Timeout New York Kids

Make the most of your city

Free and cheap things to do Labor Day weekend for NYC kids

Send summer off with a big, budget-conscious bang thanks to these affordable kicks

  • Photograph: Courtesy Hudson River Park Trust

    Big City Fishing

  • Photograph: Courtesy Hudson River Park Trust

    Big City Fishing

  • Photograph: Courtesy Hudson River Park Trust

    Big City Fishing

  • Daniel G. Avila

    Urban Park Ranger Rob Mastrianni holds a kestrel for first graders from the...

  • Labor Day: Celebrating America's Workers

  • Labor Day: Celebrating America's Workers

  • Labor Day: Celebrating America's Workers

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Summer at Governors Island

  • Summer at Governors Island

  • Photograph: John E. Barrett

    Henson's Fantastic World at Museum of the Moving Image

  • "Jim Henson's Fantastic World" on view at Seattle's Experience Music Project,...

  • Lefferts early American crafts

  • Lefferts early American crafts

  • Photograph: Prospect Park Alliance

    Birthday Party at the Lefferts House

  • Photograph: Prospect Park Alliance

    Birthday Party at the Lefferts House

  • Richmondtown

  • Richmondtown

  • Photograph: Courtesy of Bindlestiff Family Cirkus

    Uni Fest

  • Photograph: Jim Moore

    Uni Fest

Photograph: Courtesy Hudson River Park Trust

Big City Fishing

Saturday, September 3

 

Find events on...

Saturday Sept 3 | Sunday Sept 4 | Monday Sept 5

FREE Kayaking on the Hudson
Sat Sept 3 9am--6pm at Pier 96 and Pier 40; 10am--5pm at 72nd St. *Pier 96, Twelfth Ave at 56th St. Subway: A, C, D, 1 to 59th St--Columbus Circle. *Pier 40, West St at Houston St. Subway: 1 to Houston St. *Riverside Park at 72nd St (downtownboathouse.org for all locations). Subway: 1, 2, 3 to 72nd St. It's no fun being taken for a ride...unless, of course, it's a free family boat trip. The New York City Downtown Boathouse is offering complimentary kayaking every weekend (weather permitting) through October at three Hudson River docks. No need to make a reservation; just walk right up and wait on line if necessary. Don't worry if you've never kayaked before: The nautical experts provide the equipment (including life jackets, paddles and boats) and the know-how—although they do ask that you sign a liability waiver. Participants must wear bathing suits, or shorts and T-shirts, and must know how to swim. Children under 16 must share a kayak with an adult. Ages 2 and up.

Mario Batali's Edible Garden

Sat Sept 3 10am--6pm. New York Botanical Garden, Bronx River Pkwy at Fordham Rd, Bronx (718-817-8700 nybg.org). Travel B, D to Bedford Park Blvd or 4 to Bedford Park Blvd--Lehman College, then take the Bx26 bus to Webster Ave; or Metro-North's Harlem Line local to Botanical Garden. Free with admission.
If you've ever smelled something so good in your garden that you've wanted to eat it, then this is the place for you. Chef Mario Batali's edible garden will have your little ones wanting to pick strawberries from Batali's Berry Patch and may even get them to try veggies from the Babbo Beets, Beans, Garlic and Greens Garden. If that doesn't win them over, there's always the Otto Pizza Garden, filled with familiar toppings like onions, red pepper and oregano. Families can watch cooking demonstrations, try foods and explore recipes on their adventure. All ages.

FREE Family Art Project: Constable's Clouds and Czanne's Trees
Sat Sept 3 10am--1pm. Ecology Building, Wave Hill, W 249th St at Independence Ave, Bronx (718-549-3200, wavehill.org). Travel: 1 to 242nd St or Metro-North's Hudson Line local to Riverdale, then take the free hourly shuttle to Wave Hill. Free with admission. Look up at the sky for inspiration! Kids are invited to sketch their favorite clouds, trees and landscapes drawing inspiration from the two artists' paintings. All ages.

FREE Governors Island
Sat Sept 3 10am--7pm. Governors Island (212-440-2202, govisland.com). Travel: 1 to South Ferry, then take the Governors Island Ferry from the Battery Maritime Building, adjacent to the Staten Island Ferry Terminal. Much of this national monument's land-that-time-forgot vibe springs from its having been off-limits to civilians for so long. The island, now owned by the city, offers loads of weekend freebies through Sept 25, starting with the ferry ride: an 18-hole mini-golf course, Friday bike rentals and kayaking lessons. Children's Museum of the Arts sponsors a tented open-art studio from 11am to 3pm, with activity stations, a dress-up theater and guided workshops for visitors young and old. Check out our guide to the isle for more info. All ages.

Richmond County Fair
Sat Sept 3 11am--6pm. Historic Richmond Town, 441 Clarke Ave at St. Patricks Pl, Staten Island (718-351-1611, historicrichmondtown.org). Travel: From the Staten Island Ferry, take the S74 bus to St. Patricks Pl. $15, seniors $10, children under 30'' free. Kids can participate in potato sack races, watch pie-eating contests and browse produce at a farmstand during this annual celebration. All ages.

FREE Stories at the Statue
Sat Sept 3 11am--noon. Hans Christian Andersen Statue at Conservatory Water, Central Park; enter park at Fifth Ave and 72nd St (212 929-6871, hcastorycenter.org). Subway: 6 to 68th St--Hunter College. This outdoor storytime has been entertaining tots for more than 40 years. Every Saturday morning throughout the summer, a different yarn-weaver drops by to hold little ones rapt. This week, hear Rita Auerbach read Hans Christian Andersen's The Tinderbox. Ages 6 and up.

FREE Family Magic Show at Lincoln Center
Sat Sept 3 at 11am. David Rubenstein Atrium, Lincoln Center, 70 Lincoln Center Plaza (212-875-5456, new.lincolncenter.org). Subway: A, C, D, 1 to 59th St--Columbus Circle; 1 to 66th St--Lincoln Ctr. Take your little Houdini to learn a new trick or two from full-time magician Mario Marchese. Along with silly antics and an interactive show, kids can enjoy the sounds of the jazz group Sleight of Hand Band. Ages 3 and up.  

FREE New York City Unicycle Festival
Sat Sept 3 noon--5pm. Governors Island (212-253-2727, nycunifest.com). Travel: 1 to South Ferry, then take the Governors Island Ferry from the Battery Maritime Building, Slip 7.
The celebration rolls into town this weekend (on one wheel, no less). While the fest spans three days with tours and rides around the city, you'll find the best sights for kids at the Governors Island stop. Check out demonstrations, races and even unicycle basketball and hockey games. All ages.

FREE Introduction to Bird Watching
Sat Sept 3 noon--1:30pm. Prospect Park Audubon Center, enter at Ocean Ave and Lincoln Rd, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn (718-287-3400, prospectpark.org). Subway: Q, Franklin Ave S to Prospect Park.
Did you know that Brooklyn's largest park is home to more than 250 species of birds? We didn't either. Take a nature tour with your kid and learn fun facts about these cosmopolitan avians. All ages.

The Great Muppet Caper
Sat Sept 3 at 1pm. Museum of the Moving Image, 36-01 35th Ave at 37th St, Astoria, Queens (718-777-6888, movingimage.us). Subway: M, R to Steinway St; N, Q to 36th Ave. Free with museum admission. In this 1981 Jim Henson movie, Kermit and friends travel to London to report on the theft of a fashion designer's jewels. Naturally, things go awry and the crew finds itself trying to prove Miss Piggy's innocence after she's accused of the crime. Ages 6 and up.

Natural Rhythm: An Enchanting Afternoon of Indian Dances at the Staten Island Zoo
Sat Sept 3 2--3pm. Staten Island Zoo, 614 Broadway between Clove Rd and Forest Ave, Staten Island (718-442-3100, statenislandzoo.org). Travel: From the Staten Island Ferry, take the S48 bus to Broadway. Free with admission.
Come to the zoo and you'll want to leave dancing after watching Ms. Rajeswari and her students groove to nature's rhythms. Audience participation is encouraged. All ages.

Galli's Aladdin

Sat Sept 3 at 2pm. National Comedy Theatre, 347 W 36th St between Eighth and Ninth Aves (212-629-5202, gallitheaterny.com). Subway: A, C, E to 34th St--Penn Station. $20, children ages 2--17 $15.
Little theatergoers will be enchanted by this timeless tale of a street urchin, a princess and a mysterious lamp. Ages 3 and up.

FREE Handiwork: Tasks and Crafts from the Past
Sat Sept 3 3:30--4:30pm. Lefferts Historic House, Prospect Park, Flatbush Ave at Empire Blvd, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn (prospectpark.org). Subway: Q, Franklin Ave S to Prospect Park. Ditch the BlackBerry and cell phones with a pretend trip to 19th-century Brooklyn, as kids enjoy old-time games and arts-and-crafts projects such as building and decorating whirligigs. Ages 6 to 16.

Music in the Garden Concert Series

Sept 3 at 6pm. Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main St at Dahlia Ave, Queens (718-886-3800, queensbotanical.org). Free with admission. Travel: 7 to Flushing--Main St, then take the Q44 bus south to Dahlia Ave.
Bring your lawn chairs and blankets for an evening of music and dance as families watch a performance by artists from the New York. All ages.

See all events on Saturday September 3

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
Share your thoughts
  1. * mandatory fields