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Worth It? Family Memberships in NYC to Consider for Winter

After visiting NYC's top play spaces, museums, and other fun zones, we've rounded up the various membership deals at popular kid-centric destinations. These places keep your kids entertained, active, and out of the cold. Some even offer short-term memberships, so you only have to pay until spring arrives.

In the dead of winter, it can be daunting to schlep somewhere new every weekend, so a membership to one (or two) of your favorite kid play spots makes sense. We've already done the math so you'll know exactly how many visits it takes until these investments pay off—and whether or not the "deal" works for your family. If the math doesn't work out for you, consider buying one of the play spaces' bulk passes instead, which usually knocks a few bucks off the daily drop-in price.

Need more ideas? Check out our Indoor Play Spaces Guide for more romper rooms by borough, bounce houses, and year-round family entertainment.

22 Hottest New NJ Destinations for Kids That Opened in 2018

As we prepare to count down to the new year, we're looking back at all the wonderful new kid attractions we gained in New Jersey over the last 12 months. We added more than a handful of new indoor play spaces, two playgrounds updated with modernized equipment and cool features, and a museum dedicated to NJ's Revolutionary War history. 

If you didn't get enough shopping during the holiday season, swing by for storytime at Indigo, a gigantic new bookstore at Short Hills Mall. Menlo Park Mall's Disney Junior Play Zone and PopFit Kids at Paramus Park Mall also keep mini shoppers in mind with FREE indoor play.

Looking for a sweet treat? You can't go wrong with ice cream at Brooklyn-import Ample Hills, or a custom confection from Sugarsuckle, known for their amazing kids' birthday cakes

Soar to new heights in 2019 at iFly, which opened its first NJ location this year. Other chains including Dave & Busters and Sky Zone expanded their presence in the Garden State this year with new locations. And what's old is new again, as favorites such as Asbury Lanes, Imagine That!!!, and the Sandy Hook Lighthouse reopened in 2018 after being closed for extensive renovations.

Whether you want to hit the (sensory) trail or jump for joy, you're in the right place. Read on for the coolest, brightest, and best new offerings for NJ kids.

18 Best New NYC Family Destinations That Opened in 2018

City kids are a lucky bunch. The past year saw a huge crop of new kid-friendly destinations popping up throughout the five boroughs. From a major new exhibit at the New York Aquarium to overhauled and brand new playgrounds and even a whole park, plus indoor places to shop, romp, and create, cool new exhibits, exhibitions, and a brand new museum, our kids have got it made. We're just lucky they let us come along for the ride!

Read on on for our top 18 new kid-friendly destinations in New York City that opened in 2018. If you've already conquered these, see what other adventures await on our list of 100 kid-friendly things to do in NYC before your kids grow up.

Basketball Exhibit at Yogi Berra Museum Is a Slam "Dunk" for NJ Kids

What do you get when you mix basketball and baseball? A new exhibit called Dunk! at the Yogi Berra Museum & Learning Center in Little Falls.

The exhibit, on loan from Science and Arts Engagement New York, will be up through June 1, 2019. This hoops-focused installation combines memorabilia and interactive stations that kids can delve into. 

Located just north of Montclair on the campus of Montclair State University, the museum is a quick and easy day trip destination for sports-loving kids and families in NJ. Read on for more about its newest attraction.

The Best New Entertainment Hot Spots for LI Kids, 2018

2018 has been another great year for Long Island families, with new and improved attractions and venues opening in NassauSuffolk and on the East End. From museums to indoor play spaces to spray parks, and more, the year brought exciting places to discover and more ways to have fun.

In case you missed any of this year’s hottest new spots, we’ve rounded up some of the best right here. You still have time to catch the Holiday Light Show in Calverton and Party City’s new Toy City pop-up. While it’s cold out, there are plenty of indoor places to explore such as a rebranded Long Island Explorium and a restored exhibit at Vanderbilt Museum … and you can dream about the warmer weather by making plans to visit Splish Splash and its thrilling new water slides this summer. (More exciting warm-weather news: Plans are underway for the opening of a new adventure park at Jones Beach this spring.)

Polar Express 4-D: A Movie with Train Ride Thrills at the MOS

Each of the past five years, I've planned to bring my Polar Express-obsessed boys to a Christmas-themed train ride down the Cape or Rhode Island. But packed sports schedules and school calendars have caused me to lose steam on the idea of even a slightly far-flung locomotive journey. Luckily, I found out about a new, Polar Express-themed adventure that's right in Boston, lasts all of 20 minutes, costs just $6, and packs real charm and excitement into almost all of that time. New this year, the Museum of Science is running the Polar Express 4-D Experience in its specialty theater space through January 6, 2019. As a bonus: All Aboard! Trains at Science Park, featuring model trains and interactive train tables, is on exhibit, too. Do your kids have trains on the brain? Here's what to expect with a train-themed visit to MOS.

Beloved Bear Corduroy Stars in New Must-See Exhibit

All three of my kids have been fans of Corduroy since they were toddlers, possibly because I was a fan way before they were even born. It’s impossible not to fall for the endearing, mild-mannered stuffed bear created by prolific author, illustrator, and painter Don Freeman. His two books starring the lovable bear—Corduroy and A Pocket for Corduroy—are among the author’s best-known works.

Naturally, when I learned that The Museum of the City of New York, one of my family’s favorite NYC destinations, was opening a new exhibit dedicated to Corduroy and a curated collection of Don Freeman’s other works celebrating NYC, I knew I’d be first in line. The exhibit is a loving tribute to Freeman, whose affection for New York City is evident in masterful works that display the intricacies and liveliness of a city like no other. A City for Corduroy: Don Freeman’s New York is an engaging, colorful display and makes for a wonderful outing for little ones and grownups alike—a fitting tribute to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Corduroy.

Interactive Mickey Mouse Pop-Up Museum Lands in NYC

Attention, Disney fans: Celebrate Mickey’s 90th birthday at at the latest family pop-up to hit New York City. From his humble beginnings in “Steamboat Willie” to the cultural icon that we all know and love today, Mickey Mouse gets the full biographical treatment in a museum experience that offers a little something for everyone.

Located near NYC's High LineMickey: The True Original Exhibition celebrates 90 years of Mickey Mouse’s influence on art and pop culture. The 16,000 square-foot exhibition features classic memorabilia for all the nostalgic feels, plus contemporary work from popular artists. We were lucky enough to get a sneak peek of the pop-up, immersive museum celebrating Disney’s most beloved character.

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