While New York's weather might have been off to a rainy, dreary start this week, the forecasts are in and we're in for beautiful, mild days for the rest of the week through Saturday. Sure, it might not seem right to go apple picking or pumpkin picking without completely bundling up, but this is also your family's chance to take advantage of outdoor attractions before the puffy coats come out and the sun starts setting before 6pm. Here's how to make the most of "hotaumn."
1. Book it straight after school to one of the city's best kids' playgrounds.
Instead of rushing home, or spending a mere 20 minutes at the park closest to your apartment, maybe try going to a bigger playground just a subway stop or two away and making your afternoon an adventure. Feeling that October breeze rush on by as they play on the swings, slide or a totally unique play fixture will make building new friendships even more fun. Too much homework, or grown-up work, for a weekday adventure? Wake up early on Saturday!
2. Take a spin on the rides at Coney Island
One of Summer's top destinations, Luna Park, is open this Saturday and Sunday. To celebrate the last weekend of it's 2017 season, the park is in full Halloween Harvest mode. In addition to enjoying roller coasters, rides and games, kids can get their face painted, go for a pony ride and check out the pumpkin patch. It's too cold to go in the ocean, but it's the perfect temperature for wearing a sweater to explore the boardwalk and find shells in the sand, too.
3. Navigate the Amazing Maize Maze
Though most families are able to make it out of this annual Queens County Farm Museum attraction in 30 to 40 minutes, the mild weather means you can take your time solving the corn maze's puzzle game. Each family is given a blank sheet of paper when they enter the labyrinth, but with patience and a bit of luck they can find nine different game pieces that, when taped on the piece paper, make a complete map. There's also answers to a tricky crossword puzzle and other fun components to the maze. After you finish, grab a cup of apple cider and go feed the barnyard animals.
4. Frolic in a public garden
Humans aren't the only ones loving the sunny days and the frost-free evenings. Many orange, yellow, purple and red flowers that bloomed earlier in the season, like mums, marigolds and cockscolm flowers, are still holding strong at the city's top children's gardens. Take the trip up to the Bronx to the New York Botanical Garden or Wave Hill, or down to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, if you're also hoping to peep some excellent fiery fall foliage and participate in some special Autumn-programming.
5. Get it one last ice cream cone
While we admit that temperatures in the mid to high 60s isn't ideal ice cream weather, it's not too cold yet to savor every bit of creamy goodness. We recommend visiting an Ample Hill Creamery location to find flavors that embrace the season, like Nonna D's Oatmeal Lace, No Sleep Till Pumpkin and Autumn in New York. Yum.
6. Hop a ferry to Governor's Island
Another warm-weather favorite that is open through Halloween, this car-free tree-filled island just south of Manhattan boasts plenty of fall fun. During the weekend check out the special pumpkin patch that boasts views of the Statue of Liberty, picnic under leaves in all their autumnal splendor, and even go for a ride on the spooky haunted hayride.