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Top Summer Family Activities on the North Fork

Long Island Aquarium Mermaid
Swim with the Mermaids at the Long Island Aquarium

There is a tremendous variety of activities across the North Fork for everyone of all ages. From getting to know the farm animals and discovering plenty of sea creatures to traditional campground activities and so much more, we highlight ten terrific activities from Calverton and Riverhead to further east in Greenport. 

Outdoor Adventure at Long Island Sports Park, Calverton

Find everyone’s favorite sporting activity at Long Island Sports Park on Edwards Avenue in Calverton. Enjoy a great day of fun and adventure while exploring a wide array of activities. These include Disc Golf, Foot Golf, Paintball, Airsoft, and much more. Summer camp is also available for children. 

There are also several events and festivals that take place throughout the year at Long Island Sports Park, including a Mud Run coming up in September. 

Aquatic Adventures at Splish Splash Water Park, Calverton

Splish Splash Water Park is a popular annual family tradition on the East End. Splish Splash features 96 acres fun and exhilarating water rides for the whole family. Families of all ages can enjoy over 20 water slides, 2 wave pools, a large Kiddie Area, lazy river, a tropical bird show, and many different food and merchandise locations. High speed slides include Bombs Away, Riptide Racer, and Bootlegger’s Run. Bootlegger’s Run is the one and only hydromagnetic water coaster in New York full of breathtaking drops, including one from nearly five stories high. For those who wish to take it easy at the park, there is the Lazy River and Soak City.

Splish Splash Water Park is open from May-September. Daily and annual passes as well as parking passes are available to purchase online or in person. This year, the Water Park is celebrating their 30th anniversary, so be on the lookout for discounted tickets, including 25% off weekday park passes. 

Tour and Learn at Spirit’s Promise, Baiting Hollow

Visitors to Spirit’s Promise Equine Rescue and Rehabilitation at Blossom Hollow Ranch are able to take part in a guided tour and meet the horses and other animals who call the Center home. Spirit’s Promise, a non-profit organization, rescues and cares for horses and many other barn animals who have been abused, neglected, or unwanted. In addition to several beautiful horses, each with very different stories, other barn animals include pigs, goats, cows, guinea hens, a dog named Jo, and a very friendly Turkey named Larry. 

Spirit’s Promise is located on Sound Avenue in Baiting Hollow. 45-minute horse and farm tours are available for booking, in addition to youth clinics, school field trips, youth clinics, parties, and farm theraputic recreation. Visitors are also welcome to become members. 

An Undersea Adventure at Long Island Aquarium, Riverhead

Long Island Aquarium, open year round, is always packed with plenty to do for everyone including year round events and functions, tours, indoor and outdoor exhibits, and private animal encounters. Bring you and your family to the aquarium and take them on a magical journey through a wide range of exhibits that bring undersea wonders to life. Outdoor exhibits range from Otter Falls and Penguin Pavilion to Ancient Reptile Ruins and Creatures of the Night. For those rainy days, indoor exhibits include Butterflies, Critter Corner, the Lost City of Atlantis Shark Exhibit, and many more. 

The aquarium hosts dozens of spectacular events throughout the year perfect for children of all ages. These include Princess Tea Parties, Swim with the Mermaids, and many interactive animal experiences like a personalized penguin encounter, and the bug encounter. 

Long Island Aquarium on East Main Street is open seven days a week. Hours are 10am-4pm Monday-Friday, and 10am-5pm Saturday and Sunday. 

Rich Railroading Heritage at Railroad Museum of Long Island, Riverhead and Greenport

The Railroad Museum of Long Island is a railway museum is a perfect destination for train lovers and enthusiasts of all ages. 

In Riverhead, current exhibitions for the 2021 season include recent artifacts from the ongoing restoration of Pennsylvania Station. Visitors to the Greenport museum can witness a celebration of Long Island Agriculture and the Long Island Rail Road, updates to our Conductors and Ticketing exhibit and what we believe is the very last, surviving wooden grade crossing sign from the LIRR

The Railroad Museum of Long Island is located in Riverhead on Griffing Avenue, and further east in Greenport on 4th Street. Both the Riverhead and Greenport museums are open on Saturday-Sunday seasonally from April-November. Riverhead is open on the weekends from 10am-4pm, and Greenport is open from 11am-4pm. Visitors are encouraged to travel between our two museum sites on the LIRR “Greenport Scoot” on weekends, once each day, from Memorial Day through Columbus Day. Visitors can then step back in history as you ride through the North Fork. 

Admission tickets and memberships are available. 

Monkey Around at Safari Adventure, Riverhead

Safari Adventure is home to a huge 18-foot indoor playground and gaming center for children. Let your children climb, play, and explore together and meet new friends. The soft play equipment is ideal for children ages 1-10. 

The play center has giant inflatables, a hands on area, toddler area, calming spa with weighted blankets, plus over 30 video games and skill games for children of all ages. 

Safari Adventure, located on Pulaski Street, is now open seven days a week from 11am-6pm. Note that reservations are no longer required. Memberships and a rewards program are available for visitors. 

Farm Fun at Catapano Dairy Farm, Peconic

Catapano Dairy Farm is a beloved goat farm and shop located in Peconic on the North Fork. A selection of interactive events are held during specific seasons, including baby goat yoga and farm yoga. Goat meet and greets are held after each yoga class. 

Visit Catapano Dairy Farm for a tour and learn how to milk a goat, make goat cheese, and learn how a dairy farm operates while meeting the goats! The tours also include samplings of their delicious goat cheese. Tours are offered Tuesday-Thursday by appointment. 

Catapano Dairy Farm on North Road is open 10am-5pm daily except most Tuesdays. Goat milking is at 4pm. The Farm is open the first Tuesday of the month for a half-priced farm tour at 1pm. Their onsite store is open 10am-5pm Friday-Sunday, and every day except Tuesday from May 31st for the season. 

Their cheese selection is available seasonally and only for local pickup! Body soaps and crème available year-round and ship within the continental USA, perfect for sending to loved ones as gifts back home.

Plenty of Play at Harbes Family Farm, Mattituck

Harbes Family Farm in Mattituck may be considered the epicenter of family fun on the North Fork! Children will immediately fall in love with the animals at Harbes Barnyard Adventure, which features 8 acres of family fun, including farm animals, a Gnome Hedge Maze, Hayrides, Canna Bulb Flower Field, and much more! You could easily spend half the day at Harbes with the wide variety activities on hand for all ages, including weekend harvest events like the Sweet Corn Harvest, Tomato Harvest, and Watermelon Harvest, just to name a few. 

Be sure to stop by the Mattituck Farmstand for plenty of farm-fresh produce on the East End. Produce ncludes Harbes own farm-grown super-sweet corn, tomatoes, peaches, watermelon, and apples. A must-try are Harbes’ signature fresh apple cider donuts made with real apple cider.

Harbes Family Farm is located on Sound Avenue and is open every day beginning at 10am. Harbes Orchard in Riverhead is also on Sound Avenue, and Harbes Farms is located on Main Road in Jamesport. Harbes Orchard reopens in September for apple picking. Harbes Farm Jamesport also opens for the autumn season in September and offers acres of pumpkin and fall festivals every weekend. 

Explore the Seaside Wonders in the Village of Greenport

The Village of Greenport is one of the most diverse family friendly destinations on the East End. The historic seaside village is home to dozens of shops, indoor and outdoor activities, restaurants, museums, and so much more. Greenport also hosts dozens of festivals and events throughout the year.

Greenport Village has things to do for the whole family year round. Notable attractions include the Antique Carousel, East End Seaport Maritime Museum, and taking the family to the annual Maritime Festival in September. One of the best aspects about Greenport is that it is a very walkable village and very simple to navigate. Wish to visit Shelter Island via the North Ferry? Just hop on board! Shelter Island is great for older children and adults for cycling excursions. 

Explore the Outdoors at Eastern Long Island Kampground, Greenport

Located just minutes away from downtown Greenport, Eastern Long Island Kampground is filled with plenty of outdoor (and indoor) activities for everyone in the family. ELIK is the largest privately owned Kampground on Long Island. Onsite activities range from archery and a swimming pool to indoor activities like foosball, a pool table, and chess. For overnight stays, guests may choose from a cabin suite, camper rental, or even a luxury safari tent. 

The 2021 season extends until October 31st, making Eastern Long Island Kampground the ideal spot for venturing to for a weekend getaway, Columbus Day Weekend, or Halloween.

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Diane Tucci
Author: Diane Tucci