Arts + Entertainment

Things to Do in Boston Now That You’re Vaccinated and Ready to Party

Finally ready to hit the town worry-free? We've got you covered.


post-vaccine bucket list

Scorpion bowl photo via Instagram/Hong Kong | Theater photo via Instagram/Coolidge Corner Theatre | Trampoline screenshot via Barre Groove | Bowling photo via Instagram/Boston Bowl

So your final dose of the vaccine is kicking in, antibodies are coursing through your veins, and you’re ready to hit the town. Where do you start?

In case you’ve forgotten about all the fun things to do outside your home around here, or in case you’ve been avoiding riskier activities even as the city’s attractions (i.e. those that involve hanging out in enclosed spaces with other people and touching a lot of things with your hands) began to reopen, we compiled a list of ways to reacquaint your freshly inoculated self with a good time in Boston.

Book a screening room for your vaccinated pals


Have you missed date night at the movies? Miss it no more. AMC and the Coolidge and the Brattle all offer private screening room deals on the cheap for you and as many as 24 buds. These rentals put you in charge, allowing you to screen the classic or blockbuster of your choosing. There are still rules in these places: You’ll be required to wear a mask unless presently munching on popcorn. But the chance for you and your squad to have a movie theater all to yourself is a rare one you can capitalize on worry-free.

Enjoy Boston’s finest finger foods

Even if you did journey inside a restaurant dining room this year, perhaps you’ve been reluctant to order the shareables. Well, fret no longer, and feel free to dig into some finger-lickin’ cuisine with abandon, just like in the good old days. Might we suggest our list of Boston’s best nachos to get you started?

Go bowling

 

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Bowling alleys have been cleared to open for a while now, but if the thought of touching theoretically germ-dusted balls gave you the heebie-jeebies before, now is your chance. Boston Bowl‘s lanes, pool tables, and arcade are all in business. Same for Kings. Best of Boston winner Sacco’s Bowl Haven is in hibernation for now. We also recommend the candlepin bowling at Central Park Lanes, Eastie’s best kept BYOB secret.

Take out your stress on your friends

Grab some of your vaccinated buddies and reacquaint yourself with the art of blasting them with lasers at Xtreme Craze in Woburn, the laser tag and inflatable obstacle course, which just reopened. To incorporate some pain into the equation, Boston Paintball is up and running at its indoor facility in Ashland (the company’s Chelsea outpost is still closed for now).

Book a Boston Harbor cruise

Why not celebrate your fully-vaxxed status by popping a bottle of bubbly on a boat? And word to the wise, if you charter a boat this early in the season there are some pretty nice deals to be found.

Order a scorpion bowl

The concept of a swarm of buddies slurping a big bowl of liquor sounded a lot less appetizing in 2020, but now that you’re vaxxed, Hong Kong is calling.

Treat yourself with a spa day

Close contact with a masseuse for prolonged sessions is no longer cause for concern, and now is the perfect time to undo some of the knotty damage you’ve done to your back by sitting down for so long. Boston favorite Treatment Training Wellness in the South End, which specializes in aches and pains (pandemic-era stress induced or otherwise), is there to help.

Hit the casino

It’s been a time of huge ups and downs for the $2.6 billion Encore Boston Harbor, which hadn’t even gotten a full year of operation under its belt before the pandemic hit, and had to adjust several times to tweaks in the state’s reopening guidelines. But now it’s back to its 24/7 glory. Since you’re no longer gambling with your health every time you try to blow off steam, why not gamble on the slots? (By the way, the typically pricey Encore is also offering unusually low rates on its luxury rooms).

Go for the high score at the arcade

 

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Want to game without betting the farm? Bar arcades are the way to go. Fellow gamers might have to take extra precautions when it comes to post-Galaga hand sanitizing, but you’ve got antibodies on your squad now. There are a couple bar/arcades to meet your needs. Area Four’s A4cade is still closed down, but Versus in Downtown Crossing is open. Or venture up to Bit Bar in Salem, where game consoles and “Tetris Tots” await.

Go analog with board games at the bar

In case you’ve grown tired of screens, one of our favorite new concepts to hit Boston before all of this was the immersive board game/bar combo in Mission Hill called Tavern of Tales. After toughing it out this year, it went on a winter hiatus, but plans to return when warmer months do. So now that you’ve vanquished the virus, you’ll soon be able to get your grubby fingers all over some dice, grab handfuls of tater tots, and vanquish some imaginary foes.

Escape an escape room

We’ve spent more time than we ever could have imagined trapped in rooms during quarantine, and most of them didn’t even have treasure maps, trick bookshelves, or hidden keys. Now you and your post-vax pals can revel in breaking out of interiors that are sinister in a fun way: At Boston’s Escape the Room, which is up and running, one of the puzzles, actually called “The Apartment,” is pretty on the nose. And Boda Borg in Malden, which reopened this month, is still the same emporium of escape room-style Quests you remember it being.

Go to a nightclub

Well, sort of. Big Night Entertainment had to shut its doors to the traditional club scene last year, but has since turned its dancehalls into some club-like exercise facilities. At the Grand, you can now do some trampoline-based routines on what used to be the dance floor, or do a spin class at the brand-new Big Night Live while your instructor leads you from an illuminated stage. Unusual? Sure! But until herd immunity lets them bring back the sweaty nightclubs of yore, you can come close to the feeling.

Bounce at a trampoline park

You’re never too old to hop, is what I like to say. Trampoline parks may primarily attract (non-vaccine eligible) children, but to hell with that! Take your vaccinated crew to SkyZone  in Everett and jump around. It’s good for the soul.