Big Ol’ List of Links for You–Local Resources

This is likely to be outdated now, but it is an old favorite of readers, so I’m leaving it available. Interested in getting something added to this list? Please contact me only if it’s something locally-focused. Useful websites, places three or four hours away. . . great! Love them! But I’m not going to list them here because the emphasis is local. Thanks.

4M’s Farm (Castleton, horses)*
Catskill Animal Sanctuary (this seems like a nice option if you’re anti-zoo; your kids might end up wanting to become vegans after a visit)
Hudson-Mohawk Bird Club
New York State Young Birders Club
Pet Bird Club
Ride with Lisa (Rensselaer, horses)
Therapy Dogs for reading: check your local library
Schauber Stables (Ballston Lake)
Tri-County Pony Club
Wunsapana Farm (Altamont, llamas and more)

Arts Centers including visual & performing arts
The Arts Center in Saratoga Springs
The Arts Center of the Capital Region (Troy)
Boght Arts Center (“art & spirit converge”, Cohoes)
Hamilton Hill Arts Center (Schenectady)
Logan Studio-Academy of Music and the Arts (Clifton Park)
Omi International Art Center (Ghent)
Out of the Box Creative Learning
Sand Lake Center for the Arts (Averill Park)

Arts & Crafts
Albany Art Room *
Art Smarts *
Art Utopia (classes ages 8-17)
Bumble Beads *
Kidzart art classes for kids at various locations*
Studio 5 Art (Clifton Park)
Upstate Artists Guild nonprofit with mostly grown-up-friendly programs

Dance/mostly classes
Albany Berkshire Ballet

An Clar School of Irish Dance (Colonie)
Baker School of Dance (Glenville)
The Dance Experience (Delmar)
Dance Force (Schenectady)
Dance Lili Creative Ballet and Movement Studios (Saratoga)
Dance Crazy (ballroom in schools)
eba Center for Dance and Movement (Albany–teens & adults)
eba Kids Dance Space @ eba (Albany–children, not-for-profit, no recitals)
Eleanor’s School of Dance (Colonie)
Farrell School of Irish Dance
Ferrara Dane Studio (Rotterdam)
The King’s Dancers (Glenville–Christian)
Lorraine Michaels Dance Centre (Albany, mostly adults–including “adults”–but also kids ballroom & hiphop)
Merritt Dance Center (Schenectady)
Modern Dance with Ginny Martin (Glenville)
Northeast Ballet Company/Myers School (Schenectady)
Orlando School of Dance (Schenectady)
School of the Arts at the National Museum of Dance (Saratoga)
Spendwood School of Dance and Gymnastics (Cohoes)
Turning Pointe Dance Centre (Saratoga, children & adults)

Dance/mostly performance
Ellen Sinopoli Dance Company (Troy)
Maude Baum and Company Dance Theatre (eba) (Albany)
Nacre (Albany)
Dance Flurry (Saratoga)

Entertainment for Children (includes birthday party venues, folks who travel to different events, and items to rent for an event)
Andy “The Music Man” Morse
Ben Rudnick & Friends (music)

Cake Bash Parties (at-home cupcake decorating)
Catskill Puppet Theater
David Kaye (Silly Billy & Dr. Blood/magician & balloon twister)
Dee Ellen Lee (storyteller)
Domino the Great (comedy magic)
Emack & Bolio’s (Albany ice cream & gifts)*
everything but anchovies dance theatre
Fun Flicks (outdoor movie equipment)
Gizmo Guys (comedy juggling)
High Peaks Juggling
Homespun Occasions (traditional music/dance)
Joey D (magician)
Jumping Bean Party Rental
Just 4 Fun Entertainment (rentals of bounce houses, skate rinks, and other items)
Komotion Movement Theater
Krystal Rose Princess and Spa Parties
Magicman Entertainment
Mischief the Clown
Mr. Twisty (balloons)
The Puppet People
Roger the Jester (juggling, magic)
Sylvia & the Magic Trunk (ventriloquist)
Tanglewood Marionettes
Tantrums (party hosting & packages, emphasis on girls)
Too Tall Stiltwalking
Uncle Rock (music)
Wee Affairs (children’s event planning)
Zucchini Brothers (music)

Farmers Markets/Orchards/CSAs/Co-ops
Bowman Orchards*
Cooper’s Ark Farm
Dakota Ridge Farm (llamas)
Ellms Family Farm
Engelke Farm (zip lines cross country skiing)
Fair Weather Farms (New Lebanon)
Fox Creek Farm CSA
Goold Orchards
Honest Weight Food Co-op
Indian Ladder Farms*
Knight Orchards
Mohawk Harvest Food Co-op
Niskayuna Co-op
Pioneer Food Co-op (Troy)
Riverview Orchards*
Roxbury Farm
Saratoga Farmstands list
Schenectady Greenmarket
Troy Waterfront Farmers Market
Vinewood Acres Farm* (Scotia)

Indoor and/or Year-round Playtime Geared toward School-Age Kids
Bounce Around (Clifton Park Center)
Boulevard Bowl (Schenectady)*
Chuck E. Cheese’s (Latham) *
Cicotti Center (Colonie) *
Del Lanes (Delmar, bowling)*
Girls Incorporated of the Capital Region
Guptills Arena (Latham, rollerskating) *
Rollarama (Schenectady)*
Saratoga Strike Zone (Bowling, ball pit, bumper cars, arcade)*
Sportsmans Bowl (Schenectady)*
Sunset Lanes (Albany, bowling)*
Towne Bowling Academy (Albany)*
Treepaad Fun Center (Malta) *

Albany Public Library
Bethlehem Public Library
Clifton Park-Halfmoon Library
Crandall Public Library
East Greenbush Library
Guilderland Public Library
Rensselaer Public Library
Round Lake Library
Schenectady Public Library
Troy Public Library
Voorheesville Public Library
Watervliet Public Library
William K. Sanford (Colonie) Library

Misc. Enrichment & Academics
Albany Area Amateur Astronomers
Capital Region Friendship Circle
Capital Region Language Center
Children at the Well: Interfaith Storytelling
The College of St. Rose (Albany; nursery school, physical education classes, tutoring, and special services for children with speech, hearing, or autism spectrum issues)
Electric Powered Aeromodelers Club
Henry Hudson Planetarium*
Hola La Spanish classes
Language Learning Institute (babies, children, & adults)
Mad Science*
Math Done Right (older students)
Niskayuna Community Education
Schenectady Amateur Radio Operators
Spanish Immersion @Albany (Loudonville)
Story Circle of the Capital District
Tiny Chefs

Moms/Parenting Groups

Moms groups evolve, grow, die, etc. fairly quickly, so I’ve erased a bunch of these now-outdated links that were on Meetup, and here’s the main Meetup search link instead
FOCUSS on Fathers
MOMS Club various chapter links
Mothers Center of the Capital District
MOPS/Mothers of Preschoolers (Christian)
Niskayuna Moms Group

Monthly Cultural Events
Art Night Schenectady (third Fridays, 5-9 pm)
Ballston Spa First Fridays (first Fridays, 6-9 pm)
First Friday Albany (first Fridays, 5-9 pm)
Saratoga Springs First Saturdays (first Saturdays, 5-8 pm)
Troy Night Out (last Fridays, 5-9 pm)

Municipalities (This one’s a little subjective because the quality of the websites vary–I  link to either a list of youth programs or a general parks/rec. page.  A couple of sites were so un-helpful that I didn’t bother to list them.)
East Greenbush
Stillwater Area Community Center

Albany Institute of History & Art (Albany, art & Colonial & Egyptian artifacts)
ALCO Heritage Museum (Schenectady, locomotive history)
Berkshire Museum (Pittsfield, MA)
Bronck Museum (Coxsackie)
Brookside Museum & Saratoga County Historical Society (Ballston Spa)
Brown House Inn (Amsterdam, Victorian activities)
Chapman Historical Museum (Glens Falls)
Children’s Museum of Science & Technology (Troy) *
Empire State Aerosciences Museum (Glenville)*
Hanford Mills Museum (East Meredith, historic working mill)
Historic Cherry Hill (Albany, historic house)
Hyde Collection (Glens Falls, art & historic house)
Mabee Farm Historic Site (Schenectady, historic house)
National Museum of Dance (Saratoga)
National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame (Saratoga, horse racing)
New York State Museum (Albany)*—natural & cultural history of State, carousel
The Old Stone Fort Museum (Scoharie)
Pruyn House (Colonie, historic house)
Railroads on Parade (Pottersville, model trains)
Renssalaer County Historical Society (museum & historic house)
Saratoga Children’s Museum (Saratoga)*—play town and various kids’ fun *
Schenectady Museum (Schenectady, science focus, including planetarium)
Schuyler Mansion (Albany, historic house)
Shaker Heritage Society (Albany)
Ten Broeck Mansion & Albany Historical Society
World Awareness Children’s Museum (Glens Falls)

Albany Pro Musica (mostly grown ups, with choral outreach programs)
Albany Symphony (mostly grown ups)
Capital District Youth Chorale
Carondelet Music Center
(classes, Latham)
Empire State Youth Orchestra
Heidi’s Place/Music Together (Loudonville)
Heldeberg Music Together (Center Square, Albany, classes for kids)
Jay Street Music (Schenectady, classes for kids)

Kelly Madsen–Beginner Guitar Lessons for Children
Kniskern Music House (Clifton Park, store & classes)
Miss Peggy’s Music Room (Albany, classes for kids)
Matt’s Music Together (Troy, North Greenbush, & Chatham, classes for kids)
Modern Day Music Rock School Music Academy (Clifton Park)
Music Box Arts/Music Together (Mohawk Valley, many locations)
Music Mobile, Inc.
The Music Studio (Albany, classes)
Music Together of Saratoga (Saratoga & Clifton Park, classes for kids)
Old Songs (Voorheesville, traditional music & dance)
Pickin’ and Singin’ Gatherin’ (Folk, jamming, lists events)
Romper Rhythms (Delmar)

Saratoga Children’s Chorus
Schenectady Symphony (mostly grown ups)
Troy Children’s Chorus
Troy Music Hall

Musical Instrument Rentals
A Violin Shop (Schenectady: violins, violas, and cellos)
Blue Sky Recording (Delmar: strings, wind, drums, & bells)
Burnt Hills Music Store
Cellos 2 Go (Schenectady)
Drome Sound (Schenectady: sound, lighting, & DJ equipment, percussion, wind, & string instruments)
Francis Morris Violins (Colonie: violins, violas, and cellos)
Hermie’s Music Store (Schenectady: band instrument rental)
John Keal Music (Albany:  strings, wind, & drums)
Kniskern Music House (Clifton Park)
Rock Bottom Guitars (Scotia)

Albany Pine Bush
Altas Quest (letterboxing)

CDPHP interactive map of local hikes
Children & Nature Saratoga
Dyken Pond (Cropseyville)
ECOS Environmental clearinghouse
Five Rivers Environmental Education Center
Landis Arboretum
Local Hikes
Moreau Lake State Park
New York State Parks
Pine Bush Field Station and Rensselaer Lake
Pine Hollow Arboretum (Slingerlands)
Reist Sanctuary
Thacher Park/Nature Center
Up Yonda Farm (Bolton Landing)
Wilton Wildlife Preserve

Organizations for Kids
4H in Schenectady
4H in Albany
4H in Rensselaer
Boys and Girls Club of Albany
Boys and Girls Club of Schenectady
Boys and Girls Club of Troy
Boy Scouts of America Twin Rivers Council
Camp Fire USA (this is the national site; there’s nothing local right now)
Capital Region Friendship Circle
Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York
Girls Incorporated
Girls on the Run (this is the national site; there’s a local organization based in Glens Falls but not Schenectady/Albany/Troy right now).
Y Guides at Guilderland Y

City of Albany Playground List
Check out the lovely playground list here.
Contribute to the playground list by filling out a survey here.

Small-bany has done several profiles of area playgrounds, with photos.

Pools & Swimming
Albany City Pools
Albany Jewish Community Center

Albany Starfish
Boys and Girls Club at Rotterdam
Capital District YMCA*
Chelsea’s Swim School (specializing in ages 6 months to 6 years)
Cicotti Center (Colonie)
Excel Aquatics (Albany & Schenectady)
Learn 2 Swim (Glenville, March to November)
Little Troy Park (Charleton, beach club)
Moreau Lake State Park
Niskayuna High School
Prospect Park (Troy)
Sand Lake Beach
Schenectady City Pools
Schenectady JCC

Serrago’s Swimmers (swim lessons including special needs)

Pregnancy/Brand-New baby Resources
Adoptive Families of the Capital Region

Albany Doula and Placenta Encapsulation
Baby Changing Station Breastfeeding Guide
Bellevue Woman’s Center (Niskayuna)
The Birth Place (Albany Medical Center)
Community Cradle
(referrals throughout Capital District)
Doula Network of the Capital Region
Family Life Center, Albany
Gatesway Health & Massage (Colonie, infant massage)
ICAN (Cesarean awareness, VBAC support)
Kellymom (internet site, breastfeeding help)
La Leche League of New York
Motherwear’s Breastfeeding Blog
Online Postpartum Depression Support
Orenda (mommy-baby yoga)
Shades of Light Capital Area Post-partum Support
St. Peter’s Hospital
Seton Health Childbirth Center
(St. Mary’s, Troy)
Sling Babies (babywearing)
Stroller Strides (Saratoga, mom fitness)
Top Form (Clifton Park, mom & baby exercise)

Special Needs
Autism Society of the Greater Capital Region
Capital Region Friendship Circle
Center for Autism and Related Disabilities at SUNY Albany
Center for Disability Services
Challenger Sports  local information, call 899-4878
Disability Scoop okay, it’s not local, but tons of information
Down Syndrome Aim High Resource Center
Epilepsy Foundation of Northeastern NY
Families Together in Albany County
Friday Knights Recreation Program (autism spectrum & difficulties relating)
Parent to Parent of New York State
Piano for Special Kidz
Serrago’s Swimmers
Special Needs Support–Upstate New York
SAFE: Sports Are for Everyone
Stride Adaptive Sports

Spectator Sports
Albany Legends (basketball)
Albany Devils (hockey)
RPI Athletics (Troy)
Siena College Athletics (Loudonville)
Tri-City Valleycats (Troy, baseball)
Union College Athletics (Schenectady)

15 Love (Various locations, tennis)
Adirondack Martial Arts Center (Clifton Park)
Afrim’s Sports (Colonie, Soccer & Golf)*
Albany County Hockey Facility
Albany Curling Club
Albany Figure Skating Club
Albany Indoor Rock Gym
Albany Jewish Community Center
Albany Rowing Center (middle school & up)
Albany Youth Soccer
All Stars Academy (Latham, baseball)*
Athletic Republic & Hockey Hut
Breathing Room (Delmar, yoga)
Capital District Pop Warner (football, cheering)
Capital District Raptors (competitive basketball)
Capital District YMCA*
Cartwheels Gymnastics Center* (Clifton Park)
Crossfit Beyond (Albany, “Keeping Kids Fit for Life”)
DC Gymnastics*
Duanesburg Area Community Center
Empire Martial Arts
The Edge-Halfmoon* (Rock climbing)
Frozen Ropes (Albany, Baseball & softball)
Guilderland Rock Adventure Barn*
Hudson Mohawk Figure Skating Club
Hudson Mohawk Road Runners Club
Joe Yoga (Cohoes)
Knickerbacker Arena (Troy, ice skating)*

Learn 2 Swim (Glenville, March to November)
Maple Ski Ridge (Schenectady)
Mechelle’s Way Tae Kwon Do
Messa Ice Rink at Union College (Schenectady)
Niskayuna Lacrosse
Northeast Gymnastics(Albany)
Northeast Martial Arts (Colonie)
Orenda Yoga (Schenectady & Guilderland)
Rotterdam Youth Soccer Club
Schenectady Basketball Club
Schenectady County CYO Basketball
Schenectady-Guilderland-Scotia Rowing Association
Schenectady JCC
Schenectady-JC Little League
Schenectady Municipal Golf Course
Schenectady Soccer Club
The Shelter (Albany, skateboarding)
Sportime NY*
Sports Plex of Halfmoon*
Stadium Golf Club (Schenectady)
Stepping Star Gymnastics & Dance (Saratoga)*
Title XI Soccer Academy
Troy-Albany Youth Hockey
Troy Area Sports Activities (brochure)
World Class Gymnastics (Latham)
Yoga Kids (Clifton Park)

Summer and Seasonal Outdoor Fun (spring/summer/fall destinations that don’t fall into the farms, nature, or pools categories also listed)
Adirondack Extreme Adventure Course (ropes, etc. in Bolton Landing)
Albany Aqua Ducks (tours by boat & trolley)
Alive at 5 (Thursday night concerts in Albany)
Collar City Live (Troy, concerts)
Control Tower (mini-golf, ice cream, go-karts)
Eagle Mills Cider Mill (Broadalbin)
Fingerlakes Musical Theatre Festival (Auburn, NY summer)
Funplex Fun Park
Glenville Sportsplex
Heldeberg Workshop (Voorheesville, not-for-profit summer camps)
Hoffman’s Playland (Latham)Latham Greens (mini-golf, ice cream)
Howe Caverns (Caves, ziplines, ropes)
Oasis Family Fun Club (Troy)
Pirates Hide-Out Mini-Golf (Halfmoon)
Powers Park Concert Series (Saturdays in Troy)
Rockin’ on the River (Wednesday night concerts in Troy)
USS Slater (Albany)
US Waterski Show Team (Scotia)

Summer Programs Indoors
Bowtie Cinemas (free kids’ movies on Tuesdays & Wednesdays in Schenectady)
Regal Cinemas (free kids’ movies on Tuesdays & Wednesdays)

Adirondack Children’s Troupe theater group by and for children based in Queensbury
Capital Area Productions youth theater group based in East Greenbush
Capital Repertory Theatre not child friendly, ask that children under 6 not attend
Confetti Stage adult and child-friendly performances
Curtain Call Theatre (Latham) mostly grown-up stuff

Debuts Theater Company (Albany)
Drama Kids drama programs for kids 3-18
The Egg
Family Players of NENY
Fingerlakes Musical Theatre Festival (Auburn, NY summer)
Flying Kite Children’s Theatre (Saratoga)
Glens Falls Civic Center
Lake George Opera at Saratoga:  performs in schools, has a summer opera camp
Mac-Haydn Theatre for grown ups, with a children’s theatre season each summer
New York State Theatre Institute (Troy) a variety of shows, classes & camps for kids
Palace Theatre (Albany) a variety of shows for grown ups and kids
Proctors Theatre (Schenectady) a variety of shows for grown ups and kids

Saratoga Children’s Theatre
Schenectady Civic Players for grown ups, with occasional child-friendly fare
Schenectady Light Opera for grown ups, with occasional child-friendly fare
Schenectady Theater for Children stages theater in schools
Steamer 10 Theatre (Albany) * mostly kid- and family-oriented

Theatre Institut at Sage (Troy) adult and kid shows, classes and camps
Universal Preservation Hall (Saratoga Springs) Arts & community
Village Stage performing at various theaters for children and families, but info. isn’t updated
WAMC’s The Linda for grown ups, with occasional child-friendly fare
Wood Theater (Glens Falls) variety of shows for grown ups and kids

Toddler Play Activities
Candyland Activity & Enrichment Center (Schenectady) — As of February 2012, this has closed.
Discovery Place Learning Center (East Greenbush)
Explore (Glens Falls) *
Fun4Tots (Schenectady)
MiMi’s Kids Club (East Greebush) *
My Place to Play (Schenectady)*
The Neighborhood Nanny–they have a drop-off hourly care location for 2- to 6-year-olds in Schenectady
Joyful Jumpers (Colonie)*
Shooting Stars (Clifton Park)*
Tiny Tots Tearoom (Clifton Park)*
Toddler Tales (Colonie)
Tumbling Tykes (Latham)*

Winter Day Trips. . . for these, I’ve added the location as well as how far it is from my house near Schenectady.  I know that’s not super-convenient for everyone, but I’m just trying to give you a general idea to get you started.  So if you’re in Troy, then those Massachusetts locations might be great options for you.  I’ve listed whether each place has skiing/snowboarding or tubing as well as if they have night options and if they specifically list adaptive ski lessons on their sites.  It’s possible that I’ve missed something, of course, so follow the link and read their site directly for the most accurate and up-to-date information.

Belleayre Mountain Highmount, NY – 1¼ hours; skiing/snowboarding
Butternut Great Barrington, MA- 1¼ hours; skiing/snowboarding, tubing, adaptive
Catamount Hillsdale, NY – 1¼ hours; skiing/snowboarding, night, adaptive
Glimmerglass State Park Cooperstown – 1½ hours; tubing on weekends
Gore Mountain North Creek, northwest of Lake George – 1½ hours; skiing/snowboarding, tubing, night, adaptive
Jiminy Peak Hancock, MA – 1 hour; skiing/snowboarding, night, adaptive
Maple Ski Ridge Rotterdam – ¼ hour; skiing/snowboarding, night
Otis Ridge Otis, MA – 1½ hours; skiing/snowboarding, night
Royal Mountain Ski Area Caroga Lake – 1¼ hours; skiing/snowboarding
Sawkill Family Ski Center Kingston – 1¼ hours; skiing/snowboarding, tubing
Ski Bousquet Pittsfield, MA– 1½ hours; skiing/snowboarding, tubing, night
Tubby Tubes Co. Lake Luzerne, near Lake George – 1¼ hour; tubing
West Mountain Queensbury, near Glens Falls – 1 hour; skiing/snowboarding, tubing, night
Willard Mountain Greenwich, east of Saratoga – 1 hour; skiing/snowboarding, tubing
Windham MountainWindham, west of Hudson – 1½ hours; skiing/snowboarding, tubing, night, adaptive

Have another link we’d like to know about?  Email me, please:

The * means that they do birthday parties.  I’ve probably missed that some other places listed here also do birthday parties, but if I try to double check it all now, I will go nutty.

There are some places that are wonderful, but they don’t have a decent website.  There are some websites that are helpful, but they are either too obvious or broad for me to include here.