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Free Activities for Kids while visiting New York City

Free Activities for Kids

  • 1. We love the Children’s Reading Room at the Main Branch of NYPL. It has comfy reading spots, computers and even the original Winnie the Pooh on display. Plus all branches offer free activities for kids including readings, arts and crafts and films. Not in Manhattan? Your borough has a library, too.

  • 2. Many buildings in NYC have amenity filled atriums and lobbies that are open to the public. Our favorites: The Ford Foundation’s garden lobby on East 42nd Street and The Winter Garden in the Financial District.

  • 3. There are free story times every day of the week in this town. ‘Nuff said.

  • 4. Build at the Lego Store where they have bricks stations set up for hours of building and don’t miss the looking in the little portholes with master lego builders versions of NYC icons.

  • 5. And while you are there the learn about fire safety at the FDNY Fire Zone in Rock Center.

  • 6. Visit the National Museum of the American Indian housed in the former US Custom House. This museum offers family friendly films, workshops and other free fun.

  • 7. Hit Grand Central Terminal to watch trains come in and out of the station, check out the Whispering Gallery or take in one of the other activities here.

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    Children's Activities - Prestige Tours

  • 8. The Parks Department runs Nature Centers in every borough that are open year round where kids learn a little bit about the world around them. Plus the centers offer great activities – tours, crafts and a lot more.

  • 9. Midtown’s Sony Wonder Technology Lab has cool hands on techie exhibits for all ages, weekend workshops and free films.

  • 10. There is a world of high-tech wonder and magic (and free events) to be had at the new Disney Store in Times Square. Just try to get out without buying anything!

  • 11. Learn about the NYC of a long, long time ago with a visit to the Leffert’s Historical House in the children’s area of Prospect Park. Kids will love the hands on old time toys.

  • 12. Watch the bakers in action or grab a bite to eat at the Chelsea Market. Go early and have your run of the place.

  • 13. Visit the tropical enclosed gardens at NYU’s Rusk Institute. Chat with the birds or ask an attendant for some food to feed the fish.

  • 14. Don’t skip a trip to Central Park just because it is cold, commune with nature in Belvedere Castle or play a quick board game in the Chess and Checkers House.

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    Prestige Tours - Free Family Activities

  • 15. Get crafty with the kids for free at places like Mini Max, New York Public Libraries or one of the other places listed here.

  • 16. There are plenty of stores where kids can kill an hour or so playing or reading, while you shop, try the Scholastic Store, Toys R Us or one of these.

  • 17. Take in a fun, free flick at one of these places around town.

  • More free places to go at specific times:

  • 18. Through April 9, 2011 kids can play at the JCC for free on Saturdays.

  • 19. Catch the beat at a Carnegie Kids free live music performance in neighborhoods all around the city this winter.

  • 20. Every other Saturday the ultra cool design museum, Cooper Hewitt offers Free Saturday Programs for families that include museum admission.

  • 21. Friday afternoons offer free family craft programs and more at the Charles A Dana Discovery Center in upper Central Park through April 8, 2011.

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