Winter Activities for Young Children in Basking Ridge

January 14, 2015

January has started with a blast of very cold air and lots of snow flurries.  Once the weather becomes too cold or messy to play outside for long periods of time, children are forced to spend more hours of the day cooped up inside which leads to cabin fever and the common phrases, “I have nothing to do.” and “Play with me.”  In addition, our children have energy they need to expend but no space to do it.  So parents need somewhere to go with their children that is inexpensive and engaging.  Here are some winter activities for young children that should keep them (and you) busy and happy during these chilly months.

Basking Ridge Library

32 S Maple Ave
Basking Ridge, NJ 07920
(908) 204-3031

The Basking Ridge Library offers a variety of programs for tots during cold winter months. There’s Tot Time where kids enjoy stories, rhymes and songs with their parents (2 1/2 to 3 1/2 year olds). Preschool Story Time features Stories, fingerplays and songs for 3 1/2 – 5 year olds. And Throwback Thursdays is a way for the whole family to enjoy classic children’s stories. The library is a great way to keep little ones busy (and warm) with fun, educational activities.

Cost: Free, Registration is required for some programs

Somerset Hills YMCA

140 Mount Airy Rd
Bernards, NJ 07920
(908) 766-7898

665 Martinsville Road
Basking Ridge, NJ 07920
(908) 766-7898
The Somerset Hills YMCA boasts an indoor pool, which can be a retreat during an especially chilly day. In addition, the YMCA also hosts classes such as swim lessons and family yoga.

Cost: Depends on membership level

Raptor Trust

1390 White Bridge Road
Millington, NJ 07946
(908) 647-2353
The Raptor Trust is a unique wild bird rehabilitation center. Visitors have the opportunity to appreciate many birds, such as hawks, eagles, falcons, and owls; up close. They also hold educational events, such as Owls are a Hoot!; call for details.

Cost: $2 per person suggested donation

Willing to drive a little bit further?

Check out these ideas for a fun day trip.


Imagine That!

4 Vreeland Rd
Florham Park, NJ 07932
(973) 966-8000

Imagine That!! is a children’s museum which caters to preschool and young elementary age children. At Imagine That!!!, children are encouraged to touch, discover, learn and explore in their 16,000 square foot space, featuring over 50 unique exhibits. Children will discover interesting exhibits while absorbing and cementing important concepts as they go. The exhibits are specifically designed to stimulate the child’s imagination and intellect while providing them with a fun and exciting day!

Cost: Adults: $9.95; Children: $10.95 (ages 1-12). Admission fee includes unlimited time to explore the activities.

Liberty Science Center

Liberty State Park
222 Jersey City Boulevard
Jersey City, NJ  07305
(201) 200-1000

Liberty Science Center offers content designed just for children ages 2-5. This age-restricted, 4,000-space provides young children a place to discover new things about themselves, their abilities and the world around them. Highlights include investigating simple machines using a giant ball machine, making music on ringing rocks, and painting with water.

Cost: Adults: $19.95 (age 13+); Children: $15.75 (ages 2 – 12)

Do you know of other local places to take the kids during these chilly months? Is it both inexpensive and engaging? If so, please contact us so we can add your suggestion to this list.

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Little Footprints
Little Footprints Learning Center is a ministry of Millington Baptist Church in Basking Ridge, New Jersey. We offer a safe, nurturing preschool for 2 ½ to 5 year old children. We strive to provide a quality education in a loving Christian environment and invite you to browse our website to learn more about our program. If you have any questions or wish to have a tour of our facility, feel free to contact us.