6/2-4 SCOOPER BOWL @ CITY HALL PLAZA
6/3 BEYONCE @ GILLETTE STADIUM
6/4 UNCORKED AT FRANKLIN PARK ZOO
6/11-12 DRAGON BOAT FESTIVAL @ CHARLES RIVER (CAMBRIDGE SIDE)
6/17 BUNKER HILL DAY
6/17-18 BRIAN WILSON @ BOSTON SYMPHONY HALL
6/24-25 BOSTON CARIBBEAN FOOD FESTIVAL
6/27 CHINATOWN MAIN STREET FESTIVAL
[Throughout the Month] CiIRQUE DU SOLEIL @ SUFFOLK DOWNS
Late spring in Boston is one of the city's most dynamic times of year. April has its showers; May has its flowers, and June? June brings that grand opportunity to eat as much ice cream as you can, until you are doubled-over with a crippling headache--and for a great cause! City Hall Plaza will host the 34th Jimmy Fund Scooper Bowl from June 2nd to June 4th, where you purchase an all-you-can-eat ticket to feast on samples from ice cream vendors from New England (including Ben & Jerry's) and beyond. Proceeds from your brain-freeze go to the Dana-Farber institute for cancer research in Boston.
This same weekend, the first big act of June's stellar lineup of live music comes to Gillette Stadium, as "Queen Bee" diva Beyonce takes the stage on June 3rd as part of her Formation World Tour, after turning more than a few heads and ruffling a few feathers during this year's Super Bowl halftime performance--but hey, that's why she's the Queen..
Saturday, June 4th, you can stroll around the Franklin Park Zoo's Tropical Pavilion sampling various wines from around the world at the 3rd annual "Uncorked", because with gorillas, hippos, and free-flowing alcohol, what could possibly go wrong? Don't answer that, but do drink responsibly!
The following weekend, June 11th and 12th, brings Boston's celebration of the traditional Chinese Dragon Boat Festival to the Charles River--actually, the Cambridge side of the river, to be exact; featuring races, cultural performances, and street snacks. The festival itself, celebrated by Chinese populations across the world, dates back over 2,300 years, and memorializes the rather morbid story: the drowning death of poet Qu Yuan, whom locals raced into the river to save. Failing this, the boatmen threw sticky rice dumplings into the river so that the fish would eat these (now known as zongzi) instead of feasting on the poet's flesh.
Of course, this being Boston, the cradle of the American Revolution, we have plenty of our own homegrown historical traditions, festivals, and reenactments, which also continue to ramp up, into the spring and summer. This month, we celebrate Bunker Hill Day on June 17th, commemorating the battle of Bunker Hill...which was actually fought on the neighboring Breed's Hill, proving that even our forefathers did, in fact, wish to confuse and disorient the city's tourists for hundreds of years to come. Wherever the battle was fought (and lost, against the British), the Battle of Bunker Hill served as something of a moral victory for the budding patriot resistance, in showing the red coats that they were indeed a force to be reckoned with. The annual fife-and-drum parade will take place on the 17th, beginning at Bunker Hill, so check the above link for details!
Speaking of revolutionaries, don't miss your chance to see musical genius/quirky pop mastermind, and the heart and soul of the Beach Boys, Brian Wilson as he brings his legendary pop-sensibilities for a two-night stand at Boston Symphony Hall, June 17th & 18th. Wilson's penchant for catchy, whimsical, but affecting songwriting has spanned his storied-but-turbulent career, most famously when he took the reins in creating the Beach Boys' psychedelic/surf-pop masterpiece, Pet Sounds--which he'll be performing in its entirety, along with the Boston Pops, for likely the last time ever!
If Brian Wilson's sweet harmonies and pleasant aura of childlike innocence is not your cup of tea, maybe you'd prefer the company of jerks, at Boston Jerk Fest. (aka, the Boston Carribean Food Festival), June 24th & 25th. Not to be confused with walking down Landsdowne Street after last call on a surly Saturday night, Boston Jerk Fest is an edible ode to the flagrant flavors of the the Carribean, and will feature many chances to sample the festival's namesake dish, and much more, as well as rum and beer tasting and live music. Your chance to sear your face with scotch bonnet pepper-laced treats happens June 24th and 25th.
June 27th sees Boston's frenetic Chinatown come to life with the annual Chinatown Main Street Festival, a colorful celebration of the city's sizable Chinese population featuring Lion Dances, martial arts performances, traditional music, and even a few street food vendors.
Last but not least, the month of June is a great time to enjoy this year's edition of Cirque du Soleil, titled "Kurios", a mind-bending steampunk-meets-the-circus affair, combining acrobatics with a bit of magic, over at Suffolk Downs, just a short ride away on the Blue Line.