Summer Activities

End of Summer Checklist: 40 Things to Do in NYC Before School Starts

With August upon us and the start of a new school year looming, my kids and I are in a panic about all the things we haven't yet crossed off our NYC summer bucket list.

Sure, we've had a lot of fun tooling around the city, enjoying our local swimming pool, reigniting a love for some favorite playgrounds, chilling out with some ice-cold treats, and soaking up all the FREE entertainment. There are plenty of great activities we haven't gotten to, though.

So as a reminder to us, and to you, we've crafted this list of 40 things to do before summer ends. Some are summer-only events happening all month; others are one-time-only affairs, so read on and get ready to dive in before the summer sun sets!

Best Cape Cod Beaches for Families

Wide, clean, and blanketed with soft sand, the Cape Cod National Seashore boasts miles upon miles of beaches that are great for kids and families. While many Cape Coddians claim their local spot is tops, the following beaches check all the boxes essential for family fun, including plenty of space, fun (but not too intense) waves, and helpful extras like lifeguards, bathrooms, and easy parking that can make a good beach day a great one.

Once you've had your fill of sandcastling and shelling, go explore the region's charming towns for more fun things for kids to do at the Cape. If you want to experience our Massachusetts shoreline with an island vibe, check out our favorite beaches and activities on Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, too.

25+ Things To Do with Kids Before School Starts Again in Westchester

The start of August sets me in a panic every year: Have I made summer fun enough? How will we squeeze in all the great outings I had hoped to take my kids on? Below are some ideas to help you check more items off your summer bucket list before school starts again.

Be sure to check out our Summer Activity Guide for more ideas, along with our August GoList for our top picks for the month. As always, our Event Calendar is full of many more ideas, and you can sign up for our newsletters to keep on top of our top picks and new finds.

End-of-Summer Bucket List: 30 Things To Do With NJ Kids Before School Starts

August is here, and Target is fully stocked with school supplies... which only means one thing: Summer is almost over! If you haven’t been to the beach, picked your own fruit, or ridden a roller coaster yet, there's still time to squeeze in more fun before saying so long to summer. Read on for 30 awesome adventures to have with your kids before school starts, and get ready to go out with a bang!

Find even more bucket list–worthy ideas in our Summer Fun GuideAugust Go List, and Events Calendar

Summer Streets Returns This August: Explore Car-Free NYC with Kids

Summer Streets, easily one of our favorite NYC seasonal festivals, returns for its 12th season of car-free Saturdays on August 3, 10, and 17.

The annual Summer Streets event gives New Yorkers three consecutive Saturdays of car-free summer fun, with a seven-mile stretch of city streets from the Upper East Side to the Brooklyn Bridge closed to cars and open exclusively to pedestrians, skaters, and bicyclists. Five fun-filled rest stops overflow with fun activities, giveaways, and entertainment.

Most of the interactive stations are 100% FREE but some require advance registration. Read on for all the details on this ultimate summer street fest.

Best Tubing and Rafting for New Jersey Families

New Jersey offers several scenic spots where you can enjoy water tubing and rafting on rivers and lakes. Head west to go tubing on the Delaware River for a ride with the current, splashing and gliding past the wildlife and cliff-side rock formations. You can also hitch a ride around one of New Jersey's lakes. There are plenty of gentle tubing and paddling adventures that are suitable for children age 4 and up, so the whole family can enjoy this classic summer thrill.

For more family fun, including water parks and campgrounds in New Jersey, check out our Summer Fun Guide

Free Things to Do With Kids on Long Island in August

Summer is winding down, and on Long Island the fun doesn't have to end, especially when it's FREE. August brings more excitement with FREE festivals, arts and crafts events, concerts, and more.

Grandparents can enjoy a day with their grandchildren at the Suffolk County Farm. Artists big and little can appreciate the Huntington Summer Arts Festival. Locomotive lovers can ride on a steam train. If you want to squeeze in more family fun before school starts, check out these FREE events below. 

The Battery With Kids: 9 Fun Things to Do in Downtown's Biggest Green Space

The Battery, the park at the southernmost tip of Manhattan Island, is to lower Manhattan what Central Park is to upper Manhattan. This welcoming green space has been enlarged twice during its lifetime with landfill, and is now the largest open space downtown—25 acres of waterfront property. The Battery (as it has been renamed—although many people still call it Battery Park) is a beautifully landscaped garden full of family activities, public art, and great views—and not just of the Statue of Liberty, either. The promenade is a perfect place to stroll, ride bikes, scooter or just sit in the sunshine. Most people think of it as the place to get the boats for the Statue of Liberty, but I like to think of it as the “front lawn” for the city and a perfect outing for the whole family.

Read on for how to get the most out of a day out with kids in the Battery.

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