The National Archives of New York

Create your own history lesson by researching your family history dating back to Ellis Island arrivals or learn about someone else’s history at The National Archives of New York City. Located downtown at One Bowling Green, the archives are a historical wonderland for those curious about everything and anything. Dubbed a “walk in research experience”, take your time to sift through original documents and microfilms in all their old-timer glory, as well as “oo” and “aah” over original artifacts. And we love that all events and access to the archives is totally free!

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Their resources in the Research Center include online subscription services such as Ancestry, Fold3, Heritage Quest, and ProQuest. They also offer activities in The Learning Center for families Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, in addition to pre-registered programs for adults, teachers and students.

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It’s a perfect spring break activity for families as well! For the April 14th – 18th break the archives have put together self directed learning activities that can be done from noon until 3pm. So take your kids, parents and grand-parents to dig deeper than their jewelry box for treasured family jewels (of information that is).

A fun activity that will be occurring on May 19th is their genealogy program where you can learn about immigration and naturalization records from a USCIS historian.

They even give short tours to get you acquainted with all the archives have to offer Wednesdays at noon. To top it off, kids age 12 and under ride free through Memorial Day on Seastreak, so it really is a family and wallet friendly activity.

One Bowling Green, 3rd Floor

New York, NY 10004

1-866-840-1752

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The Seastreak Family

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South Street Seaport

If you take Seastreak into the city you don’t have far to go to enjoy and explore classic downtown Manhattan. Our Pier 11 stop is only 2 blocks away from the South Street Seaport at Pier 17, which is still rich in history hundreds of years after being a shipping port for residents.

South Street Seaport 5

Stroll the two blocks to Pier 17 and you’ll find a beautiful water view, friendly local businesses and a very pleasurable area to amble around. After being hit terribly in Hurricane Sandy, the Seaport has slowly been rebuilding and revitalizing the area. Opening soon is a bar restaurant VBar Seaport that will serve seasonal dishes in addition to Studio Manhattan, a unique accessories shop specializing in printed bags with city photographs on them. These are sure to be a hit with tourists as a cool, one of a kind souvenir to take home.

These two businesses will complement the existing stores like Abercrombie and Fitch, Local Charm, tkts and Superdry.

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As a cultural hub, you can see people on any given day doing yoga on the makeshift lawn, watching a movie at the Front/Row outdoor cinema, or participating in one of the many walks the Seaport supports.

Opening next year at the Seaport is Manhattan’s first ever luxury movie theater, thanks to iPic Entertainment and the Howard Hughes Corporation. It’s expected to have eight screens and seat 505 people, serving as a major downtown attraction for an “affordable luxury experience.”

Downtown Manhattan has so much to offer and it’s just a ferry ride away! Check out our schedule to see when we sail to Pier 11.

South Street Seaport, Pier 17

89 South St

New York, NY 10038

(212) 732-7678

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The Seastreak Family

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Psychics

Everyone should visit a psychic once in their life for A) the fun of it and B) for curiosity’s sake. New York City is crawling with magical, spiritual and classically educated people who can read your palm, heal your soul and tell your future. A must-do for the astrology obsessed (guilty!), but who wouldn’t want to have a personalized session with the city’s finest psychics?

It seems like there’s a psychic on every block ready to tell your fortune, but is there a difference between a $5 session and a $100 session? Absolutely! While storefronts attract the adventurous  tourist, most of NYC’s well known mediums work out of their homes or private offices not visible at street level.

Deb McBride

If you read your horoscope like your life depends on it, then you’ll love  Deb McBride. A Brooklyn based astrologer, she takes classic astrology very seriously and prepares for your visit by reading your chart in depth. Key information about your birth informs your chart and her reading, so be prepared to give her specific details, including your birth date and time.

Karen Thorne

Karen Thorne is another popular astrologer that offers personal chart readings, combined charts for two people, business charts and birth charts. She has been studying the stars for years and even teaches classes to those aspiring to gain insight and become a psychic themselves!

Mark Seltman

Known as “Master Palmist,” Seltmans mission is to get you better acquainted with yourself by analyzing the lines on your hand. They tell a lot about a person, and arguably the key to predicting your future is in understanding your present. He says “the value in reading hands is in being able to readily and easily identify human character, behavior, and motivation.” We couldn’t agree more!

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Astro Twins

These famous twins are worth mentioning because they are physics to some of Hollywood’s biggest stars, including Beyonce and Sting. They’re the brand behind several books including the upcoming Momstrology, teaching parents what their child’s sign brings to their personality and compatibility with you. Their site Astro Style has daily, weekly and monthly horoscopes read by thousands. They also offer scheduled phone or Skype sessions lasting anywhere from 60 to 90 minutes if you can’t make it in person, but the cosmic energy they emit is definitely worth a trip.

Psychics 2

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New York City Easter

Grab your bonnet and be part of New York City’s annual Easter Parade this year because why would you pass up the opportunity?

It’s free and full of spectacles, with thousands of people celebrating by showing off their Easter hats. Things get fancy since the parade has turned into a photo op and informal competition for whose head can hold the craziest deigns atop it. Starting at 10am and lasting until 4pm on April 20th, the parade takes place on Fifth Avenue from 49th to 57th Streets. The best place to watch (and pray your picture is taken) is around St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

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East Parade April 20th

10am-4pm

Fifth Avenue 49th to 57th Streets

You can then hop over to Full Bunny Contact, an Easter carnival serving up all the tricks for four days of fun. Admission is $10 and gets you access to the dance floor, food and games. The games at this carnival aren’t your average “knock the bottles over” type though; it’s more like “grab all the Easter eggs with prizes in them without getting flustered by the giant bunny in your way.” Prizes won’t pay your rent, but they do include gift certificates, food and other cool swag.

NYC Easter 4

Other games you’ll find are putt putt with raw eggs, race against a live rabbit with a tortoise shell strapped to your back, tic tac toe against a chicken, a dunk tank and a rabbit fortune teller.

If you’re planning your visit in advance, keep in mind their awesome special events like the bunny beauty pageant, egg decorating contest, and temper tantrum contest (may the biggest brat win)!

When you buy your tickets in advance you’re given more booth tickets to spend on games than if you buy at the door. If you want to participate, daytime entry and 25 tickets is $20 while evening entry (after 7pm) is $30. While kids age 4 and under are free, the event is suggested for people 15 years old and up.

Easter Carnival

The Clemente

            107 Suffolk St

New York, NY 10002

(212) 260-4080

April 17th – April 20th

 

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Get Up and Ride Bike Tours

Brooklyn waterfront neighborhoods are some of the most beautiful in New York City. Get Up and Ride offers bike tours of Brooklyn that touch on the history, food and beauty from a local’s perspective. The large borough offers a lot in the way of brunch, pastries and scenery. All you have to do is show up!

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Get Up and Ride supplies the bike, helmet, walkie-talkie (so you can listen to your guide as you ride) and your food. They keep groups under 11 people so it’s manageable size. The speed is relaxed and more like a leisurely ride with friends than any kind of race. It’s fun, great exercise and such a unique experience.

Choose from their selection of tours like the “Classic”, which takes you all over Brooklyn for four and a half hours, or the “Brunch in Brooklyn” tour that culminates with brunch at a Brooklyn favorite. Add on a pre-bike rooftop yoga class for some much needed muscle stretching, and we’d say you can call yourself a Brooklynite! They also specialize in custom tours for large groups, families and corporate events. Children older than 16 and taller than 5 feet are welcome; however younger kids can tag along if you book a private family tour.

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Tours last anywhere from three to five hours, and have plenty of stops to rest your legs and fill your tummy! You’ll see the real Brooklyn most tourists don’t get to see, and will have ample time to soak it all in. All tours begin in the trendy Williamsburg neighborhood and start at $60 a person. The majority are perfect for city biking novices because they take safe streets with dedicated bike lanes. Barring horrendous thunderstorms, tours are given rain or shine. No matter what the weather is, though, the waterfront views never fail to sparkle.

135 North 11th Street

Williamsburg, Brooklyn

 

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Art Classes

Does drawing a stick figure give you anxiety? You probably weren’t an artsy kid then. Maybe you would like to get over your fear or just learn a new skill? Art in any form is a great hobby; it can be therapeutic, but also wildly imaginative. Awake your inner Picasso with these engaging art classes in NYC. Newbies are welcome!

The Painting Lounge

Bring your own beer to any class at The Painting Lounge to take the edge off. Supplies are included in the class prices, so you can go, drink and take home a grand masterpiece! Each class has participants paint a famous painting. When you view their calendar before buying your seat you can see what the class will be painting during that session. Recreate an Andy Warhol or Van Gogh with the help of instructors; no one will ever know the difference between your work of art and the original!

The Painting Lounge offers split paintings as well, meaning couples or friends can each paint their own side of the painting, put it together and voila, a masterpiece!

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Manhattan Studio

39 W 14th St. Suite 401

New York, New York 10011

(212) 518-1803

The Art Students League

If you’re serious about your art, the Art Students League is the place to hone your skills. With no pre-requisites required, a catalogue of classes and rolling enrollment, finding the best fit for you is a breeze. They offer painting, sculpting, print making and mixed media all taught by working artists. Pay monthly for classes, which range from $90 to $250.

215 W 57th St

New York, NY 10019

(212) 247-4510

The Art Studio NY

Named the number one art school in the city, they sure do live up to their name! From painting to pastels to drawing, their nonjudgmental attitude goes a long way in attracting art enthusiasts. We think their date night at the Met class held on Saturday nights is pretty cool. It’s just you, your sweetie, a pad of paper and about a thousand works of art.

Art Classes 2

145 W 96th St #1b

New York, NY 10025

(212) 932-8484

What are you waiting for? Grab your brushes, your imagination, and hop on board Seastreak. If the breathtaking skyline views of Manhattan don’t inspire you, then we don’t know what will.

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The Seastreak Family

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Of Mice and Men on Broadway

If either high school English or celeb stalking is your thing, we’ve got you covered! Of Mice and Men just began previews on Broadway and it stars none other than Leighton Meester (of Gossip Girl fame) and James Franco (of basically every movie you love fame).

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The two and a half hour long drama, based on John Steinbeck’s novella, tells the story of George and Lennie, two migrant workers in California during the Great Depression. Both want a better life, but Lennie always seems to be causing problems that interfere with their happiness and grand plan. George, a smart and driven young man “must choose between protecting his friend and staying the course towards his version of the American Dream”, according to NYC.com.

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Of Mice and Men is a limited engagement as it’s only on Broadway for 18 weeks. It officially opens April 16th and once it does tickets will surely be hard to come by. Pro tip? Whether you buy a ticket to the show or not, you may get a glimpse (and a picture or two) of the stars if you hang out by the stage door post-performance.

 

Longacre Theatre

220 W 48th St

New York, NY 10036

 

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Spa Castle

Quite literally as big as a castle, this 100,000 square foot getaway in Queens is home to saunas, treatments and pools galore. Catch up with friends or families while spending a day at Spa Castle without a worry because everything, including food, is available. With their unbeatable hours (6am-midnight, 7 days a week) you’ll be hard pressed to not find time in your schedule to go.

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Upon arrival, you will receive your spa key which will open a corresponding locker and keep track of the services you purchase during your visit. Stroll through Sauna Valley to enter one of seven saunas, each with their own healing properties. One sauna is lined with pure gold to comfort sore limbs, while another uses color therapy to balance energy within the mind, body, and soul. Cool off in Ice Land to strengthen your immune system, reduce cellulite, fatigue and pain, and firm your skin.

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All of their structures resemble tiny huts or igloos, giving off an authentic village feel. Enjoy the peace and become one with nature without having to set foot on dirt.

You can also cool your jets with their aqua jets placed in each of their heated, four-season pools. These jets work with the heat of the pool to target pressure points throughout your body, while giving you a seat with a view.

Spa Castle 4

Access to the saunas, pools and in-house, health-conscious food court are included with the one-time entry fee of $40 for weekdays and $50 for weekends. Additional services are available to be purchased a la carte or in packages.

Indulge in body scrubs, mani-pedis and massages for reasonable rates. Couples are welcome, so take your honey and get a couples massage together to unwind. What we love the most though, is that gratuity is INCLUDED in the price of services- whoop!

It’s one big Zen hangout well worth the trip to Queens! Are you feeling centered yet?

Spa Castle

131-10 11th Ave

College Point, NY 11356

(718) 939-6300

 

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The Seastreak Family

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Macy’s Flower Show

Get a taste (and whiff!) of spring at the annual Macy’s Flower Show, taking place now through April 6th. This year’s theme is “The Secret Garden” where you can sniff your way through the enchanting plants, located in the Herald Square store’s windows and entire main floor.

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The designers of the space include professional event designers and florists whose clients include hotels, brides and corporate companies. They’ve been featured in The Knot, on Martha Stewart, and bestowed multiple prestigious awards.

Macy's Flower Show 2

The space is split up into six mini-gardens each with their own specific theme. Wade through flowers in the “Under the Sea” garden, or take in the natural beauty of cityscapes in the “Skyline Garden.” Wonderment and discovery are around every turn of these lush gardens so bring your camera and maybe some Claritin too!

Fun and engaging events are held throughout the duration of the show, including this upcoming weekend’s floral seminar with Tom Sebenius, professional florist, as well as Teen Vogue’s Prom Party with a performance by Mack Wilds in New York’s multi-story store. Shop for a prom dress in juniors and get 20% off your purchase along with a cosmetic bag when you instagram a picture of you there with the hashtag #MacysProm.

Macy’s Flower Show is held not only in New York, but in other store locations like Philadelphia, Chicago and Minneapolis. Seastreak docks at East 35th Street, just a short walk from Macy’s Herald Square, so let us take you there!

151 W 34th St

New York, NY 10001

(212) 695-4400

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The Seastreak Family

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Broadway Musical If/Then

If you, like millions of others, have seen and loved Disney’s Frozen, then there’s a pretty good chance Idina Menzel is a familiar name. The voice behind Elsa and “Let it Go”, Menzel has been working her vocal chords for years. She was an original cast member of Rent, won a Tony for her performance of Elphaba in Wicked, and has been in several movies, including Enchanted and Rent.

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Known for her powerhouse vocals, Menzel doesn’t disappoint in the brand new Broadway musical If/Then, which tells the story of a forty year old woman who moves to NYC after a divorce looking for a fresh start. She has the choice of two different paths she can travel based on her choices and fate’s inquisition; both are played out quite ingeniously.

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In this musical, written by Next to Normal writers, you’ll see Menzel reunite with her Rent costar, Anthony Rapp.

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If you find yourself with time before the show, try your hand at winning their lottery drawing for the opportunity to purchase two tickets at $25 a piece for that evening’s performance. The drawing takes place daily two hours before show time.

The show is a beautiful, contemporary musical that will likely resonate with most audience members. It officially opened March 30th and a cast album is expected to come out in June. We’ll definitely be booking our tickets for this Broadway legend’s return before it’s sold out!

Richard Rodgers Theatre

226 W. 46th St

New York, New York 10036

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The Seastreak Family

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