Long Island

The Best Long Island Brunch Spots for Kids and Families

Brunch isn't just for adults anymore. There are plenty of fabulous brunch spots across Long Island where kids and families can indulge in delicious pancakes, fluffy eggs, and menus designed just for them.

From highchairs to kid-friendly cups to crayons at the table, these 12 brunch destinations in Nassau, Suffolk and the east end are designed to keep children happy while serving up some Instagram-worthy meals. And did we mention they're delicious, too?

While you're at it, check out our favorite Long Island spots to enjoy tea with your little one and these restaurants where kids eat free!

Things To Do on Long Island this Weekend with Kids: Halloween Crafting, Pet Parade, Long Island Oyster Festival

Rock Hall welcomes visitors for a weekend of country fun. Enjoy the harvest market, pumpkin patch, children's craft area, farm animals and more! The Long Island Oyster Festival, a huge waterfront celebration offers a mix of new activities and old favorites.

Get crafty at the Long Island Puppet Theater, making monster puppets and more. Bring Fido along for the Halloween party and pet parade at Sands Point Preserve. 

Peep our nature walk guide for the best places to spot the changing leaf colors. 

See our Fall Family Fun Guide for the best in seasonal entertainment, including day trip ideas, fall festivals, corn mazes,  and plenty of FREE events and activities. As always, our Event Calendar and October GoList are loaded with fun, daily happenings for Long Island kids.

Kids' Consignment Shops and Sales on Long Island

Whether you're stocking up for school clothes or dressing up a wee one that changes in size every couple of months, kid clothes can really add up. Luckily, there are kid-centric consignment shops and special sales across Long Island, where you can buy barely (or never) worn kids’ items at a discount. You can also sell your own gently used items to get some extra cash.

For more ways to your family can fun together without breaking the bank check out the affordable activities listed on the Long Island Events Calendar.

Easy Halloween Treats for Kids and Classroom Parties

Candy bars aren't the only Halloween treats to hand out this October 31. School kids across the country are getting ready to celebrate with Halloween parades and classroom parties, meaning you might be on the hook for homemade Halloween treats.

But there's no need to fear the sign-up email headed your way. I've planned more than a few Halloween parties and have put together a list of easy Halloween treats to help parents skip the last-minute scramble. These tried-and-true spooky snacks transform pretzel sticks into ghouls, mandarins into pumpkins, and make enough Monster Mash Brownies that will turn the entire class into sugar monsters.

Best Neighborhoods to Trick-or-Treat for Long Island Kids

There's nothing like trick-or-treating on Long Island. With its many kid-friendly downtowns and villages full of local businesses in the Halloween spirit. Or your very own neighborhood, where kids know how to navigate which houses are handing out pennies and which are doling out full-sized candy bars. Halloween is also a great time to explore new parts of Long Island. 

We’ve compiled a list of the best Long Island Neighborhoods for trick-or-treating. We prefer those that have houses close together, merchants who participate, are well lit, and have minimal traffic. Read on for our list of favorites.

Check out our Halloween Guide for more Long Island trick-or-treating fun, including these top events for kids and not-too-scary haunted houses and walks. For more seasonal fun, see our October GoList and Fall Fun Guide.

100 Things To Do in California with Kids Before They Leave The Nest

Whether your kids are leaving the nest in one year or in ten years, there are at least 100 things to do in California worthy of any family's bucket list. From San Diego to Crescent City and every town in between, there are amusement parks, great hikes, drives to the mountains, adventure activities, and so much more!

Did you know that California has 58 counties? Okay, maybe your bucket list doesn't need to cover all 58, but we have awesome family excursions covering over 30 counties across California's 163,696 square miles. How many have your kids experienced?

Polar Express and Santa Trains Near NYC This Holiday Season

The magic of Chris Van Allsburg’s popular Christmas picture book The Polar Express comes to life again this winter with festive holiday trains within a whistle's blow of the New York City metro area. A huge hit with kids and parents alike, these trains spark the imagination and holiday spirit with seasonal snacks, stories, even gifts—not to mention a visit from Santa himself.

These old-school cabooses (some harking back to the 1920s) offer a classic holiday ambience. There's a Polar Express just an hour south into New Jersey, as well as the one-day-only Tri-State Santa Train about 50 minutes away. You could also consider a day trip to the Catskills, or a weekend getaway to Pennsylvania Dutch Country for the Santa's Paradise Express. No matter which Santa Train experience you choose, your family can combine the annual Santa Claus photo op with lasting memories of a sweet adventure.

Remember: these train rides sell out quickly, often months in advance, so book now if you want to go.

Drop-In Childcare and Babysitting Services for Parents on Long Island

When parents need time to run errands, get work done, or even have a date night, it can be difficult to find impromptu childcare. We've created a list of drop-in childcare and babysitting services on Long Island to accommodate whatever your schedule throws at you. These services provide safe and fun childcare for your child to thrive, while you tick off items on your to-do list or even have some fun of your own! You’ll find mini-camps, drop-in childcare, parents’ night out, and babysitting services to meet all of your last-minute and sporadic childcare needs.

And for more family-friendly activities, be sure to check out our Long Island Events Calendar. You can also sign up for our FREE newsletters to get the best local events and reviews delivered right to your inbox.

Columbus Day Weekend Things to Do on Long Island: Fall & Chowder Festivals, Costume Parade, Plays

Plan three full days of fall family fun this Columbus Day weekend. Parade around the City by the Sea at Long Beach's Halloween parade and fall festival or head to Huntington for the Long Island Fall Festival at Heckscher Park. Theater lovers can catch Madagascar, Jr. in Smithtown or A Kooky Spooky Halloween in Port Jefferson. 

Be sure to check out our nature walk guide for the best places to take in in those changing leaves and beautiful fall vistas. 

See our Fall Family Fun Guide for the best in seasonal entertainment, including day trip ideas, fall festivals, corn mazes and plenty of FREE events and activities. As always, our Event Calendar and October GoList are loaded with fun, daily happenings for Long Island kids.

Easy Pumpkin Carving Stencils and Ideas for Halloween

If your family pulled out the Halloween decorations well before the first pumpkin spice latte sip of 2019, then we're sure you're looking for great pumpkin carving ideas now, too.

The cornerstone of any great Halloween display—the jack-o-lantern—is always one of our favorite things to do with kids in the fall, right after the apple picking and pumpkin patch outing, of course. Pumpkin carving is one of those rare activities that every member of the family can enjoy equally. Little kids love the mess, big kids love the chance to wield a knife, and parents love to show off our creative skills.

We’ve rounded up 12 of our favorite pumpkin carving stencils, all of which include a link to the FREE pumpkin carving design. With a little practice and plenty of options, we're sure you'll find the pumpkin design that captures your family's Halloween vibe, from Baby's First Halloween sweetness to Cyclops to superhero character themes. So read on to step up your Halloween fun (and game).

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