101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

Warm weather is back, along with your will to go outdoors and explore NYC. Lucky for you, we've rounded up the best things to do in the spring.

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  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    51. See the blooms at the Orchid Show

  • Photograph: Joseph Moran

    101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    52. Find out what happens when David Byrne meets musical theater

    Pictured: Here Lies Love's Alex Timbers and David Lynch

  • 101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    53. Imbibe at the NYC Craft Beer Festival

  • Photograph: Raymond Haddad

    101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    54. Get a dose of the backcountry at the 5th Annual Brooklyn Folk Festival

  • Photograph: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

    101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    55. See some impressive Lincoln-esque facial hair at "Photography and the American Civil War"

    Pictured: Abraham Lincoln, Presidential Campaign Medal, 1860

  • 101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    56. Party at 5Pointz Aerosol Art Center

  • Photograph: David Reeves

    101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    57. Instagram your heart out during Manhattanhenge

  • Photograph: Rachel Neville

    101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    58. Mark the return of Dance Theatre of Harlem

  • Photograph: Shervin Lainez

    101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    59. See a gay pop act on the verge of a breakthrough

    Pictured: AVAN LAVA

  • 101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

    60. Wander among the artworks in the green fields of upstate New York

     

     

Photograph: Virginia Rollison

101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013

51. See the blooms at the Orchid Show

51

See the blooms at the Orchid Show

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

The New York Botanical Garden explodes into a tropical floral extravaganza for the 11th annual Orchid Show. Banish your winter blues as you take in the thousands of blooms on display, and don't forget to make a pit stop by the Shop in the Garden for your very own orchid to take home. This year the design, by staffer Francisca Coelho, thoughtfully incorporates trees felled by Hurricane Sandy.

  1. New York Botanical Garden Bronx River Pkwy, at Fordham Rd
  2. Sat Mar 2 - Sun Apr 21
More info
52

Find out what happens when David Byrne meets musical theater in Here Lies Love

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Under ordinary circumstances, the phrase disco musical would send us running for the hills; but not when the incomparable David Byrne is involved. He and Fatboy Slim (a.k.a. Norman Cook) are behind this new tuner, which tracks the rise—and shoe obsession—of former Filipino first lady Imelda Marcos. Based on Byrne and Cook’s 2010 concept album of the same name, the dance-packed, beat-heavy piece is being helmed by hotshot director Alex Timbers (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, Peter and the Starcatcher). Here Lies Love is set in a nightclub environment—unless you opt for a seat in the balcony or a box, you’ll be standing and moving with the performers; audience booty-shaking is encouraged.

  1. Public Theater 425 Lafayette St, between Astor Pl and E 4th St
  2. Wed Apr 16 - Sat Jun 21
More info
53

Imbibe at the NYC Craft Beer Festival

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

The suds fest is back for its vernal shindig. Ticket holders receive a tasting glass for unlimited two-ounce pours, but with 150 brews on offer and sessions lasting only two-and-a-half hours (three-and-a-half if you pony up for a VIP pass), you’ll need to have a plan of attack. Make a beeline (and get on line) for a citrusy Firestone Walker Double Jack and the farmhouse ale Allagash Interlude, then explore varieties by approximately 75 breweries from across the country. Soak up the alcohol with hearty snacks from Cooper’s Craft and Kitchen—such as a stout-braised, chipotle-smothered pork sandwich ($6)—the Guilty Goose and Tavern 29. Hops-heads itching to make their own concoction can attend cofounder of Bitter & Esters Douglas Amport’s seminar on brewing at home; check nyccraftbeerfest.com for other expert-led workshops, but arrive early, as they’re limited to 50 first-come first-served spots apiece.

  1. Lexington Avenue Armory 68 Lexington Ave, at 26th St
  2. Sat Mar 30
More info
54

Get a dose of the backcountry at the 5th Annual Brooklyn Folk Festival

  • Critics choice

Kings County may have precious few wide-open spaces, endless highways and starry, starry nights, but that hasn’t stopped jug bands, banjoists and other Americana types from sprouting here like mushrooms beneath a crumbling back porch. Promoter and Down Home Radio Show (downhomeradioshow.com) host Eli Smith brings members of the scene to the Bell House for one weekend this April. Acts on the roster include darkly hilarious antifolkie Jeffrey Lewis, Brotherhood of the Jug Band Blues, NYC folk godfather Peter Stampfel (of the legendary Holy Modal Rounders) and many others. There’ll also be film screenings, music workshops and readings during weekend afternoons, and the final session on Sunday night begins with a square dance called by Dave Harvey of NYC Barn Dance. Various times, visit brooklynfolkfest.com for details. Shows $15–$20, one-day pass $30, three-day pass $80.

  1. 149 7th St, (between Second and Third Aves)
  2. Fri Apr 19 - Sun Apr 21
More info
55

See some impressive Lincoln-esque facial hair

  • Critics choice

Did Lincoln inspire you to grow some natty 19th-century whiskers? See what you're aiming for as the Met draws on its collection of archival photography for the exhibit "Photography and the American Civil War," which features more than 200 images taken during the Civil War.

  1. The Metropolitan Museum of Art 1000 Fifth Ave, at 82nd St, 10028
  2. Mon Sep 2
More info
56

Party at 5Pointz Aerosol Art Center

  • Critics choice
  • Free

The Institute of Higher Burning hosted an ambitious season of programming in 2012, and continues in the same vein  beginning May 4 with a full lineup of parties, scratch battles and live art. Until then you can explore the premises and catch a spray-painting demo on a guided tour (next dates: Sat 23, Sun 3 2–3:30pm; $35; sidetour.com) with curator Jonathan Cohen (aerosol master Meres One). Free hourly sojourns are also being offered March 9 as part of the Armory Show adjunct Armory Arts Week (2–6pm; armoryartsweek.com).

  1. 45-46 Davis St, (at Jackson Ave)
More info
57

Instagram your heart out during Manhattanhenge

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Witness the stunning natural spectacle that occurs when the sun aligns perfectly with Manhattan’s grid: The setting orb will illuminate both sides of every street in the borough four times a year. For the best view, camp out as far east as possible along a broad avenue with views across the island (14th and 34th Streets will do). And don’t forget your camera.

  1. Location TBA
  2. Until Sat Jul 13
More info
58

Mark the return of Dance Theatre of Harlem

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Artistic director Virginia Johnson unveils the new, streamlined version of Dance Theatre of Harlem in its first New York season. Six performances, including two programs and a family matinee, include John Alleyne's Far but Close, Robert Garland’s Gloria, Alvin Ailey’s The Lark Ascending, Donald Byrd’s Contested Space and George Balanchine’s Agon.

  1. Rose Theater (at Frederick P. Rose Hall) Broadway, at 60th St
  2. Until Sun Apr 14
More info
59

See a gay pop act on the verge of a breakthrough

The city’s gays are currently spoiled for choice when it comes to singers, bands and performers treading the gay party (and even musuem party) circuit, and we’re predicting big things for acts like melancholy popsmith Bright Light Bright Light, modern-retro band AVAN LAVA and viral sensation JbDubs. Find out where they're playing this spring and listen to their essential tracks here.

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101 things to do in the spring in New York City 2013: Wander among the artworks at Storm King

Wander among the artworks in the green fields of upstate New York

  • Critics choice

Dia:Beacon doesn’t have a monopoly on arty day trips. In the Hudson River Valley, Storm King Art Center boasts more than 100 post-1945 sculptures—many of them monumental—on over 500 acres of land. Stroll at your leisure or rent a seven-speed Electra bike ($10/hr, minimum two hours; full day $40). May 4 sees the opening of a Thomas Houseago exhibit, part of the artist’s first monograph museum tour in the U.S. It showcases his outdoor sculptures, which explore the energy of the human body through abstraction. Coach USA Short Line runs one service a day between Port Authority Bus Terminal (625 Eighth Ave between 40th and 42nd Sts; 212-564-8484, coachusa.com/shortline; departs NYC at 8:30am and 10am, $44) and Storm King on the Mountainville line. Times vary, check stormkingartcenter.org for details; $12, seniors $10, students $8, kids under 5 and members free.

  1. 1 Museum Rd, New Windsor, NY

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