Weekday Event Picks for NJ Kids: Nature Classes, Weeki Wachee Mermaids, November 2-6

Coming off that Halloween sugar rush, you may be rushing to find activities for this short week of school. Luckily, our November calendar is filling up. Relaxing theatrical performances are aplenty, including productions of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, Pinocchio & Other Tales and Berenstain Bears: Hospital Stories. Before the cold weather sets in, take advantage of nature exploration this week at Fall Preschool Nature Classes and Fall Mini Nature Camp. And don’t forget to check out our Event Calendar for even more options!

Museums of Fairfield County: 6 Best Art and History Museums

The quaint streets of the towns and villages of Fairfield County are dotted with beautiful, old, historic houses. There is not a single community that would not pride itself on the natural beauty of its surroundings: our lush forests, serene lakes, majestic rivers, bubbly creeks and beautiful shoreline have long served as inspiration and refuge for local and visiting artists. It is not surprising that the county has many first-class museums featuring history and the arts. As our state and communities, most of our museums are also small, easily accessible and extremely family-friendly. Here's a summary of some of our favorites:

1. Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum 

The Aldrich ins Ridgefield is a nationally recognized modern art museum which is also recognized as one of the most innovative and engaging institutions of its kind. It has no permanent collection, but rotates a variety of high-quality exhibits, several of which are featured at the same time. Consequently, the Aldrich always has something for everybody: an interesting mixed-media exhibit, a video presentation, sculptures, painting, exhibits of 'found objects'. The small museum is composed of surprisingly airy and spacious exhibition halls, providing for a leisurely, laid-back art experience.

 

The Aldrich Museum offers a variety of workshops and educational opportunities for children, including hands-on art classes for preschoolers and kindergartners. Every third weekend it is 'drop-in time' at the museum for families for interactive and fun art education events.

 

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum 

258 Main Street

Ridgefield, CT, 06877

Phone: 203-438-4519

 

2. Bruce Museum 

The Bruce Museum is a small, local museum with art and natural history exhibits. Its collections were started by Robert Moffat Bruce, a wealthy textile merchant from the late 19th century. It features a pleasing diversity of exhibits: permanent art exhibits from the work of the local Cos Cob school, natural history exhibits focused on geology, minerals, land formation complete with engaging video presentations. Its glow-in-the -dark minerals and touchable meteorite are the favorites of kids. Many of its thematic exhibits focus on the natural history of the Connecticut region.

 

Bruce Museum 

1 Museum Drive

Greenwich, CT, 068830

Phone: 203-869-0376

 

3. Bush-Holley Historic Site 

The Bush-Holley House has gone through many transformations throughout its two and a half century existence. Like most of colonial Connecticut, it started out simply and humbly: a one-room tiny house. Over the years it grew into a nice, colonial saltbox, proud residence of an industrious and thriving family in the Cos Cob area. By the mid-1800s it was transformed into the center of an art colony, its grounds and terraces offering sweeping views of the Long Island Sound inspiring the artists of the Cos Cob school.

 

As a museum, the well-preserved colonial house celebrates both: colonial life and history and the achievements and work of the Cos Cob art community. 4 of its carefully designed rooms are dedicated to the presentation of colonial life through the reconstruction of the Bush family's late 18th century home. The remaining rooms feature the work of the late 19th century Cos Cob artists.

 

Bush-Holley Historic Site 

39 Strickland Road

Cos Cob, CT, 06807

Phone: 203-869-6899

 

4. Westport Historical Society: Wheeler House and The Bradley-Wheeler Barn Museum 

The two-story, pretty, white, Italienete Wheeler House in Westport takes us back to the Victorian period. The house's first floor rooms have been meticulously restored with many original and replica objects for the period. The Victorian bedroom, dining room, parlor and kitchen vividly evoke the comfortable and respectable lifestyle of an American middle-class family in the post-Civil War period of new hope and growth.

 

Not far from the attractive, Victorian house stands the heptagonal, bulky, cobblestone Bradley-Wheeler Barn. The mysterious little building houses an exhibits of the history of Westport from native Americans to today. The key attractions are the barn's 5-foot square model of the town from 1860s with audio recordings by Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman and Swezey, the little toy train from Westport's old-timer Swezey Jewelers' shop windows.

 

Westport Historical Society 

25 Avery Place

Westport, CT, 06880

Phone: 203-222-1424

 

5. Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum 

The magnificent Lockwood-Mathews Mansion in Norwalk commemorates the glamor and larger-than-life grandeur of the Gilded Age. The great mansion is one of the biggest and most beautiful historic house-museums in Connecticut. Many of its rooms on the first-floor have been renovated and restored: its movie-worthy rotunda, luxurious and impeccably elegant library, music, dining and billiard rooms could have been in the mansion of Great Gatsby.

 

The park surrounding the mansion has many treats for kids. The Stepping Stones Museum for Children – with its new fun exhibit that Mommypoppins has recently featured - is just a few steps from the big house. Don't forget about the fun playground, Devon's Place also located in Mathews Park. Younger and older kids – including my almost 14-year old – seem to enjoy this playground a whole lot more than your average playground.

 

295 West Avenue

Norwalk, CT,

Phone: 203-838-9799 (ext 3)

 

6. Keeler Tavern, Ridgefield 

The Keeler tavern in Ridgefield is our long-time favorite. The old colonial inn-tavern-hotel-post office is interesting in itself with its many exciting objects from hundreds of years ago. What makes it real fun and entertaining is the lively stories of the costumed tour guides: colorful anecdotes, amusing rumors and gossips from the period and sometimes scary stories bring to life the tribulations, joys and everyday routines of Connecticut's colonists. Mommypoppins' detailed post about this little historic treasure chest was published here.

 

 

Keeler Tavern 

132 Main Street

Ridgefield, CT, 06877

Phone: 203-438-9953

 

Weekday Picks for LI Kids: Pumpkin Decorating, Holiday Planting, Cooking, November 2-6

While many kids are still coming out of their candy comas after a fun-filled Halloween, that doesn't mean families can't kick off the start of November with pumpkin decorating, holiday planting and healthy cooking.

For even more activities, check out our Long Island Events Calendar, which is updated daily. You can also get the best events of the week sent directly to your inbox each week if you sign up for our newsletter.

Weekday Picks for Connecticut Kids: Castle Making, Storytime, and Holidaze

Election Day is Tuesday, which means no school for many Connecticut kids. Could be a great day for a daytrip. Check out our daytrip guide for lots of suggestions all over the state.

We've rounded up our best bets for November 2-6, including a castle making workshop, a nature hike, and Holidaze.

For more options check out our jam-packed Event Calendar. Have a great week!

Weekday Picks for Boston Kids: Christmas Festival & Free Fun, November 2-6

How many parents out there are waiting for the right moment to try some of these great tricks for making Halloween candy disappear? My hand is definitely raised! Now that Halloween is a thing of the past, I'm already looking forward to some fun events in November, the unofficial start of the holiday season. This means perusing the calendar for events like this week's family-friendly concert or a Christmas festival (yes, you read that right) that includes a gingerbread competition (pictured). Keep your eye on the full Event Calendar for more upcoming happenings.

Weekday Fun: Election Day Camps, Fall Field Day, Theater, November 2-6

Election Day is Tuesday, which means no school for many NYC kids. If you have to work, we've rounded up dozens of enriching full-day camp programs to keep kids happy and entertained. If that free day is an opportunity for a little extra fall fun, inspiring seasonal day trips, including one to a sporty spot in Massachusetts, are worth considering.

Other highlights for the coming week include the long-awaited release of The Peanuts Movie. Amp up the excitement by bringing the kids to meet iconic cartoon beagle, Snoopy, as he makes his way around NYC. If you are root-root-rooting for the home team, we've got a bunch of DIY ideas to cheer on the New York Mets as the World Series wraps up this week.

We've rounded up our best bets for November 2-6, including a Day of the Dead celebration, the annual Canstruction exhibit, a wonderful entry to theater for tots, FREE museum times and no-school Fall Field Day.

As always, you can find lots of other ideas in our Event Calendar and Fall Fun Guide.

Weekday Picks for Westchester Kids: Mad Hatter Party, Book Art, Backyard Birds, Nov. 2-6

Halloween may be over, but the abundance of fun and enriching programs continues for Westchester families! Mid-week is loaded with opportunities to learn and create. Adopt a new talent at Folded Book Art, learn about the Birds That Live in Our Backyard and don’t be late for a very important date at the Mad Hatter's Tea Party

These are just some of our top picks for the week—all of which are FREE! Read on for the rest and check out our hot-off-the-press November GoList for our top picks for the whole month. Our Event Calendar has even more options to choose from. 

The Best Outdoor Ice Skating Rinks on Long Island

Button up your overcoat--or just wear a furry animal hat--because it’s time for outdoor ice skating!  Enjoy the crisp winter air and a delicious cup of hot chocolate when you're done.We've compiled a list of the best outdoor skating rinks on Long Island.

Keep in mind that there are also quite a few Indoor Rinks around LI, so if the weather is simply too cold or if it's the off-season, you can still strap on some skates and have fun. Happy Skating!

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