Cobble Hill

NYC Play Spaces with Sibling Discounts

While there are plenty of great drop-in indoor play spaces in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens, as a mother of two young girls under age 5, the deciding factor for me is always financial. Can I afford to take both of them without hocking my wedding ring? If the answer is no then I have to move on, regardless of how fabulous the indoor playground is or how stir crazy my kids are.

In an attempt to save money this winter, I decided to look into whether any play spaces offered discounts for siblings or (even better) charged a flat fee per family. Turns out my research paid off: I found 10 indoor romping spots in New York City that fit the bill (make that reduced the bill). So skip the pawn shop: Here are drop-in play spaces with deals for siblings.

Best New Summer Day Camps for NYC Kids 2014

Winter is the season for sledding, skiing and summer camp stress. There are so many unique and enriching programs to choose from in NYC, it's difficult to know where to send your child for the best summer experience, especially when there are new programs popping up every year.

To help you make an informed decision about the new camps on the block, we've rounded up 10 of the most promising programs set to debut this summer. Some are brand-new, others are places that are significantly expanding their already awesome offerings. (We also included a couple of camps that have been around for a few years but were under our radar and are worth highlighting.) At these notable new summer day camps, kids can study STEM concepts, design robots and motorized gizmos, hone their artistic skills, learn to skateboard and more. And the options run the gamut from preschoolers to teens.

Be sure to check out our Summer Camp Guide for info on lots of other programs in NYC as well as sleepaway options. We even have a Camp Directory, which allows you to search for programs by interest, age and area.

NYC Stroller Repair: Where to Get Your Stroller Fixed in New York City

If you've got a baby or toddler in NYC, chances are you have a stroller (or two or three). When my son was young, our stroller got plenty of wear and tear up and down subway stairs, across potholes, and through muddy parks, snowy streets and rainstorms. It also pulled double-duty as a grocery cart, coat rack and, when strapped, a diaper changing table.

While heavy-duty strollers are built to withstand a fair amount of abuse, if you're using your wheels every day, parts inevitably break. Do you really want to trash that $1,000 stroller because the frame bent or the tire popped off? We didn't think so.

For simple repairs like a blown tire, you can try your local bike shop (many handle minor fixes and may even stock standard stroller-size inner tubes and other small parts). But for more advanced assistance, we've found five New York City services that specialize in stroller repair so your family can get rolling again.

Enriching After-school Classes for NYC Kids

NYC kids have it good when it comes to enriching after-school programs. The choices for hands-on learning fun are seemingly endless. Our Classes Guide is packed with posts about sports like basketball and tennis, performing arts such as musical theater and dance, language immersion for Spanish and Chinese, and even offbeat offerings like trapeze and archery. And every year we hear about fresh specialty programs.

Last year our new classes post featured many places that had just opened. This year is a little different as tried-and-true favorites like the 92nd Street Y, the Art Farm in the City and Long Island City Kids add new and notable offerings to their schedules. We've leafed through the catalogs and picked out the most exciting new kids' classes debuting this fall. Be sure to browse our Classes Guide for even more options.

Best New Summer Day Camps for NYC Kids 2013

Every year around this time, the annual summer camp panic sets in for parents. We suffer from a particularly acute case of it here in NYC, due to the overwhelming number of summer day camps available. It's difficult to know where to send your child for the best summer experience, especially when there are new programs popping up every year.

To help you make an informed choice about the new camps on the block, we've rounded up the most innovative and enriching summer programs set to debut this summer. Some are brand-new, others are places we love that are significantly expanding their already awesome offerings. At these notable new camps, kids can learn about animals, create cool contraptions, study STEM concepts, hone their artistic skills, design bridges and playgrounds, and tackle a ton of other projects. And the options run the gamut from preschoolers to teens.

Be sure to check out our Summer Camp Guide for info on lots of other programs in NYC, commuter camps and sleepaway options.

Best NYC Kids' Concerts for Fall 2012: 11 Live Rockin' Music Shows

September is synonymous with back to school but it doesn't have to be all work and no play. This month also marks the beginning of the new fall culture season and we're kicking off our coverage with a roundup of awesome concerts for kids.

If you're a kindie music fan, it's likely some of your favorites are playing New York City over the next few months. Big names include Gustafer Yellowgold and Elizabeth Mitchell, as well as popular local acts like the Deedle Deedle Dees, Princess Katie & Racer Steve, and Suzi Shelton. My four-year-old daughter and I recently became fans of Shelton—we've been to three of her shows in the last three months.

The coolest thing about our kiddie concert roundup? Five of these shows are FREE. So get ready to move and groove at our top 11 family rock concerts in NYC this fall.

NYC Kids' Eyeglasses: Where to Find Children's Eyewear in New York City

[UPDATED: December 1, 2012]

Shopping for kids' eyeglasses isn't like shopping for clothes or shoes. With prescription glasses, the fit and the style have to be perfect—after all, your child will be wearing them every day. So while there are many excellent eyewear stores in New York City, it's best to go to one that has experience fitting glasses for kids, especially since your child may not realize if a prescription is slightly off or if the frames are pinching the nose. It's also important to find a shop with an onsite optometrist and a wide selection of children's eyeglasses so your kid can find a pair that makes him feel comfortable, confident and even cool.

We contacted a number of well regarded local pediatric ophthalmology offices and asked where they send their clients for kids' glasses in NYC.

NYC Children's Choirs: How to Join a Kids' Chorus in New York City

Got a little songbird who's always singing around the house? Maybe it's time to get them out of the shower and into the spotlight. For kids who love to croon, New York City is a Mecca of children's choruses, ranging from casual to competitive to pre-professional, with plenty of performing opportunities for all. Plus members do a lot more than just sing, they also learn how to read music and how to sight-sing, and really expand their repertoire so you don't have to hear that same tune over and over and over again (like you do now).

We've rounded up seven sensational children's choruses in New York City. Best of all, a few are even free to join (although an audition is required).

Free and Cheap Magic Shows for NYC Kids

When you look at the prices of a lot of magic shows in New York City, like Steve Cohen's Chamber Magic or Sam Eaton's The Quantum Eye, you realize that the real trick is affording tickets. But there are some (comparatively) affordable magic shows for kids in NYC, in fact a few are even free.

Whether your child believes in sorcery or just wants to figure out how it's done, a good magic show can captivate even really young kids. Trust me I know: Ever since my preschooler saw a DVD of that old Frosty TV special in which a magician's hat brings the snowman to life, she's been obsessed and we've seen at least a dozen magic shows, from the free ones at Bryant Park's Le Carrousel to the long-running Off Broadway show Amazing Max. So ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, behold our roundup of magic shows for kids in New York City this summer.

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