Children are welcome at Outside the Box, which features a wide variety of performers. (Photo Credit: Outside the Box)

Children are welcome at Outside the Box, which features a wide variety of performers. (Photo Credit: Outside the Box)

Tickets to performances in Boston can be expensive. But this summer the organizers of a local festival are thinking outside the box to give visitors the chance for plenty of free entertainment.

Outside the Box, founded in 2013, is a 6-day festival at Boston Common that was created as a way to showcase performing arts in the city.

The cost? Not a dime. Every Outside the Box performance is free of charge.

“Our region is already known for its universities, hospitals and for its history,” event founder Ted Cutler said on the Outside the Box website. “It’s my hope that we add the arts to what people think of when they think of Boston.”

More than 100 acts will perform during the event, with a wide variety of genres represented.

Smashmouth performs during a 2015 concert. (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for 90sFEST)

Smashmouth performs during a 2015 concert. (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for 90sFEST)


More Than 100 Performers

Festival organizers recommend arriving early to opening ceremonies on Wednesday, July 13, to get a good spot at the Fairgrounds, which is located at the corner of Beacon and Charles Streets.

On Thursday, July 14, Vertical Horizon and Smashmouth will be among the performers on a “Throwback Thursday” themed evening. The bands are best known for their hit songs in the early 2000s.

Daughtry, the band formed by Chris Daughtry, hits the stage on Friday, July 15, while Saturday’s day of music begins with a drum off by Blue Man Group.

Local and international arts organizations will be featured at the event as well.

A main theme of the festival will be dance, and a wide variety of family-friendly performances.

You can find a complete schedule of performances on the Outside The Box website.

Outside the Box features a wide variety of acts showcasing local and national performers. (Photo Credit: Outside the Box)

Outside the Box features a wide variety of acts showcasing local and national performers. (Photo Credit: Outside the Box)


Getting To Outside The Box

Your best bet for traveling to Boston Common is public transportation.

There are several parking garages underneath the Common, but drivers will have to pay to park there.

To use the MBTA for your trip to Outside the Box, take the Red Line or Green Line to Park Street, or the Orange Line to Chinatown and make the short walk.

Outside The Box Interactive

In addition to showcasing the performing arts, the festival will also feature some of Boston’s best technology and business entrepreneurs through Outside the Box Interactive.

The free Innovation Village on Boston Common brings together large and small companies who will display their products and services.

One of the highlights of Outside the Box Interactive will take place on Friday, July 15, on the Capital One Mainstage when the OTBi Awards get underway.

Boston startup companies will compete and be judged by several of the city’s influential leaders. The contest winner will be announced onstage.

Outside the Box allows crowds to enjoy free shows over the span of several days. (Photo Credit: Outside the Box)

Outside the Box allows crowds to enjoy free shows over the span of several days. (Photo Credit: Outside the Box)


What To Bring

You’ll definitely want to bring a blanket and sunscreen to Outside the Box as you’ll be enjoying the performances in the summer sun.

While there will be food for sale at vendors throughout the area, visitors are welcome to bring their own food.

Outside the Box is a family-friendly atmosphere, so you’re welcome to bring children as well.

There will be hands-on activities for the children, and parents can also take the little ones to the Frog Pond playground or Knucklebones area to take a break from the festival.

All areas of Outside the Box are handicap accessible.

Alcohol, drugs, and weapons are prohibited from Outside the Box.

For more information, visit the Outside the Box website.

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