When the asphalt starts to sizzle, some New Yorkers flee, others festi-vizzle.
After two years of COVID — and a long winter — New Yorkers are ready to shake off their layers and bask in the sun. And outdoor festivals are once again blooming in the five boroughs.
The Post has culled the best of these fests in theater, music, film, food and more.
From the always-enchanting Shakespeare in the Park to hard-seltzer spritzes to music fetes with hot lineups featuring Kid Cudi, Herbie Hancock and Blondie, this summer has plenty on tap.
So make like the Beastie Boys and “Ch-Check it out.”
Governors Ball Music Festival
After COVID pushed this mega-event to September last year, Governors Ball returns to its regular spot on the June calendar. Once again, it will be held at the home of the New York Mets, Citi Field. Kid Cudi headlines Day 1, with Migos, Black Pumas and “First Class” rapper Jack Harlow also rocking the crowd. Day 2 features Halsey, rapper Roddy Ricch and electronic artist Flume. Then J. Cole performs Day 3, along with R&B diva Jazmine Sullivan, “Heat Waves” band Glass Animals and Grammy-winning DJ-producer Kaytranada. Gov Ball After Dark takes the party inside with concerts at clubs across the city, including Irving Plaza (Tove Lo on June 9), Bowery Ballroom (Soccer Mommy on June 10) and Brooklyn’s Elsewhere (Kaytranada again, on June 11).
June 10 to 12. Citi Field. 41 Seaver Way; GovernorsBallMusicFestival.com
Forest Hills Stadium
A long time ago — before the Williams sisters were even born — Forest Hill Stadium hosted the US Open tennis tournament. Now, its pastoral setting and country-club vibe make it a magical music getaway. This season’s lineup offers an eclectic assortment of acts for music fans of all tastes. The series kicks off with Grammy-winning indie folkie Bon Iver on June 3, and then Led Zeppelin god Robert Plant and bluegrass queen Alison Krauss make a roots-y twosome on June 4. Aussie electronic trio Rüfüs du Sol will be bringing the beats on June 10 and 11, while indie rocker Phoebe Bridgers will crank up the crowd on June 16. Later in the summer, Norah Jones will torch the stage on Aug. 4, and Queens’ own LL Cool J will headline his Rock the Bells hip-hop festival on Aug. 6.
Various dates. Forest Hills Stadium, 1 Tennis Place; ForestHillsStadium.com
The Rooftop at Pier 17’s concert series
In just its fourth season, this South Street Seaport venue has become a summer music haven, with the Brooklyn Bridge providing the scenic backdrop for an array of artists to make some serious sound waves. Among the acts docking at Pier 17 this year are singer-songwriter Vance Joy on June 4, reggae band Rebelution on June 15 and rapper Pusha T — who recently debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with his new album, “It’s Almost Dry” — on June 16. July highlights include the Australian pop-rock group 5 Seconds of Summer on July 12 and 13, and a night of new-wave nostalgia with the Psychedelic Furs on July 15. Then August heats up with buzzy indie artist Girl in Red on Aug. 2, Elvis Costello & the Imposters on Aug. 11 and downtown New York legends Blondie on Aug. 17 and 18.
Various dates. Pier 17, 89 South St.; Pier17NY.com
New York’s biggest electronic music festival turns up the technology with a Web 3.0 theme this year. In another tech twist, the festival will accept crypto payments. But one thing remains the same: the DJs, who will be sending the masses spinning on Randall’s Island Park over Labor Day weekend. Dutch DJ Martin Garrix — who was the most requested spinner in fan surveys — will lead a loaded lineup that also includes Diplo, DJ Snake, Armin Van Buuren, Afrojack and British house-music master Carl Cox. In addition to those big names in the game, Electric Zoo 3.0 will also turn the spotlight — literally: Expect a dizzying display of lights — on rising DJs such as Kyle Walker, Wax Motif, Sidepiece and Queens native CID.
Sept. 2 to 4. Randall’s Island Park. 20 Randall’s Island Park; ElectricZoo.com
While Central Park will always be the heart of SummerStage, this year’s festivities will have you venue-hopping all over the city to soak up the sounds of the season. Legendary jazzman Herbie Hancock will officially open the proceedings with a free Central Park concert on June 11, held in association with the Blue Note Jazz Festival. Central Park will also host benefit shows featuring indie rock band Modest Mouse (June 8), George Clinton and Parliament-Funkadelic (June 15) and singer-songwriter Andy Grammer (Aug. 4). For “Bird” lovers, the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival will be bopping everywhere from Harlem’s Marcus Garvey Park to the East Village’s Tompkins Square Park Aug. 26 to 28. And R&B icon Stephanie Mills will headline a free show at the Coney Island Amphitheater on June 25. Dance troupes — including Dallas Black Dance Theatre at Brooklyn’s Herbert von King Park on July 22 — will twirl across the city as part of the fest.
Various dates and locations; CentralPark.com
Shakespeare in the Park
Last year, professional theater returned to the city after a long COVID-related shutdown with Shakespeare in the Park. This summer the 60-year-old Central Park institution is back in its full glory with two productions: “Richard III” (running June 17-July 17) starring Danai Gurira of Marvel’s “Black Panther” as the title king; and a new musical version of the comedy “As You Like It” (Aug. 10-Sept. 11) from the talented composer Shaina Taub, whose “Suffs” is currently on at the Public Theater downtown. Tickets for al fresco Shakespeare are free and there are plenty of ways to get your hands on them (a daily distribution in-person, a standby line and a digital lottery). Unlike Broadway, you will have to present proof of vaccination to enter, but face masks are not required.
Various dates. Delacorte Theater, 81 Central Park West; PublicTheater.org
These outdoor screenings combine indie films with parties — sometimes even after-parties. The events are held at unique venues scattered throughout the city, not all of them rooftops — past locations include the Greenwood Cemetery and the top of Old American Can Factory in Gowanus — and often kick off with drinks and live music. Some fun titles this year include “Fire of Love” (June 15), a documentary about a volcano scientist couple; “Memoria,” a Tilda Swinton-led flick from Palme d’Or winning director Apichatpong Weerasethakul; and “I Love My Dad” (July 3) starring Patton Oswalt.
Various dates and locations. Tickets are $16. RooftopFilms.com
Smorgasburg and Bronx Night Market
Discover exciting local food vendors at this open-air food festival, which is held weekly in Williamsburg, Prospect Park, lower Manhattan and Jersey City and made the Spaghetti Donut and the Ramen Burger famous. Belly up to bites from vendors like Big Mozz, known for its giant fried mozzarella sticks in Prospect Park; Carlitos Barbecue Taqueria (at World Trade Center, Jersey City and Prospect Park); lobster rolls from Red Hook Lobster Pound (at World Trade Center, Jersey City and Prospect Park); and Rosie’s Empanadas (Jersey City and Prospect Park). Meanwhile, at the Bronx Night Market at Fordham Plaza, now in its fifth year, a rotating lineup of more than 50 vendors showcase cuisines from more than 20 countries. Don’t miss Filipino-style barbecue from Barbecue on a Stick; cajun seafood like fried shrimp and lobster from Rockin’ Cajun Seafood Grill, known for its seafood boils, lobster fires and po’ boys; and Jamaican specialties like jerk chicken from Rostacy Jamaican Food.
Get your spritz on at this nationally touring hard seltzer festival at lower Manhattan’s Pier 36, where imbibers can sample more than 100 fizzy flavors. Expect crowd pleasers like White Claw and Mike’s Hard Lemonade Seltzer as well as more novelty brands like Vizzy, BuzzBallz and Topo Chico Hard Seltzer on tap. Attendees can also indulge in munchies from rotating vendors, soon to be announced, and plenty of Instagram-worthy photo moments.
Aug. 6. Tickets start at $35. Pier 36, 299 South St.; Seltzerland.com
Lincoln Center’s Summer for the City
With more than 300 events from May 14 until Aug. 14, the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts is looking to put the spring back in New Yorkers’ steps. “One of the most basic jobs of the arts is to help heal,” Chief Artistic Officer Shanta Thake said in a press release. “This summer we will do exactly that, with moments to rejoice, reclaim, and remember within a city transformed.” “The Oasis” dance floor installation will allow revelers to move their feet to salsa, swing, bachata, merengue and more. The BAAD! Bronx Academy of Dance will present the Mini Kiki Ball for Pride Month and later, in August, there will be the BAAND Together Dance Festival. And July 10, couples “whose weddings were canceled or diminished due to the pandemic” are invited to redo “the ritual alongside hundreds of other New Yorkers, with live musical performances, a ‘second dance,’ desserts and a reception on the dance floor,” according to the release.
Various dates and locations. Lincoln Center; SummerForTheCity.org