Art, film and food festivals galore, pumpkins, Halloween Balls and of course Comic Con make October packed full of eventful treats.
10/ 1- 13: Fall for Dance Festival features 20 international dance companies in five unique programs and two world premiere commissions at City Center.
10/ 1- 14: See classics, documentaries, and full-length feature films by the world’s great filmmakers at the New York Film Festival
10/ 10/ 1- 31: Archtober offers special tours of buildings (some by boat), lectures, films, and exhibitions that help us to appreciate architecture and design in everyday life.
10/ 1- 31: See scarecrows in the garden and join kids’ activities at Spooky Pumpkin Garden at New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx. Weekends add creepy creatures like bats and reptiles plus pumpkin-carving demonstrations.
10/ 4 (6 to 9 p.m.) Enjoy tastes from 30 local food and wine purveyors at Taste of the Village in Washington Square Park.
10/ 4 – 7: Fans of comic books, games, sci-fi, anime, manga, and popular culture meet artists, celebrities, vendors, and publishers at New York Comic Con at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in Midtown Manhattan.
10/ 5 – 7: Hear famous and influential authors, journalists, poets, screenwriters, and cultural icons speak at the New Yorker Festival.
10/ 5 – 21: African Restaurant Week has 75 gastronomical events, including a Harlem food festival Oct. 13, chef-hosted dinners, pop-up experiences, and cooking classes, and 23 restaurants offer special fixed-price African menus.
10/ 5 – 11/ 3: Intense, creepy actors confront you in the labyrinth of passageways at Blood Manor at 359 Broadway. Not for pre-teens. See schedule.
10/ 6 (12 to 5 p.m.): Sample dishes from 15 East Village restaurants, with live entertainment and local musicians at Taste of the East Village on E. 7th Street (from Cooper Square to 2nd Ave.). A $30 ticket includes 4 tastes or buy more.
10/ 6 – 28: Boo at the Zoo features costume parades, magic shows, a corn maze, a haunted forest, pumpkin carvers, and treats at the Bronx Zoo and is included free with all tickets. 10/ 7: Hear great songs from stage and screen at Elsie Fest in Central Park.
10/ 7 (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.): Board vintage buses, and meet bus drivers and historians during the Bus Festival at Brooklyn Bridge Park. Free.
10/ 7 – 8: Bring a lawn chair to Indigenous Peoples Celebration, which features artists, singers, colorful dancers, speakers, and authentic tribal cuisine on Randall’s Island. Free.
10/ 8: Watch marchers, bands, floats, and Italian folk groups parade up Fifth Avenue from 44th to 72nd in the Columbus Day Parade, on WABC-TV at noon. Free.
10/ 10: Get in line to buy $1 pizza samples from dozens of New York City’s best pizzerias at Slice Out Hunger in St. Anthony’s Church to support charity. Bring cash.
10/ 11 (8 to 10 p.m.): Chelsea Night Market is a $95 walk-around tasting through the food stalls after hours at the Chelsea Market, with cocktails, spirits, wines, and beer for age 21+.
10/ 11 – 14: New York City Wine & Food Festival (NYCWFF) features cooking demos by famous chefs, seminars, classes, wine tasting, celebrity dinners, and a weekend Grand Tasting.
10/ 11 – 14: Clio Art Fair is a curated fair in Chelsea featuring artists without exclusive gallery representation. Free.
10/ 11 – 14: You never know what to expect when Art in Odd Places (AiOP) brings visual and performance art to nearly the entire length of 14th Street. Theme in 2018 is “body.” Free.
10/ 12 (7 to 10 p.m.): A Taste of NYC: A Celebration of the City’s Most Post-Worthy Bites is a $95 casual walk-around tasting at Tommy Hilfiger on 5th Avenue for age 21+.
10/ 12 (7 p.m.): Cocktails for a Cure is an “inspiring evening complete with the hottest music, signature cocktails, and premier cuisine” including restaurant hors d’oeuvres, a photo booth, an open bar, a karaoke room, and two DJs on two floors at Up&Down to support charity.
10/ 12 – 14: Visit 240 of the city’s architecturally and culturally significant spaces and places (many closed to the public) during Open House New York Weekend. Most locations are free, but many require reservations.
10/ 12 – 14: Choose a three-hour session to attend The New York Coffee Festival for tastings, exhibits, demos, and live music at Metropolitan Pavilion.
10/ 12 – 19: The Imagine Science Film Festival screens science-inspired short films with a different theme every year.
10/ 12 – 28: FringeNYC features 200 companies from around the world holding 1100 stage performances in 20 venues.
10/ 13 (3 to 5 p.m.): Enjoy “festive cocktails and perfectly paired bites” with wine, spirits and beer, while your dog has “delicious doggie treats, toys, and products” and kids play games and drink soda at Yappie Hour in Big Screen Plaza, 851 6th Ave.
10/ 14: Buy a pickle on a stick or other pickle-themed food, take part in games and activities, and hear live music at Lower East Side Pickle Day on Orchard Street (from Delancey to E. Houston), where vendors once sold pickles from barrels. Free.
10/ 16 – 21: Architecture & Design Film Festival features films, parties, and panel discussions with design leaders and filmmakers at Cinépolis Chelsea.
10/ 16 – 11/18: See world-class performances, films, and artist talks with a focus on music during White Light Festival at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
10/ 18 – 20: Garment District Arts Festival offers exhibitions, performances, workshops, open studios, art, and gallery receptions near 8th Ave. and W. 38th St.
10/ 18 – 21: Chelsea Film Festival screens “independent shorts, feature-lengths, and documentaries from emerging directors” at two venues (AMC Loews 34th Street & Fashion Institute of Technology).
10/ 18 – 21: The Margaret Mead Film Festival screens 40 outstanding non-fiction films and hosts special events and performances that explore world cultures at the American Museum of Natural History.
10/ 18 – 28: See stunning films (mostly short) about wildlife worldwide, and attend an opening reception or panel discussion at Wildlife Conservation Film Festival at Cinema Village Theater.
10/ 19 (7 to 10:30 p.m.): Enjoy good food and wine at Global Food and Wine Experience at Guastavino’s to support diversity in the hospitality and culinary industries.
10/ 19 – 31: Gravesend Inn is a haunted hotel with high-tech animated characters, produced by students in City Tech’s Theatreworks program, at 186 Jay Street.
10/ 20 (12 to 4 p.m.): Marco Polo Festival celebrates Chinatown and Little Italy with a puppet parade on Mulberry Street (from Bayard to Grand) ending at a stage on Grand Street with cultural performances. Free.
10/ 22 (7 to 9 p.m.): Meet the best chefs and mixologists, selected by New York Magazine, as they prepare and plate your food at New York Taste, held at 269 11th Ave.
10/ 24 – 28: See films about the world’s favorite foods and then eat them at the NYC Food Film Festival at AMC Empire 25.
10/ 24 – 30: NewFest screens a variety of gay and lesbian films at Cinépolis Chelsea.
10/ 25 – 27: Billed as the largest photography and imaging show in North America, PDN PhotoPlus International Conference + Expo features educational seminars, workshops, photo walks, master classes, and 200 exhibitors at Jacob Javits Convention Center.
10/ 25 – 28 (preview Oct. 24): Find affordable art from 80 dealers at the Fine Art Print Fair at the Jacob Javits Convention Center.
10/ 26 (9 p.m.): The Halloween Masquerade Ball is a giant “sexy Venetian carnival affair” with DJ dance music on multiple floors at Stage 48 for age 21+.
10/ 26 (7 & 10 p.m.): Watch a silent classic horror film with live organ, and then see an immersive show of fantastic creatures that surround you at Halloween Extravaganza at The Cathedral of St. John the Divine.
10/ 26 – 27: Bring a flashlight for a guided tour of the crypt at The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, and hear stories about the entombed, during Crypt Crawls for ages 12+.
10/ 26 – 28:Bring photos, candles, and marigolds to remember the departed outdoors at St. Mark’s Church-in-the-Bowery on Day of the Dead, with food & crafts for sale. Free.
1-/ 27: Kids can come in costume for trick-or-treating, magic shows, craft projects, music, and live storybook characters at the Halloween Celebration at the American Museum of Natural History.
10/ 27 (9:30 p.m.): Heaven & Hell Halloween Ball by Dances of Vice is a fantasy party with costumes required and a no-host bar at Capitale
10/ 27 (12 to 3 p.m.): Take a Halloween Haunted Walk with a parent past vampires and witches to Lookout Hill. Halloween Fair (nearby on The Nethermead) has family activities and food trucks. Both are free in Prospect Park and best with children ages 7 to 12.
10/ 28: Dog Halloween Costume Party is a dog costume contest at Fountain Plaza in Washington Square Park. Free.
10/ 31: The Amazing Halloween Scavenger Hunt has you read clues on your phone that send you around the city performing physical and mental challenges with a Halloween theme.
10/ 27 – 31: TEFAF New York Fall is a fair that offers exceptional fine and decorative art from international galleries at the Park Avenue Armory. Repeats in May.
10/ 27 – 1/2, 2019: Winter Village at Bryant Park has a free ice skating rink with skates for rent, plus 125 holiday kiosks
10/ 28 (4 to 7 p.m.): Bring a carved pumpkin (see rules) to Halloween Pumpkin Flotilla for spooky stories, crafts, a 6 p.m. costume parade, and a 6:30 p.m. pumpkin float near Charles A. Dana Discovery Center. Free.
10/ 29: Famous actors are among the cast at 24 Hour Plays on Broadway, where you watch six brand new plays created, staged, memorized, and performed in a single day at American Airlines Theatre.
10/ 31 (2 to 6 p.m.): Wear a costume or mask to Spooky City to enjoy a haunted scavenger hunt, spooky tales, a Monster Mash Dance party, and pumpkin decorating at the Museum of the City of New York.
10/ 31: Dance, dine, show off your costume, and watch creative cabaret acts all evening at Village Halloween Costume Ball at Theater for the New City. Free outdoor entertainment starts 4 p.m., ticketed indoor 8 p.m.
10/ 31: The big Village Halloween Parade features 53 bands, dancers, artists, puppets, and thousands of New Yorkers in costume parading up 6th Avenue (from Spring Street to 16th Street). Free.
10/ 31 (10 p.m.): Mix, mingle, frisk, and frolic to DJ tunes with crowds at the Masquerade Ball in the grand opulence of Capitale for age 21+.