Like the calm before the storm of July 4th, the weekend of July 1 through July 2 holds some secret treats for New York City kids. Sure, you have to wait another few days for Macy's 4th of July Fireworks, or the Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest until Tuesday July 4, but school is OUT!
Considering how many New Yorkers might skip work July 3 and turn it into a four day weekend with, say, a trip to the Jersey Shore, or the Hamptons, this also might be the perfect weekend to dodge crowds at a local amusement park, or one of our favorite local—and free—pools, water playgrounds or beaches.
Older kids can Kayak Polo in the East River and preschoolers can dig Goldilocks and the 3 Bears, in Park Slope. There's a brand-new children's exhibit, Let's Dance!, opening up, and an Angry Birds slingshot that we know the kids can't wait to get their hands on.
All of our best bets for the weekend are below. If you need a closer look at Tuesday, July 4, see our guide to events the week of July 3, or our guide on where to watch the Macy's fireworks, and whatever else you may need to know. You can find additional options in our Event Calendar and our Summer Fun Guide. If you're looking to plan ahead, our July GoList features the absolute best things to do with kids throughout the month in NYC.
Happy pre-Independence Day weekend!