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10 Weird Laws in New York You Won’t Believe Are Real




Weird laws in New York abound! One might think that New York would have the most sensible laws, however, this is not the case.

A big city with many things for people to do requires some sort of regulation. Though what seems to happen in such highly populated and historical places, is that weird laws are needed to keep the peace. Take a look at these weird laws in New York.

1) It is Against the Law to Wear a Mask on Halloween

Yup, believe it or not, it is illegal for a group of two or more people to be masked on Halloween in New York. This law dates back to 1845 when farmers attacked police over wheat prices, and was revived in 2011 due to protesters wearing Guy Fawkes masks during Occupy Wall Street.

2) Jaywalking is Against the Law but Always Tolerated

Most New Yorkers know about this one (not so sure about ducks). Least surprising at all, police haven’t enforced this for decades now. Chalk it up to overpopulation or laxness, but I know it’s because there aren’t enough pens in the world to issue that amount of tickets.

3) You Better Not Be Flirting

Essentially meant to curb unwanted flirting, the letter of this law only denotes the “flirting” part, and leaves out the “unwanted.” This grammatical loophole could cost you $25 if you’re not careful. Quite literally, get a room.

4) Men Outside Of Their Home Must Wear A Matching Jacket And Pants

Step 1: Check yourself in the mirror.

Step 2: Stay in.

5) Wearing Tight Pants

There is actually a law that prevents women from wearing “body-hugging” clothing. This ranges from yoga pants to skinny jeans to cocktail dresses. Maybe it’s because they’re… ahem, distracting. Whatever the case, it’s one of the weirdest laws in New York by far.

6) One Must Not Talk to Anyone While in an Elevator

This law also states that one must have his/her hands folded in front of them while looking toward the door. Apparently, before this law, the majority of elevator passengers flailed their arms as they spoke, frightening other passengers. This law was written into the books to stop riders from accidentally hitting those around them when talking.

7) Donkeys Cannot Sleep In Your Bathtub

Sorry NYC, but it looks like the good ol’ ‘donkey in your bathtub’ days will be little more than treasured memories from now on.

8) Slippers Are Not To Be Worn After 10 PM

We all knew this one, right?

9) All Businesses Must Have Spittoons

And they must clean them every 24 hours. Technically when paired with the “no public spitting” law, this makes variable sense. Although apparently only wine tasters got the memo.

Something to think about: Not in the too distant past someone’s job was to empty and clean these.

10) No Walking Around on Sundays With An Ice Cream Cone


Specifically, one cannot walk around with an ice cream cone in their pocket. Well, I’m glad someone finally said something.

Currently residing in Phoenix, Arizona with his wife and Pomeranian, Mochi. Leo is a lover of all things travel related outside and inside the United States. Leo has been to every continent and continues to push to reach his goals of visiting every country someday. Learn more about Leo on MuckRack.

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