Weekend Fun for NJ Kids: Hot Air Balloons, Peaches, Drone Race

As the month of July comes to a close, New Jersey is bursting with summertime fun - get out there and make some warm weather family memories! Festivals abound this time of year, so take the whole gang to the QuickChek Festival of Ballooning, the Just Peachy Festival at Terhune Orchards or the Sweet Corn Festival at Oasis Family Farm. If you need to duck out of the heat for a couple hours, check out the Family-Friendly Paint Party at Bottle & Bottega, catch a kid-friendly performance of "Robin Hood" at the Garden State Discovery Museum or take your little ones for Afternoon Tea with My Doll & Me at Just Bead Yourself. 

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

Take the Train to These 10 Boston-Area Beaches

With all of the beautiful beaches in New England, spending a day on the sand by the ocean is a popular summer activity. But parking can be really difficult to come by—not to mention very expensive. Luckily there’s a better way: Take the T (or the commuter rail) to the beach! It'll add to the adventure and ensure a day of fun in the sun.

8 NYC Walking Tours for Every Family Interest

Walking tours are a great way for families, both native and tourists, to explore NYC. Whether you tour a neighborhood or borough you don't know well or one you've known forever, you are bound to learn something new while having plenty of fun. In a city as chock-full of life as New York, tour options are available for seemingly every sort of interest. You can take eating tours, check out movie and TV locations, explore nature, get a deeper understanding of Big Apple history and even learn which local wild plants are safe to eat.  

My son and I are big fans of walking tours, particularly ghost tours. We loved the spooky history tour we took in Montreal, and the Colonial-themed ghost tour of Williamsburg, Virginia. But until last summer, we hadn't tried a walking tour in NYC. We fixed that by tramping around the West Village with a Ghost Tour of NYC guide and fellow Mommy Poppins contributor Raven and her daughter. We had a blast and so did our almost-tween kids: We learned which Greenwich Village apartment buildings may be haunted and by what; gleaned some interesting historical tidbits; unearthed the macabre history of Washington Square Park; and discovered you don't have to be a tourist to enjoy a good walking tour.

Looking for more ways to see the city? Check out our Visitors' Guide, which includes reviews of all the city's best sights, places to eat, and stay.

4 Awesome Places to Explore in Tree Houses Near Philly

With screen time, lessons, daycare, and school it doesn’t seem like there’s much time to explore nature and discover new places, but tell kids that there’s a special house built in a tree for them to discover, and watch their curiosity take over. Tyler Arboretum, Longwood Gardens, Morris Arboretum, and Treehouse World are perfect for kids of all ages because there's plenty of places to explore. Parents who have dreamed of building a tree house in the backyard will find plenty of inspiration, too.

Snap, Crackle, Pop: Kellogg's Cereal Bar Opens Near Times Square

I will not lie. When I heard a permanent cereal bar opened earlier this month near Times Square, I thought it would just be a trap for tourists. But after visiting, I found Kellogg's NYC to be an adorable cafe appealing to many diverse visitors (even us proud New Yorkers) with a fondness for breakfast; it will take you right back to your mother’s kitchen, filling everyone’s bowl with a whole lot more than just Rice Krispies.

We ran into Rob Nieporent, general manager of Kellogg's NYC, who told us that the inspiration behind the cafe was not merely to enhance Kellogg's bottom line or reinvent a tried-and-true brand name. Instead, Nieporent explained that the masterminds behind the restaurant wanted consumers to think about cereal in a new light. Beyond a staple breakfast food, the cereal bar demonstrates how the Kellogg's cereals we grew up with pair with a number of other ingredients, including blueberry jam, mint, and lemon zest. After trying three scrumptious concoctions inspired by pastry chef Christina Tosi (the founder behind the cereal-studded Momofuku Milk Bar), they sure had us convinced. 

7 Great Tide Pools to Take Kids to in Connecticut

One of my favorite things as a child was searching the seashore for shells. To be honest, I never cared much to go into the deep, dark water. Perhaps this is why I loved tide pools so much- I could spend hours mining through rocks and sand and collecting all the little creatures and shells that the tides left behind. Fortunate for us, we can enjoy the unique ecosystem of the Long Island Sound on many of our Connecticut Beaches  

Now that I am a parent, I love sharing this great New England tradition with my daughter. I love the sense of exploration that tide pools enable without the need for floatation devices. They also provide the perfect way to cool off on a hot summer day.  Each one of the beaches in this list offers the perfect setting for your budding marine life expert.  Make sure you check out the tide charts before you hit the road. 

Free Things To Do with Philly Kids in August 2016

Summers in Philly are filled with food festivals, swimming, concerts, and family vacations to the shore. But by summer's end, kids are bored and already worried about the start of a new school year. You might be looking to get out of the house and break that cabin fever for a few hours without breaking the bank! We've rounded up some of the best free events around Philly happening in August. To see more upcoming events, check out our event calendar.

Weekday Picks: Museums Galore, Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Free Indoor Treats, July 25-29

This week starts out with the city holding its breath for the families of the Santa Clarita Valley and the firefighters who are working to save their homes. Alas, we also hold our breath because of the smoke that hovers over our heads. These are good days to visit a museum, particularly if you can catch one of LA or OC's many free museum admission days. You might not know all of the city's smaller museums or low cost museums; and have you checked out the Valley's new Discovery Cube? Ever been to the GRAMMY Museum? Have you seen the Endeavour yet? Or The Broad? Add in some planetariums and the Science Center and you could easily spend the entire week indoors.

Of course we hope the air will clear quickly and leave room for the many other things to do on Mommy Poppins’ Event Calendar, particularly during this season of outdoor concerts and movies. From Pasadena to Studio City to Beverly Hills to Santa Monica, there is almost always something extra going on during the summer. My kids and I like to spend at least one summer day at the Tar Pits. The grounds at the Los Angeles County Museum are perfect for picnicking, and whether or not we make it inside the George C. Page Museum, the mammoths surrounded by bubbling tar are always worth a look. This Tuesday, Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox offers an extra reason to visit LACMA.

Find more ideas in Mommy Poppins’ Event Calendar, Monthly GoList and weekly newsletter.

Weekday Picks: Village Fair Days, Harry Potter and Rabbit Bags, July 25-29, 2016

Sometimes, especially in late July, indoor air conditioned play is just the ticket. Check out our Indoor Fun Guide for all sorts of ways to beat the heat this summer. On Monday, children can enjoy hands-on programs that show how farmers care for their animals. In the mood for a little music? There are many free family concerts this week including a country band in Ridgefield.  For those interested in summer fairs, you can get your fix at the New Milford Village Fair Days this Friday and coming weekend. 

Enjoy our CT Summer Fun Guide and CT Beach and Water Fun Guide for even more ways to enjoy the season with kids. As always, the Event Calendar is continually updated with events so check back often and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest to be sure you don't miss a thing.

Weekday Picks for LI Kids: Nature MakerSpace, Let's Talk Turtles, July 25-29

From enjoying the outdoor gardens at Long Island Children's Museum and learning about sea life in Greenport to talking about turtles and building a bug house, there is plenty to do on Long Island this week to connect kids with nature. And there's even more going on this week, so be sure to take a look at our Long Island events calendar and our Summer Fun Guide. You can also get the best events of the week sent directly to your inbox each week if you sign up for our newsletter.

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