Tag Archives: New York Hall of Science

Birthday party places for kids in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Bounce U

BY SWEETINA KAKAR

If you know a lot of people with birthdays this time of year, it’s no coincidence. September and October are two of the most popular birthday months, and, according to AnyBirthday.com, more babies are born on October 5 than any other day. To mark this birthday-packed time of year, here’s a list of places to throw great kids parties in Queens.

Alley Pond Environmental Center
228-06 Northern Boulevard, Douglaston
718-229-4000

Alley Pond Environmental Center allows for both an indoor and outdoor experience for any kids event, specifically birthday parties from ages two to 12. The two-hour parties include a discussion about nature and handling live animals along with a nature inspired game or arts and crafts project in a classroom style space. According to the weather, the children will be taken on a nature trail with an experienced guide. With an animal room, party hosts can pick which animals, from blue tongue lizards to ring neck doves, they want to show their guests. All activities will be done within an hour-and-a-half, with 30 minutes left for food and refreshments, which will be provided by party hosts.

Architots
64-64 Dry Harbor Road, Middle Village
718-894-7777

The art and design studio offers 18 different themed parties, including animal, High School Musical, princess, pirate and American Idol themes. The studio’s Crayola inspired décor doesn’t just influence coloring but painting and building too. All parties include invitations, a craft, face painting or tattoos, food for children and refreshments for all.

Astoria Sports Complex
34-38 38th Street, Long Island City
718-729-7163

For sporty children, Astoria Sports Complex provides large indoor game areas for all ages. A soccer room, batting cages, inline skating rink, jumbo slide and bouncy room gives party hosts plenty of options to entertain their guests. The soccer rooms have built-in green astro turf and plexiglass surrounding the room for protection. The batting cages are miniature sized baseball fields to get the full playing experience. Each party includes a host, invitations, music, goody bags, food and refreshments.

Birthday Zone
29-21 21st Avenue, Astoria
718-726-9026

Birthday Zone specializes in customized party themes, but also has eight preplanned themes available. There is a mini arcade, large playing area and dining room, all decorated according to the theme of the party. Preplanned parties include character mascots to entertain all guests. All parties include games, dancing and face painting, with the option of crafts and cotton candy. Pizza is given to children along with refreshments for all.

Bounce U
Whitepoint Center, 132-25 14th Avenue, College Point
718-747-JUMP (5867)

Bounce U has private children’s events and specialty birthday parties with large playing and dinning areas. Their purple and red themed areas make a fun and friendly environment. At Bounce U, children have a large room to enjoy different activities in different bouncy houses, such as an obstacle course, a safe boxing ring and basketball hoops. Bounce U gives you the option to light up any party with a glow-in-the-dark experience and flashing colorful lights. The 2-hour party includes food and refreshments for guests, along with cake and balloon decorations for the dinning room.

BrickHouse Ceramic Art Center
10-34 44th Drive, Long Island City, NY 11101
718-784-4907

This hands-on, messy but artsy party place in Long Island City has different types of birthday parties for all ages. The art center teaches how to make different creations out of clay, including plates, bowls and cups. At BrickHouse Ceramic Art Center parties include creating and glazing, though the crafts cannot be taken home right away, but can be picked up in about two to three weeks, after they are dried and fired. The two-hour party time allows for a 30 minute pottery workshop and 30 minutes for dinning.

City Ice Pavilion
47-32 32nd Place, Long Island City
718-706-6670

Summer or winter, City Ice Pavilion always has an ice skating rink available for a party. It has an igloo-like atmosphere with its cooling ice and white bubble covered rink. Party attendees can skate and enjoy food and refreshment provided by City Ice Pavilion. Invitations, admission, rentals and private lockers are all included in the City Ice Pavilion party experience.

Kids Fun House
6273 Fresh Pond Road, Ridgewood
718-418-KIDS (5437)

An arcade and playground with slides and a playhouse, Kids Fun House is a great place for children’s parties. You can choose from various party themes: princess, knight, fairy, pirate, character inspired or carnival. Children get to make their own goody bags with a candy table in the dinning room. All parties include crafts, tokens for the arcade, decorations, food for children and refreshments for all.

Kids n’Shape
162-26 Crossbay Boulevard, Howard Beach
718-848-2052

Kids n’Shape includes a bounce house, slides, a full basketball court, zip lining, ball-pit, scooters and skating. The minimum two-hour parties include invitations, balloons, food and refreshments.

Museum of the Moving Image
36-01 35 Avenue, Astoria
718-777-6888

The Museum of the Moving Image isn’t just an educational atmosphere, but is also a place for fun birthday parties for ages eight and up. With a party room and several different exhibits, party attendees have tons to do for two-and-a-half hours. Guest will be surrounded with antique camera equipment, movie customs and pictures of famous actors. They begin with making flipbooks and animation, and dubbing their voices over famous movies. A guide gives a tour around the museum, educating guests about movies, television shows and video games. Finally, the party can watch a classic film. Children will receive goody bags. Food and beverages are optional.

New York Hall of Science
47-01 111th Street, Corona
718-699-0005

New York Hall of Science allows for both an indoor and outdoor experience for birthday parties. The museum doesn’t just include interactive educational exhibits, but also an outdoor miniature gold course and a science playground. Guests will be surrounded by rockets, lights, molecules and hidden kingdoms. With eight themes to choose from, a two-hour party includes expert guided tours of the 450 hands-on exhibits as well as food, refreshments and a full day pass to the museum.

Plaster Party Place
96-09 Metropolitan Avenue, Forest Hills
718-263-0960

The bright colored studio welcomes children of all ages for a two-hour painting party. With 75 different ceramic objects to select as a canvas, children can express themselves in multiple ways. Children will experience a party full of music, dancing, games and face painting. Two party hosts will supervise and direct the event. Food and beverages will also be provided.

Queens Zoo
53-51 111th Street, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park
718-271-7361

The Queens Zoo offers a full animal party experience where you’ll see creatures from all over the world. Birthday celebrations also include a large party room, located in the Wild Room, where an expert zoo guide will provide a live animal encounter, crafts and activities. Guests can even visit the petting zoo. The zoo provides three party themes to choose with admission, decorations and party goods.

Young Chefs Academy
108-10 72nd Avenue, 2nd Floor, Forest Hills
718-268-0343

At Young Chefs Academy children will learn to cook and bake from scratch. Expert chefs will help and show the guests how to crack, mix and whip up a delicious dish, along with an arts and craft activity. A two-hour party includes decorations, chef apparel, refreshments and a complimentary class pass for each guest.

What to do with the kids this weekend


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of the New York Hall of Science

QUEENS

Saturday, September 29

9:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Join the Friends of the Ridgewood Library for their semi-annual Fun Day, where there be a flea market, crafts, reading in the garden and more.

11 a.m. – 3 p.m., The National Estuaries Day Festival commemorates Little Neck Bay, the local estuary. Meet people from health service, recreational and civic associations, school groups and government organizations. Hike along Alley Pond Environmental Center’s unique and beautiful estuary trails, listen to live music, visit educational booths and exhibits from neighborhood organizations and participate in children’s activities and crafts. Free entertainment, hands-on demonstrations, fun games, boat and canoe rides. Please pre-register.

5:30 – 8:30 p.m., At the Voelker Orth Museum’s Oktoberfest in the Garden there will be food, drinks, music and more in celebration of the German-American heritage of the Voelker and Orth families. Admission $30 ($25 for members), inclusive of food and drink. Reservations recommended.

Saturday, September 29 – Sunday, September 30

10 a.m. – 7 p.m. (Saturday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. (Sunday), Deemed “The Greatest Show and Tell on Earth,” the annual Maker Faire at the New York Hall of Science will feature more than 500 maker exhibits, the world’s most diverse showcase of creativity and innovation in technology, craft, science, fashion, art, food and more. Expect outrageous attractions such as the Life-Sized Mousetrap, Coke Zero and Mentos Show, Power Racing Series, iconic Cupcake Cars and other spectacular surprises, such as workshops on soldering, lock picking and Arduino.

Sunday, September 30

12 p.m. – 6 p.m., The Forest Hills Street Festival is a family fair on seven blocks with about 150 vendors, promotions, kiddie rides and crafts. Plus, Austin Street stores will be open. Rain or shine.

4 p.m. – 6 p.m., The Autumn Moon Festival at the Queens Botanical Garden is an afternoon of moon cakes, arts and crafts, and cultural performances celebrating an ancient holiday that reflects on the summer harvest, the fullness of the moon and the myth of the immortal moon goddess. Bring picnic blankets and summer chairs. Free with admission.

 

AROUND QUEENS

Saturday, September 29

1 p.m., Ballet Long Island’s Princess Tea Party opens this weekend, featuring Cinderella, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, The Little Mermaid and more. Kids can also take photos with the princess characters and join them for a tea party following the performance.

5:30 p.m. -6:30 p.m., Take part in the national attempt to break the Guinness World Record for the most soccer balls ever dribbled by a group at one time. The event also raises money and awareness for America SCORES, which help bring soccer to under-resourced elementary schools. The New York City event will take place at Pier 25 (at Hudson River Greenway and North Moore) and will be followed by a happy hour fundraiser at Harry’s Italian Pizza Bar in Battery Park City.

Saturday, September 29 – Sunday, September 30

11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m., Come to the Long Island Children’s Museum this weekend to see Dora the Explorer Live! “Dora’s Pirate Adventure.”

Sunday, September 30

12:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., Kiddie Cruise: A Princess and Pirate Adventure is an all inclusive fun-filled family event that sails for two hours on the Hudson River. Guests enjoy a puppet show, magician, face painting, arts and crafts, live music while soaking in the sights. All guests receive a healthy bagged lunch and unlimited juice and soda. Kids are encouraged to dress up as their favorite Princess or Pirate. The boat leaves from Pier #40 West Side Highway in Manhattan.

 

 

 

What to do with the kids this weekend


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Queens

Friday, August 24

12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Take a whale and dolphin watching cruise, leaving from Riis Landing in Rockaway. Reservations required.

5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., Come to an evening of dancing under the stars at Gorman Playground. There will be music, face painting for children, and a raffle drawing.

Saturday, August 25

11 a.m., Children between the ages of 6 and 11 at Central Library’s Science Lab will execute awesome experiments, learn something new, and enjoy an hour of educational fun at this wonderful weekly lab.

11 a.m. – 2 p.m., Children explore innovative art mediums and a variety of subject matter at Socrates Sculpture Park’s free Kids Sculpture Workshop, including paper making, bike decoration, mask making, and more.

Noon – 4 p.m., Children of all ages can participate in a free afternoon of crafts, games, music, inflatables, pony rides and more at Family Day at St. Albans Park.

4 p.m. – Midnight, Help renowned visiting Canadian artists Thomas+Guinevere transform Socrates Sculpture Park into a field of freestanding, larger-than-life, glowing, sculptural scarecrows.

Sunday, August 26

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Engage with your children in discussions about art in The Noguchi Museum’s galleries, and work together or individually to make your own works of art. This program is for families with children ages 5-11.

Saturday, August 25 & Sunday, August 26

11 a.m. – 4 p.m., At the last New York Hall of Science’s Maker Weekend of the summer visitors can build a fort using cardboard, PVC pipes, fabric while collaborating with other museum-goers. Free with museum admission.

Around NYC

Friday, August 24 – Sunday, August 26

Sited on Madison Square Park’s expansive Oval Lawn, Pet Sounds will introduce a snaking network of vibrantly colored pipe railings creating new paths as they wind across the urban oasis. As these railings converge around a common seating area, each railing begins to grow into a unique fantastic form.

Saturday, August 25

Noon, Tykes will have a ball watching a slew of kiddie musicians at this J&R sponsored Kids Music Fest. Among the day’s featured performers are Bari Koral, Karen K and the Jitterbugs and Hot Peas ‘N Butter. Once they’ve gotten their musical fill, kids can participate in free activities from MoonSoup and the Craft Studio. Free. All ages.

4 p.m., Enjoy Key Wilde and Mr. Clarke at a free kids concert in Carroll Park.

Sunday, August 26

10 a.m. – 5 p.m., The three stages at the Brighton Beach Jubilee feature Russian entertainment, rock and roll music and dads competing in an arm wrestling competition for the title of the “strongest arm in Brooklyn.” Sandy the Seagull, the Brooklyn Cyclones’ mascot, will make an appearance, and children can take a spin on kiddie rides and get their faces painted. Free. All ages.

12:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., Kiddie Cruise: A Princess and Pirate Adventure is an all inclusive fun-filled family event that sails for two hours on the Hudson River. Guests enjoy a puppet show, magician, face painting, arts and crafts, live music while soaking in the sights. All guests receive a healthy bagged lunch and unlimited juice and soda. Kids are encouraged to dress up as their favorite Princess or Pirate. The boat leaves from Pier #40 West Side Highway in Manhattan.

2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m., Families are invited to the historic Brooklyn farmhouse to rewind time—and get their hearts pumping—with such fun throwback activities as potato sack races and spoon races. Free. Ages 5 and up.

Day trips in and around Queens


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Montauk's Camp Hero State Park

QUEENS

Forest Park
Myrtle Avenue, Union Turnpike, Park Lane South between Brooklyn-Queens County Line and Park Lane

This large park has 165 acres of trees, a golf course,  riding trails, historic carousel and more.

Museum of the Moving Image
36-01 35 Ave., Astoria

Learn all about the magic of film at the country’s only museum dedicated to the art, history, technique and technology of the moving image in all its forms. After you check out the exhibits, stick around for one of its evening screenings. 

New York Hall of Science
47-01 111th St., Corona

You don’t need to be a science geek to have fun at this museum, featuring over 450 interactive exhibits that any curious child will love.

Queens County Farm Museum
73-50 Little Neck Parkway, Floral Park

The only working historical farm in the city, visitors can check out the fields, vineyard, farm implements and various farm animals.

Queens Botanical Gardens
43-50 Main St., Flushing

The beautiful gardens and trees provide an urban escape for visitors who can walk around for hours through its 39 acres.

Queens Zoo
53-51 111th St. in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park 

Queens locals don’t have to travel very far to see animals, such as tropical birds, alligators, pumas and bears, at this zoo inside Flushing Meadows Park

The Noguchi Museum
9-01 33rd Road, Long Island City

Founded and designed by internationally renowned Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi, this LIC museum is noted for its sculpture garden.

 

 


AROUND QUEENS

American Airpower Museum at Republic Airport
1230 New Highway, Farmingdale, NY

Both the young and old will enjoy this museum of historic aircraft and military vehicles at Republic Airport. 

Bronx Zoo
2300 South Blvd., Bronx 

Not only is this zoo the largest in New York City, it is also one of the largest urban zoos in the country. Throughout the year visitors can check out its hundreds of animal species, children’s zoo, butterfly garden, camel rides and much more. [Photo courtesy of Bronx Zoo]

Brotherhood Winery
100 Brotherhood Plaza Drive, Washingtonville, NY

Dating back to 1839, Brotherhood is America’s oldest winery, and offers tours and tastings. [Photo by Tomas Donoso]

Camp Hero State Park
1898 Montauk Highway, Montauk, NY

This 415-acre park provides a variety of outdoor enjoyment, including extensive trails, a long expanse of beachfront along the Atlantic Ocean and an historic military installation. [Photo courtesy of NYS OPRHP]

Captain Lawrence Brewing Company
444 Saw Mill River Road, Elmsford, NY

In addition to tasting its many beers, including several seasonal varieties, the brewery also has special events—everything from concerts to trivia nights.

Coney Island Beach and Board Walk
Corbin Place to W. 37 St., Boardwalk, Brooklyn

The iconic Coney Island offers lots of fun, whether it’s walking along the boardwalk, riding on the Cyclone roller coaster or eating a Nathan’s Famous hotdog.

Deep Hollow Ranch
Three miles east of Montauk village on Route 27; turn left at Suffolk County Park

People usually think of the southwest when it comes to cattle ranches, but Long Island is home to America’s oldest one. Visitors can tour the ranch and take horse rides along the shore of Block Island Sound. 

Discovery Wetland Cruises
Across Dock Road from the Three Village Inn (150 Main St., Stony Brook, NY)

Take a one-and-a-half hour tour boat tour of an 88-acre wetlands preserve in Long Island.

Discovery Times Square
226 West 44th St., New York

There is plenty to see (and buy) in the heart of midtown Manhattan, but one place that shouldn’t be missed is Discovery Times Square. Currently you can check out an interactive family-friendly exhibit about the secret world of espionage.  

Long Island Aquarium & Exhibition Center
431 East Main St., Riverhead, NY

See sharks, otters, sea lions and more ocean creatures at this acaqurium, which features indoor and outdoor exhibits. [Photo courtesy of Long Island Aquarium and Exhibition Center]

New York Renaissance Faire
600 Route 17A, Tuxedo Park, NY

In its 35th year, this annual festival will bring you back to Elizabethan England with it food, shops, acrobatics, magicians, juggler and more. It runs until Sept. 23.

Pollock-Krasner House
830 Springs-Fireplace Road, East Hampton, NY

Modern art fans will love taking a trip to the home of the late artist Jackson Pollack and his wife. Famous for his drip paintings, which now sell for millions, you can see the studio where he created his famous works.

Six Flags Great Adventure & Wild Safari
Six Flags Blvd. (off of I-195), Jackson, NJ

Just take a drive south down I-195 and you’ll reach this amusement park of thrilling roller coasters and other fun rides plus its safari park.

Splish Splash
2549 Splish Splash Drive, Calverton, NY

Voted one of the country’s best water parks by the Travel Channel, this Long Island attraction is the perfect way to beat the summer heat.  

The Cloisters
99 Margaret Corbin Drive, Fort Tryon Park, New York

A branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Cloisters museum and gardens is dedicated to the art and architecture of medieval Europe. [Photo courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art]

Woodbury Common Premium Outlets
498 Red Apple Court, Central Valley, NY

Everyone loves a great deal. From chain store brands to designer goods, you’ll find amazing discounts at this shopping center. 

Cartoons come to life at Hall of Science


| mchan@queenscourier.com

Photo Courtesy of New York Hall of Science

Cartoon lovers can watch their favorite characters come to life, beginning at the end of the month.

A new 6,000-square-foot exhibition at the New York Hall of Science (NYSCI) — called “Animation” — explores animation from concept to finished product, from storyboards, character design and drawing techniques to movement, timing, filming and sound.

The exhibit — which includes a screening room and a cartoon museum — also features “larger-than-life” colorful graphics of popular Cartoon Network characters from shows like “Dexter’s Laboratory” and “Ed, Edd n Eddy.” It also teaches visitors the history of animation.

“Animation” is open from March 31 through September 2 and is free with general NYSCI admission.

For more information, visit www.nysci.org or call 718-699-0005.