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The best things to do in NYC this week

Check out the very best things to do in NYC this week including cultural events, fun trivia nights, concerts and more

NYC skyline
Photograph: Shutterstock NYC skyline
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There are many incredible things to do in NYC this week, some of which are the best things to do in spring. We're so happy the season for spring festivals and things to do outside is finally upon us. For news on when major warm-weather events are happening, check this page. Aside from that, pay close attention to all the excellent concerts, art shows and hilarious comedy shows happening this week too.

RECOMMENDED: Full list of the best things to do in New York

Best things to do in NYC this week

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Photograph: Courtesy Rebecca MB. Pearson
Things to do, Festivals

Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit

icon-location-pin Washington Square Park, Greenwich Village
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This city tradition feels fresh every spring when artists following in the footsteps of Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning set up shop in the park. Hundreds of exhibitors, from NYU students to artists who remember the Village as a creative enclave, display their paintings, sculptures, photography, jewelry and woodcraft. University Place starting at E 13th St. 

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Photograph: Courtesy Mike Shane
Things to do

YES Memorial Day BBQ + Party

icon-location-pin House of Yes, Bushwick
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Throw together your most patriotic getup and bring your holiday to a thrilling end with 12 hours of all-American raging in House of Yes’s yard, where hot dogs and patties (with veggie options!) are doled out all day, barely clad partyers dance to house beats and the alcohol keeps coming. Tunes are provided by Eli Escobar and The Duchess. 

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Bobby Hankinson
Stefano Giovannini
Things to do, Trivia

POP! A Bingo Party

icon-location-pin Pete's Candy Store, Williamsburg
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For bingo players with a particular predilection for pop culture, this night of geeky revelry hosted by comedian Bobby Hankinson provides clips, trivia and drunken debates on sacred topics from the media vault. 

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Brooklyn Memorial Day Parade
Things to do

Brooklyn Memorial Day Parade

icon-location-pin Various locations, New York
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Catholic war veterans lead Brooklyn service organizations in honor of fallen soldiers and their families in one of the oldest parades in Brooklyn—in fact, it's now in its 152nd year. Sponsored by the United Military Veterans of Kings County, the ceremony kicks off at 11am on Third Avenue and 78th Street in Bay Ridge, then proceeds along Fourth Avenue and ends with a 21-gun salute by the U.S. Army at Fort Hamilton. The NYPD and FDNY will also march, Brooklyn high-school bands will perform, and antique fire trucks and autos will be on display.

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Photograph: Courtesy Robert Denbo
Things to do

Memorial Day Commemoration at Green-Wood Cemetery

icon-location-pin Green-Wood Cemetery, Sunset Park
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The annual Memorial Day concert at Green-Wood Cemetery features The New York City Symphonic Band. Bring a blanket to sit and enjoy the free live music, including a special program in honor of famed composer and conductor Leonard Bernsetin and others. Food and refreshments will be provided by local vendors throughout the day.

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Photograph: Courtesy Artists & Fleas
Shopping, In-store events

Artists & Fleas Vintage Showcase

icon-location-pin Artists & Fleas SoHo,
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Take your OOTD selfie and spring fashion game to the next level at Artists & Fleas in Soho. For one day only, market-goers will have a chance to peruse an extra special assortment of vintage wares, shoes, jewelry and accessories from a great group of purveyors (12 total) with a serious eye for style. Aside from sifting through sweet throwbacks from merchants like Gypsy Nation Vintage, Thriftwares, Zingara, Funkanova, Omnia Vintage and more, imbibe with vino provided by Wölffer Estate. If you want early access to this retro jackpot, attend the opening night party ($10) to sift the racks before it's open to the public. 

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Photograph: Courtesy Greg Kessler
Things to do, Festivals

World Science Festival

icon-location-pin Various locations, New York
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Nerds, rejoice! The World Science Festival is back with another round of debates, films, workshops, interactive installations and discussions featuring leaders in astronomy, neuroscience, robotics and more. Get a new perspective on the intelligence of other animals, learn about the promising effects of psychedelics, stargaze with professional telescopes in Brooklyn Bridge Park and top it all off with a free street fair in Washington Square Park.

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Photograph: Courtesy Bea Helman
Comedy, Stand-up

STEVIE

icon-location-pin Union Hall, Park Slope
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Drew Anderson, Marcia Belsky and Sam Taggart form their own comedy coven at this witchy stand-up night, honoring the spinning queen Stevie Nicks. The Rumors are true: The former Bushwick gig has moved to Park Slope's Union Hall and spotlights a magical group of guest comedians each month. May's edition stars Ana Fabrega, Catherine Cohen, Charlie Bardey, Moss Perricone and Rachel Kaly.  

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Weyes Blood
Photograph: Courtesy Kathryn Vetter Miller
Music

Weyes Blood

icon-location-pin Music Hall of Williamsburg, Williamsburg
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This local folkie (real name Natalie Mering) crafts atmospheric, haunting tunes that mine nostalgic territory (’60s electric piano and lush backing arrangements) to explore contemporary anxieties. Be entranced by her vocals during her upcoming Music Hall of Williamsburg in support of her new record, Titantic Rising. 

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Truth Serum
Comedy

Truth Serum

icon-location-pin Q.E.D., Astoria
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The hilarious Zoe Yellen turns her late night talk show into a wild, boozy comedy get down with drinking games, sketches and stand-up every month. May's edition features comedians Jaye McBride, Jhanelle Dennis and Julian Williams, and contestants Chandler Dean, Kara Lindsay Rowells and Samuel Haddis.

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Mark Guiliana
Photograph: Courtesy the artist
Music, Jazz

Mark Guiliana Jazz Quartet

icon-location-pin Village Vanguard, West Village
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An acclaimed contemporary innovator behind the set, Guiliana has developed an erratic, explosive style of groove that turns the pocket inside-out as often as it nestles deep within it.

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Photograph: Courtesy The Color Factory
Things to do

The Color Factory

icon-location-pin The Color Factory, West Village
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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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Photograph: Courtesy Urban Outfitters
Shopping, In-store events

Betsey Johnson x Urban Outfitters Launch

icon-location-pin Urban Outfitters - Herald Square, Midtown
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Betsey Johnson, the queen of color and all the fun flair, heads to Urban Outfitters Herald Square for a meet-and-greet in honor of her new collection with the brand. Enjoy gratis specialty cocktails, DJ tunes by Angel and Dren and get a tote customized by letter and design artist Brian Kaspr.

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Cabin
Photograph: Courtesy Maria Baranova
Theater, Drama

Cabin

icon-location-pin The Bushwick Starr, Central Brooklyn
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Writer-director-choreographer Sean Donovan puts on a fourth hat as the costar of his new multimedia piece about three queer guys in a cabin in the woods. Fellow performers Tyler Ashley and Brandon Washington share the choreography credit for this world premiere about the nature of storytelling; the production features original music by Heather Christian. 

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Jonathan Zeller
Comedy, Stand-up

The Good Dog Show: A Dog-Friendly Comedy Show

icon-location-pin DSK's Haus on Hanson, Fort Greene
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Pups are welcome at this stand-up show at a "barkeasy" in Brooklyn. For the May edition, host Jonathan Zeller brings up an outstanding lineup of comedians—Aparna Nancherla, Emmy Blotnick, Ophira Eisenberg, Daniel Simonsen, Shane Torres and Tim Barnes—and some cute performing pooches, too.

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Lunch Bunch
Photograph: Courtesy Elke Young
Theater, Drama

Summerworks 2019

icon-location-pin The Wild Project, Lower East Side
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Clubbed Thumb mounts its 24th annual new-works festival, one of the best ways to see which local playwrights have their fingers on the pulse. The first show is Sarah Einspanier's portrait of harried public defenders, Lunch Bunch (May 17–28), directed by Tara Ahmadinejad. Next up is Zhu Yi's You Never Touched the Dirt (June 3–13), a depiction of economic transformation and its costs, directed by downtown mainstay Ken Rus Schmoll. The final show is Daniel Glenn's look at life on the Plymouth Plantation, King Philip's Head Is Still on That Pike Just Down the Road (June 19–29), directed by Caitlin Ryan O'Connell. Lunch Bunch: Review by Helen Shaw Hey, here’s a dare! Try seeing Lunch Bunch, Sarah Einspanier’s excellent workplace comedy, when you’re hungry. Its characters are overtaxed public defenders (the script suggests they might be in the Bronx), and their lone joy is a co-op lunch agreement shared by five proud members. In rattling, lickety-split dialogue, the lawyers tell us about the sustainable homemade delicacies—like sesame-encrusted kale chips and jackfruit barbecue—that they bring in to share with fellow Bunchers. (My notes here read: “Buy jackfruit.”) Membership in the Lunch Bunch is jealously guarded, so when rookie cook Nicole (Julia Sirna-Frest) subs in for a vacationing Tal (Eliza Bent), we have the whisper of plot. But there’s little room for a story, because Einspanier has crammed every second with marvelous character studies and syncopated conversations th

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Photograph: Courtesy Bryant Park
Things to do

Dance Party in Bryant Park

icon-location-pin Bryant Park, Midtown West
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Aside from the gratis yoga and tai chi classes held on the lawn of Bryant Park, the green space coaxes toe-tappers to its nearly 10-acre expanse with a fun and free Dance Party on Wednesday evenings starting in May. Folks can cut a rug and learn new styles led by experts starting at 6pm, when instructors walk you through how to swing, tango, salsa or bachata. An hour later, a live band plays the appropriate tunes so you can show off your new steps under the stars.

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Lorena Russi, Micheal Foulk and Kyle Dacuyan
LGBT

Greetings, from Queer Mountain

icon-location-pin Housing Works Bookstore Cafe, Soho
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Lorena Russi Serna and Kyle Dacuyan welcome LGBTQ writers, performers and artists to share tales on a given theme at this well-curated storytelling night. 

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Growing Up Female
Growing Up Female. 1971. USA. Directed by Julia Reichert, Jim Klein. Courtesy the artist.
Things to do, Film events

Julia Reichert: 50 Years in Film

icon-location-pin Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Midtown East
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This retrospective celebrates the work of Academy Award–nominated documentarian Julie Reichert with screenings of films from across her career. On the lineup: Growing up Female, Methadone: An American Way of Dealing, A Lion in the House, American Factory 美国工厂 and more. Don't miss the chance to get a peek at Reichert's current work in progress, Raises Not Roses—The Story of the 9 to 5 Movement on May 31.

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Brooklyn Botanic Garden
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Chris M. Morris
Things to do, Walks and tours

Twilight Tuesdays at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

icon-location-pin Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Crown Heights
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The city's foliage is in full bloom and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is taking full advantage with extended hours every Tuesday through the end of September. Drop in for a sunset cocktail with bae or a solo stroll amongst the garden's multitude of horticultural treasures.

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NYC events calendar

Find the best things to do all year with our NYC events calendar of the coolest events, including parades, concerts, films and art exhibits

GYG NYC Widget 2019

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