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Free (or cheap!) for kids on Long Island in October

Michael DiGiuseppi, 1, of East Williston, checks out

Michael DiGiuseppi, 1, of East Williston, checks out the Halloween displays at Hicks Nurseries in Westbury. (Sept. 23, 2013) (Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan)

Need weekend plans or something to do with the kids during the week? There are a ton of free children's events at local libraries, but we also found free and cheap ($5 or less) things to do elsewhere this month. Whether you have one, two, three or more kids in tow, here's a roundup of fun, budget-friendly events in October.


Fall Family Fun at F & W Schmitt Farms (26 Pinelawn Rd., Melville) on Saturdays and Sundays through Oct. 27 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Pumpkin picking, rides, bouncy slides, haunted mansion, hayrides, pony rides, petting zoo and more. Additional charge ($9) for corn maze.

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Heritage Trust Family Festival at North Shore Heritage Park (633 Mount Sinai Coram Rd., Mt. Sinai) on Thursday, Oct. 3 from 6 p.m.-10 p.m., Friday, Oct. 4 from 6 p.m.-11 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 5 from 12 p.m.-10 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 6 from 12 p.m.-6 p.m. Families can enjoy food, rides, games and more.

Star Wars Reads Day at Barnes & Noble (91 Old Country Rd., Carle Place) on Saturday, Oct. 5 from 2-4 p.m. Dress in costume and meet the voice actors who play the characters in the audio book.

Fiesta Latina at Rogers Mansion (17 Meeting House Lane, Southampton) on Saturday, Oct. 5 from 2-4 p.m. Families can enjoy games, activities, food, music and more.

Fall Festival at Hicks Nurseries (100 Jericho Tpke., Westbury) daily through Oct. 27 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Take a picture with Otto the Ghost and a hayride down a decorated trail, visit farm animals and more. The animated children's story, featuring Otto the Ghost, is a new story on friendship, family and Halloween cheer. Fee for certain activities. Apples, fudge, roasted corn, popcorn, apple cider, candy apples and other fall treats are available for purchase.

Second Saturdays: Viva l'Art at the Hofstra University Museum Emily Lowe Gallery (Hempstead Turnpike, Hempstead) on Saturday, Oct. 12 from 1:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. Children ages 4-10 can create collages and drawings while learning about famous artists like Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dali.

Harvest Festival at Kelly Park (Hawkins Avenue, Lake Grove) on Saturday, Oct. 12 from noon-3 p.m. A Halloween celebration featuring a petting zoo, pumpkins, a hay ride, pony rides, crafts and more. Rain date Sunday, Oct. 13.

Flick and Treat at Newsday (235 Pinelawn Rd., Melville) on Saturday, Oct. 19 at 3 p.m. Come in costume for trick-or-treating, followed at dusk with a family-friendly movie that kids of all ages can enjoy. The event is free, but advance tickets are required. Rain date is Sunday, Oct. 20.

Treasurers of the Forest, Story Tim, Ramble and Craft for Kids at Bailey Arboretum (194 Bayville Road and Feeks Lane, Lattingtown) on Saturday, Oct. 19 at 10:30 a.m. Hosted by the Hungtingon-Oyster Bay Audubon, kids ages 5 and up will receive a treasure bag and are encouraged to pick up leaves, sticks, etc. as they wander through the woods. Then, they will make collages with what they've collected, read stories and more. Registration is required.

Rolling River Annual Fall Festival at Rolling River Day Camp (477 Ocean Ave., East Rockaway) on Saturday, Oct. 26 from noon-4 p.m. Families can trick-or-treat, enjoy carnival rides, crafts, a petting zoo, face painting, music and more.

Children's Costume Contest at Pagan-Fletcher Restoration (143 Hendrickson Ave., Valley Stream) on Sunday, Oct. 27 at 3 p.m. Kids should wear costumes and prizes will be awarded, presented by Valley Stream Historical Society. 

Arts in the Plaza at the Kennedy Plaza (Park Ave., Long Beach) on Saturdays through Oct. 26 from 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. This weekly event features photography, jewelry, paintings and more on display, plus a kids art station from 10 a.m.- noon. Live music is from 1 p.m.-4 p.m.

Halloween Festival at the Stony Brook Village Center (Main Street on the Harbor, Stony Brook) on Thursday, Oct. 31 from 2 p.m.-5 p.m. Kids can enjoy trick-or-treating, a costume parade and more.


Fall Family Festival Weekend at Planting Fields Arboretum State Historic Park (1395 Planting Fields Rd. Oyster Bay) on Saturday, Oct. 4 and Sunday, Oct. 5 from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Kids can enjoy trick-or-treating, a costume parade, pony rides, potato sack races and more; held rain or shine. Price: $20 per car.

Kids for Kyle at Smith Field Park (190 Smith Rd., Ronkonkoma) on Saturday, Oct. 12 from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. This fall festival to benefit the local chapter of Cystic Fibrosis features games, monster trucks, pumpkins, games, food, giveaways, bounce houses and more. Price: $2.

Fall Family Fun Day at Northport Historical Society (215 Main St., Northport) on Saturday, Oct. 19 from noon-2 p.m. Kids can enjoy activities, games, pumpkin decorating, face painting, crafts and light refreshments. It will be held indoors in the event of rain. Price: $10 per family.

Explore the Science of Ice Cream at Maritime Explorium (101 E. Broadway, Port Jefferson) on Saturday, Oct. 19 and Sunday, Oct. 20 from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Make your own batch of ice cream (and learn the science behind it too). Price: Free with $5 admission.

Scary Walk 4 Autism at Darkside Haunted House (Route 25A, Wading River) on Saturday, Oct. 19 from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Children will enjoy a Halloween party, a scary walk, inflatable slide, obstacle course, popcorn machine and more. Proceeds benefit Justice 4 Autism. Rain date is Sunday, Oct. 20. Price: $5.

Fall Craft at Rogers Mansion (17 Meeting House Lane, Southampton) on Saturday, Oct. 26 from 11 a.m.-noon. Children ages 7-12 can create a fall-themed craft. Reservations are required. Price: $5.

Mix Up Some Witches Brew at Martitime Explorium (101 E. Broadway, Port Jefferson) on Saturday, Oct. 26 and Sunday, Oct. 27 from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Stir up a batch of colorful “Witches Brew” slime to get ready for Halloween. Price: Free with $5 admission.

Enchanted Trails at Red House Nature Center, Inlet Pond Park (Route 48, Greenport) on Saturday, Oct. 26 and Sunday, Oct. 27 from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Tour custom-built fairy habitats while walking the trails, then create a dwelling using natural materials. Proceeds benefit North Fork Audubon Society. Price: $5, $20 per family.

Tags: events , weekend fun

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