As a parent, you take the salty (tears from bee stings) with the sweet (drips from ice cream cones). Here’s where to take them for a summer treat.
Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream
Why You’ll Try It: The creamy ice cream takes the cone to an ethereal level, pleasing little palates with subtle vanilla and strawberry flavors, and sophisticates with gianduja (a chocolate-hazelnut combo). (Cups & cones, $4-$7; hand-packed pints, $8.)
Why You’ll Go Back: A portion of profits goes to Wildlife Direct, an organization that protects endangered species.
Where You Find It: 632 Manhattan Avenue, between Bedford and Nassau Streets, Greenpoint (718-701-1630).
Why You’ll Try It: Two words — fried dough.
Why You’ll Go Back: Seventeen fillings like peanut butter, chocolate, and strawberry jam. Plus, 25 gelato flavors, panini, and killer iced coffee. (Bomboloni, $1.25 each, $12 per dozen; gelato, $4-$16.)
Where You Find It: 187 Columbus Avenue, at 68th Street (212-877-3080).
Why You’ll Try It: The minicakes trump traditional cupcakes any day.
Why You’ll Go Back: Creamy frosting on top and in the middle, plus edible sugar butterfly toppers. (Minicakes, $4.25 each.)
Where You Find It: Limelight Marketplace, Sixth Avenue, at 20th Street (212-686-2253).
Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain
Why You’ll Try It: The soon-to-open spot’s signature egg cream — that unique-to-NYC mix of milk, vanilla or chocolate syrup, and seltzer.
Why You’ll Go Back: Kids will love the old-fashioned soda fountain and game room in the back of the shop.
Where You Find It: 513 Henry Street, at Sackett Street, Carroll Gardens (718-522-6260).
Cake & Shake
Why You’ll Try It: The bakery cart has creative cupcakes (the Yummy Nut is peanut butter cake with banana mousse and milk chocolate frosting) and delish milk shakes. (Cupcakes, $3; shakes, $5.)
Why You’ll Go Back: Kids can decorate the cart with dry-erase markers before heading to the playground.
Where You Find It: Washington Square Park, University Place, at Waverly Place.
Ditch Plains Drop In
Why You’ll Try It: Chef Marc Murphy’s (Landmarc, Ditch Plains) famous Ditch Dogs, lobster rolls, and Ditch’Wich ice cream sandwiches are up for grabs at the soon-to-open spot.
Why You’ll Go Back: The Kid’s Lunch Box (sandwich, drink, veggie sticks, and a special “surfer snack”) makes for the perfect picnic. (Ditch Dog, $4; lobster roll, $12; Kid’s Lunch Box, $6.)
Where You Find It: Pier 1, Brooklyn Bridge Park, Dumbo.
Governors Island Reopens
What: Take your bikes over on the ferry (or rent them there) and explore five miles of beautiful trails.
Why: The Water Taxi Beach, interactive sculpture garden and minigolf course, and fun food options are all worth the trip.
When: Thru Oct. 10. Fri., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sat. & Sun., 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Where: Ferries leave from the Battery Maritime Building, 10 South St., at Whitehall St. Ferry schedule online at govisland.com. Admission is free.
Big Apple Barbecue Block Party
What: The nation’s top pit masters grill while you and your little biscuits chill to live music.
Why: Taste the best ribs, brisket, and pulled pork this side of the Mason-Dixon Line.
When: Sat. & Sun., 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Where: Madison Square Park, Madison Ave., b/t 23rd & 27th Sts. Info at 646-747-0584. $8 per plate.
Centennial Bee-Day Party
What: Celebrate the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s 100th birthday at this festival full of beehives, honey-making, and live music.
Why: Kids get busy with hands-on activities like puppets.
When: Sat., noon-6 p.m.
Where: 900 Washington Ave., Prospect Heights (718-623-7200). Admission is free.
Photos: Courtesy of Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream; Courtesy of Butterfly Bakeshop; Courtesy of Ditch Plains Drop In