Ultimate List of Halloween Fun for Westchester Kids

Halloween is almost here, and the number of activities in our area can be overwhelming. Have no fear, for we are here to give you the nitty-gritty on more than two dozen(!) of our favorite events for kids in Westchester and the Hudson Valley—and many of them are FREE!

Looking for more family fun, with or without a costume? Check out our Event Calendar and sign up for our newsletters.

18 Things to Do Before Philly Kids Turns 18 in the Delaware Valley

Celebrating a child's birthday can be an emotional one for parents. After all, each birthday celebrates one more step towards growing up. Before you know it, your kiddo is 18! Wait, didn't I just bring this baby home from the hospital?  With only 18 birthdays before being considered an adult, there are certain experiences in and around the Delaware Valley every Philly kid should have. This way, when they fly from the nest, they can say, "Yeah, I've done that. I'm from Philadelphia."

Our picks are listed in no particular order. However some clearly are geared toward a younger set while others have a broader appeal to kids of varying ages. Read on to see how many of our 18 must dos your child has visited.

Texas' Hidden Children's Museums You Have to Visit

Major cities throughout Texas boast well known and very well loved children's museums such as Austin's Thinkery, San Antonio's DoSeum, and of course our very own Children's Museum of Houston. But as "they" always say... everything is bigger in Texas! That means there are even more children's museums to get to know and love all over the lone star state. These hidden gems are nestled in small towns and suburbs, and they are bursting at the seams with fun and hands-on learning for kids of all ages. 

Best Kid-Friendly Hotels for a San Diego Family Vacation

Whether you're driving down from Los Angeles or flying in from afar, a weekend in San Diego is the perfect getaway to find rest and relaxation all year long. The SoCal destination offers a wide array of family activities to keep everyone entertained, in between the requisite visits to Seaworld, Legoland, and the Safari Park. Here, we round up eight of our favorite spots to kick back and unwind in this picturesque beach town.

Best Places for Trick or Treating in Houston

Halloween is only a couple weeks away, which means it's time to start finalizing costumes (just realized you're in a pinch? We've got you covered with easy, last-minute costume ideas!) and determining where you're taking the kiddos trick or treating, especially if you're looking to branch out past your own neighborhood this year. Not sure where to start looking? Check out these Houston neighborhoods and hotspots for fun, safe, and friendly trick or treating this Halloween.

Best Neighborhoods to Trick-or-Treat on Halloween Night with Los Angeles Kids

Trick or treat! Los Angeles consistently makes the top 5 cities on Zillow's Halloween list of the country's best spots for trick-or-treating. The real estate website bases its trick-or-treat ranking on criteria like home value and crime rates. That's good, but what about special effects and Halloween decorations? If one figures in the number of film industry creatives living in a given metropolitan area, LA wins first place by a country mile. Speaking of country miles, if you've walked the distance between houses in the most expensive LA neighborhoods, you know that higher home value does not always translate to better trick-or-treating. What does? Well, keep your Halloween hats on, because we've got a list of some of LA and Orange County's most legendary trick-or-treat neighborhoods. I defy anyone in Philadelphia to beat these!

Polar Express and Santa Trains Near NYC This Holiday Season

The magic of Chris Van Allsburg’s popular Christmas picture book The Polar Express comes to life again this winter with festive holiday trains within a whistle's blow of the New York City metro area. A huge hit with kids and parents alike, these trains spark the imagination and holiday spirit with seasonal snacks, stories, even gifts—not to mention a visit from Santa himself.

These old-school cabooses (some harking back to the 1920s) offer a classic holiday ambience. There's a Polar Express just an hour south into New Jersey, as well as the one-day-only Tri-State Santa Train about 50 minutes away. You could also consider a day trip to the Catskills, or a weekend getaway to Pennsylvania Dutch Country for the Santa's Paradise Express. No matter which Santa Train experience you choose, your family can combine the annual Santa Claus photo op with lasting memories of a sweet adventure.

Remember: these train rides sell out quickly, often months in advance, so book now if you want to go.

Jack O’Lantern Journey at Franklin Park Zoo: 5 Tips for a Fun Family Evening

Eager to experience some Halloween night magic before October 31? This fall season, Boston’s Franklin Park Zoo is just the place to do it. Through November 4, the zoo is home to the Jack O’Lantern Journey, a spectacular jack-o’-lantern display filled with thousands of intricately carved pumpkins over a half-mile trail. I headed to the event with my two children to find out everything you need to know before visiting. Here are my insider tips to make sure your visit with children is a real treat (with no tricks).

Foliage on Foot: 10 Great Fall Hikes for Westchester Kids

It officially feels like fall, and the leaves have begun to change. While fall foliage drives can be fun, bringing the kids on an outdoor hike has the added bonus of letting them burn off some energy.

We polled our writers and readers and have gathered up a list of some of our favorite places in Westchester and the Lower Hudson Valley to bring kids to hike for beautiful autumn views. (Does the word “hike” make you instinctively grimace? No worries—we’ve included some easy options for those who are used to seeing the leaves from behind a windshield.)

Be sure to consult our Fall Fun Guide for more seasonal activities, and follow us on Facebook

Free Halloween Parades and Events for Kids on Long Island

Halloween might be the final day of October, but events are happening on Long Island all throughout the month. Here are some fun and free Halloween events in which the family can take part. Kids (and grown-ups) love dressing in costumes, so consider attending more than one event to get the best use of them. 

Don’t forget to check your local library for any FREE Halloween events it might be hosting. And for more seasonal fun, check out our Long Island Halloween Guide, our October GoList, and our compilation of the best fall fairs and festivals on Long Island. 

So whether you scored that pizza slice costume on clearance last year or spent hours with a hot glue gun and duct tape, these events are a great way to showcase those fun or frightening costumes. 

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