October 2014 events calendar for New York City

Plan your month with our events calendar of the very best activities, including Halloween activities and our picks from theater, the arts and music

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Let’s be honest: There are lots of cool things to do in October—we love Open House New York and the CMJ Music Marathon—but we’re just getting ready for Halloween festivities at the end of the month. Use our events calendar to find the best Halloween NYC events, along with our favorite theater and music events.


RECOMMENDED: Full events calendar for 2014


Featured events in October 2014

Hedwig and the Angry Inch

  • Rated as: 5/5
  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice
  1. Belasco Theatre 111 W 44th St, between Broadway and Sixth Ave
  2. Tue Sep 23 - Thu Oct 9
Buy tickets

New York City Wine & Food Festival

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice
  1. Various locations
  2. Wed Oct 15 - Sun Oct 19
More info
  1. Joe's Pub at the Public Theater 425 Lafayette St, between Astor Pl and E 4th St
  2. Fri Oct 31
More info

The Freedom Party NYC Annual Halloween Bash

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice
  1. Santos Party House 96 Lafayette St, at Walker St
  2. Fri Oct 31
More info

Free events in October 2014

Smorgasburg

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Head out to the open-air fair before it gets too cold: The season's final iterations will be November 22 at the Williamsburg waterfront and November 23 at Brooklyn Bridge Park. Visit smorgasburg.com for more information.

  1. Brooklyn Bridge Park Main St, at Fulton Ferry Landing, 11201
  2. Sat Sep 27 - Sun Nov 23
More info

“Interference: Coexistence”

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Humanity hasn’t yet developed the technology to create the holodeck from Star Trek: The Next Generation, but the Center for the Holographic Arts is doing its best to keep the dream alive at this LIC art space. “Interference: Coexistence” shows off holographic art by 25 of the world’s best 3-D artists, with selected pieces from the heady, future-obsessed decades of the ’70s and ’80s. The Clock Tower, 29-27 41st Ave at Jackson Ave, Queens.

  1. Queens
  2. Thu Oct 2 - Sat Oct 18
More info

Thrills the World

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video depicted him as a zombie…which is very spooky because he died in 2009. Chilling! Since 2006, flash mobs have been organizing themselves to dance like MJ himself in the "Thriller" video to raise money and awareness for the Pajama Program, which delivers pj's and books to children who need them. And you can help out, too.

  1. Manhattan
  2. Sat Oct 25
More info

Halloween Harvest Festival

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Fashion your own costume to resemble Fido’s at this daylong holiday primer. Four-legged family members can compete in the Canine Costume Contest while their two-legged counterparts create their own getups on-site with the help of resident artists.

  1. Socrates Sculpture Park 32-01 Vernon Blvd, at Broadway
  2. Sat Oct 25
More info

"Rite of Passage: The Early Years of Vienna Actionism, 1960–1966"

  • Rated as: 5/5
  • Critics choice
  • Free

This survey of paintings, collages, drawings and performance photographs curated by Hubert Klocker should provide an eye-opening introduction to a group whose outrageous reputation is well earned, if also somewhat misunderstood.

  1. Hauser & Wirth New York 32 E 69th St, between Madison and Park Aves, 10021
  2. Tue Sep 23 - Sat Oct 25
More info

Comedy at the Knitting Factory

  • Critics choice
  • Free

The smooth and delightfully understated Hannibal Buress introduces fellow stand-ups.

  1. Knitting Factory 361 Metropolitan Ave, at Havemeyer St
  2. Sun Nov 2 - Sun Dec 28
More info

Music events in October 2014

Bridget Everett: Rock Bottom

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

The astonishing, totally fearless Amazon of alt cabaret and raunchy comedy (Inside Amy Schumer) returns to Joe's with a new show commissioned for the venue. Cocreated with Broadway's Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman (Hairspray) and Beastie Boy Adam Horovitz, this is full-contact New York magic, and not to be missed.

  1. Joe's Pub at the Public Theater 425 Lafayette St, between Astor Pl and E 4th St
  2. Tue Sep 23 - Thu Oct 16
More info

Billy Joel

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Erstwhile angry young man Billy Joel—now an official Madison Square Garden franchise, like the Knicks and Rangers—is tacking on date after date in what's threatening to become an endless run. Because you had to be a big shot, didn’t you, eh, Piano Man? (P.S. Welcome back.)

  1. Madison Square Garden 4 Pennsylvania Plaza , between 31st and 33rd Sts, 10001
  2. Thu Oct 2 - Thu Dec 18
More info

Lykke Li

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

The shadowy Swedish songsmith plays cuts from her soul-baring latest, I Never Learn, which comes off like the modern-day counterpart to an immersive Phil Spector affair. Wallowing has rarely sounded so gorgeous.

  1. Radio City Music Hall 1260 Sixth Ave, at 50th St
  2. Sat Oct 4
More info

Bastille

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Fast-rising Brit quartet Bastille manages to mesh an ’80s postpunk moodiness with perky, dramatic beats—not a million miles from Ed Sheeran singing with the Pet Shop Boys. Its sophomore album has purportedly been delayed due to extensive touring, but we figure that means you can expect a well-oiled show.

  1. Radio City Music Hall 1260 Sixth Ave, at 50th St
  2. Thu Oct 9 - Fri Oct 10
More info

The Allman Brothers Band

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

We thought it'd never end, but yes, folks, these gigs (some rescheduled from earlier this year) mark the final time the roots-rockin' jam institution will take the Beacon stage—or any stage, for that matter. Come revel in the glorious twang one last time.

  1. Beacon Theatre 2124 Broadway, at 74th St
  2. Tue Oct 21 - Tue Oct 28
Buy tickets

Art events in October 2014

The Wayside Motor Inn

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

In the past century of playwriting, there must be nearly as many plays set in hotels as in dysfunctional households. No surprise there: Hotels come with built-in drama—sleazy affairs, folks on the run, depraved criminality (or, if you’re Tracy Letts, all of the above).

  1. Pershing Square Signature Center 480 W 42nd St, at Tenth Ave
  2. Tue Sep 23 - Sun Oct 5
More info

Drunk Shakespeare

  • Price band: 2/4

At this nearly nightly event, an actor drinks heavily (in the vein of Comedy Central's Drunk History) and then tries to corral others into enacting a story from the Bard's beloved oeuvre. Bibulous excess is encouraged.

  1. Quinn's Bar & Grill 356 W 44th St, between Eighth and Ninth Aves, 10036
  2. Mon Sep 22 - Sat Oct 18
More info

"NYC Makers: The MAD Biennial"

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Finally, an ultimate tribute to not just the artistic minds that make New York a creative hub, but also the behind-the-scenes guys we never hear about. NYC will pay homage to 100 awesome artists and their production teams who have shown outstanding levels of talent in their fields, from stonemasons and set designers to instrument makers and media-art collectives.

  1. Museum of Arts & Design 2 Columbus Circle, at Broadway, 10019
  2. Mon Sep 22 - Sun Oct 12
More info

"Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs"

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

It was rather late in life that Henri Matisse (1869–1954) began to create one of his most extraordinary bodies of work. Starting in the 1940s, he cut out shapes in colored paper, arranging them into compositions that sometimes seemed to push into pure abstraction.

  1. Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) 11 W 53rd St, between Fifth and Sixth Aves, 10019
  2. Sat Oct 25 - Wed Dec 31
More info

"Christopher Williams: The Production Line of Happiness"

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

A MoMA retrospective is usually an indicator of an artist about to become a household name, but I suspect that the work of Christopher Williams is too difficult for that to happen. His show was sparsely attended when I was there, while crowds thronged through a concurrent Toulouse-Lautrec exhibit.

  1. Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) 11 W 53rd St, between Fifth and Sixth Aves, 10019
  2. Mon Sep 22 - Sun Nov 2
More info

More events in October 2014

The Haunted Pumpkin Garden

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Halloween junkies can get their spooky fix in this scary patch of the Children’s Adventure Garden filled with frightening spirits lurking in between the gourds. Weekend programming includes parades, where kids can get some extra mileage out of their costumes. Older visitors can enjoy sessions such as a pumpkin-carving demo with Ray Villafane (Oct 19, 20).

  1. New York Botanical Garden Bronx River Pkwy, at Fordham Rd, 10458
  2. Sat Sep 20 - Fri Oct 31
More info

The Rink at Rockefeller Center

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Even if the sidewalks are overrun with tourists, you’ll have ample room to skate at the city’s most iconic rink; only 150 people are allowed on the ice at once (so that also means you should prepare for a bit of a wait). RECOMMENDED: More rinks for ice skating in NYC

  1. The Rink at Rockefeller Center 30 Rockefeller Plaza, between 49th and 50th Sts
  2. Sat Oct 11 - Wed Dec 31
More info

Bootycandy

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

The sixth sketch in Robert O’Hara’s tartly delectable anthology Bootycandy, just before intermission, takes place at a writers' conference at Playwrights Horizons. The moderator is a supercilious (and super-silly) white man, and the guests are four “emerging” African-American playwrights alleged to have written the preceding four vignettes, which vary in tone from outrageously funny to painfully sexual and emotional.

  1. Playwrights Horizons 416 W 42nd St, between Ninth and Tenth Aves
  2. Tue Sep 23 - Sun Oct 19
More info

New York City Ballet Fall 2014

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

The company returns with a promising fall season. The performances kick off with the Sarah Jessica Parker–conceived Fashion Gala, in which pieces, including now resident choreographer Justin Peck's new work, feature costumes by prominent fashion designers.

  1. David H. Koch Theater (at Lincoln Center) 20 Lincoln Center Plaza, at 63rd St
  2. Tue Sep 23 - Sun Oct 19
More info

Cider Week NYC

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

More than 200 bars, restaurants and markets throughout New York turn their attention to fermented fruit for a week's worth of tastings and events.

  1. Various locations
  2. Fri Oct 24 - Tue Nov 4
More info

Billy Joel

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Erstwhile angry young man Billy Joel—now an official Madison Square Garden franchise, like the Knicks and Rangers—is tacking on date after date in what's threatening to become an endless run. Because you had to be a big shot, didn’t you, eh, Piano Man? (P.S. Welcome back.)

  1. Madison Square Garden 4 Pennsylvania Plaza , between 31st and 33rd Sts, 10001
  2. Thu Aug 7 - Thu Dec 18
More info

Halloween Murder Mystery

  • Price band: 2/4

Sharpen your sleuthing skills while soaking up an authentic haunted-house vibe at this interactive event in one of the city's oldest buildings. According to a New York Tribune article in the Mount Vernon Hotel's archives, an unidentified skeleton was discovered under the floorboards of the 1799 carriage house, which was converted into a country retreat in the early 19th century. Who was it and whodunit? Wander through candlelit period rooms searching for clues to piece together a fictional mystery inspired by the chilling report.

  1. Mount Vernon Hotel Museum and Garden 421 E 61st St, between First and York Aves
  2. Fri Oct 24 - Sat Oct 25
More info

“Interference: Coexistence”

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Humanity hasn’t yet developed the technology to create the holodeck from Star Trek: The Next Generation, but the Center for the Holographic Arts is doing its best to keep the dream alive at this LIC art space. “Interference: Coexistence” shows off holographic art by 25 of the world’s best 3-D artists, with selected pieces from the heady, future-obsessed decades of the ’70s and ’80s. The Clock Tower, 29-27 41st Ave at Jackson Ave, Long Island City, Queens.

  1. Queens
  2. Thu Oct 2 - Sat Oct 18
More info

Oktoberfest in NYC

One of the top things to do in New York this fall includes two weeks of drinking some of the best beer in NYC during Oktoberfest. Take in the beautiful fall foliage while drinking at one of the best beer gardens and beer halls in New York City. Oktoberfest New Yorkers, take advantage of this glorious holiday to sample fine Bavarian beer and food. Prost!

  1. various locations

L.E.S. Pickle Day

  • Free

An area rich in history with more unique traditions than can be documented, the Lower East Side smiles back on the past today. In the heart of the old Pickle District, this Orchard Street fair features samples of the green delicacy from India to Haiti, from Malaysia to Brooklyn, and of course, those good old fashion kosher dills from the LES. Plus, in keeping with the spirit of Halloween, kids will get their faces painted and compete in a costume contest.

  1. Manhattan
  2. Sun Oct 19
More info


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