Nightlife and Networking: The Ultimate Guide to Making Friends as an African in New York City

This guide to making friends is your ticket to the real New York – the one that pulses with African rhythms and warmth.
The Love Central - Nightlife and Networking: The Ultimate Guide to Making Friends as an African in New York City The Love Central - Nightlife and Networking: The Ultimate Guide to Making Friends as an African in New York City
Nightlife and Networking: The Ultimate Guide to Making Friends as an African in New York City

Feeling lost in the Big Apple? Don’t worry! This guide to making friends as an African in New York City will turn you from a lonely to a social butterfly in no time. We’ll explore the vibrant nightlife and networking scenes that make NYC a melting pot of cultures and opportunities

New York’s African scene has exploded since the 1980s. Did you know that between 2010 and 2019, the African-born population in NYC grew by a whopping 29%? 

Today, you’ll find vibrant communities from Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal, and beyond. Little Senegal in Harlem and the Ghanaian enclave in the Bronx are just the tip of the iceberg.

Let’s break down your ultimate guide to making friends:

The Love Central -
Hit up Silvana on 116th Street for their Thursday Afrobeats night Image source Freepik

1. Nightlife Nirvana

Hit up Silvana on 116th Street for their Thursday Afrobeats night. DJ Tunez often spins here, dropping the latest hits from Wizkid and Burna Boy. For a taste of East Africa, try Mekelburg’s in Brooklyn on Saturdays.

Mark your calendar for the African Film Festival in May at Lincoln Center. It’s a goldmine for cinephiles and culture vultures alike. The DanceAfrica festival in Brooklyn each Memorial Day weekend is another can’t-miss.

Try the Azul Rooftop at Hotel Hugo in SoHo. With its Cuban-inspired decor, it’s a hit with the Pan-African crowd. Pro tip: arrive before 9 PM to snag a good spot.

2. Networking Knowhow

The African Leadership Network hosts monthly mixers at rotating venues. Their annual conference in October is a who’s who of African professionals in NYC.

If you’re in tech, don’t miss the yearly AfroTech conference. For finance folks, the Africa Fintech Summit in April is a must-attend.

Organizations like African Communities Together in the Bronx always need helping hands. It’s a great way to give back and expand your circle.

3. Tech-Savvy Socializing

Join groups like “Africans in NYC” (2,500+ members) or “Nigerian Professionals in New York” (1,800+ members). They organize everything from brunches to book clubs.

On Bumble BFF, use the “Interests” filter to find fellow Africans. Hey! VINA is great for African women looking for girlfriends.

“Africans in New York City” has over 15,000 members. It’s a goldmine for event announcements and networking opportunities.

The Love Central -
The Senegalese Association on 116th Street hosts language exchange meetups Image source Freepik

4. Neighborhood Nuggets

At Accra in the Bronx, join the communal table on Fridays for fufu and groundnut soup. Le Baobab Gouygui in Harlem serves the best thieboudienne outside Dakar.

The Afrikan Poetry Theatre in Jamaica, Queens offers drum classes on Saturdays. The Senegalese Association on 116th Street hosts language exchange meetups.

On Sundays, head to the drum circle at Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem. It’s been a tradition since the 1960s and attracts a diverse crowd.

Conclusion: The Ultimate Guide to Making Friends as an African in New York City

This guide to making friends is your ticket to the real New York – the one that pulses with African rhythms and warmth. Remember, New Yorkers move fast, so don’t be shy! Strike up conversations, accept invitations, and soon you’ll have a social calendar bursting at the seams. 

Now go forth and conquer, African style! Your NYC squad is waiting to be formed.

READ: Jealous of Your Friend’s Success? Here’s How to Make it Fuel Your Own!

But instead of letting jealousy eat away at you, why not transform it into a driving force for your own success?

This article will guide you on how to achieve that. But first, let’s understand why we compare ourselves to others.

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