10 things to do in Boston this weekend

BosTen is your weekly guide to the best events and coolest happenings in and around Boston.

The Roaring Twenties Lawn Party at Castle Hill at the Crane Estate.
The Roaring Twenties Lawn Party at Castle Hill at the Crane Estate. John Jovens

Welcome to BosTen, your weekly guide to the coolest events and best things to do in Boston this weekend. Sign up for our weekly email newsletter here. Have an idea about what we should cover? Leave us a comment on this article or in the BosTen Facebook group, or email us at [email protected].

Hear Barry Manilow put the words and melodies together

Since the early-1970s, the music business has been very good for Barry Manilow. Packed concert halls; gold and platinum albums; 36 songs in the Top 20, 28 of which hit the Top 10, and 13 of them attaining the No. 1 spot. Business really picked up for Manilow when he met Better Midler, became her music director, landed a recording deal with Bell Records (which became Arista Records), and the hits just kept on coming. As did his directions in music, moving from ballads to disco to jazzy swing and, these days — his most recent record was “Night Songs II” in 2020 — to covering classics from The Great American Songbook. Manilow has so much material, his TD Garden show on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. could potentially last for hours. What would be really cool is if, among the hits, he sneaks in a jingle or two. Or maybe the vocal version of “Bandstand Boogie,” the theme from “American Bandstand.” No, he didn’t write that song, but he did co-author the lyrics. — Ed Symkus

Celebrate The Banks Fish House’s first birthday

The Banks Fish House, a Back Bay seafood restaurant, turns one year old this summer. To celebrate, the restaurant will throw a party the only way they know how: with a New England ocean feast. Each ticket will grant guests access to “as much seafood” as their heart desires. Island Creek will be on raw bar duty, and there will also be caviar, lobster rolls, and tuna tartare on offer. Additionally, tickets include two drinks, with a choice between bubbles, Narragansett beer, or a frozen cocktail. The vibe is rounded out with music and oyster shucking. — Joel Ang

Catch a free outdoor movie (or two)

While film fans have started heading back to regular movie theaters after two-plus years of COVID-19, the Boston area is once again offering a robust number of free outdoor movies during the summer months. All summer long, movie lovers have been catching a mix of fairly recent films and certified classics at pop-up outdoor movie screenings — free of charge. On Thursday, visit Revere Beach for an 8 p.m. showing of the 2021 Disney hit “Encanto.” On Friday, you can catch “Crazy Rich Asians” at dusk as part of Boston Harbor Hotel’s Summer in the City series. Saturday’s free film can be found at the Prudential Center lawn, where “Space Jam” will be screening at sunset. Finally, you can wrap up the weekend of free movies on Sunday with an 8:15 p.m. showing of “Meet the Parents” at Christopher Columbus Park— Kevin Slane

Rock out with ’80s legends at Fenway Park

After multiple delays, the ’80s are back at Fenway Park. Mötley Crüe and Def Leppard first announced they would be coming to Fenway Park way back in 2019, along with fellow ’80s rockers Poison and Joan Jett & The Blackhearts. The pair of shows, originally scheduled for Aug. 25-26, 2020, then rescheduled until July 17-18, 2021, before being delayed again, are finally set to be held on Friday and Saturday at 4 p.m. First formed in 1977, Def Leppard has stayed productive even after nearly 45 years. The British arena rockers put out a self-titled album in 2015 and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2019. Mötley Crüe, meanwhile, has managed to keep all four of its founding members after 40 years together, a relative rarity in high-profile rock bands. The group will be on tour for the first time since 2014-15’s “The Final Tour,” which luckily for fans turned out to be a misnomer. Tickets for both shows are still available through the Red Sox website. — Kevin Slane

Taste of the Caribbean & Jerk Festival showcases culture of the West Indies

Make a day trip to Hartford this weekend for the Taste of the Caribbean & Jerk Festival, a celebration that has been taking place there since 2006. This year, the festival will be held on Saturday at the Mortensen Riverfront Plaza from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. The original vision of the festival was to honor the city’s Caribbean culture and community, while enhancing Hartford’s revitalization efforts. This year, attendees will be able to try some of the islands’ famed dishes, such as chicken flavored with jerk seasoning. There will be beef patties, curried goat, and desserts like rum cake or pineapple upside down cake. Vendors will also be serving vegetarian dishes, featuring ingredients such as tofu or cabbage. There will be a costume parade and a lineup of entertainment, with headliner Johnny Osbourne, a Jamaican singer, performing. Attendees can also expect to hear reggae music, calypso, and gospel, while experiencing dance performances as well. — Shira Laucharoen

Chase the blues away at the Salem Jazz and Soul Festival

After a COVID-related hiatus, audiences will once again have the chance to listen to music from five different live bands, as well as a DJ, at the Salem Common when the annual Salem Jazz and Soul Festival returns Aug. 6 from noon to 8 p.m. at the Salem Common. Featured performers are the HDRnB All Stars, The Runaround Sound, Steve Lacey Quartet, Verdegree, and the Salem High School Jazz Band. Skot Void will serve as DJ for the event.  Other than music, the Peabody Essex Museum is also sponsoring education tents with four free workshops, along with kids tents for this family-friendly event. There is also an artisan vendors fair event-goers can peruse. Although this year’s event is a single day, Salem Jazz and Soul hopes to bring its usual two-day festival back in 2023, according to organizers. — Ria Goveas

A 1920s party roars into Castle Hill at Crane Estate

Calling all flappers and dandies. While this decade hasn’t quite gotten off to a roaring start, things are trending in the right direction as the Roaring Twenties Lawn Party returns to Castle Hill on Crane Estate for its ninth year. Presented by Boston Swing Central and The Trustees of Reservations with the theme of “Reimagine the Jazz Age,” this two-day lawn party is a celebration of all things vintage. Attracting thousands in Gatsby-esque apparel, this retro picnic features live music and dancing, performances, lawn games, a vintage faire, Vintage Girl Photography, a Poetry Brothel, Florence’s Fashion Stroll, and more — all set on the lavish swoon-worthy grounds of the Crane Estate. Explore the formal gardens with 1920s jazz in the air, stroll the antique auto show, march in a suffragette parade, take a dance lesson, and enjoy a drink at the Bootlegger’s Garden featuring Mill River Winery, 1634 Meadery, and True North Ales. Guests can pre-order a picnic or visit one of the onsite vendors or experience afternoon tea in the Italian Garden for sandwiches, sweets, and teas while overlooking the formal garden. There is also a chance to book a mansion tour given by a “Crane family servant” in 1929. This year organizers have added the following event: “Reimagining the Jazz Age: A discussion of race, social justice, inclusivity, and vintage culture,” helping participants reimagine a better, more inclusive 2020s for everyone. Vintage attire is suggested but not required. Remember: a string of beads, a boa, and a fascinator or hat can transform a regular outfit into 1920s chic. — Cheryl Fenton

Cheer on your favorite drag queens at Boston’s Gay Bash’d

Boston’s Gay Bash’d is marking four years of providing a safe space for LGBTQ+ community members and their allies, while also celebrating queerness and expression with a party this Saturday at Sinclair in Cambridge. Performers who will be taking the stage include hyperpop legend Alice Longyu Gao, as well as resident drag hosts Static, Saint (from AMC Shudder’s “Boulet Brothers Dragula”), Violencia (also from “Dragula”), and Binx, among others. There will also be hyperpop DJ sets from Rubí and resident DJ Math3Ca, so come prepared to dance. This event is open to those 18+, and there is alcohol for those 21+. Doors open at 9:30 p.m., and expect a night that stretches out: No end time is specified. Additionally, 25 cents from each ticket purchased will go to The Shout Syndicate, a Boston-based, volunteer-run fundraising effort which raises money to help fund youth-led arts programs at nonprofit creative youth development organizations in Greater Boston. — Ria Goveas

Cruise over to the Boston Seafood Festival

The historic Boston Fish Pier is a working wharf for nearly 20 small businesses, 365 days of the year. For one day each summer, it becomes a family-friendly destination for fresh food and fun during the Boston Seafood Festival. Returning this Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. for its ninth iteration, the Boston Seafood Festival features a traditional lobster bake and a Harpoon Beer Garden in 2022, plus seafood sampling (and non-seafood items), fish-cutting demonstrations, oyster shucking contests, live music, roving pirates, children’s activities, and more. Founded in 2012 by the nonprofit Boston Fisheries Foundation, the Boston Seafood Festival celebrates Massachusetts’ maritime history and heritage — and the contemporary regional economy. The foundation works to protect oceans and fisheries while promoting Boston’s historic Fish Pier and ensuring its sustainable future. This year, the festival will welcome South Kingstown, R.I.’s Matunuck Oyster Bar, Texas crawfish dealer Roses Seafood, Boston-born Cajun seafood company Shaking Crab, nationwide franchise Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh, and more vendors to be announced. The festivities are supported by an array of local restaurants, hotels, wholesalers, and retailers. General-admission tickets are $20 for adults and $7 for children (kids 5 and under can attend for free), with the lobster bake and beer available for additional purchase. The event is happening rain or shine. — Jacqueline Cain

Score some great deals during Dine Out Boston

Dine Out Boston, formerly known as Restaurant Week, offers diners a chance to try some great restaurants across the city at more affordable prices starting this Sunday. Over 60 spots are already participating for the summer dates (Aug. 7-20), and the list of restaurants continues to grow each week. Some notable eateries include The Banks Fish HouseAtlantico, and Bar Enza. The Banks and Atlantico will be serving lunch and dinner pre-fixe menus for $32 and $46 respectively, while Bar Enza will only have a dinner menu available at $46. Reservations are recommended for Dine Out Boston and, if you prefer, some restaurants will be offering pre-fixe menus for takeout as well. — Joel Ang


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