25 Spring NYC Bucket List for Families 2024

25 Spring Bucket List for NYC Families
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25 NYC Spring Bucket List: The Ultimate Insiders Guide for Families

Spring brings a little step to us New Yorkers as well as visitors to our vast city. It is the perfect time to enjoy the outdoors, such as strolling on one of our majestic bridges, heading indoors, and visiting one of New York’s iconic cultural institutions. The best part is you can mix it up with some of the many free things New York has to offer. Happy Spring!

1. Stroll through the New York Botanical Garden’s outdoor grounds and collections, including the Everett Children’s Adventure Garden. On Wednesdays, there is *Free* admission all day for NY residents -non-residents can obtain gratis admission from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. (on Wednesdays.)

2. Head to Goshen, NY, and enjoy the Spring season of Legoland New York, a Certified Autism Center since last year.

3. Head to Long Island City MoMA PS1’s where you’ll find exhibitions, performances, events, and more. Admission is FREE for all New York residents. For visitors: $10 for adults, FREE for kids 16 and younger, and $5 for seniors and students.

Photo Iwan Baan, courtesy of museum

4. Enjoy exhibitions, immersive experiences, and more at the new Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education, and Innovation– part of the American Museum of Natural History and part of your admission. Some exhibitions cost extra- we recommend reserving tickets in advance.

5. Speaking of AMNH, swing by The Secret World of Elephants exhibit! It’s all about the different elephant species and their relatives, and they tell their whole story with life-size models, videos, graphics, and a bunch of other cool stuff

6. Enjoy Long Island’s Vanderbilt Museum in Long Island and enjoy the estate exploring the Memorial Wing, Habitat Wing, Nursery Wing, and Hall of Fishes.

7. Travel to The Met Cloisters in Fort Tryon Park with a gorgeous view of the Hudson River. You’ll be captivated by medieval art, renaissance Europe, and more at this beautiful museum.

8. Check out the Cherry Blossoms throughout the city in spots such as Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Riverside Park, Central Park, and the famous New York Botanical Garden Cherry Blossoms trees.

9. If looking for stunning NYC views -the Edge NYC has the highest outdoor sky deck in the Western Hemisphere. Located at Hudson Yards, make time to shop around or eat some delicious foods before or after you get your panoramic views in

10. Walk over to Gansevoort Street and Washington Street and enjoy a free Highline tour. Visit the site for days and hours.

11. Climb the giant sturgeons at the Pier 26 Science Playground, a brand new 4,000-square-foot marine science-focused play area in Hudson River Park.

12. Rainy afternoon? Stop by one of NYC’s cat cafes to meet some friendly felines while you wait for the clouds to pass. Popular spots include The Meow Parlor on Manhattan’s Lower East Side and the Brooklyn Cat Cafe near Brooklyn Bridge Park.

13. Jump on a ferry for the full New York experience and head to Brooklyn Bridge Park -don’t forget to visit Jane’s Carousel, have a picnic, and take a selfie with the bridge as a background.

14. Head to Coney Island for a wild day! See live sharks at the New York Aquarium and stop to ride the Cyclone on your way home.

15. Tour real Naval ships and meet our country’s Armed Forces members during Fleet Week, which kicks off just before Memorial Day Weekend.

16. Travel to the islands! And by “islands,” we mean Roosevelt Island, Governors Island, and Little Island. Have a barbeque at Lighthouse Park on Roosevelt Island, visit The Yard for unique unstructured play on Governors Island, and see the flowers in bloom on Little Island.

16. Go for a stroll on Gansevoort Peninsula, Manhattan’s very first public beachfront! The largest standalone recreational space in Hudson River Park just opened in October 2023, so New Yorkers will finally have the opportunity to explore it this spring.

17. Walk through the streets of DUMBO and discover the diverse art. From the famed DUMBO Walls to the stained glass Watertower sculpture on top of 20 Jay Street, there is something to discover at almost every turn.

18. Catch a ballgame! The Mets home opener is set for March 28, and the first home game for the Yankees is April 5. Minor league games are easier on the wallet; the Brooklyn Cyclones’ and the Staten Island FerryHawks’ also start the season in April. 

19. Enjoy one of the unique carousels in New York of fiberglass fish illuminated with color-changing LED light fixtures. The SeaGlass carousel is at the Battery Conservancy, located at the park’s southern end.

20. Go wild at the Bronx Zoo when you visit with animals from around the world! Plus, take in unparalleled views of the park when you add the Nature Trek to your visit filled with wooden bridges and tunnels to cross.

21. Whether you live near or make a day trip of it, head to Shadmoor State Park in Montauk, which features a vast ocean, hiking trails, and birdwatching. Pack a picnic and enjoy.

22. Spend the day at Far Rockaway Beach and enjoy the boardwalk; bring your skater (and safety gear)- enjoy the 15,700 square feet concrete park of stairs, rails, ledges, and more.

your awesome weekend october
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23. Visit waterfalls in Central Park -there are five in total, and you can find them in the Ravine, the stream valley section of the North Woods.

24. Plan a staycation at the TWA Hotel, whether you grab something to eat before or after a flight or stay a night or a few; this hotel is truly a New York adventure perfect for families.

25. Visit the The Seaport spend the day at The Imagination Playground New York City Police Museum, hop on a NY Water Taxi, pack a picnic, and head over to  Governor’s Island; the list is endless on all there is to do at this fun spot.

Relevant Directory Listings

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Monster Mini Golf

<p>Upon entering Monster Mini Golf, all perceptions of traditional mini golf will be spirited away by the indoor, 18-hole, monster-theme, glow-in-the-dark miniature golf course! The locations in <a href="https://monsterminigolf.com/deerpark/">Deer Park</a>, and <a href="https://monsterminigolf.com/gardencity/">Garden City, NY</a> invite guests to experience a host of family-oriented fun activities. Whether visiting for the first time or the one hundredth, mini golfers feel the excitement and adventure of playing mini golf amidst spooktacular monsters and custom, glow-in-the-dark, hand-painted artwork. While testing their skill on the fairways, lively music flows over the course from the unique “WEIRD Radio” station” and an interactive DJ entertains golfers with contests, awarding cool prizes for the wackiest reasons. While the course is challenging enough for adults, it is also quite playable for children. Monster Mini Golf is open year-round and frightfully fun for the entire family. In addition to miniature golf and thrilling arcade and redemption games, the locations offer additional attractions. <a href="https://monsterminigolf.com/deerpark/">Monster Mini Golf in Deer Park, NY</a> offers a Laser Maze and a Virtual Reality experience. The Garden City location offers a Laser Maze, Bowling, and a Virtual Reality Experience. Two very posh, private party rooms are also available and are perfect for any event. Monster Mini Golf looks forward to making it a monstrous success. Monster Mini Golf is indoors, ensuring that the event will always take place, regardless of the weather. It is a climate-controlled, affordable source of family entertainment. For more details please visit <a href="http://monsterminigolf.com">monsterminigolf.com</a> or find them on Facebook.</p>

WCS Education - Wildlife Conservation Society

<p><span style="font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"><span style="font-size: 13.3333px;">Explore nature, learn about the planet, and get close to animals—all in New York City! WCS zoo and aquarium day camps are for every young adventurer, from toddlers to teens. Campers experience hands-on learning, from STEAM classrooms and animal exhibits to nature trails and the beach. Recognized as industry leaders, the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) Education Department was the first of its kind to offer zoo camps and continues to provide award-winning programming. Visit wcs.education/camps to explore summer camps at the Bronx Zoo, Central Park Zoo, Queens Zoo, and New York Aquarium!</span></span></p>

Steps on Broadway Youth Programs

<p class="m_6201101365486487057m_1751229968981391907gmail-m-6447730382188674378msonospacing" style="color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background-color: #ffffff;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">For 40 years, the Youth Programs at the internationally celebrated Steps on Broadway have nurtured young dancers, ages 18 months to 18 years.  Whether seeking a fun dance experience or comprehensive pre-professional training, there is a program suited for everyone.  Classes include ballet, tap, jazz, theater dance, hip hop, contemporary, modern, pointe and more.  Taught by a faculty of internationally-recognized concert, ballet, Broadway and celebrated guest artists, every student is encouraged to discover their artistic uniqueness, deepen their passion for the art form, while growing as dancers and individuals. </span><u></u><u></u></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 10pt; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background: white;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; color: #5a5a5a;">Classes are offered throughout the academic year and summer.</span><u></u><u></u></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 10pt; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background: white;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; color: #5a5a5a;">First Steps (ages 18 mos – 5 yrs)</span><u></u><u></u></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 10pt; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background: white;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; color: #5a5a5a;">Kids & Teens (ages 6-18 yrs)</span><u></u><u></u></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0px 0px 10pt; color: #222222; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: small; background: white;"><span style="font-family: Arial, sans-serif; color: #5a5a5a;">Pre-Professional Program (ages 7-18 yrs, by audition only)</span></p>