August in New York City: The Best Shows, Concerts, Festivals And More
Secret Summer in Long Island Cit
Feeling like you haven’t gotten the most out of summer just yet? With just about a month left of beaches and outdoor parties, you’re probably wondering how to make the most of the warm-weather fun. Luckily, whether you’re visiting New York City in August or a longtime resident looking for something new to do, the last month of summer is full of cultural events, pop-ups, concerts, sporting events and more.
Ready to plan the best month ever? From a cocktail festival to the US Open tennis tournament, here are the best things to do in New York this August.
See one of the hit musicals now on Broadway
Andre de Shields in HADESTOWN, one of the few new musicals generating serious heat.
Tourists and locals alike can bond over their love of a Broadway show. Choose from big critic and award show darlings like Wicked and Hamilton or try out a new classic like Hadestown, which recently won 8 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Film and television lovers are especially in luck, with shows like Mean Girls, The Office! A Musical Parody, and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child all currently playing.
Rock out at Queen + Adam Lambert: The Rhapsody Tour
Adam Lambert and Brian May of Queen perform in concert during ‘The Rhapsody Tour’ which comes to New York in August.
With Adam Lambert filling in the Freddie Mercury role, Queen’s “The Rhapsody Tour” has received positive reviews for its energy and touching tribute moments. Nostalgia seekers will be reminded of the best of Queen but Lambert can still rock you. And yes, the setlist includes “Don’t Stop Me Now.” (August 6 and August 7)
Shake things up at the New York Cocktail Expo 2019
One of New York’s biggest cocktail festivals will once again shake things up with an all-out booze-soaked bash featuring tastings of more than 30 spirits, beers, ciders and, of course, cocktails. Your ticket gets you access to samples of new drinks from lauded local bars for a Best Cocktail Competition, as well as tropically-minded cocktails during a Tiki Throw Down. (August 18)
Another event for cocktail-lovers? Take a ferry (or the No. 7 subway train) across the river to Long Island City for Secret Summer NYC. This farm-to-bar mixology event takes place at The Foundry. In fact if you wish to stay just outside the heart of Manhattan while enjoying full views of the skyline, consider booking a night at The Ravel or Z New York Hotel — both just steps from The Foundry. Secret Summer serves more than just sustainable cocktails: expect live DJs, plus musical and theatrical performances. (August 4)
Celebrate a three-course prix-fixe meal during NYC Restaurant Week
Temple Court at The Beekman
You’re going to need a hearty multicourse meal to go with all those spirited drinks. From the iconic Palm Court at The Plaza Hotel to Chef Tom Colicchio’s Temple Court at The Beekman Hotel (which hosts a chill and intimate jazz brunch every weekend in the Bar Room)—check out many upscale restaurants throughout the five boroughs for Restaurant Week. Now through August 16.
Embrace your inner groupie at Shawn Mendes: The Tour
Shawn Mendes performs during “The Tour” which heads to Brooklyn’s Barclays Center in August
The 20-year-old heartthrob (and Forbes 30 Under 30 member) Shawn Mendes will lighting up the stage at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center for two nights in August. Expect angsty love anthems like “If I Can’t Have You” and “Señorita” (featuring Camila Cabello) along with throwback summer jams like “I Know What You Did Last Summer.” And if you wish to book a hotel near Barclays, check out the EVEN Hotel Brooklyn or the Holiday Inn Brooklyn Downtown. (August 23 and August 24)
Dress up for the Jazz Age Lawn Party
The Dreamland Follies at the 2017 Jazz Age Lawn Party in New York City.
The Prohibition Era-inspired fete returns to New York for its 14th annual installment. Don your finest Roaring Twenties attire and hop a ferry to charming Governors Island for a period-piece extravaganza that’ll include performances from Michael Arenella & His Dreamland Orchestra and the ten-lady dance spectacle Dreamland Follies. To keep the fun rolling, there will be Aperol Spritzes and original cocktails by legendary New York mixologist Julie Reiner. (August 24 and August 25)
Keep summer hot at the Afropunk Festival
Gary Clark Jr. performs at Brooklyn’s Afropunk in 2017 and is back on the lineup this year. (PHOTO BY CYNTHIA EDORH/GETTY IMAGES)
Since 2005, this annual Brooklyn festival has spotlighted the creative works of African-American artists, musicians, filmmakers, designers and more. This year’s musical lineup, which is pretty stacked, includes FKA Twigs, Rico Nasty, Leon Bridges, Leikeli47 and Gary Clark Jr. Another major highlight is the delicious Bites & Beats festival within a festival. Looking to stay nearby the venue? Consider the new Pod Brooklyn Hotel, which has a low-key but fun sports bar and patio on the ground floor as well as a rooftop bar. (August 24 and August 25)
Catch a match at the US Open Tennis Tournament
The Queen: Serena Williams will be going for a record 24th Grand Slam singles title this year at the US Open. PHOTOGRAPHER: RICK MAIMAN/BLOOMBERG NEWS
Head to the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, Queens, to see the world’s best tennis players—including Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Serena Williams and more. Qualifying rounds are free to watch, and there’s a also free kids’ festival for the whole family before the tournament begins. (August 26 to September 8)
Jam out at the Soulfrito Music Fest
Soulfrito Festival returns to New York City. SOULFRITO INSTAGRAM PAGE
Originally launched in Miami, Soulfrito returns to New York with a mash-up of sounds from the rising stars of hip-hop and Latin trap. At this one-night concert you’ll be jammin’ out to the likes of Ozuna, A Boogie, Jeremih, Arcangel, and Guayanaa. Drink water, everyone. (August 30)
Information of: Forbes by Dan Q. Dao