Camping Adventures Await in Connecticut

When done right, camping is a blast. It brings to reality idyllic stories of roasting marshmallows over a fire and telling imaginative stories while gazing at a night sky. Once the initial equipment is purchased, camping can be a frugal way to vacation – averaging about only $30 a night. Opportunities to camp around the country are endless, but if you’re new to camping or have young children, “experts” recommend beginning the adventure close to home. It just happens that Connecticut offers some fantastic campgrounds. We have five recommendations  for tent camping that your family can try out.  If you don't feel quite ready to pop up a tent, we mention a few locations that provide cabins for rent, while still keeping things basic. In addition, we offer some camping tips that will help make the experience that much more enjoyable.

For more ideas on how to have a great summer, browse our Summer Fun Guide.

Imaginary Invalid: A French Farce in Topanga for Summer Evening Giggles

One of my favorite things about summer is outdoor theater. There is something magical about seeing a live show under the stars, and Topanga’s Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum has long been one of LA's most delightful places to experience this magic. The rustic theater’s Sunday morning program for young children is a summertime staple, but choosing the right show to share with bigger kids from the Botanicum's evening line-up can be trickier. It would be understandable to assume that you could skip the 17th century Moliere play, for example, but you’d be missing out on some major giggles—including the biggest collection of high-brow fart jokes I have ever witnessed. Scoff if you like, but any play that makes my middle schooler laugh himself breathless makes my recommend list.

Best Family Campgrounds in New Jersey

There are lots of ways for New Jersey families to experience the great outdoors. From scenic parks, playgrounds and trails to inviting beaches and lakes, the state offers plenty of places to get some fresh air. But if you really want to get the kids unplugged and at one with nature, it might be time to plan a camping trip. While you may be having visions of s'mores, campfires and happy children sleeping under the stars, the truth is, camping with little ones isn't always easy. Luckily, there are campgrounds throughout the state that cater to adventurous families. From comfortable cabins to family-style entertainment and amenities, these great destinations will make your camping experience memorable. No matter what your family's camping style is you're sure to have a blast at one of these family-friendly campgrounds. 

Busy Bodies in Clinton Hill: New Play Space for Brooklyn Kids

There's no doubt that Brooklyn is the play space epicenter of New York City, boasting about two dozen indoor romping spots for little ones to shake their sillies out. Even so, when Clinton Hill momtrepreneur noticed a need in her Brooklyn nabe, Busy Bodies was born. Offering drop-in play, a full range of kids classes, and even workshops for parents, Busy Bodies is a welcome addition to local families. 

Day Trip: Family Fun in Long Island's Sag Harbor

Summertime means vacation time for many families, and luckily you don't have to travel far for a getaway that has something for everyone in the family. Simply head to the East End village of Sag Harbor for some seaside fun. From historical locales to beautiful beaches, it's the perfect place for a day trip or a weekend away. You can easily spend a good part of the day walking down quaint Main Street, lined with shops and restaurants, and make your way to the marina to watch the sailboats go by. Then stop by the windmill that houses the Visitor Center for info on local events, and check out some of our favorite things to do in this beautiful town. And for more to do in the area, take a look at the Hamptons & North Fork Family Guide.

Dinosaurs Unearthed: A New Adventure at the Academy of Natural Sciences

If there's one thing we love in my family, it's dinosaurs! If you're anything like us, the idea of life-size animatronic dinosaurs, probably sounds pretty amazing. Dinosaurs Unearthed at the Academy of Natural Sciences features more than a dozen of these massive creatures, and you can see them before you've even walked through the door. Running through January 16, 2017, this exhibit is perfect for the dino lovers in your family.

SplashDown Beach: Family-Friendly Water Park in Hudson Valley

A water park is hard to beat on a hot summer day. My family and I headed to SplashDown Beach in Fishkill, New York, during the recent heat wave and hardly noticed the blazing temperature as we coasted along the lazy river and enjoyed the waterslides and other thrill rides. Dubbed “America's Biggest Little Water Park,” this Hudson Valley park about 90 minutes north of NYC offers all the fun of its larger counterparts, with a solid family-friendly vibe, attentive staff, and fun rides for all ages. There's a reason we included SplashDown in our roundup of best water parks for toddlers, but really the fun extends to big kids, teens, and parents, too. 

Don't forget to check out the Mommy Poppins Theme and Water Park Guide for more amusement park fun—and waterslides.

25 Things To Do in Salem With Kids

Salem gets most of its visitors in the fall, and when Halloween rolls around the city is absolutely packed with revelers. But Witch City is a fun place to visit year-round, especially in the summer. From getting there on the ferry and learning the history of the Salem Witch Trials to eating some great local food and exploring beautiful outdoor areas, a trip to Salem is fun for the whole family. Below you’ll find 25 reasons this North Shore city is a great destination with kids.


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