New Jersey

Why Legoland Is My Favorite SoCal Theme Park

Southern California is blessed with some of the world's most famous theme parks; families travel from all over to experience Disneyland and the original Universal Studios Hollywood (including the Wizarding World of Harry Potter)—but just 90 miles to the south, in the San Diego suburb of Carlsbad, is a park that has at least as much to offer as the mouse and the wizard. There is a whole lot more to Legoland California than bricks, and truth be told I prefer a day there to any other major theme park.

See Baby Animals and More at Family-Friendly NJ Farms

Celebrate spring by visiting baby animals and barnyard pets on a local New Jersey farm. In addition to seeing chicks, calves, lambs, bunnies, and piglets, kids can crack corn, collect eggs, and even learn how cheese and bread are made at these family-friendly farmsteads.

Some offer full petting zoos, as well as wagon rides and pick-your-own fruits and vegetables. Read on for more than a dozen of our favorites.

Affordable Summer Camps for New Jersey Kids

Summer camps in New Jersey vary wildly in price, so it’s important to choose a camp that’s right for your child AND your pocketbook. Many camps let you register by the week or even the day, so you don't have to commit to an entire summer. Other options, like three-day weeks and half-day camp, also allow you to keep costs down. The cost of certain camps can be applied against the child care tax credit for children of single parents/two working parents, and some camps offer financial assistance—especially ones that get money from donors. 

Here we've rounded up 15 affordable day camp options for NJ kids. To find more New Jersey summer camps, check out our Camp Guide and Full Directory of Listings

Weekend Fun: Bunny Trains, Cherry Blossom Festival, Egg Hunts

If you're hunting for something to do this weekend, our calendar is brimming with egg hunts and other Easter festivities. Grab your baskets and gather eggs at PAWS Discovery Farm, Oasis Family Farm, Hoboken Grace Community Church, and Cape May Zoo, among many others. The Easter celebrations continue with holiday trains rides out of Flemington and Whippany, and a visit with the Bunny at Abma's Farm and Turtle Back Zoo.

Take in fresh air and springtime scenery at Essex County Family Day and Bloomfest​, which are part of the Essex County Cherry Blossom Festival. Or head down the shore for Opening Day at Morey's Piers and Jenkinson's Mermaid Tea Party.

Find even more weekend options in our Spring Guide, including 40+ Spring Festivals for New Jersey Kids and Families. And look to our April GoList and event calendar for a complete listing of happenings this weekend and beyond.

These STEM Summer Camps Are Creating a Generation of Inventors

Curiosity, critical thinking, and a collaborative attitude might be three attributes all parents aspire to see in their children. These are also traits fostered at STEM summer camps where the subjects of science, technology, engineering, and math are turned into hands-on group and individual projects. Whether your teen is itching to found the next hot tech startup or she’s just into robots or maybe biology, summer camp offers kids a great place to explore these subjects in-depth, away from the pressures of the classroom.

We’ve put together a list of some of the top science and tech camps that offer sessions in multiple cities and states across the country. Some offer programs for kids as young as 6; some are more focused on coding and computer science, while others include “STEAM” programming with design, music, writing, and other creative pursuits on the roster. All emphasize hands-on collaboration aimed at creating the next generation of engineers and inventors. In many camps, kids will also gain presentation skills, leadership traits, and most likely, the confidence to stick with these sometimes difficult subjects and tasks...even when they fail. 

25 Spring Day Trip Ideas for New Jersey Families

Spring weather has finally arrived, and now that the sun is shining, my kids want to spend every spare minute soaking it in. I'm all for keeping them outdoors, so we've rounded up 25 ideas for spring day trips in New Jersey. If your family is searching for local adventures to make the most of the mild days, check out our top picks, from picnic spots and easy hikes to amusement parks and spring festivals.

Our Spring Fun Guide is loaded with even more family fun ideas, including 50+ things we can't wait to do with kids this spring.

100 Things to Do in New England with Kids Before They Grow Up

No matter where you live, exploring New England with kids ought to be on your short list of family vacation goals. Steeped in history and natural beauty, the Northeast offers families a chance to learn about the earliest Americans, frolic on snow or sand, and enjoy all sorts of old-fashioned fun, from farm-fresh ice cream to vintage carousels.

Drawing from our carefully curated lists of the best things to do with children in Boston and Connecticut as well as the inside scoop from parents in Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine, we've come up with 100 things to see, do, and eat with kids in New England. It includes our favorite beaches, children's museums and amusement parks, charming New England towns with kid-friendly activities, ski and holiday trips, and top seasonal events and carnivals. One thing is for certain: You'll be wicked glad you visited Yankeeland.

Best Family Campgrounds in New Jersey

There are lots of ways for New Jersey families to experience the great outdoors. From scenic parks, playgrounds, and trails to inviting beaches and lakes, the state offers plenty of places to get some fresh air. But if you really want to get the kids unplugged and at one with nature, it might be time to plan a camping trip. To be sure, camping with little ones isn't always easy; but luckily, there are campgrounds throughout the state that make the experience comfortable and fun for even the youngest campers.

Read on for a dozen campgrounds that offer everything from tent camping to fully appointed cabins, along with a host of family-style entertainment and amenities.

Target's Car Seat Trade-in Returns: Get the 2019 Details

Is it time to toss or upgrade your child's car seat? Beginning on April 22, Target will recycle your expired, damaged, or just yucky goldfish-crusted and stained one and help you to save on a new model through its popular car seat trade-in event. As if we needed another excuse to go to Target, right? 

Whether you're expecting a new baby, or simply sizing up, read on for all the details on this year's trade-in program.

Jersey Shore Boardwalks and Amusement Parks for Family Fun

Everyone loves a good trip to the beach, but Jersey Shore boardwalks, with carnival games, kids' rides, and even water parks, are where the real memories are made. Whether you make it a day trip or have weekend or week-long plans to visit the beach, one thing you most definitely don't want to miss is time on the boardwalk.

From ice cream and funnel cakes, to rides and mini-golf—and a few that feature water parks and toddler amusements—a boardwalk ups the ante on your usual trip to the beach. Boardwalks and the Jersey Shore go hand-in-hand, but if you are making only one trip this year, make sure it's to one of the best!

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