The best things to do in NYC this weekend

There are a ton of great things to do in NYC this weekend, but don't worry—we've whittled the list down to our 15 recs
Photograph: Shutterstock
By Jennifer Picht and Time Out New York contributors |
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TGIF! There are some incredible things to do in NYC this weekend from some special events at the New York Botanical Garden to one of the largest street fairs in New York. Can’t deal with all this rainy weather? Same, but luckily, this list of indoor activities should help lift your spirits.

RECOMMENDED: Full list of the best things to do in NYC

Things to do in NYC this weekend

1
Things to do, Performances

Art Battle NYC

The solitary art of painting becomes a spectator sport at this showdown, where live painters face off in front of a crowd for a chance to compete in the international Art Battle championships. Watch as 12 artists spray and splash an assortment of paint during timed rounds, with drinks and music to keep the audience screaming. Paint on.

2
9/26/10. Atlantic Antic, 2010
Things to do, Markets and fairs

Atlantic Antic

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NYC’s largest and oldest street festival returns to Downtown Brooklyn for its 44th year, boasting ten blocks rammed with Brooklyn-based food vendors, artists, craft breweries and artisanal shops. With so much awesome fare at your fingertips, you'll have to pace yourself. Stop off at performance stage and catch a live act before getting back to it.

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3
Brooklyn Museum
Things to do, Talks and lectures

Museum Day Live!

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Download a voucher from the Smithsonian museum to receive two free tickets to one of more than 20 New York City museums and cultural centers. Participating big-name institutions include the Jewish Museum, Asia Society Museum, Queens Historical Society, Fraunces Tavern Musuem and more. 

4
Queens County Fair
Photograph: Courtesy Queens County Farm Museum
Things to do, Festivals

Queens County Fair

icon-location-pin Queens
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Get a little rural living without leaving the city limits at the 36th iteration of this down-home festival. For two days, the Queens County Farm Museum will become even more agrarian than usual with livestock competitions, pie-eating contests, awards for the fastest corn huskers and pig races and Irish and German musicians to keep your feet stomping. While there, try to make your way through the Amazing Maize Maze, a three-acre labyrinth, or take a spin on carnival rides. Glean tips on fashioning your own farm-to-table fare at a colonial cooking demo, or knock back a few at a Bavarian beer garden. You can even register online to enter your own craft, vegetable, or baked or canned goods in one of the blue-ribbon contests.

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5
Photograph: Courtesy Kisha Bari
Things to do

Photoville

icon-location-pin Brooklyn Heights
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Photoville is back! And your Insta is about to get meta. NYC hosts a bounty of beautiful photography exhibitions, but only Photoville can claim to be as pretty as the photographs it showcases. Held in and around giant shipping containers in Brooklyn Bridge Park, the massive celebration of pictures features more than 600 artists, 75 exhibitions, talks, screenings, seminars and hands-on photography workshops for budding shutterbugs. There's also a beer garden from Brooklyn Brewery with food from Smorgasburg including Big Mozz, Mao's Bao and John's Juice. The best part: Photoville is totally free, and dog-friendly! Find a full list of hours and events on Photoville's website.

6
Tribeca TV Festival
Photograph: Courtesy Dia Dipasupil
Things to do, Festivals

Tribeca TV Festival

icon-location-pin Tribeca
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Move over, film. The annual Tribeca TV Festival presents three days of premieres and panels featuring the very best of television. This year's bash toasts two decades of Law and Order: SVU with a panel discussion including Mariska Hargitay, Ice T, Dick Wolf and the rest of the cast. Bryan Cranston looks back on Breaking Bad for the tenth anniversary of its premiere, and Tracey Ullman shows up to preview a new season of HBO zaniness. Along with screening premieres of new series and returning favorites like Ray Donovan and Madam Secretary, the festival will host a viewing of one of Anthony Bourdain's finale episodes of Parts Unknown, followed by a discussion on his legacy with producers and episode guest W. Kamau Bell. Most events run for $20–$30 a pop. It's a golden era of episodics; don't miss the chance to bask in the glow of the small screen.

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7
Idles
Photograph: Courtesy Partisan Records
Music, Punk and metal

Idles + Bambara

icon-location-pin Williamsburg
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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.

8
Ben Moss and Dillon Curry
Photograph: Courtesy Sandy Honig
Music

Dillon Curry and Ben Moss

icon-location-pin Hell's Kitchen
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Dreamy acoustic duo Ben Moss and Dillon Curry have been teasing us all year with intimate performances all around town; finally, they're giving us an EP to cling to. The folk rock buddies are joined by frequent collaborators Courtney Bassett and Cathryn Wake for this special release party at the Green Room 42. 

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9
The World Maker Faire
Things to do, Conventions

World Maker Faire

icon-location-pin Queens
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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.

10
Photograph: Courtesy The New York Botanical Garden
Things to do

Blues, Brews & Botany

icon-location-pin The Bronx
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Hang out in a beer garden like no other when the New York Botanical Garden hosts music, tastings and talks. Listen to live bluegrass and blues while playing lawn games and sampling craft brews, then head over to the Perennial Garden to learn about the botany of beer from brewers and scientists.

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11
Joe Battaglia and the New York Big Band
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist
Music, Cabaret and standards

Joe Battaglia and the New York Big Band

The expansive Art Deco grandeur of the Edison Ballroom is the scene of this highly retro evening of dinner and swing music, courtesy of Battaglia and his brassy 16-piece crew. If you're looking for a time-capsule New York dance hall experience, this is where to find it. The fall show is titled September Swing.

12
Ben Wasserman and Brantley Brice
Photograph: Courtesy Dee Guerreros
Comedy

Cereal Milk

How apt for Ben Wasserman and Brantley Brice's sweet new stand-up show to go down at Friends & Lovers, as their room will most certainly be packed with their best buddies. Join the two adorable whackjobs as they welcome funny friends Carmen Lagala, Jes Tom, Eudora Peterson, Adam Wade, Sam Taggart and Maria Wojciechowski to chill on stage.

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13
Be Cute
Photograph: Courtesy Maro Hagopian
LGBT

Be Cute Brooklyn

icon-location-pin Gowanus
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We consider ourselves very lucky to be able to party with Horrorchata, Charlene and the other icons of Brooklyn drag at this low-priced monthly kiki. Count on hits from Janet Jackson and Britney Spears and outrageous performances from Bushwig's greatest hits along with DJs like Hannah Lou and Amber Valentine. Serve your look, but prepare to sweat your fake eyelashes right off. 

14
Julia Drummond
Things to do

What's Your Age Again?

icon-location-pin Greenwich Village
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Le Poisson Rouge shuts it down every Friday with this hardcore nostalgia-rager, featuring the appropriately-titled cover bands Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and TRL. Lose your voice singing along to crowd pleasers from the oeuvres of Prince, TLC, Nirvana, Outkast and beyond at this wild weekly bash.

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15
Bear Mountain State Park fall foliage cruise
Photograph: Courtesy Viator
Things to do

Bear Mountain Full-Day Cruise

icon-location-pin Hell's Kitchen
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Take a leisurely cruise up the Hudson River to gorgeous Bear Mountain State Park. After a 2.5-hour cruise, you'll have three hours to explore the park's natural beauty, abundant hiking trails and zoo. On the way back, join the onboard Oktoberfest complete with craft beer, German food and live music.

More things to do in NYC this weekend

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