Weekday Picks for Boston Kids: Monsters, Butterflies, New Zoo, August 29-September 2

I don't know about you, but I can't believe my kids are going back to school already this week. They can't believe it either, especially since it still feels so much like summer. So before the homework piles on, I'm planning on using this week to ease into school with as much fun as we can manage. There's still time to catch one of the local free outdoor movies, stop by a festival, or hit the beach one last time.

There's also some excitement going on at Franklin Park Zoo this week, with the opening of the new children's zoo that features four diverse ecosystem "neighborhoods," including a new home for the adorable red pandas (pictured). It's a good week to volunteer as a family, too, with a special opportunity to help out at the Greenway's butterfly garden. Besides all these great picks, be sure to keep your eye on the full Event Calendar for other fun upcoming events.

Weekday Fun: Fireworks, Human Chess, Star Wars, Kids' Concert

With just one final full week before NYC kids head back to school, we're planning on soaking up all the final summer fun we can, especially the FREE and outdoor variety. This week visit Riverside Park for a game of human chess, catch the final fireworks show on the Coney Island boardwalk, or enjoy an outdoor concert by local kiddie rockers Rolie Polie Guacamole at the Brooklyn Public Library. Before they close for the season, hit a sprinkler at a favorite playground, or head to a local beach, water playground, or outdoor pool for a non-crowded weekday visit. (Don't forget: Many NYC beaches and public pools will stay open an extra week past Labor Day this year.) 

Other ideas to wrap up summer include roughing it on a family camping trip, traveling back in time at the New York Renaissance Faire, one last FREE kayak in NYC waterways, outdoor movie, or getting ready for back-to-school with our Summer Slide Busters guide. If you are preparing to start your preschool search, our New York City Preschool Listings and Guide is a great resource. Consider a boat ride to round out summer vacation, or even a visit to a new neighborhood like the Long Island City waterfront or the activity-packed borough of Staten Island.

As always, you can find great ideas for the week on our Summer Bucket List, or our always-packed Event Calendar.

Weekday Picks for Philly Kids: Outdoors, Museums, Movies, August 29- September 2

By the end of August, Philly parents may be feeling conflicted. One part yearns for the structure and routine that the school year provides. The other part wants to soak up every remaining bit of summertime fun. Whether your kiddos are getting back on a schedule or you have one more week of freedom, our Events Calendar can provide many way to spend your time.

Explore the exhibits at the Delaware Museum of Natural History during its Two Dollar Tuesdays. Wander through the fairy garden at Winterthur as it hosts Terrific Tuesdays. Cool off with a visit to your local library and create a novel, read to a dog, listen to a story, or play a game of chess. Gather some friends and escape to the bowling alley. End the day by watching the stars in the summer sky at Green Lane Park, seeing a free movie at The Dell Music Center, or checking out West Chester's Swingin' Summer Thursdays.

Continue reading for our top picks for the week. Narrow down your options searching by age, location, and type of activity. Enjoy!

Things to Do in Silicon Valley: A Kid’s Guide to Tech and Science Fun

“What would you do with kids in Silicon Valley?,” people asked me when they heard we were planning on spending a few weeks there this summer. Sure, the nerd capitol of America doesn’t sound that thrilling at first. But just as we have to thank the geeks and nerds for bringing us great stuff like the smart phone, the internet and Pokemon Go!, having all those squares concentrated in one place means San Jose, Palo Alto, and the surrounding towns are jam-packed with some pretty awesome stuff for those of us who appreciate the geekier side of life.

Whether your family members are true technology buffs or just love a good science museum, there’s loads of fun from Santa Cruz to Palo Alto to get your geek on. Here are the top things to do in Silicon Valley for science and technology-loving kids:

 

25 Things To Do in Provincetown With Kids

Cape Cod is a classic summer destination for Boston families, but getting there can mean hours spent in the car. Not so if you head to Provincetown at the very end of the Cape—taking the fast ferry from Boston will have you there in no time. And once you’re back on dry land, there’s so much to do, from beaches and biking to kid-friendly restaurants. Here are our 25 top picks for family activities in P-Town.

Best Lincoln Center Area Restaurants for Families

Though many of the restaurants and cafés surrounding Lincoln Center might seem too upscale for family dining or a quick, inexpensive snack, there are plenty of affordable, kid-friendly eats hidden in plain sight. As a plus, most of these places cater to the pre-theater crowd, know local productions and schedules, and are more than happy to make sure you're in and out with time to spare before the curtain rises. Whether you're in the neighborhood for a concert, the ballet, or just to check out the famous fountain, here are our favorite spots to grab a bite without breaking the bank—or your patience.

Find more great kid-friendly eateries in our NYC restaurant guide.

CORNucopia at Philipsburg Manor: A-Maize-ing Family Fun

Labor Day weekend ushers in the return of one of our favorite fall festivals, CORNucopia. The annual festival at Philipsburg Manor in the picturesque Sleepy Hollow is filled with all manner of old-fashioned corn(y) fun set in the 18th century. Not sure about the fun factor at an event devoted to corn? You’ll be a-maize-d! My family and I attended last year and can't wait to return. Expect corny—and quality—fun, from music to corn-shucking contests.

Day Trip to Van Saun Park: 10 Things to Do with Kids

Looking for an outdoor play adventure beyond the local playground? Make Bergen County’s Van Saun Park your family’s day trip destination. My own family makes this hour-away journey a few time a year, and it never disappoints. With its massive playground, splash pad, carousel and train rides, plus a zoo, a trip to Van Saun almost feels like a theme park visit (minus the admission fee). The playground and zoo are open year-round, while some of the activities, such as the rides, are seasonal (April through October). A little tip-- there’s plenty of parking, but weekends get pretty crowded; you may want to arrive early. Please note that admission to Van Saun Park is free, including the playground and splash pad, but some features do require an additional fee, as noted. Here are 10 awesome things to do on your next Van Saun Park adventure:

26 Ways To Keep Enjoying Summer after School Begins

Whether you're relieved by the quiet or disturbed by the abrupt ending, most LA families are using those three little words (back to school) a whole lot earlier these days. Of course, dropping our kids off at school doesn't change the weather; there might be no child left behind at the beach, but it's still summer until close to Halloween. So if your family is not yet ready for summer to end, pick a few items off our Endless Summer List and go have some fun while the sun still shines!

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