Westchester

Weekend Fun: St. Patrick's Day, Purim, Maple Sugaring

With the March snow melting, this weekend is a great time to combat cabin fever and enjoy any of the many activities we’ve identified for Westchester and Hudson Valley families.

St. Patrick’s Day falls on Sunday, and the weekend is chock-full of opportunities to wear your best green. Among the many parades are the Mamaroneck-Sound Shore St. Patrick’s Day Parade and the Rockland County St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which is reported to be the second largest in the state.

Other seasonal fun includes Purim Carnival, featuring a magic show, inflatables, and other kid fun in honor of the holiday. And, with the maple-sugaring season drawing to an end, carpe diem at maple sugaring with a pancake feast, where you can not only learn about the maple-sugaring process but get instant gratification atop a stack of pancakes. For sheer entertainment, catch a family performance by the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus.

For more options to choose from, read on, consult our Event Calendar and sign up for our newsletters!

STEAM Camps for Kids in Westchester and the Hudson Valley

STEAM classes (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) are all the rage these days, and with good reason. Job opportunities in many of these fields continue to grow as our world becomes ever more dependent on technology.

Kids may not care about their career prospects just yet, but that doesn't mean they can't have a blast while learning these subjects. The best STEM/STEAM camps keep fun at the forefront. We've rounded up camps throughout Westchester and the lower Hudson Valley that offer educational and interactive experiences for school-age kids. Looking for more camp ideas? Consult our Summer Camp Guide and sign up for our newsletters.

Star Wars, Potter, and More New Theme Park Rides at Disney and Beyond

Amusement parks are a spring break and family vacation staple. From coast to coast, amusement and water parks abound, offering fun and thrills to parents and children ranging from toddlers to teens alike.

While there's never any shortage of excitement, having an opportunity to check out new attractions only adds to the kids' enjoyment. Take a look at which popular destinations are introducing everything from state-of-the-art roller coasters to gentle kiddie rides, and which are celebrating the opening of entirely new sections of their already-enticing parks in 2019. We've rounded up new rides (including water park fun) from California's Disneyland to Orlando, Florida and even along the New Jersey Shore boardwalks and in Pittsburgh, Chicago, and Texas.

Weekend Fun: Peter Pan on Ice, Brazilian Carnival, St. Paddy's Parade

This weekend's excitement includes an abundance of promising performances. These include Cumbia for Kids, a foray into Colombian music and dance; Trusty Sidekick Theater Company’s Shadow Play, a multimedia production about a mischievous shadow; and Peter Pan & Friends on Ice. At the FREE Brazilian Carnival, catch a Batucada dance performance and engage in a mask-making workshop.

With St. Patrick’s Day a week away, it’s not too early to don your green and eat corned beef. Among the numerous parades in Westchester and the Hudson Valley is one of the largest in the state: the Annual Northern Westchester-Putnam St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Maple sugaring is still in peak season, as are the events that celebrate it, including pancake breakfasts and additional attractions.

Read on for further details and additional options—then head to our Event Calendar for yet more. Also refer to our March GoList for our top picks for the rest of the month and our roundup of FREE family events in March

Ski Free All Spring with the 2019 Ikon Pass - And Save $100 on Kids’ Passes

If you hit the slopes at least one week a year, a ski pass can mean serious savings for your family. Ikon Pass is an annual ski pass that gives you access to over 30 skiing and snowboarding destinations across 12 states, 4 Canadian provinces, and 4 continents. And even better, if you buy your pass now, you get this year’s spring skiing for free!

While you might think of skiing as a quintessential winter activity, the higher temps, longer days, and shorter chairlift waits make spring break the perfect time for a family ski trip. Whether you're a bunch of black diamond die-hards or some of your gang's still all about the bunny hill, an Ikon Pass will definitely help you make the most of spring on the slopes—and since the pass for the 19/20 season literally just went on sale, you can use it for the rest of this season, as well as all of next year.

A Dozen Spring Break Mini-Camps for Westchester Kids

If you're not heading out of town for spring break, you may be wondering how to keep the kids busy during their time off. Spring break camps offer a great way to keep them active, learning, and engaged while they're out of school.  

Westchester offers many specialized programs, so there's sure to be a camp to please most interests. We've rounded up a dozen choices, including those focusing on nature, arts, and sports.

Be sure to check out our Event Calendar for more fun things to do during the break. And if you're looking ahead to the end of the school year, don't miss our Summer Camps Guide for Westchester Kids!

Family-Friendly Farm Stays: Meet the Animals and Work the Farm

Farm stays provide guests of all ages with a taste of farm life. Whether by milking cows and collecting eggs, or gathering fresh fruit from a pineapple plant for breakfast, families who choose to stay at a farm hotel, which might be cabin, house, or even a tent, will likely have more fun than Old MacDonald led you to believe is possible.

Time your farm stay with the kids for spring, summer, or even fall. Check out which seasonal activities might be going on before picking the dates of your farm vacation, as well as the location. We've rounded up 10 of our favorite farm "hotels" around the country, from Maine to Texas to California.

I've found that farmer-hosts have a strong desire to educate little farmers on how to live a more sustainable and balanced life. Unplug, relax, and enjoy the fruits of a hard day’s work around a campfire. Lessons learned on these farms will stay with you long after you return home. 

Find more vacation ideas and weekend getaways in our Family Travel Guide, or check out your local Farm Fun Guide for local petting zoos, harvest festivals, and pick-your-own fun.

25 Free Things to Do in March with Westchester Kids

In like a lion, out like a lamb goes March, the saying goes, and Westchester families are looking forward to the arrival of spring mid-month and the fun that lies ahead. We're always hunting for a good bargain, so below we've rounded up our top FREE events for families to help our readers get the most out of the month without getting the most out of your wallets.

Some of the FREE seasonal fun this month include various holiday celebrations—St. Patrick's Day, Mardi Gras, Purim, and Women's History Month—as well as sweet maple-sugaring adventures. And don't forget our list of FREE places to play for year-round fun.

Read on for our top picks, but also consult our Event Calendar for more free (and not-so-free) activities. If you subscribe to our newsletter, we'll keep you in the know, March and beyond!

Get Ready: New York State's Biggest Indoor Water Park Opens in April

The Kartrite Resort & Indoor Waterpark—billed as the biggest indoor water park in New York state—is finally opening this spring!

Since we first learned about this exciting new indoor water park in the Catskills over a year ago, we’ve been eagerly anticipating its grand opening. Originally scheduled for April 5, the resort has announced that the opening will now take place Friday, April 19, 2019

Located about 2 hours from midtown Manhattan in Monticello, NY, the Kartrite is an exciting alternative to farther-afield indoor water parks in the NYC area. Reservations are now open for April and beyond—perfect for spring break, a weekend away, or your family's summer vacation. Read on for more details, plus a peek inside the space.

Weekend Fun: Illusionists, Sugaring Party, Free Arts Workshops

Seasonal fun abounds this weekend for Westchester and Hudson Valley families, with late-winter fun and the promise of spring on the horizon.

March brings the start of St. Patrick’s Day festivities, kicking off with the Dutchess County St. Patrick’s Day Parade, one of the largest in the state. For stage entertainment, expect to be mystified by the trickery of The Illusionists.

The maple-sugaring season is now in full swing, with numerous harvesting experiences (and a few pancakes) scheduled. One of our favorite ways to tap into the action is the Maple Sugaring Party

Many of our top picks this weekend are FREE—including workshops in film-making and theater—and there are many more to be found on our Event Calendar. Also refer to our hot-off-the-press March GoList for our top picks for the month! 

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