There’s plenty of reasons to be excited about 2020 in New York City — and they have nothing to do with the presidential election.
As we close out a year and a decade, and start anew, let’s take a look ahead at some of the major events, dates and anniversaries we’ll mark this coming year.
• Jan. 1 was the start of a new era in Queens, as Melinda Katz becomes the borough’s first new district attorney in 28 years. Katz resigned from her post as Queens borough president to take her new job. Six candidates are seeking to replace her in a special election that Mayor Bill de Blasio will likely schedule for February or March. It’ll be the first of several critical elections in the city this year.
The 2019 Asian Lunar New Year Parade
• Jan. 25 marks the arrival of the Asian Lunar New Year. On the Chinese calendar, it’s the Year of the Rat, which according to the zodiac symbolizes the start of a new era, and is a sign of wealth and surplus. The biggest Asian Lunar New Year celebration will take place on Feb. 9 in Chinatown, with thousands set to enjoy food, dancing dragons and firecrackers.
• Feb. 9 is the start of the Westminster Dog Show at Madison Square Garden. Thousands will enjoy the canine spectacle featuring some of the best-trained (and cutest) dogs in the world.
• Feb. 29 is Leap Day, as the world gets an extra day this year. This Leap Day happens to fall on a Saturday. How will you spend your extra day?
• March 17 is St. Patrick’s Day, and the Irish of New York City will again celebrate Ireland’s patron saint in grand style with the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade along Fifth Avenue. Tens of thousands will again revel in the wearing of the green, enjoying the bagpipes and drummers and saluting the many first responders who participate every year.
• March 26 is Opening Day for Major League Baseball — and a date most frustrated New York sports fans can’t wait to arrive. The Mets are scheduled to host the defending World Champion Washington Nationals at Citi Field in Flushing at 1:10 p.m., while the Yankees will begin their season on the road in Baltimore, facing the Orioles at 3:05 p.m.
• April 15-20 is the Tribeca Film Festival. The stars are expect to come out in Lower Manhattan for the five-day showcase of some of the best cinema in the world, and a litany of events featuring film makers.
• April 28 is Primary Day in New York State. Voters will head to the polls to make their choices not just in the anticipated presidential primary, but also for primary contests in various legislative races. This year, all U.S. House and State Legislature seats are up for grabs, in addition to the presidency. New York Democratic delegates will head to Milwaukee the week of July 13-16 for the Democratic National Convention, while Republican delegates will gather in Charlotte, North Carolina the week of Aug. 24-27 for the Republican National Convention.
• May 23 is Eid Al-Fitr, one of the holiest days of the year for Muslims across New York City. It marks the end of Ramadan, a month of dawn-to-sunset fasting during the most spiritual time of the year for Muslims. Families will gather together for large feasts celebrating the breaking of the fast.
• Memorial Day, May 25, is not only the unofficial start of summer, but a day to pay tribute to all the men and women who served in defense of our nation and made the ultimate sacrifice. Communities across the city will mark Memorial Day with parades and ceremonies honoring those brave soldiers past and present.
• June 6 marks the Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park on the Queens/Nassau border. It’s the third jewel in thoroughbred racing’s Triple Crown. Thousands are expected to gather at the track for the big race, which — depending on the outcome of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes in May — could have historic implications.
• Broadway’s best will be honored on June 7 during the Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall. The star-filled spectacle will honor the actors, writers, musicians, producers and other creators behind some of the Great White Way’s top musicals and plays.
• June 14 will feature the National Puerto Rican Day Parade. Tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans from across the city will celebrate their heritage and culture with a grand parade along Fifth Avenue in Manhattan.
• June 20 will mark the eighth-annual Juneteenth Celebration in Harlem, a commemoration of the emancipation of all African-American slaves from the former Confederate states after the conclusion of the Civil War.
• June 26 is an especially anticipated date for every New York City student — as it’s the last day of the public school year. The kids will get to enjoy two months of summer vacation before returning to school on Thursday, Sept. 10.
• June 28 marks the NYC Pride Parade through Manhattan. Rainbow flags will proudly fly across the city as the LGBTQ community celebrates love and freedom.
• Saturday, July 4, is Independence Day, and the city will pause to celebrate the 244th birthday of our nation with barbecues, beach parties, fireworks and, of course, the annual Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest at Coney Island in Brooklyn. The grandest pyrotechnic display, the Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Extravaganza, will occur on the New York City waterfront. (Americans will also get July 3 off in observance of Independence Day.)
• Aug. 18 marks the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage. On this date in 1920, the 19th Amendment was ratified, granting women across the United States the right to vote. New York City will hold tributes to this occasion in the months and days leading up to the anniversary.
• The U.S. Open tennis tournament begins on Aug. 24 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. The sport’s greatest stars will take the court for 12 days of incredible matches as they seek a grand slam championship.
• Sept. 7 marks the annual West Indian American Day Carnival and Parade along the streets of Brooklyn. The annual event features music, entertainment, dance and food celebrating the heritage of Caribbean residents across the city.
• Sept. 11 will mark the 19th anniversary of a date that, for many New Yorkers, seems like a recent, tragic memory: the terrorist attacks that brought down the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. Thousands will gather at the National September 11 Memorial in Lower Manhattan to honor the 3,000 souls lost in the attacks; communities across the city will also hold their own tributes and vigils on the anniversary and the days leading up to it.
• Jewish New York residents will celebrate the start of a new year on Rosh Hashanah, which begins at sundown on Sept. 18. More than a week later, they will take part in the most solemn day on the Jewish calendar, Yom Kippur, the day of atonement which begins at sundown on Sept. 27.
• Sept. 20 marks the annual African-American Day Parade through Harlem. The annual march along Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard recognizes and honors African-American heritage and great leaders of the nation through the years.
• The Jacob Javits Convention Center will again host New York ComicCon on Oct. 8-11, drawing tens of thousands of costumed New Yorkers for days of exhibits, interviews and other fun activities focused on comic books, science fiction and pop culture.
• Halloween, Oct. 31, falls on a Saturday this year, and the city’s spookiest, most ghoulishly fun party will take place in Greenwich Village. The Village Halloween Parade has only grown in popularity and participants over the decades, as tens of thousands walk the streets for an evening of not-so-scary fun.
• Early the next morning, Nov. 1, thousands more will gather at the foot of the Verrazzano Narrows Bridge on Staten Island and start the New York City Marathon. The 26.2-mile, five-borough journey features some of the best runners in the world, along with regular New Yorkers seeking to achieve a personal goal of crossing the finish line near Tavern on the Green in Central Park.
• Do we need to remind you that Election Day is Nov. 3? As you may have heard, it’s kind of a big deal —as the country will decide whether to re-elect Donald Trump to a second term in the White House. Regardless of whom you support in the presidency and the other races on the ballot, make sure you have your voter registration in order before October so you can vote on Election Day, or participate in early voting in New York City.
• Before you know it, the holidays will be here again. Thanksgiving is Nov. 26, and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade will mark the arrival of holiday season across the five boroughs. Christmas is Dec. 25, and as of this moment, you have 359 days to shop for your special someone.
From all of us at amNewYork, we wish you a happy, healthy and prosperous new year!
Oh, we almost forgot… for all of you who drive, here’s the 2020 Alternate Side Parking Calendar, courtesy of the city’s Department of Transportation.