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Summer in New York City brings warm weather and plenty of exciting things to do and see throughout the five boroughs. Embrace the season by diving into all the culture, food and activities on offer, from bike riding and boat outings to fireworks and food festivals. Summertime is also packed with innovative exhibit openings, must-see sporting events, top-notch films and a bevy of outdoor concerts—all perfect for filling any agenda.
New in NYC
Hornblower Cruises & Events
Take in views of the skyline during a dinner, brunch or cocktail cruise aboard Hornblower's luxury yachts. Both public and charter trips are available, whether you're planning a simple outing with friends or a corporate event, birthday party or wedding. Hornblower also just introduced the latest boat to join its fleet: the eco-friendly Hornblower Hybrid fits 600 passengers for a one-of-a-kind journey around the harbor.
NYC & Company and CityMaps recently unveiled a brand-new NYC Map app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Visitors can locate nearby restaurants, shops, entertainment, nightlife and hotels through easily recognizable logos and icons. Plus they can book dinner reservations, access parking locations and rates, and receive real-time offers from top deal sites. NYC Map is available for free in the US iTunes store.
Marvel Super Heroes at Madame Tussauds New York
The famous wax museum introduces a new set of figures to its already-impressive 85,000 square feet of celebrities. The interactive exhibit spans multiple levels of the museum and includes The Hulk, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Captain America and Thor. Visitors can walk through stations replicating scenes from the pages of the comic books as well as watch a 4D Marvel Super Heroes short film.
Space Shuttle Orbiter Enterprise at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, celebrating its 30th anniversary, will unveil the Enterprise to the public this July. The prototype orbiter of NASA's space shuttle was used for test flights in the late '70s and early '80s. The shuttle—which departed its former home in Washington, DC, atop the specially outfitted 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft—is the latest addition to an impressive collection of flight memorabilia at the Intrepid appealing to visitors of all ages.
Audio Tours of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
On June 4, the Statue of Liberty National Monument and the Ellis Island Immigration Museum began offering audio tours of the monuments. The audio guides, which complement the National Park Service–led Ranger tours, are 30 and 45 minutes, respectively, and are included in the price of the ferry ticket to the monuments. The tours are available in nine languages: English; Spanish; French; German; Italian; Japanese; Mandarin; Russian and Arabic. A special children's tour is available in five languages: English; French; German; Italian and Spanish.
The Drawing Center Reopens in September
The Drawing Center, which closed its doors in September 2011 for renovations, will reopen on September 15 with an expanded space for exhibitions and public events, plus an education center and gallery. Since its beginning, the center has specialized in contemporary and historical work by famous and unknown artists. One of the featured artists in the new space will be Guillermo Kuitca, whose personal Diarios paintings incorporate sketches, doodles and bits of ephemera from his everyday life.
Barclays Center Set to Open
After nearly two years of construction, the Barclays Center will open its doors this September as the state-of-the-art home to the Brooklyn Nets. The venue will also serve as an exciting performance space, hosting big-name artists like Jay-Z, Barbra Streisand and Andrea Boccelli, and it will offer a range of rooms and clubs for private events of all sizes. Just steps away from transportation hub Atlantic Terminal, the arena is close to great shopping and dining options.
New Itinerary Ideas
Outdoor Concerts and Free Movies
Countless summer concerts span every borough almost every day of the week. Highlights include Summerstage, the River to River Festival, and Celebrate Brooklyn! Regardless of what genre you're into, you'll find the perfect show and likely discover some new favorites, too. Even better, many of these shows are completely free. To start planning, read our guide to free summer concerts in NYC.
There are also tons of free movies screening across the City this summer. The Wizard of Oz, The Princess Bride, Slumdog Millionaire and The Lion King are just a few films you can see outdoors. For a full list of films, read our roundup of free summer movies in NYC.
Real Bronx Tours
Real Bronx Tours allow visitors to get immersed in the borough's rich culture and history. Tours accommodate groups of any size for a three-hour outing that explores the many ways this borough has changed over the past 30 years. Stops include Yankee Stadium, Mott Haven, the South Bronx, The Bronx Museum of the Arts, the Grand Concourse and Arthur Avenue.
Adirondack Sailing Excursions
Hop aboard the 1890's-style schooner Adirondack for an outing that travels past the historic landmarks of New York Harbor. Boats depart five times a day May through October and trips last two hours, providing ample time for visitors to relax while snapping pictures of iconic sites like the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Summertime sails include a full-moon trip, a city lights sail and a sunset sail against a picturesque city backdrop.
Upcoming Events and Exhibitions
The Joyce Theater's Fall 2012/Winter 2013 Season
September 18, 2012–January 27, 2013
The Joyce Theater presents a range of dance artists and styles, among them international performers and renowned ballet companies. This year, see the Kidd Pivot theater company and the US premiere of The Rodin Project, co-produced by Russell Maliphant. Among the other companies making an appearance this year are Philadanco, Ballet Next, Morphoses and Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo.
Metropolitan Opera 2012–2013 Season
September 24, 2012–May 11, 2013
The distinguished Metropolitan Opera begins its season with the comedy L'Elisir d'Amore on September 24. As the season progresses, audiences can expect seven new productions, including The Tempest and Parsifal, three complete Ring cycles and a holiday production of The Barber of Seville.
Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks
Once again, the Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks will light up the sky over the Hudson River with about 40,000 shells launching from six barges set to a patriotic soundtrack. Although millions tune in to America's birthday bash on TV, there's nothing quite like seeing the display live.
Nathan's Famous Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest
Top hot-dog eaters will assemble in Coney Island for this annual competition of consumption. When the clock strikes noon, competitors start eating Nathan's hot dogs for 10 minutes straight. The tradition, which started in 1916, brings out screaming fans hungry for more.
Through August 25
Harlem Week began as a one-day tribute to the neighborhood and has evolved over the past 38 years into a summerlong celebration of the community's rich economic, political and cultural history. Fairs, festivals and special events take over the area's parks and venues for an unforgettable celebration.
Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival
The festival, which is traditionally held on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month and takes place on Meadow Lake in Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, features traditional Chinese foods and performances and over 120 dragon boat teams from across North America.
August 27–September 9
For two weeks each year, the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, in Queens, becomes the focus of the tennis world: the final Grand Slam tournament of the year can make or break a player's season.
Broadway on Broadway
Broadway on Broadway, in its 20th year, is expected to be bigger than ever this year, as performers from top productions put on a free show in Times Square. Expect previews of brand-new shows and highlights from classics.
West Indian American Day Carnival
August 30–September 3
Take in reggae and calypso music, taste freshly made delicacies and see extravagant costumes dot the streets in the heart of Brooklyn over the Labor Day weekend. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the celebration.
Fashion's Night Out
As far as fashion events go, it doesn't get much bigger than Fashion's Night Out. The annual extravaganza returns for its fourth year, bringing designers, models, fashion editors, celebrities and shoppers to top stores in the City. Each year brings a lineup of exclusive events and musical acts.
Feast of San Gennaro
The Feast of San Gennaro takes over the already-vibrant streets of Little Italy for 20 days to pay tribute to the patron saint of Naples. More than 1 million people flock to the festival to take in parades, frequent food stands and watch a cannoli-eating contest. It all culminates in a celebratory Mass and candlelit procession with the statue of San Gennaro.
Food trucks are a staple of New York City culinary culture and every year, the Vendy Awards celebrate the best street chefs around. Celebrity judges decide who deserves the title of New York City's Best Street Vendor, and all-you-can eat passes are available so you can judge for yourself who should get the top prize.
New York Film Festival
September 28–October 14
This year marks the 50th anniversary of iconic displays from the world's most venerable filmmakers and international talent. The 17-day festival, organized by the Film Society of Lincoln Center, also presents classics, documentaries, full-length features and special events.
Open House New York Weekend
Open House New York Weekend is your exclusive chance to get a glimpse of NYC's rarely seen spaces. Sites include boardrooms, factories, firehouses, lighthouses, mansions and skyscrapers. Among last year's spaces were Nitehawk Cinema, the St. George Theatre and the CFDA Fashion Incubator. Since this year marks the event's 10th anniversary, the organization has special programming and new initiatives in the works.
Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden
Island Sounds: A 500-Year Music Mash-Up
Through December 2013
The interactive multimedia exhibition showcases memorabilia, instruments, artifacts, photos and videos from musicians who were born or based in Staten Island. Artists recognized include David Johansen of the New York Dolls and local singer Ingrid Michaelson.
New York Public Library
Lunch Hour NYC
Through February 17, 2013
The New York Public Library's latest exhibition, at the Steven A. Schwarzman Building, examines 150 years of the busy lunch rush and its overwhelming, oftentimes innovative, menu options. The display pulls from the library's resources to tell the story of how the City operates between the hours of noon and 2pm.
The Morgan Library and Museum
Churchill: The Power of Words
Through September 23
This exhibit spans over half a century of Churchill's life, including his childhood and his Cold War correspondence with President Eisenhower. Drafts, speaking notes, personal and official correspondence, public statements, and speech and broadcast recordings paint a picture of his lifelong relationship with the United States.
American Museum of Natural History
July 28–December 12, 2012
Discover the world of spiders through creature models, videos, interactive exhibits and fossils. The museum's latest addition focuses on fantastic feats of arachnid survival and showcases some of the most impressive insects alive, like the goliath bird eater and the western black widow.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Regarding Warhol: Fifty Artists, Fifty Years
September 18–December 31, 2012
Experience one of the most influential artists of the last half-century with five themes, from vernacular subject matter to celebrity portraiture. The exhibit juxtaposes Andy Warhol's works with samples from leading contemporary artists to showcase his extensive influence on the art world.
Tony Award Winners
The 2012 Tony Awards took place on June 10 at the Beacon Theatre. Among the contenders were revivals like Death of a Salesman and The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess; adaptations like Newsies, Once and Peter and the Starcatcher; and star-studded shows like Nice Work if You Can Get It (Matthew Broderick) and Other Desert Cities (Rachel Griffiths, Stockard Channing). Read our roundup of the night's top winners here.
Opened May 2012
Manhattan — Tribeca
Wyndham Garden Long Island City Manhattan View
Opened April 2012
Queens — Long Island City
The Algonquin Hotel Times Square, Autograph Collection
Manhattan — Times Square
W New York – Union Square
Manhattan — Union Square
Download the latest Hotel Development Fact Sheet.
NYC & Company Signature Programs
Save the Date
Save the Date is your essential trip-planning aid. It lists major NYC events and holidays, plus the dates for best hotel values and availabilities—all in one place. It's just the tool you need to help plan a first-class visit for your clients. You can download a PDF of key dates here.
NYC Restaurant Week Summer 2012
This signature dining program, celebrating its 20th anniversary, offers prix-fixe meals ($24.07 lunches and $35 dinners) at hundreds of New York City's finest restaurants.
As New York City's Official Family Ambassadors, the Muppets highlight the best ways for families to experience and enjoy the many restaurants, stores, cultural institutions, parks and attractions that the five boroughs have to offer.
Broadway Week and Off-Broadway Week Broadway Week and Off-Broadway Week offer theatergoers two-for-one tickets to popular shows. Last year's Broadway shows included Anything Goes, Seminar and Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark. Off-Broadway shows included Avenue Q, Rent and STOMP.
NYC Travel Training Academy
Become a New York City Specialist and learn insider information about the City's hotels, shopping, dining, culture and more. Register now at nycgo.com/training. The program is available in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, the Netherlands, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.
The NYC & Company Travel Trade Pass, which provides special offers for travel professionals visiting the City, now includes additional offers exclusive to New York City Specialists who have successfully completed the NYC Travel Training Academy.
Get the NYC Official Travel Planner online
Selling NYC is easy with this comprehensive guide to the City's accommodations, dining, nightlife, transportation and more. Plus theNYC Official Travel Planner is now available online.
For More Information
Should you have any questions or require additional information, feel free to contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact your local office. For general information, including a calendar of events and other essential information about New York City, please visit nycgo.com.