Gertrude Ederle Playground Opens in NYC on Upper West Side

I've paid my dues at New York City's playgrounds after a decade of parenting in this city. My family has visited our share of parks and even ranked our favorites, but we're always looking for our next big adventure. With kids ages 3, 7, and 10, it's no easy task to find a playground where all three are entertained, but our recent visit to the newly opened Gertrude Ederle Playground on West 59th Street was an all-around hit.

Where to Trick-or-Treat on Halloween with New York City Kids

One of my favorite childhood memories from growing up in NYC was Halloween in Greenwich Village. Back then, the Village Halloween Parade was just a couple of hundred artists and others who marched through the neighborhood. Afterward, we would trick-or-treat up and down the brownstone blocks. Everyone was friendly, and we would come home with our shopping bags completely filled. It was magical.

Although the parade and Greenwich Village have changed a lot since then, your kids still can enjoy that kind of thrilling trick-or-treat experience in many New York City neighborhoods. And which neighborhood is now the best one for Halloween trick-or-treating in NYC? That depends on who you ask. New Yorkers love to bicker over the best coffee shops, the best (and worst) train lines, and yes, the best places to take their kids on Halloween. We also love to find that secret gem.

So we asked our astute readers and collected recommendations from our parent-driven NYC staff over many, many years to bring you a list of our favorite trick-or-treating spots so you'll know where to bring your kids this October 31. 

Join one of the local Halloween parades and then go trick-or-treating throughout the community with local families. Or hit one of the neighborhoods or streets listed below: We have a slew of spots to try in all five boroughs. For more seasonal fun, check out our jam-packed Halloween Guide.

16 NYC Restaurants Serving Family Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving is a time to count your blessings—and to spend hours in the kitchen, right? Eh, we New Yorkers of small space fame and rapid-fire takeout options often prefer to let someone else handle our annual turkey fest. Of course, in New York City we can choose from a number of award-winning restaurants for that amazing dinner. With that in mind, we’ve rounded up a number of options in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens to make this November 24 as easy and delicious as possible.

Now, instead of deep-cleaning your apartment to meet those far-flung relatives (and their expectations), you can spend the night before in a more festive way—say watching the inflation of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade balloons. After all, what could be of a more New York City Thanksgiving experience than that?

Haunted Halloween Houses and Not-too-Spooky Walks for NYC Kids

Looking for a not-too-scary Halloween fright for the kids? A tricked-out haunted house or slightly spooky Halloween trail just might be the right kind of boo for you.

Haunted houses long have been a popular suburban Halloween stapleLong Island, Westchester, Connecticut, and New Jersey are rife with them. And while NYC has gained several spooky haunted houses of its own, including Blood Manor, those are for grown-ups only. However, there are a handful of haunted houses in New York City that offer gentler Halloween chills for families.

You're sure to find spooky family-friendly attractions at pretty much every Halloween festival and fall fair. But we're skipping those to tell you about the best of the city's more elaborate and kid-friendly haunted houses and other spooky attractions for kids this year. Read on for the scoop—and heed the age warnings. While grade-school kids can attend most of these, not all are suitable for preschoolers.

Guide to Día de los Muertos or Day of the Dead for NYC Kids

Halloween isn't the only spooky holiday to celebrate in October. Day of the Dead—or Día de los Muertos as it's known in Spanish—is observed by many Latino cultures and is especially popular in Mexico.

Day of the Dead officially takes place on November 1 and 2 to coincide with the Catholic holidays of All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day. However, NYC events are spread throughout October and early November and most of them are FREE. While it's not a Halloween event, it occurs around the same time and features many of the same trappings like skulls and parades. Revelers honor friends and family members who have died by building altars and adorning them with colorful paper flowers, grinning skeletons and candles. It's a joyful way to remember the deceased without freaking kids out. We've rounded up half a dozen Day of the Dead events where NYC kids and families can celebrate the holiday.

You can find more fall activities in our Fall Fun Guide and check out the Halloween Guide for all the best happenings in NYC this month.

21 Fun Things To Do with NYC Kids on Columbus Day

New York City kids have only been in school for a month and weary parents are staring down another off-day. But don’t panic. There are plenty of New York City kid spots and activities ready to entertain you and your brood on Columbus Day.

Fall weather offers the perfect chance to hit up one of New York City’s many destination playgrounds, of course, but we’ve also scoured our event and museum listings, favorite children's shops, and combed through our day trip guides to put together a list of 19 things to do with the family on Columbus Day. Read on desperate parent, read on.

Check out our Columbus Day Weekend event picks for NYC kids to find even more happenings for the holiday weekend.

11 Halloween Events in NYC Perfect for the Preschool Set

When my son was a baby, I wondered if he'd ever know the joy of trick-or-treating door to door like his suburban counterparts. But over the years, I've learned that NYC really knows how to celebrate Halloween. There are a dizzying number of FREE Halloween celebrations, kid-friendly costume parades, and close-knit communities that dole out copious amounts of candy to trick-or-treaters.

For little New Yorkers, the holiday can sometimes seem more scary than sweet—or take place mostly after their bedtime. So we've put together a list of 11 Halloween events perfect for the preschool set. Ease them in and enjoy the holiday fun while it lasts; they'll be celebrating at the Village Halloween Parade before you know it.

For more Halloween happenings, be sure to check out our Halloween Guide and our events calendar, which is continually updated with new, fun events as we find out about them.

Free NYC Halloween Parades for Kids

Everyone loves a parade, which means we're all absolutely smitten with Halloween parades. While families with older kids may want to dare to take in the iconic Village Halloween Parade on Sixth Avenue in Manhattan, it can be pretty scary—it's always insanely crowded, loud and many of the costumes are risque, gory or in poor taste. If your children aren't up for that big Hallow-baloo, there are plenty of smaller, kid-friendly NYC neighborhood parades, including in Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx.

We've rounded up community-driven Halloween processions for families to watch or march in, most of which are FREE. If you don't live in a great trick-or-treating area, these parades are a wonderful way to hunt for candy in another neighborhood. Find even more seasonal happenings in our Halloween Fun Guide.

The Battle of Brooklyn: History Comes Alive Close to Home

The New-York Historical Society's new exhibit, The Battle of Brooklyn, focuses on one of the earliest, largest, and closest-to-home battles of the Revolutionary War. Though not specifically designed with kids in mind, this exhibit offers a behind-the-scenes look at the American Revolution, with remnants of history still seen in today's Brooklyn. Older school-aged kids will enjoy exploring this immersive installation of the not-so-legendary skirmish that took place shortly after the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

First Birthday Parties: Manhattan Spots to Celebrate Your Tot

By the time you've reached your baby's first birthday, you may be ready to rock out.

After all, you've survived sleepless nights, blowouts, and mounds of laundry and lived to tell the tale. Birthday parties are big business in New York City; where you celebrate that first milestone depends largely on how much of a blowout you desire, and how much cash you wish to blow. Keeping in mind that you've got years of birthday parties in your future, we've rounded up 10 spots in Manhattan to celebrate that all-important first birthday.

Whether the party is about your kid and his or her crew, or you need to cater more to grown-ups than little people, we've got a spot for you. So prime the camera and get ready to celebrate.


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