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Summer festivals send us outdoors. Here are a few outdoor events at which we can engage with the city and other New Yorkers.

Museum Mile Festival

Tuesday, June 11, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

This is Museum Mile unencumbered by autos and buses between 82nd and105th streets. The event takes place rain or shine.

Ten museums participate beginning at 110th and Fifth Avenue with the Museum for African Art, and continuing south to the Museum Del Barrio, the Museum of the City of New York, The Jewish Museum, Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution, National Academy Museum and School of Fine Arts, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Neue Galerie New York, Goethe-Institut New York/German Cultural Center, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art . Admission to all museums is free but long lines tend to wind around the area so start early. Enjoy live music, magic, face painting, and balloons.

New Taste of the Upper West Side

Friday, May 31, and Saturday, June 1, in the Grand Tent on Columbus Avenue between West 76th and West 77th streets. The two-night gastronomic extravaganza features 40 Upper West Side chefs preparing dishes. The event benefits the Columbus Avenue Business Improvement District's Streetscape Project as well as supports the O'Shea School complex and P.S. 87.

The two-day program kicks off Friday, May 31 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. with Comfort Classics. Best of the West takes place Saturday night, June 1, from 7 p.m. to 9: 30 p.m., showcasing seasonal fare under the Grand Tent. Daniel Boulud, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Michael Lomonaco and Jacques Torres, among others, will create signature dishes. General admission is $135 per person; VIP reception at 6 p.m. is $250 per person. For tickets, visit www.newtasteuws.com or call the 212.721.5048.

The River To River Festival June 15 to July 14. From large outdoor stages to empty warehouses, from university theaters to the intersection of Broad and Wall streets, River To River is the place to explore experiences within the festival. The free event features music, dance, visual arts, and film for 28 days indoors and out in celebration of Lower Manhattan.

Among the events is the Bang on a Can Marathon, Sunday, June 16, from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Michael Schimmel Center for the Arts, 3 Spruce St. It's nine hours of music from around the corner and around the globe.

For a complete schedule, visit www.rivertoriver.com.

The New York International Fringe Festival

A multi-arts festival in North America with more than 200 companies from throughout the world, perform for 16 days in more than 20 venues. Fringe NYC, with1,200 performances, celebrates its 17th anniversary Aug. 9 through 25. FringeNYC is a production of The Present Theatre Company, Inc. It includes 75,000 audience members, 5,000 artists, and 2,000 registered volunteers. Mayor Michael Bloomberg presented FringeNYC with a 2007 Mayor's Award for Arts and Culture.

Tickets for events are on sale online and by phone beginning July 20; 866.468.7619 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily; $15; credit cards only. Day of performance tickets can be purchased at the venue box office 15 minutes before a show; cash only; www.fringenyc.org

Bonjour New York!

Celebrate Bastille Day on 60th Street between Fifth and Lexington avenues, Sunday, July 14 from noon to 5 p.m. during the French Institute Alliance Francaise's annual street fair. Free and open to the public it celebrates French culture with crepes, éclairs, and fromages, wine and beer mixed with live music. Shop for classic crafts, gourmet treats, and special gifts while children enjoy face painting and arts-and-crafts activities at the Kids' Corner.

The event celebrates the friendship between France and the United States, and commemorates France's Independence Day, July 14, 1789.




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