The 6 Best Fall Festivals In New York

Yes, Labor Day is over – but don’t let those post-summer blues set in just yet.  Some of the city’s best cultural and arts festivals take place over the next few months, which you and the entire family will be able to enjoy. From cannoli-eating contests to ghoulish goblins walking the streets, fall is the time to let loose and have a bit of fun. See the top picks for fall festivals and events below.

Feast of San Gennaro

The 6 Best Fall Festivals In New York
San Gennaro Feast (Credit: CBS 2)

Mulberry St (From Canal St to Houston St)
New York, NY

Date: September 13-23

This festival lasts 11 days and is a celebration not to be missed. Every year, visitors flock to Little Italy to celebrate the life of the saint and Italian heritage. This festival is a mix of religion, delicious food and live entertainment, all representing the Italian culture that has been such a big part of this diverse city. When you visit, don’t miss the cannoli-eating competition and the parade at the end of the week. If you’ve never tried true Italian sausages, listened to Italian folk songs or experienced an Italian religious procession, you’ll want to head downtown this September.




Dumbo Arts Festival

The 6 Best Fall Festivals In New York
(credit: DUMBO Arts Festival/Facebook)

Between Manhattan and Brookyln Bridges
Brooklyn, NY

Date: September 28-30

Situated at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge across from Manhattan, this festival attracts the most art-conscious visitors from the city and beyond. Over 500 artists participate in the event and artwork is featured both in galleries and outdoors. Expect great entertainment to coincide with the creative works of art. Over the three-day festival, take your family and friends to special musical performances, visit an artist creating a mural on the street, be silly with circus performers or view cutting-edge digital installations.




Village Halloween Parade

The 6 Best Fall Festivals In New York
(credit: AP Photo/Tina Fineberg)

6th Ave between Spring St and Canal St
New York, NY

Date: October 31

Halloween is a time to dress up in the craziest costume you can find, and New Yorkers take it to the extreme. To see some of the wackiest and downright scariest costumes in town, head to Greenwich Village where you can join in the parade and enjoy the festivities. Live bands, puppet performances and wacky costumes are all part of the event. And if you’re interested in volunteering, there are many opportunities to do so either during the event itself or in the weeks before when volunteers can join in costume or puppet-making workshops. When marching in the parade, be sure to get there early. And if you’re not looking to get scared this Halloween, you might want to avoid the subways.

The 6 Best Fall Festivals In New York
New York International Art Festival
Location is TBA
New York, NY

Date: November 10

This single-night art show highlights all mediums, from sculpture to painting and digital works to drawings. Members of every artistic medium are welcome to attend. Filmmakers, traditional artists, sculptors, photographers, art buyers, gallery owners, investors and more stop by the event, which is a great place to market yourself and make new contacts in the art world.




Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

The 6 Best Fall Festivals In New York
(Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)

Start: 77th St and Central Park W
Finish: 34th St and Macy’s Herald Square
New York, NY
(212) 494-4495

Date: November 22

Snoopy, Spiderman and Dora the Explorer are fan favorites flying through the air on the third Thursday of November. The parade features celebrity singers, the Rockettes, marching bands and of course, Santa Claus. This year, the parade takes a new route down Central Park West with many options for ideal viewing along the two-mile route. What’s the best part of the festivities? Everything is free. And that is certainly something to be thankful for.





Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting Ceremony

The 6 Best Fall Festivals In New York
(credit: STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)

30 Rockefeller Plaza
New York, NY

Date: November 28

Technically it may still be autumn, but this New York City tradition is sure to get you in the Christmas spirit. The largest tree in New York City, the Rockefeller tree is a holiday staple and the celebrations that surround it are not to be missed. Featuring performances by well-known musicians and singers, the ceremony ends with the lighting of the New York spruce with over 30,000 individual light bulbs. So grab your partner along with a warm cup of hot cocoa and settle down to watch the festivities, now in its 80th year.