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Fun places for teenagers to hang out

Updated July 20, 2017

Parents' ideas of fun teenage activities and teenagers' ideas don't always mesh, but there are plenty of safe, fun activities that both groups will endorse. As your kids age, "family friendly" takes on a new meaning. Just because your teens can drive themselves to go out with friends doesn't mean they don't need suggestions on what to do, so offer help if they are amenable.

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Many museums around the country have special programming for teens. The Museum of Modern Art, in midtown Manhattan, has a free Friday night program that includes pizza, movies and talks with artists. All you need to get in is a valid high school ID. Get free pizza at 4 p.m. on every Friday during the school year; movies or artist talks begin at 4:45 p.m.

Music Clubs

Kids who like to dance can find some clubs that allow entry to teens who are 18 and older. They usually get a hand stamp to show that they are not allowed to drink. Arena Nightclub, in Los Angeles, California, admits teens who are 18 and older. Be sure to bring identification. The club has different music each night, with dance parties on Tuesdays and Hip Hop and R&B on Wednesdays. There is a dress code; "dress to impress."

Universal City Walk

Universal City Walk is a free area outside Universal's theme parks in Orlando, Florida. The area has a separate nightclub section where you have to be 21 to enter, but the traffic-free City Walk has music, restaurants and shopping. There is also a 20-screen cinema and a comedy club. The basketball-themed restaurant NBA City has a regulation half-court and video games.

Dave & Buster's

Dave & Buster's is an upscale video arcade with a restaurant and bar where teens can spend their quarters, and dollars, on classic and action games. Each of the 55 Dave & Buster's in the United States has hundreds of games, plus a Winner's Circle where you can cash in tickets for prizes. Billiards and table shuffleboard offer quieter games. You can usually buy game cards for Dave & Buster's at a discount, and some nights offer half-price games.

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About the Author

Judy Antell was the editor of Big Apple Parent for 13 years and continues to write for the monthly publication. Antell has been published in "The New York Times," "Parents" magazine and on numerous websites. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature and a Master of Arts degree in literature and drama from Washington University.

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