, Corporators and fellow members for a look back at the past year of museum activities. Free admission.

“The Democratization of Public Spaces”

The American Planning Association’s recently adopted Planning for Equity Policy Guide reminds us that equity is an ongoing practice for those who believe better public space can change lives and communities. Public spaces that enrich our communities must be welcoming and accessible for the many. The pursuit of that equity must be planned for and intentional. Mary will discuss the City’s goals, objectives and plans to remove barriers to ensure equitable access to public spaces.

Speaker: Mary S. Rapoza has been the Director of the New Bedford Parks, Recreation & Beaches Department since 2013. She has a great love of public spaces and engaging children and adults in the great outdoors for health and recreation. Her commitment to improving the quality of life and health for all New Bedford residents through the development of city wide recreational opportunities and beautiful, safe, open spaces is reflected in the new park construction and park rehabilitations that have occurred during her tenure as the Director of the parks department.

New Bedford Parks Recreation & Beaches has constructed several new parks under Mary’s direction including Captain Jack Peterson Dog Park, Noah’s Place Playground at Marine Park, the renovated bowling greens at Hazelwood Park and currently Abolition Row Park with the NB Historical Society. Her department manages the annual Play in the Park Summer Food Program which distributes over 88,000 free meals to city youth at parks, playgrounds and summer programs throughout the city, the Full STEAM Ahead program at the Ricketson Nature Center and Andrea McCoy Recreation Center, flag football, pre-K soccer and other recreational and enrichment programs.

Mary’s experience as a Landscape Designer and environmental educator brings a rich background to her position as Director. She received a Graduate Certificate in Landscape Design from the Landscape Institute at Harvard University. As a professional Landscape Designer, Mary has designed and managed the installation of private estates, commercial sites and public parks and spaces. She previously worked as an environmental educator at the Children’s Museum in Dartmouth and the Buzzards Bay Coalition.

Thursday, Friday, & Saturday
September 22, 23, & 24, 7pm
**CANCELED**
Locally Sourced: A Night of Homegrown Performance
The Collective’s Summer Series

This week’s performances of Locally Sourced have been canceled due to covid. The Collective is working to refund all purchased tickets.

Saturday,  September 24, 1pm
Abolition Row Walking Tour
Presented by The New Bedford  Preservation Society and the Rotch-Jones-Duff House and Garden Museum
Take a tour of the structures and people in connection to the story of abolitionism in New Bedford. The tour will conclude at the Rotch-Jones-Duff House and Garden Museum and light refreshments will be served. Your tour guide is Jan Da Silva,  member of the Board of Directors of the New Bedford Preservation Society. Ms. Da Silva is the Program Manager, Visitor Experience and Resource Stewardship for New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park. Meet at the corner of Union Street and Seventh Street. Free.

Photo Credit: Nathan and Polly Johnson House,  New Bedford Historical Society


October

Saturday, October 1, 2pm
House Tour
Enjoy a one-hour guided tour of the Rotch-Jones-Duff mansion. Various RJD docents and staff conduct tours. Free with the price of admission.

Wednesday, October 12, 5pm – 7pm
Rotchtoberfest
Carve or paint and contribute a pumpkin for the Great Pumpkin Parade (please bring your own pumpkin). The Museum provides carving tools, paint and inspiration. Not carving? Enjoy beer from Moby Dick Brewing, lawn games, and donuts and cider. All ages are welcome to this free autumnal event. 

Thursday, October 13, 4pm – 8pm
The Great Pumpkin Parade
Visit the grounds to see a display of Jack-O-Lanterns, carved with care by community members. Inside the mansion, children can participate in a scavenger hunt with prizes. Refreshments served. Suggested donation: $5 Individuals / $10 Family. This event is also part of AHA night.

Thursday, October 20, 11:30am – noon
Family Storytime
In Partnership with the New Bedford Free Public Library
Meet in the mansion parlors, or garden, for an engaging half hour of stories for the whole family. After the stories, take home a family fun craft kit to collaborate and create together! RJD Family Storytime will run every third Thursday of the month, through November. Open to all ages with accompanying adult. Free.

Friday & Saturday, October 21, 22, 6pm
Mystery at the Mansion: Gala

The Collective returns with an all new mystery to solve in this participatory theatrical event. The setting this year is a fictional museum gala where guests can expect a red carpet, paparazzi, and plenty of suspects. Guests at the party will help investigate the crime by seeking clues and interviewing suspects.  Arrive promptly for your red-carpet entry. “Gala” dress is encouraged. A seasonal menu of hors d’oeuvres is provided; guests can opt for a cash, or full bar and their choice of date. Tickets on sale now! 
Tier One: $50 includes entry, nosh, 1 drink ticket, and cash bar.
Tier Two: $80 includes entry, nosh, and open bar


November

Saturday, November 5, 2pm
House Tour
Enjoy a one-hour guided tour of the Rotch-Jones-Duff mansion. Various RJD docents and staff conduct tours. Free with the price of admission.

Thursday, November 10
Game Night
4-6pm, Family Games
6-8pm, 21+ Games
Assemble some teammates and head to the RJD Mansion. The early hours feature family-oriented games. The later hours are for 21+ games. Bring your favorite board game, Magic Deck and beverages (no red wine or Twister in the mansion please!) The Museum provides classic board games and teammates as needed, plus low-priced snacks for the evening. This event is free as part of AHA Night.

Thursday, November 17, 11:30am – noon
Family Storytime
In Partnership with the New Bedford Free Public Library
Meet in the mansion parlors, or garden, for an engaging half hour of stories for the whole family. After the stories, take home a family fun craft kit to collaborate and create together! RJD Family Storytime will run every third Thursday of the month, through November. Open to all ages with accompanying adult. Free.

Friday, November 25, 4pm – 7pm
Friday Night Brights
Visit the RJD for family-friendly fun, music and refreshment. Wear your ugliest holiday sweater and seasonal accessories. The Cookie Challenge is in its third year where weekend-warrior bakers bring batches of their favorite cookie recipes for you to sample and judge. Activities will be outside, weather permitting. The decorated mansion will also be open as space allows for touring. Suggested donation: $5 individual / $10 family.

Sunday, November 27, 1pm
Children’s Tea
Bring your favorite doll or plushy animal friend for tea in the decorated parlors of the mansion. Dress-up is encouraged, but not at all required. Fee includes tea, desserts, and admission to the Museum. Recommended for ages 5 and up, with adult companion. $25 Member adult / $30 Public adult /$10 per child; advance reservations required.

Tuesday, November 29
Seatings available at 2pm & 4pm
Afternoon Tea in the Parlors
Enjoy tea and scones in the festively decorated double parlors of the mansion. Festive dress is encouraged. Fee includes tea, desserts, and admission to the Museum. $25 Members / $30 Public; advance reservations required.


December

Thursday, December 8, 4pm – 6pm
Christmas on County
Drop in to see the decked halls of the mansion and hear from docents about some of the holiday customs held by residents of the house. This event is part of AHA night. Donations are accepted in lieu of a fee.

The Rotch-Jones-Duff House & Garden Museum
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