Westchester

Weekend Fun: Creativity Festival, Horse Show, Children's Book Fest

September may be winding down, but fall fun is heating up!

One of the big headliners for Westchester and Hudson Valley families this weekend is the return of the Chappaqua Children's Book Festival, where young bibliophiles get the chance to meet authors and illustrators, collect autographs, hear book readings, and celebrate beloved literature.

Horse lovers and fun-seekers will get a kick out of the Peekskill Rotary Annual Horse Show and Country Fair or the more high-brow American Gold Cup, the five-day equestrian event that offers more than high-stakes horse-jumping.

Fall festivals continue with the return of the rather pungent Hudson Valley Garlic Festival. Alternatively, make a difference in the lives of local families in need with either of two events that put the fun in fundraiser.

Read on for our top weekend picks, but be sure to also check our Event Calendar to view many more options to choose from. Also sign up for our FREE weekly newsletters for more family fun this weekend and beyond. Stay tuned, because Halloween season is coming!

Top Indoor Birthday Party Places for Westchester Kids

Hey, it isn't always park or pool party weather, but kids can still have a blast celebrating inside! And trust us: There is no shortage of places for Westchester kids to get their party on—whether the birthday boy or girl wants to jump on trampolines, scale a rock wall, 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.

Top Haunted Houses and Halloween Events for Westchester Kids

Think you can handle the Creepy Morgue at Playland or survive the Haunt at Rocky Ledge? Whether you’re local or a daytripper, Westchester is a hot spot of exciting and fun (and terrifying!) Halloween happenings for children. We've collected some of the best frights, a couple ideas better suited for the younger ghouls, and a few fun parades in the Lower Hudson Valley.  

Keep in mind that the listed age minimums are suggested by the event producers. You know your kid best—what’s no big deal to one grade-schooler could cause nightmares for weeks to another.

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Kids Free October in San Diego: Deals at the Zoo, Legoland, Seaworld, and More

The lazy days of summer may be over, but that's no reason to trade adventurous family outings for a never-ending cycle of school drop-offs, pick-ups, and algebra homework. Instead, pack up and head for San Diego during San Diego Tourism Authority's annual Kids Free promotion.

The citywide campaign kicks off October 1, enticing families to visit San Diego's big-ticket attractions like Legoland, San Diego Zoo, San Diego Wildlife Park, and Seaworld. Children can eat, stay, and play for free at more than 100 participating hotels, restaurants, museums, and parks until October 31.

We've selected 10 offers that we think are particularly good deals; put two or three together, and you've definitely got savings worth traveling for. Scroll down for a link to all 100+ free opportunities for kids in October.

Hayrides and Fall Farm Fun for Kids in Westchester and the Hudson Valley

It's autumn—time for visiting pumpkin patches and apple orchards, enjoying apple cider and doughnuts, and going on hayrides. Westchester and the Hudson Valley are rife with farm fun in the fall, including hayrides—many of which are free or at least included with the admission price.

We've gathered up some of our favorite farms and orchards with hayrides and other fall fun. For more ideas for kid-friendly autumn activities, sign up for our newsletters and follow us on Facebook.

Weekend Fun: Jay Day, Donut Festival, Campfire S'mores

With so many fantastic family programs this time of year in Westchester and the Hudson Valley, we've been extra busy culling the best events for our readers.

In addition to several fall festivals, there’s an eclectic assortment of one-of-a-kind happenings, some of which appeared on our September GoList.  

Celebrate American heritage (and books and animals) at the multi-faceted Jay Day, and various abilities at Wheelchair Games. Get out in nature by building homes for fairies and gnomes or build a campfire to toast some s’mores. Take advantage of FREE admission to museums and national parks. In fact, all of our top picks for Saturday are FREE!

This weekend offers a bonanza of entertaining and enriching events (not to mention apple picking), so you’ll definitely want to visit our Event Calendar to see the extensive fun beyond our top picks below. And be sure to check out our Fall Fun Guide for Westchester Kids for more seasonal happenings. Enjoy as much as you can take in—and if you haven't done so already, sign up for our newsletters to avoid missing any of the fun!

Interactive “Crash, Splash, or Moo!” Invites Young Readers to Play Along

My daughter and I have read Bob Shea’s brand new Crash, Splash, or Moo! so many times now that I’m pretty sure I could transcribe it here from memory. But instead of giving away the much-anticipated outcomes of the interactive book that plays out like a totally wacky quiz show, I’ll tell you why it’s quickly become “The Song that Never Ends” delivered in book form to our household.

Best Pumpkin Patches and Picking in Westchester and Hudson Valley

Autumn is in full swing, and it's a beautiful time of year to be outdoors! We've told you all about the wonderful fall festivals and where to go apple picking. Now we're turning our attention to the great pumpkins.  

Below we've rounded up our favorite places to go pumpkin picking in Westchester and the Hudson Valley. Sure, you can buy your pumpkins from the supermarket or your local nursery, but if you're looking for a more authentic experience, head to one of these nearby pumpkin patches (though pumpkins will generally be found already off the vine). We recommend contacting the farms before heading out to confirm hours of operation, availability, and any comforts that might vary.

Looking for more fall activities? Consult our Fall Fun Guide and follow us on Facebook

Best Kid-Friendly Hotels for a Los Angeles Family Vacation

Finding bliss and relaxation on vacation is so much easier when the kiddos are happy. Whether you're visiting Los Angeles, housing out-of-town guests, or indulging in a staycation (though we can recommend some kid-friendly hotels all around the world), why not choose a hotel that caters to the smallest guests? These LA resorts offer a little slice of paradise, family-friendly amenities, and unique experiences that might make you want to ditch that faraway destination and spend the weekend in SoCal. The best part is watching the kids have a blast, too.

Weekend Fun: Riverfest, Fairy Walk, Movies on the Sand

September is in full force now, and that means an abundance of activities for Westchester and Hudson Valley families.

Several neighborhoods are celebrating town pride, including the all-new Mount Kisco SeptemberFest, a three-day extravaganza that includes a carnival and more; Larchmont Day, which boasts pony rides, big trucks, and more; and the annual Riverfest, an extravagant waterfront street party featuring performers, international cuisine, and other attractions.

Did your kids overdose on their iPads this summer? Help them “detox” at Survive, which dares tweens to overcome various challenges in nature (gasp!) without their electronic devices. Or don your best wings and head out for a Fairy Walk.

Read on for details on these and other great events happening this weekend. Don't forget: Our Event Calendar offers many more fun happenings this weekend and beyond in Westchester and the Hudson Valley. If you haven't done so already, sign up for our newsletters!

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