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Bull Riding, Global Fest and Amiri Baraka: Your Guide to the Best Manhattan Weekend

By Nicole Bode | January 8, 2010 7:46am | Updated on January 8, 2010 7:36am

From bucking broncos in Madison Square Garden to blowing out the birthday candles for Alexander Hamilton's big day, DNAinfo has all your weekend events across the neighborhoods.

Midtown West

Professional Bull Riders @ MSG

Ever wondered what it's like to ride a bucking bronco? Find out vicariously this weekend as professional bull riders from around the country converge on Madison Square Garden to take on the 2,000-pound animals.

Address: 4 Penn Plaza, New York, NY 10001

Date: Fri. - Sun. (Jan. 1 - 3)

Time: Fri., Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 1 p.m.

Cost: $10–$195

Upper West Side

Amiri Baraka @ Frederick Douglass Creative Arts Center

The former poet laureate of New Jersey, whose controversial poem about 9/11 prompted then-governor Jim McGreevey to abolish the position,  reads at Saturday's open house of the Frederick Douglass Creative Arts Center.

Bull riders like this one will be hanging on tight this weekend at a rodeo in Madison Square Garden.
Bull riders like this one will be hanging on tight this weekend at a rodeo in Madison Square Garden.
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Address: 270 West 96th Street NYC, NY 10025

Date: Saturday (Jan. 9)

Time: 3pm - 7pm

Cost: Free

SoHo, Tribeca, Nolita

King Lear @ SoHo Repertory Theater

Playwright Young Jean Lee presents a new spin on the Shakespeare classic, in which she ditches the namesake king and focuses instead on the indifference of Lear's children towards their declining father.

Address : 46 Walker Street, New York, NY 10013

Date: Fri. - Sun. (Jan. 8 - 10)

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Cost: $30 - $40, students $20

Lower Manhattan

New York Guitar Festival Opening Night

Grammy-nominated slide guitarist Debashish Bhattacharya and his tabla-playing brother, Subashish open the New York Guitar Festival with a night of Hindustani guitar music at the World Financial Winter Garden.

Address: 220 Vesey Street New York, NY 10281

Date: Friday (Jan. 8)

Time: 8 p.m.

Cost: Free

East Village

GlobalFEST Opening Night @ Webster Hall

The annual collection of up-and-coming musicians from around the world opens Sunday with a star-studded lineup including contemporary Zydeco artist Cedric Watson. The performances will fill three stages in Webster Hall.

Address: 125 E 11th St., New York, NY 10003

Date: Sunday (Jan. 10)

Time: 7 p.m.

Cost: $40

Washington Heights

Live Jazz at the New Leaf Cafe

Check out a rotating cast of live jazz performances each Thursday and Friday night at Fort Tryon Park's cafe and restaurant.

Address: 1 Margaret Corbin Drive, New York, NY 10040

Date: Fri. (Jan. 8)

Time: 8pm – 11pm

Price: Free

Alexander Hamilton's Birthday

Celebrate the birthday of Founding Father and U.S. Constitution drafter Alexander Hamilton at the Morris-Jumel Mansion. There will be period costumes, colonial music and a birthday cake.

Location: 65 Jumel Terrace at W 160th St, New York, NY 10032

Date: Sunday (Jan. 10)

Time: 11am – 4pm


Recycle your Unwanted Electronics in Inwood

Save the earth and clean out your closets at the same time by dropping off unwanted electronics in Inwood Saturday. The one-day-only event safely disposes of old TVs, computers, radios, printers, and other items that could otherwise leak nasty chemicals into a landfill.

Date: Saturday (Jan. 9)

Time: 10:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

Location: Lt. William Tighe Triangle at Riverside Drive near Dyckman Street & Broadway

Price: Free  

East Harlem

Pre-Screening of Reggie Workman's Jazz Documentary

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem presents an autobiographical documentary by legendary bassist Reggie Workman. "Trio 3: At This Time" reveals the behind-the-scenes of Workman's 2009 tour with jazz legends Oliver Lake, Andrew Cyrille and Geri Allen at Birdland jazz club.

Date: Saturday (Jan. 9)

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Location: 104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C, New York, NY 10035

Midtown East

Public tours of the Plaza Hotel

Skip the $600-per-room nightly rate and check out the legendary Plaza Hotel with a guided tour. Architecture guru Francis Morrone will show you the behind-the-scenes of the 102 year old hotel, including special areas off-limits to tourists.

Date: Saturday (Jan. 9)

Time: 3 p.m.

Location: 768 Fifth Ave, New York, NY 10019

Price: $15, seniors $10

Upper East Side

The President’s Wife and the Librarian

The New York Society Library unveils an exhibit with decades of correspondence between President Theodore Roosevelt's wife Edith and NY Society Librarian Marion King. The friends traded more than 500 letters sharing their personal insights from the Great Depression through World War II.

Date: Fri. - Sat. (Jan. 1 - 3)

Time: noon–4pm

Location: 53 E 79th St., New York, NY 10075

Price: Free

Upper West Side

The Butterfly Conservatory @ the AMNH

Escape the winter chill with a trip to the American Museum of Natural History's tropical butterfly conservatory, where temperatures stay at a balmy 80 degrees.

Date: Fri. - Sat. (Jan. 1 - 3)

Time: Daily, 10am–5:45pm

Location: Central Park West (at 79th St), New York, NY 10024

Price: $24, seniors and students $18, children 2–12 $14


Midtown East

Gossip Girl Sites Tour

Gossip Girl fanatics can take a three-hour bus tour the sites featured on the CW teen drama - including Henri Bendel, the Palace Hotel and other locations around the city.

Date: Sunday (Jan. 3)

Time: noon

Location: 455 Madison Ave (at 51st St), New York, NY 10022

Price: $40