Tweens & Teens

The Sky's the Limit at These Houston Trampoline Parks

Trampoline parks give parents the chance to release their inner child as the kids burn off some serious energy. It's also the safest way to practice front back flips and bouncing friends into the air without serious physical trauma. We all knew that one kid growing up who flew off the backyard trampoline and broke a bone or two. Houston has several trampoline parks to choose from that offer unique activities, weekly specials, and party packages.

In general, the facilities do not allow guests to wear denim, and most require grip socks that can be purchased upon admission (maybe they will let you by with those fashionable hospital socks you probably still have stashed away somewhere along with an unfinished baby book). 

Weekend Fun for Houston Kids: LEGO KidsFest, ArBOOretum, Tomball Bluegrass Festival, Oct. 22-23

Houston's faux fall is in full swing, but the good news is a cool front is allegedly on its way to town just in time for the weekend. You and the family can visit pumpkin patches and take pictures wearing cute fall clothes instead of tank tops, check out area festivals, or test your wits at a haunted house. Hayrides are another good option, and many are hosted at area farms which provide a full day of family fun.

Here's a list of the biggest events happening in October, and don't forget to check our calendar for weekday and weekend activities. 

Weekend Fun for LI Kids: Rock Hall Country Fair, Halloween Family Fun Fest October 22-23

A week before Halloween and the festivities are just getting started. Enjoy the Halloween Spooktacular at Sweetbriar Nature Center or traipse in costume down the village of Bellmore for the Halloween Parade. Run amuck on Molloy College's campus during the Halloween Family Fun Fest in Rockville Centre or at the Rock Hall Country Fair in Lawrence. Feeling fit? Take on the Tiny Titan Obstacle Run as a family.

Also, as the temperature starts to drop, now is the perfect time to peruse our Long Island Classes Guide to find indoor, educational opportunities for children of all ages.

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Weekend Fun for CT Kids: Fall Fairs, Nature Hikes, and Spooky Science

It may feel like mid-June out there, but the calendar says it's the height of fall. After all, can you bake a pie with fresh apples or pumpkins you picked yourself in the summer? With Halloween next week, there are plenty of corn mazes and haunted houses all around the state, but don't forget about other family fun, like a renaissance faire or that classic staple of entertainment for all ages, the circus. For even more ideas, check out our Halloween and Fall Fun Guide. Make sure you subscribe to our weekly newsletters and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest so that you won't miss any of the fun! As always, our event calendar is updated with the latest activities. Our top suggestions for fun this weekend are broken out below. Enjoy!

Alternatives to Traditional Trick-or-Treating for Philly Families

Trick-or-treating is an annual custom that many families enjoy every Halloween. However, not every child or grown-up is all about roaming the streets for the sole purpose of getting candy from their neighbors (or strangers)! When October 31 rolls around, be sure to check out all the great trick-or-treat alternatives in the Philadelphia area—whether they take a hayride, play in a pumpkin patch, or pick up some tasty tidbits from the local mall, little ones will still get to dress up and have fun on Halloween, without the traditional door-to-door candy gathering. Plus, don’t forget to check our Event Calendar regularly—new activities are added daily.

Mommy Poppins Philadelphia would love to see some cute costumes! Follow us on Instagram, post a photo or two, and tag us @MommyPoppinsPHL so we can marvel at the adorable kiddos in and around the area.  

Halloween Ghost Trains, Rides, and Haunted Boats near LA

So you've already been to the pumpkin patches, and you're ready to take Halloween to the next level; you're ready, in fact, to put it in motion. Well, we know seven deadly ways to take this haunt on the road – or the sea – with everything from an old-fashioned train ride through fields of pumpkins, to a spooky tour through the bowels of a haunted ship, to a scream-filled hay ride through fields of zombies. Whatever Halloween means to your family, you can make it a ride at one (or more) of these vehicular annual haunts. After all, the family that guns down armies of zombies together stays together.

Boo at the Zoo & Halloween Fun at Westchester & Hudson Valley Nature Centers

Halloween may technically be one fleeting day at the end of October, but its such a fun time of year, many of us celebrate all month long. And let's face it, we spend so much time and money putting together the perfect costume, stockpiling candy and other treats, and often doing fun crafts, that Halloween really does take more than just a day to celebrate.

We've already mentioned the fun ragamuffin parades coming up as well as Halloween-themed events in Historic Hudson Valley and throughout Westchester. Now we're turning our attention to the many nature centers in Westchester and the rest of the Hudson Valley. Set against beautiful backdrops, these events provide a perfect run-up to the Big Night. Read on for more details about these events, which include both daytime and evening options and range from sweet to (not too) spooky.

Looking for even more Halloween activities? Check out our Halloween Fun Guide and follow us on Facebook

Giveaway: Our Generation Dolls Opens Limitless World of Imagination

Confession: I might be a bit of a Target addict. I've spent my fair share of rainy days wandering the aisles looking for nothing in particular and the Our Generation Dolls section has caught my eye on more than one occasion. All those pink and orange boxes, displaying a tempting array of dolls and tons of accessories to make a child’s imagination go wild, have had me itching for when my kid would be old enough dive into this world.

So I was intrigued to partner with Our Generation Dolls at the recent in-store event at Target in Mt Laurel, NJ. It was a great opportunity to spend some time in that oh-so-tempting doll area and explore the universe of OG Dolls a little more closely. Plus, Mommy Poppins gave away a $100 Target gift certificate. If you missed the event, don’t worry, because I have lots to report back and we’re giving away another $100 Target gift card here!

Weekday Picks: ArtNight Pasadena, Great Shake Out, & Pixar Oct. 17-21

Fall festivals and Halloween-related events are in full swing, and yet there are also plenty of other options for families looking to mix in some culture and education this week.

ArtNight Pasadena is a free event that features exhibitions, music and dance performances, and interactive activities at 18 participating cultural institutions. Kids can check out the works of Picasso at the Norton Simon Museum or the effects of light on color, shape, and the world at Kidspace Children's Museum. Also, ArtWORKS Teen Center offers an interactive evening of printmaking and screen-printing as part of the event.

Discovery Cube Los Angeles and Discovery Cube Orange County both take part in Thursday's Great Shake Out, an annual event focusing on earthquake preparedness and the importance of family planning and readiness. This is a great opportunity to talk to kids about what they should do at home or school or in the community if a large quake strikes.

And the Science Center's new Pixar exhibit demonstrates how science and art converge to create great movies.


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