Boston events, festivals, things to do – April 2018

April 2018
best events in Boston

Easter restaurants

April 1, 2018

Boston locations

OpenTable lists restaurants offering special menus for Easter. Also see recommendations by BostonChefs.

Anime convention

April 1, 2018 (begins March 30)

2 miles SW

Wizards, witches, and magical girls find live games, panels, karaoke, a music-video contest, cosplay events, and a formal ball at Anime Boston at Hynes Convention Center and the Sheraton Boston Hotel.

LGBT film festival

April 1 - 8, 2018 (begins March 30)

multiple locations

See contemporary gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender films at Wicked Queer.
CityPass Boston

Design week

April 4 - 15, 2018

Greater Boston

Boston Design Week has roughly 80 events about architecture, environmental and landscape design, urban design, interior design, fashion, photography, graphic design, industrial design, and studio design.

Game convention

April 5 - 8, 2018

1.3 miles SE

PAX East features video games, tabletop games, computer games, panels, entertainers, exhibits, and contests at Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

Women in the arts

April 6 - 7, 2018

3.8 miles SW

We Create is a “feast of music, dance, film, performance art, mixed media, and circus arts” at Hibernian Hall.

Home show

April 7 - 8, 2018

31 miles NW

See home improvement products, services, and demonstrations at Suburban Boston Spring Home Show at the Tsongas Center in Lowell.

Comics convention

April 7 - 8, 2018

37 miles west

Super Megafest Comic Con celebrates comics, sci-fi, TV, and movies with guest actors, panel discussions, costume contests, role-playing, and vendors in Marlborough. Repeats in Nov.

Film festival

April 12 - 16, 2018

multiple locations

Boston International Film Festival (BIFF) shows 100 short and feature-length films from around the world at AMC Loews, the Paramount, and BPE Studio. It begins with an optional black-tie gala the first night.

Empty Bowls soup night

April 13, 2018

11.5 miles west

Buy a handmade bowl for $10 at Empty Bowls, and you’ll get a bowl of soup with bread and live music in de Witt Hall at Lasell College in Newton for charity.

Art fair

April 13 - 15, 2018 (preview April 12)

1.5 miles SW

Shop for modern art and hear expert presentations at AD 20/21 Home in the Cyclorama.

Cambridge Science Festival

April 13 - 22, 2018

Cambridge locations

Cambridge Science Festival has hundreds of interactive events making science, technology, math, and engineering fun (including a one-day family-friendly science carnival and robot zoo).

Singing competition

April 14, 2018 (8 p.m.)

4.5 miles NW

Watch the best local groups perform in the A Cappella Festival at Somerville Theatre for a chance to represent New England at the national finals in May.

Boston Marathon

April 16, 2018

1.5 miles SW

Watch 30,000 runners brave hilly New England terrain and unpredictable weather in the Boston Marathon, billed as the world’s oldest annual marathon. It begins in rural Hopkinton and ends in urban Copley Square.

Patriots’ Day

April 16, 2018

15 miles NW

Patriots’ Day begins with a reenactment of the Battle of Lexington, followed by historical tours, concerts, ceremonies, a movie, and a 2 p.m. parade in Lexington.

Funny women

April 19 - 22, 2018

Boston & Cambridge

Women in Comedy Festival (WICF) includes acclaimed stand-up comedians, improv & sketch groups, musical comedy groups, and solo artists and storytellers. It also offers a variety of comedy workshops and panels.

Art fair

April 20 - 22, 2018

1.5 miles SW

See the contemporary work of 90 juried artists at the CraftBoston Spring show in the Cyclorama at Boston Center for the Arts.

Folk festival

April 20 - 22, 2018

33 miles SW

The New England Folk Festival (NEFFA) features music jams and workshops, dancing to watch or join, food booths, crafts, and family events in Mansfield.

Motocross racing

April 21, 2018

27 miles SW

Watch off-road motorcycles race on dirt tracks with steep jumps, tight corners, and obstacles at Supercross at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro.

Film festival

April 25 - May 2, 2018

Boston locations

The Independent Film Festival Boston (IFFBoston) shows nearly 100 innovative crowd-pleasing films, holds frequent parties, invites filmmakers to attend panel discussions, and has an awards ceremony.

Arts festival

April 26 - 29, 2018

3.5 miles NW

Arts First celebrates student and faculty creativity with more than 100 music, theater, dance, film, and visual arts events at Harvard University. Most are free.

Boston College Arts Festival

April 26 - 29, 2018

7 miles west

Boston College Arts Festival features art exhibitions, demonstrations, and sales; music, dance and theater performances; literary readings, and film screenings.

Jazz festival

April 26 - 29, 2018

7.9 miles NE

Arlington Jazz Festival has concerts on four days, with the main event Sunday evening at Arlington Town Hall.

Cocktail festival

April 27 - 29, 2018

multiple locations

Thirst Boston features cocktail seminars, tastings, and parties for beverage enthusiasts and industry insiders.

Tattoo convention

April 27 - 29, 2018

2 miles SW

Boston Tattoo Convention has tattoo artists, vendors, seminars, and entertainment at Hynes Convention Center.


April 27 - May 6, 2018

Greater Boston

ArtWeek Boston offers hundreds of artist talks, creative experiences, performances, behind-the-scenes tours, and kids’ activities. Many are free.

Earth Day

April 28, 2018 (9 a.m. to noon)

multiple areas

Volunteer to help at the Earth Day Charles River Cleanup. Select a location when registering. Free.

Sheep festival

April 28, 2018

10 miles west

The Sheepshearing Festival features demonstrations of sheepshearing, herding dogs, spinning and weaving, historic re-enactments, live music, fiber goods, and craft and food vendors at Gore Place in Waltham.

Visit art studios

April 28 - 29, 2018

4.2 miles SW

Visit 35 artists’ studios and homes during Open Studios weekend sale in Brookline. Free.

Literary festival

April 28 - 29, 2018

37 miles NE

Newburyport Literary Festival has an opening ceremony and a dinner with authors on Friday, and a breakfast with poets, readings at various locations, and closing ceremony on Saturday in Newburyport.

Monster trucks

April 28 - 29, 2018

54 miles NW

Big trucks with big wheels create big noise and excitement at Monster Jam at SNHU Arena in Manchester, NH.

Flowers & art

April 28 - 30, 2018

2.6 miles SW

Art in Bloom is a festival of floral arrangement and fine art that includes a preview party, classes, demonstrations, walking tours, and a family-friendly Community Day on Sunday at Museum of Fine Arts.

Japanese festival

April 29, 2018

1 mile SW

Japan Festival Boston has Japanese drumming, folk music, arts & crafts, dancing, speakers, exhibitors, and food vendors at Boston Common (139 Tremont Sreet). Free.

Race on the river

April 29, 2018

6 miles west

Run of the Charles offers a variety of canoe, kayak, and paddleboard races for all skill levels and a finish-line festival with food, music, prizes, and displays at Artesani Playground.

Jazz Week

April 2018 (undated)

Greater Boston locations

Jazz Week offers numerous jazz events, from solo shows to jazz ensembles, and some are free.

Taste of South Boston

April 2018 (undated)

1.1 miles SE

Taste of South Boston features local restaurant food, wine and beer tasting, live entertainment, and a silent auction in the Plaza Ballroom at the Seaport Hotel.

Wine tasting

April 2018 (undated)

1.2 miles SW

Taste 100 wines at Wine Riot at the Castle at Park Plaza, and note your favorites on the free app.

Beer tasting

April 2018 (undated)

1.5 miles SW

Sample beer, meet the brewers, and hear live music at the Spring Craft Beer Fest inside the Cyclorama at Boston Center for the Arts.

Young artist show

April 2018 (undated)

1.5 miles south

Enjoy art, design, entertainment, dancing, appetizers, wine, and cocktails at the Greatest Party on Earth to support young artists at Artists for Humanity.

Apple cider tasting

April 2018 (undated)

1.8 mile SE

Taste 75 hard ciders and buy food at Pour The Core for age 21+ at Cruiseport Boston.

Art & food celebration

April 2018 (undated)

2.2 miles south

Create brings together innovative artists, chefs, bartenders, and musicians at the SoWa Power Station, where you can enjoy their art, food, drinks, and music.

Hot chile contest

April 2018 (undated)

2.7 miles SW

Watch contestants eat hotter and hotter chile peppers until one champion wins free burritos for a year at the Chile Eating Contest, “a test of endurance and stamina and poor judgment” at El Pelon Taqueria. Free to see.

International tasting

April 2018 (undated)

3.5 miles NW

Sample foods from 8 international restaurants with live music to support charity at Yum: A Taste of Immigrant City in Center for Arts at the Armory in Somerville.

Blues music

April 2018 (undated)

7.3 miles NW

Hear blues, soul, and jazz at BluesApocalypse, which features five bands plus a cash bar, refreshments, and a silent auction at Arlington Center for the Arts.

Beer festival

April 2018 (undated)

44 miles west

Brew Woo features craft beer, live music, local eateries, and vendors at DCU Center in Worcester.

Vegetarian festival

April 2018 (undated)

44 miles west

Discover new food items, taste samples, speak to producers, and shop at the New England VegFest at the DCU Center in Worcester. Free.

Make glass Easter eggs

April 2018 (undated)

4.8 miles SW

Make your own glass ornaments to take home at an Easter Class at Diablo Glass School.

Easter at the zoo

April 2018 (undated)

8.2 miles north

Bunny Bonanzoo has holiday games, music, crafts, and a visit from the Easter Bunny at Stone Zoo.