Explore New York City

Memorial Day in New York City

Find parades, concerts and more in the Big Apple.

It’s almost time for summer to begin officially, and one of America’s favorite ways to ring in the season is Memorial Day. It’s a great holiday meant to honor those who serve our country, but it also lets the community come together and celebrate in the warm weather. New York City is no stranger to big parties, and Memorial Day always joins in the fun. If you visit the Big Apple during the holiday weekend, you’ll find several different ways to celebrate in all five boroughs of NYC.

New York City’s Memorial Day Weekend Events

Fleet Week

One of the more popular ways Manhattan celebrates Memorial Day is Fleet Week at Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum. This particular weekend is filled with activities to help visitors learn more about our different military branches. You have the opportunity to tour a real military vehicle, create arts and crafts and watch a flyover by Navy fighter jets.

Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum New York | WhereTraveler
Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum (©Angel Ceballos)

New York Philharmonic Memorial Day Concert

The New York Philharmonic is celebrating its 30th annual Memorial Day Concert this year in Morningside Park. This year’s concert is dedicated to the people of Ukraine, so guests can listen to classical pieces of music that combine tragedy and hope throughout the night. The best part is the concert is free to the public, so anyone can stop in and celebrate Memorial Day with music.

Brooklyn Memorial Day Parade

Memorial Day is a great holiday to celebrate community, and the Brooklyn Memorial Day Parade is no exception. Stop into Bay Ridge and see local heroes riding on patriotic floats throughout the neighborhood. The parade holds plenty of fun for visitors besides the floats, as you’ll also see local bands and community groups marching with our nation’s best.

Memorial Day | WhereTraveler
Memorial Day (©Zack Culver)

Lower East Side Festival of the Arts

A different kind of activity happening throughout Memorial Day weekend is the Lower East Side Festival of the Arts. When you visit the Theater for the New City, you’ll find a variety of free activities for all ages that lets summer fun truly begin. Take part in a cultural fair and eat delicious food outside, and watch variety of acts and live performances once you step inside the theater.

Green-Wood Memorial Day Concert

If the New York Philharmonic feels a little grand, stop by Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn for their Memorial Day Concert. This free concert is coming back after a two-year hiatus and features live music honoring those who serve as well as some of Green-Wood’s famous residents. Be sure to bring your picnic blanket and lay back in the grass while you enjoy some beautiful music during this holiday weekend. 

Picnic | WhereTraveler
Picnic (©Kate Hliznitsova)

Little Neck-Douglaston Memorial Day Parade

Another parade happening in the city is the Little Neck-Douglaston Memorial Day Parade. This parade in Queens is one of the largest in the country and has been happening for almost 100 years! Start the holiday off with a memorial service and continental breakfast, then stick around for the celebration featuring parade floats, live performances and an awards ceremony.