Events & Festivals Around Town

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Arlington Alive!

The outdoor celebration of the arts and community in the heart of Arlington includes an eclectic mix of live musical performances by local artists, live theatre, street dance, artists´ booths, authors´ booth, and food from Arlington based restaurants.

Cultural District
Arlington First Lights

First Lights in Whittemore Park takes place on first Thursday of December starting at 6:00 pm in front of the Jefferson Cutter House at the intersection of Mass Ave. and Route 60. The event includes the lighting of the park’s trees, musical entertainment, activities at the museum, a live ice sculpture demonstration and community sing-a-long!

Photo: Jenna Fisher/Arlington Patch Staff

611 Massachusetts Avenue

Cultural District
Arlington Heights Festivals

Arlington Heights events are organized by the Arlington Heights Community Association (AHCA). Activities and events include: Spring Window Painting, Spring Fling Festival, Halloween Window Painting, Holiday Window Painting, Winter Festival, and potential new events.

The AHCA is a group of Heights business owners, residents and non-profits who meet monthly to address local issues and concerns, support beautification projects, and organize public events and activities to promote vibrant community engagement. AHCA works together with the Arlington Commission for Arts and Culture, ArtsLink, and the Chamber of Commerce to present a variety of public events throughout the year. In the past two years the AHCA has organized five storefront window painting events – Halloween, Winter and Spring, two Holiday Strolls, and a Spring Fling Festival. These events have helped to increase a sense of community pride, contribute to economic vitality, and draw visitors from Arlington and beyond to discover and explore the charming and unique Heights district.

This group continues to welcome new volunteers. If you would like to attend one of the monthly Thursday meetings, volunteer at future Heights events, or donate money to support their beautification projects and activities, please contact Janet O’Riordan,

611 Massachusetts Ave Arlington, MA

Cultural District
Arlington International Film Festival

For 2020, AIFF is a 10-day festival, screening documentaries, animations, shorts, and narrative feature films that increase multicultural awareness and understanding. Plus Voices of Our Youth, a student filmmakers program. Local artists are especially encouraged to submit entries.

Festival takes place November 5 - 15 ONLINE

204 Massachusetts Ave

Cultural District
Arlington Jazz Festival

The four-day festival, produced by Morningside Music Studio, features top performers, local rising ensembles, and student groups. Morningside aims to increase awareness of Jazz and foster a sense of community. Locations throughout Arlington

Cultural District
Arlington Open Studios

Every November, the Arlington Center for the Arts brings together 60+ local artists and craftspeople to share their talent and their work with the community. Media include painting, photography, fiber, ceramics, glass, fine jewelry, mixed media, printmaking, and sculpture. Plus music and creative food.

730 Massachusetts Ave Arlington MA

Cultural District
Chairful Where You Sit

Adults and children apply their creative skills to discarded chairs destined for the attic or the trash heap. The transformed one-of-a-kind chairs – elegant, funny, quirky, clever, and always colorful – go on exhibit at Chairful Where You Sit. Take home your favorite – all funds raised go to support Arlington Commission for Arts & Culture's imaginative programs and installations. The Chairful program has ended as of 2021.

Cultural District
Day of the Dead

The fiesta shares in the rich Mexican tradition of honoring loved ones who have passed away with Mexican food, live Mariachi music, memory altars (ofrendas), and festive activities for all ages.

Cultural District
Feast of the East

Capitol Square in East Arlington comes alive with its annual Feast of the East: the Fox Festival and Parade; Chairful Where You Sit art exhibit; ethnic food from local restaurants; live music and line dancing; sales, raffles, and giveaways from neighborhood businesses.

Cultural District
Fox Festival & Parade

Led by the New Orleans-style Second Line Social Aid and Pleasure Society Brass Band, the Fox Festival and Parade is a highlight of the Feast of the East. Look for giant foxes and other urban animals marching along the sidewalks of Capitol Square in a festive pageant.

Photo by Milton Bevington

204 Massachusetts Ave

Cultural District
Garage Band

GARAGE BAND is a pop-up dance party, a celebration of community, and a gathering in an unusual venue, the Arlington Global Service Station, a classic auto service station that has become, thanks to input from neighborhood artist Johnny Lapham, a public art landmark in the heart of Arlington’s Cultural District.

GARAGE BAND is organized with assistance from the Arlington Commission for Arts and Culture’s Programs and Festivals Committee, an activist group of local arts leaders.

334 Massachusetts Avenue Arlington, MA

Cultural District

Musicians of all stripes perform on Arlington’s lawns, porches, and stoops. Wander the streets of different neighborhoods to list listen to live music of all genres during this family friendly event, produced by Arlington Center for the Arts. Locations all throughout Arlington!

Cultural District
Romancing the Square

Capitol Square celebrates the spirit of Valentine’s Day with free activities throughout East Arlington’s business district for adults and children. Free chocolates, art happenings and exhibits, sales, music, and refreshments to help everyone get in the mood for romance.

204 Massachusetts Avenue

Cultural District
Shakespeare in the Park

A treasured summer tradition, the Arlington Center for the Arts presents an outdoor performance of a Shakespeare play put on by apprentices from the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company. This program has ended.

129 Jason Street (Menotomy Rocks Park)

Cultural District
Spring in the Square

Spring’s here! Capitol Square celebrates with workshops, activities, events, and promotions for all ages.

204 Massachusetts Ave

Cultural District
Town Day

Town Day is an all-out celebration of everything that makes Arlington a great place to live, work, and visit. Music and dance performances on a central stage, booths from town organizations and local businesses, used book sale, Fire Department demonstrations, interactive art activities, and much more,

Cultural District