Timeout New York Kids

Make the most of your city

38 fun and free things to do in NYC in October 2012

There's nothing we love more than free things to do in NYC; behold, our list of 38 gratis October events that won't cost your family a dime.

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    The Little Red Lighthouse and the GWB

  • Open House NY

  • Photograph: QCFM staff photographer

    Queens County Farm Museum

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Fall Kids Fest

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Century of the Child at MoMA

  • My Dog Loves Central Park Country Fair

  • Harmony on the Hudson

  • GrowNYC's Halloween Costume Swap

  • Halloween Harvest Festival

  • Dia de los Muertos

  • World Financial Center Screamin' Green Halloween

  • LES Pickle Day

  • Central Park Pumpkin Sail

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    39th Annual Village Halloween Parade

Photograph: Virginia Rollison

The Little Red Lighthouse and the GWB

Birding at Wave Hill
Brush up on your birding knowledge on a walk let by naturalist Gabriel Willow and learn about the native and migrating birds that call the garden home. Sun Oct 14 at 9:30am. Wave Hill. Free with grounds admission, which is waived Sunday mornings. Ages 10 and up.

Harmony on the Hudson Music Festival
Bread & Puppet Theater performs its unique show The Complete Everything Everywhere Dance Circus at this gratis downtown festival. Keep an eye out for double-Dutch jump-roping, arts and crafts, and games, too. Sun Oct 14 14pm. Robert F. Wagner Park. All ages.

Harvest Fest at Gansevoort Plaza
Embrace the coming of fall with games, face painting, a dress-up photo booth and pumpkin painting. Plus, kids can take apple-picking to the next logical step by making their own applesauce. Sat Oct 20 10am4pm. Gansevoort Plaza. All ages.

Brooklyn Bridge Park Harvest Festival
Head down to Brooklyn for an afternoon of harvest-themed fun. Families can prepare for Halloween by perusing the pumpkin patch, making masks and leaf rubbings, or visiting the face-painting booth. Make sure to stick around for performances by kid-friendly acts like the Pop Ups. Sat Oct 20 10:30am1pm. Brooklyn Bridge Park. All ages.

"Space Invaders" Family Workshop
Families will tour the installations on exhibit in "Space Invaders," the cheekily named exhibition whose works take over the interior and exterior spaces of the Lehman College Gallery. Afterward, families will take part in an art-making activity inspired by the exhibit. Sat Oct 20 at 10:30am. Lehman College Art Gallery. Ages 6 to 10.

GrowNYC's Halloween Costume Swap
Still looking for a Halloween costume? Check out GrowNYC's costume swap. Come find a new-to-you costume, or donate your clean, gently used costumes to the swap. Items to bring are limited to clothing, costumes, accessories, decorations and other Halloween-related items. Swapping is free, and you can take or give as much as you like. Sat Oct 20 11am3pm. Free. All ages.

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