The Westin New York at Times Square
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Eight Family Friendly things to do in New York City

The Westin New York at Times Square
The Westin New York at Times Square

by Larry Berle

1.  Take a ride on the Staten Island Ferry.  Go down to Battery Park (the very southern point of Manhattan). You can see the new World Trade Center just a few blocks north and you can catch a cruise boat and visit the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. But if you just want to get close to the statue and a breathtaking view of the Manhattan Skyline then take a ride on the Staten Island Ferry. It’s free and on the other side you can visit Staten Island or just get back on the ferry and ride back. There are not that many free things in New York so cherish this.

photo courtesy TheHighline.org
photo courtesy TheHighline.org

2 .  Walk the Highline.  This is an old elevated freight railroad line that has been transformed into a public park on the Manhattan’s West side. Its a mile of elevated walkway that stretches from Gansevoort St in Chelsea to Tenth Ave and 30th st.(in 2014 it will be extended to 34th st) with greenery and public art projects along the way. It is a wonderful respite from all the hustle and bustle of Manhattan.
Between 15th and 16th St at 9th ave we found the Chelsea Market, right along the Highline route. This bldg is filled with specailty grocery stores, several bakeries, sushi, seafood and sandwich places and is just a delightful place for lunch.
http://www.thehighline.org
http://chelseamarket.com

photo courtesy NewsiesTheMusical.com
photo courtesy NewsiesTheMusical.com

3.  Visit the Great White Way and see NEWSIES presented by Disney.  This is a fun Broadway show for the family. It’s the story of the downtrodden news paperboys who went on strike for better pay. It won two Tony Awards in 2012 for best choreography and Best Score. It is a kind of David and Goliath story where the little guy prevails with energetic choreography and infectious music. The day we were there the audience was over 1/2 kids. Discount tickets may be available at www.broadwaybox.com

http://www.newsiesthemusical.com

photo courtesy: PPC.Broadway.com
photo courtesy: PPC.Broadway.com

4.  Go back to broadway and see Spiderman- turn off the dark.  Spiderman brings to life the Marvel comic book hero in one of the most technically elaborate Broadway musicals of all time, The comic book caricatures bring the Manhattan skyline to life on stage and feature incredible aerial stunts as Spider-Man flies over the audience to fight the forces of evil in Gotham. The high energy show features a rock score by U2 musicians Bono and the Edge, and is directed by visionary, Julie Taymor who directed the intriguing Broadway production of Lion KIng. The action is non stop and wonderfully weaves in the love story between Spiderman and his girl friend, Mary Jane.
It is probably the most expensive show to hit Broadway and was fraught with problems in the early going with flying accidents and other problems that delayed the opening for months. This is the Broadway show for families and the day we were there the audience was filled with kids, who cheered Spiderman as he overcame the evil—–
Discount tickets are available at www.broadwaybox.com

http://ppc.broadway.com/shows/spider-man-turn-off-the-dark/

5.  Visit Harlem. I would not have suggested this 8 or 10 years ago but it is changing daily and is clean and safe today and well worth visiting. Former president Bill Clinton has his office there now and you can visit the famous Apollo Theatre, see where former jazz greats Count Basie and many others lived and even the place where Malcom X was assassinated.
Eat to your hearts content. Choose from several of the greatest restaurants in the world or just eat at one of the many food carts on the street. On almost every block you can find delicious 99 cent slices of pizza. You can spend $300 per person for a dinner or eat for under $15 a day,or anything in between.

6.  See more family friendly Broadway shows: Matilda the Musical, Annie and Pippin and Cinderella to name a few.
Find your favorite TV show that is broadcast in NY and get free tickets. Join the outdoor audiences in the morning for the Today Show and Good Morning America.

7.  Eat to your hearts content.  Choose from several of the greatest restaurants in the world  or just eat at one of the many food carts on the street.  On almost every block you can find delicious 99 cent slices of pizza.  You can spend $300 per person for a dinner or eat for under $15 a day,or anything in between.

8. Find your favorite TV show that is broadcast in NY and get free tickets.  Join the outdoor audiences in the morning for the Today Show and Good Morning America.

Larry Berle is a travel writer who writes on many travel topics but specializes in golf travel.  He is author of A GOLFERS DREAM: HOW A REGULAR GUY CONQUERED THE GOLF DIGEST LIST OF AMERICAS TOP 100 GOLF COURSES.   Learn more about his book at www.GolfersDreamBook.com and from there you can also access his travel blog.

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