free things to do in New York City
Free events for Sunday, 05/16/21
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Free Events, Free Things to Do in New York City!  Read More

Are you looking for free things to do in New York City (NYC) on May 16, 2021?

26 free events take place on Sunday, May 16 in New York City. Don't miss the opportunities that only New York provides! Exciting, high quality, unique and off the beaten path free events and free things to do take place in New York today, tonight, tomorrow and each day of the year, any time of the day: whether it's a weekday or a weekend, day or night, morning or evening or afternoon, December or July, April or November! These events will take your breath away!

New York City (NYC) never ceases to amaze you with quantity and quality of its free culture and free entertainment. Check out May 16 and see for yourself. Summer or Winter, Spring or Fall! Just click on any day of the calendar above and you'll find most inspiring and entertaining free events to go to and free things to do on each day of May . Don't miss the opportunities that only New York provides!

Some events take place all year long: same day of the week, same time there are there for you to take advantage of. One of the oldest free weekly events in Manhattan is Dixieland Jazz with the Gotham Jazzmen, which happen at noon every Tuesday. Another example of an event that you can attend all year round on weekdays is Federal Reserve Bank Tour, which takes place every week day at 1 pm (but advanced reservations are required). You can take at least 13 free tours every day of the year, except the New Year Day, July 4th, and the Christmas Day. If you are classical music afficionado, you can spend whole day in New York going from one free classical concert to another. If you love theater, then New York gives you an option to attend plays and musicals free of charge, or at deep discount. You just need to have information about it. And we are here to make that information available to you.
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The quality and quantity of
free events,
free things to do
that happen in New York City
every day of the year
is truly amazing.

So don't miss the opportunities
that only New York provides:
stop wondering what to do;
start taking advantage of
free events to go to,
free things to do in NYC
today!

Free events, free things to do in New York City (NYC)
Sunday, May 16, 2021

All events, things to do on Sunday, May 16, 2021 are free unless otherwise noted.

Film | Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007): Oscar-Winning Musical Adaptation with Johnny Depp (virtual, streaming for 24 hours)


A big-screen adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's award-winning musical thriller "Sweeney Todd." Johnny Depp stars in the title role as a man unjustly sent to prison who vows revenge, not only for that cruel punishment, but for the devastating consequences of what happened to his wife and daughter. When he returns to reopen his barber shop, Sweeney Todd becomes the Demon Barber of Fleet Street who "shaved the heads of gentlemen who never thereafter were heard from again." Helena Bonham Carter stars as Mrs. Lovett, Sweeney's amorous accomplice, who creates diabolical meat pies. Directed by Tim Burton
   New York City, NY; NYC
_12:00 am
Free
Films, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007): Oscar-Winning Musical Adaptation with Johnny Depp (virtual, streaming for 24 hours)

Dance Performance | American Ballet Theatre: Six Ballets (virtual, streaming for 24 hours)


American Ballet Theatre presents six new works created by this year’s cohort of choreographers. Program - The Unforeseen  Choreography by Zhong-Jing Fang; Music by Camille Saint-Saëns (Danse Macabre) - She Didn’t Choreography by Joseph Markey; Music by John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman (My One and Only Love) and Taylor Deupree (Seep) - Death and Life Choreography by Sung Woo Han; Music by Alessandro Marcello, arranged by J.S. Bach (Adagio from Concerto No. 3 in D Minor) - Nunanu Choreography by Luciana Paris; Music by Future Natives Project (Erial featuring Rodrigo Aranjuelo & Federico Diaz) - Thread of Memories Choreography by Luigi Crispino; Music by Joe Hisaishi (Howl’s Moving Castle Theme, Etude, A Wish to the Moon, One Summer’s Day) - Soirée Nocturne Choreography by Melvin Lawovi; Music by Frédéric Chopin (Nocturne No. 20 in C# Minor, Op. Posth.)
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_12:00 am
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Dance Performances, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, American Ballet Theatre: Six Ballets (virtual, streaming for 24 hours)

Fair | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Flea Market in Brooklyn: Art, Jewelry, Antiques and More


Shop for vintage clothing, furniture, collectibles, antiques, jewelry, art, handicrafts, and more. Every Sun 10 am - 5 pm, 40-50 vendors. Visitors must wear a face covering and maintain social distance.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_10:00 am
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Fairs, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Flea Market in Brooklyn: Art, Jewelry, Antiques and More

Workshop | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Vinyasa Yoga


Connect with the earth and the skies above in this all-level Vinyasa Yoga class in Brooklyn Bridge Park. This class will help all yogi’s build towards peak poses and postures and grow your foundational knowledge of the practice of yoga. Sundays, May 9-October 24, 2021. Advanced registration is required. Registration opens every Tuesday at 10:00am for classes the following week.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_10:00 am
Free
Workshops, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Vinyasa Yoga

Fair | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Waterfront Market: Music, Food, Antiques, Clothing, Roller Skating


The market offers socially-distanced experience of food, shopping, family-friendly activities and entertainment: music, accessories, clothing, jewelry, pet supplies, beauty products, pottery and much more. Every Sat and Sun, 10 am - 5 pm. Visitors must wear face coverings at all times and observe social distancing.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_10:00 am
Free
Fairs, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Waterfront Market: Music, Food, Antiques, Clothing, Roller Skating

Park Walk | (IN-PERSON) Waterfront Walk With A Skyline View


Join your tour guide to learn about the history of this landmark park, its sustainable design, and how it came to life. Wear comfortable shoes, the tour traverses the beautiful park landscape. Every Sunday starting May 9 and continues through October.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_10:30 am
Free
Park Walks, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON) Waterfront Walk With A Skyline View

Fair | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Pop-Up Market: One-of-a-Kind, Handmade Items


The market offers one-of-a-kind, handmade items from local artisans. This weekly event features more than twenty vendors offering artwork, jewelry, fashion, home and apothecary goods, and more. Masks are required for all adults and children over the age of 2.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_10:30 am
Free
Fairs, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Pop-Up Market: One-of-a-Kind, Handmade Items

Tour | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Waterfront Walk: Guided Park Tour


Conservancy docents lead a walking tour traversing the Park's beautiful landscape. Learn about the history of the Brooklyn waterfront, how the Park came to life, and its sustainable design.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_10:30 am
Free
Tours, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Waterfront Walk: Guided Park Tour

Fair | (IN-Person) Design Festival: Makers Pop-Ups, Art Installation, Design Markets, Food Vendors and More


Design Festival 2021 is a a 5-day long (May 14 - May 18) series of programs, makers pop-ups, art installation, outdoor design markets, retailer specialty items, and much more. The campus will be activated with design-oriented events open for all to participate in.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_11:00 am
Free
Fairs, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-Person) Design Festival: Makers Pop-Ups, Art Installation, Design Markets, Food Vendors and More

Tour | Harriet Tubman and Maryland's Underground Railroad Sites (Zoom)


Join the tour of the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad sites in Maryland, a network of secret routes and safe houses used by enslaved African-Americans to escape into free states and Canada. Learn how Harriet successfully escaped from slavery and how she then heroically led others to freedom. The program will focus on Harriet Tubman's (1822-1913) inspirational life and feature many of the Underground Railroad sites in Maryland associated with her.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_11:00 am
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Tours, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Harriet Tubman and Maryland's Underground Railroad Sites (Zoom)

Tour | Machu Picchu: The Lost City of the Incas (virtual, live stream)


Starting from the top viewpoint, the tour guide Mike will slowly reveal to you the entire historical site of Machu Picchu, one of the New Wonders of the World. Its majestic setting surrounded by mountains will surely be a wonderful sight. As you slowly walk down, you will be able to spot orchids and many other fauna and flora that thrive in the cloud forest. You will also be able to hang out with some llamas along the way.
   New York City, NY; NYC
_11:00 am
Free
Tours, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Machu Picchu: The Lost City of the Incas (virtual, live stream)

Tour | The Art Tours at Hudson Yards: The Interior Design Tour


Discover how art is threaded throughout the Hudson Yards neighborhood. Enjoy a curated and guided tour throughout Hudson Yards as part of NYCxDESIGN, Design Days. The Interior Design Tour Exploring how design is an expression of identity. In both the exterior and interior of Hudson Yards, the collaboration of architects Diller Scofidio + Renfro and the Rockwell Group, combined with various highlighted artists, have created a symphony of visual expression that is meant to elicit an emotion for each visitor. Highlights include Juame Plensa's Voices and Jonathan Borofsky's Human Structures.   The tour is offered 3 times a day - 11:00am, 2:00pm, 5:00pm.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_11:00 am
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Tours, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, The Art Tours at Hudson Yards: The Interior Design Tour

Workshop | Tee Time on the Plaza


Putt putt your way through this 7-hole mini golf course. Grab a friend and make a day of it! May 10-27, 2021
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_11:30 am
Free
Workshops, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Tee Time on the Plaza

Park Walk | (IN-PERSON) Foraging Tour: Devil's Walkingstick Shoot, Redbud Flowers, Wild Carrots, and More


This Brooklyn park provides such a superabundance of wild foods as mid-spring approaches, it's hard to cover them all in just one tour. You'll begin with spicy hedge mustard, corn-flavored chickweed, and spinach-flavored lamb's quarters. Then, you'll come across stands of goutweed, an herb that tastes like parsley, carrots and celery. Nearby, you'll find munch on sweet-sour redbud flowers, then check out the asparagus-flavored Devil's walkingstick trees that grow next to sour-flavored Japanese knotweed shoots. You'll also find sour-flavored curly dock leaves, wild bay leaves, and wintergreen-flavored black birch, peppergrass, poor man's pepper, common blue violets, jewelweed, plus the roots of burdock, wild carrots, and much more. The tour will last for about 4 hours. Please wear a mask and observe social distancing.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_11:45 am
$20 suggested donation,...
Park Walks, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON) Foraging Tour: Devil's Walkingstick Shoot, Redbud Flowers, Wild Carrots, and More

Jazz | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Downtown Jamaica Jazz Festival


This year's lineup -- curated by The Jazz Gallery's Rio Sakairi -- is one of it's strongest yet. The headliner of Downtown Jamaica Jazz Festival is none other than Grammy-nominated saxophonist Ravi Coltrane. The son of legendary Jazz artists John Coltrane and Alice Coltrane, Ravi is a highly regarded bandleader, and composer. In the course of a twenty plus year career, Coltrane has worked as a sideman to many, recorded noteworthy albums for himself and others and founded a prominent independent record label, RKM. *Please note, COVID-19 safety protocols will be observed. Only 100 people at a time will be let in to view this event.*
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_12:00 pm
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Concerts, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Downtown Jamaica Jazz Festival

Festival | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Swamp in the City: An Open-Air Cajun & Creole Music Festival


This weekend-long open air festival will feature world class Cajun and Creole bands on two different stages, jam sessions, picnic concerts, pod partner dancing and ample breathing room on New York City’s picturesque island. Swamp in the City will feature performances from Jesse Lége, Cedric Watson, Joel Savoy, Joe Hall, Kelli Jones, Wilson Savoy, Jourdan Thibodeaux, Chas Justus, Jo Vidrine, Rose & the Bros, Bayou Brew… and maybe more! Bring your instruments! Swamp in the City will host a jam each day and, if enough visitors are interested, they’ll offer a few group lessons in playing Cajun & Creole music. A Swamp in the City HQ tent will let registrants stash their instruments safely when not in use.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_12:00 pm
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Festivals, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Swamp in the City: An Open-Air Cajun & Creole Music Festival

Performance | Downtown Live, Featuring 36 In-Person Performances


Live performances are back! Downtown Live will bring 36 in-person performances to Lower Manhattan on May 15-16 and 22-23. The performances will be staged at unexpected locations around the neighborhood, including a covered loading dock (4 New York Plaza), an arcade along the Stone Street Historic District (85 Broad Street) and a plaza with harbor views near The Battery (1 Battery Park Plaza). After a year of lockdowns, these in-person shows offer audience members a long-awaited chance to see LIVE theatre, contemporary performance, and music and to explore all that Lower Manhattan has to offer.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_12:30 pm
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Performances, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Downtown Live, Featuring 36 In-Person Performances

Jazz | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Lounge and Smooth Jazz


Enjoy an afternoon of live jazz! Sharla Keys (keyboards and voice) and ArBuz (drums) draw inspiration from Earth pop music of the last 50-60 years, lounge, and smooth jazz, and use them as a platform to launch the audience on intergalactic, genre-bending journeys. Please wear your seatbelt and bon voyage. Drinks are available for purchase.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_2:00 pm
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Concerts, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Lounge and Smooth Jazz

Classical Music | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Vivaldi, Mozart, Tchaikovsky by the Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra


Hear string players from the Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra perform a festive, family-friendly selection of music by Vivaldi, Mozart, Copland, and Tchaikovsky. Masks are required for all adults and children over the age of 2.
   New York City, NY; NYC
_2:00 pm
Free
Concerts, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Vivaldi, Mozart, Tchaikovsky by the Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra

Talk | Behind the Build: Bednark Studio Tour (virtual)


Celebrate NYC x Design Interior Design Day with a virtual visit to Bednark Studio, a vertically-integrated design and fabrication company that specializes in retail environments, experiential marketing, and architectural millwork. Based in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, Bednark is a custom fabricator with manufacturing capabilities in wood, plastic, metal, print, and integrated lighting. On this virtual tour, founder Michael Bednark will walk through their 65,000-square-foot shop and discuss their process, capabilities, and a selection of their 3,000+ premium projects for local clients and global brands including Balenciaga, Nike, and St. Germain.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_2:00 pm
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Talks, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Behind the Build: Bednark Studio Tour (virtual)

Jazz | (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Jazz Quartet Performs Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, George Gershwin, Irving Berlin


Saxophonists and clarinetists Peter and Will Anderson will be joined by Joe Boga on trumpet and Alex Raderman on drums. They will play classic American repertoire from the songbooks of Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, George Gershwin, Irving Berlin and more.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_3:00 pm
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Concerts, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, (IN-PERSON, outdoors) Jazz Quartet Performs Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, George Gershwin, Irving Berlin

Tour | Buckingham Palace State Rooms (live stream)


Join London-based tour guide and historian Edward Calcutt on an online exploration through the sumptuous and richly-adorned State Rooms of Buckingham Palace, designed to impress, and used primarily for official events and visits held by the monarchy. 
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_3:00 pm
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Tours, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Buckingham Palace State Rooms (live stream)

Opera | Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions: Grand Finals (virtual)


Discover the next generation of operatic stars as ten outstanding young singers--chosen from among 1,200 applicants--compete in the Grand Finals Concert of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. For more than 60 years, this historic program has launched the careers of some of today's biggest names.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_3:00 pm
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Concerts, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions: Grand Finals (virtual)

Discussion | Word Love: The Art and Craft of Comedy Writing (virtual)


Three comic legends in the making - Erin Jackson, Gina Yashere, and Roy Wood, Jr. - live and online as they converse about the art and craft of comedy writing. There will be a discussion amongst the comics, followed by questions and answers from the audience
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_4:00 pm
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Discussions, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Word Love: The Art and Craft of Comedy Writing (virtual)

Opera | Met Opera: Donizetti's Roberto Devereux (virtual, streaming for 23 hours)


Soprano Sondra Radvanovsky stars as Elizabeth I. David McVicar's atmospheric Met premiere production frames the dramatic and heart-rending love story of the queen and the Earl of Essex as a play within a play unfolding before the members of the royal court. Radvanovsky's portrayal of the aging monarch is a tour de force, laying bare the conflict between her public duties as ruler of England and her private feelings as a woman. Matthew Polenzani is the Earl of Essex, Roberto Devereux, the object of her affections who is torn between two women. Elina Garanca as Sarah and Mariusz Kwiecien as her husband, the Duke of Nottingham, complete the quartet of principals. Maurizio Benini conducts. From April 16, 2016.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_7:30 pm
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Concerts, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, Met Opera: Donizetti's Roberto Devereux (virtual, streaming for 23 hours)

Performance | chekhovOS: an experimental game: Film, Theater and Video Game Technology (Zoom)


The latest workshop from our Zero Gravity Virtual Theater Lab fuses film, theater, and video game technology to experiment in a new medium where viewers interact with the performers. Inspired by Anton Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard and drawing from recordings of Chekhov's letters and dreams, this interactive online theater experience accesses the operating system behind both Chekhov's computer and the world in which his characters live, searching for happiness. This is a work-in-progress created during the pandemic, a way for artists to work through the themes of the play, the encroaching virus, and a moment of change in the world around us. Followed by live talkback with members of the cast and creative team.
   New York City, NY; NYC
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_8:00 pm
Free
Performances, May 16, 2021, 05/16/2021, chekhovOS: an experimental game: Film, Theater and Video Game Technology (Zoom)
Complimentary Tickets

to shows, concerts ... (CFT Deals!)

Theater | (IN-PERSON) A Thriller by Tony Winner

Regular Price: $35
CFT Member Price: $0.00

Dance Performance | (IN-PERSON) Modern Ballet

Regular Price: $48
CFT Member Price: $0.00
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