End-of-Summer Fun: 25 Things to Do on Long Island Before School Starts

Thrill to a final run down the water slide at Splish Splash in Calverton. Photo courtesy of the park
Thrill to a final run down the water slide at Splish Splash in Calverton. Photo courtesy of the park

Why whine about summer winding down when you can embrace it, filling these last few weeks with engaging and entertaining family fun? 

We've rounded up 25 of the best end-of-summer fun activities to do with kids on Long Island before they head back to school — from water playgrounds and outdoor pools to pick-your-own flower farms and fairs and street festivals.

For the best family events, browse our Summer Fun Guide or our guide to beaches, pools, and water fun for your last sticky summertime hurrah before school resumes. Of course, our Event Calendar is loaded with fun, daily happenings for Long Island kids.

Must-Do Summer Activities with Kids Before School Resumes

1. Run Through Some Sprinklers

Hit the local splash pad one more time before the sprinklers are turned off for fall.

2. Ride a Roller Coaster

Visit Adventureland or test out the kiddie rides at the newly opened Legoland New York or another nearby theme park

3. Dine Al Fresco

Nosh outdoors at Long Island restaurants with great outdoor seating and enviable views, including these in the Hamptons.

RELATED: The Best Beach Communities on LI That Aren't in the Hamptons

Hit the waves at Jones Beach, where the water temperature in August is at a seasonal high. Photo by the author

4. Build One Last Sandcastle

Hit the beach one more time. Swim and lounge in the summer sun.

5. Grab Your Popcorn 

Catch a movie under the stars at Strawberry Field, Heritage Park, or Tanner Park.

6. Get a Dose of Dinosaurs

Visit the new dinosaur exhibit at The Center for Science Teaching and Learning. When you are done visit one of Rockville Centre's newest hot spots for kids.

7. Explore a New Community

Whether it's Lindenhurst, Huntington, Port Jefferson, or Garden City, family-friendly fun awaits.

RELATED: The Best Camping Destinations on LI for Families

Climb the Fire Island Lighthouse for an amazing view of the sea. Photo by the author

8. Get a New Perspective

Climb a lighthouse before the ocean gets too rough and the breeze too chilly. Enjoy a host of family-friendly activities during Lighthouse Weekend August 7-8 at Montauk Point.

Our Backyard is a water-based play area for kids at the Long Island Children's Museum. Photo courtesy of the museum

9. Experience the Messiness of Nature

Explore the seasonal Our Backyard exhibit at the Long Island Children's Museum while it's still warm outside. Maybe try Slip and Slide Sock Skating which is included in your admission.

10. Pitch a Tent (or Park Your RV)

Enjoy the outdoors at these cool Long Island camping sites for a final weekend of summer outdoor fun.

11. Take One More Train Ride

Hitch a final ride aboard Long Island Live Steamers, a mini railroad for kids at Southaven County Park, or visit one of these other destinations for train-obsessed kids.

RELATED: 100 Things to Do With Kids on Long Island Before They Grow Up

Savor the last summer berries at Bhavana Berries on the North Fork. Photo by the author

12. Be a Farmer For a Day

Visit one of the many farms on Long Island and pick your own berriesflowers, or peaches.

Ride the epic water slides as a family at Splish Splash. Photo courtesy of the park

13. Swoosh Down a Water Slide

Check out these water parks and epic pool slides, including the new high thrill slides at Splish Splash.

14. Dive Into Fun

Pick up a day pass for these fantastic outdoor swimming pools before the autumn chill arrives.

15. Don Your Captain's Hat and Life Vest

Explore Long Island via water by taking a family-friendly boat ride.

16. Visit Wine Country

Have a picnic at one of Long Island's many family-friendly wineries.

17. Have One More Adventure

Brave the ropes and bridges then zipline parallel to the beach, at WildPlay adventure park at Jones Beach.

18. Celebrate the Summer

Get your face painted, pick up a balloon, and enjoy carnival rides at some of the final summer street festivals, carnivals, and fairs on Long Island, including Alive on 25 in Riverhead, Promenade Nights in Great Neck Plaza, and Port Outdoors Dine and Shop in Port Washington.

RELATED: 50 Great Things to Do With Kids on the East End in the Summer

Cruise the Jones Beach boardwalk, then go crabbing or fishing at Pier 10. Photo by the author

19. Enjoy the Beach Without the Sand

Stroll a boardwalk in flip-flops, sans hoodie. Or fish off a pier. Hang onto that summer vibe—you'll need it come November.

Attention mini-golfers: Go for a hole-in-one at the aquatic-themed Whale's Tale on Shelter Island. Photo by the author

20. Get on the Course

Putt-putt your way to a hole-in-one at these mini-golf spots.

21. Get Out of Town

Take a final summer-fueled day trip to see dinosaurs, parks, cute towns, ferries, and more. 

22. Go Back in Time

Watch the "Old Time Base Ball Tournament" at Old Bethpage Village Restoration. Players in vintage uniforms play the game following the rules from 1864.

23. Have a Party

Set up a backyard water park extravaganza for the neighborhood kids with games and plenty of splish splashing.

24. Decide Between Comedy Or Tragedy

Head to the 32nd Annual Shakespeare Festival at the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum. This year you can choose between As You Like It, Titus Andronicus, or Richard III

25. Indulge Your Sweet Tooth

Cool down with an over-the-top ice cream creation from local parlors, or check out these uber-indulgent sweet treats.

This post is updated annually. Writer Kristen Markel contributed to this 2021 update. 

Neighborhood Guides
Activity Guides