10 things to do in Boston this New Year’s Eve weekend

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

People watch early fireworks during First Night festivities on December 31, 2015.
People watch early fireworks during First Night festivities on Dec. 31, 2015. –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.


Since forming at a Berklee music program as teens in 1992, funk and jazz group Lettuce has played shows around the country, and their most recent album reached number one on the U.S. jazz albums chart. They’re bringing the groove back home at the Paradise on Thursday. (Thursday, Dec. 28 at 9 p.m.; Paradise Rock Club, Boston; $32-36; 18+)

“Alien” in 35 mm at the MFA


Director Ridley Scott recently made waves for his speedy effort to replace Kevin Spacey with Christopher Plummer in his new film, “All the Money in the World.” But before all of that, Scott found fame and acclaim with his second feature film, “Alien,” which will be screened in 35 mm at the Museum of Fine Arts on Friday. Beyond Sigourney Weaver’s career-making lead role, “Alien” features a great performance from legendary character actor Harry Dean Stanton, who passed away earlier this year. (Friday, Dec. 29 from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; $9-11; rated R)

Jim Jeffries

Irreverent Australian comedian Jim Jeffries, who recently wrapped the first season of his self-titled show on Comedy Central, will be at The Wilbur for a series of shows from Dec. 29 to Dec. 31. Two of the six shows have already sold out, but both New Year’s Eve performances still have tickets available. (Friday, Dec. 29 through Sunday, Dec. 31 at 7 p.m. and 10 p.m.; The Wilbur, Boston; $51.95-71.95; all ages)

Noon Year’s Eve Party

Midnight is way too late for younger kids to stay up, and with forecasts calling for low temperatures this weekend, you may not want to be outside all that long. To that end, the Lower Mills branch of the Boston Public Library is having a Noon Year’s Eve party on Saturday, with fun activities for the younger set. Formal wear is still encouraged, so consider dressing your children in their New Year’s Eve finest for the gathering. (Saturday, Dec. 30 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Lower Mills Branch of the Boston Public Library, Boston; free; all ages)

“Phantom Thread” in 70 mm


If you want a chance to catch one of the most talked about films of the year before it officially opens in Boston on Jan. 12, the Coolidge will have an advance screening of Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Phantom Thread,” a film set in the 1950s about a dressmaker played by Daniel Day-Lewis (“Lincoln,” “Gangs of New York”) in what the Oscar-winning actor says will be his final film. (Saturday, Dec. 30 at 7 p.m.; Coolidge Corner Theatre, Brookline; $14.75-$17.75; rated R)

First Night First Day Boston 2018

At Boston’s annual New Year’s Eve celebration, expect a lot more than fireworks and ice sculptures. Two full days of citywide activities will include a scavenger hunt, a concert celebrating African-American history, and a puppet show. For a full schedule of events, check out the First Night website. (Sunday Dec. 31 to Monday, Jan. 1 at various times and locations; free; all ages)

Bukowski’s F*** New Year’s Party

Do you hate all the New Year’s Eve hoopla with a fiery passion? Bukowski is hosting an anti-New Year’s party at both their Boston and Cambridge locations. Party hats and noisemakers are strictly forbidden, the bar won’t charge a ridiculous cover (and will even pay a lucky few a dollar at the door), and instead of Dom Perignon in a crystal champagne flute, you’ll drink PBR from a Dixie cup at midnight. Bukowski in Cambridge will also show end of the world movies, hoping tongue-in-cheek that “the Mayans get it right this time.” (Sunday, Dec. 31 from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Bukowski Tavern, Boston and Cambridge; free; 21+)

Harpoon New Year’s Eve


Harpoon is throwing a New Year’s Eve bash in its cavernous Seaport beer hall, celebrating with traditions, music, and food from China, Mexico, Russia, and France. Your ticket gets you three beer tokens, one of Harpoon’s famous soft pretzels, themed desserts and hors d’oeuvres, and a take-home gift at the end of the night. (Sunday, Dec. 31 from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Harpoon Brewery, Boston; $90; 21+)

Speedy Ortiz at the Great Scott

Want to ring in the New Year with one of Boston’s coolest rock groups? Local music blog Allston Pudding is putting on a concert at Great Scott for New Year’s Eve headlined by Speedy Ortiz and featuring Ovlov and Wendy Eisenberg. (Sunday, Dec. 31 from 9 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.; Great Scott, Boston; $30-35; 21+)

Pig Roast Brunch

You can find plenty of restaurants offering New Year’s brunch, but how many of them will have a pig roast like La Brasa? The Somerville spot will also offer its usual brunch items a la carte. Reservations are recommended. (Monday, Jan. 1 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; La Brasa, Somerville; free entry; all ages)