Winter in Connecticut. Sure it's quaint and cozy, and classically New England. But it can also feel incredibly long. By February, you and the kiddos may find yourselves practically climbing the walls. Fear not, we have a list of 55 boredom busters sure to keep the entire family busy until spring. Whether you want to sled, ski, or ice skate, or if you've got a sweet tooth to satisfy, we've got something to occupy every whim. Don't let the winter doldrums get you down; there's much fun to be had and we'll show you exactly where to find it. And if this isn't enough to keep your troops from a winter mutiny, you can find even more ideas in the Mommy Poppins CT Winter Fun Guide. Here's to winter! Make it your family's best one yet.
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Play is synonymous with childhood; it develops physical strength, social skills, imagination, and it’s a whole lot of fun. What's important is that it's available to kids four seasons of the year, whether the forecast requires indoor active play or allows for fair-weather forays to a playground or park. 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.
"Trick-or-treat!" Kids of all ages love reciting those magic words in exchange for bags filled with goodies. Walking through the streets and knocking on strangers’ doors late in the evening, however, may not be the best option for toddlers and preschoolers. Luckily, New Jersey offers plenty of opportunities for safe trick-or-treating in controlled environments. From pumpkin farms to amusement parks to community events, you can experience the fun of trick-or-treating without worry at these structured, family-friendly outings.
When done right, camping is a blast. It brings to reality idyllic stories of roasting marshmallows over a fire and telling imaginative stories while gazing at a night sky. Once the initial equipment is purchased, camping can be a frugal way to vacation – averaging about only $30 a night. Opportunities to camp around the country are endless, but if you’re new to camping or have young children, “experts” recommend beginning the adventure close to home. It just happens that Connecticut offers some fantastic campgrounds. We have five recommendations for tent camping that your family can try out. If you don't feel quite ready to pop up a tent, we mention a few locations that provide cabins for rent, while still keeping things basic. In addition, we offer some camping tips that will help make the experience that much more enjoyable.
For more ideas on how to have a great summer, browse our Summer Fun Guide.
Summer nights are long and lazy. And I don't know how it goes in your house, but in mine bedtime gets a little bit fuzzy around the edges. There are few things better than a movie for the whole family on a balmy summer night (or, in some cases on a hot summer morning or afternoon), and when that movie is free (or nearly free), well, I say bring it on! There are loads of summer movie series in Connecticut; most of them are outdoors, a lot of them are free, and even the ones that aren't are so very inexpensive you will be loading up the car as soon as you're done reading this. Pop the corn, grab a blanket, and head to one of these fun family movie series this summer.
Sure, you've probably visited your fair share of pumpkin, apple, and strawberry festivals. But have you been to a Podunk Bluegrass festival? Or a Sailfest? Or perhaps a Potato and Corn fest? Summer may be short here in Connecticut but it sure is jammin' with festivals from June through Labor Day. Whether you're planning to indulge in some strawberry shortcake piled high with whipped cream, check out some really cool cars at an antique car show, or groove to some reggae, there are so many family-friendly festivals happening all summer long. Grab a picnic basket and a blanket, pack your camera, and have some fun at one of these Connecticut festivals. And, be sure to check out our Connecticut Summer Fun Guide to help plan some pretty epic adventures with the whole crew this summer.
Most children are fascinated by all creatures, whether they are furry, slimy, scaly, or prickly. With their colorful feathers, quirky personalities and ability to fly, birds are especially captivating. My young explorers love to grab their binoculars and pretend to be ornithologists. Of course, just venturing outside in a suburban backyard will lead to a bird sighting or two. But for a more exciting experience, try visiting one of Hartford County's many nature centers, which go the extra mile in welcoming and educating young bird enthusiasts.
Bird-watching is a great hobby for many reasons. Kids get the opportunity to engage in physical activity outdoors (usually for free!), sharpen their observation and listening skills, and increase their patience. It can also inspire other fun activities like making a bird feeder, collecting materials from nature and trying to replicate a nest, or creating art projects. So go ahead: follow the sounds of birdsong and visit one of the following places.
April showers bring May flowers, and along with all the colorful blossoms come an array of springtime celebrations. The Hartford and New Haven areas are bursting with exciting outdoor family festivals in April, May, and June. These eleven events feature crafts, delicious treats, family-friendly activities, and boundless fun. So head outside with the children and enjoy all that spring in Central Connecticut has to offer.