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Best parks for kids

Children have fun on the bike trails at

(Credit: Kirsten Luce)

Choo! Choo! On a sunny Thursday, Walter Poppe and Robert Steinberg were out with fellow railroad enthusiasts, rebuilding the train tracks at Southaven County Park in preparation for summer. The park offers train rides for kids -- and adults -- on a couple of Sundays each month during the summer.

"It's one of the best-kept secrets," says Poppe, president of the Long Island Live Steamers, the club that maintains the railroad on the county's land.

That's just one of the "secrets" of Long Island's parks. Here is the inside scoop on Southaven and other great park destinations for kids.

- Compiled by Beth Whitehouse

  • Southaven County Park , Victory Avenue, Brookhaven: This

    Southaven County Park Cross country skiing, Fishing Venues, Kayak/Canoe rental, Paddling and rowing, Kids, Hunting land, County park, Suffolk Victory Avenue Brookhaven Camping, fishing, canoeing, hunting, bridle paths and hiking trails. Cross-country skiing (weather permitting) ...

  • The lifeguards at North Hempstead Beach Park.

    North Hempstead Beach Park Outdoors, Beach, Sports and recreation, City and Town beach, Kids West Shore Road Port Washington The staff is friendly and the park offers basketball, volleyball, handball, shuffleboard, and bocce courts. ...

  • Grant Park, Broadway and Sheridan Avenue, Hewlett: Patio

    Grant Park Ice skating rink, Skating Venues, Cross country skiing, Kids, Roller rinks, Outdoor ice rink, County park, Inline skating Broadway and Sheridan Avenue Hewlett County park featuring fishing, athletic fields, a playground, walking paths, picnic space, handball courts and ...

  • Northport Village Park, Main Street, Northport: PATIO AT

    Northport Village Park City park, Performing Arts Center Main Street Northport Waterside commons featuring open space, a playground, chess tables and a band shell. Occasionally hosts ...

  • A child hangs from a bar in the

    Lake Ronkonkoma County Park Kids, Walking, County park, Baseball, Basketball, Running Lake Ronkonkoma The 223 acres park has two baseball fields, handball and basketball courts with an added ...

  • Mitchell Park in Greenport. (July 20, 2014)

    Mitchell Park Sports and recreation, Kids, Outdoors 115 Front St. Greenport Village park featuring a marina, antique carousel, open space and a camera obscura. It also ...

  • Beachgoers stand on the sand at Heckscher State

    Heckscher Park Attractions, Sports and recreation, Park, Outdoors, Arts and Entertainment, Kids 2 Prime Ave. at Route 25A Huntington With open spaces, picnic areas and athletic fields, this park also hosts events held by ...

  • Jelani Hall of Roosevelt yells down the slides

    Cantiague Park Outdoors, County park, Sports and recreation, Kids 480 W. John St. Hicksville Parking is free for Nassau County residents at this county park, although a Leisure Pass ...

  • Belmont Lake State Park, Exit 38 - Southern

    Belmont Lake State Park Kids, Kayak/Canoe rental, Outdoors, State park, Sports and recreation, Paddling and rowing Exit 38 - Southern State Parkway North Babylon This 459-acre spread surrounds a lake, with picnic and play areas nearby ...

Get the scoop on events, nightlife, day trips, family fun and things to do on Long Island.

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