You know who wants to go home for the holidays? Hundreds of adorable kitties, puppies and bunnies who are seeking a loving family in NYC. Over 650 adoptable furry friends, fixed and vaccinated, will be looking for a new home. Adoptions start at just $25, and all new pets come with a swag bag to help get them settled. Instagram-famous pets and celebrity advocates will be onsite, plus vendors, food trucks, a photoshoot with Santa and more.
Spend the weekend inside seeing all of the coolest new art, fashion, technology and gear associated with casual, stunt and hobby motorcycle riding at the New York Motorcycle Show, taking place at Javits Center. Models from every top brand, designer and dealer will be on display, from classic rides to totally stripped and tricked-out hogs. Experts will also be on hand to answer questions, with merchandise, activities, presentations and booths. Tickets are just $18 for adults, while kids 11 and under get in free.
Known for its culinary classes and hands-on workshops, Camaje sets its sight on the holidays with a special session dedicated to creating gift-worthy cupcakes. Your instructor, Abigail Hitchcock, provides the cupcake ingredients and frosting, plus all of your tools — oh, and some wine to really spark your creativity. You’ll take home new techniques for decorating with buttercream, plus six delicious cupcakes that you designed during your class.
Dec. 12, 7 p.m.
Washington Square Park Arch, West Village
Take part in a holiday tradition that’s part experimental art and part parade with Unsilent Night, an interactive performance piece where hundreds of city-dwellers bring their own boomboxes (or phones and MP3 players, if you must) to play cassettes, CDs and digital tracks from a four-part symphony. The event, which began in 1992 and is now in 35 cities throughout the country, is run by Phil Kline, who also composed and arranged the music that will play throughout the march from Washington Square Park to Tompkins Square Park.
Dec. 12, 8 p.m.
Madison Square Garden, 4 Pennsylvania Plaza
Everyone’s favorite bewildered-by-life comedian and real-life sitcom dad, Jim Gaffigan (of TV Land’s “The Jim Gaffigan Show”), heads to Madison Square Garden for a one-night-only special this Saturday night. In case you missed his visit earlier this year, he’s touring with his latest show, “Yeti in the City,” which sounds like great holiday family fun. (Just kidding — Gaffigan’s routine is pretty clean but it’s still standup; try taking the kids to “Elf the Musical,” which is playing next door).
Dec. 12, 9 p.m.-1 a.m.
The Academy Mansion, 2 E. 63rdSt.
Mixing modern holiday magic with Gatsby-era flair, jazz maestro Michael Arenella returns to the Academy Mansion for the seventh annual Winter Ball. Don your best cocktail dresses or flapper fashion for a festive all-night affair with a premium open bar and live holiday music, plus a special visit from Santa. Your ticket also includes general admission to the Jazz Age Tea Dance the following afternoon to help you recover from the evening’s excitement.
Whether or not you’ll spend the preceding evening jitterbugging with fellow baby dolls and dapper gents at the Winter Ball, you can catch up with some fancy footwork on Sunday at the Jazz Age Tea Dance at Webster Hall. In addition to tea and cocktails, along with light bites, there will be a dance floor and live music from Michael Arenella and His Dreamland Orchestra.
Hundreds of tenor and brass tuba players come together for a massive concert beneath the city’s famous Christmas tree and all along the iconic ice rink at Rockefeller Plaza. Traveling from across America, the musicians will all play under the baton of conductor Chris Wilhjelm, from the band Goldman. This tradition began in 1974 and is now going strong in over 200 cities worldwide.
Santa Suit 5K
Dec. 13, 11 a.m.
Prospect Park, 95 Prospect Park W.
Hundreds of Santas are descending on New York City, but we’re not talking about SantaCon – instead, athletes are donning their beards and red suits for a holiday-themed run to benefit the Prospect Park Youth Track Club. The Rockapulco Run Santa Suit 5K takes place this Sunday in Prospect Park, ending with drinks and merriment at Farrell’s Pub. And don’t worry about finding a costume, your registration comes with a suit. If you can’t make it this time, there will be another Santa Suit 5K on Dec. 19 at Rockaway Park.
Stand up for women’s reproductive rights and enjoy a fun night of comedy and holiday festivities at the same time. This comedy benefit is hosted by Lizz Winstead, co-creator of “The Daily Show” and co-founder of Lady Parts Justice, a league of influential entertainers and activities working to correct social injustices and misconceptions about women’s rights. The night includes laughs, crafts, cookies and holiday gifts.