Thien August

Thien August

Latest posts by Thien August

The Best Indoor Play Spaces for Kids in Suffolk County

Play spaces made just for kids are our go-tos during Long Island's wintertime, or anytime it's too cold, wet, or even hot out. So we've rounded up the best indoor play spaces in Suffolk County, from bounce houses and indoor playground to more low-key spaces such as a natural play room and spots for art. There are fun zones loaded with action sports that are best for bigger kids, and plenty more just right for toddlers and preschoolers.

Many of these destinations also double as party spaces, so call ahead to make sure they're open for public play. And don’t forget your socks—many do not allow shoes or bare feet, even for adults. Then get ready to let your kids loose to play at one of these spots, instead of in your living room. 

And if you live in Nassau County, don't worry. We've compiled a similar list just for you. Whether you want to stay indoors or bundle up and enjoy the winter, check out our Winter Fun Guide for entertainment all season long.

The Best Indoor Play Spaces in Nassau County

The chilly weather might force your little ones indoors, but they don't have to be confined to your living room all winter long.

After you've made your umpteenth indoor fort and your kids are climbing the walls, get up and out with our list of the best indoor play destinations in Nassau County. Most of these spots are affordable and accessible, and, where appropriate we've added age designations to guarantee a good time for all. 

No worries if you're in Suffolk County. See our list of the top indoor play destinations in Suffolk as well as our guide to fun spots and sports centers across all of Long Island

For even more inspiration, see our guide to winter fun on Long Island, including indoor and outdoor ice skating, museums, sledding, and more.

New Year's Eve Celebrations for Long Island Kids

Break out the noisemakers and ring in 2018 with the family. Just do it a few hours earlier, so the kids can take part, too.

There are plenty of family-friendly New Year's Eve events across Long Island. Head to a museum, enjoy a roller skating party, fireworks, or celebrate with dinner and dancing. Best of all? No cleanup required.

We've rounded up 13 great options for the big night that allow everyone to have fun and, hopefully, no overtired little ones the next day.

Don't forget to check out our list of 30 fun things to do over the school holiday break to keep the kids busy all week. More family fun can be found in our events calendar and Holiday Fun Guide.

Indoor Swimming Pools for Families on Long Island

If you haven't had a chance to get away this season and spend some time by the pool, there's still hope--and you don’t have to brave the crowds at the airport to do it.

Why not visit one of the many indoor swimming pools Long Island has to offer? We’ve rounded up some of Nassau and Suffolk County's most affordable and family-friendly indoor pools. Check out each location’s website for family swim schedules and rules, as well as information on lessons. And don't forget to take a look at your school district’s website under the “athletics” link to determine if it offers a community swim program. 

Find swimming lessons around Long Island, or for other kid-friendly activities you can enjoy in winter, check out our guide to indoor play spaces.

Long Island Destinations for Delicious Hot Chocolate

Winters on Long Island might not be as cold as we make them out to be. Still, when the snow starts to fly a hot drink helps to take the chill away.

Adults and kids can enjoy hot chocolate, especially when it’s topped with marshmallows, whipped cream, or both. And while you can make it at home, isn't it nice to get out of the house with the kids? After all, it squashes cabin fever and there’s no cleanup for you. Here are 13 places acrosss Long Island that serve up delicious hot chocolate and other tasty treats.

If hot chocolate isn’t your thing, why not try one of these spots for afternoon tea with the kids? See our guide to family-friendly restaurants for even more dining ideas on Long Island. And for more winter fun, check out our Long Island events calendar.

Where to Donate Gently Used Toys and Baby Gear on LI

If your kids are anything like most, their holiday wish lists are filled with requests for new toys. And once the holiday comes—and they're happily playing with their gifts—what do you do with all of the old toys that are cluttering up the house? Or all of the baby equipment that the kids have outgrown?

For safety reasons, fewer and fewer places seem to be accepting gently used toys. But before you put those toys out on the curb, consider these Long Island organizations that accept preowned toys and baby items provided they are clean, undamaged and in working order.

For safety reasons, charities do not accept cribs or car seats. However, many will accept strollers, bouncers, and even baby care items such as diapers. At this busy time of year, however, contact these charities to make sure they haven't reached their donation limits. One other tip: Ask your preschool child's school director, local library or church. Often, those institutions are willing to accept used toys and books from someone they know and trust. 

Looking for more ways to help your community? There are plenty of holiday volunteer opportunities for kids and families. And for other seasonal activities, check out our Long Island Holiday Fun Guide.

Birthday Freebies for Long Island Kids on Their Big Day

What kid doesn’t like special treats on his or her birthday? There are plenty of places on Long Island that offer free meals and other goodies for your child on that special day. Many of these birthday treats can be cashed in anytime during the child’s birthday month, so the fun can be enjoyed before or after the birthday itself.

We love to support local small businesses when we can, but some of these chain-store birthday clubs are pretty sweet, and many have locations across Long Island so there's bound to be an outpost near you. Be sure to check out our Long Island Party Guide for more on how to make your child's birthday a day to remember, including information on venues, entertainers, and more.

Spectacular Holiday Light Displays on Long Island

Watch your little ones' faces light up as they see the glow coming off these spectacular holiday light shows across Long Island. That's not all: Most are complete destination stops with hot cocoa, ice skating, and photo-ops with Santa.

For more seasonal fun, see our Long Island Holidays Guide. Our events calendar is packed with up-to-date holiday activities for kids of all ages, including more holiday lights at private houses around Long Island.

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