Long Island

Weekend Events: Trains, Lights, Flying Santa, Hanukkah

Holiday train shows are chugging into town this weekend in Levittown, Farmingdale, and Babylon.

Hanukkah celebrations continue in East Rockaway, Rockville Centre and East Hampton, while seasonal festivities headline in Bellmore, Long Beach, and Wading River

See our Holiday Family Fun Guide for the best in seasonal entertainment, including our Christmas tree cutting guide, breakfast with Santa events, Hanukkah fun roundupice skating rinks and plenty of FREE events and activities. As always, our Event Calendar and December GoList are loaded with fun, daily happenings for Long Island kids.

Where to Donate Gently Used Toys and Baby Gear on LI

If your kids are anything like most, their holiday wish lists are filled with requests for new toys. And once the holiday comes—and they're happily playing with their gifts—what do you do with all of the old toys that are cluttering up the house? Or all of the baby equipment that the kids have outgrown?

For safety reasons, fewer and fewer places seem to be accepting gently used toys. But before you put those toys out on the curb, consider these Long Island organizations that accept preowned toys and baby items provided they are clean, undamaged, and in working order.

For safety reasons, most charities do not accept cribs or car seats. However, many will accept strollers, bouncers, and even baby care items such as diapers. At this busy time of year, however, contact these charities to make sure they haven't reached their donation limits. One other tip: Ask your preschool child's school director, local library, or church. Often, those institutions are willing to accept used toys and books from someone they know and trust. 

Looking for more ways to help your community? There are plenty of holiday volunteer opportunities for kids and families. And for other seasonal activities, check out our Long Island holiday fun guide or these 30 things to do over holiday break with Long Island kids.

25 Christmas Movies to Fill Your Family with Holiday Cheer

 Is your house brimming with the magic of Christmas and the holiday season? When the tree has been trimmed, and all the gifts have been wrapped, it's time to put the kids into those Christmas jammies to snuggle up with the perfect family Christmas movie. Don’t let picking the wrong festive flick turn you into a Grinch.

Unlike the naughty list, this holiday movie list is filled with positive messages, classic tales, and just the right amount of seasonal cheer. So, pop some popcorn and enjoy a family movie night with one of these Christmas classics perfect for kids. 

Hanukkah Fun and Menorah Lightings on Long Island

Hanukkah festivities, crafts, and activities are underway across Long Island. Giant menorahs will be lit, dreidels spun, and latkes devoured during the eight-day celebration that begins on Sunday, December 2.

You'll also find car parades, fire jugglers, ice skating events, and more. Here are some of the most fun Festival of Lights events for local families. Be sure to check out our Holiday Fun Guide for more events this month, and of course, the daily Events Calendar.

As always, for outdoor events we recommend you call or check websites for potential weather-related postponements or delays. Happy Hanukkah.

Best Things to Do in Charleston, South Carolina with Kids

Warm, charming, and packed with history, Charleston, South Carolina, regularly tops the lists of America’s most visit-worthy cities, and it’s easy to see why. Beautiful beaches and waterways, leafy streets and parks, gorgeous architecture, and a thriving cultural scene mean there’s always something to see and do. And it certainly doesn’t hurt that Charleston is one of the best food cities in the country.

Best of all, Charleston is especially fun to visit with kids. It’s easy to get around, the weather is almost always nice (even though the summer months can be sticky and humid), and the overall vibe is incredibly welcoming to families. Our family has been vacationing in Charleston and the neighboring barrier islands for over a decade: Here are the things we love to do, the places we love to eat or stay at, and—just as important—what we’d recommend skipping with children in tow.

December GoList: Things to Do with Long Island Kids This Month

No need to remind you of all that is going on in December. In fact, of our 12 monthly GoLists, it’s unlikely you’ll find one with more entertainment possibilities than December, assuming, of course that between shopping, and surfing (the Web), traveling, and cooking you have time to take advantage of them.

From light shows to train shows, tree and menorah lightings, Santa brunches, and even family-friendly New Year's Eve celebrations, our gift to you this holiday season is 31 days of possibilities. So enjoy, and remember we are committed to being your source for the best seasonal entertainment on Long Island.

With so much to do, what’s the point of a lengthy introduction? Let’s move headfirst into the month’s must-do events. And for more great seasonal happenings, why not head to our Long Island guide to the holiday season or our Long Island events calendar.  As always, best to you and all those who matter to you from your friends at Mommy Poppins. 

Awesome Santa Claus Activities for LI Kids During the Christmas Season

If you're looking to mix it up with jolly ol' St. Nick at an outing that's a wee bit different, we have rounded up some of our favorite Santa activities across Long Island. While some events are FREE and require no preregistration, many that are require advanced tickets. These events are quite popular and can sell out early, so you'll want to book reservations as soon as possible.

For more seasonal cheer, check out our roundup of LI holiday lights, and our list of seasonal entertainment, including our Christmas tree farm guide and breakfast with Santa events. Don't forget to check out our Holiday Fun Guide and events calendar often for more hopping holiday happenings.

Weekend Events: Hanukkah, Holiday Lights, Dickens Fest

Glow all weekend with these holiday light show spectaculars across Long Island. Celebrate Hanukkah with a Menoracade or bash at Nassau Coliseum. Stay connected to nature this weekend at the Holtsville Ecology Site or Sunken Meadow State Park.

See our Holiday Family Fun Guide for the best in seasonal entertainment, including our Christmas tree cutting guide, breakfast with Santa events, Hanukkah fun guideice skating rinks and plenty of FREE events and activities. As always, our Event Calendar and November and December GoLists are loaded with fun, daily happenings for Long Island kids.

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. 

Party City Opens Toy City Pop-up with Hot Holiday Toys

The holiday shopping season is in full swing, and the folks behind Party City are offering tired parents one more shopping outlet in 2018. Toy City, a seasonal pop-up similar to the Halloween City shops also owned by Party City, opened this fall with about 50 locations across the country. Expect to find some of the season's hottest toy items, from LOL dolls to Legos, at Toy City.

A number of the Toy City locations opened within former Halloween City stores and have been busy converting the shelves from spider webs and broomsticks to Play-Doh and Transformers. 

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