The Best Free Events NYC Has to Offer




The “freshman 15” is an issue all freshman face when they come to college, worrying about what to eat and where to work out. Many students are unaware of all the free health classes offered around New York City. To help freshmen and other students, here’s a look at three different events that take place weekly in parks around the city

Bryant Park Tai Chi
Bryant Park and their Tai Chi class is approximately a twenty minute walk from the school. Every Tuesday and Thursday through Sept. 29, Jeremy Hubbell, one of the lead Tai Chi directors, leads a group of students and teachers in a Tai Chi class. Whether rain or shine, all ages are welcome to join Hubbell and his group from CK Chu Tai Chi from 7:30–8:30 a.m. CK Chu Tai Chi is a non-profit organization that promotes health in both the spirit and body. Taking part in Tai Chi does not require any prior experience, so students shouldn’t be afraid to go if it’s their first time performing this exercise.  

When Sarah Takash, Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) ’20, was asked about her interest in this event, she said, “I would look forward to experiencing tai chi for the first time because any physical activity outside is always beneficial, and it is different because it’s out in the open air.”

This event is organized by Bryant Park Co. and takes place at the Fountain Plaza in Bryant Park. Participants will always meet at the park regardless of weather conditions, but the class moves indoors to 156 W 44th Street on rainy days.

Summer on the Hudson: Yoga Evening Salute to the Sun
After a long day of classes students are welcome to go to the Hudson River and join other New York residents for a free yoga class. After hosting other successful classes, Summer on the Hudson has brought back its popular events such as yoga for people of all ages and fitness levels to enjoy.

“I really love yoga. I think yoga on the Hudson would be beautiful and the atmosphere would be really relaxing,” Lauryn Masciana, FCLC ‘20, said.

This waterfront event takes place every Wednesday through Sept. 28 from 6:30–7:30 p.m. Anyone who attends the yoga class must bring their own yoga mats. The yoga-filled evening is known as Hatha Yoga with Hollis. Participants meet at the Plaza at 66th Street in Riverside Park South and get to watch the sunset from there while performing yoga. Summer on the Hudson events run on a first-come, first-serve basis, so spots will fill up if you don’t arrive on time to claim one.

A.M. Stretch
Stretching in the morning helps the body wake up and prepares a person for a long day of classes and work. Luckily, the New York City Parks and Recreation Department has set up a free stretch class from 10:30–11:30 a.m. at Hamilton Park on the Lower East Side for people of all ages and interest levels.

Claire Kielsa, FCLC ’20, said, “If it worked in my schedule, yeah I would go! I always exercise better in group settings, since on my own I’m not too motivated.”

The class was created to help students learn to stretch correctly, as well as gain correct posture in their exercises.The commute from campus is a bit far, since the class takes place at the Hamilton Fish Recreation Center in the East Village. The recreation center also features an Olympic-sized pool, basketball courts and many other facilities. For students who choose to go, it is a great way to jump out of bed and become active on any weekday morning through Sept. 25, when the event ends.