Preschoolers

NYC Playgrounds With Shade: Play It Cool at These Shady Parks in NYC

Need to find a playground with shade for a hot summer day in NYC? These shady playgrounds in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens offer a break from the sun, but no shortage of fun.

While kids can always cool off in NYC's many sprinklers, there's no reason for us parents to get stuck baking in the heat. A few NYC playgrounds are known to offer exceptional amounts of shade—Hippo Playground in Riverside Park and Discovery Playground in Fort Washington Park come to mind—but we asked our readers if they knew of any super-shady playgrounds in New York City. They came through with a number of great suggestions.

Please keep in mind that the name of the game here is comfort on a hot summer day; though we have visited plenty of destination playgrounds, with a few exceptions, these shady suggestions tend to be neighborhood standbys and small playgrounds that have plenty of shade, but perhaps not too many bells and whistles. But if you're looking for a cool place to play this summer, one of these spots should do the trick.

The World’s Largest Bounce House Opens in Brooklyn This Weekend

Grab your socks and take your summer to new heights. The Big Bounce America, officially the world’s largest bounce house, is landing in Brooklyn at Aviator Sports. The high-flying starts tomorrow, Friday, July 26, with recently-added dates through Sunday, August 4, and timed-entry sessions are selling out fast.

This touring bounce bonanza will put your block party to shame with the world's largest bounce house (Guinness certified!), a 900-foot-long inflatable obstacle course, a giant maze, ball pits, slides, climbing walls, and basketball hoops...all to be enjoyed while a DJ spins, confetti blasts, and beach balls fly through the air. Exhausted yet?

Best Parks and Playgrounds for a Birthday Party on Long Island

Birthdays: Our kids all have them. After deciding on the guest list comes the inevitable question of venues. Instead of heading to a party destination or organizing a party at home, did you ever consider a birthday party at a state, county, or community park?

It's true: Long Island is home to a host of beautiful and fun-filled parks that will make it a memorable day for your child whether you're planning a first birthday or a 13th.

And a party at a park means less cleaning for you, no worrying about how many people can fit in your house, or how to magically make it spotless.

So read on for our take on the best parks at which to host a birthday party, and for more birthday fun, check out our Long Island Birthday Party Guide

20 Houston Parks With Lots of Shade

Being outside pretty much tops our to-do list every day, and we're constantly going from one activity to the next, be it to a neighborhood splashpad, a nearby playground or a park with plenty of trails for biking. Basically, staying inside all day isn't an option; we would all go stir crazy! With summer upon us, I'm not willing to sacrifice that time outside as the temperatures start steadily climbing, but I am more aware of which places offer some shade so we can beat the heat... even if only for a few minutes. Here are some great parks in Houston that offer at least a moderate respite from the brutal summer temps.

WowMoms World Play & Wellness Center Coming to Paramus

Have you ever dreamed about a place that includes opportunities for exercise, enrichment classes, and socialization for kids AND moms, all under one roof? WowMoms World, coming to Paramus in late 2019 or early 2020, strives to be that coveted one-stop spot where growing families can relax and enjoy everything from parent-child classes and swim lessons to arts and crafts and an organic lunch or snack. 

Canada-based WowMoms opened its first U.S. location on Long Island in January, and other spots have since opened in Florida and Texas. The 6,200-square-foot Paramus space will be WowMoms' first New Jersey location.

18 Places to Take Parent-Child Swim Classes in Boston

Swimming ability and water safety are so important for little ones, but it can be difficult to imagine letting your baby or toddler plunge into the pool without you. Luckily, you don’t have to because there are a plethora of places in or near Boston that offer parent-child swim lessons so you can get in the water together. If you’re looking for other ways to be active with your child, check out our post on yoga classes for Boston moms and babies.

10 Best Hotel Pools in Los Angeles with Day Passes for Families

Hotel pools have a certain magic for kids; in fact, book a hotel without a pool at your peril. Whether you're vacationing in the City of Angels, or just looking for a staycation that puts your kids' swim lessons to good use (while waiters bring you delicious food and decadent adult beverages), there's always a good reason to take advantage of LA's bounty of hotel pools. Any of the hotels below is worth a weekend for the pool alone. Don't want to spend the night? These hotels are not only great spots to base a vacation or staycation—they all offer day passes for their pools, too. And while not all hotel pools are kid-friendly, this list of family favorites can turn any swim day into a family vacation, whether you're staying or day-playing.

Fun Boat Rides for Connecticut Kids and Families

As close to a shoreline as most Connecticut families are, a fun boat ride with kids can make for a perfect day trip. Whether you’re looking for a scenic ferry cruise, an interactive sailboat adventure, or an educational marine experience, there's a boat ride to suit every kid who's looking to get out on the river or sea this summer.

We have rounded up some of the best tours and interactive sailing adventures across the state. For more fun on the water, be sure to check out our Connecticut Beaches and Water Fun Guide and the best places for canoeing and kayaking with kids in Connecticut.

Family-Friendly Hotels in the Hamptons and North Fork

If you’ve ever visited the Hamptons and North Fork on Long Island, you know there is lodging to meet just about every need. There are hotels near fishing resorts, country inns near golf courses and bed-and-breakfasts within walking distance of the North Fork’s celebrated wineries. Families visiting the East End have options, too, from chain hotels near kid-favorite attractions to mom-and-pop guesthouses with private beaches and pools. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite Hamptons and North Fork hotels, motels and guesthouses for families. 

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