Plan Your Martin Luther King Jr. Day Weekend :: January 17–20


Friday, January 17

Belmont World Film’s 17th Annual Family Festival

January 17 – January 19

*The Regent Theatre is hosting the Festival on Friday night and Sunday Only*

Belmont World Film‘s 17th Annual Family Festival, “Where Stories Come Alive,” offers nearly four full days of some of the world’s best films for children and adults, animation workshops and talks with Cinzia Angelini, head story artist on the recently released Abominable (not to mention story artist on The Minions Movie, Despicable Me 3, Spider-Man 2, and more), and The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show Storytime, a live audience participation story time with large puppets featuring two of Eric Carle’s most famous books. Films are screened in English or their native language with subtitles, which will be read aloud through headphones for young readers, and many are being screened in the US for the first time. It might even be your only time to see them in New England.

7:30 PM – Hacker – Danish film with subtitles read aloud through headphones

10:30 AM – THE VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR SHOW STORYTIME! – Live event followed by a free photo session with the caterpillar puppet
12:15 PM – The Snail And The Whale (shown with Zog) – English film
1:00 PM to 3:00 PM – Learn to Create Storyboards for Animated Films – Workshop with story artist Cinzia Angelini
1:30PM-Laugh Out Loud with Mo Willems-Englishshortfilms
2:45 PM – It’s Easy Being Green: Films About Kids Helping the Environment & Other Stories – English short films followed by a Q&A
4:00 PM – Mila – Work in progress screening followed by a talk with Director Cinzia Angelini

Dancing with the Stars Live!

January 17 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm :: Boch Center Wang Theatre :: $53.00

Dancing With The Stars Live! 2020 Tour will take the Boch Center Wang Theatre stage January 16 – 17.

Saturday, January 18

Boston Chai Party Pop Up

January 18 @ 10:00 am – 1:00 pm :: El Choco, Cambridge :: Free

Feeling a little winter chill? Join Boston Chai Party when they arrive at EHChocolatier on January 18th, 10am-1pm with cups of authentic Indian chai made from their families’ recipes of masalas (freshly ground spice blend) and fair trade sourced black tea from Assam, India. And if you want to make a classic cup of chai at home, they will be offering tins of masala, tea and unsweetened concentrate that are perfect for customizing to your personal taste. Boston Chai Party will show you a much better way to drink chai and they’re hoping you will join them in their chai revolution!

Minni Make + Play – Night Lights

January 18 @ 10:00 am – 11:00 am :: Minni Space LLC, Boston :: $30

Minni Make + Play workshops are designed just for the littlest mess makers (and players!) ages 1.5–3 years to attend with their caregivers. Each uniquely-themed workshop focuses on skill development, materials exploration and irresistible sensory stations under the guidance of a supportive Minni instructor.

Take your little one to the moon and back in Minni Make + Play – Night Lights, a workshop all about starry winter skies and glistening reflections. Instructor Maria will begin with a reading of Papa, Please Get the Moon For Me by Eric Carle before guiding star gazers through a series of sensory activities inspired by everything shiny and bright, from painting mini moons to collaging original constellations. No need to climb a ladder to the moon: We have everything you need to brighten your little’s winter.

Illusionist Matt Roberts with “Charismatic Comedy Magic”

January 18 @ 10:30 am – 11:30 am :: Regent Theater, Arlington :: $15.00

Don’t miss the chance to be a part of Matt’s one-of-a-kind, interactive magic show! Frequently recognized as “that guy from TV!” having hosted Wal-Mart’s major ad campaign in over a dozen commercials and earning two EMMY Award nominations for his work on PBS, Matt Roberts is first and foremost a live performer with an unforgettable comedy magic show. You will be astonished as solid objects vanish, change size and pass through each other, right before your very eyes! Children and adults of all ages will be in hysterics, as audience members become STARS of the show. You’ll even learn how to do a magic trick, yourself, and receive a free autograph after the amazing finale! Always a popular attraction, get your tickets today before they all DISAPPEAR…

Celebrate the Lunar New Year at Franklin Park Zoo!

January 18 @ 10:30 am – 2:00 pm :: Franklin Park Zoo, Boston :: Included in cost of admission

Celebrate the Lunar “Zoo” Year! The always-balmy Tropical Forest will be festively decorated for the occasion. In celebration of year of the rat you’ll learn fun facts about some of our rodents during zookeeper chats. Prepare to let your creativity soar at the craft table where you can make your own traditional Chinese lantern. Don’t miss a performance of the lion dance by The Imperial Lion Dance Team at noon!

Sunday, January 19

Tinkergarten Trial

January 19 @ 1:30 pm – 2:20 pm :: Rock Meadow Conservation Area, Belmont :: Free

For over 7 years, we at Tinkergarten have been on a mission to spread a love of learning and nature throughout the country by offering play-based learning to kids in community parks. Our outdoor classes are designed to engage and inspire kids in building essential skills including empathy, collaboration, creativity, persistence, and problem solving. Our Winter session starts now and continues through March! Join the movement of thousands of families learning outside together and enjoy some well-spent time with your kids. Meet other local families with children of the same age. Come join a free trial today.

Celebrate O-Shogatsu – Japanese New Year

Sunday, January 19 @ 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. :: Boston Children’s Museum, Boston :: Included with cost of admission

Gather to welcome 2020 in the Japanese Oshogatsu style! Dance with Taiko drumming beats, pound Mochi sticky rice, parade with Shishi the lion, and relax with Chado tea ceremony! Try hands-on activities such as Koma spinning tops, Fuku-warai lucky laugh game, Origami (giant & wearable origami), Omikuji fortune telling, and more!

Boston Children’s Museum is home to the Japanese House (Kyo-no-Machiya), an authentic silk merchant’s house from Kyoto, Japan. The house will be decorated in New Year’s fashion for the event with many symbols of good luck.

Tinkering With Toys :: Build a Truck

January 18 – January 20 :: Discovery Museum, Acton :: Included with the cost of admission

Race, vroom, and whiz on toy tracks of your own design! Build and test out roads and raceways using recycled and re-purposed materials. There will be a plethora of toy vehicles for you to use or visit our car creation station to engineer your own.

Tinkering With Toys programs are planned in conjunction with the Discovery Museum’s new exhibit ‘Toys:The Inside Story’ open January 18 – May 10, 2020.

Monday, January 20

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, admission to Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo is free

January 20 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm :: Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo :: Free

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo will offer free admission on Monday, Jan. 20, 2020. Guests are invited to write messages of hope and peace on the murals that will be located within the Tropical Forest Pavilion at Franklin Park Zoo, and within the Animal Discovery Center at Stone Zoo. This is a wonderful opportunity to spend a memorable day with family and friends while learning about fascinating wildlife from all over the world.

MLK Day at the MFA

January 20 @ 10:00 am – 5:00 pm :: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston :: Free

Celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Guests are invited to enjoy free admission all day long, courtesy of Citizens Bank. Programs and activities for all ages will take place throughout the day, including performances by The WonderTwins and Abilities Dance.  Mayor Marty Walsh will offer remarks commemorating the life and work of Dr. King, and the winners of a city-wide student essay contest for middle and high school students will be announced at the event.

PJ Library MLK Day Peace Mural Project

January 20 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm :: Ready, Set, Kids! Arlington :: Free

What does peace look like? Participate in a special artist-led peace mural project based on kids’ visions of peace at Ready, Set, Kids! (284 Broadway) in Arlington on Monday, January 20 from 10am-12pm. Honor Martin Luther King by coming together to spread a peace-loving message through the power of art. For families with children ages 3-8 years. No Cost. Space is limited. Registration recommended at For more information or weather-related updates, check the JCC Metro North Family Connection on Facebook or contact [email protected] or 617-841-8009. This program is made possible in part thanks to support from the Richmond Foundation.

MLK Day Community Project for Birthday Wishes

January 20 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm :: Leventhal – Sidman JCC, Newton :: Free

Join JCC Greater Boston on Martin Luther King Jr. Day as we make birthday wishes come true for New England children experiencing homelessness. The event will take place at the Leventhal-Sidman JCC (333 Nahanton Street) in Newton on Monday, January 20 from 10am-12pm. We will be decorating handmade cards and packing up Birthdays-in-a-Box filled with all of the supplies a family would need to celebrate their child’s birthday with joy. In addition, a portion of the proceeds from the J Cafe on MLK Day will go to Birthday Wishes, so be sure to stop by for lunch or a snack. For families with children ages 3-9 years. This event is free for families, but pre-registration is required at For more information, contact [email protected] This program is made possible in part thanks to support from the Richmond Foundation.

A Celebration of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. presented by BYSO and the Museum of African American History

January 20 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm :: Faneuil Hall, Boston :: Free

Join the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras, Museum of African American History, and distinguished leaders who will evoke the power and promise of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. through a spoken word performance and concert.

Conductor Marta Żurad will lead young musicians from Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras’ Intensive Community Program in a moving array of classical music, spirituals, and freedom songs. The day’s festivities culminate with an audience sing-a-long.

This event is FREE and open to the public. Register for this event here:

Benkadi Drum and Dance at the JFK Library

January 20 @ 10:30 am – 11:30 am :: JFK Library, Boston

The multicultural Benkadi Drum and Dance group returns to perform new dances showcasing traditional West African rhythms and movements in this diverse cultural event. Come marvel at the beautiful costumes and interpretive dance as folktales come to life before your eyes!

Still I Rise: 17th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Concert

January 20 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm :: Symphony Hall, Boston :: $15 – $75

Now in its 17th year, our signature concert honoring Dr. King shines light on the historic artists who fought to be seen and recognized. Maya Angelou’s anthemic poem reminds us of our hidden power to transcend boundaries. Featuring pieces by composers like Florence Price, Undine Smith Moore, and Rosephanye Powell, our performance at Symphony Hall will inspire you to rise and reach for your sky.


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