New York with 7 and 10 year old girls

Jun 21st, 2007, 07:05 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
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New York with 7 and 10 year old girls

I will be in NYC with my two daughters, 7 and 10, and also my 67 year old mother. We are arriving Thursday June 28, at LGA around 5:30 pm, staying at the Marriott Marquis Times Square. So far, our definite plans are Mary Poppins Friday night(already have tickets). We have a dance competition Saturday at the Crowne Plaza Times Square on Saturday from 12:00 to 6:00 pm or so. Sunday is wide open and Monday we may have more dance from 12:00 to 2:00 but not sure. We depart from LGA Tuesday, July 3, around 5:30 pm. What do you suggest? We are thinking...Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty, Central Park, Rockefeller Center. And of course, American Girl Place. Have been told show at AG is good but not as good as Broadway. We may just eat and shop there.
Restaurants recommended to us (kid friendly) are Carmines, Ollies, Serendipity, Patsy's Pizza, Two Boots. We will see Dylan's Candy Bar, heard about Jacques Torres, City Bakery. What about a good, not too expensive pre-theater dinner on Friday. Also, if we wanted to see another show, what do you recommend? I would like the scoop on half price tickets. Where, when, etc. I welcome all suggestions. (My girls are mature for their age)
dancemom is offline  
Jun 21st, 2007, 07:31 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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I have been a couple of times with my daughters, now both teens. They like the Nintendo World Store near Rockefeller Center, if your kids have Nintendo DS they can take them in and download new games in the store to play there!
TKTS is right at your hotel! Or next door if the new facility construction is finished. They have a listing of shows that they have tickets for that day. You do have to pay cash there. Last summer we got half-price tickets for Producers there, but we found that tickets for Avenue Q were less expensive by going directly to the theater (for back row, we could see the stage just fine). We went to Ollies after a show, and it is good food, good place to take the kids.

We thought the Empire State tickets were too expensive, so did not go there. Pick up a brochure from one of the folks in Times Square selling Red Line bus tour tickets, and pick a route to get tickets for, that way you can hop on and hop off all day. Have fun!
JoyinVirginia is offline  
Jun 21st, 2007, 07:36 PM
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Here's the website for the TKTS half price ticket booths.

The Times Square Booth sells day-of-performance tickets only. Temporary location at the Marriott Marquis Hotel W. 46th Street between Broadway & 8th Ave. The “Play Only” window doesn't sell tickets to musicals, dance or music performances. This line often moves more quickly.

For evenings:
Mon-Sat 3pm-8pm
Sun: 3pm until one-half hour before the latest curtain time being sold

For matinees Wed & Sat: 10am-2pm No evening tickets are sold from 10am-2 pm at Times Square.

Sun 11am-3pm

The South Street Seaport Booth sells tickets to evening performances on the day of the performance, and matinee tickets the day before.
At the corner of Front and John Streets, near the rear of the Resnick/ Prudential Building at 199 Water Street.

For evening performances: Mon-Sat 11am- 6pm
Sun 11am-4pm
Opening Sundays beginning April 15
Tickets are sold on Sunday for evening performances only.

Saturday 11am-6pm; tickets are sold for Saturday evening and Sunday matinee performances.

Friday 11am-6pm and tickets are sold for Friday evening and Saturday matinee performances.

TKTS accepts only cash & travelers checks. Both locations sell tickets at 50%, 35%, and 25% off full-price plus a $3.00 per ticket service charge. Availability and inventory change throughout the day and at the discretion of individual productions.
abram is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 11:17 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
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I'll bet your girls would love Ellen's Stardust Diner. Very kid friendly--the waiters and waitresses sing show tunes. And the food was good, 50's-style diner food with exceptional milkshakes. It's right on Broadway at 51st.
cvilleva is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 01:59 PM
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Are they Girl Scouts? National headquarters with gift shop and museum is onn 5th and 38th.
TrvlMaven is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 04:42 PM
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Suggest Top of the Rock versus the Empire State Building - will save hours in waiting time and IMHO the views are better.

In Central Park don't miss the zoo, the Carousel - and consider having lunch or brunch at The Boathouse.
nytraveler is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 04:45 PM
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Thank you for all the info. I will definitely try the half price tickets at the Marriott. As far as Nintendo World, I am not sure my girls would be in to it. We have PS2 but they rarely play it. I'm sure my seven year old son would love it but he is staying home. This is a girls trip. I will keep it in mind for next time. I have heard about Ellen's Stardust Diner and it sounds like fun but some people are very negative about it. Is the atmosphere worth it? As long as the food is decent and not awful I would love to give it a try. This trip is about the girls, not about my tastebuds. Thank you for the tip on Girl Scout Headquarters. I hadn't heard about that one before. Another question, we are thinking about the 3 hour Circle-Line Cruise on our first full day. I have read about the extremely long lines for SOL in the summer and am thinking this might be a good alternative. I think my 10 year-old would probably like Ellis Island but I think it might be lost on my 7 Year-old. Any thoughts? Also, leaning towards Top of the Rock as opposed to ESB because of reports, again, about long lines, etc. Thanks for the help!
dancemom is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 04:56 PM
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Ok, Top of the Rock it is! Speaking of Rockefeller Center, we are thinking about doing the Today Show thing On Friday, June 29, and just found out that Hillary Duff will be there for the Friday Concert. That would be a thrill for the girls. What ungodly hour do we need to get in line?
dancemom is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 05:26 PM
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Today Show--as early as you can manage--especially given Hilary Duff performing. Stop and pick up breakfast sandwiches, coffee, juice and picnic while you're waiting.
TrvlMaven is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 05:51 PM
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Are we taliking 5:00 or 6:00 am? I have no idea.
dancemom is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 06:30 PM
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I'd get there about 5am if you want to get anywhere near the front. That whole area fills up fast especially for a big name concert.

I'm also going to give a nod to the Stardust. I took my neice and nephew there not long ago and they LOVED IT. If your girls are singers, they might get asked to help.

Id also sugget the Central Park Zoo as a fun day and if you join as a family which is not much more than admission, you have a full year of membership and it includes the Bronx Zoo, CPZ and the Aquarium on Coney Island, which if you have time might be a fun day at the beach.

If you have a whole day open you might enjoy a day on Fire Island at the Sunken Forest, which is a beautiful hike through the woods.

From Penn Station you take the train to a cab to the ferry and I think round trip is $22, maybe less for kids. There is a bath house, ranger station (national seashore), cafe and there's usually a lifeguard on the weekends. The ride over and back is alot of fun. It's a short walk from the ferry dock to the beach, and the beach there is really beautiful. The Sunken Forest part of Fire Island is very family oriented.

Also instead of waiting in line in Times Square for tickets, go downtown to the Booth at the South Street Seaport. The girls will enjoy seeing the tall ships and some fun shopping there, AND the line is MUCH shorter. From there you can either walk up, 6 or 7 blocks or take the bus up to Chinatown (best Dim Sum spot is on Mott St, Mandarin Court, and get a bubble tea at one of the tea shops. Then walk up to Little Italy for a fun desert and most of the restaurants ther are cafes in the middle of the street.

Have a GREAT time while you are here.

travelbuff is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 05:27 AM
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There are a lot of shows that don't normally have performances on Mondays that will have one next Mon. b/c of the holiday. Since you're staying right in the Marriott Marquis, I can't imagine why you'd schlepp all the way downtown to that TKTS booth unless you're already going to be there. You could also buy discounted tix in advance with a discount code from OR
print off the discounts from broadwaybox that interest you and go to the theater box office when you arrive. Legally Blonde might be fun.

For a boat ride to see the Statue of Liberty, I think the 3 hr. Circle Line is waaaay too long for the girls and for the length of this trip. You have loads of other options including:

>the FREE Staten Island ferry which passes from a distance
>the Beast which the kids will love
>The 2 hr. cruise or the Harbor Lights cruise or the 75 min. cruise

>The has hop on/off options which might be fun and also harbor cruises

> also does harbor cruises

>There are also sail boats and schooners

I actually think if the girls have never been to NYC, maybe you should consider some sort of bus tour? gets great reviews. is another option and I think has some 1/2 day tours (downtown and midtown is generally more popular than uptown). The Grayline hop on/off is also popular. Or use the Water Taxi's hop on/off to explore on your own, if you think you know your way around.

Make sure you visit Greenwich Village which looks very different from midtown. YOu will pass through it if you do a tour.

Surprised you don't have John's pizzeria on your rest. list. It's around the corner from the Marriott in a converted church.

Also, directly across from the side of the Marriott, also on 44th st. is Junior's, famous for the cheesecake. They're like a good diner. Some say it's not as good as the other locations, but it sure is convenient for you.

Virgil's BBQ is also popular with families.

Some other restaurants in the theater area that would still be fine with the kids are Cafe 123 (un deux trois), Film Center Cafe, Havana Central, Trattoria Trecolori (closed for a while and recently moved to a new location and reopened, Viva Pancho, Ruby Foo's....

If the girls like rice pudding, there's a cute place called Rice to Riches that has rp in every flavor imaginable.

Similar concept for peanut butter

If you go to Economy Candy which is on the lower east side, you might want to go to Katz's deli before for a pastrami sandwich or a hot dog.

Hope this helps and you have a great time.
mclaurie is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 06:49 AM
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Definitely go to Ellens Stardust Diner. We went to NYC a year and a half ago and our best find was Ellens Stardust. We brought our two boys age 8 and 10 (when the subway was on strike, ugh!). We are going back again at the end of July. We went to Jeckyl and Hyde which was pretty good, Mars 2112? which we hated, and Ellens which was the hit. The food was great and affordable and the singing was enjoyable. Be sure not to delay on ordering though, because you never know when your waiter is going to sing and when that happens you won't get any service at all. We went to the empire state building and we actually did some virtual realty ride thing. I remember thinking the extra cost was worth cutting in line. pretty much they take you through a side entrance and put you on this ride (which made me completely nautious). it is like being on a helicopter going through the streets of NYC. But then when they let you off the ride, you are autimatically way ahead in the line. I wouldn't pay for the empire state building twice, but for my kids it was a must see, because that is what they could tell their friends about when they got home.

lindanu is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 08:40 AM
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I think I've narrowed it down to the 2 hour Circle-Line Cruise (I originally thought 3 hour to get a feel for the whole island of Manhattan, not just to see the SOL) or actually doing the SOL/Ellis Island trip and getting off at Ellis island. Feedback? Per the feedback on Ellen's, we will dine there. I have thought about the bus tour but the Gray Line seems to sell 2 day trips which won't work with our schedule because we are free Friday, but not Saturday. So many details to figure out!
dancemom is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 10:02 AM
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Ellen's Stardust Diner has basic diner food - at least as good as you would eat at a local diner - but - it's not gourmet fare. But - for kids that age they probably prefer this food anyway, and the wait staff's performances are a hoot.
nytraveler is offline  

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