Mt Vernon

Top Swim Lessons and Classes for Westchester Kids

Hoping to get your child more comfortable in the pool? You’re in luck: there are lots of swim class options for Westchester kids, from babies through teenagers. With classes focusing on everything from basic swimming skills and safety to mastering specific strokes, there’s something for every level of swimmer. Choose from group lessons, private lessons, or even lessons in your home pool.

Ready to dive in? We've rounded up a list of swim schools to get you started.

For more ideas, check out our Classes Guide for a full rundown of classes available in the area. Or sign up for our newsletter to stay in the know!

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.

7 Spots Westchester Kids Can Take Figure Skating Classes

As the Olympic competition heats up and outdoor temperatures struggle to creep above frigid, the cold-yet-controlled climates of Westchester County's indoor skating rinks beckon to families who've been cooped up all winter. If you're looking for ways to get your own little Nathan Chen or Bradie Tennell out there on the ice, check out these local skating classes.

Want even more winter fun? Take a look at our Winter Fun Guide.

Where to Donate Toys, Baby Gear and Kids' Clothing in Westchester

As your children grow, they will definitely outgrow (and lose interest in) clothes, shoes, strollers, car seats and toys alike. And let’s be honest—all that stuff takes up space. Before you haul your unwanted items to the curb on recycling day and hope that someone else takes them, see if any of the following organizations might make good use of them (and possibly give you a tax write-off to boot).

We've gathered several charities where you can donate kids’ toys, gear and clothing in Westchester. Looking for more ways to stay in the know as you watch your kids grow? Sign up for our newsletters and follow us on Facebook.

13 of the Best Places for Families to Get Pizza in Westchester

Whether your family likes to kick it old-school when it comes to pizza—or you prefer a gourmet take on the tried-and-true formula of crust, sauce and cheese—Westchester has plenty of pizza options. Slices, pies and more can be found in this baker's dozen of pizzerias—there's even a mobile pizza truck!

For more great ideas on places to dine out with the family, check out our Westchester Kid-Friendly Restaurant Guide and sign up for our newsletters

Slide the City's Massive Water Slide is Coming to Mt. Vernon

Slide the City, the giant town-hopping water slide for kids and adults, arrived in Goshen over the weekend, and we were there bright and early to check it out. This inflatable slip-and-slide is scheduled to stop in Mt. Vernon on Saturday, August 26, and we have everything you need to know ahead of time.

Looking for more summer fun? Consult our Summer Activity Guide and follow us on Facebook.

The Best Local Ice Cream Shops in Westchester

Summer's in full swing! We hope you're surviving this heat wave and are having fun making your way around town, checking out all the great things to do in Westchester. While you're out and about, one must-have piece of knowledge is where to find some frozen goodness.

Sure you can hit up some of the big chains or ice cream trucks, but there's just something about a good old-fashioned neighborhood ice cream shop. We're lucky to have lots of great spots, so ride out the summer days and stay cool at one of Westchester's local shops.

6 FREE Chess Clubs for Westchester Kids

“Life is a kind of chess,” wrote Benjamin Franklin in his 1786 essay on “The Morals of Chess.” Chess teaches foresight, circumspection and caution, as well as not to be “discouraged by present bad appearances in the state of our affairs,” he wrote.

Fast forward a couple hundred years, and it's believed there's a positive effect on cognitive development in children who play chess. In addition to offering intellectual stimulation, chess crosses cultural and socioeconomic boundaries, bridging gaps in a disparate population.

Fortunately, numerous opportunities for Westchester children to play chess exist. In addition to schools often offering extracurricular play, we previously rounded up chess camp options and have now compiled FREE chess clubs and classes available at Westchester libraries. Whether your child is a novice or a Bobby Fischer, there’s something for everyone—in fact, there’s at least one option for each weekday.

Keep tabs on our Event Calendar, as programs are often added or repeated. Read on and go for checkmate!

February Winter Break Camps for Westchester Kids

It seems as if we've finally adjusted to being back from holiday break when it's time to start planning for the next week off from school! Whether you need to work or are just having a Westchester staycation, a school-break camp can be a great way for kids to spend their week off from the grind. 

Whether your child enjoys sports or art (or both), Westchester is full of choices, and we've rounded up some of our favorites here. Be sure to sign up for our newsletters to stay up to date on the latest events, classes, news and more happening in Westchester, and follow us on Facebook

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