NJ Pond Ice Skating, Snow Tubing, Ice Fishing and Snow Shoeing

Do you know how many calories you can burn snow shoeing? Have you ever gone out on the ice not to skate, but to sit and fish and drink hot chocolate? If you're interested in winter sports beyond the realm of skiing and snowboarding and tubing, check out these fun for the family winter alternatives, and don't forget to check out our Winter Fun and Activities Guide for even more off the beaten path cold weather enjoyment!

Things to do that are NOT Shopping on Black Friday in New Jersey

Black Friday is known as one of the busiest shopping days of the year. Retailers try to lure us in with deep discounts on everything from toys to electronics. Let's face it, though, dragging the kids to the mall isn't the most fun way to kick off the holiday season. This year, why not look for a family activity that will make everyone merry? From holiday shows to winter festivals, we've come up with a great list of things to do on Black Friday that are far away from the busy shopping centers. Be sure to check our Events Calendar regularly for even more great holiday activities throughout November and December.

Best NJ Pediatric Clinics and Urgent Care

Finding a pediatrician you and your child (well...for the most part!) like is wonderful. However, most pediatricians don't have late-night office hours, and when middle-of-the-night emergencies happen, clinics and pediatric hospitals open round-the-clock may be able to step in and save the day. (I know my daughter only seems to get sick on Saturday nights, so off to the local pediatric clinic we go...) Below is a list of pediatric clinics and urgent care facilities in New Jersey that cater to babies and kids.

I Want Fries With That! 5 Great Diners for Kids and Families in New Jersey

Diners are right up there with all of the things you’d expect to find in NJ, like boardwalks by the beach, saltwater taffy, shopping malls and great views of Manhattan. And it goes without saying that diners are probably some of the best joints to visit with kids – loud, crowded, cheap and charmingly unsophisticated. Plus, diverse menus mean that everyone can order exactly what they’re in the mood for (which basically means less complaining and whining for tired parents!)

So how do you distinguish a great diner from a so-so one? All of the joints below stand out from the pack for a number of reasons. Maybe they’re family-owned and operated (doing everything with just a little extra love), maybe they take the time to make everything from scratch or maybe the food is just that darn good! Read on for our pick of diner favorites for NJ families:

Skylands: New Jersey Botanical Garden

Once spring hits I could jump for joy; no more germ ridden, crowded indoor play-spaces! After my joyous display of enthusiasm, my kids and I sit down and make our spring and summer bucket list; places we want to visit before the weather gets chilly. Skylands Botanical garden is on the list every year, and we go as many times as possible.

February Family-Friendly Theater and Shows in New Jersey

I’ve always enjoyed live theatrical performances as a child, and am so grateful my parents took the time to take me to various productions—from the circus to community theater. Now, as an adult and a mom, I’m excited to share the power of performance with my daughter—seeing family-friendly shows is a great way for loved ones to bond over the arts. Here’s a list of February 2014 live shows the family can appreciate and enjoy these next few weeks. See you in March!

Best Birthday Place Ideas for Girls in New Jersey

In the words of the great Cyndi Lauper, “Girls just wanna have fun!” We've told you about Best Birthday Party Ideas for Boys, and now it's the (miniature) women's turn. If you are looking for a fresh idea for your little lady’s upcoming celebration, check  out our ideas below. From a salon makeover to crafts to tea parties to a ballet lesson (or for our more hip chicks, a hip-hop class), there are endless options in the Garden State. And for more party ideas, visit our complete Birthday Guide!


Library Programs in Northern New Jersey

Community libraries are a wonderful resource for families. From story time to special clubs and fun events, they offer a wide variety of programs that appeal to all ages. Libraries are especially wonderful during the cold winter months when you need somewhere to escape with the kids for a few hours. We’ve rounded up some of the best activities currently scheduled at Northern NJ libraries—read on for some great suggestions to keep your family busy this winter.

Kid-Friendly Comic Book Shops in Northern New Jersey

Boom! Pow! Crash! Zap! If your kid's hero is more Tony Stark than LeBron James, finding a local comic book shop is a must. Just think of all the cool things your kid can learn through reading comic books: the battle of good and evil, visual storytelling, hilarious (intentional and unintentional) dialogue, and how to rock a cape. Read on for quotes and recommendations from some Jersey comic book store owners and a listing of great Northern NJ stores.

Horseback Riding in New Jersey

If your family is in the mood to try a new sport, why not opt for horseback riding? From Monmouth County to Sussex County, New Jersey’s vast farmland hosts a variety of riding stables and private horseback riding lessons for the entire family to enjoy, and summer riding camps for the kids. There's even a number of therapeutic riding centers in our fair state. So, get out and giddy up!


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