When you live in the most expensive city in America, it can be hard to stick to a budget. Luckily, we've got you covered. Whether you're looking for a concert, art exhibit, comedy show or even a date idea, there are plenty of places to good time without paying a dime. Here are the best free parties, cultural events and things to do between now and next Wednesday.
Rubin Museum of Art Block Party
The Rubin throws itself a true stormer of a party based on its exhibit “Nepalese Seasons: Rain and Ritual.” This celebration of meteorological proportions lauds the art, culture, nature and ideas of Nepal through music, dance, Himalayan street food, family yoga, Nepali-dress demonstrations and good old-fashioned henna tattoos. Other highlights include a photo booth and art activities like DIY bird rattles. BYO prayer flags. 150 W 17th St (212-620-5000, rubinmuseum.org). Sun 17 1–4pm.
Astoria Flea and Food Night Market
Fufill your “night shop” quota every Saturday and Sunday evening this summer at Astoria’s open-air bazaar, and pick up all the latest in handcrafted accessories like jewelry and knits, refurbished furniture, vintage ephemera and local brews from the only “all-Queens beer garden.” Just be careful not to get too turnt beforehand, or you may need some“refurbishing” of your own the next morning. Luckily, there will be plenty of tasty grub to help you soak up all those suds. 34-12 36th St, Queens (licflea.com). Sat, Sun 6–11pm. Through Aug.
Governors Island Storytelling Fest
This island has endured tons of wild rumors: Walt Disney served time on the island’s prison (false); almost every “historical plaque” there contains factual errors (ugh, true); there’s a secret escape tunnel that stretches out to Brooklyn (oh, come on!). But one actual fact is that on Sundays in Nolan Park, the island now has its very own storytelling festival with a rotating cast of world-renowned tellers of tales, complete with music and even the occasional puppet show. Nolan Park lawn, next to building 10B (govisland.com/events). Sun 1–3pm. Through Sept.
Hester Street Fair Ice Cream Social
Ronald Reagan loved many things: jelly beans, divorce, the Cold War and, best of all, ice cream! That’s why the former president designated July as National Ice Cream Month and the third Saturday as National Ice Cream Day. Thank goodness Hester Street Fair is here to help New Yorkers celebrate with a smorgasbord of fresh batches of local and unique frozen treats from Melt Bakery, Tipsy Scoop and plenty more for the incredibly lactose tolerant. Grab a spoon and dig in! Hester Street Fair, Hester and Essex Sts (eventbrite.com). Sat 16 at 11am.
Game of Thrones Trivia Night
“Seeing a beautiful woman naked for the first time is among the five best things in life,” but so is this evening of trivia for fans of the most popular HBO series who want to test their knowledge of GoT’s intricate fantasy world. So study up on the Targaryen family tree, fine Dornish wines and good-looking Stark sons if you and your team want to survive and win free booze. And to paraphrase the enormous wisdom of the diminutive Tyrion Lannister, “That’s what you do. You drink and you know things.” The Dubliner, 45 Stone St (212-785-5400, dublinernyc.com). Tue 19 at 7pm.