As always, there are lots of free, frugal and just plain cheap family-friendly things to do in NYC over the extended Labor Day holiday weekend. As always, nothing here costs more than $10. Be cheap and have fun with NYC on the Cheap.
NYC‘s Unicycle Festival is three days of madness on one wheel. Last year‘s festival attracted more than 300 riders from around the country, and at least as many onlookers to try to learn to ride a unicycle. Today, Friday, August 30, Brooklyn Unicycle Day features a 13 mile unicycle ride across Brooklyn. The festival‘s main events takes place on Governors Island, from 12pm—5pm on Saturday and Sunday. FREE activities include races, competitions, exhibitions, and a variety of unicycle sports including unicycle basketball and hockey. Plus, demonstrations by world-famous unicycle riders. Event website
Highline – NYC’s headline-making park is always free to visit, and to help you enjoy the late summer flowers and shrubs, there’s a FREE monthly guide to what’s blooming now. Download the current bloom list here.
Smorgasburg – Eat your way across Brooklyn in one spot at the final outdoor Smorgasburg of the season in Brooklyn Bridge Park on Sunday. Strictly local food vendors serve up lobster rolls, homemade ice cream, microwbrews and more, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Smorgasburg website
Brazilian Day NYC – A day long festival of music and dance Sunday along Little Brazil on 46th Street, celebrating Brazilian Independence Day. See the full NYCOTC posting for full details.
FREE kayaking continues this weekend on both the Hudson River and the East River. Borrow a kayak for 30 minutes at a time from the Downtown Boathouse, at Pier 96, at 56th Street. The colorful kayaks go out between 9 a.m. and 5:30 pm. There’s also a Downtown Boathouse location at Chambers St. and at 72nd St. In Brooklyn, this is the final weekend for freebies from Brooklyn Bridge Boathouse, between Piers 1 and 2 (across from the Pop-Up Pool) Saturdays only, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Check out New York City’s newly reopened Pier 42 on the Lower East Side, for public art installations and a picture postcard view of two of New York City’s most famous bridges, the Manhattan and the Williamsburg. Pier 42 sits between them, with entrances from the East River Greenway at Montgomery Street and through Corlears Hook Park at Cherry Street. Take the F train to East Broadway and walk toward the East River.
Check the NYCOTC Summer Calendar to stay up to date with free outdoor movies, free outdoor concerts and other free summer events that let you enjoy NYC on the Cheap. We are NYC nifty and NYC thrifty.