A Marathon of Fall Events and Attractions in Boston

From the return of the Boston Marathon to college life in full swing, to apple-picking, pumpkins and Oktoberfest, to home games at Boston’s beloved sporting venues – the Boston area has a spectacular fall for everyone

Downtown Boston | I-95 Exit Guide
Downtown Boston | I-95 Exit Guide

Fall in Boston is upon us and this lineup of events makes Boston an autumnal paradise any year; but this year, the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (GBCVB) invites both first-time visitors and lifelong residents to fall for Boston like never before with a marathon of events on tap. The “Fall for Boston – Like Never Before” campaign is in full swing and visitors are encouraged to share their experiences on social media with #VisitBoston and #BostonUSA.

In honor of the 26.2 miles of the famed Boston Marathon, the GBCVB has compiled a list of 26 highlights of the season. The following is not ranked in a particular order but provides options for everyone of all ages and interests.

  1. How about a fall marathon? The Boston Marathon, which traditionally occurs each Patriots’ Day but could not take place in 2020 or spring 2021, will take to the streets on October 11. This is the first time ever that the marathon will happen in the fall!
  2. Calling all fans of sporting events with an autumnal backdrop… Head to the banks of the Charles later this October for the Head of the Charles Regatta, the most famous two-day regatta on the planet that features student athletes from across the globe on October 22 through 24.
  3. With fans finally back at stadiums, a trip to Gillette to see the New England Patriots can’t be passed up. Rumor has it that Tom Brady will make an appearance at his old stomping grounds on October 3 when the Pats host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers… No pressure, Mac Jones!
  4. If you do make your way to Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., the New England Revolution could bring home their first MLS Cup. Might just want to stick around for the champions!
  5. Staying local to Boston? No fear. TD Garden will get down to business as both the Bruins and Celtics kick off the return of regular season action. Texas is coming to town – opening night for the Celtics is October 22 vs. Houston, while the Bruins will be back on the ice October 16 vs. Dallas. And before the home teams play, the Laver Cup brings some of the world’s top international tennis stars to the court from September 24 through 26.
  6. If you’re keeping your fingers crossed for October baseball at Fenway Park – America’s most beloved ballpark – this would be the first time the Boston Red Sox go to the playoffs since winning the World Series in 2018. Go Sox!
  7. If sports aren’t your game, festivals and markets also abound, and Boston’s Harbor Islands remain a destination into the fall. New to Spectacle Island on September 18: Soulful Bliss. Boston Harbor Now joined forces with AfroDesiaCity to organize an artistic festival featuring local talent and arts with delicious craft beer and cider courtesy of Night Shift Brewing.
  8. Keep your eyes out for the many artisan markets making their debut amidst the fall foliage. The Greenway Artisan Market, which operates every Saturday through October, runs the length of The Rose Kennedy Greenway. And satisfy your hunger with the Boston Local Food Festival on the Greenway on September 19.
  9. Visit Seaport Common on Sunday, September 26 and again on October 17 for the Seaport x Black Owned Bos. Market to shop gifts, apparel, local food, beauty products and more, all from local purveyors while supporting Black entrepreneurs.
  10. Why visit only two artisan markets when you can visit three? Head to Boston’s South End for SoWa Sundays, where local artists offer their works and wares alongside food trucks, beer gardens and a farmers market through December 12.
  11. Other local farmers markets can be found across Greater Boston well into fall, from Copley Square and Central Square, all the way to Roslindale Village.
  12. Cultural festivals are here, too. Check out Savor the Square in Roxbury’s Nubian Square on September 18 and again on October 16 to experience the creative and entrepreneurial energies of Roxbury come to life.
  13. Just across the river in Cambridge, the Dance for World Community Festival will take place on Mass. Ave. in Harvard Square on September 25. This free outdoor event about live dance, community and activism was organized by Jose Mateo Ballet Theatre and can’t be missed.
  14. Oktoberfest celebrations aren’t just for Germany. TrilliumDorchester Brewing Co.Sam AdamsNight Shift, and Harpoon have you covered, offering three consecutive weekends of fun. It all starts on September 18 at all three Trillium locations and at Dorchester Brewing Co. on both September 18 and 19, followed by September 24 through 26 at the Sam Adams Boston Brewery and Taproom, then September 25 at Night Shift’s Everett location and September 26 at the Lovejoy Wharf taproom. When October finally does arrive, Harpoon hosts Oktoberfest on October 1 and 2. And furry friends can join the 4th annual Dogtoberfest on October 3.
  15. Performing arts and concerts have returned across the city. The rush of Fenway Park will continue with or without the Sox this fall. The Jonas Brothers will take the stage on October 1 and are ready to bring the entertainment to America’s oldest MLB stadium.
  16. On the other side of town, at TD Garden, a star-studded lineup includes Michael Bublé, Twenty One Pilots and Harry Styles.
  17. Head downtown to the Orpheum to see John Legend, City and Colour and Steely Dan.
  18. More intimate venues will host Leon Bridges (Royale, September 18) and Future Islands, Rob Wave, Thundercat and Dinosaur Jr. are all at the House of Blues.
  19. The Boch Center will put on both “Rain” and “Rent,” and amazing musicians such as James Blake, St. Vincent and Frankie Valli will make appearances all fall.
  20. Broadway is back in Boston! “Hadestown” will be on stage at The Opera House this November.
  21. Prefer a smaller venue? The Speakeasy Stage Company production of 2020 Tony Nominee “The Sound Inside” will open at Boston Center for the Arts on September 16.
  22. These iconic and award-winning ensembles, outfits and theatre companies will also finally return to the stage: the Boston Symphony OrchestraCelebrity Series of BostonBoston Lyric OperaHuntington Theatre Company, and American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge.
  23. The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston has world-class exhibitions on display that will end soon. “Monet and Boston: Legacy Illuminated” and “Paul Cezanne: Influence” are both on view now through October 17. These French masters won’t be around for long and certainly won’t disappoint.
  24. Don’t miss out on the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in the Fenway this time of year. “Titian – Women, Myth & Power” will be on view through the fall.
  25. The ICA, Boston in the Seaport just unveiled two exhibitions: the 2021James and Audrey Foster and Mexican artist Raul de Nieves “The Treasure House of Memory.”
  26. Finally, at Revolutionary Spaces on the Freedom Trail, September marks the official opening of  “Heard,” an audio-visual art installation from inaugural 2021Artist Fellow James Colman.

Fall for Boston – Like Never Before. This is the year, truly like no other before it, for visitors to make new memories and see why there’s no place like Boston in fall. This comprehensive list highlights many of Boston’s most iconic offerings yet there is so much more to be seen, heard, tasted and felt in the area. Learn more at www.bostonusa.com.

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