Mark Your Calendars June is Bustling with Free Activities to Enjoy

Mark Your Calendars June is Bustling with Free Activities to Enjoy

Polo, film and art festivals, food, dancing, jazz, opera, blues, Shakespeare in the Park, Father’s Day, Summer Solstice Celebrations, mermaids and Pride. NYC is jammed packed with events to keep you throughly entertained.

6/1: NYC Multicultural Festival promises diverse cultural music, dance, food, fashion, and a kids’ area on St. Nicholas Avenue (from 141st to 145th). Free.

6/ 1: A ticket to classy Polo Classic includes transportation to Liberty State Park in New Jersey to watch a game hosted by Neil Patrick Harris and a performance by Alicia Keys, with food trucks and champagne for sale.

6/ 1 – 2: Attend dozens of world-class lectures, films, and events on science and innovation during World Science Festival.

6/ 1 – 2: New York Polish Film Festival screens feature films, shorts, and documentaries, which all have English subtitles at Scandinavia House.

6/ 1 – 2: Interact with authors, publishers, celebrities, and content creators at BookCon “where storytelling and pop culture collide” at Jacob Javits Convention Center.

6/ 1 – 2: 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 Metropolitan Pavilion.

6/ 1 – 2: Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit features 120 artists on the sidewalks of University Place. Repeats in Sept. Free.

6/ 1 – 2: Figment features creative art installations you can touch and play with on Governors Island. Free.

6/ 1 – 2, 2019 (begins May 31) Governors Ball is a three-day outdoor music festival with 65 acts “featuring music of all genres, foods of all flavors, arts of all variety” at Randall’s Island Park.

6/ 1- 2 Rose Garden Weekend includes live music, garden tours, demonstrations, and a cash bar at the New York Botanical Garden.

6/ 1 – 9: (begins May 23) 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.

6/ 1 – 30: Blue Note Jazz Festival has 50 concerts in 3 venues, and features big name artists.

6/ 1 – 30: (begins May 28) See hundreds of art exhibitions, concerts, dance, and literary events at Uptown Arts Stroll in Northern Manhattan. Free. Open studios held 1 to 6 p.m. on:

6/ 8 – from West 179th to 220th Street

6/ 15 – from West 135th to West 178th Street

6/ 1 – 8/ 11 (begins May 21) For tickets to Shakespeare in the Park at Delacorte Theater in Central Park.

6/ 23 – Much Ado about Nothing

July 16 to 8/ 11 – Coriolanus

6/ 1 – 9/ 24: Enjoy outstanding music, comedy, theater, dance, lectures, and films during SummerStage in city parks. The (mostly) free concerts are popular, so arrive early.

6/ 3 Taste of Times Square features international food from 40 restaurants and music from local bands on 46th Street (from Broadway to 9th Avenue).

6/ 4 – 25 (Tuesdays): Washington Square Music Festival offers classical music in the park on Tuesdays, and occasionally jazz. Free.

6/ 6 – 12: See Italian life and culture as presented by a new generation of Italian filmmakers at Open Roads: New Italian Cinema at Lincoln Center.

6/ 7 – 28: American Folk Art Museum offers concerts at 2 p.m. on Wednesdays and at 5:30 p.m. on Fridays. Free.

6/ 8: NYC Multicultural Festival promises diverse cultural music, dance, food, fashion, and a kids’ area at the bandshell at Jackie Robinson Park. Free.

6/ 8: New York Salsa Festival features performances by Willie Colón, Victor Manuelle, Jerry Rivera, India, Grupo Niche, Eddie Santiago, Tito Rojas, Lalo Rodríguez, José Alberto El Canario, Fruko Y Sus Tesos, and Angel Lopez De Son By Four at Barclays Center.

6/ 8 – 9: CraftNewYork features 160 juried artists, gourmet foods, and “distillery and winery tastings” at Damrosch Park near Lincoln Center. Free.

6/ 9 (11 a.m.): Billed as America’s largest demonstration of ethnic pride, the National Puerto Rican Day Parade goes joyously up Fifth Avenue from 44th to 79th. Free.

6/ 10 – 19: The Summer Recital Series by the Metropolitan Opera features opera performances in various parks. Free.

6/ 11: Join the crowds listening to live music and visiting six museums for three hours during Museum Mile Festival on 5th Avenue (from 82nd to 110th Street). Free.

6/ 11 – 14 & 16: Hear classical music outdoors under the stars at New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks, followed by fireworks. (The indoor show on June 16 does not have fireworks.)

6/ 13 – 20: See compelling films from around the world about truth, justice, accountability, and human dignity at Human Rights Watch Film Festival at Lincoln Center.

6/ 13 – 22: Register to take free dance and fitness classes from 32 studios during New York City Dance Week.

6/ 15: (11 a.m. to 4 p.m.) Bike, climb, fish, paddle, zip line, and play games during Adventures NYC at the Central Park bandshell area. Children under age 18 need a legal guardian for some activities. Expect lines. Free.

6/ 15: (4 p.m., VIP 3 p.m.) Taste 40 types of rum with snacks, and attend seminars during New York Rum Festival at Metropolitan West for age 21+.

6/ 15- 16: Wear a flapper costume and dance to the Dreamland Orchestra at Jazz Age Lawn Party, which includes dance lessons, dance contests, food vendors, 1920s cars, croquet, and a kidland on Governors Island. Held in June and August.

6/ 16: Taste of Jewish Culture Street Festival features “dozens of award-winning food purveyors putting their individual ethnic spins on traditional Jewish foods” with klezmer music on 6th Avenue at W. 48th Street. Free.

6/ 16: (1:30 p.m.) The Amazing Father’s Day Scavenger Hunt begins at Slattery’s Midtown Pub with a series of clues on your phone that send you around the city performing physical and mental challenges.

6/ 16: (7 p.m.) Actors and writers perform selections written by Joyce during Bloomsday on Broadway at Symphony Space.

6/ 16: (12 to 4 p.m.) Egg Rolls, Egg Creams, and Empanadas Festival is a cross-cultural celebration of Jewish, Chinese, and Puerto Rican music, food, folk art and crafts outside the Museum at Eldridge Street. Free.

6/ 16 – 23 New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival (NYCEMF) showcases innovative electronic music and video art at Abrons Arts Center.

6/ 17 – 19: Explore the ways games and virtual reality can improve lives at Games for Change, which features talks, workshops, a game arcade, vendors, and awards at Parsons School of Design.

6/ 18 – 29: Attend cultural performances and events at River to River Festival, including dance, music, theater, and the visual arts at 40 locations in Lower Manhattan. Free.

6/ 20 – 27: See great films from around the world at the Soho International Film Festival at Village East Cinema.

6/ 21: Make Music New York is a live musical celebration on the longest day of the year, with 1,000 concerts on streets, sidewalks, and parks in five boroughs. Repeats in December. Search the schedule. Free.

6/ 21: Renew your mind, body, and spirit by registering to attend a yoga class and visiting the yoga village (on Broadway from 44th to 45th Street) on the longest day of the year at Solstice in Times Square. Free.

6/ 21: Doors open at 7 p.m. to see movies at sunset during Summer Movie Series at Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. Held in May, June, July, and August.

6/ 21: Summer Solstice Celebration includes art-making workshops, face painting, a solstice ritual, music, and entertainment at Socrates Sculpture Park. Free.

6/ 21: Decorate the midsummer pole, make flower wreaths, play traditional games, buy Swedish food, and dance to authentic fiddle music at the Swedish Midsummer Festival at Robert F. Wagner Park and nearby. Free.

6/ 22: Generation Bridge Summer White Ball includes DJ music, dancing, a soul-food dinner, and a one-hour open bar (wine, beer, and signature cocktail) at 265 W. 37th 

6/ 22: Hudson River Park Games is a Team Pentathlon where you compete in heats of dodgeball, volleyball, steal the bacon, flag football, basketball, and an obstacle course on Pier 40 at Hudson River Park.

6/ 22: (12 to 5 p.m.) Essex Street Market – Block Party has 15 food vendors, pushcarts, live music, and kids’ activities on Essex Street (from Delancey to Rivington). Free.

6/ 22: Summer Solstice Celebration is a concert that begins in darkness and continues through sunrise at The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine.

6/ 22: The Mermaid Parade has 1000 people wearing glittery semi-nude costumes, floats with aquatic themes, and classic cars that drive east along Surf Avenue, and then west along the boardwalk on Coney Island in Brooklyn. Expect crowds. Free.

6/ 23: Drums Along the Hudson features traditional dance, drumming, crafts, and foods at Inwood Hill Park, plus performers representing other cultures. Free.

6/ 24: Watch big Broadway stars perform with young artists from across the nation at the annual Arts for Autism, which is hosted by Christopher Jackson (nominated for a Tony Award for “Hamilton”) at Gershwin Theatre.

6/ 25 – 7/ 13: Midsummer Night Swing begins with a lesson in swing, tango, salsa, etc., followed by a live band in Damrosch Park at Lincoln Center. Closed Sunday and Monday.

6/ 28 – 7/ 14: Watch recent hit movies from China, Japan, and South Korea at New York Asian Film Festival in two venues. Lincoln Center and SVA Theatre

6/ 30: Pride Week events today include a noon Pride March down 5th Avenue and then up 7th Avenue (route map), an afternoon PrideFest street fair, and Pride Island at Pier 97, typically followed by fireworks.


Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email:

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