'March of Dads' 2021
Jun 16, 2022
Juneteenth, Father’s Day and a Mermaid Parade: 12 things to do this weekend
We're also still in the thick of Pride Month ... oh, and the Brooklyn Magazine Festival is this weekend, too!
Kings County will be playing host to new events this weekend—like the first-ever Brooklyn Magazine Festival—and legacy affairs (like the 40th annual Mermaid Parade on Coney Island). Juneteenth is this weekend, for which there is no shortage of local celebrations. And there is also Father’s Day, as well as the ongoing string of LGBTQ+ events, smack in the middle of Pride Month.
It’s going to be a busy weekend in the borough. This is what’s going on in your backyard:
Friday, June 17
Celebrate creativity at the Brooklyn Magazine Festival
All weekend long
The first-ever Brooklyn Magazine Festival is already underway and you, dear reader, have several ways to experience it. For four days this week, we’ll be hosting a series of intimate conversations and less-intimate club shows that will culminate in a two-day music festival this Friday and Saturday at the LeFrak Center in Prospect Park. The lineup there includes Car Seat Headrest, Empress Of and more; tickets are on sale now, ranging from $55 for single-day admission to $180 for an all-weekend VIP pass, with the festival kicking off at 3 p.m. this Friday.
Throw axes for Pride Month
Kick Axe Throwing’s “Queer Axe Throwing” event is exactly what it sounds like, so if you’d like to embrace your lumberjack with fellow queer locals, head to Gowanus on Friday. Tickets are $20 per person and include one hour of axe throwing, though attendees are welcome to hang out at Kick Axe’s in-house bar both before and after the event; doors open at 7:30 p.m., but the splintering carnage starts promptly at 8.
Learn how to make your own chocolate creation
Dominican chocolatier Kahkow USA is known for its chocolatey workshops, and this Friday there’s an event that all connoisseurs of the cacao-based treat won’t want to miss: a one-hour chocolate bar making demonstration (that also happens to be BYOB and 21-and-over). Starting with a brief history of the brand as well as of chocolate itself, attendees will learn how to craft their own bar and leave with their creation in hand; general admission is $120, or $150 if you require Kahkow’s bar-making kit that contains all the necessary ingredients.
Boogie down with a night of French disco
Schimanski in Williamsburg is hosting “Daft Disko” this Friday night, billed as a “French house & disco party” with music inspired by the likes of Daft Punk, Stardust, Chic and dozens more. The 21-and-over event, which runs into the wee hours, is free for the first 50 people who RSVP, though the 51st attendee and beyond will have to pay the standard $10 admission charge.
Saturday, June 18
Ride your bike through the city for charity
This weekend is the official PineappleRide 2022, giving cyclists a chance to discover New York for a charitable cause; this year’s by-donation ride will benefit the Bronx River Alliance, which aims to establish ecological and economic health for the communities that border the waterway. Leaving from Bensonhurst Park in Bath Beach at 9 a.m., the route will take cyclists through all five boroughs of New York before looping back to Brooklyn and reaching Grand Army Plaza by midnight. More details about the all-day excursion are available online.
Stroll along the Gowanus ArtWalk
Back by popular demand, the “Arts Gowanus ArtWalk on Atlantic Avenue” returns this Saturday for a two-weekend run, showcasing work from over 100 artists along a 1.5-mile stretch of the titular thoroughfare between Cobble Hill and Boerum Hill. It’s a free and self-guided tour, and while it’s technically a semi-permanent fixture through next weekend, attendees are encouraged to experience it between noon and 6 p.m. when the full range of galleries and storefronts are open. The Atlantic BKLN, a new music venue on the route, is also participating with a couple of associated performances, details of which are available on its website.
Swim under the Brooklyn Bridge
There’s nothing technically stopping you from embracing your inner Kramer and going for an impromptu swim in the East River at any time of year, but if you’ve ever wanted to do so in a supervised and somewhat controlled environment, then check out Urban Swim’s “fast and fun introductory open water swim” this Saturday. Running for eight-tenths of a mile from Pier 4 Beach to Pebble Beach, and passing directly under the Brooklyn Bridge, this one-hour swim promises an “entirely new perspective” of the iconic cable-suspended span and Lower Manhattan … just don’t swallow any water. Tickets are $135 per person.
Check out the 40th annual Mermaid Parade
The country’s largest art parade is back on Surf Avenue this Saturday, celebrating its 40th anniversary with dozens of floats and thousands of individuals taking to the streets of Coney Island to express themselves. The Mermaid Parade, presided over by signer Justin Vivian Bond and former New York City health commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi, officially starts at 1 p.m., though it’s best to arrive early to score a prime viewing location along the route. The Mermaid Parade Ball after-party then begins at Coney Island Brewery at 5 p.m., with tickets available for as little as $25 each.
Sunday, June 19
Join—or just watch—the 3rd annual ‘March of Dads’
Be a part of “The Dad Gang” this Sunday by joining the March of Dads, a Father’s Day procession through Prospect Park in celebration of Black fatherhood. A pre-march rally starts at 10 a.m. at Grand Army Plaza, with festivities officially getting underway at 11 as the group of participating fathers (and their children) meander through the park to the steps of the Brooklyn Museum. It’s free to participate in the March of Dads, though donations are welcome; the first 200 dads in attendance will also get a free gift, organizers say.
Experience Juneteenth as a family
If you’re not participating in the nearby March of Dads, then consider heading to the Brooklyn Museum directly for a family-friendly celebration of Juneteenth and the ongoing movement for Black lives. Running from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., this free Juneteenth event includes a series of all-ages happenings, like sound bath meditation, art making stations and free book giveaways—all underscored by a “Cool Culture Scavenger Hunt,” which will guide families through the various activities. A full program of what’s going on this Sunday is available on the museum’s website.
Indulge with a Black food festival
The Weeksville Heritage Center in Brownsville is hosting its two-day Juneteenth Food Festival this weekend, celebrating the recently-commemorated federal holiday at the site of one of the largest pre-Civil War free Black communities. ”Designed to reflect the breadth of Black Brooklyn,” organizers say, the event will feature more than 20 Black food vendors who’ll be representing cuisines ranging from central Africa to Latin America to the southern U.S., in addition to a lineup of all-Black queer and trans DJs. The festival runs from noon to 7 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday; entry is free.
Check out a Black culture market
In honor of Juneteenth, City Point Mall downtown is also hosting its own celebration in the form of its second annual Black Creatives and Cultural Market. Happening at the shopping center just off Albee Square on both Saturday and Sunday from noon to 7 p.m., this weekend-long community event includes an art show, panel discussions, live music and many more events that are designed to highlight Brooklyn’s BIPOC creators. It’s free and open to the public.
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