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New York This Week: Comic Con, Queensboro Dance, Techweek

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Queensboro Dance Festival

photo courtesy Steve Clarke

Queensboro Dance Festival

Here are the five coolest things to do in and around New York City this week

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Don’t be surprised when you see hoards of superheroes on the subway this week—it’s time for NY Comic Con, which means characters of all sorts out and about. Slightly more under the radar, you’ll find start-up enthusiasts at NY Techweek, dance aficionados repping Queens at the Queensboro Dance Festival, and mindful foodies at a screening and discussion of the documentary film After Winter, Spring. Those seeking a true taste of fall (or looking to escape all the Whovians and Trekkies) should head to the Berkshires to catch autumnal foliage at its peak.

October 8–11 | Geek out
NY Comic Con
There is something for every shade of nerd at the NY Comic Con festival, held each year at the massive Jacob Javits Center. Whether you’re into Game of Thrones or Dragon Ball Z, comics or pop culture, Star Wars or Star Trek, you’re sure to find kindred spirits and snag some coveted autographs from actors, comedians, authors, creators, and more. Catch a sneak preview of The X-Files reboot, attend a panel on hip-hop and comics, or make new friends at a Lord of the Rings fan meet-up. Tickets are sold out but available through StubHub, or you can catch some of the individually ticketed ancillary events that are part of the affiliated NY Super Week, like the Robot Chicken Season 8 Party or the HP Lovecraft Festival.
Times vary | Jacob Javits Center, 655 W. 34th St., New York | From $40 | website

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October 12 | Film screening & discussion
After Winter, Spring
Urban farmers and the farm-to-table trend may have sparked a renewed interest in growing your own, but for the multigenerational farmers of the Perigord region in Southwest France it is simply a way of life. They have held sacred the traditional ways as best they can, but may not be able to compete with big agro for much longer. This is the story that is told in the documentary After Winter, Spring, being screened at the French Alliance this week. A discussion with filmmaker Judith Lit, chef Daniel Boulud, and local farmer Sarah Chase will follow. There will also be a mini farmers' market featuring the products of local farmers.
7:30 p.m. | Florence Gould Hall at French Alliance, 55 E. 59th St., New York | From $8 | website

October 12–18 | Dance festival
Queensboro Dance Festival
Queens is making a name for itself as a cultural destination with events like the Queensboro Dance Festival, held at The Secret Theatre in Long Island City. For the second year running, the festival will highlight Queens-based dancers, choreographers, and troupes with a week of exciting dance in a variety of styles. Each evening features eight to ten short performances, from the classical to the avant garde and from belly dancing to flamenco. The kick-off party on October 12 ($10 suggested donation; other events are set price) should be a fun night of socializing with dancers and dance enthusiasts.
Times vary | The Secret Theatre, 4402 23rd St., Long Island City, Queens | From $15 | website

AFAR Local is published every Wednesday, so check back for insider updates on restaurant openings, festivals, exhibitions, shows, weekend escapes, and more. Planning a trip? The AFAR guide to New York has you covered.

October 12–18 | Innovate
NY Techweek
A celebration of tech entrepreneurs and start-ups, this week-long conference offers panel discussions, investor speed dating (called the Hatch Match), social gatherings, workshops, a hiring fair, a hackathon, and an expo showcasing new, exciting products. Sit in on a fireside chat with Al Roker, learn about harnessing the power of 3D printing, get the skinny on underused marketing tactics, and learn how to optimize your content marketing, all while networking with likeminded business people. If you’re only interested in the expo and hiring fair, tickets are just $5, but access to the full event will run $75.
Hours vary | Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 W. 18th St., New York | From $5 | website

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Weekend Escape
Leaf Peeping in the Berkshires
There is no clearer indication of the transition from summer to fall than the changing of the leaves. Admirers of fall foliage are known as leaf peepers and for some it’s more like a sport than recreation. Right now is peak leaf peeping season in the area of Western Massachusetts known as the Berkshires, and it’s the ideal time to throw on that sweater, sip some hot apple cider, and enjoy the cool, crisp air and vibrant leaves. Hike to the top of Monument Mountain in Great Barrington for autumnal panoramic views. Nearby Lenox is a particularly charming and walkable town with plenty of shops and excellent restaurants. Enjoy brunch at casual, farm-to-table cafe/bakery Haven and be sure to sample an inventive, self-curated tasting menu at chef-driven Nudel just around the corner. Try to snag a room at the Gateways Inn, which is walking distance from town.

A native New Yorker, Katherine is a freelance food and travel writer who has eaten her way across the globe and is always on the lookout for her next great meal. She is an avid reader, insatiable traveler, sometimes photographer, and mom to inquisitive toddler.

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