New York City is a playground for families and children, and APA members arriving in the city for the annual meeting with kids in tow will have no problem finding interesting diversions.
Here’s a handful, including some of the perennial favorites plus a few you may not have heard of.
Julie Larsen Maher/Wildlife Conservation Society
Central Park Zoo: More than a million visitors a year flock here to enjoy some 130 species that inhabit this 6.5-acre corner of Central Park. Kids will want to visit the penguin house and try to spot four new king penguins. Visitors are also advised to look for a California sea lion pup named Bruiser, a new addition to the sea lion exhibit. The outdoor Tisch Children’s Zoo houses more than 30 species, including goats and cows that enjoy being petted. The Central Park Zoo is open daily 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. It is located near the southeast corner of Central Park and can be entered off of Fifth Avenue at 64th Street. (212) 439-6500
Bronx Zoo: The famed institution is home to more than 5,000 creatures in a great variety of habitats, including an outdoor baboon reserve, a sea lion pool, and an exhibit dedicated entirely to Madagascar. Visitors can ride the Wild Asia Monorail, which tours 38 acres of exhibits that house elephants, Indo-Chinese tigers, deer, antelope, and Mongolian wild horses. The zoo’s indoor attractions—the World of Birds, Mouse House, World of Reptiles, and Congo Gorilla Forest—can be a blast on a rainy day. In April through October, the Bronx Zoo is open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Note that on Wednesdays admission is free. The zoo is located at 2300 Southern Boulevard (at Fordham Road) in the Bronx.
Walk the Brooklyn Bridge: This elegant and stirring achievement of architecture and engineering is one of the iconic symbols of New York City, offering a pedestrian walkway with spectacular views of lower Manhattan and other city landmarks, such as the Statue of Liberty and Governors Island. Historian David McCullough, in his book The Great Bridge: The Epic Story of the Building of the Brooklyn Bridge, writes that for nearly 50 years after its opening in 1883, the bridge “reigned supreme as the most magnificent, if not technically the largest, suspension bridge on earth.” Visitors can enter the bridge walkway at Cadman Plaza East near Prospect Street on the Brooklyn side of the East River. While there, be sure to visit Brooklyn Bridge Park, a nearly 85-acre expanse on the Brooklyn waterfront with landscaped play spaces, including the Water Lab, a stone-strewn area with water to splash in, and Sand Village, a huge sandbox flanked by two long metal slides. Also located in Brooklyn Bridge Park is Jane’s Carousel, which opened in 2011 after undergoing almost 30 years of renovations. The original 1922 structure has been repainted and embellished with 1,200 lights in a pavilion designed by Pritzker Prize–winning architect Jean Nouvel. (718) 222-9939
Children’s Museum of Manhattan: For families with toddlers and young children, this choice may be an especially good one. It houses five floors of exhibits, many of them geared to tots aged 6 and under, including a “Dora the Explorer” play area. The museum also hosts traveling exhibits. The entrance fee is $11, with children under 1 admitted free. It’s located at 212 West 83rd Street between Amsterdam Avenue and Broadway. (212)721-1223
Museum of Math: This new museum has 30-plus interactive exhibits, including Math Square; a Jumbotron on the floor that connects each person standing on it by the shortest path possible, changing the moment anyone moves; a design studio where participants create a 3-D design on a screen and can have it “printed” into a sculpture via a 3-D printer; and Enigma Cafȳ, a place where families can sit at tables to work on digital puzzles. The museum is open daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is located at 11 East 26th Street, between Fifth and Madison avenues. (212) 542-0566 ■