September 2010 Sports Calendar
by Jonathan Zeller, 08/23/2010
New York City is an exciting destination for sports fans all year long. Below you'll find a list of standout events happening in and around NYC throughout September. Visit our team schedules page for the complete lineup of New York's major and minor league teams, including the New York Red Bulls, New York Mets, New York Yankees, New York Liberty, Brooklyn Cyclones, Staten Island Yankees and football's New York Giants and New York Jets, whose seasons begin this month.
Run to Remember
September 5, 10am; Governors Island
During this event, runners and walkers honor the memories of those lost on September 11, 2001. Participants raise funds for charities including Tuesday's Children, the September 11th Families' Association, Voices of September 11th and the 9/11 Living Memorial Project. Events include a 5K run, a 3K run/walk and various children's "fun runs."
Brooklyn Bridge Swim
September 11, 12:15pm; starting at Brooklyn Bridge Park
Swimming the East River: it's not just for Seinfeld's Kramer anymore. Thanks to NYC Swim, ordinary (albeit fit) men and women can take the plunge and paddle across the storied channel from Brooklyn to Manhattan. The Brooklyn Bridge provides an appropriately majestic backdrop for these bold competitors as they splash their way through a kilometer of the waterway's choppy currents.
Giants and Jets Home Openers
September 12, 1pm; September 13, 7pm; New Meadowlands Stadium
New York's proud National Football League franchises begin another era, this time in a shiny, modern stadium so new it actually has "new" in its appellation (we assume it will bear the name of a corporate sponsor soon enough). On Sunday afternoon, the Giants square off against the Carolina Panthers, and on Monday night, the Jets take on the Baltimore Ravens. The Jets game will feature musical performances by Green Day and the duo of Slash and Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger. The luxurious digs are twice the size of the old Giants Stadium, though the dimensions of the gridiron itself, we've been assured, remain unchanged.
September 18, 12:30pm; Lawrence A. Wien Stadium
When it comes to college football rivalries, you might not think that Columbia–Fordham lives up to Michigan–Ohio State, but for fans of NYC's Ivy and Patriot League gridders, this game is a big deal. The quality of play is pretty strong, too. John Skelton, who hurled four touchdowns for Fordham in last year's game, now plays for the NFL's Arizona Cardinals. In addition to the action on the field and in the stands (complete with cheering students, pep bands and, doubtless, body paint), Lawrence A. Wien Stadium features one of the most stunning views in all of sports—a panoramic perspective of Spuyten Duyvil. For 10 bucks, you could do a lot worse.
NYC Skate Marathon
September 25, check-in at 5am, race at 7am; Prospect Park
Legend has it that the very first skate marathon took place in 490 BC when the Greek soldier Pheidippides strapped on his in-line skates in Marathon and delivered a crucial message to Athens; he skated the whole way without stopping and uttered the triumphant exclamation, "We have won" before he collapsed and died from a severely scraped knee. OK, we made that up. Still, while the skate marathon may not share its wheelless cousin's historical pedigree, there's no denying it's really, really cool. Today's festivities include 100-kilometer, 42-kilometer and 21-kilometer races, along with 5K fun skates for kids and adults—so skaters of all skill levels can join in on the action. If you do participate, just be sure to learn from Pheidippides' mistake: wear a helmet and pads.
Escape New York Century Bike Ride
September 25, 7am; starting at Sakura Park
We have an inherent bias against any event claiming that New York City is something to "escape." Though the notion that anyone would want to leave NYC is pure malarkey, we have to admit that a 50- to 100-mile ride along the Hudson River with views of the Palisades does sound quite agreeable. Three separate routes—all detailed on the Escape New York website—depart at 7am, 8am and 9am. In addition to the views (which seem to be a prominent theme in this month's sports calendar), riders receive tasty muffins, scones, sandwiches and beverages at various points in their journeys. Yes, this ride promises to be a pleasant excursion. But an "escape"? Not really—thankfully, you and your bike will end up right back in the City when it's all over.
Tunnel to Towers Run/Walk
September 25, 9:30am; starting at the Brooklyn side of the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel
On September 11, 2001, when off-duty firefighter Stephen Siller learned that the World Trade Center had been hit, he rushed through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel toward the site—on foot, with his equipment on his back. He lost his life saving others. In this event, runners and walkers pay tribute to his courage by retracing his path. Proceeds benefit the Stephen Siller FDNY Children's Foundation, which awards scholarships, helps burn victims, finds permanent homes for orphans and does much more to make New York City a better place.
Queens Strongest Arm Finals
September 25, 1pm; Queens County Farm Museum
The Queens County Fair has a small-town feel that belies its setting in America's foremost metropolis, and an arm-wrestling contest is the sporting event fit for such a shindig. Watch burly men and women compete to prove the mightiness of their biceps, wrists and forearms—and while you're at the Queens County Farm Museum, take in a full day of such old-fashioned diversions as carnival rides, an "amazing maize maze" and even livestock competitions right here in the big city.
New York Urban League Football Classic
September 25, 3:30pm; New Meadowlands Stadium
This matchup between historically black college football squads has become a favorite local tradition, and this year's installment takes on special significance as the first time the event has taken place at New Meadowlands Stadium. In the game itself, the Howard University Bison and the Morgan State Bears compete for gridiron bragging rights. As hard fought as the game is every year, for many fans, the schools' marching bands alone are worth the price of admission. Their lively performances entertain even those who can scarcely tell a linebacker from a halfback.