Places Where Long Island Kids Can Learn to Cook & Bake

It’s never too early to teach kids the importance of eating healthy, and what better way to do that than by showing them how to cook nutritious meals? (OK, fine, sweets-baking is also fun for kids.)

Not only will kids master important kitchen skills, these classes also improve fine motor skills, boost math comprehension (thanks to all that measuring), and encourage kids to try new foods.

We’ve rounded up more than 10 places that offer cooking and baking classes for kids in Nassau and Suffolk counties. So go ahead and encourage your future Emeril or Giada to get cooking! And for more enrichment programs, check out our Classes Guide.

Best Tubing and Rafting for New Jersey Families

Paddling a raft or floating on a tube down a rushing river is a summer thrill your kids won't get at a local water park. If you're looking for an exciting alternative to the beach, head west toward the Delaware River for a ride with the current, splashing and gliding past the wildlife and cliff-side rock formations. Most tubing adventures are suitable for children age 4 and up, and life jackets are required. Check websites for pricing and reservation information. And be sure to bring river shoes to protect everyone's feet from the slippery, rocky riverbed!

For more family fun, including water parks and campgrounds, check out our Summer Fun Guide

Best Family Restaurants Near the Bronx Zoo and Botanical Garden

It's no secret that the New York Botanical Garden, the Bronx Zoo, and Wave Hill are all cultural gems and year-round destinations for families, or that all are located in our city's northernmost borough. The real question on many parents' minds, however, might actually be, “but where do we eat?” As a mother of three in the Bronx, that question is easy to answer. The hard part is narrowing down the plentiful options.

The surrounding neighborhoods of Riverdale and the Bronx Park area are just as picturesque and wonderful as the attractions themselves, complete with myriad spots to stop off for a bite. So we've rounded up several dining options near each destination where families can fill up before or after a fun-filled day.

Find more great eats in our guide to Family-Friendly NYC Restaurants, including more near uptown city hot spots like the American Museum of Natural History and Lincoln Center.

Boston has a New Museum! A Review of the Dreamland Wax Museum

On the list of things Boston is flush with—green space, top universities, a maddening number of rotaries—museums are a particular point of pride. We boast some of the world's best, but it's been awhile since one could call itself "new." Enter Dreamland. As visitors to Government Center may have noticed, the Dreamland Wax Museum just had its grand opening in July. With more than 100 wax figures, Dreamland is definitely a different sort of experience than you might find on the neighboring Freedom Trail and Faneuil Hall. I recently visited with my 12-year-old son, my seven-year-old daughter, and an eight-year-old friend, and here's our take on whether the museum is cool or creepy. (Spoiler alert: It's a little bit of both).

Special Campgrounds With Kid-Friendly Extras Near Westchester

"Getting away from it all" and spending time camping in the woods sounds idyllic, but let's face it: Sometimes—especially when kids are involved—you just need something a little extra.

Whether it's a place to do laundry or a game to keep the kids happy, these campsites are all within a reasonable distance and have plenty of amenities and activities. You'll still feel like you're getting away from civilization, but with any luck you won't hear the never-ending cries of "I'm bored!" 

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How to Spend a Day Exploring the San Jacinto Battleground

With a new school year starting in just a couple of weeks, we decided to ease our kids back into the learning game with a fun and informative trip to the San Jacinto Battleground. Filled to the brim with Texas history, this state historic site is home to the iconic San Jacinto Monument and museum, the USS Texas Battleship, and tons of green space to explore with historical markers and informative plaques. It's often challenging to find a family activity that all four of our kids (ages 3, 5, 8 and 11) will enjoy, but we were pleasantly surprised by how much there was to see and do at the battleground. 

This Weekend's Fun for LA Kids: Elephants, South Bay CicLAvia, and Dan Zanes

Let's talk about the elephant in the room: some of you are going back to school next week. Let's talk about the elephants of the wild: the LA Zoo devotes this weekend to exploring the care and conservation of these majestic creatures (as well as their plush cousins).

There's also a wolf, as in Peter and the Wolf, or Peter y La Loba as our friends Lucky Diaz and the Family Band Jam say. They're putting on a free show this weekend, and you know who else is as well?  Dan Zanes, who's pretty much our all time favorite, and his show is free free free at the Getty (which is also home to one of LA's best hills for rolling down).

If you want your kids to get a taste of the kind of music you grew up with, then hurry up and bring your jukebox money because the B-52s are putting on a—you guessed it—free show at Pershing Square. You can also show them your 90s and hip-hop moves. That's what we call taking them to school, before you, you know, actually take them to school. Because school is starting. And that's the elephant in the room.

Keep reading for our most elephantine picks for this weekend...

Weekend Fun for Philly Kids: Peaches, Insects, Trains August 12-13

Philly families are in store for a peachy weekend! Peddlers' Village, Linvilla Orchards, and Oasis Family Farm host festivals in honor of this sweet summertime fruit. Some events feature pick-your-own opportunities while other offer peach pies, cobblers, and ice cream as well as children's activities. Kiddos who love nature and animals are sure to be interested in the Academy of Natural Science's Bug Fest or The Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association's Butterfly Festival. Families with train lovers can take a camping trip (sans sleepover) on Colebrookdale Railroad's Campfire Express or travel for a summertime picnic on the West Chester Railroad. Younger engineers can visit the famous little blue engine from the island of Sodor who makes his way down the tracks at Morris Arboretum all weekend long.

Trying to escape the August weather? Find reprieve in air-conditioning at Easton's Crayola Factory, one of many local museums, or your neighborhood library. For now, continue reading for some of the amazing activities found in our event calendar.


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