Father's Day Weekend for Westchester Kids: Festivals, Amazing Max, June 18-19

It’s time for Dad’s special day, and a special celebration is in order. View our roundups of Father's Day fun in Westchester and the Lower Hudson Valley for ideas for ways to honor Dad, Grandpa and the other special father figures in your life.

Three different towns happen to be celebrating community pride with day-long festivals that offer the likes of performances, trolley tours, food and more. Of these, the Newburgh Illuminated Festival is on the grandest scale, with hoop dancing, yoga, a children’s area, more than 40 bands over 10 hours and lots more.

Another common theme this weekend is international culture. Ethnic festivals include the colorful Yonkers Ukrainian Heritage Festival, and a performance of music from around the globe is in store at the FREE Music Under the Stars.

Back by popular demand is The Amazing Max, whose talents have caught the attention of The Huffington Post and PBS Kids. For 18th-century fun, try New Windsor Cantonment State Historic Site Children’s Day.

Read on for all of our top picks and sign up for our FREE weekly newsletters if you don't already receive them. Don't forget: Our Event Calendar has even more options to choose from, and check out our top picks for the remainder of June.

Happy Father’s Day!

Father's Day Weekend Fun for LI Kids: Daddy & Me Brunch, Painting, June 18-19

This Father's Day weekend make dad the center of attention. Whether it's a Daddy & Me Painting session, Daddy & Me Brunch, Building a Boat with Dad or celebrating Father's Day in Flight with an aviation craft, there's plenty to do, see, eat and create.

Remember, you can find even more options in our jam-packed Event Calendar and our Summer Fun Guide, plus great ways to celebrate dad in our Father's Day roundup. To receive our posts in your inbox, subscribe to our free newsletters.

Father's Day Weekend: Mermaid Parade, Brick Fest, Superheroes

Dad's the king on Sunday, but families can celebrate Father's Day in NYC all weekend long with a wide variety of fun family outings. Choices for Saturday include Coney Island's iconic Mermaid Parade, Hunts Point's similar but smaller Fish Parade and Summer Festival and the extreme sports fest Adventures NYC in Central Park. On Sunday, catch free music and dance performances at SummerStage Family Day in Red Hook or the cultural mash-up Eggcream, Egg Rolls and Empanadas on the Lower East Side. Play with Legos at the New York Hall of Science's epic Brick Fest, or enjoy superhero-themed activities at Brooklyn Children's Museum. Plus, a pair of seasonal performance series kick off in Central Park, and the Parks Department holds its lottery for free summer swimming lessons.

These are just a few of the great things going on this Father's Day weekend. All of our best bets are below. You can find additional options in our Event Calendar, our Summer Fun Guide and our other article outlining 25 Ideas for Celebrating Father's Day in NYC.

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there!

4th of July Fireworks In and Around Philly

Nothing says Independence Day like a great fireworks display. Philadelphia knows how to celebrate the birth of America. Start with what's being billed as the largest free concert in the United States with Party on the Parkway, where part of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway will be shut down and a lineup of great bands will play before a spectacular fireworks display above the Philadelphia Museum of Art. If being one of the thousands celebrating in the streets isn't your idea of a perfect 4th of July, there's a spectrum of events in many of the suburban towns around Philly like the Narberth Fourth of July Celebration and Fireworks. Whether enjoying a local band and fireworks in your nearby park or joining the throngs on the Museum Mile, don't forget to bring your chairs, blankets, coolers with snacks, and a few activities to keep the kids entertained until the sky turns dark.  

Father's Day Weekend: Cars, Cockpits, Festivals, and a Stampede, June 18-19

It's here! It's here!! Put on your sun hat and officially welcome summer and everything it brings: family cookouts, fairs and carnivals, beach outings, park adventures, pick-your-own fruit, and time spent by the water. School vacation has begun and Sunday is Father's Day, so there's lots to celebrate this weekend and plenty of free opportunities to do so. 

If your family is looking to dote on dad, check out our roundups of Father’s Day fun in Connecticut and also specifically in the Hartford area. A Father's Day Barbecue Picnic at Lyman Orchards, open cockpit tours at the New England Air Museum and East Haven trolley rides are just some of the activities on tap. Of course, who doesn't like food? The New England Food Truck Affair in Guilford is sure to satisfy. 

If you're headed to a big city, let our regional Boston and New York City sites help you make the most of your trip.

For more ideas throughout the state, be sure to check out our Event Calendar. And if you're still figuring out summer, peruse our list of camps with availability or our Summer Fun Guide. To keep up with everything happening in CT, subscribe to our free newsletters, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Father's Day Weekend in NJ: Trains, Fishing, Ponies, Berries

Time to celebrate that special guy in your life, whether it's dad, grandpa or another person you hold near and dear! New Jersey is always bursting with fun during the month of June and Father's Day weekend is no exception. Celebrate dad with a Father's Day necktie craft at Imagine That! Children's Museum, a Father's Day Excursion Train Ride at Whippany Railway Museum or the Freshwater Fishing Derby for the whole gang at Turkey Swamp Park. For more family fun, round up the troops for the Strawberry Harvest Festival at Alstede farms, the Pony Up! Festival at the United States Equestrian Headquarters or bring your blankets and cozy up during an outdoor Play in the Park performance of The Little Mermaid.

For more options, take a look at our full Event CalendarJune GoList, and our Summer Fun Guide.

Best Spray Parks and Water Fountains for Preschoolers in Boston

Boston has a lot of cool fountains that can be great fun for families in summer. But I've learned the hard way that not every fountain is suited for preschoolers. 

A few years back, when one of my sons was 4, I took him and his brothers to the Christian Science Plaza fountain along Huntington Avenue. To me as a parent, it was a wise selection: awesome fountain, I didn't have to walk far from the parking spot, and bathrooms were nearby in the Prudential Center. But my 4-year-old kid was horrified by the fountain and how big it was. It took him a half hour to even wander up to the where the water shot out of the ground, and soon after he got soaked and was freezing. It was not the best choice for a young child. 

With that thinking in mind, here are some gentler, preschooler-friendly fountains and spray parks in Boston:

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