101 things to do in Boston to expand your world

Inspired by BU's list of 101 things to do before you graduate, I'd like to compile a, well, somewhat different list. Their list has some good historical spots, but overall is too white/straight/Christian/male for my tastes, and centers too much around hanging out in near-downtown neighborhoods and spending money. Not that there's anything wrong with that sort of entertainment, and not to say that I don't engage in plenty of that myself, but I would think that most people can come up with the downtown nightlife stuff and the touristy stuff without needing help from a list.

So, I'm proposing a different list. I'll probably retain some of the more funky ideas from BU's list, but I'd like to diversify the list a bit. I'll start with some obvious ones. Please comment or e-mail me with things to add to the list. I'll put in links at some point, I promise.

1. Volunteer to serve a meal at somewhere like Rosie's Place, Women's Lunch Place, or Boston Rescue Mission.

2. Attend the yearly Pride Parade or related events.

3. Eat Ethiopian food at somewhere like Addis Red Sea, Fasika, or Asmara. You get to eat with your hands!

4. Check out a reading or workshop at The Center for New Words.

5. Visit the ether dome at MGH.


Wayne said...

6. Volunteer with EarthWorks Boston for a few hours to help restore one of the City's amazing Urban Wilds - often a window onto an interesting piece of an obscure neighborhood you never knew existed.

7. Go to a concert (jazz, Baroque, gospel, fado), view an art installation, or attend a lecture, poetry reading or festival at Forest Hills Cemetery in Jamaica Plain, sponsored by the Forest Hills Educational Trust.

8. Check out the Massachusetts Audubon Society's Boston Nature Center, a state-of-the-art "green" education and visitors' center, with adjacent community gardens and a 67-acre wildlife sanctuary off Walk Hill Street in Mattapan.

Anonymous said...

9. Go get your knob polished by a special lady in Chinatown.

Rhea said...

A superb list. Nice and unusual. I will add a couple (I must confess I did not read the original list).
10. Take the all-night bike ride around Boston in August.
11. Go inside the Mapparium at the Christian Science Monitor.
12. See a classic film at the Harvard Film Archive.
13. Smoke a cigar from one of the historic, old cigar shops (Peretti's, for example)

ladivina said...

I was going to suggest the Mapparium, too, but rhea beat me to it. I'll add, however:

14. Volunteer at Angell Memorial Hospital.

15. Visit the telephone museum in what is now the Verizon building on Franklin Street.

Lyss said...

16. Bring the Sunday paper to the Arboretum on a nice day. Sit. Read.

17. Go on a walkign tour with the JP historical society (the Green St. one will teach you all sorts of things you never knew about baseballs in Boston).

Ron Newman said...

18. Go to a saint's day festival in the North End, in July or August.

19. Take the train to Lowell for the Lowell Folk Festival in July.

20. Take the train to Gloucester for St. Peter's Fiesta in June.

21. Take the train or bus to Providence for Waterfire. While there, wander over to Federal Hill for an Italian meal.

22. Ride a bicycle on the Minuteman Trail out to Lexington and Bedford, and then continue on to Concord, where you can visit the Old North Bridge, the Orchard House, Walden Pond, and other historic and literary sites. You're tired now, so take the train back.

23. Go to a local neighborhood parade such as Dorchester Day, Roslindale Day, or Columbus Day (in East Boston).

24. Attend an outdoor concert in Copley Square.

25. Ride the Mattapan trolley (once it reopens next year).

Ron Newman said...

26. Visit, shop, and eat in an ethnic neighborhood, such as Maverick Square in East Boston (yummy Mexican) or the Jackson-to-Hyde-Square strip of Centre Street (Cuban and other Latino).

27. Walk around Jamaica Pond.

28. Fly a kite in Cambridge's Danehy Park (behind the Fresh Pond Shopping Center, near Alewife station).

29. After the next big snowstorm, take your cross-country skis on the train to Lincoln and explore the town-wide trail system there. Warm up at the DeCordova Museum.

30. Drive Route 1 in Saugus.

Ron Newman said...

31. Climb the tower at Mt. Auburn Cemetery in Watertown. (Frequent buses go there from Harvard Square.) Especially worth doing in fall foliage season.

32. Attend a free lecture at the Ford Hall Forum, Cambridge Forum, or JFK School of Government.

33. Go candlepin bowling at Sacco's Bowl-Haven in Davis Square, which looks unchanged since it opened in 1939. While in the neighborhood, take in a movie at the Somerville Theatre (open since 1914) and a meal at the Rosebud Diner (built in 1941).

Lyss said...

34. Eat at Charlie's in Harvard Square.

35. Visit Harvard Yard

36. Watch the lightning show at the Museum of Science.

37. Suck it up and do the Freedom Trail (hey, someone had to say it...)

39. Dim sum in Chinatown

Ron Newman said...

38. Attend a religious service other than your own.

40. Take a fast ferry to Provincetown for the day. (May through October only)

41. Hike in the Middlesex Fells, Blue Hills, or Lynn Woods.

Anonymous said...

Great suggestions and I laughed out loud that Ron got to mine first .

32. Attend a free lecture at the Ford Hall Forum, Cambridge Forum, or JFK School of Government.

The original list in the post is worth reading too.

I can't post with my own identity because of this beta blogger crap.


Anonymous said...

Go see a Boston Derby Dames bout. It is an awesome and unique experience!