Suffolk

Centerport With Kids: Fun Things to Do in This Harborfront Community

If you, like many Long Islanders, are a fan of colorful drives through the region's tranquil roads, you have likely seen glimmers of blue-green beaches clapboard farm stands, and more between Huntington Village’s shops and Northport’s waterfront.

You might even have rambled through a community called Centerport, a mini-peninsula carving into the county and back out into Long Island Sound. While you might not have considered it as a day-trip destination, Centerport’s winsome waterfront, cultural attractions, and enticing eateries make it a wonderful place to visit with your family. It is also a great stop on your way to touring Port Jefferson or even the Long Island Aquarium in Riverhead with your tiny travelers.

Visiting Sunken Meadow State Park: Picnics, Playgrounds, Beaches

A trip to Sunken Meadow State Park on the rocky, picturesque North Shore of Long Island can be whatever you want it to be.

There's a different feel to this beach than those on the South Shore. It's quieter, more relaxed, and less trafficked than Jones Beach or Robert Moses state parks. The Long Island Sound waters are calm and clear. Families with children of all ages line the shore with beach chairs and umbrellas. 

 Kids can enjoy watching the water rush over them as their feet dig into the sand. If excitement is what you're after, you'll find it at Sunken Meadow State Park, which boasts a little something for everyone.

Super Skate Parks for Long Island Kids

If your adventuresome little skater dude or gal likes to carve and ollie, turning your furniture and household items into a skating playground, then this post is for you.

Take them instead to one of these skate parks across Long Island, where roller skaters, bladers, skateboarders, trick bikers, and more can show off their stunts, fully padded and protected of course. Note: Most of these facilities are skate at your own risk and require parental waivers for skaters 16 and younger. Check requirements before heading out.  

And for more fun in the area, check out our list of great go-kart and slot-car destinations on Long Island, and be sure to check out our Long Island Events Calendar.

Great STEM Classes for Long Island Kids

If science and technology are to develop, the world needs innovative minds to keep dreaming and creating.

STEM and STEAM programs emphasize science, technology, engineering, art, and math to develop the brains of the future, our kids. More schools, camps and museums across Long Island are offering classes and workshops with a focus on STEM education. Check out some of our favorite programs below.

Little engineers, rejoice. 

The Best Family-Friendly Hotels on Long Island

No one grooves on the magic of a hotel stay more than kids. The swimming-pool smell, the room-service abandon, and the I-must-have-done-something-right feeling sparks through them the minute the swoosh open the lobby doors.

With that in mind, we've put together our list of the best kid-friendly hotels in Nassau and Suffolk, and even added a few on the East End. So whether you’re frequenting local attractions or hosting out-of-town guests, these destinations are sure to delight teeny travelers and discerning grown-ups alike. Happy travels.

Jones Beach: A Family Staycation at LI's Kid-Friendly State Park

The jewel of Long Island state parks, Jones Beach is a popular beach day destination. And with a whopping 6 million visitors each year, it’s the second most-visited state park in New York state (after Niagara Falls).

Many Long Islanders have fond memories of spending time at Jones Beach with family and friends, walking the boardwalk, taking in a concert, or enjoying the surf and sand. A visit to this beach feels like being on vacation without ever leaving the Island. It’s so much more than a beach, and we’ve got the rundown on what to do, see, play, and even eat at Jones Beach to get the most out of your visit.

Fishing on Long Island: Where to Drop a Line with Kids

Ready to teach your little one how to cast a line? Fishing is a fun outdoor family activity with deep roots in Long Island's maritime history and culture.

Surrounded by the sea, kids on Long Island can drop a line in a number of waterfront communities, beaches, local piers, boats, and parks. We've rounded up a few of our favorite family-friendly fishing venues where you can test your skills and perhaps hook the catch of the day.

Looking for more summer seaside enjoyment? Make sure to visit these stunning Long Island lighthouses or Long Island boardwalks ideal for a family stroll.

Hall of Fishes Reopens at LI's Vanderbilt Museum

The Vanderbilt Museum, a marine and natural history museum in Centerport, recently reopened its Hall of Fishes, a spectacle of restored flamingos, shore bird dioramas, and an undersea painting.

Add this museum to your summer bucket list and to your list of top educational destinations in Suffolk County. Check off more with our 50 FREE things to do with Long Island kids. Of course, our Summer Fun Guide, is a comprehensive guide to all things warm weather and family-friendly.

New Spray Park Splashes Into Elwood in Suffolk County

Get soaked and stoked at Long Island's newest water park, the Sgt. Paul Tuozzolo Memorial Spray Park. A first in the Town of Huntington, this water play area is small in size, but pours out big fun. 

Check out more super sprinkler parks on Long Island here.

To splash into other watery fun, take a peek at our guide to Long Island amusement parks and water parks. For even more kid-friendly activities, check out our Summer Fun Guide and our recommendations for the best beach playgrounds as well as other top playgrounds and parks on LI

Support Groups, Play Groups, and More for LI Special-Needs Families

Families of special-needs children encounter special challenges. The good news is, on Long Island there are quite a lot of resources available for support.

Many times these challenges are not anticipated. Although caregivers might get some relief from drop-off respite programs, other support services can be required. The firms and agencies below offer support programs ranging from personal care and training to financial services, and even playtime.

For more information, see our guide to special-needs services on Long Island, including a look at the region's top sensory gardens, inclusive playgrounds, and more.

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