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Auden Barbour / Columbia Daily Spectator

October is here, which means midterm season has begun! Nevertheless, as you work hard and (hopefully) ace your exams, you’re bound to have some free time. Why not use this as an opportunity to treat yourself and head out into the city, especially with so many activities to choose from this fall season?

Check out our list of the top five things we recommend you do this month in NYC!

1. Smorgasburg

Smorgasburg is an outdoor market open every weekend in NYC, where nearly 100 vendors from across the city come together to offer food! It’s the perfect place to go to if you want to try out a whole variety of different cuisines at once. Particularly if you choose to go to Smorgasburg in Williamsburg, you can enjoy your food alongside a pretty great view of the East River.

On Fridays, Smorgasburg is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Oculus Plaza in the Westfield World Trade Center. On Saturdays, they’re open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Williamsburg, Brooklyn in the East River State Park. Finally, on Sundays, they’re open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. There isn’t any fee for entering Smorgasburg, but you will need to bring cash/debit/credit to get the food (there are also ATMs at each location). Check out more info on Smorgasburg’s official website here.

2. Open House New York

Open House New York is happening from Oct. 18 to 20! This is an event which allows you to enter and view many buildings in NYC, including many that are generally inaccessible to the general public. These include 145 Central Park North, the Americas Society on the Upper East Side, and the Austrian Cultural Forum. Many of these buildings require tickets (and some are already sold out), so try to get tickets ASAP!

Regardless, Open House New York is a once-a-year event that you probably don’t want to miss. If you can’t make it to one of the buildings, try going on one of the interesting walking tours or conversations that Open House New York hosts. For more information, check out their website here.

3. Waterlicht

If you’re free on Oct. 22, 23, or 24, check out “Waterlicht,” a “large-scale light installation” by artist Daan Roosegaarde. It’s at the Lenfest Center of the Arts on the Manhattanville campus (which is at 129th Street). “Waterlicht” seems to be a dazzling light show, and is described as illustrating “the power and poetry of water while raising awareness about rising global sea levels.” If this interests you, then you should definitely check it out.

There isn’t much of a time commitment—the website recommends up to half an hour—and the times run from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. each day with lines opening at 6:30 p.m.. And best of all, tickets are free! Check out the EventBrite link for more information and to obtain tickets.

4. Village Halloween Parade

With almost 60,000 people participating each year, the Village Halloween Parade is something that you should definitely look into if you want to celebrate Halloween in New York! It’s happening from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Oct. 31 (a Thursday night) and starts at 6th Avenue and Canal Street. The parade itself will go up along 6th Avenue from Spring Street to 16th Street.

If you want to participate in the parade, great! All you have to do is show up at Canal Street and 6th Avenue before 7 p.m. If you just want to watch, you can view the parade from other streets. There will be bands playing and people having lots of fun, so bring your friends and have a good time! The Village Halloween Parade will probably be a blast if you do choose to go. For more info, check out the official website here.

5. Spend time in MoHi!

If you can’t get out in the city to do something extravagant, then try some new things near campus! Go for a jog down Riverside Drive or through Morningside Park. Perhaps work out at Dodge or spend some time trying out the restaurants on Broadway and Amsterdam. Also, Columbia’s University Life is hosting a pumpkin painting party on Monday, Oct. 14, at the Jerome Greene Annex at 410 W. 117th Street! There are so many ways to spend your free time on campus—if you don’t necessarily want to leave MoHi, you don’t have to.

We hope you find new and exciting things to do in NYC this fall!

Staff writer Abhishek Hariharan can be contacted at Follow Spectator on Twitter @ColumbiaSpec.

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