curated by Sara Maher

Is it fall? Winter? Fall? Winter? With temperatures fluctuating, it can be tempting to give up on the outdoors and stock up on wool socks. Stave off hibernation a few more weeks with these (mostly) outdoor activities.

Game Day

Blow off a little steam on Election Day with some good old-fashioned fun at NYC Parks’ Fall Field Day. In addition to live entertainment, fitness workshops, and a mock voting booth, kids of all ages and abilities can participate in new and nostalgic games like giant soccer, pillow polo, tug-o-war, and the egg-and-spoon race.

F Queensbound to 21 St-Queensbridge and walk west on 41st Ave to Queensbridge Park. Tue Nov 8, 11am-3pm. Free. nycgovparks.org/highlights/festivals/fall-field-day

March On

America’s Parade, produced by the United War Veterans Council, is the largest Veterans Day celebration in the nation. This year’s parade commemorates the 15th anniversary of 9/11 and the 25th anniversary of Desert Storm, and will grant special recognition to Afghanistan, Iraq, and other post-9/11 veterans and First Responders. Before the parade starts, witness the wreath-laying at the Eternal Light Flagstaff in Madison Square Park.

F downtown to 47-50 Sts-Rockefeller Center, 42 St-Bryant Park, 34 St-Herald Sq, or 23 St and find a spot along Fifth Ave; parade runs uptown on Fifth Ave from 26th to 52nd Sts. Opening ceremony in Madison Square Park at 24 St at 11am, Nov 11; parade continues until approximately 3pm. Free to watch. americasparade.org

Shop ’Til You… Freeze

According to Time Out New York, the Union Square Holiday Market is the “one alfresco shopping event worth braving the cold for.” The European-style winter market has over 150 vendors of handcrafted gifts, from jewelry and beauty products to leatherwork and home goods. And did we mention the food? With treats from local favorites like Momofuku Milk Bar and Wafels & Dinges, your mouth will be too happy to notice the rest of your face is frozen.

F downtown to 14 St and walk east on 14 St to Union Square. Through Dec 24; closed Thanksgiving Day. Opens 11am. Free entry. urbanspacenyc.com/union-square-holiday-market

Tombs and Trills

Founded in 1838, the Green-Wood Cemetery was one of the first rural cemeteries in America, and was, at one time, the second-most visited tourist destination in the nation after Niagara Falls. Check out both the living and the dead on the Green-Wood Cemetery Bird Walk and History Tour, guided by a NYC Parks urban park ranger. Learn more about the diverse bird population that calls these 478 acres home, while visiting the graves of the cemetery’s most famous “residents.”

F downtown to Church Ave and walk northwest to enter the cemetery; exact meeting location will be given upon registration. Sat Nov 19, 1-2:30pm Free; registration required. Info and registration: nycgovparks.org/events/2016/11/19/rangers-choice-greenwood-cemetery-bird-walk-and-history-tour

Water, Water Everywhere

The Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy’s Environmental Education Center uses hands-on exhibits to teach kids about the park’s ecology, history, and sustainable design. The center is open for free, self-guided exploration a few days a week, allowing kids to play with the Discovery Station and interact with the river’s wildlife in the 250-gallon East River Aquarium and touch tank.

F downtown to York St and walk northwest to the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy Environmental Education Center (99 Plymouth St, in the park). Through Nov 20; Tue and Thu, 3-5pm, and Sat-Sun, 1-5pm. Free. brooklynbridgepark.org/events/ed-center-open-hours

Tags: Adventures Off-Island entertainment Sara Maher

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