Local Highlights

Free things to do in Long Island City this spring


The murk of the melt-off is behind us, and spring is well underway in New York City. The change of the season means snow boots go back in the closet, color begins to trickle back into every New Yorker’s wardrobe, and a whole new realm of possibilities for spring activities is opened. While some citydwellers may rejoice at the end of winter (and the temporary relief from seasonal affective disorder,) others may only see the dollars they saved by staying indoors. 

Well, we’re here to tell you that spring doesn’t have to be spendy! Some of the best attractions in the city are free; good times don’t have to cost a dime. In addition to getting a great deal on rent, members of ALTA by Common — our Long Island City home — have access to all the free festivities the happening neighborhood has to offer. But don’t just take our word for it! Here are some of the best ways to enjoy spring in LIC without spending more than a MetroCard swipe. 

Visit the Noguchi Museum


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Showcasing the life and career of the famed sculptor Isamu Noguchi, the Noguchi Museum holds the largest collection of the artist’s work in the world. From massive concrete monoliths to iconic mid-century furniture designs, Noguchi’s work is displayed across both indoor and outdoor spaces — meaning you can soak up the spring sun while also soaking up some artistic inspiration. The museum is a 20-minute train ride from ALTA by Common (or a 30-minute walk on especially perfect days,) and advanced admission is free on the first Friday of each month. Due to upcoming renovations from May 18th to 29th, however, several exhibits will be closed and admission to the remaining open exhibits will be free. 

Picnic in Queensbridge Park

When the weather is just right: Round up your roomies, pack some snacks, and head to nearby Queensbridge Park for the perfect spring picnic. The park is a straight shot from ALTA by Common, and offers picturesque views of both the island of Manhattan and the bridge the park is named after. If sitting still isn’t your speed, the park’s fields are perfect for playing a friendly game of Spikeball!   

Get inspired at MoMA PS1


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ALTA by Common has some seriously artsy neighbors, and our Long Island City home is just a short walk from the iconic MoMA PS1. The museum is one of the oldest contemporary art institutions in the country, and is known for its Apple Store-sized gallery spaces which completely transform to fit the vibe of the installations they house. Admission to MoMA PS1 is free to most NYC students, though the prices of admission are suggested. With that said: It’s worth it to pay when you can. 

Take the Roosevelt Island Tram

While New Yorkers love to turn their nose up at all things touristy, sometimes you have to admit that these “junk food” activities can be fun — sort of like binge-watching Summer House! And when you’re reality TV’d out, a ride on the Roosevelt Island Tram can be just the springtime change of perspective you need. Getting there from ALTA by Common can be a bit of a trek (though we suggest walking to the train to avoid a bus transfer,) but once you’re on the tram you have the chance to see the city with a totally fresh set of eyes. Once on the island you can stick around and explore — or you can swipe your MetroCard again, throw on “Empire State of Mind,” and start the journey all over again. 

Soak up spring at ALTA by Common 

While the above free activities are appealing, it really pays to be a member at ALTA by Common. Spring days can be spent tanning (with a view) on the outdoor deck, grilling (and chilling) with other members, shooting some pool (or going for a swim in one,) or catching up on all the Marvel movies in the outdoor theater. With rates starting at $1,374 for a private bedroom in a coliving suite and onsite laundry, a coworking space, and regular cleanings — in addition to the above amenities — your dollar goes further with Common. 

Though spring is upon us, it’s not too late to make the most out of Long Island City living! Schedule a tour of ALTA by Common today, and make your dollar go further this spring. 

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