Ever since my kids saw the stop-motion animated film Chicken Run set in a very tightly-run chicken coop, they’ve been obsessed with factory tours. The precision and organization of a factory assembly line is fun to watch and, despite the repetition, doesn't get tedious (unless you happen to work there). Going behind the scenes and seeing how products are made is always interesting, though I admit my family is partial to food factory tours that culminate in sampling the finished product.
Here is a list of six sweet (and salty) food factory tours that are fun and educational for kids, all located in the Northeast. Some are easy day trips from the tri-state area. Others require a weekend and make great destinations for any upcoming school breaks.
It’s usually right around mid January when the post-holiday slump starts to settle in as we (finally) get around to taking down the last of our decorations and dive back into the routine of work and school. But despite chilly temps and predictable schedules, there’s no reason not to have some weekend fun with the family. New Jersey has some neat winter happenings, like the Maple Sugaring Demos at Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center and an awesome Live Reptile Show at Manasquan Reservoir. Liberty Science Center is keeping the educational fun going all weekend with both their Retro Science: Duct Tape Mania exhibit and the hugely popular Bubblemania show. And remember, you can find a full list of weekend activities in our Event Calendar.
Last week marked the beginning of Mommy Poppins' eighth year, which is hard for me to believe. We have worked hard over the years to try to provide the best activity and event ideas for local families in NYC, Los Angeles, Boston, Connecticut, New Jersey, Long Island and Westchester. But we know enriching experiences don't just happen when you are out exploring the world; a lot of them happen at home, too.
In our mission to inspire wonderful family time, we are starting a new series of posts dedicated to at-home projects kids and grown-ups can do together. Our WeeWork posts will feature simple crafts, recipes, indoor games and other activities that you can do at home for FREE, using things you probably already have around the house.
Starting next week, look for a post every morning, Monday through Thursday, with a simple WeeWork activity. Whether you are home with a young child, a homeschooler, or just looking for ideas for a rainy day, we hope WeeWork will inspire some fun together time.
If you want to get WeeWork posts delivered to your inbox, sign up for the separate daily WeeWork newsletter. And since none of these ideas will be local, you can finally share some Mommy Poppins fun with your friends who live in other areas. By the way, did you know we are on Pinterest, too? We'll be posting all these ideas to our Crafts, Activities and Games board.
To get us started, here's a sample WeeWork post. This three-step project allows kids to enjoy snowballs without the deep freeze. Make your own indoor snowballs for no-mess at-home fights or use them as pretty wintry decorations. All you need is some paper and plastic wrap.
Winter is here and it’s a cold one! If you’re tired of being cooped up inside with the kids, why not visit one of Union County's wonderful indoor play spaces? We’ve covered eight great choices below, including everything from bounce houses to art studios to indoor mini-golf. Keep them in mind on the next frigid day and no need to worry about going stir-crazy! For more indoor play ideas, visit our new Indoor Play & Rainy Day Activity Guide.
Hang in there Jersey! Though you probably can’t feel your toes (or nose or fingers) because of the bitter cold, milder temps are headed our way! If you’ve got a major case of cabin fever, you’ll be happy to know there are plenty of fun and educational outdoor events this weekend. Burn off some energy with the kids at the Winter Exploration Geocache at Stony Brook-Millstone Reserve or learn about maple syruping with hands-on demos at the Reeves-Reed Arboretum. If you’re looking to stay indoors, get pumped for the Super Bowl with the Gridiron Glory exhibit at Liberty Science Center or take in a performance of Fancy Nancy at the Mayo Performing Arts Center. And don't miss our great giveaway--a winter session at Kidville Montclair, valued at $400, so enter today!
January is known for being the slowest, coldest month. But that doesn’t mean it still can’t be chock-full of family fun! Hopefully, you’ve finally decompressed from holiday festivities and can make time to catch some live shows in Jersey this month. Here’s a round-up of family-friendly shows for kids and if the theat-uh is not your thing, check out our Winter Fun Guide or January GO List for other fun 'n' frosty options.
The chief spokesperson for the civil rights movement is memorialized annually on the third Monday of January. This floating holiday has evolved into just more than a day off from school. Now deemed as a National Day of Service, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day encourages volunteers across the country to donate their time to make a difference. This day reminds us of hope, compassion and the ongoing potential of social change.
Welcome to Mommy Poppins New Jersey! The free online resource for parents and kids where you’ll get the scoop on what’s fun, unique, outdoorsy, indoorsy, artsy, bouncy, sassy and splashy in the Garden State. Come play with us, won’t you?