Quick NYC weekend with 6 yr old

Jun 15th, 2015, 11:13 AM
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Quick NYC weekend with 6 yr old

You have all helped me so much in the past, I feel bad asking for more advice! But here goes - due to a work meeting that just came up, we are planning a quick trip to NYC with our 6 year old daughter. Both my husband and I have been several times, and we usually have her 10 yr old brother (who has been to NYC) in tow, but it just so works out that it will be the 3 of us so we want it to be a special time for her.

What is not to be missed for a girl her age? The first instinct is Broadway - but unfortunately, that doesn't look promising. We arrive on Sat afternoon, July 4, and leave late Mon, July 6. The show schedules that weekend pretty much limit us to Sun 3PM, which basically eats much of our one full day.

We may keep it very basic and do the tried-and-true: Times Square (Hershey and M&M Store - we may never get her to leave), Statue of Liberty cruise, Central Park - showing her the Plaza where Eloise lives But I feel that we need some sort of structure - even having just show tickets or a dinner reservation usually helps shape the rest of a trip, so I feel naked without anything planned!

If (a big IF) all goes well, we would like to head south to see the fireworks Sat night. Any insight to that? Is it just a mob scene heading toward the South St Seaport?

Monday we have all day with just the two of us (dad leaves for Philly) - any mom / daughter to-do's before we leave that night?

Has anyone been to the Victoria Confino tour at the LES tenement museum? I love that place, and that tour is geared towards families, but not sure if it will be over her head. Any other tours / musuems that especially appeal to little girls?

Thanks for any tips !
4sammy is offline  
Jun 15th, 2015, 12:03 PM
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It is a HUGE mob scene for the fireworks. And even worse when the fireworks are over and everyone tries to leave at once.

I did this with my son [he was 15 at the time] and it was a long time ago but it was pretty bad; we needed to get to Grand Central Station to take a train home and we couldn't even get on the subway there were so many people going down the steps. We ended up walking all the way [42nd St] which was a long way after standing for so long. We got there several hours early to get a good viewing spot.

There were no bathrooms [porta potty] anywhere as well.

Not sure if this is still the case at Tenement Museum; but we went approx. 4 years ago in the August and there no no a/c. It was hotter than blazes.

Are you going to see The Statue of Liberty or just go past it?

Liberty Science Center is great for kids.
DebitNM is offline  
Jun 15th, 2015, 12:18 PM
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Unfortunately, that is pretty much the worst of all possible weekends to be here. It's far too late to book the Statue of Liberty so that is out. I wouldn't even seriously consider it. But if you want to do the Staten Island Ferry, that would be nice on Sunday evening.

Other than the Lion King, there's not much on Broadway that suits little girls. Even Matilda is probably too loud for her, but if you want to try it you certainly could. Maybe Aladdin, which is rarely discounted.

I could recommend the following:
doug_stallings is offline  
Jun 15th, 2015, 12:25 PM
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Sorry ... posted accidentally before I was ready. What you end up doing may have as much to do with how hot it is outside than anything else.

The Fireworks (I'd actually recommend watching these indoors on TV rather than dealing with the crowds)
The Gazillion Bubble Show
The Museum of Natural History (if she likes stuff like that)
A rowboat rental from the Loeb Boathouse in Central Park
The Central Park Zoo or the Bronx Zoo (the latter would take at least a half-day)
Alice's Teacup
Ellen's Stardust Diner
Staten Island Ferry
Liberty Science Center (visited by ferry on Sunday)

You can certainly go see a Broadway show on Saturday night. You'll have enough time, and that might be a good night since many people will go to see the fireworks.
doug_stallings is offline  
Jun 15th, 2015, 03:25 PM
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You might want to take to the American Girl Place Store at 609 5th Av (5th Av and 49th St)


nycguy10002 is offline  
Jun 15th, 2015, 04:13 PM
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Do NOT take her to see the fireworks. There will be a million people (no hyperbole) standing their watching and that's all you can do - stand and watch. She will be too small to see very well. The area is closed to traffic and transit several hours in advance - which means walking in and walking out afterward and there are no porta-potties. Given the usual weather - hot and humid - this will be hell for a 6 year old. Much better to see on TV.

A couple of recos:

Staten island ferry - or if you prefer a Circle line cruise that takes you closer to the Statue (can not land at liberty island) but there is a 2 hour harbor cruise.

Museum of Natural History - all kids LOVE the dinos

The Met - check out the Costume institute and if she likes Egyptian Dept and Temple of Dendur (show her on the web site first to gauge her interest - I loved it at that age)

Central Park (pick one or two spots she might want to see - perhaps with street performers - look at the map of the Central Park Conservancy)

I don;t think the Tenement Mueum has AC and might be too much for her

Top of the Rock - so she can see hoe big the city really is

A nice tea at someplace fou fou - if you think she would like it

What are her interests - that may help you pick out something special?
nytraveler is offline  
Jun 15th, 2015, 05:11 PM
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I would also like to suggest going to

1. central park and exploring the Belvedere Castle if she's anything like my niece then she loves princesses!

2. If you don't mind going into Queens then there is the NY Hall of Science. It's pretty cool but it's not too big that it would end up taking up your entire day!

3. Since you wanted to check out a musical but I would suggest looking into the Broadway stars performing for FREE at Bryant Park.

4. Jane's Carousel at Brooklyn Bridge Park

Hope you guys have fun!!!
tiffbrose is offline  
Jun 15th, 2015, 06:10 PM
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Central Park Zoo/children's zoo, and Carousel

Staten Island Ferry.. its 20 minutes in each direction, and runs on the hour and half hour. and its free

Alice's teacup, Serendipity,

July 4 at 7pm American Ballet Theater Cinderella, kids are free with a full price adult ticket... check the program to see if it would be too long a show for your 6 year old. seats in the orchestra are not that graduated but you can get a seat cushion from the usher in any section.

Natural History Museum
Met Museum.. check the free programs for kids, nice playground down the street

fireworks are in the east river.. don't go.. it will be hell ..no place to sit.. a zillion people.. no toilets

have fun
maxima is offline  
Jun 16th, 2015, 12:09 PM
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I lost my password and had to reset - sorry for the delay! Thanks so much for your input! OMG the fireworks sound horrible - we will skip it for sure!

I am really excited to look into the suggestions! Alice's Teacup in particular - she is such a girly girl - right up her alley!

Statue of Liberty - we will just do the ferry, we did that with our son and it was just the right amount of time for his interest level at the time.

Good tip on the tenement museum. July with no A/C is a bummer. We live in TX so we know heat, but we also know the value of good A/C

The other things that stand out as interesting to her are the Bryant Park performances and Ellen's Stardust Diner. I'm taking your tips one by one and checking them out.

Thanks a million!
4sammy is offline  
Jun 16th, 2015, 12:44 PM
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I'm thinking this as a rough itinerary:

Sat 4PM - arrive at hotel (midtown, at Marriot East Side on Lex), head out to Times Square, eat at Ellen's Stardust (they don't take res - is it typically a long wait?); Top of the Rock, and back to hotel for fireworks on TV.

Sun AM - Central Park then a quick pizza lunch; maybe stop by Bryant Park 1-2PM for La Carrousel Magique (magic show) - I would think this would just be a quick stop and an excuse to rest our feet if we happen to be in the area at that time - agreed? It isn't something we should plan our day around? - on our way from CP towards Staten Island Ferry. We are ambitious

Sun afternoon - Staten Island ferry, then Little Italy / Chinatown and grab a pasta dinner and cannoli. Or should we do this in the village? I know Little Italy gets no love but I think my little pasta-loving girl would get a kick out of it and would hit us up for some cheap crap souvenirs. I don't think it's too much to wander through LI / Chinatown, and then get a good Italian meal in the west village - suggestions for either?

We have part of Monday so brunch or lunch at Alice's Teacup, and maybe time to do something we didn't get a chance to do already.

On another note - American Girl store. She doesn't know / care about AG yet. She IS a girly girl so is there a draw there for her if she doesn't have one yet? Is it just a store and she will be begging me for $200 dolls and I will curse it?
4sammy is offline  
Jun 16th, 2015, 12:53 PM
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NewbE is offline  
Jun 16th, 2015, 07:10 PM
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AMAZING italian restaurant in west village is L'Artusi you definitely want to make reservations cause they are always full. If not you should go RIGHT when they open at 5:30 pm for dinner. THEIR FOOD IS AMAZINGGGGG!!!!
tiffbrose is offline  
Jun 16th, 2015, 07:10 PM
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My suggestion for Monday is a visit to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and have a scavenger hunt tour.
SueNYC is offline  
Jun 17th, 2015, 08:53 AM
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L'Artusi does sound amazing! But not sure about it on this trip. She loves pasta, but we're not motivated to spend $24 on a plate of pasta that she will pick the "good stuff" off of so on this trip, we want to keep it basic. Food tastes better when the kids are happy too What about Angelo's? Is the food awful or just not the most inventive? I've had some fabulous, creative meals in NYC but I'm down for good, basic red-sauce Italian done well. Or any local favorites in the Village / NOLITA / LI areas ?

Googling scavenger hunt tour...
4sammy is offline  
Jun 25th, 2015, 12:38 PM
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Can anyone give advice on walking or biking over the Brooklyn Bridge? That is an area of the city we have not explored. The park looks appealing to the kids. My 6 year old is super lazy, how long is the walk? It looks like you can rent bikes with trailers, so she may go for that. Any tips on the park ie., is it just right there when you cross the bridge?

Sorry if I sound clueless. I just - am.
4sammy is offline  
Jun 25th, 2015, 01:48 PM
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This is actually a very good question, and I suspect you'll get a variety of opinions here.

I think you'll find it to be too much for a 6 year-old to bike across, and it will be very crowded that weekend (though people often commute across the bridge by bicycle, so it's not as if a gazillion people won't be biking there). It's also a rather long walk of more than a mile to walk across the bridge to back to the park (the park is actually underneath the bridge, so there's a bit of backtracking either getting to or leaving from the park to get to the bridge). If your 6 year-old is super lazy, what you might want to do is to walk halfway; you can see more from the Manhattan end, and it's an easier trip.

You could visit Brooklyn Bridge Park and then walk halfway across the bridge from the Brooklyn side, but the walk is far longer. The park isn't exactly near a subway station.

You might actually find the ferry to Fulton Landing a more convenient and fun way to get to the park. The Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory is there as well, making it a worthwhile stop.
doug_stallings is offline  
Jun 25th, 2015, 09:09 PM
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Doug, thanks so much. It's nearly impossible to find that type of info online! I have visions of carrying a 6 year old miles and miles - ouch.

Is Brooklyn bridge park worth the trip? I just thought it would be a fun way to make the walk across worthwhile if it was doable. If not, we will just walk halfway across, ooh and ahh, and walk back.
4sammy is offline  
Jun 26th, 2015, 04:02 AM
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How lazy is she? NYC is a lot of walking - esp if you want to explore Central Park and see much.
nytraveler is offline  
Jun 26th, 2015, 04:45 AM
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Another thing to keep in mind about the Brooklyn Bridge: for almost entire walk has no shade--totally exposed to the sun. Earlier or later in the day might be more comfortable.

I once met my brother with his two sons (ages 8 and 10) in the middle of the bridge at about noon of a clear summer day. They walked from the Brooklyn side, and by the time we met in the middle, those kids looked whipped by the sun and heat. We walked off the bridge and sat in shady City Hall Park, drinking beverages, for almost 30 minutes for them to recover.
ellenem is offline  
Jun 26th, 2015, 04:56 AM
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I'm no expert on Brooklyn Bridge Park, but I'm not sure I'd make a special trip to get there.

A much better excursion would be to Governor's Island, which is really special and fun. There are food vendors, plenty of places to walk and play, and you get to be out in the middle of the harbor. The ferry is only $2 and is free for kids. Early ferries on weekends are always free.

The ferry is next to the Staten Island Ferry in Lower Manhattan.
doug_stallings is offline  

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