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Arts + Culture

10 Pop Ups We Can’t Wait to Check Out

As much as we try to deny it, August is HERE. But that doesn’t mean we have to mourn the end of summer just yet. From psychedelic dinner parties to ‘80s beach bashes, here are 10 must-dos before the season switches for good.

See recent posts by April Ellis

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Photos courtesy of The Museum of Ice Cream


Museum of Ice Cream, NYC

Summer’s sweetest treat is getting its own museum. Yes, you read that right: All your dessert dreams will come true at this insta-perfect spot in NYC’s Meatpacking District. Snap selfies in a swimming pool of rainbow sprinkles, ride an ice cream scoop seesaw, and get high on helium-filled sugar balloons. And while the experience wouldn’t be complete without tastings from vendors like Blue Marble and Black Tap, you’ll also be given a Willy Wonka-like “miracle berry pill” that makes your tastebuds sense sour as sweet. To test it out, you’ll lick a pink vanilla ice cream cone topped with two slices of lemon. (Trust us, it actually works!)

Until September 1

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Monkey Town, LA

Immersive dinner theater is trending throughout America, from Queen of the Night in NYC to Monkey Town in LA. This specific performance pop-up in a warehouse near the fashion district has the city’s art scene in an uproar — both for its psychedelic cinema and the impressive five-course menu crafted by chef Nick Montgomery. The tables are surrounded by four giant movie screens projecting a video montage of odd scenes while live musicians and multimedia performers play in the center of the cube. Meanwhile, diners tuck into farm-fresh fare like heirloom tomato salad, gnocchetti tirolesi and berkshire pork ragout, and king trumpet mushroom with roasted radish, crispy shallot and shiitake jus.

Until October 1

RELATED: 79 Things to Do for Free in LA

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The Line, Amagansett, NY

Something hot is always happening in the Hamptons. And this season, it’s a dual design shop and boutique pop-up from The Line. Housed in a white clapboard beach cottage built in 1720, the chic space is home inspo to the max thanks to exposed oak beams, marble tables and copperplate etchings by Bridgehampton-based artist Mary Heilmann. There’s also a walk-in closet stocked with our fantasy wardrobe (think knits by Altuzarra, Manolo Blahnik mules and sexy Flagpole Swim bikinis). Bonus: free fashion styling, interior design consulting, personal shopping and a lending library of beach reads (perfect for the store’s oceanside locale).

Until September

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Barbara Jean, LA

Patina Restaurant alum, chef Jason Fullilove, has a new project on deck and our mouths are watering just thinking about it. Housed in Feastly, the Arts District’s new marketplace, Barbara Jean is making a name for itself with its epic soul food menu, a tribute to Fullilove’s childhood in Cleveland and southern Africa. Blending flavors from both cuisines, you’ll find plates from pickled shrimp with watermelon to pork-stuffed pig’s feet with a side of collards and root veggies. Though we’re keeping our fingers crossed that the pop-up will turn into a permanent restaurant, we suggest foodies grab a spot now while they still can.

August 12, 19 and 26

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W Hotel Glamping Suite, NYC

Who says you can’t have the best of both worlds? At the W New York’s brand new Laurel & Wolf-designed urban Glamping suite, guests can bed down under the Big Apple’s shining lights… literally. On the terrace of the hotel’s penthouse Extreme Wow Suite, you’ll find a 12-foot yurt, colorful linens draped over Acapulco chairs, festive string lights, a fire pit and free booze (no really, a bottle of Veuve Clicquot will be waiting for you). Cheers!

Until November

RELATED: 10 Luxe Camping Retreats to Check Out this Summer

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Casa da Cachaça, NYC

The Olympics are officially upon us, and people are celebrating. To get in the spirit, events are popping up all over the country. Our favorite? The Leblon cocktail pop-up at the Hatbox bar in the stylish Refinery Hotel. On the menu are Cachaça Caipirinhas (Brazil’s national drink) and boozy popsicles from My Sweet. Other Olympic perks include themed workout classes and a free Art of Cachaça mixology lesson.

Until August 20

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Photo by David Miller


Saved by the Max, Chicago

Get ready for a serious dose of 90s nostalgia. This Saved by the Bell-inspired pop-up restaurant in Wicker Park is a spot-on replica of The Max cafeteria from the teen sitcom (complete with a jukebox and payphone!). The Bayside-based menu has cheeky names like A.C. Sliders (pulled pork and Jameson BBQ sauce) and Tori’s Fried Chicken (Goose Island 312 beer-battered Korean fried chicken on a roasted scallion waffle with spiced syrup), cooked by chef Brian Fisher from the Michelin-starred Schwa. As if that’s not worth the trip alone, there are also events like 80s and 90s-themed costume contests, TV-karaoke, trivia, Zack Attack cover bands and even meet-and-greets with the cast.

Extended until December 31

RELATED: 7 Best Day Trips from Chicago

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Brixton Beach Boulevard, London

Miami culture is taking over London in the form of an ‘80s-inspired beach party. Expect surprise DJ sets, outdoor screenings, street food, killer cocktails, and of course, some crazy neon attire. You can even join disco yoga lessons on the sand — and yes, instructors will be in jazzercise aerobics clothes. There’s even pastel-colored snack shacks with punny names like Mac to the Future serving items like the Delorean (mac n cheese topped with chorizo or pancetta). JS Tip: Go on Thursdays when there’s no cover charge from 6-11pm.

Until August 28

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roofTop Chefs, Boston

A private poolside dinner with some of New England’s best chefs? Sign us up! Every Tuesday night, resident chef Nick Calias and his culinary friends will be dishing up delicious meals on the 12th-floor terrace of The Colonnade Hotel. While the menu is kept under wraps until the day of, we trust the food will be good in the hands of James Beard nominee Matt Louis (of Moxy and Franklin Oyster House), Tom Brady’s former personal chef Allen Campbell, and Top Chef finalist Tiffani Faison. The best part? Your calories count for something — all proceeds go to the No Kid Hungry program.

Until September 13

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Photo by Belinda Lawley


The Deck, London

For five days in August, The National Theater will turn into a 50-seat rooftop cinema called The Deck. The showcase flick is War Horse, but not the Oscar-awarded Spielberg movie. There's a twist: it’s the filmed version of the theater’s popular stage production. And in place of stale, overpriced concessions are smoked brisket sliders with homemade gherkin relish, sweet and salted popcorn plus a welcome drink.

August 15-19

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