🙅 $500 concert tickets? Hard no.

Plus: 🖼️ An MFA controversy

It’s Tuesday, Boston.

🌱 Got any dirt? No, literally. Artist Larissa Rogers is looking for soil donations from places that are meaningful to you for an upcoming exhibit about the first Black woman to own a home in Boston. If you want to contribute, just fill out this Google form.

👀 What’s on tap today:

  • Mayor Wu’s veto

  • Good and bad Orange Line news

  • New England vacation habits

Up first…


It’s officially concert season

Image: Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe. Illustration: Emily Schario.

Concert prices may technically be down from last summer … But according to data from SeatGeek via Axios, the average resale ticket price to attend a summer concert is still $224, compared with $269 around this time last year.

So if your budget busted your dreams of seeing Noah Kahan at the Fenway Concert Series (resale tix start around $500), here are a handful of local summer concerts for under $100:

🤑 To start, don’t sleep on the freebies. For tunes, brews, and food, head to Cambridge Crossing on June 20 for the kickoff of its summer nights free outdoor concert series with performances from local bands like the Blue Light Bandits and Copilot

🎻 For classical sounds … Grab a lawn chair and some snacks because the Boston Landmark Orchestra’s free summer concerts return to the Hatch Shell on the Esplanade this weekend. Throughout the season, you can hear scores from icons like John Williams, George Gershwin, and Mozart while watching the sunset on the Charles. 

But if your budget has some wiggle room …

🛹 See the queen of Sk8er Bois. Avril Lavigne will be live at the Xfinity Center in Mansfield on Aug. 24 for her “Greatest Hits” tour. She’ll play all your early aughts favorites like “Girlfriend,” “Complicated,” and of course, “Sk*er Boi.” BTW, if you haven’t been to the Xfinity Center, it’s arguably one of our favorite outdoor concert venues around, with a great lawn for listening. Tickets start around $81.  

⚾ See a concert at Fenway without taking out a loan. Noah Kahan may be one of the hottest tickets in town, but country star Kane Brown still has seats for his show at the Fenway Concert Series on July 20 starting at $60. Hootie & the Blowfish also have plenty of $50 tickets to their show on July 21.

🎤 Listen to Mr. A to Z like it’s 2008. Picture this: You’re wearing a cami under your popped-collar polo shirt at your middle school dance while slow dancing to “I’m Yours.” It’s quite possible you can recreate something similar on July 6 at the Seaport’s Leader Bank Pavilion as Jason Mraz will be there for his “The Mystical Magical Rhythmical Radical Ride” tour. Tickets start around $54

🏃‍♀️ Get cozy with a Gen Z indie darling. If you have TikTok, you’ve definitely heard Lizzy McAlpine’s hit “Ceilings” — see: this trend. So if those 15-second videos have you humming along, it might be worth grabbing a seat to her “Older” tour stop at MGM Music Hall at Fenway on June 21. Tickets start around $37.

👀 Want more cheap concerts? Boston.com shared more free outdoor concert series here along with a list of must-see concerts with ticket prices here.


Live out your coastal grandmother fantasy 

🌊🎶 If you’re fond of sand dunes and salty air head to The Dunes on the Waterfront! Tucked away on the shores of Ogunquit, Maine, these charming summer cottages are perfect for anyone looking to lean into quintessential New England summer vibes. With amenities like a cozy fire pit, a heated pool, and access to beach cruisers, rowboats, and more, you’ll have everything you need for a getaway filled with relaxation (and yes, plenty of aesthetic pics for Insta). Book your stay now and enjoy 25% off from May 24 to June 21. 


Quick & dirty headlines

Image: Pat Greenhouse/The Boston Globe

🙅🏻‍♀️ Mayor Wu gave a thumbs down to cutting police and fire budgets. Remember when Boston City Councilors voted 10-3 to make $15 million of changes to Wu’s $4.6 billion proposed city budget last week, including redistributing nearly $4 million away from police and fire budgets? Well, Mayor Wu is not into it. Yesterday, she vetoed most of the council’s changes, restoring the budgets of both the police and fire departments. Now, city councilors (some of whom seemed pretty peeved about the move) could overrule her veto with a two-thirds majority vote.

💊 Getting an IUD in Mass. could get less painful. Some local clinics are now offering patients sedation for IUD insertion procedures, which have gained a reputation as an intensely painful tradeoff for one of the easiest and most effective forms of birth control out there. Despite some research indicating that pain levels during the procedure may cause up to 41% of patients to sour on the contraceptive, there are no national guidelines for pain management during IUD insertions. In many cases, patients are just advised to take Advil or Tylenol.

🖼️ The MFA is grappling with one of its most controversial pieces. The museum announced an effort to re-contextualize “Appeal to the Great Spirit,” the controversial statue of a Native man who greets visitors at the building’s front entrance, which has long been acknowledged as insensitive to Native communities by visitors and museum officials alike. The exhibit, called “The Knowledge Keepers,” will be installed in November, and will be part of an annual series that aims to enliven the museum's front entrance.

🚇 Enjoy it while it lasts, Orange Liners. First, some good news: The MBTA successfully removed 10 speed restrictions on the Orange Line during the recent shutdown between Wellington and Back Bay, which means faster trains and fewer disruptions for riders in the future. That also brings the line’s total slow zones down to 26. Now the bad news: You have exactly 11 days to enjoy the speedier commutes before more major shutdowns come your way. But who’s counting? 


Together with Levitate

Enter to win a Levitate Your Summer Prize Pack worth $2,500+. We’ve partnered with our friends at Levitate to give you a chance to win a pair of 3-day VIP Tickets to Levitate Music Festival (7/5-7/7) featuring Sublime, Lake Street Dive, Mt. Joy and more. Additionally, the prize package includes a $800 shopping spree for two across Levitate Brand apparel, and tickets to sold-out Levitate Backyard shows this summer! To enter, just refer a friend and have them accept your invite by the end of the day on June 14, 2024. If you’ve already referred a friend to B-Side (and they’ve accepted), you're eligible! Full details below*


🛫 Wait! Before you read on … how much do you typically spend on a weeklong vacation?

Let us know below!

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New Englanders’ vacation habits

Illustration: Gia Orsino.

How much time and money do you spend on vacations each year? 

If you said about two weeks and $2,234, apparently, you’re right in line with the rest of Massachusetts. Bonus points if those trips are to the beach or poolside with family.

According to a recent study, the amount of cash, days, and locations New Englanders prefer to involve in their vacations varies pretty wildly from state to state: From New Hampshirites, who spend just $450 on one vacation a year; to Rhode Islanders, who spend almost $2,300 on two and prefer traveling to cities; to Vermonters, who spend $2,000 on two vacays and (shocker) prefer ski getaways.

You can check out the other silly, surprising (and TBH, some totally predictable) findings here.

— Written by Gia Orsino and Emily Schario

🌴 Thanks for reading! BTW, if anyone’s going on a $2,000 beach vacation anytime soon and has extra space in their suitcase … I’m available.

💜 Special shoutout to today’s sponsor, The Dunes on the Waterfront, for supporting local journalism and offering New Englanders a slice of coastal paradise. 

💃 Keep up with us @BostonBSide on IG, TikTok, and Twitter. Send comments and suggestions to [email protected] or [email protected].