Your weekend plans begin here, with a couple of dozen FREE and cheap things to do this first weekend of August, including movies, music and dance. NYCOTC weekend guide is always $20 or less so you can take bites out of the Big Apple without eating up your budget.
New York City doesn’t have to be expensive when you know where to go and what to do, and we do.
Unless a price is noted, our weekend list is FREE, and we usually remind you anyway, to be sure you know. Unless otherwise noted, street fairs are 10am to 6pm.
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Usually we start with Friday events, but this week we’re adding Thursday – today – because there’s so much to do.
Thursday, August 3rd
Lincoln Center – See a screening of The Big Lebowski at 10:30pm in the Damrosch Park Bandshell, part of the Lincoln Center Out of Doors Festival.
Jazz at Pier 84 – FREE evening of live music from members of the Jazz Foundation of America. Tonight, the Gregory Lewis Organ Monk Trio.
Live at the Archway – Head to the archway on the Brooklyn side of the Manhattan Bridge on Thursday evenings through the end of September for 17 weeks of FREE family-friendly music concerts, dance performances, social dance classes and more. Tonight, it’s the uptempo music of the Ghost Train Orchestra, plus a FREE swing dance lesson by virtuoso teacher Paolo Pasta Lana who teaches swing, lindy and balboa at You Should Be Dancing in Manhattan.
Lincoln Centers Out of Doors – Three weeks of FREE concerts, dance performances and film screenings,through August 13th, including a salute to Bollywood and a musical salute to rock ‘n’ roll icon Chuck Berry. This weekend includes La Casita, a salute to the music and poetry of the LGBT movement, and an evening of music and dance from Eastern Europe.
Space and Science Festival at the Intrepid – Meet NASA astronauts, learn how space explorers live and work in space, see films about space exploration and more, at this annual celebration of science and space. Through August 6 with a combination of FREE and ticketed events.
SummerStage FREE concerts in parks in all five boroughs all summer
Movies Under the Stars – FREE outdoor movies nearly every night of the week all summer in all five boroughs.
NYC Restaurant Week 2017 – Splurge on a fixed-price three-course meal at one of 400 top NYC restaurants participating in this annual program. Get lunch for $29 and dinner for $42. NYC Restaurant Week is through August 18th.
Hip Hop Shakespeare – Brush up your Shakespeare with these FREE family-friendly performances in parks in all five boroughs, through August 6th.
Best NYC Atlantic Ocean beaches you can get to by subway. NYC has 14 miles of Atlantic Ocean and Long Island Sound beaches, with lifeguards on duty daily 10am to 6pm through Labor Day. Remember to bring your sunscreen.
NYC FREE outdoor pools are a great way to beat the heat. Here’s where to cool off in all five boroughs:
- Best outdoor pools in Manhattan.
- Best outdoor pools in Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, Staten Island
- Where to find sprinklers and spray showers in NYC parks
Best NYC outdoor beer gardens for a summer afternoon and evening
FREE apps on subway track work and schedulng delays – know what trains are bypassing what stations so you aren’t late for one of these free and cheap weekend events.
NYC official street closures website – know what streets are closed when for street fairs, parades, political protests and more.
Friday in NYC
Films on the Green – This year marks the 10th anniversary of this FREE annual outdoor French film festival produced by the French Embassy, FACE Foundation and NYC Parks. Films are in French with English subtitles, curated by Wes Anderson, Jim Jarmusch, James Ivory, Saul Williams, Isabella Rossellini, Wanda Sykes, Laurie Anderson, Matthew Weiner, Matías Piñeiro, and Amy Hargreaves. Every Friday through Sept. 7th.
Sunset on the Hudson – FREE live music on Pier 45, at 7pm. Tonight, the Chuck Braman Jazz Band
Freebie Friday – FREE admission to NYC museums including MOMA. No passes or coupons needed. Just go.
Get FREE admission to more than a dozen NYC museums with the IDNYC card. Enrollment is also FREE.
Freebie Friday: Family Fridays at MoMath – Solve puzzles, family-style, and learn how math affects everything, from music to space flight. 6:30pm, FREE The National Museum of Mathematics is at 11 E. 26th St.
Freebie Friday – Grand Central Neighborhood Tour. FREE every Friday at 12:30, docents from the Grand Central Partnership guide you through the history of the fabled Grand Central Terminal and some equally-fabled nearby landmarks including the Chrysler Building. There are no tickets, no reservations. Just meet at Sculpture court at 120 Park Avenue (southwest corner of East 42nd Street). Tour is 90 minutes.
Friday and Saturday
Tribeca Drive-In: Dinner and a Movie on Oculus Plaza – Tribeca Film Festival’s curators chose these classic and fan favorite feature films, all of them set here in New York City, for FREE screenings on the first Friday and Saturday of the month, through October. This weekend it’s the ill-fated love story of Tony and Maria and the music of New Yorker Leonard Burnstein in West Side Story on Friday, and the original Ghostbusters on Saturday (not the dreadful remake). Screenings are at 7:30pm.
Saturday in NYC
Tango in the Park – Since Mid 1990s, Argentine Tango afficianados have been gathering to dance, and be watched dancing, in Central Park. There are no lessons, although you can pick up a tip or two from a friendly participant. Every Saturday through the last Saturday in September, 6pm to 9:30pm, at the Shakespeare Statue, at the south end of The Mall. It’s rain or shine – in case of rain, the dancing moves nearby to “The Dairy” (Visitor Center)
FREE Saturday admission at top NYC museums includes the Jewish Museum and the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum.
Saturday and Sunday in NYC
Shakespeare in Bryant Park – See the Bard’s Twelfth Night FREE this weekend at evening and matinee performances.
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See next page for Sunday events, including street fairs