40 Things To Do with Kids on a Rainy Day at the Jersey Shore

The Jersey Shore is known for its gorgeous beaches, of course, and outdoor entertainment like boardwalk fun. But not every summer day can turn into a sunny beach day. What happens to the family fun when it rains? Beach houses, no matter how grand, start to feel pretty small when you are stuck indoors.

Fortunately, there are plenty of indoor spots to explore along the shore. From Asbury Park to Cape May, we've put together a list of shore activities that will get you off the beach and out of your condo. So whether the rain is spoiling your beach day, you need a day out of the sun, or just a change from the sand and surf, we have you covered.

For more entertaining activities this season, check our list of 70 Best Things To Do at the Shore all summer.

Weekend Fun for LA Kids: Anime, Mud Mania, World Cup, and More Fireworks

Wow.  That was fun.  The sis and the boom and the bah, fireworks lighting up the sky every which way. It's our once a year chance to say "Go America!"....want to do it again? Guess what: we've got you covered!  We snuck a couple more red white and booms in our calendar, see if you can spot em.

In fact, this is the weekend of, dare we say it, reliving things past. Reliving historyreliving art (spoiler: it's people!), reliving great plays, and reliving, well, more history.  You can relive some of your favorite movies,  and relive some classic tunes.  You can even watch a little history in the making.

Think the past is yesterday's news?  Then why not make some new memories this weekend!  You can dance up a stormeat to your heart's contentmeet some movie stars, root for the home team , and even brighten someone's day.  (Just warning you though:  things might get a little messy).

Keep reading for the stuff of memories, both new and old!

Weekend Fun for CT Kids: Blueberries, Fireflies, and More Fireworks, July 7-8

Like many parents, I was not super thrilled to realize that Independence Day fell on a Wednesday this year. Late night fireworks and early morning camp schedules are not a fantastic combination (and let's not even talk about the camps that didn't meet this week because of the holiday). But now that we're through the other side, I have to admit I'm sort of relieved for a chance for a do-over this coming weekend. Didn't get your fill of fireworks on Wednesday? Head to Berlin or Darien or Manchester on Saturday. 

Or, spend a different kind of evening under the stars at a free (or nearly free) outdoor movie. This weekend alone you can catch Wonder Woman at Mill River Park in Stamford, Paddington 2 at the Shoppes at Farmington Valley in Canton, and Pixels at Shady Beach in Norwalk. If you're in the mood for something a little closer to nature, head to the New Canaan Nature Center for their Night of 1,000 Fireflies or to the White Memorial Conservation Center to learn all about turtles. And don't miss the start of blueberry picking season.

For even more options, check out our Event Calendar, which we update frequently with new listings from across the state. To keep up with everything going on in CT, follow us on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Pinterest. Have a wonderful weekend! 

Weekend Fun: Garden Festival, Mattituck Fair, Steam Trains

This weekend, as you celebrate America, help Heckscher Museum celebrate its 98th anniversary with a variety of family-friendly activities in the galleries. You also can party hardy at the Planting Fields Garden Festival.

Catch Pinkalicious on stage in Westhampton Beach. Or travel full steam ahead to Brookhaven for a ride through the woods with Long Island Live Steamers

It looks like a great weekend to hit the beach, pools, sprinkler parks, or perhaps to cool off at a water park.  Fireworks shows continue on Independence Day and July 5 so make sure to check our list of all the best shows.  

Visit our Summer Family Fun Guide for the best in seasonal entertainment, including day trip ideas and plenty of FREE events and activities. Our Event Calendar is loaded with fun, daily happenings for Long Island kids.

Weekend Fun for Houston Kids: Willy Wonka, Little Artists, July 7-8

It's official. It's HOT outside and it's only promising to get hotter as the summer continues. Pool days and splash pads may dominate the outdoor activities right now, but sometimes you just need a day indoors, which is why we've come up with 25 Beat-the-Heat Crafts for Hot Summer Days. You'll find everything from marshmallow catapults to pipe cleaner bird feeders here, guaranteeing that you day spent at home is both interactive and enjoyable. Also worth checking out: Fun Indoor Play Spaces in Houston, because sometimes you just need to hang out while the kids go crazy. 

Summer is also the perfect time for a day trip, and we have two completely different but equally fun suggestions: 

When you find yourself in a planning slump, make sure to head over to our event calendar, which is constantly being updated with different family-friendly activities happening throughout the week and check out our July GoList for an overview of the hottest stuff happening this month. You'll also want to sign up for our weekly newsletter; once you do you'll have everything happening on Mommy Poppins delivered in one concise email, making it the easy to stay on top of everything we post.  

Have a great event you want to share with others? We'd love to add it to our calendar! Just submit your event to us so we can add it to the site and share it with our readers.

Now let's plan out this weekend together!

Weekend Fun: Our Lady Fest, One World Family, Mummenschanz Returns

July is here at last, and outdoor fun abounds. This weekend, options include a boat-making workshop at Wave Hill, a vintage car festival on Governors Island, and the annual Our Lady of Mount Carmel festival kickoff in Williamsburg, with carnival rides, unhealthy-but-delicious food, Saturday's musical Questua procession, and, on Sunday, a parade led by the massive giglio, soaring 65 feet high and covered with flowers.

Looking for something cool and indoors? Mummenschanz is back with a brand new show, or head to Governors Island for a FREE production of The Golden Dove. Young magicians in training will enjoy "meeting" Harry Houdini at the New York Historical Society. And don't miss the Family Fun Day at One World for face painting, balloon animals, and more fun with a view. Plus there's still time to take advantage of the Red, White and Deep Blue Sea 2-for-1 ticket deal, if you want to throw a WOW into the weekend.

Don't forget to check our list of water playgrounds and sprinklers if you're looking for another way to cool down (or just have a kid who loves a good splash). Or take the family out of New York City altogether to pick berries or go camping.

For more fun, consult our complete July GoList, our packed Summer Fun Guide, and our fun-filled Event Calendar.

Weekend Fun for Philly Kids: Pirate Festival, Xtreme Bugs, Big Bounce July 7-8

If you need weekend inspiration, Mommy Poppins Philadelphia has got you covered. Our jam-packed event calendar is exploding with ways to encourage imagination, creativity, and physical activity.

Grab an eye patch and a sword to head to the Wilmington Pirate Festival, where kids can make pirate crafts, see aerial pirate performances, and take tours of the boat, the Kalmar Nyckel. Pretend you are a prince or princess and explore Fonthill Castle as you learn what it was like to live there long ago. View oversized insects in a world of gigantic bugs at Academy of Natural Science or construct fairy houses or teepees in the garden at Morris Arboretum. Channel your inner artist by dropping by an art session or art museum. Burn off some energy (and calories) at The Big Bounce America or paddle down Perkiomen Creek. Still looking for more? Continue reading our top picks for an amazing weekend!

Weekend Fun: Pirate Quest, Hot-Air Balloon Festival, Fireman's Carnival

Though the 4th of July is behind us, not all of the fireworks have lost their spark. The West Point Independence Day Concert and Fireworks combines an outdoor concert and Independence Day festivity on Saturday. And the American Revolution lives on at New Paltz in the War for Independence, where there will be reenactments and interactive activities that allow kids to experience colonial times firsthand.

The real attention-grabber this weekend is the annual Hudson Valley Balloon Festival, when fireworks are replaced with dazzling displays of color floating aloft. For more thrills, hit the rides at the annual Fireman's Carnival, or bring your budding swashbucklers to Pirate Quest.

Read on for more ideas and consult our Event Calendar for daily fun, and look to our Summer Activity Guide for the best places to keep cool, from splash pads to water parks

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Best NYC Playgrounds for Children with Special Needs

There's certainly no shortage of wonderful playgrounds and parks in New York City. But when you add a child with special needs into the mix, the selection of truly great playgrounds suddenly seems much smaller. As a mom of of a special needs child, I've explored quite a few of the city's playgrounds in search of the ones with the best play-for-all features and equipment.

Happily, many NYC playgrounds meet or exceed the Americans with Disabilities Act standards, and there are literally hundreds of special needs-friendly playgrounds throughout NYC. Some also include accessible JennSwings, those big plastic swings that offer full-body positioning support for kids up to 125 pounds. But the adaptive swing doesn't always appeal to my son, so there need to be other attractions for a playground to be cool in his book.

I'm spotlighting 17 playgrounds that I feel truly are the best. Not only are they accessible (half the battle), they're fun for all ages, with and without special needs. Grab some sunblock, towels, sand toys, and running shoes and get exploring: Your kids will thank you for it!

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