Even though the fireworks will be on the East River this year, here are some fun ways to spend your Fourth of July on the Upper West Side!
Midsummer Night Swing
Come celebrate the USA’s birthday by reviving the golden age of Latin dance! Held on Lincoln Center’s wonderful open-air dance floor, “set just nine blocks up from where the Palladium Ballroom broke down barriers and launched a mambo craze that stretched from sea to shining sea,” Lincoln Center hosts this instructor-led dance party every year in which anyone can salsa the night away!
Learn more about Midsummer Night Swing 2018.
Grill in Central Park
Usually, grilling or barbecuing is not allowed in Central Park, except on three specific days each year—including the 4th of July! It is recommended that if you BBQ or grill on the 4th of July, that you find an area north of 96th street, due to the crowds in the southern end of the park. On the Westside, it’s recommended that you grill on the Great Hill due to the fact that there are flat areas far from trees.
It is also important to note that the use of propane gas is not allowed anywhere at any time and that BBQing is prohibited in the following areas: All playgrounds, athletic fields, areas that are fenced off, woodland areas (North Woods) and the Conservancy Gardens.
For more information: https://www.centralpark.com/things-to-do/activities/grilling-or-barbecuing/
Westside Community Garden Annual 4th of July Picnic
From 6-8pm, the Westside Community Garden is serving up burgers and hot dogs for the community! This family friendly event is a great way to enjoy grilled food surrounded by the Garden’s beautiful flowers and trees. The Garden states that folks can bring their favorites sides as potluck but that’s not required!
Gray’s Papaya for Hot Dogs
For so many, celebrating the 4th of July just is not the same without a good hot dog! Luckily for us Westsiders, Gray’s Papaya has been cooking up some of the best (and least expensive!) hot dogs in New York for decades! Check out the $6.45 special—two hot dogs with a drink! You can add either fried onions or a generous pile of sauerkraut and eat them right at the counter!
New-York Historical Society “Independence Day: Freedoms and Food in WWII, A Special Family Event” and “FDR Reads the Declaration of Independence”
The New-York Historical Society is celebrating Independence Day by providing educational and exciting programs about the World War II era! From 11:00am- 3:00pm, come experience immersive family activities exploring the freedoms Americans cherish, the daily lives of soldiers, and warfront and homefront food. All visitors will get a free, tasty treat invented for WWII soldiers: M&Ms! Visitors can also pick up a free family guide, made possible by a grant from Humanities New York, to tour the exhibition.
Then, join the New-York Historical Society for a live reading of the Declaration of Independence by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, portrayed by a Living Historian! This special program commemorates our nation’s independence and the exhibition Rockwell, Roosevelt & the Four Freedoms. Readings are approximately 20 minutes long.
More information on Freedoms and Food:
More information on FDR Reads:
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Jori Rose Schwartz
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