Kids

Long Island Restaurants Open for Thanksgiving 2017

A Thanksgiving feast is usually prepared and served in our homes. But sometimes it’s nice to take a break from tradition. Drop the daylong prep for Thanksgiving and head out to one of these Long Island restaurants serving up a traditional turkey dinner. Who knows, maybe you can enjoy a Thanksgiving run, volunteer, or (gasp!) relax a little.

For those who aren’t fans of turkey, many of these restaurants offer regular menu items. so everyone can have what they prefer. Just be sure to call ahead for reservations.

Have a happy Thanksgiving! And for more tips and activities this season, check out our Long Island Fall Fun Guide.

Petting Zoos & Farms: 9 Places to Bring Westchester Kids for Animal Fun

Have an animal lover on your hands? Westchester and the Lower Hudson Valley are filled with opportunities to see animals up close and personal—including some places that even let you get hands-on at a petting zoo. Many of the farms also offer kid-friendly activities in addition to the chance to see, touch and feed animals like horses, goats, cows, pigs, chickens, alpacas and more.

Read on for our top picks, and be sure to sign up for our newsletters for more family-friendly autumn activities. Don't forget to follow us on Facebook!

Ultimate Halloween Guide: 24 Best Celebrations in LA for Spooky or Free Fun

If you've already spent on the Halloween costume (and perhaps a second one if you bought too early), and the pumpkin (and perhaps a second one if you bought too early), and the Halloween candy (and perhaps an extra aerobics class, if you bought too early), then you might have reached your limit with spending money on this mother-of-all kids' holidays. That's when it's time to start sniffing out which are the key Halloween activities, and which are the free ones, that keep the mood going at this haunting time of year. The following 24 events are the Halloween parties not to miss—the scream of the crop!

Polar Express and Santa Trains Near NYC This Holiday Season

The magic of Chris Van Allsburg’s popular Christmas picture book, The Polar Express, comes to life again this winter with festive holiday trains within a whistle's blow of the New York City metro area. A huge hit with kids and parents alike, these trains spark the imagination and holiday spirit with seasonal snacks, stories, even token gifts—not to mention a visit from Santa himself.

These old-school cabooses (some harking back to the 1920s) offer a classic holiday ambience. There's a Polar Express just an hour south into New Jersey, or the one-day-only Tri-State Santa Train about 50 minutes away, or consider a day trip to the Catskills or weekend getaway to Pennsylvania Dutch Country for this Santa's Paradise Express. Best of all, families can combine the annual Santa Claus photo op with a sweet adventure sure to create lasting memories.

Remember: these train rides sell out quickly, often months in advance, so book now if you want to go.

Ultimate Guide to FREE Halloween Events in Houston

Halloween is almost here! Don't sweat it if you don't have costumes yet - we have you covered. There are tons of trunk-or-treats happening around the city this weekend and the next as well as on Halloween (along with continued pumpkin patches and haunted houses) where kids can collect candy in a safe and controlled environment, but if you're looking for some wicked fun on actual Halloween day, read on for great FREE options.

Bucket List of Free Places to Play in CT

Play is synonymous with childhood; it develops physical strength, social skills, imagination, and it’s a whole lot of fun. Just watch children buzzing by on a playground or in a park, giggling in a sandbox, or raising their arms in delight as they zoom down a slide. Throw in a free opportunity for play, and most parents will be as giddy as their kids. So here are some suggestions where to burn off energy, but not cash.

Jump N Play Is the Latest Must-See Queens Bounce House

Queens already has more indoor bounce houses than any other NYC borough, but it just added another! Jump N Play opened this past summer in Ozone Park, a neighborhood that's also rapidly growing its list of exciting indoor play spaces.

This location, with its fire-engine-red exterior, is impossible to miss. Inside is even harder to resist. The humongous two main rooms offer one bounce house after another. My 5-year-old's jaw dropped and he went speechless for about a full 60 seconds. Read on for our review and important know-before-you-go details about this new play spot.

Disney on Ice Brings Moana and Elsa Show to NYC Metro Area

A Disney on Ice show skates into the greater New York City area this November with some of the entertainment company's most popular female characters. This Dare to Dream production features Moana for the first time, but also Belle of Beauty and the Beast, Elsa and Anna of Frozen fame, and plenty more princesses.

The family show kicks off in the metro region at the Prudential Center in Newark, November 1-5. It then plays Barclays Center in Brooklyn, November 9-12, and finally at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on Long Island, November 15-November 26.

Weekend Fun for Boston Kids: Head of the Charles, Bats, and a Lantern Parade, Oct 21-22

Ready, set, row! This weekend is the Head of the Charles—read our complete guide to watching as a family—as well as an extra special boat's birthday (and both events are free!). It's your last chance to visit King Richard's Faire this season. In the Halloween spirit? Build a house for this Halloween-y creaturemeet some creepy crawlies, walk amongst a forest of jack o' lanterns, and then join in a monster mash-up.

A few more fun activities include a Haitian dance workshop, a special storytime about the immigration experience, a mobile science lab, and even a chance to light up the night at a lantern parade.

Also on Mommy Poppins this week:

Need more family fun ideas? Check out our full events calendar.

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