If you’re living for jack-o-lanterns, haunted houses, black cats and all things spooky, then stop reading this post right now.
More power to all you urban witches out there, but some of us just don’t like Halloween. All those screaming children hopped up on sugar, annoying jump-scares, plastered 21-year-olds and insufferable costumes just don’t do it for every New Yorker.
If you agree that Halloween in NYC is the worst, you’ll want to stay far away from the Village until November 1. Instead, find refuge in these activities that have absolutely nothing to do with All Hallows’ Eve.
Take a pizza-making class
Eschew caramel apples and gummy vampire teeth for handmade pizzas with a delightfully chewy crust and melty mozzarella. You might have to brave the reveler-infested streets to get to this class at Taste Buds Kitchen in Chelsea, but it’s worth it. After you try your hand at making a few pies, you’ll get to taste-test your creations with a few glasses of wine.
Hide from the craziness at the Met
No matter what insanity is taking place on the streets of Manhattan, the Metropolitan Museum of Art somehow remains serene and undisturbed. Pass a quiet few hours wandering the seemingly endless halls of the museum. The scariest thing you’ll see there is the hall of medieval Arms and Armor.
Check out a hip-hop dance festival at the Apollo
The international hip-hop festival Breakin’ Convention comes to Harlem this weekend. Crews including Dynamic Rockers, Protocol, Popin’ Pete and the Soweto Skeleton Movers will perform on both Friday and Saturday. Eighties rapper Biz Markie hosts the festival with Breakin’ Convention founder Jonzi D.
Drink wine in a BYOB painting class
Channel all your Halloween-hating energies into creative pursuits, like a paint-and-sip class. Paint Along NYC has several BYOB classes scheduled this Friday, Saturday and Sunday—and none has a Halloween theme. See how you fare at painting a pair of owls at twilight, a bustling cafe scene, a still life with wine bottles or brightly colored elephants.
Taste vodka and caviar at the Russian Tea Room
Nothing washes your cares away quite like Russian vodka and caviar. Sip a trio of vodkas as you taste wild American hackleback caviar, paddlefish roe and wild Alaskan salmon roe in the Russian Tea Room’s gilded dining room. There’s no costume required; in fact, we’d discourage you from showing up to the swanky restaurant in anything but your finest threads.
Go sailing on the Hudson River
Take advantage of the warmer-than-usual fall weather for one last joyride on the Hudson River. Learn the basics of sailing in a Hudson River Community Sailing class. The views of Manhattan from the river are truly extraordinary—even lifelong New Yorkers will have to snap a photo or two.
See the last performance of Les Contes d’Hoffman at the Metropolitan Opera House
Halloween and the opera really don’t mix, so you’ll be safe from ghoulish mischief in the plush seats at the Metropolitan Opera House. The german opera about a tortured poet’s many love affairs finishes its run this Sunday.
Get tipsy at Brooklyn Wine Fest
Whether you’re a bona fide oenophile or know nothing about wine, you’ll feel like a total sophisticate by signing up for an entire day of wine tasting. Your ticket to the Brooklyn Wine Fest gives you unlimited five-ounce samples of hundreds of wines from around the world. It’s a much more classy way to get your buzz on than downing shots in some bar decked out with fake skeletons.
Make your own terrarium
Boycotting Halloween means boycotting pumpkins and decorative gourds, too. Decorate your apartment with something decidedly not harvest-themed instead, like one of the miniature moss terrariums you can make at Twig Terrariums. The group classes include everything you need to landscape your teeny-tiny green world and expert advice on how to care for your new plant baby.
Reach new heights in an aerial acrobatics class
You can learn to fly in Bushwick—seriously. In a beginner silks class at the Muse, acrobats and circus performers will teach you to hoist yourself off the ground using only two long strips of fabric hanging from the ceiling. Practice climbing the silk, contorting your body into beginner poses and even attempting a few small drops.
Cheer on the Brooklyn Nets at home
The only orange you’ll see at a Brooklyn Nets game is the basketball dribbling down the court. Lose yourself in a fast-paced game between the Nets and the Denver Nuggets. The screech of the buzzer will block out any unwelcome thoughts of Halloween.
Check into one of the city’s best hotels or Airbnbs for a staycation
For a completely Halloween-free weekend, hole up in a New York City hotel for a staycation. Order room service, watch all the cable channels you don’t pay for at home, take a long bubble bath and thank god you’re not out there with the costumed masses.