Center City

Outdoor Ice Skating in the Philadelphia Area

During the chill of the holidays in the Philadelphia area it's tough to think of a more traditional outdoor winter activity to do with the family than ice skating. Getting bundled in hats and scarves, lacing up your skates, and warming up with a steaming cup of hot chocolate after a spin on the ice is sure to please kids young and old.

There are several temporary outdoor ice rinks set up in the Philadelphia area this season, providing unique settings for this fun winter sport. We also have a list of Pennsylvania state parks that offer ice skating when the conditions are right. So whether you are a novice on the ice, or you're ready to show off your triple axel, see our list of outdoor rinks for a memorable day with the family.

Cherry Street Pier Just Opened: Here's Why Families Need to Go

As the temperature drops and the days grow shorter, it becomes all too easy to simply hunker down and stay inside.  But Philadelphia offers a number of alluring public spaces to help you shake off those winter doldrums, helping to get you and the kids off the couch and out into the fresh air.  The recently opened Cherry Street Pier is one of the more intriguing options and makes a great destination for a quick and easy excursion for the whole family.

Cherry Street Pier is the latest product of Philadelphia’s ongoing efforts to revitalize the Delaware River Waterfront.  The nearby Spruce Street Harbor Park is already a popular summer destination, offering food, games, and a floating beach—and even sand and deck chairs.  In the winter, visitors flock by the thousands to WinterFest, coming to skate at the BlueCross River Rink or simply grab a hot chocolate and soak up some holiday charm.  The Cherry Street pier is a more modest, though perhaps a bit bolder, initiative, and it's definitely worth a wintertime visit. Read on to learn more about this latest outdoor Philly space that I recently visited with my own family.

All Aboard With Thomas & Friends at Please Touch Museum's New Exhibit

If you have a little train lover in your family, chances are you practically live on the Island of Sodor: humming along to the theme of Thomas & Friends™, and amassing more trains, tracks, and stations than you thought humanly possible.  Now Thomas the Train fans are in for a special treat. At Please Touch Museum’s latest exhibit, Thomas and Friends: Explore the Rails!, the entire family can enter their favorite world of make believe, practice STEM skills, and spark their imaginations with Thomas.  Read on to find out what makes this exhibit a must-do for Philly area families with tykes in tow. 

Best Neighborhoods to Trick-or-Treat for Philadelphia Kids

Once again (and to no surprise to any of us who live here) Zillow's annual list of best cities for trick-or-treating has named Philly among the top five. If the kids are looking to score a ton of candy for Halloween this year, it looks like they're in luck. Usually the best way to find a great neighborhood for trick-or-treating is to head out and look for lights and decorations, but if you don't have the time (or the energy) to drive around in the dark, we've got you covered. We've talked to local parents and candy-givers alike, and gathered up the best of the best neighborhoods for getting some sweet treats.

Read below to see if your neighborhood made the cut. For those who were not born and raised here, the question of "when is Halloween celebrated?" is always answered with "on Halloween!" Which is to say, we trick or treat on October 31 even if it is a school night, but there are also great ways to celebrate throughout the month of October if you want to make sure you maximize your ROI on those costumes, including found plenty of free Halloween events—not to mention a few amusement park haunts.

Indoor Play Spaces in Philly for Babies and Toddlers

Mother Nature can often be a real thorn in the side to new parents in Philadelphia. Be it winter snow, spring rain or summer heat, the weather often discourages getting out of the house with babies and toddlers. Visiting an indoor play space can rescue the little ones from cabin fever as well as offer parents a chance to socialize with other new moms and dads.

Parents in the city need to be a little more creative in finding indoor play areas, with fewer moonbounce-type centers than in the suburbs. Mommy Poppins has a list of fun spots to drop-in with tots in and around Center City Philadelphia, including museums, gyms, and clothing stores. 

Be sure to browse our directory for even more indoor fun ideas in the Philly area or our list of indoor play in Bucks, Chester, Montgomery, and Delaware Counties.

Reading Terminal Market with Kids: 4 Ways to Enjoy this Busy Indoor Market

Located in the heart of Philadelphia, next to the Convention Center, Chinatown, and Independence Mall, Reading Terminal Market is a bustling indoor market, full of great vendors and delicious food, and a must-see for city goers. From fantastic pastries to famous sandwiches, beautiful bouquets of flowers and pantry stock-up items, the market should be on Philly families’ bucket list (it’s on ours!). Add to that its close proximity to Suburban Station with its access via Regional Rail, and Reading Terminal Market becomes even more enticing.

Read on to make the most of your visit to Reading Terminal Market with four ideas to have fun in this busy city spot.

15 Studios Where Kids Can Take Dance Classes in the Philly Area

Dance studios and classes come in a variety of styles for all ages. Some focus on fun and fitness while others trend toward competition and professional training. Many offer classes starting with Mommy & Me for the youngest dancers, and expand their variety as children get older and more skilled. Whether the aspiring dancer is into ballet, jazz, tap, modern, or hip hop, this list has something for everyone from Center City to the 'burbs.

10 Things to do in Chinatown with Philly Kids

One of the most bustling neighborhoods in Philadelphia is Chinatown, with so many shops, restaurants, and sightseeing spots. Chinatown is an historic area of Philadelphia filled with culture, fun, and good food.  With the Chinese New Year upon us, now is also a great opportunity to educate little ones about the diverse melting pot of cultures in Philly. It's a great place to spend a day walking around and having a great time with the kids. We've rounded up some really fun things to do with kids in Chinatown.

21 Places for New Year's Eve Fun with Kids in Philadelphia

While they may not be able to stay awake until midnight, kids still have plenty of opportunities to celebrate New Year's Eve in the Philadelphia area. From museums and zoos, to parks and moon bounces, many venues are hosting afternoon events for the little ones. Several options on our list provide prime seating for the city's early (6 PM) fireworks show over the Delaware River. Children can have their own countdowns, toss confetti, watch a mini ball drop, and, who knows, maybe even get home before bedtime!

See our list of fun places to ring in the New Year with kids. Many of these are ticketed events, so be sure to make plans before they sell out.

If you are looking for something else to do on December 31, there are plenty of other non-New Year's themed events listed on our calendar

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