Roxy’s Best Of… New Jersey

The Best of the State of New Jersey, from entertainment and events to kid stuff (including birthday party venues and summer camp) to restaurants to art galleries and shopping

Nov
04

Roxy’s Mailbag Responds to Desperately Seeking Activities in Bernardsville, New Jersey

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Dear Roxy,
I have a toddler son and am trying to find local (Bernardsville, Bedminster) things for him to do in the afternoons. I’m sick of Gymboree..any toddler cooking classes, or other different types of things?
Thanks in advance.
Desperately Seeking Activites

Dear Desperately Seeking Activities,

Thanks for visiting Roxy’s Best Of… here are a few tips for you and your toddler in and around the Bernardsville and Bedminster areas:

  • Little Music Makers in Basking Ridge, NJ: a more local, personal version of Gymboree for “mommy and me”… or as their web site describes it, “a fresh, fun, and innovative approach to making music with your child.” Our very first nanny out here in the Roxiticus Valley found Little Music Makers for us when we moved here from New York City in October 2003, and my girls really had a lot of fun there when they were toddlers. Little Music Makers playfully blends weekly themes, as well as singing, live music (12 string guitar/piano), dancing, musical instruments (from near & far), marching, chanting, fingerplays, lap songs, puppets, scarves, parachute, free movement, props (hoops, balls, beanbags), musical flannelboard stories, unusual tonalities & rhythms, musical make-believe, weekly themed stickers and activity sheets in a rich, diverse musical environment….and, if I recall correctly, a dog puppet named Petey.
  • Annie’s Playhouse in Far Hills, NJ — acting, singing, dancing, movement for boys and girls of all ages, starting quite young and continuing through high school. London and Maddie have attended the Annie’s Playhouse Summer Stars camp for the past two summers and particularly enjoy the end of summer performance. During the school year, Annie’s offers a Broadway Babies program for ages 17 months to 5 years.
  • There’s a place called Cooks & Crafts in Flanders, NJ, that my girls have been to for birthday parties, probably not inclined towards toddlers as there aren’t many people brave enough to teach toddler cooking classes, but worth a phone call.
  • For afternoon outings but not formal “classes” with your toddler, check out some of the local farms (Alstede, Riamede, Stony Hill) for pumpkin or apple picking, petting zoos and other activities on the Roxy’s Best Of… Community Site Kid Stuff Category.
  • Although it may be a bit out of your way, Randolph, NJ has a lot of London and Maddie’s favorite kids stuff: Time In, Aspen Ice (ice skating), Tai Kwon Do, Pump It Up, the Little Gym, and Garden State Ballet. Randolph Gymnastics (and Randolph Rock Climbing) is a great venue for both lessons and birthday parties. When my girls were toddlers, we also spent a fair amount of time at the West Morris YMCA for swimming lessons and other toddler-oriented classes and activities. The Somerset County YMCA, with a similar selection of family programs, is located in Basking Ridge, NJ.
  • For more of a commitment than just the occasional activity, Roxy highly recommends Westmont Montessori in Mendham, NJ, which starts with small classes for 2-year-olds and was an enriching pre-school experience for my two girls. They’re having an open house for new families on Saturday, November 15th.

Good luck, and if you find something great for your toddler son, I hope you’ll share it by leaving a comment here on Roxy’s Best Of… so that I can pass it along to my local readers. Oh, and don’t forget — please let everyone know that Roxy sent you!

All the best,
Roxy

 

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