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Things to do on Thanksgiving in NYC

Find plenty of things to do on Thanksgiving, whether you're in the holiday spirit, or if you're more ho-ho-oh forget it

Photograph: David Cova

If you're staying here over Thanksgiving weekend, chances are you've got your folks in town. In which case, it's the perfect time to take them to the festive sights—like ice-skating rinks or holiday markets—while the city's delightfully deserted. On the other hand, if you're here and are trying your very best to avoid Christmas in New York, we've got your agenda for a cultured couple of days away from the turkeys. Check out our list below of the best things to do on Thanksgiving.

RECOMMENDED: A full guide to Thanksgiving in NYC

Things to do on Thanksgiving weekend

Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park

Not only is there free ice-skating on Bryant Park's 17,000-square-foot outdoor rink (bring your own skates!), but also 128 holiday shops, including a bunch of new kiosks and eateries such as Marty V’s Burger and Super Mac + Cheez. And after you shop and skate, warm up at spacious rinkside restaurant Celsius. FYI: The vendors are only there until January 3, but if you want to practice your lutzes and axels with ample spinning room, try visiting during off-peak hours (open through March 6).

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Fri Oct 30 - Sun Jan 3

Waverly Midnights: "Wes Craven's Nightmares"

Shake off the sentimentality of Thanksgiving family films, and watch something truly unsettling. There’s nothing better for a winter night than to watch Freddy Kruger go slashing through the snow, so head to IFC for 1984’s A Nightmare on Elm Street. Seeing Johnny Depp get swallowed by a mattress should be a Thanksgiving tradition.

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Fri Oct 30 - Sat Dec 26

Radio City Christmas Spectacular

You'll get a kick out of this holiday stalwart, which—after more than eight decades—still features Santa, wooden soldiers and the leggy, spunky Rockettes. In recent years, new music, more eye-catching costumes and advanced technology were introduced to bring audience members closer to the performance.

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Fri Nov 13 - Sun Jan 3

Turkeys for Thanksgiving

Was Showgirls really that bad? What really went down during filming of The Wizard of Oz? Who thought putting Sting in Dune was a good idea? BAM has curated a bonkers collection of box-office bombs, critically maligned cult favorites and hits with notoriously troubled production stories. Thanksgiving weekend may be the only time this year when you'll have four hours to spend on Elizabeth Taylor's Cleopatra, so why not sit back and watch the royal affair unfold? You may leave with a whole new appreciation for some universally hated movies.

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Fri Nov 20 - Sun Nov 29

Seinfeld Thanksgiving Trivia

Are you and members of your team "sponge worthy" enough to duke it out with other masters of Seinfeld trivia? Organize a four-person bizarro team and study up on "close talkers," Himalayan walking shoes and both phases of Del Boca Vista if you want to stand a chance of surviving until Festivus.

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23 Nov 2015

Feeding NYC

Join Feeding NYC two days before Turkey Day to help prepare, package and deliver holiday feasts to more than 35,000 New York City families in need. With packaging shifts available or even the option to just donate, there are plenty of ways you can help this Thanksgiving.

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24 Nov 2015

Thanksgiving Dinner

Exorcise your anxiety about turkey-centric family reunions by forcing the PIT crew to act out a chaotic, All-American Thanksgiving dinner onstage. Based entirely on audience suggestion, the "family members" will take out all their insanity upon one another, with hilarious results. Try to go easy on them.

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24 Nov 2015


Tear it up on the dance floor before you embrace total Thanksgiving sloth at this rowdy ska, hip-hop and funk throwdown. Wild Dumpstaphunk of New Orleans joins riotous rock fusion act Fishbone and special guest Cyrl Neville for a slamming evening of nonstop foot-banging jams.

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25 Nov 2015

Thanksgiving Eve Party

DJs Lady D, Doowyah and Dre Black will be shutting down Webster Hall after hard hip-hop jams all night. Get down with free drinks before 11:30pm (in return for a canned food donation) and classic jams before crashing hard for Thanksgiving.

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25 Nov 2015

ReSolute Thanksgiving Eve

Williamsburg may seem relatively quiet on Thanksgiving Eve, but that's only the view from the outside of Baby's All Right. Fearless party collective ReSolute brings the insanity behind its 24-hour dance ragers and rambunctious electro party cruises to Baby's for a late night of disco, dance and house from the fiercely addictive Pachanga Boys.

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Wed Nov 25 - Thu Nov 26
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Mark W
Mark W

Every Saturday night (including the one after Thanksgiving), grab your loved one(s), or leave 'em behind, and come sing and dance the night away at

SHAKE RATTLE & ROLL Dueling Pianos - 

10pm show Saturday Nights at

The Cellar @ 22 Warren St. NYC 10007

All request rock n roll party, all night long.


jjust a few cool things for thanksgiving xx