Are you a new mom that struggles to find local activities for your little one? Have you tried looking online but haven’t found one comprehensive, clear and concise calendar for your specific area of Brooklyn? As a mom of a 3 year old, these struggles are very recent memories for me. Although this information is all available online on several different sites, there hasn’t been one dedicated place where parents can search activities by neighborhood. Until now….(drumroll please)… meet Denise Clay, a mom of a 2 year old boy, a patient of Dr. Cao’s, and co-founder of the exciting brand-new website, www.skipkid.com!!!
SSP: Denise, what is your background, and how did SkipKid come to be?
I’m a psychotherapist and my SkipKid partner, Callie, is a writer. We met when our now 2 year olds were only a couple of weeks old and we became instant friends.
SkipKid is really an example of how necessity breeds ingenuity — ultimately, the site is the resource we most felt was missing when our children were very young. We had several frustrating experiences of logging on to sites claiming to feature “local activities” only to find that the events were several neighborhoods away or that the event information was outdated. We’ve spent the last year developing the site and are hopeful that SkipKid will change the way parents and caregivers organize their days and participate in their communities.
SSP: Can you please tell us a little bit about SkipKid and how it works?
SkipKid is a mobile website featuring a comprehensive list of drop-in activities throughout Brooklyn—sortable by neighborhood—for children ages zero to four. Our goal was to make SkipKid as user friendly as possible — as a result, users can access the site from their computers or mobile devices (smart phones or tablets). There is a drop-down menu on our home page that allows users to select a neighborhood and find a complete list of local drop-in activities. Users can filter in additional neighborhoods as well.
SSP: What is the purpose/goal of the site?
We hope to help parents and caregivers structure their days more efficiently while building community relationships in the process. We don’t want others to feel the same frustration we felt when trying to organize their days with their little ones; we hope that SkipKid will eliminate some of the stress involved with getting out the door. When our children were very young, we didn’t even know where to begin — what was there to do with a three-month old? Now parents can check SkipKid and find out.
SSP: What makes SkipKid different from other Brooklyn-based kid-activity websites?
Many sites say they focus on local events, but we actually mean it!
As all new parents and caregivers well know, little ones require a lot of scheduling, and optimizing the window of time between naps, feedings, etc, requires careful planning. SkipKid helps parents and caregivers find activities that are walkable or within their own neighborhoods, which is different from existing sites that tend to list activities by borough. When you live in Park Slope and you have only a couple of hours to get out of the house, it isn’t actually helpful to know that there’s a sing-along happening in Williamsburg, or vice versa. We created SkipKid with this in mind, which is why we structured the site with a specific focus on neighborhoods. Moreover, we aim to have a complete list of activities–not simply events at the big-name venues like the Brooklyn Zoo and the Brooklyn Children’s Museum, but the tiny neighborhood venues with sing-alongs and puppet shows. We want to build community by bringing people together in at their own neighborhood shops.
SSP: How does one submit an event to your site?
There’s a “contact us” button on our homepage, or users can email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are doing our best to keep everything up-to-date and current, and definitely want to know about any new and upcoming drop-in events and drop-in classes!
SSP: Is there a way for someone to get updates on new events as they are added (if we forget to go online)?
SSP: Does SkipKid currently have pages on social media, and what can we find there?
SSP: What’s next for SkipKid? Any new features planned for the future?
Callie and I are both due with our second children in the next couple of months…so the SkipKid family will be growing. After that, we plan to expand the site to cover Manhattan neighborhoods as well as other boroughs and cities. We also hope to create new events. We can see where there are holes in the schedule, so to speak–Park Slope might have 5 sing-alongs on Tuesday at 10 AM, but nothing on Thursday at 4 PM. We want to help fill these gaps.
SSP: Is there anything else you’d like the readers to know?
We really welcome feedback! Feel free to drop us a line and let us know what you think about the site or let us know if there are any events we’re missing – we’d love to hear from you!
Finally an easy-to-navigate Brooklyn kids activity-based website for all of us moms, dads and caregivers out there. Covering 20 Brooklyn neighborhoods and featuring over 900 regularly scheduled and special events, there is a plethora of information now available at our fingertips. No more wasting our precious free time, looking through so many outdated calendars or filtering through events throughout the entire borough of Brooklyn to find those local to you and your family. And as Denise mentioned, make sure to sign up for your daily updates and newsletter so you don’t miss anything!