February 2013 events calendar for New York City

Plan your month with our events calendar, including free things to do, and Valentine's Day, Chinese Lunar New Year and Mardi Gras events.

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After a monastic January (giving up all your vices and spending nothing because the holidays cleared you out), it's time to cut loose. Use our events calendar to guide you to the best things to do this month: Find a date and romance them on Valentine's Day, get a new year's do-over in Chinatown and party like there's no tomorrow for Mardi Gras. There's also the start of a year's worth of celebrations for Grand Central's Centennial.


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Featured events in February 2013

Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show

  • Critics choice

As fun as they are, puppy cams and viral videos can’t compare with real-life specimens as a cuteness delivery system. Coo over more than 3,000 dogs representing 187 breeds and varieties at the 137th annual caninefest, where dogs are judged across seven divisions (hound, toy, nonsporting, herding, sporting, working and terrier). Seek out two breeds making their debuts this year: the floppy-eared Treeing Walker coonhound and the diminutive, scrappy Russell terrier. If you can’t score a ticket, you can still get your fix via online streaming during the day and TV coverage of the evening competitions. Visit westminsterkennelclub.org for more information.

  1. Pier 92 Hudson River, at 52nd St
  2. Until Tue Feb 12
More info

Two Boots Mardi Gras Ball with Cyndi Lauper + Questlove + PitchBlak Brass Band + This Ambitious Orchestra and more

  • Price band: 2/4

Dig deep and plan to get rowdy as local pizza purveyor Two Boots hosts a Mardi Gras party meant to raise funds for the Lower Eastside Girls Club. Don't show up thinking this is a regular concert by Questlove or Lauper, on hand as the king and queen of the ball; still, prepare to be entertained for a good cause.

  1. Le Poisson Rouge 158 Bleecker St, at Thompson St
  2. Until Tue Feb 12
More info

16th Annual Soul on Ice Winter Skating Party

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

Glide and twirl to soul music at this fund-raiser for Figure Skating in Harlem. Competitive figure skater Sharon Cohen founded the organization in 1997 to help young girls learn the ice-slicing arts and boost their confidence and leadership skills. In addition to rink time, the party will feature a live DJ, snacks, activities and a performance by FSH’s synchronized-skating team, Harlem Ice. Visit figureskatinginharlem.org for more information.

  1. Trump Lasker Rink Central Park, enter at W 110th and Malcolm X Blvd (Lenox Ave), 10026
  2. Until Sat Feb 8
More info

Never Sleep Alone

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Talented character actor and cabaret comic Roslyn Hart plays "sexual psychologist" Dr. Alex Schiller in this interactive bash. The doctor's goal: making sure the single people in the audience hook up with one another, while getting them in the mood with a few choice tunes.

  1. Joe's Pub at the Public Theater 425 Lafayette St, between Astor Pl and E 4th St
  2. Fri Feb 15 - Sat Apr 27
More info

Valentine's Day events on February 14

Romance Under the Stars

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Eschew the dinner date on Valentine's Day and snap up tickets to this swanky soiree at the American Museum of Natural History's Rose Center for Earth and Space. The night begins among the asteroids (have a "heavenly bodies" quip ready) with an open bar of cocktails and champagne, passed hors d’oeuvres and chocolate-covered strawberries while the Josh Rutner Quartet sets the mood with jazz standards. An hour and a half later, cozy up in the Hayden Plantarium while an astronomer tells lovey-dovey stories based on the mythology of the cosmos.

  1. Hayden Planetarium at the Rose Center for Earth & Space 175 Central Park West, at 81st St
  2. Until Fri Feb 14
More info

Reverend Jen's Anti-Slam Cher Day Valentine Extravaganza

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

Downtown pixie Reverend Jen serves up a special Cher-themed version of her weekly Anti-Slam—because, really, isn't Cher Day better than Valentine's Day? In addition to the usual open-mike antics, attendees can enter a raffle (prizes include vibrators) and participate in the "Art Star Dating Game." Sporting a Cher look (or Cher-adjacent look) is strongly encrouraged.

  1. Pyramid Club 101 Ave A, between 6th and 7th Sts
  2. Thu Feb 14
More info
More Valentine's Day ideas

Free events in February 2013

Grand Central Terminal Centennial

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Critics choice
  • Free

Happy 100th, GC! The station’s big birthday gift to itself: a new logo showing its iconic clock striking 7:13pm—also known as 19:13, Grand Central’s birth year. Start the party at a daylong shindig, with a music program planned by opera singer Jessye Norman and a multimedia show from the New York Transit Museum (the first of many that the Transit Museum will put on during 2013). If you can’t wait for the big Beaux Arts building’s birthday, the Grand Central Centennial Holiday Fair jumps the gun with gift shopping through Dec 24.

  1. 42nd St to 44th St, (between Vanderbilt and Lexington Aves)
More info

Chinese Lunar New Year Firecracker Ceremony

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Half a million people converge on Chinatown for this New Year do-over, and the Better Chinatown Society will light just as many rounds of fireworks to ring in the Year of the Snake. After 14 years of the parade winding from Little Italy to the Lower East Side, there’s a new addition to the celebrations: A flower market festival will take over Sara D. Roosevelt Park on the preceding Friday and Saturday (noon–7pm). Come for the dancing troupes and Pan-Asian food booths, and stay because the firecrackers will drive away every evil spirit for miles.

  1. Location TBA
  2. Sat Jan 31
More info

Will Oldham in conversation with Alan Licht and Sasha Frere-Jones

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Indie hero Oldham sat down with compatriot and fellow musician Alan Licht for a number of long, revealing conversations, which have been compiled into a new volume titled Will Oldham on Bonnie "Prince" Billy. Against all odds, Oldham appears tonight alongside Licht and New Yorker critic Frere-Jones to expand on the content of the book.

  1. BookCourt 163 Court St, between Dean and Pacific Sts
  2. Wed Feb 6
More info

Groundhog Day Celebration

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Get up early to check in with Staten Island Chuck, whom the zoo describes as “New York City’s only weather forecasting groundhog.” Judging by his shadow, the creature will weigh in on whether we’ll have a short winter this year. Whatever the outcome, you’re invited to stick around for breakfast ($10, children under 5 $5, reservations recommended).

  1. Staten Island Zoo 614 Broadway, between Clove Rd and Forest Ave
  2. Until Sun Feb 2
More info


Music events in February 2013

Tibet House Benefit Concert

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Curated by celebrated composer Philip Glass for the nonprofit dedicated to preserving Tibetan culture, this 23rd annual show is sure to include an eclectic, star-studded cast of the latest and greatest on the music scene. Although the lineup won’t be announced until the end of the year, past performers have included living legends David Bowie, Iggy Pop and Moby, plus recent hotshots the National, James Blake and Vampire Weekend. It’s one party for peace you won’t want to miss.

  1. Carnegie Hall 154 W 57th St, between Sixth and Seventh Aves
  2. Until Tue Mar 11
More info

The Who

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

The Who—that is, Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, some other musicians and two very prominent ghosts—performs its classic rock opera Quadrophenia, a smash double album from 1973.

  1. Nassau Coliseum 1255 Hempstead Tpke, at Meadowbrook Pkwy
  2. Until Thu Feb 21
Buy tickets

Lady Gaga: The Born This Way Ball

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

It’s no secret that Gaga is a very busy pop star. She battles critics about her weight gain, feuds with Madonna and Calvin Harris, and writes songs tied to timely news events (see “No Floods,” dedicated to post-Sandy NYC)…and she tours! The Mother Monster is hitting NYC’s biggest arenas for a four-night last hurrah in support of Born This Way. The real question is, will the pop-music dominatrix go pantless or indulge us with a meat dress? Either way, expect supreme, sexed-up entertainment. Also at Madison Square Garden.

  1. Barclays Center 620 Atlantic Ave, at Flatbush Ave
  2. Until Thu Mar 7
More info

Toshi Reagon Presents Good Folk Lovers Rock: A Post-Valentines Day Sade Love Fest

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Brooklyn-based blueswoman/folkie Toshi Reagon pays homage to the queen of the quiet storm, with performances from Ganessa James, Allison Miller, Kimberly Nichole, Alex Nolan, Morley and Sun Singleton.

  1. Joe's Pub at the Public Theater 425 Lafayette St, between Astor Pl and E 4th St
  2. Until Fri Feb 15
More info
More music events in February

Arts events in February 2013

This Clement World

  • Price band: 2/4

The globe is warming and the oceans are rising, and the marvelous Cynthia Hopkins has something to say about it. In her newest multimedia music-theater piece, the performer explores the meaning of climate change, backed by a 15-piece band and chorus. Frequent collaborator D.J. Mendel directs. (Off Broadway review to come.)

  1. St. Ann's Warehouse 29 Jay St, between John and Plymouth Sts
  2. Until Sun Feb 17
More info

Karen Russell

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Those who fell for the whimsical characters, fantastic plots and evocative Floridian landscapes of Russell's debut short-story collection (St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves) or her novel (Swamplandia!) will be ready for her new title, Vampires in the Lemon Grove. The stories involve the titular bloodsuckers (one of whom is aviophobic), a seagull's nest that communicates the universe's secrets and much more.

  1. Greenlight Bookstore 686 Fulton St, at South Portland Ave
  2. Until Mon Feb 18
More info

Good Person of Szechwan

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

Good Person of Szechwan. Public Theater (see Off Broadway). By Bertolt Brecht. Dir. Lear deBessonet. With Taylor Mac, Lisa Kron, David Turner. 2hrs 45mins. One intermission. Good Person of Szechwan: in brief Director Lear deBessonet offers a piquant, unexpectedly charming account of Bertolt Brecht’s 1943 problem play about goodness in a world of limited resources. The very likable cast is led by the superbly beguiling Taylor Mac. Good Person of Szechwan: theater review by Adam Feldman At La MaMa earlier this year, Lear deBessonet’s staging of Brecht’s Good Person of Szechwan was a garden of down-to-earth delights. (For our review of that version, see below.) Now transferred to the white-hot Public Theater, it bursts into even more fragrant bloom, jelling without losing its exuberant sense of mess. I have never seen a production of Brecht so flat-out pleasurable as this one. The staggeringly charismatic Taylor Mac gives a virtuosic star turn as the gold-hearted whore Shen Te (and her cruel male alter ego, Shui Ta), while the supporting actors—led by David Turner and Lisa Kron—deftly tease out the play’s twists of moral instruction. In Brecht’s rigorously topsy-turvy catechism, goodness in a vicious world is impossible—or rather, it can only be achieved by a kind of theatrical magic. Lucky for us, that’s just what this charmingly pointed parable delivers.—Theater review by Adam Feldman THE BOTTOM LINE Taylor Mac dazzles in a tough yet joyful revival. [Note: The following is a

  1. Ellen Stewart Theatre at La MaMa E.T.C. 66 E 4th St, between Bowery and Second Ave
  2. Sat Dec 7 - Sun Dec 8
More info

The Laramie Project Cycle

  • Price band: 3/4

Director Moisés Kaufman reunites with the original cast of the landmark documentary theater piece The Laramie Project. This time, they pair their study of a Wyoming town in the wake of the 1998 murder of gay student Matthew Shepard with its 2008 epilogue. The whole cycle runs about five hours on marathon days, which includes a dinner break.

  1. BAM Harvey Theater 651 Fulton St, between Ashland and Rockwell Pls
  2. Until Sun Feb 24
More info

Groundhog Day

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

Rarely can a Hollywood comedy be described as philosophically profound, but this tale of a smug, selfish weatherman (Bill Murray) forced to replay the same day until he gets it right owes as much to Nietzsche as to Second City. Stephen Tobolowsky, who plays annoying old acquaintance Ned Ryerson, will attend the screening.

  1. 92YTribeca 200 Hudson St, at Canal St, 10013
  2. Until Sat Feb 16
More info


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