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.

Spectacular show

August 1 - 7, 2016 (from June)

0 miles

New York Spectacular is a musical about a family spending an extraordinary day in New York, featuring the dancing Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall. Discount tickets $39 to $90.

Readings at the bridge

August 1 - 15, 2016 (Mondays from July 11)

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. Discount tickets $33 (Aug. 5 and later).

Champagne Sunset Cruise

August 1 - 29, 2016 (7:15 p.m.)

2.4 miles SW

The Champagne Sunset Cruise includes 1.75 hours of views and a glass of champagne or other beverage on Yacht Manhattan, leaving Chelsea Piers (Pier 62). Discount tickets $35.

Skyline cruise

August 1 - 30, 2016 (from June)

2.4 miles SW

Enjoy 90 minutes of views on an afternoon Statue of Liberty & Skyline Sightseeing Cruise, with a free glass of champagne or other beverage on Yacht Manhattan, from Chelsea Piers (Pier 62). Discount tickets $28.

Sailboat ride on Clipper City

August 1 - 30, 2016 (from June)

4.5 miles south

Tour New York City Harbor aboard the majestic Clipper City tall ship, sailing from Battery Park.

Short plays

August 1 - 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 sets of plays.

Tony-winning musical

August 1 - Sept. 4, 2016 (from June)

0.3 miles west

The show-business musical Chicago has sizzling songs, seductive dance numbers, and a powerful story at Ambassador Theatre. Discount tickets $33 to $95.

Adult comedy

August 1 - Sept. 4, 2016 (from June)

0.4 miles west

People and puppets who live in a shabby neighborhood on Avenue Q entertain mature audiences with sassy songs and funny antics at New World Stages. Discount tickets $45.


August 1 - Sept. 23, 2016 (begins May 16)

NYC locations

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

Lobster & beer sail

August 2 & 16, 2016 (7 p.m.)

4.5 miles south

Enjoy lobster rolls from Luke’s Lobster, coleslaw, potato salad, craft beer, and a two-hour cruise around Lower Manhattan on Lobster & Beer Lovers Sail aboard Clipper City Tall Ship, leaving Battery Park. Discount tickets $76.

Award-winning “Jersey Boys”

August 2 - Sept. 25, 2016 (also June & July)

0.4 miles NW

Hit musical Jersey Boys is the rags-to-riches story of 20-somethings Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons live at August Wilson Theatre. Discount tickets on weekdays: $40 to $104.

Creative percussion show

August 2 - Dec. 25, 2016 (also June & July)

0.5 miles SW

STOMP has high-energy dance, acrobatics, comedy, and nonstop rhythm from unusual instruments at the Orpheum Theatre. Discount tickets $50.

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.

Shakespeare in the Park

August 3 - 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.

Baseball meal deal

August 3 - 27, 2016 (also June & July)

8 miles north

New York Yankees package deal includes a field-level seat plus unlimited picnic food until 30 minutes after game time at Yankee Stadium. Discount tickets $75.

Free Summer Movies

August 1 - Sept. 15, 2016 (begins in May)

NYC locations

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

Romantic jazz cruise

August 3 - Sept. 28, 2016 (9:45 p.m. Wed.)

4.3 miles south

Enjoy skyline views and live jazz on an Evening Jazz Cruise aboard the 158-foot Clipper City Tall Ship departing from Battery Park. Discount tickets $42.

Broadway hits in the park

August 4 & 11, 2016 (begins 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.

Cocktail show

August 4 - 20, 2016 (also June & July)

2.8 miles south

Your ticket to The Imbible includes 3 craft cocktails plus a comic romp through the history of spirits and cocktails at SoHo Playhouse. Discount tickets $39.

Comedy about motherhood

August 4 - Sept. 3, 2016 (from June)

0.4 miles west

A former Miss New Jersey is One Funny Mother with a funny show about raising kids at New World Stages. Discount tickets $30.

Outdoor movies

August 5, 2016 (also July)

1.2 miles west

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

Films & food on the beach

August 5, 2016 (6 p.m.)

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. Rain date is Aug. 6.

Baseball special

August 5 - 27, 2016 (from June)

8 miles north

Watch the Yankees play from air conditioned Mohegan Sun Sports Bar, with giant windows, high-def TV, and a bar selling drinks and pub fare. Discount tickets $30.

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. Discount tickets $19.

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

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.

Harlem Week

August 6 - 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.

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.

Discount tickets $17, child $9.

Brunch cruise circles Manhattan

August 6 - Dec. 31, 2016 (weekends)

2.4 miles SW

Around Manhattan Brunch Cruise offers three-hour of views as you circle Manhattan Island in a classic 1920s yacht and eat a buffet brunch with a complimentary beverage, departing from Chelsea Piers (Pier 62). Discount tickets $56.

Brunch on a sailboat

Aug. 7 - Oct. 9, 2016 (11 a.m. Sundays)

4.1 miles south

Enjoy skyline views on a two-hour Champagne Brunch Sail Aboard the Shearwater classic schooner, leaving Lower Manhattan. Discount tickets $67.

Burlesque on a sailboat

August 11, 2016 (9:45 p.m.)

4.5 miles south

A Burlesque Sail on Clipper City tall ship features music, dancers, and drinks, departing from Battery Park for age 21+. Discount tickets $36.

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.

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, follies, food, 1920s cars, and a kidland on Governor’s Island.

Filipino expo

August 13 - 14, 2016 (gala Aug. 12)

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.

Concert in the garden

August 13 & 25, 2016 (6:30 p.m.)

12 miles north

Your ticket to Summer Concert Evenings includes a free cocktail and a concert on the conservatory lawn at New York Botanical Garden for age 21+. Discount tickets $25.
  • August 13 - Mipso (indie band)
  • August 25 - Giordano & the Nighthawks (jazz)


August 14, 2016

0.5 miles SW

Ecofest has exhibits about alternative energy and the environment, green vehicles, an eco fashion show, 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.

Disney spoof

August 19, 2016 (10 p.m.)

1 mile SW

Distorted Diznee has high-energy dancing, comedy, dazzling costumes, and lip synching by drag queens dressed as Ariel, Mary Poppins, and Snow White at Laurie Beechman Theatre for age 17+. Discount tickets $11 (and $20 food or drink minimum).

Long Island food trucks

August 19, 2016 (4 to 7 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.

Blues & BBQ festival

August 20, 2016

1.5 miles NW

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

Margarita bar crawl

August 20, 2016

3 miles south

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


August 20, 2016 (3:30 p.m.)

7.9 miles north

Watch New York City FC play a game at Yankee Stadium. Discount tickets $30 to $199.

India parade

August 21, 2016

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.

Picnic in Grand Central Station

August 22 - 26, 2016

0.4 miles SE

Bring your own food or buy from vendors at Life’s a Picnic in Grand Central, which features picnic tables, entertainment, WiFi, and air conditioning. Free.

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.

Comedy festival

August 22 - 28, 2016

Brooklyn locations

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

Jazz festival

August 26 - 28, 2016

NYC locations

Charlie Parker Jazz Festival has concerts, recordings, and talks in honor of jazz legend Charlie Parker. 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.

Outdoor opera videos

August 27 - Sept. 5, 2016

1.2 miles NW

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

Yankees festival

August 2016 (undated)

3 miles south

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