8 Sheepshearing and Wool Festivals in New England

We're finally seeing the first signs of spring! On the farm at this time of year there is new life everywhere, and the sheep are due for haircuts. That means it's shearing festival time. Locally, Gore Place and North Andover are celebrating sheepshearing season with big shindigs. (It’s not that strange—think of the big deal you made about your child’s first haircut.) If you want to make a fun family day trip or even a weekend getaway out of it, there are also sheepshearing and wool festivals in nearby Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Western Massachusetts.

Patriots' Day Weekend Events for Families in Boston, Lexington, and Concord

Patriots' Day commemorates the April anniversary of the battles of Lexington and Concord, the first clashes of the American Revolutionary War. It is a Massachusetts state holiday, officially observed on the third Monday in April, and is celebrated with parades and ceremonies from Boston to Roxbury, and all along the Battle Road.

We’ve rounded up some of the key reenactments, parades, and special events leading up to and on Patriots' Day, as well as special events at local museums, historical houses and Minute Man National Park. Note: most of the events listed are free but also very popular, so plan to arrive early and expect crowds. (If you're interested in more happenings or places to eat while in Concord, check out our 20-plus things to do in Concord post.)

Beyond the Goody Bag: 10 Great Birthday Party Favor Ideas for Kids

Whether you love them or hate them, party favors are still a huge part of any child’s birthday celebration. I happen to love figuring out favors for these festive occasions, because it’s creative and challenging—something I can happily pat myself on the back for, if done successfully. For that to happen, it needs to be equal parts pleasing for the kids and their parents, and either edible, memorable, practical, shareable, or charitable.

Do yourself a favor and read on for 10 ultra unique ideas to take your little guy or girl’s goody bag from basic to brag-worthy.

For more unique ways to fete your youngsters, check out our list of free ways to celebrate and 10 sweet alternatives to birthday cake, or learn how to create a DIY photo booth for the big event. Planning to celebrate your little one's first birthday soon? We've got ideas for your soon-to-be-turning-one babes, too. Whatever you're looking for, we’ve got birthday hints in the bag.

Weekend Fun for Boston Kids: Circus, Butterflies, and Ninjago, Apr 7-8

It may have snowed just days ago, but it must be spring because the circus is back in town! If you're looking for circus acts on a smaller scale, check out this one by Ringling Brothers-trained Johnny Peers and his Muttville Comix. Also back for the spring is I Spy Butterfly at the Puppet Theatre Showplace, free soccer demo classes, and these Patriots' Day reenactments. Excited for the latest Ninjago movie? Head over to Legoland for a weekend filled with screenings of the 4D movie, interactive demonstrations, scavenger hunts, a Ninjago-themed build, and even some photo ops with Ninja Kai. 

Also on Mommy Poppins:

Skydiving and Surfing Under One Roof in Nashua

Here in chilly Boston, we're grateful for the inside playgrounds and indoor water parks that allow kids to replicate outdoor fun all year long. But when you really want to take four-seasons adventure to the next level, point the family cruiser toward the Granite State: At SkyVenture, located just over the New Hampshire border (and less than an hour from Boston), kids as young as preschool-age can "fly," surf and slide under one roof—in a single, glorious afternoon. We got the scoop from parents and kids who've made the trip.

Free Things to Do With Boston Kids in April

There's so many free activities for kids happening in Boston this April that it's hard to know just where to begin. From theatrical performances to dance parties to ice cream cones, Boston offers a lot of free for families this month. Be sure to also check out our round up of Patriots' Day activities as well as our April Go List for even more options that are easy on the wallet. 

April GoList: Best Things To Do with Kids in Boston

April is bursting with possibilities, beginning with April Fools' Day fun and Passover celebrations. April vacation week brings the endearing story of Charlotte and Wilbur to Boston, scientific explorations to Cambridge, and magical worlds to Providence.

This month, we show our Boston pride during Red Sox Opening Day, Boston Marathon, and Patriots' Day celebrations. Plus, a Volunteer Expo and Earth Day fests around town give us lots of opportunities to teach our kids about kindness and citizenship.

It's time to say goodbye to winter and try something new this month with our top picks for family fun!

Weekend Fun for Boston Kids: Happy Easter, Mar 31-Apr 1

It's Easter weekend and don't worry - there are plenty of chances to catch Mr. Bunny and also hunt for an egg or two. Why not hunt for eggs in a historic church yard, or in an open field (with games, too), or even in a garden on a scavenger hunt? Ever had brunch with a bunny? Now you can!

This weekend is also the perfect time to see a fairy circus, hang out with MP readers' favorite clown, and create your very own grassy head creature.

Also on Mommy Poppins:

10 Enrichment Classes for Boston Babies

As a new mom, I really looked forward to doing classes in subjects like music and art with my son. At first I thought we’d have to wait until he was older to do any sort of formal enrichment activity, but I soon learned that there are a ton of options available for even the littlest babies. These classes are a great way to bond and are perfect for providing much-needed stimulation for babies that are past the newborn stage. So here’s a roundup of 10 classes that are designed especially for Boston babies. 


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