Best Of The Decade
Distilling 10 years of Best of Westchester issues into a must-have guide to everything stupendous, supreme, sublime, sophisticated, and superlative in the county. Our Best of the Best of Westchester.
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Making the county a great place in which to grow up
All Dressed Up
Shopping with kids, teens, and tweens can be, like, so not cool—but not at All Dressed Up. Why? Young fashion plates positively love the racks of dresses. And who wouldn’t, with designs from BCBG, ABS, and Betsey Johnson? If there’s any complaint, it’s not that your girls won’t be able to find something to wear—it’s that they’ll find too much.
Greenburgh Nature Center
No, petting your Labrador doesn’t count as communing with nature. Give your kids a real taste of the natural world by bringing them to the Greenburgh Nature Center. The manageable, 33-acre property has an easy, third-of-a-mile trail that loops around a pond, giving them a chance to spot frogs and insects, rabbits, chickens and ducks, prairie dogs, and even birds of prey. Inside, there’s even more—check out the live animal museum. And, in the summer, take them to the greenhouse to walk among butterflies—something that’s eternally sold out at the American Museum of Natural History.
Steiner’s Last Licks
Armonk (914) 273-3551
Rye (914) 315-6688
Scarsdale (914) 725-5932
Nothing is better than grabbing a beer and watching the game—unless you’re under 21. Steiner’s Last Licks gives young sports fans a place to gather, bond, and talk about sports, with ice cream and candy taking the place of beer and wings. That would be great enough, but Last Licks also gives kids a chance to meet their sports heroes with frequent in-store signings and other events. (Tiki Barber, Mike Richter, and Walt Frazier recently stopped by for Steiner events.) If there’s no star athlete in town, there’s still plenty of memorabilia for sports fans to pore over.
Young fashionistas—and their parents—breathed a hearty sigh of relief that their favorite clothing store was no longer relegated to New York City and Long Island when, in 2008, Lester’s opened its first Westchester location. With 10,000 square feet stocked with 3,000 brands, it’s easy to replenish a child or teen’s wardrobe in one stop. And, with up-to-the-moment fashions and red-hot designers (think Ed Hardy, Juicy Couture, Free People, J Brand, and Ben Sherman), you can do so without witnessing too much eye-rolling, too.
Photo courtesy of Muscoot Farm
Baby animals. Our lips crack smiles; our hearts melt just thinking about them. There’s nothing more adorable than seeing little lambs chasing after calves, goats, and sheep. Of course, there are adult animals, too—cows, horses, pigs, turkeys, and donkeys—plus gardens and a farm museum to get us back to our agrarian roots, and all free-of-charge. Informative, yes—but not nearly so adorable. We’ll come back again and again just to see the little babies.
Photo by Cathy Pinsky
The Voracious Reader
Larchmont (914) 630-4581
Blogs and Seventeen have their place, but the best way to make sure those are not the only reading materials your kids will get their hands on is to take them to The Voracious Reader. Since 2007, parents have flocked to this indie shop to find books for their kids, from babies through teenagers—and yes, sometimes for themselves, too. (Who among us hasn’t dipped into Harry Potter?) But the books aren’t the only attraction here. The staff understands what gets young readers excited, knows the hot books (Mockingjay, anyone?), and throws parties, brings in authors to read, and hosts book clubs to make reading a fun, social thing to do. Blogs seem boring in comparison.