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CRUISE THE HUDSON - WESTCHESTER

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by Julie Ruggiero

Related: boat ride, Hudson River, Family fun, New York Water Taxi, wildlife, Palisades,


Find the top things to do this month with kids in the NYC area in our Calendar of Events

   You're sipping hot apple cider, munching on gourmet donuts, and taking in the beauty of the colorful trees along the Hudson River. And your kids? They're having fun and learning at the same time. Sound too good to be true? It's not, because on November 2, the New York Water Taxi hosted its first-ever Hudson Hues, a brand new tour of the Hudson River exclusively developed with Westchester residents in mind.
   The Hudson River Valley has one of the highest concentrations of historic landmarks in the country. Along the three-hour tour, which went all the way to the Bear Mountain Bridge and back, an interpreter guided passengers through the history of the region, and pointed out the tributaries and creeks that fed into the river, the wildlife, and of course, the amazing fall foliage on both shores. As the boat passed under each bridge and saw Amtrak and Metro North trains zip by, kids learned about the Indian tribes that once lived there, photosynthesis and wildlife, and the importance that commerce played in the 1920's and 30's. Part of the tour addressed plans for daylighting, or uncovering, the Saw Mill River that is currently piped underground. This unearthing will re-energize the river and nearby parks and estuaries.
   Those who arrived early at the Recreation Pier in Yonkers, where the boat boarded, made a full day out of it. The last remaining Victorian site of its kind on the Hudson River, the Yonkers Recreation Pier offered a panoramic view of the valley, with a variety of restaurants and shops, and the Palisades as backdrop, downtown Yonkers was better than it has ever been.
   Onboard, passengers had the option to sit inside in a temperature-controlled environment or go to the top deck. The New York Water Taxi was equipped with a hospital grade muffler system that allowed passengers to talk to neighbors without competing with engine noise. The boat was also environmentally sensitive, even those with weak stomachs didn't feel any motion. At the end of the trip, every family was given a souvenir goody bag to remember the experience. What better way to have spent an autumn Sunday! For more info, 212-742-1969 ext 0; www.nywatertaxi.com.

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