And... action! As summer kicks off, a familiar annual scene is playing out at locations throughout the Southland: the season of free, nearly free, and gloriously cheap outdoor summer movie series has started rolling. At museums, parks, beaches, and malls, indoors and outdoors, in the early morning and by the light of the moon, families can catch both recent blockbusters and timeless classics for free or close to it. (While free is awesome, we think a dollar is still pretty good!)
Below you can find our comprehensive guide to free (and darn close to it) summer movie screenings and festivals. Click on the event names for more details, including movie titles. And keep checking back, because we'll continue to post more listings as they are announced, throughout the 2017 summer movie season.
Slip-slidin’ away! There are few better ways to stay cool this summer on Long Island than to head down a slippery water slide, splash around in a refreshing swimming pool, or get drenched at a water park. That's why we invite you to check out our list of the hottest spots on Long Island where kids and adults can stay cool on even the most sweltering summer days. Check websites for rates and hours. All town pools are open to nonresidents, but they might have to pay a higher entry fee.
Did we mention the Besties are here? The Bestie Awards is our reader voting contest celebrating small, local businesses that make parenting on Long Island so wonderful. Help us choose our finalists by shouting out your favorite places to make, do, eat, learn, and play. Nominate your Besties now.
For young children, a ride on a carousel’s painted pony, a spin with dad around the bumper car track, and a dripping swirl of frozen custard are the stuff summer memories are made of. No need to seek out the latest scary high-tech roller coasters (which means you can cross Luna Park's most scary rides off your list).
Rides that look mild (or frankly, downright boring) to big people usually provide just the right amount of thrills for toddlers and preschoolers. Happily, there are a number of amusement and water parks in or near New York City that offer these kinds of tame attractions. Here's our roundup of theme parks perfect for the pint-sized.
Find more seasonal rides in our Theme and Water Parks Guide for NYC Families.
A successful Kickstarter campaign, along with generous donors, including Henson family members, will bring it to fruition at last. Although the exhibit offers something for everyone—nearly 300 artifacts—kids will probably be most excited about the 47 original Muppets, which include Kermit, Miss Piggy, Big Bird, Elmo, and other favorites. Other material on display at MoMI, including sketches, storyboards, scripts and costumes, will highlight the process Henson followed to bring his visions to life.
Looking for a place to take your little ones for gentle thrills and kid-friendly amusements? We've rounded up 15 NJ amusement parks that are perfect for the younger set. Some, like Storybook Land, are geared exclusively toward small children, while others, like Morey's Piers and Jenkinson's Boardwalk, offer a solid selection of kiddie rides in addition to bigger thrills.
We've limited our list of amusement parks to those located in New Jersey—to search for more tot-friendly spots in surrounding areas, check out the Best Amusement Parks for Preschoolers in and Near NYC.
The abundance and availability of fresh food at this time of the year is a real treat. Being able to pick our own fruits and vegetables at local farms makes the bounty taste even sweeter. Not only is it a fun family activity, it's also a great way to teach children about where their food comes from and to engage them in its preparation process.
Right now, strawberry picking is just getting under way, but don't hesitate: on some farms the picking season lasts just a few weeks. For more pick-your-own options in Connecticut, check out our posts about strawberry picking in Hartford County and blueberry picking farms. Happy picking - and baking - and eating!
Springfield always surprises me with its rich culture, history, and capacity for family fun. It is a city of firsts, and learning about its past may inspire your child to become a pioneer of the future. There's so much to do in Greater Springfield, including riding roller coaster, enjoying a peaceful meeting with an alpaca, and—starting June 3—visiting the brand-new Dr. Seuss Museum. Plus, it's just the right distance for a short getaway from Boston or Connecticut. Read on for 25 fun family activities to do while you’re there, whether it’s for a day or two, or more.