Welcome to 2016: 7 Incredible Things to Do on New Year's Day in NYC

The New Year is coming up, and it's about time to make your plans. So what will spend your New Year's doing?

Odds are, you've given extensive thought to how you'll spend New Year's Eve. Whether you're drinking or not, whether you plan on hitting New York City's clubs, or joining the maniacal scene in Times Square, staying in the city is definitely the move.

Have you figured out how you plan on spending New Year's Day, though?

Once the champagne is drunk, the streamers streamed, and the ball dropped, what will you do next? We know you probably have off from work, and odds are you'd prefer not to spend the whole day in bed, moaning about being hungover.

That's where we come in. We have some ideas for how you should spend your New Year's Day in NYC. Read on to find out what they are.

1. Coney Island Polar Bear Plunge

minnymoto Happy 2015!!!!!

Swimming in the ocean in January? Well, based on this weather we've been having, that actually doesn't seem too far fetched, but let us tell you. In years past it was an insane concept.

Weather aside, the Coney Island Polar Bear Plunge is an excellent community event geared at raising funds for Camp Sunshine, a camp for terminally ill children beside a lake in Maine.

Every participant is asked to donate $20 for Camp Sunshine, and then assemble on the Boardwalk at Stillwell Avenue on Coney Island on New Year's Day. If you're going to partake in the ocean swim, you should be there before 1 p.m.


You should also bring warm clothes, surf boots or old sneakers, and towels. There are changing facilities on the Boardwalk at Stillwell Avenue.

After the swim, there's a celebration at the Coney Island Brewing Company & Peggy O'Neill's Bar. $2 will be donated to Camp Sunshine for every beer sold, so for the first time in your life, you'll actually be drinking for charity.

Sounds pretty amazing, doesn't it? You can register and pledge here.

2. New Year's Day Marathon Benefit Reading

poetry_project Stacy Szymaszek and Simone White start off the night

Every year, the Poetry Project holds an annual event on New Year's Day, with all funds raised dedicated toward paying writers throughout the season. It also helps fund as many as 65 additional events throughout the year.

It's taking place at Saint Mark's Church in the Bowery, and it'll feature more than 140 poets reading works from 2 p.m. until 2 a.m.

Sounds pretty incredible, doesn't it?

The event's goal is to provide a site of collective agency, and create a space for the poets and audience members to experience spoken poetry communally. 

It's arguably the most inspired poetry event that takes place every year in NYC, and in the cultural capital of the world, that's saying something. If you're intrigued, and we certainly are, you can grab tickets here.

3. Brunch

thebodycoach Corrrr! Hold tight for the cauliflower drop scones with smoked salmon and poached eggs 😍 It's packed full of protein and healthy fats πŸ‘ŠπŸ½πŸ”₯πŸ’ͺ🏽 Ingredients: 300g cauliflower 3 eggs 1 egg white 5ml olive oil 100g smokes salmon Method: For drop scones: Blitz the cauliflower in a food processor until it turns into a fine rice. Place in a microwavable dish and blast it for 2 mins, stir and repeat. Allow to cool slightly before squeezing out as much liquid as possible through a tea towel or muslin. Combine the dry cauliflower with one egg and one semi whipped egg white, and season with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan to a medium heat. Spoon in your mix to create mini pancakes. Cook for 2-3 mins each side until golden brown. To serve: Serve the drop scones with smoked salmon, avocado and two poached eggs. #leanin15 #foodie #foodporn #breakfast #brunch #fitness #health #nutrition #fats #protein #salmon #eggs #fit #fitspo #fitfam

Brunching on New Year's Day is absolutely necessary.

What can you think of that'd be preferable to brunching with your pals, reliving tales from the night before, with a glass of champagne in your hand?

Yeah, we agree. We don't really think there's a better way to spend New Year's Day. 


Whether you're tossing back an excellently crafted bloody Mary at Sarabeth's or curing your hangover with some Fried Chicken & Bubby's Buttermilk Biscuit from Bubby's in Tribeca, brunching is practically required for starting the New Year out in style.

4. Visit the Winter Village at Bryant Park

croller357 Noon sunlight at the #bryantpark skating rink #fall #newyork #trees #buildings #iceskating #ice #wintervillageatbryantpark

If you haven't been to the Winter Village at Bryant Park, New Year's Day is as good a day as any.

You'll be able to browse the wares at the 125-boutique like shops stress free, because for the first time in a long time, you won't have to worry about buying gifts for anyone but yourself.

You'll also be able to twirl laps around the ice rink. We'd recommend bringing a combination lock so you can save your $8 on checking a bag. If you have your own skates, bring those too. That way, skating at the Winter Village is truly free.

If you need to rent skates, doing so costs $15. Still, it's an enchanting way to start the New Year to glide up and down such a beautiful rink.

You'll also be able to eat your way through the day at all the delicious food vendors at the Winter Village.


5. The New York Botanical Garden (2900 Southern Blvd - the Bronx) 

micantgonz won't you be my neighbor?πŸš‚πŸ˜‰

The Holiday Train Show at the New York Botanical Garden, you know, the super elaborate one with 150 miniature NYC landmarks, 3,000 extra feet of exhibition space, and a half a mile of track for the model trains to whip and whiz, is open on New Year's Day.

Every aspect of the 150 landmarks, from the mini Brooklyn Bridge, Statue of Liberty, and Rockefeller Center, were created from bark, leaves, and other natural materials.

The show also features a short film that reveals its behind-the-scenes magic, and a dazzling finale that enchants both musically and visually.  


So, you should come out and see it. While you're at the New York Botanical Garden, you might as well peruse the other 250 acres of the garden. On New Year's Day, they'll have a cell phone audio tour with train-inspired poems by Billy Collins while you stroll through the collection. 

The whole thing is pretty magical, and you should check it out while it lasts. Get tickets here.

6. Go to a museum

themuseumofmodernart "The trajectory of [Pollock's] too brief career retains a drama ... of volcanic ambition and personal torment attaining a lift-off, with the drip technique, that knitted a man’s chaotic personality and ... revolutionized not only painting but the general course of art ever after." Read @newyorkermag review of our current Jackson Pollock exhibition at the link in our profile. Installation view of "Jackson Pollock: A Collection Survey, 1934–1954" at The Museum of Modern Art, New York (November 22, 2015–March 13, 2016). Photo by Thomas Griesel. Β© 2015 The Museum of Modern Art, New York

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is closed on New Year's Day, but a lot of NYC museums aren't closing their doors to the New Year's Day crowd.

For instance, the Whitney is side open, as is the Museum of Modern Art, and the Museum of the Moving Image.

If you're obsessed with learning, you can get your history on at the New York Historical Society, or your science on at the New York Hall of Science.

Or, you could go check out "The Secret World Inside You" at the Museum of Natural History, where you'll have the chance to tour the human body. We've got to admit this particular exhibit sounds at once fascinating and gory to us, but we're intrigued.

7. Tour Central Park

lightningbolt00 I'm in LOVE with Central Park!! ❀️ #NYC2015 #centralpark

If you live in NYC, you've probably chilled out in Central Park. You've probably thrown out a blanket, laid back, and enjoyed a bite or two.

However, you probably haven't taken a Central Park Tour. You probably haven't heard the Central Park Conservancy's insider's taken on some of Central Park's most iconic sights.

Since, in our completely biased opinions, NYC is the best urban park in the world, we think you should probably seize this chance to learn a thing or two about it. If you take this tour, that's exactly what you'll do.


You'll learn how rocky, swampy land was built into the living work of art that is modern day Central Park. You'll tour the Dairy Sheep Meadow, Cherry Hill, the Lake, Bow Bridge, Bethesda Terrace, the Mall, and Literary Walk.

The tour starts at 11 a.m. on January 1st at the Dairy Visitor Center, located in the middle of the Park between 64th and 65th Streets), and you'll tour for an hour and a half. After 90 minutes of splendor and beauty, you'll be incalculably more knowledgeable about NYC's most famous park.

Tickets cost $15. Get them here.

Got $7,000 Laying Around? Spend It at the Top of 1 World Trade Center This New Year's Eve!

[Feature Image Courtesy American Profile] 

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