Weekend Fun: Frozen Sing-Along, Monster Jam, Fire & Ice Festival

The weather for the weekend ahead is looking mild, so take advantage of this break from the winter freeze and enjoy the outdoors. Learn how to tap a maple tree at Reeves-Reed Arboretum, wassail the apple trees at Terhune Orchards, celebrate Groundhog Day (a few days early) at the Stony Brook Millstone Watershed Reserve, or head to downtown Mt. Holly for the Fire & Ice Festival

On Sunday, Disney fans can sing along with Anna and Elsa at bergenPAC's Frozen Sing-Along or check out a production of Beauty and the Beast Jr. at the Count Basie Theatre. Monster truck aficionados can cheer on battling vehicles at Monster Jam, and train lovers won't want to miss the last weekend of the annual Antique Toy Train Show in Deptford. 

Check out our Guide to Indoor Play Spaces for more options for weekend family fun, or take a mini vacation at an indoor water park. And look to our event calendar and January GoList for a complete listing of happenings this weekend and beyond.

Best Indoor Play Spots for Toddlers and Preschoolers in Manhattan

The playground isn't always an option for keeping antsy little New Yorkers (and the grown-up variety) busy. When the weather turns and the stir-craziness sets in, it's time to search out indoor options that are not your apartment. 

After finding myself searching for indoor play options a few too many times, I'm offering my mom-tested picks for the top spots for the toddler-and-preschool set in Manhattan. None of these places—kid gyms, museums, and even atriums—require a membership, and all will help you, your little one, and, most importantly, your apartment survive a long, cold winter or rainy day.

Read on for a dozen of the best places to play with your preschooler in Manhattan, including FREE spots.

10 of the Best Family-Friendly Museums on Long Island

Few things are better for parents than introducing children to culture while also having some fun. Luckily for us, Long Island is home to a host of museums that cater to a younger crowd. In fact, many of these sites offer hands-on, interactive exhibits and activities that can be enjoyed by children of all ages.

From air and space to science and trains, these spots offer special exhibits and programs to keep children engaged, entertained, and educated. So why not visit? In the meantime, scope out some more fun in our Guide to Indoor Play Spaces on Long Island as well as our Event Calendar. And our museums guide offers the complete lowdown on Long Island planetariums, science centers, historic sites, and more.

31 Things To Do in Gowanus, Brooklyn with Kids

Sandwiched between the famously family-friendly enclaves of BoCoCa and Park Slope, Gowanus is holding its own in terms of cool hangouts and play spaces for kids. With the promise of a $500 million Superfund cleanup of its odoriferous waterway, the area is transforming from an industrial pass-through to a destination in its own right, complete with new condo development. Following in the footsteps of nearby Red Hook, warehouses have become art houses, and boutiques and restaurants are opening up left and right. Mixed-use buildings are providing more residential options than ever, so it's no surprise that this Brooklyn neighborhood is attracting young families in droves.

Gowanus spans the area from Baltic Street to the north and the Gowanus Expressway to the south, Fourth Avenue to the east, and Smith and Hoyt Streets to the west. Despite all the development in this formerly industrial neighborhood, Gowanus maintains its status as a hotbed for artists, makers, and entrepreneurs. Easily accessible by subway, and walking distance from the Barclays Center, the area is exploding with activities for families and kids of all ages. Enjoy an ice cream cone, explore the art scene, or get busy creating in the up-and-coming 'hood.

Getting Started with Ice Hockey: Classes and Leagues at Rinks around LA and the Valley

Playing hockey on the local pond? Yeah, that'll happen when the Valley freezes over. But just because our kids can't go out back to hit a puck around like their snow-bound counterparts on the East Coast doesn't mean they can't get the ice time to pursue their Olympic hockey dreams -- the LA area produces some of the top figure skaters and hockey players in the country. Here are some top spots for kids to hit the ice and hone their hockey technique.

Houston's Newest Indoor Playground Makes Us Say 'Hooray'

Every mom can agree that having a good go-to indoor playspace can be a lifesaver when you need to get out of the house, but not necessarily outdoors. However, as the mom of two kids that fall into very different categories on the developmental spectrum, it is surprisingly hard to find playspaces that cater to both of my kids' age groups within the same space. More commonly, there are two entirely separate areas for the babies/young toddlers and the older toddlers/little kids, making it impossible to keep an eye on both kids if I let my youngest play. Houston's newest indoor playground just opened in Katy, and it did not disappoint. Read on to get the inside scoop on Hooray

10 Must-See Exhibits at Boston's Museum of Science

The Museum of Science is a paradise for pretty much any curious kid, which is why, in a city packed with brainy attractions, the MOS is probably our crown jewel. Many of the exhibits are specifically aimed at children, with lots of opportunities for fun and hands-on learning, but parents are certain to learn something new when visiting the MOS. The catch: With 130,000 square feet of exhibit halls, it's nearly impossible to soak up every part of the museum, so it's best to go with a game plan in mind. While not every family is going to agree on their favorites, we're pretty certain you can't go wrong by hitting these highlights—none of which, by the way, require extra money beyond regular admission fees. 

Hands On Philly: 8 Philly Spaces Where Kids Can Touch Things

Let's face it, kids can sometimes be a little crazy- especially when you've been cooped up in the house for too long. But sometimes, when kids have too much energy they just want to grab and touch EVERYTHING. So, where can you go? We've rounded up some great Philly play areas and museums where kids can go nuts and touch anything they want, and you don't have to worry about it!

The best part of some of Philly’s museums and venues is the freedom. There are plenty of great options where kids can roam free and get really interactive!

The Liberty Science Center Celebrates 25 Years With Exciting Changes

It's no wonder Liberty Science Center has become a New Jersey mainstay for nearby parents and kiddos. Did you know the 300,000-square-foot educational center on the Jersey City bank of the Hudson is already celebrating 25 years of non-stop learning, playing, and exploration on January 23rd? And the much-loved museum isn't letting this major milestone pass by quietly either. Instead, it's rolling out a whole slew of improvements, entirely new exhibitions, and exciting upcoming events.


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