Boston events January 2020. Things to do in Boston.

Best events for 12 months

Boston events January 2020

Holiday light show

January 1, 2020
0 miles
See “the largest tree in the northeast” decorated with lights synchronized to music at Blink Light & Sound Show at Faneuil Hall every half hour from 4:30 to 10 p.m. See the separate page for opening day. Free.

New Year’s jokes

January 1, 2020
2.6 miles west
Hear 100 comedians tell their brand-new jokes during each half of 100 First Jokes at ImprovBoston.

New Year’s swim

January 1, 2020
2.7 miles SE
Run into cold Boston Harbor to celebrate the new year at New Year’s Day Swim sponsored by the City of Boston and L Street Brownies at Curley Community Center in South Boston for age 16+. Free.

Historical reenactment

January 1, 2020
3.2 miles NW
Join a parade from Somerville City Hall to Prospect Hill to watch the Grand Union Flag Raising, which reenacts George Washington raising the American flag on the same spot on January 1, 1776. Free.

New Year’s baroque

January 1, 2020
3.3 miles NW
The New Year’s celebration by Boston Baroque features a variety of classical music, with champagne and chocolates at intermission in Sanders Theatre.


January 1 - 4, 2020
8.2 miles north
See trees covered with lights, live reindeer, decorated animals areas, and Santa at ZooLights at Stone Zoo. The last day with Santa is Dec. 24. Closed on Thanksgiving & Christmas.

Austrian music & dance

January 5, 2020 (2:30 p.m.)
2.1 miles SW
Salute to Vienna New Year’s Concert brings the waltzes of Strauss to life with costumed dancers, singers, and a full orchestra in Boston Symphony Hall.

Travel show

January 11 - 12, 2020
2 miles SW
Hear talks by travel experts (including Samantha Brown, Peter Greenberg, and Pauline Frommer) and shop from travel industry vendors at the Travel & Adventure Show in Hynes Convention Center.

No pants on the subway

January 12, 2020
0.3 miles west
Liven up winter by taking a No Pants Subway Ride in your underwear. Meet in Pemberton Square at 1 p.m., ride at 1:30 p.m., and then head to the after party at McGreevy’s.

Book sale preview

January 17, 2020 (7 to 9 p.m.)
10 miles west
Be among the first to browse used books at the week-long sale and “sample delicious chocolate treats” during Books and Bon Bons at Gore Place in Waltham. Free.

Celtic music festival

January 17 - 19, 2020
4 miles NW
Boston Celtic Music Fest (BCMFest) features musicians, singers, and dancers from Irish, Scottish, Cape Breton, and other Celtic traditions in Cambridge.

Fly Fishing Show

January 17 - 19, 2020
29 miles west
The Fly Fishing Show has casting demonstrations, classes, celebrity speakers, fly-tying materials, rods, and reels in Marlborough. The International Fly Fishing Film Festival (IF4) on Friday evening requires a separate ticket.

Family Film Festival

January 17 - 20, 2020
multiple locations
Belmont World Film: Family Film Festival shows a variety of entertaining films from around the world (subtitled if foreign) in Arlington, Belmont, and Cambridge.

Auto show

January 17 - 20, 2020
1.3 miles SE
The New England International Auto Show displays a wide range of vehicles, from vans and crossovers to hybrids and SUVs at Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

Sci-fi convention

January 17 - 20, 2020
1.3 miles SE
Arisia is a science-fiction and fantasy convention with costumes, dancing, gaming, films, vendors, and an art show at Westin Boston Waterfront.

MLK gospel concert

January 18, 2020 (7:30 p.m.)
3.3 miles NW
The Harlem Gospel Choir makes a Joyful Noise with music and dance to celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at Sanders Theatre in Cambridge.


January 18, 2020 (10:30 a.m.)
7.6 miles NW
Emmy-nominated magician Matt Roberts brings his humorous and astounding interactive magic show for all ages to the Regent Theatre in Arlington.

Discount tickets

Motown music

January 18, 2020 (8 p.m.)
7.6 miles NW
Hear the timeless sound of The Platters, Linda Jones, Ruby and The Romantics, Smokey Robinson, Dionne Warwick, and Ronnie Dyson during Duets, Doo Wop, Motown, and More at the Regent Theatre in Arlington.

Discount tickets

Tasting event

January 18, 2020 (1 to 5:30 p.m.)
41 miles SE
A ticket to South Shore Food & Wine Expo includes samples of wine and food pairings, plus live music and a vendor marketplace at Plymouth Memorial Hall.

Amazing pet tricks

January 19, 2020 (3 p.m.)
11.9 miles NE
The 30 animals in Popovich Comedy Pet Theater were “rescued from animal shelters and given a new leash on life,” wowing audiences in Las Vegas and now appearing for one day at Lynn Memorial Auditorium.

Discount tickets

Music and wine

January 19 - Feb. 28, 2020
0.4 miles north
Hear music in an intimate setting with optional food and wine at City Winery Boston on Beverly Street.

Discount tickets

MLK breakfast

January 20, 2020
1.3 miles SE
Hear live gospel music and distinguished speakers (governor, mayor, and senators) at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Breakfast at Boston Convention Center. The reception begins at 7:30 a.m. and the breakfast at 8:30 a.m.

MLK museum day

January 20, 2020 (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
2.7 miles SW
The Museum of Fine Arts has free admission and special events to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

MLK Day in Cambridge

January 20, 2020 (11 a.m.)
3 miles west
Martin Luther King Day Commemoration features music, a speech, and readings of Dr. King’s works at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, followed by an informal lunch. Free.

MLK commemoration

January 20, 2020 (12 to 2 p.m.)
3.6 miles west
Boston University commemorates alumnus Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with speeches and a performance of the music of Aretha Franklin at Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration in the ballroom at George Sherman Union, Boston University. Free and open to the public.

MLK concert & tribute

January 20, 2020 (1 to 3 p.m.)
3.6 miles west
Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra performs “a moving array of classical music, spirituals, and freedom songs” at its annual MLK Tribute Concert at Faneuil Hall Free.

MLK Day at Gardner Museum

January 20, 2020 (11 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
4 miles SW
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service offers music, stories, poetry, and a children’s workshop at Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, plus free admission to all exhibits. Expect a line.

MLK tribute

January 20, 2020 (6:45 p.m.)
8.1 miles NW
“An evening of inspiration, celebration, and community,” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Observance begins with a reception at 6:45 p.m. followed by a program at 7:30 p.m. in Arlington Town Hall. Free.

Taste of East Boston

January 23, 2020 (6 to 9 p.m.)
3 miles east
Taste of Eastie includes samples from 30 local restaurants, entertainment, a cash bar, and free parking at Hilton Boston Logan Airport.

American classical music

January 24, 2020 (8 p.m.)
3 miles SW
Cantata Singers perform works by Aaron Copland, Charles Ives, Irving Fine, and Yehudi Wyner in Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory. Optional pre-concert talk by Yehudi Wyner at 7 p.m.

Discount tickets

RV show

January 24 - 26, 2020
1.3 miles SE
Meet RV dealers and manufacturers, and see the latest models of motorhomes, fifth wheels, campers, and travel trailers at the Boston RV and Camping Expo at Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

European classical music

January 24 & 26, 2020
2.1 miles SW
Hear the talented musicians and singers of Handel + Haydn Society perform works by Haydn and Mozart with vocalists and a violin concerto in Boston Symphony Hall.

Discount tickets

Home show

January 24 - 26, 2020
16 miles north
See home improvement products, services, and demos at Suburban Boston Spring Home Show at Shriners Auditorium in Wilmington.

A musical about love and death

January 24 - Feb. 16, 2020
20 miles NW
Hundred Days is “a show that celebrates and laments the elusive radiance of a shared life” [NY Times] as it tells the true story of a couple that plays folk rock together at Umbrella Center for the Arts in Concord.

Discount tickets

Track meet

January 25, 2020
2.9 miles SW
The Indoor Grand Prix is a professional track-and-field meet held at Roxbury Community College.

Chocolate festival

January 25, 2020 (1 to 2 p.m.)
3.6 miles west
Arrive on the early side to sample chocolate from 10 businesses at the Taste of Chocolate Festival at 31 Brattle Street in Cambridge. Free.

Edgar Allan Poe show

January 25, 2020 (3 & 5 p.m.)
10 miles west
A historian dressed as Edgar Allan Poe brings the American author to life with readings, biographical details, and dark humor at Edgar Allan Poe: Master of the Macabre at Gore Place in Waltham for age 16+.

Discount tickets

Birding festival

January 25, 2020
38 miles north
Superbowl of Birding is a competition to find the most species of birds, with categories for families and kids at Mass Audubon’s Joppa Flats Education Center. The registration fee includes a pizza party afterward.

Addams Family musical

January 25 - Feb. 1, 2020
10 miles north
In this “lost” episode of The Addams Family TV show, the daughter falls in love and shocks her parents by inviting a “normal” boy and his parents to dinner, live onstage at Greater Boston Stage Company in Stoneham.

Discount tickets

Mind-reading comedy

January 26 - Feb. 22, 2020
0.4 miles SW
Master mentalist Jon Stetson entertains with a funny show that “blends the art of mystery with the study of psychology, the predictability of human nature, and the power of intuition” at Omni Parker House.

Discount tickets

Outdoor games festival

January 27, 2020 (12 to 4 p.m.)
3.6 miles NW
Plaza WinterFest opens today and runs through March 13 with giant outdoor games (chess, foosball, ping pong, cornhole, and ice lanes for curling, shuffleboard, and bowling), fire pits, and food vendors at Harvard Science Center Plaza in Cambridge. Free.

Beer festival

January 31 - Feb. 1, 2020 (SOLD OUT)
1.5 miles SW
Celebrate 32 brewers and 92 beers that push the boundaries of brewing at Extreme Beer Fest at the Cyclorama for age 21+.

Monster trucks

January 31 - Feb. 2, 2020
42.8 miles SW
Big trucks with big wheels create big noise and excitement at Monster Jam in Providence, RI.

Discount tickets

Little Women musical

January 31 - Feb. 23, 2020
3.7 miles SW
Based on a popular children’s book by Louisa May Alcott, Little Women is about four sisters growing up in Civil War America, at Wheelock Family Theatre for age 7+.

Discount tickets

Working-class drama

January 31 - Feb. 29, 2020
3.5 miles SW
Factory workers gather in a local bar to share laughs, hopes, and cold beer in Sweat, but when a recession and a lockout loom, lifelong friends are pitted against each other in a heart-wrenching fight to stay afloat at Huntington Avenue Theatre.

Discount tickets

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