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20 amazing things to do in NYC this week

Written by
Jennifer Picht

Mon 12

OutdoorFest at various locations and times; free–$69
OutdoorFest, a ten-day lineup of activities, classes and volunteering opportunities, aims to get New York apartment dwellers to engage with the natural environment around the five boroughs. Look up the full schedule to save your spot for mountain biking, outdoor yoga, backcountry cooking, fly fishing, hiking, running and, naturally, beer drinking—can’t miss that.

Orange Is the New Black Trivia Stone Creek Bar and Lounge; 8pm; free
Obsessed with the new season of Jenji Kohan’s masterpiece? Flaunt your knowledge of Litchfield Penitentiary at this fan trivia face-off. If you want to succeed, you need to recall the real names of favorite characters like Big Boo and Pennsatucky, draw on the life stories of Mendoza and Big Red, and keep up with Crazy Eyes’ sci-fi sex novel.

NPR’s Ask Me Another The Bell House; 7:30pm; $20–$25
Host Ophira Eisenberg and house musician Jonathan Coulton challenge puzzle masters, audience members and special guests with brainteasers and trivia tidbits in this popular NPR show. This edition features author and actress Annabelle Gurwitch.

Tue 13

Museum Mile Festival at various locations; 6pm; free
This festival is back for its 39th year, which turns Fifth Avenue into the city’s largest block party. Live music and entertainment flood the streets while museums open their doors to the public at no charge. This year’s participants include Museum of the City of New York, the Jewish Museum, Cooper Hewitt, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Neue Galerie New York and more. Fifth Ave between 82nd and 105th Sts. 

The Moth StorySLAM Housing Works Bookstore Café; 7:30pm; $10–$30
Everyone in NYC has a story to tell, but how many of us can hop onstage and share it with a room full of strangers (without even asking for money)? Think of a tale you’d like to unload, then head to this storytelling throwdown, at which volunteers are drawn at random to share five-minute pieces. This edition’s "Mystery" prompt encourages speakers to share five-minute tales of intrigue. 

Rooftop Happy Hour at Hotel Chantelle; 6pm; $20
Join Time Out New York as we visit some of NYC’s best sky-high drinking spots. One June 13, we’ll be partying at Hotel Chantelle, enjoying the first of many rooftop happy hours of the season! Your ticket includes unlimited Segura Viudas Cava wine, light bites and live music.

Feeding the Moon: The Astrology of Self-Care WeWork FiDi; 6pm; $50
Groundbreaking politically-conscious astrologist Chani Nicholas invites you to join her for a talk on how the moon influences our self-understanding of boundaries, identity and healing. Bring your star chart and let the inspiring writer set your path to boundless possibility. 

Taste of Bushwick Boar’s Head Distribution Plant; 6:30pm; $45–$125
Go up a pant size after bingeing on eats and drinks from over fifty of Bushwick's finest purveyors, including Arancini Bros., Sea Wolf, El Cortez, Hops & Hocks, Queen of Falafel, Arcane Distilling, Mominette and Kings County Brewers Collective.

“The Art of Spider-Man” Society of Illustrators; 10am; $12
This exhibition invites you to see how the comic-book art of Steve Ditko, John Romita, Todd McFarlane and other visionaries involved in drawing Marvel’s beloved wall crawler influenced the way superhero stories are told.

Made You Look Film Series: Menace II Society SVA Theatre; 7pm; $3–$5
Hip-hop scholar Martha Diaz hosts a screening of this seminal 1990 gangster rap picture, followed by a conversation.

Wed 14  

Facets of Schubert Festival The Morgan Library & Museum; 7:30pm; festival pass $90–$140, single events $30–$50
This three-week chamber music fest explores the life and works of prolific Austrian composer Franz Schubert, with performances by St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble, discussions and museum tours. Special guests include soprano Ying Fang, pianist Henry Kramer, composer Steven Mackey and writer Adam Gopnik.  

Mindfulness Meditation at the Rubin Museum of Art; 1pm; $15
New York Times best-selling author and meditation teacher Sharon Salzberg and other esteemed practitioners of mindfulness meditation lead beginners and long-time meditators in midday sessions designed to expand your consciousness—during your lunch break. Inspired by art from the Rubin Museum, each event includes an opening talk, a sitting meditation and a closing discussion. 

Exotica Slowly Shirley; 6pm; free
Shimmy back in time and partake of ’50s surf culture at this monthly tiki night started by bartender extraordinaire Garret Richard and featuring burlesque, live bands and tasty beach-inspired craft cocktails.

“Uptown: Nasty Women/Bad Hombres” El Museo del Barrio; 11am; free with museum admission
Artists from East Harlem confront sexism, racism, homophobia, violence, health care and the state of the environment in this new mixed-media exhibition. Explore works from Vladimir Cybil Charlier, Jaime Davidovich, Aya Rodríguez-Izumi, Sable Elyse Smith, Nari Ward and many more, and see how these subversive artists use collage, documentary photography, poetry, painting, textile work and video to question—and resist—the status quo.

Thu 15

Chris Harder: #BigBrightStar Laurie Beechman Theatre at the West Bank Café; 7pm; $22
The "raunchy Romeo of burlesque" and regular Wasabassco fixture takes the Laurie Beechman stage to dance, strip and act his way through a life story that includes a South Dakota childhood, a career in pornography, and closets full of tear-away pants. 

Piano Party The Green Room 42; 9pm; free
Belt out your favorite ballads from Phantom of the Opera, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours and other sing-along classics at this open-mic piano karaoke bash, emceed by Michael McAssey.

The Shins + Tennis Prospect Park Bandshell; 6:30pm; $40
Though this indie institution has undergone fundamental transformations in recent years, there's no mistaking the essential Shins-iness of the band's latest Heartworms: Once again we find James Mercer pondering life’s big questions in long-lined vocal melodies floating over jangly, detailed guitar-pop arrangements. Here the Portland, OR, indie-rock faves open the summer season with a Celebrate Brooklyn! benefit show.

Citi Summer in the Square Union Square; 7am; free
Every Thursday during the summer, Union Square Park hosts a full day of free activities, including yoga, cardio and bootcamp classes, lunchtime jazz, screenings of classic flicks like Back to the Future and The Karate Kid and a series of dueling performances, wherein pianists, beatboxers, dancers and guitarists square off to see who can put on the best show. Visit to see the full lineup of events and drop in for some gratis outdoor fun. 

Layers: How to Build a Soundtrack from the Ground Up Museum of Modern Art (MoMA); 7pm; free
Aspiring sound designers, learn from the pros at this panel discussion with Philip Stockton, Eugene Gearty, Paul Hsu, Suzana Peric and Deborah Wallach. Find out how they transformed rough scenes into cinematic masterpieces, hear about the demands of the job and walk out with some tricks of the trade. 

BLAQThursday’s Open Mic Night Port Morris Distillery; 8pm; $5
Singers, dancers, poets, rappers and comedians take the stage at this open mic hosted by the Bronx Blaqlist and dedicated to Bronx residents. Show up to sip on Puerto Rican moonshine, known as pitorro, and take in some top-notch local talent.

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