We dare not say the words that are on every kid’s mind these days. Back to what? Where? Now?
It’s September, and that means summer games have run their course. It’s time to get serious again, at least Monday through Friday. And while we at Mommy Poppins embrace the value of learning, we also recognize that few times on finer on Long Island than September weekends.
The sun still shines brightly, and there’s plenty to do for Long Island families with a sense of adventure. The month opens with a great celebration of Native American culture on the East End, and continues with fishing derbies, museum holidays, nautical festivals, farm stand happenings, and more.
By the time September ends and we transition fully to autumn, kids won’t even remember this is the month they returned to, well, we won’t say. So enjoy September and all it brings. Here are our picks for the best in Long Island family entertainment this month.
Remember, our Long Island Events Calendar offers exciting family options as they develop throughout the month. You can always sign up for our FREE newsletters to get posts like this delivered to your inbox.
Apple Picking — East End
There’s no better time, and some would say, no better place, to pick your own fruit than September on the East End of Long Island. Why not check out this regional tradition at one of LI’s many pick-you-own farms?
RELATED: 100 things to do with LI kids before they grow up
Thrill to the magic of Cirque du Soleil at the new Nassau Coliseum.
Cirque du Soleil’s Ovo — Uniondale
Through September 3
Enjoy the grandeur of Cirque de Soleil at the newly renovated Nassau Coliseum. Ovo features a lively insect ecosystem stunned to discover an egg (ovo in Portuguese) in its community.
Shinnecock Powwow — Southampton
Experience all the pageantry of the East End’s indigenous people. The 1,300-member tribe hosts 100 other tribes in traditional dance and drum performances, arts and crafts, a sunset fire lighting, and more.
Snapper Derby — Shelter Island
These juvenile bluefish are perfect for kids and novice fisherman. Kids compete for a series of prizes in this catch-and-release tournament; there’s also a logo design contest for the artistically inclined.
Friday Night Promenade — Garden City
September 1, 8, 15
The streets of downtown Garden City are transformed in this weekly celebration. Enjoy theme dining, shopping, music, and more. Sept. 1, Rat Pack night; Sept. 8, Back to the 80s; Sept. 15, Pineapple Circus. FREE
Dockside Family Fest — Captree State Park, Bay Shore
This annual nautical festival features music, food, pony and boat rides, magic and pirate shows, and even crab races.
RELATED: 25 things to do with Long Island kids before school resumes
Tap into your inner creativity at Hallockville.
Hallockville Fall Festival — Riverhead
Enjoy this annual end-of-summer North Fork tradition at Hallockville Museum Farm. Enjoy model trains, hayrides, a tractor pull show, music, and tours of the 18th-century farm.
Fiddle and Folk Festival — East Setauket
Enjoy a day of music, storytelling, farm animals, crafts, a petting zoo, and the largest swing on Long Island.
Jungle Bungle Animals Music and Nature Show — Seaford
Toddlers will thrill to this interactive music show at Tackapausha Museum and Preserve that teaches children to love and cherish animals and nature.
Fly a Kite Festival —West Sayville
Bring you own kite or purchase one at the Long Island Maritime Museum and watch them take to the skies.
North Hempstead KidStock — Port Washington
Join in on the fun at this open-air festival, featuring music, outdoor games, and more at North Hempstead Beach Park.
International Peace Day — Sayville
Meditate and reflect on peace as a family while walking the labyrinth at the Common Ground beginning at 5 pm.
RELATED: After-school classes and programs for LI kids
Beware of the "pirates" in Greenport.
Greenport Maritime Festival — Greenport
Enjoy parades, a harbor flotilla, fishing competitions, water sports demonstrations, kayak races, and, of course, food and game vendors in this annual celebration of Greenport’s aquatic heritage.
DogFest Long Island — Massapequa
Pure breed or mixed, grab your pet’s leash and visit Marjorie Post Park for an afternoon of dog walking, agility competitions, a canine costume parade, and more to benefit Canine Companions assistance dogs.
Smithsonian Museum Day — Islandwide
Participating museums across Long Island offer FREE admission to those with a Museum Day ticket. See the link above for participating museums and to download Museum Day tickets.
Meandering Rivers Ramble — Oakdale
Celebrate World Rivers Day with a naturalist-led walk along the Connetquot River. Discover the creatures that call the river home and their habitats.
Community Cultural Family Festival — Dix Hills
Enjoy music, food trucks, crafts, even a 3-on-3 basketball tournament at the Upper Room Christian World Center that celebrates multicultural Long Island. Continues through October 1.
Photos courtesy of the events/venues