101 things to do in New York City: Fall 2012

Your essential guide to the season’s best things to do in New York City—festivals, parties, hot new spots and more—makes like a leaf and drops.

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  • Photograph: courtesy Dumbo Arts Festival

    61. Explore a creative 'hood during the Dumbo Arts Festival

    Pictured: Immersive Surfaces by The Leo Kuelbs Collection at the 2011 Dumbo Arts Festival

  • Photograph: Lucas Gurdjian

    62. Have some fucking dinner during the Omnivore World Tour

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    63. Mark the "discovery" of America at the Columbus Day parade

  • Photograph: Courtesy the New-York Historical Society

    64. See gorgeous masterpieces in “Nature and the American Vision: The Hudson River School”

    Pictured: Thomas Cole, The Course of Empire - The Arcadian or Pastoral State

  • 65. Get your thrills at Fairgrounds

    Pictured: Fairgrounds hosts, from left: Matthew Camp, Joseph Graham, Jorge Lopez, Dina Marie, Greg Bennett and Reichen Lehmkuhl

  • Photograph: Philippe Matsas

    66. Explore loftier thoughts at the White Light Festival

    Pictured: William Christie and Les Arts Florissants

  • Photograph: Norman Blake

    67. See indie flicks at the Coney Island Film Festival

  • 68. Get out and vote!

     

     

  • Photograph: Courtesy 92nd Street Y

    69. Catch election fever at the 92nd Street Y

    Pictured: Michael Steele

  • 70. Eat like a king during Harvest in the Square

Photograph: courtesy Dumbo Arts Festival

61. Explore a creative 'hood during the Dumbo Arts Festival

Pictured: Immersive Surfaces by The Leo Kuelbs Collection at the 2011 Dumbo Arts Festival

61

Explore a creative 'hood during the Dumbo Arts Festival

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Head to this annual three-day arts fest in the culturally rich Brooklyn neighborhood to view the work of more than 500 artists. Drop by local studios, see installations, performance art and works-in-progress in the streets.

  1. Various locations
  2. Fri Sep 28 - Sun Sep 30
More info
62

Have some fucking dinner during the Omnivore World Tour

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

The globe-trotting Omnivore World Tour returns to New York, celebrating jeune (“young”) cuisine through a series of free master classes and two “Fucking Dinners” ($76). The meals will be created in teams: Dominique Crenn (San Francisco’s Atelier Crenn) joins Alexandre Couillon (La Marine of Noirmoutier, France) to create their take on French cuisine at Dekalb Market; while locals Carlo Mirarchi (Roberta’s, Blanca), Brooks Headley and Mark Ladner (both Del Posto) collaborate at Blanca. The classes are equally high-profile, with Jose Ramirez (Chez Jose, ex-Isa), Christophe Dufau (France’s Les Bacchanales) and Ivan Shishkin (Moscow’s Delicatessen) among those leading workshops. This year also sees the first Omnivorous Party (Sept 23 at 1pm, free) at Dekalb Market, featuring DJs and creative riffs on American street food available for purchase.

  1. Various venues 138 Willoughby St, at Flatbush Ave Ext, 11201
  2. Sat Sep 22 - Sun Sep 23
Buy tickets
63

See gorgeous masterpieces in “Nature and the American Vision: The Hudson River School”

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

The New-York Historical Society created this traveling exhibit to showcase iconic paintings by artists such as Thomas Cole and Asher Brown Durand. They were part of a group called the Hudson River School, whose work depict pastoral landscapes throughout New York state. After a year on the road, the exhibit, which includes Cole's five-painting series The Course of Empire, is back at N-YHS. Visitors can see 45 of these bucolic images, which portray locales such as Niagara Falls, the Catskills and Lake George. It’s a perfect taste of the countryside for the urbanite who’s wary of wide open spaces.

  1. 170 Central Park West, (between 76th and 77th Sts)
More info
64

Get your thrills at Fairgrounds

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Reality stars Reichen Lehmkuhl (The A-List: New York) and Greg Bennett (The Real Housewives of New Jersey) are your special hosts at this all-homo night at the Six Flags amusement park, brought to you by Mark Nelson and Out In Events. Get cheap thrills on the rides, indulge in greasy food and flirt with fellow revelers without the risk of mistaking some dad from Philly for a daddy from Chelsea. Some tickets include transportation or unlimited food. Check gaysixflags.com for details.

  1. Six Flags Great Adventure 1 Six Flags Blvd, at Monmouth Rd
  2. Until Sat Sep 6
More info
65
William Christie and Les Arts Florissants, one of Time Out's 101 things to do in New York City in the fall

Explore loftier thoughts at the White Light Festival

  • Critics choice

Lincoln Center’s annual series explores music’s transcendental qualities, and this fall brings another month’s worth of events that invite audiences to unplug and consider the human condition. Among the highlights is Les Arts Florissants, William Christie’s globally renowned ensemble of Baroque singers and instrumentalists (Oct 19 at 7:30pm; $45–$77); recitals by acclaimed pianist Emanuel Ax (Nov 4 at 5pm; $40–$100); and Heiner Goebbels’s staged concert I went to the house but did not enter, based on texts by T.S. Eliot, Maurice Blanchot, Franz Kafka and Samuel Beckett (Nov 13, 14 at 7:30pm; $25–$75). Visit whitelightfestival.org for a complete lineup.

  1. Various venues
  2. Thu Oct 18 - Sun Nov 18
66

See indie flicks in Coney Island

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Cinéastes can consider the Coney Island Film Festival a smaller, more laid-back and community-focused alternative to the star-studded New York Film Festival. The three-day fest, which kicks off just a week before the NYFF takes over the Upper West Side, screens a variety of micro-budget features, animation, shorts, documentaries, music videos and ’hood-centric flicks. But perhaps the biggest draw? Watching movies in the punk-meets-freak environs of Sideshows by the Seashore while imbibing plenty of Coney Island brews. coneyislandfilmfestival.com

  1. 1208 Surf Ave, (at 12th St), 11224
More info
67
Vote, one of Time Out's 101 things to do in New York City in the fall

Get out and vote!

  • Critics choice
  • Free

You already know how important it is to cast your vote in this year’s presidential election on November 6, but consider this a reminder of your duty as an American citizen. If you haven’t registered to vote yet, there’s still time: The deadline to register in New York City is October 12, and you can do so in person at any Board of Elections office. For more information—including what forms of ID you need and locations—visit vote.nyc.ny.us.

  1. Tue Nov 11
68

Catch election fever at the 92nd Street Y

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Get a primer on the most hotly debated political topics at one of the 92nd Street Y’s Campaign for the American Conversation events: The series kicks off September 9 with “The Unconvention: A Soundbite-free Evening of Political Talk from Left, Right and Center” (7pm; $10). Speakers include former Indiana Governor and U.S. Senator Evan Bayh, ex–Republican National Committee chair Michael Steele, HuffPost Live host Abby Huntsman (daughter of former presidential candidate Jon) and BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith. Legendary Watergate reporter Bob Woodward (Sept 27), economist Joseph Stiglitz (Oct 3) and lawyer-commentator Alan Dershowitz (Nov 16) also make appearances during the four-month run. Also at 92YTribeca. Visit 92yamericanconversation.org for a complete schedule.

  1. 1395 Lexington Ave, (between 91st and 92nd Sts)
More info
69

Eat like a king during Harvest in the Square

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Union Square transforms into a giant outdoor buffet for this annual tasting event. Try unlimited samples of signature dishes from more than 50 restaurants, including Gramercy Tavern and Hill Country Chicken; local producers and suppliers, among them Wolffer Estate Vineyard and Heartland Brewery, will provide wine and beer pairings. Tickets are dear, but proceeds go to a worthy cause: to help the Union Square Partnership maintain the park. VIP preview 6–7:30pm

  1. Union Square 14th St to 17th St, between Broadway and Park Ave South
  2. Until Thu Sep 18
More info

Users say

3 comments
Rod Carlysle
Rod Carlysle

I was really enjoying this list, I hadn't made plans for tonight, so I was sitting alone, in my apartment, with my tabby Max. He and I were especially excited about the Queens County Fair, but unfortunately I don't think we'll be able to make it since my mother will need to be taken to the doctor's that weekend and she likes knowing that I'm at home in case she needs me. It was an enjoyable evening, me and Max, but unfortunately when we came to the end of the list our pleasant evening was brought to an unexpected halt. I searched the entire length of this list, and the rest of your website, but I can't seem to find the 101st thing to do in NY. LIkely I won't be able to do it, I don't get out of the house that often because of my asthma, but I really enjoyed imagining myself doing those wonderful things with all those happy looking people. I hope you'll post the 101st item, if no please send it to the included email address, I don't have a computer with a printer, but that is my mother's email address, she'll print it out and deliver it to my apartment, Yours Truly, Rod

Mandy
Mandy

This list is awesome! I'm particularly jazzed about the LitCrawl and Halloween Parade. You left taking a language class off the list though. Fall is the perfect time to take an indoor class and keep your mind active. I took a Spanish class at Fluent City and it was awesome. The offer 10 languages (French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, German, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Hebrew) and have affordable classes in Brooklyn and Manhattan. My teacher was Ricardo and he was really cool. Check out their classes at http://www.fluentcity.com Thanks for the list!!