New Jersey

NJ Weekend Events May 1-2: Fish, Fairs, Farms and Fossils–from FREE!

Finally!  Looks to be a full-on weekend of fine weather in which to frolic freely—but wait, there’s only so much time you can spend at the local playground before you hear the old, “I’m bored!” rear it’s ugly head.  So grab the fishing poles, the spelunking headgear, the sheep shears, the Wonder Woman costume, and don’t forget the camera, because this weekend, New Jersey covers it all!

NJ Weekend Events 24-25: Rutgers Day, Earth Day Festivals, Sheepshearing & Open Cockpits

The Garden State is going green this weekend as we recycle, reuse, and extend the mid-week Earth Day activities.   Festivals, fairs, and celebrations with an environmentally friendly theme are plenty this weekend at Rutgers University, Liberty State Park, Liberty Science Center, Camden Children’s Garden, and the Morris Museum where kids can see movies, learn about the environment, get crafty with recyclables, and just have plain fun all to benefit our planet.  For those who feel that Earth Day should be celebrated in isolation with nature, this weekend’s your chance for a small guided canoe paddle through NJ’s marshes.  And with Spring in the air, some local Jersey farms are bringing out the sheers to de-fleece the sheep!  

Visit New York City's National Parks, Really!

When you think of National Parks you probably think of places like the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, and other parklands out west. But did you know . there are actually 10 National Parks in New York City and Northern NJ, and over 30 historic sites, parks, monuments, trails, memorials, and heritage areas right here in New York State?

This week (to April 25) is National Park Week, and all 392 National Parks offer free admission in celebration of "America's Best Idea" so it's a perfect opportunity to check out some of these awesome destinations with your kids. (Tours and other fees may still apply).

Read on for everything you need to know for a family-friendly, historic, and beautiful visit to these local gems.

Minor League Baseball in the New York Metro: Brooklyn Cyclones and 5 Other Teams

Last week we wrote about going to a Mets or Yankees game with a baby . Of course, going to a major league baseball game is a huge expense. Tickets for a family quickly get very expensive and that’s just the beginning with more money for overpriced food, ice cream and souvenirs. And with a child meltdown (if not from fear, then from boredom), all of that money can seem like a waste.

A better alternative is to take your family to a minor league game. The minor league stadiums are smaller so children can see better (and not be as terrified by the height of the stadium); there are also entertaining mascots and lots of promotional giveaways to entertain them. Tickets start as low as $10. And finally, the games are significantly shorter.

NJ Weekend Events April 16-18: Lots of FREE Fun! Earth Day, Stories in the Sky, Tot Sculptures and Colonial Games and Crafts!

It sure isn’t easy being green, is it? So how do you start your kids off on the right carbon foot(print)? The weekend before Earth Day 2010 offers tons of eco-friendly fun to get your family rolling on a commitment to conservation, recycling, and a general “greening” of your lives. But hey, if you’re already doing your part to save the planet, there’s other fun stuff to do this weekend, too! Grounds for Sculpture teaches your tot about an ancient art form; Morris Museum plays Colonial Games and Crafts; and the Tenafly Nature Center offers a “take-home tour” of the night sky. So going it green or not, get out there!

What's Happening! The Week in Review

There's so much going on we thought it might be helpful to provide a quick weekly round-up of all the things we've posted and what's hot to make it easier to follow along. If this is helpful, let us know.

This week's photo: A sign on a dirt road in Vermont that our GPS had led us down. I guess somebody was sick of lost tourists driving up to their house.

NJ Easter Weekend Events April 3-4: Bunnies, Big Bird, Beatrix Potter and Barking Beauties–much FREE!

With the arrival of Easter weekend comes the expected, but always child-entertaining, mix of Easter egg hunts, bunny breakfasts and Easter Bunny crafts–take your pick of preferred location: Imagine That! Children’s Museum (once you’re in, you’re in–activity planning for the day DONE); Liberty Village Premium Outlets (they hunt for eggs, you hunt for bargains); Weis Ecology Center (bonus: learn to dye your eggs naturally); Terhune Orchards (romp through the blooming pastures); the Brownstone Puppet Theater (puppets and a teddy bear parade, too) or the New Jersey Children’s Museum (breakfast included!) Up to your long ears in bunny business? Switch to Big Bird at Liberty Science Center’s One World, One Sky event, or go to the dogs at the Ocean City Humane Society’s pet fashion show. By the end of the day, your own little beasties will be ready for bed!

NJ Weekend Events March 27-28: Lots of FREE Fun: Farm Animals, Fishing, Treasure Island and Telescopes!

Rain? Snow? Sun? Who cares?  Whatever the weather this weekend,  New Jersey’s got somethin’ goin on!  Head outdoors to see newly-born farm animals; break out the fishing poles to kick off fishing season at the Trout Hatchery; or collect glow-in-the-dark rocks from a world-famous mineral deposit.  If the weather goes South, head indoors: kids can learn all about Treasure Island and pirates at the Cotsen Children's Library; enjoy African art and crafts at Montclair Arts Museum's free family day; or hunker down in the Liberty Science Center to learn about oceans, chemistry, and the HUBBLE telescope.  Mother Nature, bring it ON!

Weekend Events for NJ Kids March 13-14: Snakes, Einstein, Shows and Crafts--Most FREE!

Einstein definitely was NOT Irish, but this weekend is a cause to celebrate both Einstein’s birthday, the number pi, and St. Patrick’s Day!  And with weatherpeople forecasting wind and rain, you may just decide to opt for indoor entertainment like the circus, plenty of fun theatrical performances, a crafts festival, or a reptile and turtle demonstration.  And Easter is just around the corner with the Easter Bunny making early visits to some local malls…

Crafty Kid Places in NJ: Beading, Pottery, Glass-Blowing and More!

As Easter and Mother’s Day quickly draw near, you’re facing the age-old “what to give to Grandma/Grandpa/Aunts/Uncles and various other relatives” quandary. But really, how many “#1 Grandma” mugs can a cupboard hold?  You know they truly treasure the handmade gifts from the heart (and little hands) than a trinket from the mall.  But before you pull out the playdough, paints and glitter, consider a trip to one of these Create-Your-Own Studios where kids can make blown glass ornaments, a fused glass dish, a hand painted bowl, silver or beaded jewelry, and more.  Not only will you wow the crowds, but mom doesn’t have to worry about cleaning paint off the furniture or getting glitter out of the rug!

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