Weekend Fun for Philly Kids: CraftNOW Create, Apples, Mermaids November 3-4

Every year, many Philly families look forward to this particular November weekend. It's when we turn back the clocks and everyone gets an extra hour to play, catch up on to-do's, or to sleep. Instead, why not take advantage of those additional sixty minutes by enjoying some of the amazing fall activities found in our events calendar?

This weekend's lineup is sure to please everyone in the house. Those interested in the outdoors can take a hike, search for birds, enjoy delicious apples, i.e. nature's candy, or walk for a good cause. Consider climbing aboard a train at West Chester Railroad or Wilmington & Western Railroad to view the fall foliage from the rails. Or, if time permits, splurge on an autumn weekend getaway, many of which include outside activities.

On the other hand, if your family prefers indoors, take a ride to Adventure Aquarium for its Mermaid festivities, watch a family-friendly comedy show at Philly Improv Theater, watch artisan demonstrations at CraftNOW Create, or experience The Philadelphia Museum of Art's Family Festival.  

Read on to see what you can do with your extra time this weekend. Enjoy!

Explore Some of the Nation's Best Smithsonian Museums in Washington, DC

Note: During the current government shutdown, the Smithsonian museum and the National Zoo are closed. Check out our event calendar to find fun things to do in DC!

The vast array of Smithsonian Museums in Washington, DC can be pretty overwhelming. There are so many, each one unique and worthy of a visit so it can be hard to decide which ones to hit up when you're planning a trip to the DC area or just trying to figure out which one to focus on for half a day. But regardless of which you choose, each museum has much to offer school-aged children (and grown-ups, too). Here are some "not-to-miss" exhibits when visiting the Smithsonian Museums.

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. 

Restaurants Open on Thanksgiving in the Philadelphia Area

Thanksgiving Day is all about the food. But if cooking isn't your thing, or you would rather leave it to the professionals, there are some amazing options for a family gathering that won't leave you with the dirty dishes. Start the day off with the annual Thanksgiving Day Parade in Philadelphia, then leave the work to someone else. Reservations are strongly encouraged for all of the following restaurants as many fill up in advance. 

Free Things to Do with Philly Kids in November

November is a unique month. It begins with a candy hangover thanks to Halloween fun, followed by Election Day (GO VOTE!). Next comes a day to honor those who serve to keep us safe, Veterans Day. It is no coincidence that National Take A Hike Day allows Philly families to burn some extra calories in anticipation for the big turkey feast that is Thanksgiving, later in the month. After Turkey Day, Philly families roll right into holiday fun, filled with lights, parades, and Santa sightings.

Yes, the month of November leads Philly parents into the most expensive time of year. So, be sure to save a few dollars by referencing our handy free fun post. Free museum events, crafting opportunities, storytimes, and educational workshop are sure to entertain the kiddos. Nature lovers have animal encounters to look forward to while music fans can experience free concerts. Build something, hike somewhere, learn something new, all while spending family time together and not spending a dime.

November GoList: The Best Things To Do with Philly Kids this Month

It's hard to believe the holidays are already right around the corner, but here we are! This month brings Thanksgiving and next up it's Christmas and Hanukkah. If you've already burned through all the fall fun the Delaware Valley has to offer, we've got plenty more to do this month. If you want to get in some relaxation before Santa comes to town, then try a fall-friendly weekend getaway with the faimily.

To see everything happening in November, visit our events calendar.

Weekend Fun for Philly Kids: Halloween, Johnny Shortcake, Shell Show October 27-28

Philly families are in for a treat this autumn weekend since our event calendar is filled to the brim (of a witch's cauldron) with plenty of opportunities to break in those Halloween costumes before the main event. In fact, Philly kids can find candy at the market, at the zoo, in the square, at amusement parks, on a train, and in a cemetery. For a healthier alternative, consider heading to Smith for its Healthy Halloween event, running in a Halloween 5K, or taking a Halloween hike to burn off anticipated candy calories.

After pretending to be a goblin, ghost, spider, or scarecrow, take in a show at the Kimmel Center as Johnny Shortcake heads onstage, or see students from Upper Darby Performing Arts Center show off their talents at Showstoppers. Then, head to the Academy of Natural Sciences for the  Philadelphia Shell Show and reminisce about summertime or drop by Penn Museum for its annual Day of the Dead Festival.

For even more spooktacular ideas, keep reading for our top picks. And, kids, don't forget to save some candy for Mom and Dad!

Kids’ Cooking Classes? Taco Bout a Good Time!

Philly parents agree: There are a gazillion reasons to get kids cooking in the kitchen. Besides being a "hidden gem" STEM activity with its math and chemistry components, it hones motor skills, builds self esteem, teaches an important life skill, and makes kids more willing to try new foods (if they cook it, they will be much more likely to try it).

If you're already sold on the benefits of kids cooking and want to give your little chef more structured and professional instruction, then a cooking class can be a great addition to your extracurricular line up. Running anywhere from 45-90 minutes for a regular class and longer for workshops and winter break/summer camps, these classes are sure to impress parents with the skills their young ones learn. 

Keep reading below for some Philly area cooking classes designed with kids in mind.

Easy Last-Minute Halloween Costumes for Kids

Maybe your daughter changed her mind about her Halloween costume for the bazillionth time. Or maybe your son got an invite to a last-minute Halloween party. Or maybe you're just a proud member of the Procrastination Club. Whatever your case may be, we’ve found the easiest Halloween costumes for kids that even a non-crafty mom or dad can pull together on the fly.

Most of the costumes on our list don't call for an arm's-length list of crafting supplies or Halloween props: Headbands, pom-poms, markers, solid t-shirts, and a glue gun can go a long way with a little imagination. In fact, these DIY kids' costumes are so easy, you might just have time to whip up a few frighteningly tasty Halloween treats, too.

7 Reasons Kids Love Longwood Gardens in Chester County

Longwood Gardens is a special Chester County destination for children and grown-ups alike. Every season it has something exciting to offer. In the fall, it’s tough to beat its array of colorful foliage, and kids enjoy the pumpkins and harvest activities. Winter brings a wonderland of festive lights and holiday displays.

Once spring and summer roll around, Longwood Gardens transforms into an oasis filled with incredible blooms, shady pathways, and outdoor events and musical performances in the Open Air Theatre. Visitors don’t have to be horticultural experts to appreciate everything Longwood has to offer. Here are seven reasons why kids (and adults!) can’t get enough of Longwood, no matter the weather.


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