New York City

PlayDate March 23: New Brooklyn Playground, Hubble IMAX at LSC, Free Goodies, Viking Ship in Times Square, Food Revolution, More

What's happening in NYC this week for kids? There's new playground in Brooklyn, a new IMAX space show at the Liberty Science Center, a viking ship has docked in Times Square, and for parents, a revealing new TV series about the food our kids are eating. Plus it's free cone day at Ben and Jerry's and free pastries at Starbucks today only. Get the scoop!

Opening this week:

 

Viewing Tips for NYC Elephant March 2010

Staying up late and seeing the annual Ringling Brothers' elephants exit The Midtown Tunnel is a fairly exciting event for city kids--afterall it's not every day you see pachyderms parading down 34th Street in the middle of the night to herald the Spring opening of the circus. No secret there.

But we do have some tips on seeing the elephants this year:
 

Brand Spankin' New: Battery Park City Public Library

A new public library branch opened in Battery Park City this week and is holding opening celebrations today. March 18, 2010. Besides being a beautiful, light and spacious facility, the new Battery Park City NYPL branch was constructed with a focus on environmental sustainability and will be the first GREEN Library in Manhattan.

 

Making Math fun for everyone at the NY Hall of Science: The Math Midway Exhibit

The Math Midway is a hands-on, side show styled, action packed “carnival” that illuminates mathematic principals and applies them in fun, surprising ways for kids.  My family and I got a peak at the Math Midway last year when it debuted at the Science Festival in Washington Square Park but it was so unbelievably crowded we couldn’t really tell what it was.  We were excited to hear it was coming back to the NY Hall of Science in Queens and wanted to give it another try. 

Circus Elephants Walk Across Manhattan March 22, 2010

Update: There is no elephant parade in 2014 due to the circus playing in Brooklyn..

Once again the Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey Circus is heading into town and since the circus elephants can’t go up the Penn Station escalators, they need to get off the circus train a stop early in Queens and walk through the Mid-Town Tunnel, and straight across Manhattan to Madison Square Garden.

Posting this event is always controversial because some people feel that watching the circus elephants march across Manhattan is supporting their mistreatment in the circus. On the other hand, I get lots of emails every year asking me when it 's happening. My position is that this is a pretty crazy thing that happens in NYC and I'm letting people know. Do what you like with the information.

 

What's For Dinner: Cooking Classes to Help with Feeding Kids

[UPDATED: July 18, 2012]

We hear a lot about the benefits of cooking and eating healthy meals together as a family, but despite our best intentions, it can be tough to make that happen on a daily basis, whether for lack of time, energy, creativity—or all of the above.
 
You can get a little help in the kitchen and have fun doing it by taking a cooking class to learn easy, healthy recipes and techniques for getting food on the table for your kids. Despite what you might think, cooking classes don't have to be fancy or expensive, there are some casual options here in the city that are a good fit for parents for making family meals.

8 Great Birthday Party Ideas in Queens

The semi suburban sprawl of Queens has endless birthday party options. Vanessa in Astoria had her son's first birthday at an indoor playspace, booked live music, and even got a professional photographer. If you are looking for a Queens birthday idea then you have come to the right place. Here is the lowdown on the best birthday party places in Queens. You can find even more options in our Birthday Party Guide including 10 more Queens party places.

Celebrate St. Patrick's Day in Queens

Most commonly known as a drinking holiday, St. Patrick’s Day is usually a time to lock the kids in your house. But not this year! Queens has one of the largest Irish communities in NYC and there are some great parades and classes to look into even before the actual holiday. Here is the skinny:


Cook Your Own Food at a Korean Barbecue Restaurant

One of the really great things about New York CIty is having all these cultures living here together. And by far the most fun way to experience them is through food. From food carts to family friendly restaurants, dining out on ethnic foods is delicious, fun and educational.  

One of my favorite ethnic food experiences, and probably one of the most interesting restaurant experiences for kids is Korean barbecue. Korean barbecue has a couple of things going for it that make it a favorite for both me and kids:

Destination Playground: New Union Square Playground

When I was a little kid we lived near what we called Abingdon Square Park and is now called Bleeker Park, the playground on 7th Avenue in the West Village. It was a great park and the main feature was a giant concrete boat that we would climb on, tunnel under, jump over and in general inspired many imaginative games. The concrete boat is long gone now and I can only imagine that some kid smashing their face into it one too many times hastened its end.

Now most NYC playgrounds look pretty much the same: generic climbing equipment, slides, sometimes swings or a water feature, but a new playground in Union Square definitely breaks the mold for NYC playgrounds.

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