Kids are innate animal lovers—we bet all parents go through that phase when they're convinced their child is going to grow up to be a veterinarian. But in wintertime when all living things in New York City seem to be hibernating, it's tough to indulge kids' craving for creatures beyond the ever-present subway rats. And who wants to pet one of those?! That's why we rounded up the best places to get up close and personal with animals in cozy, indoor environments. Here's where you can hang with cool cats, beautiful birds and butterflies, and even "adopt" a critter without ever having to take it home.
My kids have been counting down to their February break from school since the end of their holiday break. If your kids have been doing the same, and if you're planning on staying close to home, a mini-camp might be the way to go.
Westchester is full of choices including several great options for your budding Picasso. We've rounded up some art-themed mini-camps that still have openings to keep you're little ones engaged and having fun all week long. And be sure to sign up for our FREE newsletters to stay up to date on the latest events, classes, news and more happening in Westchester, and follow us on Facebook.
This post is sponsored by Play Fair.
Imagine a place where all the world's toy makers get together to show off the brand new, not-on-the-shelves-yet toys they've invented to wow children of all ages. Sounds like heaven for kids, doesn't it? That's what Toy Fair is, but until now it's always been a strictly business, adults-only event. Well, all that's about to change with Play Fair, an awesome, two day toy fair especially for kids and families. On February 13 and 14, at the Javits Center, families can check out all the latest games and toys, plus tons of live entertainment and some special appearances. Toy Fair may just be the closest thing to a Willie Wonka world for toy-loving kids.
Did the recent snow days bring on cabin fever in your home? Get ready for more time off in February. Most New Jersey schools are closed for President’s Day, some longer- even the whole week! We’ve already brought you drop-off options for February break. Now we’ve gathered even more activities to keep the little ones busy, and your own sanity in check, on these wintery days off from school.
Preschool favorite Peppa Pig is making her U.S. theatrical debut in life-size puppet form as Peppa Pig’s Big Splash tours the country, hitting 90 cities, including Downtown LA this month. Our NYC Editor caught the show in New Jersey and offers us a sneak preview:
If you have a preschooler or toddler at home, you likely know all about Peppa Pig, her snorting family and their love of muddy puddles. The British-accented pink pig plays on Nick Jr., and ahem, YouTube, on a loop in many a tot’s house, entertaining kids with simple graphics and wholesome themes. You can expect the same from the musical Big Splash, including plenty of Daddy Pig antics, games involving brother George and sightings of Peppa’s friendly pals: Pedro Pony, Danny Dog and Suzy Sheep.
Given the STEM movement in education and the always popular “Make Your Own” or DIY birthday party theme, it’s no surprise that girls and boys are requesting robotics-fueled shindigs with their friends. At a robotics party, kids construct their own models—sometimes in 3D—that move and roll while also learning about the mechanics behind it all.
Wait a second—parties that are both fun and educational? What’s not to love? We rounded up of some of the top kid spots in New York City that offer robotics birthdays, where creativity—and sometimes little robotics creatures themselves—run wild.
Check out our NYC Kids' Birthday Party Guide for more inspiration.
When it comes to indoor play spaces, Brooklyn can't be beat. While both Manhattan and Queens have about a dozen drop-in indoor playgrounds apiece, Brooklyn boasts nearly two dozen places where kids can run amok. While we've include a couple of the more mellow tot spots with crafts or storytelling, this best of Brooklyn list is focused on the real active play spaces where toddlers, preschoolers and even tweens can conquer multi-level mazes, swoosh down slides, climb up rock walls or, you know, turn around in circles until they fall down exhausted and ready for a nap.
Read on for 21 drop-in indoor romper rooms for kids in Brooklyn.
If winter happens to be your favorite time of year, it is your lucky weekend! There are plenty of family-fun events happening that celebrate this chilly, snowy time of year. Wagner Free Institute of Science's Winter Wonderland and Briar Bush Nature Center's WinterFest both offer seasonal crafts, games, and activities for families. Nature-loving visitors to Riverbend Environmental Education Center can explore the outdoors during cold winter months at its Winter Trek. Or, incorporate a history lesson into the mix at Valley Forge National Historic Park's Join the Continental Army experience.
On the other hand, consider sharing a cultural experience with your kids this weekend. Many museums throughout the Philadelphia area are celebrating Chinese New Year. Consider visiting Garden State Discovery Museum, Independence Seaport Museum, or Philadelphia Museum of Art for a variety of festivities welcoming the Year of the Monkey.
After spending time enjoying winter activities or museums, check out our Events Calendar as the spring consignment sales are starting to pop up. New information is constantly being updated to our entire list so be sure to check back often. Have a great weekend!