Free train and free fun in New York City

With free NJTRANSIT week upon us, why spend a lot of that money you saved on doing expensive things in New York City?

Though New York has a bad reputation for being pricey, there are plenty of things you can do without breaking the bank.

In the mood for a laugh? Check out one of the many improv shows. “Hot Tub,” a weekly variety show, showcases New York’s weird comedy, featuring up-and-coming comedians and established touring acts for a strange but funny experience.

You can see it and many other shows at the Peoples Improv Theater at 154 W. 29th St. “Hot Tub” is $8 and starts at 10 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 22.

If you need something to do during the day, get something for lunch at one of the many restaurants near Bryant Park and then read a book at the park’s reading room.

Bryant Park is situated behind the New York Public Library in midtown Manhattan, between 40th and 42nd streets and Fifth and Sixth avenues.

Racks of magazines and books are available while you sit in a designated area of the park.

According to the information stands in the park, the reading room is open only Monday through Friday, but you can still read outside on the weekends, weather permitting.

There is no limit on the amount of time you have to read and there’s no process for taking out the books and magazines.

Just grab a table, go to the rack and pull out something to read. There are even children’s books, if you’re in the mood to channel your inner child.

Or, instead, you can take a free outdoor walking tour of Lincoln Square, wherein Lincoln Center is located.

“Sidewalk Surprises” is a tour given by a knowledgeable urban historian that includes a look at the interior of one or more buildings, a visit to shops in the area and some history about the Upper West Side.

The tours meet inside Columbus Circle at 59th Street and Broadway. Tours start at 11 a.m. on Saturdays.

If you’re in the mood to go shopping on Sunday, take a free neighborhood tour on the Lower East Side of New York’s original shopping district.

The tour, which starts at Katz’s Delicatessen on the corner of East Houston and Ludlow streets, is two hours long and offers an insider’s look at discount retailers and the history and importance of retail for the Lower East Side’s development.

The tour is given by a licensed guide and starts at 11 a.m.

Walking without a guide is also nice, and a street fair offers just that opportunity.

Take a walk along narrow, cobblestone streets in Little Italy, which runs from Canal Street to Spring Street.

This is the last weekend of the Feast of San Gennaro, New York City’s oldest and largest street festival.

It starts at 11:30 a.m. and goes until midnight on Saturday and 11:30 p.m. on Sunday. Presented annually, the feast will have stands, food, parades, entertainment and a cannoli-eating contest.

These events and the many others in New York should fill all of your free NJTRANSIT weekend. Just be sure not to forget to do your homework with all that traveling!