Keeping active in the cold

child playing


Movement and exercise is important for everyone, but especially for young, developing kids.  As children’s nervous systems are maturing, they need movement to help them make sense of the world.  Children sometimes can improve their concentration and performance in school when they have movement activities interspersed throughout the day.  Active movement help children to know their physical boundaries and can help them improve their general health.  Our lives are getting more and more sedentary, especially with all the fun activities we can do with computers and all the great videos and shows for children.  It may be especially hard to find movement opportunities for our children now that the weather is getting colder.  Here are some ideas to incorporate movement activities indoors.


A mini trampoline designed for indoor use with children can  be used, especially if you have little space.  Exercise balls like you’d have for pilates can be fun for kids as well.  If you have more space, ride on toys and scooter boards can be used indoors.  Mattresses on the floor can be used for jumping on as well.  All of this equipment would require close adult supervision, of course.  To make it even better, join in on the fun with your kids sometimes!  Wrestling with a careful adult or older child involves lots of fun movement.  You can put tape on the floor (painter’s tape leaves little, if any, residue) and create lines to walk on, or jump across.  You can make shapes with the tape and have the children jump between circles, square, triangles, etc.  You could also make parallel lines with the tape and call it a river so the kids can climb into a box and row down the river.  Let your imagination soar!


Playing in the snow can be fun for kids of all ages!  You might head for indoor play places such as Gymboree or My Gym.  Other indoor attractions such as Liberty Science Center, the New Jersey Children’s Museum and indoor water parks can also encourage movement.


You can put on some lively music and dance.  Stop the music and play freeze dance.  Or you can make up dance moves and have everyone imitate each other’s moves.  You can toss a balloon in the air, or use rackets or paddles to hit it around.  You can take a sheet and play parachute and put the balloons in the parachute.  A lot of young kids like to have an adult hold onto either end of the sheet and have the child sit in the middle while the adults swing them back and forth.  You can play bean bag toss and have bins or garbage cans to throw the bean bags in.  Or you can crumble up newspapers and throw them around, throw them at targets, or throw them into bins.  You can play charades.  You can also walk like different animals – crab walk, jump like a frog, walk like an elephant – whatever!


These are ideas to get you started.  There are a lot of things you can do with children to get them moving inside.  If you have special equipment, you can use it.  But you can also just use your imagination and things you have around the house.  Have fun with it!


Linda Velwest is a pediatric occupational therapist working with early intervention. She also teaches Autism Movement Therapy classes


Ideas to play in the snow

After the storm, kids are crazy to go outside so if  you decide to go outside, let’s bring some fun.

Here there is a list of fun thing to do with the snow:

1.- Color the snow: Take some some spring bottles with water and some drops of food coloring. Take also the sand toys so you can pretend you are having an ice cream shop.

2.- Play snow tic tac toe:  Take some sticks and some rocks or pinecones as game pieces.

3.- Make snow angels and take amazing pictures

4.- Bring some snow indoors: Bring some of the snow and let them play as they are having a Bakery. Give them some baking cups and the sprinkles could be some little rocks and sticks.

5.- Snow kitchen: If you have some backyard bring their little kitchen and appliances and pretend the snow are the ingredients for the little chef.

6.- Make funny faces on the snow

7.- If you have a Ms. or Mr. Potato head, take the pieces with you and play with them in the snow.

8.- Snow fights: These are so fun, be gentle with the little ones.

9.- Bury a treasure: Hide some toy or treat on the snow and let’s start looking for it.

10.- and if you feel adventurous, build an Igloo. Here you can check the instructions.

15 things to do with your family in a snow day

Fun things to do in jersey city

So, Finally snow is coming! Let’s plan what to do so we don’t stay on bed all day. There are many fun things you can do with your family.

1.- Watch Netflix family friendly movies: Our recommendations are:

– Snow Buddies : “In this family-friendly tale, a feisty pack of golden retriever puppies embarks on an Alaskan adventure, braving snow, ice and danger along the way.”

– Nature: Snow Monkeys : “In Japan’s frigid Shiga Highlands, a troop of snow monkeys functions in a complex society of rank and privilege where each knows its place.

-Fireplace for Your Home: “Replicate the peacefulness of an old-fashioned, wood-burning fireplace, as well as a crackling yule log fireplace, all set to holiday tunes.”

-Pingu: On Thin Ice: “Getting himself in trouble is nothing new for the mischievous penguin Pingu as he returns for more hilarious adventures in this cartoon collection.”

-Chicken Run: “This engaging stop-motion, claymation adventure tells the story of an American rooster who falls in love with a gorgeous hen on a British farm. The couple decides to run away from the farm, but they must first contend with the evil farmer who is intent on keeping them under her control. The chickens decide to attempt an escape so they don’t get turned into chicken pot pies.”

-Lilo and Stitch: “A tale of a young girl’s close encounter with the galaxy’s most wanted extraterrestrial. Lilo is a lonely Hawaiian girl who adopts a small ugly “dog,” whom she names Stitch. Stitch would be the perfect pet if he weren’t in reality a genetic experiment who has escaped from an alien planet and crash-landed on Earth. Through her love, faith and unwavering belief in ohana, the Hawaiian concept of family, Lilo helps unlock Stitch’s heart and gives him the ability to care for someone else.”

-Secret of the Kells: “In the remote Irish woods, Cellach (Brendan Gleeson) prepares a fortress for an impending attack by a Viking war party. Unbeknown to Cellach, his young nephew Brendan (Evan McGuire) — who has no taste for battle — works secretly as an apprentice in the scriptorium of the local monastery, learning the ancient art of calligraphy. As the Vikings approach, revered illuminator Aidan (Mick Lally) arrives at the monastery and recruits Brendan to complete a series of dangerous, magical tasks.”

Fun things to do in jersey city

2.- Make a dance party: After breakfast, turn up the music and start dancing with the little ones. Once they are kind of exhausted ask them to help you to build a living room Campsite

3.- Build a Living Room Fort: Let’s flip our household routine upside down.  Wear pajamas, turn out the light, hide some snacks and make s’mores while watch a movie or read favorite books. Have tons of blankets, pillows, sleeping bags and stuffed animals. Hopefully they will be more relaxed and will take a nap under the fort.

4.- Make your own game: We found this website where you can make your own game with your own rules. How cool is that?

5.- Clean the house: We know , we know! Cleaning the house sometimes is not fun but this is the perfect day to clean your closets and get rid of the clutter in those drawers. Just 15 min each room and start the week with a house more organized.

6.- Arts and crafts: We have tons of arts and craft in our Pinterest board, Check them out and have fun!

7.- Neighborhood Play Date: Schedule a playdate with some of your neighbors. Make shifts so each family can have some quite time during the day.

8.- Bake; Kids love to cook and eat what they prepared afterwards. What about some cookies or muffins. When they are ready, also can be decorated,

9.- Photoshoot: Take all the halloween costumes, wigs, hats and glasses and make a fun photoshoot!

10.- Call or visit Grandparents: we bet you’ll make happy everyone with this one.

11.- Plan your next vacation: This is a perfect day to do it. One more thing out of the check list.

12.- Help a neighbor to shovel snow, specially if he is a senior

13.- Warm bubble bath for the little ones: Let them play for a while there before bedtime

14.- Write a letter with your little one to that family member or friend overseas.

15.- Play with the snow! Click here to read fun things to do with the snow.

Fun things to do in jersey city

Fun things to do in jersey city

8 places to go Skiing in and around New Jersey

Best places to go Skiing in New Jersey: There are plenty of options that are easily accessible from the Jersey City area. The Poconos offer some great options in PA, upstate New York boasts some memorable spots and we’ve even got some right here in NJ! Here’s a handy list of some of the best ski locations based on proximity and family friendliness. Plus, many of the destinations on this list offer snowtubing, which is a fun and easy winter sport alternative. It’s a great option for all ages.

New Jersey

Mountain Creek, Vernon

mountaincreek-logoBest places to go Skiing in New Jersey

Mountain Creek is located in Vernon, which is about a 1.5 hour drive from downtown Jersey City. It is located very close to the NJ/NY border. This ski resort offers 167 acres of trails on 4 mountain peaks and is the “region’s highest vertical and the only true All-Mountain Terrain Park south of Vermont.” They have merged with Crystal Springs Resort and offer golf, a spas, a lodge, several restaurants,skiing, snowboarding, snowtubing and more. They offer lessons for children as young as 4 and start at $99.99. Kids Kamp is a full-day option which includes a lift ticket, lesson and lunch for skiers and snowboarders from 4 – 7 years of age. Kids Kamp rates begin at $159.99 and include all rental equipment. Lodging options include the Grand Cascades Lodge, Minerals Resort & Spa (which they tout as their family resort), The Appalachian (studio, one and two bedroom units slope side) and Black Creek Sanctuary (gated townhomes).

Campgaw Mountain, Mahwah

new Campgaw logo blackBest places to go Skiing in New Jersey

This is a smaller mountain, but a great place to learn to ski or snowboard. They also offer snowtubing here. Campgaw Mountain is just under an hour’s drive from downtown Jersey City. It is a much smaller operation than your average ski resort, so it’s the perfect place to take the family if you are learning, don’t like lines and just want to have a relaxing ski experience. Programs are offered that are multi-week lessons. They offer a Cruisers program for children 4 – 6 years old. This program allows kids to become comfortable with ski equipment and learn how to ski amongst children their age. Program begins at $129. The First Step program is designed for ages 7 and up and teaches the fundamentals of skiing and snowboarding. Pricing for this program begins at $229. After that comes Next Step which is also for 7 and up and is designed for those who can safely traverse the top or mid-station of the hill. Pricing begins at $229. Daily lessons are also offered on a group, private or semi-private basis. Pricing varies, but begins at $39 for a children’s lesson (ages 4 – 6). Check the website for details. Snowtubing is a popular family activity that Campgaw Mountain offers. Ride a tube down the hill and use a surface lift to just ride your tube right back up again. Sessions sell out quickly and it is recommended that you purchase your tickets online in advance. All riders must be a minimum height of 42 inches. Hours and rates vary, see the website for details.

Thunder Ridge Ski Area, Patterson

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Thunder Ridge is about an hour and 45 minute drive from downtown Jersey City. They offer 30 trails, 3 chairlifts and 4 magic carpet lifts. Mid-week specials are offered Monday through Thursday where lift tickets are only $25 for ages 6 and up from 10am – 5pm. Lessons are offered for every skill level, from beginner to expert for kids 3 and up. Private lessons are offered for $105/hour. Many types of group lessons are available ranging from a Mommy/Daddy and Me class for ages 3 – 5 which is an hour in length and costs $49 per parent and child. Thunderbolts is a lesson for children ages 4 – 7 years old and introduces kids to skiing. A 75 minute lesson is $41. Ridge Riders is a lesson for snowboarders ages 6 – 7 and is $45 for a 75 minute lesson. Other groups for all ages are available, check the website for pricing and times. Advance reservations are always recommended. Half-Day programs are offered on weekends and holidays from 9:30am – 1pm for children ages 5 – 9 years old. Prices vary. They even offer babysitting options if you want to hit the slopes with your significant other and your little one isn’t ready. Lodging options in the immediate surrounding areas include Comfort Suites, Ethan Allen Hotel, Hilton Garden Inn and more. Check their website for deals and packages available through the listed hotels. In addition, many local restaurants are located nearby.

New York

Hunter Mountain, Hunter

 logo (1)Best places to go Skiing in New Jersey

One of the most popular NY ski destinations, Hunter is about a 2.5 hour drive from downtown Jersey City. Many family-friendly winter activities are available. They offer the largest snowtubing park in New York State including more than 20 chutes nearly 1,000 feet long, a mini tubing park for children, a snack bar, fire pit and more! Two hour sessions begin every hour on the hour for $20/person 42 inches and above. Two hour sessions are available for children 33 inches – 42 inches for $30 for child and adult. Advance booking is recommended. There are many lessons and programs offered for all ages. The Explorers Program is for ages 4 – 6 years old and offers fun and kid-friendly ski instruction. You can drop kids off, but you must be on the premises during program time. Single sessions that are 2 hours are offered, as well as full day sessions which are 4 hours and include snack and lunch. Single sessions are $85 including life, lesson and equipment (no lunch) and full day sessions are $125 including lift, lesson, equipment, lunch and snack. Mountaineers is a program offered for ages 7 – 12 years old and includes ski and snowboard lessons. Singles sessions are offered for $85 including lift, lesson and equipment. Full day sessions are $125 and include lift, lesson, equipment, lunch and snack. Reservations are required for all programs. If you want to hit the slopes for a bit on your own, try Playcare, which is a childcare service for children ages 2 – 6 years old. The service is $85 for a full day (up to 9 hours), $68 for a half day (up to 4 hours) and there are 2 hour options available for $45 per child. There are many lodging options including the Kaatskill Mountain Club and Liftside Condos, which are slopeside and offer ski-in/ski-out access.

Mount Peter, Warwick

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Mount Peter was actually started in 1936 by Macy’s Department Store to show off and sell their ski fashion. It is located in Warwick, NY, just over the NJ border, just a bit more than an hour’s drive from downtown Jersey City and offers 14 trails and 5 lifts. Lessons are offered for every age and level. They even offer a free beginner lesson on weekends and holidays for skiers (with the purchase of a lift ticket for ages 5 and up). Pete’s Pals is a program offered for children ages 4 and under (must be potty-trained). The cost is $90 and includes the lesson, ski equipment, lift ticket/area pass and hot chocolate. Also, a Kids Camp is offered for 3 hours for ages 5 and up. Children must have skied or snowboarded before and can ride the area by oneself. Weekends only for $195 (without equipment rental $165). Many deals are offered including Discount Tuesdays for which you must show your current union, school, military or AARP card and get a half price lift/area ticket from 9am – 5pm. Ski and Stay packages are available at many area hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Note: There is a program called ISKINY Free for Kids offered for 3rd and 4th graders from anywhere (not just NY). The program gives kids the opportunity to ski or ride free at a majority of New York ski resorts this winter when accompanied by a paying adult. There is also a Learn to Ski or Ride Passport available for free, but not every resort is participating in that. Check the website and apply to get a ticket book of free lift coupons.


Camelback Mountain, Tannersville

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This is our nick pick for the Best places to go Skiing in and around New Jersey. The Poconos offers many fun ski resort options, including Camelback. It’s about 1.5 hour’s drive from downtown Jersey City and offers the biggest ski and snowboarding terrain (34 trails and 16 lifts) in the area and boasts the biggest snowtubing park in the US. They offer many packages and lessons for kids including CamelCare Adventurers which is a half-day (2.5 hours) program geared toward children ages 4 – 12 years. Midweek rates are $110 and weekend/holiday rates are $129 and include ski or snowboard rental, instructional time and lift ticket. There are various group and private lessons available, as well, with rates ranging from $35 – $125. Click here for details. It is highly recommended that you sign up for all lessons and programs online in advance. Snowtubing is a popular family activity at Camelback. There are up to 42 lanes of snowtubing available and there are tubing hours daily. Weekend and holiday tubing is limited to 3-hour sessions, but mid-week is unlimited and offered at one flat rate for the whole day. Rates vary, so click here to check. A double tube only with parent has a minimum height requirement of 33 inches to 43 inches. Single and double tubes are for 44 inches and up. Children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult with a valid tubing ticket. Camelback Lodge is located on-site and offers various rooms and suites. Alternate area lodging is available, click here for details.

Great Wolf Lodge, Scotrun

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Great Wolf Lodge doesn’t offer on-site skiing, however, they are located very near to Camelback and, similarly, they are about a 1.5 hour’s drive from downtown Jersey City. The unique element to Great Wolf Lodge is their large indoor waterpark and multitude of children’s activities. Activities include  arcades, a children’s spa, a kid-friendly mini bowling alley, kiddie movie theater, ropes course and many quest type activities, plus much more! The waterpark includes rides for kiddies as small and toddlers on up. There are many themed-rides and pool areas. There’s something for every age. You attain access to the waterpark and activities by staying at the lodge. The waterpark allows you access after 1pm on your check-in day through the day you check-out. Unique family suites are available including KidKamp Suites with tents within your room and KidCabin suites where the kid’s beds are housed inside a little log cabin (it even comes with a TV inside!). They also offer more standard suites for those who want a more traditional room. Resort amenities include lots of on-site restaurants (even a sweet shop!), shops, an adult spa, a children’s spa and a fitness room. It’s basically a kiddie wonderland located near several ski/winter sport areas. It’s definately qualify for the list of the Best places to go Skiing in and around New Jersey

Shawnee Mountain,

East Stroudsburg

 Best places to go Skiing in New JerseyBest places to go Skiing in New Jersey

We have included Shawnee in our list of the Best places to go Skiing in New Jersey Shawnee because it’s a great family destination for winter sports and is located very near to Camelback and is only a little over an hour’s drive from downtown Jersey City. They offer 23 trails, 8 lifts and 2 parks, plus snowtubing. Shawnee offers morning, afternoon and full-day children’s lessons. Three-hour group format sessions include use of an exclusive area for beginners, instruction, ski/snowboard rentals and youth lift ticket. SkIwee is for ages 4 – 6 and is just for skiing. Morning and afternoon session are available and one session is $100 and include snack. Mountain Cruisers is for ages 7 – 15 (ski only) and is available morning, afternoon or full day for $100 per session. Snack is included with half-day programs and lunch is included with full-day programs. Young Riders is for ages 7 – 15 for snowboarders only. Morning and afternoon sessions are available for $100 per session. Mid-week programs are for entry-level riders and weekends are for all levels. Snacks are included with all sessions. SKIbaby is an intro class for 3 year olds. Sessions include a one-hour ski lesson and equipment rental for $70. They also offer Mommy & Me ski lessons for parents and children together. One hour lessons are $70 per session. WEEriders is designed for children ages 4 – 6 that want to snowboard. This 2-hour group session includes a lesson and equipment rental and cost $90. Snowtubing is offered in 2 or 4 hour sessions. Prices vary based on time and length, click here for details. Children must be accompanied by an adult. There are many lodging options in the surrounding area including The Shawnee Inn, which is on-site. Click here for area dining options.



Looking for a cold weather activity that will suit the whole family? Take them for ice skating! There are some really great ice skating rinks in and around Jersey City.


  • Bring your little one’s bike/scooter helmet. A lot of these places offer helmet rentals, but if you have one, bring one!
  • Dress appropriately! Some of these rinks are outdoors or partially covered, so it’s cold in there! Dress little one’s in a snowsuit with layers. If they fall on the ice (which they do…a lot) they will start to get wet, so snow pants are best. But, don’t forget about you. Try double socks to keep your feet warm in the rental skates.
  • Leave your bag at home or in the car.I know this one seems obvious, but I found myself at the ice skating rink with a bag and nowhere to leave it. Try just taking the essentials in your pockets or lock your bag in the trunk of your car while skating.


Newport Skates, 95 River Drive, Jersey City (NOW OPEN)

skating rinks in Jersey City This rink is very close to Newport mall and it definitely one of the best Ice Skating Rinks in Jersey City. Admission is $7 and skate rentals are $6. Newport Residents and tenants get a discount of half price daily admission with proof of residential or employee ID card. Once you pay, you can skate all day, which is nice if you live locally or have kids that need a lot of time on the ice! Their hours of operation are:

  • Monday – Friday from 4pm to 9pm
  • Saturday from 11am to 9pm
  • Sunday from 11am to 7pm


Pershing Field Ice Rink, 807 Summit Avenue, Jersey City

This local favorite is in Jersey City Heights. They offer a parking lot, so it’s very convenient from downtown if you have a car. This rink is covered, but open to the outdoors.

Rink Fees (admission & skate are paid PER session):

Jersey City Resident Admission
Adults (ages 18-61) (must show proof of residency) $3 *if no proof is shown, adult must pay nonresident fee*
Children (ages 17 & under) $2
Senior Citizens (62 & older) $1

Non-Jersey City Resident Admissions
Adults (ages 18-61) $5
Children (ages 17 & under) $3
Senior Citizens (62 & older) $2

Skates(fees are the same for both Residents and non-residents of Jersey City)
Figure Skates: $4
Hockey Skates: $5

2017-2018 General Public Skating Sessions:

Thursdays: 4pm-6pm
Fridays: 3:45pm-5:30pm | 5:45pm-7:45pm | 8pm-9:45pm
Saturdays: 4:15pm-5:45pm | 6pm-7:45pm | 8pm-9:45pm
Sundays: 2pm-3:45pm | 4pm-5:45pm | 6pm-7:45pm

There is a small snack shop located inside the rink offering cookies, candy, hot chocolate and more.


Richard J. Korpi Ice Rink, 669 Avenue A, Bayonne

If you like the indoor and temperature controlled ice skating experience, this rink is for you. This rink offers public skating sessions just on weekends.

  • Friday nights from 5:45pm to 7pm
  • Saturdays from 2:15pm to 3:30pm and from 6:45pm to 8pm
  • Sundays from 2pm to 3:15pm

The cost for non-residents is $10 per session and includes skate rental. Bayonne Residents are $3 for kids, $5 for adults and $4 for skate rentals. There is limited free public parking offered.


Richard J. Codey Arena at South Mountain, West Orange

This fantastic, recently renovated, indoor rink is only about a 30 minutes drive from downtown Jersey City. It boats two rinks, a skate rental area, food concession area, locker rooms and more! It is located not far from the Turtle Back Zoo.

Public skating session hours vary, so be sure to check the calendar here. Rates are $8/adult and $6/child. Skate rentals are $4. Pass cards are also available to buy for 12 admissions for the price of 10. They offer skating lessons, hockey lessons and various programs, check their website for details. On-site parking is available.


The Town of Secaucus’ Ice Rink on Plaza Center Road Buchmuller Park: 150 Plaza Center, Secaucus

The Town of Secaucus’ Ice Rink on Plaza Center Road provides skating opportunities during open sessions, rentals, and for hockey leagues. The rink is typically open from Oct-Apr, weather permitting. The rink is also used for other activities in the off-season.

$3.00 Admission   /   $2.00 Skate Rental

Regular Hours are:

  • Thursday: 7:30pm – 9:30pm
  • Friday: 7:30pm – 9:30pm
  • Saturday: 1:30pm – 3:30pm & 7:30pm – 9:30pm
  • Sunday: 3:00pm – 5:00pm & 7:30pm – 9:30pm

Hours are subject to change. Please call 201-330-0273 to verify open skating sessions.


Warinanco Sports Center, One Park Drive, Roselle, NJ 07203

approximately 30 min drive from Jersey City

The newly renovated Warinanco Sports Center, formally the seasonal skating rink, has expanded to a beautiful 11,000 square foot facility open to the public year round. The Center features brand-new event and meeting spaces, a pro shop, and is home to the Warinanco Café! In winter months, the skating rinks hosts nearly 50,000 guests and is perfect for date night, skating lessons, or to attend local high school hockey games.

Schedule: please check here.


$5 – Children (17 & Younger)
$6 – Adults
$5 – Seniors (62 & Over)

Rentals: $4


The Rink at Winter Village, Bryant Park, NYC

This 170’ x 100’ outdoor ice rink is located in the center of Bryant Park and skating is FREE! Skating hours are 8am – 10pm daily through March 4, 2018. Of course, if you don’t have your own skates you will have to rent them there. Rental fees are $20 per rental. They also offer helmet rentals for $6, skate aids for $20 . You can even check your bags for a fee. Lockers are available for use for free, but you must bring your own lock or purchase one there for $10. FastPass is an option to skip the line and pay for your family in advance, check the website for details. Skating lessons are offered, but they suggest you schedule the lesson in advance. Private lessons are $60, semi-private lessons are $80 per group and group lessons are $120 per group. All lessons are 30 minutes in duration.

Winter Village offers many things including Ice Bites to get some treats during your skate, the Holiday ShopsPublic Fare restaurant, Scavenger Hunt, Winter Carnival , Story Time and more….

Getting there is easy just take the B, D, F, M, 7 to 42nd Street.


Wollman Rink, Central Park, NYC skating rinks in Jersey City   Located in the southeastern section of Central Park, Wollman Rink has been open to the public since 1949. At this outdoor rink, skating is available through early April seven days a week, with limited hours on:

  • Monday and Tuesday from 10am to 2:30pm
  • Wednesday and Thursday from 10am to 10pm
  • Friday and Saturday from 10am to 11pm
  • Sunday from 10am to 9pm

Monday – Thursday rates are $12/adult and $6/child 11 and under. Friday – Sunday and Holidays rates are $19/adult and $6/child 11 and under. Spectator’s rates are $5/person. Skate rentals are $9. You can rent locks for $5 with a $6 refundable deposit. The rink is cash only, so come prepared. The nearest subways are: A, B, C, D, 1 at 59thStreet/Columbus Circle; N, Q, R at 5th Avenue/59th Street; F at 57th Street and the 4, 5, 6 at 59th Street.


The Rink at Rockefeller Center, NYC Ice Skating Rinks in Jersey City

Perhaps one of the most famous ice skating locations in NYC, this outdoor rink is visited by people from all around the globe each winter. The rink is open daily with 8 sessions from 8:30am through midnight. The rates varied from $25 to $32 depending on standard, holiday or peak time, and $15/child under 11 years of age. Skate rentals are $12. You can take skate lessons daily from 9am – 6pm for $50 per 30 minutes private lesson (this also includes general admission to the rink). They also offer group rates with a 15 person minimum and advanced reservations required. Group rates are $17/adult and $12/child, with skate rentals being $8. There are so many things to do once you are there including great food, hot chocolate, shopping and so much more! Take the B, D, F to Rockefeller Center/47-50thStreet.


Sky Rink, Chelsea Piers, NYC skating rinks in Jersey City

This indoor ice skating rink is open year-round. Check general admission schedule HERE.

Rates are $11/person for all ages and $6 per skate rental. Helmet rentals are available for $5. Various classes and programs are offered including private skate lessons, hockey tots, adult skate night and more. Check the website for details. Once you are there, Chelsea Piers offers so much including great food, drinks, shopping and more! On-site parking is available for a fee. You can also take the M23, M14-D or M12 buses.


The Rink at Brookfield Place, located on the plaza in front of Brookfield Place Winter Garden

skating rinks in Jersey City   Located on the Hudson River Waterfront, it is open from Monday – Friday from 1pm to 8:30pm, and Saturday and Sundays from 10:15am to 9:30pm. The rink offers programs such as Learn to Skate, Mommy/ Daddy & Me, Kick Ice Hockey Fitness and Corporate Skating Events. Single sessions of 90 minutes are $15 and skate rentals are $5.

New Year’s Events for Kids and Families

You may already have a babysitter booked for a night on the town with your significant other. But, if you don’t…here are some great events and activities in and around our area that will guarantee a fantastic New Year’s for the whole family!

12 Days of Science

Liberty Science Center, Jersey City

December 20 – January 1 (closed 12/25)

The LSC will be open both New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, so it’s the perfect place to get out of the cold and get the kids active! This holiday celebration includes the new Infinity Climber, building and displaying a huge snowflake, meeting a penguin, tasting ice cream made with liquid nitrogen, special live shows and more. Special holiday hours are 9am – 6pm except for Christmas Eve (9am – 4pm). They are closed on Christmas Day.

lf: The Musical 

Various Dates and Times

Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn

Looking for something fun and different to do on New Year’s? Take the kids to see Elf: The Musical! The Paper Mill Playhouse, located in Millburn, is only about a 20 minute drive from downtown Jersey City. There is a 1:30pm showing on New Year’s Eve and a 7pm showing on New Year’s Day. Tickets range from $36 – $91.

Holiday Lights

Now – January 4, 2015

Turtle Back Zoo, West Orange

You still have time to check out Holiday Lights if you haven’t already done so this season. Holiday Lights will be open on both New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day from 5pm – 9pm through January 4. The zoo will not have Holiday Lights on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. However, Holiday Lights will be open on New Year’s Day, although the zoo won’t be open during the day. The event is free to the public, though donations of canned goods, toys and pet food are encouraged.

Disney on Ice: Princesses and Heroes 

January 1 – 4, 2015

Izod Center, East Rutherford

See a showing on New Year’s Day at 1pm and explore a world of wonder where heroes and hearts prevail! Tickets start at $25 and parking is $15/car.

Winter Wonderland Camp 

December 29 – 31, 2014 from 11am – 1:30pm

Need a daytime activity for the little ones? Try Winter Wonderland Camp. Children ages 3.5 – 7 years will enjoy making sculptures, drawings, paintings, 3D objects and more. You can book an individual day for $50 per day or all three days for $135.

New Year’s Eve Family Cruise 

December 31, 2014

Pier 16, South Street Seaport, NYC

Take the whole family along for a night of New Year’s Eve fun on the New York Harbor! Kids and parents can dance the night away, play Wii games, enjoy treats, party favors and more. This event is best suited for older children, as the cruise boards at 9:05pm and sails until 12:20am. Tickets are $125 per child ages 3 – 12 and $200 per adult. Family packs are available for $600 (2 adults and 2 children).

Newport Skates 

Newport, Jersey City

Take the family skating for the day at Newport Skates! They will be open both New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day from 11am – 9pm. Admission is $7/person and skate rentals are $6.

New Year’s Eve Concert for Peace

December 31, 2014 from 7pm – 9pm

St. John the Divine, NYC

Enjoy an evening of music at a beautiful location. This year’s concert is hosted by Harry Smith and features Judy Collins and Jason Robert Brown. General admission is free and open to the public and seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Rink at Rockefeller Center

Rockefeller Center, NYC

If you are in the mood for ice skating and don’t mind crowds, take the family to this iconic ice skating rink in NYC. Skate together under the infamous Christmas tree. They have various hours daily, including New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. Peak rates are $30/adult and $15/child (under 11) and skate rentals are $12.

Central Park Fireworks and NYRR Midnight Run 

December 31, 2014 at 10pm

Central Park, NYC

Celebrate with dancing, live performances and a firework show then countdown to midnight and partake in the 4 mile unscored midnight fun run. This event is free.

New Year’s Day Brunch Family Bowl 

January 1, 2015 at noon

Brooklyn Bowl, NYC

Start the New Year off with a strike! Enjoy bowling and brunch starting at noon. All ages until 6pm. There will be no cover charge.

Magical Pumpkin Wands | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

I know it’s September, but I’m already thinking about Halloween non-stop! It’s never too early to start putting out some harvest pumpkin decorations in the fall, so here’s a craft that is sure to please as a centerpiece on your table, party favor for kids or even as a colorful gift!

Materials you will need:

  • Foam or cardboard pumpkin cut-outs

  • Permanent markers

  • Colorful paper straws

  • Strong craft glue or hot glue

  • Ribbons, Halloween findings

  • Blush or red marker {optional}


*Paper straws are readily available at Target and party stores. Pumpkin cut-outs can be found this time of year at the dollar store, Target or A.C. Moore. Michael’s should also have them in stock.



Step 1 Decide how many magical pumpkin wands you’d like to make. Take out as many pumpkin cut-outs and paper straws as you will need.


Step 2 Decorate the pumpkin cut-outs with a permanent marker. Create cute and scary jack-o-lantern faces. This part is appropriate for even the smallest child. Get creative and give one pumpkin some reading glasses! If you’d like rosy cheeks, you can use a red marker or real makeup blush on a dry paintbrush.



Step 3 Tie festive ribbons around the top of the paper straws about one inch down from the top. Add Halloween findings if you have them. I had these cute foam candy corns on wires so I added them to my wands as well.


Step 4 Glue the pumpkin ‘head’ on the top of the wand using a strong craft glue and let it dry for a few hours. Hot glue is instant, so I prefer that method if you have a hot glue gun handy. For very small children you could even use clear tape, but keep in mind your wands won’t last too long, especially after playing with them for a few hours.


Step 5 Display your pumpkin wands creatively throughout the house in vases, planters or at mealtime. The kids can spend hours playing with them this October!

Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is a local Jersey City illustrator and arts instructor. She has written and illustrated various children’s books, and is releasing her second picture book this fall. She teaches private art lessons to children in the Jersey City area and loves the magical artwork that kids create!

Don’t forget to stop by Ashley’s blog on JCFamilies. Visit every month to see a new crafting idea for your child and please Like, Share or Comment on this craft if you enjoy it!

Crafty Valentine Decorating Ideas | Time to Create with Lady Lucas

It’s hard to believe that the holidays are over, and Valentine’s Day is already around the corner! I have already decorated my home for one of my favorite holidays, and wanted to share some easy and fun crafty decorating ideas with you. Enjoy these tips, and if you have any tips of your own, please add them to the comment section for other moms to enjoy below!

Valentine Tree

Not so fast putting the Christmas decorations away- half of your ornaments might look great on a Valentine tree! I just happened to have this pink tree up in my studio during the holidays, but you could probably find a red one on sale {left over from the holidays} at Target or the dollar store. If you don’t have a small tree, a fancy tree branch or group of twigs from the floral shop would also work well.

Decorate your Valentine tree with mostly white, pink and red ornaments. Any animal ornaments work great too. A quick way to add a little love, is to punch a hole in the center of red and pink paper hearts such as the ones pictured above. Push these hearts on the tips of your tree branches or twigs for a lovely touch.


Window Love

Have the kids cut out some hearts out of red and pink construction paper and hang them in all your windows using wall putty. Wall putty can be found in the stationary isle of Shop Rite or at any office store. Cute red cupids such as the one above can be found at a party store. Cupids are quite tricky to cut out, so I would recommend buying them and making the hearts at home! Some other fun ideas for cut paper shapes are; cupcakes, red birds and ladybugs.

Fun with Cake Picks

Remember the terrarium craft I shared within my blog post a few months ago? Well, my tiny little garden is still growing and I like to change the theme from month to month. If your terrarium at home is still living, or you’d like to learn to make one, a really simple way to make it festive is by adding plastic cake picks into the soil. This cupid pick was the perfect addition to mine, but you could use pretty much any pink or red little fellow to add some Valentine fun. Cake picks also make a great addition to Valentine cupcakes, or as a decoration on the top of a Valentine heart. They are sold at all major party stores as well as in the baking isle of fine food stores.

Click to Download and Print a PDF of this Craft


Ashley Lucas {aka Lady Lucas} is a local Jersey City illustrator and arts instructor. She has written and illustrated various children’s books, and is currently working on a compilation of her most popular crafting ideas. She offers private art lessons to the Newport community for children ages 4 – 8 years old and loves seeing the magical creations children come up with!

Don’t forget to stop by Ashley’s blog on JCFamilies. Stop by every month to see a new crafting idea for your child and please Like, Share or Comment on this craft if you enjoy it!