Scarsdale

Where to Host an Indoor Birthday Party for Westchester Kids

While the weather outside means that park and pool parties are a no-go right now, it doesn’t mean that kids can’t have a blast celebrating inside. And trust us: There are no shortage of places for Westchester kids to get their party on—whether the birthday boy or girl wants to jump on trampolines, bake cookies, do yoga or race go-karts.

Here, we’ve put together a list with choices for a variety of ages (and invite lists)—from preschoolers to tweens and teens. Looking for even more options? Check out our full Party Planning Guide or head straight to our directory

Drop-In Play: Where Westchester Kids Have Indoor Fun on a Moment’s Notice

If you and your kids are feeling cooped up during the cold weather, we have some good news: Westchester offers plenty of places where kids can bounce, jump, climb, play and explore.

We've gathered a big list of locations where you can take the kids to let off some steam. No planning? No problem. Most require no advance registration to attend or have open hours where you can stay and play for a while. 

For even more ideas for winter activities, make sure to check out our Event Calendar and follow us on Facebook!

Breakfast with Santa for Kids and Families in Westchester

Though Santa is busy preparing for his famous ride on Christmas Eve, he still somehow has time to break bread (or pancakes) with children in Westchester this holiday season. These cozy get-togethers have become increasingly popular, typically featuring a full breakfast and holiday activity, with added perks at some. The best part? Quality time and photo-op with St. Nick.

We’ve rounded up some top picks for Breakfast with Santa throughout Westchester to help you spread some holiday cheer. Advance registration is either required or recommended, so don't delay. And don't forget to bring your wish list! 

If you're looking for more holiday activities, check our Event Calendar and sign up for our newsletters.

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!

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!    

Fall Festivals in Westchester: Cider, Donuts, Pumpkin Carving & Hayrides

Usher in the fall season in Westchester with a host of family autumn festivals. The area's harvest celebrations are packed with fun seasonal activities for kids, including pumpkin fun, hayrides, apple-cidering, doughnuts and more.

We've rounded up details on the best upcoming fall festivals in Westchester, several of which made our September GoList. Be sure to consult our guide to best places for apple picking, many of which include festival-like added attractions.

Looking for more family fun? Get the most out of the season with our newsletters and follow us on Facebook

Best Places for Frozen Yogurt with Kids in Lower Westchester

Summer is here, as is the burning desire to cool down with an ice-cold frozen treat. We previously rounded up some of our favorite ice cream parlors in Westchester, and now we're turning to frozen yogurt. But what adults crave in a frozen-yogurt shop isn’t necessarily what kids want (gummy worms on top of cabernet-pomegranate twist?).

Choosing where to go for fro-yo is fraught with numerous options—partly because there are often new shops opening and others closing (Eastchester lost Nuts About Yogurt, while Pure Bliss recently closed in Pelham and Larchmont). Sure, there are many national chains to choose from, but our interest lies more in the local operations. To help guide our readers, my family made the ultimate sacrifice in visiting a bunch of fro-yo shops in Lower Westchester—strictly for our readers’ benefit, of course. A few calories later, we’ve whittled these down to a choice few and have offered the inside scoop.

Read on for the skinny on fro-yo! Be sure to sign up for our newsletters and follow us on Facebook to stay in the know about all things kid-related in Westchester.

Mother's Day Brunch: 10 Places to Celebrate Mom in Lower Westchester

Mother's Day is just around the corner, and it's the one day a year we're mandated to celebrate all things Mom. Whether you're honoring your mother, grandmother, aunt or sister, one of the most popular ways to appreciate the special woman in your life is to treat her to brunch.

Westchester offers a variety of great restaurants featuring Mother’s Day brunch, and we've rounded up some of our top picks for those in Lower Westchester. Many places require reservations, and we suggest hurrying—we had to strike one annual standby from this year's list because it had already sold out. 

Looking for more things to do on Mother's Day and in May? Check out our Event Calendar 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!

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