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Notable parents on their favorite holiday traditions in NYC

Famous New York City parents (think the owners of Cozy's Cuts for Kids and Eleni's) tell us about their winter and holiday plans.

There's nothing like Christmas in New York—just ask these notable New York City parents. We asked them to tell us about their favorite holiday and winter activities—answers ranged from the ice-skating in Manhattan to checking out the department store windows. Scroll through our slide show to read all of their comments, then tweet us at @timeoutkids to let us know what your family's favorite holiday tradition is!

  • Photograph: Berman Fenelus

    Filmmaker Nina Davenport and son Jasper

    What's your favorite thing to do in NYC during the holiday season?
    "Having spent most of my adult life avoiding traditions, I now find myself trying to create traditions for my son—in particular, for Christmas. This year, I plan to take Jasper ice-skating at the Standard Hotel in Chelsea; to see the Christmas lights in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn; sledding in Prospect Park (if global warming will allow us some snow, for a change!) and to the Museum of Modern Art. I believe in teaching young children about charity and compassion, so we'll also be participating in New York Cares Winter Wishes."

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    Cozy Friedman, founder of Cozy's Cuts for Kids, So Cozy Hair Care for Children, author of Cozy's Complete Guide to Girls' Hair and mom to Shane, 15, and Riley, 13

    What's your favorite thing to do in the NYC area during the holiday season?
    "For as long as I can remember we have been going to the Hamptons with our closest friends for New Year's. Every year is different because life keeps changing—having no kids, years being pregnant, then babies, kids and so on. The group keeps getting bigger and bigger and we love it! We always go the beach on New Year's Day, no matter how cold it is. Last year we added a new tradition—Polar Bear Plunge! We'll see if that tradition continues…"

     

  • Theresa Scotto, owner of Pop Star Parties, and Anthony Scotto, co-owner of Fresco by Scotto, and mom and dad to children Anthony, 17, and Gabrielle, 14

    What's your favorite thing to do in NYC during the holiday season?
    “Doing good and giving back is very important to us as a family—especially during the holiday season. It’s become a family tradition every year for us to volunteer at Terence Cardinal Cooke Center. We bring and wrap gifts for the children and elderly who live there.
    As a special treat for the kids, we also rent out the private room at the Sea Grill in Rock Center every year and have dinner with our family friends and their kids. Hint, hint!: This gives you easy access to the skating rink without waiting on any crazy lines! Then we take our annual family picture in front of the big tree."

  • Lisa Shaller-Goldberg, owner and designer of Minnie Rose, and mom to Jake, 7, and Aylin, 2

    What's your favorite thing to do in NYC during the holiday season?
    "One of the best parts about living in New York City is experiencing the magic of the holiday season. It's almost as if the entire city comes to life right before our eyes. We love to give our kids a whirlwind tour of the incredible holiday window displays of all the landmark buildings. Each holiday window is such a fun and creative visual thrill for us and the kids. Having grown up in the fashion industry it was a tradition we always did with our families and now we are so excited to get to share this special time with our children.   While the crowds may be a little intense and the traffic a bit crazy, we indulge and get a car service for the afternoon so we can literally "window hop" down Fifth Avenue. It's nice to have a warm car to hop in and out of and certainly makes stopping for fun treats like warm pretzels and hot chocolate along the way, super easy. It's something we look forward to doing with the kids every year".

  • Dabney Lee, designer and owner of Dabney Lee, and mom to three-year-old triplets Bennett, Elsie and Poppy

    What's your favorite thing to do in NYC during the holiday season?
    "I love filling my home in Dumbo with yummy treats throughout the holiday season. Every year growing up my grandmother made "puffs" on Christmas day for brunch. It's basically fried dough with jam or powdered sugar, and it's absolutely delicious! I have continued the tradition my triplets and they absolutely love it! We also love to go ice-skating and an annual Christmas party at the Yale Club every year."

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    Eleni Gianopulos, founder and chief cookie creator at Eleni's New York, and mom to William and Sophia

    What's your favorite thing to do in NYC during the holiday season?
    “One of our favorite holiday traditions with the kids is exploring the incredible holiday windows and of course a visit to the tree at Rockefeller Center. To avoid the massive holiday crowds, we leave the house real early (like 7am!) and bundle up— I even let the kids wear their cozy winter pajamas out— which they love. We first stop for a delicious cup of hot coco and a croissant—the best part about this hour is that we literally have the streets to ourselves! The kids love peeking into the holiday windows and I love to get lots of adorable shots of them.”

  • Pauline and Thomas Nakios, owners of women's clothing line Lilla P, and parents to Theo, 7, and Elliot, 4

    What's your favorite thing to do in NYC during the holiday season?
    "One of our favorite winter family traditions is taking the boys ice skating on the weekends. We love to stay local so going for a fun afternoon lunch at Pastis is followed by an afternoon ice skating session at The Standard Hotel’s adorable little ice skating rink—it’s the perfect size for little ones just learning. After skating, Thomas and I splurge on a decadent cheese board and glass of wine, while the boys snack on hot chocolate and warm cookies at The Standard Grill. It’s the epitome of a perfect NYC winter day."

  • Katie Wicks Conovitz, co-owner of Twelve NYC, and mom to Sawyer, 5, Coco, 3, and Jack and Asher, both 2

    What's your favorite thing to do in NYC during the holiday season?
    "Since we live in Dumbo, taking a fun family trip (with all four kiddos!) into midtown is always an exciting excursion. We all love going to Bloomingdale’s to see the beautiful Christmas shop. The kids each get to pick out a special holiday ornament for the tree and of course we stop for some delicious fudge and candy canes in their sweet shop on the top floor—it's always a treat."

Photograph: Berman Fenelus

Filmmaker Nina Davenport and son Jasper

What's your favorite thing to do in NYC during the holiday season?
"Having spent most of my adult life avoiding traditions, I now find myself trying to create traditions for my son—in particular, for Christmas. This year, I plan to take Jasper ice-skating at the Standard Hotel in Chelsea; to see the Christmas lights in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn; sledding in Prospect Park (if global warming will allow us some snow, for a change!) and to the Museum of Modern Art. I believe in teaching young children about charity and compassion, so we'll also be participating in New York Cares Winter Wishes."


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