Hidden NYC: 23 Fun Things To Do in Central Park

Central Park was created as a respite for the teeming masses of Manhattan. The 843-acre jewel is home to woodlands, meadows, lakes, and wildlife, and years later still offers a reprieve to all New Yorkers. Today, more than 40 million people annually visit the lush expanses of one of the country's earliest public parks. Its 21 playgrounds make it a destination for families from all over the city and world.

Central Park isn’t a place to tire of easily. My family's daily commute to school takes us back and forth across the park—for that, I thank my lucky stars. But it's easy to lose perspective and forget how much this massive green space has to offer locals and visitors alike. With that in mind, we've rounded up 23 fun sites and scenes worth exploring in New York City's big backyard, from the obvious playgrounds and sledding hills to more obscure destinations. Enjoy!

Get Merry and Go Round on Unique Carousels with NJ Kids

With all the crazy thrill rides found in theme parks these days, there’s something simply magical about taking a spin on an old-fashioned carousel. Often one of the first rides a child gets to experience, carousels have a special way of making even the most timid tiny ones crack a smile, and they’re a treat for all ages. New Jersey is home to both traditional and turned-up-a-notch carousels, and you don’t have to trek far to find one. Hop on a carousel at one of the area malls for a year-round shopping distraction, go for a spin in a park or zoo, or catch views of the Atlantic from a Jersey shore carousel on the Boardwalk.

We’ve rounded up 15 of the best and most unique carousels in and around NJ, so pack up your little ponies and give them a whirl.

Bucks County, PA with Kids: 25 Top Things to Do as a Family

New and old collide in the pretty Bucks County, Pennsylvania, countryside where young families can play the day away at Sesame Place and older kids can enjoy Revolutionary War history at Washington Crossing. From real castles to playground castles, ice cream shops to kayaking, Bucks County is a sweet spot for a family weekend getaway. Just north of Philadelphia and less than two hours from NYC, it’s easy to access.

Ready to plan a trip? Read on for our list of 25 must-do places to play and see, as well as eat and stay at in Bucks County. We divided it into four family-friendly mini itineraries. Choose one or get some ideas to mix and match an adventure of your own. Explore popular towns like New Hope and Doylestown.

Perfect Day Camps for Preschoolers to Try This Summer

Finding ways to fill long summer days with fun and enriching activities for kids can be a challenge. This is especially true for preschoolers, many of whom seem to have boundless energy and want to constantly be entertained. Day camps can help get kids out of the house and provide a variety of engaging events to participate in. Whether your little one is into exploring the outdoors, experimenting, or creating, Houston has a variety of day camp options. Read on for a selection of day camps that are specifically designed for preschoolers.

And check out our full summer camp guide for ideas on all kinds of camps for kids of all ages.

10 Special Libraries in LA & OC Worth a Drive Beyond Your Branch

Local libraries are a key part of the parenting experience, and most of us are aware of the goings-on at our nearest branch—from toddler storytimes, to homework help, to family movie nights. Some savvy parents are even on top of the many extra perks that come with a library card. But what about venturing beyond the local branch? With so many libraries in the greater Los Angeles area, some are really exceptional and merit a visit even if they're not your local. The 10 SoCal libraries below all boast something extra that makes them worth a drive.

6 Summer Birthday Party Spots for Boston Kids

Summer is nearly upon us and that means it’s time to plan birthday parties for kids born when school is out. I have a summer baby, so I’ve thought a lot about where to have a party when the weather is nice and everyone’s on vacation. We've shared ideas for outdoor options where you can plan a free, spontaneous celebration, but we discovered several more venues—some indoors, some out—that specialize in summery kids' parties. Here are six of our favorite warm-weather birthday bash spots around Boston.

Spruce Street Harbor Park: Play Games and Enjoy Some R&R in the Hammocks

If you think you have to head all the way to the Jersey Shore for a boardwalk, think again. This one is just over the bridge, a few blocks south of Penn's Landing, and is perfect for family fun. With the weather warming up, Spruce Street Harbor Park kicks off its season on Friday, May 11th. From games to food to a stroll on the boardwalk, read on to plan your visit to this great pop-up park.

Strawberry Picking with Kids in Connecticut

Soon, we will be picking strawberries....One of the healthiest and most delicious treats that warmer weather brings is the season of juicy red strawberries. Treat your children to a day at a local  farm to see where this super fruit grows and watch the excitement on their faces as they hunt for the biggest berries. The strawberry season is short, usually lasting only from mid June to early July, so don’t miss out on abundant possibilities: homemade jam, strawberry shortcake, berry tarts, or simply enjoying the antioxidant-packed fruit in cereals, salads, or as ice cream topping. For more berry picking fun, check out Berry Farms in Connecticut.

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