Jody Mercier

Jody Mercier

Jody Mercier's picture

When asked to illustrate her career goal as a first grader, Jody drew a picture of a mom with one kid on each hip and another clinging to her leg. All these years later, that is her reality, raising three kids in this crazy city. Since her dream job only pays in hugs and kisses, she has spent her professional career as an editor at SI.com, espnW.com and SportsonEarth.com, and also freelanced for Care.com.

Latest posts by Jody Mercier

March GoList: Best Things to Do with NYC Kids This Month

It's hard to believe March has arrived, bringing with it signs of spring all around New York City, from melting snowbanks to outdoor play. One thing that doesn't change with the season is our overflowing events calendar, but we're making it easy for you to hit all the fun, spring-inspired events, including the Macy's Flower ShowPurim fests, and of course St. Patrick's Day parades and children's activities as the city turns green March 17.

We've rounded up 14 must-hit happenings in our GoList. Beyond the holidays, it's a huge month for the performing arts. We've got details on the innovative Tilt Festival, plus a pair of huge, new, kid-friendly Broadway debuts with Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Anastasia. Brooklyn's BAM is staging a fun-for-the-whole family Peter Pan-inspired show and tween favorite The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical is debuting a brand-new Off-Broadway production. Looking for a little-kid friendly theater experience? You're in luck as Paw Patrol Live makes a stop here, too.

We're also highlighting a music fest in Brooklyn, a monthlong pop-up art studio for kids in Queens, a FREE STEAM festival in the Meatpacking District, and mummies arriving at the American Museum of Natural History.

Now get your calendars ready! Here are the top things to do with kids in New York City this March.

Take Your Little Devils to NJ Devils Kids Day (Giveaway)

My family goes crazy for sports. We love baseball and Sundays are definitely reserved for rooting on our favorite NFL teams, but our recent  afternoon to see the New Jersey Devils was our first taste of the action-packed family-friendly entertainment of a hockey game. The fun afternoon has me confident we'll be heading back again soon. And you should too. In fact, we're giving away a family four pack to the upcoming NJ Devils Kids Day on March 19th. Read on to hear more about my family's newest sports passion and how you can enter to win. 

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12 Great Birthday Party Places for Preschoolers in Manhattan

You won't be long into your parenting journey before you realize your toddler has a more robust social life than do you. Once your kid hits preschool, weekends are no longer your own. Instead, you'll be toting your kid from one party place to another—and maybe classes, too.

I've been at the game for more than a decade and have ushered three kids to countless soirees around New York City. I've seen my fair share of the city's kid-party venues, so I'm rounding up a sampling of the best-of-the-best to recommend for your next party.

Whether your style is exorbitantly fancy or simple and classic, here are a dozen spots in Manhattan perfect for hosting your preschooler's next party.

Take a Day Trip to Japan with New Children's Museum Exhibit

If a trip to Japan is just slightly over your budget, but you're still crazy—or curious—about Japanese culture, the newly reopened Hello from Japan! exhibit at the Children's Museum of Manhattan is a perfect, albeit petite, alternative. This exhibit—the third in the Upper West Side museum's Global Cultural Exhibition Series, following exhibitions on Ancient Greece and China, and preceding the ongoing Muslim culture exhibit—originally graced the museum in 2015 and has returned for another run, offering an immersive experience for NYC's youngest art and museum fans.

February School Break: 35 Fun Things to Do with NYC Kids

Kids can stop praying for more snow days. Midwinter recess kicks off for New York City public schools over Presidents Day weekend, offering nine days of uninterrupted holiday playtime. To help you make the most of the February vacation, we've rounded up more than 35 things to do with kids across all five boroughs, right through Sunday, February 26.

Lucky for us, NYC museums, ice rinks, parks, and other fun zones host a slew of special activities and promotions during the school break. Some of our picks take place on specific dates, others run the entire time, and all are great ways to celebrate the freezin' season.

The extra days off also make it a great time to book a couple of nights away as a family with these more budget-minded getaways, or to pile onto the train or into the car for a day trip to a top kid spot.

Remember you can always search our Event Calendar for more February break week happenings. (Tip: Search for a specific day or with the word "break.")

Indoor Play Spots for NYC Toddlers with Weekend Hours

Indoor play spots are essential for NYC families with young children (and limited square feet) as temperatures begin a steady decline into winter.

Unfortunately, so many of the city's indoor play spots are limited to weekday hours. That's great for caregivers Monday through Friday, but mom and dad are left out in the cold, scrambling to fill up those chilly fall, rainy spring or snowy winter weekends with their preschoolers in other ways. Luckily, we've uncovered nearly two dozen fantastic play spaces that get it, and are keeping weekend, drop-in play hours for kids, no membership required. All include playthings sized just right for the little ones, including for babies in many instances. They are stroller-friendly and equipped with changing stations, making them no-fuss options for the toddler squad.

Summer Camp Open Houses Begin in NYC

We may be mired in winter in New York City, but it's already time to think about summer camp for the kids. A number of the city's top camps host open houses over the next few weeks, and attending lets you preview summer offerings and familiarize yourself with new-to-you programs.

We've compiled more than two dozen upcoming open houses from our sponsors, including options for day and commuter camps, so you can stay warm while perusing the listings from your couch. There are hundreds of summer camps in Manhattan alone, but this list should get you started.

And whether you're looking for a preschooler-age camp, music camp, sleepaway camp, or even a FREE camp, remember to check out the Mommy Poppins Summer Camp Guide for more ideas in 2017.

Read on—and let the research begin.

NYC Museums Open Doors for Free on Inauguration Day

As the country swears in a new president Friday, January 20, a number of New York City museums are opening up their doors for FREE. Many others will host American- or historical-themed events, or even protest sign making at one.

Perhaps it should come as no surprise that in a city where residents overwhelmingly voted against President-elect Donald Trump, that NYC is in less of a celebratory mood than a reflective or even defiant one. Protests continue, including the Women's March on NYC, this Saturday. But the museums' outreach, a sort of taking in of those looking for camaraderie on Inauguration Day, is a welcome touch.

And in the spirit of making lemonade out of lemons, we've rounded up 11 ways to commiserate your Inauguration Day away. Whether you spend it taking in one of the city's cultural institutions FREE of charge, or in the company of like-minded friends we wish you the best on what still strikes us as a truly surreal day.

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