Connected Worlds, NY Hall of Science
Sandbox, NY Hall of Science
New York Hall of Science
A museum dedicated to hands on learning for the past 50 years.
Upon entering the spacious modern lobby of the historical museum, visitors are entreated to begin their scientific journey with a toss of a coin into a concave structure called the Vortex - it measures speed and weight.  With over 450 interactive exhibits, ranging from simple to mildly complex, there's so much to see, it's hard to process all of it in one day. All five senses are engaged at any area explored.  

Favorites among kids: a pitching cage which clocks the speed of fast balls, any exhibit that distorts their vision and Design Lab, a large open space where children create out of random materials.

Connected Worlds, with its animated biospheres, was my brood's preferred attraction. By extending an arm in front of a screen, seeds are planted creating habitats. Entry is free, but guests need to sign up for a time slot.

Preschool Place is a play area dedicated to little tykes. Exhausted parents can sit and relax while toddlers run about the room or watch puppet shows. The science playground teaches visitors how wind, sun and water play a role in physics using recreational park tools. That outdoor exhibit, plus mini golf, are open during select months out of the year.

The museum always hosts seasonal activities and programs.  Gingerbread Lane is a yearly draw.  Families can salivate over hundreds of mini homes and other structures made out of gingerbread, royal icing and decorated with countless pounds of candy. The yummy display is the brainchild of Chef Jon Lovitch. He's won the Guinness World Record multiple times for building the largest villages. Every January, on a select date, the edible houses are given away to whoever wants one. 

Admission costs $15 adults; $12 kids. When all attractions are running, your best bet is the all inclusive ticket at $29. Otherwise save some money, the museum offers blocks of time on Fridays and Sundays when only the entrance fee is waived. Group rates are available. Call to book birthday parties and special events. Contact info: 718-699-0005.

Located at 47-01 111 Street, Corona, Queens, the facility is one of many attractions that call Flushing Meadows Park home.  Free parking is available in a lot on 53rd Avenue and 111 Street. You can search around nearby residential streets for a space. Otherwise, try the musem lot which charges $10. Accessibilty by train (#7 line) make this venue a jewel for local residents and a must-see for tourists. A plus is its proximity to other landmarks such as the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center and Citi Field, home of Major League Baseball team the NY Mets.  But be forewarned, particularly if driving, the area gets terribly traffic congested when either of the stadiums have games going on.
  1. Making Bubbles
    Making Bubbles
  2. Gingerbread Lane
    Gingerbread Lane
  3. Pitching Cage
    Pitching Cage
New York Hall of Science