Dutchess County

Best Places for Apple Picking with Kids in Westchester and the Hudson Valley

Apple picking season is here! I used to look forward to apple picking every year as a child, and now I have just as much fun watching my little ones run through the orchards—not to mention the fresh-pressed apple cider and hot, delicious cider doughnuts! Many farms also have family-friendly entertainment and activities including live music, corn mazes, and more. Apple picking is also a great farm-to-table teaching opportunity and a wonderful way to ease out of summer.

So get your apple recipes ready and read on for our top picks for apple picking with kids in Westchester and the Hudson Valley. Remember to contact the farms before heading out. Many are family-owned and -operated, and hours may change with little or no notice.

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Pick Your Own Blueberries and More at These Hudson Valley Farms

Strawberry-picking season may be coming to an end, but never fear: we've got the scoop on farms and orchards where you can pick other types of delicious berries all summer long—including blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries.

Here are a few of our favorite places to go berry picking in the lower Hudson Valley, whether you decide to go for the morning or to make an entire day of it. Either way, be sure to call ahead to make sure the farm has berries on hand.

Looking for even more outdoor fun? Check out our summer guide.

Best Swimming Pools for Westchester and Hudson Valley Families

Nothing says summer like a day at the pool. Lucky for us, there’s no shortage of spots in Westchester and the lower Hudson Valley to take a dip. These area pools offer families everything from water slides and three-foot waves to a lazy river! Need a swimming break? At many of the pools, there are concession stands and places to picnic, as well as playgrounds, hiking trails, and other activities to truly make it a great day out. 

Here, we’ve rounded up a few of our favorites. Some of these—particularly the Westchester pools—require county residency, so take note before you head out. Prefer splash pads instead? Check out our list of go-to spots—and look to our Summer Guide for even more outdoor fun. 

Splash Pads and Water Playgrounds in Westchester and Hudson Valley

Ready to cool off this summer? There are plenty of local pools and beaches, but if you’re looking for something a little different, a splash pad or sprayground is a great choice. The setting—particularly the smaller splash pads—is especially fun for younger kids, who can run through the sprinklers and water jets. Lucky for us, there are a whole slew of family-friendly sprinkler parks to choose from in Westchester and the Hudson Valley, whether you’re looking for a quick morning trip or an all-day adventure.

We’ve rounded up a few to check out, from Yonkers to Wappingers Falls, including several that offer FREE entry. Looking for even more outdoor activities? Be sure to check out our Summer Guide.

Pick-Your-Own Strawberry Farms and Festivals in the Hudson Valley

If apple picking is the perfect fall activity, then strawberry picking is surely the early-summer equivalent. Not only are you able to stock up on the sweet stuff, but you’re able to visit and support local farms and, of course, spend time as a family.

Best of all, there are plenty of places throughout the Hudson Valley where kids of all ages can try their hand at picking their own strawberries. The season usually starts around the beginning of June, but be sure to call ahead first. Not into picking them yourself? Westchester and the Hudson Valley have a few strawberry festivals you can check out, instead.  

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Mini Golf with Westchester Kids: Top Putt-Putt Spots

Between splash pads, swimming pools and amusement parks, there’s so much to see and do in and around Westchester and the Lower Hudson Valley this summer. But we'd be remiss if we didn't include one tried-and-true family favorite to the list: mini-golf! 

Whether you’re looking for a fun, traditional putt-putt course or something a little different—glow in the dark, perhaps?—we’ve got you covered. Below, we've rounded up a few of our favorites.

For even more great activities, check out our Event Calendar and follow us on Facebook.

Hudson Valley Day Trip: 40 Things to Do with Kids in Beacon

At just about an hour from downtown White Plains, Beacon makes for a superb family-friendly New York day trip. This Dutchess County city features an artsy, bustling downtown—mostly centered along Main Street—that's home to lots of different shops and restaurants. There’s something for kids of a variety of ages to do, and it's also close to other exploration-worthy towns like Cold Spring

We’ve rounded up fun things to do when you visit whether you head up in the summer, winter, or sometime in between. Looking for even more day trip ideas? Check out our Summer Fun Guide or sign up for our newsletter to stay in-the-know.

Family-Friendly Beer Gardens in Westchester and the Hudson Valley

Spring is—finally!—right around the corner, making it a great time to start thinking of all the fun things to do once the weather really starts to warm up. And while there are plenty of kid-specific activities to do outdoors, here’s one the whole family can get in on: Going to one of the beer gardens in the area.

Sure, a beer garden might not seem like the first place you’d take little ones, but with kid-friendly food and even games and toys, they can be a great spot to spend a sunny afternoon.

In search for more family fun? Check our Event Calendar and sign up for our newsletters.

Hudson Valley Balloon Festival 2018 Takes to the Sky in Rhinebeck, NY

What kid doesn't love a balloon, especially a entire sky filled with huge, colorful, hot-air balloons? Every year, families flock to the annual Hudson Valley Hot-Air Balloon Festival, which includes synchronized launches from sites across the area. Even if you don't live in the Hudson Valley, this experience is worth a day trip—spectators come from all over the tri-state area!

The 2018 Balloon Festival will be held in a new location—the Dutchess County Fairgrounds in Rhinebeck—from Friday, July 6 to Sunday, July 8. Read on for details about this annual favorite, and be sure to check out our Summer Activity Guide for more fun all season long.

If haven't already, be sure to sign up for our newsletters and follow us on Facebook.

Petting Zoos & Farms: 9 Places to Bring Westchester Kids for Animal Fun

Have an animal lover on your hands? Westchester and the Lower Hudson Valley are filled with opportunities to see animals up close and personal—including some places that even let you get hands-on at a petting zoo. Many of the farms also offer kid-friendly activities in addition to the chance to see, touch and feed animals like horses, goats, cows, pigs, chickens, alpacas and more.

Read on for our top picks, and be sure to sign up for our newsletters for more family-friendly autumn activities. Don't forget to follow us on Facebook!

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