February is cold, bleak and boring, right? WRONG. February is, first and foremost, my birthday month. So, ipso facto, it’s fabulous. Between Black History month and Chinese New Year, it’s also a month full of vibrant culture and myriad chances to learn. Not as if there is ever a shortage of things to do and places to go in NYC, but in February, there most certainly isn’t. Plus, in the heart of the local’s winter, February represents a time when most New Yorkers are feeling rested, having finally recovered from the insanity of the holidays, and are ready to get up, get out, and enjoy this frost-bitten city we love to call home.
So kick back and check out this month’s Top 5 in NYC!
See a Broadway Show… for way less!
We’re coming up on the tail-end of 2-for-1 week on Broadway, but there are actually plenty of other ways to score cheap tickets. If you’re not into standing in line at the TKTS booth in Times Square for ½ price tickets day-of (and if you are, kudos, because there are always great deals), then how about becoming a member of New York Show Tix? NYTix lines up all the currently running shows and lists out each one’s various discounts. It’s only $4 a month and they don’t automatically recharge you. It’s definitely the way to go in order to have access to all the information you need without all the footwork and time spent browsing 10 different sites. Oh and P.S. did you know you can usually score standing room only tickets for $27 a pop at the box office the night of a performance? And did you further know that there’s something called a “lottery” for nearly every show, every night? And that this lottery can score you front-row seats to Book of Mormon for $25? Yeah, you’re welcome.
Make the Most of Restaurant Week
Restaurant week is an interesting thing – it can be an opportunity to take advantage of some great deals, but you have to be careful. Don’t worry, though, that’s why you have me here to guide you in the right direction J. During the summer, we took advantage of L’Ecole and I would go back in a heartbeat. This winter, I’ve got my eyes on 21 Club. Stay up-to-date with Tangent Pursuit and I’ll be sure to let you in on all the secrets!
Indulge Yourself on Valentine’s Day
Okay, calm down everyone. Valentine’s Day is, indeed, perhaps the cheesiest of hallmark holidays. But, why don’t we take the 3-day weekend and make it mean something more? If you’re coupled up, how about ditching all of the hoopla of dining out and, instead, grabbing a bottle of good champagne and a solid charcuterie platter and hanging in for once? If you’re single, there are plenty of those “stop light” themed dating parties, but my guess is most people despise them. So maybe try reveling in the fact that the only person you have to worry about pampering is yourself? Set up a spa day alone or with friends and relish the care-free day.
Get a Little Cultured
Not only is this Black History Month, but February 19th also marks the Chinese New Year. Celebrations for Chinese New Year start early and go on for a while, kind of like Mardi Gras, but the main chunk of the celebrations occur from February 18th to February 24th this year. Head over to Flushing Queens or to downtown Manhattan for fireworks and some authentic Chinese New Year celebrating. To gain some insight into Black History, get involved in an NYPL conversation or check out local culture hubs like Symphony Space for their calendar of events. Symphony space has Keep on Keepin’ on, a documentary about the life and times of famed Jazz star Clark Terry Jr. running on Sundays all month. I caught it last year at Tribeca Film Festival and it was well worth it! If you’d like something a little more light-hearted but just as engaging, how about Black Women in Comedy?
See Something Wild
Check out Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs at MOMA, enjoy the Kinky Film Festival and its opening night Gala, run around in your Undies for a cause (or watch others do so), or head over to Monster Jam for their annual monster truck show. There really is something for everyone, here.