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© Jeffrey Kollbrunner
© Jeffrey Kollbrunner

9 Cultural Festivals To Attend In New York This Summer

Picture of Camille Fuller
Updated: 9 February 2017
Summer is the perfect time to immerse yourself in New York City culture, obtaining the best foreign experiences without the price of a plane ticket. From concerts to foodie festivals and film screenings, take advantage of all that NYC has to offer. We profile ten cultural festivals to attend in New York this summer.

Mostly Mozart

Celebrating its 50th anniversary, Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart music festival brings you the best of this musical genius. The iconic Austrian composer pushed the boundaries of classical music, and he has inspired generations with his timeless sounds. From July 22nd through August 27th, Mozart’s brilliance is showcased in everything from orchestral performances to stunning dance ensembles. In addition, there will be 50 world premiere performances presented at this year’s event.

Lincoln Center, 10 Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, NY, USA, +1 212 875 5456

© Jeffrey Kollbrunner

© Jeffrey Kollbrunner

Thunderbird American Indian Powwow

The 38th annual Thunderbird American Indian Powwow is a cultural event not to be missed. Showcasing delicious food and stunning jewelry and arts and crafts alongside traditional Native American dance performances and competitions, this festival will enlighten all participants. The Powwow will commence on Friday, July 29th at 6 pm, and conclude on Sunday. Admission is $16 for adults and $7 for children 12 and under for this weekend-long event. Day passes cost $11 per adult and $5 per child.

Queens County Farm Museum, 73-50 Little Neck Parkway, Floral Park, NY, USA+1 718 347 3276

© Jeffrey Kollbrunner

© Jeffrey Kollbrunner

Festival of the Americas

On July 30th from 10 am to 6 pm, the Festival of the Americas returns to New York City in celebration of all North, South, and Central American cultures. The festival has long served as a unique opportunity for New Yorkers to experience a colorful conglomeration of ‘American’ cultures, featuring food, arts and crafts from over 500 vendors. The festival will take place between 42nd and 56th street and 6th avenue.

A Great Day in Harlem

Spend the day in Harlem on July 31st to celebrate this New York City neighborhood’s rich history and culture. Beginning at noon, participants will enjoy a picnic with cuisines from around the world, alongside a fashion show and a lively mix of gospel, jazz, and Latin music performances. Peruse the vendors and exhibitions on view in honor of the beginning of Harlem Week.

U.S. Grant National Memorial Park, West 122nd Street and Riverside Drive, New York, NY, USA

Asian American International Film Festival

From July 21st through July 30th, the 39th annual Asian American International Film Festival will screen over 100 narrative features, shorts, documentaries, and music videos to showcase the best Asian-American talent in the cinematic industry. The festivities begin with a gala celebration and movie screening at the Asia Society, located on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. The duration of the festival will screen films across four venues: Cinema Village East, Asia Society, the Museum of Moving Images, and Flushing Town Hall. Visit the festival’s website for a full list of screening times and locations.

Asia Society, 725 Park Avenue, New York, NY, USA, +1 212 327 9217

© Bob Dea

© Bob Dea

The Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival

In celebration of the fifth moon in the lunar calendar, the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival is an annual event held on Meadow Lake in Queens. Over 120 boat teams will compete for cash prizes and trophies. The boats are approved by the International Dragon Boat Federation, with races held on August 6th and 7th. Come watch the races, watch live performances from the Shaolin Temple Warrior Monks, presentations from China, Mexico, and Peru, and indulge in traditional Chinese food alongside a selection of global cuisines.

Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens, NY, USA, +1 718 760 6565

© Bob Dea

© Bob Dea

The East Harlem Giglio di Sant’ Antonio Feast

Running from August 11th through August 14th, this weekend celebration kicks off at 6 pm on Pleasant Avenue in East Harlem. The East Harlem Giglio di Sant’ Antonio Feast was brought to New York from Italy in the 1880s in honor of Saint Anthony for freeing young men in Nola from North African pirates. This celebration has since been passed down from generation to generation, so come for incredible food, games, rides, and live entertainment, including the dance of the Giglio on Sunday.

Pleasant Avenue, East Harlem, NY, USA

India Day Parade and Festival

The Federation of Indian Associations gears up to host its 36th annual India Day Parade on August 21st. Starting at noon, dozens of floats will make their way down Madison Avenue, beginning on East 26th Street. Come hungry as a wide selection of delicious Indian dishes will be on offer. The festival will also feature Indian vendors, musical performances, and dancing.

Brighton Jubilee Festival

Food, trinkets, and performances take over Brighton Beach for the 40th annual Brighton Jubilee Festival, hosted by the Brighton Neighborhood Association. On August 28th, come out to celebrate the area’s diverse community of citizens. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, this Brooklyn festival welcomes all to join in on the festivities.

Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, NY, USA