New Haven with a five year old on Thanksgiving
November 21, 2022 5:45 PM   Subscribe

We're visiting grownup friends in New Haven, Connecticut, for Thanksgiving (Wednesday to Friday). Our five year old will be the only young kid around and will need some outings. Can you help us brainstorm things to do in New Haven on and around Thanksgiving that might be fun for adults and one five year old?
posted by john hadron collider to Travel & Transportation around New Haven, CT (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
The Eli Whitney Museum's Annual Exhibition of American Flyer Trains Opens Friday morning and there are nice walking trails and a waterfall there as well.
posted by coevals at 6:11 PM on November 21, 2022

Walk the beach in West Haven.
posted by Sukey Says at 7:17 PM on November 21, 2022 [2 favorites]

Normally I would suggest the Yale Peabody Museum—what five-year-old doesn't love dinosaurs?—but they're undergoing a major renovation and won't reopen until 2024. Something to remember for the next time you visit, I suppose.
posted by Johnny Assay at 4:09 AM on November 22, 2022 [1 favorite]

what five-year-old doesn't love dinosaurs?

On that note, if you have access to a car, Dinosaur State Park is about 30 minutes away.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 4:25 AM on November 22, 2022 [2 favorites]

Museums in New haven include a trolley museum and the art museums of Yale.
posted by SemiSalt at 5:21 AM on November 22, 2022

Peabody Museum is closed for renovation. Children's museum is closed.

Jordan's Furniture has indoor ropes courses, one of which is designed for children under 48".

There is duckpin bowling in West Haven as well as in Hamden.

Fest Faves is a new spot that serves carnival food.

Fantasy of Lights is a nighttime drive through event at Lighthouse Point Park that is fun to visit. Facebook says they'll be open even Thanksgiving night.

Farther away, the Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport will be open Friday and Kid City pretend play children's museum in Middletown is open Weds and Fri.
posted by xo at 6:03 AM on November 22, 2022 [2 favorites]

The PEZ Visitor Center in Orange! Fun for adults too.
posted by southern_sky at 6:32 AM on November 22, 2022 [1 favorite]

Depending on how far you're willing to drive, the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk is wonderful. It's about 50 minutes from New Haven. We got my brother a family pass there starting when his daughter was 3 and she adores visiting and watching the animals and fish. Very child oriented and interactive!

Seconding the Beardsley Zoo, which is also fabulous with little kids. I have fond faint memories of my older cousin taking me and my sister and we've all made the trip with my niece now!
posted by carrioncomfort at 9:25 AM on November 22, 2022

How about walking along Long Wharf and looking at all the colorful food trucks and the many different kinds of food they serve? Maybe sampling a few?

Or the Helicopter Museum in Stratford?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 11:28 AM on November 22, 2022

Seconding Kidcity Children’s Museum in Middletown. It’s 30 mins away, but it’s absolutely delightful.

Just around the corner is a really great old fashioned toy store, Amato’s. They do an elaborate model train display every holiday season, but it might be too early.
posted by Xalf at 3:12 PM on November 22, 2022

Amato's is more than a toy store. It's also a hobby shop with a full complement of materials, parts, paints, etc. for model train, RC car/plane, and other enthusiasts. Great place!
posted by ZenMasterThis at 7:54 PM on November 22, 2022

If it’s not too cold, drive to the top of East Rock park and walk around. IIRC there’s a playground at the bottom a couple of blocks away, so if the adults want to walk the rock, one adult + kid can play on the play structures. This isn’t a major activity, just a way to get a little bit of air and move post-TG bodies.

Weds or Fri: pizza. The Wooster Square places are the famous ones, but if the lines are bananas, Modern Apizza is a great option (always my favorite anyway).

I agree about Long Wharf. It’s a good place to walk around and literally kick rocks.
posted by saltykitten at 9:09 AM on November 23, 2022

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