AHA! Is a monthly FREE celebration of arts & culture in downtown New Bedford.

AHA! Is a monthly FREE celebration of arts & culture in downtown New Bedford.

Join us for the July 14th AHA! & see what unfolds when KIDS RULE Downtown NB! Hit the streets and enjoy a night jam-packed with summer sounds, hands on activities for the kid in all of us, Troll Ball, a Solstice Skate Jam, plus unique shopping & good food at our many boutique stores & eateries.

A huge thank you to Senator Montigny and Representative Cabral for their ongoing support, providing access to cultural programs for community kids!

Calling All Kids

The Little Portuguese Feast in Custom House Square! Enjoy culture, music and Folkloric dances, flower decorating & traditional Portuguese food. Festivities begin with the singing of the National Anthems at 6:30pm. More info about August’s Portuguese Feast Celebration at www.portuguesefeast.com.

Play a round of Troll Ball with Mastermind Adventures in Wing’s Court.

Fire Safety Fun with the New Bedford Fire Department's Fire Safety Program. Get on a hook and ladder truck, meet Sparky the firedog and check out the demonstration smoke and burn building. 5-8pm on 2nd street between Union and William.

What’s Up at the New Bedford Whaling Museum (18 Johnnycake Hill)? New Bedford Festival Theatre presents a sneak peek of this summer's upcoming production of Grease. 7pm on the plaza

Pilgrim UCC (634 Purchase Street) presents root beer floats and children’s crafts in the Church Home, 6-7:30pm.

Solstice Skateboarding hosts a Skate Jam on Purchase Street featuring a barrel jumping contest sponsored by Element Skateboards.

Touch Tank of Live Estuary Critters with the Lloyd Center.  Meet your neighbors who live in the local environment. Plus find out about affordable family fun and all kinds of week-long summer programs for kids. Time & Location: TBD

Join WHALE (the Waterfront Historic Area LeaguE) for an Architectural Details Scavenger Hunt! Discover which historic buildings WHALE has saved over the last 50 years and win a prize. Scavenger Hunt headquarters located at the Custom House Park fountain (William Street side). 5-7:30pm

Subtext Bookshop (209 Union Street) goes all out for kids' books.  Look for this month’s Specialty Series: Young Adults Manga.

Girls Rule 2016 Tour, featuring the talents of young ladies throughout the state, who love to perform. These gifted musicians not only sing–many also write, compose and play instruments. An evening of young energy and fine music, under the direction of Sharon Jenson and Marlene Kalisz. 5:30-7:30pm under the terrace tent at the Rotch-Jones-Duff House and Garden Museum (396 County Street).

Tiny Treasurers of the Great Leviathan! Whaling log books contain more than just words. The capture of a whale was often marked in the book by an ink stamp of a whale.  Join Ruth and Abby, the 1850s ladies, to make your own whale stamp reminiscent of the art in log books.  6–8pm at the New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park (33 William Street).

Underground Railroad Walking Tour with the NB Historical Society. The tour will leave from the 54th Regiment Plaza/Custom House Square at 6pm. Plus, the Nathan and Polly Johnson House (21 Seventh Street) will be from 6-8pm.

DIY hedgehog craft at the New Bedford Public Library (613 Pleasant Street).

Kids’ Wellness Challenge at the New Bedford YMCA (25 South Water Street).
Kids will take part in a number of obstacle course stations and fun challenges with balancing, jumping, running, and more!

Mass In Motion New Bedford presents the Downtown New Bedford Farmers Market! Happening every Thursday on Barkers Lane (south side of Custom House Park) from 2-6pm (later on AHA! Night) the Market will feature local produce, eggs, meats, fish, jams, baked goods, flowers, and more!

Check out the BCC New Bedford arts and crafts table and let your imagination run wild. 5-7pm on the sidewalk in front of 800 Purhcase Street.

Live Music in DNB!

The summer tradition continues! Centre Street Sessions presented by Whaling City Sound and Fiber Optic Center, Inc. This month's performers are the Bryan Steele Band: Bryan Steele, tenor sax; Jim Giaquinto, piano; Mike Lavoie, bass; Danny “Dr. D” Schwartz, percussion. In the Kaller Beef Building parking lot on Centre Street. Sets at 5:30 & 7:15pm. Rain location: BayCoast Bank (corner of William & Purchase Street).

Café Arpeggio’s (800 Purchase Street) Featured Performer for July is Wind of Sparrow, Nathan Orie and Jade Bryant. Featured Performer from 6-7pm and Weekly Open Mic from 7-10pm, hosted by Art Tebbetts & Denn Santoro.
“This delightful young duo knocked out our regular open mic crowd, and it was agreed we needed to hear a whole set of their music.  Hot on the heels of their new vinyl EP release, WIND OF SPARROW comes to share their harmonies and wonderful songs.”

All That Jazz at the New Bedford Public Library (613 Pleasant Street) featuring local high school jazz musicians: Keegan Marshall-House on Piano, Max Pacheco on drums and Maxx Wolski on Vibraphone. In the library courtyard/entrance from 4 - 6pm.

Live music and outdoor dining at Cork Wine and Tapas, Rose Alley Ale House, and Pour Farm Tavern.

We Art NB!

The Monster Show: artwork inspired by 5 year old Gabriel Arruda and curated by Heather Berthelette at TL6 The Gallery (100 William Street).

The Way Cool Sunday School presents Kids Rule the eARTh at the Green Bean (740 Purchase Street).

Alison Wells Fine Art Studio (106 William Street) presents artwork by private lesson students. Plus, an art activities table for kids and teens and original paintings, prints and greeting cards available by Alison Wells.

A Thousand Mornings in New Bedford with Marissa Bolton, Jacob Ginga, Gregg Harper, Heather Hobler, Dudley Moor, and Ruth Rego. Find this group show on the 2nd floor of City Hall (133 William Street).

Archvillainy: The Art of the Bad Guy at Gallery X (169 William Street).

Opening and Gallery Talk for The Weird World of Chuck Hauck. Curious about the mind of an artist responsible for giant insects and cockapoodles?  Come hear well-known area sculptor and Gallery X Founder Chuck Hauck talk about the strange creatures that inhabit his world. 6:30pm in the 3rd floor exhibit hall of  the New Bedford Public Library (613 Pleasant Street).

New Show at Gallery 65 (65 William Street). Opening Reception for Scenes from the New Bedford Waterfront, paintings and prints by Carole Constant. Plus! 2 Trunk Shows: - Ceramics by Chrissy Feiteira - Coloring books, cards and posters by Judith Moffatt.  Join published author/illustrator Judith Moffatt for an evening of discovery in coloring. Demonstrations using various types of pencils for blending and application will put a new twist on your coloring skills. 5-9pm

Artist Reception and Talk at UMD CVPA Star Store Gallery (715 Purchase Street) - Dennis Hlynsky: Murmurations is a video exhibition showing the magic of multiple formations of starlings, filmed by Rhode Island School of Design professor, Dennis Hlynsky, in seven screens running simultaneously. Hlynsky’s videos, available online, have been viewed or embedded more than 7 million times on his Vimeo page as well as within blogs and online media, such as Colossal, Huffington Post, The Guardian, Mashable, Wired Magazine, and more than 200 others in almost every country on the world. This UMass Dartmouth exhibition marks the first time these works have been as extensively shown in a solo exhibition. Artist Reception 6-8pm, Artist Talk 7pm. Plus, new show in Gallery 244: "Remembering Willoughby Elliott" an exhibition of his paintings.

Artist Talk and 4 continuing shows at NBAM/Artworks! (608 Pleasant Street) - BIERSTADT: Nature & National Identity  Curator: Janice Hodson, New Bedford Free Public Library Painter Albert Bierstadt’s rich, monumental landscapes offered a 19th century vision of the stunning national treasures of the American western wilderness – natural resources that were unseen by most.  For so many people, the majestic beauty of the West as pictured on his canvases and those of his contemporaries was a revelation…and inspiration.  Images of these beautiful wild places proved influential in shaping public opinion about these natural wonders, helped inspire popular movements to preserve them for all to enjoy, and culminated in the creation of our national park system. Click for full list of Bierstadt related events. More Than Scenery: Yellowstone, an American Love Story, photos by Janet Pritchard.
UMass Dartmouth's Memory Holloway speaks with artist Janet L. Pritchard about her exhibit of photographs of visitors experiencing Yellowstone National Park. 6pm – 7pm - The Bierstadts in New Bedford - Artist in the World: Photography in the Vault by Dutch artist Andre Smits, curated by Joan Backes.

Swing by the South End! Judith Klein Art Studio (127 Rodney French Blvd. Door #31) hosts a reception for Summer 2016: a group show featuring 16 artists across multiple mediums.  Participating Artists: Beth Barry, Diana Arvanites, Lori Brady, Izabella Casselman, Mark Delisle, Stephen Denton, Michael Hubert, Joan L'Homme, Sheila Oliveira, Denn Santoro, James Sears, Valorie Sheehan, Laurie Steger, Elizabeth Wilkinson, Judy Volkmann and Judith Klein. Artists will be available to talk about their works. 5-8pm


February 11, 2016 Fire & Ice
March 10, 2016 All sewn up
April 14, 2016 Sustainable SouthCoast
May 12, 2016 We Art NB
June 9, 2016 placemaking now & then
July 14, 2016 Kids Rule
August 11, 2016 #findyourpark
September 8, 2016 Festa, Fiesta, Fete: Celebrate NB Cultures
October 13, 2016 walkabouts
November 10, 2016 Made in NB: celebrating arts month
December 8, 2016 city sidewalks
December 31, 2016 City Celebrates! New Year’s Eve

All activities are FREE and open to the public.Year-round programming is funded in part by the Mass Cultural Council's John and Abigail Adams Arts Program, The Island Foundation, The City of New Bedford, the AHA! partners, individual supporters and in-kind marketing support from the Standard-Times and WBSM. For more information call 508-996-8253 x205

First time visitors
may want to start AHA! Night at the National Park Visitor Center (33 William Street). Complete program flyers with maps are also available at all AHA! venues starting the Tuesday prior to each event.

Directions: From I-195 E or W. Take Exit 15 (Rte. 18). Follow Rte 18 to 2nd traffic signal; take a right onto Union St. At the first traffic signal take a right onto Second Street and take your first left for parking in Custom House Square or continue on two blocks to the Elm Street garage. On-street parking also available for free after 6 pm. 

Our AHA! Partners have something for everybody on your list. 
- boutique shops 
- museum memberships
- galleries galore
- tickets to a show
- gift cards to eclectic eateries 

Click here for AHA! Partner info.

AHA! Is a monthly FREE celebration of arts & culture in downtown New Bedford.