By Jessica Allen
If what you do on the first day of the year determines what you’ll do for the rest of the year, then what you do during the first weekend of the year just might determine what you do for the subsequent 51 weekends. Here are our picks.
Because of extremely cold temperatures this weekend, always check with event organizers to confirm details.
Under the Radar 2018
The Public Theater
425 Lafayette St.
New York, NY 10003
The annual Under the Radar festival seeks to spotlight plays and performances that might otherwise, you know, fly under the radar. Over the past 14 years, the festival has showcased work by more than 200 theater companies from 14 countries, “providing a high-visibility platform to support artists from diverse backgrounds who are redefining the act of making theater.” Thursday, January 4, through Monday, January 15, see schedule for details and ticket info.
Monster Energy Buck Off at The Garden
Madison Square Garden
4 Pennsylvania Plaza
New York, NY 10001
Here’s an event we never thought we’d tout in this column: bull riding at Madison Square Garden. Yep, you read that right: this weekend professional bull riders and their fans will descend on MSG for some mounting, bucking, and kicking. It’s worth getting a ticket to see how the logistics will work—MSG, is, after all, a sports arena and a concert stage, not a bull ring. Olé, indeed! Friday, January 5, and Sunday, January 7, see schedule for details and ticket info.
50 First Jokes NYC
The Bell House
149 Seventh St.
Brooklyn, NY 11215
In what’s become a hilarious tradition, on the first Friday of the New Year, Bell House welcomes 50 comedians to its stage, each and every one of which tells the first joke he or she wrote since the clock chimed 12 on January 1. No cheating! Veteran funny folks and newbies alike—including Alison Leiby, Noah Gardenswartz, and Ziwe Fumudoh—are scheduled to get up there and let the punchline rip. Friday, January 5, 8 pm, $15, tickets required, must be 21+.
No Pants Subway Ride
Seven meeting points in Queens, Manhattan, and Brooklyn
If you’re looking to add a little mirth to your commute, look no further than the 17th annual No Pants Subway Ride. Participants don their cutest undergarments and hop aboard the NYC subway. Any other day of the year, of course, such free spirits would run the risk of getting arrested. Organized by the fun-loving pranksters of Improv Everywhere, the event has grown into an “international celebration of silliness.” Sunday, January 7, 3 to 5 pm, free, RSVP via Facebook.