Spring Break Mini-Trips


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The West Essex Trail runs from Verona to Little Falls

Back during Verona’s winter break, we gave you ideas for a few day trips and long weekends. Some of those options, like skiing and the Titanic and Leonardo Da Vinci exhibits, are gone. But several of our earlier ideas are still viable options.

Like the Liberty Science Center, Crayola Factory and New York Hall of Science. The Math Midway exhibit at NYSCI has closed, but its many permanent exhibits remain and, if the weather improves later in the week, its Science Playground will be open. What’s that? A way for kids to explore a variety of scientific principles by running, jumping and climbing. New York City kids have already had their spring break, so you could have the place to yourself. NYSCI is located close to the old Shea Stadium, an easy 1-hour trip when commuters aren’t on the road.

For Crayola, head in the opposite direction, out route 78 and over the bridge to Easton, Pa. Again, it will take about an hour. Despite the name, this is not the original Crayola factory, though the company did make its crayons in Pennsylvania for many years. Crayola is closed on Mondays until Memorial Day, but is open Tuesday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday 9:30 to 5 and Sunday from noon to 5.

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Liberty Science Center is open on Mondays, and every day of the week. No new special exhibits at the moment, but all the permanent displays are open. And with many of the schools in our area in session and occupied with testing, you could catch a break and find LSC relatively crowd free. If you want to make a day of it, pack the bikes and let the kids ride on the Liberty Park trails nearby. They are completely flat and free of traffic, and you get a great view of Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. If you want to get even closer, LSC offers a combo ticket that includes a boat tour of the harbor island attractions.

If you haven’t yet experienced the Edison Museum since its renovation, make time to go to West Orange this week. The kids get to understand what music was like before the iPod and you get to see one of the greatest idea labs ever created. The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Kids are free and adult tickets are just $7, and parking is free too.

Even before the sun comes back later this week, there are some outdoor options. The old railroad line known as the West Essex Trail is hikable and bikable even in drippy weather. Eagle Rock Reservation is another great choice for hiking, and if you’re coming back from the Edison Museum, turn in at the Highlawn Pavilion entrance and start the trail from that direction.

Coming soon: New mini-trip options.

Home page photo by Courtney Bolton via Flickr, Creative Commons license

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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected]


  1. We’re headed to the Crayola factory tomorrow- a surprise for the kids. After that- our first trip “down the shore” on Thursday if it gets as warm and nice as it’s supposed to. No need to hit the water- a picnic on an empty beach and plenty of room to run is what we’re looking for!


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