Marathon, Patriots Day, Red Sox - Biggest April Events!
Exciting events normally fill the Boston Events Calendar for April, 2021 - Patriots' Day reenactments, the Boston Marathon, Red Sox opening day, and more! With the Covid-19 pandemic still underway, things are somewhat different this year- but far better than last April!
The 125th Boston Marathon is now postponed to October 11, 2021, with a reduced field size of 20,000 in-person racers plus another 70,000 virtual participants.
Patriots' Day, which commemorates the start of the American Revolution with numerous reenactments, parades, and celebrations, will be almost totally virtual this year - but the good news is that it does include a lot of fun events. This local tradition honors those who paved the way for freedom from British rule almost 250 years ago.
And more good news about the Red Sox opening day on April 1: it will take place as scheduled (Update - April 2, due to rain), as will the rest of the MLB season, but right now Fenway Park capacity is capped at 5,000 lucky fans. Needless to say, you'll find fewer tickets than normal so if you want to enjoy this quintessential Boston experience, don't wait to check the schedule and get your tickets.
Top photo: Boston Marathon runners approaching Heartbreak Hill
In-Person April Events 2021
April 2021 Boston Red Sox Schedule - Opening Day & Home Games at Fenway
The Red Sox play their home field season opener at Fenway Park in early April each year.
This year, their home opening game at Fenway is against the Baltimore Orioles on April 1.
Then, based on tradition, the Red Sox normally play a home game on Patriots Day and the game ends just in time for fans to watch Boston Marathon runners rush past Fenway Park on their way to the finish line - but that won't happen in 2021 due to postponement of the Marathon until October.
Red Sox Home Game Schedule for Fenway Park & Tickets - 2021
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Tour Boston by boat - the best way (and one of the safest) to see the city! Check out these fun sightseeing, music, and entertainment Boston Harbor cruises on the Yacht Northern Lights and Schooner Adirondack III:
Fun Boston Harbor Cruises To Do Right Now:
Northern Lights Sunset Cruise - Grab a cocktail and apps from the bar and then relax as you watch the sun set on this sail around the Harbor, just in time to catch the USS Constitution fire its cannons as the sun dips down past the horizon
Boston Harbor Cruise on Northern Lights - Soak up Boston's unique sites and rich history on this comfortable sightseeing cruise around the Harbor - perfect friends and family experience! Drinks and small bites are available for purchase at the bar
Brunch Cruise - Savor a delicious 3-course brunch on this relaxing sightseeing cruise around Boston Harbor
Gift Card - Looking for a special gift? Purchase a Classic Harbor Line gift card with a value of your choosing!
Get your Boston Bruins tickets for April home games at TD Garden before the regular season wraps up. The Garden has seating restrictions due to the pandemic so you'll find fewer seating choices than usual, and they go fast.
The Garden's convenient location next to North Station and close to Faneuil Marketplace makes it super-easy to get to.
Don't miss the chance to see Boston's hockey team, winner of 6 Stanley Cup championships!
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Arctic Adventure: Exploring with Technology - Find an Arctic fox, travel across a glacier, & more in this immersive exhibit
Science Behind Pixar: See how art and science create magic
Design Engineering Workshop - Design, build, and test solutions for everyday problems
With fascinating permanent exhibits for all ages, there's always something to see, do, and learn. Here are just a few of the most popular: Butterfly Garden (extra fee), Colossal Fossil: Triceratops Cliff, Cosmic Light, Dinosaurs, Hall of Human Life, Live Animal Care Center, Mathematica, Nanotechnology, Natural Mysteries, New England Habitats, The Light House - plus 17 more!
What to See in Boston's Museums & Aquarium - April
Although most Boston's museums have reopened, current capacity is limited to 25% of normal. To be certain of getting admitted, get your tickets in advance if possible.
- Current & Up-Coming Shows
Monet and Boston: Legacy Illuminated - April 17 - Oct 17, 2021; special ticket required
Writing the Future: Basquiat and the Hip-Hop Generation - Through May 16, 2021; special ticket required
Paul Cezanne: Influence - Explore Cezanne's impact on other artists - Through October 17, 2021
Women Take the Floor - Female artists' visions & voices - Through Nov 28, 2021
Collecting Stories: The Invention of Folk Art - Through January 9, 2022
Museum general (and most shows) admission: $25 adults; free entrance with Go Boston Pass and Explorer Pass discount cards. Buy special admission tickets ($32 including general admission) at mfa.org.
New England Aquarium
Harbor seals and seal lions, a giant 4-story ocean tank with hundreds of Caribbean reef animals, an Amazon rain forest, sharks, Myrtle the green sea turtle, and frisky penguins are just a few of the thousands of aquatic animals you'll experience here.
Watch the famous tea party event come alive with live actors, immersive exhibits, and a visit to the full-scale replica 18th century sailing ships at this unique living history museum. Get advance tickets.
Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston - Current & Future Shows
i'm yours: Encounters with Art in Our Times - New acquisitions and iconic works - Through May 23, 2021
Beyond Infinity: Contemporary Art after Kusama - Her pioneering ideas and artistic vision - Through July 18, 2021
Eva LeWitt - Huge colorful hanging wall sculpture made from coated mesh fabric - Jan 16, 2021 - Oct 23, 2022
Admission: $15 adults; free entrance with Go Boston Pass. Closed on Mondays.
On April 2 as well as on other SoWa First Fridays in Boston's art-filled South End, over 60 galleries south of Washington Street and at the Artist's Guild at 450 + 460 Harrison Ave, and nearby businesses and restaurants open their doors from 5pm to 9pm to give you a chance to experience the vibrant South End arts community.
Start at either 450 or 460 Harrison, and just follow the gallery lights and signs as you stroll around the neighborhood. Wrap up your evening at one of the South End's renowned restaurants.
Please note: Right now, capacity limitations apply to galleries, plus not all have reopened yet. If you are interested in a particular gallery or artist studio, please check with them directly to confirm their open status and hours.
Featured New Hotel for April: Hyatt Centric Faneuil Hall in Boston's Financial District
68 Deevonshire Street, Boston's Downtown Financial District
A superb Financial District location close to Faneuil Marketplace, top visitor sites such as the historic Freedom Trail, and the Waterfront, Hyatt Centric Faneuil Market is ideally situated for both business and leisure travelers. You're about 8-10 minutes on foot from TD Garden, plus several nearby T (subway) stations put the rest of the city within easy reach - and now that balmy April weather has arrived, you'll love how many attractions are within a quick walk from the Hyatt Centric.
The 163 guestrooms and suites offer free wifi, smart TVs, bluetooth speakers, robes and slippers, and all the other amenities you'd expect in a high-end hotel. Dine onsite at Bar Mercato and enjoy its small plates and relaxed ambiance, or eat at any of the other excellent choices nearby.
Patriot's Day Re-Enactments, Parades, and Events - 2021
Celebrated annually on the third Monday in April (a Massachusetts State holiday), Patriot's Day (April 19, 2021) commemorates events and battles in Lexington, Lincoln, Concord, and present-day Arlington (once called Menotomy) that marked the beginning of the Revolutionary War.
When: Most Patriots Day events take place from Saturday, April 17 - Monday, April 19, with more events throughout April
PLEASE NOTE: Due to the ongoing pandemic, all in-person Patriots Day events will again canceled - but the good news is that many will be virtual this year.
Run of the Charles, New England's largest canoe and kayak race, takes place on the last Sunday in April - perfect way to spend a Saturday afternoon if you're a spectactor, or enjoy a day on the river if you're a paddler. About 1,500 racers and spectators participate each year.
This year's event will be virtual due to the pandemic. You can find more information about how to participate here.
Don't miss the River Festival beginning at 11:30 at the finish line with live music, a taco truck, raffles, a beer garden, and vendors!
When: Sunday, April 26 Time: Races start around 10am, depending on the race length (3 to 14 miles). Watch from Boston or Cambridge Where: Charles River Cost: Free for spectactors
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Art in Bloom at Museum of Fine Arts - Virtual
When: April 30-May 3, 10am-5pm Where: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston's Fenway neighborhood Closest T station: Green Line/Museum Cost: Tours and most special events are free with the cost of museum admission, while the teas and a few other events require tickets - check the MFA website for details.
This is what usually happens: Art in Bloom at MFA welcomes the arrival of spring in Boston with floral arrangements inspired by works of art throughout the museum, flower arranging demonstrations, outdoor walking tours, and informal dining among European paintings at the Art in Bloom Café.
And of course, the timing of MFA's event is perfect: outside the museum, magnolia and cherry trees have burst into bloom all over Boston. Celebrate this special time of the year by visiting Art in Bloom - and then walk around the city and enjoy all the flowers.
When: April 1 - 30 Where: Online at several venues this year Cost: To be announced for 2021 More information: Wicked Queer website
Several online venues host the 37th annual LGBT Film Festival, showcasing an eclectic selection of LGBTQ+ cinema from around the world. Look for 17 short programs and 24 feature films.
Postponed or Canceled April Events 2021
The Boston Marathon 2021 - Rescheduled for October
Boston Marathon runners not far from Heartbreak Hill
The Boston Marathon - one of the city's biggest events of the year, and also known as the "Patriots Day Race" - features about 31,500 elite runners from around the world competing in a route made difficult by rolling terrain and features such as "Heartbreak Hill." Although this hugely popular event normally takes place in April, it has been rescheduled this year to October due to the ongoing pandemic.
Although the winners complete the course in just over 2 hours, many participants are still running hours later. You can watch from anywhere along the route.
If you attend the traditional Boston Red Sox home game at Fenway Park scheduled for Marathon Day, you'll be part of the crowd streaming into Kenmore Square just as the runners arrive at the finish line on Boylston Street.
John Hancock Sports and Fitness Expo - Rescheduled
The huge (and free) John Hancock Sports and Fitness Expo and Number Pick-Up is expected place in the Seaport World Trade Center (200 Seaport Ave) prior to the rescheduled race on Columbus Day Weekend - October 9-11 - and if you love running, you couldn't ask for a better reason to arrive a few days early before the race.
Runner's World magazine calls this event the "best runner's expo in the country" and the 100,000 enthusiasts typically in attendance can attest to that.
In addition to the popular Runners Seminar Series, you can usually visit exhibits by 200 of the running industry's top companies - and of course you can buy every piece of running gear on your bucket list. Stay tuned for any updates for this year!
Race participants pick up their bib number here as well.
More info: www.baa.org
Closest T station: Silver Line SL1/Seaport WTC; take the Red Line to South Station, and change to the SL1 bus on the Silver Line
Boston Common Carousel - Delayed Opening
When: Opening date TBD. Hours are Sunday - Thursday, 10am-6pm, Friday and Saturday, 10am-8pm Where: Boston Common Cost: $3 (adults can ride next to their child free of charge)
The colorful Boston Common carousel across from Beacon Street provides plenty of entertainment for the younger set from April through October.
On Saturday, April 3 at 11:30am (CANCELLED for 2021), head over to Faneuil Hall Marketplace for a special 2-hour Easter Egg Scavenger Hunt. Pick up your basket and clue sheet in the Upper Rotunda in Quincy Market to figure out which businesses are hiding eggs, and then visit the businesses to receive one egg. This event is free - but you must register (preferably in advance so you don't have to wait in line) because supplies and places are limited: www.faneuilhallmarketplace.com/
The Boston International Film Festival brings together the best local and international independent and experimental films in this annual festival. "Eclectic" barely begins to described the wide-ranging scope of the films you'll see here - everything from documentaries to avant-garde surrealism.
Tickets are sold for "sessions," typically including a longer film bundled with several shorter films on a similar topic or theme.
- Regal Cinemas Fenway Stadium, 201 Brookline Ave; Green Line/D: Fenway
- Kendall Square Cinema, 355 Binney Street, Cambridge; Red Line: Kendall
- Cambridge College, 500 Rutherford Ave; Orange Line: Community College
- Bunker Hill Community College, 250 Rutherford Ave; Orange Line: Community College
- Old South Church, 645 Boylston Street; Green Line: Copley Nearest T station: Green Line/Park Tickets: $12 for most session with all-session and VIP passes also available More information: BIFI Website
Anime Boston - the largest anime convention in New England - returns to the Hynes Convention Center and Sheraton Boston Hotel (find rates & reviews) on April 10-12 with music, films, cosplay, and star guests including Japanese rock band Girlfriend, m-flo, Brittany Lauda, Matt Shipman, and voice actor Zach Aquilar plus lots of exhibits, artists, and special presentations. More information
Japan Festival Boston - Canceled
The festival celebrates Japanese culture in Boston with performances on two stages, Japanese athletes and singers, cosplay contest, workshops, food vendors, raffles, silent auctions, and 100+ booths with food, arts, and crafts.
Look for the traditional Japanese portable shrines, including children's versions, brought to the site by volunteeers in the spirit of Japanese festivals.
This has grown into a huge event, with 60,000 attendees last year and probably more this year.
Nearest T station: Red & Green Lines: Park Street
Taste of the North End - Cancelled
Taste of the North End on Friday, April 24, 7pm-11pm gives you a great chance to sample special dishes from over 45 North End restaurants, bakeries, and distributors in this annual tasting event.
This is also the North End's biggest fundraiser - proceeds benefit the North End Waterfront Health Center, as well as other neighborhood charities for children and seniors.
The list of participating restaurants is too long to name . . . but just to whet your appetite, look for treats from Carmelina's, Castle Island Brewing Co, Mamma Maria, Bricco, Taranta, Artu, Lucca, Massimino, Neptune Oyster, and Modern Pastry, as well as liquid refreshments from a number of neighborhood wine importers.
With panoramic waterfront views to enjoy from the Steriti Rink, this is sure to be a spectacular evening.
Where: Steriti Memorial Ice Rink, 561 Commercial Street, Boston's North End Tickets: $99 (plus service fee) - purchase in advance for $79 before April 20 Nearest T: Orange and Green Lines/North Station More info: https://www.northendboston.com