Tag Archives: open play

5 Rainy Day Activities for Kids in NYC

Today is a pretty rainy day here in NYC, which is not a lot of fun when you have little kids. There is nothing worse than being cooped up in a tiny one- or two-bedroom apartment with your children climbing the walls—and you climbing the walls too. Luckily there are plenty of rainy day activities for kids in NYC, which are great alternatives to staying inside and playing with the same old toys. Here are a few activities we recommend from experience!

Kids inside Pergamon Museum listening to audio guide. Berlin, Germany.Museums. NYC has some great kid-friendly museums, as well as museums solely dedicated to entertaining kids! A few of our uptown favorites are Children’s Museum of Manhattan and the American Museum of Natural History, and downtown there is the Children’s Museum of the Arts. You can also head to Lincoln Center to visit the (FREE!) Sesame Street exhibit if your child can’t get enough of this classic favorite show.

Drop-in Classes. Kidz Central Station has lots of drop-in classes, where you can register on the day of class—no planning ahead, no semester-long commitments. There are classes in music, cooking, tae kwan do, and more, so there are great options for all ages and interests. See our recent post about kids’ classes you should sign up for now—many of which are drop-ins—as well as all of the drop-in classes available now on the site!

Open Play. Open play is a great opportunity for a change of scenery, as well as for avoiding too much structure in your child’s day if he or she already has scheduled classes. Plus, open play spaces are great for meeting other families for future play dates and activities! Just the other day we wrote about all of the great spots for open play in NYC—check out the post for a refresher!

Playdates. While we’re on the subject of playdates, they are the perfect free activity for a rainy day. While your child might get a little antsy playing at home by him/herself, add a little playmate to the mix and it makes a rainy day so much brighter. Call up one of your friends—who is probably feeling as stir crazy as you are—and see if he or she is up for an afternoon get-together!

Art Projects. Sure, we all have crayons and coloring books, but a creative art project where kids can use their imaginations can help liven up a gloomy day. In many cases, you can use everyday materials you have lying around for a project! For example, get some glue/glue sticks and paper, and find as many odds and ends as you can in your apartment—buttons, newspapers, magazines, string, those plastic things used to tie up bags of bread, etc. Have your little one glue on the pieces to create his or her unique masterpiece! Another great project is a DIY tambourine. All you need are two paper plates, macaroni, and crayons/markers/other materials to decorate! Have your child decorate both paper plates and then put macaroni in the center of one paper plate. Attach the other plate on top using a stapler or tape and you have a homemade tambourine! While it’s a fun project, we’re sorry in advance for the extra noise!

5 Open Play Escapes for Kids in NYC

NYC is a fantastic place to raise kids, but small living spaces can often result in little ones climbing the walls and adults getting extreme cabin fever. Kids’ programs that offer open play in addition to classes really get it—sometimes parents need a kid-friendly spot to escape to when the usual toys and games just won’t cut it.

Kidz Central Station has some great options for open play, including play spaces that are open all seven days a week, and programs that offer open play in addition to enrolled classes. So if it’s raining, too cold for the park, or when you feel the walls closing in on your apartment, check out some of these awesome places for kids to run, jump around, and let out some energy.


TLB Music
TLB’s playroom is every kid’s dream: an indoor play space with slides, a play kitchen and market, soft blocks, a rock climbing mountain, ride-on cars, a reading nook, puzzles . . . the list goes on. Open seven days a week, parents can visit this Upper East Side favorite at their convenience, and purchase single visits or five-packs in advance.

A state-of-the-art gym on the Upper East Side, Gymtime is known for a variety of great classes for kids of all ages. While the program doesn’t offer open play all day long or for every child, anyone enrolled in the Tiny Tots program (age 7–18 months) gets unlimited complimentary open play during designated hours of the week. Parents/caregivers and kids can drop in at their leisure for play time in the Tiny Tot mini gym, which includes, slides, mats, mini trampolines, and more.


Creative Dream Parties
Known for creating amazing birthday party celebrations, Creative Dream Parties now hosts open play Monday through Wednesday from 10am–12pm in its 3,000-square-foot space in Murray Hill. Kids can run, dance, laugh and play and use their imagination to create their own fun experiences. Snacks and drinks are included and drop-offs are available to give parents a quick break during the day.

Kids at Work
A Chelsea program known for its flexible schedule of drop-in classes, Kids at Work also offers a Free Baby Playdate each week, where parents and kids (newborn to 12 months) can socialize and play in the program’s cool, sunlit, 1,000-square-foot space. The play area includes age-appropriate toys, manipulatives, balls, and tunnel, and open play is offered every Monday at 1pm.

PLAY GreenpointPlay Greenpoint
For Brooklynites in the Greenpoint area, PLAY Greenpoint is the perfect spot to spend an hour, an afternoon, or even a full day. Kids up to seven years old can explore various play areas, a wide-open tumbling gym, a music and art studio, and more, and for the littlest babies, there is a designated baby area for crawling around or quiet time. Parents and caregivers also have access to a sitting and feeding area, which includes a beverage center stocked with ice coffee, water, and juice, as well as a microwave for any food you want to bring.