As always, there’s plenty to do in NYC free and cheap on weekends, and this Mother’s Day weekend has an extra long list of events. Nearly everything on our weekly list is FREE, and nothing is over $15 per person. So take advantage of the wonderful spring weather and enjoy NYC on the cheap.
any time of year
Today and Saturday in New York:
Global Beat Festival: FREE performances by international musicians and dancers at the Winter Garden glass atrium in Lower Manhattan. Full details in this previous NYCOTC posting. .
Saturday in New York:
Harlem Children’s Theater Festival: Sing-a-longs, storytelling, performances and a raffle at the end of the festival, formerly known as Family Arts Day. FREE, 10am to 1pm at City University Aaron Davis Hall. Harlem Children’s Theatre Festival is presented by the School of Education’s Graduate Program in Educational Theatre, one of just ten such graduate programs in the nation. Students in program create and facilitate all the activities as part of their curriculum.
Kid’s Spring Fling in Lincoln Center: An all-day festival of music and dance workshops and performances, kid-friendly movie screenings, a scavenger hunt and more, 11am to 2pm, all FREE. Get the full schedule here.
Midtown Block Party: Street fair on 45th Street between Sixth and Seventh Aves., 10am-4pm
Second Avenue Festival: Street fair on Second Ave., between 4th and 14th Streets, 10am-5pm
Sunday in New York:
Japan Day in Central Park: Celebrate Japanese food and culture at this annual FREE festival, with music and dance performances, karate and sword-fighting demonstrations and more. 8am to 4pm, at the Central Park Bandshell, midpark at 72nd St.
Saturday and Sunday in NYC:
Crafts on Columbus: Annual gathering of well-made artwork and jewelry, not the regular street fair schlock. on Columbua Avenue, between 77th and 81st Streets, behind the American Museum of Natural History, 10am-6pm both days
Smorgasburg: The popular Brooklyn foodie festival is back outdoors every weekend through fall, with more than 75 local vendors selling top quality sodas, gluten-free sodas, seafood and more. Saturdays are in in East River State Park, and Sundays in Brooklyn Bridge Park. Full details on the Made In Brooklyn Tours website.
Fulton Stall Market at the South Street Seaport: A new farmer’s market and more. The more includes FREE Saturday morning cartoons for the kids and cooking demonstrations for the grownups. Details here.
Also, check the list of best free things to do in NYC any day of the week, including weekends.