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NYC events in September 2019

The best NYC events in September range from last-minute summer excursions to Oktoberfest celebrations and more

Photograph: Matt Marquez
By Jennifer Picht and Time Out New York editors |

The best NYC events in September include everything from last-minute things to do in summer to early fall celebrations including incredible art and cultural events. Utilize our events calendar for September to help you schedule all the happenings you don’t want to miss like some of the best things to on Labor day, the West Indian Day Parade, and the one of the best NYC street fairs: Atlantic Antic. Sure, summer is nearly over, but the warm-weather isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. So make sure to enjoy all of the wonderful things to outside in New York before the cold front sweeps in!

RECOMMENDED: Full NYC events calendar for 2019

Featured NYC events in September 2019

Things to do

Coney Island Beard and Moustache Competition

icon-location-pin Coney Island USA, Coney Island

Any Williamsburg resident can moan and groan about the rising preponderance of waxed-up facial hair styles in the hipster generation, but for 12 years, Coney Island's finest have been rocking it for real. At this outrageous cult competition, dozens of mustachioed and bearded men and women will take the stage to show off their sickest styles to win the Beard and Mustache Fez trophy. This year's categories include, and we're not making this up, "Ballyhoo Beard" (best beard styled), "Man or Beast" (best beard natural), "Hokum and Hoodwinked" (Best Fake Beard or Moustache), "Dog and Pony" (best partial beard/sideburns), "Carny Trash" (worst in show) and many more. You better start taking your keratin and B3's if you want to slay this game. For only the strong will survive!

Brooklyn Book Festival
Things to do, Literary events

Brooklyn Book Festival

icon-location-pin Multiple venues

This annual literary celebration brings together spectacular writers from across the globe for a full week of talks, shopping and even yoga to satisfy the borough’s brainiacs. Events will be taking place all week long, but the main draws are Saturday's Children's Day and Sunday's Festival day. This year boasts authors Jonathan Safran Foer, Ebony Flowers, Joyce Carol Oates, Tina Chang, Ilya Kaminsky, Nick Bruel and many more.   

The World Maker Faire
Things to do, Conventions

World Maker Faire

icon-location-pin New York Hall of Science | Queens, NY, Flushing Meadows–Corona Park

Once a year, builders and tinkerers of all ages convene at this innovation-centered event to show off their inventions—and teach onlookers how they can make them at home. This edition features talks on wearable electronics, 3D printing, droid-building, costume design and building your own phone, plus, oddly, a dance battle. We guess it truly is a fest for movers and shakers of all stripes.

Things to do

TASTE Williamsburg Greenpoint

icon-location-pin East River State Park, Williamsburg

Celebrate the adjacent Brooklyn ‘hoods with a block party loaded with lots and lots of food. Forty of the top restaurants, bars and merchants from the area will convene for tastings–including Midnights, Barano, Brooklyn Bowl, Eleva Coffee, Brooklyn Label, Midinights, Tacocina and more. All proceeds will benefit the Firehouse North Brooklyn Community Center. 

Brendan Drake
Photograph: Courtesy Yi-Chun Wu
Dance, Contemporary and experimental

Dance Now Festival

icon-location-pin Joe's Pub at the Public Theater, East Village

Dance Now's 24th season offers a massive festival of short works by 40 dance makers of every stripe, all challenged to mount five-minute pieces on the teeny stage at Joe's Pub. The best of the fest, as chosen by the producers, return for a special encore performance on Sept 27; they include festival winner Brendan Drake as well as binbinFactory /Satoshi Haga & Rie Fukuzawa, Blue Wyatt Project, Tsiambwom M. Akuchu, Loni Landon Dance Project, Claire Porter/PORTABLES, HUMA, Cleo Mack and many more. 

Music events in September 2018

Photograph: Edmond Sadaka/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock
Music, Rap, hip-hop and R&B

Drake + Migos

After pairing on single "Walk It Talk It," Canadian R&B superstar Drake joins forces with hip-hop trio Migos on the Aubrey and the Three Migos Tour. Expect to hear plenty of ubiquitous new tracks from his latest album Scorpion. Here's hoping that Drake and Migos play at least part of the show in the Soul Train-themed attire from their collaborative video. While he's in town for gigs at both the Garden and Barclays Center, Drake will also be hosting an event called "The Day Party" at Brooklyn Mirage on Sunday, August 26. Drake associate DJ Spade is spinning, and you can also expect an appearance by Youtube star Shiggy a.k.a. the guy behind the “Shiggy Dance” from the “In My Feelings” challenge. (No word if Drake himself will be performing or just hanging out.)

Sun Ra Arkestra
Courtesy the artist
Music, Jazz

Sun Ra Arkestra

The world owes a great cosmic debt to time-traveling bandleader Sun Ra. He went back to Saturn and left the funkiest, swingingest band in the Milky Way here on Earth. This afternoon matinee show is your opportunity to travel the spaceways; your captain is 90-year-old Arkestra mainstay Marshall Allen.



A rapper who keeps company with the indie rock crowd (she's signed to Philly label Don Giovanni), Sammus writes hip-hop paeans to geek culture—gamers, comics fans and so forth. She plays with a rotating cast of openers for this Mercury Lounge residency. Most notably, you'll find multi-instrumentalist Mal Devisa performing Sept 11, who works surprisingly textured tunes from a pared down framework: soulful vocals soaring over loops of understated bass guitar. Her strikingly direct tunes have garnered her quite a word-of-mouth reputation in the local indie scene, exploring resilence, displacement and isolation with a revelatory spirit. Also look out for hectic noise-duo Machinegirl (Sept 18) and self-described "future-soul" quintet Jelani Sei (Sept 25).

Panorama Festival 2017
Photograph: Filip Wolak
Music, Music festivals


Pitchfork and October present their second annual pairing of bands and brews. The fest hits Governors Island with a two-day lineup of more than 20 acts, including Vince Staples, Yo La Tengo, Chic, Vagabon, Julie Byrne and the Flaming Lips. Between sets, grab beer samples from over 90 different breweries based near (Blue Point, Circa) and far (India's Bira 91, Germany's Aktien). A single-day ticket includes 45 ounces of beer, a two-day ticket includes 90 ounces and plenty more is available for $1.50 per 3-ounce pour. Come thirsty.

Photograph: Courtesy Alicia J. Rose
Music, Rock and indie


Portland, OR, singer-songwriter Liz Harris brings her murky yet lovely tunes to NYC for the first time in over two years. She hits town behind her latest, Grid of Points. A sparse affair à la 2014's RuinsGrid of Points finds Harris once again at the piano, her voice swathed in reverb and drifting among the chords like a slowly curling mist. It's music well worth losing yourself in.

Van Morrison
Photograph: Courtesy Shore Fire Media
Music, Rock and indie

Van Morrison + Willie Nelson & Family

The great bard of Irish R&B turns up in Queens for a rare show. You never know what you're going to get from a Van gig—or what mood the famously prickly singer-songsmith will turn up in—but he remains one of the least contrived performers of his generation. While Morrison's vocals might have diminished over the years, his penchant for thrilling improvisational risk remains very much intact. Outlaw-country figurehead and genuine American institution Willie Nelson brings his road-sharped crew to open the night.

Rina Sawayama
Photograph: Courtesy Lillie Eiger
Music, Pop

Rina Sawayama

The London singer imbues her sugary music with pop-punk riffs, J-pop nuances and video-gameworthy synths, putting it all together in a very post-internet way. Her debut, Rina, is essentially a study in society’s obsession with new technology, from the imagined life of a blogger on “Ordinary Superstar” to the smart-phone addiction of “Cyber Stockholm Syndrome.”

Riot Fest 2017, Jawbreaker
Photograph: Neal O'Bryan
Music, Punk and metal


Seminal ‘90s punk band Jawbreaker came out of retirement last year, which meant two decades’ worth of teenagers who passed around 24 Hour Revenge Therapy CDs finally got to shout along to a live rendition of “Boxcar.” Since reuniting for Riot Fest last September, the trio has gradually expanded its tour and even revealed plans to log some studio time. If you weren't able to catch the band during its sold-out run at Brooklyn Steel in February, consider this Coney Island appearance your shot at redemption.

Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever
Photograph: Courtesy Warwick Baker
Music, Rock and indie

Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever

The Aussie quintet has peddled bright, bounding indie rock on its two splendid EPs—2016's Talk Tight and 2017's The French Press—and now it's added an equally infectious debut album to its oeuvre. A 35-minute collection of pristine guitar pop, Hope Downs beautifully showcases RBCF's keen melodic sensibilty, chugging motorik vim and clever, impressionistic lyrics.

David Byrne
Photograph: Courtesy Chris Buck
Music, Rock and indie

David Byrne + Tune-Yards

The former Talking Head, active solo artist and avid bicyclist returns to Forest Hills for the first time since his erstwhile band visited in 1983 (he's also doing a two-night stint at Kings Theatre directly afterward). His new show is a choreographed spectacle that echoes his Stop Making Sense heyday. In the opening slot, Merrill Garbus and Co. supply Afrobeat-inspired pop with vocal gymnastics that never fail to impress. 

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