Long Island Family - February 2024

Page 1

February 2024


A Love Story Sophie Demenge, founder of the popular children’s lifestyle line, Oeuf, on how family is first for both life and her brand

Make Memories at Sleepaway Camp & Join Us at Our Camp Fair! Page 23

Tooth Fairy Tales

What to know before your child’s next dental visit

Flu vs Covid Which one is it?

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@buckleycountrydayschool February 2024 | Long Island Family



February 2024


pg. 24

pg. 30 pg. 18


pg. 14


Stories & columns

8 | Health Is it the flu, COVID, or a cold?

6 | Editor’s Letter

24 | Family Day Out Long Island’s top rinks for ice skating 27 | Cover Sophie Demenge’s on founding, with her husband Michael, the children’s lifestyle brand Oeuf and how family is first for both her brand and life 30 | Family Day Out Must-see Elephant Exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History

12 | Mom Hacks Teaching your kids about money

28 | Calendar All the fun events and activities for February

14 | Mom Stories Mirror on the Wall: reflections on beauty and aging 18 | Ask the Expert The right dentist matters for kids with disability challenges 20 | Camp Sleepaway Camps: crafting memories this summer 23 | Camp New York Family camp fairs are a great place to start your summer camp search

4 NewYorkFamily.com | February 2024

Family fun

on the Cover Photo: Yumi Matsuo | yumimatsuostudio.com Makeup & Hair: Buffy Hernandez | buffysaintmarie.com Produced by: Donna Duarte-Ladd Cover written by: Serena Norr

February 2024 | Long Island Family


Editor’s Note

Nina Gallo Photography

Hey there, February Winter is here brrrr, and some of us have dusted off those winter coats after not experiencing snow in some parts of New York (701 days in the city alone!) With the colder months comes the seasonal viruses. While we aren’t doctors, we checked in with the experts, How Parents can Differentiate from the Flu, COVID or a Cold (page 8), to hopefully help you when that pesky cough sounds like it may be more. The chilly weather is why we photographed our cover mom, Sophie Demenge (page 27), in her family’s cozy home this month. Sophie and her husband Michael founded the children’s lifestyle line Oeuf. This line is unique and beloved by many New

Yorkers who adore the quirky touches of city life woven into some of their designs. Sophie shares with us about living in Brooklyn and why family and Oeuf will always go hand in hand. Enough about winter! We are true New Yorkers, and we’re starting to think of the warmer months ahead because this is what we do, which means Summer Camp! We know summer camps, so we have a helpful piece on Sleepaway Camps (page 20.) If you are searching for more camp info, head to our site (newyorkfamily.com) for all our helpful camp fair dates (page 23) and articles.

Publisher: Clifford Luster Executive Director: Donna Duarte-Ladd Associate Publisher: Erin Brof Advertising Director: Stacie Goldberg Deputy Editor: Jeannine Cintron Digital Editor: Kaitlyn Riggio Events Manager: Shara Levine Partnership Managers: Lauren Alperin, Lauren Anchin, Joan Bergman, Mary Cassidy, Suzanne Cirigliano, Chris Cunnington, Lori Falco, Shelli Goldberg-Peck, LynnMarie Hanley, Lisa Herlihy, Nicole Miller, Janine Mulé, Nina Spiegelman, Gwen Tomaselli Marketing & Strategy Director: Rosalia Bobé Marketing & Events Assistant: Ashley Rivera Sales & Marketing assistant: Elana Cantor Marketing Assistant: Tilejah Gilead Media Sales Assistant: Anastasia Aktipis Art Director: Leah Mitch Web Developer: Sylvan Migdal Graphic Designers: Arthur Arutyunov, Connie Sulsenti Editors at large: Serena Norr, Cris Pearlstein Editorial Contributors: Jana Beauchamp, Mia Salas

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Is it the Flu or COVID or a Cold? A helpful guide for parents By BarBara russo


ith flu season still upon us, viruses and early cases of respiratory illnesses on a constant news loop, it’s not hard to wonder when your child has a cold and when it is more. To make matters worse, seasonal influenza activity continues to increase in most parts of the country. As a parent, here’s what you need to know about this year’s flu season and what you can do to help keep your kids flu-free. Here are some tips on what is what when it comes to colds, flu, and Covid. But first the flu. The CDC estimates that there have been at least 1.8 million illnesses, 17,000 hospitalizations, and 1,100 deaths from flu so far this season. “At the moment, the flu season is in

8 NewYorkFamily.com | February 2024

high gear,” Samir Undavia, MD, attending physician, NJ ENT & Facial Plastic Surgery in Marlton, NJ, said, adding that the CDC numbers include both children and adults. But to put things into a clearer perspective, this year’s flu season isn’t too different from last year’s. “Parents should expect a similar flu season to last year, which included approximately 11,000 medical visits per 100,000 kids and 119 hospitalizations per 100,000 kids,” Undavia said. Over 80 percent of severe disease were unvaccinated children, Undavia added. In New York during this flu season, cases are rising, but right now, the rates are still lower than around this time last year, according to the state health department. Symptoms of Flu in Kids As anyone who’s had the flu can attest, having it at any age is brutal. Lots of rest and drinking plenty of fluids can help a lot.

Symptoms of the flu in children and adults usually include fever, chills, muscle and body aches, fatigue, headaches, cough, sore throat, and a runny nose. But there are a few differences in symptoms between children and adults, explained Flora Sinha, MD, internal medicine at Cedars Sinai Medical Group. “Gastrointestinal issues such as nausea, vomiting and diarrhea are also common, although these symptoms are seen more in children versus adults. Children may also have higher fevers,” Sinha said. When to See a Doctor At this point, you might be wondering: The flu is often treated at home. At what point should I bring my child to the doctor? “Parents should bring their child to a doctor if they have complications from the flu, such as ear pain and pressure, shortness of breath, severe fatigue without oral intake of liquids and food, or if the symptoms

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Flu vs. Covid vs. a Cold persist for longer than the flu should last, which is over 10-14 days,” explained Undavia. Sinha added that temperature and fever play a big role in when to bring your child to the pediatrician. “For very young babies–younger than 3 months–you’ll want to see your pediatrician if your child has a rectal fever of 100.4 or higher immediately,” Shinha explained. “For healthy adults and children 3 years of age and up we look for a fever that is higher than 104F and/or that won’t respond to fever reducing medications or lasts longer than 72 hours. If your child is extremely fatigued, looking lethargic, you may also bring them in.” One of the best ways for kids and adults to prevent the spread of the flu includes washing hands often Preventing the Flu Not surprising, some of the best ways for kids and adults to prevent the spread of the flu are pretty simple. It’s basically what you’d expect to do when trying to prevent other

Jenean White, MD, a family medicine physician, shared some general symptoms to look if you’re trying to identify which illness is present: Fever

Commonly present in all except cold; more sudden onset with flu


Present in all; mild to moderate with a cold


Rare in cold; common in flu; sometimes with COVID


Rare in cold; sometimes in COVID and flu


Rare in cold; common in COVID and flu

Runny or stuffy nose

Common with cold; sometimes with COVID and flu

Shortness of breath

Rare in flu and cold; sometimes in COVID

respiratory illnesses, including: • Washing hands often • Avoiding close contact with sick people. When you’re sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick. • Covering coughs and sneezes • Staying home if you’re sick The Flu vs. Covid vs. a Cold: Which is it? Your child comes home from school and isn’t

feeling well. Is it a cold? A Covid test reads negative, okay it’s the flu or is it? Needless to say, differentiating between these three respiratory illnesses can be quite difficult. Without a lab test confirming the diagnosis, identifying which illness is present can be challenging, Undavia said. But in general, colds are more mild, while the flu and Covid can be more severe.



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8 Top Tips for Saving Money on Summer Camp by Jess Michaels


hen you decide to send your child to camp, you are giving them the opportunity to try new activities, meet new people, gain independence, and learn about who they are as individuals, among so many other benefits. Camp is an amazing experience; however, parents have their family budgets to consider. Here are a few ways for families to save money on summer camp: Look for camp early – It’s not too early to start thinking about camp for summer 2025. Looking early and registering for camp in the summer or early fall will help you save money by taking advantage of the early bird rates camps offer. This is also a good way to ensure you get a spot at your top choice camp. Begin your research now to understand which camps you would like to tour this summer. Seeing a camp in action is one of the best ways to get a feel for a camp. Scholarships & financial assistance – If you are looking for a camp that offers scholarships, financial assistance, and sliding scales, start your search with non-profit summer camps. Families can also reach out to the

12 NewYorkFamily.com | February 2024

American Camp Association, NY, and NJ for a list of camps that financial assistance. Assistance offered from the U.S government – The government offers programs that may help families save money on summer camp. • Dependent Care FSA (DCFSA) – A Dependent Care FSA is a pre-tax benefit account that allows you to pay for dependent care such as day camp while you are working. Visit the FSA Feds Website at www.fsafeds. com for more information. • Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit -The IRS allows an income tax credit of up to $6,000 of dependent care expenses if you have two or more dependents and up to $3,000 for one dependent. Day camps can count towards the children and dependent care tax credit. Visit www.irs.gov for more information. Work at camp – Do you enjoy working with children or are you in a profession such as education, social work or nursing? Summer camps are always looking for qualified, enthusiastic adults to work at camp. Besides a competitive salary, many camps will offer your child a discount for camp. Sibling discount – Did you know many

camps offer savings for registering multiple children at camp? Take advantage of these savings by sending more than one child to camp. Give the gift of camp – Giving your child the opportunity to go to summer camp truly is a gift so why not make it part of a birthday or holiday gift. Does your child need that big birthday party and more toys? Asking extending family to contribute to camp as a gift is also a great idea. The skills and experiences gained at summer camp will last for a lifetime while that new toy may be fun for a couple of months. Beware of too good a deal – We all have our budgets to consider but beware of a camp deal that seems too good to be true. Your child’s safety needs to be at the top of mind with any camp decision you make so please do your research. At a minimum, a camp should be inspected by the Department of Health. Choosing an ACA Accredited camp means that the camp goes above and beyond state licensing and meets hundreds of health and safety standards. Call the American Camp Association, NY and NJ – If you would like to send your child to camp, there is a camp for every budget. Families can reach out to the American Camp Association, NY and NJ’s Camper Placement Specialist Renee Flax for free, one-on-one advice on finding the right camp at the right price for your family. Contact: renee@acanynj.org or 212-391-5208.

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mom stories

Mirror on the Wall Reflections on beauty & aging By Drew IsserlIs Kramer


very night, I look in the mirror at the 39-year-old woman staring back at me. I am not young. I am not old. But things are changing. I pluck a gray hair and wonder, do I have jowls? Are my lips wrinkling, or am I just dehydrated? In truth, I don’t take great care of myself. I don’t moisturize enough. I don’t speak the language of dermatology. Sometimes I forget to wear a hat. I wonder what will happen if I continue down this course. Will I look like a little old lady while everyone else I know has the skin of a baby’s bottom? What will I look like if I look 87? The rebellious side of my personality toys with being a silver fox. What if I let my skin leather with decades of happy summers in the sun? Maybe I can be a fearless, cool crone like Iris Apfel. In some ways, I can present as low maintenance. I’ll never be a woman with a perfect manicure or blowout, but I have a vibe and my own vices. I haven’t taken the leap into injectables because I am scared. I work out three days a week and start the day with a Gwenyth Paltrow intermittent fast until lunch to keep carbs, cheese, and wine in my major food groups. There are months that I become fed up with my graying hair and impulsively drive to a salon for a single process rinse. Maybe I am not ready to look old. In today’s filtered online world, no one needs to look old. Mainstream photo-editing tools like Facetune and Instagram’s Paris filter shrink my pores and waistline in a swipe and a pinch. Such advances in technology and media created our youth-obsessed culture and standards of beauty so unattainable that even celebrities cannot keep up. In December 2023, 56-year-old actress Maria Bello made headlines for lamenting that “every housewife on TV was seemingly getting younger” while she was getting older. Try she did to beat the clock, but it only brought misery and pain. Eventually, she learned to “own it.” Self-acceptance is always the goal, but every day every woman must confront the mirror and ask herself: is this the best she can do? The best one can do is a personal assess-

14 NewYorkFamily.com | February 2024

ment. It is the lowest amount of work one is willing to put in to look and feel presentable when leaving the house. While this changes depending on the occasion, for the purpose of this examination, my personal best will be defined as good enough to run into an old friend on the street without feeling naked in my aging face. As I grapple with the shifting shape of my head, I consult the women in my life to understand how they approach growing older. My first call is to my lawyer and mother, who is 69. I asked her if I could refer to myself as “coming from vain people ‘’ in print without offending her. She responds with knowing agreement. She believes that her mother, a beautiful woman with never a blonde hair out of place, would be “rolling over in her grave to know that her daughter let her hair go white.” During the pandemic, my mother went cold turkey on hair dye, declaring herself free. “As you get older,” she says, “everything changes.” While she no longer cares much about clothes or makeup, she admits she misses her blonde era. Asked for her current definition of “good enough,” she says she doesn’t want to give up Botox because she doesn’t want to “look like a hag.” My first lesson in aging: everyone has a relationship with appearance and their own line for its maintenance, one that might shift over time. At the mention of Botox, I call Dr. Margo

Lederhandler–the go to dermatologist of my thirty-something mom friends in Westchester, NY. My first line of questions came from my observation of a group of 29-year-old girls at a neighboring table at a restaurant. In a discussion of their addiction to Botox, one joked that she “didn’t know what was in it, but didn’t care.” When probed about the science and risk factors of looking good, Dr. Lederhandler expertly detailed the history of Botulinum toxin-A, first used as an ophthalmological treatment in the 1970s. When injected into the nerve under the skin near the eye, doctors saw offensive muscle spasms go away with a wrinkle reduction bonus. This cosmetic purpose was FDA approved in 2002, launching a multimillion-dollar antiaging revolution of injectable products that smooth lines and fill sag. Aside from the occasional bruise or a reversible eyelid or eyebrow droop, Dr. Lederhandler assures that the risks are low when the facial anatomy is assessed properly. Reassured that the toxins that freeze muscles won’t scramble my brain, I ask Dr. Lederhandler if I’ve missed my boat not starting at 29. What’s the deal with preventative? She advises patients to “begin injectables when bothered by lines that remain when the face is at rest.” The lines on the skin show signs of repeated muscle movement. The longer those lines are ingrained, the harder

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mom stories

it will be to erase them. In that sense, earlier can be better. As we ponder the many other options to prevent aging, my mind races. Overwhelmed by the magnitude of treatments that range from surgical to injectable to topical to lasers, Dr. Lederhandler brings me back to the present with the admission: It is OK to age. “We will all age,” she reminds. “Some people don’t want to be lineless.” For her patients and herself, her goal is “not to defy aging, but to look like the best version of herself.” She uses injectables, lasers, topicals and sunscreen to help patients look rested and refreshed. To Dr. Lederhandler, “aging gracefully does not mean giving up; rather, it is to help patients understand what is reasonable and to feel good in their skin.” Armed with more information, I toy with the idea of a laser to keep my pores cute for in real-life encounters on the street. As I consider the many other things I could do with the price of eternal youth, I slink back into my regular life. While chatting with my writer friend Fran Scheffler, I ask her how she approaches beauty as she ages. A stunning silver fox at 77, I learned that her dark hair started to go gray at the age of 15. In college, she got away with a Clarol wash-in



Sc n u F

Self-acceptance is always the goal, but every day every woman must confront the mirror and ask herself: is this the best she can do? shampoo, but in her early 30s, she “stopped needing to be that vain” and embraced the slow transformation of age. Reflecting on the impact of her own mother’s vanity, she adds, “in her mother’s generation, dress, makeup and hair was an artform.” It was very important to keep herself looking good. Fran attributes her more simple approach to beauty to the validation she received for her intelligence. With a Ph.D. in Speech, Language, and Hearing, her work as a clinician and academic shifted her focus to bigger things than the mirror. While she worries

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F o r C u ri o u

that “women who are too caught up in looks believe that is all they offer,” she admits that “the women who do nothing look unkempt.” Anything too extreme is unhealthy. Today, Fran wants to look healthy. As we discussed her style and new hair styling tool, it struck me that a little vanity is important. It is healthy to care about one’s physical appearance. Keeping the body mentally and physically fit is not an irrational quest for youth and beauty. Instead, I rebrand it a pursuit of wholeness in mind, body, and spirit. It is a commitment to accept what is while, as my Grammy would say, “doing the most with what we have.” If it takes a facelift or a crisp new pair of blue jeans to confront the mirror and move on to a greater purpose, you receive no judgment here. I cannot predict how I will feel or the lengths I will go to feel like I am my best self. We all struggle to accept change at every age. If we are lucky, we will get to mourn the youthful glow that recedes with each passing year and become accustomed to a new face in the mirror. Aging is scary, but I do like the person that I am becoming. My collagen is waning, but my chutzpah grows.

ds i K s


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February 2024 | Long Island Family


ask the expert

Your Neurodiverse Child’s Dental Visit The right dentist matters for kids with disability challenges By Donna Duarte-LaDD


ot many of us go to a dental office excitedly; I still, from childhood visits, have needle fear. You know that long silver needle that goes in your mouth? Just why? I ask myself any time I’m in the dental chair. This is why, as parents, we can all understand why kids may face challenges when visiting the dentist. Imagine how sensory or kids with disability challenges may feel on these visits. As a mom with a child on the ASD spectrum, dental visits are one of the most challenging of doctor visits as they incorporate things my child hates to do, like sit still and have you look into his mouth. Like most special needs parents, we not only want doctors to get our kid; We need you to vibe with all the uniqueness they bring to the table or rather the chair- for these visits can be nerve-racking for them and us parents. This is why when I found Dr. Alice Hoang at Brooklyn Mint Dental, I knew we may have found ‘our person.’ Dr. Alice specializes in treating neurodiverse patients, both adults and children. The office aims to make dental visits more practical and enjoyable, which isn’t easy if you have an anxious child. I was super impressed not only with Dr. Alice and her entire office, who took the time to get to know my son, but how she slowly worked to make him comfortable and was able to get him in the medical chair without him once freaking out (she was ready with the weighted blankets and his favorite shows-brilliant.) I appreciated Dr. Alice’s advice about using a gentler three-sided toothbrush, which can do more when your child has limited teeth brushing time, and using toothpaste with fun flavors. Most notably, her understanding and natural caring personality that most special needs parents know our kids have a superpower of knowing who is real and who is not and gravitating only toward the people who naturally connect with them. I asked the doctor for some pointers for parents wondering what dental office may work for them and the questions they need to ask when choosing a dentist. How should parents approach long-term dental care planning for special needs

18 NewYorkFamily.com | February 2024

children? The more that guardians are mindful of their child’s triggers, sources of comfort, communication style, and behavioral profile, the easier it is for a provider to tailor their care to be more approachable. When we care for special needs children, the guardian’s input is uniquely critical to the care of their children. Appointments should be on the shorter side, especially at the beginning for special needs children, so they can get acclimated with the space and staff. Easing into treatment slowly can prevent fear leading up to future dental visits. I am not physically or mentally challenged, yet I am still not a fan of dental visits, so what strategies work for you when you have a patient with high anxieties or sensory challenges? The tools we use for our sensory-sensitive patients work for even the most anxious patients. Ultimately, our amenities are intended to ease behavioral management of our patients in most circumstances, no matter the patient’s diagnosis. What should parents look for in a dentist when seeking treatment for this child with disability challenges? The most important aspect of anyone’s

care is finding a provider they trust and feel safe with. When seeking treatment for a child with disability challenges, this applies to both the guardians and the patient. My philosophy is meeting any patient where they are to help them achieve the highest level of dental health possible. I would encourage any guardian to find a dentist that values relationships with all patients no matter their needs. Ultimately, dentistry varies from dentist to dentist, and the philosophy, values and personality of the dentist shape the practice. Is it essential for the doctor to have parental involvement, or should they (the parents) step back a bit? Collaboration is an important aspect of general dentistry, whether with other professionals and/or with our patients and their guardians. I would encourage parents to be involved in familiarizing and desensitizing the patient in the new environment. Establishing trust with the dentist helps build rapport and makes the patient feel comfortable with the parent or guardian’s support. When a treatment plan is suggested, dentists like to offer choices, explaining the difference of the pros/ cons of each option, allowing both the patient and their guardian to choose the best option with the dentist’s support. When booking the first appointment, I

would also ask the dental practice if it’s possible to have shorter appointments initially for your child to get acquainted with their new environment. With time, your child will feel more in control of their environment and less anxiety towards a new, but now familiar face. You can ask if you can bring some items that might help your child in the chair such as weighted blankets or stuffed animals, their favorite show or music cued up, noise-canceling headphones and sunglasses. Involve your child in this process so they know they have some autonomy and their opinion matters. A boost in self-esteem and confidence does wonders for everyone. Pertaining specifically to sleep needs, how does treatment for neurodiverse patients and/or patients with dental traumas differ? The assessment and screening of sleep and airway will be the same. However, the treatment may vary, and patients with prior trauma or sensory sensitivity may reject the possible options available depending on the etiology and manifestations of their trauma or sensory sensitivity.

“Establishing trust with the dentist helps build rapport and makes the patient feel comfortable with the parent or guardian’s support.” As a dentist who treats sensory-sensitive patients and children with disabilities? What measures do you take to make the dental experience more comfortable for the kids and parents? When we created Brooklyn Mint, we wanted to put the most anxious patient at ease, whether they are triggered by sensory stimulation or by the environment. In every treatment suite, we have individualized speakers for music (or white noise), a television with noise-canceling headphones, massaging heated eye masks, cooling eye masks, weighted blankets, a weighted stuffed toy, microfiber blankets, light dimmers, a selection of fidget toys, guided meditation virtual and traditional nitrous oxide as well as an option for moderate sedation. While each amenity we offer helps elevate the patient experience,

each is also very intentional and evidencebased. We also have a children’s sensory room with a nursing chair for any chest-feeding parents. More importantly, our doctors and team can ease the most anxious and/or sensory-sensitive patient. When a patient receives our initial forms, there is an “Optional Handle Me with Care Questionnaire.” When patients (or their guardians) decide to complete this form, it allows us to customize the care of our patients before they even step through our doors. We can cue preferred television shows and music, dim the lights, have any amenity readily available, and customize our approach for each patient. Dr. Alice Hoang can be found at: Brooklyn Mint Dental, 567 Pacific Street, Suite B, Brooklyn, NY 11217. 718-360-0365

February 2024 | Long Island Family




CampS Crafting memories this summer


onths before summer, many parents entertain an age-old question: how can we make this summer special for their kids? One tradition is summer sleepaway camps. Sleepaway camps nourish kids while giving them a break from everyday routine, whether from the city or from playing videos all day (#iykyk.), This allows kids to step out of their comfort zones after a long school year and explore new or familiar friendships in a supportive and supervised setting. These camp experiences contribute to personal development, resilience, and a deeper connection. The best part is that there is a camp for every kid that is the perfect fit for a fantastic summer. Check out our picks!

Camp Tuku Huguenot, N.y., 12746 Camptuku.org 928-224-5855, info@camptuku.org

Camp Chateaugay 233 Gadway Road, merrill, Ny 12955 Chateaugay.com info@chateaugay.com

Tucked away on the pristine shores of a beautiful mountain lake in New York’s Adirondacks, Camp Chateaugay has been the summer “home away from home” for campers aged 7 -17 years old, since 1946. Camp Chateaugay is a co-ed, traditional, sleep-away summer camp focused on building independence, self confidence and friendships as well as providing world-class training in a variety of land sports, water sports, and arts — all while having fun and creating life-long memories. Camp Chateaugay offers campers the chance to unplug from technology and connect with nature. They provide a safe, inclusive, and supportive environment with experienced and passionate staff who are dedicated to ensuring every camper has an unforgettable summer, filled with fun, learning and growth.

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Camp Tuku is a traditional sleepaway camp with a mindful approach! With summer camps hosted in Mayer, Arizona, and Huguenot, NY, Camp Tuku welcomes girls and boys ages 6-17 from all over the country. In everything they do – from yoga, innovations, archery, low ropes, arts & crafts, swimming, and pet care – they do it mindfully, always integrating the mind, body, and heart to build resilience in their campers! In collaboration with Emory University’s Center for Contemplative Science (The Center), Camp Tuku has integrated its mindfulness summer camp program with The Center’s SEE Learning™ curriculum, integrating competencies, resources, and skills that support kids’ well-being and flourishing. Campers will build relationships and focus on community while building resilience, confidence, focus, reflection, and awareness.

Dorothy P Flint 4-H Camp

Frost Valley YMCA

3186 Sound Ave. Riverhead NY 11901 ccenassau.org/dpf-4-h-camp DPF4hCamp@cornell.edu

2000 Frost Valley Road, Claryville, NY 12725 Frostvalley.org 845-985-2291, info@frostvalley.org

Dorothy P.Flint 4-H Camp is proudly embarking on its 100th year of creating unforgettable memories! Nestled on the picturesque Long Island Sound in Riverhead, NY, the 140-acre co-ed overnight and day camp is a haven for campers aged 5-16. DPF 4-H Camp celebrates diversity and provides a nurturing environment for youth to reach their fullest potential as capable, competent, and caring citizens. 4-H educational programs are designed to inspire curiosity, creativity, and a love for learning in our natural world, ensuring that each camper’s experience is fun and enriching. Programs in Archery, Nature & Ecology, Outdoor Living & Cooking, Farm & Agriculture, Sport & Recreation, Performing Arts, and Visual Arts & Crafts.

Frost Valley YMCA is the premier summer camp in the heart of New York’s Catskill Mountains, just a few hours from New York City. At Frost Valley YMCA, your camper can participate in sports, arts and crafts, hiking, horseback riding, rock climbing, canoeing, swimming, singing, storytelling around the campfire, sleeping underneath a canopy of stars, and so much more! Frost Valley is guided by 8 core values: caring, community, diversity, honesty, inclusiveness, respect, responsibility, and stewardship, which are infused into all camp programs. At Frost Valley, children and teens become campers for life. Help your child experience the magic of camp for the upcoming Summer of 2024! Tiered pricing and financial assistance are available.

Ghostlight Theater Camp

Incarnation Camp

7 Camp Eastwood Circle Ghostlighttheatercamp.com 207- 358-0641, chris@ghostlighttheatercamp.com

253 Bushy Hill Road, Ivoryton, CT 06442 Incarnationcamp.org info@incarnationcamp.org

Unleash the Spotlight at Ghostlight Theater Camp! Elevate your child’s summer with the ultimate stage experience! Their unrivaled productions, dynamic classes, and engaging activities set them apart as the premier theater camp. Immerse your young stars in a world of creativity where every moment is a chance to shine. At Ghostlight, they cultivate more than talent; they build confidence and independence. Their carefully crafted program empowers campers to discover their unique voices, fostering lifelong skills that extend beyond the stage. With top-notch instructors, cutting-edge productions, and a supportive community, your child will leave Ghostlight Theater Camp with newfound skills and a shining sense of self.

Incarnation Camps - Wilderness adventure & classic summer camp fun! Located in coastal Connecticut, on over 700 wooded acres surrounding a mile-long private lake, Incarnation Camps are the country’s oldest coed camps. Since 1886, they have provided programming that offers funfilled, traditional camp experiences with experiential learning and many options for campers, including ceramics, sports, woodworking, arts & crafts, sailing, archery, farm care, music, and so much more! Campers are guided through well-rounded & adventurous programs that develop an appreciation for nature & celebrate the uniqueness of each individual. Incarnation Camp programs serve over 1000 campers each summer, and our alumni network is far-reaching. February 2024 | Long Island Family



Woodward Action Sports Camp Pocono Springs Camp 48 Pocono Springs Way, East Stroudsburg PA 18302 poconospringscamp.com summer@poconospringscamp.com

Located in the Pocono Mountains, just 75 miles from NYC, Pocono Springs offers a unique concept in the world of sleepaway camps: a traditional co-ed camp experience in a 5-week program. Their five-week program allows families to provide their children with a full-season summer camp experience while also having the flexibility for family travel, specialty camps, and other summer fun outside of camp. Additionally, they’re not a session camp! This means every camper starts and ends together - creating a truly cohesive community filled with down-to-earth families and mature staff who are genuinely excited to be part of your camper’s growth. A three-week “intro program” is available for 1st year campers entering grades 2nd-5th.

Woodward, PA woodwardpa.com 814-349-5633, office@woodwardcamp.com

For those who love action sports, a week at Camp Woodward is beyond anything you could imagine. With a more than 50-year legacy of teaching kids the art of balance and agility, Woodward knows what it takes to learn and progress in the most popular action sports. That is why they have built the most innovative parks, hired the most capable instructors, and partnered with the world’s top action sports athletes to create the ultimate summer camp experience. All located on a beautiful 48-acre campus, the summer camp experience at Woodward includes a wide range of recreation activities in addition to sports instruction and competition. Plus, Woodward’s supportive community, fueled by a shared passion for action sports culture, lifts all athletes and ignites their complete potential. There’s simply no place like it.

Check us out Online! We’re the #1 print & digital lifestyle platform for engaged parents in New York. Visit newyorkfamily.com to check it out and sign up for our weekly newsletters!

22 NewYorkFamily.com | February 2024


Get Ready for the Camp Fair! New York Family Camp Fairs are a great place to start your summer camp search


electing the right camp for your child sets the stage for life-long memories, friends, and a summer brimming with enjoyment! Summer always seems to creep up on us fast here in NYC, so it’s time to start prepping your camp plans. Instead of facing these decisions alone, head over to New York Family’s Camp Fairs, where you’ll learn about all the many camp options for your kiddos. This year, there will even be promotions, games, raffles, art & crafts, face paintings, and more—all for free. Before we dive into the Camp Fair specifics, let’s go over what to look for so you can find the best camp for your kids.

Types of camps Sleep away camps: Considering a sleep away camp this summer? These camps are great for boosting your kid’s independence and confidence. They’ll learn how to do things on their own, returning back in August as self-sufficient campers! Sleep away camps also improve social skills, helping your little ones form friendships outside of school. While you might be nervous to send your kids away for the summer, asking the right questions at the Camp Fairs can help! Read on for a handy checklist. Day camps: You’re probably already familiar with the classic day camp. These are great for keeping your kids entertained (and active!) during the day. If your kids are hoping to do a little bit of everything– sports, arts & crafts, games– then a general day camp may be the way to go. They often have a “choose your own adventure” structure, where kids can choose what they want to do. Special interest camps: Does your child have a unique interest or skill they can’t stop talking about? Help your child nurture this passion through special interest camps. These

might include dance, arts & crafts, STEM, sports and theater. Your kids will be surrounded by other campers who are also excited about that interest, and specialized camp directors who are experts in their fields! Camp Fair checklist for parents Ready to attend a Camp Fair? Here are some of the questions to ask directors and counselors so you can find the perfect camp: • Can you walk me through a typical day for my child? • What time is drop off/pick up? Do you offer aftercare? • What background or experience do the camp counselors have? (Especially important for special interest camps!) • What kind of safety procedures or systems do you have in place in case of emergency? (Especially important for

sleepaway camps!) • What will my kids learn this summer? • What makes this camp special? Can you share the camp mission or values? • Does the camp offer financial aid or scholarship support? Ready to learn more about when and where these Camp Fairs are taking place this year? Read on for the details! New York Family’s 2024 Camp Fair is coming to you! Long Island Family Camp Fair Sunday, 3/3 Camp Fair at Cradle of Aviation

The Long Island Family Camp Fair is the final one offered this year in New York! Mark your calendars for this event to find the right camp fit for your kiddos. February 2024 | Long Island Family


family day out

Long Island's Top Rinks for Ice Skating By Barbara Russo

Northwell Health Ice Center

f you want to go ice skating in Long Island with your kids, you’ve come to the right place to find the perfect rink. We’ve rounded up indoor and outdoor ice-skating rinks in Nassau County and Suffolk County that offer public skating sessions. Bonus: Heading to an ice skating rink in Long Island is a great way to keep the kids active during the winter months!

Indoor rink


Ice Skating in Nassau County Andrew Stergiopoulos Ice Rink/ Parkwood Ice Skating Rink

200 Merrick Ave., East Meadow, 516-441-0070 Hours: Check the public schedule on the website. Prices: $15; $5 skate rental This 165,000 square-foot facility offers public skating and consists of two indoor, NHL-sized skating rinks, as well as one outdoor rink that hosts both roller and deck hockey leagues throughout the summer.

Indoor rink

Parkwood Sports Complex, 65 Arrandale Ave., Great Neck, 516-487-4673 Hours: Monday, 12:30-2:30pm; Tuesday, 10am-12pm, and 12:30-2:30pm; Wednesday, 9:30-11:30am, 12-2pm, 2:15-4:30pm; Thursday, 10am-12pm and 12:30-2:30pm; Friday, 12:302:30pm, 3-5pm, and 7:45-9:45pm; Saturday, 12-1:30pm and 3-4:30pm; Sunday, 12:15-1:45pm, 3:15-4:45pm, and 7:15-9:30pm. Price: Adults$9 residents, $15 non-residents; Children- $7 residents, $11 non-residents; Seniors, $5 residents only; Friday Nights- $10 residents, $14 non-residents; $5 skate rental. Part of the Great Neck Park District, this Long Island ice-skating rink offers public skating and a skate school for all ages and abilities. Its Snow Plow Sam program is for toddlers ages 3 to 6. It’s a 30-minute class designed to give kids a fun introduction to the skating world. Newbridge Arena Indoor rink

2600 Newbridge Road., Bellmore, 516-783-6181 Hours: Wednesday, 4-6pm; Thursday, 8-10am; Friday, 8:30-10:30am, 4-6pm, and 8:30-10:30pm; Saturday-Sunday, 12:30-2:30pm and 3-5pm. Call or check the website for holiday hours. Price: $11; $9 resident; $7 military, fire, police, volunteer ambulance; $5 skate rental. This Nassau County ice-skating rink has been a local favorite for over 25 years. It’s known for its Hot Shots Ice Hockey league, starring the NYPD and FDNY, and also offers public skating, skate lessons, and hockey-based programs.

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Port Washington Skating Center Indoor rink

70 Seaview Blvd., Port Washington, 516-4846800 Hours: Times vary and reservations required; see website. Price: $18. $5 skate rental. Enjoy public skating, skate lessons, and hockey clinics. There is a Little Ones skate school geared toward 3- to 4-year-olds. It offers an introduction to skating using toys and props as teaching aids. Camp days are also available on select school holidays. More information is available on the website. Christopher Morley Park Outdoor rink

500 Searingtown Road, Roslyn, 516-571-8123 Hours: Season runs November-March. Call for hours. Prices: Call for information This spacious ice-skating rink in Nassau County is set in scenic Christopher Morley Park. In addition to ice-skating, other amenities kids and families can enjoy near the rink include a playground, nature trails, and a farmers’ market, which is open through late November. Grant Park Rink Outdoor rink

1625 Broadway, Hewlett, 516-571-7821 Hours: November-March. Monday-Thursday, 1:15-315pm and 4-5:30pm*; Friday, 1:15-3:15pm, 4-6pm, and 7-9pm; Saturday, 10:30am-12:30pm, 1:15-3:15pm, 4-6pm, and 7-9pm; Sunday, 10:30am-12:30pm, 1:15-3:15pm, and 4-6pm Prices: $10 resident, $15 non-resident; $6 resident children 17 and younger; $10 child non resident.

$5 skate rental. Public skating available. Other amenities kids and families can enjoy include a playground, athletic fields and workout stations. Public puck shooting sessions are available on Monday and Thursday, 4-5:30pm for all ages. *puck shoot only in the evenings on Monday and Thursday Marjorie R. Post Community Park Ice Rink Outdoor Rink

Unqua and Merrick roads, Massapequa, 516-797-7990 Hours: Friday, 4-6pm and 7-9pm; Saturday, 1-3pm, 4-6pm and 7-9pm; Sunday, 1-3pm and 4-6pm. Prices: $7 resident, $11 non-resident; ages 5-17, $6 resident $9 non-resident; $4 seniors and ages 2-4 resident; $6 non-resident. Veterans volunteer firefighters and auxiliary police are $4 for residents and $6 for non-resident. $5 skate rentals. Public sessions are available at this popular community park, which draws many people from surrounding neighborhoods in Massapequa. Other amenities families and kids can enjoy at the park include a playground and basketball, handball, tennis, bocce and volleyball courts. Syosset-Woodbury Community Park Ice Rink Outdoor rink

7800 Jericho Turnpike, Syosset, 516-677-5990 Hours: Weekends only, check for public skating hours. Prices: $7 resident, $11 non-resident; ages 5-17, $6 resident $9 non-resident; $4 seniors and

$10 ages 10 and younger; $6 skate rental This Nassau County ice rink offers public skating, lessons (both group and private) and several hockey programs. Long Beach Ice Arena Indoor rink

150 West Bay Drive, Long Beach, 516-705-7385 Hours: Saturdays, 1:30-3pm; Sundays, 12:15-1:45pm. Prices: $10; $8 senior citizens; $5 skate rental Open year-round and offers public skating, sticks and pucks sessions, youth and adult hockey programs. The Learn to Skate program is a group lesson for kids ages 4 and older interested in learning to skate for figure skating or hockey. ages 2-4 resident; $6 non-resident. Veterans volunteer firefighters and auxiliary police are $4 for residents and $6 for non-resident. $5 skate rentals. Public sessions available. Town of Oyster Bay Ice Skating Center Indoor rink

1001 Stewart Ave., Bethpage, 516-433-7465 Hours: Through April 1, 2024: Monday and Wednesday, 4-6pm; Friday, 4-5:30pm and 8:30-10:30pm; Tuesday and Thursday, 10am12pm; Saturday, 2:45-5:45pm; Sunday, 2-5pm Prices: Call for information Offers public skating, lessons, youth figure skating and hockey programs, and birthday party packages.

Ice-Skating in Suffolk County Dix Hills Ice Rink Indoor rink

575 Vanderbilt Parkway, Dix Hills, 631-462-5883 Hours: Times vary; check the website. Price: $15; $10 children, teens, and seniors. Resident cards available for special pricing. $4 skate rental. $0.50 lockers. This year-round skating destination in Long Island offers public ice skating, lessons, a pro shop stocked with skate equipment and more. The facility sits upon 150 acres of scenic parkland and is designed to resemble a ski lodge that is open and airy, giving it a true rustic look! Buckskill Winter Club

Freeport Ice Rink

Outdoor rink

Indoor rink

178 Buckskill Road, East Hampton, 631-324-2243 Hours: Call for information or check the daily schedule online. Prices: All day pass: $33; $27 ages 5-16; $20 seniors; $15 ages 4 and under. Skate rental available. This Suffolk County ice-skating caters to the Hamptons’ community and beyond. It offers public skating, private rink rentals, lessons, and more. There’s an on-site club house with a snack bar, fire place, big-screen TV, and couches.

130 E. Merrick Road, Freeport, 516-377-2314 Hours: Thursday, 3:30-4:45pm; Friday, 7:309pm; Sunday, 1:30-3:30pm. Prices: $7; $4 skate rental. Resident discounts available. Public skating, lessons and birthday party packages available at this Nassau County iceskating rink. There is also a public puck shoot session on Fridays, 1:15-4:15pm that runs through May 27 for all ages. Iceland Long Island Indoor rink

3345 Hillside Ave., New Hyde Park, 516-746-1100 Hours: Friday, 8:30-10pm; Saturday, 12:151:45pm; Sunday, 11:15-12:45pm. Prices: $12;

The Rinx Indoor rink

660 Terry Road, Hauppauge, 631-232-3222 Hours: Monday-Friday, 12:30-2:30pm;

Tuesday-Wednesday, 4-5:45pm; SaturdaySunday, 12-3pm, Friday, 8:15-10:15pm. Price: Weekdays: $13; $11 children; $6 seniors, $16 Friday nights. Weekends and holidays: $15; $12 children; $7 seniors. $7 skate rental. Founded in 1993, the Rinx is open year round and offers public skating, lessons, day camp and figure skating and hockey programs. Have a tiny tot interested in skating? There’s an on-site preschool academy for children ages that includes traditional preschool activities, as well as group skating lessons for kids ages 3-5. Check the website for more information. The Rinx at Harborfront Park Outdoor rink

Port Jefferson Village Center, 101-A E. Broadway, Port Jefferson, 631-403-4357 Hours: Season begins Friday, Nov. 26. Monday-Thursday, 12-1:30pm, 2-3:30pm, 4-5:30pm, and 6:30-8pm; Friday, 12-1:30pm, 2-3:30pm, 4-5:30pm, and 8-10pm; Saturday, 10-11:30am, 1-2:30pm, 2:45-4:15pm, 4:30-6pm, and 8-10pm; Sunday, 10-11:30am; 1-2:30pm; 3-4:30pm, and 4:30-6pm. Price: Weekdays: $13; $6 seniors; $10 children 11 and younger. Weekends and holidays: $12; $6 seniors; $9.50 children 11 and younger. Skate rental: $7. (NOTE: Friday nights and Saturday nights, admission is $15) Enjoy harbor-front and scenic outdoor skating in the village of Port Jefferson. Lessons and party packages available. Southampton Ice Rink Outdoor, covered rink

668 County Road 39, Southampton, 631-283-2158 Hours: Check website for weekly dates. Prices: weekdays, $15, $12 for children; weekend/ holidays, $20, $15 for children This ice-skating rink in Suffolk County offers public skating, lessons, adult and youth hockey programs, and birthday party packages. Located at the Southampton Golf Range, the rink has a new snack bar featuring Nathan’s hot dogs, fries, and sandwiches. Superior Ice Rink Indoor rink

270 Indian Head Road, Kings Park, 631-269-3900 Hours: Friday, 8:30-10:30pm; Saturday-Sunday, 12:30-2pm. Prices: $10; $15 Friday nights. $5 skate rental This Suffolk County ice rink has a new, fully equipped gym. Multiple membership packages are available. There is also team and individual training available. February 2024 | Long Island Family


A New York Love Story Sophie Demenge on founding with her husband Michael, the children’s lifestyle brand Oeuf and how family is first for both her brand and life

By Serena norr


or many New Yorkers, when one hears any conversation regarding the brand Oeuf (oeufnyc.com), the line French born Sophie Demenge started over 20 years ago with her husband, Michael Ryan, many have the same reaction, mostly of Ahhh. Memories may toggle somewhere from nostalgia to aspirational home goals. For us parents who now have kids in their tween and teenage years, we have memories of that dreamy baby stage where we chose a unique item or two (or three!) and placed it delicately in our baby’s room or carefully hunged in the closet. Then we recall with a warmth how each room, each closet, was eventually upgraded to reflect a new stage with Oeuf’s beautiful pieces. Which is the point. Oeuf was created to design their daughters’ room with a modern and high quality (non-existent at the time) that evolved into a brand renowned for its modern, sustainable, and durable furniture and clothing. This further expanded when their son was born, and they haven’t looked back. Over the years, their Prospect Park home - particularly the kids’ rooms - became the backdrop of many photoshoots (where we recently enjoyed spending time during this cover shoot!). Today, Sophie, Michael, and their small team (which is a family affair as it sometimes includes help from their kids: Mae, now 21, and Marius, now 19) continue to be strongly rooted in their values of craftsmanship and quality. Much of Sophie’s design and focus on sustainability comes from her background growing up in France, surrounded by quality products that weren’t thrown away. Oeuf and family are still growing as the brand and Sophie, now an empty nester, evolve into new designs and new adventures. Read on to learn more about this seasoned mom and entrepreneur who embraces life - and her business - with heart, love, and a mission to always stay true to herself.

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Tell us about the history of Oeuf and how you and your husband, Michael Ryan, created it 21 years ago? We kind of created it by necessity because in 2002, there was really nothing. It was a very different landscape in the kids’ design space, especially in furniture. At the time, we actually had another design business for grownups where we were creating ceramics wood, one-of-a-kind pieces, and metal pieces. Since we had that business, we already had a design studio in Brooklyn. So, when I was expecting, Michael and I started looking around for furniture where we realized that there was this giant gap. So, we decided to make everything for my daughter in the studio, and it took off. At first, we actually didn’t plan on making it a business. The pieces were just for her. We curated and made her rugs, the bedding, the crib, all the furniture, and the toys. It was really, really fun to do. When they went to the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) in NYC where we presented some of our kids’ stuff. A few weeks later, we were in The New York Times! It was incredible, but I think people saw that there were items out there that weren’t made well or clunky. Plus, they weren’t a variety of great design and kids were not kind of honored that way. We kept designing things for the kids and continued to expand. Two-and-a-half years later, I had my son, Maus and then we made a toddler bed. We then made a desk, a bunk bed, and expanded to clothing. While we did still have the other business, we realized that what we were creating at Oeuf was a lot more fun and went for it. What has been the experience like working with your husband? We do very different things that compliment each other. We have a division of labor and tasks. It has changed and evolved over the years. Sometimes it does feel like we are in a never-ending round of couples therapy and other times it’s exhilarating. I

think it’s important to be able to separate marriage and our work relationship a little bit. We also know each other so well and know when we need to leave when one of us needs a bit more space. We’re also both goofballs and laugh a lot. I think that’s the super glue in the relationship. I also still feel like we’re in this 20-year-old startup where we’re still learning. We’ve had to adapt together really quickly, and even when we feel like we have a handle on things, something else happens. This is very similar to parenting and nice to know that Michael is the one I can bounce ideas off of and connect with about everything from parenting to business. Have you ever felt the need to change your products over the years to conform to trend? We believe in staying true to ourselves and I don’t think we are influenced by the outside world. We try to do what makes sense and we’re not trying to please anyone or even guess what people want. As with our history, we created what was best for our own children and it resonated. We only launch a new product when we’re excited about something or when we feel like it is missing in the market. Tell us how your now-grown children are involved in Oeuf. It’s wonderful! They’ve done really everything from the behind the scenes styling to modeling when they were newborn to helping out at photo shoots or selling at sample sales! They’ve also grown up in this world since a lot of our photo shoots are held at home. They’re used to seeing stylists, photographers,and people come in and out of their rooms with equipment. The business has become a part of our creative family adventure. However, they do have their own lives- and I welcome them back to help whenever they are around. What was it like raising Mae and Marius in Brooklyn? How was it different from your experience growing up in Paris?

mothers who are inundated with products. I actually think you don’t need much. For example, in France we don’t throw things away. In our line, we encourage people to resell items, use them on other kids, or give them a friend. This is our sustainable model, which is rooted in our design and mission. Tell us about what it’s like now that your kids are older and you are in the empty nester phase - what are you excited about? I’m really excited when they come home but I also love seeing them out in the world and becoming their own people. I actually like being in the background (of their lives) where I almost become irrelevant. I think a great testament to my parenting is to let them shine and be their own people. In terms of my day-to-day, it freed up some time, including my mental time. Women and mothers take on so much that we don’t even realize. I feel like I was wearing these different backpacks - like what’s for dinner or appointments - that I don’t have to be burdened with. I’m also a new empty nester cause my son just graduated from high school so I haven’t even really figured out how I want to use this newfound energy. Especially, as a mom, I think we always put ourselves last. I don’t even know what I would love to be doing yet, because I’m so used to doing everything for everybody else. It’s also shocking (in a good way) to have this time. I think having more time with friends, and even reading a book is going to be amazing. There’s this French comedian who says that being an empty nester is kind of like being a teenager with a credit card. I resonate with that a lot in this stage.

Photo by Yumi Matsuo

I started out as a mom in the East Village. When May was two, two years old, we moved to Brooklyn. I wanted her to have a community and roots. I find Brooklyn very similar to Paris in that way. When I grew up in Paris, I always walked to school, which is similar to how they grew up in Park Slope. We used to walk everywhere. When they were younger, the kids would walk to the orthodontist or to their friends’ house or for sleepovers. Brooklyn feels like a village (like Paris) that I love. I also love having access to Prospect Park, which is similar to my walks to the Luxembourg Garden. Now, it is also beautiful to see my kids’

connection to France. We all go all the time. My daughter actually lived there last year and wants to move back when she graduates. My son is there now, too! What do you think influences your design sensibility? I think design and creativity is very personal. We’re not really a big consumer type of family so I think there’s this French sensibility from how I grew up about quality and not quality. When we first started, we would tell people to buy less, really buy less. Especially young

Is there anything about the brand you’d like to share that people might not be familiar with. Consistency and quality is important to us where all of the furniture is made in Europe for the past 20 years. Michael often goes to Latvia where the products are made as well as Bolivia where our knitters live. We even invited the five original knitters to spend a week with us in Brooklyn. At the end of the day, our family (and the people who work for us) are interwoven in the business. At the end of the day that’s what really matters. Discover more about Oeuf at oeufnyc.com and on Instagram @oeufnyc.

This piece has been edited for clarity and brevity. To read the entire cover article please visit newyorkfamily.com February 2024 | Long Island Family


calendar By Shara Levine

Rex Scofield Photography

San Jose Taiko comes to the Tilles Center on February 25.


at The Mansion at Glen Cove

Monster Jam WHEN: Feb. 2-4, Friday, 7 pm; Saturday, 1 pm & 7 pm; Sunday, 1 pm. WHERE: UBS Arena, 2400 Hempstead Turnpike, Elmont AGES: All WHAT: See the world’s best drivers and their 12,000-pound monster trucks show off crazy skills, massive stunts and allout racing. WANT TO GO?: Tickets start at $20. monsterjam.com

WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 4, 9:30 – 11:30 am WHERE: The Mansion at Glen Cove, 200 Dosoris Lane, Glen Cove AGES: 5 – 8 WHAT Dress in royal attire and feast on a scrumptious buffet breakfast when you meet and greet with some of your favorite princesses. WANT TO GO?: $64.13; $44.89 child. (646) 518–8771, themansionatglencove.com

Cinderella Musical

Tracks and Traces

WHEN: Feb. 3-11, Saturday, 11 am – 12 pm, Sunday, 12 – 1 pm WHERE: Bellmore Movies and Showplace, 222 Pettit Avenue, Bellmore AGES: 8 and younger WHAT: This classic fairy tale springs to life in this fast-paced musical production featuring ragged Cinderella and the handsome prince looking for a bride. WANT TO GO?: $15. bellmoremovie.com

WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 4, 1 – 2:30 pm WHERE: Valley Stream State Park, Valley Stream State Park Road, Valley Stream AGES: All WHAT: Discover the secrets of forest animals and explore the park in search of tracks. WANT TO GO?: $4. parks. ny.gov

Breakfast with Princesses

Jurassic Quest WHEN: Feb. 17-19, Saturday and Sunday 9 am – 8 pm; Monday, 9 am – 5 pm.

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WHERE: Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, 1255 Hempstead Tpke, Uniondale AGES: All WHAT: Travel back in time to see a herd of life size dinosaurs, interact with dino trainers, watch a live Raptor Training Experience, and more. WANT TO GO?: $32.50-$52.05. nassaucoliseum.com

America, 1276 Hicksville Rd. Seaford AGES: All WHAT: Put on your favorite neon outfits and lace up your skates for an unforgettable evening with Pikachu! WANT TO GO?: $15-$27; $6 non skating adult admission. (516) 795–5474, unitedskates. com

Princess Royal Tea Party


WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 18, 11:20 am – 12:30 pm & 1:20 – 2:30 pm. WHERE: Sands Point Preserve, 127 Middle Neck Road, Sands Point AGES: All WHAT: Celebrate Valentine’s Day with a special tea party featuring some special royal couples, singing, an interactive dance party, individual meet & greets, and more. WANT TO GO?: $65; $55 child; $75 child VIP. sandspoint­ preserveconser­vancy.org

WHEN: Feb. 19-24, Daily, 11:30 am and 2 pm; Friday, Feb. 23, 6:15 pm WHERE: Long Island Children’s Museum, 11 Davis Ave., Garden City AGES: 3 and older WHAT: With toe-tapping Americana music inspired by bluegrass, gospel, and folk, Frederick is an engaging story about the power of the arts, community, and that no mouse gets left behind. WANT TO GO?: $10 with $17 museum admission; $14 Theater only. licm.org

Glow In the Dark with Pikachu

Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live

WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 18, 12 – 2 pm WHERE: United Skates of

WHEN: Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2 pm WHERE: Tilles Center for the


learn Chinese calligraphy, create a traditional good luck decoration, and visit the collections to see one of the animals in the Chinese Zodiac. WANT TO GO?: $20; $18 members. vanderbiltmuseum. org

Performing Arts, 720 Northern Boulevard, Brookville AGES: All WHAT: Meet and interact with an eye-popping collection of amazing life-like dinosaurs and other creatures in a theatrical performance that entertains kids while stimulating their imaginations. WANT TO GO?: Tickets start at $30. (516) 299–3100, tillescenter.org

Princess Tea Party

San Jose Taiko WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 25, 3 pm WHERE: Tilles Center for the Performing Arts, 720 Northern Boulevard, Brookville AGES: All WHAT: This high-energy show combines music with traditional Japanese drumming! WANT TO GO?: Tickets start at $30. (516) 299–3100, tillescenter.org

Suffolk Groundhog Day with Holtsville Hal WHEN: Friday, Feb. 2, 7 – 8 am WHERE: Holtsville Ecology Site, 249 Buckley Rd, Holtsville AGES: All ages WHAT: Six more weeks of winter or an early spring? Find out when Holtsville Hal gives his famous forecast! WANT TO GO?: Free. brookhavenny.gov

Art Inspired by JeanMichel Basquiat WHEN: Friday, Feb. 2, 4 – 5 pm WHERE: John Jermain Memorial Library, 201 Main St, Sag Harbor AGES: 5 – 11 WHAT: Celebrate Black History Month by getting creative and making your own artwork inspired by artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. WANT TO GO?: Free. johnjermain.org

Celebrate Groundhog Day with Holtsxille Hal at the Holtsville Ecology Site on February 2. about Lunar New Year with beautiful traditional Chinese dances, origami, history, art, culture, and more. WANT TO GO?: Free. (631) 380–3230, heckscher.org

Narwhal Ball WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 4, 11 am – 4 pm WHERE: The Whaling Museum & Education Center, 301 Main Street, Cold Spring Harbor AGES: All WHAT: Explore the world of polar sea creatures, gather around for “Storytime with Elsa”, indulge in an icy treat, and create frosty crafts. WANT TO GO?: $5-$25. cshwhalingmuseum.org

Baby’s First Valentine’s Day 2024

WHEN: Thursday, Feb. 8, 11 am – 12:30 pm WHERE: The Children’s Museum of the East End, 376 Bridgehampton Sag Harbor Turnpike, Bridgehampton, AGES: 0-18 months WHAT: Bring your little valentine to sing songs, dance, play games, create a special craft, and take a special “kissing booth” photo! WANT TO GO?: Free. cmee.org

Celebrate the ‘Year of the Dragon’ at Vanderbilt WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 11, 10 am – 12 pm WHERE: Vanderbilt Museum & Planetarium, 180 Little Neck Rd, Centerport AGES: All WHAT: Make a paper lantern,

WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 11, 12:30 pm, 3 pm & 10 am. WHERE: Long Island Aquarium, 431 E Main St., Riverhead AGES: All WHAT: Your little Princess will enjoy formal white glove tea service and dance and sing with all of her favorite Princesses. WANT TO GO?: $49.95; $44.95 ages 2-12; $10 children younger than 2 longislandaquarium.com

Southold WinterFest WHEN: Saturday, Feb. 17, 10 am – 3 pm WHERE: Main Road, Southold Village AGES: All ages WHAT: Celebrate the cold with live music, caricature art, face painting, ice sculpting, jugglers, and much more! WANT TO GO?: Free. facebook.com

Weather Wizards: Family Program WHEN: Thursday, Feb. 22, 10 – 11:30 am WHERE: Connetquot River State Park Preserve AGES: 6 and older WHAT: Ever wonder how a cloud forms or why a tornado starts? Uncover weather secrets with hands-on demonstrations and activities. WANT TO GO?: $4. eventbrite. com

Dorothy’s Adventure in Oz

Lunar New Year Celebration WHEN: Saturday, Feb. 3, 12 – 5 pm WHERE: The Heckscher Museum of Art, 2 Prime Avenue, Huntington AGES: 3 – 12 WHAT: Celebrate and learn


Celebrate Lunar New Year at the Heckscher Museum of Art on February 3.

WHEN: Feb. 24-March 16, Saturdays, 11 am; Feb. 21 – 23, 25, 11 am. WHERE: Theatre Three, 412 Main St, Port Jefferson AGES: All WHAT: This new take on this classic tale features an original score, memorable characters, and reminds us that “there’s no place like home!” WANT TO GO?: $12. theaterthree.com

February 2024 | Long Island Family


family day out

Celebration of Elephants Must-see exhibit at American Museum of Natural History By BarBara russo


f you haven’t yet - it is time to walk into the new The Secret World of Elephants exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History, and you’ll get a sense of just how amazing these gentle giants are in the wild. In a narrow but sprawling curatorial space at the uptown museum, The Secret World of Elephants, now opened, tells the story of elephant species and their relatives through life-size models, videos, graphics, and more. “We are delighted to present The Secret World of Elephants, a comprehensive look at these intriguing and important animals and the latest scientific thinking about their abilities, environmental roles, social structure, history and future,” Sean M. Decatur, president of the American Museum of Natural History, said. “This exhibition is an example of what the American Museum of Natural History does so well: by starting at a point of shared curiosity and fascination we can share larger stories about evolution, the environment, animal behavior, and the interactions between human and animals, thereby expanding understanding of the natural world and our impact on it.” What to Expect at The Secret World of Elephants Some of us have been fortunate enough to see an elephant at a zoo or even in the wild. However, the new museum exhibit allows visitors of all ages to learn more about these beautiful creatures. The Secret World of Elephants offers so much insight into these animals through interactive exhibits including: A station where visitors can feel the extremely low sound waves elephants use— called infrasound—to send messages through the ground and to other elephants’ feet, which conduct vibrations up their legs and to their brains A life-size African elephant model with a video projection on one side of its body showing the skeleton of this massive mammal and

30 NewYorkFamily.com | February 2024

providing an inside look at how it processes the huge amount of food it eats—about 300–500 pounds per day—and elephant gestation, which can last for nearly two years, longer than any other living mammal A miniature elephant model that prompts visitors to turn a wheel to flap its ears, a process that helps elephants keep cool in hot environments And—brace yourself!—an exploration of elephant poop, featuring replica dung, that provides key nutrients for plants and other animals and helps expand plant ranges by transporting seeds. (Pretty fascinating!) Additionally, life-size models, including a scientifically accurate representation of a woolly mammoth shedding its fur, fossils and casts, and videos reveal the amazing story of these massive mammals. A Bit About Elephants It’s hard to find anyone who doesn’t see how majestic elephants truly are. By the way, there are three species of elephants native to two continents: the African savanna, African forest and Asian elephant. But at one time, animals like this, who had tusks and trunks, lived on almost every continent and many islands. Although only these three elephant species remain, their abilities remain remarkable. Elephants’ trunks are strong enough to pull down a tree, yet nimble enough to pluck a single blade of grass. They communicate extensively with each other, maintaining complex emotional ties with other herd mem-

bers. They shape their environment, creating habitat for countless plants and animals. And over centuries of interactions with humans, they’ve been trained for war and work, and are powerful religious and political symbols across cultures. “Elephants are the world’s largest land animal, but we understand surprisingly little about them,” The Secret World of Elephants curator Ross MacPhee, curator emeritus in the museum’s department of mammalogy, said. “Researchers are working toward assembling a much more complete picture of elephants and we’re learning new secrets about their minds, bodies, and ecological importance every day. We also know elephants face an uncertain future. The global demand for ivory, along with climate change and habitat loss, are pushing them along the path to extinction. If we don’t act quickly, elephants could be gone before we ever truly get to know them.” What You Need to Know About Visiting the AMNH The American Museum of Natural History is located at 200 Central Park West, Manhattan. Hours: The museum is open daily, 10 am–5:30 pm; at presstime the exhibit has tickets available until June 30th, 2024. Tickets: Tickets that include admission to The Secret World of Elephants start at $28 for adults, $16.50 for children (ages 3-12) and $22.50 for seniors and students. Timed-entry tickets must be reserved in advance at amnh. org/tickets. For more information, visit amnh.org.

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• Meet Camp Directors • G

• Arts & Crafts • Free Treats • Face Painting

• Balloon Animals • Fun Photo Station • Bounce House

Sunday March 3, 2024 - 12pm to 3pm Cradle of Aviation Museum at Charles Lindbergh Blvd RSVP Now - Space is Limited www.newyorkfamily.com/CampFairs Sponsored By


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