Lots of exciting events pack the Boston Events Calendar for August 2016 as summer fun continues in the city.
Shakespeare on the Common, plenty of Red Sox games plus preseason for the New England Patriots, Summer Dine Out Boston, and lots of free outdoor movies keep everyone entertained.
August weather in Boston is usually balmy, but pack an umbrella in case of surprise thunderstorms.
Stroll along the waterfront, choose a restaurant offering patio seating, and by all means, check out fun options for sightseeing tours.
Most important, enjoy the remainder of summer in Boston as the days grow shorter.
Boston Events Each Month
North End Feasts and Festivals - 2016
Boston's North End Italian Feasts and Festivals take place throughout the summer, as they have for 100 years or more - almost as long as Italians have lived in this neighborhood.
Most of the North End feasts celebrate a saint with food, music, religious ceremonies, parades, strolling singers, celebrations, and more - they're like giant street parties.
In general, opening ceremonies take place on Friday evenings, with other events starting around 1pm on Saturday and Sunday and continuing until about 11pm. High Mass usually takes place on Sunday morning.
Four of the most famous take place in August:
St. Agrippina di Mineo Feast and Procession - July 28-30 (to be confirmed for 2016) - starts at 7pm on Thursday and 12 noon on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday - procession at 12 noon on Sunday starting at Hanover and Battery Streets
Madonna Della Cava Feast - August 5-7 (to be confirmed for 2016), Battery and Hanover Streets - procession at 1pm on Sunday; feast opens at 7pm on Friday and 12 noon on Saturday and Sunday
Fisherman's Feast of the Madonna del Soccorso di Sciacca - August 18-21, 2016, - Blessing of the Fishing Waters at Christopher Columbus Park on Thursday at 6pm. Feast opens at 6pm on Friday and 12 noon on Saturday and Sunday. Grand Procession at 1pm on Sunday, on Fleet, Louis, and North Streets, with Flight of the Angel at 8pm
St. Anthony's Feast - The largest Italian religious festival in New England, August 26-28, 2016, Endicott, Thatcher, and North Margin Streets, parade at 12 noon on Sunday - parades, strolling singers, entertainment, and 100 pushcarts offering mouth-watering Italian food in this "Feast of All Feasts"; feast opens at 7pm on Friday, 12 noon on Saturday and Sunday; Grand Procession starts at noon on Sunday.
St. Lucy's Feast - August 28-29 (to be confirmed for 2016), Thatcher and Endicott Streets, procession at 5pm on Monday (find more Labor Day events in Boston)
Nearest T station: Commuter Rail or Orange & Green Lines/North Station
Cost: Free (although you'll find temptations to spend money on food, drink, and commemorative items)
Hotels in Boston's North End
Half-Price & Discount Tickets for Boston Events in August
- Salem Walking Tour: Movie & TV Show Filming Sites @ Salem, MA - Full price $10; Goldstar $5
- Water Country Water Park @ Portsmouth, NH - Full price $42; Goldstar $29
- Boston Cupcake Crawl in Back Bay, South End, Boston Common
- Whale Watch Cruise @ Boston Harbor Cruises - Full price $35-$51; Goldstar $26 - $39
- Blue Man Group @ Charles Playhouse - Full price $58-$103; Goldstar $31-$72
- Shear Madness at the Charles Playhouse
- Nick's Comedy Stop - Boston Theatre District - Full price $20, Goldstar $0 - $10
Return to top - Boston Event Calendar for August
Shakespeare on the Common Continues - 2016
One of the most popular summer Boston events, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company presents Love's Labour's Lost, one of the Bard's funniest early comedies, for Shakespeare on the Common in 2016.
Bring a blanket or low folding chair, perhaps a picnic basket, and get ready to enjoy a magical evening of free theater under the stars. You can also rent a chair for $5, plus a $5 deposit that you will get back when you return the chair.
Bring your own food, or purchase something tasty from the vendors who will be onsite for the occasion. Toilets are available at the nearby tennis courts.
Shakespeare on the Common is a highlight of mid-summer entertainment in Boston - don't miss it!
More information: Shakespeare on the Common
When: July 20 - August 7 at 8pm on Tuesdays through Saturdays, 7pm on Sundays, plus a 3pm matinee on August 6 (note - no performances on Mondays); performances run about 2.5 hours
Where: Boston Common, near the Parkman Bandstand
Getting there: By subway: Green/Red line to Park Street Station, or Green Line to Boylston; By car: Park under the Common in the Boston Common Parking Garage
Cost: Free admission; chairs in a small special section near the stage are available in return for a donation of $50 or more, with proceeds to benefit CSC.
Hotels near Boston Common
Free Sunday Night Movies in Christopher Columbus Park
Enjoy free outdoor movies during a 6-week series in Christopher Columbus Park, the entrance to Boston's North End, sponsored by the Boston Push Cart Association. Movies include a number of favories from the past 40 years, and start at dark.
Here's the lineup for August:
August 2 - Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
August 9 - Money Ball
August 16 - Sabrina
Harbor & River Cruises - Discount & Half-Price Tickets for August 2016
The best way to tour Boston! Save with Goldstar's listings for discount and half-price Boston Harbor & Charles River cruises - why pay more?
- Boston Harbor Lighthouse Brunch Cruise @ Departs from Boston Harbor -
Full price $64; Goldstar $45
- Thirsty Thursday Waterfront Cruise @ Boston Harbor - Full price $16; Goldstar $9
- Codzilla Boat Ride @ Boston Harbor - Full price $26-$30; Goldstar $18-$23
- Provincetown Fast Ferry to Cape Cod - Full price $65-$88; Goldstar $46-$62
- Oysters and Craft Brews Cruise @ Boston Harbor - Full price $74; Goldstar $54
- Whale Watch Cruise @ Boston Harbor Cruises - Full price $35-$51; Goldstar $26 - $39
- Boston to Salem Fast Ferry - Full price $35-$45; Goldstar $25-$32
- Charles River & Locks Cruise - Full price $24-$28; Goldstar $16-$19
- Boston Harbor Sunset Cruise - Full price $25-$29; Goldstar $12-$17
Most of these cruises are available through early fall.
More Fun Boston Tours for August
Summer Dine Out Boston - 2015
When: August 16 - 21 & 23-28
Where: Best restaurants in Boston and Cambridge - hundreds of choices!
Twice each year, Boston foodies look forward to the best restaurants in the city being on sale. You will too, as you sample the affordable fixed price lunch and dinner menus concocted by the city's best chefs. You can start making your Dine Out Boston reservations about 3 weeks ahead of time. Don't wait, because tables fill up fast!
More about Dine Out Boston
Return to Top - Boston Event Calendar August
Free Friday Flicks at the Hatch Shell - 2016
Enjoy free outdoor concerts at the Hatch Shell on Boston's Esplanade throughout August.
This series of family movies sponsored by WBZ NewsRadio 1030 and the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) provides the perfect excuse to grab a blanket or lawn chair, pack a picnic, and head for an evening of entertainment under the stars.
The August movie lineup for 2016 includes:
- August 5 - The Good Dinosaur
- August 12 - Jurassic World
- August 19 - Up
- August 28 - Ant-Man
When: Movie starts at sundown (about 8pm in August)
More information, including the movie schedule and weather cancellations: Call the Free Friday Flicks Hotline at 617-787-7200
Summer in the City - August Events
Boston Harbor Hotel's popular "Summer in the City" series lets you kick back and enjoy free music and movies overlooking the waterfront throughout the summer.
Listen to music between 6pm - 10pm as musicians perform on the Blues Barge on Tuesday (Soul), Wednesday (Rat Pack), and Thursday (Blues).
On Fridays, enjoy music (starts at 4:30) and movies projected on a large screen over the Harbor starting at dusk.
Combine these events with a drink at the hotel's Rowes Wharf Sea Grill and dinner at Meritage for the perfect summer evening.
August 7 - The Big Sleep
August 14 - Raider of the Lost Ark
August 21 - Now Voyager
August 28 - The Apartment
More about Boston Harbor Hotel
Lobster Bake Day Trip to Maine from Boston
This day trip tour to Maine lets you savor the last month of summer while experience the quintessential New England feast: a lobster bake complete with clams, mussels, chowder, and of course, locally-caught Maine lobster.
You'll also get to stop at Nubble Lighthouse, Kittery Outlets, and Stonewall Kitchen to sample some of New England's tastiest jams.
Plus, this luxury bus tour takes you past the beautiful rocky coastline, small villages, and some of the best scenery north of Boston.
Boston GreenFest offers a huge assortment of exhibits, performances, and presentations about sustainable living. EcoThemes include water, energy, green cities, transportation, health, nutrition, and EcoFashion.
GreenFest highlights include:
- Green fireworks and light show
- 200+ exhibitors
- Green Film Fest - huge lineup of films from around the world
- EcoRide & Drive on Cambridge Street - try out electric and hybrid models
- 100+ live performances
- Lots of food vendors
- Free fitness classes (bring your old running shoes and donate them)
- Speakers, workshops, and much more!
When: August 21-23, noon - 10pm on Friday and Saturday, noon - 6pm on Sunday
Where: Boston City Hall Plaza, Government Center
Nearest T station: Government
Cost: Free admission - all ages welcome
More information: www.bostongreenfest.org
Boston Hotels near City Hall Plaza
Boston Seafood Festival
The Annual Boston Seafood Festival celebrates our city's marine heritage, love of seafood, and commitment to sustainable harvest.
It brings together seafood tastings, chef demos, educational events, Battle of the Shuckers, and the traditional Blessing of the Fleet.
A special Lion Dance performance by the celebrated Gund Kwok Asian Women's Lion & Dragon Dance Troupe kicks off the Festival.
Whale-Watching Cruise + New England Aquarium
What's better than sightseeing in Boston?
Heading out to the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary on a special 3-hour cruise to get close-up views of humpback whales, Atlantic dolphins, sea birds, and friendly porpoises from the three outdoor decks. It's a different world!
After your cruise brings you back to Boston's Central Wharf, spend time at the New England Aquarium exploring fascinating exhibits and watching sharks, stingrays, penguins, and more.
Your ticket includes both the whale watch cruise and the Aquarium at a special discounted combo price. Find out more
Fun Sightseeing Tours of Boston
August 2016 Boston Red Sox Schedule - Home Games at Fenway
Indulge your passion for baseball by going to see the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park:
Hotels near Fenway Park
Boston Theater & Shows for August 2015
Shakespeare on the Common
Shakespeare on the Common, taking place almost nightly until August 8, 2015, attracts enthusiastic crowds for a wonderful summer evening of theater under the stars on Boston Common.
This year's production is King Lear.
More Shows in Boston in August 2015
- Mainstage Show - ImprovAsylum - Check Goldstar for half-price tickets
- Blue Man Group - Charles Theatre - Get schedule & tickets
Top Hotels near Boston's Theatre DistrictFind more Boston Theatre District hotels
Boston Concerts & Shows - August 2016 - Tickets
- James Taylor - Fenway Park - August 3
- Black Sabbath - Xfinity Center - August 25
Tickets:TicketLiquidator | AceTicket | Goldstar - Discount Tickets
August Moon Festival in Chinatown
When: Sunday, August 9, 10am - 5pm
Where: The Chinatown Gate area on Harrison Ave, Chinatown in Downtown Boston
Closest T station: Orange Line / Chinatown
If you drive: Parking garages near Theatre District and Chinatown
Boston's Chinatown comes alive with lion dances, martial arts, firecrackers, folk dances, and lots of vendors for the annual Chinese Moon Festival, also called the Mid-Autumn Festival.
What does the festival actually celebrate? Possibilities include the legend of Chang'e, the immortal Lady of the Moon, and the overthrow of the Mongol rulers in 1368 when a rebel leader distributed mooncakes (which Mongols didn't eat) with messages hidden inside saying "Kill the Mongols." Mooncakes are round pastries filled with lotus seed paste - you can buy this delicious treat at all of the Chinatown bakeries.
Although this 3,000+ year old Chinese festival traditionally falls on the 15th day of the 8th Lunar month - in other words, late September/early October - Boston celebrates it in mid-August. It's the perfect excuse to spend an August Sunday in Chinatown. Start with dim sum, and then enjoy the colorful festival.
Films at the Gate - Free Chinese Film Festival in Chinatown
The Chinatown Park Plaza on the Greenway morphs into an outdoor movie theater for this popular early fall event featuring Kung-Fu Classics (Mandarin or Cantonese, with English subtitles). Folding chairs are available on a first-come, first-served basis - or bring your own, along with carryout from nearby restaurants (no alcohol, though). The festival begins at 7pm with martial arts and other cultural performances followed by the feature film starting at 8pm, and runs from August 27 to August 30, 2015.
After the movie, head for dinner at one of these nearby fun Chinatown restaurants.
Films at the Gate Schedule:
- Thursday, August 27 - Free block party to celebrate Films at the Gate's 10 year anniversary - starts at 6pm; at 8pm, 9-Man documentary
- Friday, August 28 - Shaolin Soccer
- Saturday, August 29 - Drunken Master
- Sunday, August 30 - Iron Monkey
Where: Throw Back Thursday block party is at the empty lot next to Ginza Restaurant (now closed) on Hudson Street. On Friday thru Sunday, at the Chinatown Park on the Rose Kennedy Greenway
Closest T station: Red Line, South Station (nearest public restrooms are also here)
Cost: Free - sponsored by Asian Community Development Corporation (ACDC), series curator Jean Lukitsh, founding producers Leslie and Sam Davol, and numerous other local organizations, businesses, and individuals
Deutsche Bank Championship New England PGA Tour
This top Labor Day Weekend event begins in August during some years - but not 2015. Check the September Events Calendar for details.
Fun Sightseeing Tours of Boston
Free Concerts in Fort Point
Stop by Made in Fort Point(300 Summer Street, South Boston Waterfront neighborhood) to catch their series of free summer concerts this summer every Thursday from 5:30-8:00pm.
The eclectic lineup of musicians brings you a new experience each week - plus the concerts give you the perfect excuse for dinner at one of the terrific nearby restaurants: try the lamb sausage flatbread at Trade (540 Atlantic Ave), grilled Island Creek oysters with jalapeno-chorizo butter at Papagayo (283 Summer St), or tagliatelle with Bolognese sauce at Barbara Lynch's Sportello (348 Congress St).
Made in Fort Point exhibits and sells the creations of 75+ Fort Point artists. More information: www.fortpointarts.org
Harborwalk Sounds at ICA Boston
Musicians from all around the world perform free concerts featuring jazz, world music, reggae, dance music, Latin, and more on Harborwalk next to ICA Boston. Relax and enjoy great music and gorgeous views.
Not Sure about Boston Neighborhood Locations?
This neighborhood map should help you get oriented. You can find a list of top attractions in each neighborhood here.
Need a more details? Here are our favorite free and low-cost Boston maps.
Magic 106.7 Family Film Festival
Enjoy this free fun family activity - movies under the stars in Prudential Center's lovely South Garden (go up the escalators from Huntington Ave, and the garden is to your right; from Boylston, it is on your left).
When: Every Saturday from July 11 - August 29; entertainment and children's activities start at 5pm, and movies start at sundown; rain dates will be held on the following Wednesday
Where: Prudential Center, South Garden
Nearest T station: Green Line/Prudential
Nearest parking garage: Prudential Center Garage - get discounted parking with a $10 purchase
Here is the 2016 schedule:
Brave - Saturday, August 6
Zootopia - Saturday, August 13
A Bug's Life - Saturday, August 20
Mary Poppins - Saturday, August 27
Boston Discount Cards for Attractions, Tours, Cruises
Best way to save in Boston. Save 50% or more when you take a Boston Harbor cruise or Duck Boat tour, visit Plimouth Plantation, the New England Aquarium, Museum of Science, Prudential Skywalk Observatory, Museum of Fine Arts, Fenway Park Tour, and more. Compare to find out which one is best for you.
Vintage Baseball at Georges Island
Park Rangers don vintage uniforms and demonstrate how baseball was played during the Civil War Era using original rules - you can watch, or join the game.
Keep in mind there's lots more to do on Georges Island - hike, explore, swim, picnic, bird watch. You're in a different world - but only 20 minutes by ferry from Boston!
New England Revolution at Gillette Stadium
Watch our local soccer team, the New England Revolution, bring men's soccer to a new level at Gillette Stadium.
2 home games are scheduled for August:
- Aug 1 at 7:30pm vs Toronto
- Aug 15 @7:30 vs Houston
Hotels near Gillette Stadium
Find out more about Boston discount cards, and how they give you big savings on top attractions.
The Patriots start their regular season in September. See the entire Regular Season schedule
Will this be the year that we celebrate another Super Bowl victory? Stay tuned!
Get your tickets now:
Want to stay nearby? Hotels near Gillette Stadium:
Landmarks Orchestra Concerts at the Hatch Shell - 2015
The Boston Landmarks Orchestra's weekly free summer Esplanade concerts attract larger crowds to the Hatch Shell each year with its mix of classical, traditional, modern, and contemporary music. Concerts start at 7pm and run about 2 hours.
The Landmarks Concert schedule for August includes:
August 5 - Italian Night - The Golden Age of Itallian Opera
August 12 - Sheherazade Meets Clarice Assad
August 19 - Drums Along the Charles
August 26 - With Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, a fully staged production of A Midsummer Night's Dream
Weather alerts and alternate locations in case of rain: 617-987-2000; orchestra website
Free Fun Friday at the Constitution Museum
The USS Constitution Museum in the historic Charlestown Navy Yard invites you to visit on August 14 for Free Fun Friday (no admission) from 9am - 6pm for family activities, crafts, games, and cookies in honor of Guerriere the Terrier's birthday.
Guerriere is the museum's mascot...and recalls the Constitution's battle with HMS Guerriere, when cannon balls bouncing off her sides earned her the nickname, "Old Ironsides."
Free Fun Friday is sponsored by the Highland Street Foundation.
More Free Fun Friday Events in Boston
Thanks to the Highland Foundation, a major sponsor of the arts in Boston and elsewhere in Massachusetts, you can enjoy free admission on the following Fridays in August at these venues:
- Free ferry rides to Georges Island and Spectacle Island (Boston Harbor Islands), departing from Long Wharf in downtown Boston. Ticket window opens at 7am and ferry leaves every half hour starting at 8am - first come, first served. More about Boston Harbor Islands
- Greenway Carousel - 11am - 5pm More about the Greenway
- Old State House on the Freedom Trail (206 Washington Street), 9am-6pm More about Old State House
- John F Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum
- USS Constitution Museum
- Franklin Park Zoo
- Museum of African American History in Beacon Hill
- Plimoth Plantation
- Old Sturbridge Village