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Top 5 Activities To Do With Your Kids This Summer in Manhattan

Top 5 Activities To Do With Your Kids This Summer in Manhattan


Just because the doors to your child’s school are closed for the summer doesn’t mean he or she has to experience a lapse in learning. Summer in Manhattan is a great time to explore the many educational opportunities offered by the city’s best museums, libraries and parks.

The arts in particular are one area of the curriculum that sometimes get overshadowed by traditional core subjects, which is why the warmer months are a perfect time to reconnect with activities that ignite your kids’ creative spirits. Here are five Manhattan-based, arts-centric programs worth checking out this summer.

1)  LC Kids Artists at the Atrium

Attend the “LC Kids Artists at the Atrium” performance series at The Lincoln Center’s David Rubenstein Atrium, 61 W. 62nd St., New York, NY 10023, (212) 875-5000

LC Kids Artists at the Athrum (Photo Lincoln Center)
LC Kids Artists at the Athrum (Photo Lincoln Center)

On the first Saturday of each month, families and children of all ages can enjoy a free, one-hour interactive concert featuring unique musicians and other artists from a variety of disciplines. For a truly unique experience, kids can stick around after for an exclusive meet and greet with the performing artists. In June, Shine and the Moonbeams tore up the atrium with their unique, funk-infused brand of R&B.

2) Writopia Camp

Uncover a knack for writing at Writopia Camp, 155 W. 81st St., Ste. A, New York, NY 10024, (212) 222-4088

Writopia Lab New York Filmmaking Program (Photo Writopia Lab)
Writopia Lab New York Filmmaking Program (Photo Writopia Lab)

Geared toward children ages 6-18, this camp helps young authors develop their skills for writing in a variety of styles including humor, poetry, filmmaking and more. Thespians and other theatrical types will especially like the Playwriting and Performance sessions in which they get to work closely with established playwrights in a course that ultimately culminates in a field trip to see an Off-Broadway production.

3) MoMa’s

Make time for MoMA’s family programming, The Cullman Education and Research Building, 4 West 54th St., New York, NY

Objects Recycled, Rearranged, Reinvented (Photo Moma's)
Objects Recycled, Rearranged, Reinvented (Photo Moma’s)

MoMA’s “A Closer Look For Kids” program allows families of up to two adults and three children participate in weekly themed discussions and activities, each focused on the museum’s most prized masterpieces. On Saturdays and Sundays, interested families can obtain free tickets starting at 10 AM at the Cullman education building for that day’s programming.

4) High Line

Hangout on the High Line, Washington St. at Gansevoort St., New York, NY 10011, (212) 206-9922

Photo Courtesy of High Line
Photo Courtesy of High Line

Everyone knows the meatpacking district’s premiere elevated park is a trendy spot for shopping and sightseeing, but did you know that they offer special arts activities for families in July and August? Lawn Time is ideal for children ages 0-3, and features high-energy readings from a rotating group of storytellers. Wild Wednesdays offer a more hands on experience for children ages 4 and up. where nature-themed arts and crafts projects can be created during their weekly “Arty Hours” sessions.

5) New York Public Library

Enjoy story time at the New York Public Library, Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, Fifth Ave at 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036, (917) 275-6975 

New York Public Library photo provided by Razimantv Wikimedia Commons
New York Public Library photo provided by Razimantv Wikimedia Commons )

Whether your kids are toddlers or tweens, there is something for everyone to enjoy at The New York Public Library’s Stephen A. Schwarzman building. “Toddler Storytime” gives children ages 18 months to 3-years-old an introduction to interactive storytelling, while “Family Read Aloud” gives school-aged children a chance to try out their reading skills right next to their parents and librarians. Book Buddies! offers a slightly more advanced format where students ages 7 to 9-years-old have a chance to discuss their recent reads with their peers in a warm and welcome environment.

Manhattan offers a treasure trove of summer arts activities for the whole family. Even the warmer months can bring forward a wealth of knowledge for school-aged children, so start exploring the borough’s many free and affordable offerings. You might just learn something new too!

Note: This is a guest post by Candace Schaffer; the views and opinions expressed are those of the author. Candice Schaffer works at Knightsbridge Park, a leading digital marketing firm for luxury real estate brands such as Cavalleri Malibu, The Austin San Francisco and One Mission Bay.

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About the author

Carmen Edelson is the Founder of Carmen's Luxury Travel. Carmen has been traveling the world for over a decade. Her travels allow her the opportunity to pursue her itch to travel to the best luxury destinations, and experience those first class tastes from around the world.


  1. Mellissa Williams
    June 25, 2016 at 4:01 am

    I can’t believe I haven’t visited New York yet! I’m hoping to go in the next 6 months. Some great tips here and not just for kids, will bookmark this for my trip.
    Mellissa Williams recently posted…Sophisticated Naples And The Wild Everglades, FloridaMy Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 26, 2016 at 10:55 am

      New York City is an amazing city to visit and can be a little overwhelming for first time visitors. Some of the museums on my list are worth checking out when you do go.

  2. John
    June 25, 2016 at 5:17 am

    I had never heard of the High Line until reading about it here – will definitely have to add it to my list. I don’t have any children (yet!), but these are a really wholesome set of activities. We need more of that, I think.

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 26, 2016 at 10:56 am

      High Line is an old subway line that was converted to a very neat park. We enjoy walking around it.

  3. Andra
    June 25, 2016 at 12:01 pm

    I went with my little niece in NY and I can definitely agree that MoMa is a nice place for kids. I also like that Family Read Aloud program, didn’t know about it.

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 26, 2016 at 10:59 am

      A lot of people don’t realize that the city has some great programs to keep the kids busy, and they are free. I hope you both enjoyed your trip to NYC.

  4. Long Nguyen
    June 25, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    Writopia Camp is so excited and I have never heard things like that before. How many days does that take, please? I love my daughter can join some of these.

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 26, 2016 at 11:07 am

      Writopia Camp has several programs that are week long. Some are for 1/2 days, others for the full day. It’s probably best to call them directly and see what’s best for your daughter.

  5. Drew
    June 25, 2016 at 4:12 pm

    I don’t have kids, but those are some great recommendations. I used to live in NYC, and there are a lot of kid-friendly things to do. Governer’s Island is nice too on the weekends. Great green space just a short ferry ride away from the Financial District.
    Drew recently posted…Going HomeMy Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 26, 2016 at 11:08 am

      I agree NYC does have a lot of kid-friendly things to do. I love going to Governer’s Island, it’s so nice and relaxing.

  6. Rob
    June 25, 2016 at 6:00 pm

    Although we won’t be visiting Manhattan this summer it is good to know that there are lot of things that kids and families can do. We do want to get to NYC something in the next year or 2 so we will keep theses suggestions in mind.
    Rob recently posted…How to Try Expat Life Rent FreeMy Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 26, 2016 at 11:40 am

      I’m sure you’ll find plenty of activities in the city to keep you and your family busy when you do go.

  7. Natasha
    June 25, 2016 at 6:54 pm

    Great tips! We used to live in the Bronx and would always come down just to stroll around the high line on a beautiful day.

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 26, 2016 at 11:42 am

      We were just in the city recently and the day I wanted to go to High Line is was raining so we didn’t go. 🙁

  8. João Leitão
    June 26, 2016 at 7:40 am

    I lived in Manhattan for almost one year back in 2000 and 2001. I do love the city and I felt like home. Indeed NYC is very pleasant for all ages, but having kids sometimes can be harder to please them, or at least not to take them to boring places. Your list does have some great ideas to make our children happy. I actually was in MoMa during some kids art workshops. Amazing to motivate them into art. Greetings from south Morocco!
    João Leitão recently posted…Mesopotamian Marshes, The rebirth of Iraqi VeniceMy Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 26, 2016 at 11:43 am

      It’s very hard to keep your kids happy and entertained. I agree some of the art workshops offered in the city are some of the best ways to keep them creative and motivated.

  9. LeAnna Brown
    June 26, 2016 at 12:13 pm

    I can’t believe I’ve never been to NYC! The high line looks like a great place to kick back and people watch
    LeAnna Brown recently posted…Brexit: What Does this Mean for Travel?My Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 27, 2016 at 11:48 am

      The high line is a great place to relax on a bench and people watch.

  10. Joanna
    June 26, 2016 at 2:18 pm

    I think you have pointed out some great educative activities. I know that a lot of museums make the visit fun for children, to keep them interested and that’s a great way for kids to learn about art, history, biology.
    Joanna recently posted…New Year’s in HavanaMy Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 29, 2016 at 8:58 am

      Most people don’t realize that many places throughout NYC offers educational activities for the kids. Some are free and others charge a fee. It’s a great way to keep the kids entertained.

  11. Carly Moore
    June 27, 2016 at 5:27 am

    Forget the kids, I want to visit that giant library!
    Carly Moore recently posted…UNESCO # 8 – The Historic Site of LyonMy Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 29, 2016 at 8:59 am

      The MoMa and the New York Public Library are both fantastic places to visit.

  12. Suze - Luxury Columnist
    June 27, 2016 at 5:40 pm

    I want to go on the Writopia Camp ;-). Shame it’s only for kids
    Suze – Luxury Columnist recently posted…Announcing the Winner! S.Pellegrino Young Chef UK & IrelandMy Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 29, 2016 at 6:23 pm

      It does sound like a fun program if it was available for adults too.

  13. Vedante | The Lavish Nomad
    June 29, 2016 at 5:25 pm

    Great list of things to do in Manhattan with kids. Also the Arty Hours of High Line sound really good to me 😀

    • Carmen Edelson
      June 29, 2016 at 6:29 pm

      New York City is such a fun place with so many different places that offer many activities for the family.

  14. Christina
    July 4, 2016 at 3:45 pm

    Love NYC! Growing up, we spent a lot of summers visiting the different museums. I may just have to rush back while I still have a kid that is young enough for toddler story time!
    Christina recently posted…12 Must See Places in the American SouthwestMy Profile

    • Carmen Edelson
      July 4, 2016 at 7:48 pm

      All our kids are a little older now, but I’m sure they would of all enjoy some of these programs too when they were younger.

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