Welcome to Winter Break
December 23, 2013


Welcome to Winter Break!

While it doesn’t look like we’ll be using our sleds over break, the upside of a snow-free forecast is that it’s a good time to go exploring in a different borough, or walk over some bridges that you haven’t had a chance to hit yet.  It’s going to be cold, but not unbearable, so bundle up, pack a flask of hot chocolate, and see the city! 

Following is a list of events  around the five boroughs that can serve as endpoints to a journey. 

The Bronx

Designed with children in mind, the New York Botanical Garden  has rolled out large-scale model trains that cover a range of landscapes.  Set in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, the trains traverse bridges and go past replicas of New York landmarks—the Statue of Liberty, Rockefeller Center, and the Brooklyn Bridge, to name a few—that are constructed out of plants.  Open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., this exhibit is open every day but Monday until January 12, 2014.


The Audubon Center  at the Boathouse in Prospect Park is hosting different tours and events starting Thursday, December 26.  During the afternoon, tours geared toward children will explore the local flora and fauna, launch nature journals, and meet the Center’s resident animals.  Throughout the week, the recreation center in St. John’s Park is offering free movie nights starting at 7 p.m.  On Thursday, they will be showing A Christmas Story, and on Friday, Elf will be the main attraction. 


Outdoor holiday markets abound in Manhattan , so consider a jaunt to Union Square, Columbus Circle, and Bryant Park.  Madison Square Park is also home to a sculptural installation of 30-foot bronze trees that are well worth a gander, and the Arsenal in Central park is holding its 31st annual show of dozens of unique wreaths designed by artists, horticulturalists, and designers. 


Throughout break, the Queens Botanical Garden will be showcasing a photo exhibit titled “Deconstructed Flowers” as part of its Art in the Garden series.  The artist, H. David Stern, uses multiple photographs to create layered flower montages.  The exhibit is available Tuesdays through Saturdays until January 26.  Going deeper into the borough, the Queens County Farm Museum will be hosting a holiday open house on Thursday, December 26, from noon to 4 p.m.  Stop by to see the farmhouse all decked out for the holidays, participate in arts and craft events, and enjoy some mulled cider while you’re there. 

Staten Island

If you have a camera, or just want to join an Urban Park Ranger tour, the Art and Photography program in Bloomingdale Park Playground will help you to interpret nature through the lens of a camera—or just to learn about nature and the environment.  Digital cameras are preferred, but all are welcome.  The event is Sunday, December 29 at 1 p.m.

In Any Park, Any Borough

Winter is a great time to go birding and animal tracking.  While some species have flown south to warmer climes, those who remain are easier to spot in the trees (thanks to the absence of leaves) and track on the ground.  Pack binoculars and a nature journal and see how many falcons, deer, salamanders, and eagles you can spot. 


April 20, 2015 (9)
America’s National Parks are getting a lot of welcome attention right now, due to the National Park Service’s 100th anniversary in 2016.
December 23, 2015 (5)
This winter, try making your own pull-behind sled, also called a pulk or pulka.
Get outdoor tips & trips
Yes, I want to receive expert advice on getting my family outside!


Tip of the Day

Help a neighbor: Whether it’s the season for shoveling snow, raking leaves, or weeding their garden, your kids will get double benefits from being outdoors and building community.

© 2023 Appalachian Mountain Club | 10 City Square, Boston, MA 02129
About | Privacy Policy | Contact Us