This is a pretty big weekend here for anyone who’s a fan of boxing, horse racing, ‘margs and/or ‘ritas, street festivals, yelling “Mayday!!” like an old-timey pilot, Star Wars, free live music, rhyming with May, every day, by the bay, bookstores, and chocolate. If you don’t like any of that stuff, I don’t know what to tell you, just go outside and smell some flowers or something at least.

Thursday to Sunday, April 30 to May 3 – ARTS FIRST
Head to Harvard’s annual ARTS FIRST festival for an all-caps, all-free celebration of the best in student and faculty talent, and also maybe to get an apology for yelling at us in the event title? Was that necessary? ARTS FIRST. Sounds like arts and crafts time with a cranky toddler who likes arts better than crafts. ARTS FIRST. ARTS FIRST. Some of the four-day festival’s highlights include the award-winning play Red about artist Mark Rothko, Jazz on the Plaza, and Saturday’s performance fair around the square featuring a Swan Lake adaptation by the Hasty Pudding Theatricals. (Various times, FREE, all ages)

Friday to Sunday, May 1-10 – ArtWeek Boston
The citywide and sensibly capitalized ArtWeek Boston visual and performing arts festival returns with more than 125 events designed to be participatory, interactive, or offer behind-the-scenes access to artists. This year’s slogan is “Take art into your own hands,” except not literally, please don’t pick up anything in the museums. Don’t touch the art, let the art touch you, that’s what I always say. Don’t pick up the art, let the art pick you up. Don’t lick the art because the color reminds you of a Starburst, let the art — OK you get the idea. (Various times, prices, and ages)

Saturday, May 2 – Tattoos with Strangers
CommuniT aims to inject a little more life and meaning into people’s commutes with events like Saturday’s Tattoos with Strangers outside Park Street station. It’s pretty much what it sounds like: Show up and get a matching temporary tattoo (choose from hearts, dinosaurs, Disney princesses, and more) to commemorate your fledgling acquaintanceship with a stranger. Who knows, maybe you’ll make a friend! Or maybe you’ll lick your arm to get it ready for the tattoo and your stranger will say “Need any help with that?” and you can just walk away and go back to staring at the floor when you’re on the T. (12 p.m., FREE, all ages)

Saturday, May 2 – Taza Chocolate Cinco de Mayo Block Party
When date-specific party days like Cinco de Mayo fall on a school-night, you’re allowed to also celebrate on the closest Saturday. And when Taco Tuesday falls on a Tuesday, which is always, you can go ahead and move that party up, too, because tacos. Taza Chocolate’s fourth annual Cinco de Mayo Block Party fills the 500 block of Somerville Ave. with music, games, a Slumbrew beer garden, multiple taco trucks, and who cares what else because when you see the words “multiple taco trucks” you stop asking questions, close your eyes, and very quietly say thank you. (12 p.m., FREE, all ages)

Saturday, May 2 – Independent Bookstore Day
You celebrated Record Store Day a couple weeks ago, and now it’s time to recognize that another medium that technology is trying to shove in our phones: books. Papercuts JP celebrates Independent Bookstore Day with readings, live music, a spelling bee, and drunk coloring hour. You can check out events at other indie bookstores around the city, but I can’t promise any of those will have a drunk coloring hour. (11 a.m., FREE, all ages)

Saturday and Sunday, May 2-3 – Somerville Open Studios
Somerville is home to more artists, per capita, than anywhere else in America except Manhattan, or something like that, I think. Whatever it is, there’s a lot of artists. This weekend at Somerville Open Studios, 392 of those artists at 108 different locations will open their studios and workspaces to the public. Seriously, the map has so many dots I looked at it and said “Is this a map of art studios or Dunkin’ Donuts franchises?” Because there are so many Dunkin’ Donuts in Boston. You got it. (12 p.m., FREE, all ages)

Sunday, April 3 – Harvard Square Mayfair
As if the annual Harvard Square Mayfair wasn’t sure to draw a crowd just because it’s a massive party on a beautiful spring day, now they went and booked a bunch of awesome bands to play. This year’s The Sinclair-produced lineup includes The Sheila Divine, Freezepop, Hallelujah the Hills, Bent Shapes, Parks, and lots more, plus 20 dance troupes, street art, food vendors, and four beer gardens to keep you drunk enough that you won’t mind how crowded it’s going to be. (12 p.m., FREE, all ages)

Photo credit: snarkyman/Creative Commons


This article was provided by our content partner, The Boston Calendar.