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Check out these quintessential NYC venues and events

You can't call yourself a New Yorker until you've hit these spots.

Photograph: Wendy Connett

Comedy: ASSSSCAT 3000
The UCB’s überpopular improv showcase often features both rising talent and prominent comedians; you may end up seeing past and present SNL cast members (including UCB cofounder Amy Poehler and cover boy Seth Meyers). Get there early—by about 7pm—for a better chance of scoring a ticket. Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, 307 W 26th St between Eighth and Ninth Aves (212-366-9176, ucbtheatre.com). Sun 7:30, 9:30pm; early show $10, late show free (limited tickets distributed at 8:15pm).

Dance: New York City Ballet
Whether it’s your first or 50th viewing, the ballerinas of this iconic company never fail to amaze and inspire. Don’t wait until Nutcracker season to glimpse the brilliance: This spring, you can watch world premieres choreographed by master-in-chief Peter Martins and Benjamin Millepied (also known as Natalie Portman’s hubby). David H. Koch Theater (at Lincoln Center), 20 Lincoln Center Plaza at 63rd St (212-496-0600, nycballet.com). May 1–June 10. Times vary; $29–$149.

Reading: Steamboat: A Literary Humor Series
Named for the store’s painting of the ship designed by engineer Robert Fulton, this popular monthly event gathers top-notch comics (Michael Ian Black and Giulia Rozzi were at March’s edition). Writer Bob Powers and other satirically minded folk introduce new tomes and read from humorous texts. Greenlight Bookstore, 686 Fulton St at South Portland Ave, Fort Greene, Brooklyn (718-246-0200, greenlightbookstore.com). Next event: Apr 19 at 7:30pm; free.

Dining: Dim sum in Queens
New Yorkers pride themselves on authenticity, so for legit Chinese eats, head to central Queens for a small-plates feast. If you have taste buds of steel, sample fiery Szechuan delicacies like peppercorn pork and lamb in chili sauce at Spicy & Tasty(39-07 Prince St between Roosevelt and 39th Aves, Flushing, Queens; 718-359-1601, spicyandtasty.com). Tamer palates can hit Joe’s Shanghai(136-21 37th Ave between Main and Union Sts, Flushing, Queens; 718-539-3838, joeshanghairestaurants.com) for some of the restaurant’s revered soup dumplings. Or try the goods at East Ocean Palace (113-09 Queens Blvd at 75th Ave, Forest Hills, Queens; 718-268-1668), where you and your pals can select ginger lobster, curry-dusted steamed squid and congee with thousand-year egg from a lengthy, picture-laden menu.

Nightlife: Gotham Burlesque
Leave your shy friends at home for these risqué performances, starring the city’s sultriest tassel twirlers. Boylesque star Tigger! headlines the next revue, on April 7, while Dirty Martini and Jo “Boobs” Weldon of the New York School of Burlesque are set to take the stage this summer. The Triad, 158 W 72nd St at Broadway (212-362-2590, triadnyc.com). First Saturday of the month 10pm; $35–$45.

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