I’ve been excited ever since the East River Ferry asked me to come up with 4 great day trips for families highlighting stops along their ferry route. It’s given me a chance to visit and revisit some of our favorite haunts. I did posts on what to do in North Williamsburg and Governor’s Island. Today, I am highlighting all the fabulous things to do in Long Island City.
Short Daytrip to Long Island City
Your main destination is MOMA’s PS1, but on the way you will stop at “graffiti Mecca”- 5 Pointz; an outdoor 20,000 square foot art space. Then on your return trip to the ferry landing, choose between superb Thai food at Tuk Tuk NY or creative sandwiches at Bread Box Cafe. (All details are below)
Long Daytrip to Long Island City
This trip is for those with good stamina: it requires a bus or taxi ride up to northern Queens- but I promise you, it’s worth it. Visit the Noguchi Museum for a peaceful walk through the museum or attend one of their family workshops, then walk east to Socrates Sculpture Park for a picnic or much-needed run around and through the park. (All details are below)
Your trip on the ferry to LIC:
To help you prepare for your ferry trip: tickets are $4 for a one way trip between 2 stops (bike is $1 extra) or if you get an all day pass ($12), you can hop on and off various locations. For all the info and maps go to the East River Ferry site here. If you get hungry on the ferry, you can order a cup of coffee from Brooklyn Roasters or an egg cream.
Short Day Trip to Long Island City (DETAILS)
Getting Around: Walk 11 blocks to 5 Pointz and then 2 more to MOMA PS1. On your way back stop for delicious food at one of the recommended restaurants below.
45-46 Davis Street
Long Island City, NY 11101
“5Pointz Aerosol Art Center, Inc. is an outdoor art exhibit space in Long Island City, New York, considered to be the world’s premiere “graffiti Mecca,” where aerosol artists from around the globe paint colorful pieces on the walls of a 200,000-square-foot factory building.” You don’t need to go in, it’s all outside, so just walk around and see all the various tags and paintings. Some of the work might be too graphic for small children, so please look at the photos on their site to see the current work and decide for yourself.
22-25 Jackson Ave. at the intersection of 46th Ave.
Long Island City, NY 11101
Hours: 12–6 PM, Thursday through Monday, closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
MoMA PS1 is one of the oldest and largest nonprofit contemporary art institutions in the United States. An exhibition space rather than a collecting institution, MoMA PS1 devotes its energy and resources to displaying the most experimental art in the world.” You might consider going on a Saturday for their “Warm Up” which goes from July to September 8th. The outdoor series showcases live music, sound, performance and DJs. It is very popular anc can get very crowded with bodies and dancing. Also w0rth checking out is Wendy, the winning design of MoMA PS1’s 13th annual Young Architects Program. Wendy is made of nylon fabric treated with a ground breaking titania nanoparticle spray to neutralize airborne pollutants. During the summer of 2012, Wendy will clean the air to an equivalent of taking 260 cars off the road. One of my favorite permanent pieces at PS1 is Selbstlos im Lavabad by Pippolit Rist. It is a small video inside a hole of the floorboards. You need to look for it in the lobby entrance.
4906 Vernon Boulevard
Long Island City, NY 11101
Tuk Tuk has great Thai food and their service is efficient and warm. All good when you are tired after a day of museum walking. The inside is rather plain, but the pad thai makes that a non-issue.
47-11 11th Street
I always eat at this place when I head to MOMA PS 1. It’s fresh, healthy and delicious. Some complain that it’s expensive for it’s location, but I am always just grateful for the good food and excellent service after a trip over. The bagels are baked on site and most of the food is organic. The Box is only open until 6 pm- so choose you need to hightail it back here if you want to make an early dinner.
Long Day Trip to Long Island City (DETAILS)
Getting Around: Walk 4 blocks to 50th Avenue and Vernon Boulevard. Take the Q103 Bus to Vernon Boulevard and 33rd Road. Please note, the Q103 runs only on weekdays, once an hour, so please visit mta.com for schedules and information. You will arrive at the Noguchi Museum. After a peaceful visit there either get a lunch at the museum cafe or walk a few blocks east to Socrates Sculpture Park for a picnic lunch.
Socrates Sculpture Park
32-01 Vernon Boulevard at Broadway
Long Island City (Queens), NY 11106
Hours: Socrates is open 365 days a year from 10am until sunset. Click here for sunset times: www.timeanddate.com
Admission is FREE.
Socrates Sculpture Park is a unique park that features ever-changing large sculpture and art installations that is open to the public. I love it here- the art work can be uneven at times but it always feels authentic. On Saturdays, through November, the Park hosts a market with farm-fresh fruits and vegetables and family-friendly activities every week with GrowNYC. On select Saturdays or Sundays, you can also take part in their Healthy Living program where you can take a free kayak out, take a yoga class, tai chi or Capoeira class. There are art making workshops on the weekends too!
9-01 33rd Road
New York, NY 11106
Hours: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday: 10:00am-5:00pm, Saturday & Sunday: 11:00am-6:00pm, Monday & Tuesday: CLOSED
Admission: General admission: $10, Senior Citizens: $5 , Students with a valid ID: $5, NYC public high school students with a valid ID: FREE, Children under 12: FREE, Members: FREE (Learn more about Membership) On the first Friday of every month year-round, Museum admission is pay-what-you-wish.
The Isamu Noguchi Foundation and Garden Museum is devoted to the preservation, documentation, presentation, and interpretation of the work of Isamu Noguchi. His work is beautiful, abstract and serene. The Museum has a lot of workshops for families. Programs cost $10 for families with up to 4 members (fee includes Museum admission); free for Family Members.