Weekend Fun for Houston Kids: Above and Beyond, 2nd Saturday at the Depot, Aug. 11-12

This weekend is going to be an excellent one, and not just because it's one of the last ones before school starts. With summer drawing to a close, now more than ever is the time to take advantage of activities like sandcastle building lessons at Stewart Beach, Evening Chill at the Houston Zoo, and Movies Under the Moon at Sugar Land Town Square. There's also still time to make some headway on our 15 Things To Do with Kids Before Summer Ends list, though you definitely want to jump on that since most of these events end when the summer does!

In other Mommy Poppins news, anyone who is in need of a caregiver should take a look at this highly helpful piece: How to Get the Most Out of a Caregiver Interview. This comprehensive article will help you feel confident during your next caregiver interview, both in identifying exactly what you want and need and landing the person best suited for the job. 

Inspiration is always just a click away with our event calendar, which we are constantly updating to reflect as many events and activities happening around Houston that we can find, and with our August GoList, which handpicks the biggest and best things to attend throughout the month. We also highly encourage signing up for our weekly newsletter so you're in the loop right away with all the awesome articles posted on Mommy Poppins. For anyone planning an event, we would love to get you some extra coverage! All we ask is that you submit your event to our calendar, and we'll review it and take care of the rest!

Now let's check out what's happening around Houston this weekend.

Weekend Fun for Boston Kids: Butterflies, Instruments, and Camp-outs, Aug 11-12

This weekend is all about the butterflies, with not one but two happenings featuring these winged specimens at the Museum of Science and the Trailside Museum. We've also got two of MP's favorite August events including one with stars, s'mores, and meteors and the other a real summer campout. Music lovers should head to Jamaica Pond for an instrument playground followed by a jazz concert, and ICA Watershed is hosting it's interactive storytelling program again. Finally, let's all head to the Common to support our favorite baseball team at this awesome summer Out of the Park event

Weekend Fun: Dragon Boats, Puppet Shows, Dance Fest

High on our "must" list of things to do in New York City this weekend are the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival in Corona Park, and this Saturday's car-free Summer Streets fest on Park Avenue. Looking to cool off with some indoor fun? This weekend's Puppet Fringe Festival includes some great productions for kids, like the gorgeous Sueno: A Latino Take on A Midsummer Night's Dream, featuring 50 carnival puppets, stilt walkers, music, and dance.

New York City kids who like to dance (a decided majority) should love the FREE West African Dance performance at the 37th Annual Battery Dance Festival on Saturday. And on Sunday, YahYa Kamate hosts a West African Dance class for all ages at Morris-Jumel Mansion.

City parks are packed with cool activities, like Mostly Mozart concert in Central Park, and the last Summer on the Hudson Playdate of the year, featuring magic with Sammie and Tudie. Foodies in training can cultivate their palates at Connecting through Food in Queens' Socrates Sculpture Park, Totally Tomatoes Weekend at the New York Botanical Garden, and Honey Weekend at Wave Hill.

Our August GoList and Summer Fun Guide are powered up with the best ideas for family outings, and our event calendar adds things to do daily. And don't miss our list of Summer Must Dos: 33 ways to squeeze all the fun you can out of summer, before the school year starts up again.

Weekend Fun: Summerfest, Retro Gaming Expo, Kidz Bop

Swing and sway at the Jones Beach theater this weekend as Kidz Bop Live lights up the stage. Go early to get wet and wild at the park's new splash pad. Stroll around Sayville during its annual Summerfest or get into retro mode at the Long Island Retro Gaming Expo.

Head outdoors to a boardwalkbeach, pools, sprinkler parks, or perhaps to cool off at a water park

Visit our Summer Family Fun Guide and our August GoList for the best in seasonal entertainment, including day trip ideas and plenty of FREE events and activities. As always, our Event Calendar is loaded with fun, daily happenings for Long Island kids. 

Explore Lush Gardens and Nature with Kids at Reeves-Reed Arboretum

The perfect antidote to the stress of crazy family schedules might well be Mother Nature herself—and Reeves-Reed Arboretum in Summit is just the place to stop and smell the roses.

The Arboretum is not your average park outing; this serene Union County oasis offers some unique and interesing ways to learn about and experience the outdoors while giving the whole family some much needed R&R.

Weekend Fun: Country Fair, Fireman's Carnival, Corn Festival

Here’s hoping you’re staying in town this weekend, ’cause there’s plenty for families to do in Westchester and the Hudson Valley!

It's a great time to visit the New York Renaissance Faire, as there are perks for kids—including FREE admission and a costume parade and contest. The South Salem Fire Department's Carnival is in town, featuring rides, games, and food, as is the Otisville Country Fair, which offers distinctive twists like a chainsaw competition and a cast-iron frying-pan toss. Bring your pixie lover to a Fairy House Workshop, or join a citizen-scientist project at the Great Hudson Estuary Fish Count.

Read on for more details on our top weekend picks—many of which are FREE. Planning the rest of the summer? Check out our August GoList for our top picks for the month. And remember to check out the extensive weekday and weekend events listed in our Event Calendar!

Weekend Fun for CT Kids: Water Ski Shows, River Fire, and Kiting, August 11-12

If you are reading this, then the heat and humidity of this past week hasn't completely crushed your joie de vivre. If you've had enough of the Great Outdoors indoor activities abound in Connecticut this weekend, including a Curious Exhibit at the CT Science Center, and indoor stargazing in Stamford. But with weather forecasts calling for low 80s, the real fun this weekend is outdoors. Check out the annual water ski show on Bantam Lake, a classic car cruise in downtown Putnam, a kite festival in celebration of Indian Independence Day, and an ice cream social and Colonial-era celebration in East Windsor.

For even more ideas, we have a host of suggestions in our Event Calendar, the August GoList, and the Summer Fun Guide. For the latest and best family-friendly events, follow us on FacebookTwitter, Instagram, and Pinterest

Weekend Fun for Philly Kids: Bug Fest, Block Parties, Trains August 11-12

There is plenty of summer fun on tap throughout the Delaware Valley during this August weekend. And, with only a few weeks until Philly kids hit the books for a new school year, Philly families should make the most of the extraordinary activities that can be found in our jam-packed events calendar.

Start off the weekend with a visit to the Academy of Natural Sciences' annual Bug Fest to learn fun facts about creepy crawlers. Be sure to explore the Museum's Xtreme Bugs exhibit while you are there. If you prefer to be outside with insects, grab your camera and head to Green Lane Park to snap pictures of both bugs and flowers.

On Saturday, families can enjoy West Chester's Market Street Block Party which features kids' activities as well as the Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic. On Sunday, young and old can rock out to great bands along the Delaware River at Radio 104.5 Summer Block Party. Round out the weekend with some train fun. See Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends at Morris Arboretum or take a Summer Picnic Train Ride on the West Chester Railroad.

Keep reading for more ideas of ways to spend the weekend. Make it a great one!

Destination Playground: Ancient Playground in Central Park

Originally built in 1936, the Ancient Playground on the Upper East Side may seem to have earned its moniker (according to our kids, anyway), but its name is really an homage to its proximity to the Egyptian galleries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, right across the street. The ancient-civilization-themed romping spot, packed with fun climbing structures and water features, is a popular playground for locals and tourists alike, cementing its place on our list of Central Park's top playgrounds.

Read on for more details on why this classic old gem of a playground, at 85th Street and Fifth Avenue, ranks among the city's best.

Outdoor Paintball Fields Where Houston Kids Can Have a Blast

Keeping older kids engaged in something other than video games and electronics can be tough. But what better way to entice kids to get out of the house than to let them get messy shooting paintballs at each other? Luckily, Houston has several great spots to take older kids, tweens, and teens where they can run off some steam and engage in a rousing game of paintball. Racing around rugged terrain, ducking and darting around obstacles, and feeling the rush of competition while trying to dodge splattering paintballs at every turn can make for a fun family outing, group event, or birthday party. Read on for some of our favorite places around Houston to get kids in on the thrill of playing paintball. 

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