10 things to do in Boston this weekend

BosTen is your weekly guide to events and cool happenings in and around Boston.

Billy Joel at Fenway Park in 2013.
Billy Joel at Fenway Park in 2013. –EPA/Dominick Reuter

Skip Netflix this weekend—here are 10 ways to get out of your home and not be bored in the city. If you’d like BosTen delivered to your inbox every Thursday, click here. Want more things to do? Check out our events calendar at boston.com/events. You can also learn even more about awesome events around Boston by joining the BosTen Facebook group.

Neighborhood Nights at Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

Free fun activities will abound both inside and outside the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum on Thursday during the museum’s Neighborhood Nights program. Outside the museum at Evans Way Park, you’ll find the interactive performance piece “Intervention: Ocean Blues,” featuring stilt dancers in “oceanic, bioluminescent, sculptural wearables” sashaying along to the rhythms of Afro-Caribbean percussionists. Also on hand will be the Boston Latin Academy Step & Stroll Team, DJ Real P, roller skaters from Chez-Vous Roller Rink, youth demonstrations from Xtreme Ninja Martial Arts, and hands-on activities like lawn games, art-making, and metalworking. (Thursday, Aug. 9 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston; free; all ages)

Summer Dock Party


You can sip beer and wine from an open bar while enjoying riverside views at Community Boating’s annual Summer Dock Party on the Charles River Esplanade. The party is a chance for CBI members to both socialize with each other and show the public what the organization has to offer. (Thursday, Aug. 9 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.; Community Boating Inc., Boston; $35; 21+)

Jimmy Buffett with Peter Wolf

A plethora of Parrotheads will descend on Fenway Park Thursday when Jimmy Buffett takes a quick break from wasting away in Margaritaville for a concert at the ballpark. Buffett and his Coral Reefer Band also will be joined on the bill by local rocker and J. Geils Band frontman Peter Wolf and the Midnight Travelers. (Thursday, Aug. 9 at 7 p.m.; Fenway Park, Boston; $46-$146; all ages)

Free Fun Fridays in Boston

The next edition of the Highland Street Foundation’s Free Fun Fridays will be the most Boston-centric of the summer, with six of the 10 attractions offering complimentary admission located in Boston proper. They include the Boston Harbor Island National and State Park, the Greenway Carousel, the Institute of Contemporary Art, and more. (Friday, Aug. 10 at various times and locations, free; all ages)

Billy Joel

The Piano Man won’t be in a New York state of mind when he steps onstage at Fenway on Friday. Sure, the prolific songwriter will always be tied to NYC, but with his fifth straight summer appearance at Fenway, Boston fans can probably forgive him. (Friday, Aug. 10 at 7:30 p.m.; Fenway Park, Boston; $159.50; all ages)

Fan Expo Boston


Boston Comic Con is now known as Fan Expo Boston, but the annual celebration of nerd culture will remain largely unchanged aside from its name, with swarms of fans expected to descend upon the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center this weekend. Some of the celebrities expected to make appearances include the cast of “Back to the Future” (Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Tom Wilson, Lea Thompson), Jeff Goldblum (“Jurassic Park”), and Evangeline Lily (“Ant-Man and the Wasp”). (Friday, Aug. 10 from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 11 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, Aug. 12 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, Boston; $35-129; all ages)

Tour de Fat

New Belgium Brewing’s 19th annual Tour de Fat will roll into Boston on Saturday, with the Colorado beer company promising a day of bikes, beer, and music at City Hall Plaza. The headlining musical act is The Voidz, a rock group fronted by Strokes singer Julian Casablancas, and the afternoon will also feature a touring group of comedians and cirque performers. A portion of the beer sales will benefit the nonprofit Boston Cyclists Union. (Saturday, Aug. 11 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.; City Hall Plaza, Boston; $15; 21+)

Ignite! Global Street Food and Fire Festival

Somerville’s Union Square will light up with smiling faces and flaming torches on Saturday thanks to the Somerville Arts Council, which will pair delicious eats from a dozen of the city’s restaurants with fiery performances from members of the Boston Circus Guild. Stop by before the sun goes down and you’ll catch food demos from local chefs, a bicycle carnival, and a mini artisan market from the Somerville Flea. (Saturday, Aug. 11 from 6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.; Union Square, Somerville; free; all ages)

Open Newbury Street


For the second time this summer, the City of Boston will make Newbury Street a pedestrian-only thoroughfare this Sunday as part of the third year of the Open Newbury experiment. Check out local businesses, listen to live music, and play a few lawn games on the car-free stretch from Berkeley Street to Massachusetts Avenue. (Sunday, Aug. 12 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Newbury Street, Boston; free; all ages)

Boston GospelFest

The 18th Annual GospelFest will take place at City Hall Sunday evening, and according to the city’s website, it’s the largest gospel music celebration in New England. Musicians scheduled to perform include the Mayor’s Community Gospel Choir, Phil Thompson and Tamar, and headliner Jonathan McReynolds. (Sunday, Aug. 12 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.; City Hall Plaza, Boston; free; all ages)

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