– By Jodi Grundig
It’s the last weekend of the summer! This weekend features a parent and kid night out, two popular fall festivals, and a waterfront festival. Enjoy the weekend before the kids get busy with the school year.

(Photo Credit: The Big E)

The Big E

The Big E Fairgrounds
1305 Memorial Avenue
West Springfield, Mass
September 16, 17, 18 2011
10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Adults – $15, Kids – $10

The Big E – the largest fair in the Northeast – starts this weekend, featuring rides, food, top- name entertainment, crafts, shopping, exhibits, animals, parades, and much more! The fair officially starts at 10 a.m., but gates do open early. A throwback to 19th century recess is held every day at noon – just for the kids. There’s so much going on at the Fairgrounds it’s best to check out the entertainment schedule so you can visit on the right day/time! Motocross is the
main feature this weekend on the big stage.

(Photo Credit: Neaq.org)

Aqua Kids Family Day

New England Aquarium
One Central Wharf
Boston, MA 02110
September 16, 2011
10 a.m.- 12 p.m.
Free with admission

No registration is required for this underwater adventure at the New England Aquarium, which takes place in the Curious George Discovery Corner. See live animal presentations, listen to animal stories, and make art projects with the aquarium staff.

(Photo Credit: arbeatonline.com)

Pizza and Art Night

212A Mass Avenue
Arlington, MA 02474
September 16, 2011
6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
$20 per child

If you need a few hours of adult time, and frankly after a long week who doesn’t? This just may be the perfect solution for you. You can drop your children aged 8 and older off at Artbeat where they’ll work on crafts together and nosh on pizza while you get two hours of uninterrupted time alone. Many parents spend the time relaxing at a neighboring restaurant.

CBS Insider Tip: You must register in advance for this event and pick-up time is strictly 8 p.m. You can arrange for a later pickup in advance – for a fee of course.

(Photo Credit: Endless Summer Waterfront Festival)

Endless Summer Waterfront Festival

Nantasket Avenue
Hull, MA 02045
September 17, 2011 (rain date: September 18, 2011)
12 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Celebrate the end of the summer with the Hull Nantasket Chamber of Commerce. This annual end-of-summer waterfront festival includes live entertainment, food booths from local restaurants, a kids’ sidewalk chalk competition, a sand sculpture competition, and over 75 artists and vendors.

(Photo Credit: ssnc.org)

Feed the Animals

South Shore Natural Science Center
48 Jacobs Lane
Norwell, MA 02061
September 17, 2011
10 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Free with admission
Admission: Free for Members
Adults, $7.00 Senior, $5.00, Children (3-15) $3.00
Under 2: Free

During this weekly “feed the animals” program at the South Shore Natural Science Center, your kids can ask questions and learn more about the animals at the science center while the naturalists feed the animals.

King Richard’s Faire

235 Main Street
Carver, MA 02330
Opening Day: September 3
Runs weekends through October 23
10:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Admission: Adults: $27, Kids 4-11: $15
Discount coupons are available on the site.

The 30th Annual King Richard’s Faire continues this weekend, offering eight stages full of entertainment, along with games and rides. Kids love the step back into the Renaissance (along with the tigers and jugglers), and adults love the wares from over 100 artisans.

CBS Insider Tip: Purchase your tickets in advance online – only cash is accepted at the gate.

Jodi Grundig is editor and publisher of Family-Friendly Boston, Family Travel Magazine and Mom’s Favorite Stuff.