February. Let’s be honest; February is a tough month. Besides a few holidays here and there and a week of vacation for the kids, February just seems to drag on. To me, it is far enough into winter that the excitement of the first snow and the holiday season has worn off, and it is still too far from the first signs of spring. I find it ironic that the shortest month of the year can feel like the longest and gloomiest.
If you’re tired of the cold Staten Island weather; the dark skies, the slushy streets and this “polar vortex” type weather, chances are you’ll be welcoming the scents and signs of spring just as much as I will. But, the hopes for a better (and warmer) tomorrow won’t help us though today.
But a new perspective will.
There are so many amazing things to do in Staten Island, even in the dreary and cold month of February. Whether you’re in the mood for some outdoor activities or are looking for a reason to get out of the house while still staying warm, there are plenty of places on Staten Island that will provide entertainment, fun and warmth. Take advantage of some of these seasonal activities and you won’t regret February any longer.
Ice Skating, Anyone?
Staten Island Skating Pavilion
3080 Arthur Kill Road
As one of the only indoor rinks in the city, the Staten Island Skating Pavilion offers public skating sessions on weekends (more during school breaks), lessons, events, games, hockey leagues and even birthday parties.
WWII Veterans War Memorial Ice Skating Rink
Clove Lakes Park- Victory Boulevard west of Clove Road
Take advantage of the cold weather at Staten Island’s only outdoor skating rink, which has become increasingly popular with local families. The rink also offers skating lessons, public sessions and birthday party packages.
Staten Island Sledding
Although the small hill at Clove Lakes Park (at the corner of Slosson and Martlings) is known as the “official” sledding spot on Staten Island, but there are plenty of other places to get a sled run in. Many kids (and adults) love sledding down “Dead Man’s Hill” in Silver Lake Park, or taking a ride on the hills on the La tourette Golf Course. Either way, many memories will be made on these sleigh-riding hills.
Another Venue for Skaters (that is, skate-boarders)
354 Front Street
For teens and young adults, Staten Island’s 5050 Skatepark is the place to be. As the only indoor skatepark in the city, this is a great place for teens (or anyone else) who needs the indoor space to work on their scooter, skateboard or BMX bike tricks. There are open sessions, beginner sessions and one-on-one lessons as well. Visit www.5050skatepark.com for more details.
Staten Island Children’s Museum
1000 Richmond Terrace
Telephone: 718-273-2060 / Fax: 718-273-2836
Located on the grounds of Snug Harbor Cultural Center, the Staten Island Children’s Museum offers a variety of hands-on educational exhibits such as Block Harbor, House: About It, Portia’s Playhouse, Great Explorations, Bugs and Insects, Ladder 11, Sea of Boats, and DB’s Fantastic Machines. It also provides special programming for children of all ages on a regular basis, such as daily activities like Storytime, weekday programs like Kidz Cook, toddler programs like Artist in Me and weekend family workshops like Up 4 Art. Perfect for anyone feeling cooped-up indoors!
St. George Theatre
35 Hyatt Street
There is nothing like catching a show at the iconic St. George Theatre. This month, you won’t want to miss “Who’s Line Is It Anyway?” stars Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood as they bring their show, “Two-Man Group” to Staten Island. If you need a good laugh to get you out of the mid-winter blues, this is a must-see!
Staten Island Museum
75 Stuyvesant Place
Hosting both indoor and outdoor adventures, the Staten Island Museum is a place for thinkers, doers, explorers and anyone with even just a touch of curiosity. This month the museum is hosting a variety of workshops, including family art workshops, outdoor adventures and bird walks, and even science programs. Visit their website at www.statenislandmuseum.org for more information about upcoming events.
Tibetan Art Museum
338 Lighthouse Ave
Perfectly nestled on the side of Lighthouse Hill, the Tibetan Art Museum presents the art and culture of Tibet and the Himalayas in order to educate and inspire. Besides offering a variety of exhibits and programs, the museum will also open its doors on weekends in February for guided meditation. Visit their website at www.tibetanmuseum.org for more information.
Staten Island Greenbelt
700 Rockland Avenue
Staten Island’s Greenbelt has loads of programs available for adults and children of all ages, all year round. If you’re a runner and want a change of scenery, take advantage of the group trail runs the Greenbelt is offering. Or, get your children involved in all of the President’s week activities that will be taking place during their week off from school. Adult artists, little tots and anyone looking to increase their knowledge of the natural world or enjoy Staten Island’s trails should take advantage of these Greenbelt programs. For a list of February events taking place at the Greenbelt, visit their website at www.sigreenbelt.org.
Historic Richmond Town
451 Clarke Avenue
Historic Richmond Town, Staten Island’s living history village and museum complex, is alive and kickin’ even in the dead of winter. It’s time to relax by the fire while listening to some of the best folk and acoustic songwriters and musicians in the country. Check the Richmond Town website at www.historicrichmondtown.org for information on the upcoming tavern concerts that will surely transport you back to a simpler time.
So, I suppose that February doesn’t have to be as bad as it may seem. With all of the things to do on Staten Island this month, spring will be here before we know it!
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Stay warm this winter, and, I hope to meet up with you soon!