Timeout New York Kids

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38 fun and free things to do in NYC in October 2012

There's nothing we love more than free things to do in NYC; behold, our list of 38 gratis October events that won't cost your family a dime.

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    The Little Red Lighthouse and the GWB

  • Open House NY

  • Photograph: QCFM staff photographer

    Queens County Farm Museum

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Fall Kids Fest

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Century of the Child at MoMA

  • My Dog Loves Central Park Country Fair

  • Harmony on the Hudson

  • GrowNYC's Halloween Costume Swap

  • Halloween Harvest Festival

  • Dia de los Muertos

  • World Financial Center Screamin' Green Halloween

  • LES Pickle Day

  • Central Park Pumpkin Sail

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    39th Annual Village Halloween Parade

Photograph: Virginia Rollison

The Little Red Lighthouse and the GWB

Halloween Harvest Festival
Kids are invited to craft costumes with park artists, participate in art-making workshops, listen to live music and sample local harvest foods from area restaurants. Plus, creative pet owners can enter Fido in a canine costume contest. Sat Oct 20 11am3pm. Socrates Sculpture Park. All ages.

Jefferson Market Garden Harvest Festival for Children
After scooping up free mini pumpkins, little ones head to a decorating table to adorn their finds with stickers and crafting supplies. Rain date is October 21. Sat Oct 20 11am2pm. Jefferson Market Garden. Ages 3 to 8.

Super Sbado: Da de los Muertos
The museum opens its doors for a day of free programming, including concerts, exhibition tours and workshops. Families can check out the ambitious new exhibition "Caribbean: Crossroads of the World," an exploration of the Caribbean's diversity and cultural history, then take part in the 3,000-year-old Mexican tradition of the Day of the Dead. Celebrate the far-from-morbid holiday with the Calaveras Callejeras procession through Central Park, skull face painting, pan de muerto and champurrado tastings, and more. Sat Oct 20 11am6pm. El Museo del Barrio. All ages.

Woodland Discovery Day
Awaiting families at the Discovery Center are tours of the center's new Woodlands exhibit, plus North Woods discovery kits that they can take out to that special part of Central Park to explore its fauna and flora. Activities are ongoing, with gallery tours starting every 30 minutes. Sat Oct 20 11am2pm. Central Park, Charles A. Dana Discovery Center. All ages.

Kids watch monster-themed TV shows (screenings include Elmo Says Boo, Go, Diego, Go and Dora the Explorer), make ghoulish crafts and stuff their pockets with sweets. Sat Oct 27 10am4pm. Sony Wonder Technology Lab. Ages 2 to 6.

World Financial Center Screamin' Green Halloween
For the first time ever, this annual Halloween extravaganza is moving outside! The Plaza will be transformed into Halloween Village, complete with a 30-foot-high scarecrow, roaming characters and game booths. Eco-minded tykes can craft costumes from repurposed materials and snack on organic and fair trade goodies. Costumed kids can also take part in a Ghosts and Goblins parade through Battery Park City. Sat Oct 27 noon3pm. World Financial Center Plaza. All ages.

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