Now that spring has arrived in the Big Apple, it is time to get out of the house and enjoy it. There are a quite a few events going on and options available to enjoy this great time of year.
The Easter Parade
This celebrated annual must-see happens this Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It starts at 5th Avenue and 49th Street and heads north for six blocks to 55th Street. Now, you don’t have to dress like Judy Garland or Fred Astaire to be the talk of the town, but with thousands of people walking around you, including some in some pretty incredible costumes, you just might want to dress up a little. The dress style is informal but the fun is over the top.
The Botanical Garden
The New York Botanical Garden is world-famous. It is located in the Bronx of all places, in the northern part of the city at 2900 Southern Blvd. The garden sits on 250 pristine acres of some of the most manicured and beautiful greenery in the world. Any visitor to the garden is generally overcome with senses, aromas and colors throughout the day. Considering the size of the garden, be prepared to pack a lunch and drink, because you will need to rest often. Wear good walking shoes. Also, make sure you pack sunscreen and hats, as you will need them. Admission to the park is $28 per adult and $12 per child, while children under 2 are free. The park closes at 5 p.m. There are multiple exhibitions throughout the year, with special events taking place regularly.
The Orchid Show
It is orchids galore through April 22. Every imaginable orchid is on display for the next three weeks. There are daily tours, as well as nighttime exhibits. The evening orchid show is a premium at $38 per ticket to see the best in the business. The fragrances alone are worth the price of admission.
There is nothing like the opening day of the New York Yankees baseball schedule. This year, opening day is Monday, April 2, 2018 at modern Yankee Stadium. To the new visitor, the stadium was rebuilt at East 161st Street in the Bronx in 2009, with the appearance of the original home of the Bronx Bombers included in the design. There you will see photographs and videos of the most famous players in the history of the game.
Across the Whitestone Bridge in Queens, opening day for the Mets is early this year, on Thursday, March 29, 2018 against the St. Louis Cardinals. Citi Field is at 120 Roosevelt Avenue in Queens.
Macy’s Flower Show
This flower show from March 27 – April 3, 2018 features an extravaganza of floral designs throughout the store for one week each year. There are designs for both the end of winter and the beginning of spring in the show. It is quite an experience.
An Evening of Jazz Around Manhattan
This should be quite a show. An evening of jazz as you cruise the East River around the Island in a 1920s yacht with a backdrop of those gorgeous city lights of Manhattan, Brooklyn and Staten Island. The music will mesmerize while the drinks and dinner flow. The cruises start April 1 and leave from Pier 62. Tickets are $64, but early evening warmth on the water should make it all worth it.
A Giant Pillow Fight
Yes, New Yorkers know how to have fun! On April 7, thousands of New Yorkers will enter Washington Square Park on Saturday at 3 p.m. to throw pillows and teddy bears at each other. The Great Pillow Fight lasts for two hours, and everyone gets to be a kid again during that time. You can’t have more fun than that.
For the Kids
On April 7-8, the Queens County Farm Museum is having a carnival on the grounds. Admission is $15 for the entire day. The museum is located in Floral Park, NY at 73-50 Little Neck Parkway. It is good country fun in the city that never sleeps.
A Photography Exhibit off the Beaten Path
Starting April 5, you can see the 38th edition of 120 independent photographers from around the world display their wares. The exhibit is stationed at Pier 94, 56th Street and 12th Avenue, which means you can enjoy the exhibit and then step outside to enjoy the Hudson River with a glass of wine and some good New York eats. Well worth the visit.
The Brooklyn Folk Music Festival
Starting April 6, you need to head south! Brooklyn has a long history of music, from the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) to the indie scene to folk, and this week belongs to the folk scene. The Folk Festival is a modest $25 a ticket and has a very long list of performers, so get out there and give them some support. A jaunt across the East River is always well worth the trip.
April 15th is the day we celebrate this grand, gorgeous orb on which we all live so get out to Union Square and hoot and holler! The event is FREE and you get a T-shirt!
World Voices Festival
For readers with an intellectual and literary bent, PEN, the international authors and speakers organization, holds its annual World Voices Festival at various locations throughout the city from the 16th – 22nd of April. This year 165 authors will present their latest works. Many of the events are free so just check the schedule.
Tribeca Film Festival
This is Robert DeNiro’s own film festival. Just like Robert Redford’s Sundance Festival in Colorado, this one is in DeNiro’s hometown. Tribeca is a portmanteau of three words, “triangle beneath Canal” Street, which means it is right next door to the Freedom Tower and is filled with upscale restaurants. The festival runs from April 18-29 and is one of the hottest events in town.
An Art Battle
This is for the avant-garde reader. Think a group of Leroy Neimans competing with each other. The art ranges from the classic to the abstract. It all happens on April 28th in Soho at la poisson rouge,158 Bleecker Street. Price is $15.
May Things to Do
The Other Art Fair
Head to Brooklyn on May 3-6 for a global art fair of emerging artists. It is the 3d Annual exhibit of native talent in the city and hundreds of artists are showcased. It is held at the Expo Center at 72 Noble Street in Brooklyn. Early tickets are just $7.
5 Borough Bike Tour
This just sounds like a whole lot of FUN! On May 6, head down to the bottom of the Island, take a few snaps of Liberty Island, and then hit those pedals! Take a 40-mile bike tour of all 5 boroughs in ONE day! You just can’t beat that for a Spring day. The best way to enjoy the city is on a bike!
Hoboken Spring Arts and Music Festival
After the bike tour, head across the river for some wine and cheese to celebrate the tour and to see 300 more artists display their wares, as well as musicians, perform while you browse. Should be a good time for all. May 6.
This is for the investors in the readership and, of course, the tech nerds. On May 10, 500+ startups and 20,000 registrants are expected to crash Pier 94 at 711 12th Avenue at 10 am sharp for Tech Day! Attendance is FREE, just put your thinking cap on.
Spring Color Festival
Head to the Governor’s Island for this multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, festival of color. There you will find dancers, musicians, singers and people painted in a palette of colors and clothes to celebrate the rebirth of the planet in Spring. The event is on May 12, but registration is still free today so plan early.
You have options galore. First, there is the Garden Party where you can enjoy all the festivities while also walking the garden. But there is also OpenTable which is a database you can use to find which restaurants in the city have specials waiting for Mom. Finish the day off with a Mother’s Day Cruise. This one includes both brunch and dinner. Plan your day well and don’t forget the thank yous to her.
Taste of the Upper West Side
For those with a higher-end palate, you can sample up to 40 restaurants in the upper west side from May 18-19. Tickets are north of the century mark but you are sampling from some of the finest eateries in the city over two days. Eating at any one of them would cost your 4x the ticket price. A good deal for those so inclined.
Five boro Craft Beer Fest
For those with the slightly plainer tastebuds, you can sample dozens of craft beers at the five boro craft beer fest on May 19. It is hosted at The Well, 272 Meserole Street in Brooklyn. Tickets are $75 but you get to sample from dozens of craft breweries so it’s all good.
Shakespeare in the Park
Kickoff summer on May 29th with the world-renowned Shakespeare festival which features Othello and 12th Night this year. Tickets are FREE at Delacorte Park in Central Park and so is the sunshine.
Bronx River Paddle
I still can’t believe this is done. What an adventure! Paddling the Bronx River! It is June 2 from 10 am to 3 pm and again on June 16. The first start at 219 Street and Bronx Boulevard and finishes at Starlight Park. The second starts again at the same place but ends at the Bronx Zoo. For the athletic and adventurous, of course, but, my goodness, this sounds FUN! One Caveat: They can only seat 20 for either one so RSVP NOW and see the city from a view most New Yorkers will never even consider.
The Great Randall’s Island Treasure Hunt and Outdoor Movie Night
This one is another family adventure for the kids on Randall’s Island. It is June 9 at Field 80 with crafts and games and a day of adventure for the kids. They will repeat movie night on June 22.