I didn't grow up in Los Angeles; and although I have Latin American family, we are not of the Mexican or Guatemalan variety - meaning I arrived in SoCal knowing next to nothing about Day of the Dead. I've gradually pieced together the whole fascinating cultural and historical puzzle, discovering how many Halloween traditions we actually owe to the Native Americans who were in the city of angels before us, before the Spanish, before Christianity. El Día de los Muertos is a rare opportunity to understand several layers of angeleno culture, while celebrating something that looks a heck of a lot like Halloween.
While LA offers many Day of the Dead celebrations, the most authentic may be the novenarios, the nine nights of revelry leading up to November 2. Many Spanish-speaking countries have novenarios leading up to Christmas, but there is a similar build-up to the Day of the Dead, and here in LA it is most celebrated, not surprisingly, on Olvera Street. I've been curious to check out this traditional celebration for years, but between ghost trains and haunted houses our last week of October has always been booked solid. Not to mention that whole parking downtown thing. This year I finally decided to take the sugar skull by the horns and go see what it's all about. Curious?
WaterFire just might be the greatest thing that’s ever happened to Providence, Rhode Island. In the 20 years since the first bonfires were lit on the rivers in Providence, the brilliant and moving art installation has helped to transform the city into a vibrant, family-friendly destination.
Part community festival and part art exhibition – complete with bonfires juxtaposed with water, music, arts and crafts vendors, boat rides, and live performances – WaterFire is an event not to be missed. But just like other wonderful, very popular events such as First Night Boston, having the inside scoop on WaterFire can mean the difference between having a magical night with the family and a total bust. Here are 25 things to look for and to know before you go – with wisdom learned (sometimes the hard way) from my family’s WaterFire adventures and from the very knowledgeable team at WaterFire.
Portsmouth, New Hampshire is one of our favorite destinations for a short New England getaway and each time we visit, we discover something new. During our most recent Portsmouth mini-vacation, we found terrific burger joint, explored the many wonders of Prescott Park, and had a blast at Water Country.
As a seacoast city, Portsmouth is a hot spot in the summertime, and with good reason: The Prescott Park Arts Festival brings world-class live entertainment to New England at affordable prices. The lush gardens in Prescott Park and across the street at the Strawbery Banke Museum are gorgeous oases in the summer months. Water fun abounds, whether at a water park or on one of Portsmouth’s islands. However, the town shines in the colder months too, especially during the holidays. The annual Vintage Christmas celebration is on our must-do list. Whenever you decide to go, there is an abundance of fun for families. These are 25 of our top picks for exploring Portsmouth with kids:
Known as the birthplace of American pizza, the city of New Haven lives up to its reputation as a first class foodie destination. Thanks to Market New Haven, I experienced many culinary delights in the city of pioneering restaurateurs, and I also learned that New Haven is more than a foodie town. It’s a place to explore history and architecture, art and culture. It's where ideas are nurtured and celebrated. Happily, it’s also very accessible to families and is wonderfully walkable. Take the kids for a day trip or a weekend getaway and experience the city for yourselves, with this list as your guide.
I am constantly telling my kids how lucky they are to live so close to New York City—especially in the summer. From beautiful parks and beaches to a variety of attractions and entertainment, all five boroughs are family-friendly stops, whether it’s for a day, weekend or extended trip. And our sponsor NYC & Company is "spreading the news" on everything the area has to offer for parents and kids.
The lines between Massachusetts and Rhode Island are so fuzzy, sometimes we're not sure which state we're in. Lucky us, because Rhode Island packs giant family fun into a tiny package. Travel less than an hour in any direction, and you're in a completely different world.
We love exploring the parks, beaches, nature centers, museums, places to eat, and other things to do with kids in Rhode Island. As we explore, we'll share our finds with you, so take a look at where we've been and keep checking back for even more great places and family adventures in the Ocean State.
One of my favorite holiday activities when I was a kid was going for an evening ride to look at the Christmas lights - and it remains one of my Christmastime pleasures to this day. If a drive in search of neighborhood lights doesn't fit your schedule this season (or even if it does) you may enjoy an armchair peek at some of the most extravagant holiday light displays around the nation - from New York to Los Angeles (with forays into Boston, Connecticut, and Orange County as well). Read on for some Christmas eye candy, featuring the most over-the-top light displays we know!
Portland, Maine is a city filled with history, outdoor recreation, culture, and truly great food. Pack up the car or take the train and bring the kids along for an engaging, relaxing, and sometimes even awe-inspiring New England family weekend getaway.
To plan a memorable trip, take a look at these 25+ things to do with the kids in Portland, one of my kids' favorite places in New England.
We're glad you're here at Mommy Poppins Boston, your free online resource for everything for families and kids in the greater Boston area. We'd love to hear from you with any questions or suggestions! — Tara