“Summer’s lease hath
all too short a date.”
– William Shakespeare
Me: “I want to travel more.”
The bank account: “Like, to the park?”
Mid-August. Camps wind down. Marketers sell the “wrong” notebooks, at least according to the School Supply List. My son will outgrow his new pants in three months. But it’s still summer! So, I have compiled a list of terrific local family-friendly and budget-friendly destinations throughout the Hudson Valley, most of which I have taken my own kids to over the years. No passports or packing required!
As a mom, I am committed to raising my kids to know where they come from by offering experiences in, on and around the Hudson River.
As a mom with cancer, I am restricted from driving and operate with limited energy. My kids are impossibly older than my mind tricks me into believing, and exploring as a family feels increasingly precious because they are starting to honor personal responsibilities outside of our home. It’s hard to match schedules. I also don’t anticipate being here during their impending adulthood. This list is my answer to, “What can we do together before this moment in time passes?” Get to know our Hudson Valley, or go even deeper and revisit some favorites, and ground your family in local history and incredible experiences right here. And of course, please add your own ideas to the list!
As Susan Sontag said, “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” I invite you to look through this collection of special Hudson Valley spots and note the places you have been to already, and I challenge you to take in as many as you can before Labor Day (also not the end of summer, but psychologically has the “RealFeel” of fall). I’d love to hear about it; feel free to share your summer adventures with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kids’ Almanac Hudson Valley summer checklist
“Kilometers are shorter than miles.
Save gas: Take your next trip in kilometers.”
– George Carlin
Forsyth Nature Center (free) in Kingston, http://forsythnaturecenter.org
Trevor Zoo in Millbrook, www.millbrook.org/page/trevor-zoo-home
Dia: Beacon in Beacon, www.diaart.org/visit/visit/diabeacon-beacon-united-states
FiberFlame Crafting in Saugerties, www.fiberflamestudio.com
Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center (free) at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, https://fllac.vassar.edu
Storm King Art Center (free on 8/30) in New Windsor, https://stormking.org
Four Brothers Drive-in Theater in Amenia, http://playeatdrink.com
Hi-Way Drive-in Theatre in Coxsackie, seven miles north of Catskill, www.hiwaydrivein.com
Overlook Drive-in Theatre in Poughkeepsie, http://overlookdrivein.com
Hyde Park Drive-in Theatre in Hyde Park, http://hydeparkdrivein.com
Awosting Falls at Minnewaska State Park Preserve, https://parks.ny.gov/parks/127/details.aspx
Black Creek Preserve (free) in Esopus, www.scenichudson.org/parks/blackcreek
Esopus Meadows Preserve (free) in Ulster Park, www.scenichudson.org/parks/esopusmeadows
Innisfree Garden in Millbrook, www.innisfreegarden.org
John Burroughs Nature Sanctuary and Slabsides (free) in West Park, www.johnburroughsassociation.org
Walkway over the Hudson State Historic Park (free) in Highland and Poughkeepsie, https://parks.ny.gov/parks/178/details.aspx
Bannerman Island, departures from Beacon and Newburgh, www.bannermancastle.org
Beatrix Farrand Garden at Bellefield (free) in Hyde Park, www.beatrixfarrandgardenhydepark.org
Boscobel in Garrison, www.boscobel.org
Eleanor Roosevelt’s Val-Kill in Hyde Park, www.nps.gov/elro/index.htm
Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt and Presidential Library (mix of free/fee) in Hyde Park, www.nps.gov/hofr/index.htm
Hudson River Maritime Museum in Kingston, www.hrmm.org
Hudson River Sloop Clearwater in Kingston and Poughkeepsie, www.clearwater.org
Maverick Concerts in Woodstock, https://maverickconcerts.org
Olana State Historic Site in Hudson, www.olana.org
Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome in Red Hook, https://oldrhinebeck.org
Washington’s Headquarters State Historic Site in Newburgh, https://parks.ny.gov/historic-sites/17/details.aspx
Widow Jane Mine (free) in Rosendale, www.centuryhouse.org
Nancy’s Artisanal Creamery in Woodstock, https://nancysartisanal.com
Zoe’s Ice Cream Barn in Lagrangeville, www.zoesicecreambarn.com
Hudson Valley Renegades baseball in Wappingers Falls, www.milb.com/hudson-valley
The Lunch Box Community Meal Program in Poughkeepsie, http://dutchessoutreach.org/how-you-can-help/volunteer
Saturday Night Street Outreach in Poughkeepsie, www.facebook.com/events/180414712700942
Bowdoin Park Splash Pad (free) in Wappingers Falls, www.co.dutchess.ny.us/countygov/departments/dpw-parks/ppbowdoin.htm
Kingston Point Beach (free) in Kingston, www.kingston-ny.gov/content/8401/10588/10622/default.aspx
River Pool (free) in Beacon, www.riverpool.org
Splashdown Beach Water Park in Fishkill, https://splashdownbeach.com
Zoom Flume in East Durham, www.zoomflume.com
Head On and Heart Strong!
Kids’ Almanac columnist Erica Chase-Salerno was diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer in the Summer of 2015. To read more about her experience, visit https://hudsonvalleyone.com/tag/ericas-cancer-journey.