It’s a 4th of July 3-day weekend! Woo hoo!!
But with all that NYC has to offer, in the event you somehow still black out and can’t figure out a single thing to do, the Brooklyn Reader has done the work for you.
Here are the Top-12 Things to Do in Central Brooklyn This 4th of July Weekend:
#1. Go to the beach!
Here are five free beaches around NYC to get things on and poppin!
1. Jones Beach, 1 Ocean Parkway, Jones Beach is one of New York State’s biggest beaches, with 6.5 miles of sand, two swimming pools, a two-mile boardwalk, miniature golf and the Theodore Roosevelt Nature Center. It also has four bath houses, each with its own signature personality—oriented either for families; one for seclusion; one for adult play; and even one for a little nudity.
2. Fort Tilden Beach, Beach 169th St, (at the Atlantic Ocean), NYC’s best-kept secret, this lifeguard-free three-mile stretch of clean sand, trees and grassy dunes is so isolated that even on a summer weekend you’ll get a good 50 yards of beach to yourself.
3. Coney Island Beach, West 37th Street to Ocean Parkway, The most famous beach in New York, at Coney Island Beach, you can lay out, swim, ride a roller coaster, eat a hotdog at Nathan’s Famous, visit the city’s main aquarium, go to a concert, or simply watch the parade of people moving up and down the boardwalk. Lots to do for adults and children alike.
4. Rockaway Beach, Beach 3 Street to Beach 153 Street and Boardwalk, All the beaches in New York have sun, sand, and waves, but only Rockaway Beach, in Queens, has surfing. This beach is clean and picturesque for selfies of you and friends on the rocks with the water splashing in the background!
5. Jacob Riis Park Beach, Rockaway Beach Blvd, This “fairly secluded, laid-back beach” is part of the Gateway National Recreation Area. It draws an eclectic crowd; everyone feels welcomed. One tip: Bring your own food, since the concession stands aren’t always open and there aren’t restaurants close by.
#2. Hang out at one of the boroughs fabulous public pools:
- Kosciusko Pool, 670 Marcy Avenue, Bedford-Stuyvesant
- Red Hook Recreation Center, 155 Bay St, Red Hook, Red Hook
- Double D Pool, 3rd Avenue and Nevins St., Park Slope/Gowanus
- Sunset Park Pool, 6th Avenue and 44th St., Sunset Park
- McCarren Park Pool, Lorimer St at Bedford Ave,Greenpoint
Beginning June 29 – July 10, BAMcinématek and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences presents “By Any Means Necessary: A Spike Lee Joints Retrospective.” Spend the day looking back on nearly three decades of remarkable Spike Lee Joints. BAM is located at 30 Lafayette Avenue, Fort Greene.
#4. Get your African arts on!
Don’t miss the 43rd International African Arts Festival! The even kicks off Thursday, July 3 – Sunday, July 6, from 10:00am – 9:00pm, at Commodore Barry Park, Navy Street between Flushing and Park Avenue in Brooklyn. Donation is $3.00 at the gate.
Friday, July 4
#5. Go to a party where the food, the crowd and the beats are more diverse and mixed up than a pot of jambalaya! (This is a great party; I was there last year).
Do or Dine is excited to be hosting a special Fourth of July Rub-A-Grub this year. This party features DJ Akalepse (Truth & Soul/ Plane Jane) and DJ Still Life (STR8 West Coastin/ Worldwide Smash) and a three-part menu crafted by Do or Dine’s chefs. The event will kick-off in the afternoon and feature three rounds of food and drinks, each coupled with different DJ sets. Round-one will feature appetizers and bloody mary’s, followed by a second round of appetizers and beer and shot special. Taking us into the evening will be round three, which will include a featured cocktail and Do or Dine’s take on BBQ.
#6. Go grab some free BBQ at Freddy’s
Freddy’s Restaurant in South Slope will be serving free ‘cue on Friday, as well as offering drafts from all its taps for only $4. A deal like this means the place will surely be packed, so plan to show up early and come hungry. And if you prefer to bring your own barbecue, that’s fine, too: The bar’s grill masters are happy cook it for you.
#7. Watch the fireworks from a rooftop party in the Brooklyn Navy Yard!
The fireworks are back on the east side, which means they go up from only a few hundred yards from the Brooklyn Navy Yard. And we just happen to have the most unique venue with the best view EVER! Brooklyn Grange, 63 Flushing Avenue, #300. Tickets available here:
#8. Picnic at Brooklyn Bridge Park!
You already know that Brooklyn Bridge Park will be THE PLACE to be to watch the fireworks on Friday (to see a listing of other places to watch the fireworks in Brooklyn, go here). But heck! Why not just hang out at the park all day, have a picnic and claim your spot early??!!! There will be music, bbq’ing, entertainment and beautiful people everywhere, all with the NYC skyling and East River as your backdrop. This is NYC at its finest!
Saturday, July 5
#9. Take an African Dance Class for just $5!!!
Do something entirely different! Celebrate your 4th of July Weekend by healing your soul through Congolese Dance with Funmilayo. On Saturday, July 5, 2:00pm – 3:00pm, at the Cumbe Center for African Diaspora and Dance, located at 558 Fulton Street, for just $5 you get to sweat and wind it out in an environment filled with drumming, dance, celebration, community and fun! And if you want to stay for the day, you can! It’s community dance day: All classes at Cumbe on Saturday are just $5!
#10. Go to a free outdoor Concert
ROBERT GLASPER EXPERIMENT FEATURING TALIB KWELI | GLENN KOTCHE | AJA MONET at the Prospect Park Bandshell, 7:00pm– a part of Celebrate Brooklyn!–An elevated hybrid of jazz, hip-hop, and R&B leaps from the Grammy-winning fingers of the “supple, simmering pianist” (NPR Music). Robert Glasper–a fusion that finds its most potent expression with his exceptional band Robert Glasper Experiment. He comes to the Bandshell with the stalwart Brooklyn MC Talib Kweli on board to add his lyrical prowess to the holiday weekend.
#11. Go to a Dance Party at Brooklyn Tap House
Check out to what will go down as one of the hottest dance parties of the summer. Join Talib Kweli and Brooklyn’s own DJ Jahmedicine at Brooklyn Tap House for a musical excursion through the best of A Tribe Called Quest, Michael Jackson, Pharell, Stevie Wonder, Dancehall/Soca, Slow Jamz, and Much More. Come experience a night of true Paradise. Huge Indoor/Outdoor Space with Food and Drinks on premise. Must be 21 years of age and above with valid I.D. Please bring paper ticket.
#12. Gather your friends, your kids, anyone of any age, and head straight to the Brooklyn Museum!
If you haven’t been in a while, this weekend would be an ideal time to return to Target First Saturday at the Brooklyn Museum, where this month, you are in for a special treat: This free family day is going to be hot as fire this 4th of July weekend when filmmakers Paul Trillo and Landon Van Soest discuss their Brooklyn in 3,000 Stills project. Bring your smartphone and contribute to a crowd-sourced portrait of Brooklyn. Also, enjoy a book signing by, Brooklyn native Michael July and his enigmatic book Afros: A Celebration of Natural Hair. Co-hosted by Malik Yoba, and Michaela Angela Davis while Anu Prestonia of Khamit Kinks leads a natural-hair show. Book signing follows.Or listen to the sounds of Nina Skye and Blitz the Ambassador at Blitz’s only NYC summer show, as he blends African popular sounds, vintage soul, and hard-hitting beats and lyrics. Opening set by DJ Ushka and DJ Beto (iBomba). For itinerary, go here.