Five Reasons to Leave the House This Weekend

Boston Calling, Cambridge Carnival International, Cambridge Open Market Opening Day, and more.



Boston Calling

While in other cities you have to wait a year until the next Lollapalooza, Governors Ball, or South by Southwest, here in Boston we only have to wait a few months for our signature music festival. The second Boston Calling will not only include more diversity in genre—indie rockers Local Natives and Vampire Weekend play on Saturday, while rapper Kendrick Lamar and DJs Major Lazer and Wolfgang Gartner perform on Sunday—but also more local talent, with Boston natives Bearstronaut and Sonicbids contest winners Viva Viva, as well as a grand homecoming of sorts for Sunday headliners Passion Pit. With a great selection of music, food, and two beer gardens’ worth of refreshments, this weekend’s Boston Calling promises to be another good one.

$75-$350, Saturday, September 7, and Sunday, September 8, noon-10:30 p.m., City Hall Plaza,

Gilt City’s Better Than Backstage Party

The first band doesn’t play until noon on Saturday, but there’s no reason you shouldn’t start celebrating Boston Calling weekend early. Tomorrow night, come out to Royale for a festival kickoff party hosted by Gilt City. Snack on Italian cuisine from Salvatore’s and sip on signature cocktails by Privateer Rum. Dance to beats by DJ Big Phyll and then enjoy a Boston Calling sneak peek with a performance by Okkervil River, indie rockers from Austin who will take the stage at City Hall Plaza on Saturday. Make sure to grab your swag bag before using your $20 UberX or UberBLACK new user credit toward a ride home, but if you don’t feel like ending your Friday night at 10:30, no worries—admission to the kickoff party includes post-party entry to the luxurious Royale nightclub.

$30, Friday, September 6, 7:30-10:30 p.m., Royale, 279 Tremont Street,

Culture Tap Opening Reception, Artist Talk, and Demonstration

Thanks to a pair of artists from New American Public Art, your CharlieCard can now do more than just pay your T fare. Now through October 18, it also serves as your access key to an art installation consisting of two interactive kiosks set up at the plaza in front of the Boston Center for the Arts in the South End. During the day, swiping your CharlieCard at each of the kiosks activates an audio story relevant to the history and culture of the South End. After sunset, it activates environmental lighting that will illuminate the surrounding architecture, foliage, or sidewalk—and no, it doesn’t charge you. The best part? Since each CharlieCard has a unique radio-frequency identification number, different cards will activate different stories and lighting combinations at each kiosk. Come out to the BCA tomorrow night to learn all about it from artists Dan Sternof Beyer and Bevan Weissman. Then try out Culture Tap for yourself.

Free, Friday, September 6, 7-9 p.m., Artist Studios Building at Boston Center for the Arts, 551 Tremont Street,

SoWa Alternative
Cambridge Open Market Opening Day

Starting tomorrow, you’ll have two opportunities a week to check out handmade jewelry, gourmet foods, vintage clothing, and more, all in one place. On Sundays, there is SoWa, the beloved open market in the South End, and now on Fridays, there is the Cambridge Open Market at Harvard. Both are organized by the same folks, so you know the drill—meet local artisans, artists, and craftspeople; buy handmade products; and enjoy food from a variety of food trucks. All good things really do come in pairs.

Free, Friday, September 6, 11:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m., the Plaza at Harvard University, 1 Oxford Street, Cambridge,

Cambridge Carnival International

Cambridge’s largest festival returns to Kendall Square to celebrate its 21st year this Sunday, and it’s sure to be as colorful, bright, and loud as ever. Celebrate Caribbean culture with live music, dancing demonstrations, and samples of traditional food. Take the kids out for storytelling, face painting, and even a stilt-walking demonstration courtesy of OPENAIR Circus. And as always, enjoy the highlight of the festival as you join a crowd of up to 100,000 and cheer on the participants of the annual costume parade, decked out in dazzling handmade costumes and dancing to the pulsating beat of drums.

Free, Sunday, September 8, noon-7 p.m., Kendall Square, Cambridge,