Over eight years ago, we moved to the Financial District when our first-born, O, was five-months old. Before moving to the Financial District, we were living in a beautiful, 1-bedroom, walk-up in a brownstone apartment in Chelsea. Unfortunately, the combination of a walk-up apartment + 1-bedroom + 1 newborn baby did not equal to a comfortable living space.
At that time in 2003, we decided to move down to the Financial District because there were still rental apartments that had great deals because of 9/11. We found a great elevator building with space for two-bedrooms. At the time, the area was still unchartered territory. We were definitely pioneers. Just to illustrate how uncrowded it was eight years ago, the Financial District was still zoned for PS234; now there are four new schools that have been created to help with the growing population of elementary school kids in Lower Manhattan. Simply put, It wasn’t as family friendly as it is now. In 2009, six years after we moved, The New York Times wrote an article called The Financial District Attracts Families. The article states, “In less than a decade, the area has evolved from a place dominated by young finance workers in their first rental apartments to one filled with young couples buying their first homes and starting families.”
It still has taken a while for companies to come around to the fact that the Financial District has become the Diaper District. When O was a baby, we had to lug uptown to purchase any baby accessories like strollers, bath-tubs, and car-seats, which was a big pain…since traveling anywhere with a new-born was quite harrowing to a new mom.
Welcome to 2012 and the Financial District has officially become the Diaper District. J&R, the electronics and computer store, has opened up J&R Jr. on its second floor. This division of J&R has its Grand Opening on February 11, and will provide the best in baby gear, kids electronics, toys, and developmental classes. My family and I were invited to a preview launch party of J&R Jr. by MomTrends and KidzVuz and were excited to welcome the latest addition to Lower Manhattan.
Families downtown are going to be super excited with the selection of product that J&R Jr. has. They have products for kids 0 to 9 years old from strollers to sippy cups to Sonicare(R) toothbrushes! They have an amazing toy selection – perfect for those last-minute birthday parties.
What our girls loved the most was that they had a HUGE arts and crafts section carrying big brands such as Alex(R) and Melissa & Doug. Drawing, glueing, cutting and creating is what they love to do, so when they saw the Alex(R) table at the party, they went straight to it.
For the young families, they have a HUGE selection of strollers, exersaucers, diaper bags (even manly ones for dad!), and all things for the new baby. Definitely something I wish I had access to 8 years ago when O was born, or even 4 years ago when S was born! You’ll be able to find everything here. And for those families traveling to NYC, and you’ve forgotten something, no need to travel far, just come down to J&R Jr. and I am positive that they’ll have what you are looking for.
For the older set, there are a products like books and electronic games. I do hope that they will continue to build out their selection for the older ones, such as a larger selection of books and electronic toys so that our 8-year-old won’t age out of J&R Jr.!
As if all of that isn’t enough, J&R Jr. has teamed up with MoonSoup, an early childhood development center, that will be housed in J&R Jr.’s second floor as well. Moonsoup has creative, enrichment music and art classes for Babies, toddlers, and pre-schoolers. They are offering a free trial class and if you sign up for classes before February 19th, you receive 20% off.
For J&R Jr.’s Grand Opening on February 11th – 12th, They are having a 2-Day Kidstravaganza packed with free musical performances by top acts like Laurie Berkner, The Dirty Socks Band, Dan Zanes and more. There will also be visits from magicians, princesses and giveaways! Make sure to arrive early for the performances, as space is limited. For those families living above Chambers Street, J&R Jr. is offering FREE Shuttle buses to get you downtown for the Kidstravaganza. More information for shuttle bus and locations here.
J&R Jr. is located at One Park Row, 2nd floor.
MoonSoup is located within J&R Jr. at One Park Row, 2nd Floor