Some Favorite Spring Activities in New York City

Although we had a pretty mild winter in the Big Apple, spring—the much-awaited reprieve from the usual bitter cold grasp of Old Man Winter has definitely arrived.

Every day, as my family and I rush off to school for drop off or pick up, or head to the kids’ afterschool activities, Mother Nature’s brightly-colored blossoms greet us. We find ourselves smiling because no matter how busy we may be, we can’t help but feel cheerful just witnessing spring’s beauty all over NYC.

For us, spring also means we get to indulge in some of our favorite activities:

  • Jaunts around town. Regardless of the season, we love walking around—exploring our city streets. During spring, our walks are even more special because our colorful cityscape calls our attention. And, we can’t resist but take notice and appreciate our surroundings. Of course, the weather makes it more pleasant to gallivant and explore.

Here’s a short video of one of our favorite places, the Hudson River Esplanade:

  • Spring cleaning. I don’t know about other households, but in ours, we wind up accumulating books, magazines, toys, hair accessories (I have three girls), sports gear and clothes, etc. throughout the year. And spring is when we tend to get rid of winter clothing that the kids have outgrown, which we donate to various nonprofits, like Housing Works.

    Housing Works on W 10th Street at the West Village

    Thankfully, one of my girls’ schools is holding a Service Day next week. As a member of the parent-led Community Service Committee (and a writer), I encouraged my girls to scour their bookshelves and donate their gently used books for a project for Service Day. Kids in the lower grades will decorate wine crates, which will hold the books to be given to a family shelter so children there will have good reads to entertain them. It’s exciting to know these young ones will soon travel to faraway lands, or become engaged in fun adventures via these books.

My girls happily parted with 25 gently used books, which we took to school in batches (too heavy to schlep all at once via subway).

With a week to go, nearly six boxes are teeming with donated books for Service Day.

  • Spring decorating. My girls have a spring-themed room, and after a bit of searching, we found just the right table to add that “green” hue, which also brightens up their study space. The black and red chairs with round cutouts bring to mind ladybugs, which they thought was cool. And, the removable stick-on wall decals offer an inexpensive option for changing themes, when appropriate.

    For other design ideas, especially ones that are suitable for rooms that you can alter as your child gets older, here’s one of my favorite articles, “Raising Roomies”, which appears in New York Family magazine.

And speaking of “green” and “gardens”, we hope you’ll find fun and creative ways to celebrate Earth Day 2012, taking place from Friday, April 20 to Saturday, April 21.

If you’re in town, how about trying:

  • Passport to Green New York. Here’s your chance to participate in a five-borough eco-scavenger hunt wherein you’ll learn about the many green opportunities that exist in NYC.

    Bring the kids and visit as many eco-friendly destinations as you can. Collect stamps from places like the New York Botanical Garden, and then eat at Bareburger, ‘wichcraft or other participating family-centric dining venues for more stamps.

    Who knows, you may even win cash prizes, a flatscreen TV or gift cards. Even if you don’t win anything, you’ll have had a rewarding educational experience with the family.

What are your own favorite places or activities for spring? Do you have plans for Earth Day?

Editorial Creatives wishes all of you a wonderful and beautiful week. Enjoy spring in your neighborhood.


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2 thoughts on “Some Favorite Spring Activities in New York City

  1. Each Earth Day, for many years, I would meet my kids’ school buses and we would clean the garbage along the street from the bus stop to our home. It was a such a small gesture, give the short walk and relatively little garbage but I’m a believer in ‘think global, act local’! Not sure what we’ll do this year as they’ve long since forbidden me to meet their school bus!!

    • Thanks so much for stopping by, Astra. I really appreciate your comments and also agree with “think global, act local”. It’s really the small things we all do that, when put together, impact our world in big ways. And oh yes, I foresee a similar scenario regarding my kids. For now, they don’t mind that I pick them up at school. Of course, as they get older, that’ll change (and boy, they’re growing up quite fast). What a meaningful tradition you shared with your kids. Here’s to a beautiful Earth Day. I’m sure you’ll find something great to do.

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