Get ready to use our NYC events in August calendar as your guide to finishing the season with a bang! Now that we’re stuck in a heat dome, it’s safe to say that the dog days of summer are here to stay, but don’t hide indoors—there are too many exciting things to do in August. So make sure to check out all the incredible summer concerts, festivals and delicious food and drink opportunities happening this month. And use August as your last change to take advantage of all the outdoor movies at the best NYC parks as well as New York beaches. This is the last full-month of summer, people—this is not a drill!
RECOMMENDED: Full NYC events calendar
Featured NYC events in August 2017
Travel to beautiful Hong Kong without ever leaving the city thanks to this annual event at Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, now in it’s 26th year. Around 180 teams gather at the lake to race on long boats while paddling to the beat of their boat’s drummer at this culture fest inspired by Chinese tradition. On land, you can join in on the fun with music and dance performances, martial arts demonstrations and food-court vendors selling Asian cuisine like steamed dumplings, pork-belly buns and frozen delights such as Sno Biz shaved ice.
The Jazz Age Lawn Party 2017 is a spectacular summer tradition on gorgeous Governors Island. Step onto the ferry, and back in time, with thousands of others dressed to the 1920s nines and enjoy music from Michael Arenella and his Dreamland Orchestra, learn the Charleston and sip on cocktails in the sunshine.
Five stages featuring electronic music acts, 3D projections, food trucks, vendors, death-defying aerialists, circus performers and a giant inflatable slide: Yeah, BangOn!NYC goes all out for this annual bash. Get pumped for DJs such as Griz, The Knocks, The Golden Pony, Motum and plenty more. This mind-blowing music and arts festival is not one to be missed, so grab your tickets and keep your eyes peeled for the secret NYC waterfront location announcement.
Break out the stretchy pants, New York, and get ready to taste your way through 20 of New York's best burgers at Time Out's Battle of the Burger. Join us as we crown the 2017 champ on August 10 at Pier 26, where refreshing Budweiser beers flow and tunes will be playing throughout the night.
For two weeks, Flushing Meadows–Corona Park will be the tennis capital of the world for the U.S. Open tennis tournament. While Wimbeldon has its white, New Yorkers bring the party to the National Tennis Center with a celebrity-studded crowd, international food vendors and live musicians performing on the grounds—not to mention tennis's top pros.
Get ready to chow at this 18th annual riverside bash with barbecue from local grillmasters like Dinosaur Barb-B-Que and Mighty Quinn's, while tuned to live blues and roots performances by The Campbell Brothers, Sugar Ray and the Bluetones, Terrie Odabi, Dumpstaphunk and more.
Afropunk Festival is an annual event that takes place in August at Brooklyn’s Commodore Barry Park (City Park). Over the course of a weekend, the outdoor summer music festival—which celebrates multicultural arts—hosts a wide array of well-known musical artists (including some of the biggest hip-hop artists), as well as “BITES & BEATS” food trucks, live artworks and the SpinThrift Market. Additionally, Afropunk strives to raise multicultural awareness in New York City with its Activism Row initiative.
This Bed-Stuy event just keeps growing, with this year's selection of 45+ craft beers and artisanal wines to sample. Admission includes 15 drink tickets, each of which can purchase a three-ounce pour of one of the many wines and beers on offer. Imbibe while snacking on local food trucks and listening to live music and DJs.
Created by the late Joseph Papp in 1962, the Public Theater’s series offers free, large-scale productions of works by William Shakespeare (as well as the occasional musical or non-Shakespearean drama). The productions often feature some of the most talented actors of our day. Past casts have included including Meryl Streep, Kevin Kline, Al Pacino, Blythe Danner, Philip Seymour Hoffman, George C. Scott and Denzel Washington.
You’re king (or queen) of the world! Hop aboard Hornblower’s Sensation and cruise along the Hudson while taking in unbeatable views of the Manhattan skyline. As you dance to live DJ's tunes on all three of the Sensation's decks, you’ll be treated to Francis Coppola Diamond Collection wines, light bites, and Tattly’s temporary tattoo bar. And, yes, we’ll forgive you if you say, “I’m on a boat!” all night long. (We’ll be saying it too.) Powered by Eventbrite
Theater events in August 2018
Hamilton: Theater review by David Cote What is left to say? After Founding Father Alexander Hamilton’s prodigious quill scratched out 12 volumes of nation-building fiscal and military policy; after Lin-Manuel Miranda turned that titanic achievement (via Ron Chernow’s 2004 biography) into the greatest American musical in decades; after every critic in town (including me) praised the Public Theater world premiere to high heaven; and after seeing this language-drunk, rhyme-crazy dynamo a second time, I can only marvel: We've used up all the damn words. Wait, here are three stragglers, straight from the heart: I love Hamilton. I love it like I love New York, or Broadway when it gets it right. And this is so right. A sublime conjunction of radio-ready hip-hop (as well as R&B, Britpop and trad showstoppers), under-dramatized American history and Miranda’s uniquely personal focus as a first-generation Puerto Rican and inexhaustible wordsmith, Hamilton hits multilevel culture buttons, hard. No wonder the show was anointed a sensation before even opening. Assuming you don’t know the basics, Hamilton is a (mostly) rapped-through biomusical about an orphan immigrant from the Caribbean who came to New York, served as secretary to General Washington, fought against the redcoats, authored most of the Federalist Papers defending the Constitution, founded the Treasury and the New York Post and even made time for an extramarital affair that he damage-controlled in a scandal-stanching pamp
In this captivating original musical, Hello, Dolly! scene-stealer Taylor Trensch now plays the title role of a high school student thrust into social relevance after a classmate's suicide. Benj Pasek and Justin Paul's score combines well-crafted lyrics with an exciting pop sound, and Steven Levenson’s book gives all the characters shaded motives. Read the full review.
If theater is your religion and the Broadway musical your sect, you've been woefully faith-challenged of late. Venturesome, boundary-pushing works such as Spring Awakening, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and Next to Normal closed too soon. American Idiot was shamefully ignored at the Tonys and will be gone in three weeks. Meanwhile, that airborne infection Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark dominates headlines and rakes in millions, without even opening. Celebrities and corporate brands sell poor material, innovation gets shown the door, and crap floats to the top. It's enough to turn you heretic, to sing along with The Book of Mormon's Ugandan villagers: "Fuck you God in the ass, mouth and cunt-a, fuck you in the eye." Such deeply penetrating lyrics offer a smidgen of the manifold scato-theological joys to be had at this viciously hilarious treat crafted by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, of South Park fame, and composer-lyricist Robert Lopez, who cowrote Avenue Q. As you laugh your head off at perky Latter-day Saints tap-dancing while fiercely repressing gay tendencies deep in the African bush, you will be transported back ten years, when The Producers and Urinetown resurrected American musical comedy, imbuing time-tested conventions with metatheatrical irreverence and a healthy dose of bad-taste humor. Brimming with cheerful obscenity, sharp satire and catchy tunes, The Book of Mormon is a sick mystic revelation, the most exuberantly entertaining Broadway musical in years. The high
[Note: The review below is for a 2014 version of this show, which was then titled The Imbible. A revised version now plays at New World Stages. A different, brunch-theater edition, titled Day Drinking, plays on weekend matinees.] Remember Bill Nye the Science Guy? Great! Now imagine him as a bartender who is deeply interested in the history of ethanol alcohol, really likes wigs and costumes, and just joined a coed barbershop quartet. That description of Anthony Caporale’s The Imbible: A Spirited History of Drinking may sound far-out, but the show is both educational and entertaining. (It's also a fine showcase for a cappella classics arranged by Josh Ehrlich and performed by a gifted ensemble that includes the show's director, soprano Nicole DiMattei.) Mixing whimsy and information, Caporale makes the story of our relationship with alcohol remarkably compelling. And the show's lessons—on subjects like the drinks served at Prohibition-era speakeasies, the origin of the gin and tonic, and the difference between a cocktail and a mixed drink—can be washed down with complimentary, thematically appropriate beverages. As Caporale says, “Trust me, I get funnier with every sip.” That makes the show a must-see for anyone who enjoys free booze, which is probably nearly everyone.—Amelia Bienstock
Theater review by Diane Snyder For seven Harry Potter novels, the mediocrities of the Hogwarts house Hufflepuff lived in the shadow of their overachieving schoolmates. Matt Cox’s Puffs, or: Seven Increasingly Eventful Years at a Certain School of Magic & Magic gives them their due. In this funny and affectionate homage to J.K. Rowling’s world of wiz kids, Harry, Hermione and Ron take a back seat to average American wizard Wayne (Zac Moon), goth gal Megan (Julie Ann Earls) and math genius Oliver (Langston Belton), who is stuck at a school that doesn’t even teach his subject. They may not be at the top of the class, and they’re not wild about Harry, but they persevere through adversity and find power in friendship. A press release asks that the word parody be avoided in describing Puffs, but much of the show’s comedy is clearly aimed at Potterphiles. The 11 cast members play an assortment of characters, from a mumbling potions master to a squeaky house elf, and some of the jokes will be lost on those with no knowledge of the films or books. But even Potter virgins will enjoy the show’s witty wordplay and well-executed physical comedy. At times, the pacing is so frenetic that jokes can’t find a place to land, but there’s heart as well as humor here. In the past two years, Cox and director Kristin McCarthy Parker have shepherded their silly, subversive show from the People’s Improv Theater to Off Broadway’s New World Stages. Like its main characters, Puffs illustrates the heigh
After many years, the sassy and clever puppet musical doesn’t show its age. Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx’s deft Sesame Street–esque novelty tunes about porn and racism still earn their laughs. Avenue Q remains a sly and winning piece of metamusical tomfoolery. Running time: 2hrs 15mins. One intermission.
Director-designer Julie Taymor takes a reactionary Disney cartoon about the natural right of kings—in which the circle of life is putted against a queeny villain and his jive-talking ghetto pals—and transforms it into a gorgeous celebration of color and movement. The movie’s Elton John–Tim Rice score is expanded with African rhythm and music, and through elegant puppetry, Taymor populates the stage with an amazing menagerie of beasts; her audacious staging expands a simple cub into the pride of Broadway, not merely a fable of heredity but a celebration of heritage.—Adam Feldman Running time: 2hrs 40mins. One intermission.
One of the more unlikely musicals on Broadway this season, Come from Away is the tense but humane story of an airport in Gander, Newfoundland, where 38 planes and more than 6,000 passengers were forced to land on September 11, 2001. The book, music and lyrics are by the Canadian team Irene Sankoff and David Hein. Read the full review.
Three deadpan blue-skinned men with extraterrestrial imaginations carry this tourist fave, a show as smart as it is ridiculous. They drum on open tubs of paint, creating splashes of color; they consume Twinkies and Cap'n Crunch; they engulf the audience in a roiling sea of toilet paper. For sheer weird, exuberant fun, it's hard to top this long-running treat. (Note: The playing schedule varies from week to week, with as many as four performances on some days and none on others.)
Theater review by Adam Feldman After seeing the imaginative and dynamic Once on This Island, you may feel that once is not enough. Michael Arden’s immersive revival of Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty’s 1990 musical is staged in the round and constantly on the move, drumming its story forward to a steady throb of pop-Caribbean beats. Framed as a folktale shared among impoverished islanders—Dane Laffrey’s sandy set suggests the aftermath of a natural disaster—the plot follows naive orphan Ti Moune (Hailey Kilgore, in a winsome Broadway debut), who falls for a boy above her station: the rich and light-skinned Daniel (Isaac Powell). Overseeing their quasi-romance, which defies the strict class and color divides of their French Antilles isle, is a quartet of sometimes capricious gods, played by Lea Salonga, Quentin Earl Darrington, the striking Merle Dandridge and the remarkable Alex Newell (in an astonishing drag diva turn). One of Ahrens and Flaherty’s earliest collaborations, Once on This Island is patchy in parts. Its best-known songs, “Waiting for Life” and “Mama Will Provide,” bring down the house, but there are also languors (such as the drippy “The Human Heart”). And the central story of female sacrifice and degradation, which borrows liberally from Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid,” is treated as more inspirational than it actually is. But it is hard to imagine a better account of the show than the one that Arden and his team—including choreographer Camill
Music events in August 2017
After suddenly leaving his hit sketch show at the height of popularity back in 2006, Chappelle took a break from the limelight. But now the comedian is back in full force with the mega success of two specials on Netflix. During his 14-show Radio City residency, Chappelle will play host to a variety of musical guests including the Roots, Chance the Rapper, Erykah Badu, Lauryn Hill, Childish Gambino, Lil Wayne and John Mayer.
The wildly popular Fleet Foxes hit town for two benefit gigs behind their first album in six years, Crack-Up. If the first two singles from the effort, "Third of May / Ōdaigahara" and "Fools' Errand," are any indication, the Seattle outfit hasn't missed a beat. The band's warm pop-folk stylings, swirling around singer Robin Pecknold's haunting voice, will no doubt sound even more expansive under an open sky. Don't be surprised if you get lost in them.
The Descendents have been delivering 90-second fastballs of buzzed-up bubble gum punk off and on since the late ’70s. The band went on several extended hiatuses in the ’90s and aughts; its latest, excellent LP, Hypercaffium Spazzinate, is just its third in three decades. The songs might be more mature, but they’re still as fast and concise as ever.
Having rolled past their 30th anniversary a handful of years back, the Melvins show no signs of slowing down. In fact, the dynamic alt-metal outfit is pushing harder than ever (as evidenced by its gig opening for Tool on June 24 in San Bernardino, California). With last year's releases—an LP, Basses Loaded, and a long-lost collaboration album, Three Men and a Baby—the crew has a ton of fresh material to air out at their infamously awe-inspiring shows, not to mention a newie, A Walk with Love and Death. Expect to hear from across the band's career, as well as some seriously sludgy covers.
The tireless jam-band vets hit the Garden for A Baker's Dozen—a 13-night series of performances. With these shows the Vermont quartet joins Billy Joel, Elton John and the Grateful Dead in the exclusive club of blockbuster acts to play MSG more than 50 times, so you better believe they’ll be ready to bring the party.
In the years since Fleetwood Mac's hard-rocking, heart-breaking run in the '70s and '80s, Buckingham and McVie have rarely worked together. But the two legendary stars have teamed up again (sans Stevie Nicks and the rest of the band) for an angsty, Tusk-reminiscent new album.
Logic—also known as Sir Robert Bryson Hall II—reached mainstream success and landed a Def Jam recording deal in 2013, on the strength of his Young Sinatra mixtape series. Since then the young MC has only grown in fame. He's joined on tour with Brooklyn rapper, and actor in Mr. Robot, Joey Bada$$.
Brooklyn trio Slothrust brings its grungy blues-punk to town behind its latest, Everyone Else, which finds the three jazz musicians celebrating loudness with furiously danceable tracks (and the odd love song) that inhabit a realm of ennui and the weird. Drums, guitar and bass evoke both Sonic Youth and death metal, but frontwoman Leah Wellbaum’s androgynously droll Nico-esque deadpan is the main attraction.
Turntable whiz RJD2 hits Brooklyn Steel with dense, party-fueling beats. He was last heard on his 2016 soulful sixth album, Dame Fortune, in which the "Mad Men" theme producer lays out his ominous hip-hop production behind contributions from artists including R&B guitarist Son Little and spitfire North Carolina rapper Phonte.
Brooklyn quartet Pill serves up its scathing no-wave at a free daytime set in Brooklyn. It's hard to say which will be more electrifying, Veronica Torres' unbridled wail or Ben Jaffe's skronking sax. Show up and find out (and in the meantime, brush up on the band's superb 2016 debut, Convenience).
At this sprawling brasserie, looks matter. Rotisserie chickens spin in a giant hearth; the curved, glass-enclosed kitchen demands attention; and streamlined light fixtures create a clubby feel. Chef Franck Deletrain’s menu is heavy on surf and turf for the expense-account crowd. Nods to Morocco include a just-sweet-enough chicken b’steeya with a hint of orange-flower water and garnished with spiced candied almonds. Raw-bar choices are popular, as are meaty crab cakes and the butter topped filet mignon. Many of the showy desserts are crowned with arabesques of spun sugar. A more casual meal is available at the moodier adjoining Beer Bar.
Venue says: “Cafe Centro offers all of your favorite French dishes, including Beef Bourguignon, Lobster Risotto, Croque Monsieur, and Bouillabaisse.”