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September 2019



the best New York neighborhoods

Fall Fun! Apple Picking, Hayrides & More!

Dikla Goren Dekel Catching up with this stylish mom on the go

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September 2019 |



September 2019

pg. 38

pg. 36

FEATURES 8 | Scheduling Your Kids How much is too much when it comes to your kid’s schedule? Our Editor weighs in 24 | How to Choose a Hebrew School Criteria to keep in mind when making your choice 30 | Apple Picking and Fall Fun Our top picks for apple picking, hayrides and fall fun close to the Big Apple 36 | Dikla Goren Dekel — Stylish Mom on the Go The DUMBO influencer and blogger chats with us about gratitude, embracing chaos, and her passion for fashion 38 | New York’s Best Neighborhoods for Families We break down the most familyfriendly spots to live around the city. Did your ‘hood make the cut?

Stories & columns 6 | Editor’s Note Back to school time can be a renewal for grownups too 12 | Family Health Flu shot facts. Don’t do winter without reading this 14 | Mom Hacks Healthy, easy and affordable school lunches and snacks for when you’re bored of the same old

pg. 14

pg. 28

Family fun 42 | Calendar Unmissable events in Queens and beyond for September

Activities directory 18 | Back to School Activities Exciting activities and enrichment programs for kids

28 | Ask the Expert How to deal with bullies, even if the bully is your own child 32 | Family Day Out: Beer Halls and Beer Gardens Keep the whole family pleased with these surprisingly kid-friendly spots 46 | We Asked All the back-to-school feels

on the Cover Photo: Brooklyn-Based Photographer Ana Gambuto Hair & Makeup: Buffy Hernandez | Clothing on Dikla: Bloomingdales | Clothing on kids: Stitch Fix | Backpacks: STATE |


Queens Family | September 2019



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Editor’s Note Publisher: Cliff Luster Publisher: Susan Weiss Associate Publisher: Mary Ann Oklesson Creative Director-At-Large: Hester Aba Executive Editor: Donna Duarte-Ladd Digital Editor: Katarina Avendaño Partnership Managers: Erik Bliss, Erin Brof, Mary Cassidy, Shelli Goldberg-Peck Marketing Assistant: Charlotte Sauvagnat Art Director: Leah Mitch Web Developer: Sylvan Migdal Nina Gallo Photography


September always feels like a renewal. The new school year begins and fall is on the horizon. The reset button has been set, and a summer break with plenty of warm sunshine has re-energized the whole family. This month can also mark an important time for those school-age kids: the nervous energy of being in a new grade, reconnecting with classmates, meeting their teacher. Exciting! When it comes to packing lunches for the kids for the new school year, we’ve got tasty snacks and lunch tips (page 14), make easy and inspiring meals for them. Gracing our cover this month, we have powerhouse mom, Dikla Goren Dekel,

Graphic Designers: Arthur Arutyunov, Connie Sulsenti Editorial Interns: Michael Davis, Sarah Jackson, Mia Salas

Contact Information

(page 36) a parenting influencer who oozes positivity and gratitude while embracing the chaos of parenting. Lastly, getaways are not only for summer! As we move into fall, escape the city and head to the orchards for apple picking and hayrides, you’ll want to read up on our extensive Autumn Adventures guide (page 30).

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get in touch Share your feedback and ideas about family life in the city! Email us at and tag us at #newyorkfamily


Queens Family | September 2019

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Balancing Extracurricular Activities How to keep it together when it comes to all those after-school sports, classes, and programs! BY DONNA LADD


s we move on to a new school year, I have been spending my free time researching the sports, classes and extracurricular activities my kids will be doing this school year. I am a former “Sports Moms,” think like a Stage Mom of after school activities, and that would be me. I hadn’t planned it this way. My mother never pushed my sisters and me to do sports. But my father was the outdoorsy type, and we did everything from track and skateboarding to raquetball and volleyball. When my oldest son was around 16 months, I enrolled him in his first soccer class. It was adorable watching him and his “teammates” figure out where exactly the ball was to go and why they couldn’t tackle or eat the netting. Then it got serious. The kids got older,


Queens Family | September 2019

and there was more passion, practice time and parent participation required. After soccer, we did basketball, flag football and then gymnastics. My son excelled in gymnastics, and I started to think — Olympics. Gold! But he hated it. He felt he was being pushed too hard, and the truth is, he was. I kept pushing. But he was miserable, and he demanded a break, or a break-up as I called it with what I thought was our one-onone bonding time. So last school year we took the year off. My youngest had recently been diagnosed with autism, so focusing on his needs was already proving to be quite time-consuming. And privately, I was becoming a bit unhinged with all that was on my plate. This decision was the best thing we could have done as a family. We focused on the youngest, his therapies and getting him into a specialty school. My oldest still participated in his

after-school activities, but as far as anything extra, we stopped it all, even the guitar lessons. Having this past year off also helped me get some perspective on time and how we spend it. This is the time while these kids are young; I needed to stop trying to be a super mom and chill out! Cherish the memories and let them have fun. Now we’re back at it. We missed the practices, the running out the door early on Saturday mornings, even the snow days where I use to curse the weather as we trudged through the snow. But the truth is these kids wake up at dawn. We might as well get out the door and be productive! And participating in a sport or extracurricular activities has enormous benefits. There were many Saturday mornings where I’d find my son on the Xbox, and we would spend the better part of the day arguing about being on the tablet. Participating in a sport




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or extracurricular activity helps our kids to learn to communicate better, to practice social skills and to come together with a group of kids in the same age group (some from different schools!) who learn to be part of a team. I am excited and nervous about going back to the running around and the evening practices. But I’m ready, and I have begun to mentally prepare myself to go with the flow and enjoy the ride. A few tips I learned during my hiatus: When it comes to after-school or weekend classes — what does your child want? I never asked my son what he wanted to do. When one activity wasn’t his thing, we just moved onto the next. I never considered that maybe he didn’t like sports. He was excelling in after-school classes like theater and dance and yet I continued to put him in sports classes. I felt if his friends are in these classes, shouldn’t he be as well? During our year break, I stopped pushing, and I was surprised when he asked to play baseball this year. He has had a hand in the league we chose,

committed to the time and days he will be practicing and agreed to the time we will be getting up for games. He is genuinely excited, which helps us feel united in having this be a great experience for us as a family. Step back if you have overscheduled your kids If the classes, activities or weekend sports leave you or your family feeling like you’re losing it, step back. This doesn’t mean quit. Skip a game or two. Talk to the coach and let him or her know you’ll be missing a few classes. Take some time to ask why is this not enjoyable. It may be the wrong fit for your child? Perhaps they are in too many activities? Finish the class if you can, set new limits and work within the limitations you set up for your family when choosing the next set of classes and activities. Ease up during the classes and games My husband was the assistant coach for my son’s soccer team, which put added pressure on my son. The games, especially if the

team lost, could be intense. He was four. We need to lighten up as parents, and I am as guilty as the next. I found myself being quite competitive, but it’s not worth it unless you have a future NCAA player on your hands. Work on having a healthy sense of competitive balance, especially when it comes to sports, so your child sees you are happy, win or lose. Know your bandwidth Learning from past mistakes — I am scheduling classes and activities that are close to home. This is what works for us, as we are always crunched for time even on a Saturday. The baseball league my son will be joining is 10 minutes from our apartment. This will help when we have to run to practice and on those frigid mornings when we need to hurry to a weekend game. I also know parents in this league, which will help if I need someone to tag team when it comes to dropping off and picking up during practice. All the classes, sports and dances are part of our kids growing up. Enjoy, breathe it all in. These are what memories are made of!


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family health

Flu Shot Facts Common questions about the vaccine By Pramod Narula, m.d.

I am planning to get the flu shot for myself. I’ve heard I should also have my daughter vaccinated against the flu, but I am worried. I’ve heard so many conflicting things: that the shot can actually give her the flu and that she might get the flu anyway. So why bother? I want to protect her and do the right thing — I just don’t know what that is!


here are many theories and misconceptions out there about flu shots, including the ones you mentioned. Let’s tackle some of the big ones with information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Can a flu shot give you the flu? No, a flu shot cannot cause flu illness. The influenza viruses contained in a flu shot are inactivated (killed), which means they cannot cause infection. Flu vaccine manufacturers kill the viruses used in the vaccine during the process of making it, and batches of the flu vaccine are tested to make sure they are safe. In randomized, blinded studies, where some people get flu shots and others get salt water shots, the only differences in symptoms was increased soreness in the arm and redness at the injection site among people who got the flu shot. There were no differences in terms of body aches, fever, cough, runny nose or sore throat. Is it better to get the flu than the flu vaccine? No. The flu is a serious disease, particularly among young children, older adults and people with certain chronic health conditions, such as asthma, heart disease or diabetes. Any flu infection can carry a risk of serious complications, hospitalization or death, even among otherwise healthy children and adults. Therefore, getting vaccinated is a safer choice than risking illness to obtain immune protection. What about people who get a seasonal flu vaccine and still get sick with flu-like symptoms?


Queens Family | September 2019

Some people may experience flu like symptoms despite getting vaccinated because they may have been exposed to an influenza virus that is very different from the viruses the vaccine is designed to protect against. The ability of a flu vaccine to protect a person depends largely on the similarity or “match” between the viruses selected to make the vaccine and those spreading and causing illness. There are many different influenza viruses. Is it too late to get vaccinated after Thanksgiving (or the end of November)? No. Vaccination can still be beneficial as long as influenza viruses are circulating. The CDC recommends that providers begin to offer influenza vaccinations as soon as vaccines become available in the fall, but if you have not been vaccinated by Thanksgiving (or the end of November), it can still be protective

to get vaccinated in December or later. Influenza is unpredictable and seasons can vary. Seasonal influenza disease usually peaks in January or February in most years, but disease can occur as late as May. Is the “stomach flu” really the flu? No. Many people use the term “stomach flu” to describe illnesses with nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. These symptoms can be caused by many different viruses, bacteria or even parasites. While vomiting, diarrhea, and being nauseous or “sick to your stomach” can sometimes be related to the flu — more commonly in children than adults — these problems are rarely the main symptoms of influenza. The flu is a respiratory disease and not a stomach or intestinal disease. Pramod Narula, M.D .is the Chairman of the Department of Pediatrics at NewYorkPresbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital.

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MoM hacks

Game On! By Denise nicole


t’s that glorious time of the year again — back to school! Between shopping, stocking up on school supplies, and making massive to-do lists, we all have been busy. But with a new school year comes new opportunities to do things better. Back to school can come with its own unique set of stressors, not the least of which are school lunches and the plethora of snacks our kids require seemingly every hour on the hour. This means it is time to pull all of our ingenuity and creative force to master...the lunch box. It is time to find that perfect combo of healthy and fun that your tribe might actually eat. Like most moms, nourishing my family with healthy meals is important to me. But it can get a bit overwhelming keeping up with the pace of NYC and staying grounded in healthy habits. I have learned a few tricks to simplify the process. Warning: the following tips could radically transform your mom life and may even result in you having time to pack your own lunch as well!


Queens Family | September 2019

We’re making your back-to-school meal prep hassle-free. It’s a game changer!

Instagram Inspo


Some of my favorite lunch accounts:


Look for lunch and snack inspiration It’s time to do your research, which, for most of us, means scrolling for 15-20 minutes on Instagram (Pinterest if you really want to get serious). That’s where we get all our best meal ideas these days, right? Try not to get overwhelmed by the visuals. Social media is guilty of the perfect lunch — we have all become obsessed with those perfect bento box meals. While your lunch may not be


shaped into creative masterpieces, we all know most days a sandwich and a side of peas will work just fine. As long as your kid likes it, that’s all that really matters. Show them that eating is fun My kids love cooked baby carrots, sliced mini cucumbers and plain cooked pasta spirals. My mom hack to save time is to buy pre-sliced or spiraled veggies. Especially during the school

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mom hacks

week, in the fridge, you’ll find pre-sliced fruits and vegetables. You can also purchase veggie and fruits, set aside 45 minutes to an hour and chop them up as soon as you bring them home from the grocery store — or after the kids go to bed. Since my children are still on the younger side, they are easily swayed to eat their fruits if in fun shapes. Using cookie cutters, you can instantly upgrade your lunchbox game, and it’s a great way to save time. For grain and protein options, easy-cook dishes that can be done over the weekend are brown rice and grilled chicken (or chickenless nuggets if you have a vegetarian in your household). Store your hard work into airtight containers or mason jars in the fridge, and they will stay fresh all week.

Fave School Gear Now that you have all the timesaving tools and snack hacks ready to go, where are you going to put all these delicious morsels of goodness? Have no fear, I’ve got just a few of my favorite lunch gear goodies lined up for you. Check them out here: Thermos Funtainer stainless steel food jars. These babies actually keep food hot and cold, plus they’re durable and can survive being dropped and tossed around a bit.

One-pot meals are hassle-free Stop wasting dishes and time cooking everything in different pots. Need boiled eggs, pasta and soft-cooked carrots for the kids’ lunchboxes tomorrow? No problem! Boil one pot of water and toss them all in. Pay attention to the time, using a small strainer to scoop out what needs to come out first. Cool it all. Separate and put into the lunchbox or storage container of your choice until it’s time to be feasted on.

Stasher bags. These nontoxic silicone reusable bags are amazing. You can heat them and freeze them, and they are dishwasher-safe. Put any and all snacks inside.

“Don’t fix what isn’t broken” applies to kids meals too Don’t be afraid to repeat meals. If you have found a meal that your little ones love to eat and enjoy — no need to reinvent the wheel. Kids are creatures of habit; having the same meal two-three times a week is a good thing. If the lunchbox keeps coming back empty, or at least with some of the food eaten, thank your lucky stars and take the win.

Bentgo box. Bento Boxes are great for getting crafty with a variety of different lunch items and snacks. They are versatile and one of my favorites.

Meal delivery services are a mother’s helper Try out a meal delivery service; they’re not just for dinner. There are many meal delivery services where you can get pre-planned, sometimes already prepped meals delivered right to your door. You can whip these up in no time and even have your kids help! One of our family favorites is Hungryroot. They have some plant-heavy, nutrient-loaded meals and snacks that are so delicious, my kids loved them. Most of their meals can be prepared in 15 minutes or less (with kids helping), and they are colorful and creative. Think pad thai with sweet potato noodles and a colorful shaved brussel sprout salad. Another service is Yumble, which is a meal service designed specifically for kids. You can order up meals with farm-fresh produce that are nutritionist-approved and ready to eat.

OmieBox Bento Box with Thermos. This is a really cool lunch box, bentostyle. There’s actually a built-in thermos to keep food hot or cold inside the lunchbox.


Queens Family | September 2019

Classic chicken nuggets with corn and peas or multigrain mac and cheese with a side of broccoli are big hits on their menu. Say yes to the school lunch Don’t forget the school lunch. If school lunch

Best Snacks

What lunch is complete without the snacks? Here are some of my favorite snacks you can pick up to add that extra something to your little one’s lunch. Bobo’s Oat Bars and Bites, LesserEvil popcorn, Bitsy’s Smart Crackers and Once Upon A Farm smoothie blends. Drinkable yogurt and granola, mandarin oranges and fresh snap peas are also great on-the-go snacks.

is provided, it’s a viable option as well. I had illusions of grandeur last school year and expected every one of my son’s lunches to be perfect veggie skewers in small shapes and pinwheel magic. It didn’t happen, and that’s OK! Some days I packed the “perfect” lunch, other days I sent him to school with a bottle of water and a banana — such is life! He ate school lunch and was just fine. Everyone’s schedule is different. Whether you’re a stay at home mom, a mom who works outside of the home or somewhere in between — these tips can help you streamline your routine. When it comes down to it, we are all just trying to have as many stress-free mornings as possible. These hacks have worked well for my family and me; use what works for you and your family’s lifestyle. Now off to the races — I mean classroom! Denise Nicole is a birth and postpartum doula, wellness advocate and content creator. Her goal is to help people find sustainable and healthy habits for themselves and their families. Denise is very passionate about wellness for all, self-care and finding the perfect matcha. Denise is a mom of two; follow her family on their NYC adventures on Instagram @abrooklynbabe

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Queens Family | September 2019

Christ The King Campus 68-02 Metropolitan Ave., Middle Village, NY 718-366-7454 Offering families one location for all of their educational and leisure activities. Test prep is offered for all grades, and the year-round private tutoring program offers individual educational support based on the students’ schedule and needs. The Dance & Drama program offers classes for boys and girls of all ages in all genres of dance, including ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, break-dancing and acrobatics. Karate classes for all skill levels are offered in their state-of-the-art facilities. Cooking, foreign language and athletic skill clinics are some of the other fun programs. The After-School Program picks up students in many area schools and its participants

can enjoy any of the kids classes while on campus! On-site parking, reasonable prices, and flexible scheduling! CK has served the community for over 50 years.

Kuei Luck Enrichment Center 195-05 69th Ave., Fresh Meadows, NY 718-679-9908 At this leading provider for weekend enrichment classes, students become college and career ready by building and solidify core skills in ELA, mathematics, and writing. Their newly designed curriculum is developed to coincide with the Next Generation Learning Standard (NGLS). Their curriculum goes beyond the expected grade level standards and exposes students to advanced topics in critical thinking and problem solving. All students receive the individual help they need in small classroom sizes. This is proven to show results by helping students gain the confidence they need to succeed. Their highly qualified and licensed teachers help your child suc­ceed and reach their full potential. Call now to register!

Just Wee Two Bay Terrace Jewish Center 1300 209th St., Bayside, NY 800-404-2204 A fun filled program for children 8 months to 3 1/2 years and their caregiver. Through activities such as music, arts and crafts, playtime, stories and snack, children are encouraged to explore, discover, interact and enjoy this special time in their lives. This program provides a unique opportunity for grownups to share this magical experience.They also offer partial separation and two hour separation classes which help children transition to future school activities. There are three

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Performing Arts The Ailey School 405 W. 55th St, New York, NY 212-405-9000 They are growing in leaps and bounds at The Ailey School Junior Division. Does your little one love to move and dance? The Ailey School’s First Steps and Bounding Boys program, for children ages 3-6, is a creative and fun way for your child to learn about dance, rhythm, and music. For children who want to get serious about learning different dance techniques such as modern, ballet, West African and more, help them get a step ahead by signing them up for the pre-professional training program for students ages 7-9. Register today

American Dance & Drama Studio 188-22 Union Tpke., Fresh Meadows, NY 718-479-8522 americandanceand​ Established for 45 years this studio offers quality training with a caring and professional staff. Classes are offered from ages 2 through adulthood. They offer ballet, tap, jazz, contemporary, princess ballet, acrobatics, hip-hop, ballroom, drama, vocal and musical theatre. Visit the 7,000 square foot studio space, which features a stage where drama and vocal classes are held. Call or email them to set up a free trial class.

Joe’s Academy of Music 114-04 Farmers Blvd., St. Albans,NY 550 Remsen Ave., Brooklyn, NY 718-454-3036 Premiere music and dance school for all ages, offering musical instruction for all instruments, vocals, dance education in all genres and musical theater. Their retail division, Joe’s Music Store provides rentals and purchases for Instruments and accessories. They have proudly served thousands of students in Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx and Long Island. Services include an academic enrichment program: math, science/lab experiments and visual arts, as well as their innovative Music FunTime music curriculum for preschoolers. Their YouthMAX Leadership Program inspires and equips young people to value themselves and others, by developing and maintaining a positive self-image, showing compassion to others, persevering in the midst of adversity, and creating a daily routine of successful attitudes and behavior.

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Queens Family | September 2019



September 14, 2019 - June 20, 2020 Kuei Luck Enrichment Center Weekend Enrichment classes help students build and solidify core skills in reading, writing, and mathematics. Our curriculum is designed to match the Common Core Learning Standards (CCLS) and goes beyond the expected grade level standards by exposing students to advanced topics in critical thinking and problem solving. Our licensed teachers are here to help your child succeed and reach their full potential. Call now to register!

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Course Information Subjects Covered: English (ELA), Math, and Writing Dates: September 14, 2019 - June 20, 2020 Times: AM Session 9 am - 12 pm (3 Hours) PM Session 1 pm - 4 pm (3 Hours) Free Tutoring (w/ TA): AM 12 pm - 1 pm PM 4 pm - 5 pm Day: Saturdays Grades: 3-8

Immediate families only.

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718.679.9908, • 195-05 69th Ave, Fresh Meadows, NY 11365 September 2019 |


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• Taught Grades Pre-K – 5 • 10 Years Teaching • General Education and Special Needs • Specializes in Math and ELA

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Learn To Dance In A Friendly Atmosphere


Classes begin Sat., September 14th AGES 3 – ADULT

60-13 Myrtle Ave., 2nd


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Queens Family | September 2019

718-279-3980 As a dancer, a mother and an educator, artistic director Nadia Avigliano has come to know that children possess many different styles of learning. Dance provides them with an avenue to learn through movement. Through dance education, they acquire skills in rhythm, patterning, memorization, problem solving, spatial and body awareness, musicality, precision and coordination. The Center’s environment nurtures students’ selfesteem and encourages them to strive for their best. They cultivate each child’s special talents and creativity through the gift of dance. Whether your child hopes to dance professionally or just wants to try a new activity, they offer various levels of engagement suitable for beginners or seasoned dancers.

Robert Mann Dance Centre

Ridgewood Dance Studio


60-13 Myrtle Ave., 2nd Floor Ridgewood, NY 718-497-2372 Believing that it’s important for every child to experience the art of dance, their Studio has been dancing into the lives of the community for over 35 years. Learning to dance is a vital part of a child’s development and encourages discipline, mature habits, poise, personality, stability, selfconfidence and knowledge of music. The owner, Florence Webber, began taking dance classes at the age of 6 at Joe Wilson’s Dance Studio and taught her the love of dance. Some of the many accomplishments/ performances have included: The Apollo Theater, Six Flags Great Adventure Park, Hersheypark, Rye Playland (WKTU), and major dance competitions. Their students have been accepted into performing arts schools as well as The Alvin Ailey and Rockette summer intensive programs.

214-10 41st Ave., Bayside, NY 718-225-3696 The RMDC has achieved excellence in the dance world because of its professional distinction and dedicated teaching staff. A great number of their students have been accepted into dance academy programs in professional schools such as LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts, Frank Sinatra High School of Performing Arts, Benjamin Cardozo High School Dance Program, NYU Tisch School of The Arts, Marymount College, Fordham University, Queens College and the famed Juilliard School in NYC. Many RMDC dance students can be seen at almost any venue where dance is part of the program such as on and off the Broadway Stage.

Advantage QuickStart Tennis 281 Main St., Roosevelt Island, NY 212-935-0250 crussell@ Advantage QuickStart Tennis teaches the sport of a lifetime, for ages 3 and up! Kids can fall in love with the game – learning, playing, growing and enjoying tennis customized for age and ability. Specially-trained coaches make it accessible, engaging and un. It all happens at Roosevelt Island – easy to get to by ferry, bus, subway or car! Kids even get FREE unlimited Play More sessions, to make practice something to look forward to, and FREE unlimited Athletic Zone sessions to build all-around athletic skills. Fall session starts in September and enrollment is open right now!



NEW Fall session begins 9/6!! Register a trial to receive $15 credit toward 16wk session Fall (Sept.-Jan.) Medium based 16-week instructions: Illustrations with Charcoal & Pastels, and Watercolor & Acrylics Paintings Art Fundamentals (90 minute) M/T 4:15-5:45pm Sun 9:30am, 11:15am, 1pm & 2:45pm Young Artists (2.5hr) W-F after school or Sat 9:30 & 12:15

646-209-9352 • 190-19 Union TPK, Fresh Meadow, NY 11366 Art curriculum designed by Mrs. Ma, Master of Art, School of Education NYU Instagram: kimmymaartstudio


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Other Locations: Park Slope & Brooklyn Heights, Plainview & Manhasset, Greenwich & North Stamford, CT







September 2019 |



How to Choose a Hebrew School What to consider when finding the right Jewish education for your child By Gavriella Mahpour


hoosing the right Hebrew School for your child can seem like a daunting task. There are various factors that you may wish to consider, such as location, cost, the school’s level of Jewish observance, your goals and priorities for your child and tour structure and availability. In the context of this article, the term “Hebrew School” refers to what used to be commonly referred to as “Hebrew Sunday School,” but today refers to a Jewish learning program that takes place during the weekend or during after-school hours on weekdays. Check out these fool proof tips to make your family’s Hebrew School decision-making process a breeze! Location The location of your ideal Hebrew School should be a factor in your decision. Is the potential school nearby? Many synagogues


Queens Family | September 2019

offer supplemental programming for elementary-age children or instructional education for bar and bat mitzvah-age students. Oftentimes, synagogue-led programs are the right choice for parents who desire a familiar learning environment, teaching staff or social circle for their child. Alternatively, your local Jewish Community Center (JCC) may also offer weekly programs designed to enrich your child’s Jewish education. Cost The size of your budget may also impact your decision. Bear in mind that even though a program may be less expensive than others, it does not necessarily mean the quality is less good. Take into account the pros and cons of each program with your goals for your child as paramount. However, if you feel one program has outstanding attributes, it may be worth it to pay the slightly higher fee.

School’s level of Jewish observance Another aspect that deserves consideration when choosing a Hebrew School is compatibility with your family’s level of Jewish observance. Is your potential preference Reform, Traditional or Orthodox? Does the level of religious teaching match the level of observance in your household? These are just a couple of questions parents and caregivers should ask themselves when assessing program options. Take a tour One of the easiest and best ways of finding your ideal Hebrew School is by taking a tour of the program’s facilities while classes are in session. A private or open house-style tour provides prospective families the opportunity to observe the teachers’ classroom management style, get a feeling for the program’s curriculum and ascertain how knowledge is relayed to students. Are the classrooms or other settings clean, orderly and welcoming? A

September 2019 |



tour is also an excellent forum during which to ask any questions about the program that you may have. The majority of program directors are more than happy to schedule private tours for potential incoming families who desire a closer look at the school. Your goals and priorities What would you like your child to learn at Hebrew School? Standard topics of study usually include Jewish prayer, history,

holidays, community service, Shabbat and Hebrew language. If your child is of bar or bat mitzvah age, schools may also offer preparatory classes consisting of Torah study and/or chanting his or her Torah portion. The ultimate goal of a quality Hebrew School program should be to enrich your child’s knowledge of and love for Judaism. All of these factors should prove more helpful in making your decision as to which Hebrew School is a good fit for your child for

a great year. Gavriella is a contributing writer and editor for New York Family, having been with the magazine since 2011. Her writing interests include family events, education and food. She is a voracious reader whose favorite genres are mystery, fantasy, science fiction and thrillers. Gavriella also works as a preschool educator in Bergen County, New Jersey. She has a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Manhattan’s Stern College for Women.

Local Hebrew Schools Manhattan Congregation Or Zarua - Or L’Atid program Upper East Side 127 E 82nd St. 212-452-2310 Hebrew School is just one piece of the puzzle at Or Zarua. The Or L’Atid program for youth and family encompasses Hebrew School, holiday celebrations, social events, Shabbat programming, and more. Students there are engaged and connected, while doing real, active Jewish learning. The depth and breadth of their program gives their kids Judaic knowledge and abilities while connecting them with tradition and ritual, with Rabbi Bolton, their educator, Sigal Hirsch and teachers, and with one another. Kids at Or Zarua love learning, a value passed down from parents and other adult members of the community. Students are engaged with deep questions, opportunities for personal connection, music, art, movement, and authentic Jewish practice.

Congregation Rodeph Sholom Upper West Side 7 West 83rd St. 646-454-3080 Congregation Rodeph Sholom offers exciting and innovative programming from Pre-K-12. Their highlights include an emphasis on inclusion for all families; social justice; a brand new, fully renovated sun-


drenched floor designed for young families and children; a gifted clergy team who prioritize building relationships with families; and an individualized Hebrew program which allows students to work at their own pace as they develop the skills of fluent reading and chanting prayers. Students can also practice with a newly developed Hebrew App! Children choose classes based upon interest areas such as comics, music, yoga, visual arts, photography, debate and culinary arts in the new state-of-theart kitchen. The program inspires ideas, instills values and creates community. Through lively discussions, creative projects and engaging activities based upon their interests, students will embrace Judaism with joy, incorporating the teachings of Torah, prayer and acts of loving kindness in everyday life.

The Jewish Youth Connection, sponsored by Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun Upper East Side 125 East 85th St. 212-774-5692 The Jewish Youth Connection calls themselves “the Hebrew School with H.E.A.R.T in the heart of NYC” offering a Hands-on, Energetic, Attentive, Relevant, and Tech-savvy environment for their students, who each walk away with a stronger connection to Judaism. Their unique approach to providing each student with the

Queens Family | September 2019

attention they deserve sets it apart from other Hebrew schools in New York City. The staff, teachers, tutors and administration put their heart and soul into the program, creating an engaging, loving and nurturing environment. Make sure to check out their Bar and Bat Mitzvah programs, as well as their classes starting from K-7.

Brooklyn Beth Shalom v’Emeth Reform Temple Religious School Ditmas Park / Flatbush 83 Marlborough Road 718-282-1596 The Beth Shalom v’Emeth Reform Temple Religious School is a welcoming and inclusive program that provides students with an understanding and love for Judaism and its traditions. Students learn to appreciate the richness of Jewish heritage and to embrace the values of the Jewish faith. Shabbat morning classes focus on communitybuilding and Jewish learning in a lively, interactive setting. All students attend class on Saturday mornings, including Shabbat services for families and children. They approach every student as an individual — from personalized Hebrew instruction to enabling them to help conduct Shabbat morning services. Their focus on each student successfully integrates children with special needs. Join them, it’s B’ShERT!

Union Temple of Brooklyn Grand Army Plaza 17 Eastern Pkwy. 718 638-7600 This program strives to create Jewish learning experiences that empower students and families to live joyful and meaningful lives. Children from all types of Jewish backgrounds and families feel at home here, including those with special needs. Sunday morning begins with the whole school community gathering for tefillah. The classroom study that follows includes Hebrew, Torah and Jewish culture enhanced by music and art. Families are actively involved in school activities and holiday celebrations. Through studies and weekly tzedakah, students learn what it means to be a Jew in today’s world. By the time they begin their Bar or Bat Mitzvah preparation under the tutelage of the rabbi, they are fully prepared. Wanting Jewish learning and culture to expand beyond the temple walls? They offer many opportunities for parents to be a part of the experience – at school, home, and during Shabbat and holidays.

Queens Free Synagogue of Flushing 136-23 Sanford Ave. 718-961-0030 freesynagogue@ They are about to begin their

second century of serving the Jewish Community of Queens, and are experiencing a true renaissance with significant growth in membership of young families with children. They offer Hebrew school classes starting at age 6, and religious education starting at age 5, and continuing religious education for their post-Bar and Bat Mitzvah students. Only a short eight years ago they were a synagogue with no Religious School. Today, families from Forest Hills, Sunny Side, Astoria, Woodside, Elmhurst, etc. are all making the trip to Flushing to be a part of the new Free Synagogue of Flushing. The children in their program range in age from 6 to 14 years old. They have a wonderful educational staff consisting of talented college-age instructors filled with passion, dedication and devotion to their children

who represent the next generation of educated American Jews.

The Reform Temple of Forest Hills 71-11 112th St. 718-261-2900 Religious School years are a formative time for students to develop as individuals and as Jews. The Reform Temple of Forest Hills encourages students to think about their Jewish identity through a variety of ways like arts, music, literature, conversation, and creative learning. Their community, led by their dynamic Rabbi, Cantor, and Educator, is strengthened by its commitment to Social Action and Tzedakah. They work towards creating Jewish moments of celebration and connection for families to carry forward and grow.

Religious School

RegisteR now Grades Pre-K to 12

Become a part of a warm, welcoming, and vibrant Reform community with a dynamic Religious School program

For more information please call 718-261-2900 or email us at

Visit our website – The Reform Temple of Forest Hills 71-11 112th Street, Forest Hills, NY Easy to get to ~ Near public transportation E / F / M / R trains ~ Local bus routes ~ LIRR Join Us @



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September 2019 |



Let’s Talk About

BULLYING How to help deal with this serious issue BY SAMANTHA HUGGINS


t’s true that hurt people, hurt people. Kids who are trapped in a bullying relationship experience deep power imbalances that can build in momentum and impact over time. These inequalities between children can be caused by popularity, racism, able-body privilege, gender identity and many other factors. The pain for the receiver can be immeasurable, and the outcome can have a lasting emotional and social impact on both parties. What is bullying? According to, bullying is defined as “unwanted aggressive behavior among school-aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance.” The behavior is repeated or has the potential to be repeated over time. There are several versions of bullying, including social, verbal, emotional and physical. These forms of bullying can happen both in person as well as through social channels such as texting and online games (thank you, technology!). This means the threat of bullying is even more significant than when many of us parents were kids. When bullying is happening, it can be constant, with no break for the entire family. The bullied child may cope in a variety of ways. Kids might go into an emotionally frozen state and not speak out until their distress manifests into physical illness. Some children become depressed or exhibit other emotional and psychological changes, while others may try to tackle it head-on. Addressing the bullying The tricky thing about our kids getting older is that we can’t just pick them up off the playground floor and walk out of the park. Resolving conflict isn’t easy once children reach a certain age. As we get older and add more depth and dimension to our relationships and social structure, the stakes become higher. The repercussions of our


Queens Family | September 2019

actions and how we choose to support both parties can significantly impact the outcome. It’s a delicate balance for everyone involved. Dealing with bullying Here are some tools and suggestions for parents whose children are feeling attacked, as well as those kids who are being accused of bullying and might, therefore, feel on the defensive themselves. Try to stay calm: Whether your child is the accused or the recipient of bullying behavior, let’s put on our empathic hats and collect information before we act. Our goal is to be swift, thoughtful, and to not make the situation worse. Be mindful of labeling kids: Labels feel

like hard facts. When we speak in stone, we are cementing ideas about our kids as well as their perceived views of themselves. Rather than saying “so-and-so is a bully,” consider using language that feels more fluid. “My child has been bullying yours.” “My child is being bullied.” These kinds of statements offer an ending, and we are thereby planting a seed of future resolution. Check-in with your kids and do it often: Just as we learn as new parents to consider growth, weight and perceived milestones to assess whether or not a child is thriving, it is essential to check in on how our children are doing socially. Children might share their struggles in subtle ways. Whichever mode they are in, there are usually clues and

opportunities to approach these subjects throughout the school year. Sometimes it takes more cajoling than a simple “How was your day?” Learning signs of bullying and how to keep open lines of communication between you and your kids can increase the likelihood that they will be willing to share what is going on in their lives. Circle your wagons: As our kids get older and move up the educational ranks, many parents experience difficulty in connecting with other families at their kids’ schools. Parents’ lives become busier and, as our children require less immediate attention there is often less opportunity for engagement with our kids’ classrooms. This can weaken relationships among and between parents and school communities, and lack of communication can affect the willingness to partner to resolve delicate issues that children are confronted with. If bullying is something you feel is happening to your child, reach out to trusted resources for support. If you do not have a support system, look to connect with your school’s administration or a teacher in your child’s

Just as we learn as new parents to assess whether or not a child is thriving, it is essential to check in on how our children are doing socially. classroom. They may be able to open the channels to working with the family of the suspected bully. There are also vast online resources, such as and pacer. org. Remember, you are not alone. According to the Society for the Positive Care of Children, nearly 30% of kids report being bullied between sixth and 12th grades,



and more than 70% of kids and teachers report witnessing it. This is a systemic problem. Hopefully, we can address this issue by creating and maintaining strong community webs of support in our schools, neighborhoods, and homes, encouraging empathy and addressing unearned privilege. Let’s agree to talk and listen to each other when we are faced with these horrible situations. Let’s also work on building strong community relationships. I know I will be working on mine. Samantha Huggins is a birth and postpartum doula, childbirth educator, doula trainer, CBC, parent and curriculum builder. As a founding member of Carriage House Birth, Samantha works vigilantly to redefine doula work and contemporary parenting. She oversees CHB Education focusing primarily on curriculum building, elevating doula professionalism, and training doulas. Samantha is deeply committed to this work and creating a model of care that is sustainable and works for all people. Samantha is the mother of two, wife to one and friend to many.

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Au��mn Adven�ures Apple picking and fall fun not far from the Big Apple!



he start of fall is always an exciting time. While kids are busy with back-to-school, what better way to spend family time on the weekends than to head to one of these apple picking orchards within striking distance of the city. Kids will be pumped to pick apples, learn how food grows and many of the orchards offer hayrides and a host of other fun fall activities on weekends. We’ve included the travel distance from Midtown so you know how long the journey will be. Because each apple picking season is different, be sure to call ahead to check that there will be ripe apples to pick, and provisions for bad weather, before you set off. One Hour and Under Demarest Farms 244 Wiermus Road, Hillsdale, NJ 07642 201-666-0472 (40 min from Midtown)

Starting September 3rd, you’ll be able to taste the first of fall’s harvest! Step foot in the orchards and start picking delicious apples for your seasonal pies, ciders and more. Hop on a hayride, pet and feed farm animals and don’t forget to try Demarest Farm’s sweet apple dessert treats. Some of their tasty apples include Cameo, Cortland, Empire, Fuji, Gala, GoldRush, Golden Delicious, Honeycrisp, Liberty, McIntosh, Mutsu (Crispin), Red Delicious, SunCrisp and Winesap. $7 per person


Queens Family | September 2019

(age 2 and over), which includes free parking, entrance to the apple orchard, a hay wagon ride, two petting zoos, adventure playground, corn box, photo display area, crooked house village, wooden playsets and picnic area with tables. Open to the public from 3-4:30 pm on weekdays starting Sept. 3. Queens County Farm 73-50 Little Neck Pkwy., Queens, NY 11004 718-347-3276 (40 min from Midtown)

What better way to celebrate fall than to start the season off with apple picking? Join the Queens County Farm on weekends throughout October to explore the grounds and taste a variety of Hudson Valley apples. There will also be scrumptious donuts, apple pie, and even crisp apple cider to enjoy while you pick in the orchards. Don’t forget to pick up your Halloween pumpkins, go for a hayride, and roam The Amazing Maize Maze while you are there. Open 11 am - 4:30 pm. October 5th26th, Saturdays and Sundays, October 14th. Gate admission is free. Hillview Farms 223 Meyersville Road, Gillette, NJ 908-647-0957 (50 min from Midtown)

Make the trip to Hillview Farms to pick seasonal apples from late August until the end of October. Spend the day with the family

on the farm picking from a variety of apples, taking a ride on their hay wagon, and seeing animals roaming around the farm. You can’t go wrong with the classic red apple, but make sure to take home a few other delicious options, such as Cortland, Empire, Fuji, Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, Jonagold, Jonathan, Macoun, McIntosh and Stayman/Winesap. Open 9 am - 6 pm (field closed to the public at 5 pm), daily. One Hour to One Hour and a Half Harvest Moon Farm & Orchard 130 Hardscrabble Road, North Salem, NY 10560 914-485-1210 (1 hr & 20 min from Midtown)

Be part of the excitement at Harvest Moon for their biggest time of the year. This familyowned and operated apple orchard will be welcoming their main harvest with a variety of delicious apples available for picking beginning Aug 31. Bring the family to visit the orchards as well as their farm store with stone fruits and vegetables. Open 9 am - 4:30 pm, daily (through October). Stuart’s Fruit Farm 62 Granite Springs Road, Granite Springs, NY 10527 914-245-2784 (1 hr & 20 min from Midtown)

Since 1828, Stuart’s Fruit Farm has been a proud family-operated farm. This fall season,

bee observation hives and taste their sweet and delicious apple treats on the farm. Open to the public from 9 am - 6 pm on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday and all holidays. Open 9 am - 5 pm, Monday - Sunday for school group reservations only. Admission and parking are free. $29 for half a bushel of apples. Lawrence Farms Orchards 306 Frozen Ridge Road, Newburgh, NY 12550 845-562-4268 (1 hr & 30 min from Midtown)

bring your family along for the beginning of the apple-picking season where there will be an array of apples to choose from and the opportunity to go on a hayride around the orchard! Before you leave the farm, spread your blanket out for a picnic and share a homemade pie from the farm stand. Apple picking begins Sept. 6 and runs through November. Open 10 am - 5 pm, daily. Cash or check only. Alstede Farms 1 Alstede Farms Lane, Chester, NJ 07930 908-879-7189 (1 hr & 20 min from Midtown)

Alstede Farms invites your family to pick their crisp, seasonal apples for the fall season. Kids will be thrilled to see and learn how food grows as they pick their own for a healthy snack. Eat straight from the tree or bring home this delicious fruit for making traditional homemade apple pie, cider and delightful pastries. Choose from over 50 different varieties. Not sure where to start? Don’t forget to check out the other fun activities offered on the farm, such as exploring the mazes, spending time with the farm animals, and more! You can also pick berries, corn, peaches and more. 9 am - 6 pm for pick your own with last admission at 5 pm, open daily. Apple Ridge Orchards 101 Jessup Road, Warwick, NY 10990 845-987-7717 (1 hr & 30 min from Midtown)

Kick off the fall season by visiting the most scenic and rustic pick-your-own farm. Just 60 miles from New York City, you can pick from a variety of 20 different apples throughout the Hudson and Warwick Valley. Have a fun and educational experience as you spend time at the orchards picking. They even have dwarf trees that little ones can reach! Make sure to also take a trip on a hayride, pet and feed the farm animals, explore the corn maze, visit the honey

Take a drive to Lawrence Farms Orchards and make it a family day out! Enjoy the beautiful scenery of the farm and have a blast picking a variety of apples such as McIntosh, Jonamac, HoneyCrisp and Gala. Take a break from picking and head over to their concession stands where you’ll find apple-flavored treats, along with hot dogs, milkshakes, chicken fingers and more. Open 9 am- 4 pm, daily. Admission is $5 per person with a $2 credit towards produce purchases, children under 2 years old are free. Season passes available.

ening guide. Admission, parking and bags are free and apples are $29.95 per bag (but you can eat all the apples you wish as you pick for free). For the kids, there are barnyard baby animals, pony rides, and wagon rides. The country store has great cider as well as an assortment of apple jams, butters, pies and other goodies. There is also, a haunted house, live music, country store and more! Apple picking season starts August 31st to early November. Open 9 am-5 pm, daily. Fishkill Farms 9 Fishkill Farm Road, Hopewell Junction, NY 12533 845-897-4377 (1 hr & 30 min from Midtown)

Fishkill Farms has been part of the Morgenthau family for over 100 years and invites your family for the apple picking season. This 270acre apple orchard offers a variety of fruits and vegetables throughout the year that you can pick. Be sure to stop by for their apple season in the months of September and October. Open 9 am - 6 pm, last entrance at 5 pm daily. Over an Hour and a Half

Barton Orchards 63 Apple Tree Lane, Poughquag, NY 12570 845-227-2306 (1 hr & 30 min from Midtown)

Switch up your typical weekend plans and take a family car ride to Barton Orchards. These apples are known for being the best in the area with over 120 acres of apple trees to pick from. Apple picking starts here from the middle of August through November. As we move through the fall season, a variety of different apples will be available for picking, such as Early Golds in August, Jona macs in September, and Ida Reds in October. And, to make sure that you have the freshest apples, Barton’s Orchards rotates picking areas around the farm! In order to pick apples, you must purchase a Barton apple bag that day. Open 9 am - 6 pm, from August-November. Masker Orchards 45 Ball Road,Warwick, NY 10990 845-986-1058 (1 hr & 30 min from Midtown)

Masker Orchards is a go-to for family-friendly apple picking in the Hudson Valley region (you can even bring the dog). Drive right to the trees with your family and then get lost in the massive orchard picking a variety of apples (picking poles are also available) and taking in the views and foliage. With 14 varieties of apples ripening throughout the season at Masker Orchards, you’re sure to find all of your family’s favorites; and to help make sure of this, they put together an approximate rip-

Apple Dave’s Orchards 82 4 Corners Road, Warwick, NY 10990 845-772-1242 (1 hr and 35 min from Midtown)

Opening Labor Day weekend, start your picking at Apple Dave’s Orchards and take home a variety of apples like McIntosh, Cortland, Honeycrisp, Gala, Empire, Jonagold, Rome Beauty, Red Delicious, Macoun, Fuji and Golden Delicious apples. You can also visit their farm store where they have fresh-pressed apple cider, apple donuts, pies, flowers and seasonal items. Opens Saturday, Aug. 31. Open 9 am - 5 pm, daily. Hank’s PumpkinTown 240 Montauk Hwy, Water Mill, NY 11976 631-726-4667 (2 hrs from Midtown)

Hank’s PumpkinTown in Water Mill, NY is well-known to families for its amazing apple picking and over 30 acres of fall family fun! It costs $25 to pick one peck (about 10 pounds of apples), after you’ve had your fill of picking, wander over to the wooden playground, maze park, face painting, and gem mining. We love mining for fossils and gems and have even found (fool’s) gold before! For some extra fun head to the maze park ($15 admission) and you’ll have unlimited access to check out the giant corn maze, jump on the 70’ jump pad, enjoy hayrides, tractor and family corn trains, duck races, a pedal cart race track and much more! The Market has yummy, freshly baked pies, cookies, cupcakes, candy apples and everpopular cider donuts. September 2019 |


Family day out

Kid-Friendly Beer Halls & Gardens These venues are becoming a hotspot for NYC families By Mia SalaS


ou may not immediately associate a Beer Hall with kids, but there are a number of Beer Halls & Gardens in NYC that actually welcome young kids and families. Join other families at a communal table or hang with a large group of friends and you’ll be surprised how family-friendly the atmosphere is. Beer Halls are certainly not all about beer; they feature lunch, dinner and even brunch menus, full of a fusion of traditional German, Eastern European, and American foods. Giant, soft pretzels are a Beer Hall classic: one that both kids and adults enjoy! Learn more about German history and culture through food, entertainment, architecture, design and atmosphere. If you’re looking to head to Beer Halls & Gardens this summer or fall, we’ve rounded up the kid-friendly ones around New York City! Brooklyn

Spritzenhaus33 33 Nassau Ave. Greenpoint, Brooklyn 347-987-4632

With a delicious menu and a spirited, friendly environment, Spritzenhaus is a great Beer Hall for your family. A wonderful space for community, you can spend hours here, eating, drinking, and chatting with other families. Choose from a variety of sausages on pretzel buns with toppings and dipping sauces. Kids love the Belgian fries and Sigmund’s soft pretzel. Enjoy the indoor, industrial setting with communal tables or, in the warm weather months, move the party to their outdoor seating. Play Jenga as you snack on fries, and don’t forget to stay up to date with Spritzenhaus’ Jenga hunt, which challenges visitors to find certain Jenga pieces with writing on them. Hours:


Queens Family | September 2019

Monday-Wednesday 4 pm-4 am, ThursdaySunday 12 pm-4 am. radegast Hall & Biergarten 113 North 3rd St. Williamsburg, Brooklyn 718-963-3973

Not only does Radegast Hall serve lunch and dinner, but they also do brunch! Get your Brooklyn brunch on with homemade pierogies, blueberry ricotta pancakes, gypsy toast, and much more. Try the NY prime strip with a side of German potato salad as an entrée. The Grill offers sausages, sandwiches and plenty of delectable sides. Be sure to check out the specials when you go! In addition to the kid-friendly food options, Radegast Hall also hosts events that are perfect for families. Enjoy live music by artists and bands such as Kings Country Pleasure Club, Sugartone Brass Band, DJ Nique and Bout Time Vibes. Join other friends and families at the communal tables to spend the afternoon dancing, eating and

making memories. Also a plus: strollers are welcome every day except Saturday after 2 pm! If you would like to book a private event, Radegast Hall is very accommodating. Kidfriendly hours: Monday-Friday 12 pm-8 pm, Saturday-Sunday 11 am-8 pm. BErG’n 899 Bergen St. Crown Heights, Brooklyn

From the founders of Brooklyn Flea and Smorgasburg, BERG’N is a must-visit Brooklyn Beer Hall. Vendors include Pizza by Charlie, Jianbing, King David Tacos, Mighty Quinn’s Barbeque and Landhaus. With this diverse selection of food, you can be sure that you won’t leave with an empty stomach. Stay up to date on BERG’N’s calendar to attend events such as trivia night, debates on the big screen and game night. You can also host your event at BERG’N, either in the private room, private room and courtyard combo or everything the light touches (the

(Above) Feast on German delights at Bierocracy in Long Island City. (Left) Radegast in Williamsburg features live music.

entire venue). Kid-friendly hours: TuesdayThursday 9 am-10 pm, Friday-Saturday 10 am-9 pm, Sunday 10 am-10 pm. DSK Brooklyn 710 Fulton St. at Hanson Place Fort Greene, Brooklyn 347-841-4495

Kid-friendly options on the menu include freshly baked pretzels, which you can add Nutella or Obazda (cheese spread) to, truffle fries, pommes frites (French fries), Käsespätzle (German mac & cheese), chicken schnitzel, German s’mores, and Gummi Bier (a beer mug filled with Gummi Bears and marshmallows). If you’re looking for a venue for your little one’s birthday party, DSK Brooklyn provides the perfect venue in their private event space, Haus on Hanson. Enjoy various events, such as live music, dog shows, trivia night, dog-friendly days in the beer garden, science talks, and more. Hours: Monday 5 pm-1 am, Tuesday 3 pm-1 am, Friday-Saturday 12 pm-4 am, Sunday 12

pm-12 am. QueenS Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden 29-19 24th Ave. Astoria, Queens 718-274-4925

Keep your family entertained for hours at Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden with great food, music, events and more. Enjoy live music by artists and bands such as Ronald Reggae, Stomp Society Swing Band and Dan Zlotnick. Test your knowledge on Thursday with trivia night or host a private event for your friends and family. Kidfriendly items on the menu include fish & chips, mac & cheese, perogies, hot pretzels, nachos grandes, buffalo chicken wings, French fries, and hot dogs. Finish your meal

off with something sweet, such as crêpes, apple strudel or crème brûlée. The history of this beer garden is quite interesting; the Bohemian Citizens’ Benevolent Society of Astoria, which owns and manages the Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden, was formed in 1892 and named after the medieval Kingdom of Bohemia. The construction of Bohemian Hall began in 1910, and by 1919, the outside Bar and Park were finished. The Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden has survived for decades, and it continues to blend Czech and Slovak cultures with American traditions and culture, all while providing endless family fun. Kid-friendly hours: Monday-Thursday 5-9 pm, Friday 3-9 pm, Saturday-Sunday 12-9 pm. Bierocracy 12-23 Jackson Ave. Long Island City, Queens 718-361-9333

The snacks are just as good as the main courses at Bierocracy. Start with popcorn chicken, giant bavarian pretzel, or homemade fried cheese, and then try the pork schnitzel, fish & chips, flatbread veggie or chicken and bacon pizza, dark beer goulash with dumplings and more! The Bierocracy sliders are also a hit for kids. For desserts, kids love the German warm September 2019 |


Family day out

seasonal crumble cake. As for brunch, there’s a kids brunch menu that includes schnitzel fingers and fries, sliders, kids flatbread pizza, ice cream float and kids fries. Bierocracy strives to create a welcoming and “old world” communal beer hall atmosphere, so you can be sure to have a unique and memorable experience during your visit. If your kid’s birthday is coming up, consider hosting it at Bierocracy, as they have a private party room with customizable food and beverage menu options, audio system and a large projector screen. Hours: Monday-Wednesday 4 pm-12 am, Thursday 4 pm-1 am, Friday 4 pm-2 am, Saturday 11 am-2 am, Sunday 11 am-11 pm. Manhattan harlem tavern 2153 Frederick Douglass Blvd. Harlem, Manhattan 212-866-4500

With communal tables, booths and a bar area with a nostalgic design, Harlem Tavern is a warm and welcoming environment for your family. The diverse menu features many options that kids can enjoy, such as chicken quesadilla, chicken tenders, Harlem tavern sliders, home fries, tacos, tavern style mac & cheese and more. In addition, Harlem Tavern offers “Kids Corner,” kid-friendly menus for ages 12 and under for both brunch and dinner. Kids’ dinner entrees include penne pasta, fish sticks, two mini burgers, chicken fingers, grilled cheese sandwich, mini mac & cheese and mini cheese quesadilla. If you’re looking to book an event, such as a birthday party or gettogether, Harlem Tavern can accommodate up to 400 people in their venue, complete with party packages tailored to your event. Hours: Monday-Thursday 12 pm-2 am, Friday 12 pm-4 am, Saturday 11 am-4 am, Sunday 11 am-2 am. Zum Schneider 107 Avenue C at East 7th Street East Village, Manhattan 212-598-1098

An authentic Bavarian Bierhaus and German restaurant, Zum Schneider is a great place for families with German food, events and shows. Kids get to draw on the floor with chalk and enjoy dishes such as Brezn (Bavarian soft pretzel), Schupfnudeln im Sauerkraut (hand-rolled, pan-fried potato dumplings) and lots of different sausages. Apfelküchle is a must — everyone loves these apple fritters in beer batter with vanilla sauce, served with vanilla ice


Queens Family | September 2019

Zum Schneider offers a taste of Germany in the East Village. cream. Additionally, Zum Schneider hosts events, such as celebrations for their 20th anniversary, German-American Parade, and Oktoberfest. Zum Schneider even has its own soccer club: Zum Schneider FC ’03. Hours: Monday-Wednesday 5-11 pm, Thursday 5 pm-1 am, Friday 4 pm-2 am, Saturday 1 pm-2 am, Sunday 1-11 pm. Although there is no curfew for kids, the kitchen closes at 10 pm Sunday-Thursday and 11 pm FridaySaturday. Loreley Beer and Garden 7 Rivington St. Lower East Side, Manhattan 212-253-7077

Loreley offers lunch, dinner and brunch. All three menus are extensive, featuring many kid-friendly options. Choose from sausages, French fries and tater tots, fish & chips, burgers, tacos, soft-baked German pretzels, buffalo wings, sliders, nachos, red velvet waffles, mini pancakes, potato pancakes, avocado toast and more! Don’t miss out on the New York style cheesecake and fried ice cream for dessert. There are also lots of specials, the kid-friendly ones being Taco Tuesdays and $10 lunch specials on MondayThursday, 12-5 pm. Enjoy both the indoor Beer Hall and outdoor Beer Garden venues with your family! Hours: Monday-Tuesday 12 pm-1 am, Wednesday-Thursday 12 pm-2 am, Friday 12 pm-4 am, Saturday 10 am-4 am, Sunday 10 am-1 am. Although there is

no curfew for kids, we recommend you avoid Happy Hour: Monday-Tuesday until 10 pm, Wedesday-Thursday until 7 pm, Fridays 12-4 pm, and Sundays 7-10 pm. the Bronx the Bronx Beer hall 2344 Arthur Ave. Belmont, Bronx 347-396-0555

Don’t miss out on this beer hall gem that the entire family will love! The menu consists of dishes from The Bronx Beer Hall and neighbors Mike’s Deli and Cafe al Mercato. They also have plenty of kid-friendly items that include classic BX burger & fries, grandma greco’s wings, various pizzas, chicken & waffles, french toast, and plate o’bacon. Brunch is served on Sundays, 11 am-4 pm. The Bronx Beer Hall Calendar is fully stocked with events, so stay up to date for live entertainment, including music and comedy performances. You may also host your event at The Bronx Beer Hall, working alongside an Events Coordinator. Don’t forget to browse The Bronx Beer Hall Merchandise to show off your Bronx Beer Hall pride! The Bronx Beer Hall location is also super convenient for more family fun after your visit to the Beer Hall, as the Bronx Zoo and the New York Botanical Gardens are nearby. Hours: Sunday 11 am-8 pm, Monday 4-11 pm, Tuesday-Saturday 11 am-close (or when the last person leaves).



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Dikla Goren Dekel Mom on the Go! On the importance of gratitude, embracing chaos, and her love for style By Katarina avendaño


other and influencer Dikla Goren Dekel is a mom on the move. After growing up in Israel, she moved to NYC at age 29 where she settled into life with her long-time love and now husband Noam. After the birth of her second child, she started GirlPlusTwo, a blog and social media moniker that reaches mothers around the world. Her platform was built out of her desire to build a career where she could spend time with her kids while working — a career choice that ended up being the perfect fit. Most days you can find Dikla on Instagram, dishing on her love for fashion, travel, and the juggling of three, soon-tobe four kids! She doesn’t just talk about motherhood, she shares moments from her busy days, showing how crazy but fun it all can be. Whether it’s surviving a road trip with the kids or creating a family routine that works for getting the entire family out of the door to school, Dikla makes motherhood look exciting. Supporting her through her mom journey is an incredibly loving family: supportive husband Noam and kids Romi age 3, Ori 5, Yuli 8. It’s obvious that family comes first in this household; there is so much shared love and happiness. Dikla and her husband Noam do their best to teach their children about finding everyday joy, the importance of gratitude and positivity! We chatted with Dikla about GirlPlusTwo, raising kids, and being a NYC mom. Can you explain what GirlPlusTwo is and what sparked your passion for creating it?


Queens Family | September 2019

I founded GirlPlusTwo after my second son, Ori, was born. I was itching to reinvent myself, and used my blog as a way to showcase my life as a mother in the City, explore my love of fashion and connect with parents around the world. I wanted to create something that was wholeheartedly mine, to be my own boss, have creative direction over everything I produce, and still spend as much time with my kids as possible. I have a degree in economics and business management but knew early on that I would rather work with people than sit behind a desk all day crunching numbers. I need something truly dynamic. Next thing I know, this is my fulltime gig, outside of mothering! How were you able to launch your website and grow your Instagram following as a new mom and stay motivated through it all? My motivation for doing GirlPlusTwo was to create an exciting career for myself. This motivated me in its earliest months, especially as the blog took off. It also continues to motivate me now, as I make friends and connections through the blog that I could never have dreamed of. I also would be remiss if I did not give major credit to my loving husband, who has supported me in pursuing my dreams every step of the way, and my family, friends and interns. What’s your routine for getting the kids ready for the new school year? Any tips for getting out the door quicker on those frantic mornings? I have one word for this: Teamwork. If your partner is able to be there and assist,

take them up on their help! Split the morning chores: brushing teeth, getting the kids dressed, making breakfast and lunches, so that one parent doesn’t feel like it’s all falling on them. Also, involve the kids! Giving the older kids mini-tasks like choosing the cereal and putting bowls on the table makes them feel needed and important, and allows for another aspect of the morning to be taken care of. To get the kids ready for the new school year, we always do a big school supply and clothing shopping day, where the kids can pick out a few things they want and feel like they have an active role in planning for the year. I also start making bedtimes a bit earlier about a week before school begins and put extra effort into ensuring that a routine is in place for the first day. After having your first child, you’ve shared that there were difficult times within the first year of parenting. How did you both tackle this and learn together as new parents? Because our family lives in a different country, no one taught us how to deal with the difficult times postpartum. We had to experience everything on our own, without the support of family close by. Our friends back home, too, were thousands of miles away physically and light-years away from the world of parenting! But, maybe because of having no one else to count on in those first few weeks, we had to ‘win’ at this parenting thing on our own and learn together as new parents. Now, almost a decade later, we’ve gotten more of the hang of this parenting thing, including balancing out our relationship as husband and wife and

as parents. We make sure to carve out time for each other regularly. We make a point of going out for a date night every other week. We also are conscious of each other’s feelings and needs – Noam is a morning person, and I’m a night person, so we factor this in when deciding who takes which shifts with the kids. I’ve realized that it’s mostly about listening to the person in front of you and understanding their needs to try and make them happy. To me, this is love. What values do you find the most important when it comes to family, and how are you teaching your kids this? I feel very fortunate to say that the core of our family is genuine love and happiness. Noam and I teach our children to be grateful for all that they have, to be kind to all others, and to realize that each moment is a moment for happiness. We demonstrate these values to our kids through our interactions with one another, with friends, family members, and of course, to them directly. We encourage generosity and inclusivity with their friends, as well as an appreciation for the good in their lives. We are also big proponents of fun. We want our children to live their lives with goodness and happiness every step of the way. How do you maintain a connection to your home country of Israel and teach your kids about their roots? We travel to Israel at least twice a year, if not more. Israel is our first home, it’s where we grew up, and it is the foundation of our identities as people. Our families also come out to visit us as often as they can. But, we are still thousands of miles away. The beauty of technology, though, is that we are able to Facetime with everyone over there every single day. Not a day goes by when we aren’t connected to life in Israel. We also celebrate all of the Jewish holidays and are involved with the Chabad here in Dumbo, which helps our children develop a love of Judaism and pride for their Jewish identity. With three kids and another baby on the way, busy times are coming! But, that is part of the fun of parenting, and Dikla wouldn’t want it any other way. For her, every day is an adventure and she is grateful for it all. Whether it’s running after the little ones or sharing the experience of watching a sunrise, Dikla takes a moment for family. Photo by Ana Gambuto Hair & Makeup by Buffy Hernandez Clothing courtesy of Bloomingdales

To learn more about Dikla, visit or follow her on Instagram @diklagoren September 2019 |



Family-Friendly Neighborhoods From a small town vibe to a ’hood with 10 playground choices — we’ve found the best New York City communities — plus one terrific suburb! By Danielle Sullivan


icking one neighborhood in which to settle down in New York City can be a feat in and of itself. All around the city, you will find diverse communities teeming with culture, events, parks, nature and museums. Whether you want a more laid-back setting that’s close to the city or a home right in the middle of the hustle and bustle, there are up and coming, as well as resurging, family-friendly neighborhoods that offer community, excitement, culture and memories to last a lifetime. We scoured statistics for the cost of rentals and homes, the quality of education, and the availability of indoor and outdoor family fun, dining and shopping. Our neighborhoods were chosen based on having a close-knit community feel, top-notch schools, affordability (it’s still New York guys!) and a wide variety of offerings in the arts, culture, sports and events for children and parents! Here are our top 13:

the best New York neighborhoods


Battery Park City, Manhattan Snuggled between the Hudson River and the West Side Highway, Battery Park City is always bustling with activity. In many family-friendly neighborhoods, you have to sacrifice plentiful eateries or proximity to venues, but not with Battery Park City. There is everything you need within walking distance, from pharmacies and supermarkets to family activities and nightlife. Or you can enjoy some quiet time and watch the ships come in at the waterfront. Battery Park City’s rate of elementary school student absenteeism is among the lowest of the city, and it also houses the elite Stuyvesant High School. Hot spots: The Skyscraper Museum, Museum of Jewish Heritage, Teardrop Park, Brookfield Place Recent median sale value: $1.7M Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $5,500-$7,500 Schools: Three of the highest-ranked schools in the city including the prominent Stuyvesant High School

Astoria, Queens Astoria has become one of the hottest places to raise a family. The unofficial Greek capital of New York, Astoria has the best Greek food to be found along with a 15-minute commute to midtown on the N, R, W, or M. Between its multiple family-centered events and venues, along with its family-owned Greek restaurants and quick commute to Manhattan, families have all they need right in their neighborhood. The middleclass vibe consists of a diverse group of parents who enjoy the lower rents and neighborhood feel. The view of Manhattan’s East Side from Astoria Park is nothing less than magnificent.

Bay Ridge, Brooklyn You can live in Bay Ridge for months and still not visit every eatery there. With a mix of renowned staples like The Kettle Black, Hunter’s Steak & Ale House and Uno Pizzeria & Grill as well as with new cafés and restaurants, it’s a busy parent’s paradise. A stunning view of the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge lights up the neighborhood every night for its native residents and newcomers alike. The neighborhood is vibrant and lively, with many schools, stores and a strong family ambiance. The R train will get you to midtown in 45 minutes, and the NYC ferry can get you to Wall Street in 40 minutes.

Hot spots: Museum of the Moving Image, Kaufman Astoria Studios, La Guli Pastry Shop, Astoria Park Recent median sale value: $475K Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $2K-$2,700 Schools: 38 schools in total, including the distinguished I.S. 141 The Steinway

Hot spots: Owl’s Head Park, Fort Hamilton Athletic Field, 4.5-mile bike and walking path along Shore Parkway Recent median sale value: $360K Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $1,800-$2,400 Schools: 12 schools including, P.S. 102 The Bayview

Queens Family | September 2019

A s t o ri a

Glendale, Queens This little neighborhood gem remains somewhat underthe-radar. Not flashy like better-known areas, Glendale has a wonderful family atmosphere with tree-lined streets and two-story homes as well as rentals. While strolling through this working-class neighborhood, you’ll hear church bells and see kids playing ball out in the street. You’ll find stores like Trader Joes, Home Depot, Staples, Panera Bread and Five Guys. Glendale also houses The Shops at Atlas Park, a mall featuring a landscaped courtyard bordered by multiple stores, eateries and a multiplex cinema. Throughout the area, you’ll find some of the best German food in the city. The nearby M and L lines take about 30 minutes to reach Manhattan. Hot spots: Forest Park, Leone’s Pizzeria, Zum Stammtisch (German cuisine) Recent median sale value: $1.5KM Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $1,800-$2,200 Schools: Multiple high-quality elementary schools and competitive parochial schools

Glen Rock, New Jersey It’s no surprise that Glen Rock, NJ, has been ranked one of the best towns in the Garden State by New Jersey Family magazine. With a population of just under 12,000, Glen Rock has highly-ranked public schools and countless community activities with nearly everything located within a 10-minute car ride. Commuting to NYC is available via NJ Transit or by bus. Two train lines service Glen Rock, so the wait times are short and the ride is just 47 minutes to Penn Station. The close-knit community enjoys nature trails,

gardens and a municipal pool. Hot spots: Annual Glen Rock Family Fair, Thielke Arboretum, Francesca Brick Oven Pizza & Pasta, The Glen Rock Inn, Stone & Rail Recent median sale value: $635K Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $2,300-$3,300 Schools: Four elementary schools, one middle school and one high school all receive A’s for academics, clubs and sports, and quality teachers

Greenpoint, Brooklyn Greenpoint tends to be more family-oriented than its more popular neighbor, Williamsburg, and yet also has a fabulous blend of innovative restaurants and shops. Charming in its old school vibe, Greenpoint has a variety of available housing: walk-ups, converted warehouses, new condos and row homes. Once known as an industrial neighborhood, it has recently blossomed with creativity and residential offerings. Several churches are scattered throughout the treelined streets, and the waterfront is one of the biggest attractions, allowing for day or night strolls and boardwalk fishing. Kids play softball, volleyball, soccer and handball in McCarren Park or the smaller McGolrick Park. You can get to Manhattan in about 30 minutes via the G train or the East River Ferry. Hot spots: Authentic Polish food, old-school butchers, McCarren Park, Msgr. McGolrick Park Recent median sale value: $860K Starting rent for 3 bedrooms: $2,700-$3,000 Schools: Three elementary, one middle and two high schools, including P.S. 31 Samuel F Dupont School, which ranks 9 out of 10 for testing

the best New York neighborhoods

September 2019 |


H a rl e m

Harlem, Manhattan Harlem has been steadily rising as one of NYC’s best family neighborhoods. The parks are plentiful and 125th Street is bustling with shops, restaurants and bistros. Dominican, Ecuadorian and AfricanAmerican culture is abundant in both shopping and dining, making it easy to find fantastic food. Kids (and adults) may beg you for regular lunches and dinners at Dinosaur Bar-B-Que. Birthday parties at the popular Harlem Shake include Double Dutch and swing dance fun. The neighborhood is served by most major train lines and buses and is just 20 minutes from midtown on the subway. Hot spots: Dwyer Cultural Center, Marcus Garvey Park, Morningside Park Recent median sale value: $540K Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $2,000-$2,600 Schools: Highly-regarded schools, including Central Park East I & II

the best New York neighborhoods


Prospect Lefferts Garden, Brooklyn This neighborhood lies at the crossroads of the city, just minutes from both downtown Brooklyn and lower Manhattan. It is bordered by Empire Boulevard to the north, Clarkson Avenue to the south, New York Avenue to the east, and Ocean Avenue/Prospect Park to the west. All major train and bus lines are sprinkled throughout the streets and Prospect Park is just a short stroll away. Stunning historic brownstones, countless cafés, restaurants, family and community activities and events are abundant. Hot spots: Brooklyn Public Library, The Owl Music Parlour, Prospect Park Recent median sale value: $1.6M Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $2,100-$2,800 Schools: Seven primary and secondary schools, including the Lefferts Gardens Charter School, which has a focus on environmental science

Queens Family | September 2019

Riverdale, the Bronx Some call Riverdale the best of both worlds because you gain a wonderful sense of peace, quiet and family life, yet the commute to Manhattan is relatively easy. This northern town in the Bronx was once a summer retreat for the rich, so Tudor-style mansions still exist. There are also many single homes and co-op apartments making it possible for all types of families to live here, as well as several churches and synagogues. The schools, ranging from elementary to college, are some of the most prestigious in the city. Hot spots: Wave Hill, Riverdale Park, Seton Park Recent median sale value: $260K Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $2,200-$2,500 Schools: Top-ranked public and private schools, including highly-ranked Riverdale Kingsbridge Academy (M.S. High School 141)

Roosevelt Island, Manhattan According to StreetAdvisor, Roosevelt Island is ranked as the second-best neighborhood in all of Manhattan. Did you even know it is part of Manhattan? With just about 10,000 residents, Roosevelt Island provides what growing families crave: quiet and a small neighborhood feel just minutes away from the glory of the city. It’s a place where you will know your neighbors and your neighbors will know you. On the island itself, there are several family fun offerings, including a 60 foot. community swimming pool, public grills, baseball fields, basketball courts, playgrounds, concert areas, several parks and green areas, a community newspaper, farmers’ market and countless food trucks. Considered a middle-class, not upscale neighborhood, prices are relatively affordable (for NYC!) and traffic is light. Overlooking the East River, there are many ways to commute: the tram (from 60th Street and 2nd Avenue), the F train, its own red bus service, ferry service to Queens and Manhattan, and two bridges.

Hot spots: Lighthouse Park, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Four Freedoms Park, Nisi Kitchen, The Octagon Recent median sale value: $1.4M Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $3,600-$4,400 Schools: Highly-rated P.S./I.S. 217 has over 600 students

Tribeca, Manhattan The old saying,“You get what you pay for” rings true in Tribeca. While rents are higher than in other areas, everything you want is at your fingertips. You’ll find child-centered sports and activity venues like Asphalt Green, Gymboree and NY Kids Club, several arts and crafts venues and science-centered programs for all ages. The neighborhood has a lot of stroller traffic, and moms and dads meet daily in the local playgrounds. Choices of restaurants, specialty shops and eateries are plentiful. The renowned Odeon is often known as the perfect Tribeca bistro serving up French-American delights. Every major subway line is just steps away, and you can hop on a bus or take a leisurely walk to midtown. Hot spots: Hudson River Park, The Wonder member playspace and Maman Tribeca Recent median sale value: $3.8M Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $5,000-$7,800 Schools: P.S. 234 and P.S. 150 get top honors

Upper West Side, Manhattan This 40+ block family neighborhood, right in the middle of busy Manhattan, is home to 10 playgrounds and three greenmarkets. Between the plethora of nearby museums, cafes, playgrounds and boutiques, the Upper West Side remains one of the top neighborhoods for growing families. It’s also home to two of the city’s most beautiful parks: Central Park and Riverside Park. The Upper West Side is also known for its yummy delis and specialty shops, like Zabar’s, Citarella and Schatzie Prime Meats. Hot spots: American Museum of Natural History, Children’s Museum of Manhattan, Hayden Planetarium, Lincoln Center, Symphony Space Recent median sale value: $1.1M Starting rent for 2-3 bedrooms: $2,400-$3,500 Schools: Top public schools P.S. 199, P.S. 87, P.S. 9 and some of the most esteemed private schools in the city

Windsor Terrace, Brooklyn This quiet neighborhood has a distinct hometown feel. It is a hop, skip and a jump from the busier Park Slope, so you can throw your kids in a stroller and take a walk to the various stores and playground meetups in the Slope, and then walk back home to the peace and quiet of Windsor Terrace. There are beautiful limestone and brick row houses, co-ops, condos and rentals. Prospect Park is the stunning backdrop for this charming neighborhood and you will find yourself there often, no matter how old your children are. There

Roos e v e l t Is l a n d

are kid-centered events, music and fishing, and you can walk along the park path to visit the Prospect Park Zoo or the Audubon Center. The F train will get you to midtown in 35 minutes. Hot spots: Prospect Park, Farrell’s Bar & Grill, Regina Bakery, Dub Pies, Nitehawk Cinema Recent median sale value: $1.6M Starting rent for 3 bedrooms: $2,400-$3,000 Schools: Six schools, including the highly-ranked Magnet School For Science And Technology

Danielle Sullivan is a writer, mom of three living in New York City and is a proud Brooklynite. She is an awardwinning writer who has won awards from the Parenting Media Association for ten years running. Follow her on Instagram @deewrite.

Some Family-Friendly Apartment Buildings Manhattan

Roosevelt Island The Octagon, 888 Main St

Tribeca 70 Charlton, 70 Charlton St UWS The Belnord, 225 W 86th The Astor, 235 W 75th The Chatsworth, 344 W 72nd UES The Kent, 200 E 95th The Pavilion, 500 E 77th 180 East 88th, 180 E 88th

Brooklyn One Brooklyn Bridge Park, 360 Furman St Instrata Brooklyn Heights, 75 Clinton The Chatsworth

Bronx Skyview Riverdale, 5700, 5800, 5900, Arlington Ave

Queens The Kent

The CORTE LIC, 21-30 44th

September 2019 |


family fun




Great Kid-Friendly September Events in Queens By mia salas

SUNNYSIDE OUTDOOR MOVIE NIGHTS: WEST SIDE STORY September 6 Come watch West Side Story (1961) with your family in the park! Play on the playground before the movie starts, then lay down your blanket and enjoy the movie. This is the last movie of Sunnyside Outdoor Movie Nights, and it’s the perfect, kid-friendly end to the series! Free, 8-10 pm, recommended arriving early. L/CPL Thomas P. Noonan Jr. Playground, 43rd Street and Greenpoint Avenue, Sunnyside, Queens, 11104,




September 12 We sometimes celebrate our half-birthdays, so why not celebrate being halfway to St. Patrick’s Day? Immerse yourself in Irish culture with McManus Irish Dance and live Irish music. This family-friendly event encourages little ones to come dance, play games and make arts and crafts! Free, 4-7 pm. Bliss Plaza, 46th Street and Queens Boulevard, Sunnyside, Queens, NY 11104,

SOCRATES SCULPTURE WORKSHOP: PLAYGROUND DESIGN September 14 Art is all around us — including in playgrounds! Isamu Noguchi designed playgrounds that are also works of art. Educators from The Noguchi Museum will lead kids through exploring how a playground can be a sculpture, and then young artists will get to design their own playgrounds! Free, 12-3 pm. Socrates Sculpture Park, 32-01 Vernon Blvd., Long Island City, Queens, NY 11106,

GUESS WHAT: FAMILY-FRIENDLY STAND-UP COMEDY September 21 Yes, you can bring the kids to this comedy show! Hosted by an 11-year-old and her dad, this familyfriendly stand-up show is sure to have kids and adults alike laughing. Kids will even have a chance to tell their jokes on stage. Free. 1-3 pm (doors open at 12:30 pm). The Creek and The Cave, 10-93 Jackson Ave., Long Island City, Queens, NY 11101,

POSEIDON PARADE September 21 Spend the afternoon at this family-friendly parade! See huge parade floats, colorful costumes, and beautiful artwork on the boardwalk. Enjoy the day outside before the cold weather arrives! Free, 12-4 pm. Beach 94th Street Plaza in Rockaway Beach, Beach 94th Street and Shorefront Parkway, Queens, NY 11693,


Come hungry to The Big Chocolate Show on Sept. 21 and 22.


Queens Family | September 2019

September 21-22 To kick off Chocolate Week NYC, visit New York’s largest chocolate show! There will be chocolate tastings, live demonstrations, book signings and tasting classes, led by chocolatiers, chefs and experts from around the world. The Big Chocolate Show works with Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, which raises funds for pediatric cancer research. One-day general admission $15 kids ages 3-12, $30 adults, ticket packages vary for tasting classes, family packs, and weekend admission, 10 am-6 pm Sept. 21,

Jeffrey Kollbrunner

10 am-5 pm Sept. 22. Resorts World Casino, 11000 Rockaway Blvd., Jamaica, Queens, NY 11420,

37TH ANNUAL QUEENS COUNTY FAIR September 21-22 Be among the first to experience the Amazing Maize Maze for the season at Queens County Fair! After you conquer the corn maze, check out the corn husking and pie eating contests, livestock competitions, hayrides, carnival rides, games and arts and crafts. Listen to live music, enjoy delicious food and get recycling tips and more at this fun-filled day at the farm! Advance Tickets $5 kids ages 3-12, $10 adults, additional fees for select attractions, 11 am-6 pm. Queens County Farm Museum, 73-50 Little Neck Pkwy., Floral Park, Queens, NY 11004,

APPLES & HONEY DAY September 22 Celebrate the harvest season with apples and honey! Create apple- and honey-inspired arts & crafts, enjoy tastings, meet a beekeeper, and listen to delightful music. There will also be demonstrations and family-friendly workshops, all related to apples and honey! Free with Garden admission, 12-5:30 pm. Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main St., Flushing, Queens, NY 11355,

3RD ANNUAL SRI CHINMOY 5K, 10K & KIDS RACE September 22 Whether your family loves to go for runs together or you’ve never run a 5K before, this running event is perfect for an autumn morning. Enjoy cool weather and scenic views as you make your way around the course. There’s even a race specifically for kids under age 13! Afterward, enjoy a fresh and delicious pancake breakfast. 5K $20, 10K $30, Kids Race $2, prices go up after Sept. 6, 5K and 10K at 10 am, Kids Race at 9:45 am. Alley Pond Park between 73rd and 76th Avenues, near Springfield Playground and Aarya Park Parking Lot, Oakland Gardens, 11364,

Experience farmland fun right in the city at the Queens County Fair on Sept. 21 and 22.

ATHENS SQUARE’S LATIN NIGHT: QUEENSBORO DANCE FESTIVAL September 26 Queensboro Dance Festival brings dance groups together in Athens Square for Latin Night! Watch your little ones dance it out alongside professional dancers in a mini dance workshop. There’s also a DJ and open dance floor to test out some of your dance moves. The dance groups performing include A&Y Duo, Rastro Dance Company, Sector Dance and more. Free, 7-8 pm. Athens Square, 30th Street and 30th Avenue, Astoria, Queens, NY 11102,

September 2019 |


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Featured event

Events Around the City By Mia Salas

HABANA OUTPOST KIDS CORNER: ANNUAL BACK TO SCHOOL BASH September 3 The Kids Corner at Habana Outpost offered workshops and crafts on the weekends all throughout the summer. With school starting up again, it’s time to finish off Kids Corner with the Back to School Bash! Enjoy arts and crafts and celebrate both the end of the summer and the start of a new school year with your neighborhood friends. Free, 11 am-2 pm. Habana Outpost, 757 Fulton St., Brooklyn, NY 11217,

The Brooklyn Book Festival Children’s Day September 21 As the largest free literary event in New York City, The Brooklyn Book Festival presents more than 300 authors and 250 booksellers! Children’s Day encourages reading for kids through workshops, author readings, art projects and more.

NYC BROADWAY WEEK September 3-16 There are so many familyfriendly shows playing in the theaters right now, and there’s no experience like Broadway! In the epic 2-for-1 deal during NYC Broadway Week, catch your favorite Broadway shows for a great price. Get ready for amazing theater and family memories. Prices and showtimes vary. Broadway, New York, NY,

SEPTEMBER CHILDREN’S ARTS & CRAFTS Tuesdays, September 3-24 Evening arts and crafts are a great supplement to the education and enrichment kids receive at school. Seaside Library offers arts and crafts for kids, with a different, Septemberrelated theme each week. Themes include sunflowers, pollinators, Henri Matisse and fall landscapes. Free, 4-5 pm. Seaside Library, 116-15 Rockaway Beach Blvd., Rockaway Park, NY 11694,


Queens Family | September 2019


September 7 As the final movie in the CinemaLIC summer series at Hunter’s Point South Park, Mary Poppins Returns (2018) is the family-friendly hit that’s sure to entertain everyone. Even if your little ones haven’t seen the first Mary Poppins, they will still appreciate this sequel. Out of all the movies offered throughout the summer at this beautiful, outdoor venue, Mary Poppins Returns, rated PG, is the best for kids! Free, movie starts at sunset. Hunter’s Point South Park, Center Boulevard between 50th Avenue and 2nd St., Long Island City, Queens, NY 11101,

MC VEGGIE FRESH AT HUDSON RIVER KIDS September 9 and 12 Learn all about living a healthier lifestyle

Young readers get to browse a wide selection of books, hear from their favorite authors, get crafty with book-themed arts and crafts, engage in performances and listen during storytime. Free, 10 am-4 pm. MetroTech Commons, Brooklyn, NY 11201,

through rap and hip hop! MC Veggie Fresh encourages healthy behavior changes, self-confidence, cooking with kids, friendly rap battles and food exploration. If your little ones want to continue the exciting journey of health and nutrition, they can read Shanon Morris’ debut book: MC Veggie Fresh Rocks The Mic! Free, 4-4:45 pm. Hudson River Park’s Pier 25 at North Moore Street, New York, NY 10013 on September 9, Pier 62 at West 22nd Street, New York, NY 10011 on September 12,

EZRA JACK KEATS STORY AND CRAFT September 19 Bring your little ones for storytime with a book by Ezra Jack Keats, a pioneer in American children’s literature. Librarians will then lead kids through a bookrelated craft for further enrichment. At the end of the session, every kid gets to keep a free copy of one of Keats’ books!

Free, 4-5 pm. Central Library, Youth Wing, 10 Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn, NY 11238,

SMITHSONIAN MUSEUM DAY September 21 Smithsonian Museum Day is not only a citywide event — it’s nationwide! Head over to one of the participating museums with your family after downloading your ticket for free entry. Museums include Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Museum of Chinese in America, New York City Fire Museum, Queens Historical Society, The AKC Museum of the Dog and many more. Free, museum hours vary. Multiple locations citywide, smithsonianmag. com Toby Tenenbaum

SQUARE DANCE September 27 Grab your partner and get ready for a night of square dancing! There will be country food, otherwise known as delicious comfort food, music and lots of activities for kids and families. Spend the day outdoors in the park with family and friends. Free, 5-10 pm. Bryant Park Lawn in Bryant Park, New York, NY 10018,

GET HOOKED FISHING FESTIVAL September 28 Learn all about fishing and underwater

Learn how to fish on Randall’s Island at the Get Hooked Fishing Festival on September 28. wildlife at Get Hooked Fishing Festival. Partake in catch-and-release fishing with equipment provided, play games, make crafts related to underwater wildlife, listen to live music and enjoy plenty of refreshments. Free, 11 am-2 pm. Randall’s Island, Southern Shore, South of 103rd Street Footbridge, New York, NY 10035,


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Travel back to the Middle Ages at the 35th Annual Medieval Festival. There will be music, magic, jugglers, jesters, knights, medieval crafts, food and drinks and medieval clothing. And, if you have any clothing reminiscent of the Middle Ages, guests are welcome to dress in costume too! Be sure to watch the joust between four knights on horseback! Free, 11:30 am-6 pm. Margaret Corbin Drive and adjacent lawns in Fort Tryon Park, New York, NY 10040,

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September 2019 |


We asked

What Does Back-to-School Time Mean for You? Back to school is a season for us! It is the beginning of a new school year, new teachers, friends and a whole new mindset of expectations on what’s to come! I love that feeling of excitement leading up to that very morning when the sound of the alarm clock mixed with the brake of the school bus runs through the house. @twindollicious I’m so excited for back to school season for both myself and my girls! This year, my older daughter is going to Middle School, my youngest will be starting Kindergarten, and my middle girl is going into third! I also love this season as renewal for myself - I’m taking a playwriting class and getting back into freelancing. A season of learning, fun, and challenges for all of us! @weekendjaunts Back to school means back to the routine. Less traveling. More time at home. The fall brings a whole new vibe to our house - which lends itself to football and slowcooked chili Sunday’s. This is my favorite time of year. The coziness that fall brings after a busy summer always puts a smile on my face. @eay814


Queens Family | September 2019

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ROBERT MANN DANCE CENTER Our school year opens on September 4th REGISTER EARLY Go to our website at Fill out our simple registration and mail it in today!

NOW TAKING REGISTRATIONS FOR OUR 55 TH SCHOOL YEAR… Classes For All Ages & Levels Beginners To Professionals

Ballet • Pointe • Tap • Jazz • Lyrical • Contemporary Modern • Hip Hop • Musical Theatre • Acrobatics THE ROBERT MANN DANCE CENTRE HAS THE BEST & MOST SUCCESSFUL

YOUNG DANCERS PROGRAM IN NEW YORK CITY 2½ - 3½ Pre-Dance 3½ - 4½ First Step – Tap & Pre-Ballet 4½ - 5½ & 5½ - 6½ Tap – Pre-Ballet/Jazz Combination Class Call for “Trial Class” appointment!

FALL REGISTRATION DATES: Aug 27th - 28th - 29th | 11AM – 7PM FOR INFORMATION Phone #: 718-225-3696 • E-Mail:

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Queens Family September 2019  

Queens Family September 2019