Free events

NYC on a budget: Club Free Time

 

Looking for free things to do in NYC? Club Free Time is like a friend who’s got an in!

There are so many free and affordable things happening in New York City that are worth checking out, but sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. CFT is a web-based organization that provides info about cultural events that take place in New York City, mainly in Manhattan. You can find detailed info about free workshops, plays, films, tours, and other events listed in one place.

For a monthly subscription of $2.95, you get access to CFT’s free activities calendar, making it easy to map out your free adventures for the month. Additionally, CFT provides information about discount tickets for music events, concerts, and even Off-Broadway shows.

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The event catalog covers a broad range of topics to suit anyone’s interests. Think yoga classes, writing workshops, city walks & tours, networking and professional development - CFT covers it all. Having fun and exploring all NYC has to offer doesn’t need to be expensive.

The first event we attended was a Career Development Workshop at the Science, Industry and Business Library. It was hosted by David Lees, cofounder of The Illumination Group, an executive career coaching consultancy based in NY. Fancy!

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Interesting fact: CFT started as a newsletter about free cultural events in New York in 1987, and was funded by Natella Vaidman, a Russian immigrant. Since then, the organization has grown significantly and has been featured in publications like The New York Times and Wall Street Journal!

Thank you Natella, for being the catalyst for this great resource for New Yorkers on a budget.

 

Where to celebrate Lunar New Year in NYC

 

Welcome the Asian Lunar New Year -the year of the Pig- with these fun and colorful events happening all over the city.

The Chinese New Year, or Lunar New Year, is a festival that marks the beginning of the year in the Lunar calendar. It’s celebrated by most East Asian cultures on the same day, and it’s around the corner! While the official date is February 5th, there are festivities throughout the whole month so mark your calendar and set out to some of the best NYC events in February!

Source: https://www.tripsavvy.com/chinese-lunar-new-year-in-nyc-1612203

Source: https://www.tripsavvy.com/chinese-lunar-new-year-in-nyc-1612203

MANHATTAN EVENTS

Firecracker Ceremony and Cultural Festival

The Firecracker Ceremony and Cultural Festival takes place in Manhattan's Chinatown on February 5th. As part of the annual traditions, the Better Chinatown Society lights thousands of firecrackers to welcome the new year and ward off evil spirits. Dancers and singers perform on a big stage while dragon and lion masked groups take over the streets.

The festival starts at 11:00 am and lasts until 3:30 pm near the basketball court in Sara Roosevelt Park.  

Source: https://ny.curbed.com/2017/1/28/14424166/lunar-chinese-new-year-parades-nyc

Source: https://ny.curbed.com/2017/1/28/14424166/lunar-chinese-new-year-parades-nyc

Annual Chinese New Year Parade

The Chinese New Year Parade and Festival takes place on a different day than the Firecracker Festival. This year it will be celebrated on Sunday, February 17th. The spectacle includes musicians, lion and dragon dances, stunning outfits, acrobats and martial art performers. More than 5,000 people participate in the parade. The event starts at 1:00 pm at Mott and Hester streets and ends in Roosevelt Park, at around 4:30 pm.

Source: https://ny.curbed.com/2017/1/28/14424166/lunar-chinese-new-year-parades-nyc

Source: https://ny.curbed.com/2017/1/28/14424166/lunar-chinese-new-year-parades-nyc


BROOKLYN EVENTS

Chinese New Year Parade on 8th Avenue

The Chinese New Year is also celebrated all over Brooklyn. The annual Brooklyn Lunar New Year Parade takes place February 5th on 8th Avenue, from 50th Street to 61st Street. It features traditional dancing, singing, kung fu demonstrations, and firecrackers!

Source: https://bklyner.com/year-dog-celebrating-lunar-new-year-brooklyn/

Source: https://bklyner.com/year-dog-celebrating-lunar-new-year-brooklyn/

Lunar New Year in Prospect Park

Also on February 5th, a wide range of activities will be taking place at Prospect Park. From paper-lantern making to Bingo and card games, the Prospect Park Alliance has a fun set of free activities planned for families to enjoy the Chinese holiday. RSVP and see more event details.

Source: https://www.mercurynews.com/2018/02/04/bay-area-2018-lunar-new-year-festivals-and-events/

Source: https://www.mercurynews.com/2018/02/04/bay-area-2018-lunar-new-year-festivals-and-events/

Queens Events

Lunar New Year Parade and Reception

Festivities for the Lunar New Year will start at the historic St. George’s Church with a reception held by the Greater Flushings Chamber of Commerce on February 9th. The reception will be from 9:30 am until 10:30 and will be showcasing performances by local artists and organizations, a prize raffle, and local refreshments. After the reception, head over to Union St and 37th Ave for the parade that starts around 11 am.

Source: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/flushing-lunar-new-year-parade-reception-2019-tickets-53067716970

Source: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/flushing-lunar-new-year-parade-reception-2019-tickets-53067716970

Chinese New Year Temple Bazaar

The Chinese New Year Temple Bazaar will take place on February 17 at the Flushings town hall. Temple fairs are a popular tradition for the Lunar New Year going back centuries. The fair will have a variety of performances, art-making, and food to celebrate the new year. This family-friendly event will take place in two timed entry sessions at 11 am and 2 pm. You will need your $5 ticket to participate so make sure you snag your tickets for this event before they sell out. Follow the link below the picture to purchase tickets.

Source: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/flushing-lunar-new-year-parade-reception-2019-tickets-53067716970

Source: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/flushing-lunar-new-year-parade-reception-2019-tickets-53067716970

Interesting fact: New York City is home to the highest concentration of Chinese people in the Western Hemisphere. Manhattan’s Chinatown is known to be one of the oldest Chinese communities in the United States.

See more on the Chinese New Year Origins and Traditions