Absolutely Everything We’re Doing in NYC This Winter
Aka 30 reasons winter is not the worst
We know: It’s face-numbingly cold outside, your bank account is hurting from the holidays and spring is still a good three months away. Don’t give in to the urge to hibernate, though: There are tons of awesome things to do from now until you finally put away your parka.
1. Rewatch all eight Harry Potter movies over brunch at Nitehawk Cinema, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first book in J.K. Rowling’s epic series. (Yep, we’re all ancient.)
2. Hear world-class musicians and vocalists at Winter Jazzfest (January 5–10).
3. Catch some of our favorite authors, George Saunders and Colson Whitehead, in conversation at 92Y.
4. And a one-night-only performance of Love, Loss and What I Wore, starring Tracee Ellis Ross, Natasha Lyonne and Carol Kane, to name a few.
5. Wait for it to snow, then head to the Bronx Zoo to watch tigers and red pandas live their best life.
6. Or if tamer animals are your jam, prepare to be impressed by the impeccably groomed pups at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
7. It wouldn’t be Groundhog Day without a screening of…uh, Groundhog Day. (You can catch it at Syndicated.)
8. There’s no better hand warmer than a cup of hot chocolate, and City Bakery has a different flavor for every day in February during its annual Hot Chocolate Festival. (You’re gonna need a cookie for dunking, obvs.)
9. And lucky us, there’s actually another Hot Chocolate Festival this year, put on by premium cocoa producers Valrhona. The whole thing kicks off with a party at Ladurée Soho on January 18.
10. February also happens to be Pancake Month at Clinton Street Baking Co., when mind-blowing special recipes like blueberry crumb streusel and banana chile chocolate make an appearance.
11. See live ice carving—yep, it involves chainsaws—at Central Park’s annual Ice Festival.
12. You hardly need an excuse to go out to eat, but Restaurant Week (January 23 to February 10) is a good way to check a bunch of spots off your list and save a couple bucks in the process.
13. Pick up a Winter Tippler passbook for just $35 and sip 15 signature cocktails at spots around the city (that's just over two bucks each).
14. Celebrate the Year of the Rooster with dragons, dancers and a lot of confetti at Chinatown’s annual firecracker ceremony (January 28) and parade (February 5). Make sure to pick up some nian gao—sweet and doughy New Year cake—to snack on while you watch.
16. Swoon over the fall collections at New York Fashion Week—and also style bloggers’ creative attempts to look chic when it’s 20 degrees out.
17. Escape to a tropical climate—for the day, anyway—at the New York Botanical Garden’s Orchid Show, which focuses on the gorgeous blooms of Thailand this year.
18. Sip top-shelf and artisanal booze at Edible’s Good Spirits. (Hey, it’s one way to keep warm…)
19. Take a relatively uncrowded post-holiday spin on the Lakeside skating rink in Prospect Park—it’s open through March 26.
20. Too cold to venue-hop? Have a whole night out—drinks, dinner and karaoke—under one roof at Korean barbecue spot Insa.
21. Or cozy up by the fire at Clover Club with some duck-fat potato chips and a Log Cabin cocktail (an appropriately named combo of hazelnut-infused whiskey, maple syrup, apple brandy and bitters).
22. Two words: brunch dumplings. Aka bite-size miracles filled with maple sausage, scrambled eggs, cheddar and everything bagel seasoning, courtesy of Mimi Cheng's and Sir Kensington's.
23. Two words: winter whites. It’s the one time of year it’s socially acceptable to look like a polar bear, and we fully intend to take advantage.
24. Stock up on all kinds of beautiful—and cheap!—goods at the newly reopened Pearl River Mart. You need a dragon-printed kimono, let’s be honest.
25. Take a train on the holy-moly-it’s-actually-real Second Avenue Subway—it’s officially in service as of January 1, and the new stations feature some pretty awesome artwork. This must be what riding a unicorn feels like…
26. Soak the cold right out of your bones in the thermal pools at Aire Ancient Baths.
27. Or embrace the cold in all its glory at Winter Jam in Central Park: an all-day event where you can go snowshoeing, sledding or skiing (with free rentals and lessons provided).
28. Too cold to wait in line for your Shackburger and Concrete? Download Shake Shack’s mobile ordering app and skip the line.
29. Scope out Gustav Klimt’s stunning turn-of-the-century portraits of women at the Neue Galerie before the exhibit closes January 16. And treat yourself to some fancy desserts and perfect ambience at Café Sabarsky afterward.
30. OK, fine: You have our permission to stay home, blast the heat and snuggle up with a good book every so often. But hey, don’t hole up too much—winter will be over before you know it.