101 things to do in the summer in New York City 2012

Our picks for the best events and things to do in the summer in NYC. Make a checklist, keep track on our Facebook app... just get outside and get started.

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  • 91. Celebrate Bastille Day

  • Photograph: Anastasia Cole Plakias

    92. Ascend to locavore heaven at Brooklyn Grange

  • Photograph: Yumi Aman

    93. Surf the cutting edge of theater at the International Fringe Festival

     

     

  • Photograph: Pat Saunders

    94. Get wet during City of Water Day

     

     

  • Photograph: Beth Levendis

    95. Ride the river on the East River Ferry

  • Photograph: Christopher London

    96. Relax to chamber music in Central Park with the Naumburg Orchestral Concerts

  • 97. Borrow a bike

    Pictured: Not the NYC Bike Share ride.

     

     

  • Photograph: Stewart Cohen

    98. Perform in a Philip Glass, pictured, premiere during Make Music New York

  • 99. Shop and eat outside at Hester Street Fair

     

     

  • Photograph: courtesy Gansevoort Park Avenue

    100. Party on a roof at the Gansevoort Summer Series

  • 101. Make sure your Fourth of July goes with a bang

    Pictured: Fourth of July fireworks seen from the Intrepid

91. Celebrate Bastille Day

91
Don on your best beret and head to Smith Street for a Bastille Day ptanque tournament, plus French snacks, wines and pastis-flavored cocktails.

Celebrate Bastille Day

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Admit it—the French know how to live well. Relax, drink wine and throw a couple of boules in honor of Bastille Day. Among the celebrations throughout the city, one of the biggest is on Smith Street. The Gallic bistros—which include Bar Tabac and Provence en Boîte—shut down the thoroughfare for a day of music, French food and aperitifs, as well as the largest pétanque tournament in North America.

92

Ascend to locavore heaven

Ascend to locavore heaven
You can’t get produce that’s much more local than that from Brooklyn Grange. The rooftop farm in Long Island City supplies restaurants like Roberta’s, Fatty ’Cue and Bobo, and during its summer open hours you can shop at its farm stand situated in the lobby of its headquarters. (If Queens is too far, you’ll find stands at Smorgasburg and in McGolrick Park [Driggs Ave to Nassau Ave between Monitor St and Russell St, Greenpoint, Brooklyn; nycgovparks.org; Sun 11am–4pm; June 17–Oct 28]). While you’re there, head to the roof to admire what’s growing on the one-acre plot and find out more from a volunteer about how the farm operates.

  1. 37-18 Northern Blvd, (at 37th Ave), 11101
More info
93
East River Ferry

Ride the river

  • Critics choice

Cruising New York’s waterways can be an expensive proposition, but the East River Ferry has joined the Staten Island Ferry in providing affordable views of the city from the water. We’re partial to chugging a brewski ($3–$6) on the way to Staten Island—toasting Lady Liberty along the way—but the East River Ferry now offers a less boozy alternative with concessions from Benchmarc Events, including iced coffee from Brooklyn Roasting Company ($3), chocolate or vanilla egg creams ($3) and Butter Lane cupcakes ($3). Make a day of it by riding the East River Ferry and using our New York neighborhood guides to explore nabes where it stops, like Long Island City, Queens; Williamsburg, Brooklyn; or Governors Island. Locations and schedules vary; visit nywaterway.com for more information.

94

Relax to chamber music in Central Park

  • Free

One of New York’s oldest musical traditions, the Naumburg series welcomes a pair of top-drawer local chamber orchestras—Orpheus (June 19) and the Knights (July 10, 24)—as well as the popular violinist Lara St. John & Friends in a sultry all-Piazzolla program (Aug 7), for its 107th season. • naumburgconcerts.org

  1. 72nd St, (at Fifth Ave)
More info
95

Borrow a bike

  • Critics choice

This summer, look for the launch of the NYC Bike Share program, which will introduce 10,000 rentable two-wheelers, accessible via 600 stations in Manhattan and Brooklyn for a daily or annual fee. Alta, a Portland, OR–based company that has successfully operated bike shares in Washington, D.C., and Boston, will be running the system. Rollout date and prices are not yet established.

96
Philip Glass

Perform in a Philip Glass premiere during Make Music New York

  • Critics choice
  • Free

The horns and sirens of NYC are drowned out by music during this annual one-day concertathon in public spaces throughout the city. This year, professional and amateur singers are invited to Times Square (Broadway at W 46th St, 6:30pm) to participate in the debut of a short choral piece, The New Role, by composer Philip Glass (pictured). If you’re interested, download the score on the NPR website and get practicing. For a full lineup of concerts, visit makemusicny.org for details.

  1. Various locations
  2. Sat Jun 21
97

Party on a roof

  • Price band: 3/4

By now, if you’ve been completing our 101 things to do in the summer in order (as you should), you will have partied on a boat, in a grove and on an island. Now for a rooftop. Gansevoort Park Avenue NYC opens its space to the second annual Summer Series—think Pacha in the sky. A guest DJ spins (like Italian Alex Gaudino on June 10) while you recline in the lap of luxury, take a dip in the pool, drink in the view or pump your fist. Table reservation required at gansevoortsummerseries.com.

  1. 420 Park Ave South, (at 29th St), 10016
Book online


Users say

17 comments
shore excursions in Tallinn
shore excursions in Tallinn

russia is so close,you can even see it from alaska. so does anybody from there(siberia?) ever just cross over?

Justin bieber
Justin bieber

This is so great I love summer and all my fans

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Ravyjutty

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Brad
Brad

Thanks for the summertime things to do list!! Remember everyone, this summer, you could also adopt a cat in need of a forever home. http://manhattancats.com

Ann
Ann

Appreciate the listing of activities, regardless of my beliefs about his opinions, I found the Glenn Beck comment "bring your rotten tomatos in case Glenn Beck comes" to be distasteful. Do we not respect opinions that differ from our own, or at very least, respect one another enough to not threaten them from being allowed in a public area with their family?

shine
shine

I enjoy this article a lot, however, the 20th is missed. Could you please add? Thanks.

Jonathan Shannon, deputy editor, Time Out New York
Jonathan Shannon, deputy editor, Time Out New York

Hi everyone, thanks for your comments. Hope you're enjoying the list. @Jane: The app just launched, there's a link at the top of the first page. Apologies for the delay, hope you like it! @Allie: There isn't a way to download the list as a calendar, but I like your thinking. We'll see what's possible for fall. @Steve: The series is called Rooftop Films, we've added that rather important detail. @Marco: You are very welcome.

Jane
Jane

i can't seem to find the app. did it actually launch?

The RIDE
The RIDE

#102: Jump on the Fazzino RIDE for a tour of New York like you have never seen it before!

Allie
Allie

Is there an easy way to download this whole list into Calendar? That would be incredible.

Steve
Steve

What is the name of the film series mentioned in number 30?

marco
marco

Thanks New York!!