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march 2020 established 1986

newyorkfamily.com

Goodbye Plastic

The best reusable totes

Family-Friendly

Apartment Buildings

The Bold and the Brave Activist

Jodie Patterson


GET READY FOR SUMMER 2020!

M dau My daughter had a wonderful first summer at NCDC. From the welcome picnic until the final day, d ay, she felt comfortable and supported. She tried new foods and new sports, and made new friends. She came home happy and tired, which is what camp is all about. —NCDC parent parent

14StreetY.org/NewCountry2020 For more information, please email newcountry@14streety.org or call 646.395.4357.


UNPLUG THIS SUMMER SUMMER CAMP 2020 JUNE 22 - SEPTEMBER 4

SUMMER SPORTS CAMPS REGISTRATION NOW OPEN

212.336.6846 • camps@chelseapiers.com

FLEXIBLE CAMP SCHEDULE CHOOSE 1, 2 OR MORE WEEKS ENROLL IN WEEKS 10 OR 11 AND RECEIVE AN ADDITIONAL 10% OFF OFFER VALID THROUGH 3/31/20.

chelseapiers.com/camp March 2020 | New York Family

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contents

March 2020

NewYorkFamily.com

pg. 36

pg. 40

FEATURES 10 | Mom Hacks: Goodbye Plastic! The best reusable bags now that New York has banned single-use plastic bags

14 | Ask the Expert Building play skills for children with special needs 18| Parent’s Book Club We talk with Megan Angelo about her new book, Followers

36 | Spring Clean Your Life Channel the power of springtime to give your whole life a makeover

22 | Why Day Camp? How the experience of day camp can benefit your child

40 | Jodie Patterson: Bold and Brave The author and activist talks about her experience parenting a trans child and her new book, The Bold World

32 | Mom Stories Why it’s hard to raise a feminist, even when you are one

48 | NICU Moms Moms share their powerful stories of surviving the premie experience

Stories & columns 6 | Editor’s Note Hello Spring 8 | A Note of Thanks A stately setting at Guidepost Montessori

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

66 | The Last Word Spring roots

Home & Away

pg. 62

pg. 56

Family fun 52 | Family Volunteering Teach your kids about service and giving back in NYC 60 | Take a Hike The best family-friendly trails and hikes in the city 62 | Calendar Unmissable events in Manhattan and beyond for March

Directories 24 | Camps Directory 34 | Charter School Guide

44 | Hot Properties Luxe apartment buildings for families 56 | Neighborhood Guide: The Upper West Side Is the west side really the best side? 58 | Travel When in Rome… with kids!

on the Cover Photo: Yumi Matsuo | yumimatsuostudio.com Hair & Makeup: Corey Sanders | coreysandersmakeup.com Cover clothing on Jodie: Zara top, Ulla Johnson skirt


CITY CAMPS FOR CITY KIDS!

4 ADVANTAGE CAMPS ON THE EAST SIDE & THE WEST SIDE!

DAY CAMPS

Advantage Day Camp—best day camp in NYC! • Every kind of fun imaginable, for campers 4 to 14 • Swimming, art, gym & field sports, enrichment, STEAM programs & excursions • Rock wall climbing at West Side location • Starts 6/15 East Side, 6/29 on the West Side

Advantage Junior Tennis Camp— best tennis camp in NYC!

• Players 7 to 17 focus on tennis, up close & all summer long! • Drills, games & match play plus swimming • Starts June 8, East Side & West Side

Advantage QuickStart Tennis Camp— best introduction to tennis ever!

• Customized by age & ability, for campers 4 to 8 • Friendly atmosphere, specialized instruction • Starts 6/15 East Side, 6/15 on the West Side

Advantage STEAM—best summer learning ever! • For children 5 to 9 • Kids explore, discover, collaborate & have fun • Exciting partners for 2020! Kasparov Chess Foundation and Snapology, learning through play with LEGO bricks & more! • Starts 6/15 East Side, 6/29 on the West Side

Pick your Camp. Pick your location. Earn unlimited $25 camp credits!* Choose East Side/Roosevelt Island or West Side/midtown Manhattan Quick & easy to reach NYC locations! Contact Bob Ingersole at bingersole@advantagecamps.net or 212.935.0250

Sign up today at advantagecamps.net * To earn Camp credits, refer a child who is new to Advantage Camps and enrolls. No timeMarch limit on referrals. 2020 | New York Family

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Editor’s Note

NewYorkFamily.com Publisher: Hester Aba Executive Editor: Donna Duarte-Ladd Digital Editor: Katarina Avendaño Senior Adviser: Susan Weiss Digital Director: Erik Bliss Director, Business Development: Mary Ann Oklesson Partnership Managers: Erin Brof, Mary Cassidy, Shelli Goldberg-Peck Ad Ops Coordinator: Raphael Brutus Art Director: Leah Mitch Web Developer: Sylvan Migdal Graphic Designers: Arthur Arutyunov, Connie Sulsenti Nina Gallo Photography

Hello Spring When you live in a bustling city like New York, there is a noticeable shift with the arrival of spring. Off go the heavy coats, our walks home from the train are more enjoyable as the rays of sunlight rejuvenate us. Even spring flowers work their way through the cracks of the city’s sidewalk. With this season comes renewal and the recharging of our batteries and what better way to recharge than through stories of inspirational moms. Our cover mom this month, “The Bold Jodie Patterson” (page 40), teaches us about parenting with an open heart and the art of learning to adapt. Parents will love writer Cris Pearlstein’s essay on how her daughter is defining what being a girl means on her own terms in “Why

It’s Hard to Raise a Feminist ... Even Though I Am One” (page 32). Marie Kondo, anyone? If you’re like me and tackling a bit of spring cleaning in all facets of your life, then you need to read “Hello Spring! The Best Ways to Embrace the New Season in New York City” (page 36). While you’re out and about, check out our guide to “The Best Hiking Spots in NYC” (page 60) and head outdoors to soak up some nature. Lastly, if your family is looking for the perfect way to give back to the communitywe have a borough-by-borough list of organizations to check out. Donna Ladd Executive Editor

Editorial Contributor: Mia Salas Editorial Interns: Isabelle Bousquette, Courtney Ingalls, Olga Uzunova

Contact Information

ADVERTISING: (718) 260-4554 Advertising@NewYorkFamily.com Circulation: (718) 260-8336 Tina@NewYorkFamily.com

Address: New York Family Media/Schneps Media 1 MetroTech Center North, Third Floor Brooklyn, NY 11201

President: Victoria Schneps-Yunis CEO: Joshua Schneps Group Publisher: Clifford Luster

New York Family has been recognized for editorial and design excellence by PMA. New York Family is published monthly by Queens Family Media, LLC.

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

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

Reproduction of New York Family Media in whole or part without written permission from the publisher is prohibited. All rights reserved. ©2020 Queens Family Media, LLC


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March 2020 | New York Family

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A note of thanks

A Stately Setting for a Shoot at Guidepost Montessori We shot our gorgeous cover story with author and activist, Jodie Patterson, at Guidepost Montessori’s jaw-dropping Upper East Side location. Located in a stately townhouse on E 79th street, Guidepost’s lucky students are just a stone’s throw from Central Park, with access to all the sights and attractions of Museum Mile. The architecture and decor of the building made for the perfect backdrop for our whole team to get creative! Guidepost Montessori now has four locations across NYC: two in Manhattan (Museum Mile and the Upper West Side) and two in Brooklyn (Brooklyn Heights and Williamsburg). All the locations have a really unique setting reflective of the neighborhoods they’re based in. Guidepost’s programs serve children

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

from ages 12 months to 11 years, and their Montessori approach and nurturing atmosphere are just two of the many reasons why parents and their children across the world adore them. Find out more by visiting guidepostmontessori.com. Guidepost Montessori at Museum Mile 12 E 79th St, New York, NY 10075 Guidepost Montessori at Columbus Square 775-D, Columbus Ave, New York, NY 10025 Guidepost Montessori at Brooklyn Heights 212 Hicks St, Brooklyn, NY 11201 Guidepost Montessori School at Williamsburg 717 Driggs Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Yumi Matsuo


March 2020 | New York Family

9


mom hacks

The Best Reusable

Shopping Bags

The ban on single-use plastic bags is now in effect — here are our favorites for NYC life By IsaBelle Bousquette

I

t’s time to get your hands on some reusable shopping bags, New Yorkers! The statewide ban on single-use plastic bags went into effect on March 1st, 2020. Every retail establishment that pays a sales tax, from grocery to clothing stores, will be switching to paper bags. More likely than not, they’ll be charging 5 cents for those bags. So instead

Best Produce Bag: Net Zero Double Handle Cotton Net Market Tote Bag If you’re a frequent produce shopper, check out Net Zero’s Double Handle Cotton Net Market Tote Bag. The double strap design means this bag functions as a both handbag and over-the-shoulder bag for when it gets heavier. The straps are 100% cotton and are very durable. You can fill the bag with cans, and it still won’t break (although it won’t look as aesthetic as it does filled with fruit). The mesh style is not necessarily the best pick for comprehensive grocery shopping. However, it is perfect for a trip to the farmer’s market or a romantic stroll down the produce aisle! $18.99, netzerocompany. com

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

of getting flustered at the checkout counter (should you just spring for the extra 5 cent bag or can you carry a carton of milk for five blocks?) come prepared with a reusable shopping bag! But with so many great reusable shopping bags out there, how do you find the one that’s right for you? For New Yorkers who walk everywhere (except the places they take the subway), portability

Best Collapsable Bag: BeeGreen Basic Reusable Grocery Bags The adorable patterns aren’t the best part of the BeeGreen Basic Reusable Grocery Bags (although they’re close). These bags fold up into a square pouch, meaning they’re easy to carry around in your purse or pocket. Then, when you’re ready to do your grocery shopping, unfold and fill them with as much as you can. The reinforced stitching means they’re able to carry up to 50 lbs! The BeeGreen bags are so compact, you can keep one with you at all times. That way, if you decide to make a spur of the moment stop at the supermarket, you’re always prepared.$14.55 for a pack of five, beegreenbags.com

and convenience are key. We want the bags that zip up and fit in our purses when we’re not using them. Bags that don’t tear from the hustle and bustle of NYC streets. Bags that say: “I’m prepared, I’m environmentally conscious, and yes, I’m a New Yorker.” With that in mind, we’ve rounded up a list of the best reusable shopping bags that, like you, are ready to take on the big city.

Best Fashionable Bag: Verloop Knits Gossamer Reversible Bag This bag from Verloop is made of gorgeous iridescent gossamer and comes in a rainbow of fun colors. It’ll catch the sunlight as easily as it’ll catch all your friends’ attention. It won’t necessarily hold as much as other reusable shopping bags, but what it lacks in volume, it makes up for in style. Straight from Verloop’s Spring/Summer 2020 collection, this is a bag that’s definitely high fashion. And, if you’re passionate about mindfully created, innovative products, it’s worth checking out the rest of Verloop’s line. Who knows? You might find a gorgeous gossamer scarf to match your reusable bag! $34, shop.verloopknits.com


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mom hacks

Best Portable Bag: BagPodz Reusable Bags BagPodz is absolutely the best way to carry around a ton of reusable bags at the same time. While many reusable bags collapse into their own pouches, BagPodz conveniently hold up to ten reusable bags. When you hit the register, just keep taking out as many as you need to fit all your groceries. The pouch itself zips up and has a clip on the back so you can attach it to your shopping trolley (or your belt loop, if you prefer). BagPodz are also sustainably produced, making your shopping experience eco-friendly from start to finish. $34.95 for a pack of ten, bagpodz.com

Best Lightweight Bag: Standard Baggu The Standard Baggu is kind of like your bread and butter when it comes to reusable shopping bags. It’s super basic and lightweight. Why do we like it? Because it comes in endless fun colors and prints, from red tartan to the Charlie Brown squad. Why do we love it? Because it’s made of 40% recycled nylon sourced from pre-consumer waste. The Standard Baggu holds 2-3 shopping bags (or 50 lbs.) worth of stuff, but it also comes in a Baby Baggu size and a Big Baggu size. Then, it folds up into a mini 5’’ by 5’’ pouch, so you can keep it with you at all times! $12, baggu.com

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

Best “Big Shop” Bag: Lotus Trolley Bags You won’t want to carry the Lotus Trolley Bags around with you every day, but they’re perfect for that once-a-week “big shop.” If you know you’re about to load up on groceries, then the Lotus Bags conveniently spread across the cart accordion-style in an innovative patented design. One bag is insulated, one comes with a special container for eggs, one with a special pocket for produce. (But if you’re looking for more produce pockets, check out the Lotus Produce Bags, which come in a set of nine!) When you’re ready to take your shopping out of the trolley, the rods slide out and you can pick up the bags from their side handles. The bags themselves are eco-friendly and machine washable. This purchase really takes convenience to a whole new level. $36.99 for pack of four, lotustrolleybag.com

Best Versatile Bag: Clevermade Snapbasket The Clevermade SnapBasket will serve you well in grocery shopping, but it’s also an investment for life. Use it as a gym bag, a laundry bag or even an overnight bag. The “snap” refers to the fact that it conveniently collapses into a flat slab, making it easy to store or pack away. This is definitely a bag that can carry a heavy load, with strong vegan leather handles and a capacity of 30 liters. And, if you’re using it as a purse, it has a built-in zipper pocket to store your valuables. $34.99, clevermade.com

Best Over-the-Shoulder Bag: Flip & Tumble 24/7 Bag The 24/7 bag is compact and colorful. If you’re looking for a bag that sits comfortably over your shoulder, this is the one. The felt patch underneath the strap makes it comfortable on your shoulder and keeps it from slipping. The 24/47 bag won’t carry as much weight as some other reusable bags (it holds up to 35 lbs), but it does roll up into an exceptionally small (3”) ball. The 24/7 bag could definitely become your go-to reusable shopping bag, and you can pick it up in every color, from coral to peacock, to match every outfit! $13, flipandtumble.com


TEPS S

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on Broadway

YOUTH PROGRAMS

Summer 2020 Dance once a week or study intensively…We have a program for you!

FIRST STEPS

Ages 18 mos – 5 yrs

KIDS & TEENS Ages 6 – 14

SUMMER WORKSHOP & INTENSIVE Ages 7 – 18

Ballet | Hip Hop | Jazz & More! 2121 Broadway @ 74th St, 4th Floor, NYC 10023 | 212-874-3678 | StepsNYC.com/youth-programs March 2020 | New York Family

13


ask the expert

How to Build Flexible Play Skills Allowing children with special needs to use creativity while developing their imagination By Carly SeiBald

A

ccording to the American Academy of Pediatrics, play allows children to use their creativity while developing their imagination, and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength. Play is important for healthy brain development and it is through play that children from a very early age engage and interact in the world around them. However, not all play is created equal and for children with special needs, play can

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

be a daily challenge at home and at school. It is important for parents of special needs children to understand that like language and motor skills, play skills in all children should progress and reach developmental milestones. And, just like the common challenges with language and motor skill development, children with special needs often have delays in their play skills. Parents and educators should be aware of play development and support the skill in children who struggle. Play can be

challenging for children with special needs in a variety of ways. Some children lack the language skills necessary for complex play, or some lack the intrinsic interest in exploring toys and play materials. Many children with special needs have difficulty joining in and playing with others, while others have a hard time losing games. Some children prefer structured play or play that follows rules with clear expectations, while others prefer pretend and imaginative play. Regardless of the kind of play a special needs child enjoys


Discover your capable, confident Montessori child. Visit us online to RSVP for one of our upcoming events or to book a tour.

guidepostmontessori.com/nyc Museum Mile

Williamsburg

Columbus Square

Brooklyn Heights

(917) 388-1710 12 E. 79th Street New York, NY 10075 (551) 333-1337 775-D Columbus Avenue New York, NY 10025

(347) 464-0490 717 Driggs Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11211 (929) 524-3588 212 Hicks Street Brooklyn, NY 11201

GP011720

Infant • Toddler • Preschool • Kindergarten • Elementary Mandarin and Spanish Immersion available at selected campuses.

Experience The IDEAL Difference On any given day at The IDEAL School of Manhattan, students may give a presentation on a civil rights leader; participate in a musical; enjoy Riverside Park; paint a masterpiece; or visit the Museum of Natural History. IDEAL is New York’s only K-12 independent inclusion school, where we celebrate the tremendous social, emotional, and academic growth born in a diverse and nurturing educational community. #SchoolCanBeIDEAL Sign up for a Tuesday Talk and Tour or an Open House to learn more about IDEAL’s rigorous and differentiated program, innovative social justice curriculum, and uniquely inclusive community. IDEAL is currently accepting applications in select grades for 2020-21 placement

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March 2020 | New York Family

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ask the expert

and gravitates towards, it is important that they be able to show flexibility during play. A lack of flexibility is known as rigidity (in play or otherwise), and can hinder a child’s ability to reap all the social, cognitive and developmental benefits of play. Examples of rigid play commonly exhibited by children with special needs: • Always wanting to play with materials in the same way • Excessively repetition of routines within play oftentimes paired with a set verbal script (e.g., building an elevator and announcing every floor that it stops on). • Using scripts from TV or videos (instead of using original ideas or language) • Frustration when others try and join in and change the game or not wanting their ideas to be interrupted • Sticking to game rules unconditionally, and becoming upset if changes occur • Always wanting to select the same color or game pieces • Difficulty losing • Excessive use of sound effects instead of language. • Abandoning play when it does not go their way • Difficulty choosing new play materials or activities Imagine the scenario: two children are playing with blocks and characters on the rug during free play at pre-school. One child, child A, attempts to share their play idea: “Let’s take the 6 train to a special park that has a huge water slide and ice cream trucks that you don’t need money for. And after icecream, you can ride a pony to this special part of the park that has a jumping castle!”. Child A narrates their play, using blocks as the subway car and characters who will visit the park. The second child who has special needs, Child B, listens to these ideas, and maybe even says “Okay!”, but when it’s time to start playing, instead of narrating the journey to the park, they get stuck on acting out the train ride. They move the block subway car slowly, possibly while laying their body down sideways on the rug, and making exaggerated acceleration and deceleration noises. The only language used is a script with an uncanny resemblance to the audio loop on a real train, announcing the next stop and to mind the closing doors. Child A waits for Child B to join in the pretend park fun, but Child B stays with the subway script. Accelerating, decelerating and

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

Let’s face it, being flexible is necessary for everyone. We all need the ability to react and adjust to the world around us, and practicing through play is a great place to start. announcing the next stop. And the next. And the next. While both children are enjoying themselves, Child A has invited another friend to join in and share in the fun of the imaginary park, while Child B continues to play alone. You might notice, Child B is not upset that they end up playing alone, but rather, seems most comfortable in the safety and predictability of the repetitive and familiar routine. At first glance, Child B’s play may go unnoticed by teachers or staff. They’re not causing a problem, not yelling or fighting with other children. But the true concern is that Child B, who has special needs, is not accessing play to its full potential. They’ve missed a chance to play more fully with a friend, to use their imagination and creativity to evolve their ideas, and sadly, they seem content to do what’s most familiar and predictable, unwilling to take any risks during play. Why is it important for a child to have flexible play skills? Flexible play translates to flexible language use, increased flexibility in social interactions and enhancing a child’s resilience when things don’t go as planned. Let’s face it, being flexible is necessary for everyone; kids, adults, neurotypical people or those struggling with developmental delays. Sometimes your ideas are shut down, sometimes your plans go awry, and sometimes you can’t predict what your friend or partner will do or say. We all need the ability to react and adjust to the world around us, and practicing through play is a great place to start. How can parents encourage flexible play? Helping your special needs child increase their flexibility during play will depend highly on their level of rigidity and their tolerance for disruption. It’s important to take it slowly, and always work to keep play fun and motivating. If a child is likely to become very upset by changes in their play agenda, start by introducing some very small ideas that can be seen as expanding instead of changing. This can simply mean that your character will join theirs on at the airport, or that instead of just building a familiar

apartment building, you also build the garage that attaches to it. Try not to change or limit what they’re doing, but rather add your own ideas and model how the play can evolve into something more. Use language such as “I love your idea! It’d be cool if we could add this too!”. Remember, play can never be wrong, but it can always be expanded. If your child can tolerate more redirection in play, you can attempt to facilitate more concrete change like suggesting different ideas for building or working to motivate them to play with different toys or selecting a different color game piece during a favorite board game. If your child is unwilling to give up their preferred toy, think about adding a different toy into the mix so they’re encouraged to use both toys in a new, original way. This may require explicit modeling (e.g., you show them how magnatiles and dinosaurs can go together by building a dinosaur museum). If they love toy vehicles, try using a school bus that people and animals can ride on instead of a closed car that cannot accommodate passengers. This will help allow for more play ideas such as taking the bus to school, to a special destination, and creating a dialogue between the riders as opposed to just using the bus as the main object of play. Toys & Materials that help facilitate flexible play Choosing open-ended pretend toys that can be used in a variety of ways will allow parents to model and explore lots of different play schemes with the same toys. Play food, building materials, dress-up accessories, playdoh and vehicles which can accommodate characters or animals allow for the most language use and options for ideas. If a child is stuck on playing with toys that appear only usable in a single way (e.g., train sets), think about adding creative challenges such as a pretend rainstorm which floods the track. While working to increase your child’s flexible play skills, remember to be flexible yourself. Model a variety of language and scenarios, and above all, make sure you’re having fun and being spontaneous. That is, after all, what play is all about!


For boys and girls Nursery to Grade 8 For more information: info@wetherbypembridge.org | 646-213-3400 www.wetherby-pembridge.org | 7 East 96th Street, New York

St. Joseph’s School – Yorkville 420 East 87th Street • New York, NY 10128 • 212-289-3057

COMMITTED TO FAITH, ACADEMICS, SERVICE, FAMILY

• Pre-Kindergarten 3 year old – Grade 8 program • Ranking in the top 10% of all schools in NYS on the English Language Arts and Math state exams • Graduates attend competitive Archdiocesan, specialized public, and private high schools • Scholarships available for 2020-2021 school year • Free breakfast, lunch, and after school snack available to all students • Early drop-off, after-school, and 30+ enrichment programs available • Air-conditioned classrooms, fully-equipped science labs, computer lab, multimedia library, art studio, playrooms, gymnasium, auditorium, cafeteria • 1:1 Chromebooks in upper grades, iPads, interactive whiteboards, integrated technology curriculum, coding, robotics, blended learning • Art, music, instrumental band, physical education, CYO, theater • Easily accessible via the 4 / 5 / 6 / Q trains, M86 / M31 / M15 buses; free school bus available

St. Joseph’s School – Yorkville is a culturally diverse, Christian community where each child is known and joyful learning is valued. We nurture the whole child by providing a rigorous academic education, while also fostering social-emotional growth and character development.

Parent Tour Dates: March 3, 4, 12, 24 April 8, 23, 28 May 1, 6, 19

Register for a tour by calling 212-289-3057 or emailing Peggy Sullivan at psullivan@sjyorkville.org. Visit us at www.sjyorkville.org.  St. Joseph's School, Yorkville @StJoeYorkville March 2020 | New York Family

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Parent’s Book CluB

Discover New Stories with Us! Welcome to New York Family’s Parent’s Book Club! Each month, we feature a different Monthly Pick novel, all of which have several copies available in the New York Public Library. We encourage you to start your own book club with friends, loved ones, and neighbors, using our Monthly Pick as your book of the month. Host meetings to discuss the novel with our discussion questions, and enrich your perspective of the book with our author interview on NewYorkFamily. com. We hope to connect NYC families and encourage more “me time” for parents.

marCh Theme:

Springing into Social Media By Mia salas

A

s the weather warms up, the flowers start to bloom, and the spring cleaning begins, it’s a great time to reflect on the ways that we connect with each other. Spring into social media with our March Pick, a novel that imagines a celebrity-

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

obsessed, internet-crazed, social mediadominated world of the future, yet amidst the present. Followers Megan Angelo

When a budding novelist meets a wannabe A-lister, the two women plan to launch

themselves into the high-profile lives they dream about. Thirty-five years later, in a world where government-appointed celebrities live every moment of the day on camera, another woman dreams of fleeing the corporate sponsors who would do anything to keep her on-screen. Angelo reminds us that even if we obsess over famous people we’ll never meet, what we really crave is genuine human connection. Megan Angelo’s writing has appeared in publications like the New York Times (where she helped launch city comedy coverage),


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Parent’s book club

Discussion Questions You read the book, now we have the discussion questions here to guide your book club meeting! We hope that these questions will spark thoughtprovoking, intellectual, and even controversial discussions about the novel.

1. What role does social media play in your life? 2. Followers imagines a futuristic world in which social media and the Internet have taken over. What are the benefits of a technology-driven world, and what do you have to give up in order to participate? 3. How does social media impact relationships, and how do you see this playing out in the novel? 4. Who was your favorite character and why?

Glamour (where she was a contributing editor and wrote a column on women and television) and Elle (where she has written about everything from Lauren Conrad’s Instagram to NRA TV). She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and three kids. Followers is her first novel. Learn more: meganangelo.com To read our interview with Megan Angelo, visit NewYorkFamily.com! Angelo shares her thinking behind the title, Followers: “I think this speaks to the best thing the title does: just isolates the word, reminds us to think about it all on its own and decide what it means to us. The book was originally called Cursive, and it was in a Catapult seminar with Rufi Thorpe that I floated the title Followers and everyone was like — yeah, that’s it. My favorite thing about the word is that we don’t think anything of wearing that label now — I’m a follower of so many people and things on social media — but when we were kids, it was a buzzword for all the things you shouldn’t be.”

We hope you enjoyed reading and discussing Followers. Get ready for April’s Monthly Pick, which Netflix is turning into a feature film!

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

5. What do you think the title, Followers, refers to? Followers on a social media account or followers of the social media wave and celebrityobsessed culture in general? 6. Take a look at the cover. How does the cover art relate to the story? 7.

“Orla couldn’t stop staring; she was beautiful. She was real.” (185): What does it mean to be “real”? Why does Orla admire this girl?

8. How would you describe Orla and Floss’ relationship? Do you think they are friends? 9. Reread from the bottom of page 95 through 96. How did you process this idea of parents being able to customize their child? What did you make of the studies that show that kids need to have “potential flaws”? What is considered a flaw, according to Marlow and Ellis? 10. Consider the structure of the novel. Why do you think Angelo chose to switch back and forth between the present and future, changing character perspectives? How might the story have been different if it was told solely in the present or future? 11. Share a passage or line from the text that stood out to you. What impact did it have on you, and what does it reveal about the story? 12. “How dare the world move on and

leave her to live out this ending alone?” (223): Orla describes the feeling of being disconnected from social media, email and TV. Are we so consumed by social media that if we were to delete our accounts, we’d feel a sense of isolation? Can we feel connected to others, to the world, without the Internet? 13. The present day story takes place in Manhattan, as well as part of the future story. Why do you think Angelo chose NYC as the setting? 14. Followers raises many questions about privacy. Can privacy exist in our digital world? 15. “At the end of the day, she’s a woman. She’s not going to abandon her children” (294): How did you feel when you read this line? Why does Ellis assume that all women want children? Do you agree with Honey, who says “eggs are hardly children” (294), or Ellis in this argument? 16. Think about some of the celebrities and influencers that you follow on social media. Why are you interested in their lives? Why are Marlow’s followers fascinated by her life? 17. Reread the two quotes by Friedrich Nietzsche and Kylie Jenner that Angelo includes before the prologue. Why do you think Angelo chose these quotes? How do they relate to the story? 18. How does Followers use humor to get at certain themes about friendship, privacy, women’s empowerment, social media, ambition, obsession and love? Share a moment where you laughed while you were reading. 19. What did you make of the ending of the novel? 20. How did Followers change, confirm or challenge your previous beliefs, ideas and perspectives?


REACH. GROW. ACHIEVE. Awaken your child’s potential through dance

TRIBECA FAMILY THEATER

Rosie Revere, Engineer & Friends

Christopher Duggan

Saturday, March 14 at 11AM

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“The Reading in PreSchool teachers teach with a unique style that really helps children retain information. My daughter learned to read at 5, and last year in 4th Grade, was reading at 7th Grade Level. BEST INVESTMENT I EVER MADE IN MY CHILD! -Annie Lee

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Click, Clack, Moo Saturday, March 28 at 11AM

Reading in Preschool

Reading in Preschool

Play based-Private Tutoring- ages 3 and up. ReadinginPreschool.com | 917-723-1159 info@readinginpreschool.com

We’re s� S�cial

Follow us @newyorkfamily on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and tag us #newyorkfamily in your NYC adventures!

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21


whole group cheers them on because the whole purpose of the game being played at camp is to be part of a team and work together to succeed.” Making friends Duffy says that camp is one of the best places to form friendships. “Children are together all day and enjoying fun activities. They sing songs, swim, talk over lunch and play games and sports together in a relaxed environment that feels very different than school.”

Why Day Camp?

Great reasons why these camps are beneficial for your child BY JESS MICHAELS

C

onsidering day camp for your child? Day camp is often your child’s first steps towards independence and can help your child develop important life skills and interests that will last a lifetime. Not to mention day camp is just FUN! From swimming to arts & crafts to special event days, camp packs a whole lot of excitement into just a few weeks over the summer. Check out these great reasons why day camp can be so beneficial for your child. Independence Being away from you, even if just for the day at camp, allows your child to work on skills without your assistance and to explore their interests all by themselves. As a result, children gain confidence that they can do things on their own. Katie Duffy, Director of Camps for Asphalt Green in Manhattan says, “From taking the bus to and from camp to getting changed for swimming independently without the help of mom and dad, campers are practicing independence daily and feeling good that they have conquered something on their own.” Communication With children spending hours each day engaged in screen-based activities, it’s no surprise that children have lost the art of

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

communicating face to face and being able to recognize the emotions of others. Gordon Josey, Director of Breezemont Day Camp in Armonk, NY comments, “I believe that camp 20 or 30 years ago was nice to do but wasn’t as necessary as it is today. Camp is a place for children to disconnect—where children can just talk and laugh with each other, practicing face to face communication. You can be smartest kid in school but if you don’t know how to communicate and listen to others, you aren’t necessarily going to be successful in the 21st century.” Community Camp is an intentional community that your child is instantly welcomed into. Campers and staff share rituals and traditions unique to the camp which helps everyone become part of a tight knit and supportive community. “We have a dedicated group of people who work full time as camp professionals and only think about camp. It’s how we are able to create the culture and community we have,” says Josey. Gordon explains that camp is about team building and creating a safe place for children to try something new or hone skills they have already been working on. “Whether it’s a child who plays baseball during the school year and just hit a home run or the child who struggles athletically but just hit the ball off the T in T ball, the

Play The American Academy of Pediatrics states the importance of play in promoting healthy child development and believes it allows children to use their creativity while developing their imagination, dexterity and physical and cognitive, and emotional strength. “Unfortunately, today’s children no longer play,” comments Josey. “Whether it’s because of social media and video games or we as parents no longer let kids just go outside and knock on a neighbor’s door to play, camp is where a child can play the way we played as children. Expert instruction Want your child to get quality sports instruction this summer? Many day camps offer expert sports instruction while also allowing your camper to participate in traditional camp activities like arts & crafts and archery. “One of the best parts of camp is that children are exposed to so many different sports and activities, which allows kids to realize what they like,” says Josey. “Along with traditional camp activities, we offer expert instruction for our sports with a tennis professional teaching tennis and a NCAA Basketball pro teaching basketball, so if you are looking for quality sports instruction, it can be found at day camp.” Confidence School is great for learning math, reading and writing, but not every student walks away from the school day feeling confident. What’s so great about camp is that there are no tests or scores— only activities designed to help children build confidence. “Confidence comes in different ways at camp. When a camper performs in the camp talent show and gets a loud round of applause or when a child sets the goal to move up a swim level and then achieves it, they are gaining confidence and walking away feeling good about themselves,” says Duffy.


At Oasis I will... Play, Learn & Grow Gain Confidence Be Part of a Unique Community Unplug & Connect with Nature Try New Things Build Lifelong Friendships Have Positive & Supportive Role Models

Oasis Offers:

• Programs for Ages 3-15 • 8:30am-5:30pm • Extended day available • Hot Lunch Included! • Flexible Enrollment: 2-8 weeks • AC Transportation • Carnivals & Tie Dye • Special Events • Imagination Playground • Legos & Robotics • Arts, Crafts, Music, Dance • Professional Sports Instruction & Clinics • BRAND NEW Swim Program with Imagine Swim!

Please check our website for upcoming info session dates!

> CENTRAL PARK

at The BASIS Independent School (795 Columbus Ave)

> DOWNTOWN at PS 110

(285 Delancey St)

Register Online Today! w w w.oasischildren.com 800-317-1392

@oasisdaycamps March 2020 | New York Family

23


camps Directory | Special Advertising Supplement

Advantage Camps 450 W. 43rd St., New York, NY 281 W. Main St., Roosevelt Island, NY 212-935-0250; crussell@ advantagecamps.net (East Side) 646-884-9649; pfontana@ advantagecamps.net (West Side) advantagecamps.net

Giving NYC kids the best summer ever! East Side and West Side, Advantage means fun! Advantage Day Camp offers a variety of sports, art, enrichment and experiences for kids ages 4-14. Plus complimentary early dropoff and late pickup. Advantage STEAM Camp is where campers ages 5-11 explore, discover, collaborate and enjoy. Advantage Junior Tennis Camp helps players 7-17 focus on the game, with drills and match play, plus swimming. Advantage QuickStart Tennis Camp is tennis customized for age, ability and fun, for ages 4- 7! Two great locations –

Roosevelt Island Racquet Club/Sports Park and Manhattan Plaza Racquet Club/The Beacon SchooL. Choose days, weeks or all summer. Sign up now!

The Cathedral School’s Summer STEAM Camp

Alexa Cafe

The Cathedral School’s STEAM Camp is a unique summer opportunity that can engage your camper’s critical thinking and problem solving skills, while they enjoy the wonders of the Cathedral Close. In the school’s brand new Library and Media Center and Innovation Lab, campers are able to take their passion projects and designs to new heights! With the help of their dedicated STEAM teachers, they look forward to providing your child a fun and memorable camp experience. Camp features a rotating schedule with exciting field trips, a new AquaZone to cool off on hot summer days, and use of the school’s new Expansion spaces. Please visit their website cathedralnyc.

15+ Locations Nationwide 1-888-709-8324 alexacafe.com

This all-girls program blends tech, entrepreneurship, and social impact in a fresh cafelike setting. Big ideas come to life amidst moon chairs and stylish decor. Whether you want to code an app for charity, design a mobile game, or discover Al, you’ll collaborate with new friends and create a project you’re passionate about. The Alexa Cafe courses are endorsed by SWE, The Society of Women Engineers. For girls ages 10 to 15, day and overnight programs are offered.

1047 Amsterdam Ave., New York, NY 212-316-7500 cathedralnyc.org steamcamp@cathedralnyc.org

org/steamcamp for more information, or contact STEAM Camp Director Michael Demianiuk at steamcamp@cathedralnyc. org. Sign up today!

Chelsea Piers 23rd St. and Hudson River Park 212-336-6846 chelseapiers.com/summercamp

Located along the Hudson River, Chelsea Piers is a 28-acre sports village that offers NYC’s most dynamic and flexible summer camp programs for children and teens ages 3-17. With up to 11 one-week sessions and 16 different sports to choose from, there’s a camp for every athlete and every schedule. Their coaches are dedicated year-round to providing athletes with a clean, safe, friendly, and fun environment to ensure a well-rounded sports education and summer camp experience. Camps include daily recreational periods

Summer STEAM Camp 2020 June 22 – July 31

Sign up today at cathedralnyc.org/steamcamp

24

NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

Weekly Sessions Include: Programming • Robotics • Circuits • 3-D Printing • Woodworking Stop-Motion Video • Engineering • Game Design • Art Outdoor Games and Activities Every Day!


The #1 tech camp for girls held at NYU Get empowered to make a difference with tech! Our all-girls program for ages 10-15 blends STEM skills, leadership, and collaboration in an inspiring, cafĂŠ-like setting. Spend your summer coding an app, programming a charismatic robot, producing a video for YouTube, and so much more!

Held at NYU - Washington Square and 16 other campus locations

Request your brochure today!

AlexaCafe.com | 1-888-709-8324

*Savings applies to Alexa CafĂŠ program only.

GO OUTSIDE TO GROW WITHIN ADVENTURE AWAITS! Registration is open for our 134th summer! Join us for Day Camp or Overnight Camp outdoor adventures.

Enroll today at trailblazers.org! March 2020 | New York Family

25


camps Directory | Special Advertising Supplement

including bowling, ice skating, rock climbing, Spirit Cruises, and more. Transportation from many Manhattan and Brooklyn neighborhoods and an Aftercare program for fullday campers is also available. Early bird pricing through May 17, 2020.

Collina Italiana Day Camp 1566 Third Ave., Suite 602-603, New York, NY 212-427-7770 collinaitaliana.com info@collinaitaliana

This summer program is designed for kids ages 3-5 and 6-8 who want to absorb the warm and lovely culture of Italy. They can have fun Italian style: learning and practicing Italian, meeting new friends and enjoying a unique summer in the city. The program includes Giochiamo in Italiano, where campers learn Italian through play, music, theater and games; Cinema Italiano, Italian movies and cartoons; Arte Insieme,

which encourages kids to be creative, make art and speak Italian; Le Uscite, taking kids to museums to discover Italian art; and their newest activity: Ciao YOGA!

Cub Creek Science Camp 16795 State Rte. E, Rolla, MO 573-458-2125 cubcreeksciencecamp.com

Imagine a camp where campers eat breakfast in the company of lemurs; where kids can zip-line, pet a camel, and watch a science experiment before lunch; and everyone plays a game of capture the flag right before sunset. This is that camp! With 300 animals, a six element ropes course, and more than 100 activities ranging in veterinary science, pottery, archery, chemistry, survival skills, culinary, and crafts, Cub Creek is a camp for all! Experience incredible animal encounters, create memories and friends to last a lifetime, and develop confidence, problem solving

skills, and independence in a safe, fun and loving environment.

please contact Director of Athletics and Extra-Curricular Program, Alain Haspil, at alain.haspil@theEcole.org.

The Ecole Summer Camp Flatiron District 646 410 2238 alain.haspil@theEcole.org

The École’s summer camp has been designed to provide children with a bilingual immersion experience similar to its regular school year program, but in the context of lots of summer fun! The camp welcomes all children, ages 3 to 10 years old, even if they have no French or English background. The three-week camp takes place at The École’s campus in the Flatiron District where campers can take advantage of the surrounding parks and nearby museums. Daily activities are varied and include art, dance, music and sports. The camp program is very flexible to work around your family’s schedule. For more information about The École’s Summer Camp,

*-/

LAUNCH Math + Science Centers - NYF Four locations in Manhattan (UWS, UES and Tribeca) 212-600-1010 launchmath.com info@launchmath.com

Launch Math + Science Centers offer exciting and educational one-week STEM summer camps for kids from kindergarten to 7th grade (5-12 years old). Campers explore the magic of chemistry, animate their favorite characters, crush architectural structures – and that’s just the beginning! Camps are packed with hands-on STEM projects that kids get to keep so the fun continues at home. Plus, there are NEW exciting camps and daily segments, like Launch Studios where kids document camp activities, plan “How-to� videos, perform fun skits, and more.

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020


THE #1

TECH CAMP

FOR AGES 7-19 Coding. Game dev. Robotics. Digital arts. This isn’t just a camp. It’s an experience unlike any other. Here, you push past the boundaries of XHMTTQƴSINSL^TZWXVZFIFSIGTSINSLT[JWYMJ latest tech. Led by expert instructors, you will GZNQIYMJXPNQQXSJJIJIYTKTWLJFGWNQQNFSYKZYZWJ

HELD AT 150+ ELITE CAMPUSES INCLUDING: 3>:a3>.9a(TQZRGNFa2FW^RTZSY2FSMFYYFSa6ZJJSX(TQQJLJ Iona | SUNY New Paltz | Adelphi | Kean | Seton Hall

Request your brochure today!

iDTechCamps.com | 1-888-709-8324

Discover Your Creativity and Acting Talent Home of the Meisner Technique Summer teen Conservatory (15-18 yr olds) Summer Studio (12-14 yr olds) youth Workshop (9-11 yr olds) Saturday Classes (8-18 yr olds) JR School open House/Visiting day -

March 16th Sign up on our website,

www.playhouseJuniors.com

212-688-3770 Begins July 13th Apply todAy! March 2020 | New York Family

27


camps Directory | Special Advertising Supplement

The Montessori School of New York Summer Camp

Neighborhood Playhouse Junior School

Midtown East 212-223-4630 www.montessorichoolny.com montessorinyc@aol.com

Teen & Youth Summer Conservatory 212-688-3770 playhousejuniors.com cldaehler@ neighborhoodplayhouse.org

This Summer, for children 2 – 14, we are offering “The Best of the Big Apple!” Children will explore NYC’s world-renowned museums and cultural destinations, as well as participate in Yoga, Zumba, art projects, academic activities and weekly barbecues and performances. Campers will also enjoy dance, arts and crafts, musical theatre, and foreign language as well as sports such as bowling, ice skating and swimming. Since Camp is staffed by our school year teachers, children can also continue with academics, preparing them for admission to gifted programs, or for a head start on the upcoming year.

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Young actors seeking dramatic arts training in NYC. Apply for three exciting summer intensives at the Neighborhood Playhouse, where Sanford Meisner’s world-renowned acting method was born! Working professionals and master teachers, train students in Meisner acting, singing, dance, Shakespeare, stage combat, film, theatre, television, and more. Conservatory (1518yrs) mirrors a challenging, diverse college-level curriculum. Studio (12-14yrs) provides serious, engaging pre-professional training and Youth Workshop (911yrs) explores a variety of techniques for the young

NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

actor. Acceptance is by application and audition. Space is limited.

New Country Day Camp Henry Kaufmann Campgrounds Staten Island, NY 646-395-4357 newcountrydaycamp.org newcountry@14streety.org

A program of the 14th Street Y and Educational Alliance, this camp is a joyful and inclusive community where campers, families and staff build meaningful connections with each other and the natural world around them, and experience personal growth through high-quality programs rooted in the outdoors and guided by Jewish values. Transportation on airconditioned buses from convenient locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn is provided to the 75acre Henry Kaufmann Campgrounds in the forest of

the Staten Island Greenbelt, where swimming pools, hiking trails, and open meadows set the scene for a summer of adventure and enrichment for campers entering kindergarten to 8th grades. All backgrounds are welcome.

New York Society of Play 372 Clinton Ave., Brooklyn, NY 914-512-8369 NYPlays.org frontdesk@nyplays.org

Join the New York Society of Play for their very FIRST year of Summer Workshops! Their mission is to promote social, emotional, and cognitive skills with a collection of some of the most engaging, challenging, and rewarding non-digital gaming experiences imaginable! Your child will win prizes, learn new games, and make friends in an entirely screenless environment. Their subjects include Board Games, Pokemon/Magic the


Calhoun Summer Camps Day camps for creative, curious kids in grades 2-12

Summer Camp at The École!

2020 Programs: Animation Calhoun Cooks Math Camp Movie-Making Sports & Arts Story Pirates Camp Summer Jazz Summer Music Volleyball

The École offers a bilingual summer camp, welcoming both current students and friends—ages 3 to 10—from the neighborhood. No French or English background necessary! Find out more on our website, at www.theEcole.org.

Register now! calhoun.org/camps 433 West End Ave at 81st St

Italian Summer Camp!

SESSION #1: JUNE 16 - JULY 30 SESSION #2: AUGUST 11 - 27

AGES 3 - 5 AND 6 - 8

FLEXIBLE SCHEDULE AVAILABLE

ART - BOOKS -SONGS - FUN -

OUTINGS - ITALIAN LANGUAGE & CULTURE

1556 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 602-603, NEW YORK, NY 10128 212.427.7770 - INFO@COLLINAITALIANA.COM

Through our unique dual program, which incorporates both the French and American curricula, The École offers students the lifetime benefits of a bilingual education and empowers them to create and connect to a world filled with possibilities.

Fifth Avenue Building 206 Fifth Avenue New York, NY 10010

Main Campus

111 East 22nd Street New York, NY 10010

bonjour@theEcole.org March 2020 | New York Family

29


camps Directory | Special Advertising Supplement

Gathering Studio, Outdoor Adventures, Role Play Theatre, Arts & Sciences, and more! This 10-week camp runs from 8:30am-6:00pm, with regular dismissal at 3pm and late dismissal at 6pm. Early bird prices are as low as $300 a week! Learn more about them and all of their fun, year-round offerings at NYPlays.org.

Oasis Day Camps Central Park & Downtown Lower East Side, NY 646-519-5057 oasischildren.com

varied activities tailored to their interests. The Early Start Imagination Camp for children ages 3 to kindergarten offers American Red Cross swim programs. The Lower Camp for grades 1-3 is designed to expose campers to exciting and fun sports, arts, swimming, carnivals, color war and more! Upper Camp features bigger activities, special events, onsite visitors and choice activities. Teen Travel offers daily trips!

Trail Blazers

Oasis Day Camps offer tailored programs for children age 3 to grade 9! With two locations in Manhattan: Central Park at Basis Independent School, 795 Columbus Avenue and PS 110 Downtown, 285 Delancey Street, Oasis offers a mature staff with low camper/staff ratio and a warm environment where children can participate in

394 Rogers Ave., Brooklyn, NY (Day Camp) 210 Deckertown Tpke., Montague, NJ (Overnight Camp) 212-529-5113 trailblazers.org registration@trailblazers.org

Join them for their 134th summer! Since 1887, Trail Blazers’ programs have been where campers connect to nature, make

Montessori International

Summer Camp

new friends, and create life-long memories. From grades preK-10, there is a day or overnight adventure for your camper. Registration is currently open for farmstead, rock climbing, canoeing, biking, and backpacking adventures.Kids can leave the screens at home for a summer full of learning about their environment and building skills, guided by staff from all over the world! Of course, there will be songs and s’mores! Come outside and play, adventure awaits! Visit trailblazers.org to learn more and secure your camper’s spot. Trail Blazers is accredited by the American Camp Association.

YMCA of New York ymcanyc.org/programs/ camp/find-camp

With dozens of locations across the five boroughs, and their Sleepaway Camp

upstate, New York City’s YMCA has a summer camp that your child will love — at a location convenient to you! All Y camps feature: • Well-trained staff who serve as positive role models • Activities and games that develop self-esteem and leadership skills • Activities that promote cultural diversity • Exposure to new ageappropriate, challenging, and fun experiences • An atmosphere that fosters fairness, teamwork, and cooperation • Visits to the City’s top attractions, including zoos, aquariums, parks, and museums • Health, exercise, and nutrition education Check their website for locations and open house dates!

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347 East 55th Street (at First Avenue)

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

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Come to a New York Family Camp Fair to Get Organized • Daycare and Childcare • A Patchwork of Summer Activities • School and Education Programs

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12 – 3PM Borough of Manhattan Community College 199 Chambers Street, New York, NY 10007 Sponsored by

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NewYorkFamily.com/camp-fairs/registration March 2020 | New York Family

31


mom stories

Why It’s Hard to Raise a Feminist ... Even Though I Am One My daughter can decide on her own what being a girl means By Cris Pearlstein

“F

rankie, it’s time to clean up your blocks,” I said. “Can you put them back in the bin?” She nodded while sucking her thumb, and began to do as I asked. A one-handed cleanup, on account of the thumb sucking, but eventually it was done. “Good girl!” I exclaimed. A version of this exchange happens quite often lately since Frankie will be turning 2 years old very soon, and reinforcing good behavior is my daily M-O. As the person who spends the most time with her, it’s super important for me to remember that I have to capitalize on the hundreds of teachable moments we encounter every day. I want her to be a good person, someone who shares with her friends. I feel strongly that she should treat animals with kindness and wonder. I want her to learn to treat her things — toys, books and stuffies — with respect. And I also want to make sure she gets into the habit of cleaning up after herself. This week she did a lot of things that made me proud. She gave our dog a sweet hug and patted his head. “Good girl, Frankie!” I said, making a big deal about how she was being gentle. She shockingly held my hand without complaint (something she rarely does) on our way home from the playground. When we got to our front door I knelt down and looked into her eyes, “You were such a good girl on the walk home!” And yesterday she said “please” and “thank you” without me having to remind her. “You are a very good girl for asking so nicely,” I told her, handing over the pretzels she was hoping for. But I began to see a pattern. I wondered

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

if my choice of words were actually a secret message I didn’t realize I was even sending. Is she taking away the idea that girls are only “good” if they follow directions? Will she think that the behaviors I’m praising her for are the only things that will make her “good”? And above all, is being a “good girl” an outdated expectation that her male counterparts don’t have to face? Here’s the thing: there’s nothing wrong with being “good,” and there’s nothing wrong with being a “girl.” But putting those words together over and over again in the form of praise just seems a tiny bit dangerous to me. I want her to know that all people should strive to be good, not just girls. And I want her to know that as a girl there are many things to strive for, other than just being good. A few weekends ago my husband and I went for a walk around our neighborhood,

toddler and dog in tow. We were planning to pop into some shops and so we opted for the umbrella stroller, which has a much smaller footprint than the monstrosity I use every day. But its narrower seat means Frankie tends to spread her legs wide open and let her feet hang over the sides, oftentimes kicking the people and things around us — which defeats the purpose of choosing the smaller stroller in the first place. My husband, with only good intentions, said to her, “Close your legs Frankie, that’s not ladylike.” The gears in my brain immediately started turning. The word “ladylike” didn’t sit well with me. Should anyone sit with their legs sprawled out? Surely not. Isn’t it rude to take up an obnoxious amount of space in public, especially when you live in a city of close quarters? Yes, of course. This concept hadn’t occurred to me before, but it came out as if I had been thinking about it for days. “How about, it’s not humanlike?” I added. My husband, an incredibly smart and open-minded man, thought for a second and said, “Yeah, you’re right...humanlike,” as if the gears in his brain were turning, too. According to Merriam Webster the definition of “feminism” is “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes,” and I think if you asked most people they would say they agree with this sentiment — even if they don’t identify with the word itself, which can sometimes serve as a lightning rod for controversy. What I don’t think most people realize is that achieving this equality means more than passing laws. It means more than hiring more women in the workplace. It means more than electing women into office. I would argue that one of the most important paths to achieving true gender equality, whether you like the word “feminism” or not, is adjusting our language to reflect those values. It is a difficult task to reevaluate words and phrases we have been using for decades that seem normal,


harmless, and inoffensive. But we have to ask ourselves — especially when dealing with our children, who are nothing if not giant sponges — does the language we use on a daily basis undermine the philosophies we are trying to teach? Frankie sleeps with six “friends” in her crib — every day before naptime and every night before bedtime I line them up and she takes a roll call. There’s Corn, a purple unicorn with wings; Boxy, a little white fox with a bushy tail; Bear, a soft ivory-colored bear with a floral bow; Sophie, a small labradoodle with an apricot coat; Girl, a handmade dog with a pink dress and a flower crown; and her favorite of them all, a classic brown teddy bear named, you guessed it, Teddy. These are the main characters of her life, that she named herself. They are the “people” we talk about a hundred times a day. I noticed early on that without even realizing it I assigned every one of them (along with every other toy she owns) the pronoun him, for no apparent reason. The stuffed dachshund my best friend sent me when I was still pregnant? Him. The cat figurine

I wondered if my choice of words were actually a secret message I didn’t realize I was even sending. that came with the hand-me-down Duplos from sister-in-law? Him. The squeezable sea creatures in the bathtub, like Shark, Turtle, and Whale? Him, him, and him. Unless it’s wearing a dress (like Girl) or it’s truly supposed to be a girl (like Sophie), I rely on he and him pronouns all the time. I don’t know why I do this and I don’t know why it’s so hard for me to stop. The only thing I can come up with is that it’s difficult for me to undo a lifetime of gender stereotypes, patriarchal language, and outdated assumptions that I’ve been conditioned to for the past 37 years. I have to imagine that just like quitting any long-time

CARDINAL SPELLMAN HIGH SCHOOL

bad habit (like smoking cigarettes) changing the words you’ve used all your life requires hard work, too. But it’s the kind of thing that’s impossible to quit cold turkey because I don’t always realize I’m doing it, the words just come out. Undoing second nature feels like an impossible feat. I went on a preschool tour recently where the director of the program used the phrase “thumbs up” to praise all of her students, boys and girls. I loved it and when I got home I immediately used it on Frankie. Now every time I say it she sticks her two little thumbs up and smiles. That feels like a small win. Trying to break the decades-long cycle of patriarchal language is a huge undertaking, but I think for my family it will happen slowly, one neutral praise at a time. For now my goals are to leave enough wiggle room in our conversations for Frankie to decide on her own definition of what being a girl means to her, to replace “good girl” with “good job,” and to remember that whenever I tell her how cute she is (which is really, really often!) to balance it out by also telling her that she’s smart and strong.

Where Boys and Girls with Dreams Become Men and Women of Vision

Open House: April 28th, 2020 5pm-8pm

Cardinal Spellman High School One Cardinal Spellman Place, Bronx NY 10466 Tel. (718) 881-8000 x 206 I Fax (718) 515-6615

We are still accepting transfer and freshman applications!

www.cardinalspellman.org I TACHS CODE: 303 March 2020 | New York Family

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charter Schools Directory | Special Advertising Supplement

KIPP NYC Public Schools

Manhattan Charter School

Zeta Inwood 1 Elementary

K-12 locations throughout Manhattan, Bronx/Riverdale & Brooklyn kippnyc.org enroll@kippnyc.org 212-991-6100

Phone: (212) 533-2743 100 Attorney Street—New York, NY Manhattan Charter School 2 Phone: (212) 964-3792 220 Henry Street—New York, NY 10002 manhattancharterschool.org

652 W. 187th St., New York, NY 929-447-5281 zetaschools.org

Since 1995, we’ve been creating joyful, academically excellent schools that prepare students with the skills and confidence to pursue the paths they choose — college, career, and beyond — so they can lead fulfilling lives and create a more just world. Our students consistently outperform city and state proficiency rates for math and reading and our alumni beat the national rates for both high school and college graduation. Apply today at kippnyc. org/enroll

We are two small public elementary schools educating children in grades Kindergarten through Fifth. We believe in the importance of an intimate school culture and learning environment, and are committed to offering a wellrounded education designed to help students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills. This means that there are never more than 25 students in a class, and that all students receive weekly French, Art, Physical Education, and Technology instruction, in addition to daily music instruction all beginning in Kindergarten. We pride ourselves on delivering challenging, standardsdriven instruction and fostering a culture of high expectations. Both schools offer free afterschool. We are dedicated to demonstrating that all children, regardless of race or economic status, can succeed when given equal access to quality education.

Zeta Schools are high-performing, next-generation schools with an innovative, whole-child approach, preparing children for a modern world economy. Starting with a foundation of world-class academics, their complementary social-emotional program emboldens students with the skills to thrive. It is extraordinarily important that children have the time and space to explore potential interests and passions. That’s why at Zeta, students engage in Specialist Classes as part of the school day, which may include chess, music, art, sports, and Taekwondo. Now, until April 1, Zeta is accepting applications for pre-K through 5th grade for the 2020-21 school year.

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Daily instruction •• French beginning Kindergarten •• Free Services Daily music musicDaily instruction French lessons lessons beginning in Kindergarten Free After After• School School Services music instruction • French lessonsin beginning in Kindergarten Free After School Services Small class size that allows for personal attention • Two K-5 public elementary schools in Manhattan Small class size that allows for personal attention • Two K-5 public elementary schools in Manhattan Small class sizein that allows for personal attention • Two K-5 public elementary schools in Manhattan Daily instruction •• French beginning Kindergarten •• Free Services Daily music musicDaily instruction French lessons lessons beginning in Kindergarten Free After After• School School Services music instruction • French lessonsin beginning Kindergarten Free After School Services

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NewYorkFamily.com | March 2020

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THEIR BRILLIANT FUTURE STARTS HERE.

With a focus on rigorous, hands-on academics, wellness, innovation and family service, Zeta Schools prepare students to be leaders and problem solvers in a modern world.

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KIPP students beat the national rates for high school and college graduations. Every KIPP school is tuition-free. Find a KIPP school near you in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Harlem, and Washington Heights.

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2/25/20 3:04 PM March 2020 | New York Family 35


o l l e Hring! p S—

The best ways to embrace the new season in New York City By Mia SalaS

T

he first day of spring is just around the corner on March 19, which means the weather is about to (hopefully) get a whole lot warmer, buds and maybe even some flowers will start to appear, and everyone will be shaking off those winter blues. Eventful and lively in any season, NYC is especially vibrant in the spring with all the many opportunities to workout, get in touch with nature and the outdoors, catch the latest in fashion, eat delicious and healthy food, and relax & rejuvenate your mind and body. We’ve rounded up the best ways to kick off spring in NYC so that you can have all the energy you need to thrive this season. Get Active

Shape Up NYc: Zumba Poe Park Visitor Center, 2640 Grand Concourse, Bronx, NY 10458

Looking for a free fitness class to get your workout grind back on? We love Shape Up NYC, a class that combines Latin, international, and popular music with dance moves to create an aerobic workout. It’s always tough to stick to a workout schedule, but with a weekly class, you’ll have the motivation to get moving and grooving! Every Saturday, Free, 10-11am.

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Morning Fitness at Fort tryon Park Heather Garden in Fort Tryon Park, Cabrini Boulevard and Fort Washington Avenue, New York, NY 10040

Breathe in the fresh (soon-to-be spring!) air with this morning fitness class. If you’re not much of a gym person, try this outdoor workout as trained professionals lead you through walking, stretching and strengthening exercises. Exercise with a view, in natural sunlight, with green scenery all around that has health benefits that can’t be found indoors. Every Tuesday and Thursday, 7:30-8:30am, Saturday walks begin at 8:30am, Free. NYRR Open Run Multiple locations

Break out your running shoes for this weekly run through the park. Kids are welcome to join as well! NYRR Open Run is a community-based, volunteer-led running initiative- bringing free weekly runs and walks to local neighborhood parks. The best part about these open runs is that they take place all across NYC, so they’re super convenient. There are five parks in Queens, five in Brooklyn, two in Staten Island, four in Bronx and two in Manhattan that host open runs. Be sure to visit NYRR Open Run online to check out the specific parks and times, as

well as register in advance. Strollers, dogs and little ones of all ages are welcome — just be sure to fill out the waiver for your kiddos. the High Line Gansevoort Street to 34th Street, New York, NY

Bring your family, strollers and furry friends to the High Line to enjoy some time outdoors and check out all of the beautiful spring sights that the elevated pathway has to offer. Make your way through luscious gardens, art displays and plenty of spaces to sit down for a rest and peek out at the busy city beneath you. Another reason the High Line is best in the spring — the vendors return after the cold winter season to bring you delicious food. So after your power walk, casual


sign up for a class so that you can be in your favorite part of the room. Classes include the Mellow Hum, Foundation Hum, Unified Hum and Dynamic Hum, ranging from gentle movement to challenging flow and strength content. Check out the schedule of classes to see what class time works for you. You’ll love the flexibility, with class times lasting from 6am to 8:30pm to accommodate your busy NYC lifestyle. Single class $35, Unlimited Monthly Classes $195, 10-Class Pack $250, Introductory Offer (Unlimited Classes for 3 Weeks) $75, Sound Bath $25. In ToucH WITH naTure & THe ouTdoors Brooklyn Botanic Garden Tours 990 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225

We love the Chase Away the Winter Blues Outdoor Tour at Brooklyn Botanic Garden, taking place on March 1, 12-1pm! Join Lynne Spevack, a licensed psychotherapist for this outdoor wintertime walk. Learn the simple lifestyle practices that can help you maintain a sunny outlook. March’s theme is Early Spring Flowers, so celebrate the transition to spring by checking out over a dozen different species of flowers. There’s also Nature Walks with Bradley Klein: Preparing for Spring on March 8, 11am-12pm. Catch a glimpse of the Garden’s awakening animals and plants, just in time for spring. Both tours are free with Garden admission. First signs of spring Tour Heather Garden in Fort Tryon Park, Cabrini Boulevard and Fort Washington Avenue, New York, NY 10040

stroll or morning jog, treat yourself to some yummy bites. Karma Kids Yoga Multiple locations

We’re obsessed with the parent & child yoga classes at Karma Kids Yoga. Get active with your kiddos as you benjoy a yoga session full of relaxation, imagination, and plenty of poses and stretches to practice at home. Classes include Baby Yoga & Developmental Movement, Mom & Baby Yoga, Mom & Baby Pilates, Parent & Child, Storytime, and Family Yoga. There are also Kids Only classes, including a class for kids with special needs. Also check out the Prenatal Yoga, Pilates and Power classes, as well as some of the classes for teens and bigger kids if your little ones are now

not so little! Pre-registration is often required, but drop-ins are welcome- no need to buy a membership or class package unless you want to. Class rates vary per yoga studio, so be sure to keep up to date with the weekly schedule. Humming Puppy 119 West 23rd Street, Level 2, Suite 200, New York, NY 10011

Want to practice yoga without your kiddos? We totally get it- everybody needs some “me time”, especially NYC mamas! We suggest Humming Puppy, the 80-degree yoga studio that quite literally hums with a combination of frequencies to enhance and deepen your experience. Class sizes are limited so that you can have plenty of personal space, and you can even reserve a specific mat when you

What better way to get back in touch with the outdoors than this First Signs of Spring Tour? Bring your family on a walking tour of the Heather Garden in Fort Tryon Park with horticulturist Madeline Byrne. Learn about the plants currently in bloom and all about the Garden’s history. Compare the Heather Garden with the plants found at the New York Botanical Garden, where Byrne has over 15 years of experience. Spring is just around the corner, so get ready by spotting the signs of spring in nature. March 1, Free, 1-2pm. Garden Projects, Games & More at Queens Botanical Garden 42-50 Main Street, Flushing, Queens, NY 11355

There’s a lot going on at Queens Botanical Garden once spring rolls around. If you’re looking for an event for the whole family, March 2020 | New York Family

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Children’s Garden Family Day on March 21, 1-4pm features planting activities, garden crafts, create your own trail mix, a gardenwide scavenger hunt and more. Another family-friendly spring event is the Garden Creatures Community Art Project, a drop-in Saturday workshop that uses paper-mâché and paint to create collaborative sculptures of flowers, mushrooms, insects and other spring-like creatures. Stop by any Saturday in March, 2-4pm. Both of these events are free! It’s also never too early to start thinking about your summer veggies, so register for the Start Your Summer Veggies Workshop on March 15 or 29, 11am-1pm. Recommended for adults and kids ages 10 and up, you’ll take home your own starter garden. Drop-ins welcome upon availability, but sign up to be safe: $20 non-members, $15 members. The Orchid Show: Orchid Evenings 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, NY 10458-5126

Put a spin on your typical winter date nights and have a romantic evening at the New York Botanical Garden to kick off spring. One of New York City’s most spectacular evening outings, The Orchid Show is a kaleidoscopic display of dazzling orchids. The singular style and high energy of the evening performers set the stage alongside signature cocktails and local flavors from the Bronx Night Market. On Saturday nights, you can even make a reservation for a pre-show dinner or light bite at the Hudson Garden Grill. Now in its 18th year, The Orchid Show will surely not disappoint! Orchid Evenings take place on March 14, 20-21, 27-28 and April 3-4, 10-11, 17-18. Entry times are 7, 7:30, 8 & 8:30pm. $39 non-member, $29 members. Macy’s Flower Show: Voyage to Oceanum Herald Square- 151 West 34th Street, New York, NY 10001

For over 70 years, Macy’s has been designing beautiful garden displays for the Macy’s Flower Show, and this year is no different. With 2020’s theme, Macy’s imagines a world that exists way down below — from colorful underwater flowers and coral reefs to mythical creatures from the ocean’s abyss.

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From the moment you walk into Macy’s, you’ll embark upon an exciting under-the-ocean odyssey, discovering long-lost treasures and breathtaking aquatic beauty along the way. Deep dive into spring with this sea of inspiration, opening on March 22, and staying on display through April 5. Take a Closer Look...at Spring! 450 Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225

On weekends in March and April, head to Prospect Park Zoo for Take a Closer Look... at Spring! Celebrate spring, nature and learn how to use your powers of observation to explore the natural world around you. Explore the zoo, play games, enjoy interactive activities and try drawing your observations with your own nature sketch book activity. This is a great way to spend an afternoon or morning with your family as you break into the spring season. Free with Zoo admission, 10am-4pm. The Butterfly Conservatory at the American Museum of Natural History 200 Central Park West, New York, NY 100245102

Open through May 25, this popular annual seasonal exhibit is back with more than 500 free-flying butterflies amid lush tropical plants! Revisit your love of nature this spring by checking out these fluttering, symmetrical creatures. The exhibit features butterflies from three families: Pieridae, Papilionidae and Nymphalidae. Learn all about their colors, patterns, behaviors, environment and more as you make your way through the conservatory. Timed entry daily, every quarter hour from 10:15am5pm. Select a General Admission + One or General Admission + All ticket and choose Butterflies. Kite Flying in Central Park Central Park, New York NY

Bring your kiddos to one of the best NYC parks for a fun day outside. If it’s a breezy day, bring your kite to fly up high in the sky. While kite flying is allowed in Central Park

year-round, windy winter days are definitely not the best for the classic spring/summer activity, unless you really bundle up. We recommend looking ahead at the weather and choosing a warm spring day with plenty of wind to get your kite soaring! Edge 30 Hudson Yards, New York, NY 10001

Explore the outdoors from 1,100 feet high in the air with Edge, opening March 2020 in Hudson Yards! As the highest outdoor sky deck in the Western Hemisphere, Edge combines cutting-edge technology, engineering and architecture to provide panoramic views of the city. With angled glass walls, a glass floor, skyline steps and a champagne bar, Edge will be an experience like no other, and a daring, exhilarating start to your many more outdoor spring adventures. Ticket packages vary. SPRING FASHION Mansur Gavriel Circle Bag

What better way to welcome a new season with Mansur Gavriel Circle bag in blush or coral. No, not a diaper bag or a bag that is going to hold the baseball mitts and the baby wipes. An actual bag that you maybe can fit twelve items in. Yes, something that may be deemed frivolous but is downright gorgeous and says, “hello, spring.” Women’s Trend Report at Nordstrom

Catch the latest in fashion with Nordstrom’s Trend Report. These popular trends embody spring in every way, from color to pattern. Graphic Florals is a perennial favorite, featuring blown-up proportions on floaty, tiered lengths and abstract, bloom-scattered motifs on effortless silhouettes. Pastel Pop reimagines closet must-haves into bursts of color for a timeless, yet modern attitude. Wear one pastel hue or let your accessories pop on a muted palette. These pastel looks mean business. Order online, or head over to the Nordstrom flagship store just south of Central Park! Tenoverten x HATCH Trio

Your nails shouldn’t get left out of the spring fashion makeover. We’re obsessed with this Tenoverten x HATCH Trio collab. Tenoverten, pioneers of the non-toxic nail movement, and HATCH, the premium life-


style brand for clean, mama-safe beauty and timeless clothing for pregnant women and beyond, join forces to launch three shades of nail polish along with in-salon services for new moms and the mom-to-be. These clean and safe brands are also full of life, brightness and sunshine, perfect for the spring. Inside, you’ll find Feisty Mama (magenta), Zen Mama (blush) and Poolside Mama (coral) for $36. If you really want the whole effect, get your HATCH MAMA manicure or pedicure at one of the tenoverten NYC locations: Financial District, Soho, Midtown and Tribeca.

part of their culinary team to research, qualitycheck and liaise with purveyors including farms, local winemakers, craft breweries and greenmarkets. The menu changes daily based on seasonal availability, but PRINT. offers healthy and delectable dishes year-round. And with a beautiful interior design, you’ll surely have a romantic evening.

Ulla Johnson Dress

The Farm on Adderley 1108 Cortelyou Road, Brooklyn, NY 11218

The New York Family staff of moms here are a bit obsessed with Ulla Johnson. This spring, we have our eyes on one of her floral pieces. Her looks, especially one of her flowy dresses — work on a cool day when all you need to add is a fitted blazer. Once the weather breaks pass 70 degrees — it will be no jacket required and just a chic set of sandals. GOODBYE COMFORT FOOD, HELLO SPRING TREATS NYC Ice Cream Shops

Sure, maybe ice cream is technically a summer sweet, but the cold, tasty dessert is also the perfect way to break into spring! There are so many great ice cream shops around NYC, but some of our favorites are: Ample Hills Creamery, Max & Mina’s Ice Cream, Eddie’s Sweet Shop and Sugar Hill Creamery. First Day of Spring at Rita’s Multiple Locations

Every year, the iconic ice and custard shop celebrates the first day of spring with free Italian Ice! On March 19, kick off the first day of spring by bringing your family to Rita’s. Choose from delicious flavors as you take part in this Rita’s Tradition that has a long history of over 25 years. Keep in mind, the line may be long, but free icee treats are definitely worth it. PRINT. 653 11th Avenue, New York, NY 10036

A top date night spot, PRINT. is one of the country’s leading restaurants dedicated to seasonal, sustainable cuisine. With farm fresh ingredients during the growing season and organic and traceable products during the winter, PRINT. totally gives off spring vibes. PRINT. even employs an in-house forager as

Not only a farm-fresh restaurant, The Farm on Adderley also has amazing community partners that make us smile. The Sweet Givings program raises money for charities, outreach programs and other great causes, such as the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital in February in response to the tragic bushfires in Australia. You can even drop off your natural corks, because the restaurant partners with ReCork for natural cork recycling. The art on the walls makes for a gorgeous scenery as you dine, and the menu features healthy, delicious options, including roasted rainbow trout, farm burgers, brunch selections, smaller plates and seasonal cocktails. Bonus points: there’s a kids menu! Tacocina 25 River Street, Brooklyn, NY 11249

Sure, Tacocina may be open year-round, but nobody likes to enjoy their taco outside during the chilly winter months. Get into the spring spirit with Tacocina’s outdoor seating, featuring a view of the Williamsburg waterfront. The Tacocina team presses its own tortillas to-order, using a heritage breed of corn from coastal Oaxaca in southern Mexico. Enjoy creative and classic flavors, chips & guac or salsa, and a focused selection of Mexican beer, canned wine, tequila cocktails and soft drinks. Bring your family for a bite to eat before you conquer the Domino Park playground or elevated walkway, or enjoy the outdoor scene at Tacocina with your co-workers and friends. Post-work margaritas? Yes, please! The Harvest at Spot Dessert Bar 13th Street Marks Place, New York, NY

10003 5th Street Marks Place, New York, NY 10003 11 West 32nd Street Floor 2, New York, NY 10001 39-16 Prince Street, Flushing, Queens, NY 11354

Maybe we’re not entirely done with comfort food this spring, but with The Harvest, you get the comfort taste with a healthy look. This super sweet dessert is made of layers of berries, soft cheesecake, oreo crumbs and earl grey milk tea, served with raspberry sorbet. Healthy? Not so much, but it’s baked into a planter pot with the oreo crumbles on top to mirror dirt, complete with a mint twig sprouting out of it. This treat definitely qualifies for a spring Instagram post. Another favorite is Chocolate Forest: pistachio and apricot crumb covered choco mousse cake with chocolate filling, served with pistachio ice cream. Again, on the outside, this dessert looks like an elegant green forest, which basically cancels out all of the calories on the inside in our mind. RELAX & REJUVENATE The Happinest NYC 170 S 1st Street, Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Interested in meditation and mindfulness sessions to get mentally prepared for the new season? The Happinest NYC offers classes for the whole family. Known for their meditation and mindfulness for kids, the studio also has programming for adults, and specifically for parents. Browse the various classes and register for a drop-in or consider securing a membership. This is a great way for you and your kids to break into spring together. Chillhouse 149 Essex St, New York, NY 10002 75 Varick St, New York, NY 10013

Chill out, kick up your feet and relax at the Chillhouse — the destination for modern self-care. Get a facial, massage, manicure/ pedicure or book a visit to the sauna. Some of our favorites are the “Mama Needs to Chill” prenatal massage therapy and the “Make Me Glow” facial. Book your service online today and get ready for a day of relaxation and rejuvenation for your body and mind. Another plus: there’s a cafe to satisfy all of your salty and sweet cravings! March 2020 | New York Family

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Bold

The Jodie Patterson The writer and activist speaks candidly about parenting, diversity, and learning to adapt

By Hester Aba

J

odie Patterson is a writer and activist, raising five children in New York City. Jodie’s memoir, The Bold World, which recently came out in paperback, lovingly and unflinchingly discusses her childhood and her own experience of being parented, as preparation for the challenges she has faced as a parent herself. Jodie’s awakening as an activist grew from the experience of one of her children identifying as transgender: her son, Penelope. We talked to Jodie about her fascinating life, and her tips for parents facing unforeseeable and unique challenges. We loved reading your memoir, The Bold World, which shares the story of your family history, your experience growing up in New York, and your life as a mother to five very different children. One of the main lessons your parents imparted is “to think in numbers” when it comes to the experience of being Black. What does that mean to you? As a black person, I’m often made to feel that there aren’t many of “us” out there. That I’m only one of a few. That I’m the strange minority in the room. My parents taught me differently. They taught me to think collectively, to link arms with anyone who shared a similar perspective of the world and shared the obstacles we experience as Black people. So brown folks

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all over the world became “Our People”. Simply because all brown people experience racism and oppression in some form. Thinking collectively made me feel powerful — even as a little girl I felt like I was part of a warrior tribe. Whenever you link yourself to lineage and to a global collective, you center yourself. I’ve tried to pass that on to my children: You are the prototype. When you tell Black children, girls, queer kids “you are the prototype” it’s radical — because everything else in society is telling them they don’t count. You attended the Convent of the Sacred Heart on the Upper East side, where you had the experience of being one of only a few African-American students. You then attended an Historically Black College (HBCU), and chose a multicultural school for your children. How did you make decisions about race and education in New York City? I look for schools that reflect how we identify — which is very diverse and layered — so it’s an intense process choosing the right school. In my family we speak Twi from Ghana, English, Swiss German, and French. We are cis, trans, gender queer, straight, and a few things in between. I also consider us a feminist family. Our parents and grandparents are from America, West Africa, Switzerland and Canada. I look for schools that support and reflect all those identities. Essentially our schools combine academic rigor and


Yumi Matsuo

March 2020 | New York Family

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cultural awareness. It takes a very aware and capable school to meet our needs! You mention that your father wanted you to be able to “flow” from one situation to another; to be comfortable with rich and poor, uptown and downtown, Black and White. How do you think we can best teach this skill to our children? Adaptability is one of the hardest skills to learn. It’s also a key element in our children’s life success. Through practice children can build an inner ability to adapt to change. At some point I had to allow my kids to enter all spaces, not just the pretty ones — sparring rings, neighborhood basketball courts, country clubs, suburban, urban and visiting rural friends. It’s important to take your children into different neighborhoods, visit friends across town, experience a meal in an environment that is very different from their own so that crossing borders become no big deal. Your oldest son was accepted into your family at age 19 as a “man-boy”. How did you open your heart and your family to a teenager? Do you have any advice for parents who might be adopting older children? Nain and I met when he was just completing high school. We were immediately drawn to each other and over time developed an unbreakable bond. It was a connection that’s hard to put into words, because it sounds so reckless maybe: You meet a kid, you invite him into your home, you become family. But the best way to describe it is that we ‘chose each other’. And because we met when he was 19, there are many elements of his life that I don’t understand and dont know. And vice versa. We take each other as we are today and not how we wish we were. For me this is a new approach to parenting because I’m not raising him, I’m sharing life with him. You have a transgender son, Penelope, and your account of his pain as he tried to understand and express his identity is heartbreaking. How did you find the wisdom to come to a place of understanding yourself? Malcolm Gladwell says it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert, so I researched, read, investigated on the internet, went to gender conferences all over the country and sat quietly in the back and listened, joined parents in discussion groups, sat with doctors, read more books… It was a year of deep learning of the basics around gender variance. And then eventually I put all that knowledge into my pocket and I just lived, experienced and enjoyed life with my son. The deepest learning came from staying in close proximity to the very person I was trying to understand better. The books and research took me out of the dark, but the real shift came from being with Penelope.

Yumi Matsuo

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What resources would you recommend that parents of trans or gender non-conforming children tackle first as part of their 10,000 hours? The Human Rights Campaign is an enormous


source of information. It’s the largest LGBT organization and has made a commitment to protect trans identifying people. Within the organization, there is a group of parents — Parents for Transgender Equality Council — that gather information, offer support, influence policy, debunk negative stereotypes, and reshape the narrative one school, one person, one elected official at a time. They are phenomenal! I also really respect the work being done at The Ackerman Institutes Gender and Family Project. Their peer and parent groups saved my family from sadness and confusion. They also have great educators who train schools to be more gender inclusive and safe.

medication, from cruel practices such as “conversion therapy”. When I look at all my five kids at the dinner table, I see two very different Americas: One for my cisgender kids and another for my trans kid. That’s unacceptable. What I’m focusing on in our near future is policy that establishes one America for all my kids.

As a family, you attended Aranu-tiq, an overnight camp for transgender and gender non-conforming kids. What did you learn there? It’s classic camp, so it’s about being in nature and experiencing the freedom of the outdoors. We learned to rock climb, swim, hike, sleep in the elements, all very basic camp activities. But the beauty of this camp is that nothing is gendered, language is neutral, bodies aren’t judged and there is a respect for all the ways people identify.. My first time going I was amazed at how many ways there are to identify! Countless ways. It was eye opening.

What is next for you in your activism and work? I was recently elected Chair of the Board of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. I’m very proud of the work in front of me: How do we empower parents to champion for their gender non-conforming kids? How do we help make HBCU college campuses safe and appealing to our LGBT students? How do we combat AIDS in the south and get PrEP into the hands of all people living with AIDS? How do we unite the faith community and the queer community so that we’re working together? What does LGBT acceptance look like globally? How can we elect a pro-equality president? Big questions that need strong programs and even stronger budgets… But this is the work that excites me these days!

You mention that Penelope’s siblings all had their individual ways of accepting his trans status. How did you guide them through this? We talk out ideas, and “Lab Out” big concepts — sometimes for hours at a time. Basically, anytime we don’t agree on big issues, we sit down and Lab it out. The rules are that whoever has the proverbial microphone gets to speak for as long as they need, you can’t interrupt and can only speak your truth. So my 13 year old scientist says, “I respect you Penelope, and I’ll always use your preferred pronouns. But I don’t believe in trans. It’s not scientifically proven. And scientifically speaking, physiologically speaking, you are a girl.” Penelope might then say, “Trans is a fact. And this is the way god has made me”. My 13 Year Old might counter that God is not proven either. They’ve been discussing both God and Gender for years and they still don’t see eye to eye. For us, the goal isn’t to agree, it is to discuss and disagree with decorum. Sometimes we discuss big ideas for so long that we become bored and the ideas become no big deal and we eventually decide to go play basketball instead.

Jodie’s memoir The Bold World is available wherever books are sold. To keep up with Jodie’s adventures, follow her on Instagram @jodiepatterson.

Jodi’s Favorites I wish I had more time for… A pedicure I always feel saner after… An hour-long run in my neighborhood while listening to Drake Favorite place to grab a bite to eat with the kids? Saraghina in Bed Stuy Brooklyn Favorite date night spot? Indochine in Lower Manhattan

One of the biggest challenges you talk about in your book of being a trans parent has been dealing with the rigidity of authority, from using pronouns with doctors, to being stopped at the Canadian border. As an activist, what do you hope will change in the future? I feel very optimistic about individuals. What I’m worried about and where I see the biggest need for change is in our policies. Our policies need to protect trans kids from school bullying, from expensive

Favorite dessert spot? Brooklyn Baby Cakes on Nostrand for their red velvet cupcakes Favorite park? Prospect, of course Favorite spring activity with the fam? RV road tripping. We’ve been known to pile seven people plus our pup and a whole lotta groceries into an RV, drive until we’re tired and camp for a few days. It’s wonderful.

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real estate

Hot Properties Thirteen great places for family living in the city

By Olga Uzunova

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inding the best living space in NYC has gotten easier with these amazing properties that go the extra mile when it comes to accommodating families. Whether you are looking for a living space with a rooftop, a state of the art children’s playroom, or an apartment building located surrounded by fantastic school choices, here are 13 great properties you won’t regret checking out if you’re new to NYC or moving within the city.

Downtown Manhattan: The Broad Exchange Building Neighborhood: Financial District Address: 25 Broad Street

The Broad Exchange Building, once the largest and most prestigious office building in New York City, is now a luxury condominium that launched sales earlier this year. The Broad Exchange is a pet and childfriendly building in the busy and popular Financial District. When the weather permits, enjoy the scenic rooftop space for fun parties, the shared outdoor kitchen, and BBQs with friends and family. Kids will love the outdoor playground and enjoy the indoor playroom featuring interactive play areas, educational toys and opportunities for making art. Downtown Manhattan: 77Greenwich Neighborhood: Financial District Address: 77 Greenwich

This luxury highrise is located in the heart of FiDi and has been designed as a safe haven for families who need a cozy nest in the bustle of the city. Cloud Club on the 77th floor is a zen space designed as the ultimate retreat from the city noise with a landscaped rooftop terrace with 360-degree views. Families can enjoy the observation deck on the 42nd floor with its outdoor kitchen and BBQ grills. Kids have space to create, interact, and play in the children’s playroom with

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The Kent, on the Upper East Side includes Camp Kent, an interactive indoor-outdoor playroom. enhanced protections on the windows and other potential risk areas. 77 Greenwich is two blocks away from Battery Plaza which is perfect for family outdoor activities and walks along the Hudson river shore. Kids can enjoy the SeaGlass Carousel Amusement park and breathtaking views of the Statue of Liberty. Glenwood - multiple locations www.glenwoodnyc.com

Make use of your uptown or downtown Glenwood building’s amenity spaces. Each location provides a family-friendly environment perfect for growing families. Depending on location, Glenwood buildings offer playrooms, pools, and gyms which cater to the busy New York family. Downtown rush, Midtown entertainment, or Upper Manhattan family environment take your pick, and Glenwood’s various portfolio of upscale apartment options will satisfy your needs.

Brooklyn: One Clinton Neighborhood: Brooklyn Heights Address: One Clinton St www.oneclintonbk.com

One Clinton is an architectural beauty at the center of historic Brooklyn Heights. With direct access to Cadman Plaza Park, Whitman Park and a 10 min walk from the DUMBO area, this apartment building is perfect for families. Amenities include a sky lounge with full entertaining kitchen, bar, and terrace, children’s center with indoor and outdoor active play areas and a screening room. A state-of-the-art branch of the Brooklyn Public Library will anchor the ground floor of One Clinton and presents a unique facility for book-lover residents. Manhattan: The Hayworth Neighborhood: Upper East Side Address: 1289 Lexington Ave thehayworthnyc.com

In The Hayworth, you can find both


starting with Dig Inn right next door. The subway is a few steps away (4, 5 and 6 lines) and the local Whole Foods is a five minute walk away. Manhattan: The Kent Neighborhood: Upper East Side Address: 200 East 95th Street thekentnyc.com

(Top) Incredible views at 77 Greenwich in the Financial District. (Above) A spacious layout at 45-45 Center Boulevard in Long Island City. your family home and a center for the community. The world-class 92Y, in partnership with the Hayworth, will provide your children with music, acting, and drawing classes in the cheerful children’s room. Apartments’ interiors are designed by Lee Mindel of SheltonMindel. Each

residence features an expansive gallery wall and has loft-like proportions with grand windows that let all the sunshine in your home. The elegant oak parquet floors are stunning, and the open kitchens are big enough for the family brunch. If you decide to eat out there are plenty of options nearby

Residents of all ages will enjoy spacious apartments and a full suite of amenities, including The Sound Lounge, a music practice room designed by famous musician Lenny Kravitz, and Camp Kent, an interactive indoor-outdoor playroom. This coveted location is surrounded by everyday conveniences, including a three-story Whole Foods Market and small bodegas. Walking distance to the Museum Mile, the 92nd Street Y, and Asphalt Green make The Kent a perfect location for families. A big plus for parents looking for upstanding education choices, The Kent is surrounded by some of New York’s York’s best private and public schools- PS 77, The Hunter College Elementary School, The Windward School Manhattan Lower and Middle SchoolsDillerQuaile School of Music. The Kent is located between Carl Schurz Park and Central Park, with direct access to the Second Avenue subway (N,Q lines). March 2020 | New York Family

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real estate

Manhattan: The Astor Neighborhood: Upper West Side Address: 235 W 75th St www.theastor.com

The Astor is more than a building. The Astor family were known as “the landlords of New York,” and in the 1920s owned as much as one-twentieth of NYC’s real estate. This pre-war building has been given a makeover, preserving the classic exterior and combining it with a modern interior. The Astor benefits from easy access to Central Park and Riverside Park, the two green spaces of the area. Located near Broadway’s theaters, performance venues, delicious restaurants, and the most famous museums in the city, The Astor is in the center of it all. The building has a 24-hour attended lobby, a fitness station, a children’s playroom, and summer gardens overlooking Broadway. Manhattan: The Chatsworth Neighborhood: Upper West Side Address: 72nd Street and Riverside Park thechatsworth.com

Spacious 1 to 5 bedroom apartments offer easy proximity to New York’s best restaurants and leisure activities. When you want to get cozy at home, the luxury Chatsworth residence can accommodate all your family’s needs with a fitness center, a playroom for the children and even a yoga studio. For those living with their furry friends at The Chatsworth, you have the luxury of ample green space, river views, dog runs, and petfriendly restaurants on the Upper West Side. Manhattan: The Belnord Neighborhood: Upper West Side Address: 225 W. 86th St thebelnord.com/

The clean and modern Belnord stands out amongst its limestone sisters on the UWS. Extensive views over the courtyard, the cityscape, and the sky will inspire you every day. The Belnord occupies a prime location near some of the best schools and leisure areas- Riverdale park is two blocks away as Central Park is 10 minutes walk. On the south corner of the building is the subway stop for 1 and 2 express trains. Local gourmet restaurants The Mermaid Inn and Talia’s Steakhouse will be great for your special occasions and the AMC 84th Street theater is a nearby option for an afternoon movie day with the family. Manhattan: Fifteen Hudson Yards Neighborhood: Chelsea

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The Broad Exchange Building in the Financial District includes an outdoor playground and an indoor playroom. Address: 15 Hudson Yards livehudsonyards.com/15-hudson-yards

Fifteen Hudson Yards has awesome facilities for adults, including a full concierge service which will help get you the best dinner reservations around town, in-residence dining and butler service. They also have amazing facilities for the kiddos, including the sun-filled Imagination Center. This communal fun and games space is located on the 50th floor along with wellness spots and a beauty bar. The 51st floor is dedicated to entertainment with pool tables, club room, sound-proof screening and performance room, golf club lounge, wine storage, and tasting room. The neighborhood boasts exciting and inspiring new playgrounds at Bella Abzug Park and Chelsea Park. Also to be found in the area are superb schools, great pediatric care, and gardens to explore. Roosevelt Island: The Octagon Neighborhood: Roosevelt Island Address: 888 Main Street octagonnyc.com

The Octagon on Roosevelt Island is just ten minutes away from Manhattan, and offers magical views over the skyline of the city. With a freshly renovated fitness center, yoga room, entertainment center, and pool, your family will be spoiled for choice for activities. Other family-friendly facilities include a playroom, waterfront playground and a daycare center. The Octagon also offers a free shuttle bus service to local public transport to allow you to easily get to work and play!

Long Island City: Corte Neighborhood: Long Island City Address: 21-30 44th Drive www.cortenyc.com

The residences of CORTE offer a sanctuary in vibrant Long Island City. Corte’s supercool and modern architecture makes a real statement, and you’ll love the floor-to-ceiling windows in each unit. Great family amenities include stroller storage, a playroom, and the landscaped communal roof deck. The grassy open terrasse boasts amazing views of the city and is great for family gatherings and weekend outdoor activities. Helpful additional features include a fully equipped gym, resident’s lounge, and parking. Long Island City: 4545 Center Boulevard Neighborhood: Long Island City Address: 4545 Center Blvd tfc.com/residential/4545-center-blvd/ new-york-luxury-no-fee-apartmentsand-retail-spaces

4545 Center Boulevard is nestled on the Long Island City waterfront with iconic sights of Downtown Manhattan. Located only a few minutes from Midtown, 4545 Center Boulevard is close to Gantry Plaza State Park, surrounded by 12 acres of green space, the Queens West Sports Field, an outdoor sports park, and nearby schools- 1st Ward School, Saint Marys, and The Riverview School. With multiple public transportation options like the MTA, LIRR, and NY Waterway, 4545 Center Boulevard offers the best of suburban living, in the heart of the city.


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An Ode to NICU Moms The resilience of parents with babies in neonatal intensive care

Story and photoGRAPHY By Laura Vladimirova

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arents of babies who have a stay in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) face a higher risk of developing perinatal mood disorders (PMADs), like anxiety and depression, and they may be at greater risk for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Evelyn Evelyn, an NYC-based psychotherapist who specializes in perinatal wellness, knows firsthand how challenging life for NICU parents can be. She has supported plenty of clients whose babies came earlier than expected. It was only when her own son was born at 26 weeks that she began to understand the heartache and strength it takes to be a NICU parent. Henry weighed one pound and ten ounces when he was born and spent a total of 121 days in the NICU. “The first few days were pure grief,” said Evelyn. “Then, guilt. All I could think was, ‘Why did my body do this? What happened here is my fault.” But after some time, Evelyn leaned into the idea that she had to be present for her son. She learned that she had to be present with the baby that was there. “He’s a baby. This isn’t the pregnancy I thought I was going to have or the baby I thought I was going to have, but I want to have a relationship with him now, with my baby,” said Evelyn. There are so many moments of uncertainty, worry, and the unknown for a new family with a baby in the NICU. There is also something else: Resilience. Resilience can be the glue that holds a new family together during such a scary and delicate time. Resilience doesn’t look the same for every family. For Evelyn and her husband, Bryce, they went into what Evelyn calls “doer mode.” Her world got small. She shut out anything that didn’t immediately have to

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Evelyn

Evelyn’s son Henry was born at 26 weeks and weighed one pound and ten ounces. He spent 121 days in the NICU.


Belinda

Belinda and Bryan had originally planned for a home birth and found the hospital experience frustrating and exhausting.

do with her kids. She poured herself into pumping, visiting Henry as often as possible, and keeping up a routine with her oldest son, James. This was the best way she knew how to be fully present for her baby, Acceptance was also key for Evelyn. “Acceptance helped us keep going. Whenever we got fresh news, it brought up a rollercoaster of emotions all over again.

First, grief, then being angry and then being present again,” said Evelyn. Belinda For Belinda and Bryan, they found their coping strategy to be something entirely different. After several unsatisfactory appointments with an obstetrician earlier in their pregnancy, they decided on a

homebirth and hired homebirth midwives. At 38 weeks, after a visit to the hospital to monitor Belinda, the couple were told their son’s heartbeat was decelerating. They went home to consult with their midwife and did everything they could to try and go into labor spontaneously. After some time, their midwife gave them the same news: their unborn baby’s heartbeat was decelerating. They checked back into the hospital. Because they had planned a homebirth, they had no prior knowledge of labor and delivery in a hospital setting. Belinda recalls that the staff was not compassionate to her or Bryan. They ignored most of her questions, didn’t explain things to her husband when he would ask for clarification, disregarded their requests for a more gentle birth plan, and never told them what was actually going on with their baby. Many of the procedures she received were not discussed or consented to. Belinda and Bryan felt vulnerable and did not trust that the staff would be any more helpful or volunteer any information. In what was already a profoundly confusing time, Belinda had to make an incredible effort to advocate for herself and her baby. It wasn’t until 18 hours after the birth of her son that she had any information from the medical staff about what was going on. Her son was in NICU, and it was unclear how long he would stay. In spite of hazy protocol, she demanded to see him. In the end, Baloo spent a total of nine days in the NICU due to blood sugar issues. Many times, she recounts, they were the only parents in the NICU. Parents of other fragile babies had no choice but to go back to work, and some babies were visited only by social services personnel. “Resilience for us was defiance. We knew we needed to get out of there, no matter what. We’re leaving together, all three of us,” said Belinda of her strategy. “It’s exhausting when you set up your world like that, it’s tiring.” Belinda found herself going back and forth to the hospital multiple times a day to pump and feed her baby. It became so draining that she would look for empty hallways and spaces to sleep. The hospital staff wouldn’t allow her to stay, and she would cycle through going back and forth all over again. Belinda was healing from a cesarean birth. “Everybody was doing the best they could. I can’t imagine being a doctor in that kind of environment. Everyone is underresourced, just doing the best they can. It is March 2020 | New York Family

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stressful all the way around,” said Belinda. “This model wasn’t set up for us.” Stephanie For Stephanie, the circumstances of her baby’s NICU stay were known in advance. After years of trying to conceive and multiple attempts at IVF, Stephanie and Greg were pregnant with twins. Things changed abruptly when they found out their twin girls had Twin-to-Twin Transfusion syndrome, a significant complication wherein the twins share a placenta. They underwent a procedure, which unfortunately resulted in devastating news, Emmy, one of the twins, did not make it. Then, as a result of the procedure, Stephanie’s water broke. She was only in her second trimester. Stephanie was admitted to the hospital and spent 11 weeks under observation in the antepartum unit. The plan was for Stephanie to give birth at 33 weeks, and she knew that NICU was a given. Yet, according to Stephanie, it wasn’t just the prior knowledge that she found to be a source of comfort. Instead, she relied heavily on a community of parents who had been in similar circumstances. An already social person, Stephanie joined several Facebook groups of parents who experienced Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes and TTTS. She posted there and on her social media accounts. She would ask questions and get feedback from people who had lived this experience. In an unprecedented time in her life, instead of shutting down, Stephanie opened up. She made mom friends in the groups and in the antepartum unit, friends that she keeps up with regularly to this day. After her baby Mollie was born, Stephanie continued to rely on internet communities, friends, NICU staff, and other mothers in the NICU for guidance and support. Her daughter spent two weeks in the NICU. During that time, she struggled with

Stephanie

Stephanie found support from a community of parents who had been in similar circumstances.

recovery, pumping, mastitis, and visiting Mollie daily. “Nothing can prepare you, but knowing ahead of time helped find the resources I needed,” said Stephanie. “The other hard part is to make sure you’re eating and taking care of yourself. You have to get up for a bit, go downstairs and get some air. You have to figure out how other people can help you, how they can support you, like get you food or remind you to take a shower.” All three mothers said that knowing information about their child’s clinical condition and what to expect next is crucial. “I wanted to know what my rights were and what are some hacks here to help me get through this,” said Belinda. Evelyn would get to the hospital as

Organizations that support NICU parents Hand to Hold: handtohold.org Today is a Good Day: todayisagoodday.org Postpartum Support International: postpartum.net The Motherhood Center: themotherhoodcenter.com Preemie-L: preemie-l.org March of Dimes:marchofdimes.org

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frequently as possible she didn’t miss the neonatologists and pediatricians doing rounds. Stephanie had a notebook with her at every visit, writing every detail she could down and leaving questions for the nurses. Long-term effects All three mothers also did their best just to be new moms. Evelyn read books to Henry and sang songs to him. Stephanie received a care package from a NICU awareness and support organization called Today is a Good Day, which provided a journal, hand-knit baby items like a blanket, and other useful things to help her normalize Mollie’s NICU stay. Belinda talked to her son and sat with him doing skin-to-skin as often as possible. For all three mothers, the residual effects of life after the NICU exist. They range from a completely new and learned understanding of what patient advocacy really means to hosting in-person support groups for parents of babies with special needs or even continuing a strong presence online for any other expecting parents with babies in the NICU. And while resilience or coping looks entirely different for everyone, the ability to be present from day-to-day in the NICU takes an enormous amount of strength, courage, and grit, even if it doesn’t feel like it at the time.


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Volunteering With Your Family in New York City

A borough-by-borough list shows you all the best places where you can give something back

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ew York City volunteering is something near and dear to all of us here at New York Family. Volunteering in NYC as a family is even better. It helps teach kids the value of what they have and why it’s important to help those who may not have as much. It also helps build strong family bonds as you work together as a family to do good. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, giving back spreads goodwill and joy to the community. In a city as large as New York, finding ways to volunteer as a family can be a little difficult. It’s the double-edged sword of New York City living. Everything is here, but that means EVERYTHING is here. Luckily, we’ve compiled a list of the best places for New York City volunteering as a family. This borough by borough list will help you find the perfect way to give back.

39 Broadway, 10th Floor, 212-566-7855

Manhattan

God’s Love We Deliver - SoHo 166 Avenue of the Americas

City harvest - Midtown 6 E 32nd St., 646-412-0600

City Harvest’s farmers market-style distribution centers provide fresh produce to those in need across all five boroughs of the city. Along with other activities, they promote more food being used and less waste. City Harvest offers volunteer opportunities for both adults and youth. Ages: Contact volunteer services new York Cares - Financial District 65 Broadway, 19th Floor, 212-228-5000

New York Cares is an excellent vehicle for giving back with your family. Children ages 14 and up can join up with an adult group leader for a variety of activities, while familyfriendly projects are available for everyone to take part in, even the younger kids. Ages: All ages Food Bank for new York City - Financial District

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This organization provides support to the underserved across New York. To help them with their many charitable endeavors, they accept volunteers of all ages. Even kids as young as 5 are welcome for the organization’s Weekend Repack to help sort donated and bulk items into specific categories. Ages: Five years old and up toys for tots - Across Manhattan 888-848-2596

One of the easiest ways to participate in New York City volunteering is to do it on your own. Parents and their children can give back together by donating toys to Toys for Tots. Take the kids and make a day of purchasing requested toys and donating them to your local Toys for Tots drop-off center. Ages: All ages

Offering a variety of ways for families to do good as a family, God’s Love We Deliver offers all manner of charitable opportunities from seasonal to year-round. Children 16 and over can help with activities like packing and serving. Those 18 and older can make meal deliveries. Meanwhile, children younger than 16 can participate in Crafting Love projects like making beaded bracelets and birthday and holiday cards. Ages: All ages new York Common Pantry - East Harlem 8 East 109th St., 917-720-9700

Giving back as a family by volunteering at New York Common Pantry is a great way to do good. This pantry depends on volunteer help to allow its continued distribution of thousands of meals yearly. Children ages 14 and up are welcome and can help with the distribution of pantry items, meal service, or

pantry item packing. Ages: 14 and up Friends of Governors Island - Financial District 10 South Street, Slip 7

Friends of Governors Island only accepts volunteers who are 18 or over, so this New York City volunteering opportunity is limited to those with grown children. It’s a wonderful way to help one of the most beautiful spots in NYC stay beautiful. Ages: 18 and over Food Bank for new York City - Financial District 39 Broadway, 10th Floor, 212-566-7855

Based in Manhattan, the Food Bank for New York City provides food and other services to those in need across the entirety of New York City. Opportunities to volunteer range from helping with stocking to customized volunteer experiences, with many opportunities for children to help. It’s the perfect outlet for giving back as a family. Ages: All ages Project happy - Lenox Hill 695 Park Avenue, Rm. 1023W

Project Happy focuses on improved physical and mental health along with improved social skills and self-confidence for New York City children and young adults with disabilities. Volunteers 13 years and up act as camp counselors, helping with a variety of programs. Ages: 13 and over Partnerships for Parks - Across Manhattan 212-360-1399

Partnerships for Parks is devoted to helping neighborhood parks thrive. A diverse network of dedicated park volunteers continues to expand, making it possible to do more to


restore and revive parks across the city. This joint program of City Parks Foundation and the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation is always looking for more volunteers. Ages: All ages

the JASA is committed to empowering and embracing the elderly community of New York. Ages: All ages

Jewish Association for Services for the Aged - Garment District 247 West 37th Street, New York, 212273-5200

Another excellent resource for New York City volunteering as a family, the Carter Burden Network offers a variety of services to seniors and their families, including grocery shopping, computer training, and more. The organization accepts both adult and youth volunteers. Ages: All ages

Accepting volunteers of all ages, the JASA offers a variety of services that help improve the lives of seniors across the city. Offering everything from meals to legal services,

Carter Burden Network - Lenox Hill 415 E. 73rd St., 212-423-9665

American Red Cross - Across Manhattan 202-303-4498

The American Red Cross is always looking for more volunteers across all five boroughs, and they can use the help of almost anyone at any age. Families with kids 13 and older can help with mailings, handing out flyers, fundraising events, and more. Ages: 13 and older Grow NYC Greenmarkets - Two Bridges & Gramercy Park 100 Gold St., E 17th St &, Union Square W, 212-788-7476

Grow NYC Greenmarkets are throughout March 2020 | New York Family

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New York City where families can donate their gently used clothing, shoes, and textiles. Practice giving back as a family by going through closets and donating items that you and your kids never use. Ages: All ages Brooklyn Citymeals on-Wheels - Murray Hill 355 Lexington Ave., 212-687-1234

Providing food and company to housebound elderly across New York City, Citymeal ON-Wheels is a volunteer group accepting volunteers of all ages to help hand-deliver meals. Ages: All ages Gallop nyC - Forest Hills 88-03 70th Road, 646-233-4507

If your children are 16 and over, and you love horses, Gallop NYC is an excellent opportunity for Volunteering in New York City as a family. This group offers therapeutic horseback riding to children and adults with developmental, emotional, social, and physical challenges. Volunteers can help in a variety of ways, and training is provided. Ages: 16 and over Greenpoint Church Hunger Program Greenpoint 136 Milton St.

The Greenpoint hunger program is dedicated to providing food to those in need through their soup kitchen and food pantry. They accept volunteers of all ages so giving back together is easy and rewarding for families. Ages: 14 and up Partnerships for Parks - Across Brooklyn 830 Fifth Ave., 212-360-1399

Partnerships for Parks is a city-wide initiative aimed at restoring and maintaining neighborhood parks so everyone can have green spaces to enjoy. Ages: All ages Second Chance Saturdays - Park Slope 95 Prospect Park West, 718-965-8951

Hosted at Grand Army Plaza in Prospect Park, Second Chance Saturdays is a great opportunity for giving back together with your kids. Have them clean out their closets while you do the same, and then donate your gently used clothing to help those in need. Ages: All ages

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QueenS Citymeals on-Wheels - Across Queens 212-687-1234

Citymeals On-Wheels provides food and companionship to New York City’s elderly. The organization is a great one for giving back because they accept volunteers of all ages. Ages: All ages Grow nyC Greenmarkets - Wallabout Washington Park &, Dekalb Ave., 212788-7900

Grow NYC Greenmarkets are throughout New York City where families can donate their gently used clothing, shoes, and textiles. Practice giving back as a family by going through closets and donating items that you and your kids never use. Ages: All ages Partnerships for Parks - Across Queens 212-360-1399

Partnerships for Parks is a city-wide initiative aimed at restoring and maintaining neighborhood parks so everyone can have green spaces to enjoy. Ages: All ages Queens Botanical Garden - Flushing 43-50 Main Street, 718-886-3800

Queens Botanical Garden makes giving back as a family easy. Their routine volunteer opportunities are made to accommodate ages ranging from 14 to adults, while younger children can help out at seasonal community

days if they’re accompanied by an adult. Opportunities range from planting to office work. Ages: All ages Gallop nyC - Forest Hills 88-03 70th Road, 646-233-4507

As previously mentioned, Gallop NYC offers a variety of opportunities for New York City volunteering for people 16 and up. That service is focused on helping people with physical, mental, and emotional developmental roadblocks. Ages: 16 and up Salvation Army - Across Queens 280 Riverdale Ave., 718-345-7050

Giving back as a family is as easy as literally giving as a family. Go through your closets at home — with the kids’ help — and find any clothing or other items you don’t use and donate to the Salvation Army. Ages: All ages

So Many opportunities for new york City Volunteering As a Family All it takes is a click or a phone call to start teaching your kids the importance of giving back. Most of the organizations we just listed accept children of various ages, so it should be easy to find a way for New York City volunteering that fits your family. It’s better to give than to receive so use this list to help you find the joy of giving back as a family!


2020

! w o N Vote

Vote for Your

Favorite Family-Friendly Local Spots and Businesses in New York Family’s Family Favorite Awards!

head to : newyorkfamily.com/family-favorites-2020 to vote!

• Family Fun • Health & Wellness • • Style & Shopping • Food • Activities & Learning • UP TOWN & MIDTOWN M ANHAT TAN , DOWNTOWN M ANHAT TAN , BROOKLYN , QUEENS & THE BRONX March 2020 | New York Family

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neighborhood guide

Family-Friendly Upper West Side This bustling neighborhood is chock full of museums, shops, playgrounds, and restaurants By Olga UzUnOva

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he Upper West Side is a great place to raise children or to have a family day out! Since it’s right next to Central Park, it’s away from the Midtown Manhattan fuss, and at the same time, close enough to all the family-friendly places you definitely want to visit! Please browse through our must-see guide of the Upper West Side and have a blast with the family.

American Museum of Natural History 200 Central Park West

The most significant advantage of the Upper West Side is the American Museum of Natural History! This is the place where you can enjoy time with your children night or day. Whether you visit interesting exhibits or spend a night with the polar bears, the AMNH always has new and exciting programs for the whole family. Central Park 14 East 60th St

It doesn’t need explaining why Central Park is the best outdoor place to spend time with your children. Fresh air, multiple playgrounds, and open stage performances are only a small portion of all the familyfriendly outdoor activities in the park, not to mention sports and games you can play with the little ones. Central Park has nurtured New Yorkers’ need for nature for more than 150 years and is still the best place to see animals and go bird watching. Children’s Museum of Manhattan 212 W 83rd St

Children’s Museum of Manhattan is dedicated to “helping the youngest citizens grow and develop into their best selves.” All activities in the museums are organized around the arts, sciences, and humanities, with the sole mission of educating kids in a fun and friendly way. Visitors are welcomed to experience more than 80 workshops, classes, and performances free with admission to the Museum each week. DiMenna Children’s History MuseumNew-York Historical Society 170 Central Park West

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Children’s Museum of Manhattan

The Children’s Museum of Manhattan is full of interactive exhibits. Explore history with your children through the DiMenna Children’s History Museum, where 350 years of cultural heritage and American history are introduced through digital games and activities. Targeted towards children between 8 and 13, the Museum focuses on the life stories of youngsters who once lived in New York City. Famous figures like Alexander Hamilton, the immigrant who became a U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, and James McCune Smith, the first African American medical doctor, will inspire both you and your child. Symphony Space 2537 Broadway at 95th St

Thalia Book Club Camp, All Write! Arts education programs, Global Arts Class, or Cultural Field Trip — the choice is yours! Symphony Space provides all kinds of activities to develop your kids’ interests and passions. If you are up for some weekend family fun, don’t miss Saturday’s shows. The Just Kidding performing arts series offers a mix

of bilingual concerts. Reggae tone music, puppetry shows, and dances will enrich your children’s cultural experience while having so much fun. Symphony Space’s mission is to provide you and your family with more magical moments that harness the power of the arts. Vital Theater Company 410 W 42nd St

This community of actors, dancers, and singers believe that a shared theatrical adventure profoundly influences children’s lives. These artists strive to create engaging stories that invite the young audience to ask questions, make discoveries, and get involved in discussions. Lincoln Center Lincoln Center Plaza

The Mecca for all arts. Lincoln Center, is full of Dance, theater, and musical activities designed especially for young viewers. Programs in English and Spanish show the beauty of diversity and create safe spaces for


Central Park is jam-packed with outdoor delights for all ages. self-expression. Organizers build a musicloving community for kids by igniting their imagination with various activities. This season encourages kids to discover the world and enjoy international performers. Follow #LCKids to keep up with the latest LC events. 77th/79th Street Greenmarket Columbus Avenue & 77th St

Located behind the American Museum of Natural History, the Greenmarket stretches from 78th to 81st Street. Get your all-natural produce every Sunday for a well-balanced diet. From grass-fed beef to homemade apple cider, and a full assortment of fruit and vegetables, you can find everything you need. Plus, visiting the Greenmarket with your kids is a great way to introduce them to natural methods of growing food.

Amorino 414 Amsterdam Ave

Want to try the best Italian ice-cream and macaroons in the area? Go to Amorino gelato shop and indulge your senses. Fresh ingredients, exotic fruits, and natural flavors will make your children want more. Amorino started as a small corner shop in Italy and grew into an international chain that we know today. Amorino’s philosophy is based on the use of Non-GMO natural products to ensure the best tasting dessert for its customers. The Baseball Center 202 W 74th Street

Are your kids interested in sports? Professional athletes will commit to inspiring young players and creating a team environment. Your child will enjoy the tight-knit community while building healthy habits.

PIER i CAFE West 70th St in Riverside Park South

Hippo Playground W. 91st St &, Riverside Dr, Riverside Park

Open-air, scenic river views, and a children’s menu are just a few reasons to choose Pier i Cafe. This seasonal outdoor café is located on the shore of the Hudson River in Riverside Park South. The coffee bar is basically in the park, where children can play as you sip your favorite latte. Enjoy the casual atmosphere and fresh food with friends and family from April to November.

Another excellent place for active children is the Hippo Playground. Try various games and water activities to teach the little ones about these semi-aquatic, herbivorous animals. Hippo Playground provides a relaxation station and park house, swings with safety surfacing, wooden play facilities and slides, different play equipment, a spray shower, and picnic tables. The large hill on

the east side of the playground is a popular sledding area for neighborhood children during the winter. Good Enough to Eat 520 Columbus Ave.

This all-natural diner is proud to serve its customers “Made From Scratch” meals, which means they never buy anything premade – just Non-GMO ingredients. All soups and sauces are fresh and locally made by the Kitchen Team. Good Enough to Eat is famous for its homemade bakery-bread, biscuits, cakes, pies, and cookies straight out the oven for you and your children. Albee Baby 715 Amsterdam Ave

If you are up for some new baby gear, Albee Baby is the place to visit with your little ones and test all top-shelf brands before making your choice. Albee has toys, furniture, bedding, layette, and much more. West Side Kids 498 Amsterdam Avenue

Toys for kids of all ages (including dads). West Side Kids is known as the neighborhood toy store for Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Cheerful and smiley assistants are there to help you select the right toy for your child at any age. March 2020 | New York Family

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travel

Rome and the Amalfi Coast with Kids We feared our trip to Italy would be chaotic, but it turned into the experience of a lifetime By Natasha D’aNNa

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efore parenthood, traveling was a way to get away from the everyday hustle and bustle of the city. Like most parents who recall the “before kids period,” my husband and I would look forward to sleeping in after an evening out of leisurely dinners. Now, as parents of three little ones - travel has become our way to spend together as a family, making memories that last forever. On a recent trip to Italy, what we thought would be a huge challenge with three energetic kids, ended up being a wonderful experience. The trip included spending half of our time in Rome with the second half along the Amalfi coast with stops in Sorrento and Positano. Traveling with young kids holds its challenges. Many parents are intimidated by long-distance travel from the US to Europe. This is why I was happy to have the itinerary set by an expert in family travel. In our case, we used Ciao Italy Tours (ciaoitalytours. com). Working with a travel agent who understood the challenges of traveling with kids to another country was hugely beneficial. We traveled with a total of six adults and three children, and we truly enjoyed the trip with a different perspective through the eyes of our children. Where to stay We arrived in Rome at 9 am, and the kiddos were wide awake, which was perfect for settling into our hotel and eating an early lunch. We stayed at the Star Hotels Michelangelo Roma, which was walking distance to Vatican City and its star attraction, St. Peter’s Basilica. We chose the Star Hotel because of the location, the room size, and the snacks. The hotels in Rome are not filled with indoor pools or game rooms for kids, but there is an international kitchen that serves buffet-style breakfast, lunch, and dinner, including a vast array of snacks. Children are usually little people of habit, so when traveling internationally, it is always best to seek out hotels that have a few amenities that they are familiar with. The kids ordered pancakes for breakfast,

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Travel Tips

Traveling internationally this summer? Here are our tips for long-haul flights with kids • If your flight is longer than five hours and you have very little ones, try to book an overnight flight so they’ll (hopefully!) sleep and you won’t spend hours walking the aisles • If sleeping does not happen, pack activities and snacks as mini goody bags or the latest blind bag surprises for the kiddos to open (as needed) • Remember to pack a change of clothes for everyone (including yourself) in your hand luggage. Accidents happen, and sitting in wet or dirty clothes during a long flight is unpleasant • Come up with a game plan with your partner ahead of time so you can each have a little nap or watch a movie. Trying to negotiate this mid-flight can lead to arguments! • Don’t limit screen time or snacking on long-haul flights — it’s not the time to worry about your parenting scorecard. “Whatever works” is our mantra for flying with kids!

edamame for lunch, and an insane amount of gelato. When in Rome! We found this hotel to be super kidfriendly because of the room locations. On each floor, four corners of the hall have double doors and within the double doors a corridor. We used this space to park the stroller, and when stuck indoors on a rainy day, the kids played card and board games in this cozy nook. I have to note that because our family is five plus, we automatically reserved the two rooms within this area, perfect for a large family.

What is nearby A mid-afternoon walk around town is a great idea when you have tiny tourists, walking shoes, and a reliable stroller. We packed our Colugo stroller (which collapses into a backpack) just for the toddler, and believe me, it’s a game-changer for travel. A quick visit to the Basilica for mass, shopping for gifts, and gelato, of course, can keep everyone happy and entertained, especially when the grounds are like a playground. There are many steps, and no, there aren’t any baby changing stations, but there are amazing people everywhere that are happy to help you. My love for Italy comes from the fact that children are allowed to be themselves and eat dinner at any restaurant, go to the beach or playground at any time with their family without restrictions or critics. Here are a few things that we did to make our trip to Rome kid-friendly: 4 things to do with kids while in Rome: Sightseeing with a twist — visit as many historical sights as you would like, but keep kids engaged with a scavenger hunt map and a mini camera. Include a coin toss and making a wish in the Trevi fountain. The children will enjoy identifying the location once found, and will definitely enjoy getting a prize received after visiting all of the locations. Explore the Children’s Museum, Il Museo dei bambini di Roma. It is best to call ahead and reserve your time slot. It does not follow the regular open to close schedule; instead, there are time slots of 1 hour and 45-minute visit intervals, because of its interactive experience. The playgrounds in Rome are great to experience. The traditional monkey bars and swings in the USA are not the same as in Rome. The kids were able to explore the playground as a new territory because of the knitted circle group swings and winding slides. Gelato tastings are also a great idea. Every kid loves the authentic Italian ice cream dessert after eating a nice bowl of pasta.


flytographer.com

Booking a professional photographer helped capture the moment! When in Rome: fun keepsake moment tip The one thing that I added to our itinerary in advance was a special shoot with Flytographer at the Colosseum. Without the professional photographer who knew where to go to get the best shots of our family, we would not have been able to capture these moments. Amalfi Coast With the help of Ciao Italy Tours we were able to set up a car and driver to take us between Rome and Naples. Our next stop was the Amalfi Coast. Keep in mind: drivers are not allowed to go over a certain amount of hours per day. A responsible luxury taxi service will provide you with knowledge and safe transportation to fit your entire party. As far as language

and communication, there’s always Google Translate, but thankfully I was able to maneuver my Spanish into some Italian. The sunset along the coast on the ride up was magnificent! While on the Amalfi coast, we stayed at an ancient Monastery, which was converted into a hotel by NH Hotel. The best part was a meditation walk, which lead down to the street level. This walk was taken daily by the monks who worked and lived on the grounds before it was converted into a hotel. The conversion did not take away the history of the property; in fact, the original church pews and sounds of monks worshiping can be heard when visiting the church wing within the hotel. Get ready to eat! Every meal included a gelato or an affogato

Sundae, which is ice cream with espresso poured over, pizza, bread or breadsticks with olive oil and fresh pepper (for dipping), and wine for the adults. You’re able to visit both factories and shops to purchase gifts, and we found one of our favorite paper shops La Scuderia del duca (for custom paper gifts) where we will continue to buy from thanks to online shopping! Our favorite playground in Amalfi was right in front of the beach. Our hotel had the most gorgeous infinity pool that the kids loved to swim in, but we also loved going to the beach. We quickly formed a daily routine that included swimming in the pool then walking down to the playground to enjoy the tire swings and stationary see-saws and collecting gorgeous rocks from the beach. March 2020 | New York Family

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family fun

The Best hIkIng Spots in NYC Get active and embrace the great outdoors with a family hike By Mia SalaS

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s the weather gets (slightly) warmer, it’s time to get back in touch with nature. Get active and embrace the great outdoors with a family hike. You don’t have to leave New York City to conquer nature’s trails. NYC is home to some of the oldest, historically-rich and breathtaking sights, including the Alley Pond Giant, a tulip tree that is estimated to be between 350 and 450 years old! Check out our guide to the best hiking spots in New York City for hikers of all ages and experience levels. Manhattan Inwood hill Park

The hiking trails at Inwood Hill Park are rich with history and nature. The marked scenic sites or historic highlights trail will lead you to the top of the hill, where the park’s oldest trees — two Cottonwoods planted before the park was established — still live. Take a step back in time on this hike as you imagine Manhattan as a forest grove of tulip trees, oaks and maples. One of our favorite spots along the trails is the glacial potholes, which were created by an eddy in the waters of the stream flowing beneath the melting ice of the Wisconsin glacier about 50,000 years ago! There’s also an overlook that has the most beautiful view of the Hudson River and the New Jersey Palisades. And don’t miss out on Manhattan’s last salt marsh, home to a variety of animals. Central Park

With secluded and peaceful areas to really get in touch with nature, Central Park satisfies all of your hiking needs. The 40-acre North Woods has winding paths for you to wander along as you birdwatch, gaze over the waters of the Loch, and look up at the soaring treetops above you. The Ramble is a 36-acre woodland retreat that features meandering pathways, quiet covers, and rich forest gardens. Over 230 bird species have also been spotted here, making it a favorite area for birders. Take a rest at the Summerhouse in the Ramble, providing shade from the sun and rows of benches. The Summerhouse has been renovated over the years, but the rustic structure still includes its original 19th

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century posts. The smallest of Central Park’s three woodland landscapes, Hallett Nature Sanctuary offers rustic trails, a world of wildlife, and views of the Pond and lower park.

The point lookout is also beautiful, featuring a large, sandy beach with views of White Island, Manhattan and the adjacent Belt Parkway overpass and beyond that to Jamaica Bay. Stop by the Salt Marsh Nature Center for a bit of history, a look at shore birds and turtles, and free nature programs hosted by the Urban Park Rangers.

Brooklyn Canarsie Park

Paerdegat Basin Park

A walk through Canarsie Park’s trails takes you past the active athletic fields and cricket pitches to an unparalleled natural shoreline vista. Head out on the trails of this large park to discover its wetlands, hike along a spur to find a quiet shoreline, and take in the views of Jamaica Bay and the Manhattan skyline. If you’re looking for a low-stress trail that’s a bit shorter for kiddos who aren’t crazy about a 5-mile hike, Canarsie Park is for you. The Blue Loop trail is only about a half-mile long and you’ll get to see iconic views along the way.

Paerdegat Basin Park’s upland coastal forest is a haven for wildlife and perfect for birding on the trail. Be sure to make your way to the viewpoint on the blue trail for a beautiful view of the waterfront. Both the Red and Blue trails are about 0.3 miles, making for an easy, yet incredibly scenic hike. The red trail is an easily accessible hike of mostly flat sandy terrain that is ideal for hiking along the wetland border passing black cherry trees. Queens alley Pond Park

Prospect Park

It’s no surprise that this classic Brooklyn park has some of the best hiking trails in the borough. All of the trails in Prospect Park are considered to be easy, so bring your whole family along for the hike. Bonus points: bathrooms, café and trail guides are available at the Prospect Park Audubon Center. On the Lullwater trail, you’ll get to see how nature thrives in the heart of Brooklyn as you catch views of birds and other wildlife. The Midwood trail is a scenic walk through Brooklyn’s oldest remaining forest. The thirty-minute hike loops from Prospect Park’s Audubon Center through a forest filled with birds and other animals where you’ll see some of the park’s largest trees. The half-mile Peninsula trail is a home for wildlife and great fishing. Finally, the Waterfall trail has a unique experience in store for your family as you trace the source of the lake. The Fallkill Falls is the first of six waterfalls that you will see along the Park’s watercourse. Marine Park

As the largest park in Brooklyn, Marine Park is a prime destination for hiking. Head out on one of the park’s nature trails and discover Brooklyn’s natural beauty at this waterfront park. We love the grassland lookout, which offers a 360-degree view of the restores grasslands on the eastern side of the park.

There are lots of hiking trails in Alley Pond Park. Stop by the Alley Pond Environmental Center, home to a non-profit environmental education organization that is dedicated to educating children and adults in the New York metropolitan area, to check out the programming before or after your hike. The Alley Pond Giant, the tulip tree that is 133.8 tall and has a circumference of 18.6 feet, is a must-see. Estimated to be between 350 and 450 years of age, the tree may be the tallest and the oldest living organism in the city. Alley Pond is another favorite stop along the trails, featuring hundreds of native species, and so is the Turtle Pond, which has lots of wildlife for you to discover. Bayswater Park

The Bayswater Park Blue trail is roughly a quarter-mile long and passes along the shoreline of Jamaica Bay, linking the park to a trail in adjacent parkland managed by the NY State Department of Environmental Conservation. With awesome spots for bird watching, a mix of sandy, grassy and woody areas, a maritime forest and views of the shoreline, Bayswater Park offers a hiking experience like no other. Forest Park

Forest Park offers three trails, each distinctively different to accommodate everyone from


the beginner hiker to the more experienced hiker. The Yellow trail is just about one mile, the Blue trail is 1.7 miles and the Orange trail is a 2.4-mile adventure. The Orange trail is definitely more difficult with challenging elements along the perimeter of the forest. The Blue trail is perfect for hikers that are ready to take it to the next level, but families with lots of energy will also be fine walking through the native hardwood, oak-hickory forest and kettle ponds. Never hiked before? Try out the Yellow trail for maximum fun and ease!

Through generous funding from the Recreational Trails Program grant, GreenerNYC, and Con-Ed, various volunteer groups installed paving stones and wooden puncheons for travel through the wetland areas on the west side of the lake near the Grand Central Parkway. The Flushing Meadows Bird Blind is a bird watcher’s paradise, and there’s a scenic viewpoint on the south-western edge of the lake just west of the bridge on the Pat Dolan Trail that offers a quiet respite on the west side of the lake and additional bird and wildlife viewing.

Cunningham Park

You’ll get a kick out of the gorgeous forest in Cunningham Park that features a diverse ecosystem to support abundant wildlife. The park’s Kettle Ponds feature the sounds of Spring Peepers and other species of frogs throughout the spring and summer season, so bookmark these hiking trails for your summer outings. The South Preserve trail is about 3 miles long, so keep in mind that very little ones may not be up for the distance. This is the perfect hike for a date or if you have bigger kids who are up for the challenge. Flushing Meadows-Corona Park

The Willow Lake hiking trails in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park are a breathtaking sight. The main trail runs along the south side of the lake and over a wooden bridge.

The Bronx Bronx Park

The Bronx River Forest trails offer a break from the busy Bronx nearby. Walk through a floodplain forest on the banks of the restored Bronx River, and marvel at how clean and natural this once-polluted river has become. See native plant and animal life, and look out over the man-made Bronx River Island right in the heart of the borough, mere steps from grounds of the New York Botanical Garden. We love the Island Lookout, where you can see the Bronx River Island, a man-made island that was constructed in the mid-1900s to accommodate the Bronx River Parkway. The Burke Bridge is also a must. Built in 1949, the 45-feet long bridge spans the river, where you can spot many forest birds.

Van Cortlandt Park

Van Cortlandt Park offers trails that range from easy to difficult, perfect for hikers of all experience levels. Easy trails include the Putnam trail at 1.5 miles, a historically significant path that used to be the former railroad route that ran through the park in the 1980s and the John Kieran trail at 1.25 miles, which journeys through the park’s lake area and freshwater wetlands, passing Tibbet’s Brook via a wooden bridge perfect for birding, and forms a loop with the Parade Ground. Moderate trails are the John Muir trail at 1.5 miles, where you’ll travel through three ecologically distinct forests and see a frog-filled marsh and sugar maple, hickory trees, tulip and red oak trees, and the Old Croton Aqueduct trail at 1.1 miles, which is actually rated easy/moderate. Ready for a challenge? Conquer the Cass Gallagher trail, rated moderate/difficult. Pelham Bay Park

Leave the city far behind on the Kazimiroff Nature Trail, which provides self-guided long and short loop paths around 189-acre Hunter Island. Leading visitors along the island’s wetland border, through its interior forest, and onto the shore of the beautiful Orchard Beach, Pelham Bay Park offers some of the most unique and spectacular sights for your family. March 2020 | New York Family

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family fun

10 MUSEUMS

MUSIC

THEATER

ATTRACTIONS

FOOD

Outdoors

Great Kid-Friendly March Events in Manhattan By mia salas

MICHAEL & THE ROCKNESS MONSTERS March 7 Michael & The Rockness Monsters present an interactive, super galactic, funk-inspired, rock ‘n’ roll experience for families at this energetic concert. Recommended for ages 2 to 5, your little ones will love the humor and catch melodies. Atrium events are also celebratory, yet relaxed and suitable for most audiences, but you can also borrow sensory supports so your kiddos with special needs can enjoy the show as well! Free, 11 am-12 pm. David Rubenstein Atrium, 61 West 62nd St., New York, NY 10023, lincolncenter.org

TWIST & TWIRL COOKIES CLASS March 7 Satisfy your sweet tooth with these delicious, swirled cookies! In this family cooking class, kids ages 6 to 8 will work together with their caregivers to make a festive cookie. Learn how to get a perfect swirl pattern with rainbow sprinkles on the outside, among other delicious secrets that make for great baking. $45 per kid with one caregiver, 9-10 am. Taste Buds Kitchen, 109 West 27th St., New York, NY 10001, tastebudskitchen.com

MOCACREATE: VINTAGE FAMILY ALBUMS March 7 and 21 Illustrate and then “vintage-fy” beloved family memories by aging them with tea and coffee at this MOCACREATE session. Use vintage photos of old families, buildings, and Chinatowns long gone as your inspiration. Then showcase your masterpiece in a personalized scrapbook filled with your favorite things. Free, 2-5 pm. Museum of Chinese in America, 215 Centre St., New York, NY 10013, mocanyc.org

NYCRUNS SPRING FLING 5K & 10K March 8 As the weather warms up, it’s time to head outside and get active! What better way to get back into the outdoors active groove than with the NYCRUNS Spring Fling 5K & 10K? Enjoy beautiful views of the Hudson, free finish line photos and videos, and a fueling spread of bagels, fresh fruit and more. Run for fun as a family, or jump into the competition. There’s even an age group award in the 5K for your little ones, ages 9 and under! $50 through March 5, $60 on race day, 8 am 5K, 9:15 am 10K. Riverside Park, 108th Street and Riverside Drive, New York, NY 10025, nycruns.com

GIRLS IN SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING DAY March 14 In celebration of Women’s History Month, the Museum invites your family to the sixth annual Girls in Science and Engineering Day. Enjoy hands-on experiences, exciting demonstrations and engaging discussions provided by sciencebased organizations, college programs and New York City public school students. Although the program celebrates girls and women in science, all are encouraged to attend this museum-wide event. Free with pre-registration, 11 am-3 pm. Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Pier 86, West 46th Street and 12th Avenue, New York, NY 10036, intrepidmuseum.org Erika Kapin Photography

Celebrate Women’s History Month at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum with the Girls in Science and Engineering Day on March 14.

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PI DAY AND NIGHT 2020 March 14 Head to the Museum for pi-themed


Giovanni Schiavolin

activities, including Rhythmic Rotations, MoMath’s signature giant hula-hooping contest. Pi Day events also coincide with the first-ever UNESCO International Day of Mathematics, so you can be guaranteed a day of educational fun for your family. Starting at 6:30 pm, keep the festivities going with Pi Night: try out the new “Pi Detector,” enjoy pi-themed refreshments, and even participate in a giant group demonstration of the meaning of pi! Free with Museum admission, $35 Pi Night, 10 am-5 pm and 6:30-9 pm. MoMath, 11 East 26th St., New York, NY 10010, momath.org

STORYBOOK READING AND ACTIVITY: SKYSISTERS BY JAN BOURDEAU WABOOSE (OJIBWE) March 14 Join museum staff in the imagiNATIONS Activity Center classroom for a storybook reading of SkySisters, by Jan Bourdeau Waboose. Kids will love the story of these two sisters who journey across the frozen north country to see the SkySpirits’ midnight dance, alongside the spectacular illustrations by Brian Deines. Afterwards, little ones will get to make an art project related to the book to take home. Free, 1-2 pm. National Museum of the American Indian Heye Center, 1st Floor imagiNATIONS Activity Center Classroom, Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House, 1 Bowling Green, New York, NY 10004, americanindian.si.edu

ST. PATRICK’S DAY TEA March 17 Show off your best green outfit on St. Patty’s Day at this holiday gathering. Join friends and Battery Park City Authority staff for tea and sweets. Whether you’re Irish or not, all are welcome! Free, 2-4 pm. Battery Park City, 200 Rector St., New York, NY 10280, bpca.ny.gov

The classic tale of Treasure Island comes to life in puppetry at the New Victory Theater from March 20 to 29.

RECREATION DAY March 20 There will surely be something for everyone at Recreation Day! Enjoy an afternoon with your family playing jumbo games, getting crafty and creative with art activities, and lots more. Fill up your Friday with playful, active, and imaginative fun. Free, 12-3:30 pm. J. Hood Wright Recreation Center, 351 Fort Washington Ave., New York, NY 10033, nycgovparks.org

TREASURE ISLAND March 20-29 Bring your family for a puppet theater performance in this rendition of Treasure Island! Follow the adventures of cabin boy Jim Hawkins as he battles the high seas. Can Jim solve the mystery of Captain Flint’s buried treasure? Or will he walk the plank? From Milan’s famed Carlo Colla & Sons Marionette Company, kids ages 8 and up will get a kick out of this show. Tickets start at $17, multiple showtimes. The New Victory Theater, 209 West 42nd St., New York, NY 10036, newvictory.org March 2020 | New York Family

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Featured event

Events Around the City By Mia Salas

PIZZA PERFECTION CLASS March 3 Bring your little chefs to the Kitchen to learn how to make worldfamous mini pizzas. Master the perfect dough with yeast, whole wheat and honey, then move onto the yummy tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella cheese and oregano. This family class is for kids ages 2 to 5, making it a great (and delicious!) activity for your real little ones. $45 per kid with one caregiver, 1:30-2:30 pm. Taste Buds Kitchen, 109 West 27th St., New York, NY 10001, tastebudskitchen.com

WOMEN IN TRANSIT March 5-29 As March is Women’s History Month, head to the New York Transit Museum to celebrate Women in Transit! There are three programs for kids: Transit Tots for ages 2 to 5, History on Wheels for all ages, and the Discovery Room for ages 2 to 5. Hear transitthemed stories, make discoveries and learn fun facts and explore transitthemed stations through play. Free with Museum admission, Transit Tots: Thursdays March 5-26, 10:15-11:15 am, History on Wheels: Weekends March 7-29, 11:30 am and 2 pm, Discovery Room: Weekends March 7-29, 11:30 am and 3:30 pm. New York Transit Museum, 99 Schermerhorn St., Brooklyn, NY 11201, nytransitmuseum.org

PAIGE IN FULL March 7 Get ready for a family performance that explores identity, ethnicity and culture. Paige in Full is a visual mix-tape that blends poetry, dance, visual arts, and music to tell the tale of a multicultural girl growing up

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MasterChef Junior Live! March 13 The culinary hit TV show MasterChef Junior is taking the stage in Brooklyn! The family-friendly show will feature head-to-head cooking demonstrations, challenges with past

in Baltimore. Before the performance, sign up for an interactive hip hop workshop that will get you moving and grooving! Performance only: $14, $10 Members, $8 Kids, $6 Member Kids, Free for Teens, Performance and Workshop: $22, $15 Members, $13 Kids, $9 Member Kids, Free for Teens, 1 pm workshop, 2:15 pm performance. Flushing Town Hall, 137-35 Northern Blvd., Flushing, Queens, NY 11354, flushingtownhall.org

JUST KIDDING: SQUIRREL STOLE MY UNDERPANTS March 14 A mischievous squirrel steals Sylvie’s favorite piece of clothing when she’s hanging up her laundry in the backyard! Will Sylvie rescue her underpants and discover the magic within herself? The Gottabees’ stories reflect children’s everyday aspirations, concerns, and emotional experiences. Through wordless puppetry action and live music, your family will discover something imaginative and new. $17, $14 Members, 11 am and 2 pm. Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theatre, 2537 Broadway, New York, NY

MasterChef Junior contestants and an overall immersive audience experience, fun for all ages. Tickets start at $29.50, 6 pm, doors open at 5 pm. Kings Theatre, 1027 Flatbush Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11226, kingstheatre.com

10025, symphonyspace.org

STORYTIME WITH MARA BERGMAN: THE TALL MAN AND THE SMALL MOUSE March 14 He’s a tall man who likes to fix things. She’s a small mouse who likes to find things. Could this be the beginning of a beautiful friendship? Find out at this storytime with Mara Bergman as she reads her children’s book, “The Tall Man and the Small Mouse”, illustrated by Birgitta Sif. Free, 11 am-12 pm. Books Are Magic, 225 Smith St., Brooklyn, NY 11231, booksaremagic.net

TALES FROM THE SHED March 15 Chickenshed NYC returns with an encore presentation of Tales From the Shed, its interactive and inclusive show for young kids and their families. Recommended for ages 0 to 6, kids of all abilities will love hanging out with Lion Down, Preston, Blurgh and all their furry friends. With stories, songs and dancing, these relaxed performances are right up your little one’s alley! $15,


1 pm and 3 pm. Queens Theatre, 14 United Nations Avenue South, Corona, Queens, NY 11368, queenstheatre.org

ARCH MADNESS March 21 In the spirit of “March Madness,” architectural features of skyscrapers will be pitted against each other and young architects will have to choose which ones will rise to the top. Designed for ages 5 and up, this family workshop will encourage creativity, imagination and outside-the-box thinking! $5 per kid, Free for members, RSVP requested, 10:30-11:45 am. The Skyscraper Museum, 39 Battery Place, New York, NY 10280, skyscraper.org

BRAIN AWARENESS WEEKEND DROP-IN

Liz Linder

Discover the imaginative world of “Squirrel Stole My Underpants” on March 14, part of the Just

March 21-22 Kidding series at Symphony Space. Visitors of all ages can drop into the Educational Lab in the Origins Educational Library, American Hall of Human Origins to celebrate Museum of Natural History, 200 Central the wonders of the brain. Learn how Park West, New York, NY 10024-5102, the brain evolved in animals, chat amnh.org with neuroscientists, participate in hands-on activities, and explore how our perception of color can change SWEET & SPICY POP-UP our minds and influence our actions, March 22 inspired by the new exhibition, “The Come hungry to the Sweet & Nature of Color”. Free with Museum Spicy Pop-up! Choose treats from a admission, 12-5 pm. Hall of Human curated selection of artisanal spice and

sweet-makers. There will be everything from creatively handmade sweet toasted marshmallows and stuffed cookies, to flaming hot sauces and salsas, and freshly made wood-fired spicy pepperoni pizzas, fiery empanadas, more! Free admission, costs vary for food, 10 am-5:30 pm. Grand Bazaar NYC, 100 West 77th St., New York, NY 10024, grandbazaarnyc.org

veterinary services

Advertise with us Call 718-260-4554 NewYorkFamily.com

Dr. Jennifer Berg’s New Animal Hospital 256 West St. (btwn Laight & Vestry) 212 732 7474 • info@tvw.vet tribecaveterinarywellness.com March 2020 | New York Family

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last word

The deep roots never doubt spring will come MARTY RUBIN

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New York Family March 2020  

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