Unlike other “what to do in NYC on the weekend” lists, only NYC on the Cheap gives you a list of only FREE stuff to do, unless you buy stuff. Unless otherwise noted, street fairs are 10am to 5pm.
Let’s hope the weather cooperates with all the outdoor events. Are you listening, Hurricane Joaquin.
any time of year
Free on Saturday in New York City
Harvest Festival on Randall’s Island – Take the kids to this family-friendly event that features kite flying, pumpkin decorating, face painting, self-guided tours of the Urban Farm, live music by J.D. Patch and more. Noon to 4pm at the Urban Farm. Event website.
Things That Go Bump in the Night – Scary and fun multicultural stories in celebration of Halloween. For children of all ages, presented by Linda Humes, at 3pm at the Children’s Center of the main branch of the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue guarded by those two stone lions. There are no reservations, so get there early.
- Also take the time to see a FREE photography exhibit, Public Eye: Sharing 175 Years of Photography exploring how photography has been shared and how it has influenced us, since long before the selfie.
Fourth Street Festival – street fair, between Sixth Avenue and University Place.
Summer on the Hudson Loops and Hoops Festival – Celebrate World Hoop Day by dancing to live looped music by multiple talented artists. Bring your hoop and your sense of exploration and get down. The Hoop Movement will be at the event selling hoops for those that would like to pick on up and dance the day away. You are welcome to bring your own from home, or to come and enjoy the music sans hoop. 1pm to 5pm at Pier i, Riverside Park at 68th St. Event website.
Fall Craftstravaganza – Street fair with a crafts theme. West 17th St., between Eighth and Ninth Avenues.
My Dog Loves Central Park Fair – Bring Fido for fun and games at a special fair for four-legged friends. At the Naumburg Bandshell, mid-park at 72nd St.
Fall for Arts Festival – Street fair on the lawn south of 531 Main Street,Roosevelt Island. Event website.
Free on Saturday/Sunday in New York City
American Crafts Festival at Lincoln Center – The good stuff. Not the usual street fair schlock. See this recent NYCOTC posting for full information.
Gracie Square Art Show – Also better than the usual street fair schlock. Event website
Free on Sunday in New York City
78th Annual Pulaski Parade – Celebrate all things Polish. Marching up Fifth Ave. from 39th to 56th Streets beginning at 12:30pm. Event website
Medieval Festival – Gird your loins and get thee hence to The Cloisters at Fort Tryon Park for this annual festival. See this recent NYCOTC posting for full information.
27th Annual Upper Broadway Harvest Festival – Street fair, between 96th St. and 106th St. 96th
Sons of Italy Festival – Street fair n Liberty St. between Broadway and Trinity Place
Lower East Side Pickle Day and the Pickle Pooch Parade – Pucker up, on Orchard St. between Houston and Delancey.
NYC weekend flea markets and food fairs:
Vendy Plaza: Dozens of food trucks are at the famous El Marqueta area at 125th St. and Park Avenue every Sunday through Nov. 1st. Details here.
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.
If you have a FREE weekend event you’d like to share with NYC on the Cheap, email us at [email protected]
Also, check the list of best free things to do in NYC any day of the week, including weekends.
Enjoy your free and cheap NYC weekend.