New York City

Weekday Fun: Ocean Odyssey, Fun Math, and a Boat Parade

Maybe the weather will be cooler for the cool New York City kids looking for cool events? Either way, there's a mix of indoor and outdoor fun this week, with the Annual Parade of Boats taking over the Hudson River. We've got two great book reading, one at Books of Wonder's new uptown location and one featuring the Music for Aardvarks founder, in Astoria.

Looking for more? We've got a guide to super cool kid-friendly art coming to NYC in the fall, and a guide to stores where kids play for free. Check out our October GoList
and Fall Fun Guide for oodles more ideas, and take advantage of our far-reaching Event Calendar.

Best Things To Do with NYC Kids: October GoList

Get your calendars ready: Here are the top 17 things to do with kids in New York City this October, nine of which are FREE. Halloween may generate the hoopla, but there are plenty of other must-do activities this month. The fall culture season kicks into high gear with amazing events including the interactive royal adventure The Young King at the New Victory Theater, the grand opening of the immersive marine attraction National Geographic Encounter: Ocean Odyssey , and a classical Carnegie Hall Family Concert.

Many annual seasonal favorites also take place in October, including the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine's blessing of the animals, Bay Ridge's costume-filled Ragamuffin Parade, and the Medieval Festival in Fort Tryon Park.

45 Fun Things to Do with Kids in Long Island City, Queens

About 15 years ago, a friend told me that Long Island City and Hunter’s Point were going to be the places to be.  At the time, the area seemed too industrial to be the next hot spot, but the subsequent years have proved my friend right.

Who would have thought that former warehouses would be renovated to become restaurants and boutiques and that LIC would be full of young families, eager to enjoy the amazing waterfront parks and amenities? Unfortunately, not me.

When you visit LIC now, you can see construction going up everywhere. So much has changed in just the last few years that we wanted to update our last list of fun things to do. Go forth and explore!

Central Park's Top Playgrounds Ranked for NYC Kids and Visitors

When out-of-towners ask me how I have managed to stay sane with three kids in Manhattan, my answer is always easy: Central Park. It's been our family playground for more than a decade. In fact, my son's first steps occurred there, and every day of elementary school in our house has started with a trek across the urban oasis, while our afternoons just don't feel quite right without a stop at the East 110th Street Playground, where my daughter finally conquered the monkey bars.

Central Park is our family's collective happy place, thanks in large part to its diverse array of playgrounds, which always keep us coming back for more (sanity saving) playtime.

In the spirit of our recent post ranking Prospect Park's best playgrounds, we present our top picks for Central Park.

Review: PJ Masks Live Brings the Trio's Heroics to the Stage

If your preschooler constantly refers to his biceps as "super gecko muscles," or insists on running everywhere on "super cat speed," then he might totally flip over the new children's stage show that just opened.

PJ Masks Live: Time to be a Herothe first live stage show for the popular animated Disney Junior series, kicked off its 60-plus North American city tour this September, and now your kid has the chance to see the dynamic pajama-wearing superhero trio in person. Upcoming shows include visits to BostonNew York City, and Texas

I brought my 3-year-old and 6-year-old kids to the opening show in Connecticut, and both were equally entertained by this live-action rendition of their TV show. It's packed with familiar and original music, acrobatics, and interaction. So activate your animal amulets, and put on those pajamas, because here comes our parent review of this cool new show. 

Weekend Fun: Questlove, Yom Kippur, and Boo at the Zoo

Halloween is a month away, but New York City kids get spooky early. This weekend, the Bronx Zoo launches a revamped, monthlong Boo at the Zoo, the Queens County Farm Museum invites you to its pumpkin patch, and Staten Island gets going with the Decker Farm pumpkin picking

There's still plenty of timely fun to be had, should Halloween be too far away for you. On Saturday, there's Yom Kippur in Prospect Park and, in Sunset Park, the Questlove Family Dance Party is raising money for hurricane relief. On Sunday, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden celebrates one of autumn's best seasonal crops with the Chile Pepper Festival.

If that still leaves you hungry, see our guide to the best kids' eats and shops at Brooklyn's hottest new food hall. Don't forget to pair our Fall Fun Guide with our event calendar when you make your weekend plans. 

NYC's High Line: The Best Sights and Events for Families

Like many native New Yorkers, I get caught up in my daily routine and forget what this amazing city has to offer families. It wasn’t until my gig at Mommy Poppins that I started exploring some of these overlooked, and even mega popular tourist destinations, such as the High Line. The abandoned track of elevated railway, forgotten for decades, but finding new life as a public park, has always intrigued me. It's owned by the city, but maintained by the nonprofit Friends of the High Line in coordination with the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation.

The truth of the matter is, I was wrong in my first assumption that The High Line was for tourists. It's an amazing site AND a community builder, with wonderful year-round programs for locals. So whether you’re visiting from overseas, the suburbs, or Queens (like myself), The High Line on Manhattan’s west side is a gem—and FREE.

Here, all the must-see spots at this unique outdoor park for children and kid-friendly events to add to your calendar.

Super Cool Kid-Friendly Art Coming to NYC This Fall

New York's world-class institutions are debuting some cool new art this season. From Michaelangelo to Snoopy and even butterflies and mummies, the kids will have plenty of museum hopping to do for those chillier days we've been promised!

Read on for 10 new exhibits worth checking out, including the brand-new National Geographic Encounter: Ocean Odyssey coming to Times Square area, and even an outdoor installation from Ai Weiwei, Good Fences Make Good Neighbors.

Kids Play for Free at These New York City Stores

Looking for a new rainy-day play destination? With Toys "R" Us back in Times Square for the holidays and a brand-new American Girl store opening soon, there's no shortage of stores in New York City where kids can play for free. You'll find options as varied as building Lego friends, exercising on the Wii Fit, or getting their train fix for the day, and the kids will be so exhausted by day's end, they might not even whine about leaving the Nintendo system behind (fingers crossed).

For more indoor play options, check out our guide to Indoor Play Spaces and Fun Zones in NYC.

Why Every Harry Potter Fan Should See Puffs

My 10-year-old daughter is a Harry Potter fanatic. She’s read the series six times, watched all the movies, and still sincerely hopes for an acceptance letter from Hogwarts when she turns 11. We’ve both taken online quizzes to figure out which Hogwarts house we’d belong to. (She got Gryffindor, and I got Ravenclaw.) When I heard about Puffs, a play that recounts the Harry Potter story from the perspective of the Hufflepuffs, who were mostly background characters in the Harry Potter saga, I knew we had to see it.

Puffs is charming, entertaining, and fast-paced. The premise is simple: No one really wants to be a Puff, not even the Hufflepuffs. When the characters receive their house assignments, the new Puffs feel a little bewildered. What is being a Puff really about?

Read on for our full review, or check out our NYC Theater Guide for more family shows playing now, and coming soon, such as Frozen and SpongeBob.


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