Best Kids' Birthday Parties in NYC: 10 Party Places New in 2015
We love scouring the city for places to have awesome kids' birthday parties. Cool new party spots open in NYC all the time, each one seemingly more extravagant than the last. This roundup of 10 fresh birthday bash destinations includes Milk & Cookies Kids Spa and Salon and the Pier 2 Roller Rink, as well as notable new packages at old favorites such as the Intrepid and Bowlmor Chelsea Piers. Now all you need is a kid with a birthday...and a credit card of course.
Art Station – Sheepshead Bay
1303 Avenue U between East 13th and East 14th Streets
Celebrate with a creative party at this well-stocked art supply store that also hosts classes for all ages. Guests can paint plaster or wood items, or paint on canvas in the private party room. The package also includes pizza and beverages, tea and coffee for grown-ups and all paper goods. Face painting, karaoke and other add-ons are also available. Call 718-645-4545 for more info.
Bowlmor Chelsea Piers Laser Tag or Ropes Course – Chelsea
Chelsea Piers, Pier 60 at 23rd Street and the West Side Highway
Bowling parties are always a hit with school-age kids, but at Bowlmor Chelsea Piers you can go beyond the sport and enjoy the laser tag arena and aerial ropes course. Both attractions are available for birthday bashes, though the party room is shared due to space constraints. The basic package includes a 15-minute session of either activity; free play in the game room featuring Ping-Pong, Foosball, air hockey and other tabletop games; a kid-friendly buffet, beverages and cake. Fill out the party request form and an event coordinator will respond with further details.
Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum – Midtown West
Pier 86, 46th Street and the Hudson River
The decommsioned aircraft-carrier-turned-museum has overhauled its party packages. Themes include Rosie the Riveter, astronaut, spy, pilot and marine, which are incorporated throughout the bash. The Silver Package starts with a tour of the museum, followed by a ride in the XD simulator, hands-on activities, a meal and cake. Pricier packages include more bells and whistles like 30 minutes in the Space Shuttle Pavilion, decorations, goody bags and a family membership to the museum. Contact group sales at firstname.lastname@example.org or 646-381-5010 for more info.
Just Kidding Theater Parties at Symphony Space – Upper West Side
2537 Broadway at 95th Street
Symphony Space recently began offering birthday parties in conjunction with its Just Kidding family entertainment series. Children as young as 2 can enjoy a two-hour bash in Bar Thalia with food, beverages and cake. The birthday child gets an autographed CD, and all guests receive a digital download as a favor. The Theatre Package includes tickets to a show; while the Front Row package includes a private performance in the cafe and the Easy Package is a no-frills cafe affair. Call 212-864-1414 ext 289 or email email@example.com for more info.
Milk & Cookies Kids Spa and Salon – Upper East Side
1196 First Avenue between 64th 65th Streets
In addition to glamorous mani-pedis, hairdos, facials and temporary tattoos, this brand-new children's salon offers offbeat services like slimy booger manicures and high-octane video games. And, as the name implies, visits wrap up with complimentary milk and fresh-baked cookies. The salon offers five party packages meant to appeal to girls and boys. The two-hour functions incorporate spa services such as nail treatments, updos or facials paired with special activities like runway walks, lip gloss making, cookie decorating and karaoke. Food (beyond milk and cookies) is available for an additional fee. Call 646-850-4032 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
Museum of Mathematics – Flatiron
11 East 26th Street between Fifth and Madison Avenues
While the museum opened a few years back, its party packages have been a bit under the radar. Kids can enjoy hands-on geometric building activities, math-themed songs and stories, 3D printing or math games. The package includes all-day admission, a small favor for guests, cake and a private party room. Food, drink, goody bags and more add-ons are available. Email email@example.com for more info.
Pier 2 Roller Skating Birthday Party – Brooklyn Heights
Pier 2 in Brooklyn Bridge Park, enter at the Pier 1 entrance, Old Fulton and Furman Streets
Pier 2 in Brooklyn Bridge Park debuted its outdoor roller rink last summer. This seasonal spot offers outdoor skating parties from spring through fall. Packages include rink admission, roller-skate rental, food and beverages, a host and skate mates for kids new to wheels. You bring the cake, but Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory is close enough for a sweet post-skate treat instead. Call 718-300-2401 for more info.
Smiles N Styles – Ridgewood
951 Wyckoff Avenue at Weirfield Street
This colorful Queens salon hosts fabulous birthdays. Packages include pizza, beverages and fresh cotton candy, plus costumed characters, face painting and balloon twisting. Reserve your party online.
Twinkle Playspace – Williamsburg
144 Frost Street between Graham and Manhattan Avenues
This popular Williamsburg play spot is perfect for preschoolers. The basic package includes open play, pizza, beverages, cupcakes, balloons and goody bags. Upgrade to a theme party (pirates, safari, under-the-sea, princesses and Frozen are just some of the options available) and you also get lavish decorations and paper goods, and food and drink options for adults. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
The Cliffs – Long Island City
11-11 44th Drive between 11th and 21st Streets
This 30,000-square-foot indoor rock climbing facility offers children's parties in a private room with an experienced trainer who's great with newbies (don't worry, all kids wear harnesses). Instead of party packages, The Cliffs offers everything à la carte, so you start with two hours of climbing and then pick from add-ons like pizza and beverages, paper goods and goody bags. Bring your own cake! Call 718-729-7625 for more info.
Find more awesome kids' birthday ideas in our jam-packed Party Guide.
This post originally published in February 2015.