Dia Beacon Riggio Galleries Photo By: Bill Jacobson

Since March of 2020, life in NYC has been different, to say the least. For the first time in our lives, our world as we knew it was forever changed. Sure, we experienced challenges, hardships, survived racism and other forms of social injustice, but none of us had ever seen or experienced a pandemic, much less a global pandemic of this magnitude. The Coronavirus, specifically, Covid-19, left an indelible impression on us all, but fortunately things are taking a strong turn for the better. Businesses are slated to reopen in NYC at 100% capacity this May and according to Gov. Cuomo, NYC will fully reopen on July 1. What does that mean for the Summer you ask? Where can I go? What can I do? Well, the team here at WhereItzAt has put together a list of fun and interesting things to do for the Summer, and hopefully for the remainder of 2021.

Day Trips

Beacon, NY

One of my favorite trips to take for a day is a drive up to Beacon, NY. Beacon is a very cool, laidback city in Dutchess County known to be a haven for the arts and artists. I first explored Beacon while working as a location scout on an independent film and fell in love with the city’s charm and the local folks, who were, to my surprise, very welcoming. If you love art, then you will want to explore the Dia:Beacon, a modern art museum that occupies a former Nabisco box factory. The factory was originally built back in 1929, but since May 2003, the space was transformed to house and exhibit art from the 1960s to present. With it’s very open design, including 34,000 feet of skylight, Dia:Beacon has come to be known as a “Daylight Museum.” Don’t just take our word, go experience it for yourself.

Visit their website for more information and to make advanced reservations: https://diaart.org/visit/visit-our-locations-sites/dia-beacon-beacon-united-states

Mount Beacon

Mount Beacon Hudson River views Photo By: Scott Heaney/Shutterstock.com

If you’re into the great outdoors and love hiking, then I strongly recommend a hike up Mount Beacon. Okay, let’s keep it real, I don’t recommend this if you believe you’re very out of shape and don’t like steep inclines or climbing stairs, but if you’re up for the challenge, I can guarantee you that the views will not disappoint. If you make it to the top, you will earn the privilege of wide-ranging views stretching from the Hudson Highlands to the Catskill Mountains. Mount Beacon is the highest peak of Hudson Highlands, which are mountains on both sides of the Hudson River in New York State. Aside from hiking, there is also wildlife watching, dog walking on a leash, a bike rack, cross country skiing and snowshoeing.

If you plan to travel in a group, we recommend visiting https://www.scenichudson.org/explore-the-valley/scenic-hudson-parks/mount-beacon-park/ to get more information due to COVID-19.

Governors Island

Photo by V.E./Shutterstock.com

Here is a trip that so many of us have overlooked. I had the opportunity to make this trip pre-COVID and can tell you that it was amazing. Whether you are a couple or a family with children, Governors Island has something in store for you. Think about it, 120 acres of open space, how could you not enjoy this? You can bring your own food, non-alcoholic beverages, a blanket and just enjoy the views, while relaxing on the grass. While there you can rent bicycles for group rides around the island, visit Hammock Grove for some reading and relaxation, take the children over to Slide Hill or the Hammock Grove Play Area and the list goes on. Did we forget to mention that this is all wheel chair accessible or that seniors 65 and older are free?

In case you’re wondering, the ferry ride to Governors Island is only $3 and if you don’t have a great time, then maybe you’re just not a fun person. I’m just saying…Lol. Seriously, this is one for a romantic day trip with your significant other or a fun getaway with the family.

Visit https://www.govisland.com/ for more details and to ensure you’re up to date on all the latest safety protocols due to COVID-19.

Museums

Brooklyn Museum

Did you know that the Brooklyn Museum “stands on land that is part of the non-ceded, ancestral homeland of the Lenape (Delaware) people?” Guess what? Neither did we, we had no idea that the Lenape were indigenous people of the Northeastern Woodlands who live in the United States and Canada. There is so much rich history in New York, that it’s important to take the time to discover it. At the Brooklyn Museum you can experience everything from a Pop-Up Market to Pop-Up Performances, all while experiencing a variety of exhibitions with a diverse group of artists. Over the years Brooklyn Museum has always been the place to go, whether it’s for West Indian American Day Carnival celebrations or Target First Saturdays, you could always be guaranteed to enjoy yourself at this Brooklyn institution. Today, the same holds true. Just gather the kids, family, significant other and get to it.

For more information visit https://www.brooklynmuseum.org/. 

Lorraine O’Grady Brooklyn Museum

Brooklyn Children’s Museum 

What did you say? The kids are bored and have nothing to do? Well, believe it or not, you have more options than you realize. Brooklyn Children’s Museum (BCM) is open every Thursday from 2 pm to 5 pm and all-day Saturdays and Sundays. So, if the park is too boring, too hot or it’s raining, then get the kids over to BCM for some fun play in their exhibits or for some art making workshops in ColorLab. By the way, we recommend this as a family activity. Spend some quality play time with the kids.

For more information or to purchase tickets visit https://www.brooklynkids.org/  

Stay tuned and visit www.gowhereitzat.com for more updates to this list. We still have more great options to come in Queens, Bronx, Long Island and other parts of the country.

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