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Staying Local for Spring Break? We’ve Got You Covered

Art exhibitions, sporting events, music, theater, and more


It’s starting to feel like spring is in the air despite recent snowfalls. The days are longer and on March 10, clocks get set ahead an hour as daylight saving time begins. Friday, March 8, is the official start of spring break. Residence halls will remain open throughout the week, but dining halls close at 8 pm Friday and will not reopen until 4 pm on Sunday, March 17.

While spring break is an opportunity for many to head to warmer climes, it’s also a great time to stay local. Boston is full of festivals, exhibitions, live music performances, sporting events, and St. Patrick’s Day celebrations happening over break week. We’ve put together a list of some of the best events for those staying in town. Take a look.

Music and Dance

Guitar Night: R&B/Funk Showcase at Berklee College of Music

Get an early jump on your spring break and head over to Berklee College of Music on Thursday, March 7, when six talented guitarists and their bands take the stage for a concert of R&B and funk original songs and covers. Berklee guitar professor Thaddeus Hogarth handpicked these artists for this special showcase. Best of all, it’s free.

Guitar Night: R&B/Funk Showcase at Berklee College of Music is Thursday, March 7, at the David Friend Recital Hall, 921 Boylston Street, Boston, starting at 7:30 pm. Admission is free. Find directions here.

Dance Nights: Winter Edition at Faneuil Hall Marketplace

It may be cold out, but this weekly dance event at Faneuil Hall will have you moving so much you won’t notice the chill. Learn how to swing dance for free in the Quincy Market Rotunda, courtesy of the expert instructors from Boston Lindy Hop, which offers swing dance classes for novices, veterans, and everyone in between. Stick around after the class for a social dancing session. Don’t have a dance partner? No worries. Singles are welcome.

Dance Nights: Winter Edition is Thursday, March 7, in the Quincy Market Rotunda, Faneuil Hall Marketplace, 4 South Market St., Boston. Lessons are from 6 to 6:45 pm, followed by dancing from 7 to 8:30 pm. The event is free and open to the public. Find directions here.

Urbanity NeXt at Multicultural Arts Center

This nonprofit dance company seeks to empower people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities through dance and movement. The company is hosting its seventh annual showcase, this year featuring work by seven up-and-coming choreographers from the greater Boston area—Styles Alexander, Hollis Bartlett, Dorothy Cherry, Cayley Christoforou, Alexander Davis, Carrie Kerstein, and Nattie Trogdon—who have just completed a five-month residency with Urbanity’s professional company and creative class dancers. The showcase is a must for anyone who loves contemporary dance.

Urbanity NeXt is Friday, March 8, and Saturday, March 9, at 7:30 pm and Sunday, March 10, at 2:30 pm at the Multicultural Arts Center, 41 Second St., East Cambridge. Tickets are $28 for general admission (plus a $4 fee) and $23 for students (plus a $3 fee). Tickets can be purchased online. Find directions here.

Dancers pose

Urbanity NeXt showcases rising choreographers from the greater Boston dance community. Photo courtesy of Urbanity NeXt

Harmony Sweepstakes 35th Annual A Cappella Festival Boston Regional at Somerville Theatre

Eight a cappella groups from across New England will compete on Saturday, March 8, at the Somerville Theatre, in Davis Square, in the finals of the Harmony Sweepstakes, a national competition of vocal harmony music. The Boston regional round features quartets, vocal bands, and a cappella groups singing barbershop harmony, pop hits, folk, classic, indie rock, and more. Five judges including Kayla Pichichero (SHA’16), an alum of BU’s a cappella group Treblemakers, will decide which act is worthy of taking the national stage.

The Harmony Sweepstakes A Cappella Festival Boston Regional is Saturday, March 9, at 8 pm, at the Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Square, Somerville. Purchase tickets, starting at $24, online. Find directions here.

Theater and Film

After Midnite at Coolidge Corner Theatre

Looking for some late-night fun? Head over to the Coolidge Corner Theatre for the After Midnite film series, which showcases “horrifying, weird, camp, avant-garde, tripped-out, and cult films,” often from 35mm prints, just before midnight. Grab a friend and some popcorn and settle in for a night you won’t soon forget. Among the films screening during spring break are the classic 2001: A Space Odyssey on Friday, March 8, at 11:30 pm; Blade Runner 2049 on Saturday, March 9, at 11:30 pm; Robocop on Friday, March 15, at 11:59 pm; and Starfish and Demon Seed on Saturday, March 16, both at 11:59 pm.

The Coolidge Corner Theatre After Midnite film series is at Coolidge Corner Theatre, 290 Harvard St., Brookline. Purchase tickets online or at the box office for $13.25. Find directions here.

The Huntington Theatre Company Presents Spamilton: An American Parody at the Calderwood Pavilion

It was only a matter of time before Lin Manuel Miranda’s Tony-winning Broadway hit musical Hamilton inspired a parody. And this one, by veteran playwright Gerard Alessandrini (known for his long-running revue Forbidden Broadway, a send-up of Broadway musicals and stars), will have Hamilton fans laughing hysterically. Alessandrini’s take on one of America’s founding fathers is 80 minutes of fun. And while Hamilton is its inspiration, the musical also offers some witty nods and winks to other legendary Broadway shows, including Chicago, The King and I, and Sweeney Todd. Also look out for the show’s caricatures of Broadway stars such as Patti LuPone, Stephen Schwartz, and Barbra Streisand.

The Huntington Theatre Company’s presentation of Spamilton runs at the Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts, 527 Tremont St., Boston, through April 7. Purchase tickets, starting at $25, online.

Actors in the musical "Spamilton"

Spamilton, an uproarious parody of the hit Broadway musical Hamilton, is at the Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts through April 7. Photo by Roger Mastroianni


Frida Kahlo and Arte Popular at the Museum of Fine Arts

This dazzling show, just opened at the MFA, is the MFA’s first exhibition devoted to iconic Mexican painter Frida Kahlo (1907–1954). It explores Kahlo’s fascination with Mexican folk art (known as arte popular) and how her collection of decorated ceramics, embroidered textiles, and devotional retablo paintings inspired and shaped her own work, including Dos Mujeres (Salvadora y Herminia), recently acquired by the MFA and on view here. The exhibition also features loans of Kahlo’s works from New York’s Museum of Modern Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin, which are juxtaposed here with other exemplary works of arte popular.

Frida Kahlo and Arte Popular is on display at the Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave., Boston, through June 16. Find hours, admission info (free for students, faculty, and staff with a BU ID), and directions here.

Self-Portrait with Hummingbird and Thorn Necklace, 1940 Frida Kahlo

Self-Portrait with Hummingbird and Thorn Necklace, 1940,
Frida Kahlo, © 2018 Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, courtesy of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. This piece is on view in the MFA exhibition Frida Kahlo and Arte Popular through June 16.

Nature’s Superheroes: Life at the Limits at Museum of Science

This captivating temporary exhibition offers insight into some of the world’s fascinating species and how they’ve developed superpowers to overcome the challenges threatening their survival. Organized by the American Museum of Natural History, the show includes multisensory experiences, immersive scenic displays, and hands-on interactive components. Discover the bizarre survival serenades some species employ, explore a mysterious cave where animals without eyes live, and learn how a giant elephant seal can hold its breath for up to two hours while diving to find food. It’s a fascinating lens on the breathtaking diversity of the natural world and the incredible power of evolution to shape exceptional responses to the challenges, and opportunities, of life on Earth.

Nature’s Superheroes: Life at the Limits is on display at the Museum of Science, One Science Park, Boston, through May 5. Find hours, admission info, and directions here.

The Theresa Show at the Harriet Tubman Gallery

This annual fiber arts exhibition at the Harriet Tubman Gallery is a tribute to the late Theresa-India Young, a local arts educator and fiber artist whose interest was to preserve the art, history, and diverse culture of weaving. The show has works by more than 20 local artists.

The Theresa Show is on view at the Harriet Tubman Gallery, 566 Columbus Ave., Boston, until March 29. Admission is free. Find hours and directions here.

Late Nites at MFA Boston

The Museum of Fine Arts Late Nites series draws visitors of all ages from around the city. It’s not only a chance to view great art after regular hours, but there’s food, dancing, and art-making activities on tap as well. DJs and pop-up performances add to the festive evening. And guests will have a chance to get a sneak peek at the MFA’s upcoming exhibition Gender Bending Fashion, which opens to the public on March 21.

The next Late Nites at MFA Boston is Friday, March 15, at the Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave., Boston, from 8 pm to 2 am. Tickets are $15 in advance for nonmembers, $12 in advance for members, and $20 at the door. Find directions here.

Entangled in the Everyday at the ICA

The 13th installment of the ICA’s annual collection exhibition presents major works that showcase the way artists engage with the everyday. Artists Tara Donovan and Damián Ortega use adhesive tape and metal and plastic camera parts to demonstrate how deconstructing objects can provide a new perspective, while artists like Lynda Benglis and Sheila Hicks use knotting and wrapping in their metal and thread sculptures, Sierra and Banisteriopsis II. Portraiture—with a prominent role in the ICA’s collection—is another means of exploring the everyday in recently acquired works by Anthony Hernandez, Sanya Kantarovsky, Robert Pruitt, and Lynette Yiadom-Boakye.

Entangled in the Everyday is on display at the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston, 25 Harbor Shore Dr., Boston, from March 17 to April 7. Find hours, admission info (free for students, faculty, and staff with a BU ID), and directions here.

A piece of art by Damián Ortega featuring a dissected camera at the ICA exhibition Entangled in the Everyday.


Boston Bruins and Celtics at TD Garden

If you’re a Bruins fan, take advantage of the time off and show your Boston pride by heading over to TD Garden and cheering on Boston’s favorite hockey team, taking on the Florida Panthers on Thursday, March 7, the Ottawa Senators on Saturday, March 9, and the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday, March 16, all at 7 pm.

Celtics fans won’t want to miss a chance to watch the team challenge the Sacramento Kings on Thursday, March 14, at 7:30 pm and the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday, March 16, at 12:30 pm.

Check the TD Garden website for game times and ticket prices. Find directions here.

Terrier Athletics

It may be spring break, but the men’s lacrosse Terriers will be hard at work when they host the Bucknell Bison on Saturday, March 16.

The BU men’s lacrosse game is Saturday, March 16, at 2 pm, at Nickerson Field. Admission is free for BU students with a sports pass, $5 for faculty and staff, and $8 for the general public. Tickets can be purchased online.

Boston University sophomore Jack Wilson (left) faces off against Ethan Powley of Duke University player during BU's final men's lacrosse game of the season at Nickerson Field Sunday. The Terriers fell to Duke 15-8. Photo by Alexandra Wimley (COM'17)

Photo by Alexandra Wimley (COM’17)

Festivals and St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations

Harpoon St. Patrick’s Festival

Want to get a jump-start on your St. Patrick’s Day celebration? Stop by Harpoon’s Boston Seaport District brewery on Friday, March 8, or Saturday, March 9, for the annual St. Paddy’s Day festivities. Live entertainment will be provided courtesy of local bands the Colum Cille Pipes & Drums, Joshua Tree, the “Howl at the Moon” Dueling Piano Show, and more. Enjoy some great food and choose from a themed selection of Harpoon beer, including seasonal offerings like the Harpoon Fresh Tracks pale ale and the limited release Harpoon Craic, an Irish Red IPA that embodies the spirit of St. Paddy’s Day. Attendees are encouraged to show up decked out in green and Ireland-inspired attire. Note: the event is 21+ only.

The 2019 Harpoon Brewery St. Patrick’s Festival is Friday, March 8, from 5:30 to 11 pm (doors close at 9:30 pm), and Saturday, March 9, from 1 to 7 pm (doors close at 5:30 pm) at Harpoon Brewery, 306 Northern Ave., Boston. Check the website for ticket prices; additional perks and discounts are available for Friends of Harpoon members. The event is 21+.

Chinese New Year in Harvard Square

Did you miss Chinese New Year? There’s still time to celebrate the Year of the Pig at the 13th annual Harvard Square Chinese New Year celebration on March 10. Hosted by the Harvard Square Business Association and Hong Kong Restaurant, the festivities kick off in Winthrop Square (at the intersection of Mt. Auburn and JFK Streets) with a lion dance performance, followed by a parade down Massachusetts Avenue to Hong Kong Restaurant. There, guests can nosh on authentic Chinese cuisine and enjoy family activities, such as arts and crafts, and music.

Chinese New Year in Harvard Square is Sunday, March 10, from 12:30 to 3 pm. The event begins in Winthrop Square at 12:30 pm, and ends at Hong Kong Restaurant, 1238 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, and is free and open to the public. Find more information here.

Boston Flower & Garden Show

If you’re tired of the cold and snow, we have the antidote. The Boston Flower & Garden Show has arrived, featuring more than 20 exhibitors, including the New England Society of Botanic Artists and the Massachusetts Horticultural Society. You’ll discover colorful life-size gardens, small-space gardens, food-growing trends, eye-popping floral displays, and much more. Find your perfect angle at a “selfie station” created by local professional florists, check out a garden photography exhibition, or take in one of the numerous workshops ($29 per workshop) and panels, where you can learn about the Beauty of Balance (this year’s theme), and many more tips that will help develop your green thumb.

The Boston Flower & Garden show is Wednesday, March 13, and Thursday, March 14, from 10 am to 8 pm; Friday, March 15, and Saturday, March 16, from 10 am to 9 pm; and Sunday, March 17, from 10 am to 6 pm, at the Seaport World Trade Center, World Trade Center Ave., Boston. Admission is $20 for adults and $15 for the Flower Show After Dark (Wednesday through Saturday after 5 pm). Find more information and directions here.

A garden site from the Boston Flower and Garden show

Get a jump-start on spring by heading over to the Seaport World Trade Center when the Boston Flower & Garden Show takes up residence from March 13 through March 17. Photo courtesy of the Boston Flower & Garden Show

St. Patrick’s Day Parade in South Boston

You don’t have to be Irish to enjoy one of Boston’s most beloved traditions, South Boston’s annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. This year’s parade features local school marching bands, bagpipe players, the Boston Police Department, veterans, and local entertainers. Be sure to wear green—or you’ll certainly be the odd one out.

The parade kicks off at 1 pm on Sunday, March 17, at South Boston’s Broadway Station and ends in Andrew Square. Find more information and directions here.

Senior Abigail Freeman (COM) can be reached at anfree@bu.edu.

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