New York City events calendar for August 2016. Best festivals, fun things to do, weekend street fairs, kids activities, and free entertainment in NYC, New York.

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Best events for 12 months
August 2016
August 2016

Enjoy the best New York City events, festivals, and things to do with this calendar of events.

Mileage is from Rockefeller Center in downtown New York City, New York.

Readings at the bridge

August 1 - 15, 2016 (7 p.m. Mondays)

6 miles south

Hear authors read, ask them questions, and get your book signed at Books Beneath the Bridge outdoors at Granite Prospect in Brooklyn Bridge Park on July 11, 18, 25 and Aug. 1, 8, 15. Free.

NYC Restaurant Week

August 1 - 19, 2016 (begins July 25)

NYC locations

Get a special deal on a 3-course lunch or dinner at 300 restaurants during NYC Restaurant Week, not on Saturdays. Repeats in Jan.

Classical music festival

August 1 - 27, 2016 (begins July 13)

1.5 miles NW

Attend concerts, operas, late-night recitals, and world premieres at Mostly Mozart Festival, performed by the festival orchestra and special guests at Lincoln Center.

Harlem Week

August 1 - 27, 2016 (begins July 31)

4 miles north

Harlem Week is a month-long celebration of local culture and history that includes performances, tributes, films, fashion, a children’s festival, sports events, a 5K, and a street fair. Most events are free.


August 1 - Sept. 29, 2016 (begins May 16)

NYC locations

Enjoy outstanding music, comedy, theater, dance, lectures, and films during SummerStage in city parks. The (mostly) free concerts are popular, so arrive early.

Free Summer Movies

August 1 - Oct. 1, 2016 (begins in May)

NYC locations

Free Summer Movies are shown evenings at parks in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, and the Bronx.

Shakespeare in the Park

August 2 - 14, 2016

2 miles north

For tickets to Shakespeare in the Park at Delacorte Theater in Central Park, become a $200 “supporter,” or get free tickets by joining a lottery or waiting in line. The show this month is Troilus and Cressida.

Short plays

August 2 - Sept. 3, 2016 (begins July 22)

0.7 miles north

Summer Shorts is a festival of new American short plays at 59E59 Theaters, grouped in 2 series of plays.

Outdoor concerts

August 3 - 13, 2016 (begins July 20)

0.5 miles west

Out of Doors is three weeks of world-class music, dance, and spoken word in the plazas of Lincoln Center if dry. Free.

Broadway hits in the park

August 4 & 11, 2016 (12:30 p.m. from July 7)

0.5 miles south

Bring a blanket to watch popular shows on and off Broadway perform their biggest hits Thursday afternoons at Broadway in Bryant Park. Free.

Films & food on the beach

August 5, 2016 - 6 p.m. (rain date Aug. 6)

26 miles SE

Taste on the Beach includes food, wine, beer, and live music on the beachfront at National Boulevard in Long Beach, followed by the Shorts on the Beach Film Series in a tent at 9 p.m.

Outdoor movies

August 5 & 11, 2016

1.2 miles west

See free movies about outer space at Summer Movie Series at Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum outdoors. Arrive early.

Cider cookout

August 6, 2016 (5:30 p.m., VIP 4:30)

2.2 miles SE

Ciderfeast includes unlimited cider samples from a dozen producers, grilled meat, tacos, vegetarian options, and live music at SolarOne for age 21+.

Beer & wine festival

August 6, 2016 (2 to 8 p.m.)

8.6 miles SE

Brooklyn Beer & Wine Fest begins with a pub crawl Friday evening, followed by a Saturday tasting of craft beer, artisanal wine, and curated cuisine with entertainment at 1368 Fulton Street.

Dragon boat festival

August 6 - 7, 2016

8 miles east

Watch 170 dragon-boat teams compete on Meadows Lake, and enjoy music, dance, martial arts, folk art, and Chinese food at Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival at Flushing Meadows Park in Queens. Free.

Summer Streets

August 6, 13, 20, 2016 (7 a.m. to 1 p.m.)

0.3 miles east

The city closes seven miles of Park Avenue and Lafayette Street to cars so you can play, run, walk, dance, and bike carefree during Summer Streets. Expect food, entertainment, and activities. Free.

New music

August 6 - 27, 2016 (Saturdays from June 11)

3 miles east

Warm Up is experimental live music, DJs and dancing in the outdoor courtyard of MoMA PS1 in Queens.

Renaissance fair

August 6 - Oct. 2, 2016 (weekends)

44 miles NW

Travel one hour north to 16th century England to see knights joust, mingle with costumed minstrels, shop in an artisan market, play games, and watch shows at New York Renaissance Faire in Tuxedo Park.

Italian traditional festival

August 11 - 14, 2016

4.3 miles north

The Giglio Feast of Saint Antonio celebrates Italian food, culture, religion, and tradition. On Sunday, a platform holding a 12-piece band and 80-foot statue is carried through the streets of East Harlem. Free.

Edgy theater

August 11 - 21, 2016

3 miles east

See 10 unusual plays during the UNFringed Festival at Secret Theatre in Long Island City.

Fringe theater festival

August 12 - 28, 2016

NYC locations

New York International Fringe Festival (FringeNYC) features 200 companies from around the world that hold 1100 stage performances in 20 venues.

Fringe Jr is for families.

Fringe Al Fresco is free outdoors.

1920s lawn party

August 13 - 14, 2016

5 miles south via ferry

Wear a flapper costume and dance to the Dreamland Orchestra at Jazz Age Lawn Party, which includes a Charleston dance contest, dance lessons, food, 1920s cars, and a kidland on Governor’s Island.

Filipino expo

August 13 - 14, 2016

5.7 miles NW

Fiesta in America has a trade pavilion, food court, children’s area, and cultural performance stage at Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus, NJ.


August 14, 2016

0.5 miles SW

Ecofest [sound] has exhibits about alternative energy and the environment, green vehicles, food, and entertainment on Broadway at 43rd. Free.

Free dance shows

August 14 - 20, 2016

Lower Manhattan

Battery Dance Festival features evening performances by local and international dancers outdoors at Robert F. Wagner Junior Park, moving indoors Aug. 20 to Schimmel Center for the Arts. Free.

Long Island food trucks

August 19, 2016 (4 p.m, VIP 3 p.m.)

96 miles east

A ticket to The Great Food Truck Derby gets you servings from 15 food trucks, with beer and wine for sale outside Hayground School in Bridgehampton. No dogs.


August 19 - 20, 2016 (8 p.m.)

0.4 miles north

See three U.S. premieres at Ardani 25 Dance Gala at New York City Center.

Blues & BBQ festival

August 20, 2016 (2 to 9 p.m.)

1.5 miles NW

Hudson River Park’s Blues BBQ pairs America’s best blues and roots musicians with the best of local barbecue at Pier 97. No pets. Free.

Yankees festival

August 20, 2016 (12 to 6 p.m.)

3 miles south

FanFest offers free games, food, live music, and lines for free player autographs on Mulberry St. (from Broome to Canal). Free.

Meet the Mets

August 20, 2016 (12 to 4 p.m.)

18.8 miles south

Mets Jam Music Festival has games, activities, and players at MCU Park in Brooklyn. No cameras. Free.

Margarita bar crawl

August 20 - 21, 2016 (check in 12 to 3 p.m.)

3 miles south

A ticket to Margarita March gets you eight tequila drinks in different bars, beginning at Parkside Lounge.

India parade

August 21, 2016 (11 a.m.)

0.7 miles south

India Day Parade begins at E 38th St. and goes down Madison Avenue to food booths and cultural programs at E. 27th Street, which close at 6 p.m. Free.

Comedy festival

August 21 - 28, 2016

Brooklyn locations

See both established and up-and-coming performers doing sketch, standup, and improvisation at Brooklyn Comedy Festival.

Movies in the park

August 22 - 27, 2016

multiple locations

See popular films at Central Park Conservancy Film Festival. Bring a picnic and blanket for the lawn, but no chairs, glass bottles, or alcohol. Captioned. Free.

Jazz festival

August 24 - 28, 2016

NYC locations

Charlie Parker Jazz Festival has films and concerts in honor of jazz legend Charlie Parker. Free.

Outdoor opera videos

August 26 - Sept. 5, 2016

1.2 miles NW

See popular Metropolitan Opera shows onscreen in Lincoln Center Plaza at Summer HD Festival. Free.

Break-dancing contest

August 27, 2016 (7 to 10 p.m.)

2.2 miles south

Eight award-winning East Coast dance crews battle to win $5,000 at B-Boy Royale in NYU Skirball Center.

Tennis family day

August 27, 2016

8 miles east

Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day begins with a free festival of games and tennis activities outdoors, followed by a ticketed show and concert in Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Topless parade

August 28, 2016 (1 to 4 p.m.)

1 mile NW

GoTopless is a topless rights parade to support gender equality, which begins at Columbus Circle and ends with a rally at Dag Hammarsjold Plaza. Free.

Brighton Beach street fair

August 28, 2016

18 miles south

Brighton Jubilee Festival celebrates diversity with multiple entertainment stages, a marketplace, kiddie rides, and food stands at Coney Island. Free.

Innovative theater festival

August 28 - Sept. 18, 2016

2.5 miles south

See 26 new and innovative works, including comedy, dance, drama, music, poetry, and puppetry, during Dream Up Festival at Theater for the New City.

Tennis tournament

August 29 - Sept. 11, 2016

8 miles east

Watch the world’s best players compete under the open sky at the U.S. Open Tennis Championship at Arthur Ashe Stadium in Flushing Meadows.
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© August 2016 calendar of events in NYC, NY. Best events, fairs, festivals, and things to do in New York City, New York. nyc-08