Upcoming Events and Event Catalog

Our Event Catalog provides general information about our recurring programs

Boston Park Plaza Hotel, Boston MA


Special Performance by

Hosted by

The Walden Woods Project Global Environmental Leadership Award recognizes significant achievement in the areas of climate stability, biodiversity, natural resource stewardship, human understanding, and global environmental policy. It draws its inspiration from the foundational thinking of Henry David Thoreau and builds upon his ageless principles of environmental stewardship, global interconnectedness, and personal responsibility.

This year’s award will be presented to Ed Begley Jr. and Rachelle Carson-Begley.

Ed Begley Jr. is the living definition of the word “environmentalist.” His lifelong commitment to protect the planet is legendary, from being one of the first to drive an electric car, to the design and construction of a net zero, solar-powered home he shares with his wife, Rachelle Carson-Begley. Well before the threat of climate change went mainstream, or recycling became a household word, Ed was a passionate advocate and spokesperson on behalf of the natural environment. Currently, Ed and Rachelle host a ‘living green’ podcast, called Begleyesque. The show features celebrities and green technology experts in conversations with the Begleys and includes a question-and-answer segment on the show’s topics from audience members. The ultimate goal is saving the planet, one person or household at a time.

Ed became widely known for his acclaimed portrayal of Dr. Victor Ehrlich on the long-running hit television series St. Elsewhere, for which he received six Emmy nominations. More recently, he was cast in Book Club with Diane Keaton, Candice Bergen, Mary Steenbergen and Jane Fonda; Ghostbusters with Kristen wiig and Melissa McCarthy; and a number of Christopher guest films, such as Mascots, A Mighty Wind, Best in Show and For Your Consideration. He has also appeared in the Seth Rogan/Judd Apatow film Pineapple Express. On television, Ed can be seen on ABC’s new comedy Bless This Mess with Lake Bell and Dax Shepard.

Rachelle Carson-Begley is one of the most recognized and respected environmentalists in the entertainment industry. She co-starred in the highly successful reality series, Living With Ed, shown on HgTV and Discovery’s Planet Green. Recently, the Begleys completed the construction of their new Platinum leeD certified home, which she documented in two web series — One Begley Street and Our Green Home.

One of Rachelle’s first acting jobs was a recurring role on the nighttime soap, Falcon Crest. She worked in theater, starting out at the prestigious Williamstown Theater Festival in Williamstown, Massachusetts, for two seasons before moving to the West Coast, where she has worked consistently in film, TV, and theater for 34 years. She will soon be seen in the upcoming film, Plus One, with her husband, Ed Begley Jr., and currently is developing a new show about the environment and, of course, living with Ed.

At the event, we will also present the Global Environmental Challenge Awards. To find out more about the awards and past recipients, visit our Global Environmental Leadership Award page.

Table/ticket packages available now for reception, dinner, award presentation and special performance.

Buy online or you can call 781-259-4700 or email wwproject@walden.org for reservations.

If you’d like to stay at the Boston Park Plaza , there’s a block of rooms for Walden Woods Project guests. Room block reservations end August 7 @ 5:00pm. For more information and to make your reservation click here.


Note: Professional development events for educators can be found on the educator event page

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Public Program Catalog

These events are offered on an on-going basis. When an event is scheduled, it will appear in the list of upcoming event at the top of this page.

Stewardship Lectures

The Walden Woods Project’s Thoreau Institute sponsors the Stewardship Lecture Series to celebrate innovation and creativity in environmental stewardship and to highlight the work of those who are promoting the values and ideas embodied by Thoreau. Each year the series features a number of talks, panel discussions, or media presentations featuring individuals at the cutting edge of a renewed environmental and social justice movement.

Recent Stewardship Lectures include:

  • Terry Tempest Williams, on her book The Hours of Land: A Personal Topography of American National Parks.
  • Laura Dassow Walls, in October 2016, gave the first public presentation of her biography, Henry David Thoreau: A Life, due out on July 12, 2017
  • David Gessner, All the Wild that Remains: Edward Abbey, Wallace Stegner, and the American West (on his book of the same title)
  • Robert M. Thorson, Walden’s Shore: Henry David Thoreau and Nineteenth Century Science (on his book of the same title)


We are always seeking excellent candidates for the lecture series and welcome any nominations and suggestions for the upcoming year. If you have an idea for a topic or presenter for our Stewardship Lecture Series, please contact the Walden Woods Project.

Modern Lyceum

“Thoreau’s Legacy: A Modern Lyceum” brings back the movement that spawned adult education in America with public forums that promoted thoughtful conversation and education about the social, intellectual and ethical questions of 19th-Century society. Guided by accomplished scholars on related topics, our Modern Lyceum will engage the public in an investigation of current social issues, with respect to and through the lens of Henry David Thoreau’s still-poignant writings and actions—incorporating many of his contemporaries.

Our Lyceum events will not seek to provide easy answers to today’s dilemmas and debates, but to highlight the way in which the voices and perspectives of the past can shed light on and help us to critically examine our current situation. We anticipate that our panelists will—all drawing from Thoreau’s texts and actions—come to slightly different conclusions to some very complex questions, and by doing so, broaden our perspectives on events of today.

Read more about Henry David Thoreau’s involvement with the 19th-Century Lyceum Movement in the United States.