Tweens & Teens

Visiting the Met Cloisters with Kids: Best of NYC's Medieval Museum

One of my favorite memories from childhood was a visit to The Met Cloisters with my mother. Growing up on Long Island, any trip to the city was a special treat, and I still remember the neighborhood beauty of Washington Heights and Inwood. But it was the ascent into Manhattan's Fort Tryon Park that created a sense of lure and mystery. The Met Cloisters, which appeared to me like a castle in the sky, inspired a love of learning I would eventually share with my own children.

Decades later, I brought my own children to the Cloisters museum to experience the magic of its medieval chapels, sculptures, tapestries, gardens, and paintings—all of us dressed in Renaissance regalia to fully immerse ourselves in the experience! Here's what to know to make the most of your visit to The Met Cloisters, one of NYC's suggested admission museums where children 12 and under are always FREE.

An Urban Oasis: Exploring Mill River Park in Stamford

If you told me ten years ago that I would be walking through a serene landscape along the Mill River in Stamford, I would have laughed. But that’s exactly what my daughter and I found ourselves doing on this absolutely beautiful day. The landscape here has changed dramatically over the past decade - and I’m not just talking about the high-rise condos that have taken over Stamford. With the help of the Army Corps of Engineers and civic collaboration, Stamford now houses a “world-class park in the heart of downtown Stamford.”  

Outdoor Beer Gardens Where Kids Can Play While Parents Enjoy a Cold One

Sitting outside on a hot day with a cold brew screams "summer." But for parents with young kids, relaxing with a beer doesn't always come easy. However, the Philly area's rich beer culture can be enjoyed, even if it isn't a date night out. The following pop-up beer gardens are a lot of fun - yes, even with the kids in tow. More of a wine drinker? Then check out these family-friendly wineries in the Delaware Valley. 

Muppets Take over the Skirball this Summer in the Jim Henson Exhibition

The Skirball Cultural Center is already a fantastic kids' destination, mostly because of the incomparable Noah’s Ark exhibit (add it to your list of great indoor places to take kids during the summer). Combine that awesomeness with this summer’s Jim Henson Exhibition: Imagination Unlimited (you know, Muppets?) and you have a must-go for Angeleno families. 

Best Amusement Parks Near NYC Reachable by Public Transportation

If you're feeling nostalgic for a summer adventure filled with cotton candy and Ferris wheel rides, it might be time for some family-friendly fun at a nearby theme park. There's no shortage of amusement parks and water parks for New York City-based thrill-seekers, but if you don't have a car, some parks can seem out of reach. Fear not, we’ve rounded up the best amusement parks that are easily accessible from NYC via public transportation. Remember the sunscreen—and forget the parking (and rental) headaches.

Find more summer fun in our Theme and Water Parks Guide.

The Long Awaited CTrail Hartford Train Line Opens This Weekend!

After several years of anticipation, the CTrail Hartford train line to Springfield opens Father's Day weekend. Spend a fun day on the train with your train enthusiast. You can hop on the train in New Haven and go all the way to Springfield with stops in Wallingford, Meriden, Berlin, Hartford, Windsor, and Windsor Locks on the way. The Hartford Line will provide you with an opportunity to check out some of the coolest places at each stop including bakeries, museums, mini-golf, and more. In celebration of opening weekend, all rides are free! Check out our suggestions on what to do at each stop. Some locations that we recommend may need an uber to get to them. Many are within walking distance. And make sure to check out our post on fun CT train rides to take with your preschooler.

Father's Day Weekend Fun for Houston Kids: Fun Runs, Barbecue & Brews, Texas Taco Mania, June 16-17

To all the dads, grandfathers, and men who fill the role of dad: Happy Father's Day from all of us on the Mommy Poppins Houston team! You guys are the best! Starting to panic because you still don't have anything planned to celebrate Dad? In addition to a weekend packed with Father's Day specific events, we also put together a unique list of Father's Day ideas we know Dad will actually love.

In case you missed it, we have had a lot of fun posts pop up on Mommy Poppins recently that are packed with fun summer ideas: 

We make it easy to keep your days full of interesting and unique activities; simply check out our event calendar for different things that are happening in and around Houston all week long, or our June GoList for an overview of some of the best events to attend throughout the month. We can also send all of our latest and greatest articles straight to your inbox when you sign up for our weekly newsletter. It's the easiest way to stay up to speed with everything that's happening on our site.

For anyone planning or hosting an event: we want to make sure you get coverage! We are constantly researching all of the events and activities going on in Houston and updating our calendar accordingly, however if you notice your event hasn't made it to our calendar yet we'd love for you to submit your event to us so we can get it published. Help us help you! 

Now let's get to planning this Father's Day weekend!

Fathers Day Weekend Fun for CT Kids: Dinosaurs, Drive-In Movies, and Cardboard Box Forts

It's Fathers Day Weekend, and time to show Dad how much you appreciate his lawn mowing skills and groan-inducing pun-filled jokes. This weekend take some time to participate in some classic Dad-oriented activities like building a cardboard box fort (really, this is a thing). Is your Dad into vintage automobiles? Check out car shows this weekend in Norwalk, New Canaan, and New Britain. If cars aren't his thing, how about dinosaurs?

This weekend is also a great time to head to the International Festival of Arts and Ideas, with events happening all weekend long at various sites throughout New Haven. Finally, cap the weekend off with cheeseburgers and malted milkshakes at the drive-in.

For even more options, check out our Event Calendar, which is constantly updated with new listings from across the state. To keep up with everything going on in CT, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. Have a fabulous weekend!

NYC Destination Playground: The Imagination Playground

When the Imagination Playground near South Street Seaport opened eight years ago, the concept was revolutionary. The brainchild of famed architect David Rockwell, the unique play space was the product of years of Rockwell's own research, inspired by parenting his city kids. Rockwell's flagship destination playground has since inspired other indoor play spaces and outdoor playgrounds, including a second Imagination Playground in Brownsville, Brooklyn, featuring those iconic, oversize blue building blocks.

What makes the Imagination Playground different? Unlike many city playgrounds, this one wasn't designed for the usual swinging, climbing, sliding, and wild romping. Instead, its figure-eight shape encourages creative play in distinct play areas that offer different experiences. It's not quite the free-for-all of NYC's only adventure playground on Governors Island, but it does include some DIY fun.

Registration for Apple Camp, Apple's FREE Three-Day Summer Camp, is Open Now!

If you've got an 8-12-year-old interested in STEM or movie-making, you'll want to act fast; Apple has just opened registration for its free three-day camps. Located at Apple store locations throughout Los Angeles and Orange County, these special annual camps and are 100% free—and they will fill up fast, so we wanted you to be the first to know!

For more camp information and ideas, check out our Camp Guide and Directory.

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