Best Apple Picking Orchards and Farms Near NYC

Starting around Labor Day weekend and continuing through the fall, orchards around the tristate area offer families the chance to pick their own apples. Many also host cool kids' attractions, including hayrides, petting zoos, bouncy houses and corn mazes. Some even sell home-baked treats.

While there was a time when apple trees thrived in NYC (ever wonder how Orchard Street got its name?), city families today need to head out of town to pick their own fruit. While there are plenty of wonderful apple orchards in the Hudson ValleyNew Jersey, Long Island, and Connecticut, many are quite a long drive, and we know nothing derails a fun family outing like a stressful commute. So we've rounded up a dozen places to pick your own apples that are an hour or less from Midtown Manhattan by car. A few are even accessible by train.

Pageant of the Masters in Laguna: These Paintings Aren't What They Seem

Every city has something uniquely its own, some quirky event or phenomenon that defies description yet defines by association. Houston has its rodeo; Boston has its tea party, and Laguna Beach has the Pageant of the Masters

If you've never experienced this curious gem, the private treasure of the people of Laguna, opportunity awaits you every night all summer long. But get ready to clean your glasses, because you won't always be sure what you're looking at. The extraordinary event is unlike anything else I've seen; it may not be everyone's cup of tea, but if you're raising a budding artist, or if you love hitting museums en famille, you owe it to yourselves to check the Pageant of the Masters off this summer's bucket list.

Family-Friendly Fall Fun Runs and Races in Philadelphia

Whether you have been able to whether the weather to stay in shape this summer or not, the cool crisp air of Fall is almost upon us. And with fall, comes many opportunities to get out and run! Which might be why Fall is one of the best seasons for family-friendly runs. These runs can not only encourage physical health awareness for you and your kids, but help you bond over a shared goal, and possibly learn about a cause or charity that may be a great learning experience for your kids. If you have fun on these runs, keep training for the later festive fall Turkey Trots and Santa Runs!

10 Boston-Area Fitness Classes for Moms and Babies

Life with a new baby can be hectic—between round-the-clock feedings and sleepless nights, it can be hard to fit in a shower. However, after those first few weeks, many new moms want to start exercising again. Several local fitness studios offer mom and baby workout classes so new moms can take care of themselves and keep their babies close at the same time. The classes run the gamut from pilates and barre to running and stroller sessions—mom and baby yoga classes are featured in another post.

10 Ways to Beat the Heat on Long Island This Summer

August usually brings high temps and plenty of humidity, leaving Long Island families scrambling to find ways to cool off. Whether you want to enjoy the sunshine or retreat indoors to central AC, there are plenty of options in both Nassau and Suffolk counties to help you beat the heat--and all are guaranteed fun for every age. After all, you want to enjoy these last bits of summer before school begins. For more to do this month, check out our Summer Fun Guide.

Apple Picking Around New Jersey

There's a chill in the air, the kids are headed back to school, and you know what all that means... That's right, it’s finally apple-picking time! No matter where you live in New Jersey, there's bound to be an apple picking orchard nearby, many of which also offer fun activities, like hay rides and petting zoos. So grab a few baskets and head out to one of these great farms. Mmmmm.

10 Free Back-To-School Apps Every Parent Needs

Sending the kids back to school is akin to setting those New Year’s resolutions in January. It’s a clean slate and a period (however brief) of good intentions. Make the most of this optimism with these 10 smartphone and tablet apps to help you stay organized, help lend a hand with homework, and even help add some extra learning fun.  

We talked with teachers, principals and other educational experts about their favorite apps, and then we gave them a try to see how they worked. What follows is a list of our front runners, all designed to help you and your family get the school year off on the right foot. The best part? All of these apps are free. 

Looking for more parenting tips, back-to-school related and otherwise? Sign up for our free newsletters to have them delivered straight to your inbox.  

BASIS Independent Manhattan to Open in Fall 2017

School searches can be fraught with stress, but searching for the right fit in Manhattan seems to multiply the tension tenfold...at least! Whether you're searching for a Pre-K program, elementary school, middle school or beyond, finding the right fit for your child is paramount. From public to private to charter, there are so many factors to consider and the landscape is ever- changing.

If you're a Manhattan-based family in the market for a school next year, you've got a great new option: BASIS Independent Schools is set to open its first Manhattan school on the Upper West Side in fall 2017. Serving kids in kindergarten through grade 8, the aim of BASIS Independent is to build well-rounded individuals who are challenged by the schools' accelerated liberal arts and sciences curriculum.

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