Get outdoors in NYC: Events and things to do outdoors this summer

Your guide to getting outdoors to the best beaches, pools, parks, outdoor bars and restaurants, and classic fresh-air New York events this summer

The idea of another New York summer might send you fleeing to the nearest air-conditioned LIRR car for a getaway, but hold up! There are so many great reasons to get outdoors this season—poolside cocktails, a cool night market, tacos on the boardwalk,rooftop parties and much more—that you'll want to spend every weekend in town, exploring the best the city has to offer. Come on out, the weather’s fine!

RECOMMENDED: Summer in New York guide

More things to do outdoors

Things to do

The best things to do on NYC's waterfront

No Top-Siders or lobster-patterned trousers here—these urban trailblazers are reclaiming NYC’s waterfront one canoe at a time Most popular events this week Brooklyn Flea The Brooklyn Flea is back outside on Saturdays in Fort Greene and Sundays in Williamsburg . Pick up a couple hand-hammered stack rings by Jessica De Carlo, at a special Flea-only price ($20 each, 2 for $35), or take a walk in Nina Z's eco-conscious clogs and sandals ($95-180). Visit Sharon London for easy-fitting tube dresses ($78) and vintage locket earrings ($12), or Hartford Denim Co. for quality-denim goods, like hoodies ($325) and aprons ($110). While perusing crafts and collectibles by local artisans, munch on some local bites, such as People's Pops' shaved ice ($3) and ice pops ($4) made from local, fresh fruit. "Bill Cunningham: Facades" In 1968, the legendary New York Times photographer set out to explore the idea of fashion as cultural history in a photo essay titled "Facades." More than 40 years later, 88 original prints from the project—featuring elaborate vintage attire culled from thrift shops and modeled in front of iconic NYC locations—offer as much insight into fashion as they do into Cunningham himself. Mamapalooza This celebration on the Hudson is all about motherhood: Mamas are honored with music and burlesque performances, live stand-up routines and lots of activities for little ones. Don't miss a performance from local preschooler-regaling punk rockers the Anna Banana Band, or a

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Things to do

Great outer-borough bike routes

Take to the streets on two wheels with these beginner-friendly cycling itineraries Most popular events this week Brooklyn Flea The Brooklyn Flea is back outside on Saturdays in Fort Greene and Sundays in Williamsburg . Pick up a couple hand-hammered stack rings by Jessica De Carlo, at a special Flea-only price ($20 each, 2 for $35), or take a walk in Nina Z's eco-conscious clogs and sandals ($95-180). Visit Sharon London for easy-fitting tube dresses ($78) and vintage locket earrings ($12), or Hartford Denim Co. for quality-denim goods, like hoodies ($325) and aprons ($110). While perusing crafts and collectibles by local artisans, munch on some local bites, such as People's Pops' shaved ice ($3) and ice pops ($4) made from local, fresh fruit. "Bill Cunningham: Facades" In 1968, the legendary New York Times photographer set out to explore the idea of fashion as cultural history in a photo essay titled "Facades." More than 40 years later, 88 original prints from the project—featuring elaborate vintage attire culled from thrift shops and modeled in front of iconic NYC locations—offer as much insight into fashion as they do into Cunningham himself. Socrates Sculpture Park Spring Show It’s harder to justify indoor art-peeping once the weather is nice, and you don’t have to. Head to the en plein air sculpture haven—one of the city’s few locales designated specifically for outdoor works. Then, get up close with large-scale creations, the handiwork of three international artists

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Museums

10 best parks in New York City

Take advantage of spring's warmer temperatures at ten of New York City's best public parks. New York City is full of public parks—in fact, nearly 14 percent of the city is covered in green spaces. But some of these verdant spots stand out above the rest. Here, we've rounded up ten of our favorite New York City parks—pack a picnic basket and hunker down for an afternoon, or simply lace up your sneakers and take a walk. Brooklyn Bridge Park Some city parks—Central and Prospect, most obviously—were built to replicate rustic fields and preserve serene woodland. Brooklyn Bridge Park, however, was not—and that’s precisely why it has become so popular in the almost three years since it debuted. The project has transformed a chunk of the Brooklyn waterfront into a nearly 85-acre expanse; several sections house unique attractions such as Jane’s Carousel, a restored 1920s merry-go-round, and riverside esplanades with gorgeous Manhattan views. Pier 5, the first part of the park designed specifically for “active recreation,” opened in late 2012, cementing the space as the city’s premier urban playground. Central Park For your stroll head to the 38-acre wilderness area on the west side of the park known as the Ramble. The area has a storied history (as a gay cruising spot dating back to the turn of the last century, among other things), and it was even proposed as a recreational area in the mid-'50s. Thankfully, the winding trails, rocks and streams remain, seemingly waiting to be discove

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Things to do

The best Coney Island attractions

Luna Park opens for the season this weekend—and there are plenty other reasons to visit Coney Island this summer Amid several decades of redevelopment efforts and more recent rebuilding in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, Coney Island remains one of New York City’s quintessential summertime destinations. Around 14 million people ride to the end of the D, F, N and Q lines each year to enjoy the beach and historic boardwalk. Here are a few more Coney Island attractions that make the journey worthwhile. Most popular events this week Brooklyn Flea The Brooklyn Flea is back outside on Saturdays in Fort Greene and Sundays in Williamsburg . Pick up a couple hand-hammered stack rings by Jessica De Carlo, at a special Flea-only price ($20 each, 2 for $35), or take a walk in Nina Z's eco-conscious clogs and sandals ($95-180). Visit Sharon London for easy-fitting tube dresses ($78) and vintage locket earrings ($12), or Hartford Denim Co. for quality-denim goods, like hoodies ($325) and aprons ($110). While perusing crafts and collectibles by local artisans, munch on some local bites, such as People's Pops' shaved ice ($3) and ice pops ($4) made from local, fresh fruit. "Bill Cunningham: Facades" In 1968, the legendary New York Times photographer set out to explore the idea of fashion as cultural history in a photo essay titled "Facades." More than 40 years later, 88 original prints from the project—featuring elaborate vintage attire culled from thrift shops and modeled in front of iconi

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Things to do

The best Rockaway Beach attractions

Here’s your guide to getting the most out of the Queens coast The beach that’s always been a summer staple for New York residents has cleaned up its act. The Rockaways are now full of happening places to surf, shop, get a delicious burger or cold drink and more. Treat yourself to a mini vacay and head over to the beautiful Queens coast! See all summer events Summer concerts It’s music-festival season! From the Governors Ball blowout to stadium pop happenings and hip indie shows, there are concerts to satisfy every music lover this summer. There are plenty of music festivals to get stoked for this summer-both indoors and out. Governors Ball returns with a killer lineup featuring Jack White, OutKast and the Strokes, plus Celebrate Brooklyn! returns with soul star Janelle Monáe. You can also catch some of the biggest artists like Katy Perry or Eminem and Rihanna on their summer tours. Most popular events this week Brooklyn Flea It’s that time of year (starting May 4, to be exact) when the Brooklyn Flea comes back outside on Saturdays in Fort Green and Sundays at a new, yet to be announced Williamsburg location. Pick up a couple hand-hammered stack rings by Jessica De Carlo, at a special Flea-only price ($20 each, 2 for $35), or take a walk in Nina Z's eco-conscious clogs and sandals ($95-180). Visit Sharon London for easy-fitting tube dresses ($78) and vintage locket earrings ($12), or Hartford Denim Co. for quality-denim goods, like hoodies ($325) and aprons ($110).

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Outdoor dining and bars

Bars

Rooftop bars

Have a cocktail high above the city and take in spectacular views at one of the best rooftop bars in NYC. Summer drinking in NYC 2013 New bars: outdoor and rooftop bars in NYC this summer Get outside and find a table at these new bars, which are among our favorite new summer drinking destinations in NYC. Summer drinking in NYC 2013 In NYC’s ever-expanding bar scene, these new bars stand out as some of the best spots for alfresco drinking. Check out five of our favorite new bars with outdoor spaces, including two beer bars in unexpected Brooklyn neighborhoods, and a spacious patio near the High Line. Most popular in Food & Drink 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know ab

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Bars

Best bars for day-drinking

You’ll find plenty of seats and easy-drinking beers at our favorite NYC bars for day-drinking Most popular in Food & Drink 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants Chelsea Market The former home of the National Biscuit Company is a hot spot for foodies-in-training; favorite vendors include Jacques Torres, People's Pops and Ronnybrook Dairy. The NoMad In the golden age of robber baron New York—we’re talking turn of the last century—there were hotel restaurants like the NoMad all across the city, their grand dining rooms buzzing with beau monde patrons morning till night. The recent return of the all-day hotel clubhouse began with hip reinventions of the form at the Standard, Ace and Gramercy Park Hotels. But the NoMad, with its rich mahogany bar and dining rooms shrouded in red velvet curtains, is our first truly opulent throwback. The luxurious setting, flawless service, and preponderance of foie gras and truffles call to mind an haute cuisine titan like Jean-Georges Vongerichten or Daniel Boulud. But with its fashionable crowd and cool, voluptuous vibe—the decor is by hot Parisian designer Jacques Garcia—there are clearly some young Turks behind the wheel. The NoMad is the sophomore effort from chef Daniel Humm and front-of-house partner Will Guidara, who’ve been in cahoots at Eleven Madison Pa

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Fantastic boat bars

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Restaurants

Beach eats

Orchard Beach to Coney Island, Rockaway to Brighton—TONY’s reeled in top-notch beach eats at NYC's shorelines. Most popular in Food & Drink 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Most popular in Restaurants 100

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Outdoor festivals

LGBT

Gay Pride NYC

Whether you're gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, it's time to celebrate Gay Pride in NYC. Party at the Pride March, stand up at the Pride Rally, and get down at Pride Week dances and parties Gay Pride in NYC means anyone and everyone can let their queer flag fly throughout the month, from Queens to Staten Island. If you're amped up about gay rights at this critical moment in U.S. history, be sure to join the Kickoff Rally, to be held this year at Pier 26 on June 27, or raise your voice at the parades held in four of the boroughs throughtout June (the Bronx celebrates Pride in July). While there is still plenty of work to do, a lot has been achieved since that hot night at the Stonewall more than 40 years ago. So join the protest action at the Dyke March, the party scene at the Dance on the Pier or any number of other queer events all over town. Raise a glass to those who paved the way, and make a toast to a proud tomorrow.RECOMMENDED: Summer in New York guide When is Gay Pride 2014? Gay Pride in New York City happens throughout the month of June, culminating with the NYC Pride March on June 30. Gay Pride events The Pride Kickoff Rally RECOMMENDED: Full coverage of Gay Pride Before the glittery spectacle of the LGBT Pride March and the rest of the Gay Pride Weekend festivities, get pumped up…with a glittery spectacle! This official Gay Pride Weekend opening event started as a "gay power" demonstration with 500 protestors in Washington Square Park, a month after the 1969

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Music

Summer music festival guide

The best concerts, hottest festival looks and dazzling live-music photos Music festivals have become as essential a feature of summer in the city as ice-skating and hot chocolate are to winter in New York: It's part of the reason why you live here. What makes New York's summer music festival scene better than anywhere else's? We'll start with the beautiful weather, then add the fact that you'll be watching your favorite bands play in truly iconic surroundings—say, Central Park, or at Williamsburg Park with the Manhattan skyline looming, or Randall's Island. Then there's the people—check out any of our street fashion slide shows for proof that New Yorkers are a snappy-ass bunch when it comes to festival gear. Wherever you decide to hang, just don't forget that '80s sun visor. RECOMMENDED: Summer concerts in NYC 2014 summer music festivals Celebrate Brooklyn! 2014 Janelle Monaé; Neutral Milk Hotel; The National; Nick Cave and the Bad SeedsSummerStage may be bigger and better-known, but Celebrate Brooklyn! has been around for much longer. And yes, it's worth the trek to Brooklyn—not only is the Bandshell a beaut, but the roster is often packed with interesting artists (recent alums include They Might Be Giants, Belle & Sebastian and Big Boi.) This year, the fest is kicking off its 36th season in style, with groovy R&B spitfire Janelle Monaé playing the first free concert on June 4. Benefit shows from reunited cult heroes Neutral Milk Hotel and Brooklyn indie royalty the Nat

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Outdoor movie screenings

Things to do

Rooftop Films summer series

It's better than a drive-in! Watch great indie films, documentaries and more under the stars at this outdoor summer movie series. Around mid-August you’ll be spending entire weekends escaping your sweat-soaked apartment at the air-conditioned cineplex, but right now it’s time to get reacquainted with the pleasures of the warm-weather months. For that, there’s no better place to socialize and watch movies outdoors than Rooftop Films (718-417-7362, rooftopfilms.com) events. This year’s ambitious summer series boasts more than 45 indie features, docs and short films hosted at unique open-air locations across the city. As a bonus, screenings are preceded by a musical performance and capped with a free-booze after-party. Dancing, writer/director appearances and Q&As round out the offerings (keep an eye out for a Cuban love-song balladeer serenading members of the audience after music doc Mateo later this summer).This weekend’s opening festivities inaugurate a new venue: Industry City Secret Party Cove (39th St at First Ave, Sunset Park, Brooklyn), tucked away among the 6-million-square-foot waterfront studio complex. A lineup of globetrotting bite-size fare, titled This Is What We Mean by Short Films, kicks things off on Friday May 16 at 8:30pm ($13). Most popular events this week Brooklyn Flea The Brooklyn Flea is back outside on Saturdays in Fort Greene and Sundays in Williamsburg . Pick up a couple hand-hammered stack rings by Jessica De Carlo, at a special Flea-only price ($20

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Bryant Park Summer Film Festival’s lineup

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Syfy Movies with a View festival in Brooklyn Bridge Park

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Outdoor art

The Met rooftop installation

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Things to do

Ten statues in New York City with brilliant backstories

Lady Liberty ain’t the only game in town—here’s the scoop on ten more unique statues in New York City Good, bad or just plain ugly, it seems like wherever you turn in New York City, there’s a statue to gawp at. For any of us who've wondered, “What’s that about?” (that'll be all of us), our roundup of the ten greatest backstories behind the statues is here to shed some light on those pretty pieces of stone. Whether you’re taking in the serene beauty of Green-Wood Cemetery, reenacting the dance sequence from Enchanted at the Bethesda Fountain in Central Park or plotting your escape from New York at Port Authority, you’ll know the score. Let the (totally fun) history lesson commence! More New York City Top Tens Ridiculous New York souvenirs Step away from the run-of-the-mill I ♥ NY tees and pick up these offbeat New York souvenirs Weird animal sightings Coyotes, boa constrictors and finback whales—turns out King Kong was just one of many weird animals to make a scene in NYC Statues Lady Liberty ain’t the only game in town—here’s the scoop on ten more unique statues in New York City NYC mayoral gaffes, blunders and scandals Most over-the-top parties in NYC history Think your New Year's party will be epic? It surely can't top these ten lavish shindigs, which featured real elephants, plenty of celebs and more extravagant touches NYC Christmas movie moments Get into the spirit of the season by watching these naughty (American Psycho) and nice (Miracle on 34th Street) Christm

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Art

Public art: Hidden or little-known pieces worth seeking out

Did you know there’s a Keith Haring in a New York church? Make a point to seek out these ten stellar works of public art. Public art guide New outdoor public art Check out the best additions this spring and summer, including a cloudlike pavilion on Governors Island. Iconic public art From the Wall Street bull to the LOVE sculpture: Make sure you’ve seen every piece of public art on our bucket list of world-famous pieces. Hidden public art Did you know there’s a Keith Haring in a New York church? Make a point to seek out these ten stellar works. New York statues Who the hell are these people? Discover the controversies and artistic vandalism behind three figurative sculptures. Public art tours Discover some of NYC's best public art in places like the High Line and the subway. Public art on the High Line Here’s a photographic rundown of pieces both past and current. Discover hidden New York attractions with our guide to little-known, easily missed or unexpectedly placed public art. Seek out 18 tree-and-stone pairings during your next crawl of Cheslea galleries and find a sound installation in the middle of Times Square.RECOMMENDED: Public art in New York guideJohn Ahearn and Rigoberto Torres, Homage to the People of the Bronx: Double Dutch at Kelly Street IThis lively scene of children at play, one of a series of South Bronx murals on building facades by the artists, who wanted to make permanent installations with local inhabitants. While the figures appear suspended, almo

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Art

Public art: The ten most iconic New York attractions

From the Wall Street bull to the LOVE sculpture: Make sure you’ve seen every piece of public art on our bucket list of world-famous pieces. Public art guide New outdoor public art Check out the best additions this spring and summer, including a cloudlike pavilion on Governors Island. Iconic public art From the Wall Street bull to the LOVE sculpture: Make sure you’ve seen every piece of public art on our bucket list of world-famous pieces. Hidden public art Did you know there’s a Keith Haring in a New York church? Make a point to seek out these ten stellar works. New York statues Who the hell are these people? Discover the controversies and artistic vandalism behind three figurative sculptures. Public art tours Discover some of NYC's best public art in places like the High Line and the subway. Public art on the High Line Here’s a photographic rundown of pieces both past and current. Most popular in Art Dumbo Arts Festival The already art-forward northern Brooklyn ’hood pulls out all the stops during this three-day fest, featuring works by 300-plus contemporary artists. Ahead of the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, Lillian Gerson’s pop-up recording studio, Radio Wave, gives attendees the chance to dictate their storm stories; in The Ship of Tolerance, Russian artists Ilya and Emilia Kabakov will pilot a ship along the waterfront whose sail is made of stitched-together paintings by NYC schoolkids; the Bubbles of Hope performance-art processional will see 20 dynamic

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Get outdoors 2012

Things to do

Summer scenes: Three hot spots

Get the scoop on boardwalk bites emporium Rockaway Beach Club, postwork food market Hester Nights and the new McCarren Park Pool.

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Things to do

Rooftop and hotel pools

Find out where to dip your toes into the water, plus make a reservation to swim at a hotel pool in Williamsburg.

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Art

Public art

From wall art to street art to sculpture, TONY takes you on a tour of public art in New York.

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Things to do

Traffic-free cycle rides

Try these five protected bike paths and bike lanes in parks for a car-free route.

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Outdoor dining and bars 2012

Restaurants

Outdoor dining guide

Blooming gardens, gorgeous patios and other outdoor dining spots where you can eat with a breeze.

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Outdoor grilling guide

Stock up for your next outdoor grilling bash with our borough-hopping guide to New York’s best butchers.

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Bars

Summer drinking guide

Find where to cool off with a summer drink near NYC’s best hot-weather attractions.

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Bars

Best outdoor bars

Our guide to the city's best alfresco watering holes.

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Outdoor sports and activities 2012

Things to do

Free kayaking

Get some exercise and catch awesome views of the city from the water.

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Travel

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Travel

Back-to-nature trips (2012)

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