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

The fabric of downtown New Bedford will be woven together in a colorful tapestry on March 9th for AHA! Night, New Bedford’s own second Thursday downtown arts and culture celebration. With the theme “All Sewn Up,” AHA! will celebrate the city’s rich textile history, as well as our current day love affair with the textile medium. The streets and venues of downtown New Bedford will be alive from 5 to 9pm with performances, art exhibits, lectures, and much more. 


Excellence in Fibers, presented by Fiber Art Now, at New Bedford Art Museum/Artworks! (608 Pleasant Street). Featuring contemporary quilts, tapestries, weavings, carpets, vessel forms, basketry, sculpture, installation and wearable fiber artworks.

Stop by LOVEmoda in the Cummings Building (96 William Street, Floor 2) for The Art of the Clutch demonstration. Plus Samantha Vieira, Professional Make-up Artist, eads a live make-up tutorial and shares some tricks of the trade. Hear her story, her journey to becoming a professional artist. Samantha can be booked for future weddings & special events. 6-8pm

Opening Reception for Hanging by a Thread: Needle Art of Salley Mavor and Paul Bielatowicz plays live at Gallery 65 (65 William Street).
Alison Wells Art Gallery (106 William Street) hosts:
- Opening Reception celebrating Fibers Month in New Bedford, featuring the works of three Fiber Artists: Pricilla Carrion, Carissa Frazier and Diane Savona, 5-9pm.
- Live music from singer-songwriter, Cedric Josey starting at 6:30pm.
Opening of the Quaker Clothing Exhibit and a tour by exhibit Curator Blair Walker at the Rotch-Jones-Duff House & Garden Museum (396 County Street), 5-6:30pm.

The New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park screens films about weaving. You can't get All Sewn Up without the fabric to sew. Learn about some of their sister parks that tell the story of industrial weaving in New England and how the whaling industry played a vital role in manufacturing.  6-8pm at the park Visitor Center (33 William Street).

BCC New Bedford presents T’s Against Violence.
The Clothesline Project (CLP) is a program started on Cape Cod, MA, in 1990 to address the issue of violence against women. It is a vehicle for women affected by violence to express their emotions by decorating a shirt. They then hang the shirt on a clothesline to be viewed by others as testimony to the problem of violence against women. With the support of many, it has since spread world-wide. Last year BCC Students engaged in their own T-Shirt project to address ALL VIOLENCE. The t-shirts on display were made by BCC students both men and women.

Swing by the South End! Judith Klein Art Studio (127 Rodney French Blvd. Door #31) presents an Opening Reception for a new Fiber Art Exhibit. Featuring fiber art installation by Laurie Carlson Steger and Judith Klein, quilts by Sheila Oliveira and fabric dolls by Valorie Sheehan.


Animation, Poetry, and Art at The Cummings Building Artist Studios (96 William Street, Floor 2):
- Lightbox Collaborative Animation Project starts at 7pm.
- “Threads that Connect us” collaborative poem to be written one line at a time by each willing visitor
- Poetry Open Mic happening at 8pm
- Artists Exposed: Photography installation by Beatriz Oliveira, 5-9pm
- Joanne Doherty open studio

A Doggone Good Time at the Buzzards Bay Coalition’s Wheeler Bay Learning Center (114 Front Street). Stop by for the kick-off of BBC’s responsible dog-walking campaign to promote safe and clean dog walking on public lands, 5-8pm. Plus a documentary about the power of the dog-human relationship in the Croll Conference Room at 6pm.

New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center (38 Bethel Street) presents Good Luck, Bad Luck: Superstitions at Sea featuring fishermen and sailors sharing superstitions and stories with the public. 6-7pm
Plus have a slice of cake to celebrate the 123rd anniversary of Schooner Ernestina-Morrisey's first trip! Co-hosted by the Schooner Ernestina-Morrissey Association, 7-8pm.

Enter the New Bedford Whaling Museum through the WATER STREET ENTRANCE to explore the Casa dos Botes Discovery Center. Check out the Friend’s Academy Wax Museum from 6-7pm plus kids crafts for all.

Computer Lab Open House at NBAM/Artworks! (608 Pleasant Street) from 5-6pm.

The GLCPS 5th-12th grade exploratory and elective classes present and exhibit their work at the Jacobs Center of the Global Learning Charter Public School Downtown Campus from 5-8pm. A variety of student work from their art and tech classes will be on display along with video performances from their Tang So Do classes. The GLCPS Jazz band will be performing throughout the evening. Light refreshments will be served.

Gallery X (169 William Street) hosts a New Bedford Symphony Orchestra mini pop-up show from 5-6:30 pm.
Pilgrim UCC (635 Purchase Street) hosts The Friends Academy “Band of Friends”, directed by Jim Bean. Music starts at 6pm.

The Monteirobots bring live jazz to the Cork Dining Room (90 Front Street), 8pm to midnight.


The Culture of Tea Series continues at Gatlin's Framing and Photography (209 Union Street) with a Lemongrass Chai sampling.

Celebrate Women’s History Month with 50% off books written by women at Subtext Bookshop (209 Union Street).

St. Paddy’s Day Sale at Soap La-Tea-Da (187 Union Street): all customers get 17% off any order of $29 or more. Plus free Kisses & Pats (Hershey Kisses and Peppermint Patties).


Closing reception for Singular Repetitions at the UMass Dartmouth CVPA Star Store Gallery (715 Purchase Street). Abstract, one-of-a-kind prints created using techniques from daguerreotypes to electrostatic monoprints by artists Lindsey Beal, Kim Gatesman, Amanda Means, Denny Moers, and Michael Rich.

GREEN at Gallery X (169 William Street). Green can be many things. From the seemingly limitless shades in nature, to the many associations such as food, money, recycling, envy and so on. This show explores GREEN in all it’s possibilities.

Artist Panel Discussion & 4 Continuing Shows at New Bedford Art Museum/Artworks! (608 Pleasant Street): - Spoon Full of Sugar: Navigating Heartbreak with Humor artist panel discussion with Regions’ Gallery Artist Pat Falco and Vault Gallery Artist Brooke Goldstein. 6:30pm with artist reception to follow. - IN TOUCH: The Expressive Magic of Judith James Born in Fall River, MA Judith James created works that explored the topographies of the American heartland and improvised on the patternings that human industry plowed into the earth’s surface. IN TOUCH: The Expressive Magic of Judith James is an exhibition that showcases James’ prolific years leading up to her death. The exhibit not only houses seventeen of James’ masterful fiber works but also objects, materials and personal collections from Judith James’ studio. IN TOUCH brings the work of the South Coast artist home and offers an intimate look into how well the artist applied her unique sensibility to everything she touched. - Just Not Break: Works by Pat Falco Boston-based artist Pat Falco creates text-based works that reside in the intersection of personal and political poignancy and the playful mundanities of everyday life. Falco’s work offers an authentic examination of the human experience through drawings and paintings that are both tender and sardonic, excavating devastating and hilarious truths about the U.S. political climate, historical events, the art world, love and loss. - Behind Open Doors: Works of Brooke Goldstein Goldstein creates immersive emotional experiences through fiber-based environments. Employing color, texture, repeating pattern and nostalgia, she invites viewers to lose themselves in her immersive installations. This multifaceted artist draws on textile techniques such as quilting, fabric painting, silkscreen and surface design to elicit memories relating to her own childhood, relationships and the concept of “Home”. - The Sporting Life: Yachting Prints by Currier & Ives


February 9, 2017 History, Herstory, Ourstory
March 9, 2017 All Sewn Up
April 13, 2017 Sustainable SouthCoast
May 11, 2017 We Art NB
June 8, 2017 Launch: New Spaces, New Places
July 13, 2017 Kids Rule
August 10, 2017 Jammin’ in the Streets
September 14, 2017 NB Cultures
October 12, 2017 Moveable Feast
November 9, 2017 Made in NB
December 14, 2017 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.