Williamsburg is undoubtedly one of the hottest neighborhoods in all of New York City. This charming Brooklyn area bursts at the seams with culture. From fine dining to indie music, Williamsburg offers the latest and greatest the City has to offer. With so much to do, there are no bad choices, but here are seven of our favorite things to do in Williamsburg.
Artists & Fleas Williamsburg
To add some artistic flair to the mix, Artists & Fleas markets invoke the spirit of open air markets in Paris and Amsterdam. This particular branch of Artists & Fleas opened in 2003 in a former warehouse in Williamsburg on North 6th Street. Artists, designers, makers and vintage collectors offer one-of-a-kind pieces for curious New York shoppers. Artists & Fleas hosts over 100 individual sellers and cultivates a reputation as one of the premium flea markets in the country. Trend-spotters flood the market on the weekends looking for unique finds and inspiration.
Today, Artists & Fleas sits on North 7th Street. Trendy shops, bars, and Bedford Ave. Restaurants surround it for an afternoon of culture and fun.
Brooklyn Art Library
Home to The Sketchbook Project, the Brooklyn Art Library features walls lined with shelves holding tens of thousands of sketchbooks donated by artists. This reading room is a cozy, inviting area perfect for the art historian in all of us. Additionally, librarians at the Brooklyn Art Library educate guests and give a hands-on experience enjoying the works.
The Brooklyn Art Library consists of a unique system to easily explore the archive. Visitors find books based on some criteria: particular interest, date, artist, genre… there are several! Therefore, the Brooklyn Art Library serves as a cornerstone of the Williamsburg creative community and is a must-see destination in the neighborhood.
Cinemaphiles fall head-over-heels for the moviegoing experience offered at Nighthawk Cinemas. This dine-in theater features first-run and repertory films alongside a menu of dishes inspired by beloved films. If you like the arthouse theater experience and fresh, house-made ingredients, Nighthawk Cinemas is your nirvana.
The atmosphere is casual and fun with a friendly staff. The theater offers several signature series including Country Brunchin’. Nighthawk Naughties, Live Sound Cinema, Music Drivin, Local Color, Film Feasts, Booze & Books, and more. The theater shows rare 35mm prints unavailable in big commercial cinemas. Finally– the best part– Nighthawk overturned a Prohibition-era state liquor law saying movies cannot serve alcohol. That’s right; you can order a cocktail with your movie experience– perfect!
McCarren Park is the perfect destination for an afternoon of outdoor fun. This 35-acre New York City public park hosts games of soccer, baseball, basketball, football, kickball, bocce, handball, tennis, and more. Kids enjoy the many playgrounds and the McCarren Park Pool and Play Center. McCarren Park is a shining example of the city’s diversity as locals, recent immigrants, and young renters share the park and its amenities. Recent renovations make this park one of the best in the city.
Music Hall of Williamsburg
The Bowery Presents runs this hip music venue in Williamsburg. It opened as “Northsix” in 2001 and pioneered the live music scene in Brooklyn. Elliot Smith played his last shows ever at Northsix, and Richard Linklater filmed the opening scene of the 2003 film School of Rock there. Today, musical acts of all genres book the Music Hall of Williamsburg. Additionally, the venue also hosts dance parties the last Friday of the month, drawing party animals from all over Williamsburg.
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