Summers in New York City are designed to bring the city folk away from their air-conditioned offices into the rustic outdoors of the concrete jungle. The summer finds the city glittered with all sorts of outdoor activities: outdoor movies, outdoor concerts, and my personal favorite, outdoor dancing. Sponsored by Macy’s, Midsummer Night Swing at Lincoln Center is a summertime staple taking place several evenings a week.
I attended the Midsummer Night Swing on its first official 80’s night, entitled “No Parking on the Dance Floor”. Dance lessons were provided the first hour from Buddha Stretch, who taught a hip-hop routine to the 1988 hit by Rob Base and DJ EZ Rock, “It Takes Two”.
After boogieing down and popping and locking, members of the band The Losers Lounge took the stage. The band paid tribute to dance-floor favorites by Madonna, Prince, and Michael Jackson, alongside new wave classics.
Between sets, original MTV VJ Mark Goodman spun some of the songs that made the 80’s so memorable, such as, “Hey Mickey”, “Kiss”, and “Love Shack”. Dancer Sarah Donnelly stated, “I love that we can dance under the stars to the best sounds of the decade!”
Vendors were set up, offering an array of grown-up beverages and gelato for sale. Pepsi Max representatives were roaming the park throughout the evening, handing out free cans of icy cold soda, which was very much appreciated by the parched dancers.
One tip before heading out to get your dance on: leave your baggage at home! Regardless of size, you will not be allowed to bring any sort of bag or purse onto the dance floor, and all items must be checked at the Bag Check.
If you want to check out Midsummer Night Swing, but are still a bit apprehensive about getting down on the dance floor, feel free to join the throngs of people sitting around Damrosch Park, taking in the tunes and enjoying the show. Spectating is always free, and hey, at least you’re still getting to appreciate the great outdoors New York City has to offer!
WHEN: Nightly during the summer. Please visit their website for more information on bands that will be playing.
Group Dance Lesson 6:30-7:15pm
Music and Dancing 7:30-10:00pm
WHERE: Damrosch Park
62nd Street between Columbus and Amsterdam
New York, New York
By: Jessica Tiare Bowen