East End

Indoor Swimming Pools for Families on Long Island

If you haven't had a chance to get away this season and spend time by the pool, there's still hope—and you don’t have to brave the crowds at the airport to get there.

Why not visit one of the many indoor swimming pools Long Island has to offer? We’ve rounded up some of Nassau and Suffolk County's most affordable and family-friendly indoor pools that are open to the public. Check out each location’s website for family swim schedules and rules, as well as information on lessons. And don't forget to take a look at your school district’s website under the “athletics” link or similar to determine if it offers a community swim program. 

For swimming lessons around Long Island or other kid-friendly activities you can enjoy in winter, check out our guide to indoor play spaces and our Long Island classes and enrichment guide.

The Best Family Sledding Spots on Long Island

Say it ain't snow. But it is.

Parents with kids eager to brave the outdoors don't have to leave Long Island to find ideal sledding spots. We've rounded up a host of places where you can challenge the local powder for FREE. Safety first though, so be sure to check surroundings for sticks, rocks, and more; wear a helmet and proper snow gear to keep warm; and be extra careful after dark. Bring your own equipment to these snow-covered destinations and be ready for some fun.

Don't forget to check our Long Island winter fun guide for more seasonal entertainment ideas for your family, whether the weather outside is frightful, or delightful. There, you'll find information on skiing destinations, ice rinkshot chocolate spots, indoor play centers, and more.

Winter Fun List: 50 Things to Do Indoors With Long Island Kids

The holiday bells have jingled past, but winter is still in full frozen swing. It's the time of year when your teeny angels might start to sing a twinkly tune called "I'm bored." 

Luckily, Long Island has plenty of museums, arts and crafts classes, indoor play venues in Nassau and Suffolk,  and children's theater. Our list of 50 fun things to do indoors on Long Island, below, has all that and plenty more.   

Still eager for seasonal entertainment? Check out our Winter Fun Guide and daily events calendar for more inspiration. While you're at it, why not sample a few of our 100 must-do things with kids on Long Island? And for daytime escapes or overnight excursions, you won't do much better than these winter days trips on LI and beyond.

Enjoy!  

Outdoor Ice Rinks on Long Island for Family Skating

Sure it might be cold this time of year. But if your kids like the outdoors there’s no reason not to enjoy one of Long Island's outdoor ice skating rinks this winter.

From Nassau County to the north shore of Suffolk and out to the East End, we've put together a list of the top outdoor skating venues on Long Island. Most are inexpensive and offer skate rentals, as well as lessons for those still mastering their steps and stops. Weather permitting, most of these rinks are open until the beginning of spring. All are open to the public without significant restrictions, but keep in mind admission can be higher for nonresidents.

If the weather doesn't cooperate, there are plenty of indoor rinks across Long Island worth a try. So if the weather is nasty or it’s offseason, families can skate all year long, even during beach weather.

Review: Holiday Show in Riverhead Lights Up the Season

Let the spirit of the season illuminate your heart at the new Holiday Light Show at the Long Island Sports Park in Calverton.

Uncrowded and located directly off the Long Island Expressway, the display is sure to enthrall kids and delight adults with its scintillating light creations, inspiring music, and overall holiday exuberance. And for more merriment, check out the Magic of Lights Show at Jones Beach, the Girl Scouts of Suffolk County light show, and these great things to do on Long Island with kids during the holiday season.

Your little ones might also want to visit a Nutcracker or another holiday show or perhaps travel along a nearby Polar Express train while the air is cold and light. 

Spectacular Holiday and Christmas Light Displays on Long Island

Watch your little ones' faces light up as they see the glow coming off a spectacular holiday or Christmas light show across Long Island. Is there a better way to usher in the holiday season?

We've rounded up our favorite holiday light shows in Nassau and Suffolk counties, including one new addition for 2018. Most of these destinations are complete with hot cocoa, ice skating, and photo-ops with Santa.

For more seasonal fun, see our Long Island Holidays Guide. Our events calendar is packed with up-to-date holiday activities for kids of all ages, including more holiday lights at private houses around Long Island.

Places to See Santa on LI During the Christmas Season

Santa has the magical ability to be in several places at once, but often for only a few hours at a time.

To help you pin down St. Nick, here's a sample of fun venues where he will appear on a regular basis throughout the holiday season. Remember, though, Santa sometimes has to take a break for milk and cookies, so build a little extra time into your schedule. And while some winter wonderlands remain open after Christmas, Santa returns to the North Pole on Christmas Eve, December 24.

For more seasonal adventures, check out our list of Polar Express Santa trains in the New York City and Long Island areas, and these great holiday shows in the region.

Cut-Your-Own Christmas Tree Farms on Long Island

The Thanksgiving turkey has been consumed. You've completed your Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping. Now it’s time for the next holiday ritual—finding the perfect Christmas tree.

From Cold Spring Harbor to Montauk, Long Island has close to a dozen tree farms, where enthusiastic families can cut a super-fresh spruce (or fir, or pine) at modest cost. These farms range from simple, roadside acreage to full-fledged holiday extravaganzas. So whether you prefer a quick tree-cutting errand or a day out in Santa’s wonderland, consider a visit to one of these outdoor emporiums.

These farms are all located in Suffolk County, where farmland is more abundant, and are listed below by town. As always, find more ways to celebrate in our Holiday Fun Guide.

New Light Show to Illuminate the Holiday Season in Riverhead

No one is more electrified by the spirit of the holidays than kids. This year, the Town of Riverhead is presenting a new holiday light show with dazzling displays sure to warm the hearts of everyone in your family.

If you are looking for a seasonal adventure that beats ambling through the neighborhood, this drive-through exhibit will saturate everyone with the holiday spirit. And for a full day of fun on the East End,  check out the Long Island Aquarium or the Railroad Museum of Long Island before your twinkly excursion.

You might also want to check out the Polar Express Trolley Ride, departing from the North and South Forks beginning November 23. As always, our November GoList and events calendar contain the best in holiday activities across Long Island.

Free Indoor Play Spaces for Long Island Kids

There’s no reason to stay home just because the fall season and the colder weather is upon us.

All across Long Island, there are play spaces and indoor playgrounds to keep your kids happily occupied. In fact, some of them are hiding in plain sight. And better yet, many of these kid-friendly spots are FREE. From malls to bookstores and libraries, there is plenty of FREE fun to be had for Long Island kids.

Enjoy these unique play destinations, but remember at most venues a parent/adult must be present to supervise children.

For more indoor fun, don't forget our guide to rainy-day activities on Long Island.

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