Making plans? Short on ideas? No worries. See Milva DiDomizio and June Wulff's picks for the top things to do around the Hub this weekend.
PIRATES OF SILLINESS Productions by The Hypocrites are not true to the troupe's name because the Chicago thespians strictly adhere to their mission of irreverence and hilarity. The American Repertory Theater presents this new adaptation of the Gilbert and Sullivan classic, "Pirates of Penzance," with bathing beauties, pirates who philosophize, and a banjo-playing Mabel. See what's cooking with Frederic and his freedom. May 17-18, 7:30 p.m. May 18-19, 2 p.m. Through June 2. $25 and up. Loeb Drama Center, 64 Brattle St., Cambridge. 617-547-8300, www.americanrepertorytheater.org
LOCAL SUDS For more than 25 years, the Harpoon Brewery has spread beer and cheer all over the Northeast. Boston-brewed beers at HarpoonFest include IPA, Summer Beer, and UFO White. Joining the local brew are local bands Township, Jenny Dee & the Delinquents, Evolfo Doofeht, Audrey Can't Die, The Brew, Nemes, Air Traffic Controller, and more. May 17, 5:30-11 p.m. (doors close 9:30 p.m.), May 18, 2-9 p.m. (doors close 7:30 p.m.) $20 (includes one drink and souvenir cup). 21+. Harpoon Brewery, 306 Northern Ave., Boston. 888-427-7666, www.harpoonbrewery.com
HAVE A BURGER DJ Master Millions provides the tunes at Burgers & Brews, a night to benefit music education for area youth. In between eating burgers from Fenway eateries and imbibing drinks from Cisco Brewers and Bacardi, bid on cool stuff at the silent auction. May 17, 7:30 p.m. $25. 21+. House of Blues Foundation Room, 15 Lansdowne St., Boston. www.houseofblues.com/boston
ME, MYSELF, AND I The whole is equal to the sum of its parts, but the part is at the core of "Heart of the Matter." The evening-length dance performed by Prometheus Dance explores how the individual is effected by social behavior. The modern dance troupe celebrates its 25th anniversary. May 17, 7:30 p.m. May 18, 8 p.m. Talks 30 minutes before each show. $35. Boston Conservatory Theater, 31 Hemenway St., Boston. 617-876-4275, www.worldmusic.org
PLANET MUSIC While having fun at EarthFest, stop by the booths and displays with the kids to pick up a few ideas on how to be environmentally responsible. Music at the annual Radio 92.9 event includes Vertical Horizon, Cracker, Gentlemen Hall, Fastball, and Camper Van Beethoven. May 18, 11:15 a.m. (kids concert at 10 a.m.; check website for security procedures). Free (donations accepted for One Fund Boston). DCR Hatch Memorial Shell along the Esplanade, Boston. www.earthfest.com
BORGES THEN BROTHERS Take one part rock, one part Rodgers and Hammerstein, give them the Sarah Borges treatment and you get a unique punk, country, Americana sound evident on the guitar-playing singer/songwriter’s new record, "Radio Sweetheart." Borges is followed by the Spampinato Brothers. May 18, 9 p.m. $12, $15 at the door. Lizard Lounge, 1667 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge. www.brownpapertickets.com/event/377534
HIP-HOP HOORAY Hip-hop history has a solid place in the music books thanks, in part, to the three acts performing at the Wilbur Theatre as part of the Cambridge-based Together Festival. Biz Markie has 26 years of hip-hop history; Kool Moe Dee was a member of Treacherous Three; Duo Nice & Smooth is known for catchy hooks and clever rhymes. May 18, 8 p.m. $25-$30. The Wilbur Theatre, 246 Tremont St., Boston. 800-745-3000, www.thewilbur.com
DEAD TO LIFE Imagine finding a hidden cave with 972 preserved scrolls that haven't been seen for 2,000 years? That's exactly what happened in 1947 to a Bedouin goat herder whom we can thank for "Dead Sea Scrolls: Life in Ancient Times." The exhibit features 20 fragments from the collection, multimedia presentations, and more than 600 objects including weapons, stone carvings, and jewelry. May 19, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Through Oct. 14. Timed tickets are $32, $29 seniors, $27 ages 3-11 (reservations recommended). Museum of Science, 1 Science Park, Boston. 617-723-2500, www.mos.org
HIS LAST TRAIN As a 22-year-old Peace Corps volunteer Paul Theroux was introduced to Africa and his 50-year love affair with the continent. In his new book, "The Last Train to Zona Verde: My Ultimate African Safari," Theroux writes about the overlooked, impoverished, and neglected western Africa. May 19, 7 p.m. Free. Harvard Book Store, 1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge. 617-661-1515, www.harvard.com
The weather forecast looks great for PorchFest, featuring more than 100 musical acts picking, strumming, and singing on porches all over Somerville. The third annual event is intended to be informal, neighborly, and fun. The Somerville Arts Council describes it as "a community event where Somervillians share their love of playing and listening to music." During three time slots in three different quadrants of the city, you can hear Americana, blues, Afrobeat, acid folk, Moroccan, Balkan, gospel, and other genres of music. Veteran area musicians like Matt Glaser, Tim Gearan, and Sean Staples are included in the line-up, as well as bands like the Second Line Social Aid and Pleasure Society, Cat Sounds, Dirty Water Brass Band, and The Rolling Who. There's also a Porch-ioke site if you want to belt out a number yourself. The event gets underway Saturday, May 18 from noon-2 p.m. in East Somerville, moves to central Somerville from 2-4 p.m., and finishes in West Somerville from 4-6 p.m. Download the map for details. See somervilleartscouncil.org for complete info.
The annual fest in honor of Planet Earth celebrates its 20th anniversary with a line-up that includes Vertical Horizon, Cracker, Gentlemen Hall, Fastball, and Camper Van Beethoven. Radio 92.9 EarthFest presented by Whole Foods Market also features exhibits and environmental displays, samples of earth-friendly products, and an interactive Kids' Planet area. In the spirit of the festival and in light of the fact that it's expected to draw more than 100,000 people, take the T or use pedal power to get there (free bike valet service will be provided courtesy of MassBike). May 18. Free, donations will be accepted for The One Fund Boston. Event begins at 10 a.m. DCR Hatch Memorial Shell, Boston. www.earthfest.com
The annual Together Festival, a week-long music and technology event based in Cambridge, will feature musical performances, as well as screenings, exhibitions, and trade shows. It will run May 12-19.
Artists like rapper Biz Markee and musicians Tiga will give performances at the annual festival. The different events, outlined on their website, will be held at venues across Greater Boston, including The Good LIfe and Phoenix Landing.
Seminars and discussions on the latest trends in music making, new artists, and screenings will also be held at major venues, such as the Museum of Science and the Museum of Fine Arts. Passes can be purchased for $150 and $225 for the VIP pass.
Check out the festival's website for more information.
Are you planning to attend? Have you been since it began in 2010? If so, what should other readers expect if they're going this year? Share your opinions in the comments.
Looking to find some fun activities this weekend? Have you planned the perfect Mother's Day brunch? Take a look at our transcript from our Friday chat.
Making plans? Short on ideas? No worries. See Milva DiDomizio and June Wulff's picks for the top things to do around the Hub this weekend.
SIZZLING BACON "I like risks, and there's nothing more risky about being a well-known actor and playing in a rock band." Kevin Bacon knows what he's talking about as one of The Bacon Brothers who celebrate their latest release, "New Year’s Day." The Philly-bred sibs used cover art of a young Kevin singing alongside his mandolin-playing brother, Michael. May 10, 10 p.m. $25-$49. The Wilbur Theatre, 246 Tremont St., Boston. 800-745-3000, www.thewilbur.com
UNAFRAID OF HEIGHTS There's a hysterical line in this Tony-winning musical, but we won't be a spoiler, so listen carefully to the high-energy "In the Heights" presented by SpeakEasy Stage Company. Set in New York's Washington Heights neighborhood, there's lots of sizzle and sentiment in this story about family and community. May 10-11, 8 p.m. May 11, 4 p.m. May 12, 3 p.m. Through June 8. $25 and up, $25 for ages 25 and under, $5 student and senior discount. Stanford Calderwood Pavilion, 527 Tremont St., Boston. 617-933-8600. www.speakeasystage.com
ARTSY WEEKEND The Fort Point Art Walk and Open Studios offers a chance to get free art (multi-media flowers), while supplies last, and also visit artists' studios in the Fort Point area. Galleries, creative design shops, outdoor public art installations, 75 artist studios, performances, and demonstrations should keep you busy and help you select a lovely Mother's Day gift (for you or any other special lady). May 10, 4-7 p.m. May 11-12, noon-5 p.m. Free. Fort Point area maps are at the corner of A and Binford streets, Boston. 617-423-4299, www.fortpointarts.org
NORTH BY NORTH END Eat lightly all day so you can make a decent dent at Taste of the North End where more than 35 eateries provide samples of appetizers, cheeses, entrees, and desserts. Proceeds benefit North End non-profit organizations and One Fund Boston. May 10, 6-11 p.m. $99, free for first responders. DCR Steriti Memorial Ice Rink, 561 Commercial St., Boston. 617-643-8105. totne.brownpapertickets.com
GO TO MINNESOTA The Facebook page for this event featuring DJ Minnesota says it all: "Christian Bauhofer at first glance comes off as the unassuming dude yawning next to you in class, a kind of lumberjack nerd-fusion in his glasses and scruffy facial hair. However, wait until the sun goes down and add a couple drinks and a whole lot of bass – and quiet, smiley Christian assumes his party-crushing alter ego: Minnesota." May 11, 9 p.m. $15. Brighton Music Hall, 158 Brighton Ave., Boston. www.facebook.com/nvconcepts
STOP AND SMELL THE LILACS We'd love the job of counting and smelling the more than 380 lilac plants representing 176 types in the Arnold Arboretum collection. On Lilac Sunday, fragrance shares the day with music, family activities, food vendors, and picnicking (the only day you are allowed to picnic at the Arboretum). May 12, dawn to dusk (activities and refreshments from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.). Free. Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, 125 Arborway, Boston. 617-524-1718, www.arboretum.harvard.edu
COMING TOGETHER This Mother's Day concert of family music will benefit One Fund Boston and our healing. The line up at One Family Music Festival includes Alastair Moock & Friends, Ben Rudnick & Friends, Karen K & the Jitterbugs, Vanessa Trien & the Jumping Monkeys, and special guest Mista Cookie Jar & the Chocolate Chips from Los Angeles. May 12, noon-5 p.m. Free (donations encouraged). Exchange Conference Center, 212 Northern Ave., Boston. www.onefamilymusicfestival.com
DAISY, DAISY In 1997, composer John Harbison was commissioned by the Metropolitan Opera to write an opera based on F. Scott Fitzgerald's iconic novel about obsession, corruption, murder, and betrayal. The orchestra and chorus of Emmanuel Music present the Boston premiere of "The Great Gatsby" in concert. May 12, 3 p.m. (2 p.m. pre-concert talk). $30, $50. Jordan Hall, 30 Gainsborough St., Boston. 617-536-3356, www.emmanuelmusic.org
Chefs Ken Oringer and Ming Tsai, the Red Sox, Gov. Patrick, Mayor Menino, and Aramark are the brains behind Boston Bites Back. The event raises money for The One Fund and celebrates Boston's spirit and resiliency in the face of the Boston Marathon bombings. Blue Ginger owner Tsai says, "Food is our common ground, a universal experience. This event is an occasion for Bostonians to reconnect over food, mingle with chefs and honor our city's inspiring resilience. It's an opportunity for Bostonians to literally 'bite' back." You're invited to eat, drink and socialize at Fenway Park, where 100 chefs including Jody Adams, Todd English, Tiffani Faison, and Jamie Bissonnette serve their creations from concession stands and tables. If you can't make it to the event, you can still show your Boston spirit by participating in the online auction. May 15, 6-10 p.m. $200 general access; $1,000 VIP. 21+. Fenway Park, Boston. www.bostonbitesback.org
The Museum of Fine Arts will display love for Boston during three free days in late May. The Memorial Day weekend events are being held in support for the city after the bombings at the Boston Marathon.
The museum will hold an exhibition called "Boston I Love," which will provide art lent by New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Met's art director and CEO, Thomas Campbell, reached out to the MFA and chose three paintings to be displayed in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings.
Visitors will also have the chance to contribute to a collage called "Boston I Love," featuring art made during those three days.
In addition, quilt makers from Brazil to Japan created quilt squares with messages of love and support for Boston. The quilt squares will be linked together and on display at the museum. Have a quilt of your own you'd like to share? Follow the directions here.
Will you attend the MFA's commemorative exhibitions? Have you been to events to support The One Fund? Leave your thoughts in the comments.
Weeks have passed since the Boston Marathon bombings, but the healing continues. To help with the process, Emmanuel Church and the Expressive Arts Therapy Department at Lesley University team up for "When Words Are Not Enough." All are invited to stop by anytime during the afternoon to listen to music and create art in response to the tragedy. Materials will be available, and participants are welcome to work on projects individually or in groups. May 11, noon-4 p.m. Free. Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury St., Boston. 617-536-3355.
Update: My Fox Boston reported TD Garden confirmed tickets for the concert sold out within five minutes.
Tickets for the mega star-studded May 30 Boston Strong concert at TD Garden go on sale this morning at 10 a.m. on Ticketmaster. Aerosmith, James Taylor, and New Kids on the Block (pictured) are just a few of the huge names that will perform in the benefit show to support The One Fund for victims of the Boston Marathon tragedy.
Tickets are priced from $35 to $285. Prices include all fees and service charges. Information on special sponsor tickets which will include commemorative items, reserved parking, and other items will be available on www.ticketmaster.com and www.livenation.com/vip.
Are you excited for the Boston Strong concert? Will you be attending? Comment here.
Brian Feulner for The Boston Globe
Are you suddenly craving spicy food, salty drinks, and guacamole? That's because it's the beginning of May, and Cinco de Mayo is around the corner. Don't just limit your Mexican-themed celebrations to Sunday. Here are our weekend Cinco de Mayo picks. Arriba!
CINCO DE MUSTACHE
Music, margaritas, and ... mustaches? OK! Head to Davis Square's iconic Rosebud bar and restaurant to listen to four local bands sharing tunes. Don't forget your 'staches -- the best ones get a prize. Portions of the proceeds will be donated to the MSPCA. Saturday, May 4, at 9 p.m., $8, 381 Summer St., Somerville, 617-440-6284, www.rosebudbarandgrill.com
CINCO DE MAYO PATRON DINNER
Why not celebrate Cinco de Mayo early? Even ... two days early? Venture out to Boston's waterfront for some sun and Mexican grub. Del Frisco's will pair Patron Tequila with a six-course dinner on Friday. Dinner starts early, so you'll have plenty of time to venture to TeMexCal or Rosa Mexicano for margaritas. Friday, May 3 at 6:30 p.m., $95, 250 Northern Ave., Boston, www.delfriscos.com
DRINKO DE MAYO
Sing along with dueling pianos at Howl at the Moon, where along with live music, attendees will be able to enjoy $5 margaritas or $20 mega margaritas (they are 86 ounces. You might want to share that one). Sunday, May 5 at noon, Howl at the Moon, 184 High St., Boston, www.howlatthemoon.com
FIESTA AT VIRA
Sipping while shopping: Charles Street's Vira Boutique is serving margaritas on Sunday for anyone who stops by. If the drinks put you in the mood to shop, the boutique is offering 10 percent off during the event. Cheers! Sunday, May 5 from 1-5 p.m., 107 Charles St., Boston, 617-367-0305, www.shopvira.com
MI CASA BEE CASA
Is the thought of margaritas alone not cutting it for your Cinco de Mayo celebration? The Beehive in the South End will have mariachi bands playing music from south of the border. There is no cover charge, but be sure to make reservations ahead of time. 6:30 p.m.-12 a.m., The Beehive, 541 Tremont St., Boston, 617-423-0069, www.beehiveboston.com
Why just limit the fun to one spot? Bar hop to different venues that will partake in Cinco de Mayo festivities. Kitty O'Sheas is starting a bar crawl at 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 4, and at The Bell in Hand, starting at 12:30 p.m. For more information on Boston pub crawls, visit this website. Times and dates vary.
Want more ideas? Check out more of our Cinco de Mayo listings in Boston and beyond. Also, don't forget to check out our guide to the area's margaritas.
We have a big weekend ahead of us: The Kentucky Derby, Cinco de Mayo, and the opening day of SoWa are all happening this first weekend of May. Along with our weekly chat of what's going on this weekend, we will also have our cocktail blogger Josh Childs joining us to give us tips for mixing your own mint juleps or blending margaritas for the weekend.
Join us at 11 a.m. Thursday to discuss all things to do (and drink).
Making plans? Short on ideas? No worries. See Milva DiDomizio and June Wulff's picks for the top things to do around the Hub this weekend.
IN THE LOOP During post-production of the 1965 film "Die, Die, My Darling," actress Tallulah Bankhead tussled with the line, "And so Patricia, as I was telling you, that deluded rector has in literal effect closed the church to me." The incident is the basis for the play "Looped." Stefanie Powers (who co-starred with Bankhead in "Die, Die, My Darling") portrays her in the comedy's national tour. Fri 8 p.m., Sat 2 and 8 p.m., Sun 1 and 5 p.m. $35-$95. Emerson Majestic Theatre, 219 Tremont St., Boston. 617-824-8000, www.aestages.org
FIVE EASY PIECES This group does things in fives. Returning from a five-year break, the Paris Combo quintet fronted by Belle du Berry is back with a new studio album, its fifth, titled (can you guess?) "Five." The chanson tradition of French cabaret is given a tip of the beret and a "jazzy, sexy" twist with nods to Gypsy music, Spanish and Italian melodies, American jazz, and Django Reinhardt. May 3, 8 p.m. $28-$37. Berklee Performance Center, 136 Massachusetts Ave., Boston. 617-876-4275, www.worldmusic.org
TOUGH QUESTIONS What drives a teenager to violence? British playwright Simon Stephens looks at possible root causes in "Punk Rock." The play (which is not a musical) follows a group of seniors at a British Secondary School. Stephens, a teacher himself, was inspired to write it after the shootings at Columbine High School. May 3-25. Wed-Thurs 7:30 p.m., Fri 8 p.m., Sat 4 and 8 p.m., Sun 4 p.m. $30, $25 advance, $20 seniors and students. Wednesday shows pay-what-you-can, $7 minimum. Plaza Black Box Theatre, Boston Center for the Arts, Tremont St., Boston. 617-933-8600, www.bostontheatrescene.com
POTS FOR SALE The annual Mudflat Open Studio and Pottery Sale features functional and sculptural works by 80 artists. Go on Sunday afternoon (1-3 p.m.) for free hands-on clay time for the whole family. The sale takes place during Somerville Open Studios weekend. May 3, reception, 6-10 p.m. May 4-5, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Free admission. Mudflat, 81 Broadway, Somerville. 617-628-0589, www.mudflat.org (For information on Somerville Open Studios go to www.somervilleopenstudios.org)
A HILL OF BEANTOWN The stories of Beacon Hill's Federal-era residents aren't all about wealth and good times. Get the scoop on Saturday's Beacon Hill Walking Tour which begins with a walk through the Otis House and continues through the streets of the hilly neighborhood. May 4, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. $12 (registration recommended). Otis House, 141 Cambridge St., Boston. 617-994-5920, www.historicnewengland.org
GET "Don't tell me I can't break the law/Cause the law has broken me." That line from the title track of "Get Up!" is all you need to get up and over to the Orpheum for An Evening of the Blues Featuring Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite. The mix of blues, gospel, roots, and R&B is handled by Harper's vocals and guitar, and Musselwhite's harmonica. May 4, 7:30 p.m. $39.50-$79.50. Orpheum Theatre, 1 Hamilton Pl., Boston. 800-745-3000, www.livenation.com
CONVENE AND CONTEMPLATE Special guests Danny Glover, Henry Louis Gates Jr., and author Edwidge Danticat convene for the Underground Railway Theater performance of "Roots of Liberty: The Haitian Revolution and the American Civil War." And what better venue than the Tremont Temple where the Emancipation Proclamation was read in 1863. May 4, 5 p.m. Free (RSVP required). Tremont Temple, 88 Tremont St., Boston. www.freedomrising2013.com
MEXICAN HAT DANCE Sombreros are optional but having a good time is required at Cinco de Mayo at the Beehive. Chef Rebecca Newell will whip up Mexican-inspired dishes, and the nine-piece Mariachi International will whip up music. May 5, 6:30 p.m.- midnight (dinner 5:30 p.m.- 1 a.m.). No cover (reservations recommended). The Beehive, 541 Tremont St., Boston. 617-423-0069, www.beehiveboston.com
WILD MUSIC Israeli DJ Borgore described his work in an interview with spinner.com: "My music sounds like commercial American hip-hop and death metal being played through various farm animals." He shares a night with DJ Carnage and Voltran. May 5, 10 p.m. $30. 21+. Prime, 295 Franklin St., Boston. www.facebook.com/nvconcepts
Eric Levin/Elevin Studios
Did you know May is National Burger Month? To celebrate, The Place is offering their signature Angus Burger for a buck on Thursdays. The quarter-pounder, which comes with lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickles, is part of a new culinary program focusing on fresh ingredients. A visit also allows you to check out the skull-laced wallpaper, black jewel-toned chandeliers, and other highlights of the locale's recent renovations. Thursdays in May, 4-8 p.m. The Place, 2 Broad St., Boston. 617-523-2081, www.theplaceboston.com
The Kentucky Derby may be taking place May 4 in Louisville, Ky., but that shouldn't stop you from having some fun in the Boston area. Grab your big hats, your seersucker attire, and your southern charm this Saturday to cheer on thoroughbreds with mint juleps in hand.
DARRYL'S CORNER BAR
Bourbon wings? Cucumber sandwiches? Yes, please. There will also be mint juleps available, of course. If you have a big hat you're especially proud of, hit up this South End spot -- four judges will choose a winner in their Derby Day Hat Contest. 2-6 p.m., 604 Columbus Ave., Boston, 617-536-1100, www.darrylscornerbarboston.com
Venture to this Southie hot spot for more than a watch party: a silent auction, door prizes, and a best dressed competition will also be a part of the restaurant's Kentucky Derby party. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Boston Cares. $25, 3-7:30 p.m., Lincoln Tavern and Restaurant, 425 W. Broadway, Boston, www.lincolnsouthboston.com
Enjoy this second annual watch party with complimentary appetizers at this spacious nightlife spot. Proceeds will benefit Good Sports, a nonprofit to help youth sports programs. $20, 3-7 p.m., Scholars, 25 School St., Boston, 617-248-0025, www.scholarsbostonbistro.com
East Boston's racetrack will be holding its very own viewing party Saturday. Live music, a large viewing screen, and opportunities to place wagers will all be at hand. In addition, "Boston Strong" merchandise to support The One Fund will be on sale. 2 p.m., Suffolk Downs, 111 Waldemar Ave, Boston, 617-567-3900, www.suffolkdowns.com
Dress in your best derby attire for this Back Bay establishment's "Thoroughbreds and Redheads Kentucky Derby Party." The best dressed have a chance to win prizes. Maker's Mark cocktails will be available, as well as complimentary hors d'oeuvres. 4 p.m., 900 Boylston St., Boston, www.towneboston.com
WEST END JOHNNIE'S
Located near the TD Garden, this spot has ample televisions located throughout the bar area for your viewing pleasure. Here's another bonus: traditional mint juleps will also be available. 3 p.m., West End Johnnie's, 138 Portland St., Boston, 617-227-1588, www.westendjohnnies.com
Several restaurants have been closed since the Boston Marathon bombings. Here's a list of some of today's re-openings. Head to Back Bay to enjoy a meal, and free parking courtesy of the city.
Back Bay Social Club, 867 Boylston St., Boston. bar opening at 4 p.m., kitchen at 5 p.m. www.backbaysocialclub.com
Towne Stove and Spirits, 900 Boylston St., Boston. Opened at noon. www.towneboston.com
L'Espalier, 774 Boylston St., Boston. Opens at 5:30 p.m. www.lespalier.com
The Capital Grille, 900 Boylston St., Boston. Opened at 11:30 a.m. today. www.thecapitalgrille.com
Pat Greenhouse, Globe Staff
We've been Boston Strong, now it's time to be Boylston Strong. That means heading to the Back Bay to enjoy and support the area's restaurants and businesses. Courtesy of Mayor Menino, you'll get a free pass for parking. The mayor's office sent out a press release this afternoon quoting the mayor: “As of today, these businesses that have been off limits since Marathon Monday are open and are looking forward to receiving and serving their customers once again. To support the efforts of our local businesses through the end of the weekend, the City of Boston is offering free parking at meters on Boylston Street and throughout the entire Back Bay.” That includes all Boylston Street meters, meters on Back Bay streets between Arlington Street and Mass. Ave., and meters adjacent to the Public Garden.
LANDRY LAND When Ryan Landry and his Gold Dust Orphans get their hands on a movie, TV show, book, or fairytale, they twist, pummel, stomp, and puree it to perfection. You can imagine what you're in store for at "Pornocchio." The adult parody features a talking cricket with a conservative leaning, a puppeteer who stops taking his meds, and plenty of song and dance. April 26-27, 8 p.m. April 28, 5 p.m. Through May 26. $35, $45 (for mature audiences). Machine, 1254 Boylston St., Boston. 800-838-3006, www.brownpapertickets.com/event/363193
HIGH-FLYING IMAGINATION Wagner's 1841 version of "The Flying Dutchman" was set in Scotland and is musically different from his later, more commonly performed edition. It's the former you'll see when Boston Lyric Opera presents this story about the claustrophobic Senta who creates the Dutchman. April 26, 7:30 p.m. April 28, 3 p.m. Through May 5; lectures one hour before curtain. $30 and up (recommended for mature audiences). Citi Performing Arts Center Shubert Theatre, 265 Tremont St., Boston. 866-348-9738, www.blo.org
OFF THE WALLS The boy character in "Drawin' on the Walls" paints, and his pictures come magically to life. F.U.D.G.E. Theatre Company presents the premiere of Chris Guin’s musical about the boy, and the girl and two grown-ups who help him. April 26-27 and May 2-4, 8 p.m. April 28, 2 p.m. $26, $21 students and seniors. Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, 949 Comm. Ave., Boston. 617-945-0773, fudgetheatre.com
MODEL DJ Before he turned to turntables, Swedish DJ Adrian Lux had a career as a fashion model. The man who gave you the 2010 single "Teenage Crime" and was nominated for a Grammy in 2011 will be spinning at The Estate. April 26, 10:30 p.m.-2 a.m. 21+. The Estate, 1 Boylston Pl., Boston. 617-351-7000, www.theestateboston.com
SHEAR AND SHEAR ALIKE Springtime is haircut time for the sheep (plus a llama and some alpacas) at Gore Place. Watch them get sheared at the 26th annual Sheepshearing Festival that also features an 18th-century militia encampment, herding dog demonstrations, wagon rides, crafters in period dress, a craft fair, hands-on activities, and performances by Lindsay and Her Puppet Pals, Morris dancers, the Moody Street String Band, and Merrimack Valley Bluegrass. April 27, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. $15, under 13 free, children must be accompanied by adult. No pets. Rain or shine. Gore Place, 52 Gore St., Waltham. 781-894-2798, www.goreplace.org
FLOWER GIRLS John Singer Sargent's painting "The Daughters of Edward Darley Boit" will be given the floral treatment, along with 50 other MFA gems, at Art in Bloom. Almost 70 arrangements by garden clubs and designers are accompanied by tours, lectures, and floral demonstrations. Reservations are required for "Elegant Tea" (daily 12:30 and 2:30 p.m. $30, $10 under 13). April 27-29, 10 a.m.-4:45 p.m. $25, $23 students and seniors, $10 ages 7-17, free under 7 (and ages 7-17 weekends and weekdays after 3 p.m.). Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave., Boston. 617-267-9300, www.mfa.org/artinbloom
THE COOK-OFF The winner of "The Right Stuff" gets a financial reward and fame. Two students from Boston's Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts compete for the $1,000 tuition money and a chance to have their dishes and name on menus at all five Salvatore's Restaurants. The students will prepare a three-course meal and you will vote along with celebrity and industry judges. April 28, 6:30 p.m. $45. Salvatore’s Restaurant, 225 Northern Ave., Boston. 617-737-5454, www.therightstuff.eventbrite.com
Bragg about it Political activism through music is the specialty of English musician Billy Bragg, and "Tooth & Nail" is the latest release by the folk, punk rock, and protest music maker. Bragg welcomes Kim Churchill as his special guest. April 28, 7 p.m. $34.50-$39.50. Berklee Performance Center, 136 Massachusetts Ave., Boston. 617-747-2261, www.berklee.edu/bpc
It's time for that one last meal with the family in the Boston area. Are you given the responsibility of finding the restaurant for graduation dinner, which means find a reservation, accommodating large groups, and above all, hoping everyone will be pleased? Here are some ideas for celebrating the big occasion.
LARGE GROUP: Cinquecento
Of course every aunt, uncle, niece, or nephew will want to be a part of the celebration. Cinquecento is a spacious Italian restaurant with fancy decor and an impressive menu. You can also make reservations online. 500 Harrison St., Boston, 617-338-9500, www.cinquecentoboston.com
TRENDY: West Bridge
Egg in a jar. Yes, they have a dish that involves an egg. In a jar. If you have people to impress, the unique dishes and the easy location (there is even a parking garage near by) makes this spot a crowd-pleaser. And another bonus: There is a wine bar, a brewery, and an Irish pub steps away. Reservations can be made through Open Table. 1 Kendall Sq., Cambridge, 617-945-0221, www.westbridgerestaurant.com
PRETTY: Island Creek Oyster
People who visit Boston often think seafood. Avoid the names we all know and try this spot. Not only does the restaurant have a central location in Boston, the decor makes it one of the most beautiful venues in the city. If someone in your party isn't in the mood for a fancy dish, don't worry, fish and chips are also on the menu. 500 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, 617-532-5300, www.islandcreekoysterbar.com
PIZZA FANS: Area Four
Have picky eaters in your group? Well, who doesn't love pizza? Here's a bonus: You'll be able to order some pies away from the cramped North End and in a tech-y neighborhood. Grads, you may end up getting a job in Kendall Square, so why not start by getting a meal in your possible future 'hood? Area Four takes reservations, but requires a credit card number. Large groups welcome. 500 Technology Sq., Cambridge, 617-758-4444, www.areafour.com
LAID BACK: Publick House
Do you have beer fans in your family? Ok, maybe mac 'n cheese enthusiasts? Although the Publick House is known for its impressive beer list and gothic furnishings, the cuisine is some of the best comfort food you'll find in Boston. Note: They don't take reservations. 1648 Beacon St., Brookline, 617-277-2880. Visit their Facebook page for more information.
OFF THE BEATEN PATH: Elephant Walk
For those of you graduating from Cambridge schools, move away from the direct vicinity of Harvard Square and venture down Massachusetts Avenue for some Cambodian and French cuisine. If you have people who are vegetarian or gluten-free, there are plenty of options available. You can make reservations here. 2067 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, 617-492-6900, www.elephantwalk.com
In the wake of last week's events, many Bostonians have put together benefits, tributes, and more events to help those affected by the Boston bombings. Here is a transcript of the chat.
Stephanie Callahan is a native Bostonian who loves cooking, traveling, spa treatments, and being on the ocean.
Milva DiDomizio is a New England native who's fond of cooking, singing, and Boston's arts and culture scene.
Swati G. Sharma is a Somerville resident and is a fan of city living, exploring Bostons nightlife, and dancing.
Emily Sweeney is a Boston native who goes out all over, from Irish pubs in Southie to the roller rink in Dorchester.