Free Events in Boston and Massachusetts in May

FREE events in May 2016 in Boston and around Massachusetts!


1 Sunday

ARTS FIRST, 9am – 9pm, Various locations, Cambridge. Harvard’s festival of creativity wraps up today. View a Japanese Tea Ceremony, hear the 1812 Overture or check out the Battle of the Bands. Many events free. 617-495-8676;

New England Right Whale Festival, 11am – 3pm, New England Aquarium, Central Wharf, Boston. Hear from scientists and researchers about efforts to protect this highly endangered species and take part in family activities. FREE. 617-973-5200;

MayFair, noon to 6pm, Harvard Square, Cambridge. This annual spring festival includes multiple stages of music and dance, food, vendors, children’s activities and very cool sidewalk chalk art. FREE. 617-491-3434;



Earth Day/Arbor Day Celebration, noon to 4pm, Stony Brook Wildlife Sanctuary, 108 North St., Norfolk. A day of timely demos and information sharing, children's nature games, crafts and much more. FREE. 508-528-3140;



New England VegFest, 11am – 5pm, DCU Center, 50 Foster St., Worcester. Celebrate vegetarianism with free food, kid's activities, speakers, demos and more. FREE.

Drop Into Art - Storytelling, 2-4pm, Danforth Art, 123 Union Ave., Framingham. A program about narrative in art. Activities include mobile creation, pastel drawing, book making, storytime and more. FREE. 508-620-0050;


3 Tuesday

Return of the Swans, 10:45am, Public Garden, Boston. Welcome back Boston’s most famous waterfowl to the lagoon with a reading of Make Way for Ducklings and a parade. FREE. 617-635-4505;


7 Saturday

Open Arts Day, 11am – 4pm, Arsenal Center for the Arts, 321 Arsenal St., Watertown. Experiment with clay, printmaking, mixed-media and other art projects, and take part in theatre-based activities. FREE. 617-923-0100;

Wake up the Earth Festival, 11am – 6pm, Southwest Corridor Park, Jamaica Plain. The parade begins at 11am, followed by multiple stages of entertainment, craft and food vendors, and much more. FREE. 617-524-6373;

Goat Gala, 1-3pm, Habitat Education and Wildlife Sanctuary, 10 Juniper Road, Belmont. Meet the Nigerian Dwarf Goats, join in games, entertainment and raffles, and sample goat-related products. FREE. 617-489-5050;



Make a Craft for Mom, 10am to noon, North River Wildlife Sanctuary, 2000 Main St., Marshfield. Make handmade gifts using natural materials. Bring a picnic and take a stroll through the sanctuary. Drop in. FREE. 781-837-9400;



Festival of Dance and KidsFEST, 10am – 5pm, Newton City Hall, 1000 Commonwealth Ave., Newton. This community festival features kiddie amusement rides, face painting, craft and food vendors as well as dance performances (including Circus Smirkus!). FREE.


8 Sunday

Mother’s Day

Lilac Sunday, 10am – 3pm, Arnold Arboretum, 125 Arborway, Boston. The lilac is celebrated with tours, activities and food trucks. Stay for lunch - it’s the one day picnicking is allowed on the grounds. FREE. 617-384-5253;



Ethnic Heritage Festival and KidsFEST, 10am – 5pm, Newton City Hall, 1000 Commonwealth Ave., Newton. Take part in Indian folk-art painting, try out calligraphy or origami or hit up the kiddie rides and face painting. FREE.


10 Tuesday



Peek a Blue Hike, 11am, Houghton’s Pond, 840 Hillside St., Milton. A free, one-hour guided hike for kids, including a simple scavenger hunt and refreshments. FREE. 781-828-1805;


14 Saturday

Kite and Bike Festival, 11am – 4pm, Franklin Park Playstead, Pierpont Road, Dorchester. Bring your kite and bike, or buy or rent one. Bike tours, food trucks, craft vendors and more. FREE. 617-442-4141;


15 Sunday



Star Gazing Nights, 7:30-9:30pm, Moose Hill Wildlife Sanctuary, 293 Moose Hill St., Sharon. Join local astronomers for a look at the stars and other night objects through big telescopes. Drop in. FREE. 781-784-5691;


19 Thursday


Plant a Seed Day,
3-5pm, Francis William Bird Park, 251 Washington St., Walpole. Plant a mystery seed by the sports courts, then check back all summer long to see what it grows into. FREE. 781-784-0567;


21 Saturday

EarthFest Concert, Hatch Memorial Shell, 47 David G Mugar Way, Boston. A day-long festival featuring nationally recognized bands (to be announced), a kids stage, exhibits and environmental displays. FREE.

Historic Open House Day, 10am – 5pm, various locations. Get free admission to 9 Trustees’ cultural sites across the state, including the Bradley Estate in Canton, The Old Manse in Concord and The Great House at Castle Hill. FREE.

Sol y Canto Concert, 5pm, Church of Holy Spirit, 525 River St., Mattapan. This pan-latin ensemble presents a family concert with the Church of the Holy Spirit liturgical dance ensemble. FREE. 617-598-3225;



Family Nature Hike, 10am, Oak Knoll Wildlife Sanctuary, 1417 Park St., Attleboro. A monthly hike of the sanctuary exploring the local flora and fauna. $2. 508-223-3060;



Huge Children's Tag Sale, 10am – 1pm, Sts. Anagyroi Church, 9 Cashman St., Marlborough. The West Suburban Chapter of Mass. Mothers of Twins Association’s sale includes kid’s clothing, gear and toys. $1.

Spring Spirit Day, noon to 4:30pm, New Art Center, 61 Washington Park, Newtonville. A fun-filled day of exhibitions, demos and participatory art activities. FREE. 617-964-3424;


24 Tuesday

Peek a Blue Hike, 11am, Houghton’s Pond, 840 Hillside St., Milton. See May 10 listing.


28 Saturday

Fort Independence Tours, noon to 3:30pm, Castle Island, Day Boulevard, Boston. Free one-hour tours of the fort. Round out the day with lunch at Sullivan’s and a romp on the playground. FREE.



Memorial Day Beach Ramble, 10am, Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary, 1280 Horseneck Road, Westport. A naturalist will explain the flora and fauna along the Beach Loop Trail. Registration required. FREE. 508-636-2437;



Lexington Discovery Day, 10am – 3pm, Muzzey Street/Waltham Street Municipal Parking Lot, Lexington. A street fair with food, fun, clowns, exhibits from town departments and more. FREE. 781-862-1034;


29 Sunday



Newburyport Spring Festival, 10am – 5pm, Downtown Newburyport. Enjoy live music, art, fine crafts and food from Newburyport’s best restaurants. Kid’s entertainment, live music and more. FREE. 978-462-6680;

Bio-Blitz Free-for-All, 10am – 3pm, Joppa Flats Education Center, 1 Plum Island Turnpike, Newburyport. A mixture of indoor and outdoor activities teaching about biodiversity. FREE. 978-462-9998;


30 Monday

Memorial Day

Commemorate the holiday by attending a local Memorial Day parade. Several towns, including Somerville, Sudbury, Stoneham and Quincy, hold annual parades. Check your town’s website for details.






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10 May 2016

By Boston Parents Paper