NYC events in September 2018

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 2018

Featured NYC events in September 2018

Oktoberfest NYC
Photograph: Filip Wolak

Oktoberfest in NYC

One of the top things to do in New York this fall includes two weeks of drinking some of the best beer in NYC during Oktoberfest. Take in the beautiful fall foliage while drinking at one of the best beer gardens and beer halls in New York City. Oktoberfest New Yorkers, take advantage of this glorious holiday to sample fine Bavarian beer and food. Prost!

Photograph: Raydene Salinas

New York Fashion Week

Get camera-ready for Fashion Week 2018. NYC will be filled with a stampede of posh editors, bloggers, stylists and shutterbugs. (They will be invading your favorite coffee shops and cafes. You’ve been warned). Tickets to some of the major runway shows aren’t available to the general public, but newsflash: you don’t have to be part of the elite fashion world to feel like an insider. Maybe you don’t have a front-row seat to the shows or a spot reserved next to Anna Wintour, but don't fret—we’ve got you covered. 

Photograph: Courtesy Jonathan Grassi
Things to do


Get excited for the coolest event during Fashion Week 2018. NYC is the home base for 29Rooms—Refinery29’s stellar and interactive exhibition featuring 29 rooms designed by retail brands, artists and other creatives. This event will definitely be one of the most Instagrammed New York attractions of the year. For more information on this immersive funhouse, we’ve provided all the essential details—including how to snag last-minute tickets—below. 

Dîner en Blanc New York 2016
Photograph: Courtesy Jennifer Heffner/Vita Images
Things to do

Dîner en Blanc

Dîner en Blanc—NYC’s pièce de résistance of picnics—returns to New York every year to give Gothamites an opportunity to show off their all-white wardrobe, decorative skills and Top Chef-level cooking. The location for the event changes every year, which makes the party hard to crash. But if you register your table in advance, you can partake in one of the coolest secret things to do in NYC and one of the best things to do outside. 

Food trucks
Photograph: Clay Williams

Vendy Awards

The Oscars of street food returns for its 14th annual roving-eats smackdown, where nominated food trucks, stalls and pushcarts post up on Governor’s Island to compete for your final vote. Experience cuisine from all around the world with diverse offerings from top contenders. Public nominations determine the winner, so you get to choose by casting a ballot to crown the next food truck champ.

Photograph: Paul Seibert
Things to do, Event spaces

Sunset Sail Happy Hour

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. Each ticket includes one beer (don't worry, there's a cash bar, too) to loosen you up to hit the dance floor with live DJs on all three of the Sensation's decks. Plus there will be light bites, games, giveaways, and more. And, yes, we’ll forgive you if you say, “I’m on a boat!” all night long. (We’ll be saying it too.)

Photograph: Courtesy Bronx Night Market
Things to do, Markets and fairs

Bronx Night Market

icon-location-pin The Bronx

This food-centric market features Bronx-based vendors serving up tamales, soul food, latkes, ice cream, pastries, elotes and vegan creations, plus libations from the Bronx Brewery, Port Morris Distillery, Brox Beer Hall and others. In addition to all of the delicious provisions, the market offers nifty wares from local artisans and live music performances from Bonx musicians. Come appreciate all that NYC's northernmost borough has to offer.

Things to do, Literary events

Pop-up Magazine

icon-location-pin Fort Greene

This live talent showcase invites authors, comedians, scientists and others to present researched stories on a wide range of interesting topics. Presentations include spoken word, musical compositions, photography and more. The fall tour is the biggest one yet, with stops in San Francisco, Toronto, Chicago, Portland, Los Angeles and other spots. This time, they hit BAM with an excellent lineup and musical support from the Magik* Magik Orchestra. September's edition features multimedia stories from Rebecca Skloot (#1 New York Times bestseller The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks), Ann Friedman (co-host, Call Your Girlfriend), Ed Yong (The Atlantic), Yowei Shaw (NPR's Invisibilia), Emily Dreyfuss (Wired), Jason Parham (Wired, Spook), Meg Smaker (filmmaker, Boxeadora), and NYC's own Landon Nordeman (photographer, New Yorker, New York Times) among others. They're set to discuss thirst traps through the ages, terrorist rehabilitation centers, small-town American businesses, robot ethics, flower extinction and other interesting topics.

Photograph: Courtesy Julie Larsen Maher
Things to do

Boo at the Zoo

icon-location-pin The Bronx

Lions, tigers and bears—oh my! The Bronx Zoo goes all out every Halloween season, and this weekend kicks of its month of spooky festivites. Drop in to take a hayride through a haunted forest, watch live performances, get wowed by a mentalist, participate in a costume parade and lots more.

Photograph: Courtesy The Color Factory
Things to do

The Color Factory

icon-location-pin West Village

The Color Factory NYC is officially open to the public as of Monday, August 20, and the experience is red hot. Actually, it covers a spectrum of hues, and it is guaranteed to be one of the most vibrant, educational and downright enjoyable Instagrammable moments you’ve encountered in New York. It really blue us away. The interactive exhibition, which is located in Soho, was designed and launched by event planner Jordan Ferney of Oh Happy Day (a crafts and celebrations blog) to help visitors explore the fun and importance of color. There are 16 rooms to explore throughout the 20,000-square-foot space which showcase immersive artwork from local writers, poets and musicians. The event got its start in San Francisco, but the Gotham iteration is very much an ode to New York, as there are various poems and tips for folks who live in the Big Apple throughout. Similar activiations such as a baby-blue ball pit remain in addition to a disco-themed dancefloor, oddball artifacts (think puke-inspired art) presented by the Mmuseumm and more. Best of all, you can wander through the installation phone-free (if you want.) Upon entry, you are given a card to scan at each of the various photographic experiences inside. The photos will be sent directly to your email, so you can focus on enjoying the art versus panicking over taking the perfect picture. That’s pretty convenient, but what we really love is that this ticketed attraction ($38) is worth the price in freebies alone. During your visit

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Music events in September 2018

Photograph: Courtesy Partisan Records
Music, Punk and metal

Idles + Bambara

Vitriolic Bristol punks Idles come stateside for a rager behind last year's critically acclaimed Brutalism. Show up for a raucous, searingly candid and wholly untethered performance from this politically-charged five-piece. Local noise-rock trio Bambara opens in the wake of their Western gothic latest, Shadow On Everything.

Blood Orange
Photograph: Courtesy Stacey Mark
Music, Pop

Blood Orange

icon-location-pin Central Park

It's been two years since Dev Hynes released his stunning 2016 effort, Freetown Sound. A complex, swirling affair, Freetown cemented his status as a multi-talented alt-pop visionary. Back in April, Hynes teased the release of a proper follow-up to that album, as well as a new mixtape and eight singles. Count on hearing from that treasure trove when he takes the stage for this Summerstage gig.

Photograph: Courtesy Gavin Keen
Music, Rock and indie

Alvvays + Snail Mail + Hatchie

icon-location-pin Greenpoint

The celebrated indie-pop upstarts, who first made our hearts flutter with 2014's dreamily delicious single, "Archie, Marry Me," hit town for a pair of dates behind last year's effervescent and thoroughly satisfying Antisocialites. Catch the Toronto quartet at Greenpoint's Polish-community-center-turned-concert venue for a late-summer dose of starry-eyed melodies that'll carry you far into fall.

Photograph: Courtesy Shawn Brackbill
Music, Rock and indie


icon-location-pin Williamsburg

The much-lauded lo-fi indie-rock quartet takes the stage at Bowery Ballroom for its final show ever. Don't miss the chance to revel in the band's plentiful fuzzed-out guitar licks and singer Dave Benton's muted, deadpan drawl one last time.

Lollapalooza 2017, Chance the Rapper
Photograph: Neal O'Bryan
Music, Rap, hip-hop and R&B

Chance the Rapper + Sheck Wes + Tierra Whack + DJ SpinKing

icon-location-pin Coney Island

Chicago MC Chancelor Bennett has built a tidy following the past several years with witty, joyful, freewheeling mixtapes like 2013's Acid Rap and the follow-up, Coloring Book. Add to that a series of collaborations with Donnie Trumpet, confounding fringe-rapper Lil B, and soulful singer and keyboardist Francis Farewell Starlight and you have an impressively prolific series of mixtapes and singles to expect tunes from at this open-air gig. Chance visits NYC for this show as part of Spotify’s RapCaviar Live, a concert series based on the streaming service's trendsetting hip-hop playlist. Also of particular note on the bill is rising Philly rapper Tierra Whack, whose wildly inventive debut album, Whack World, features 15 songs of a minute in length each.

The National
Photograph: Michael J. Chen
Music, Rock and indie

There's No Leaving New York

icon-location-pin Forest Hills

Brooklyn-via-Ohio alt-rock superstars the National present this two-day fest in Queens, featuring turns from Future Islands, Cat Power, Cigarettes After Sex, Phoebe Bridgers, Bully and more. The National headlines each night, so you'll have ample opportunity to savor singer Matt Berninger's microphone-stand-pounding, collar-tearing abandon on stage.

See more NYC concerts in September
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