Despite the constant rain, fluctuating temperatures, and everyday need for a jacket, believe it or not, summer is just about here. Even though summer weather isn’t consistent until the end of June, Memorial Day weekend is known as New York City’s unofficial start to the summer season. This summer, there are exactly 100 days when you count from Memorial Day Sunday to Labor Day Monday.
This summer, I plan to make those 100 days as unbelievably entertaining as possible. In fact, I plan to have about as fun a summer, day for day, as one can possibly have and still actually have some semblance of responsibility.
Thus, during these 100 days of summer I, Uzo Ometu, will do 100 things!
And when I say things, I’m talking about just about every New York City or summer activity you can think of—well, at least 100 of the ones you can think of.
So, I suppose there are two questions that come to mind when you hear a proclamation like that: what and why?
I’ll answer “what” part first. Essentially, I have compiled a list of almost 200 worthwhile things to do in New York City during the summer. I have perused countless online blogs, websites and directories. I looked at all kinds of travel guides. I’ve watched television and even listened to the radio to get the details on planned evens and summer activities in New York City. And of course, I’ve tapped some of my friends for their knowledge and experience having lived in New York City for just as long, if not longer, than me.
So what’s on this list, that I still have a week to narrow down? Well, being the fatty—I mean foodie that I am, there are plenty of restaurants on the list. However, I’m trying to combat the number of spots that restaurants and bars take up on the list by combining them into individual achievements. For example, instead of making each of the burger spots that I have failed to eat a single “to do” on my list, I made that one activity itself: Fourteen burgers in Fourteen Weeks, which is the number of weeks there are this summer.
Outside of food, there are a plethora of activities. I won’t go into too much detail now, because the list still has to be narrowed down and cultivated for diversity, but to give you an idea of some things, I intend on kayaking, boating, running extremely long distances, playing ping pong in weird places, wiling out in the Hamptons, frequenting rooftop parties, crashing parties, scavenger hunting, hitting up Broadway, watching movies on rooftops, barbequing in the park and venturing out to Governor’s Island—just to name a few.
Now to your next question, “why am I doing this?” There are a number of reasons. One, I don’t think I have ever fully embraced Summer in NYC! Sure, I’ve been here for nine years, but when you’re going to school here, learning the ways, trying to make a living for the first time in your life and using the summer as one of the best times to leave New York City, sometimes, you really fail to experience everything that summer has to offer. For example, I never even made it to Shea Stadium before they took it down, despite being here for about 7 years before they did. Another thing I haven’t done is visit the Bronx Zoo. And I still haven’t played softball in Central Park, despite having supposed to have been on several different teams.
Besides filling out my list of New York City To-Dos, I also just want to enjoy the city before I’m too old to do so. If you watch “How I Met Your Mother,” there is the one episode about things you can’t do once you’re over the age of 30. I’m quickly approaching that milestone, and I want to have done the things I would like to do before I’m too old to do them.
So here’s to my 2011 Summer in New York City! I’ve got 100 days to do 100 things. I can already tell you that I won’t do one thing every day, and that some weekends I might get five or six things done. But it is my goal to do all 100 things, and hopefully luck and finances will be on my side so I can do just that!
I will fill you all in at the start of the summer with my finalized list of 100 things, which will probably also include 10 bonus summer activities! See you in the summer!