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.

AHA New Bedford

History, Herstory, Ourstory

Evening sponsor, the Standard Times, presents Connect with Coastin’: A roundtable discussion with arts & culture columnists Don Wilkinson and Steve Froias. 7-9pm in the Zeiterion Penler Space (Purchase and Spring Street). 

International Women’s Day Celebration at the New Bedford Whaling Museum (18 Johnny Cake Hill), 5:30-8pm. Program includes a women’s resource fair, networking event, and a screening of the TED talk on “intersectionality” with a panel discussion (starting at 6:15pm). Reception with refreshments following the program. Presented by the Women’s Center, Women’s Fund, Center for Women, Gender and Sexuality at UMASS Dartmouth, New Bedford Whaling Museum, YWCA, Girl Scouts, Coalition for Social Justice, Martha Briggs Educational Club and the New Bedford Historical Society. 

Learn about mother-daughter duos of NB at the New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park (33 William Street). Rangers and volunteers will lead a lively discussion about famous mothers and daughters, Hetty and Sylvia Green (5:15pm) and Anna and Rosetta Douglass (6:30pm). 

New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center (38 Bethel Street) hosts Mothers, Daughters, Wives: Songs, Poems and Stories from Women in Fishing Families, 7-8pm. Learn about life in a fishing family from the women who know first-hand.

The Cummings Building Artist Studios (96 William Street, Floor 2) host an evening of short films and improv, 7:30-10:30pm.

Albert Bierdstadt: An Artful New Bedford Legacy 
Art curator for the New Bedford Free Public Library, Janice Hodson offers a presentation about New Bedford artist Albert Bierdstadt. In the summer of 1858 John Hopkins and Albert Bierstadt mounted the New Bedford Art Exhibition, an event unlike anything attempted before in the city.  For the first time residents were able to view canvases by William Bradford, William Allen Wall and other local artists alongside those of established American and European masters. This talk will look at impact of the exhibit on New Bedford’s cultural community. 6pm at the Rotch-Jones-Duff House & Garden Museum (396 County Street).

More to enjoy at the New Bedford Whaling Museum (18 Johnny Cake Hill):
- Our Sisters School art exhibit, 4-6pm 
- Friends Academy Wax Museum: Unheard Voices of the American Revolution 
- New Bedford Ballet performs Courage, Perseverance, and Trust: the Manjiro Story 
- Local History Guild Lecture: Marjorie O’Toole, Director of the Little Compton Historical Society and Jeffrey Miller, Ph.D. Director and Curator of the Mattapoisett Historical Society will discuss “Common Lives in the Coastal Region: Interpretive Patterns for Historical Societies.” 6pm 

Live Music In DNB 

The Cat Walsh Quartet play live at Gallery X (169 William Street).
The CWQ is an instrumental groove group based out of Boston. The group draws from a well of influences such as jazz standards, pop, world music with a sound rooted in R&B/soul. The quartet works to create original music as well as unique dynamic arrangements of familiar music. Band members are Miles Fischer on keyboards, Al Nawrocki
on drums, Evan Macleod on bass and Cat Walsh on saxophone.

Pilgrim UCC (635 Purchase Street) hosts the Global Learning Charter Public School Jazz Band, directed by Don Richard, 7pm. 

Open Mic at the Castle on Union Street
The First Unitarian Church New Bedford (Corner of Union and 8th Street) hosts a monthly open mic event. Doors open and signup starts at 6:30pm. All ages. Bands welcome. 

We Art NB 

Reception for Diane Samuels: The Whale and Other Texts at UMass Dartmouth CVPA Star Store (715 Purchase Street). The exhibit is centered around the 8’ wide by 47’ long artwork Moby-Dick, or The Whale. This mesmerizing large scale piece appears to be floating on the gallery floor and spilling off the wall, reflecting on the ocean nearby, the location for the Melville’s famous novel. Pittsburgh based Diane Samuels who often uses text as a element in her visual vocabulary this time creates waves with her meticulous hand-transcriptions created using all of the 701 pages in the novel. Reception 6-9pm, Artist Talk 7pm. 

Fashion On Union: A fashion show at UMass Dartmouth CVPA Star Store (715 Purchase Street), 6:30pm.

Swing by the South End! Judith Klein Art Gallery (127 Rodney French Blvd. Door #31) hosts a closing reception reception for Imagine & Inspire: A Student – Teacher Exhibit, 5-8pm. Student: Abigail Ackerman, Christine Knowles, Maggie Fichna, Halen Johnson, and Tessa Rémy Miller. Artist/Teachers: Judith Klein, Sheila Oliveira and Jay Ryan. 


Spring Cleanout Sale at Subtext Bookshop (209 Union Street). Shop for 50% off all books throughout the day. 

Ceramics Club Sale at UMass Dartmouth CVPA Star Store (715 Purchase Street), 5-8pm. 


February 8, 2018 Please Be Seated
March 8, 2018 I Am New Bedford: Herstory, History, Ourstory
April 12, 2018 Sustainable SouthCoast
May 10, 2018 We Art NB
June 14, 2018 Launch
July 12, 2018 Kids Rule
August 9, 2018 Jammin’ In The Streets
September 13, 2018 #FrederickDouglassLivedHere
October 11, 2018 Scapes: Tables & Tours
November 8, 2018 Made in NB
December 13, 2018 City Sidewalks

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.