The City’s most popular New Year’s Eve celebration is a modest 6-ton ball drop in Times Square. But it’s not the only way to ring in 2018; beyond that confetti-laden display, there are parties, concerts, fireworks displays and even a brisk 4-mile jog through Central Park. We’ve listed some of our favorite options below; check our guide to NYC’s best New Year’s Day events for ways to follow up the big night.
Visual Impact: On Art, AIDS and Activism
The NYC AIDS Memorial and the NYC Department of Transportation’s Art Program commemorate WorldPride and Stonewall 50 with an educational installation featuring the sobering work of eight artists, including Keith Haring and Catherine Opie. View the exhibit on Greenwich Avenue, adjacent to the NYC AIDS Memorial Park between West 12th Street and Seventh Avenue.
The Pride Experience Bus Tour
Zip around to sites of LGBTQ+ historical interest on a double decker bus with CitySightseeing New York's special Pride Experience Bus Tour. Hostess Anita Buffem entertains and performs during the two-hour tour, while a licensed New York City tour guide explains the importance of local landmarks from Hell’s Kitchen to Greenwich Village and everywhere in between.
Pride In Harlem Renaissance Tour
Join Taste Harlem for a 2-hour walking tour on LGBTQ+ history and the Harlem Renaissance. Led by local historian Michael H. Adams, the tour explores the lives of notable cultural icons such as Langston Hughes, Audre Lorde, Bessie Smith, Josephine Baker and Alain Locke—as well as some of the popular queer gathering places in the neighborhood, past and present.
Grit and Glitter: Before and After Stonewall Screening Series
Celebrate LGBTQ+ cinema with The Museum of the Moving Image’s Pride Month series “Grit and Glitter,” showcasing thirteen films made both before and after Stonewall. Films include Jack Smith’s “Flaming Creatures” (1962), Stephen Frear’s “My Beautiful Laundrette” (1985), and many other notable queer films from the past sixty years.
"Beyond Skin" By Norm Yip
Canadian photographer Norm Yip’s “Beyond Skin” exhibit features a collection of the artist’s pioneering work in fine art photography of Asian male subjects taken over the course of the last 20 years. This traveling exhibition has its first US dates in celebration of WorldPride, taking place during the last week of June in NYC.
Poet of the Body: New York's Walt Whitman
"Poet of the Body: New York's Whitman" is a free exhibit at The Grolier Club that celebrates the 200th birthday of the luminary poet Walt Whitman. The exhibit has multiple editions of his famous tome "Leaves of Grass" along with personal items of Whitman's, like the author's pen. Visitors can also take a virtual walk in Whitman's shoes via an interactive 3D stroll down Broadway in the mid-1800s.
Photography After Stonewall
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, Tribeca's Soho Photo presents “Photography After Stonewall” an exhibit featuring over 70 photographs focusing on LGBTQ+ subjects taken by 23 artists. The show will demonstrate how the uprising in the summer of '69 made possible an explosion of imagery that earlier generations had to hide and suppress.The exhibit is free and open to the public.