10 things to do in Boston this weekend

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

Fireworks explode during the annual Boston Common Christmas tree lighting.
Fireworks explode during the annual Boston Common Christmas tree lighting. –Keith Bedford/Globe Staff

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.

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical”

Illumination’s “The Grinch” has already earned more than $182 million domestically since hitting theaters, and now the stage version is here to spread holiday cheer in spite of the Christmas-hating titular character’s wishes. Starring Gavin Lee (Squidward in “SpongeBob SquarePants the Musical” on Broadway) as the grumpy green Dr. Seuss creature, “Grinch” will be at the Wang Theatre through Dec. 9. (Now through Sunday, Dec. 9; various times; Boch Center Wang Theatre, Boston; $25-145; all ages)

Boston Common Holiday Tree Lighting


Boston will continue its transformation into a winter wonderland with the Boston Common tree lighting at a little before 8 p.m. on Thursday, when the tree from Nova Scotia will be illuminated, quickly followed by a pyrotechnic display. The festivities will kick off around 6 p.m., and WCVB will broadcast live from the Common starting at 7 p.m., with appearances by pop star Andy Grammer, local recording artist Phaedra, and the cast of North Shore Music Theater’s “A Christmas Carol,” among others. (Thursday, Nov. 29 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Boston Common, Boston; free; all ages)

“A Charlie Brown Christmas” Live on Stage

The theatrical version of the beloved holiday TV special will arrive in Boston on Thursday, bringing Lucy, Linus, Snoopy, and the rest of the “Peanuts” gang to the Shubert Theatre. Unlike your least favorite holiday song playing repeatedly on the radio, “Charlie Brown” won’t overstay its welcome, departing from the theater after only one weekend of shows. (Thursday, Nov. 29 at 7 p.m. through Dec. 2; Boch Center Shubert Theatre, Boston; $38-78; all ages)

Tedeschi Trucks Band

South Shore native Susan Tedeschi built a strong solo career on the strength of her Southern-inspired Americana tunes, opening for the likes of the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan, and rocking the crowd at Lilith Fair. Over the last decade, she and her husband, Allman Brothers Band slide guitarist Derek Trucks, have melded their musical talents to great effect with Tedeschi Trucks Band, and will play three straight nights of shows at the Orpheum starting Thursday. (Thursday, Nov. 29 at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Nov. 30 at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday, Dec. 1 at 7:30 p.m.; Orpheum Theatre, Boston; $33.50-$88; all ages)

“The Nutcracker”


Last year was the Boston Ballet’s first time performing its annual marquee show under the direction of ballet master Miranda Weese, a former principal in the New York City Ballet’s production of “The Nutcracker.” This year, it’s the Boston Ballet’s new music director, Mischa Santora, who will get his first crack at the holiday classic when it returns to the Boston Opera House for a monthlong engagement Thursday evening. (Thursday, Nov. 29 at 7:30 p.m. through Dec. 31; Boston Opera House, Boston; $37-365; all ages)

Latke-Making at Mamaleh’s

Hanukkah starts on Sunday evening, meaning latkes galore will be in store. If you want to learn how to make the delicious potato pancakes yourself, Cambridge deli Mamaleh’s will offer latke-making classes this Friday, with applesauce and garnish tutorials to boot. (Friday, Nov. 30 at 5:30 p.m.; Mamaleh’s Delicatessen, Cambridge; $72; all ages)

Light Up Seaport

While it won’t have the fanfare, lengthy tradition, or Canadian tree of its Boston Common counterpart, this Seaport celebration will offer plenty of holiday cheer in its third year. Along with the ceremonial tree lighting, the evening will feature food and drink from nearby Seaport restaurants and live holiday music. (Friday, Nov. 30 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Seaport Common, 85 Northern Ave., Boston; free; all ages)

“The Slutcracker”

If “The Nutcracker” is too traditional or too expensive for your tastes, its raunchier, more affordable sibling “The Slutcracker” will bow at the Somerville Theatre starting Nov. 30. The burlesque parody created by Vanessa White in 2008 is not a family-friendly affair, but for those who prefer their ballet with a heavy dose of the risqué, “The Slutcracker” is just the ticket. (Friday, Nov. 30 at 8 p.m. through Monday, Dec. 31; Somerville Theatre, Somerville; $30; all ages)

Jolly Jaunt 5K


The Santa Speedo Run isn’t until next weekend, but you can get a holiday-themed run in seven days earlier with the Jolly Jaunt 5K. Runners will gather at the Boston Common in their best holiday attire for a race benefitting the Special Olympics. In keeping with the spirit of the season, organizers will dole out jingle bells for every runner and prizes for best holiday attire. (Saturday, Dec. 1 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.; Boston Common, Boston; $35; all ages)

SantaCon 2018

While other cities like San Francisco have cried foul over the annual sprawling, red-suited shindig that is SantaCon, the yearly bar crawl will once again take over Boston on Saturday, with thousands expected to eat, drink, and be merry. Just like last year, SantaCon will spread to multiple neighborhoods for the first half of the bar crawl from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., so you’ll likely see beard-clad revelers in Somerville, Cambridge, Boston, and everywhere in between. For the second half, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., all three routes will finish in the Fenway neighborhood, with 10 different bars sure to be bursting to the brim with Santas. (Saturday, Dec. 1 from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.; various locations; free; 21+)