Five Reasons to Leave the House This Weekend

Including a grill-off among Boston's best chefs, a puppy photo contest, and a monster truck show.

6-20-14-BOSTON, MA Chefsin Shorts fundraiser

Chefs in Shorts 2014. / Photo provided

Chefs in Shorts

On the hunt for your new go-to restaurant? Join more than 30 of the best chefs in Boston at the Seaport for Chefs in Shorts. The participants hail from many of your favorite eateries, including Scampo, Bastille Kitchen, and Salty Pig. The culinary kings and queens will face off in an epic grill competition. Tickets to the 21-plus event come with complimentary beer, wine, and tastings from each chef. A sneak peak into some of the dishes: Serafina’s corporate chef Brendan Burke will make charred octopus with melon gazpacho, pickled blackberries, and fried elephant garlic; Seaport Hotel & World Trade Center’s pastry chef Karen Hodsdon will serve up s’mores in a tin with chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, vanilla ice cream and fudge; and Foundry on Elm and Saloon executive chef Shayne Nunes will prepare brisket tostadas with Brandt Farms slow roasted brisket, whiskey BBQ sauce, manchego cheese, and charred corn salsa. The proceeds of the event benefit Future Chefs, a nonprofit organization that helps prepare young people for careers in the culinary industry.

$80, Friday, June 24, 7-10 p.m., Seaport World Trade Center, 200 Seaport Blvd., Boston,


The Amazing Nina Simone. / Jeff L. Lieberman

Roxbury International Film Festival

The largest film festival in New England is going on its 18th year. The annual Roxbury International Film Festival celebrates films created by people of color, both locally and worldwide. This year’s movies include Damon Kwame Mason’s Soul on Ice: Past, Present and Future, which tells the story of black men’s contributions to ice hockey, The Amazing Nina Simone, which details the life of one of America’s musical geniuses, and A Ferguson Story, which narrates the racial divisions and violence that followed Mike Brown’s death.

$12-25, June 22-July 1, 465 Huntington Ave., Museum of Fine Arts Boston,

Cosimo 1

Cosimo Boni performing. / Berklee College of Music

Summer in the City Concert series at Fan Pier

Whether you’re noshing at a local restaurant, lucky enough to be boating, or simply soaking up the scenery by the harbor on a Saturday evening this summer, you’ll be treated to the sweet sounds of Berklee College of Music musicians performing at Fan Pier. This week’s artist is Cosimo Boni, a trumpet player from Florence, Italy, who came to Boston in 2012 to study contemporary jazz after years of classical training. Berklee’s Summer in the City is happening at 32 other locations, such as Lawn on D, the Boston Public Library, and Spectacle Island, so stay tuned for good tunes all around you.

Free, June 18-August 27, 6 p.m., 1 Marina Park Drive, Boston,

Dog Days of Summer Photo Contest

Think your pet pooch has looks to kill? Use a summer photo contest as an opportunity to show off your furry friends enjoying the Esplanade, whether they’re frolicking, snoozing, or fetching. The 12 selected winners will be featured in a calendar. And of course, getting some cred for your photo chops wouldn’t hurt, either. The Esplanade Association planned this contest in hopes of raising awareness to restore the historic Lotta Fountain, a six-foot stone dog fountain built in 1939. To enter the competition on Facebook or Instagram, post your photo with the hashtags #LottaBostonDogs and #MyEsplanade, including a caption that captures what the Charles River Esplanade means to you and your pup.

Free, June 10-August 19, Charles River Esplanade, Boston,


Madusa monster truck in action. / Photo provided

Monster Jam

Fasten your seatbelts in preparation for Monster Jam’s return to Gillette this weekend. The 16 competing trucks, each roughly 16 feet by 16 feet and at least 10,000 pounds, are named to match their size—Metal Mulisha, VP Racing Fuels’ Mad Scientist, and Gas Monkey Garage are just a few. A Party in the Pits will take place from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, giving fans the opportunity to scope the trucks up close and meet the drivers. Tickets for the Party in the Pits are available on Ticketmaster.

$25, Saturday, June 25, 7 p.m., Gillette Stadium, 1 Patriot Place, Foxborough, 800-745-3000,