14 fun things to do this weekend in Harlem and beyond


The Faces of Harlem photo exhibit in Jackie Robinson Park.
The Faces of Harlem photo exhibit in Jackie Robinson Park.

Harlem Week wraps up with a full weekend of outdoor events, the Ted Smooth Old School Jam returns to East Harlem, and more fun things to see and do this weekend.


Harlem Week

Through August 15

Various locations

This annual festival celebrating Harlem culminates this weekend with a long list of outdoor events, including the Imagination Outdoor Film Festival, the Harlem 5K Run, stage performances at Summer in the City, the Auto Show, and music in the park courtesy of Sundae Sermon.


Craig Harris' Nocturnal Nubian Ball for Conscientious Ballers and Cultural Shot Callers

Friday, August 13 7pm-9pm; FREE

Central Harlem Richard Rodgers Amphitheater, Marcus Garvey Park, enter at Fifth Ave and 124th St

Jazz trombonist Craig Harris pays tribute to composer Sun Ra at this free public concert.


Fort Tryon Park Stewardship Days

• Saturday, August 14 at 10am; meet at the Broadway/Arden entrance

• Sunday, August 15 at 10am; meet at the Margaret Corbin Circle/Heather Garden entrance

Join the park's horticulture staff for two mornings of cleaning, weeding, mulching and planting.


The Ted Smooth Old School Jam

Saturday, August 14 noon-7pm

East Harlem Uptown Grand Central Underpass, Park Ave between 124th and 125th Sts

This old-school jam returns to the space under the Metro-North train tracks with a long lineup of DJs, plus bites courtesy of Murray's Fish Fry. Bring your skates or even just your sneaks.


Harlem Fire Watchtower tours

Saturday, August 14 1pm-3pm

Central Harlem Top of the hill in Marcus Garvey Park, Madison Ave between E 120th and E 124th Sts

Join the Urban Park Rangers as they take a deep dive into the history of this recently restored tower, used to spot fires in the 19th century.


The Public Theater Mobile Unit's Summer of Joy

Saturday, August 14 at 4:30pm

Hamilton Heights Johnny Hartman Plaza, W 143rd St and Hamilton Pl

The Public Theater's mobile unit is coming back to Harlem for an afternoon of spoken word, songs, and call and response featuring poetry by Shakespeare.


The Soapbox Presents Stoop Sessions: the Soul Edition

Sunday, August 15 at 8pm

Central Harlem SW corner of Lenox Ave and 120th St

Live music, dance and spoken word performed on a stoop in Harlem.



In case you missed it:


Faces of Harlem photo exhibit

Through October 31

Central Harlem Morningside Park, Manhattan Ave and W 112th St

One hundred portraits of Harlemites are spread across four Harlem parks—Morningside, Marcus Garvey, Jackie Robinson and Rucker—in this outdoor photography exhibit co-curated by Harlem's own Sade Boyewa El.


Goatham 2021

Through the summer

Morningside Heights Riverside Park between W 119th and W 125th Sts

Five goats return to a two-acre, fenced-in section of Riverside Park to help with the weeds.


The goats are back for the summer in Riverside Park.
The goats are back for the summer in Riverside Park.

Open Streets on Frederick Douglass Boulevard

Through Sept 30; Fri 5pm-10pm, Sat noon-10pm, Sun noon-9pm

Central Harlem Frederick Douglass Blvd between W 111th to W 120th Sts

Nine blocks of Frederick Douglass Boulevard are closed to traffic on the weekends through September. The stretch includes a long list of restaurants with expanded outdoor seating, including Melba's, BLVD Bistro, Lido, Vinateria, and more.


Traveling While Black: A Century of Pleasure & Pain & Pilgrimage

Through December 31; Tuesday-Thursday by appointment, walk-ins Friday & Saturday

Central Harlem Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, 515 Malcolm X Blvd and W 135th St

Visit the Schomburg on Fridays and Saturdays without an appointment and see its two current exhibitions, including a show exploring a century of "traveling while Black."


Zaq Landsberg's  "Reclining Liberty" in Morningside Park.
Zaq Landsberg's "Reclining Liberty" in Morningside Park.

"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.


Harlem Grown: Saturdays on the Farm

Saturdays through October

Central Harlem 134th Street Farm, 118 W 134th St between Malcolm X and Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvds

Free workshops for children on farming (sample themes: pollinators, leafy greens, edible flowers) on Harlem Grown's urban farm. Registration is mandatory.


Estamos Bien - La Trienal 20/21

Through September 26; Sat & Sun 11am-5pm

East Harlem El Museo del Barrio, 1230 Fifth Ave between E 104th and E 105th Sts

The culmination of two years of research and studio visits, this national survey takes a closer look at the work of 42 Latinx artists and collectives from the United States and Puerto Rico, exploring themes such as identity, structural racism, migration and more.


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