NYC Presidents Day Weekend: Ponycon, Intrepid Kids, V-Day, Lunar Parades

Presidents Day weekend kicks off the weeklong February break for New York City public school kids (and a long weekend for many in preschool and daycare), and there's so much to do that we're (almost) wishing for a longer holiday! Five of our top February GoList picks take place this weekend, including the inaugural hands-on Play Fair consumer toy expo, Washington's Birthday Ball and a wide variety of science activities at the Intrepid and nature fun in NYC parks. The Lunar New Year festivities wrap up with the China Institute's fete in their new downtown location and the big parades in Chinatown, Sunset Park and Flushing. Plus, Sunday is Valentine's Day and we've rounded up lots of creative family activities around the city to honor the occasion. Or visit some of these DIY spots to craft handmade chocolate treats for your sweet, or stay in and make these adorable chocolate heart pops at home.

Got to get some work in next week? Try one of these midwinter break camps for last-minute openings.

These are just a few of the great things going on this Presidents Day weekend. All of our best bets are below. You can find lots of other options in our Event Calendar, our Winter Fun Guide and our list of 35 things to do over midwinter break.

6 Awesome Artists for a Craftacular Birthday Party

You know the drill: Planning a NYC birthday party, and the kids are all over the clowns, magicians and balloon-benders. They’re all creators these days, and they want hands-on fun—with a definite takeaway at the end. That means two hours of running around for parents, right?

Or you can just hire someone to do the heavy lifting for you. You’ll end up a hero if you stick with any of these six awesome arts-and-crafts-inspired party people—all of whom bring supplies, set things up at your apartment or rented space, get crafty with the kids and clean up for you. It is as amazing as it sounds.

February Vacation Week with Kids in Boston: Worth-the-Money Activities

It's probably obvious from my posts that I'm all about free activities for my family, especially when trying to keep kids entertained all week. While I'm planning to fill up most of our schedule with some of those free picks, there are also tons of cool activities that are worth the money this February break. We certainly won't be able to hit all of these, but I'm going to do my best to narrow it down to a favorite or two and make our plans now (some activities require advance registration or tickets). Good luck choosing, and have a great school vacation week!

7 Birthday Party Places for Adrenaline Junkies

If you have an adventure loving kiddie on your hands, the usual bounce house birthday party might not quench their need for speed. Your thrill seeking boy or girl can have the time of their lives at one of these birthday spots on Long Island that will have you zipping, zooming, driving and diving. Be sure to call for up-to-date pricing and availability. And for more birthday party ideas, check out our Long Island Party Guide.

Presidents' Day Weekend Fun with Westchester Kids: Circus, Monterey Jazz Festival, Feb. 13-15

If you’re staying in town for the three-day weekend, get ready for lots of local fun for families in Westchester!

First off, as we reported in our February GoList, the circus is in town! The Royal Hanneford Circus performs Saturday through Monday, with Grandma the Clown, trapeze artists and more. Other hot tickets include Moon Mouse: A Space Odyssey and Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour.

Presidents’ Day isn’t just a day off from school—it’s also a fun learning opportunity! Throughout the weekend, there are events that leverage this, such as Presidents' Day Commemoration. For Valentine’s Day fun, learn about the birds and the bees (and the tortoises and the lizards) at Nature's Love Stories.

Read on for our top weekend picks and check out our Event Calendar for even more great activities coming up. Sign up for our FREE weekly newsletters so you're sure to receive our upcoming roundup of awesome things to do during the winter break! 

Tarantulas! Alive and Up Close at The Academy of Natural Sciences

Let's face it; I've never been that into creepy crawlies. And I am quite terrified of most insects and spiders. But as a mother, I happily take on the challenge of facing my fears in an effort to expose my little one to new and exciting experiences. The Tarantulas: Alive and Up Close exhibit, which just opened at the Academy of Natural Sciences is one of these experiences. And like many others, it turned out to be way more awesome than I expected! 

Family Presidential Activities for Presidents Day in LA

Unlike other holidays, Presidents Day is not a day replete with family rituals; if your family does have a tradition, it's more likely to be hunting for the snow chains before heading off skiing than anything presidential. If you are staying in town for the three-day weekend, though, why not find an activity that makes sense out of Presidents Day? After all, you're more likely to raise a president yourself if you keep your eye on the ball! Check out these five special Presidents Day activities for LA's little POTUS-in-training; and maybe someday your kiddo will add a third presidential museum to the LA landscape.

Valentine's Day Weekend Fun for NJ Kids: Art from the Heart, Valentine Sleigh Ride, Feb 13-14

Love is in the air this weekend, New Jersey! Whether you choose to celebrate as a couple, a family or with a group of friends, there's plenty to do in our great state! Get in the Valentine's Day spirit with a special Art from the Heart family art program at the Princeton Museum, take a cozy Valentine Sleigh Ride at Howell Farm or sign up for a Mother-Daughter Valentine craft session at Just Bead Yourself. And if you're looking for even more February fun, check out the awesome Ice Sculpture Extravaganza at Skylands Stadium or dance along to Latin beats during the Cuban Rhythms festival at MarketFair Mall. Whatever you decide to do this Valentine's Day weekend, we hope you enjoy it with family and friends. For additional activity options, check out our Event Calendar.

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