The best freebies in Boston (2024)

The B-Side

Plus: 💼 Is our WFH era over?

The best freebies in Boston (1)

By Emily Schario

Happy Friday, Boston!

🌭It’s almost Sully’s season …Sullivan’s, the famous Castle Island restaurant known for its weenies, announced that they’rereopening for the year tomorrow(!). If you’re a first-timer, here’sthe menu in all her glory.

👀What’s on tap today:

  • Is our WFH era over?
  • Street sweeping incoming!
  • Rats: 1,000. Bostonians: 0.

Up first…


Syrup, shamrocks, and supporting women

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Image: Matthew J. Lee/ Globe Staff. Illustration: Gia Orsino.

March may be the month of green.But for us, it’s the month of saving you some green.

Without further ado, here are the best freebies in Boston this month:


💁‍♀️ Give the ladies in your life some extra love.It’s Women’s History Month after all! You can browse several women-founded small businesses atBoston Women’s Market’s pop-upsat Night Shift Brewing on March 3 and Time Out Market on March 10; Fenway Community Center is hosting awomen’s history movie nighton March 27 (with free popcorn and drinks!); and here’s a friendly reminder thatBoston’s Women’s Heritage Trail, made up of 14 trails around the city showcasing spots where Boston women made history, is always free.

🎥Put on your best film critic outfit.The Oscars are March 10, so if you already plan on being glued to the TV that night, why not head over to Trident Booksellers for theirOscars watch party? They’ll be staying open late for the full ceremony, with games, wine tastings, photo ops, and everyone can cast their vote for their favorite films.

🍀Say “Sláinte!” without a cover.Thoughts and prayers to those who live in Southie: St. Patrick’s Day andBoston’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade(always free) are on the same day this year. There’s also a handful of cover-free events perfect for pre-gaming, likeLamplighter’s Stout Festfor the Guinness lovers;Aeronaut Brewing’s celebrationswith live Irish music;Night Shift’s St. Puptrick’s eventwhere your dog can enter a pup chug contest ($5 to chug but otherwise free); andCannonball Cafe’s partywith face painting and other green treats.

😂Create a Mike Madness bracket.No, that’s not a typo. Tickets to aMarch Madness game at the Garden are nearly $300. But thisMike Madness event at Night Shiftis free. In the spirit of the iconic basketball tournament, Night Shift has specifically crafted an event for people named Mike and those wanting to embrace their inner Mike. Long story short: Just come dressed up as your favorite Mike, whether it’s yourself, a friend, a celeb, or TV character. It’s gonna get weird.

🍁Get a taste of the real stuff (maple syrup).With temps heating up, the Somerville Maple Syrup project is hosting itsmaple boil downon March 2 (tomorrow!) where folks can taste fresh local syrup collected from sugar maple trees on Tufts’s Campus and learn the process of sugar mapling.

🍰Embrace your inner Paul Hollywood.If you love “The Great British Baking Show,” this is your Super Bowl. The Thomas Crane Public Library in Quincy is hosting their“Great Quincy Bake-Off” on March 5 where you can bring in a baked good of your choice to share with the class. March’s challenge is decorated cakes, so make sure it’s not too stodgy!


👀Want more?You can find more freebies onour segment from “Boston Globe Today” here.


Quick & dirty headlines

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Image: Steven Senne/AP Photo

✊🏿 Embrace Boston spelled out Boston’s history of racism.The organization(yes, the same one behind the “Embrace” statue), just publisheda 146-page reportdetailing the various ways that slavery, segregation, and discrimination have harmed Black Bostonians throughout history, with the goal of connecting them to the present state of our city. The report also lays out some steps that can be taken by the city to redress those harms and make sure they don’t continue.You can check out the report here.

🧑‍💻Is it time for the end of our WFH era?More and more local companies arebringing employees back into the office, and according to polled readers, the ideaisn’t as unappealing as it once was. The majority still have their flags firmly planted in the WFH camp, citing a better work-life balance, a more flexible schedule, and less time commuting. But, a solid 28% (compared to just 5% in 2022) were pro-returning to the office, listing concerns like decreased productivity, and management becoming less effective remotely.

🧹Boston: You’ve got some housekeeping to do.First,mostBoston neighborhoods don’t start street sweeping until April 1, but if you’re in the North End, South End, or Beacon Hill, it all beginstoday. To avoid a $200 towing fee, you canset up email reminders and find more info here. Plus: Did you know it’s legally required that all Boston dog owners annually license their dogs? Luckily, the city is offeringseveral low-cost events to get it done(plus get a rabies vaccine) starting with one on March 2,which you can check out here.


🐀Rats: 1,000 Bostonians: 0.Boston’s rats have long been an issue for the city, but since the pandemic,they seem to have gotten … stronger. Complaints on Boston’s 311 page for rats havesteadily increased since 2015, prompting calls from the City Council tocreate an official office for pest controlto address the problem. But according to local experts, the issue might be us. If we don’t figure out a way to manage our own trashy habits, no matter what we do to remove them, they’ll just come right back. Yikes!


Weekend plans

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Image: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP

🎛️ Get back to your boy band roots.Fangirl Fantasy: One Direction vs. 5SOSis coming to Big Night Live this Saturday night. Act fast to secure this night of nostalgia!

👄Read a book in the name of lOoOoOvE.Read My Lips Boston, a woman-and disability-run romance bookshop, is hosting their monthlyromance novel pop upat Winter Hill Brewing on Sunday.

🪴Cultivate your own candles.Ain’t Easy Candles is hosting abuild-your-own candle garden on Saturday, and yes, the results are as adorable as they sound: a garden of mini succulent-shaped candles.

🍻Cheers to local craft beer.Breweries across Mass. are tapping in withdeals and events to celebrate Mass. beer week,including free fancy custom glasses if you hit six spots!

🤝Network with Boston’s brightest women.SIDE Presents is hosting theirEstrogina women’s networking eventon Sunday, bringing entrepreneurs, creatives, and women from all walks of life together. PLUS, there will be free food and drinks.


— Written by Claire Nicholas


A Mass. native is doing it all

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Image: Robert Voets. Illustration: Gia Orsino.

On today’s episode of “20-somethings who’ll make you feel bad about yourself …”Brighton resident Charlie Davis is a Harvard grad, current BC law student, soon-to-be Boston Marathoner, andnow, acontestant on the newest season of “Survivor”to boot.

Like many of us, Davis got into the world of Survivor at the height of the pandemic, but unlike many of us, he actually decided to apply — and when he was rejected, applied again and again until he was cast for this season in Fiji.

Obviously, Davis isn’t allowed to reveal his fate on the season, but he did tell theGlobethat his experiences growing up in New England and as a distance runner at Harvardhelped him stay mentally tough throughout his timeon the island. Those who grew up in the south and went to a state school, however, struggled (jk).

The first episode premiered Wednesday night, so there’s still time to catch up.

— Written by Gia Orsino and Emily Schario

🛖Thanks for reading!Getting through a New England winter, 26 days living on an island with no food or shelter, potato potahto.

🚧The results are(n’t) in:Unfortunately, due to technical difficulties, we were unable to access the poll results and read your replies (TBH, the best part of our day) from yesterday’s newsletter, so please write in extra for next time <3.


💃Keep up with us@BostonBSideonIG,TikTok, andTwitter. Send comments and suggestions to[emailprotected]or[emailprotected].

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