Winter in New York has some excellent art, antique, fashion, and cultural events that are worth venturing out into the cold (or unseasonably mild) temperatures for. Some of my favorite city events happen this time of year. Here is a a sampling of my picks for what to do in our great city while the days are short and the temperatures keep us bundled up.
New York Jewish Film Festival
1/11 – 1/24, various times
The Walter Reade Theater (Upper West Side)
The Jewish Museum and the Film Society of Lincoln Center partner up to present narrative and documentary films from all over the world that speak to the Jewish experience. This year’s lineup will feature a tribute to Valeska Gert, a screening of Mel Brooks’ The Producers, an exhibition honoring Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder, as well as the usual combination of premieres and screenings.
Brooklyn Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
BAM – Peter Jay Sharp Building (Fort Greene)
The 31st annual BAM tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. will feature a keynote from Opal Tometi, one of the founders of Black Lives Matter. The Institutional Radio Choir and the Campbell Brothers will perform as well. This free event is first-come, first serve and is not one you’ll want to miss.
Outsider Art Fair
1/19 – 1/22, hours vary
Metropolitan Pavilion (Chelsea)
$20 – $50
Browse and purchase out-of-the-ordinary pieces made by out-of-the-ordinary artists. Outsider Art is made by a diverse group of people who operate on the fringes of or completely outside the contemporary art world. This art fair brings genre-bending, unique pieces to a wider audience.
Winter Antiques Show
1/20 – 1/29, hours vary
Park Avenue Armory
$25 (daily admission) – $2500 (Vice Chair ticket)
Now in its 63rd year, the Winter Antiques Show brings together new and established curators, dealers, collectors, and design professionals to purchase art and antiques from 70 exhibitors. One-third of these exhibitors will specialize in Americana, while the rest will bring English, European, and Asian pieces.
1/28, 11am – 3pm
Central Park – Bandshell Area
Free to the public
Head to Central Park for a free, all-ages winter sports festival! Borrow or bring your own equipment for snowshoeing, skiing, snowboarding, arctic golf, and sledding. Gore Mountain will provide fresh snow.
Taj Express: The Bollywood Musical Revue
Concert Hall at Lehman College (Bronx)
$25 – $45
The Taj Express is stopping in NYC for one night, bringing the best of India’s film talent. The show features a lavish set, 2000 different costumes, and of course singing and dancing to everyone’s favorite Bollywood tunes. This show is billed as family-friendly, and kids 12 and under are $10 for any seat in the house.
18th Annual New York City Lunar New Year Parade & Festival
2/5, 12 – 4:30pm
Suggested viewing locations: East Broadway or by Grand Street / Sara Roosevelt Park
Welcome the Year of the Rooster with dragon dancers, drummers, firecrackers, and confetti at this year’s Lunar New Year parade and celebration. The parade will make its way down East Broadway throughout the afternoon, and I recommend enjoying the multitude of Chinese bakeries and restaurants while you’re in the area.
New York Fashion Week Fall 2017 (Women’s)
2/9 – 2/17, various times and locations
The world’s most renowned designers will present their Fall 2017 women’s collections to buyers, writers, and influencers during New York Fashion Week. The NYFW website has a list of events that are open to the public, so you’ll be able attend some shows regardless of whether you have industry insider connections.
2/11, 3 – 7pm
Naumburg Bandshell, Central Park
Ice-carving artists hack away at more than 6,000 pounds of ice to transform them into replicas of Central Park’s bronze and stone statues. As the sun sets, the Mall will be illuminated with colorful lights while live DJs play 80s, 90s, and current Top 40 hits for a silent disco. Headphones will be given out so you can tune into your preferred channel and find others dancing to the same music. Food truck fare will be available for when you inevitably dance up an appetite.
Venetian Valentine Commedia Masked Ball
Grand Prospect Hall Ballroom
$75 (General Admission) – $450 (VIP Valentine Package)
Company XIV and Dances of Vice have created an immersive theater experience that is a fusion of Baroque dance, opera, circus, burlesque, and live music. Make the evening extra special is the Valentine Package, which includes dinner, prime seating at a romantic table for two, wine and champagne.
Cupid’s Undie Run
2/18, 12 – 4pm
Stage 48 @ 605 West 48th Street
This “brief” run starts – and finishes – with a big party to benefit the Children’s Tumor Foundation, an organization dedicated to researching neurofibromatosis, a rare genetic disorder. The Undie Run encourages rather than requires participants to strip down, so if running in your skivvies isn’t your style, don’t let that discourage you from participating in this fun and charitable event.
The Orchid Show: Thailand
2/18 – 4/9
New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
$20 (Adult/Weekdays) – $30 (Adult/Holidays & Weekends)
The New York Botanical Garden will pay homage to Thai culture with a lush tropical garden full of blooming orchids and a traditional Thai pavilion decorated with hundreds of orchids. Learn about the 1,200+ native orchid species in Thailand with guided tours, orchid care demonstrations, and expert Q&A sessions.
New York Dance Festival
2/23 – 2/26
The Roosevelt Hotel (Midtown east)
$25 (General Admission/Single Session) – $325 (Front Row Season Pass)
This multi-cultural Latin and Ballroom dance competition features participants who range from novice to world-class professional. Scholarships are available for dancers who need financial assistance, and an audition is not required for a spot in the competition. Audiences of all knowledge levels are encouraged to attend as well, so whether you’re a Ballroom aficionado or just curious about the world of dance, you’ll feel at home attending NYDF performances.
Rendez-Vous with French Cinema
3/1 – 3/12
Film Society of Lincoln Center (Upper West Side)
$10 (Members & Students) – $25 (General Public Opening Night)
Explore the landscape of contemporary French film at the 22nd annual Rendez-Vous, co-presented by the Film Society of Lincoln Center and Unifrance Films. The festival typically includes work from new talent as well as established filmmakers, though the schedule and lineup will be announced at a later date. For those interested in seeing 3 or more films, a discount package will be available once tickets go on sale in February.
The Armory Show
3/2 – 3/5
Piers 92 & 94 (West Side)
$47 (General Admission/Single Day) – $80 (Run of Show)
The Armory Show brings to NYC the world’s most important 20th and 21st artworks presented by leaders international galleries. Visitors can wander through galleries, view curated solo collections, and starting this year, experience large-scale artwork installations and site-specific commissions as part of a new program.
New York Antiquarian Book Fair
3/9 – 3/12, hours vary
Park Avenue Armory (Lenox Hill)
$25 (Daily Admission) – $50 (Preview Pass)
Over 200 dealers from around the world will bring their rare books, maps, and manuscripts to the Park Avenue Armory for a fair officially sanctioned by the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America and the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers. Choose from subjects including art, medicine, literature, and more to find a one-of-a-kind addition to your personal library.
3/9 – 3/18, various times and locations
This ten-day celebration of Asian art will include exhibitions, auctions, lectures, and special events at major auction houses and cultural institutions throughout the city. For three years, the opening reception has been held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which has opened its Asian art galleries for curator-led tours. A few of this year’s events have been added to the calendar, but the full schedule will be posted in the coming weeks.
Architectural Digest Design Show
3/16 – 3/19
Piers 92 & 94 (West Side)
$30 (General Admission Advance Purchase) – $95 (VIP)
The 16th annual Architectural Digest Design show brings design inspiration in the form of exhibitions, demos, talks, and this year, a keynote on artful home renovations. General Admission allows for reentry on all four days of the show, and comes with a digital subscription to Architectural Digest. VIP tickets come with access to special seminars, a Dining by Design dinner, and an opening reception.
NYC Saint Patrick’s Day Parade
3/17, 11am – 5pm
5th Avenue between 44th & 79th Streets
Show your Irish Pride as the Saint Patrick’s Day parade marches up 5th avenue past Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, and finishes at the Irish Historical Society at East 80th Street. Afterwards, take a stroll through nearby Central Park or grab a drink and a bit at one of NYC’s many Irish pubs. I suggest trying one in the outer boroughs to avoid the big crowds.
Affordable Art Fair
3/29 – 4/2
The Metropolitan Pavilion (Chelsea)
Ticket prices TBA
Local, national, and international galleries will showcase a wide range of prints, paintings, sculptures and photographs at affordable prices (between $100 and $10,000). Visitors can also enjoy tours, talks, and activities while viewing quality contemporary art that won’t break the bank.
MoCCA Arts Festival
4/1 – 4/2
400 local independent comic, cartoon, and animation artists will display their work at this 2-day event, which draws more than 7,000 attendees each year. The artists will also give lectures, teach workshops, and present film screenings to promote illustration as an art form.
New York International Auto Show
4/14 – 4/23
$7 (Kids) – $17 (Adults)
See the latest in automotive design and innovation at the New York International Auto Show, made up of more than four floors of displays. Nearly 1,000 consumer vehicles and concept cars will be on display, allowing attendees to get a first look at cutting-edge and never-before-seen technology.
Tribeca Film Festival
4/19 – 4/30
$9 (Matinee and Late Night Single) – $30 (Tribeca Talks); Passes are $319 – $1200
New York’s most-awaited annual film festival draws an estimated three million people for screenings, talks, and installations that highlight independent film and innovative technology. Attendees can purchase tickets for individual events or buy passes – details will be added to the festival website as April approaches.
9th Annual Brooklyn Folk Festival
4/28 – 4/30
St Ann & the Holy Trinity Church (Brooklyn Heights)
$20 (Sunday Evening) – $85 (3-Day Pass)
Enjoy 3 days of string-band music, folk, blues, bluegrass, traditional Irish and Balkan music, as well as workshops, dances, jam sessions, film screenings, and more! The famous Banjo Toss contest is a must-see as well.
Sakura Matsuri 2017
4/29 – 4/30, 10am – 4:30pm
Brooklyn Botanic Garden (Prospect Park)
Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s annual celebration of cherry blossom season and Japanese culture will feature tours, performances, workshops, tea ceremonies, and art galleries against a backdrop of cherry trees in full bloom.
Whether you’re into film, dance, cars, or anything in between, I hope you’ll enjoy some of these NYC events.