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Things to do on a Sunday in New York

Have fun like there’s no tomorrow with the best things to do on a Sunday in New York including events, brunch and more

Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz
By Time Out New York editors and David Goldberg

Forget about work in the morning: you’ve got too much partying to do today, so here are the best things to do on a Sunday in New York. Whether you’re planning a day trip from NYC, looking for an awesome festival, or finally have the time to see some of the best museum exhibitions in NYC, we’ve got the rundown for your best Sunday Funday right here. And if you blew all your cash on Saturday, stick with our picks for the best free things to do in town.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to things to do in NYC this weekend

Things to do on any Sunday

Mother's Ruin

Find the perfect brunch

New Yorkers may not be a religious bunch, but we’ve got our own time-honored Sunday morning ritual: brunch. Whether you’re dining with a group or rolling solo, here are the finest places to quell your a.m. hunger pangs (and/or hangover). Click through for our complete guide to the best brunch in NYC including pancakes, huevos rancheros, eggs Benedict, mimosas and other late-breakfast standards.

Photograph: Wendy Connett
Comedy, Stand-up

Line up for improve at ASSSSCAT 3000

NYC’s long-form improv royalty (including UCBT and SNL folk) play pickup-game style in this famous long-running show. There’s no telling who will make an appearance on a given night, but the likes of Amy Poehler and Rachel Dratch have been known to pop in. If you want to check it out for free, line up outside the theater (early!) for the 9:30pm show; tickets are distributed at 8:15pm. Play-it-safers can buy advance tickets for the 7:30pm show for $10.

Tour Brooklyn Brewery
Photograph: Courtesy Brooklyn Brewery/Dan D'Ippolito
Bars, Breweries

Tour the Brooklyn Brewery

icon-location-pin Williamsburg

Williamsburg’s craft-beer facility offers free, no-reservation general tours on Saturday and Sunday. Post-tour, join the crowds purchasing tokens for brewskis (one beer for $5, five for $20) to taste the standard and seasonal styles on tap. Sunday bonus: This is the only day that also includes Smorgasbrewery, in which five or six vendors from Smorgasburg dish out suds-complementing foodstuffs inside the brew house.

Photograph: Shutterstock
Nightlife, Clubs

Bliss out to LPs at Classic Album Sundays

icon-location-pin Greenpoint

Erstwhile New Yorker Colleen “Cosmo” Murphy brings her long-running London affair back home to Gotham. The concept is simple: It’s a good old-fashioned listening party, with each installment focusing on a selection from rock and pop’s discography of canonical LPs, all played on Murphy’s high-end audiophile hi-fi. Murphy’s album selection comes from all over the genre map: the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Kraftwerk’s Autobahn, Bob Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks. Click here to read our interview with Murphy.

Governors Island
Photograph: Shutterstock
Things to do

Take the ferry to Governors Island

A seven-minute ride on a free ferry from Manhattan or Brooklyn takes you to this seasonal island sanctuary, a scant 800 yards from lower Manhattan. Thanks to its strategic position in the middle of New York Harbor, Governors Island was a military outpost that was off-limits to the public for 200 years. It finally opened to summer visitors in 2006. Today, the island provides a peaceful setting for biking (bring a bike on the ferry, or rent from Bike and Roll once there), picnicking and general relaxation. The island often hosts events such as concert series, art exhibitions and club nights (see website for schedule).

Shopping, Markets and fairs

Shop local at Artists & Fleas

icon-location-pin Williamsburg

A rotating selection of around 60 vendors, including local designers and artists, sets up shop in this Williamsburg warehouse every weekend. The browsable mix includes everything from original T-shirts and handmade jewelry to reconditioned vintage bags and clocks made out of old hardcover books. But Artists & Fleas is as much about the vibe as the goods: DJs spin, food purveyors offer refreshments, and sundry Billyburgers wander the rows of booths in all their quirky finery.

Spoons, Toons and Booze at Nitehawk Cinema
Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nelson
Movie theaters, Independent

Indulge your inner child at Spoons, Toons and Booze

icon-location-pin Williamsburg

Does the eye-wateringly sweet taste of Frosted Flakes make you nostalgic for the cartoon-filled weekend mornings of your youth? If so, head to Spoons, Toons & Booze at Nitehawk Cinema, where Michael Austin, organizer of the ’80s Sing-Along, brings you a free all-you-can-eat sugary cereal buffet and a selection of 80-plus cartoons from the ’40s through the ’90s (DuckTales, Jem, ThunderCats, Captain Planet—you name it). You can spike your Cinnamon Toast Crunch with a shot of Baileys or Kahlúa for $5; there are some benefits to adulthood, after all.

Bars, Lounges

Get down up high at Nouveau York

icon-location-pin Meatpacking District

Nouveau York hosts Neil Aline and Jérôme Viger-Kohler keep the fun coming up in the Standard Hotel’s penthouse boîte, with Aline and top guests (DJ Harvey, Club Cheval and Dimitri from Paris have played in the past) hitting the decks for a session of house, disco and more.

Museums, Art and design

Hear live classical music at the Frick Collection

icon-location-pin Upper East Side

Few experiences in New York City can compare with taking in a lieder concert, piano recital or chamber-music performance in this stately old mansion-cum-art-museum’s elegant music room, where scores of prominent musicians have made their first local appearances. Show up early to check out the gallery, which is pay-what-you-wish from 11am to 1pm on Sundays.

Photograph: Daniel Avila
Attractions, Parks and gardens

Scream at Alley Pond Park Adventure Course

icon-location-pin Douglaston

Thrill seekers should head to this series of obstacles designed for team-building and scaring the crap out of you. Live out your Indiana Jones fantasy by scaling a bouldering wall, whizzing down the zip line, balancing on a high wire and getting catapulted from the Human Swing Shot, a device that lifts you 45 feet in the air before sending you into free fall.

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Movies to see this Sunday

Movies, Documentary

Apollo 11

A definitive documentary about the historic 1969 moon shot delivers nothing less than the real thing

Time Out says
Photo: Hilary Bronwyn Gayle
Movies, Drama

Gloria Bell

Julianne Moore delivers a signature performance as a rumpled romantic survivor.

Time Out says
Movies, Horror


Gaspar Noé embarks on another boundary-pushing head trip—you’ll want to join him

Time Out says
Movies, Drama

Cold War

Pawel Pawlikowski’s epic love story is an achingly romantic and melancholic joy

Time Out says
Movies, Comedy

Green Book

Call this actors’ duet sentimental and simplistic at your own peril. Green Book may well move you, possibly to tears, at the thought of real social change and kindness (at a time when we need it badly). Something of a reverse Driving Miss Daisy, it charts a road trip into racism shared by two well-worn stereotypes, characters that, almost surprisingly, come from real life—a true tale that happened in 1962. “Tony Lip” Vallelonga (a pizza-chomping Viggo Mortensen) is a brutal NYC club bouncer prone to howyadoins. On the hunt for work, he gets an unlikely gig at the invitation of Don Shirley (cryptic Mahershala Ali, superb), a finicky black jazz pianist who requires a tough driver to escort him on a tour of the Deep South. Tony’s no bleeding heart, but for the right price, he’s willing to swallow his pride. The mouth, however, can’t be closed: Tony cuts loose with deliriously rude arias about Little Richard, fried chicken and the proper way to write a love letter, and both actors shade their roles with unexpected nuance and a generosity of spirit. They widen the already spacious Cadillac into a stage for some of the most relaxed banter of the year. If you recall the movies that Green Book’s director Peter Farrelly made with his brother Bobby (There’s Something About Mary, the Dumb and Dumber saga), you won’t be surprised by the crassness or the unexpected heart, both Farrelly trademarks. The new film creates a beautiful friction eased by conversation—somewhat calculated, yes, b

Time Out says
Photo: Greig Fraser/Annapurna Pictures
Movies, Drama


Utterly transformed via a small phalanx of makeup artists, Christian Bale anchors Adam McKay's biopic of Dick Cheney

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Movies, Drama

On the Basis of Sex

Felicity Jones stars in this impressively brainy dramatization of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s rise to legal prominence

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Looking for the perfect Sunday brunch?

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