DUMBO

Must-See NYC Fall Art: Garbage Trucks, Outer Space, Politics

New York City museums seem to always offer plenty of wonderful art collections, but this fall families in the five boroughs will find interesting exhibits on math, history, and more. Fittingly during this election season, a few museums have focused on past and current presidents.

While you might think kids would find exhibits about our country’s leaders and current events a bit boring, these museums have curated displays that ought to spark curiosity. Plus, if your child is at all like mine, this election has been a surprisingly hot topic among friends, which only proves New Yorkers of all ages love a good political debate.

Whatever your child’s interests, you’re sure to find something on this list that appeals and educates. After all, to quote a karaoke favorite, "the children are our future." (Sorry about the earworm.)

7 Free Outdoor Art Exhibits to See with NYC Kids Now

Want to see some art with your kids, but can’t handle the hordes of summer tourists? (Guilty!) Believe that museums make more sense during the frigid winter months? (Also guilty.) Just not able to make your work hours or the kids' naps coordinate with FREE hours at NYC museums? (Hand raised.)

Here’s the solution: check out these seven outdoor art exhibits on display in NYC now. Since they’re located in city parks and other public spaces, they’re FREE! All have art that is interactive (to some degree), educational, and fun for kids. At one exhibit—Swale, a traveling barge with a “floating food forest”—you can even feed your kids healthy food they pick themselves. What could be better? Maybe the fact that you're outside and your children can run around afterward and get tuckered out? (Guilty again.)

NY Kids Club to Open Three New Locations in 2017

NY Kids Club will open three new enrichment centers and three more of its accredited NY Preschools in January 2017, bringing to 15 the number of locations across NYC. These new tot learning spots will be situated in the Brooklyn neighborhoods of Dumbo and Cobble Hill, as well as Greenwich Village in Manhattan. Each will be equipped with state-of-the-art gymnasiums for ongoing enrichment classes and open play for members, as well as classroom space for the preschoolers.

The Dumbo location at 135 Plymouth Street in Brooklyn will house five classrooms contained within an 8,400-square-foot floor plan, while the two-story Cobble Hill location at 299 Court Street comes in at 6,000-square-feet with five classrooms. Greenwich Village's 11 Fifth Avenue location will be cozier at less than half that size and three classrooms. 

Acrobatic 'Bianco' Circus Opens with Action-Packed Show

Parents tired of hearing the kids whine, "But I can't see!" at every show take note: no boosters are needed at NoFit State Circus' immersive spectacle Bianco. That's because there are no seats and all of the action takes place high up in the air. Set in a sci-fi-looking, 10,000-square-foot big top pitched directly under Brooklyn Bridge Park's namesake structure, Bianco is a rare all-ages show presented by lauded avant-garde performing arts center St. Ann's Warehouse.

While you and your kids are most likely familiar with all of the skills on display—juggling, acrobatics, tumbling, and a variety of aerial acts—you probably haven't experienced them in such an exhilarating and intimate environment. The athletic cast and crew bound through the audience, hooting, hollering and often shoving their way to center tent, where they perform their feats with glee and little clothing. But don't worry: though there's a sexy, party vibe and many exposed six-packs, it's a strictly G-rated affair.

For families who prefer edgy and scrappy neo-circus troupes to the slick razzle-dazzle of Ringling Bros. or Cirque du Soleil, Bianco is a heart-pumping thrill. But there are some important things to know before you bring the kids—you may not need to worry about them running away with this circus, but they could very easily get lost in it.

5 Things to Do on Mother's Day in NYC that Mom Will Love

Sure, a tasty Mother's Day brunch is nice, but just that word, nice. C'mon mom, you know you're more fabulous than that.

This year, Sunday, May 8 is all about you, so no simple meal, not even breakfast in bed will do. Mother's Day should be a whole-day affair that's fun for everyone in the family, especially in NYC, where options are as amazing as mom herself. You could book tickets to a kid-friendly Broadway musical—in addition to stalwarts Wicked and The Lion King, there are new tuners like School of Rock and Tuck Everlasting for which tickets are more available. If the tots are too young for Broadway, there are plenty of shows for preschoolers that are shorter and less expensive. Into museums? There are engaging new exhibits about dinosaurs, kid-lit icon Mo Willems and Star Wars sure to please all ages. Or you could splurge on a special experience such as a helicopter ride or a family spa day.

But if your ideal Mother's Day features an outdoor activity that makes the most of the spring season, we've come up with five memorable itineraries that include food and alfresco family fun that won't blow your budget.

Brooklyn Swimming Classes for Kids and Babies

Whether it’s the middle of winter or the hottest day of summer, it’s always swimming lesson season at the pools around NYC, including the family-packed borough of Brooklyn.

Brooklyn has several indoor pool options for water babies, toddlers and kids. Swimming classes at these Brooklyn locations can introduce your youngest to the water with a parent-child class or teach more advanced swimming techniques to kids who already know the ropes. Many offer private instruction, too, if the group class or schedule doesn't work for your family. So pack the towels (and swim diapers) and let's hit the pool!

Dumbo Serves Up Plenty of Family-Friendly Restaurants

Cool and hip Dumbo is one of our favorite neighborhoods in Brooklyn, where international families and old-time New Yorkers come together. And one thing this eclectic population does well is eat.

While there is a vibrant late-night scene in this bustling enclave, it is also increasingly home to children and their families and restaurants that like serving them. Dining with kids in Dumbo means scrumptious food, often with breathtaking, one-of-a kind views of Manhattan. Our favorite eateries fell into three essential-to-life-with-children categories: pizza, lunch or brunch and dessert. 

So whether you're visiting the nabe to check out all that Brooklyn Bridge Park has to offer like a carousel, destination-worthy playgrounds and wide-open green spaces, or recently transplanted to the hood, you'll want to try out these spots. Now our mouths are watering!
 

Hang with Animals at These Cozy Indoor Spots

Kids are innate animal lovers—we bet all parents go through that phase when they're convinced their child is going to grow up to be a veterinarian. But in wintertime when all living things in New York City seem to be hibernating, it's tough to indulge kids' craving for creatures beyond the ever-present subway rats. And who wants to pet one of those?! That's why we rounded up the best places to get up close and personal with animals in cozy, indoor environments. Here's where you can hang with cool cats, beautiful birds and butterflies, and even "adopt" a critter without ever having to take it home.

The Best NYC Kid Destinations that Opened in 2015

If NYC had a Facebook page, its Year in Review would go something like this: debuted three new museums, two cat cafes and one seriously jaw-dropping carousel. And that's not all! Dozens of cool kid attractions opened in New York City in 2015 and we've rounded up the 15 best new destinations to add to your family bucket list.

Read on to see how many you've already visited (they're all over the five boroughs, yes, even the Bronx and Staten Island), and then make an early New Year's resolution to check out the rest of these must-dos over holiday break (or, for seasonal spots, in 2016). Don't forget to post pics on Facebook to make your out-of-town friends Grinch-green with envy.

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