How to Celebrate Bastille Day in New York City

Written by Our Town Downtown on . Posted in News Our Town Downtown, Our Town Downtown.

By Laurent Berstecher

For those who feel that this year’s Fourth of July celebration ended too early, there is still hope to keep on partying for independence and democracy, French-style. There will be more red, white and blue this weekend as Francophiles around the world celebrate , the French national holiday commemorating the storming of Paris’ emblematic prison on July 14, 1789, and the subsequent popular uprising known as the French Revolution.

New York City will not be spared the French celebrations, and you should be getting ready for a weekend of wine tastings and pétanque tournaments in the five boroughs. Eager to help you get in touch with your French side, we have selected the best of Bastille Week for you.

Thursday, July 12
Pétanque Tournament
Tribeca’s will be hosting its third annual pétanque tournament today. Ricard-based cocktails will also be served, giving Tribeca a touch of Marseille for the afternoon.
Cercle Rouge, 241 W. Broadway (at N. Moore St.), 212-226-6252,; 10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Bastille Day Ball
The (CAFUSA) organizes its yearly Bastille Day Ball under the umbrella of the and the New York City Mayor’s Office. This year’s edition will feature a live orchestra as well as French singer Floanne and French DJ Super Jamie. General admission tickets are available for $30, but a $120 VIP ticket will grant you access to a gourmet French buffet and an open bar.
The Club 404, 404 10th Ave. (at W. 33rd St.),

Saturday, July 14
Bastille Day Brunch
French food, wine, cocktails and pétanque on the patio are coming to on Saturday, with music by DJ Marco Peruzzi. Yes, he is Italian, but we are told he started his musical career in the south of France.
, 409 W. 13th St. (betw. 9th Ave. & Washington St.), 212-675-2400,

Bastille Festival 2012 in Times Square
This year’s edition of the Bastille Festival in Times Square will take place in the Times Square Novotel and feature over 12 hours of live music by five bands, as well as a sculpture exhibition by French artist Pierre-Henri Guérard. Resident DJ Maklen will also be there to make sure that the rooftop keeps shaking until 3 a.m., closing time.
Sky Deck Terrace at Novotel Hotel, 226 W 52nd St. (betw. Broadway & 8th Ave.),; 3 p.m.-3 a.m.

Sunday, July 15
10th Anniversary Pétanque Tournament
Not even Brooklyn is spared by Bastille Day, as French bistros and host their 10th annual pétanque tournament, the largest in North America, on Sunday. Go watch over 80 teams from around the world play it out in Smith Street while enjoying French music, food and drinks throughout the day.
Bar Tabac, 128 Smith St. (betw. Bergen & Pacific Sts.),; 11 a.m.-10 p.m.

Bastille Day on 60th Street
On Sunday, 60th Street will be taken over by over 25,000 Franco-friendly visitors for a day of festivities and celebration of French culture. Hosted by the , this is the largest celebration of Bastille Day in the United States. Events will include food samples by some of the finest French restaurants in New York City, live can-can performances, free French language workshops, street mimes, accordian players, an old Citroen car show and, of course, more wine, cheese and pétanque.
60th Street betw. 5th & Lexington Aves.,; 12-5 p.m.

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