Cheap things to do: Relax
Thu Feb 26 2009
Socrates Sculpture Park
Striking large-scale sculptures by resident artists Martin Basher, Sari Carel, Juniper Perlis and others currently beautify this already scenic LIC park. Spring and summer bring FREE tai chi, yoga and Pilates classes. 32-01 Vernon Blvd at Broadway, Long Island City, Queens (718-956-1819) FREE
Get centered at this spiritual haven boasting lectures, workshops, meditation classes and more—many of which are offered on a dana (donation) basis. 22 W 15th St between Fifth and Sixth Aves (212-807-0563, tibethouse.org)
The Meditation Center and Gallery
Sign up for FREE meditation at this blissful studio; it’s believed that the peaceful practice gives us a deeper understanding of ourselves. 306 Fifth Ave between 31st and 32nd Sts, second floor (212-564-4335)
Yoga to the People
Owners Greg Gumucio and Andrea Riggs opened these three NYC studios (one offers hot yoga) to provide the practice as a service to all, regardless of one’s financial means. Various locations (917-573-9642, yogatothepeople.com). By donation.
The Urasenke Chanoyu Center
The elaborate, meticulously choreographed Japanese tea ritual, practiced by Zen masters, samurai and geishas, aims to facilitate harmony in small gatherings. This Zen den trains future tea masters in mat-lined rooms beside a garden and mazelike courtyard; an introductory lecture with demonstration is $15. 153 E 69th St at Lexington Ave (212-988-6161, urasenkeny.org)
Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art
In 1947, Jacques Marchais did the city a solid by opening her Tibetan art collection to the public. Since then, the museum has been housed in two Himalayan-temple-style stone buildings surrounded by serene meditation gardens. 338 Lighthouse Ave off Richmond Rd, Staten Island (718-987-3500, tibetanmuseum.org). $5.
The New York Earth Room
Peace seekers and hippie types swear by Walter de Maria’s 280,000 pounds of soil packed into a 3,600-square-foot gallery maintained by Dia Art Foundation. It’s FREE to visit. 141 Wooster St between W Houston and Prince Sts (212-989-5566, earthroom.org) FREE
You can’t argue with the millennia-old laws of ayurveda: The Hindu doctrine prescribes six rasas (tastes)—sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent and astringent—to balance your diet and life. The result resembles an Indian thali meal consisting of two vegetable curries, dal, rice, nan, raita and chutney, all presented in steel bowls on a steel plate. Lunch is $8.95, dinner is $12.95. 706 Amsterdam Ave at 94th St (212-932-2400, theayurvedacafe.com)
NEXT 6 best city views (for $2 and under)
Your 2009 stimulus plan >>
We've got the financial package for you: save while taking advantage of the city's bounty.