Category Archives: Free

5 Tips for Visiting New York City this Summer

The summer season is an exciting time in New York City, with endless things to do and see. Have a picnic in Central Park, spend an evening relaxing on a rooftop bar, or dance the day away at one of the city’s many festivals or concerts.

When you travel to New York City this summer, take advantage of these travel tips to make sure your NYC adventure is one you’ll treasure for years to come.

1. Visit some of the city’s best public parks
Enjoy the summer sun in one of NYC’s finest urban parks. In addition to Central Park, Manhattan’s infamous 843-acres oasis, NYC boasts a bunch of free outdoor spaces to relax, have a picnic, read a book, or even rent a canoe! Visit Brooklyn Bridge Park – complete with waterfront esplanades, a famous old carousel, and sports fields or take a walk along The High Line, an elevated park on Manhattan’s West Side built on an abandoned train track.

2. Make transportation easier with JFK car service
Navigating through hordes of traffic and waiting on hot subway platforms can put a damper on an otherwise perfect trip…even before it starts! Get to and from the airport with ease by taking advantage of JFK car service. Get picked up in a modern and chic black car that’s waiting for you when you arrive. Your car will take you right to your destination, whether that’s a hotel, a museum, or one of those public parks. It’s an affordable and stress-free way to kick off your NYC trip.

3. Try to catch one of these free festivals or shows
There’s a lot to celebrate in NYC this summer. See if you can catch one of the many free, outdoor music and cultural festivals. Start with Coney Island’s one-of-a-kind Mermaid Parade, the nation’s largest art parade on June 17th. Or check out Bastille Day on July 14th in Brooklyn’s Boerum Hill to enjoy the flavors, sounds and spirit of France. There’s also a whole host of recurring shows happening all summer long, like Shakespeare in the Park, Outdoor Movie Night in Randall’s Island Park, or any of the Lincoln Center’s annual lineup, like Midsummer Night Swing and Lincoln Center Out of Doors.

4. Check out one of these rooftop bars
Spend a night out on the town and experience the city after dusk the New Yorker way – at one of the city’s many swanky rooftop bars and lounges. Hang out with the locals at St. Cloud Social atop the Knickerbocker Hotel. Watch the buzz below with a cocktail in hand from a serene spot tucked away in lush greenery. To get out of Manhattan and still snag the best views, try Westlight atop Williamsburg’s flashy William Vale hotel or Penthouse 808 in Long Island City.

5. Feast on NYC’s finest food
Despite the prevalence of glitzy restaurants and bars, NYC’s food scene is simple at heart. There are some NYC staples that you shouldn’t miss out on this summer – and they won’t break the bank. Try custard-based homemade ice cream from Ample Hills Creamery, make a breakfast of bagels and lox from Zabar’s on the Upper West Side (and pick up some black and white cookies while you’re there, too!), grab a slice from Joe’s Pizza on Bleeker Street, or discover have one of Nathan’s Famous hot dogs at the original location, complete with sauerkraut, red onions, cheese and chili.

Now you’re ready to make the most of your time in New York City this summer. Enjoy the public parks and outdoor shows, experience the luxe lounges and casual eats, and start your trip off the right way by booking your JFK car service in advance. The more you prepare before your trip, the less you’ll have to worry about when you’re exploring the Big Apple.

New Years Eve Times Square

New Years Eve in Times Square

It doesn’t get much more iconic New York than New Year’s Eve in Times Square. This yearly celebration has come a long way since party goers started celebrating in the area as early as 1904. In 1907 the New Year’s Eve ball made its very first appearance at One Times Square. The first ball was made out of iron, 100 light bulbs and wood, was 5 foot in diameter and weighed nearly 700 pounds. It is safe to say the current ball has a few upgrades which includes a computerized LED lighting system and is covered in Waterford Crystals. Not only has the quality changed but it’s size too – it weighs almost 12,000 pounds and is 12 feet in diameter. The ball currently takes 60 seconds (which perfectly coincides with your countdown) to descend 141 feet to start the New Year.

Way down below on the city streets you can find an estimated one million people in Times Square from all over the world ready to ring in the New Year. However, the celebration wasn’t always in  midtown. In the early 1900’s people would gather at Trinity Church in downtown Manhattan where they would ring a bell to signify the new year. As more vibrant buildings were being built up in midtown, people started to make their way towards this area for celebrations.

Now tourist and locals alike gather from the early morning to find the perfect spot to take it all in. Usually in festive hats and noise makers in hand, the excitement can be overwhelming. Star-studded musical performances and appearances take black throughout the night as everyone patiently waits for the official count down to begin.

If you think one million people in Times Square is a lot, think about the one billion people who watch the events that unfold in New York City from their televisions. Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, which is now hosted by Ryan Secreast is synonymous with New Year’s Eve. Other networks you can find alternative broadcasts like New Year’s Eve with Carson Daly or CNNs’ New Year’s Eve Live. These programs allow everyone to feel part of these iconic New York City events without leaving your house.

No matter where you are this New Years, everyone here at GO Airlink NYC wishes you a very happy and healthy New Year.

One of the many free events in NYC in July is the Bryant Park film festival.

Free Events In New York City – July 2015

There are many different events going on in New York City every day, but that doesn’t mean they should break the bank. We have compiled a list of some of the most exciting free (yes, really, FREE) events and things to do in New York City this July. With the 4th of July kicking off this month with a bang, there is no doubt that fun and excitement will run through the rest of the month.

 

Macy’s 4th of July Spectacular – July 4, 2015

There are approximately 40,000 fireworks expected to go off up and down the East River to celebrate Independence Day. The show will even include fireworks coming off from the Brooklyn Bridge, how cool is that?! With the show being so large, there are tons of view spots for you to see the show for free.

 

HBO Bryant Park Summer Film Festival – July 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th

Bryant Park hosts free movie showings every Monday throughout the summer on the Lawn. In July you can catch ‘The Poseidon Adventure’, ‘I’m No Angel’, ‘Badlands’, and ‘Footloose’. The Lawn opens at 5:00pm and the movie goes on around 9am. So, grab a picnic blanket, some snacks and get comfy under the city lights.

 

Bastille Day – July 14, 2015

This French National Day commemorates the beginning of the French Revolution, Bastille Day is the name it was given to English speaking countries. In New York City, the day is celebrated with a street fair filled with French food, culture and entertainment. It is the ultimate afternoon celebration that shares French culture in New York style.

 

City of Water Day – July 18, 2015

New York City is surrounded by water and along with the city, the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance works hard to preserve this. On July 18th at Governors Island there will be a family focused festival to celebrate just that. There will be free boat tours, waterfront activities, food, live music and a Cardboard Kayak Race.

 

Shakespeare in the Park – Starts July 27, 2015

Every summer we get the privilege of two different plays being shown in Central Park at the open aired, Delacorte Theater. Earlier in the season, we got to experience The Tempest which finished up on July 5th, and now after a brief break, we now get to finish out the rest of the summer with Cymbeline. The tickets for the performances are free and there are several different ways you can go about getting them.

Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks in New York City Viewing Spots.

Where to Watch the ‘39th Annual Macy’s Firework Spectacular’!

On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was signed declaring the United States independent from Great Britain. Today, in 2015 on July 4th, Americans and visitors alike, celebrate with fireworks, parades, festivals, and barbecues surrounded by friends and family. In New York City, there’s an infinite amount of different Fourth of July events going on and the one that takes the cake is certainly going to be the 39th Annual Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular. It is the largest fireworks show in the United States and if you’re not here in New York City to catch it live, it is broadcasted across the United States along with tons of musical performances.

The first Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Show was in 1976 in celebration of the nations’ bicentennial. Since then the show has been outdoing itself year after year. At approximately 9:20 pm on July 4th, you’ll get to see 25 minutes of fireworks in all their glory. The show will take place at two locations on the East River – the Midtown area and the South Street Seaport. This is making for a bigger show which means even more spots for everyone to view the fireworks.

With that being said, where should you watch the Macy’s 4th of July Spectacular Fireworks? Think of the Brooklyn Bridge as the centerpiece for the show, so anywhere you could see the bridge, is where you’ll have perfect sight of the fireworks. Remember, you want to grab your spot way in advance so showing up at 8:30pm is not going to work.

  • Manhattan: The FDR Drive is part of Macy’s official viewing spots. There are entry points at Broad Street (ground level), Old Slip (upper level), Pearl & Frankfort, Houston Street, 23rd Street, 34th Street, and 42nd Keep in mind these areas tend to fill up the fastest and will close as they reach capacity so make sure you give yourself plenty of time to grab a spot.
  • Brooklyn: Brooklyn Bridge Park is right under the action with the City skyline in the back drop. The good thing about this location is you could spend the afternoon there, lay some blankets down, have a picnic and as the sun starts to set, you’ll end up with a prime viewing spot.
  • Queens: Long Island City is right along the East River, and the higher you can get, the better. Queensbridge Park or any of the various parks along Center Blvd will get you in on the action. As we said, the higher the location the better – so, check to see if you can get ticket to one of the rooftop parties in the area. Both Z NYC Hotel and Ravel Hotel will be hosting exciting parties.
  • By Sea: CitySightseeing New York offers a first row seat to the fireworks along with great music, food options and a cash bar. There is no doubt it will be a night to remember.

No matter what you end of doing, thanks to Macy’s, this 4th of July is set to be an explosion of fun.

 

This upcoming Sunday get your Easter bonnets and dresses ready for the festivities.

Celebrating Easter in New York City? Egg-cellent!

Although the weather doesn’t seem to agree, it is springtime in New York City! Besides events like blooming Cherry Blossoms and the Great Lawn opening, Passover and Easter both usually fall in the month of April. This upcoming Sunday get your Easter bonnets and dresses ready for the festivities. After you arrived safely to NYC via JFK, LaGuardia or Newark, it’s time to organize how you’ll be celebrating the holiday weekend.

Easter Parade and Bonnet Festival
Give new meaning to your ‘Sunday best’ with the Easter Parade and Bonnet Festival. On Fifth Avenue from 49th to 57th Street see some of the most outrageous hats march in procession. Creativity is not spared as visitors can wander down or just watch the parade along 5th Avenue. The parade route falls right in front of St. Patrick’s Cathedral which makes it a great spot to catch even just 20 minutes of the Parade and then head to your Easter dinner. The festival gets “hopping” around 10:00am.

NYC Pillow Fight
Maybe this isn’t exactly how you thought you’d spend your Easter, but on Saturday at 3:00pm it might just be the most fun. From adults to children, everyone grab a pillow and head to Washington Square Park for the 10th Annual International Pillow Fight Day (yes, that’s a thing). After your arms get exhausted from all the pillow fight fun, there will be a donation truck to drop off your pillow where it will go to someone in need.

Easter Brunch
There is an Easter brunch that suits you and your family in Manhattan, we can guarantee it. Many restaurants are offering different deals that include 3-course meals and drinks. The Easter Bunny pays a visit to many of these eateries at no extra charge. We suggest you make reservations as soon as possible as many of these places will fill up fast!

Easter Egg Hunts
Your day won’t be complete without an Easter Egg hunt and there are quite a few going on all weekend. Most of these hunts are free and locations vary throughout the city. On Saturday you can head Uptown to the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, or get your hunt on in SoHo at the NYC Fire Museum Easter Egg Hunt. On Sunday after the 9:15am service at the Church of St. Luke, there will be a hunt open to the public (even if you don’t attend the mass). Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island the Bronx also have plenty more Egg-straordinary hunts going on, you can check out this full list.

he flower show has been running for 41 years now, always letting visitor’s imagination run wild with creativity time after time.

Spring Into The Macy’s Flower Show

Macy’s has become the epicenter of New York City shopping with ten floors of different shopping experiences. Located in Herald Square, it has become a staple in the fabric of the City. As spring is finally upon us after a long winter, Macy’s is welcoming the season with their annual Flower Show. If you can’t be in New York to experience the magic, the show will also be featured at their other flagship stores in Philadelphia, Chicago, Minneapolis and San Francisco. The flower show has been running for 41 years now, always letting visitor’s imagination run wild with creativity time after time.

From Sunday, March 22, 2015 to April 5, 2015, you’ll find a spectacular two week floral display that will brighten your day in a matter of seconds. The ground level of Macy’s will be covered from floor to ceiling in flowers so you can experience “Art in Bloom”. Flowers will be flown in from all over the world and arranged by renowned horticulturalists until each piece is perfectly assembled. “Lush foliage and beautifully designed gardens celebrating artistic styles and eras bring Art in Bloom to life for this year’s Macy’s Flower Show. Enveloped by rich color and dramatic landscaping, spectators will be in for a breathtaking trip through art history as they step into our imaginative gardens,” said Mike Gansmoe, executive producer of Macy’s Flower Show.

This year spectators can welcome two new gardens to the show along with the Sino-American Friendship Association (SAFA). One garden will celebrate the year of the goat which symbolizes good luck through out the year and the other garden will feature China’s Great Stone Forest located in Yunnan.  Yunnan means “South of the Colorful Clouds”, so we can expect this garden to be nothing short of amazing.

Along with the two week Flower Show comes many family, musical and cultural events. On March 22nd, Martha Stewart will be doing a cooking demonstration and the same day will be also be a Family Fun Day. On March 27th, celebrity florist, Michael Gaffney will give a floral seminar and towards the event of the show, on April 4th you can have breakfast with the Easter Bunny! There are many events throughout the two weeks, and you can check them all out on the Official Macy’s Flower Show website

The Dumbo Arts Festival is held over 3 days, from Friday, September 26 to Sunday, September 28.

Dumbo Arts Festival

The great thing about New York City is the never-ending supply of talent. On top of that, you can even attend several of these showcases and events for free! The Dumbo Arts Festival, now in its eighteenth year, is a free public event that highlights the Brooklyn arts community and displays local, national, and international art.

The Dumbo Arts Festival is held over 3 days, from Friday, September 26 to Sunday, September 28. The official hours are Friday 6-9pm, Saturday noon-9pm, and Sunday noon-6pm.

The festival displays an impressive number of over 400 artists, 100 studios, and 50 galleries and stages. Here are some of the scheduled exhibits you shouldn’t miss.

Friday, September 26:

By Day, By Night
What:
By Day, By Night highlights the work that people do to both survive and stay true to the things they love. The photographers involved have been wandering the city talking to strangers and getting their insight on life and how they live it.
When:
6pm- 9pm
Where:
Plymouth Street Park Perimeter Fence

Degrees of Freedom
What:
A series of geometric structures (3D drawings) which allude to portals or paths the audience must physically navigate. Each participant is invited to engage with the installation, making their own decisions within the piece – such as moving left, turning right or going back to where they started.
When:
6PM – 9PM
Where:
29 Jay Street, St. Ann’s Warehouse, Brooklyn, NY

Cosmos
What:
An HD video installation that depicts a hyper-chaotic landscape of fractal dimension, infinitely regenerating as a side-scrolling video.
When:
6PM – 9PM
Where:
29 Jay Street, St. Ann’s Warehouse, Brooklyn, NY

 

Saturday, September 27:

The Imaginary Truck
What: Performers will blindfold participants and guide them through The Imaginary Truck. This experience will include live portrait drawings, games, dancing, stories, and much more.
When:  Noon – 6pm
Where:  Corner of Plymouth and Adams Street, Brooklyn NY

I ____ A Dollar
What:
A public intervention that invites people to question the value and meaning of a dollar. The goal is to engage the audience to consider whether or not having a free dollar makes a difference in their day or if the money should be given to someone who needs it more.
When: Noon – 6pm
Where:  Main Street, Brooklyn, NY

Submerged!
What:
A seven piece combination of video and sound art. Artists from Italy, Israel, Germany, USA, Brazil and Hungary worked together to create a multi-layered program that explores the collective subconscious in stunning visual and sonic detail.
When: Noon – 6pm
Where: 30 John Street Brooklyn, NY

 

Sunday, September 28:

Dreams For Free
What: 
An ongoing, social interaction, which began in 2012. The artist is collecting dreams from people in exchange for a lottery ticket. For every ticket that Jody distributes, she asks the recipient to write down his or her desires for what they would do if they won millions of dollars.
When:
Noon – 6pm
Where: 
Main Street Brooklyn, NY

Beauty
What:
A performance art series curated by Shelly Bahl and Sunita Mukhi for the South Asian Women’s Creative Collective (SAWCC). The SAWCC invites you to revel in and reveal your own uplifting and complex notions of BEAUTY in this series of vibrant interactive performances.
When: Noon – 6pm
Where:
Main Street Brooklyn, NY

The Imaginary App
What:
World-renowned artist, DJ, and visionary Paul D. Miller and Svitlana Matviyenko celebrate the release of THE IMAGINARY APP, a provocative new anthology of writers, theorists, and artists exploring the cultural and technological shifts that have accompanied the emergence of the mobile app.
When:
5pm – 7pm
Where:
37 Main Street, powerhouse Arena Brooklyn, NY

For the full schedule and more information about the exhibits, head over to dumboartsfestival.com

The Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival is Here!

The Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival is Here!

The 24th Annual Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival is commencing this weekend, with two full days of free events! This year there will be a record number of 188 teams participating in the traditional dragon boat races. In addition to the 2500 participants, festival organizers are preparing for more than twice the amount of attendees over the weekend.  Here’s a rundown of everything to ensure you have all your ducks in order for a fun weekend.

When: August 9 – 10, 2014

Where: Meadow Lake, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens

Event Schedule

August 9:

  • 10:30 AM – 11:30 AM: Chinese Music Ensemble of New York
  • 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM: Opening Ceremonies
  • 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM: American Tap Dance Foundation
  • 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM: CASYM Steel Orchestra
  • 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM: Shaolin Masters and students from the Flushing, NY Temple perform martial arts

August 10:

  • 10:30 AM – 11:45AM: Tamika Lawrence and band.
  • Noon – 12:45 PM: Wing Tsun martial art performance
  • 12:45 PM – 1:30 PM: Rectifist and friends- a New York City Band
  • 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM: Rob Lok International Purveyor of Comic Visual Action & Ocular Business
  • 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM: Mawuena Kodjovi West African melodies and dances
  • 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM: Shaolin Masters and students from the Flushing, NY Temple perform martial arts.

Other Important Details

Food: There will be a food court with a host of vendors at the festival. Attendees will have the opportunity to indulge in traditional Chinese cuisine including fish balls, edamame, dumplings and an assortment of noodles with different sauces.

How to get there: It is okay to drive but be aware that there is NO parking available unless you have a parking pass. If traveling by train, take the train to Mets-Willets Point station, where you will be able to transfer to the special event bus. You can also take the , , or trains to the train.

For more information about the festival, visit http://www.hkdbf-ny.org/!

Rainy Day Dates in New York City

Rainy Day Dates in New York City

Rainy days have a bad reputation. They’re notorious for ruining plans and even changing people’s moods. What happens when you have made dinner plans with your partner or planned a nice picnic in Central Park? Here are a few rainy day date ideas to save the day!

Bowling

Bowling almost always guarantees a fun-filled date! Not only do you get to show off your awesome skills, but you get to trash talk and brag. Try your luck at these bowling alleys.

  • The Gutter – This is the perfect “grown up” bowling alley; exposed brick and authentic wooden lanes line the interiors. Have a blast and be sure to grab a drink from the Gutter Bar (P.S. They also have happy hour where you can get 2 games or hours for the price of one.) 200 N. 14th St (Brooklyn)
  • Bowlmor Chelsea Piers – This alley has a few locations in New York, but this one offers more space and big everything! After bowling a turkey, head into the arcade and have a dance off. 11th Ave. (at 23rd St.)

Rock Wall Climbing

Rock wall climbing is a great way to stay inside and stay dry. Make a bet on who can climb to the top in the fastest time to create some friendly competition! Try Aviator Sports and Events Center in Brooklyn. Passes go for $18 for an all-day pass or $10 for two runs. 3159 Flatbush Ave.

Museums

Museums are a good way to learn about each other’s interests. Pick an exhibition to view and walk around with your date. If you’re a bit awkward, this is a good option to sort of break up the silence. Plus they’ll be tons of things around to strike a conversation about! Try these:

  • Sony Wonder Technology Lab, 56th St. & Madison Ave. : A free technology and entertainment museum that allows visitors to explore technology and creativity in one setting.
  • Museum of Modern Art, 11 W. 53rd St.: One of the most influential museums in the world, MoMA offers modern and contemporary design, architecture, painting and more.
  • The Cloisters Museum, 1000 Fifth Ave.: Dive into Medieval European history at this museum that offers medieval works of art.

Craft Class

If you enjoy talking and creating a more intimate environment with your date, try a craft class. Thankfully, New York offers a wide range of choices.

  • Any sort of crafts – If you’re in the mood for perfume blending, floral design, or sewing, try 92Y. The cultural institution and community center has been serving the community for over 100 years. Find it at Kaufman Concert Hall or 1395 Lexington Ave.
  • Take a pottery class at Painted Pot in Brooklyn. With three locations, you can create your own funky pottery shapes, and then paint them! Bay Ridge, Carroll Garden and Park Slope
  • Culinary classes are a fun and easy way to connect with people! Who doesn’t enjoy food? Try Appetite for Seduction (4 East 1st Street) or Natural Gourmet Institute (48 West 21st Street).
Harlem Week 2014

Harlem Week 2014

The importance of preserving and appreciating a melting pot of cultures is illuminated during Harlem Week 2014. What began as a one day event has turned into a month long of activities, with opportunities for all to get involved.  Since 1974, the mission has been to empower and unite the people of New York with art, culture, and entertainment. The way that the community united inspired the people of this city. This idea thrived tremendously, and now brings 2 million people from New York and all over the world. This community has a unique flavor which is showcased through all the free events offered. Below is a timeline of favorite events that’ll impact you in more ways than one.

  •  July 27 — “A Great Day in Harlem” is the event to kick off the 100+ events scheduled from late July through August. Attendees can enjoy an Outdoor Festival, Picnic, and Fashion Fusion Showcase. This family oriented event also has arts and crafts with additional exhibitions to look at. You can end the day with “A Concert under the Stars” starting at 6:00 pm.
  • August 7 — For a more informative and engaging activity, this day debuts “NYC Economic Development Day.” Included in the schedule are International Business and Health Conferences, a Career and Jobs fair, and an annual business award luncheon. This is meant to showcase Harlem’s economic development with prestigious speakers to inspire the younger generation. Registration is required for this event.
  • August 16 — This marks the “Summer in the City” Event that is definitely kid friendly with the first event being the NYC Children’s Festival. Children ranging from 5 to 12 years are able to enjoy storytelling, performances from dancers with all different styles, and face painting. “Harlem Honey Bears” is focused primarily on senior citizens. Along with the entire family they can enjoy swimming and exercising demonstrations.
  • August 17 — Known as the actual “Harlem Day,” you can find a plethora of activities for all interests involved. The Upper Manhattan Auto Show is an exhibition with vintage and unique vehicles throughout the area. “The Village within Our Village” offers information about health care services with free health testing provided on sight.
  • August 23 — A 5K Run & Peace Walk is held through the historic streets of Harlem. The purpose behind these marathons is to combat gun violence, bullying and domestic violence.  With this comes the encouragement of wide unity and peace within all communities.