Harvard Square Winter Carnival Kicks Off Jan. 17

Harvard squareCourtesy of Denise Jillson.

It’s time for chocolate, chili, and Celtic music—Harvard Square’s 11th annual Winter Carnival starts on Thursday and runs through March.

First up is the Boston Celtic Music Festival at Passim, which will include concerts, workshops, and a brunch to celebrate “Greater Boston’s deep tradition of music, song, and dance from Irish, Scottish, Cape Breton and other Celtic communities,” according to the Harvard Square Business Association (HSBA) website. The festival will run Jan. 17-20.

Jan. 25 starts off the Taste of Chocolate Weekend, which will offer up chocolate samples (expect hundreds vying for the delicious freebies), chocolate meals at restaurants, and even chocolate cocktails and cordials.

The outdoor “Some Like It Hot” Chili Cook-Off (Feb. 2) answers cold weather with warm chili. This free, annual event will have a wide range of chilis, including “super spicy” and vegetarian varieties.

Numerous other events including celebrations for the Hasty Pudding woman and man of the year, National Hugging Day, the Super Bowl, Valentine’s Day, and Dr. Seuss’s 115th birthday will aim to draw crowds to the square throughout winter’s coldest months.

The carnival runs through March. Visit the HSBA site for a full listing of events.