Orange County

Canoe, Kayak, and Paddleboat Rentals for Westchester Families

Westchester County and the Hudson Valley boast plenty of pools and spray parks to keep kids and adults splashing their way through the sticky summer months. But for New York families seeking a more active outdoor adventure, paddling down one of the state's many natural local waterways can't be beat.

Novices can take guided tours or lessons offered by kayak companies, and children as young as 3 can help power a paddleboat with some of that energy they never seem to burn off. More adventurous paddlers can take on half-day tours of the Hudson River and its aquatic ecosystems or conquer stand-up paddleboarding.

Read on for nearby spots where you can flex those rowing arms with canoeing, kayaking, paddleboarding, rowboats, rafts, and more. And for even more water fun, check out our list of the best lakes and rivers for swimming in Westchester and the Hudson Valley.

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. 

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.  

Share your picking photos with us on Facebook

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.

Outside Fun: Maple Sugaring Activities for Kids in Westchester

Finding enough family-friendly activities in the cold weather months can be a challenge. Luckily, Westchester and the Lower Hudson Valley offer many ways for families to beat the winter blues.

Maple sugaring is a great winter activity for kids. The season begins in February and runs through late March. Ideally, temperatures must dip below freezing at night and warm up during the day so that the sap flow increases. Another fun fact: To make just 1 gallon of pure maple syrup, it actually takes more than 40 gallons of sap. Who knew?!

We've rounded up maple sugaring fun in and around Westchester and the Hudson Valley. Read on for details on where to learn and celebrate this centuries-old tradition. Looking for more winter fun? Check out our Event Calendar

6 Outrageous Holiday Light Displays in the Lower Hudson Valley

‘Tis the season for checking out all the awesome holiday light displays in the area. And we’ve got some great ones for you: Along with a some decked-out houses in Westchester, the Lower Hudson Valley has its own share of festive light shows—including a house with over half a million (!) lights, a drive-through Christmas Wonderland and even some brightly lit bugs.   

For more holiday fun, be sure to check our Event Calendar and follow us on Facebook. Know of any other light displays we should check out? Drop us an email, and be sure to sign up for our newsletters to stay in the loop. 

The Best Kid-Friendly Nutcracker and Holiday Shows for Westchester Families

The holiday season is fast upon us, and while there are some ways we can self-pace how we savor the season, one recommendation for advance planning is to purchase tickets for holiday performances. Not only do they often sell out in advance, but claiming choice seats can avoid the familiar whines of “I can’t see ...”

Fortunately for Westchester residents, there are various holiday performances to choose from. We’ve rounded up the best kid-friendly productions—from assorted interpretations of The Nutcracker to traditional concerts and new musical theater—to help you ring in the holiday season.

Read on and click through for details. Also be sure to visit our Event Calendar, where you’ll find an ever-growing number of other holiday events we’re curating for your family to enjoy! Looking for even more holiday options? Check out our Holiday Fun Guide

15 Great Places to Trick-or-Treat with Westchester Kids

Whether it’s because the homes are too spread out, or they’re lining a busy road, or the neighbors are super cranky, some families just don’t live in neighborhoods that are great for trick-or-treating. There are a few sites out there known for rating the best trick-or-treating in the country, but we’ve done a little of own local research. All kids deserve a safe and candy-filled Halloween, so check out some of these family-friendly areas and events if you need an alternative.

For more Halloween-related fun, visit our Halloween Fun Guide and Event Calendar. Don't forget to follow us on Facebook!    

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