We're always delighted to welcome spring to Boston. It's the season when everything comes alive and each day brings a small and wonderful surprise. The city's green spaces are vibrant centers of color and activity, and It's the perfect time to get outdoors with the kids to reconnect with nature or celebrate at a fair or festival. Here are our picks for Boston's best activities for families in springtime.
1. Get the first sweet taste of spring at a maple sugaring festival or farm.
2. Educate your kids about a springtime farm tradition—and sample some great food and check out woolen wares–at a local sheepshearing festival.
3. Surprise your kids with a fun April Fool's Day prank.
4. Greet new baby animals at Drumlin Farm.
5. Show your kids how cool science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) can be during the Cambridge Science Festival (April 14-23).
6. Witness the true arrival of spring in Boston on Swan Boats Opening Day (April 15).
7. Go back in time with a Patriots' Day battle reenactment (mid-April).
8. Learn all about spring at a nature center.
9. Join the quest to see whales frolic in their natural habitat on a whale watching cruise.
10. Enjoy the bounty of local farms, music, and kids' activities when the farmers' markets open for the season.
11. Discover how easy it is being green and show some love for our planet at an Earth Day celebration.
12. Get outdoors and help one of our local wildlife sanctuaries during the Mass Audubon Statewide Volunteer Day (April 29).
13. Spend an afternoon in the Public Garden, where the blooms are spectacular in the springtime.
14. Celebrate the city's diversity and the arrival of spring at the Wake Up the Earth Parade and Festival (May 6).
15. Hop on the uniquely Boston Greenway Carousel for a spin and then explore the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway.
16. Enjoy all kinds of free performing and visual arts at the Harvard ArtsFirst Festival (April 27-30).
17. Rebel a little on Mother's Day: Pack a picnic and take it to the Arnold Arboretum. (OK, you're not really rebelling; Lilac Sunday on May 14 is the one day of the year picnicking is allowed at the arboretum.)
18. Don your beaks and tails for the annual Duckling Day Parade in the Public Garden (May 14).
19. Take your little one for a nature walk.
20. Sing "Let's Go Fly a Kite" with your kids while riding around Franklin Park on two (or three) wheels during the Kite & Bike Festival (May 20).
21. Start cycling with your kids in celebration of Bay State Bike Week (May 13-21).
22. Celebrate art and culture at the Cambridge River Festival (June 3). Happening on the banks of the Charles, this festival includes plenty of music, art, and activities for families.
23. Experience the swell of Dorchester pride during the Dorchester Day Parade (June 4).
24. Have your cake and sunshine, too: Dine al fresco at a kid-friendly restaurant with outdoor seating.
25. Explore our beautiful local trails with an easy hike with your kids.
Photo courtesy of Juhan Sohin via Flickr
This post was originally published in March 2014; updated March 2015, 2016, and 2017