New York really does have a festival for every taste, budget, and interest — from free films to free concerts, to art walks and ticketed events guaranteed to make you cheer. Below are our 10 favorite festivals of the summer. There’s really no better way to celebrate the season than by grabbing some friends and heading on over. By Jessica Allen.

Related: Best Free Summer Concerts In NYC

SummerStage is the city’s gift to all. As New York’s largest free performing arts festival, it strives to “enrich the lives of New Yorkers” by exposing them to emerging, contemporary, and traditional artists in an array of genres, from dance to music to drama to literature, from children’s performer Laurie Berkner to the Classical Theatre of Harlem to Father John Misty. Performances occur in almost 20 parks throughout the five boroughs all summer long. Now through October, see schedule for details

The beloved festival is back, celebrating the popular borough for the 37th straight year. A slew of incredibly talented musicians and singers are scheduled to perform at the Prospect Park Bandshell this summer, including Chaka Kahn, The New Pornographers, Interpol, and Willie Nelson. If you can’t find something to see, you aren’t looking hard enough. Some performances require tickets, while others are free. June 3 through August 12, see schedule for details

Among the 400 or so featured performers at this year’s Northside Festival, now in its seventh year, are Built to Spill, Neko Case, Sleigh Bells, Best Coast, and PC Worship. As the organizers explain, “We’ve come to think of Northside as a showcase of the past, present, and future incarnations of this so-called ‘Brooklyn sound’ that has in many ways come to define independent music in the new millennium.” June 8 through June 14, see schedule for details, tickets required

Billing itself as the “biggest block party in New York,” the Museum Mile Festival is a truly extraordinary evening of fun. For a couple of hours, rain or shine, nine museums along Fifth Avenue open their doors to all who care to enter—for FREE. As if that weren’t enough, the mile-long festival also offers clowns, live music, chalk drawing and other art activities, and 23 blocks of pedestrian-friendly strolling (no cars!). June 9, see schedule for details

Since 2002, the River to River arts festival has sought to revitalize and popularize Lower Manhattan through all kinds of cool performances, installations, talks, and other activities. The works may differ, but they’re united by several shared goals: bringing regular folks into contact with artists, showcasing the cityscape, and spotlighting the creative process. Expect to be delighted, surprised, and transformed. June 18 through June 28, see schedule for details

We New Yorkers are lucky to have not one, not two, but just about a billion outdoor film festivals to choose from each summer. Nevertheless, the HBO Bryant Park Film Festival remains one of the best, and certainly one of the most popular. Getting a seat is half the fun: as soon as the park opens for that Monday’s screening, people run, sprint, and charge to grab lawn space. Once you’re sitting down, though, you’ll be rewarded with magic under the stars. June 22 through August 24, see schedule for details

Sure, so the Bronx might have invented hip hop, but there’s no doubt about which borough has the best festival: Brooklyn! The largest hip-hop event in New York City includes educational programs, local vendors, family events, block parties, talent shows for young artists, and, of course, concerts, all of which are designed to build community, inspire social change, and showcase the wide range of talent within this genre. This year (the festival’s 11th) boasts such scheduled headliners as Common and Mobb Deep. July 8 through July 11, see schedule for details, tickets required

Every summer, Lincoln Center Out of Doors invites new and established performers to dance, sing, and, well, perform around the city, for free. This year, you can see, hear, and experience Lyle Lovett, Vintage Trouble, Letieres Leite & Orkestra Rumpilezz, Chinese acrobats, sword dancers, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. If you’re looking for something a bit more staid, try the Mostly Mozart Festival (which starts on July 25 and ends on August 22). July 22 through August 9, free, see schedule for details

Every August, North America’s largest multi-arts festival takes over small theaters around the city. The New York International Fringe Festival specializes in emerging playwrights and performers, giving more than 200 companies a chance to get their big break, or just show their work to appreciative audiences. Tons of shows and stars got their start at the Fringe, including Mindy Kaling, whose satirical play about Matt Damon and Ben Affleck was a breakout hit in 2002. August 14 through August 30, see schedule for details, tickets required

Say sayonara to summer with 150,000 or so like-minded folks at Electric Zoo, a ginormous electronic music festival featuring some of the world’s best DJs and performers. Galantis, The Chemical Brothers, Robin Shulz, and TJR are all scheduled to appear this year on Randall’s Island. As you nod your head and feel your heart thump, you can admire amazing views of the Bronx, Queens, and Manhattan, and start pinning for next year’s warm weather. September 4 through 6, tickets required, must be 18 or older

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