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NYC events in April 2020

The best NYC events in April include much-needed outdoor activities at NYC parks, fun festivals and pretty flower shows

Photograph: Courtesy Brooklyn Botanic Garden/Julie Markes
By Jennifer Picht and Time Out contributors |

UPDATE: Many events have been canceled or postponed due to coronavirus. If you're unsure if yours has been affected, please call ahead to confirm.

The best NYC events in April 2020 are going to make you psyched for spring. Aside from celebrating major holidays like Easter in New York, take a moment to stop and smell the roses at events such as the Macy's Flower Show and The Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Garden. Speaking of buds, take advantage of checking out the best NYC parks, while all the flowers and trees are starting to bloom. And there’s even more greenery fun for outdoorsy folks—Earth Day, duh!

RECOMMENDED: Full NYC events calendar in 2020

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Featured events in April 2020

Photograph: Courtesy New York Botanical Garden
Things to do, Exhibitions

The Orchid Show

The Orchid Show—NYC’s ode to springtime—should not to be confused with the season’s other stupendous garden party the Macy’s Flower Show. However, both bloom fests are worth visiting. If you’re not familiar, The New York Botanical Garden’s Orchid Show exhibits thousands of species of beautiful blossoming orchids and lasts through April. 

Photograph: Courtesy Diane Bondareff
Things to do, Exhibitions

The Macy’s Flower Show

The subject for 2019's installment at the megachain’s Herald Square location is Journey to Paradisios. Translation? It's a cosmic dream offering revelers an out-of-this-world representation of outer space. Flower arrangements are designed to show off the "mystery of the cosmos," so check out the nods to the stars, planets, rockets, aliens (of course) and more astrological wonders.

The 2018 Women In The World Summit in New York City; 4/14/2018
Photograph: Courtesy Marc Bryan-Brown
Things to do, Talks and lectures

Women in the World Summit 2020

David H. Koch Theater (at Lincoln Center), Upper West Side
5 out of 5 stars

Truth to power! That’s the inspiring theme of this year’s Women in the World Summit—a gathering where impressive and powerful women put on a series of uncensored talks and panels at Lincoln Center. This year, Emmy and Golden Globe winning writer of "Fleabag", Phoebe Waller-Bridge, is taking stage as a headliner.  Throughout the course of the two-day event (April 2–April 3), tickets holders will hear discussions about taking a stand against corruption, autocracy, sexism, climate change and harassment. Those spotlighted will dig deep on how women have battled against powerful male predators and their enablers, systemic misogyny, how to regain control of digital identity and more. "During a time when truth has become optional to some, I'm thrilled to convene this sensational lineup of bold, brave hearted women who are speaking truth to power, and removing the support beams of misogyny, injustice, and apathy,” explains Founder of Women in the World Tina Brown. Other names you'll find on this year's bill are Hong Kong activist and artist Denise Ho, Surviving R. Kelly documentarian Dream Hampton, female Kurdish warrior Commander Nesrin Abdullah, actress and author Demi Moore, nobel laureate Esther Duflo, among other empowering femmes. Past speakers and participants have included Oprah Winfrey, Nancy Pelosi, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Angelina Jolie, Viola Davis, Diane von Furstenberg and Anna Wintour. Tickets are available online!

Hornblower Cruises
Photograph: Courtesy Hornblower Cruises
Things to do

Easter events in NYC

Enjoy the (finally!) thawing weather by checking out these great things to do for Easter. NYC offers a range of things to do outside, from egg hunts—yes, even for adults—to a silly Easter Bonnet Parade and a boozy brunch cruise. In case the weather is lousy, head indoors to one of the city’s best New York attractions for the annual Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Garden. 

Tribeca Film Festival 2005
Photograph: Brian Palmer

Tribeca Film Festival

Robert De Niro and co.’s Tribeca Film Festival has long shown a spotlight on local indie features, documentaries, foreign films, the latest from big-name talent and the greatest from up-and-coming filmmakers. We’ve got your complete one-stop-shopping guide to this year’s festival: our personal must-see picks, showtimes, ticket info, a list of nearby bars and restaurants and oh-so-much more.

Photograph: Courtesy Earth Day Initiative
Things to do, Markets and fairs

Earth Day New York

There’s nothing like a day of worshipping our planet to put an optimistic spin on dwindling resources, rising sea levels and the alarming acceleration of climate change. Head to this annual street fair to get familiar with dozens of environmental non-profits and green businesses, then kick back and enjoy some live performances while you plot how to up your eco-friendly game.

Photograph: Courtesy Brooklyn Botanic Garden/Julie Markes
Things to do, Festivals

Sakura Matsuri Cherry Blossom Festival

Sakura Matsuri Cherry Blossom Festival NYC is one of the city’s prettiest spring festivals comprising the best and most beautiful elements of Japanese culture. At the Cherry Blossom Festival, NYC-folks and tourists can watch and take part in a bunch of activities while being surrounded by gorgeous, pink-petal trees at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. As one of the top Brooklyn attractions, the must-visit site hosts the beloved tradition every year, and the event is usually always bustling with visitors. 

Soccer Mommy
Music, Rock and indie

Soccer Mommy

Brooklyn Steel, East Williamsburg

Soccer Mommy is the stage name of singer-guitarist Sophie Allison. On her upcomnig sophomore album, Color Theory, she expands on the pop-infused stylings of late ’90s alt-rock that made her debut so effective: head-on emotional lyrics and a particularly affecting wistful melancholy.

Mary-Louise Parker
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist
Theater, Drama

How I Learned to Drive

Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, Midtown West

Paula Vogel's Pulitzer Prize–winning 1997 memory play, a probing look at child molestation and accelerated sexuality, makes its overdue Broadway debut. In a welcome stunt, Manhattan Theatre Club's production reunites the drama's excellent original stars, Mary-Louise Parker and David Morse, with original director Mark Brokaw.

Photograph: Denis Doorly, © 2019 The Museum of Modern Art
Art, Textiles

“Taking a Thread for a Walk”

Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Midtown West

Textiles as both art and craft form the warp and woof of this survey of the fiber medium from ancient times to the present.

Amy Sillman, The Shape of Shape, 2019
Photograph: Heidi Bohnenkamp, © 2019 The Museum of Modern Art
Art, Contemporary art

“Artist’s Choice: Amy Sillman—The Shape of Shape”

Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Midtown West

On view are 75 works from MoMA’s collection chosen by the painter Amy Sillman to elucidate the role of shape in the creation of art. Jasper Johns, Kiki Smith and Marcel Duchamp are among the names included in this selection, which is presented in a kind of modified salon-style installation.

Jesse Tyler Ferguson
Photograph: Courtesy Luke Fontana
Theater, Drama

Take Me Out

Helen Hayes Theater, Midtown West

Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family), Jesse Williams (Grey's Anatomy) and Patrick J. Adams (Suits) lead the all-male ensemble cast of this revival of Richard Greenberg's Tony-winning 2002 drama about a Derek Jeter–esque baseball star who comes out of the closet. The play offers a provocative and insightful look at the intersections of race, sexuality, class and naked guys in showers. Scott Ellis directs for Second Stage; the supporting cast includes Michael Oberholtzer and Brandon J. Dirden. 

Courtesy The Bloody Mary Festival
Things to do

The Bloody Mary Festival

Industry City, Greenwood

Trick out your brunchtime cocktailing at the 7th Annual addition of this fest for the tomato-obsessed. During the event, going down this year at Brooklyn's Industry City, you'll sample inventive pours from participating hotspots including: Lobster Joint, Crave FishBar, Dos Caminos, The Ryerson, Black Swan, The Farmer's Touch, Maria's Bistro Mexicano, Catfish, Due West, The Grayson, The Wilson, Demitri's Gourmet Mixes, Toma Bloody Mary, The Pickled Chef, The Murph's Famous Bloody Mary Mix and Vermont Fermenters. Guests will have the chance to taste them all before voting for their favorite via the “People’s Choice Award," and in the meantime, a panel of industry judges will also select the “Best Bloody Mary in New York City.”  A ticket in gets you unlimited bloody marys spanning sweet, spicy, tangy and salty, and yes, that sounds like a challenge to get your moneys worth (drink responsibly!). There will be also be a NYC bagel bar and other food and drinks onsite to sample. You can pick from two sessions to attend, one from 10:30am-1:30pm and the second 3:00pm-6:00pm. General admission tickets will cost you $52.50 and early entrance VIP tickets are $65.50.

Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations
Photograph: Courtesy Matthew Murphy
Theater, Musicals

Ain't Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations

Imperial Theatre, Midtown West
Open run
3 out of 5 stars

Theater review by Adam Feldman  The Temptations are hard to resist. No matter how much you may chafe at the clunky machinery of Broadway’s latest jukebox biomusical, Ain’t Too Proud, the hits just keep coming, distracting your critical faculties with zaps of R&B greatness. And when the show is at full power—when its lavishly gifted stars are lined up for duty in natty matching suits, moving and singing in synch through songs like “My Girl,” “I’m Gonna Make You Love Me,” “Papa Was a Rolling Stone” and “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg”—the gleam of well-polished nostalgia is strong. Is that enough, though? The problem with telling the story of the Temptations is that there isn’t a clear central story to tell. Much of Ain’t Too Proud focuses on the so-called Classic Five period from 1964 through 1968, when the quintet’s main frontman is the bespectacled and charismatic David Ruffin, played by the sensational Ephraim Sykes with a riveting combination of showboating dance moves and rough-edged soul vocals. High tenor Eddie Kendricks (the expressive Jeremy Pope) occasionally takes the lead vocals, backed by baritones Otis Williams (Derrick Baskin) and Paul Williams (James Harkness) and bass Melvin Franklin (the impressively deep-throated Jawan M. Jackson). But since the group’s membership has been in continual flux since its Motown debut in 1961, Ain’t Too Proud entrusts its narration entirely to the last Temp standing: Otis, who has been with the group from the start and performs with it

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