Weekend Trips

9 Fun Cheap Things to do with Kids on Long Island

Long Island boasts an abundance of cheap activity options for children and their caregivers.  Whether you have an only child or a group of three or more in tow, there are terrific, free and/or inexpensive places to take your children in Nassau and Suffolk counties.  Below is a sampling of some wonderful outings that are family-friendly.


Farm Fun at the Quiet Valley Farm Animal Frolic

Quiet Valley Living Historical Farm isn’t just one of those cheesy animal farms for kids, It's a real working farm that dates back to the 1760s and is on the National Historic Register. The farm is about an hour and half away from midtown Manhattan just over the Delaware River near the town of Stroudsburg and makes a great day trip from New York City any time, but around Memorial Day Weekend you have extra reason to visit for their Annual Farm Animal Frolic at Quiet Valley Living Historical Farm, a day of old fashioned fun for kids and adults and something we love to go to every year.  

5 Labor Day Weekend Getaways from New York City via Bus or Train

If you want to get out of the city for Labor Day weekend but you don't have a car, don't fret. You don't have to feel left out of the weekend getaway crowd, just because you don't have a car and loads of cash. There are several fun places you can go for the day or weekend using public transportation. These inexpensive getaways are fun for the whole family. Just hop on the bus or train and you're on your way to a world of fun.

10 Things To Do With Kids in Montauk, NY

[UPDATED: September 11, 2012]

If you're heading to the beaches of Long Island, there's a great new site to check out. KidMontauk.com gives parents the inside skinny in everything you need to know to have a blast on and off the beach in Montauk, NY. Heather D'Agostino, the site's founder, offered to fill us in on her Top Ten Things to Do with Kids in Montauk. Thanks, Heather!

Get Locavore at U-Pick Farms in New Jersey

They don't call it The Garden State for nothing. New Jersey is a great place to go to pick your own summer fruit and veggies. Whether it is strawberries, peaches, or peas, you can find plenty of u-pick farms in New Jersey.  Picking your own produce is great thing to do, especially with kids. Not only does it help you eat locally with farm fresh produce, but it's important for kids to learn about where their food comes from and make that connection with the farm. Plus it's lots of fun.

The NJ picking season starts end of May for strawberries with other berries and peaches coming in season end of June through end of July and apples, pumpkins and other vegetables available through the Fall.  Here are some of our favorite farms close to New York City for picking your own fruits and vegetables. Click through to each u-pick farm to find out what they have ripe for u-pick now, plus hours and directions, but also call ahead before you go to make sure they aren't picked out.

Sag Harbor: New York's Non-Hampton Family Beach Vacation

[UPDATED: September 12, 2012]

There is another great Summer vacation spot out East on Long Island, and it is a great place to visit for a weekend or a long day with your family. Thanks again to our friend Jill for sharing her ideas on the can't miss spots in Sag Harbor.

Sag Harbor is a great little Hampton town that doesn’t feel like you are in “the Hamptons”. It is an old whaling village that still retains its old style charm. Most of what you want to see is right on Main Street or on some of the smaller side streets – all within walking distance. It is best to find parking and just walk around. To me, the walk itself is very soothing as the town is so quaint it makes the perfect escape from bustling New York City. There are great stores to do some shopping ranging from clothing to toys to surf shops and book stores to antiques and even art galleries; Sag Harbor offers something for everyone.

NJ State Fair: Farm Fun and Rides Just a Short Ride from NYC

We love state fairs. With all the animals, games, rides and junk food, they are full of old-fashioned fun for the entire family. While we've written about all the New York State and County Fairs and that post is in our Summer Activity Guide, but we also love the New Jersey State Fair, which is opening in the end of July.

The NJ State Fair was started in 1821 and retains an old-fashioned charm today. Just one hour’s drive from NYC, the NJ State Fair is filled with a slew of animals rivaling Noah, a fairway full of rides, pig races, butterfly exhibits, bee-keeping exhibitions and a food court offering everything from home-made baked-potatoes to blooming onions and corn-dogs—your kids’ll be enthralled.  And did we mention a wine-making competition and a beer tent?  And there's even free parking.

Even Kids Love The Bard at the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival

If you read our recent post on free outdoor Shakespeare performances and loved the idea, but worried your kid couldn't handle it, we've got another recommendation. The Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival is doing performances of "The Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged)" that are so entertaining and funny that we had three kids (ages 5-10) at rapt attention for the entire show, laughing hysterically and (literally) quoting lines from Shakespeare the next day.

One of the geniuses of Shakespeare has always been that it works on so many levels. While we may think of Shakespeare's plays as the high brow and somewhat inaccessible, they are actually filled with lots of very low-brow humor, potty language and puns (the lowest form of humor), couched in flowery talk. Of course, The Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged) is a parody of Shakespeare's works, but they're working with some very rich material.


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