8 Actually Fun Things to Do in NYC This Weekend

A Smorgasburg pop-up, cocktails in a '70s VW minivan, a new mystery drink at a Brooklyn bar, and more.

BreakThrough Media

With this week officially marking the last day of the year where NYC sunsets will fall at 7pm or later, let's savor the remaining weekends of September as much as we can.

This weekend, you can have an HBO soundtrack-inspired picnic on a greenery-strewn rooftop, drink your way through an inventive cocktail menu served out of a 1977 VW minivan, or head to a limited-time version of Smorgasburg in Prospect Park -- we’ve rounded up everything to eat, drink, see, and do in NYC.

Eat your way through a limited-run Smorgasburg in Prospect Park

Prospect Park
Smorgasburg is heading back to its home in Prospect Park for a limited run of Smorg To Go.  Order ahead from vendors including Excell’s Kingston Eatery, the seafood-focused Bon Chovie, Portland favorite The Whole Bowl, and the made-for-Instagram Destination Dumplings. Your meal will be available for a quick, contactless pick up at the Smorgasburg outpost at the LeFrak Center, so bring a picnic blanket or a lawn chair for an al fresco lunch. 
Cost: Food and drink prices vary

Sip your way through a bangin’ wine list

West Village
NYC wine shop Parcelle is popping up an outdoor wine bar, Parcelle Patio, and making it the perfect place to take a date. Share a bottle or drink wine by the glass while snacking on well-paired snacks like hamachi tartare and crispy kale with ricotta. You'll need to pre-purchase a $5 ticket to get in -- all ticket sales go to The Roots Fund, a non-profit that supports the Black and Indigenous communities within the world of wine. 
Cost: Tickets are $5

Celebrate Rosh Hashanah with a challah pop-up

Friday, September 18, 9am-12pm
Lower East Side
Challah Dolly, New York’s extremely online challah bakery, is popping up at Party Bus Bake Shop for a carb-heavy Rosh Hashanah celebration. Pre-order your challah -- choose from plain or apple honey -- and then stop by the pop-up to grab your bread and ring in the Jewish New Year. We’ll have to wait a few more months for 2020 to officially end, but we might as well see if a new year’s celebration will hurry things along. 
Cost: Challah loaves start at $12

Try a "mystery drink" at a new Brooklyn bar

Minnows, a newly opened bar in Greenpoint, is officially in business for those in need of a new place to get toasted. Go for a frozen Grasshopper, a bright green New Orleans specialty, or, if you like to live on the edge, a Pond Water, which can only be described as a “sweet mystery drink” we’re happily open to wading through. Soak up your mystery booze with the hot dog menu, which features $4 beef or vegan franks served with every condiment you could possibly imagine. 
Cost: Cocktails start at $9

Drink cocktails served from a '70s VW minivan

Greenwich Village
Patisserie Fouet is hosting Double Chicken Please, a new cocktail bar pop-up from GN Chan and Faye Chen, alums of two of the World’s 50 Best Bars. They’ll be serving up a menu of three drinks from their 1977 yellow VW ride -- an “appetizer” of tequila, apple, and celery; an “entree” of whiskey and coffee butter or rum, sesame oil, and furikake; and a take-home cocktail to share with your date before your next socially distanced activity. 
Cost: $120 for 2 people

Help clean up NYC's coastlines

Saturday, September 19, 9am-1pm
Staten Island
The third Saturday in September is International Coastal Cleanup Day, when people around the world gather to beautify their beaches and shorelines. Conference House Park, which features four historic buildings with over three centuries of Staten Island history, is organizing a local cleanup for those who’d like to help. All you have to do is don your mask and head to the southernmost tip of New York State located in NYC’s isle borough, where the 10,000 year old clay bluffs overlooking the Arthur Kill coast and Raritan Bay could use a little of your love and attention. 
Cost: Free

Catch some music on the streets of NYC

Saturday, September 19, 6:30pm-9:15pm
On Saturday evening, jazz musicians will take to the streets of the Meatpacking District to serenade the city’s outdoor diners. A seat outside at Simó (from 6:30pm-7:15pm), Pastis (from 7:30pm-8:15pm), and The Chester (from 8:30pm-9:15pm) will get you front row seats to the live show. If you’re not in the mood for outdoor dining, lace up your sneakers and take a walk around the neighborhood to soak in the night music. 
Cost: Free to listen

Have a TV-inspired outdoor picnic

Sunday, September 20
Head to The William Vale’s verdant rooftop, Vale Park, for a candlelit meal set to music from a string quartet. They’ll be playing scores from Westworld, Game of Thrones, and Succession, so get ready to show off how good you are at humming behind your face mask. Your ticket includes one picnic meal per person, and cocktails will be available for purchase -- you’ll have to meet a bar minimum of $20, but you’ll have no problem hitting your goal with their selection of fruity, picnic-ready drinks.  
Cost: $65/per person

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FYI: We’ve also got you covered with comprehensive guides to LA, SFMiami, DC, Austin, Boston, Denver, Dallas, Atlanta, Phoenix, and San Diego -- just in case you’re ever out of town.
Rachel Pelz lives and writes in Brooklyn.