I would suggest that you look at the Meade ETX series of telescopes. Meade is well known for the quality of their optics. For a $1000 you can get a ETX 125 with a camera mount. The ETX series is very compact so it is easy to take it with you. With a little practice you can have it setup up less than 10 minutes. The performance is incredible given the scopes size and it has an autoseek feature that will slew the scope to items of interest.
If you have never been exposed to astronomy you may want to contact a local astronomy club and attend a meet, preferably a "dark sky" meet. They will have a number of scopes there and you can "sample" the different types. Bring the kid with you. Amature Astronomers *LOVE* to introduce the young'uns to their favorite past time. In many respects they are as rabid about their scopes as we are about our Glocks