What is color? How does it work? Why do diamonds look they way they do? Do some colors really make us sad? Why do animals use color to blend in, or stand out? Why is pink considered a color for girls? These and other heavy questions are addressed by "The Nature of Color," a new exhibition opening at the American Museum of Natural History this March. This family-friendly show features interactive exhibits that invite kids to play and experiment with the science of colors. You can go into an immersive color-changing room that responds to movement, explore a light lab, play an interactive game show and more. You can spend some quality time with some creatures that use coloration for survival: the leaf-tailed gecko, which looks like dried leaves and tree bark; the golden poison frog, which is one of the most colorful things on Earth; and iridescent blue beetles, which look like they’re lit from within. "The Nature of Color" will open to the public on Monday, Mar 9. Museum Members will be able to preview the exhibition starting on Friday, March 6, through Sunday, March 8. While you’re visiting, be sure to check out “Worlds Beyond Earth,” the space show at the Hayden Planetarium that premiered in January. There’s a reason why the Museum of Natural History is so popular when these colder weeks roll into town. An afternoon in the castle-like complex exhibition halls is one of the best winter activities for kids in NYC, and one of the best indoor activities for kids anywhere.
Good news for the Rebel Alliance: The Star Wars Day at Sea will return in 2021. Select seven-day Caribbean cruises will include a special day-long celebration of Star Wars that includes character encounters, movie screenings, trivia sessions, spectacular live shows, a ship-wide Porg-themed adventure, flight simulators and a thrilling mix of children's activities. (Jedi training, anyone?) Every Star Wars Day at Sea will end with a bang when the "Summon the Force" deck party culminates in a fireworks show. Photograph: Matt Stroshane This is the ultimate cruise for Star Wars fans of all ages. Your little Lukes and Leias will want to bring their favorite costumes—not only will they want to show off their love of the intergalactic saga, you'll get to take advantage of once-in-a-lifetime photo ops when you hang out with the heroes from some of the best Disney movies of all time. Isn't that Chewbacca on the Fiesta Deck? Sea, sun, Stormtroopers: A Star Wars Day at Sea is one of the best family vacations for New Yorkers. As always, Disney makes travel with kids a delight for children and grownups—it doesn't matter if the Disney Cruise is along one of the great rivers of Europe or reliving the interstellar battle between the forces of good and evil. The inclusive features in these cruises include the entertainment, activities and food that make cruising with Disney such a blast(er)—you do know that there's all-you-can-eat soft serve ice cream? Best of all, the Kids Clubs let the
Soft serve favorite Mister Dips will open a second location this spring (dates TBA) at Pier 17, the glammed-up entertainment venue that's a part of the Seaport development on the East River in Lower Manhattan. This will be the first brick-and-mortar Mister Dips, which has operated out of an Airstream trailer set up on the rooftop park of the William Vale in Williamsburg during the warmer months. Soon, you can get your Dips on year-round. Don't worry: The Airstream will be back, dishing up the goopy burgers, crunchy chicken, crispy waffle fries and drippy soft serve–plus some nice beers and a burger-friendly rosé–that packs 'em in during the summer. This second New York location–plus another soon-to-open shop close to the Shinola Hotel in Detroit—simply increases your dipportunities. Courtesy: Mister Dips It's a good bet that this will become one of the best ice cream shops in NYC, and one of the most-Instagrammable dessert spots in town. The opening is slated for the spring, but there's no firm date yet—check the Mister Dips feed to keep up with the latest news. When it does open and you want to treat the fam to a round of towering dip cones, you'll be faced with the happy dilemma of choosing between heading to Williamsburg for a sweeping Midtown view, or going to the Seaport to gaze across the East River at Brooklyn Heights. Or you can have your cake cone and eat it too: Go to one, then jump on an NYC Ferry and cruise to the other. It will be one of the best things
NYC has an impressive indoor playground for kids to add to its roster. On Jan 24, Forest Hills welcomed the 6,000 square-foot Dream City (108-48 Queens Blvd) to the neighborhood, and the venue's sweet, whimsical nods to New York make it the perfect retreat for pint-sized urbanites—specifically ages 1–6. Photograph: Courtesy Dream City Options abound at the tot-centric space: a ball pit amidst a colorful skyscraper mural, swings, a wood cubes pit and beehives, among others. Plus, with more cool things to do with toddlers on the way, including a food stand with faux treats, a teepee tent and park space, families will certainly want to make a visit. "I've met so many great parents and families in the Forest Hills community where my 4-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter have been growing up. We wanted to create a space where children can dream, discover and play, while simultaneously offer a place for parents to connect and network," says Corrie Hu, founder of the the space. Photograph: Courtesy Dream City The community will certainly benefit from Dream City's experiences, including open play ($30 per child for a two-hour visit and up to two adults; $20 per sibling ages 1+ for a two-hour visit) and birthday parties for kids. (If you're interested in a celebration, fill out the party inquiry online). Photograph: Courtesy Dream City Its warm, welcoming ambiance—and colorful mural by Queens artist Rob Anderson—make an afternoon Dream City a no-brainer. Meet
Cast your mind to that futuristic time known as the year 2021, when Adventures by Disney will run cruises on the most historic and beautiful rivers of Europe. Why bring it up now? Because passages are available starting Jan 29 (or Jan 27 if you cruised with Disney before), and if you book through March 27 you can save up to $750 per person. Disney is partnering with the luxury river cruise line AmaWaterways to offer four different eight-day itineraries that sound like some of the best family vacations imaginable. You can float along the Seine, the Rhône, the Rhine or the Danube. If you don't mind planning ahead, you can enjoy a magical seasonal treat and take a winter cruise on the Danube that starts in Germany and brings you to the glittering Christmas Markets in Vienna and Budapest. Photograph: Courtesy Disney The best part? Disney takes care of all of the details. These leisurely cruises are all-inclusive vacations with immersive experiences curated by Disney's family travel experts. More intimate than seafaring ships, these boats give you access to the culture you can only find in Europe with private sightseeing and English-speaking guides: You can visit the home and gardens of Monet, walk through the lavender-scented towns of Provence, visit the Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna or drift along the canals of Amsterdam. Photograph: Courtesy Disney Disney's river cruises are curated to appeal to every age group and make it fun to travel with kids. These family-frien
The New York City Department of Education announced a new program that will bring all eighth and tenth grade classes from public schools in Williamsburg, Crown Heights and Borough Park to the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust to address antisemitism and other forms of intolerance. In order to battle hate crimes, approximately 14,000 students will visit “Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away.” In addition, all New York City public school families with students 12 and over will be able to visit the Museum free of charge. (Here are some of the best free museums for kids in New York City.) We just expanded our partnership with @MJHnews – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust as part of the commitment to deepen hate crime awareness for students & schools. This builds on the existing resources that are helping to make schools welcoming, inclusive environments for all. https://t.co/SNZaAJxNne — NYC Public Schools (@NYCSchools) January 15, 2020 We will work closely with principals in Williamsburg, Crown Heights & Borough Park to send all 14,000 eighth- and tenth-graders in these neighborhoods on field trips to @MJHnews. All @NYCschools families with students 12 and over will be able to visit the Museum free of charge! — NYC Public Schools (@NYCSchools) January 15, 2020 "We must teach our children about the destructive force of hate," Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement. “This partnership with the Museum of Jewish Heritage will give all o
Don't let Thursday's sunny skies fool you: A winter storm is blowing in, bringing high winds, freezing rain and (possibly) snow over Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend. That windy air playing havoc with your hair on Thursday–gusts are up to 50mph!–is bringing a cold front that will see temperatures drop to the mid-20s on Friday. The cold front should stick around for a few days, making for a chilly weekend. Rain is expected in the city—and it just might turn to snow, according to NBC and Dark Sky API, though we can't tell how much will accumulate just yet. Photograph: Courtesy Daily Provisions Our advice? Make hay while the sun is shining (so to speak). Bundle up your little one in a pair of the best winter boots for kids, and head to the best spots for ice skating NYC kids love. If it looks like the snow will stick, then check out our updated list of the best sledding hills in NYC. If you want to stay warm, head to one of the best children's museums in NYC, or another of the best indoor activities for NYC kids. These are just a few of the 50 best winter activities for kids that make chilly season in the city so much fun! Strictly speaking, a post-skating/post-sledding/post-museum cup of the best hot chocolate in NYC isn't mandatory...but we think it should be. Photograph: Courtesy Windham Mountain While snow is a question mark for NYC, flurries are already turning New York State, rural Pennsylvania and New England into a winter wonderland—up to 12" of snow
Ready to hang 10 on the halfpipe? Vans just opened a new indoor skate park in Brooklyn, and it's the perfect place for wannabe Tony Hawks to work on their moves. Bushwick's coolest new attraction, Space 198 (198 Randolph St), allows athletes of all ages and skill levels to test out ramps, ledges and other skate-worthy concrete features. Plus, it makes for a great winter activity for kids. Photograph: Courtesy Vans OH: Did we mention it's free?! All that's required is to RSVP online. The sessions are as follows: Thursdays: 2–4pm, 4:30–6:30pm, 7–9pm Fridays: 2–4pm, 4:30–6:30pm, 7–9pm Weekends: Noon–2pm (Kids session ages 6–12), 2:30–4:30pm, 5–7pm, 7:30–9:30pm Photograph: Courtesy Vans Parents will especially appreciate the venue's safety rules: No one under the age of 18 is permitted to skate without a helmet and all minors must have a waiver signed, no exceptions. (Breathe a sigh of relief as your kid attempts his or her first kick flip.) If the youngsters have to muster up the guts to nail those gnarly moves, they're in luck. Space 198's indoor activities for kids will keep 'em occupied until they're confident enough to channel their inner Bob Burnquist. "Whether it’s skateboarding itself, art or music, the programming offered throughout at Vans Skate Space 198 will be 100 percent informed by creativity and inspired by skateboarding’s authentic heritage," the press release states. We'll see you there, skaters! Be sure to explore other kids' fitn
Excited we are. Patience we lack. It appears a Baby Yoda plush toy will debut at Build-A-Bear later this year, and we are anxiously awaiting his arrival. "We now will have The Child, also known as Baby Yoda," CEO Sharon Price John announced at today's ICR Conference in Orlando, according to Business Insider. If this isn't a reason to visit one of the coolest toy stores in town, we're not sure what is. A specific date and price have yet to be revealed for this toy collab from Build-A-Bear, Disney and Lucasfilm. However, anxious customers can stock up on other cool Star Wars merch in the meantime, including: an 18-inch Chewbacca plush ($35), a 17-inch Stormtrooper bear ($35) and a 17-inch Kylo Ren bear, among other options. Plus, shoppers can spice up their purchase with accessories like costumes, t-shirts and, of course, sound-activated light sabers. We're not typically fond of a lengthy wait—especially in regards to one of 2019's most beloved characters-turned-memes—but alas, we're at Build-A-Bear's mercy. "This is the way." To keep busy, we suggest snapping pics of the Baby Yoda mural in the East Village before it is gone (Jan 31) or watching The Mandalorian on Disney+. Perhaps a marathon night with the best family movies of all time is a good way to keep our mind off the impending purchase. Baby Yoda, we shall see you soon! Sign up to receive great Time Out New York Kids deals in your inbox each day.
Looking for activities on Monday, Jan 20, when schools are closed for Martin Luther King Jr. Day? Observe the holiday by celebrating the civil rights leader’s dedication to service—it's a day to explore your community, and spend time with your kids! 1. Visit BAM for a free celebration BAM is hosting the 34th annual Brooklyn Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. This free celebration will feature artists, civic leaders and Nikole Hannah-Jones, the journalist who created the 1619 Project for The New York Times Magazine. Tickets are distributed starting at 8am. 30 Lafayette Ave, Brooklyn (www.bam.org). 10:30am. Free. All ages. 2. Catch a screening of Amazing Grace The film Amazing Grace captures Aretha Franklin in 1972, when she was at the height of her powers. A camera crew documented the “Queen of Soul” bringing down the house at the New Temple Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles, but this lost masterpiece wasn’t released until 2018. 30 Lafayette Ave, Brooklyn (www.bam.org). 1pm. Free. All ages. Photograph: Courtesy BAM 3. Venture to MCNY The Museum of the City of New York is Honoring Dr. Martin Luther Jr. with a special story time, art projects and a scavenger hunt that takes you through the exhibition "Activist New York." You can explore King’s role in the Civil Rights Movement, and see what New Yorkers have done to make this city a better place. 1220 Fifth Ave, Manhattan (www.mcny.org). Story time starts at 11:15am. $20 suggested admission, free ages 19 a