What's Open on Christmas Day in NYC 2012: 12 Things to Do with Kids After Opening Gifts
The gifts have been ripped open, the insane plastic packaging dismantled and the batteries installed. Dinner won't be ready for hours and the kids are totally stir crazy. What else can you do on Christmas Day?
Jews have been asking that question for centuries and their answer in New York City is often Chinese food and a movie. But there are other options, whether or not you celebrate Christmas. Here are a dozen fun things to do on December 25.
You can find even more seasonal activities in our Holiday Fun Guide.
1. See a festive show Although only a handful of Broadway shows have performances on Christmas Day (and none are that kid-friendly), you can catch the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, the Holiday Circus in Brooklyn, Angelina Ballerina the Very Merry Holiday Musical and The Big Apple Circus: Legendarium on December 25. You can find discounts to most of them on BroadwayBox.com.
2. Play tourist Times Square's Madame Tussauds, Ripley's Believe it or Not! Odditorium and Discovery Times Square with the cool Harry Potter exhibit are all open on Christmas. Other tourist spots that have December 25 hours are The Empire State Building and Top of the Rock, which gives you a great, crowd-free view of the Rockefeller tree.
3. Enjoy Chinese and a movie Families of all ethnic backgrounds can experience this Jewish tradition at 92YTribeca, which is offering an all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet followed by a double feature of Back to the Future Parts I and II. Best for tweens and up.
4. Or just see a movie Cinemas are open on Christmas Day and there are plenty of great family films playing like Wreck-It Ralph, Rise of the Guardians, The Hobbit, Cirque de Soleil: Worlds Away and the 3D version of Monsters, Inc.
6. Hit the ice The Pond at Bryant Park, Wollman and Lasker Rinks in Central Park, Riverbank State Park, Van Cortlandt Park and Rockefeller Center are all open for ice-skating. If you head to Bryant Park, you can also do some really last-minute holiday shopping at its fantastic outdoor holiday market or take a ride on the carousel. And if it's too cold to glide outside, indoor rinks Chelsea Piers and Queens' City Ice Pavilion also have public skating hours on Christmas.
7. Take a stroll Walk up Fifth Avenue to see the stunning department store holiday windows before they're gone. Assuming it's not too chilly (or rainy or snowy), Christmas is also a great day to take a quiet stroll through one of our city's lovely green spaces. Central, Prospect, Flushing Meadows Corona and Van Cortlandt Parks are all open. Central Park is even hosting a free cross-park promenade tour at 12:30pm.
8. Celebrate at a Jewish museum Many of NYC's Jewish cultural institutions are open today and offering special family activities. Catch a Klez for Kids concert at the Museum at Eldridge Street and The Macaroons at The Jewish Museum; watch chef George Wong of Chopstix Restaurants carves incredible fruit sculptures at Brooklyn's Jewish Children's Museum; and enjoy a family celebration with crafts, live music and a movie at the Museum of Jewish Heritage.
9. Explore the brand-new Museum of Mathematics Although most other NYC museums are closed on Christmas Day, the city's newest addition, MoMath which debuted this month, is open on the holiday.
10. Go on a public art tour Who needs to go to a museum to see art? Check out the incredible LED sculpture BUCKYBALL in Madison Square Park or promenade up Broadway to see all seven statues by Saint Clair Cemin.
11. Pamper yourself If all that shopping and reveling has you wiped out, take a dip in the rejuvenating waters of the family-friendly Spa Castle, which is open on the holiday.
12. Attend a religious service If you weren't able to go on Christmas Eve, churches are open on Christmas, too. The five spots we mentioned for midnight mass all welcome families on December 25 as well.
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