11 Fun Things to Do in Harlem and Washington Heights This Weekend

New cafe and music venue The Porch debuts in Sugar Hill—and more fun things to see and do this weekend:

Schomburg Center's Black Comic Book Festival

Through Saturday, January 15

Central Harlem Schomburg Center, 515 Malcolm X Blvd at W 135th St

There are still two full days to catch this festival, which has gone virtual again this year. Look for panel discussions like "Afrofuturism: The Past, Present, and Beyond" and workshops like "How to Draw Black Superheroes & Comics." For those looking to take a break from their screens, there's also an in-person exhibition, "Boundless: 10 Years of Seeding Black Comic Futures," opening Friday, January 14 at the Schomburg itself.

History Now

Through April 3; Fri-Sun 11am-4pm (hourly entry)

Washington Heights Morris-Jumel Mansion, 65 Jumel Terrace between W 160th and W 162nd Sts

A series of historical photographs detailing the residents and architecture of the Jumel Historic District in Washington Heights in the early 1900s, selected and printed by local artist Rose Deler.

Beareather Sings the Classic Blueswomen

Saturday, January 15 at 8pm

Sugar Hill The Porch, 750A St. Nicholas Ave and W 147th St

New cafe and music venue The Porch kicks off opening weekend with two concerts. Friday's is already sold out, but you can still reserve your seat to see vocalist Beareather Reddy pay homage to female blues singers like Ma Rainey and Bessie Smith.

Apollo Uptown Hall: MLK, Activism, and the Arts Broadcast

Monday, January 17 at 11am and 7pm

Apollo Digital Stage, Facebook and YouTube

For its annual celebration of Martin Luther King Jr., Harlem's legendary theater and WNYC are again joining forces to examine the civil rights leader's legacy. This year's discussion looks at the connection between activism and the arts, focusing on artists like Nina Simone and John Legend.

George Washington Bridge Tower Lighting

Monday, January 17 from dusk to midnight

The bridge's iconic criss-crossed steel towers are illuminated from dusk to midnight on major holidays—and Martin Luther King Jr. Day is one.

In case you missed it:

Ice Skating at Riverbank State Park

Fridays 6pm-9pm, Saturdays & Sundays 1pm-4pm, 6pm-9pm

West Harlem Riverbank State Park, entrance at Riverside Drive and 145th St

Ice skating season is back at Riverbank State Park—the rink there is the only one open in Harlem now that the old Lasker Rink and Pool in Central Park is being redeveloped.

Charles Biasiny-Rivera. "Benjamin Franklin High School, NYC, May 1974." Collection of El Museo del Barrio.

En Foco: The New York Puerto Rican Experience, 1973-1974 and Popular Painters & Other Visionaries

Through February 27, 2022; Fri-Sun 11am-5pm

East Harlem El Museo del Barrio, 1230 Fifth Ave at 104th St

Two new exhibits on view now: Bronx collective En Foco's photographs capturing the lives of Puerto Ricans in 1970s NYC plus the paintings of 35 artists working on the margins of the mainstream art world in the mid-20th century.

Sugar Hill Children's Museum of Art & Storytelling

Saturdays 10am-3pm

Sugar Hill 898 St. Nicholas Ave at W 155th St

This beloved children's museum has reopened with two new exhibits: "Other Nature – Cicadian Rhythm," a multimedia installation by artist Cecile Chong, and "Home," a group exhibition of sculptures and more by Max Colby, Suchitra Mattai, Dionis Ortiz, and Albert Peguero.

Live Music at Shrine

Weekends until 3:45am

Central Harlem Shrine, 2271 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd between W 133rd and W 134th Sts

This gem of a live music venue kicks into high gear on the weekends with a mix of jazz, funk, blues, and even comedy—ending with DJ sets that run into the early morning.

Thomas J. Price: Witness

Through October 1, 2022

Central Harlem Marcus Garvey Park, enter at Fifth Ave and E 124th St

Artist Thomas J. Price's monumental bronze sculpture of a young Black man looking down at his phone—it's nine foot tall—is on view in Harlem's Marcus Garvey Park through next fall.

"Reclining Liberty"

Through April 2022

Central Harlem Morningside Park, Morningside Ave and 120th St

Take a selfie with artist Zaq Landsberg's 25-foot-long sculpture, "Reclining Liberty," right above the entrance to the park at 120th Street.

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