West Suburbs

Free Water Fun for Boston Kids: Spray Parks, Fountains and Wading Pools

You know it's summertime in Boston when kids are running through fountains and splashing in shallow pools of water on the Greenway and Boston Common. There's plenty of water fun to be had in neighborhoods all around the city, and we've rounded up some of our favorite spots. Most locations are open on weekends after Memorial Day, and then daily from the end of June through Labor Day. Bonus: they're all free!

Where To Pick Strawberries with Kids Near Boston

When it comes to pick-your-own produce, I don't think there's a better fruit for kids to pluck than the strawberry. The plants are close to the ground, and the berries are accessible without having to reach way into the plant. Ripe berries are clustered together, so kids have the satisfaction of picking a lot in a short period of time. Searching for ripe, jewel-colored specimens feels like an exciting treasure hunt. And no prickers!

June is "strawberry month" and most farms are open for picking by mid-month; some are ready even sooner. Read on for farms where you can pick your own strawberries, followed by tips for getting the most out of the experience. 

6 Summer Birthday Party Spots for Boston Kids

Summer is nearly upon us and that means it’s time to plan birthday parties for kids born when school is out. I have a summer baby, so I’ve thought a lot about where to have a party when the weather is nice and everyone’s on vacation. We've shared ideas for outdoor options where you can plan a free, spontaneous celebration, but we discovered several more venues—some indoors, some out—that specialize in summery kids' parties. Here are six of our favorite warm-weather birthday bash spots around Boston.

5 Kids' Farm Camps Near Boston for Little Plant and Animal Lovers

If your child is enchanted by things that grow in the dirt, whether they're pea shoots or baby piglets, it might be time to consider farm camp. Trust me when I tell you your kids will love it—when else are children encouraged to get messy and play with farm animals? Farm camps offer the best of the country in close proximity to the city, and your kids will get to be outside, do a lot of learning about ecology and environmental science, and discover the wonders of vegetables. Here are five summer farm camps within about a half hour of Boston to explore; please check the websites or call for exact prices, which may fluctuate seasonally. Check out our summer camp guide for more fun ideas to stay busy during school vacation.

Kids Obstacle Course Challenge Coming to Boston

Calling all active kids! A nationwide adventure race created just for children ages 5 and up is swinging through Boston, and it promises some heart-pumping fun for families. The Kids Obstacle Challenge will be held one day only, on May 19 at Kalon Farm in Lancaster (just less than hour west of the city) before it moves on to Washington, D.C. Expect mud pits, rock walls, ball pits, rope challenges, and more mud...basically an outdoor version of the ninja warrior courses that have become so popular. If you have kids who love to have fun, get messy, and challenge themselves, read on for more details about this one-day-only event.

May GoList - Best Things to Do with Kids in Boston

We’re feeling festive this month! For our May edition of the GoList, we’re highlighting fabulous and free spring festivals, annual Mother's Day traditions, and performances you won't want to miss. As you check out our top ten picks for things to do with kids in Boston this month, click through to the event listings so you can add them to your calendar. Plus, we'll still send our free e-newsletters with our family-friendly event picks every week.

Boston Kids' Swim Lessons Where Parents Don't Need to Get in the Pool

There are plenty of places that offer parent-child swim lessons for babies and toddlers in Boston, but that format doesn't work for all families. In some cases, parents aren't keen on the idea of getting in the pool themselves; in others, kids respond better to instructors when parents aren't around. Fewer places offer lessons for under-3-year-olds without a caregiver in the pool to participate, but many that do are highly rated by parents. Here are a few places to choose from if you'd prefer to stay dry while your little one takes the plunge.

12 Playgrounds with Tot Lots Designed Especially for Boston Babies and Toddlers

One of the things I’ve been looking forward to doing with my little boy is taking him to a playground. A stable sitter, he’s just about ready for a bucket swing...just in time for spring! But not all playgrounds cater to the sub-preschool set. Luckily, there are several in and around Boston that do have sandboxes, swings, and smaller play structures built specifically with the littlest kids in mind. Here are some of our favorite local "tot lots" with special features that are perfect for older babies and toddlers.

6 Spring Family Day Trips That Boston Kids Will Love

If there's a season when Bostonians are itching to get out and explore, it's spring: After a long, cold New England winter, it's liberating to pile the family in the car and discover someplace new, preferably one that showcases flora and fauna in kid-friendly ways. We're blessed to be in driving distance of many beautiful places fit for a weekend escape, but sometimes, you don't have multiple days to spare. All of these places offer unique ways to celebrate the season, and clocking in at around or under two hours from city limits, make for a fine springtime day trip.

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