What luck: this year le 14 juillet is on a Friday! Party-animal, social butterfly, and intellectual Francophones and Francophiles will be able to celebrate Bastille Day in the Big Apple, from early in the morning late into the night with the variety of events happening throughout the city all week long.
Saturday, July 8
To kick off Bastille Week with a bang, the FIAF Montclair (New Jersey) offers workshops for kids from 10am-1pm. Paper lanterns, flags, and pompoms are available for crafting. Kids will also be able to discover (or rediscover) classic children’s literature, since the event is also an inaugural party for the new Alliance library.
FIAF Montclair – 7 North Willow St Suite 7, Montclair, New Jersey
Over in Brooklyn, the restaurant La Défense will be organizing its traditional pétanque tournament starting at 10am. Teams who want to participate in the tournament are encouraged to hang out by the restaurant, enjoy themselves, and scope out the competition. An outdoor bar and special menu for the occasion will keep spectators happy and nourish the competitors between matches. And of course, prizes await the winners.
La Défense – 2 MetroTech Center, Brooklyn
Sunday, July 9
Like last year, the Citroen & Velosolex Club organizes their 2CV car parade. They’ll be departing at 9am from Grant’s Tomb on Riverside Drive in Morningside Heights, traversing Midtown and SoHo before heading north to finish the route on the Grand Army Plaza (Manhattan), two steps from FIAF.
A map of the route here
For this Bastille Day, the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) has yet again made big big plans. Starting at noon, a large French fair will be in full swing on 60th Street, between 5th and Lexington Avenue. Food, French associations, and artisan products will be presented in stands lining the sidewalk. Performances by Zouk, French Cancan dancers, mimes, and baritone David Serero will bring the street to life. The biggest gourmands can attend a champagne and chocolate tasting in the Skyroom from 12:30-2pm and 3-4:30pm. A wine, beer, and cheese tasting will be underway in the Tinker Auditorium from 12-4:30pm. Finally, cinéphiles will be pleased to attend and early premiere screening in New York of the biopic Dalida by Lisa Azuelos at 5:30pm at Florence Gould Hall.
FIAF – 55 East 59th St, Manhattan.
Tuesday, July 11
To celebrate Franco-American friendship, the Paris American Club of New York is organizing a cocktail dinner party at the French market Le District, from 6:30-8:30pm. Tartines with goat cheese, foie gras, lobster profiteroles, lamb chops, and more will be accompanied by vintage wines and beers of all kinds. It’s recommended to buy your ticket online in advance (checks will not be accepted on location).
Le District – 225 Liberty St, Manhattan
Wednesday, July 12
Providing the necessary history lesson, the Rennert NY Foreign Language School has organized a series of brief lectures about le 14 juillet and French culture from 6:30-8:30pm. The classes will be accompanied by wine and hors-d’oeuvres, and the evening will finish with a networking happy hour.
Rennert NY Foreign Language School – 211 East 43rd St, 19th Floor, Manhattan
Thursday, July 13
The much-awaited Bastille Day Ball will make its big return to Club 404 from 6pm-12am. Organized by the Committee of French Speaking Societies of New York, this year’s party will have performances by Chloé Perrier and the French Heart Jazz Band, as well as DJ Olivier Meiji. Two round-trip tickets between Paris and New York on Air France will be raffled off.
Club 404 – 404 10th Ave, Manhattan
The usual bal musette (accordion ball) of chef David Bouley will take place 6:30pm-10:30pm at his new address, Bouley Test Kitchen. For the occasion, two guitarists from Alsace will provide jazz music for an evening of fine gastronomie provided by the resident chefs. Thanks to the location, guests will be able to watch the chefs cook their food in front of them. A selection of wine will be available to enliven the party. Tickets can be purchased online.
Bouley Test Kitchen – 31 West 21st St, Manhattan
Friday, July 14
The day begins by the annual raising of the French flag at the New Rochelle City Hall at 10am, organized by l’Alliance Française of Westchester.
New Rochelle City Hall – 515 North Ave, New Rochelle, NY
Starting at noon, the Café du Soleil on the Upper West Side will be hosting a pétanque tournament. Those who are less sports-oriented can enjoy dishes made exclusively for the occasion on the sandy restaurant terrace.
Café du Soleil – 2723 Broadway, Manhattan
From 12-6pm, the Children’s Museum of the Arts brings kids and parents together for a series of creative workshops inspired by French works of art, street artists, and culture. The association’s Bleu Blanc Rouge summer camp kids will be giving a concert at 2:30pm.
The Children’s Museum of the Arts – 103 Charlton St, Manhattan
To celebrate le 14 juillet, the Met has organized a concert with soprano Lucy Deghrae at the Met Cloisters from 5:30-6:30pm. The artist will be singing, accompanied by an accordion, classic French songs of the 1930s.
The Met Cloisters – 99 Margaret Corbin Dr, Manhattan
For a Bastille Day celebration on the harbor, join French Tuesdays’ Bastille Day Cruise onboard a mega yacht, holding 600 passengers. Beginning at 6:30pm, and departing at 7pm from Pier 40, 353 West Street, Chelsea. On board, DJ Etienne sets the mood. The dress code is (obviously) blue, white, and red. Upon returning to port, the party continues with an afterparty on the rooftop of l’Americano. Good news: early bird tickets are only $20.
Fuel up for the rest of Bastille Week at the Natural Gourmet Institute. A special Bastille Day dinner has been arranged from 6:30-9:30pm. Delicacies like baguette, pissaladière, bœuf bourguignon, and clafoutis are sure to impress.
Natural Gourmet Institute – 48 W 21 St, 2nd Floor, Manhattan
The Italian restaurant Ai Fiori has planned an elaborate seven-course tasting menu for the evening of le 14 juillet. It’s recommended to buy tickets in advance on their website.
Ai Fiori – 400 5th Ave, 2nd Level, Manhattan
For le 14 juillet, Brookfield Place’s Le District is eager to please with an all-day party. From 10am-11pm, this marché français has extended their happy hour so that guests can make the most of their delicious cocktails crafted exclusively for Bastille Day. Musical acts and DJs will set the festive mood of the day.
Le District – 225 Liberty St, Manhattan
For the beautiful eyes of Michèle Morgan, Quai des Brumes by Marcel Carmé will be projected outside at 8:30pm in Tompkins Square Park for the outdoor French film festival Films on the Green.
Tompkins Square Park – E 10th St, Manhattan
To finish the day strong, the art center Roulette Intermedium kicks off its Bastille Day Party at 7:30pm. The soirée begins with a live recording of the podcast Chapo Trap House. The arts collective is known for its engaging, left-leaning discussions. Then, a DJ will bring the audience to its feet and to the dance floor with the best R&B hits of the 1990s.
Roulette Intermedium – 509 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn
To escape the Big Apple, head to Newt Hollow Farm, nestled in Salem in upstate New York. Their festivities begin at 5pm. Founded by Frenchman Nicolas Baric, the farm raises cows from Gascony, France in the US. RSVP to [email protected]
Newt Hollow Farm – 333 Triplady Rd, Salem, NY
If you prefer the sea to the countryside, the wine-focused festival La Nuit en Rosé hosts a tasting soirée under the stars at the Capri Hotel in the Hamptons. A “rosé pool party” has been planned for the evening as well.
OREYA Restaurant & Lounge at the Capri Hotel – 281 County Road 39A, Southampton, NY
Saturday, July 15
The French American Academy (FAA) hosts the first Jersey City Bastille Day celebration. On 3rd street, restauranteurs, pastry chefs, and musicians provide the enjoyment for the day from 11am-6pm. Pétanque players will have a tournament to keep them busy as well.
209 3rd Street, Jersey City
Over in Prospect Park, Ben l’Oncle Soul fills the Bandshell for a free concert with the group Sweet Crude, all the way from New Orleans. The evening begins at 6:30pm.
Prospect Park – 9th St and Prospect Park West, Brooklyn
Sunday, July 16
From 12-7pm, Maison Harlem hosts its usual Bastille Day Block Party. Barbes à papa, crêpes, boutique vintage and even face painting for kids will keep this block party lively.
Maison Harlem – 341 Saint Nicholas Ave, Manhattan
The restaurant Bar Tabac organizes its usual pétanque tournament in the middle of Smith Street. Be warned, the competition is stiff. To sign up your team of three, pétanquistes must pay $60 to the restaurant. Sign-up as soon as possible to make sure you get a spot. The tournament begins at noon. Live music, food stands, Ricard everywhere, and raffles are also on the agenda.
Bar Tabac – 128 Smith St, Brooklyn
The neighboring bistro Provence en boîte also joins in the fun and invites those looking for a party near the pétanque merriment into their restaurant from 11am-8pm.
Provence en boîte – 263 Smith St, Brooklyn
Happening on multiple days
The association Oui Oui Je Speak Franglais offers French Week with several events in the Montclair area of New Jersey, including crêpe workshops, soirées for dancing, cooking classes, and a garden party. Events run July 11-14.
The liqueur maker Ricard is making big moves on the Big Apple for Bastille Day. From July 10-16, Ricard has organized its “Provence Bastille Days” in several restaurants around the city. These soirées serving a provençale meal, accompanied by music by The Incognitos, a group of musicians from the southwest of France.
Christine Andreas will croon the tunes of the beloved Edith Piaf at Feinstein’s 54 Below from July 7-15. Praised by the New York Times, the French chanteuse brings the biggest Piaf classics. A three-course meal will be served during the performance.
Feinstein’s 54 Below – 254 W 54th St, Cellar, Manhattan
From July 3-16, French Restaurant Week undoes all the stops, just in time for le 14 juillet. For two weeks, foodies, Francophiles, and those nostalgic for the gastronomy of home can enjoy three prix fixes menus in 42 restaurants around New York City.