Winter can definitely be a trying season in New York City, we know. It's cold. It's gonna be gray and gloomy at best, and icy and slushy at the worst.
Still, no reason to be a drag. There's too much sh*t to do out here.
Also, aren't you happy to have our city back after the holiday tourism season? Come on, you've gotta be just a little psyched that Midtown is slightly more manageable.
Look, we've even prepared a pretty brief list of things that you should probably try to do at least once this season, with plenty– seriously plenty– of options.
Whether this is going to be your season of action (okay, we meant like, politically, but uh, do what you gotta do), cozying up in the dark of a warm theater, or both, remember that if this city never sleeps, we certainly don't hibernate in the winter, y'all.
1. Go ice skating
If you don't go ice skating, is it even really winter? Probably, since it's still freezing, but ice skating is one of the best seasonal things to do in NYC, and you've still got time to shuffle around on rented blades, praying you don't drag one of your friends down to the ground with you if you trip.
Um, okay, that doesn't sound that fun, but it totally is! We don't know why!
The Rink at the Rockefeller Center might seem like the obvious choice, but don't count out the Winter Village at Bryant Park, which is free if you bring your own skates, Lasker Rink in Harlem, or Wollman Rink in Central Park.
Really looking to beat the tourist crowds? Then you gotta love the World Ice Arena in Flushing, or on weekends, you can hit up Coney Island's Abe Stark Rink. And, we swear it's worth the ferry ride, consider trekking out to Staten Island's Skating Pavilion.
2. Get a little (too) tipsy on a bar crawl
Based on our completely scientific research, we've established that the best time to do a pub crawl in NYC is during the winter months. After you've got 1, 5, or 7 drinks in you, we're pretty sure you won't feel the cold anymore. And if you do, all that means is YOU'RE NOT DRUNK ENOUGH.
Theme nights not your thing? Head out with the folks from Pub Crawl New York, who'll take you to 4 dope East or West Village nightlife spots in one night, with exclusive drink specials, and dates for you to choose from every week.
If you're too cool for a $4 Vodka Soda, you should definitely check out Whiskey Walk, which goes down on March 4th. 8 premium Irish Whiskey tastes at 8 classic NYC bars– with a portion of all sales going to a local charity. Can't beat that.
However, in our unbiased opinion, the cutest themes are during the winter too, like this Boozin' in Your Onesie Bar Crawl on January 21st. Registration is at the Brother Jimmy's on East 16th Street from 12:30- 1:00 p.m. Let your furry flag fly high, people.
Alternatively, on the same night, we couldn't blame you if you went with the 90s Bar Crawl, because let's face it, that furry joke probably freaked you out, didn't it? Our bad. Registration starts at Ainsworth park from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m.
Remember, only 90s kids remember the coolest stuff like slap bracelets, getting yelled at for taking participation trophies adults forced on you, and Saturday morning cartoons! Omg the cartoons. They make the crippling debt totally worth it.
3. Drink some more
Prefer your boozin' stationary, or at least, indoors?
Then you've gotta check out one of these epic booze fests, like the Winter Wine Festival, hosted at The PlayStation Theater in Times Square, and probably the only good reason to wander up that stretch 42nd Street.
The theater will be transformed into an indoor vineyard on February 4th, and participating wineries will source over 250 tastings of wine from the finest regions of France, Italy, Spain, South Africa, New Zealand, Argentina, Japan, and more. Light hors d'oeuvres will also be offered, and your revelry will be serenaded by a live jazz band. What could beat that?
Um, maybe the NYC Craft Beer Fest (if it's brews that float your boat, obvi), which is going down the same weekend, on Friday, February 3rd, and Saturday, February 4th, at the Lexington Avenue Armory. They'll be offering 150 beers, ciders, and meads from approximately 75 breweries– and you'll get unlimited 2 oz tastings.
Looking for the hard stuff? Head out to Queens to the Beer Garden at Bohemian Hall for the NY Cocktail Expo, on March 12th. There will be sweet, fizzy, bubbly, bold, spicy, and even more imaginative cocktail tastings from some of the top bars in Queens.
General admission includes one cocktail from each exhibitor, small food bites, and access to some dope giveaways and prizes.
If you're not one for drinking on an empty stomach, the Oyster & Beer Festival, which is on February 11th at The Tunnel in Chelsea, is for you. Along with over 40 Wines, Spirits, & Beers for you to choose from, they're offering up over 20,000 raw oysters, including over 10 different style, a southern-style seafood boil, a New England clambake, and some great music.
4. Eat some good f*cking food
It's the most wonderful time of the year, when us plebs get the chance to indulge in some fine dining: it's almost Restaurant Week! This year's list includes established NYC classics, and some newcomers that you should definitely look out for.
The nearly three-week-long event gives diners the chance to order three-course prix-fixe meals for both lunch $29 and dinner $42 from January 23rd to February 10th. And who can say no to that kind of deal? It should probably be called restaurant weeks, to be more accurate, but hey, we're not complaining.
You can also satisfy your ultimate dim sum cravings at the newest installation of the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) EATS: a Dim Sum Brunch, on February 12th.
At this special weekend morning brunch at Golden Unicorn, you'll learn to order (and eat!) dim sum in Cantonese, and follow their traditions as they start the new year. Back at the museum, they'll walk everyone through a guided tour of Sour, Sweet, Bitter, Spicy: Stories of Chinese Food and Identity in America.
If you really wanna make eating your job, we're gonna have to introduce you to BrunchCon. Sounds pretty great right off the bat, but just wait.
This legendary food fest, coming to Prospect Hall in Brooklyn on March 26th, will feature bites from over 50 of NYC's trendiest brunch vendors, an open mimosa bar, a market featuring local vendors, a speed dating station, and a hangover lounge, because they're realistic. It's a lot. But it sounds like it's gonna be epic, and the FOMO will be seriously real if you miss out.
We'd like to think that 2016 was the worst of the sh*tshow, but chances are, we're just getting started. It's easy to feel powerless, like there's nothing you could do to make a change, but we assure you, there are plenty of ways to get involved, if you just take the initiative.
ICYMI, the Women's March in D.C. is going down this Saturday, the day after the inauguration. Not already hopping on one of the buses to the capitol? It's understandable if it's not within your means, but don't count out the Women's March on New York City, which is gonna be held on the same day.
These ladies (and men, can't forget all five of you), will be raising their voices at 1 Dag Hammarskoljd Plaza and marching to rally at Trump Tower.
Heads up: the worst thing you can do is show up uninformed, and uneducated about what's going on. Not sure what staggered times are? Yeah, check those out. Not sure what you're marching for? Read their mission statement. Don't be one of the reasons Taffy Lahren can cite as to why protests are ineffective. Stay nasty, snowflakes.
Flying solo this Valentine's Day? Kill two birds with one stone, in a way, at this singles event, where everyone will feed and clothe the homeless people at Penn Station. Just saying, it's a lot easier to weed out the f*ckboys when you're at a volunteering event. BUT OBVIOUSLY, that's not the most important part.
February in NYC can get frigid, and even more so without that fuzzy Canada Goose Jacket. The best things you can bring are a couple of used hats, gloves, and coats– they have more suggestions here.
If you like your good deeds to be masked by partying, then the legendary Brooklyn warehouse, House of Yes! has the rager for you on February 9th. At Ethereal Eve, the $20 suggested contribution at the door will be raising funds for the Urban Arts partnership, for art therapy programs that inspire children to transform their emotional and physical pain into strength, power, and creative self- expression.
We were wondering why there seem to be so many comedy show fundraisers going down recently, but it kinda makes a lot of sense. We're all stressed, some scared, and could all definitely use a f*cking laugh.
So get your tickets now for MUTHA UP for Reproductive Rights on February 3rd at Sidewalk Cafe (Avenue A), where there will be comics, storytellers, and poets from MUTHA Magazine standing up for reproductive rights. All the proceeds will go towards the Planned Parenthood NYC Action Fund.
Don't know, or a little confused about what PP does? Here ya go.
6. See an old movie
Yeah, we know, there's a ton of sh*t in your Netflix queue, and so much Oscar-bait for you to pretend to watch. But one of the perks of living in NYC that like, no one takes advantage of, is seeing movies on the big screen that would normally only be viewed on your 13-inch MacBook.
We've been hitting you with too many outdoors-y things, anyway, but that doesn't mean you have to re-watch old Parks & Recreation episodes all winter if you don't want to go outside.
Sunshine Cinema's ongoing Sunshine at Midnight series is still going strong, and they've been screening some pretty great movies, of a pretty wide variety. Last weekend, you missed Studio Ghibli's Kiki's Delivery Service. Up-coming reels include Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, The Room and Dr. Strangelove.
If you're still not ready to let go of Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, join the Museum of Moving Image in Queens, where they are hosting a tribute series on January 21st and 22nd, with screenings of one of Reynolds' best performances, The Unsinkable Molly Brown, and Postcards From the Edge, which was adapted from Fisher's book. Expect a teary theater.
A small little film called Casablanca is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, and Village East Cinema is offering a Valentine's Day showing. That'd be February 14th, guys. More on that later.
And uh, we're gonna sneak in this showing of Scott Pilgrim vs. the World at Videology Bar & Cinema in Brooklyn (with Gin & Tonics!), although a 2010 release hardly counts as old, you gotta love what we've arbitrarily decided is the best comic book movie of all time (wanna fight?).
7. Celebrate Valentine's Day
We know, we knooow. But hear us out. NYC is probably the best place to be on V-Day, whether you're cuffed, looking, or single and proud, because there is soooo much sh*t to do.
Like, you definitely don't have to be one half of a couple to participate in Cupid's Undie Run, on February 18th. The gist is, you show up at Stage 48 to party at noon, and at 2 p.m., everyone strips down, goes for a quick mile jog, then commences getting lit. Sounds pretty dope, doesn't it?
Another plus, besides, def being the perfect event to go stag, is that the proceeds benefit the Children's Tumor Foundation.
Coupled up? Skip the overcrowded, fancy dinner this year, and head to The Bronx to do something different. The New York Botanical Garden has an entire weekend of Valentine's Day plans, like chocolate seminars and tastings, a pop-up bar inside one of their conservatories, and a tour of their plants with aphrodisiac qualities *wink wink.*
If you're looking for something more low-key, stay uptown, but check out Confetti on Westchester Avenue, for Valentine's Day painting and wine (this one's BYOB). The theme will be Harley Quinn & the Joker, maybe this will be the day you finally expunge the last memories' of Jared Leto's Jim Carrey Joker from your mind.
Still looking for something more unique? Look no further than Couples Welding, but the real adventure is trekking out to Staten Island. On Wednesday, February 15th, Staten Island Makerspace is hosting a beginners workshop to cutting shapes with the plasma cutter, and practicing basic welds. It's a date bae definitely won't ever forget.[Feature Image Courtesy runkarlarun.com]