New York City events May 2019. Things to do in NYC.

New York City
Best events for 12 months

New York City events May 2019

Nonfiction film festival

May 1 - 5, 2019
(begins April 25)
1.2 miles NW
See a diverse collection of boundary-pushing nonfiction films at Art of the Real at Lincoln Center.

Taste of the Lower East Side

May 2, 2019
1.7 miles south
Enjoy unlimited tastes from 50 local restaurants plus open bars at the Taste of the Lower East Side in Metropolitan Pavilion for $195+ to support charity.

Bicycle expo

May 3 - 4, 2019
9.9 miles south
Visit 100 bicycle and accessory exhibitors, and attend biking presentations and classes at Bike Expo New York at Pier 12 in Red Hook. Free. [Do not confuse with NYC Bike Expo.]

Elite art fair

May 3 - 7, 2019
(VIP on May 2)
1 mile north
See exceptional modern and contemporary art from international galleries at TEFAF New York Spring at Park Avenue Armory. Repeats in October.

Bike tour

May 5, 2019
5 miles south
Bike 40 miles through New York’s five boroughs on Five Boro Bike Tour, starting north of Battery Park.

Indie film festival

May 5 - 12, 2019
0.9 miles west
NYC Independent Film Festival celebrates the independent filmmaker with screenings, panels, and parties at the Producers Club.

Taste of Queens

May 7, 2019
10 miles east
Sample food and drink from 60 restaurants, and mingle with the borough’s business leaders at the $125 Queens Taste at New York Hall of Science.

Bronx Week

May 9 - 19, 2019
6 miles north
Bronx Week includes a breakfast, neighborhood tours, Bronx Ball, parade, and a food & arts festival.

Mother’s Day at the zoo

May 12, 2019
0.7 miles north
A $75 ticket to Mother’s Day Celebration at Central Park Zoo includes baby animal feeding, a scavenger hunt, craft making, and treats for an adult plus a child age 3 to 10.

Mother’s Day scavenger hunt

May 12, 2019
0.7 miles south
Find hidden clues and complete fun tasks in a race around the city on The Amazing Mother’s Day Scavenger Hunt beginning at Slattery’s Midtown Pub.

Parade of dancers

May 18, 2019
2 miles south
Watch colorful dancers perform ballet, break dance, disco, hula, and samba in the 1 p.m. Dance Parade beginning at Broadway & 21st Street and ending at DanceFest in Tompkins Park from 3 to 7 p.m. Free.

World block party

May 18, 2019
3.3 miles north
East Harlem’s Ethnic Festival has music, dance, arts and crafts, ethnic food, and children’s activities on E. 104th Street (from 2nd to 3rd Avenue). Free.

Korean Street Festival

May 18, 2019
5.2 miles north
Korean Street Festival is a Harlem neighborhood event featuring Korean food, games, entertainment, and crafts at 134th Street and 7th Avenue. Free.

International food fest

May 18 - 19, 2019
1 mile NW
Ninth Avenue International Food Festival features food from around the world, international music and dance, artists and vendors, and children’s rides and games on 9th Avenue (42nd to 57th). Free entry.

Vegetarian festival

May 18 - 19, 2019
1.7 miles south
NYC Vegetarian Food Festival features food samples and meals from vegetarian restaurants, health and wellness vendors, vegetarian and animal-welfare groups, and talks and shows at Metropolitan Pavilion.

Multicultural festival

May 18 & June 1, 2019
5 miles north
New York City Multicultural Festival [sound] promises diverse cultural music, dance, food, fashion, and a kids’ area on St. Nicholas Avenue (from 141st to 145th). Free.

Contemporary art

May 20 - 23, 2019
3 miles south
Collective Design Fair displays curated pieces from dozens of galleries alongside experimental works from the next generation of global talent, with talks and tours at Skylight Clarkson.

Contemporary design fair

May 22, 2019
1.5 miles SW
The International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) is a showcase for 800 exhibitors from May 19 - 22, 2018, and the public can buy tickets to attend on the last day in Jacob Javits Convention Center.

Festival of the arts

May 24 - 26, 2019
3 miles south
Lower East Side Festival of the Arts features dance, film, music, poetry, theater, and visual art at the Theater for the New City. Free.

African festival

May 24 - 27, 2019
7.9 miles south
DanceAfrica celebrates the dance, music, and culture of Africa at BAM Howard Gilman Opera House. The 2018 performances promise “a taste of the rhythm and spirit of South Africa.”

Taiwan festival

May 26, 2019
1.8 miles south
Passport to Taiwan Festival features “small eats,” stage performances, craft demonstrations, exhibitors, and family activities in Union Square Park North. Free.

Latino festival

May 26, 2019
2.9 miles SE
The Loisaida Festival is a family friendly event with music, shows, and vendors on Losaida Avenue. It begins with a community parade at 11 a.m. Free.

Science festival

May 28 - June 2, 2019
NYC locations
Attend dozens of world-class lectures, films, and events on science and innovation during World Science Festival.

Greek festival

May 30 - June 2, 2019
26 miles SW
Enjoy Greek music, dancing, cooking demonstrations, kids’ activities, and delicious food at NJ Greek Fest at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Westfield, NJ.

Brooklyn Film Festival

May 31 - June 9, 2019
NYC locations
Watch 120 films made by independent filmmakers from 27 countries during the Brooklyn Film Festival, mostly at Wythe Hotel and Windmill Studios.

African film festival

May 2019
(undated)
NYC locations
New York African Film Festival screens both new and classic African cinema, with a special focus on intergenerational discourse, featuring works by women and younger generations.

Free movies in parks

May 2019
(undated)
NYC locations
Free Summer Movies are shown evenings at parks in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, and the Bronx.

Guitar festival

May 2019
(undated)
NYC locations
New York Guitar Festival features familiar and influential guitarists plus new talent and new sounds.

SummerStage

May 2019
(undated)
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.

French film festival

May 2019
(undated)
multiple locations
Focus on French Cinema features screenings of French films, receptions, parties, and actor & director Q&As.

Bicycle expo

May 2019
(undated)
1.1 miles SW
Join 10,000 cyclists visiting exhibitors at the NYC Bike Expo at Penn Plaza Pavilion. Free admission and secure bike check. [Do not confuse with Bike Expo New York.]

Cat conference

May 2019
(undated)
1.1 miles SW
Cat lovers are invited to Cat Camp to shop from vendors, meet adoptable cats, learn about cats, and “discuss some of the most important and challenging problems facing cats today” at Penn Plaza Pavilion.

Free movies on a ship deck

May 2019
(undated)
1.2 miles west
Doors open at 7 p.m. to see movies at sunset during Summer Movie Series at Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.

Creative film festival

May 2019
(undated)
1.3 miles NW
Columbia University Film Festival premieres short films, feature screenplays, and teleplays created by graduate MFA students of Columbia University School of the Arts Film Program at Lincoln Center.

Interested in technology?

May 2019
(undated)
1.3 miles NW
TechDay is a giant science fair with 400 exhibitors, including innovative startups at Pier 94. Free.

Italian film festival

May 2019
(undated)
1.3 miles NW
See Italian life and culture as presented by a new generation of Italian filmmakers at Open Roads: New Italian Cinema at Lincoln Center.

Taste of the Upper West Side

May 2019
(undated)
1.7 miles north
Sample restaurant food, and taste wine, beer, and cocktails under a tent at Taste of the Upper West Side at Columbus Avenue & West 77th Street.

Free film festival

May 2019
(undated)
1.8 miles SW
Dusty Film & Animation Festival screens 40 animations and 50 films made by students at SVA Theatre. Free.

Shakespeare in the Park

May 2019
(undated)
2 miles north
For tickets to Shakespeare in the Park at Delacorte Theater in Central Park, pay $500 as a “supporter” or get free tickets by joining a lottery or waiting in line.

Arts festival

May 2019
(undated)
Lower Manhattan
Downtown Urban Arts Festival (DUAF) showcases urban artists and promotes diversity, featuring music, creative plays, poetry, and films.

Chili cook-off

May 2019
(undated)
2.3 miles NW
Texas Chili Cook-off serves chili, beer, and a band, rain or shine at Boat Basin Cafe.

BBQ tasting

May 2019
(undated)
2.4 miles south
Taste eight different plant-based burgers and vote for your favorite at the The Burger Supremacy, which includes chips, salsa, and drink specials at Vspot Organic, 12 Saint Mark’s Place.

Pop-culture festival

May 2019
(undated)
2.4 miles SW
Attend screenings, discussions, and jams with movie, TV, and music icons at the Vulture Festival [sound], mostly at Milk Studios and run by Vulture, the culture and entertainment brand of New York Magazine.

Spooky stories

May 2019
(undated)
2.4 miles south
Hear macabre stories read by candlelight during Edgar Allan Poe Festival in St. John’s Lutheran Church.

Contemporary art fair

May 2019
(undated)
2.6 miles SW
Superfine promises 75 “galleries and artists at the cutting edge of emerging contemporary art, with an array of price points friendly to even the most novice collector” at 459 W. 14th Street. Tours & parties too.

Polish film festival

May 2019
(undated)
2.6 miles south
New York Polish Film Festival screens feature films, shorts, and documentaries, which all have English subtitles at Anthology Film Archives. Opening night is at Directors Guild Of America Theater.

New-music festival

May 2019
(undated)
3.1 miles east
Queens New Music Festival features live concerts of music written in the last 50 years at the Secret Theatre.

Block party

May 2019
(undated)
3.2 miles south
Essex Street Market - Block Party has 15 food vendors, pushcarts, live music, and kids’ activities on Essex Street (from Delancey to Rivington). Free.

Latino LGBTQ festival

May 2019
(undated)
3.2 miles NE
FuerzaFest includes films, short plays, dance, panel discussions, networking events, and art exhibitions.

Jazz gala

May 2019
(undated)
3.6 miles south
Made in New York Jazz Gala features famous jazz artists plus international guest performers at Tribeca Performing Arts Center.

Children’s food festival

May 2019
(undated)
3.8 miles south
Kids Food Fest encourages healthy eating for kids of all ages with food tastings, cooking demos, hands-on activities, special guests, and family-focused entertainment at Westfield World Trade Center.

Film festival

May 2019
(undated)
4 miles north
Harlem International Film Festival screens 75 features, documentaries, shorts, youth projects, and animated works from 25 different countries, and it includes panel discussions and awards.

A taste of Harlem

May 2019
(undated)
4.2 miles north
A ticket to Ultimate Grand Tasting (highlight of Harlem EatUp!) gets you unlimited food tastes and samples of wine, beer, and cocktails, plus entertainment and a marketplace at Morningside Park for age 21+.

Brunch & bar tasting

May 2019
(undated)
4.4 miles SE
BrunchCon includes tastes from 30 vendors, a bottomless Mimosa and Bloody Mary bar, lawn games, and music at Brooklyn Expo Center for age 21+.

New art fair

May 2019
(undated)
4.4 miles SE
Based in London, The Other Art Fair “leads the way in uncovering and nurturing new and innovative creative talent” exhibiting works by 130 emerging artists at the Brooklyn Expo Center. Held in May and November.

Hoboken festival

May 2019
(undated)
4.7 miles SW
Spring Arts & Music Festival features 300 artists, sculptors, photographers, and crafters, plus three stages of music, rides, games, and food vendors at 94 Washington Street in Hoboken, NJ. Free.

Festival of colors

May 2019
(undated)
5 miles south via ferry
Throw brightly colored powder, dance to live music, and buy Indian food to celebrate spring at Holi Hai festival at Governors Island. Buy non-toxic color online or onsite, don’t bring your own. Free entry.

Beer festival

May 2019
(undated)
5.9 miles SE
A ticket to Five Boro Craft Beer Fest includes beer from dozens of craft breweries, food from local restaurants, and music by three bands at The Well in Brooklyn.

Art fair on Randall’s Island

May 2019
(undated)
6 miles NE
Shop for art from 190 galleries, attend talks, and mingle with art-world celebrities at Frieze New York in tents at Randall’s Island Park.

Coffee festival

May 2019
(undated)
8.5 miles SE
Taste coffee, see exhibits, meet experts, and attend classes at the consumer CoffeeCon at Villain. Free admission for your children younger than 12 years old.

Uptown Arts Stroll

May 2019
(undated)
9 miles north
See hundreds of art exhibitions, open studios (see dates), concerts, dance and literary events at Uptown Arts Stroll in Northern Manhattan. Free.

Hip hop

May 2019
(undated)
10 miles north
Hip Hop Fever brings you 14 legendary performers, including Black Sheep, Kool Moe Dee, and Kurtis Blow at Lehman Center for the Arts CUNY.

Gospel festival

May 2019
(undated)
16.6 miles SW
Gospelfest is a talent competition followed by a gospel concert at Newark Symphony Hall in Newark, NJ.

Japanese festival

May 2019
(undated)
1.2 miles north
Japan Day @ Central Park includes dance performances, music, calligraphy, origami, and food tents at Central Park Bandshell. Free.

Mothers celebration

May 2019
(undated)
1.7 miles NW
Mamapalooza offers music, art, kids’ activities, food vendors, and crafts for mothers and the people who love them at Riverside Park South. Free.

Mother’s Day R&B

May 2019
(undated)
8 miles south
Arriving a day early, the Mother’s Day Good Music Festival features Charlie Wilson, KEM, Boyz II Men, and Joe at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Mother’s Day in the garden

May 2019
(undated)
11 miles east
Enjoy a catered Mother’s Day Brunch plus a stroll in the gardens at Queens Botanical Garden.

Mother’s Day at Wave Hill

May 2019
(undated)
12 miles north
Wave Hill offers family art projects and garden walks in the Bronx, plus a Mother’s Day Brunch that requires reservations.

Mother’s Day in the garden

May 2019
(undated)
12 miles north
Mother’s Day Weekend Garden Party features live music, games, family activities, tours, food trucks, and casual picnicking at New York Botanical Garden.

Fleet Week

May 2019
(undated)
multiple locations
Tour ships, hear concerts, watch demonstrations, and see military displays during Fleet Week, which begins with a parade of ships. Tours require ID if you are age 18+. Free.

Puerto Rican festival

May 2019
(undated)
6.8 miles north
152nd Street Cultural Festival celebrates Puerto Rican culture with live music, dancing, comedy, art and food vendors, celebrity appearances, and a children’s pavilion with storytelling, face painting, and crafts on 152nd Street (Jackson Ave. to Union Ave.). Free.