Cut-Your-Own Christmas Tree Farms on Long Island

The Thanksgiving turkey has been consumed. You've completed your Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping. Now it’s time for the next holiday ritual—finding the perfect Christmas tree.

From Cold Spring Harbor to Montauk, Long Island has close to a dozen tree farms, where enthusiastic families can cut a super-fresh spruce (or fir, or pine) at modest cost. These farms range from simple, roadside acreage to full-fledged holiday extravaganzas. So whether you prefer a quick tree-cutting errand or a day out in Santa’s wonderland, consider a visit to one of these outdoor emporiums.

These farms are all located in Suffolk County, where farmland is more abundant, and are listed below by town. As always, find more ways to celebrate in our Holiday Fun Guide.

Billy Johnson Playground Reopens in Central Park After Renovation

The Billy Johnson Playground in Central Park has reopened after a months-long rehabilitation and reconstruction project, bringing with it not only the re-opening of the iconic, long, curving granite slide, but also a second granite slide that's accessible for smaller kids.

While the original slide helped land the playground on our list of 100 things to do with city kids before they grow up, the renovation adds a few new noteworthy features to one of our favorite playgrounds in Central Park.

Best Nutcrackers and Holiday Shows for Philly Families

Going to a show during the holidays is a tradition that many Philly families incorporate into their season each year. As one would expect, there are the classics such The Nutcracker and A Christmas Carol. However, there are plenty of twists on those standbys as well as new productions on stage throughout the Delaware Valley that are sure to delight parents and kids alike. So, take a look at our comprehensive list of performances and choose which one will add a bit of theatrical magic this holiday season with your loved ones.

Weekend Fun for LA Kids: Reindeer Romp, Doo Dah Parade, and Surfing Santas

The worst of times can bring out the best in people. This week we have been reminded of the heroes that live among us: the veterans who put themselves in harm's way to defend our nation, and the fire fighters and emergency responders who put themselves in harm's way to defend our homes. Thanks to their bravery, we have the privilege of looking forward to what lies ahead. This weekend, take a moment to find the joy.  

Find the whimsy in pure absurdity and imaginations run amok. Find the mystical creatures hiding in plain sight. Find the light in the darkness (so pretty!), and follow the shimmering pathLook to the stars and see all eternity; look to the earth and see that we are all connected. Sitting on grains of sand you can expand your mind (and your vocabulary!) - just be sure to clean up after yourself.

You better not pout, you better not fly; we're getting a visit from some old guy. And a parade. And some tree lightingsWith music. Sounds pretty joyful to me.

Keep reading for our most joyous suggestions for this weekend...

Weekend Fun for Houston Kids: Turkish Festival, Lighting of the Doves, Nov. 17-18

Even though we're not entirely sure how we're already halfway through November, we're embracing the chaos of the season and gearing up to start planning and attending all the holiday festivities! To help you manage the mayhem, we've been working tirelessly to find the best events to attend this season and have started compiling resources that make it easy for you to sift through everything that's happening and pick what to attend with your family. Here are a few to get you started with your holiday planning:

We also highly recommend checking out our Fall Fun and Harvest Guideevent calendarNovember GoList, and roundup of 20 FREE things to do in November for even more seasonal fun. Now is also a great time to subscribe to our FREE weekly newsletter if you haven't done so already; it's only an email or two a week and it will keep you up to date with everything happening on Mommy Poppins!

Did you know that you can also submit your own event to our calendar? Once submitted, we'll review it and publish it to share with all of our readers!

Now let's check out what the weekend holds for Houston.

Weekend Fun: Friendsgiving, Film Fest, and Gift Fairs; Nov 17-18

It may not even be Thanksgiving yet but some of the season's most popular holiday events have already begun. Get lost in the magical Enchanted Village, hop on a train to the North Pole, behold glistening lights at Edaville, and celebrate the holidays Dickens-style. There's also one of our favorite fall events, a film festival geared towards the younger cinematic crowd. And as winter inches closer, kids can also get back to nature by learning about animal friendships, planting a succulent garden, and even designing their own park.

Weekend Fun: Holiday Trains, Book Fests, Thanksgiving Fun, Nutcracker

The holiday season roars into town like a freight train—or like one of the seasonal train shows popping up all over, including the Grand Central Station and the New York Botanical Garden displays, both opening Saturday. Kids can create vehicles and trains from gingerbread at Gingerbread Lane workshops at the New York Hall of Science, or test their inner engineers at the Transportation Museum's Train Operators workshop.

As we head toward Thanksgiving, honor original Americans at the National Museum of the American Indian, where you can see Navajo hoop dancing all weekend—and don't miss the excellent imagiNATIONS exhibit. Wave Hill's Harvest Festival also runs all weekend, with a special performance by the renowned Thunderbird American Indian Dancers, plus how-to workshops for cornhusk dolls and pumpkin pies. On Saturday, families can prep for turkey day at the Thanksgiving Table Children's Workshop or the first-ever Thanksgivingpalooza.

Check out literary treasures at the Brooklyn Children's Book Fair on Saturday, with appearances by beloved kid lit authors, and snag half-off bestsellers at the Goddard Riverside book fair all weekend. Kids can even bind books of their own at Scandinavia House.

Don't wait much longer to make your plans for the Thanksgiving Parade, or to buy tickets to the bumper crop of NYC Nutcracker shows, some of which are already in performance this weekend. There's no denying it: the holidays are here (hooray!). As always, consult our November GoList and our Event Calendar for a dazzling array of events and activities.

Weekend Fun: Diwali, Star Wars Days, Carnival of the Animals

All kinds of fun is coming up this weekend for Westchester and Hudson Valley kids. Whether you're a fan of Star Wars or STEAM, circus acts or parades, there's all this and more.

Thanksgiving starts early with the Annual Valenti Thanksgiving Day Parade, which is preceded by a pancake breakfast. A hot-ticket alert is for Circa: Carnival of the Animals, while FREE entertainment (plus cultural enrichment and interactivity) abounds at Diwali, Hindu Festival of Lights. The Mini Maker Faire is an extravaganza allowing families to be inspired by maker encounters and seeing their creations. STEM fans can get their fill of circuitry, rockets and more at the free STEAMFEST. And, although this year we don’t have a new Star Wars film to look forward to, kids can get their Jedi fix at Lego Star Wars Days.

These are just a few of our top picks for the weekend; the rest can be found below, and there are even more fun and enriching opportunities on our Event Calendar. Consult our November GoList to plan ahead, and sign up for our weekly newsletters to stay current with all our great findings!

Weekend Fun: Disney on Ice, Native American Feast

Hands-on activities including pottery-making and primitive fire-building are included at the weekend-long Thanksgiving Native American Feast at Garvies Point Museum and Preserve. 

Help Mickey and friends follow magical clues to Tinker Bell by searching the spirit realm with Miguel, sailing the ocean with Moana, and singing with Elsa.

Holiday light shows open this weekend at Jones Beach and in Riverhead.

See our Fall Family Fun Guide for the best in seasonal entertainment, including day trip ideas, fall festivals, corn mazes, and plenty of FREE events and activities. As always, our Event Calendar and November GoList are loaded with fun, daily happenings for Long Island kids.

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