Bronx/Riverdale Family - June 2024

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2024 Signature Events | May - September


Parents, mark your calendars for this monthly playdate experience designed to help kids expand their imaginations while engaging in themed crafts, games and more!


Take your yoga routine outdoors and enjoy a complimentary, weekly session on the South Lawn. Take advantage of the loyalty rewards program and earn exclusive prizes for every five classes attended.



Start your weekends unwinding with a variety of live musical performances at Park Plaza. m y - 4 Signatu ents

Grab your furry best friends and make your way to the Ridge Hill Dog Park for the doggone happiest hour of all.

Enjoy a season of exciting, action-packed, family-oriented movies on the big screen at the South Lawn.



May 18–Oct 27

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 3
2900 Southern Blvd. Bronx, New York


Photo: Ana Gambuto |

Cover Illustrator: Béatrice Hug

Makeup & Hair: Ammy Thitichaya Chan |

Kids: Logan, Lucient, Sloan and Madison

Produced: Donna Duarte- Ladd

Shot on location at Van Leeuwen Ice Cream, Williamsburg, Brooklyn |

Logan is wearing jacket, Lucient is wearing pants

4 | June 2024 JUNE 2024 CONTENTS FEATURES 16 | In the News NYC Parks now has more changing tables available in their restrooms 22 | Summer Summer family bucket list for the season 24 | Dad Stories Millennial dads are stepping up 62 | Spotlight The scoop on Van Leeuwen SUMMER FUN GUIDE 30 | Family Road Trips 48 | Summer Experiences in and around New York 56 | Summer Fun All Season Long
6 | Editor’s Letter 8 | Ask the Expert Teaching your children about financial literacy 12 | Family Day Out The Bronx Zoo celebrates 125 years 14 | Family Day Out Where to go strawberry picking 18 | Education A guide to Preschool and Montessori schools 28 | Travel Visiting Barbados FAMILY FUN 60 | Calendar All the fun activities for June DIRECTORIES 20 | Preschool & Montessori Listings ON THE COVER
pg. 30 pg. 62 pg. 18 pg. 60 pg. 24
June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 5

Summer Fun Ahead

Summer is here, which means school break is on the horizon.

New Yorkers live for this season, especially our kids, who enjoy longer days, warm nights, ice cream (!), going Strawberry Picking (page 14), checking out the Animal Chronicles Exhibit at the Bronx Zoo, catching the Lion King on Broadway, and more.

Summer is our jam (pun intended), and we have a list of endless adventures for you and the family this season. From Epic Road Trips (page 30), Summer Experiences (page 48), and Fun (page 56) to our curated Bucket List (page 22), we’ve got you covered. Even though school is out, it’s never

too early to plan for your little ones’ next educational adventure. Delve into our allencompassing Preschool and Montessori School Guide (page 18) for a seamless transition.

June is also Father’s Day; our Mom Stories essay shares how Millennial Dads (page 24) are rewriting the script on fatherhood.

To all dads, grandfathers, guardians, uncles, and stepdads of all generations, Happy Father’s Day!

Happy Summer!


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6 | June 2024 EDITOR’S NOTE
New York Family is published monthly by Queens Family Media, LLC. Reproduction of New York Family Media in whole or part without written permission from the publisher is prohibited. All rights reserved. ©2024 Queens Family Media, LLC
Nina Gallo Photography

COME SOAR. COME SMILE. COME SEE WHAT ALL THE EXCITEMENT IS ABOUT. ROCHESTER, NY IS THE PERFECT FAMILY GETAWAY FOR UNIQUE AND EXTRAORDINARY ADVENTURES. Did we mention the world’s largest collection of toys, dolls, and games? Pack your bags and hit the road for an unforgettable trip in a destination full of surprises. With fun for every family, every season of the year, playtime tends to last a little longer in our backyard.

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 7
© Rochester Lilac Festival/North Glow Photography, The Strong National Museum of Play, Loyd C. Heath, Seabreeze Amusement Park

Teaching Your Children About Financial Literacy

Like it or not, money is a huge part of our world and how we move about it. Teaching kids, especially young girls, about financial literacy is a huge step towards setting them up for success in the future.

And that’s what financial expert and founder of Inspired Capital Alexa von Tobel is striving them to do. In her new children’s book Growing Up Powerful: Money Matters, von Tobel aims to empower the next generation of financially savvy girls early on in their lives.

After spending 20 years of her career helping young adults fix their finances, von Tobel found that the financial world can be pretty unforgiving. So, she’s switching from helping young adults play defense with their finances to helping parents teach their children how to play offense.

We sat down with von Tobel to talk about how she talks about money in her own family, what pitfalls parents fall into when talking to kids about money and how we can empower the next generation of financially savvy kids.

How do you talk about money in your own home?

A study from the University of Michigan says that kids can pick up on the tone of how money is discussed as early as age five. With that in mind, von Tobel says she’s very thoughtful about how money is discussed with her family, which includes her three kids.

In von Tobel’s family, money is “a factual element of our lives,” she says, so it is discussed in a matter of fact, straightforward way.

“We talk about it with no anxiety and no stress on purpose,” von Tobel says. “And we clue our children into money decisions, but with a matter of fact, can-do attitude, upbeat tone.”

Von Tobel also says she talks about work and making money in a positive light.

Some parents talk about work in a negative light, and von Tobel says “that just creates this big, negative doom and gloom for the

concept of work.”

When you talk about work in a positive way, “you’re orienting earning money as being something that’s positive, that can be fun and exciting, that your job can be an alignment of your passions and your skill sets,” von Tobel says. “And so all of those are fun.”

By reorienting how she talks about money and work, von Tobel says money is looked at as a tool and nothing else.

“It is not meant to be ignored, it is not meant to be worshiped,” von Tobel says. “It is simply a tool that allows us to live our life.”

What are some pitfalls parents and families fall into when talking to their kids about money?

One common pitfall parents fall into is having conversations about money with young kids in ways they may have a hard time conceptualizing.

For example, von Trobel shared a story of her young daughter wanting a toy that costs $50.

“She doesn’t really have a concept of what

$50 is,” von Trobel says.

But that doesn’t mean you have to avoid conversations about money entirely with young children.

“You can start having money conversations, you just have to use very primitive ways of explaining things,” von Tobel says.

In the above example, von Tobel says she explained to her daughter that the toy she wanted cost, a “big pile of quarters,” and even though she didn’t have that many quarters today, she could get the toy for her birthday.

Parents also make the mistake of giving in to their children too often, von Trobel says, when it comes to buying things that they ask for.

“All you’re doing is making it hard for your child to learn willpower and boundary setting,” von Tobel says. “And so money is a big element of boundary setting.”

Teaching children about willpower and boundary setting when it comes to money also teaches them about supply and demand principles and the importance of delayed gratification, which comes into play with

8 | June 2024
ask the e xpert

bigger financial decisions later on.

“Do you want to buy the smaller home today, or can you wait and save up and buy the much bigger home later?” von Tobel says. “It’s a muscle that you will practice and use your entire life.”

When should parents start teaching their children about financial literacy?

Teaching kids about financial literacy can start early.

“When you’re learning basic math, you’re capable of learning these principles,” von Tobel says.

One way to do this is by setting your child up with multiple piggy banks at home: a small one for quick purchases, a medium one for larger purchases and a big one for long-term savings (like a college fund, for example).

This teaches kids about how to save money and how to split up the money they earn and put it towards different things. Simple lessons early on can help children build good habits later on.

“Those principles are really important to lay the foundation,” von Tobel says. “And to talk about money in a completely unemotional, matter of fact way can transform a child’s life.”

While there may be a misconception that kids can’t think about money because it’s too complicated, von Tobel says “the math is not the complicated piece.”

“It’s the habit forming, it’s the checking in to make sure you ask good questions, it’s understanding delayed gratification, that is what’s important with money,” von Tobel says. “It’s a muscle that you need to practice and you need to build and you need to build it as early as you possibly can.”

As people get older, conversations about money start to include things

like salary negotiations. How can parents prepare their kids for these conversations at a young age?

The key to setting kids up for conversations surrounding being paid what they’re worth in the workplace, according to von Tobel, is to teach them to work hard for the things they want and that their hard work will be rewarded.

“Your hard work is valued and it is equally valuable to somebody else working hard,” von Tobel says. “It’s about making it an unequivocal fact that they believe in and recognize and know as a truth they can hold constant.”

When parents teach their kids to know for a fact that their work is just as valuable as anyone else’s, it sets them up to be able to advocate for themselves, in the workforce and in life.

10 | June 2024
Teaching children about willpower and boundary setting when it comes to money also teaches them about supply and demand principles and the importance of delayed gratification, which comes into play with bigger financial decisions later on. ASK THE EXPERT PLAN YOUR
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June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family

The Bronx Zoo Celebrates 125 Years

The Bronx Zoo, a beloved NYC gem for residents, is celebrating its 125th birthday this year. The zoo recently celebrated this milestone with a stunning ceremony featuring special performances by the Thunderbird American Indian Dancers and dancers from the Harambee Dance Company alongside drummers. There was an outpouring of community love and support at the ceremony, and we were lucky enough to get a sneak peek of an exciting new exhibit, Animal Chronicles, which is now open to the public.

Animal Chronicles Exhibit

This new immersive exhibit is a quarter-mile ADA-accessible walk through 13 scenes of eco-friendly sculptures that highlight the zoo’s impact on its wildlife, how it’s helped save endangered species, how it created art that can connect any visitor to nature, and

the significance of continuous efforts to protect wildlife around the world.

Families will marvel at the incredible sculptures made from Spanish moss, palm

fiber, bamboo, riverstone, hemp, and more. They’ll also get the chance to learn about the wildlife that inspired these sculptures with digital storybooks accessible through QR Codes found throughout the trail.

Families can learn about some incredible Bronx Zoo stories, like ‘The Recovery of a River,’ about how the Bronx community banded together to clean up The Bronx River. In doing so, they welcomed back animals that had been missed for years, like beavers. Or

‘Over a Century of Saving Bison,’ which is about how the Bronx Zoo began working to help save Bison.

‘Animal Chronicles’ is guaranteed to be a family favorite this summer season and can’t be missed. The exhibit is now open to the public.

Bronx Zoo

2300 Southern Blvd, Bronx, NY 10460

The exhibit is part of your admission and runs until Labor Day, September 2, 2024

12 | June 2024

Our Fav Strawberry Picking Spots

Living on the East Coast, we experience some cliche pastimes, and one of those is waiting through the winter months for spring to come and deliver its delicious fruits, such as strawberries. Strawberry picking is not only a way to enjoy a rural farm; some are close to the city, allowing kids to see where fruit comes from.

NYC and the surrounding areas have many U-pick farm options and offer other forms of entertainment, such as picnics, feeding farm animals, and hayrides.

Tip: Strawberry season usually starts in late May and early June. However, we had an early Cherry Blossom season, which means Mother Nature is in control! Most farms have updates on their sites announcing that the strawberries are ready to be picked. We recommend checking the website, especially in early June, for any updates on picking dates as well as general added information.

Alstede Farms

1 Alstede Farms Lane, Chester, NJ 07930 (908) 879-7189

Head to Alstede to pick your own strawberries from late May to early July. You can also visit for their festivals and farm fun activities planned for this summer. After a hot day at Alstede go grab a homemade ice cream or refreshing slushie made with the harvest of

the season. Go buy your tickets online!

Farms View – New Jersey Market & Garden Center

945 Black Oak Ridge Road, Wayne, NJ 07470 (973) 839-1212

Farms View has been serving Northern New Jersey for over 100 years. Keep an eye out for the kick-off of strawberry season this year! You will also have the chance to watch an array of farm animals such as horses, goats and miniature donkeys. The entrance fee is $5 per person during the week and $5 on the weekend. Strawberries are $5.50 per pound.

Fishkill Farms

9 Fishkill Farm Road, Hopewell Junction, NY 12533 (845) 897-4377

Strawberries will be available for picking in June at Fishkill Farm, and you’ll have even more fruit options later in the summer. After a day of picking, you can stop by the cider bar that offers different meal options or have a picnic in the designated areas. Reservations are required at Fishkill Farms and are posted Thursday evenings for the weekend, Sunday evenings for Tuesday and Wednesday, and Tuesday evenings for Thursday and Friday.

Glover Farms

641 Victory Avenue, Brookhaven, NY (631) 286-7876

Have a fun day strawberry picking at Glover Farms where you will also get the chance to have goats and chickens eat right out of your hand! While you stroll through the fields you will have amazing views and see the farming equipment up close.

Greig Farm

227 Pitcher Lane, Red Hook, NY 12571 (845) 758-8007

Since 1952, Greig Farm has welcomed visitors to pick-your-own strawberries and along the way expanded to other fruits and vegetables. Starting June, you can come to pick your own strawberries and enjoy other fun activities such as feeding Koi Fish and Goats. Check out Farm trails, which are open to the public and perfect for a summer day. Afterward, head to Papa’s Best Batch, a smokehouse and sandwich shop serving lunch and early dinner, or grab goodies at Farm Market & Café.

Lawrence Farms Orchards

306 Frozen Ridge Rd, Newburgh, NY 12550 (845) 562-4268

Kick off June by picking strawberries, cherries, and vegetables at Lawrence Farms, and later, have a picnic with your family and friends. You can purchase different meal options and snacks for your picnic at the concession stand. Admission is at $7 per person Monday-Thursday and $10.00 per person Friday-Sunday and Holidays(children under 2 years free). Season passes are available.

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Lewin Farms

812 Sound Avenue, Calverton, NY 11933 (631) 929-4327

Lewin Farms, the first pick-your-own farm in Long Island, is the perfect option for an adventure with the kids and learning about where food comes from. In the summer, you can find fresh berries and other fruits; in the fall, you can explore a corn maze! Please note that Lewin’s U-Pick field is cash only and you can find an ATM at the front stand.

Ochs Orchard

4 Ochs Lane, Warwick, NY 10990 (845) 986-1591

Ochs Orchard is well known for its strawberry picking which starts in June, as well as their large variety of fruits and vegetables available year-round! You can also shop for fresh honey, apple cider and more.After going strawberry picking, you can have a refreshing ice cream cone or a milkshake made with their seasonal fruits.

Patty’s Berries and Bunches

410 Sound Ave, Mattituck, NY 11952

(631) 655-7996

Pick delicious berries with your family at Patty’s Berries and Bunches, a female-owned farmstand on Long Island. At Patty’s you can try homemade traditional and vegan ice-cream at the Ice Cream Patch. You will also find beautiful seasonal flower bunches for ornaments or bouquets, take tours around the grounds, and enjoy art and sculptures.

Sahl’s Father Son Farm

420 West Pestalozzi Street, Egg Harbor City, NJ (609) 965-9300

Make a trip out of strawberry picking at Sahl’s Father Son Farm. Sahl’s will be opening in May for you to have fun picking strawberries as well as watching their farm animals such as piglets, chickens and ponies.

Specca Farms

870 Jacksonville Mount Holly Rd, Bordentown, NJ 08505

We Teach for the 21st Century

Our education program is grounded in evidence-based research on how students learn best.

The mission of the Mott Hall Charter School is to prepare our scholars in mind, body, and character to succeed in top high schools, colleges, and careers by becoming inquisitive, open-minded, and compassionate citizens of the world.

(609) 267-4445

Strawberry picking is now available at Specca Farms! Besides strawberries you can pick other seasonal fruits and vegetables to complement your meals.

Sussex County Strawberry Farm

565 Route 206, Newton, NJ 07860 (973) 579-5055

For over 30 years Sussex County Strawberry Farm has been growing quality fruits in northern New Jersey. Don’t miss out the opportunity of visiting them starting June in their U-Pick fields and treat yourself with delicious berries!

Wickhams Fruit Farm

28700 Route 25, Cutchogue, NY 11935 (631) 734-6441

Stop by Wickham’s, a beautiful farm overlooking Peconic Bay for strawberry picking this June and further into the summer come pick other fruits and berries. Visit with your family and friends and enjoy a wagon ride or schedule a tour around the farm.

Congratulations to the Mott Hall Graduating Class of 2024!

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 15

NYC Parks Add Baby Changing Tables

Many city parents know that NYC Parks are their kids’ lifeline. Rain or shine, especially in the early stages, the playground is where our little ones want to be. The baby and toddler years are the best, and spending hours at our city parks is #parentlife. So is changing diapers. And who hasn’t been at the slide and swings—trying to handle a diaper change on their baby because a changing table is unavailable?

NYC PARKS has recently introduced a game-changing feature for parents and caregivers: baby changing tables in 1,200 borough restrooms. This significant improvement resulted from a thorough review of public restrooms in 2020, which revealed that only 37% of the parks’ bathrooms were equipped with changing tables.

City representatives noticed and took action. “As a father, this issue was deeply personal to me, as I experienced first-hand the struggles of finding a clean and safe space where I could change my son’s diaper while visiting one of our City’s parks. Considering how many young children utilize our parks, it has been far too common to see parents changing their children on park benches because the bathrooms have lacked the proper

stations. I knew I needed to take action, so I introduced a bill, Intro 128, that now requires the city to install at least one changing station in all park bathrooms, and within both men’s and women’s bathrooms. I am so happy to be here today celebrating the installation of these changing stations thanks in large part to the commitment of Commissioner Donoghue and the NYC Parks Department to see this project through,” said New York City Council Member Rafael Salamanca, Jr.

Baby Changing Tables at NYC Parks Now, parents can enjoy their park visits without the worry of finding a suitable place for a diaper change. Changing tables are now present in 90 percent of NYC Parks’ men’s, women’s, and all-gender restroom facilities.

The latest table is fashioned from a high-density polyethylene core hugged by a brushed stainless steel shell. It is safe to say they are pretty darn durable. These changing tables boast innate resilience against bacteria, facilitating effortless cleaning thanks to their sleek surfaces, which thwart grime accumulation in nooks and crannies. They support up to 250 lbs. of weight and are built to handle the demands of bustling environments. In other words, these tables should last for high usage demands.

NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue shared, “All parents and caregivers know that when your child’s diaper needs changing, having a clean and safe space is the bottom line. We recognize that baby changing stations are a vital amenity for parents looking to keep their little ones happy and healthy, which is why we have made diaper changing stations available in more than 1,200 park restrooms.”

Baby Changing Tables Here in Time for Summer

Last year, Local Law 56 was passed, accelerating the installation of baby changing stations in every NYC Parks restroom. This legislative deadline was met and completed three years ahead of schedule, demonstrating the Parks’ dedication to providing a safe and convenient environment for parents and caregivers.

Keep in mind that you won’t see a changing table if a bathroom has been vandalized and is beyond repair or if it lacks space.

Hey, we’ll take the 1,200 restrooms that are fitted with baby changing tables. Just in time for summer, when water sprinklers are on 24/7, lunch and pool days are on the agenda, parent meet-ups, babies squealing, and most importantly, proper baby changing tables will be there when you need them!

16 | June 2024
June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 17

Preschool & Montessori School Guide

Isn’t it amazing how quickly you go from searching for all things baby and toddler to figuring out the course of your child’s education in just a few years! Incredibly - or overwhelming - there are so many educational avenues you can take for your child! Not only about education, school provides children with a structure for learning and play as well as a place to make new friends, develop cognitive skills, and simply learn all about what it’s like to have a structured day away from home. Below, we are sharing some of the advantages of a preschool and Montessori program to make your decision a little easier.

Advantages of Preschool

Offers consistent structure and routine. While you likely have a schedule with your child, traditional schooling, such as at preschool, offers a way for your child to have a structured schedule along with a day that revolves around learning. This includes a planned day where they learn reading, math, social skills, and play. It can also set the tone for their schooling as they establish an interest in learning.

Exposes kids to language and literacy. In preschool, children will greatly expand their language. This includes an opportunity for them to learn their ABCs, listen to books, expand their vocabulary, and even to start to read. This helps to further develop their cognitive skills and communication as they get ready for kindergarten.

Prepares kids for their school years. With the introduction of preschool, kids are able to fall into a routine of what it is like to spend a range of three-to-six hours away from home. This can potentially make it easier when they start kindergarten as they will have an understanding of teachers, making friends, school work and structured learning. Meet new friends. Your child may have had the same set of friends since they were a baby/toddler, which might have been some of your mom/parent friends. Going to preschool allows them to start to form their identity away from you and create friendships and bonds of their own. Throughout their time at school, they will have to navigate this terrain and starting early can help them to adapt and “find their people” with ease.

Serves all kids. One major benefit of a preschool program - especially a public one

- is that it serves all kids. No matter what a child’s socioeconomic status and/or background is. It provides an even playing field for learning, education, and social development.

Advantages of a Montessori Program

Another educational program to consider is a Montessori program. Created by Dr. Maria Montessori, the program follows various principles focused on independence, respect, freedom of movement, and more. Unlike a preschool, Montessori programs are child-led and offer a range of opportunities for independence.

Promotes independence . One of the principals of a Montessori program promotes independence. As a child-observed model, kids are encouraged and able to lead, explore, and learn through self-direction. This can promote confidence, independence, and a generally ease of trusting their instincts.

Kids can move freely. Another principal is focused on movement and allowing them to explore and move on their own. This enables kids to feel comfortable and relaxed in their classroom and move or get something whenever they need to.

Learning is focused on being positive .The Montessori program greatly focuses on making learning fun and positive for

children. This is believed to help cultivate and foster their inner curiosity, creativity, and natural motivation.

Promotes self-discipline . Typically, in a traditional preschool classroom kids will have to follow specific rules. However, in a Montessori classroom kids are led towards self-discipline where they can pick activities that align with what they want to - rather than what a teacher tells them to do. This may help your child with their confidence and independence.

Follows a work-cycle schedule . Unlike a traditional preschool, Montessori follows a three work-cycle. During this time, kids have three hours to work at their own pace and find activities of their choice. This is also a time for them to interact/socialize with their friends, put back activities, make plans, and more. This liberal approach to learning allows kids to also move around and not be seated for an extended period of time. Additionally, there is a focus on hands-on learning where children are guided to use tools and materials that engage and use the five senses.

Focus on outdoor activities . As a part of the Montessori program, kids will go outside and spend time in nature. This may include a range of imaginative nature-focused activities with sandpits, trees, water, a garden, and more.

18 | June 2024
June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 19 Find a location near you. Visit healthcoverage Find out if you’re eligible. Speak to a Health Department enrollment counselor for safe, free assistance in your language. Call 347-665-0214 Eric Adams Mayor Ashwin Vasan, MD, PhD Commissioner Regardless of your immigration status New Yorkers 65 and older may now qualify for no-cost health insurance Doctor visits Prescriptions Hospital stays Mental health 121 6th Ave, New York, NY 10013 • 212-453-0295 Charter high SChool

Early LIFE - A branch of Lutheran Social Services of Metropolitan New York

Locations in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Brooklyn 718-870-1100

The Early LIFE program is committed to building partnerships with families and communities to support the health, education and well-being of children and families. Early LIFE provides all children ages 2-5 with developmentally and age-appropriate experiences through play-based learning and enrichment. Utilizing a holistic approach to meet the needs of changing times, their programming focuses on school readiness, safety, brain health, family engagement, trauma preparedness and cultural responsiveness that is geared towards equity and social justice.

Hudson Country Montessori School

340 Quaker Ridge Rd., New Rochelle 914-636-6202

Hudson Country Montessori School inspires and promotes innate curiosity and a love of learning through the progressive Montessori pedagogy. Striving to help children grow into respectful, socially-adept and compassionate leaders. The curriculum is designed to empower students to become independent, creative thinkers and confident achievers. Private, coeducational school, toddlers (18 months) through 8th grade. Schedule a private tour today!


Peninsula Community Organization

Main Location: 711 Manida Street

2 additional locations in the Bronx 718-542-1161

Established in 1964, La Pen evolved from the Hunts Point Coordinating Council to address the educational needs of children in low-income areas through the Head Start program. La Pen serves vulnerable populations such as Hunts Point, Longwood, Mott Haven, and Crotona Park South. It provides highquality early childhood education to children aged 3 to 5 years, emphasizing individualized care to meet the needs of its community.

20 | June 2024 PRESCHOOL & MONTESSORI SCHOOL DIRECTORY | Special Advertising Supplement
We e so Social Follow us @newyorkfamily on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and tag us #newyorkfamily in your NYC adventures!


Our multi-age classrooms develop social and leadership skills and prepare students to achieve academic excellence. Our students learn to read and write at their own pace, discover science and geography and gain a mastery of math concepts beyond their years and level.



June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 21 914.636.6202 EARLY SESSION FROM
University Heights 80 East 181st Street Bronx, NY 10453 888 Westchester Avenue Bronx, NY 10459 Castle Hill 2125 Watson Avenue Bronx, NY 10472 QUALITY EARLY CHILDCARE IN NEW YORK CITY High Quality Curriculum & Learning in an Inclusive Environment ENROLL WITH US TODAY! EARLY LIFE BRONX University Heights 80 East 181st Street Bronx, NY 10453 888 Westchester Avenue Bronx, NY 10459 Castle Hill 2125 Watson Avenue Bronx, NY 10472 Services provided by Lutheran Social Services of Metropolitan New York through funding by the Now hiring head teachers & maintenance workers! Apply here

Bucket List Summer in N YC

We love New York City, especially in the summertime when the weather is warm and the days are long. Luckily, there are endless things to do, and as parents ourselves, we want families to have the ultimate summer.

Our NYC summer bucket 2024 is for kids and families and is chock-full of fun places to visit, including free things to do because, whether you live here or are visiting, saving money is always a great thing.

From watching a free movie at the park to enjoying one of our city pools to strolling through our amazing museums, we truly have the best offerings and #bucketlist for you this summer!

We also know that when the kids are out of school, while we want them to enjoy the city, balancing the to-do list with things to do keeps everyone including you balanced and happy.

Check out our list of all you can do this summer in New York City!

1. Peak into Dublin without leaving NYC via The Portal! This sculpture is a 24/7 real-time that is streaming until Fall (we hope, keep it clean influencers!) – where you can interact with Dubliners, no plane ticket required!

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

3. In the Summer, take a dip in one of the city's many free outdoor pools.

4. Head to The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Roof Garden and check out its latest The Roof Garden Commission: Petrit Halilaj, Abetare of metal images of spiders, stars and more.

5. Visit the New York Aquarium for free admission after 3 p.m. on Wednesdays. Up to 4 tickets are required and made available at

3:00 p.m. on Mondays.

6. It may take effort, like waiting in line and going online for lottery tickets, but to see Shakespeare in the Park ( is entirely worth it!

7. Visit the Bronx Zoo on a Wednesday for FREE admission; you must reserve your tickets (up to 4!) online by 5:00 p.m. the Monday before.

8. Plan a staycation at the TWA Hotel. Whether you’re looking to enjoy a meal before or after a flight, or you’re staying for a night or a few, this hotel promises a genuine New York adventure, ideal for families

9. Walk the Highline, check out the plants, and experience this calm urban oasis New Yorkers love. Check out our guide.

10. Visit the iconic Flagship New York Public Library to check out books and the BeauxArts architecture, kids will need to be quiet

22 | June 2024
family fun

but worth the visit.

11. Hop on the Staten Island Ferry (it’s free!) and enjoy a gorgeous view of the Statue of Liberty.

12. Take advantage of the many restaurants that offer kids eat for free days, go online to for the guide.

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

14. Fly a kite at Central Park, stay awhile, and explore our city’s jewel of a park.

15. Visit the Little Island off of Pier 55 for a unique public park experience. This small island uses stunning architecture and landscaping to create a peaceful escape from busy city life.

16. Kids ages 18 and under are free at The Whitney — check out art by Edward Hopper, Alice Neel, and more.

17. Tour the Grand Central Terminal. Check out the oak leaves and acorn architectural details, the zodiac ceiling in the main concourse, and the famed glass clock at the center.

18. Go hiking in and around our city; some great spots exist!

19. Take on “Slide Mountain” at Brooklyn Bridge Park.

20. Check out the gorgeous views or sit for a picnic at the new Pier 57 rooftop (the largest in NYC!) at the Hudson River Park.

21. Visit a local library for a story time-one of the best play spaces for kids that is also a great way to cool off on those hot summer days.

22. Visit The Oculus, the central epicenter of the World Trade Center and an architect of

beauty that will have you oohing and aahhing.

23. We have Fireworks- remember to pick your spot to watch the Macy’s 4th of July fireworks (!

24. Take a break from the city and enjoy Greenbelt Staten Island’s 2,800 acres of nature, hiking trails, and more.

25. Pack a picnic and watch a free movie under the summer stars , events/free_summer_movies.

26. Summer is one of the best seasons to bring the kids to the Intrepid Museum. Make sure to check their website for one of their fun events.

27. Check out Carole Feuerman’s Sea Idylls, whose last summer installment was on Fifth Avenue. This season, you can catch her latest work of five sculptures at the South Street Seaport Seaport District, Pier 17. Don't forget to take in the amazing views of Brooklyn!



• Un entorno seguro, estructurado y de apoyo

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Millennial Dads


new generation of parents considers renegotiating manhood

Agroup of Millennial mom friends gathered at a local New York bar to reclaim Mother’s Day. Weary from a day creating family magic for our children, each woman escaped during bedtime, leaving the fathers to manage the children’s nighttime shenanigans.

Today’s Millennial dads are able parents–not sometimes babysitters. Unlike previous generations with clearly defined roles for the nurturing homemaker mother and detached breadwinner father, American dads born between 1980 and 1996 are rolling up their sleeves to participate in the manual labor of raising children. While women still carry more of the burden of domestic life, according to Pew Research, today’s dads “spend more time engaged in housework and child care than they did half a century ago.” The Pew report inspired optimistic media headlines that boasted, “young fathers have nearly tripled their time with their children since 1965. Millennial men who live with a spouse and children are the most engaged fathers of any prior generation.

Young working dads even report an “equal desire to be at home raising children, while facing the same historic demand to provide financially for the household.” Today’s work-from-home policies blur the lines between professional and home life, causing working fathers and mothers alike to struggle to find balance. Much has been written about women’s struggle to have it all. This Father’s Day, I want to shift the narrative to the Millennial man. In my exploration for this spotlight, I quickly learned that the improvement in paternal engagement is encouraging, but does not tell the whole story of growing up male in America today. Diverse and evolving concepts of gender and family forms make modern manhood complicated. If, like me, you are raising little boys today to be good fathers of tomorrow, read on to understand the challenge of parenting in a world of

rapidly evolving rules and expectations.

The Curious Case of the Childless Millennial

While Millennial dads living with their kids are more active parents, according to a 2020 Pew Report, “only one third of American Millennial men live with a spouse and children.” Fewer Millennials are having children at all, let alone living with them. Compared with 66% of Gen Xers in 2003, 69% of Boomers in 1987 and 85% of the Silent Generation in 1968, only 55% of Millennial men and women live with a family of their own.

As a result, both male and female Millennials reside in more diverse living arrangements than past generations. With the age of marriage and parenthood rising, the rate of cohabitation with an unmarried romantic partner is higher for Millennials than other generations, the more striking household shift comes from the percentage of grown men living at home with their parents. In 2023, 18% of Millennial men still live with their parents, compared with 10% of women–a higher share of the population than any other generation when in their 20s and 30s. When demographic data on race and educational attainment are considered, the trend is even more stark. Millennial men without a college degree are especially likely to fall into this category (21%, compared with 12% of Millennial men with a bachelor’s or higher degree).

The decline of men living with a spouse and child juxtaposed with the rise of men living with their family of origin set my spidey senses flaring. The Millennial men who opt into parenthood are more deeply engaged than ever before, but a significant portion of men aged 28 to 42 are still sleeping in their childhood beds. Houston, do we have a problem?

Nature vs. Nurture

In my quest to understand the diverse experience of Millennial dads, I sought insight from Cornell University’s Psychology

professor Michael Goldstein. Specializing his research in parent engagement, which he defines as how humans respond to infant behaviors, Goldstein identified a difference in the way mothers and fathers relate to parenting. In studies conducted in the late 1990s, Goldstein observed men and women consistently reported different demand characteristics, the subject’s impressions about what the study is about. When men entered the lab, they were nervous, assuming the study was about them and their parenting competence. In contrast, the women thought that the studies were about the baby. Asked why he thought the parents differed in their response to the parent engagement studies, Goldstein opined that girls and boys are raised with different messages about caregiving. Little girls are taught to be mother’s helpers, learning to hold the bottle and tend to the baby. The messaging to newly minted big brothers is that babies are fragile and could be hurt by more high energy boys. While boys and girls’ energy levels do not differ biologically, the message demonstrates a profound difference in how we raise boys and girls to be caregivers.

Armed with this insight, I next sought perspective from Jett Stone, with a PhD in clinical psychology and a practice focused on men’s issues, Stone is literally writing the book on boyhood. Asked whether men and women are biologically different in their capacity to parent, Stone states “there is biology, but biology isn’t destiny.” More important is how men are socialized to be parents – or not. In his practice, Stone observes the Millennial men in his practice to be “anxious or unhappy in their co-parenting relationship, but unable to articulate why.” When nudged to go below the surface, we discover a common pattern of men who feel fatherhood is a “performance” with the wife as director. They fear failure in the role, but do not realize that they haven’t had the same role models or lifetime of rehearsal for fatherhood that women experience in relational play. Moreover, Millennial men,

24 | June 2024
mom stories

raised during the divorce boom of the 1980s and 1990s often didn’t have a positive male role model at all, let alone one that presented a roadmap for an engaged working father. In Stone’s Connecticut and New York practice, he observes that most Millennial men never prepared for the idea of parenthood until their partners became pregnant, but they are motivated to set a new precedent of what fatherhood looks like.” Men want to care for their children in a way that their fathers and grandfathers would not consider. Today, fathers parent in dual earning families or where mothers are the primary breadwinner. The change in family structure creates a constant negotiation of household tasks and a culture shock for Millennial dads who must redefine what it means to be an engaged father.

Asked what mothers can do to help their husbands or co-parents grow into an engaged father, Stone advises to put aside the mom juggle for a moment. Undeniably, women are

carrying a huge load, but to have a productive conversation about the shared experience of parenthood, focus on the balancing act of fathering. Stone, a certified Fair Play Facilitator, uses Eve Rodsky’s method to help couples navigate daily caretaking negotiations with empathy and respect. He encourages mothers to “put aside perfection and let fathers develop confidence and competence by giving them space to parent in their own style.” Many new dads shut down and defer to mom because they appear to know more. Becoming comfortable with a partner doing things differently gives mom the space she craves and children the necessary model for engaged fatherhood.

The Masculinity Crisis in a Girl Boss Era

As Millennial parents rewrite the script on fatherhood, my thoughts return to the two thirds of the generation currently delayed in raising the next. When asked to weigh in on

the other side of the Millennial fatherhood story, Stone’s discussion turns to his experience working with Veterans. His early work with the Veterans Association shifted his professional focus to the experience of manhood. In practice with men traumatized from war, he became intimately aware of the current crisis of masculinity. In contrast to the positive attention given to girls during the four waves of feminism, there is something bleak about masculinity. Today’s men are facing a complex reckoning with dominance and fragility. While the feminist movement champions girls to be anything they want, today’s boys grow up with the mixed message that masculinity is a liability, but don’t be a sissy. The relaxing of gender norms that help men step into the role of engaged father simultaneously feels like an attack to men who no longer fit in today’s world or workforce.

In response to my query about Millennial absence in parenthood, Stone describes

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 25

an “ambition gap.” As he puts it, “it takes motivation to want to go to college, get married and have kids.” On the conservative right, there is a sense that masculinity is maligned and that education strips men of their masculinity. Men suffer in an educational system that demands focused desk work from children who are not yet developmentally up to the task. As Stone concedes, “boys brains develop differently than girls brains.” Girls, better equipped for school at a younger age, are conditioned to have it all. In contrast, boys struggling to fit within the school paradigm are deficient. In generations past, when girls were succeeding in school, the expectation was still that they’d be a mother or maybe a secretary or teacher. Now, their dreams are bigger. As more women go to college and enter prestige jobs, their male classmates feel left behind and outside of the modern workforce. Women want to date men who are equal in education or socioeconomic status. These men feel unseen and out of their league. Like new Millennial fathers, these men lack a sense of identity and a roadmap for where they belong in the world.

A Work-in-Progress

Boys and men are still figuring out how to contribute to modern society. When considering the difference between the third of men who are live-in fathers and the two thirds that are not, access to education and high earning potential drive ambition to parent. Once in the role of dad, men can shut down from the struggle to be multidimensional as a provider and caregiver in a way that they weren’t socialized before. For the two thirds of men currently outside

of parenthood, time will tell. For men cynical about the future of manhood there is a risk withdrawal and numbing. How do we bring boys and men back from retreat? Stone says it begins with discussion. In his practice, Stone helps men talk about these issues with humor and empathy. He says, “men have a round about way to get to vulnerability, but once you get them talking, we can help to redefine their sense of purpose and identity in a rapidly changing world.

Finally, to the men of my generation that are changing diaper blowouts and waking up with cranky babies in the middle of the night, I want you to know that I see you. I see you cooking dinner and putting your dishes in the sink (consider the dishwasher?). I see you brushing baby teeth and washing little hands (consider clipping their nails?). I see you playing with dolls, wrestling on the floor and reading Goodnight Moon. I see you showing up every day at work and at home. I see you building the bridge as you run, creating a new model for parenthood for the next generation of men as you raise them without a script. And I am here for that.

26 | June 2024
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Visiting Barbados

A family-friendly guide to this beautiful Caribbean island

I’m the kind of person that loves to be on the go, even on vacation, so you can only imagine how thrilled I was when I got to explore everything Barbados had to offer earlier this year.

I’ll admit, I didn’t know much about Barbados before this trip, other than it’s where Rhianna is from. But after only a four-day visit, it’s already on my “Must Visit Again” list. And if it’s not already, I recommend adding it to your travel bucket list.

Barbados is the easternmost island in the Caribbean and among the safest Caribbean destinations for visitors, so you can have some peace of mind when planning your vacation. Its proximity to the equator means temperatures hover between the mid-70s and high 80s all-year round, making it the perfect choice for a tropical getaway at any point in the year.

You won’t have any problem putting together a stacked itinerary for your trip. When it comes to planning a vacation for the whole family, Barbados has something for everyone.

You can learn about history, relax on a beach, get in touch with nature and go on break-neck adventures all on one trip. And with a total area of just under 170 square miles, you can explore the whole island on your trip.

This was my first trip to Barbados, and I was not ready to head back home at the end of it. There’s definitely a return trip to Barbados with my family in my future.

Here’s how you can get the most out of a family vacation to Barbados.

Where to Stay in Barbados

Tourism is the primary industry in Barbados, so there’s no shortage of all-inclusive resorts and hotels for your family to choose from.

I stayed at the Fairmont Royal Pavilion in St. James, and I couldn’t recommend it enough. The 72-room resort provides a luxury experience in a close-knit, friendly environment. I was consistently blown away by the staff’s kindness, hospitality and commitment to the guest experience.

Whether you opt for an oceanfront guest room, a suite or a villa, you’re sure to find

a rooming option that’s a perfect match for your family’s needs.

All rooms at the Fairmont Royal Pavilion include a furnished balcony, perfect for enjoying a view of the beach or taking a relaxing afternoon nap, complete with the soothing sounds of waves crashing on the shore.

The easy access to the beach is one of the resort’s best features. It was incredibly easy to head down to the beach for an afternoon swim or just to relax under an umbrella.

If you’re looking for things to do in addition to laying on the beach, you’re in luck. You can take a moment to yourself for a yoga class or take a fitness class with the whole family; break a sweat in the fitness center; paddleboard, snorkel or just float in the water; take a dip in the pool and more. The best part is, all of these amenities are included in your stay at the resort.

There’s so much to do at the Fairmont Royal Pavilion, it’d be tempting to stay at the resort the whole time. But that’s just the beginning of what Barbados has to offer.

Things To Do in Barbados Barbados truly has something for everyone. Here are some ideas for how to fill your family’s itinerary for your trip.

Sail on a Catamaran . Explore the water in a new way by taking a trip on a catamaran. And you don’t need boating experience to get in on the fun. Companies like Seaduced will give you everything you need to have a fun and relaxing time on the water.

Their two catamarans can accommodate up to 20 people and are manned by exceptional crew members, including a captain, first mate and professional chef. There’s more than enough room to lounge and get some time in the sun on board. And you can take your fun into the water, too. Seaduced catamarans come with equipment to snorkel with sea turtles, kayak, paddleboard or just float.

If playing in the water isn’t your speed, be sure to take advantage of the boats’ board game selection, TV and stereo system.

Wander Hunte’s Gardens. Hunte’s Gardens prides itself on being “the most enchanting place on Earth,” and I can’t say I disagree. Situated in what used to be a gully,

Hunte’s Gardens is an intricately designed and cultivated garden that allows visitors to get lost in the serenity of nature.

While visiting, you’re almost certain to run into Anthony Hunte, creator and keeper of the gardens. Enjoy refreshments at the garden’s top house before exploring the grounds at your own leisure.

There are countless rare exotic plants and various species of birds along the easy-tonavigate paths throughout the gardens. Be sure to grab a printed handout of some of the things you may find as you explore.

Take your time here. The garden is full of benches and seating nestled into the gardens, where you and your family can have a picnic or just relax. I’m a huge plant and nature lover, so visiting Hunte’s Gardens was probably the highlight of my trip and it’ll be first on my list of must-dos on any return trips I make.

Take an Island Safari . Nothing beats a private tour of Barbados, and Island Safari Barbados offers tailor made safari options

28 | June 2024

that allow you to see all of the must-see spots on the island on a personalized itinerary.

You’ll criss-cross the island, passing beautiful shorelines and rock formations, historical sites and maybe even seeing some native animals like monkeys along the way.

Be sure to strap in and hold on tight. Island Safaris can be thrilling and bumpy rides!

Tour St. Nicholas Abbey. There are no nuns in sight at St. Nicholas Abbey– and that’s because it’s actually one of the oldest plantations in the Caribbean as well as a rum distillery. This is a perfect stop for any history buffs, rum enthusiasts or train fans in your family. A visit to St. Nicholas Abbey includes a tour of the property’s Great House and gardens, a look at the factory and distillery and a rum tasting.

And you can’t go to St. Nicholas Abbey without taking a ride on the Heritage Railway. You’ll journey through the plantation’s grounds on a steam locomotive, all leading up to Cherry Tree Hill, where you can get an unbeatable view of Barbados’s east coast.

Explore Harrison’s Cave . If you’re looking to add adventure to your vacation, look no further than Harrison’s Cave. One of the island’s greatest natural wonders, Harrison’s Cave is an active limestone cave with flowing streams, pools of crystal water and towering stalagmites.

Eager adventurers can take a spelunking adventure through the cave, where you’ll crawl through hidden passageways just like early explorers did. There are also tram tours that will take you through the cave, if you want to explore without the full spelunking experience.

If you want to give your kids a place to blow off some steam, check out the Eco-Adventure Park. Your kids will be able to zip line and tackle the Challenge Course.

Want a truly unique experience that will take your visit to Harrison’s Cave to the next level? Look into the Crystal Cave Affair, created by Fairmont Beyond Limits. This exclusive event includes an unparalleled fourcourse meal by Fairmont’s executive chef and

culinary team. It’s an experience truly unlike any other in the Caribbean.

Know Before You Go: Tips for


Protect Yourself From the Sun . The UV index in Barbados is no joke. It can climb up to over 11 at most points during the year, which is considered “Extreme” (for reference, New York usually caps out at an 8 during the summer months).

For UV values that high, the National Weather Service recommends applying sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 every two hours. But from experience, I’d recommend reapplying more frequently than that, especially if you’re going to be on the water. Don’t forget to pack a hat and sunglasses!

Stay Hydrated . Being a tropical island, Barbados can get hot, especially in the middle of the day. Plus, the flight from the New York area to Barbados is about five hours, and you can get dehydrated on planes. Start drinking water before you leave for vacation, and keep drinking water when you arrive, especially if you have a lot of active outdoor adventures planned.

Even though vacation is often associated with soda for kids or alcoholic beverages for parents, mixing in water to stay hydrated will make a world of difference when you’re outside and on the go.

Know How Your Money Converts . If you’re like me, you may jump with surprise when you look at a price tag in Barbados and see a number that’s higher than what you’re expecting. Keep in mind that 1 Barbadian dollar is worth fifty cents in US dollars. Thankfully, that’s a super easy conversion! Cut any price in Barbadian dollars in half to get the price in US dollars.

Look For Ways to Expedite Your Airport Experience . The airport is probably the least exciting part of a vacation experience, especially when traveling internationally. Luckily, a number of resorts in Barbados offer Fast Track Service at the airport, helping you get to your vacation quicker.

All room categories at the Fairmont Royal Pavilion offer this perk, and it took so much out of the stress out of traveling (a huge plus for me, considering this was my first time traveling internationally by myself).

A representative from the Fairmont was there to meet me at the Grantley Adams International Airport as soon as I got off the plane. She helped guide me through customs and lead me to the car service that took me from the airport to the resort.

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 29

Family Road Trips

Looking for road trip inspo this summer? Well, start packing now because we’ve got the perfect family adventures for you!

Road Trips are a great way to skip the hustle and bustle of traveling by plane (we all know how crazy that can get with kids). Plus summer in NYC gets busy with crazy camp schedules, so it can be tricky to fit in a long vacation.

Luckily, these roadtrip destinations aren’t too far from the city. There are some beautiful, action-packed places to visit in NY, NJ, Rhode Island and other surrounding areas. So pull out your family calendar and start planning for a summer getaway with these 2024 road trip ideas!

Dutchess County Fair, NY

Whether this is your first time visiting this famous fair or it's an annual outing your family awaited all year long, the Dutchess County Fair is among the world’s best fairs. You’ll love that it is family-friendly, with activities and adventures for all, and it is only a car or train ride away.

This year’s 178th fair runs from August 20th through 25th in Rhinebeck, NY. As the largest agricultural six-day fair in NY, there’s plenty for every member of the family to do–go on rides, eat great food and listen to entertaining music. The fair’s goal is to give visitors an appreciation for agriculture while educating them on where food comes from, all while having a blast!

Kids will love meeting farm animals like cows, horses, pigs, chickens, sheep, rabbits and goats. With over 1,000 individual exhibitors, visitors won’t know what to do first. Explore 12 acres of livestock, milking demonstrations and sheep shearing, meet costumed storytellers from the early 1900’s, and shop artisanal goods and handmade crafts and quilts. Younger kids (ages 3-10) can visit a hands-on mock farm in the AgVenture Activity Tent while adults

30 | June 2024 Ultimate S U mmer Family F U n G U ide in partnership with
will appreciate the horticultural beauty of
garden displays. Be sure to purchase discount tickets to secure a spot at a great deal!

There’s no other state quite like Rhode Island, and when you’re here, you can feel it. This summer, go from outdoor adventures to immersive history to delicious dining all in one unforgettable family trip! We invite you to stop by the Ocean State and get on our wavelength.

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 31
Photo courtesy Nicholas Millard

Frederick County, MD

Summer in Frederick County, Maryland is a treasure trove of family fun with activities that cater to all ages. Embrace the great outdoors with a visit to Catoctin Mountain where you and the family can hike to one of the most scenic overlooks in Maryland — Chimney Rock. For adventurous spirits, Tree Trekkers offers thrilling zip-lining courses and aerial adventures.

Historic railroading in Frederick is on full display with the Walkersville Southern Railroad, where families can ride historical trains through scenic landscapes.

Frederick County doesn’t shy away from educational fun. Monocacy National Battlefield offers trails and guided ranger tours sharing the forgotten story of an important Civil War battle that saved Washington, DC. Discover where Civil War history and science collide at the National Museum of Civil War Medicine in the heart of historic Downtown Frederick.

And any visit to Frederick County would not be complete without a visit to one of its creameries. Grab a scoop or a cone at South Mountain Creamery or Rocky Point Creamery, and


County, NY

Embrace the thrill of endless adventures this summer. Nestled along the majestic Hudson River and boasting the loftiest peaks in the Catskill Mountains, the Great Northern Catskills has been a haven for adventureseekers for over a century.

For families, it’s a chance to immerse themselves in the serenity of old-growth forests or embark on a quest for hidden waterfalls. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or prefer a leisurely stroll, the trails of the Great Northern Catskills offer a haven for every type of explorer.

If the lake life is more your family’s speed, then ditch those overcrowded beaches and wander on the wild side. The Great Northern Catskills are famously known for some of the best paddling locations in New York State, making it a haven for avid anglers and boating enthusiasts alike.

you’ll taste the best ice cream Maryland offers — right on the farm in the rolling countryside,

The mountain towns come alive excitedly as the sun sets on a picture-perfect summer day. Scents of buttery popcorn waft through the trees as our drive-in movie theaters roll on the silver screen.

Wander along the brightly painted pubs and retro eateries in the “Painted Village in the Sky” or grow inspired by the creative energy woven into American art’s birthplace.

The towns that give this county its unique character buzzes with local farmer’s markets, live music, and more. Soon, the warmer weather will roll in, and crowds of multi-generational families will celebrate their summer traditions.

The Catskills’ famous family resorts will open their doors and invite guests to wander the property, pick up a game of pickleball, or relax by the pool. So whether one’s looking to reconnect with nature, indulge in local flavors, or create unforgettable memories with friends and family - Let’s say this is just the place.

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The Kartrite Resort

Want an all-in-one destination that will guarantee endless family adventures this summer?

The Kartrite Resort located in the Catskill Mountains is home to NY’s biggest indoor waterpark and much more. Spend an entire day at the 11 waterpark attractions just a 90-minute drive from the city, then check into one of the new and modern resort suites to get some rest. All suites (available as 1, 2 or 3 bedroom) come with 4 passes for the waterpark for the day of check in and check out. Beyond the water fun, enjoy The Kartrite's 7 eclectic eateries and bars, arts & crafts, archery, goat yoga, pony rides and hiking. Plus, to escape the heat, head indoors to endless fun at Playopolis arcade, laser tag, ropes course, rock climbing, bowling, virtual reality and more. With an action-packed calendar of complimentary daily activities to state-of-the-art fitness facilities, scenic hiking trails on property and countless local attractions, there’s always something fun to do for all ages at The Kartrite. And if there is a special occasion coming up like a summer birthday or bar/bat mitzvah, exciting promotions and packages await!

Explore Western Mass

What do you get when you begin with the fantastically beautiful corner of classic New England, blend in dozens of unique attractions, swirl in some cool college vibes and top it all off with some of the most beautiful scenery in all of the northeast?

Western Mass, of course!

Long celebrated as a “triple threat” destination, the region bursts with top attractions, and provides ultra-easy access and superb dollar value. High-profile places like the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, Yankee Candle Village, Six Flags New England, MGM Springfield and the Springfield Museums and its Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum are must-see attractions. Quintessential college towns and major events like the Big E, IRONMAN 70.3 Western Mass and Bright Nights at Forest Park - plus craft fairs, sporting events and the arts – are seasonal favorites.

With so much to experience, the real question becomes, how will you find time to do it all? You’ll need a few days to sample everything Western Mass has on tap. Mix history with family fun, pair cool cafes with the great outdoors, savor equal parts outdoor adventure and funky antiques. Surprises can be found region-wide!

Perfectly positioned where Interstates 90 and 91 meet, Western Mass is rightly regarded as the “Crossroads of New England,” and New York City is less than three hours from here. The region is also accessible by train and Peter Pan Bus Lines.

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June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family Get lost in a Rockland moment. Within 30 minutes of New York City, discover river towns where quaint meets cosmopolitan, historic meets energetic. Paddle, bike, hike, golf, shop, play. Explore more than 32,000 acres of open space, including hundreds of miles of trails and some of the highest Palisades summits in the Hudson Valley. @explorerocklandny @ExploreRC #RocklandMoment Let Rockland surprise you. And expect you’ll want to stay awhile. ®I LOVE NEW YORK is a registered trademark and service mark of the New York State Department of Economic Development; used with permission.

Mountain Creek

If your family craves outdoor excitement, then look no further than Mountain Creek. Located in Vernon Valley of Vernon, NJ, this four season resort has endless outdoor adventures that your whole family will enjoy. You can zip over mountain-top lakes, take in the view from the top of the mountain with a Sky Ride, and even learn to downhill mountain bike.

It’s not every day that you can mountain bike in NYC, so Mountain Creek is a great place to learn new skills and experience things you and your kids haven’t before. Your bigger kids might enjoy the Treescape Ropes Course full of rope walks, obstacles and other climbing elements. And if your family likes golf, there’s an entire 9-hole course at Great Gorge.

When you get too hot from all your excursions, cool off at the waterpark built into the side of a mountain where the water is spring-fed. Continue the thrills on the Colorado River Rapids or relax in the High Tide Wave Pool.

While only about an hour away from NYC, you can stay over for the weekend to take advantage of all the resort has to offer. The Appalachian is a beautiful hotel with slopeside accommodations–

Orange County, NY

Just an hour north of New York City, Orange County, N.Y., in the beautiful Hudson Valley, is the ultimate summer playground! Spring and summer offer non-stop fun that’s kidapproved. Epic thrills – restaurants for every craving - accommodations from rustic charm to sophisticated elegance – Orange County’s got it all!

Score big with the Orange County Family Fun Trail Passport to snag sweet deals at participating locations while racking up points for fabulous limited-edition prizes. Signing up is easy at

Think LEGOLAND ® New York Resort and super cool museums like the UFO & Paranormal Museum in Pine Bush or Motorcyclepedia Museum in Newburgh, with 650 motorcycles. Feeling adventurous? Swing by Adventureland NY for fun outdoors –including ropes courses, camping, and paintball. And don’t miss out on the farm scene – like One All All One Farm in Goshen, where visitors can book a tour or workshop – or hang with the animals!

perfect for a getaway! There’s a fire pit, gym, heated pool and hot tub, delicious food and more. After a long day of activities, coming back to The Appalachian is just what you need to relax and prep for another fun-filled day.

pass up the farm-fresh ice cream served at Bellvale Farms Creamery; it’s incredibly delicious when enjoyed with spectacular views from atop Mount Peter.

In Orange County, farm-to-table freshness rules! Farms and orchards offer the freshest eats and delicious goodies! Pick from places like Soons Orchards, Lawrence Farms Orchards, and more. Stock up on treats bursting with country goodness at Pennings Farm Market. Don’t

In the evening, wind down at a top-notch eatery, listen to live music, or catch a flick under the stars at the Warwick Drive-In Theater. So, for anyone down for a chill escape off the beaten path but still close to the action, Orange County is where it’s at. Check out OrangeTourism. org and make some memories with the family!

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We have 164 lakes perfect for swimming, boating, and fishing. We also have soothing hot tubs, saunas, and an indoor waterpark—where it’s always 84°. Dive in.

Our charming, small towns are bursting with food, drink, and fun in any season.

Mini vacays… longer stays, or anything in between — we’re just a short trip away.

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 37 1.800.882.CATS This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer. ®I LOVE NEW YORK is a registered trademark and service mark of the New York State Department of Economic Development; used with permission.

Rhode Island

Just over 3 hours from Manhattan, Rhode Island welcomes NYC families every summer with their plethora of family-friendly things to do. The state is 37 miles wide and 48 miles long, so there’s much to explore in just one trip!

If your family loves animals, head over to the Roger Williams Park Zoo, home to over 100 rare and fascinating species from around the world. Kids love petting the armadillos and seeing New England’s only Komodo dragon. They also have Food Truck Fridays through the summer and fall with live music and a playground.

Rhode Island also has over 400 miles of shoreline, so you definitely turn your roadtrip into a beach getaway. The beaches have playgrounds, picnic areas and yummy food options. Parents and kids will enjoy the beautiful bike paths, interesting museums and delicious ice cream shops. The Providence Children’s Museum is always a family-favorite!

Putnam County Fair, NY

The Putnam County Fair & 4-H Showcase, the country fair families love, is happening July 27th and July 28th at Veterans Memorial Park in Carmel, NY.

An easy car drive away, the fair draws thousands of visitors who enjoy food trucks, treats, vendors, games, demonstrations, exhibits, magic shows, inflatables, farm animals, pony rides, and entertainment. Listen to live music, check out the classic car show, and take part in the Duck Derby Fundraiser, which helps support the educational programs of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Putnam County. Free parking and admission.

By car or by train, take a day trip to Putnam County, where there’s always another reason to say, “I Love New York.” Visitputnam. org for more information about what to do and see in Putnam County. This project is supported by a grant awarded to Putnam County Tourism by New York State’s Empire State Development and the I LOVE NY Division of Tourism,

Plus there’s always something happening in Rhode Island that you can plan your trip around. In the summer, they have special

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events like the Bristol 4th of July Parade, Newport Folk Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, and more.
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Rochester, NY

Looking for the perfect family getaway this summer? Look no further than Rochester, NY! Nestled in the picturesque Finger Lakes region, Rochester offers many attractions and activities that promise to create unforgettable memories for visitors and their loved ones.

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and become immersed in Rochester’s natural beauty. With stunning parks, lush greenery, and breathtaking waterfalls, there’s no shortage of outdoor adventures. Embark on a scenic hike along the Genesee River Gorge with a stop at High Falls, a 96-foot waterfall in the city center. For thrill-seekers, a visit to the nearby Letchworth State Park, often called the “Grand Canyon of the East,” is a must!

With a visit to the Strong National Museum of Play, kids can unleash their imaginations in the interactive exhibits and play zones among the world’s largest collection of toys, dolls, and games. Then, venture to the Genesee Country Village and Museum, where people can experience life in the 19th century. With its authentic historic buildings, costumed interpreters, and immersive exhibits, the Genesee Country Village and Museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the past for the whole family to enjoy.

Summer is only complete with a visit to Seabreeze Amusement Park, where thrilling rides, refreshing water attractions, and entertaining shows await. From roller coasters to water slides, there’s something for every member of the family to enjoy at this beloved amusement park.

When it’s time to refuel, Rochester’s vibrant culinary scene has something for everyone. From farm-to-table eateries serving fresh,

Rockland County, NY

Imagine a place that feels a long way from home yet is so close that visitors won’t have time to ask, “Are we there yet?” Within 30 minutes of NYC, Rockland County has many surprises.

With more than 30,000 acres of open space, Palisades-peak views of the Hudson River and NYC skyline, plus miles of paths for all levels of cyclists and hikers, there’s plenty of ground to cover when taking a family trip to Rockland.

Make a splash at the Rockland Lake State Park water complex, with a huge, gently sloping “zero entrance” swimming pool, diving boards, a “spray ground” and two giant water slides. A 3.2-mile paved trail that circles the lake is popular for taking laps on foot, bikes and rollerblades.

locally sourced ingredients to iconic diners dishing out classic comfort food, visitors will never go hungry in Rochester. And be sure to satisfy a sweet tooth with a visit to the iconic Abbott’s Frozen Custard—a Rochester tradition since 1902!

With its convenient location, just a short drive from New York City, Rochester is the perfect summer destination for families looking to escape the heat and reconnect with nature, history, and each other. Plus, Rochester offers a variety of family-friendly accommodations, from cozy bed and breakfasts to spacious hotels, ensuring a comfortable stay for everyone. So why wait? Start planning a Rochester getaway today and create memories that will last a lifetime!

Stop for a bite, some ice cream, or shopping at one of the quaint, historic river towns of Nyack, Piermont, Haverstraw, and Stony Point–all walking-friendly. Urban transplants have helped build a thriving food and art scene with a cozy community feel.

Explore Bear Mountain’s self-guided nature trails–perfect for family hikes and river views–and the Trailside Museum and Zoo, which features rescued animals native to the state.

Bring binoculars to stroll across the Bear Mountain Bridge,

celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. Get weekend brunch at Restaurant 1915 at the Bear Mountain Inn or lunch at the Hiker’s Café.

The park’s indoor carousel features 42 hand-carved replicas of native animals, such as bears, foxes, and rabbits. Or schedule a real-deal horseback riding experience with lessons at Rebellious Stables.

On a sticky-hot or rainy day, have some indoor fun with Space Adventure Mini Golf and the world’s tallest indoor ropes course at Palisades Climb Adventure. Expect the unexpected when exploring Rockland County.

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June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 41
#FindYourCatskills It here.happens Adventure. Anytime. Every Time.
Whether it’s bonding over thrilling adventure, sharing laughs around the campfire, or singing along at lively events, make this summer a time to treasure forever. Come discover why the Great Northern Catskills is the ultimate family destination.

The Sullivan Catskills, NY

For families seeking an exciting and adventure-filled summer getaway, a trip to the beautiful Sullivan Catskills is the perfect fit, with activities and entertainment to suit all ages. And it’s only 90 minutes from New York City! The breathtaking natural beauty and small-town charm of the Sullivan Catskills is punctuated by big experiences throughout the year, allowing for endless family fun in a picturesque setting bound to be the new wallpaper on your phone.

Parents never run out of ideas for keeping kids busy, happy, and most importantly, off their phones at the Sullivan Catskills. Splash the day away - rain or shine - at Kartrite Indoor Water Park, kayak or canoe down the Delaware River, get up close to the friendly farm animals at Buck Brook Alpacas and Arthur’s Acre’s Animal Sanctuary, spot and snap photos of eagles soaring the sky, tour Fort Delaware and learn about frontier life back in the day, hike Bear Mountain for unmatched views and so much more.

Forestburgh Playhouse, learn about Woodstock at the Museum at Bethel Woods or catch a concert under the stars.

Ready to book your family’s getaway to the Sullivan Catskills?

After a long day of adventure, hungry bellies will be grateful for the multitude of Catskill-icious culinary options, from plant-forward to celebrity chef steaks and everything in between. Traveling with a sitter? Parents can try their luck at Resorts World Catskills, check out

Smugglers' Notch, VT

The award-winning Smugglers’ Notch Resort is the ultimate family fun vacation destination. Known for its endless number of unique activities and wide variety of accommodations, perfect for families of all shapes and sizes, Smuggs has been bringing families together for generations.

The Resort features 8 pools, 4 waterslides, games on the green, miles of mountain biking trails, Farmers Market, Pickleball, Vermont Country Fair, fireworks display, magic shows, two championship disc golf courses, and oodles more of activities to enjoy!

Let’s not forget about their 26,000-square foot, two-story FunZone 2.0, featuring climbing walls, bouncy houses, laser tag, mini golf, and more! While the kids take on the warrior courses, mom and dad can enjoy a pina colada and watch the good times unfold. Of course, everyone will have worked up an appetite so the next stop must be the build your own sundae bar at ReFuel Café(guessing)?!

Pro tip: download the Sullivan GO App for your phone for access to information about attractions, events, lodging, eateries and more, making it easy to plan your itinerary and discover hidden gems you will want to return to again and again. To learn more about the Sullivan Catskills, visit

In addition to the never-ending activity options, Smuggs is truly an experience. There’s nothing like waking up to stunning mountain views. Whether they’re hopping on an e-bike, hiking with a llama or relaxing poolside, the non-stop fun allows families to make memories

that last a lifetime.

Plan to spend time in the heart of Vermont at Smugglers’ Notch. A day at the resort offers the ideal location for breathtaking scenic vista views combined with acres of landscape almost equaling the expansiveness of America’s national parks! Visit

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June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 43 the water is warming up, offering sunbathers and swimmers the perfect opportunity to dip their toes in the lake. Meanwhile, those who want to get lost in the woods will find countless hiking trails that lead to panoramic views from Adirondack summits. Need more thrills? Spend the day at a theme park or family fun center where there is no shortage of entertainment. PLAN YOUR TRIP TODAY! FOLLOW US: @LakeGeorgeArea Dive into classic

Ulster County, NY

It’s that time of year when idyllic memories come flooding back of lazy, long summer days spent basking in the warm sun, skipping rocks across pristine water, or slurping down an ice-cold root beer float on a gentle summer evening while fireflies dance across the lawn.

Few places have as many cherished memories as summers in the Catskills. With majestic resorts along tranquil waters, streams full of aggressive trout, and Instaworthy vistas at every turn, Ulster County is the quintessential backdrop to create your nostalgic summer escape upstate.

Ulster’s trails, shops, markets, and starfilled night skies, feel tailor made for summer adventure stock full of all the makings of core memories. And with a plethora of lodging and delicious dining options, people find themselves coming back for more for years to come.

Plan a new summer tradition at

Warren County, NY

Lake George Area

More outdoor adventures coming your way with the Lake George Area in Warren County. This family-friendly oasis is filled with adventure for everyone.

Challenge your family to mini golf at one of the six courses. Your kids will love the different themes, from pirates to ‘around the world’ to even a storybook adventure full of wacky characters. Cool off with a sweet treat at Bon’s Ice Cream afterwards.

If you’re craving something more active, peddle your way in the Adirondack mountains on old railroad beds that have been turned into railbike adventures. On these guided tours you’ll get breath-taking views of the Hudson River and Adirondack forest.

And did we mention you can also experience the Wild West? That’s right! You can stay at a family guest ranch with trail riding, nighttime entertainment, a rodeo and more.

Little and big kids alike will enjoy the 70-year-old amusement park, treetop adventures and dinosaur trails. There’s truly something for everyone in Lake George Area.

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June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 45 Make moments that matter in hip and historic Frederick County, Maryland. Wander historic downtowns with locally-owned specialty shops, galleries, and theaters. Venture outdoors in National and State Parks and experience our storied past at Civil War battlefields. Indulge in world-class restaurants and unwind at dozens of tasting rooms. Heighten YOUR SENSES
June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 47 Seek for Yourself FIND YOUR HAPPY PLACE Explore a trail. Scale a mountain. Walk through living history. Take a stroll through Ulster County and discover the breathtaking beauty, eclectic culture, and endless adventure of Upstate New York. Plan your trip at ® I LOVE E NEW EW YORK loogo is a regiegistered t d trademark/service mark of the NYS Dept. of Economic Developmement, t, used wit w h pe permis m sion n

Family Summer Experiences

Summer in and around New York is one of the best places to enjoy family-friendly experiences. Whether you live in a city or the suburbs, we have all these fantastic places that are either a car, train, and sometimes a ferry away. Lucky us! Check out the summer adventures just waiting for you to experience this season!

Alliance for Downtown New York

Although Lower Manhattan is one square mile in size, it is packed with many of New York City’s most iconic attractions. Families can marvel at the architectural beauty of the Brooklyn Bridge, take a ferry to the historic Statue of Liberty, and explore the vibrant Seaport District, among many other landmarks.

Navigating Lower Manhattan is a breeze. It is exceptionally walkable and boasts an extensive transportation network, including 13 subway lines, numerous bus routes, numerous commuter ferry routes, and ample bike lanes with bike-share stations. This makes it the most convenient neighborhood for transportation in New York City, ensuring you can easily reach any destination.

Surrounded by water on three sides, Lower Manhattan features some of NYC’s best ferry infrastructure, perfect for family outings. Regular ferries depart for Governor’s Island, the Statue of Liberty, and other picturesque destinations, offering unique perspectives of the city from the water.

Staying in Lower Manhattan offers the ideal base for a family New York City adventure. Centrally located, it can reach any part of the city within 20 minutes, avoiding the crowds typical of places like

Times Square. Unlike the busier districts, Lower Manhattan provides a more relaxed atmosphere without sacrificing accessibility. Plus, the neighborhood offers a variety of hotels catering to every budget, ensuring a comfortable stay -perfect for a staycation!

Whether you’re play tourist and want to spend the day seeing the sights or just want to enjoy all the city has to offer. Lower Manhattan has it all. Its strategic location and abundance of attractions make it the perfect choice for anyone looking to explore the best of New York City.

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Blue Man Group

Looking to laugh with the family and have your kids think you’re cool? Bring them to the famed Astor Place Theatre. Blue Man Group is comedy, theater and rock concert all rolled into one. Leave your expectations at the door and let three bald and blue men take you on a spectacular journey bursting with music, laughter and surprises. Featuring pulsing, original music, custom-made instruments, surprise audience interaction, and hilarious absurdity, join the Blue Men in a joyful experience that unites audiences of all ages. A total of eight dazzling new screens have been installed to create a more immersive and engaging performance environment. Throughout the performance, audiences will be captivated by new, state-of-the-art video content accompanying the Blue Men and band.

Astor Place Theatre, 434 Lafayette St #1, New York, NY 10003, USA

Dave and Busters

From kids to grownups — everybody needs a place to let loose & have limitless fun. Dave & Buster’s has entered the chat. Pull up with the whole family experience that includes sea of 100+ arcade games in D&B’s epic Midway! Whether you’re letting the kids win or showing them that YOU STILL GOT IT, Dave and Busters has games for days! Virtual Reality, racing games, big-name titles, arcade classics, and more! The fun doesn’t stop at D&B.One thing they don’t play about is their food, so you know their all-new menu is filled to the brim with top tier, “leave-the-plate-clean” food. Whether you’re feeling snacky, fancy or something in between, they have all kinds of bites for all kinds of vibes! Grown-ups, this one’s for you! While the kiddos mash buttons & stack those tix, you can kick back with a cold one & watch the game on the big screen. From all the brew-skis to a proper glass of cab, their bar stays stocked.

Plus, if you are looking for a place to host your next birthday party, anniversary celebration, corporate happy hour, employee appreciation, or any other type of event in between, D&B’s professional planners will make recommendations for even the pickiest of palates. From groups of ten to two-thousand, Dave & Buster’s is the perfect place to make unforgettable memories with your friends, family, youth groups, or co-workers. From Chef-crafted banquets to unlimited video game play, they got all the details covered. Convinced? Pull up & spend a day the D&B way — with nonstop fun!

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June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 51

New York Botanical Garden

Wonderland: Curious Nature transforms the New York Botanical Garden’s 250 acres through the sights, settings, and scents of the classic Wonderland stories. Step into a colorful botanical experience that grows curiouser and curiouser as you encounter many beloved Wonderland characters across the grounds.

Find larger-than-life mushrooms, an outsized chessboard, a shimmering lookingglass, and more. Inside the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, discover thousands of vibrant flowers in imaginative horticultural displays that highlight the lush, blooming gardens of the Victorian era. Continue to dive into Alice’s world in the LuEsther T. Mertz Library—learn about the novel’s historical context and modern interpretations, including the stories of mind-altering plants, which were muchstudied during the Victoria era and continue to be the subjects of cutting-edge scientific research today.

You'll go mad over their programs, including Wonderland character encounters each weekend during the run of the exhibition, a Fantastic Fungi Weekend in the fall, Alice dress-up, and even more programming for families. Of course, there will be food that is so good

Ultimate S U mmer Family F U n G U ide

Urban Air

Urban Air Trampoline and Adventure Park is the best place for indoor family fun! From little ones to adults, there’s something for everyone! Spend a day with the family and see why it’s the best place for jumping, climbing, riding, playing, and more. Urban Air is open for Open Play and birthday parties seven days a week, 365 days a year! Take the next birthday party to new heights at Urban Air! Voted #1 for Best Kids’ Birthday Parties, Urban Air is the ultimate party spot for your birthday celebration! All parties include a party host, balloons, plates, napkins, utensils, and much more to make it a stellar party! An Urban Air Birthday Party is one of the best birthday parties because it is fun for all ages and takes the stress out of hosting a birthday party at home.

Urban Air Brooklyn is located at 4422 2nd Ave between 44th & 45th Street—just five blocks away from Industry City and Costco. The facility features Trampolines, a Warrior Course, Spin & Flip Zone Bumper Cars, Tubes, Soft Play Playground, Virtual Reality, and more! No reservations are required. There are other locations in New Jersey. Urban Air South Hackensack is 10 minutes away from the GWB.

that it’s almost nonsensical! Enjoy the Unbirthday Snack Truck with crumpet ice cream sandwiches, the Rose Court with refreshments inspired by the Queen of Hearts, and afternoon tea parties at the Hudson Garden Grill.

in partnership with

Urban Air Avenel is 7 miles away from the Goethals Bridge. Urban Air Milltown is near East Brunswick, New Jersey. Adventure for the whole family is near you this summer! Call 347-732-5438 to start your adventure today.

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Lower Manhattan is the Whole World in One Square Mile

Surrounded by water on three sides, the iconic neighborhood is both where New York City began and a place with endless future potential. With some of the city's greatest hits like the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, the Brooklyn Bridge and more, Lower Manhattan is perfect for families of all tastes and interests. Come experience the ultimate family travel destination this summer!

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 53 @DowntownNYC

Westfield World Trade Center

Nestled in the heart of Lower Manhattan, Westfield World Trade Center is a vibrant destination, perfect for families seeking a blend of shopping, dining, and entertainment. With over 85 shops and restaurants, there’s something for the entire family to enjoy. Conveniently connected to most subway lines and the PATH, Westfield World Trade Center offers easy access from all corners of the city, making it an ideal spot for a family day out. During the summer, the venue hosts free family-friendly outdoor movie screenings on select Saturdays in July and August, creating memorable experiences under the stars. For creative kids, the interactive and working art studio provides a space to paint and draw. On select dates in July and August, this studio becomes a hub of artistic exploration and fun. The center’s iconic architecture offers a unique backdrop for exploration, with its impressive design captivating visitors of all ages. Every Monday and Thursday, the Oculus floor transforms into an open-play piano area, inviting children to express themselves through music. This hands-on activity encourages young musicians to share their talents in a welcoming environment. On Fridays, the Smorgasburg outdoor street food market sets up shop, offering a delectable variety of treats to delight every palate.

Families planning their visit or a day close to home can enhance their experience by downloading the Westfield app at Westfield app. This handy tool allows visitors to plan their trip, ensuring they make the most of all the exciting activities and amenities available.For more information and to start planning your visit, please visit Westfield

54 | June 2024 ULTIMATE SUMMER FAMILY FUN GUIDE in partnership with Urban Air South Hackensack is 10 minutes away from the GWB. adventure today.
World Trade Center. With its diverse offerings and
fun, creativity,
Partner with Us Want to reach engaged parents across New York City? Collaborate with the New York Family Media team to spread the word about your launches, promotions and news. Reach us by emailing or calling 718.260.4554
convenient location, Westfield World Trade Center promises an unforgettable family outing
and delicious food.

Broadway is Back!

Day trip adventures to see THE LION KING on Broadway

there is something so incredibly special about taking a trip into the city with your family to see a Broadway show. From getting dressed up to finding nearby restaurants to hit before or after a show, there’s a certain excitement to the whole experience that is magical for audiences of all ages.

Recently, my kids (elementary school age to teenager) and I set off on an adventure to see a show, and it wasn’t hard to narrow down our choices. THE LION KING has been thrilling audiences for over 25 years, making it the third longestrunning show in Broadway history!

Coming from Westchester, I had the option to drive to Manhattan or travel by public transportation. I opted to take the railway and after an easy 50-minute ride from Northern Westchester to Grand Central Station in the open-aired train, we hopped off and walked a few blocks to the theater.

Times Square buzzes with excitement all day and night, and THE LION KING offers shows that will work with your schedule, including matinees on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 2 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. I opted for a matinee so we would have a few daylight hours left to explore the city afterward.

Upon arrival, we passed a security checkpoint, and a sense of relief washed over me, knowing this extra safety measure was in place. We soaked up as much theater magic as we took our seats.

The kids’ faces lit up as the curtain rose and we settled in for a theatrical trip to the Pridelands, and I mentally high-fived myself for finding a way to turn their attention away from their devices long enough to enjoy the excitement only a Broadway show can bring to audiences.

THE LION KING is a heartwarming Broadway experience, following a comingof-age story that explores the depth of the familiar yet reimagined characters of Simba and his family and friends. We join him on his journey from a cub to an adult, watching him discover his inner strength and courage with the help of his friends, Timon, Pumbaa, Zazu and Nala.

I expected to see some elaborate cos-

tumes, but I didn’t expect to be fully awestruck! The exquisitely detailed costumes allow for intimate and direct viewing of the actors’ faces and expressions. The textile puppets and masks took a whopping 37,000 hours to create – and it showed.

The stage sprang to life with a breathtaking amalgamation of lively characters, like 18-foot-tall exotic giraffes, puppets of every size, and a massive elephant maneuvered by four actors that you have to see to believe.

The show also takes families on a journey through Africa with songs and dialogue in six indigenous African languages, such as Swahili, Zulu, Xhosa, Sotho, Tswana and Congolese. Powerful voices belted out favorites like “Circle of Life,” “I Just Can’t

Wait to be King,” and “Be Prepared.” We were fully in “Hakuna Matata” mode, smiling and swaying along with the rhythm.

The curtains closed and we were buzzing from the magic and the lessons that unfolded. It was so refreshing to revel in a live experience where we used our imaginations and witnessed the power of theater-making.

A pivotal experience for families, live theater truly is back and better than ever.

THE LION KING runs for two hours and 30 minutes and is designed for kids ages six and up. The show performs 8 times a week. Tickets are available at the Minskoff Theatre box office (200 W 45th St.) or at lionking. com/tickets. Learn more at

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 55 New York FamilY partN er
©Disney ©Disney ©Disney

Summer Fun!

Summer is one of the best season’s to enjoy all the East Coast offers, from hopping on the train for a day trip to packing up the car to check out a museum, an amusement park, a favorite town, or a new town, eating some good food, and more. Here are some unique things for families to do in and around the Bronx during the summer!

Alliance for Downtown New York

New York, NY

Lower Manhattan has all the shopping, dining, and entertainment anyone could want. From City Hall to the Battery, savor unique flavors, discover awe-inspiring museums, catch a show, and so much more. No one can ever know what’s next when one square mile contains infinite possibilities. So get going and see what’s happening in downtown New York.

Big Kahuna Water Park

West Berlin, NJ

Dive into fun at Big Kahuna’s Water Park in NJ, where you can enjoy a range of thrilling slides and water attractions suitable for all ages, abilities, and sensory sensitivities. The year-round indoor water park boasts weatherproof fun under a retractable roof, and the attached outdoor water park is free with admission from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Big Kahuna’s is a certified autism center and the perfect day trip with free parking, a full-service café, bar, and a vibrant island atmosphere.

Big SNOW American Dream

East Rutherford, New Jersey

Beat the heat this Summer and hit Big SNOW American Dream, North America’s first and only indoor snow dome. Big SNOW is located in the Meadowlands and has something for everyone in the family. Ski. Board. Tube. Shop!

Blue Man Group

New York, NY

Blue Man Group is a comedy, theater, and rock concert all rolled into one. Leave expectations at the door and let three bald and blue men unveil a spectacular journey bursting with music, laughter, and surprises.

Chuck E. Cheese

Multiple Locations

Chuck E. Cheese has been entertaining families with delicious food and cutting-edge games for decades; refreshed fun centers feature new games, an interactive dance floor, large-format video walls, new food, new prizes from the legendary prize wall and active play features (including Trampoline Zones at select locations). Join them all summer long for 2 months of unlimited visits, up to 250 games per day, and up to 50% off on most food & beverages with Summer Fun Pass (starting at just $44.99 online)!

Dave and Busters

Multiple Locations

Dave & Buster’s has everyone covered for all the summer fun! This Father’s Day, participate in the first-ever D&B Dad Games to compete against other families for a chance to win one year of free game play.

Frederick County

Frederick County, MD

Experience a one-of-a-kind sporting event in Downtown Frederick, Maryland, during the 10th National Clustered Spires High Wheel

Bike Race on July 13th. This free, familyfriendly event features bike racers from around the world riding antique high-wheel bicycles in a spectacle you won’t see anywhere else in the United States.

Greene County, NY

This summer, groove at lively, family-friendly events like the 2nd Annual Sunflower & Sangria Festival and Catskill Irish Arts Week. See why the Great Northern Catskills have been the epicenter of warm-weather fun for over a century.

Mashantucket Pequot Museum

Ledyard, CT

Come on a journey the whole family will love at the world’s largest Native American Museum! From Wednesday to Saturday, there will be culture-filled educational programs, workshops, and events for the entire family in July and August. Experience the amazing culture of the Pequot people and learn about their distinctive relationship with nature, their challenges, and their inspiring resiliency.

New York Botanical Gardens

Bronx, NY

Head down the rabbit hole to explore

56 | June 2024 ULTIMATE SUMMER FAMILY FUN GUIDE in partnership with
June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 57 Come on a journey the whole family will love at the world’s largest Native American Museum! Experience the amazing culture of the Pequot people and learn about their distinctive relationship with nature, their challenges and their inspiring resiliency. Our story lives on… 110 PEQUOT TRAIL MASHANTUCKET, CT 860.396.6910 PEQUOTMUSEUM.ORG Tickets discounted online! Now open for 2024! 2024 season passes are now available for purchase. Order online at

Wonderland: Curious Nature at the New York Botanical Garden. It is fun for the whole family. Dress up to explore mind-bending flower displays fit for a queen, outsized art installations, and fantastical tea parties! May 18–October 27, 2024; Tuesday–Sunday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; $35 for adults and $15 for kids.

New York International Air Show

Orange County, NY

Enjoy a weekend of family fun while attending the New York International Air Show at the Orange County Airport in Montgomery, New York on August 10th and 11th. See thrilling aerial performances headlined by the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds and other top talent. The Italian Air Force Frecce Tricolori are visiting the USA for the first time in over 30 years. Explore amazing aircraft displays and delicious food vendors all around the grounds. It’s a great event for the whole family! Get tickets now. AirShowNY.ccm

Nyack Street Fair

Rockland County, NY

Don’t miss the Nyack Street Fair on Sunday, July 14, 2024, on Main Street and Broadway. Over 360 exhibitors will display Arts, Crafts, Photography, sculpture, and a Kids’ Zone. Enjoy great food, live music, and more!

Putnam County Fair and 4-H Showcase

Putnam, NY

Come and join the fun at the Putnam County Fair & 4-H Showcase on July 27th and July 28th at Veterans Memorial Park in Carmel, NY. There will be farm animals, pony rides, vendors, entertainment, food trucks, and so much more! Parking and admission are free.

Ridge Hill

Yonkers, NY

Signature Events have returned to Ridge Hill. Now through September 26th, guests can enjoy weekly and monthly outdoor experiences,

including pet-friendly happy hours, children’s playtime, fitness classes, film screenings, and live concerts.

Salem Witch Museum

Salem, MA

Looking for something out of the ordinary to do this summer? Take a trip to Salem, Massachusetts, a city made famous by the Salem Witch Trials. The Salem Witch Museum brings visitors back to 1692 in an immersive audiovisual experience and offers extended hours during summer. Visit for tickets and information on visiting this iconic museum.

Smugglers’ Notch

Jeffersonville, VT

Join on June 20th, for the Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year and the official start of summer. At Smuggs, things are going to heat up with a Summer Solstice celebration! Guests will be in awe of Cirque De Fuego, Vermont’s premier fire performers, drum performances by Jeh Kulu Drum Theater, spectacular fireworks not to mention the blazing bonfire, ooey-gooey s’mores, and much more!

Storybook Land

Egg Harbor, New Jersey

Explore, play, read, and ride! Create your own story at Storybook Land, where they’ve been making memories since 1955! Visit Santa Claus on Christmas in July! Saturday, July 20th.

Sullivan Catskills Visitors Association

Liberty, NY

Sullivan Catskills has the KCBS sanctioned backyard barbeque on May 15 and Drag me back to the Catskills from May 14-16.

Ulster County

Ulster County, NY

Ulster County’s Borscht Belt Fest, “Comedy, Cuisine, Culture in the Catskills”, returns to the Catskill this summer on July 27 and

28, 2024. The festival celebrates the legacy of the idyllic Borscht Belt resort era, its vibrant comedic past, and its wide-ranging influence on contemporary American culture. Held in Ellenville, NY, the heart of the renown Borscht Belt, the festival features stand-up comedy, art, live music, film, educational programming, food, and plenty of one-liners. For information

Visit Rhode Island

Rhode Island is small but grand, offering a wide variety of events for the whole family to enjoy. This summer, several can’t-miss events include the Newport Bermuda Race, Bristol 4th of July Parade, and Washington County Fair.

Visit Rochester

Rochester, NY

With 140+ annual festivals and events, there is always something great happening in Rochester, NY. Festival season kicks off each May with the Lilac Festival, the largest free festival of its kind in North America. It continues with the Rochester International Jazz Festival, Corn Hill Arts Festival, Rochester Fringe Festival, ROC Holiday Village, and more.

Warren County

Lake George, NY

The Lake George Area is a destination filled with water activities, amusement parks, and many other family-friendly activities to satisfy all ages! Discover the birthplace of “The Original Vacation,” where families would gather to spend their summer vacations in the southern Adirondacks.

Westfield World Trade Center

New York, NY

Over 85 world-class shops and restaurants, connected to 13 subway lines and the PATH, are located in the heart of Lower Manhattan. Free fun for the whole family includes outdoor movie screenings and interactive kid-friendly art studios! united-state/westfieldtradecenter

58 | June 2024 ULTIMATE SUMMER FAMILY FUN GUIDE in partnership with
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June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 59 Want to reach engaged parents across New York City? Partner with Us Collaborate with the New York Family Media team to spread the word about your launches, promotions and news. Reach us by emailing or calling 718.260.4554



Animal Chronicles

WHEN: Weekdays, 10 am – 5 pm, Saturdays and Sundays, 10 am – 5:30 pm through Sep. 2

WHERE: Bronx Zoo, 2300 Southern Boulevard, Bronx Park


WHAT: This immersive walking trail features 13 scenes of 68 animal eco-sculptures that showcases key achievements in the Zoo’s history of saving animal species.

WANT TO GO?: Tickets start at $28.75.

Wonderland: Curious Nature

WHEN: Tuesdays – Sundays, 10 am – 6 pm through Oct. 27.

WHERE: New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Blvd., Bronx Park


WHAT: Witness mind-bending horticultural displays, unusual and outsized art installations, fantastical tea parties, and the wonderfully weird beauty of Alice’s world of imagination.

WANT TO GO?: $15-$35. (718) 817–8700,

Family Art Day

WHEN: Saturday, June 1, 11 am – 3 pm

WHERE: BxArts Factory, 240 East 153rd St., Melrose


WHAT: Let your inner artist shine as you participate in various art activities and workshops from painting to drawing or printing.

WANT TO GO?: Free.

90’s Skate Party

WHEN: Friday, June 7, 4 – 7 pm

WHERE: Pulaski Park, Bruckner Boulevard & Willis Avenue Bridge, Mott Haven


WHAT: Enjoy an afternoon of music, dancing, and skating while listening to some of your favorite 90’s hits.

WANT TO GO?: Free.

Free Community Paddling

WHEN: Saturday, June 8, 11 am – 3 pm.

WHERE: Concrete Plant Park, Bronx River bet. Westchester Av and Bruckner Blvd. Bronx AGES: All

WHAT: Beginners and families to join are invited to explore the waters of the Bronx via kayak or canoe.

WANT TO GO?: Free.

Family Tree for Father’s Day

WHEN: June 15-16, Saturday and Sunday, 10 am – 1 pm.

WHERE: Wave Hill, 4900 Independence Ave., Riverdale


WHAT: Design a tree sculpture using your family as inspiration.

WANT TO GO?: Included with admission: $4-$10. (718) 549–3200,

The Hunts Point Fish Parade & Arts Festival

WHEN: Saturday, June 15, 12 – 4 pm

WHERE: The Hunts Point Fish Parade & Arts Festival, 940 Garrison Ave., Hunts Point AGES: All

WHAT: See the community march together in a vibrant celebration of activism, joy, and community building featuring banners, costumes, and puppets.

WANT TO GO?: Free. thepoint. org

Capoeira Performance and Dance

WHEN: Saturday, June 15, 2 pm

WHERE: The Mall at Bay Plaza, 200 Baychester Ave., Coop City AGES: All

WHAT: See Moses Kyle McCarter perform the art of capoeira- a combination of song, dance, and martial-arts.

WANT TO GO?: Free. (718) 208–2750,

Juneteenth Celebration

WHEN: Tuesday, June 18, 11 am – 2 pm

WHERE: Hunts Point Recreation Center, 765 Manida St., Hunts Point AGES: All

WHAT: Celebrate Juneteenth with activities that will include performances, creative art, light refreshments, and more.

WANT TO GO?: Free.

NYC Parks Presents: Schools Out Celebration

WHEN: Thursday, June 20, 3 – 6 pm

WHERE: Soundview Park,

60 | June 2024
Check out the Animal Chronicles trail at the Bronx Zoo this summer.

O’Brien Ave. & Leland Ave., Clason Point


WHAT: Celebrate the end of the school year with games, activities, and much more.

WANT TO GO?: Free.


67th Annual National Puerto Rican Day Parade

WHEN: Sunday, June 9, 11 am

WHERE: 44th Street to 79th Street along Fifth Avenue, Midtown


WHAT: Be there for the largest demonstration of Puerto Rican cultural pride in the nation featuring stunning floats, dance performances, costumes, music, and more.

WANT TO GO?: Free. nprdpinc. org

Drums Along the Hudson: A Native American and Multicultural Celebration

WHEN: Sunday, June 2, 1 am – 6 pm

WHERE: Inwood Hill Park, 218th Street & Indian Road, Inwood


WHAT: This all-day event features an open air pow wow, a Mohawk craft demonstration, storytelling, international and vegan cuisine, raffles, and more.

WANT TO GO?: Free.

Egg Rolls, Egg Creams, and Empanadas Festival

WHEN: Sunday, June 16, 12 – 4 pm

WHERE: Museum at Eldridge Street, 12 Eldridge St., Lower East Side


WHAT: Celebrate the diverse traditions that give the Lower East Side and Chinatown its identity with a medley of Jewish, Chinese, and Puerto Rican tastes, sights, sounds, and crafts.

WANT TO GO?: Free. (212) 219–0302,


WHEN: June 1-2, Saturday and Sunday, 11 am – 4 pm.

WHERE: Queens Zoo, 53-51 111th Street, Corona


WHAT: See the sheep get their annual haircuts along with fun crafts for kids, and an opportunity to learn all about wool, domestication, and farm animals!

WANT TO GO?: $6.95-$9.95.

Astoria Park Carnival

WHEN: June 5-6, Wednesday and Thursday, 4 – 10 pm; Friday, June 7, 4 – 11 pm; Saturday, June 8, 12 pm – 12

am; Sunday, June 9, 12 – 11 pm.

WHERE: Under the RFK Bridge, Corner of Hoyt Ave N and 19th St, Astoria


WHAT: Bring the family out for thrilling rides, exciting games, and mouth-watering carnival foods!

WANT TO GO?: $1.50 single ticket; $32 for 20 tickets; $62 for 50 tickets.

Andy & Suzanna’s Children’s Concert & Class

WHEN: Sunday, June 16, 4 – 5 pm

WHERE: Culture Lab LIC, 5-25

46th Ave., Long Island City


WHAT: Sing and dance the wiggles away when Andy and Suzanna entertain the family with bubbles, puppets, and harmonies in this unforgettable concert!

WANT TO GO?: $28.52 for 1 adult and 1 child. culturelablic. org


New York Liberty vs. Indiana Fever

WHEN: Sunday, June 2, 7 pm

WHERE: Barclays Center, 620 Atlantic Ave., Boerum Hill


WHAT: Catch the excitement of the WNBA when Breanna Stewart and the New York Liberty take on Caitlin Clark and the Indiana Fever.

WANT TO GO?: Tickets start at $50.

Saddles and Soul: A Juneteenth Black Western Celebration

WHEN: Saturday, June 15, 12 – 8 pm

WHERE: Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Pkwy, Prospect Heights


WHAT: Honor the legacy of Juneteenth as a Texas holiday and the long history of Black Western culture with line dancing to sets by local DJs, photo activations, art-making, and food.

WANT TO GO?: Included with admission: $14-$20; free for ages 19 and younger. (718) 638–5000, brooklynmuseum. org

PREPOSTEROUS! A Happenstance Circus

WHEN: Sunday, June 23, 1 pm

WHERE: Waterfront Museum, 290 Conover St., Carroll Gardens


WHAT: This circus features charming vintage clowns performing the classic circus mirror routine with a twist, live music, and a very satisfying slow motion number involving a pie.

WANT TO GO?: $5-$20. (718) 624–4719, waterfrontmuseum. org

June 2024 | Bronx/Riverdale Family 61 JUNE calendar
Sheep Shearing Weekend
Make a Family Tree for Father’s Day at Wave Hill on June 15 and 16. The Hunts Point Fish Parade & Arts Festival is back on June 15.

The Scoop on Van Leeuwen!

If you haven’t guessed yet, summer is the theme for our June cover, and who doesn’t think of ice cream when the weather starts to warm up? For this month’s cover, it was not hard to sway our 4-year-old cover kids to pose for our cover while devouring their favorite ice cream.

A Brief History

For many of us parents, Van Leeuwen holds a special place in our hearts, dating back to the days of Van Leeuwen BK (before kids.) The memories of those first scoops and the joy they brought are still fresh in our minds.

For newer parents and fans, here are the CliffsNotes: Van Leeuwen started in 2008 as a yellow scoop truck on the streets of NYC by Ben Van Leeuwen, Pete Van Leeuwen, and Laura O’Neill, who wanted to make French-style (oui, oui yum) ice

cream with good ingredients.

While many New Yorkers are spoiled and have one or two Van Leeuwens in their neighborhoods (they have the most ice cream shops in New York!), since those ice cream truck days, the brand has expanded to 50 scoop shops and growing and can be found in California, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, DC, Colorado, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Texas.

Let’s get to the best part—what we munched on at the photo shoot. The kids loved the more classic flavors of strawberry, vanilla, and cookies and cream, but we seasoned ice cream connoisseurs dove into Earl Grey Tea, Pistachio, Black Cherry Chip, Lemon Poppy Seed Muffin, and more.

Visit to find your shop or the grocery store where you can find ice cream pints, sandwiches, and bars.

What's popular?

Popular vegan flavors include Churros & Fudge, Peanut Butter Brownie Honeycomb, Strawberry Shortcake, and more.

What's new?

Van Leeuwen’s Summer Specials are Marionberry Chocolate Chip Sherbet, Mango Sorbet, Chocolatey Crisp Cereal & Milk, and Passion Fruit Berry Pop.

62 | June 2024
Photo by Ana Gambuto
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