Spring in Boston is the best. That’s when the city wakes from its winter hibernation, shakes off the snow and embraces all the opportunities that the warmer weather offers.

And it doesn’t have to cost you a thing to get into the spirit. Below are 14 free events going on in and around the city this spring.

1. Suburban Boston Spring Show — April 1 & 2

Held at the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell, the Suburban Boston Spring Show is a great chance for homeowners to get ideas (and find inspiration) for any upcoming remodeling projects. “You could spend days searching the internet for contractors, then setting up appointments and meeting them at your home,” the organizers say. “Or you can spend an afternoon with us getting to know our carefully selected home improvement professionals until you find the right one for your project. Saving you time — and money — is one of our primary goals.”

2. Boston Design Week — March 29 to April 9

With more than 80 events, Boston Design Week will return this year at the end of March. The events cover everything from urban design to photography to graphic design. Last year’s event brought together more than 11,000 attendees, and organizers expect an even better turnout this year.

3. Boston West Book Print and Ephemera Fair — April 15

Minuteman High School in Lexington will hold an event for book lovers on the afternoon of Saturday, April 15. Attendees will be able to explore collections of old, rare books plus other vintage documents and photos. Immediately following will be reenactments commemorating the anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord.

4. Watch the Boston Marathon — April 17

The marathon is already one of the biggest events in the entire Northeast, and Peter Berg’s Patriots Day last year brought even more attention to it. There will be around 30,000 participants this year, plus tens of thousands more out to cheer them on. Go witness one of the most celebrated marathon events in the world.

5. Patriot’s Day — April 17

The third Monday in April marks Patriots’ Day, when Boston and the rest of the country mark the beginning of the Revolutionary War. You’ll find free events all around the city, including the marathon, to mark the holiday. Highlights each year include reenactments of Paul Revere’s midnight ride, and the battles at Lexington and Concord.

The most dramatic reenactments include Paul Revere’s midnight ride from Boston across the countryside, battles on Lexington Green, and Old North Bridge in Concord.

6. Harvard’s ARTS FIRST Festival — April 27 to April 30

The ARTS FIRST festival brings together Harvard students, alumni, faculty and staff to celebrate all forms of art. Over four days, you’ll find more than 100 theatrical performances, films, musical performances and visual art happenings, among other things. This is a great long weekend of art, and definitely worth checking out.

7. Memorial Day — May 29

Memorial Day kicks off summer unofficially, and this is the event to attend if you are looking for fun with a small crowd. Highlights for the weekend include the Cambridge Memorial Day Parade, which will bring thousands out to Harvard Square to celebrate America’s servicemen and servicewomen. The parade begins at the Cambridge Common and ends at the Cambridge Cemetery.

8. Common Boston — June 3 to June 4

Discover the architectural inspiration behind our city’s skyline at this open house. Common Boston is hosted by the Boston Society of Architects, and his held annually to celebrate the city’s architectural heritage and speak enlightening discussions.

9. The Dragon Boat Festival — June 10 to June 11

The Boston Dragon Boat Festival is a demonstration of the diversity of culture in our city. Highlights include a Korean dance showcase, Bhangra and Bollywood dancing, a Chinese martial arts demonstration, and loads of great food.

10. South Shore Art Festival — June 16 to June 18

The South Shore Art Festival is a family-friendly event that features more than 100 artists and their exhibitions. There will be lots of fun activities to keep the little ones busy, too, plus there will be live music throughout the weekend. Organizers expect more than 9,000 attendees this year.

11. Arts Fest Beverly — June 17

Up in Beverly, you can join thousands of people to enjoy the featured artists plus great family entertainment. With over 150 artists and crafters, Arts Fest Beverly has something for everyone. Organize say last year drew a record crowd, and they’re looking to surpass those attendance levels this year.

12. Juneteenth — June 19

Juneteenth is a nationwide celebration that commemorates the end of slavery in the US. If you love history and art, the Museum of Fine Arts is the place to be. The museum will host talks and tours so attendees can learn more about the end of such a terrible institution and discover great works of art.

13. Hanover Day & Night — June 24

Down in Hanover, the city will be celebrating its 11th Hanover Day & Night Festival, which showcases local talent and is ideal for people of all ages. Enjoy a serenading band, a 5K and a magnificent display of fireworks, among other events, with thousands of other attendees.

14. Renegade Craft Fair — June 24 to June 25

The Boston Center for the Arts will be hosting the Renegade Craft Fair, an international event that brings together great artists in cities around the world. This Boston fair will feature more than 100 creative crafters and designers. Come and learn how some new crafting techniques yourself.


Casey Meehan is an entrepreneur, writer and musician based out of Chicago. He frequently writes about trading and personal finance at his blog Stock Hax.