Earth Day Activities for Philly Families

It’s finally spring! Although the weather during the month of April can be really unpredictable, families are finding ways to enjoy the great outdoors. Earth Day is April 22, and it’s the perfect time to recognize Mother Nature and show support for environmental protection. There are plenty of family-friendly activities around the Delaware Valley that have been inspired by this worldwide day of celebration, and they’re helping to shape a green generation.

Check out our roundup of Earth Day events—note that not all activities are taking place on April 22. Looking for even more outdoor fun for the whole family? Don’t forget to look at our events calendar for the latest.

Earth Day Events & Activities for Long Island Kids 2016

While Earth Day officially falls on April 22, celebrations are being held throughout the month. Children and adults can get into an Earth-friendly mindset—kids can even learn ecological values and practices that will last a lifetime. We've rounded up several Earth Day events and activities across Long Island.

For other happenings around the area, be sure to check out our Event Calendar.

Fishing Derbies in the Hartford Area

Want to feed children once? Give them a fish. Want to feed children for life? Teach them how to fish. Or something like that. Confession: this sushi-loving parent has never attempted to fish, but my eldest daughter has been asking relentlessly about the opportunity to make her own "catch of the day," so this spring we will finally cast our first line. We learned that fishing derbies are great places to experience the sport, learn about our local resources, and become more environmentally aware. Whether you are a novice or a pro, here are a few fishing derbies in the Hartford area that guarantee a fun family day and a reminder that "good things come to those who bait." 

Hogwarts Hurls into Hollywood: Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios

Hollywood is the original home of Universal Studios, so it never really sat right that Orlando got not just one but two Harry Potter attractions before we did. The injustice is finally set right this week, as Southern California gets its very own Wizarding World of Harry Potter just off the Hollywood Freeway, where Hogwarts ought to be. The magical treat is included in normal theme park admission, though in the coming weeks calling admission to Universal Studios "normal" is a little optimistic. Most of opening weekend is completely sold out to potty Potter fans. Something else that isn't normal? I got to experience the entire attraction a day early with only a handful of press, a few cast members from the film, and not a single line to wait in. Not to gloat, of course: I only bring it up so I can tell you what wonderful wizardry you can expect to find at Hollywood's new Harry Potter World. And to share some cool stories of meeting the actors. And to help you to not vomit. But more of that anon.

Indoor Rock Climbing Gyms in Hartford Area

Two little monkeys jumping on the bed, one fell off and the other ran to mommy scared. Wait -- that’s not a segment from the beloved books series. It sounds more like a page from a parent’s life, and increasingly hotter days do not seem to deplete most children's energy levels. Instead of baking on a playground bench while watching kids have all the fun, or deeply sighing as they pounce from living room couch to armchair, parents in the Hartford area have an amicable option: indoor rock climbing gyms.

The Pitch: Indoor Soccer Field Opens in Williamsburg

To the delight of soccer fans citywide, NYC's first indoor soccer facility has opened just across the river in Williamsburg. The Pitch, named for the British term for the playing field, is located in a former warehouse just steps away from Williamsburg family-favorite, McCarren Park. The high-quality, artificial-turf field offers a climate-controlled environment that is cool in the summer and warm in winter. It's flooded with natural light and is a perfect year-round destination for soccer-loving kids, including mine!

Celebrating Patriots' Day from Boston to Lexington and Concord

Patriots' Day commemorates the April anniversary of the battles of Lexington and Concord, the first clashes of the American Revolutionary War. It is a Massachusetts state holiday, officially observed on the third Monday in April, and is celebrated with parades and ceremonies from Boston to Roxbury, and all along the Battle Road.

Thousands of members of local minute men companies, militias, and historical societies participate in reenactments in Boston, Minute Man National Historical Park, Concord's Old North Bridge, Lexington's Battle Green, and other historic sites in the Boston area.

We’ve rounded up some of the key reenactments, parades, and special events for Patriots' Day, as well as special events at local museums, historical houses and Minute Man National Park. Note: most of the events listed are FREE but also very popular, so plan to arrive early and expect crowds. (If you're interested in more happenings or places to eat while in Concord, check out our 20-plus things to do in Concord post.)

NYC Carousels: 13 City Merry-Go-Rounds To Spin You Around

There's something wonderfully nostalgic about kids getting a thrill from a ride on a carousel. There are more than a dozen merry-go-rounds in our city and all offer a unique spin on this traditional kiddie ride. With spring in full swing, it's a great time to take your first carousel ride of the season. There are merry-go-rounds in all five boroughs, which means there's probably one near you.

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