Trains, Dinos & Heroes

Exploring Sands Point Preserve: Dino Trail, Castles, and Hikes

Dare to compare footprints with fantastic beasts who roamed the Earth long before us at the Dino Trail at Sands Point Preserve.

It's one of six trails ripe for strolling, hiking, jogging and exploring at this sprawling Gold Coast estate turned public sanctuary. And that's not all: There's so much more to explore, including 200 acres of trails, a pond, beachfront, woods and native habitats.

There are so many sweet spots to soak up nature on Long Island. Get out and get exploring. Looking for more North Shore shenanigans? Check out our Mommy Poppins visitors guide to nearby Port Washington, a family-friendly Long Island destination.

How to Get Tickets to NYC's New Harry Potter Exhibit

It’s a busy year for Harry Potter fans. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is already setting ticket records on Broadway (if you can't get a ticket, see our other theater recommendations). Another of the Potter-prequel flicks hits theaters this fall, Fantastic Beasts 2: The Crimes of Grindelwald, and New York City is getting a brand-new museum exhibit dedicated to all things Harry Potter and his magical world of wizards and magic.

As every wizard knows, this year marks the 20th anniversary of the U.S. publication of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. To celebrate, the New-York Historical Society (NYHS) brings the British Library’s exhibit Harry Potter: A History of Magic to the Upper West Side in October. Tickets go on sale to the general public on Thursday, April 26, and it might be a good idea to buy them sooner rather than later as the museum expects the same Potter-happy crowds experienced last year at the British Library. 

Find out what exactly is included in the upcoming exhibition.

Indie Toy Stores: LA's Best Spots To Shop for Toys

Toys. Kids love ‘em; parents wish they would put them away. But in this the age of electronics, we can all agree that a good old-fashioned manipulative beats a device with a screen any day. With even big toy store chains like FAO Schwartz and Toys 'R' Us closing shop, it's time for us to rally and support the local toy stores we love if we want them to be here next year—particularly the ones where you find an unusual gift just when you need it.

Kids' Birthday Party Entertainers in NJ that Come to You!

There’s nothing like the comfort of your own home when it comes to hosting your kid’s birthday party. Sure, you have to clean up, but you’re in control and you don't have to worry about sharing a space with other parties. And, since the cost of an at-home party tends to be lower, it's the perfect opportunity to splurge on a one-of-a-kind experience that will bring the party to you.

We've rounded up top New Jersey entertainers for your next bash. From costumed characters to magicians, balloon twisters, and face painters—even ponies and lizards—these party entertainers make house calls to delight your birthday kid and pint-sized party guests.

Find more ideas in our NJ Birthday Party Guide.

Hop Aboard the Easter Bunny Express: Train Rides for Kids Near Philly

Spring is in the air, and many of our scenic railroads are celebrating the season with Easter excursions. Families are invited to get outside after a long winter to enjoy a trip through the countryside with Peter Cottontail himself! We have rounded up several Easter-themed trains that are running special events for kids in the Delaware Valley.

Some of these trains include an Easter Egg hunt at the halfway stop. It is helpful to check whether the railroad provides a photographer and charges for a picture with the Bunny or if you can bring your own camera.

These Easter Bunny Trains can be the start of a great family tradition to celebrate the Easter holiday and to welcome Spring!  Be sure to check our calendar for more fun spring events.

Dinosaurs Invade a Shopping Mall in Redondo Beach

Part museum, part play space, Wonder of Dinosaurs at the South Bay Galleria is a tantalizing collection of animatronic dinosaurs of all varieties, in the setting of a mini amusement-park-toy-shop combo that offers a full day of family friendly exploration (and shopping). Spanning two floors of retail storefront, this dino destination has such wow-worthy draws as Triceratops bouncies (some reserved for the many birthday parties being held on the premises) and a movable dinosaur with reigns for riding like a horse. This natural history museum of play gyms, Wonder of Dinosaurs is a welcome addition to the many kid-friendly places in Redondo Beach.

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