New York at Its Core: Explore NYC's Past and Future with Kids

Atop museum mile in East Harlem, the Museum of the City of New York (MCNY) is a treasured, often less crowded destination for parents in the know. Best for grade school kids and up, the MCNY explores the rich history—and celebrates the vibrant future—that makes this city so great. Plus, kids under 19 are admitted free, making the museum's suggested admission for adults a complete deal. My daughters and I recently checked out its newest and biggest exhibit, New York at Its Core: 400 Years of NYC History, and came away with a deeper understanding of, and appreciation for, the city we call home.

Purim Festivals and Carnivals around LA

Not too sure what Purim is? Imagine something between Hebrew Halloween and Middle Eastern Mardi Gras, and you'll more or less have it. Jewish families know Purim as a time of uncharacteristically raucous rabbinical revelry, marked by costumes, noisemakers, interactive storytelling, triangular pastries, and enough drink (for the grown-ups) to muddy the lines between good and evil. Gentile families generally don't know it at all. But Purim is worth knowing. Its story has all the best elements: a party-hearty king, a beautiful and courageous queen, a resourceful good guy, and a bad guy so hateful that everyone drowns out his name with noisemakers at carnivals all over town. Check out one of the events below for classic Purim carnival activities, costume parades, and boisterous retellings of the Purim story.

And if you know of a celebration we've missed, please let us know!

Science & Technology Camps for Philadelphia Area Kids

The importance of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education is becoming more and more apparent in our children's lives. Technology is everywhere, and STEM fields provide some of the most in-demand career opportunities. Plus, kids can learn to design video games, build LEGO robots, or even dissect a squid! How cool is that? 

Fun and engaging summer camp programs in science and technology are plentiful in the Philadelphia area. All this is sure to make summer science anything but boring.

Visit the Mommy Poppins Camp Directory for even more great summer program options.

Weekday Picks: ArtNight Pasadena, Live Action Fairy Tales, Mad Science, March 6-10

Looking to expose your family to more culture? Pasadena's semiannual ArtNight  features 17 cultural institutions opening their doors for free to share their latest offerings and special events. Of particular interest to kids is the Teen Center, with its live performances and visual arts, as well as Kidspace Children's Museum and Pasadena Unified School District's No Boundaries 12 exhibit showcasing more than 400 artworks by students and live performances.   

Also this week, Disney's El Capitan in Hollywood offers up a Festival of Fairy Tales: Disney's Live-Action Adventures in anticipation of the March 17 release of the live-action Beauty and the Beast. Featured screenings this week are The Jungle Book, Pete's Dragon, Cinderella, and Alice in Wonderland

Here's our list of favorite outings this week. Want more? Check out the Mommy Poppins Event Calendar and the March GoList.

Weekday Picks: Nature, Fireside, and Bald Eagles, March 6-10

With milder temperatures in store this week it's sure to be an optimum time to get out and about with the kids. Some highlights include stargazing at Yale, fireside stories in Mystic, and enjoying nature in Litchfield. And don't miss the Mommy Poppins virtual scavenger hunt!

To keep tabs on all the fun across Connecticut, check our frequently updated Events Calendar and our March GoList for all of our faves. Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest

Weekday Picks for Westchester Kids: Tech Week, Kid Luau

Teen Tech Week arrives, and Westchester libraries and other venues are rallying to celebrate the national occasion! Expect much in the way of STEM family programming, like Messin' with Makey Makey! and an opportunity to learn 3-D Printing. Or, join Mommy Poppins for a virtual scavenger hunt—but that’s not all …

March is associated with many other occasions. For one, we’ve rounded up ways to celebrate Women’s History Month, and one of these events is taking place mid-week.

Our Event Calendar is loaded with many ways to celebrate March occasions—as well as “just because” fun, like the KidX Luau Event. So grab your planner and start soaking up all the fun and enriching activities we’ve curated for you—most of them are FREE!

Best NYC Children's Bookstores to Spend an Afternoon In

Only a small number of dedicated children's bookshops exist in NYC—Books of Wonder and Bank Street Bookstore, we're looking at you!—but there are a number of other indie stores with impressive children's book sections. Many of these lit havens host children's activities, including read-alongs but also author events, and writing workshops.

My kids have a particular weakness for books, possibly because it's the one thing I never deny them—as evidenced by the overflowing bookshelves at home. We love exploring new-to-us, local shops and spending lazy afternoons getting lost in the stacks, so we've rounded up some of our favorite bookstores around the city, including two new ones coming soon.

Whether shopping for a birthday gift or looking for a local storytime, the neighborhood independent bookstore is a great bet for NYC families.


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