Join us on the first Thursday of every month for a restorative evening of discovery and community. Museum admission is free from 3 pm through 9 pm and interactive programs kick off at 5 pm. Explore art, architecture, and seasonal horticulture displays in the Palace, and visit the studio for hands-on art-making activities that change each month. The Café is open late for dinner and drinks. 

In November, bring your friends or family to the Studio and create a blind contour of your loved ones. Blind contour is the process of drawing while only looking at the subject (in this case, the other person’s face) and not looking at the paper as you draw. This process requires you to focus on looking while not worrying about the quality of the drawing. 

Head up to Calderwood Hall at 7 pm for the premiere of a film and a panel conversation with the Abilities Dance Boston. Separate reservations are required for this free, 90-minute featured program. (Program tickets include general museum entry. If you plan to attend the film screening, please reserve your tickets for the performance.)

How to Reserve Tickets

Advance registration is required for free timed entry tickets. Reserve your ticket online by clicking the RESERVE YOUR TICKETS button above.


The Gardner maintains its mask requirement for free and ticketed events in Calderwood Hall. Masks must be worn over the mouth and nose while in Calderwood Hall. Please contact the Box Office at 617 278 5156 for further information. 

Free First Thursdays are supported in part by Maureen and Michael Ruettgers and the Wallace Minot Leonard Foundation. The Museum receives operating support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.