The Boston Event Calendar for June 2021 kicks off summer in the city with plenty of fun activities, big events, exciting shows, and local favorites that visitors don't always hear about - but no worries, you'll find them listed here.
Although most larger concert venues don't reopen until next month, you can catch a few DJs (Kaskade, Jack Harlow, and Steve Aoki) at The Grand Boston in Seaport in early June, and Flora Cash at Brighton Music Hall later in the month.
But the good news is that the Boston Red Sox are back with Fenway Park at almost full capacity with home games attracting enthusiastic fans.
Other top events such as Scooper Bowl and the Dragon Boat Festival on the Charles River will return this year but in a safe but different format while the massive Pride Parade has been postponed until the fall.
June 2021 official holidays in Boston:
- Juneteenth, June 19 (but government offices, banks, schools etc will be closed on June 18)
- Bunker Hill Day, June 13, but this Boston-only holiday is always observed on a Sunday to accommodate a parade
Top photo: Outdoor dining along Newbury Street in Boston's Back Bay neighborhood
Summer Boston Harbor Cruises
Tour Boston by boat - the best way 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:
- Adirondack III Day Sail - Enjoy cool breezes on this sightseeing sail around Boston Harbor and the Inner Harbor Islands
- Boston Harbor Cruise on Northern Lights - Soak up Boston's unique sites and rich history on this sightseeing cruise around the Harbor
- Northern Lights Sunset Cruise - Grab a drink from the bar and watch the sun set on this sail around the Harbor
- Adirondack III 90-Minute Mimosa Day Sail - Soak up the sun on this sightseeing sail around the Harbor with drinks available for purchase at the bar.
- Adirondack III Sunset Sail - Relax as the setting sun turns the sky brilliant colors during this calming sunset sailing experience
- Brunch Cruise - Savor a delicious 3-course brunch on this relaxing sightseeing cruise around Boston Harbor
- Sunday Evening Jazz Cruise - Groove to live jazz as you watch the ever-changing sunset colors as the sun sets behind Boston's city skyline
Boston Concerts & Shows 2021
Top June Concerts in Boston - Schedules & Tickets
Larger concert venues don't reopen until next month - but these DJ events plus Flora Cash at the Brighton Music Hall in late June look good:
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- Flora Cash - Brighton Music Hall - June 27
- Ringo Starr & His All Starr Band & The Avett Brothers - Wang Theatre - June 2, 2022
Schedules & Tickets:
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Boston Red Sox Schedule - Home Games at Fenway - June 2021
Location: Fenway Park
Nearest T stations: Green Line B or C/Kenmore; Commuter Rail Worcester Line/Yawkey
Indulge your passion for baseball by going to see the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.
Get Schedule & Tickets
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Where to Stay near Fenway Park
If you're coming to a Red Sox game, spend the night or the weekend at one of the nearby hotels, such as the hip Verb Hotel, directly across the street from Fenway Park:
More top hotels near Fenway Park:
Boston Theater Shows for June 2021
Top June Shows in Boston's Theaters
Most Boston theaters won't reopen until September so there's nothing scheduled for June of this year - but you can book tickets now for Wicked in 2022!
- Wicked - Boston Opera House - June 8-July 24, 2022
Schedules & Tickets
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Where to Stay near Boston's Theatre District
Enjoy your Boston performance or show experience to the fullest when you stay in one of the nearby Theatre District hotels, such as the luxurious Hyatt Regency:
More top Theatre District hotels:
Boston Comedy Clubs 2021
Comedy clubs such as Laugh Boston are just beginning to reopen toward the end of the month.
New England Coastal Tours
These special 1-day New England Coastal Tours on a luxury bus show you spectacular beaches, wetlands, quaint seaside villages, harbors, and lighthouses along the North Shore of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine.
Depending on when you go, you may also see the first displays of brilliant fall foliage along the New England coast.
You'll visit Hampton Beach and have plenty of time to photograph 19th century Nubble Light in York, Maine.
Don't miss this chance to see New England's glorious coast at its best!
- Find out more about the New England Coastal Tour - Now through October
- Find out about fall foliage sightseeing tours departing from Boston - Tours start in September
Join one of the exciting 3-hour Whale Watching Cruises departing from the Downtown Boston Waterfront, and experience the thrill of spotting whales off the coast of Boston.
You'll see magnificent creatures such as Humpback and Finback whales close-up from the deck of your ship, and spot White-Sided Dolphins frolicking in the waters.
These cruises sell out quickly and capacity is currently limited to 15 participants per cruise, so don't wait to get your tickets now for this iconic Boston experience!
Lion Dances on Sundays in Boston's Chinatown
Head to Chinatown on Sundays to watch Lion Dances starting at the Chinatown Gate (Beach Street) on the Greenway at 12 noon, and then stop by one of the neighborhood's restaurants for Dim Sum. Dances continue on Sundays through July 3.
Fun Events & Activities on the Rose Kennedy Greenway 2021
The Rose Kennedy Greenway is offering so many fun things to do this summer:
- Greenway Food Trucks: Over 35 trucks offering specialties ranging from Korean to Summer Shack's seafood to frozen hoagies in Dewey Square, Congress Street, the Carousel, Rings Fountain (Milk Street), State Street, and Rowes Wharf Plaza, and Trillium Beer Garden. You'll find them at 2-6 locations each day, and although the number of trucks vary each day, the number of locations and trucks is the biggest on Thursdays.
- Farmers Market in Dewey Square run by Boston Public Market offering fresh produce, meat, cheese, breads and pastries, ice cream, and more. Open Tuesdays and Thursdays 11am - 4pm
- Boston Calling Block Parties - Live music and drinks from Blue Moon Brewing, Vizzy Hard Seltzer Canada, Topop Chico Aqua Mineral, and more. Thursdays, 5pm-8pm, Dewey Square.
- Trillium Beer Garden in the Wharf District Parks (High Street and Atlantic Ave) featuring draft beers by Trillium Brewing Company and a rotating selection of onsite food trucks. Open Thursday and Friday 2-10pm, Sat 12 noon-10pm, Sunday 12 noon-6pm.
- City Winery Open Air Wine Garden on Dewey Square across from South Station, serving their locally-crafted wine on tap plus with craft beer and cider by Harpoon Brewery along with a menu of fresh wraps, cheese boards, and snacks. Open Wed and Thurs 4-9pm, Friday 4-10pm, Sat. 1-9pm, Sunday 11am-7pm.
- Public Art - See new installations by Daniel Gordon in the Fort Point Channel Park
- Fountains - You'll find them in 7 different locations along the Greenway - so get ready to splash, wade, and cool off!
- Carousel - Open daily, 11am-8pm. Tickets: $4.
- Greenway Fitness Programs: Free fitness and yoga classes from local studios; must preregister
Featured New Hotel for June: Hilton Garden Inn Boston/Brookline
700 Brookline Place, Brookline
With 174 guestrooms and a convenient location on the Brookline/Boston border close to top cultural attractions, universities, and Fenway Park, Hilton Garden Inn Boston/Brookline offers an indoor swimming pool and fitness center, onsite dining, and shuttle service to nearby Longwood Medical Area.
If you're driving into the city from the west, you'll appreciate the hotel's convenient location close to the Mass Pike (I-90) and Route 9. Valet parking is available for an affordable (for Boston) fee.
Best of all, once you're at the hotel, you'll have lots of transportation options at your fingertips. Just hop onto the commuter rail, subway, or bus and you'll be at Fenway Park, the Museum of Fine Arts, Northeastern University, Simmons University, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Harvard Medical School, and Boston's world class hospitals in Longwood in 3-10 minutes. Or walk, and enjoy the many coffee shop/bakeries, restaurants, scenic parks, and friendly vibe in Boston's Fenway neighborhood.
Lawn on D
Lawn on D, a playground for adults (kids are welcome too but this is mostly an adult venue) located behind the Convention Center in the South Boston Waterfront, is where you'll find fun swings with LED lights and comfy seating, bocce and other games, and art installations throughout the summer, along with casual food and wine, beer, cocktails, and non-alcoholic beverages.
Open daily from 7am-11pm from May to October, except when closed for private events. Food, drinks, and lawn games available Thursday 3-10pm, Friday & Saturday 12 noon-10:30pm, Sunday 12 noon-10pm, with live entertainment by local bands on the weekends.
Pandemic safety and sanitation precautions are in place.
Another option in this area is to sample one of the many restaurants in the Seaport and Fort Point areas of the South Boston Waterfront. For Boston Harbor views while you dine, visit a Seaport restaurant. To try the creative cuisine of some of Boston's most innovative chefs, head to a Fort Point restaurant.
Fun Boston Tours for June
More Ways to Experience Boston
Juneteenth Celebrations in Boston 2021
Juneteenth celebrates June 19, 1865, the day when Union soldiers reached Galveston, Texas and annouced that the Civil War had ended and that all enslaved people were free. June 19 immediately became an unofficial day of annual celebration in Texas, and Juneteenth officially became a Texas state holiday in 1980, a Massachusetts state holiday in 2020 (although the state "recognized" Juneteenth in 2007), and a U.S. holiday a few days ago. In addition to commemorating the end of the institution of slavery in the U.S. and the liberation of African Americans, it also celebrates Black culture and achievements.
Many of Boston's celebrations of Juneteenth continue to be online again this year, but you can find a comprehensive list of celebrations here. (Be sure to check out the list at the bottom of Black-owned restaurants.)
Here are more places to explore Black history and culture in Boston:
Museum of African American History - Check out their latest exhibition, "Jazz Scene in Boston: Telling the Local Story," as well as their permanent collections. More information
Black Heritage Trail (Beacon Hill) - Official tours are still suspended due to the pandemic, but you can walk the 1.6 mile trail yourself and check out the 10 sites. Find a map and guide the the sites here
National Center for Afro American Artists (300 Walnut Street, Roxbury) - Currently closed due to the pandemic, but group tours to see permanent and temporary exhibitions are possible - so get a group of friends and neighbors together, and schedule a visit.
Garden Tour of Historic Charlestown - 2021
Explore the beautiful and historic Charlestown neighborhood as you tour the lush gardens in this oldest part of Boston where the Puritans first landed in 1630 before moving on to Beacon Hill. You'll start at the Community Gardens at 499 Main Street to pick up your guide book before walking around to see the many special flower gardens and hidden shady oases.
Tickets are $25 in advance online or $30 on the day of the tour (499 Main St) on June 19, 10am-3pm.
Donna Summer Disco Party
The Donna Summer Disco Party returns on June 24, 6-9pm outdoors at Copley Square to honor the Boston-born disco legend's life and legacy. Summer was born in Dorchester and grew up in Mission before becoming a star in the 1970s. No roller rink this year - but you'll be able to dance all night (well, until 9pm) while grooving to Summer's greatest hits, complete with a disco ball, colorful lights, and plenty of glow sticks.
DJ Vince 1 will provide the music, and Donna's great niece will take the stage for a musical performance. Masks are encouraged and hand sanitizer will be available. If you haven't been vaccinated yet, get one (or two) before you come - find out where to get it for free today and then sign up for the $1 million lottery starting on July 1st.
Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival 2021 - Virtual
The annual Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival is the largest-running dragon boat race in North America with over 60 teams competing. Enjoy the spectacular dragon boats, with rowers ranging from novice to expert. Race seeding trials take place on Saturday, and the races occur on Sunday.
The 2021 races will be virtual. Details have not been announced as of early June, so please check the organizer's website for details: https://www.bostondragonboat.org/
For future years: Don't miss the Cultural Festival on Sunday (Cambridge side of the Charles) featuring Asian arts, crafts, martial arts, and dance performances!
- Races: June 12-13
- Cultural Festival with food and entertainment: June 13 only - 12 noon-5pm
Where: Charles River, with Festival (food and entertainment) on the Cambridge side of the river
Nearest T station: Red Line/Harvard Square
More Dragon Boat Festival information
Boston Pride Week Events & Schedule - Postponed for 2021
Boston Pride Week, the city's annual celebration of LGBTQ+ communities and the largest pride event in New England, has been postponed until the fall for 2021. A new date has not been announced yet.
This huge event features multiple festivities, parties, and celebrations around the city during Pride Week, with even more events throughout the month of June. Boston Pride Week highlights normally include:
- Pride Remembrance Memorial at the Garden of Peace, 64-98 Somerset Street (in the esplanade behind 123 Center Plaza in Government Center)
- Pride Night at Fenway Park - Red Sox ticket information
- Boston Pride Festival at City Hall Plaza
- Boston Pride Concert at City Hall Plaza
- Boston Pride Parade from Copley Square to City Hall Plaza
- Pride Parade Route - Parade kicks off in Copley Square in Back Bay, turns right on Clarendon Street and loops through the South End by turning left onto Trement, and left again onto Berkeley Street. At Boylston Street, the parade turns right. After passing by the Public Garden, it turns left at Charles Street, right at Beacon Street, and passes along Boston Common and Beacon Hill. After a final right turn onto Tremont Street, marchers end up at City Hall Plaza.
More events information: www.bostonpride.org
Boston Hotels with Outdoor Swimming Pools
- Verb Hotel next to Fenway Park (shown in photo) - Find Lowest Rates
- Colonnade Hotel near Prudential Center - Find Discount Rates
- Revere Hotel in the Theatre District -Find Discount Rates
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, Museum of Fine Arts, Fenway Park Tour, and more. Compare to find out which one is best for you.
Battle of Bunker Hill Day Parade 2021
When: Sunday, June 13, 12:30pm-3:30pm
Where: Bunker Hill Monument, Monument Square, Charlestown, MA (parade starts at the intersection of Vine, Bunker Hill Street, and Main Street, Charlestown)
Nearest Boston subway station: Orange Line/Community College
More information: 617-242-2724
Join the National Park Service at the Bunker Hill Monument on Boston's Freedom Trail to commemorate the anniversary of the famous battle against the British on nearby Breed's Hill on June 17, 1775, and enjoy the Bunker Hill Day Parade, a Boston tradition since 1786. Members of the Charlestown Militia dressed in Colonial attire play fifes and drums, and offer musket salutes as part of a wreath-laying ceremony at the monument.
The parade kicks off at Hayes Square (corner of Vine and Chelsea Streets), marches up and down Bunker Hill Street, turns left at Main Street at Sullivan Square, continues down Main Street, turns left onto Monument Ave and then right onto Monument Square, turns right onto Winthrop Street, and ends up at the Charlestown Militia Training Field (corner of Common and Winthrop Streets). Streets start to close to traffic soon after 9am.
Afterward the parade, explore the Bunker Hill Museum (free admission) across from the monument on Monument Street, or follow the red stripe of the Freedom Trail down to the Charlestown Navy Yard for a free tour on the USS Constitution. Please note: The museum may still be open on a modifed schedule - Friday-Sunday from 10am-12noon, and 2pm-4pm), and as we write this in April, the Constitution is stilled closed - so please check back later for possible updates.
The Battle of Bunker Hill took place during the Seige of Boston, which lasted from April 19, 1775 until March 17, 1776 when the British were finally routed and forced to flee the city.
June 17th is the official state holiday and is observed in Boston (although not in the rest of Massachusetts or elsewhere in the US). The parade always takes place on a Sunday on or before June 17.
Museum of Science Exhibits - 2021
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!
Where: Boston's Museum of Science
When: Daily, 9am-5pm; open until 9pm on Fridays
Admission: $29 general museum admission ($24 for kids). Buy online to skip the line. Get free museum admission when you have a GoBoston Discount card or Boston CityPASS card.
Imax Theater and Planetarium: Additional fees apply
Scooper Bowl Ice Cream Fest - 2021
Boston's favorite ice cream fest, Scooper Bowl, normally dishes out 10 or so tons of ice cream, gelato, frozen yogurt, and sorbet in this popular 3-day fundraiser at City Hall Plaza.
This year, the event will use a safe format involving boxed ice cream kits to be picked up in a variety of locations in the greater Boston area. Kits will be available for $50 and $75, and can be picked up at one of four Boston locations.
Scooper Bowl raises money for the Jimmy Fund to benefit cancer research at Dana-Farber. Not only do you get to eat all you want of the ice cream donated by the nation's top frozen dessert companies, but you can vote afterward for your favorite among the 50+ different flavors on offer.
When: Kits go on sale in late June and get picked up in August
Where: City Hall Plaza, Boston
Nearest T station: Blue and Green Lines/Government Center
All-You-Can-Eat Tickets: https://www.jimmyfund.org/events/cancer-fundraising-events/jimmy-fund-scooper-bowl/
More information: Scooper Bowl
Where to Stay near City Hall Plaza
If you're coming to an event at or near City Hall Plaza, spend stay in a nearby hotel, such as the chic and trendy Ames Hotel:
More top hotels near City Hall Plaza:
Not Sure about Boston Neighborhood Locations?
Need a more details? Here are our favorite free and low-cost Boston maps.
Berklee Summer in the City: Free Summer Concerts in Boston
Normally, Berklee College of Music students, faculty, and alumni give over 400 free outdoor concerts all over the city during the summer from June through early October. Music ranges from jazz to classical, Latin to funk, folk to world, and are free.
Right now, the only concerts scheduled for 2021 are virtual, and you can find the schedule here: https://www.berklee.edu/events
If any concerts happen live this summer, the usual locations include Atlantic Wharf, the Boston Public Library, Brewer Fountain Plaza on Boston Common, the Charlestown Navy Yard, Chin Park and City Winery on the Greenway, selected Boston Harbor Cruises, the Arnold Arboretum, Christopher Columbus Park on the waterfront, Downtown Boston, the Longwood Medical Campus, multiple locations in Cambridge, Dorchester Heights, Institute of Contemporary Art, Prudential Center, Fenway locations, and more.
More Free Summer Concerts in Boston
Concerts in the Courtyard: Boston Public Library in the McKim Courtyard (700 Boylston Street, Copley Square in Back Bay) on Fridays 12 noon-1pm from early June through the end of August. Music ranges from jazz to classical, folk to world, and are free. Right now, the concerts are online on BPL's YouTube channel but may move outdoors later this summer. More info: https://www.bpl.org/concerts-in-the-courtyard/
Summer Activities in Boston
Looking for more things to do in Boston in the summer?
Fun Free Fridays in Boston in June - Cancelled
Fun Free Fridays give you free admission to 100 top Massachusetts cultural venues across the state throughout the summer, thanks to the generosity of Highland Street Foundation. A different selection of destinations offer no-cost access each Friday from the end of June through the end of August.
In case you're looking ahead to when this event resumes (hopefully) next year, here is the schedule from 2 years ago for Boston area destinations:
- Lyric Stage of Boston
- MIT Museum (Cambridge)
- Concord Museum (Concord)
More locations outside of Boston: Highland Street Foundation website
Free Events in Christopher Columbus Park
Enjoy free outdoor movies and celebrations at Christopher Columbus Park in Boston's North End. Activities this summer are reduced due to the pandemic - but huge improvement over last summer during the shutdown!
Here's the summer lineup so far:
Independence Day Celebration for Children (& their families) - June 26, 12 noon-2:30pm - Magician, storyteller, and games
Summer Sunday Movies - Sundays July 18 through August 22, 7pm - Bring a blanket or low folding chairs and watch family favorites starting at sundown. Find out what's showing: https://www.foccp.org/foccpevents
North End Feasts and Festivals 2021
Boston's North End Italian Feasts and Festivals draw huge crowds to this historic neighborhood. You can smell the mouth-watering food, hear the music, and feel the excitement as you walk across the Greenway to Hanover Street, where many of the celebrations take place.
These parades and festivals take place almost every weekend throughout the summer.
North End Festivals scheduled for June (all are processions only - no feasts during June):
- Santa Maria Di Anzano Procession - June 6, 10:30am - Mass at St Leonard's Church (Hanover and Prince Streets); 116th annual procession to be held on Sunday, Spetember 19, 1pm starting at St Leonard Church (this Saint's Day is always just a procession; no feast)
- St Anthony of Padua - Does not appear to be scheduled this years. Here's what to expect (hopefully) next year: Outdoor Mass at St Leonard Church's Peace Garden, Hanover and Prince Streets; 6pm: Candle-lit procession starts at St Leonard Church
- Saint Padre Pio - June 27 at 2pm (Tentative) - Procession starts at St Leonard Church, Hanover and Prince Streets
Boston Harbor Cruises
Frog Pond Spray Pool Opens on Boston Common 2021
For 2 glorious months after school ends, Frog Pond turns into a spray pond and becomes the best place to cool off in the city ... if you're 12 or under. The Grand Opening Celebration features family-friendly entertainment, music, art, a gala ceremony, and of course, the chance to play in the 30-foot spray at the center of the pond. Lifeguards will be on duty this summer during all open hours.
When: June 24, 11am; remains open from 11am to 6pm every day through Labor Day, unless there's a thunderstorm
Where: Frog Pond at Boston Common
Nearest T station: Green Line/Park
More Boston Splash Pool Locations:
- Rose Kennedy Greenway - Rings Fountain, in the Wharf District section near Faneuil Marketplace and Christopher Columbus Park
- Christian Science Plaza - Boston's Fenway neighborhood, close to the Colonnade Hotel
Free Drop-In Summer Yoga on Boston Common 2021
Dropping in on free summer yoga sessions near the carousel on Boston Common is part of what makes Boston fun in the summer. Instructors will lead a vinyasa flow class focused on releasing stress and expanding energy and welcome participants of all levels.
When: Every Thursday, 6-7 - through September 30 (no class on July 1st)
Where: Frog Pond at Boston Common
Nearest T station: Green Line/Park
Bring: Your own mat, blocks, towels, and belt
South End Garden Tour 2021
The South End Garden Tour never gets boring because it features gardens in a different area of this large neighborhood every year. Each year's tour focuses on gardens in specific areas such as Union Park and SoWa, with numerous gardens and green spaces open for this self-guided tour.
This year's tour will be virtual, due to safety concerns related to the pandemic. Find more information here: https://thetrustees.org/content/virtual-south-end-garden-tour/
Get ready to view some gorgeous gardens in this neighborhood known for its passion for gardening. Tour proceeds benefit the South End/Lower Roxbury Open Space Land Trust.
You can also stroll through the South End neighborhood on your hown, and perhaps stop for lunch or an early dinner at one of the many terrific chef-owned South End restaurants.
When: Saturday, June 11, 10am - 4pm, rain or shine (To be updated for this year)
Where: Begins at Berkeley Community Garden (corner of Tremont & East Berkeley) in Boston's South End
Nearest T station: Orange Line/Back Bay
Cost: Tickets are $35 on day of the tour, or $30 online - find details at www.thetrustees.org
More Fun Boston Tours
Roxbury International Film Festival 2021
When: June 17-June 26
Where: Museum of Fine Arts, Haley House Bakery Cafe, and other sites in and near Roxbury
Cost: Tickets to most films are $11; VIP packages available
More information: Rox Film Fest website
The Roxbury International Film Festival showcases films "by, for, and about people of color," with screenings, panel discussions, receptions, and workshops, plus additional events throughout the year. This year's festival features a hybrid version - plenty online, plus some film screens in person in indoor and outdoor venues - and looks even bigger than ever!
Rox Film began in 1999 when the founders created a venue to celebrate films written, produced, and directed by filmmakers connected with Africa by birth, ancestry, or culture. It is now the largest film festival with this focus in New England. Expect an exciting (and big) collection of full-length features, documentaries, experimental films, shorts, and animations, a series of teen-produced films, and a special program of shorts for children under 10. Find all the details on the Rox Film Fest website.
Check Boston movie theaters for other local films
Back Bay Fens & Rose Garden Tours 2021
The Back Bay Fens - normally just called "The Fens," and part of Olmsted's Emerald Necklace of parks - has everything: wilderness areas, the Victory Gardens, ball fields, the Kelleher Rose Garden, war memorials, the meandering Muddy River, and more.
Tours are offered on a variety of topics and at a variety of times between May and October, and sometimes change at short notice due to weather conditions. To find out what's on offer, check the Emerald Necklace Conservancy's website. Tours are free, but a $10 donation per person is requested to help support ongoing maintenance and improvements of the area.
Please note: Tours are currently suspended because of the pandemic - so go walk around on your own! There's plenty to see, and the Rose Garden is especially spectacular during June.
Hotels with Views of Boston's Public Garden
Boston Early Music Festival 2021 - Virtual
The Boston Early Music Festival is HUGE, as you might expect as it's the largest early music festival in the world. While it's not the only reason why Boston takes center stage as the early music capital of the country, the Festival certainly cements its reputation.
This week-long celebration of 17th and 18th century music features a fully staged Baroque opera: Steffani's Orlando this year, plus hundreds of other performances, master classes, lectures, demonstrations, workshops, children's programs, and even a sort of trade show of instruments. On many days, the concert schedule starts at nine in the morning and goes until midnight.
When: June 6-13
Where: Normally at multiple Boston locations - mostly Downtown, Back Bay, Fenway, and the Theatre District, plus a few in other locations; a major venue is the magnificent Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory - but this year all events are virtual due to the lingering pandemic
Tickets: Ticket costs vary from free to inexpensive to pricey, with packages available, and the good thing is that all events will continue to be online for awhile after the festival dates; check the event website for details about the many options
Where to stay:
- Courtyard Marriott Downtown Boston Hotel, location of the Exhibition, as well as many events and performances. More Theatre District hotels
- Hotels near Jordan Hall - Colonnade Hotel | Midtown Hotel | Sheraton Boston Hotel | Hilton Back Bay Hotel
- Boston Park Plaza and Towers Hotel, close to the Cutler Majestic and the Revere Hotel
- Taj Boston, convenient to the many concerts scheduled for Emmanuel Church, Old South Church, First Church Boston, and other historic churches in Boston's Back Bay.
- The Lenox Hotel, also convenient to Back Bay sites as well as New England Conservatory's Jordan Hall
Boston Harbor Islands 2021
Hop on a ferry at Boston's Long Wharf for a 15-minuted cruise to the Boston Harbor Islands, where (normally) free concerts, ranger tours, kayaking trials, clambakes, a Spectacle Island beer garden, Boston Light tours, and even Zumba take place on weekends and weekdays. Although most of these events are on hold at the moment due to the pandemic, there's still plenty to do on your own.
Enjoy a day of exploring historic sites, photographing birds, enjoying a picnic, hiking, swimming, wading in tidal pools, or simply enjoying the scenery.
When: Late May through Columbus Day
Where: Georges Island, Spectacle Island, Peddocks Island (normally open to the public but not in 2021 due to the pandemic)
Getting there: Boston Harbor Island ferry information
Ferry cost - round trip to the Islands: $25 adults, $18 children (ages 3-11), $23 seniors 65+, children under 3 free - you can buy your tickets at Long Wharf ticket booth
Closest hotel to Long Wharf: Boston Marriott Long Wharf
Schedule information: Boston Harbor Islands website
Secret Gardens of Cambridge Tour
The Secret Gardens of Cambridge tour, sponsored by Friends of the Cambridge Public Library, takes place only during alternate years ending in even numbers - and this is an OFF year. The self-guided exploration typically covers 4 Cambridge neighborhoods and 24 gardens, including many that are new to the tour each year. You'll get tons of gardening ideas, and see a mix of public and private garden paradises.
Date: Usually the first Sunday in June - check back next year for exact date and time
Where: Cambridge, MA (just across the river from Boston)
Nearest T station: Red Line/Harvard
Cost: Tickets are $25 on day of the tour; available at all Cambridge library branches and numerous Cambridge businesses, including Porter Square Books, Brattle Square Florist, Rodney's Books, Pemberton Farms, Big Picture Framing, Nomad, Clothware, and Bonny's Garden Center. Proceeds benefit the Cambridge Public Library - this is its biggest fundraiser!
Cambridge Arts River Festival - Online
When: Saturday, June 1, 11am - 6pm
Where: Along the Massachusetts Avenue between Prospect and Sidney Streets and down Sidney Street to Pacific Street
Nearest T station: Red Line: Central - Please note: many streets near Central Square including Mass Ave will be closed, and performers and vendors will be using the already-scarce parking - so don't even think about driving to this event
Cost: Free - although you'll find plenty to buy from food and crafts vendors
Please note: The festival is online only this year (find information here), but this is what normally happens:
The Charles River Festival is like a huge street party celebrating early summer in the city with outstanding music, the People's Sculpture Race (you push, pull, or pedal your sculpture along the 3/4 mile course), performances, and food. Around 200,000 festival goers come each year.
Enjoy the sunshine and lots of excellent folk, Latin, jazz, and world music performances and dance at 6 performance stages, plus poetry, theater, art exhibits, and family-oriented craft-making activities at this huge festival celebrating the arts. Over 100 food vendors and artisans sell their offerings. Do your holiday shopping now and you'll be all set in December.
Summer in the City
Boston Harbor Hotel's popular "Summer in the City" series lets you kick back and enjoy live music overlooking the waterfront throughout the summer from June 29 until August 26.
Listen to music between 6pm - 10pm as musicians perform on the Blues Barge on Tuesday (Pop-Soul), Wednesday (Rat Pack), and Thursday (Blues Barge).
Combine these events with a drink and dinner on the hotel's terrace overlooking the Harbor for the perfect summer evening.
More about Boston Harbor Hotel
10K Race through Back Bay - Virtual for 2021
When: June 23, 8am
Where: Boston Common - Starts and finishes on Charles Street
Closest T station: Green Line/Arlington
Cost: $65 registration fee
More information: BAA Website
Please note: this race is virtual this year (check the BAA website above for details). The following paragraphs describe what usually happens in case you're planning ahead for next year.
Whether you're training for the next Boston Marathon or just want to do a Sunday morning dash through Beacon Hill, Back Bay, and Fenway, the Boston Athletic Association's 10-kilometer race presents a perfect opportunity to test your skills and stamina during Boston's summer weather.
Limited to 10,000 runners, the race will follow a course that begins and ends from Boston Common at Charles Street, and winds through the Back Bay and Fenway neighborhoods. No qualifying standard is required for this race.
Popular Back Bay Hotels***y-hotels-back-bay-colonade-stbotolph-copleysquare-lenox-main.shtml***
More Things to Do in Boston in June
Continuing during June in Boston
SoWa Open Market in Boston's South End
Noon Concerts at King's Chapel on the Freedom Trail
First Fridays at Museum of Fine Arts
Fish Weir on Boston Common
Looking Ahead to July Events in Boston
- July 4th Fireworks
- Hotels with fireworks views
- Mid-summer festival in Chinatown
- Shakespeare on the Common