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Things to do with kids in NYC over Presidents' Day weekend

Celebrate commanders-in-chief of the past and present with our guide to fun things to do with kids over Presidents' Day weekend

Photograph: New-York Historical Society

Looking for something to do with the kids on Presidents' Day? We're helping to make that executive decision a little easier. Our agenda includes plenty of family-friendly things to do during Presidents' Day weekend. Whether you take in a concert, a historical happening or one of the best museum exhibits for kids, make it a Presidents' Day weekend for the history books.   

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Presidents' Day weekend events

"Nature's Fury: The Science of Natural Disasters"

If Hurricane Sandy has taught New Yorkers anything, it's that no one is safe from the forces of nature. Though we often hear news of earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, tornadoes and tsunamis obliterating areas around the world, many were shocked that a place like NYC could be hit by such a massive storm. Now families can learn more about these natural disasters through an interactive exhibit that lets kids bone up on the geological causes, the risks to humans, coping in the aftermath and how to predict future destruction. Hands-on activities invite visitors to monitor earthquakes around the world in real time, manipulate an earthquake fault, generate a virtual volcano, stand at the center of a roaring tornado and check out an interactive map of NYC during the hurricane in 2012. All ages.

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Engineering Week at NYSCI

The New York Hall of Science is holding an engineering fest every weekday of the midwinter break. On Civil Engineering Day (Feb 16, 11am–4pm), kids will use gumdrops and toothpicks to build a dome, craft a boat out of aluminum foil and construct a bridge with blocks and paper clips. On Feb 17 from 1 to 4pm, Richard Schweiger, creator of the new animated TV show Space Racers, will host screenings, workshops and a Q&A session about engineering in outer space. Kids will also get the chance to learn about nano–crystals (Feb 18, 1–4pm), wearable tech (Feb 19, 1:30–4pm) and motors (Feb 20, 1:30–4pm). Most of the programs are free, but some workshops require a small materials fee to participate. Ages 4 and up.

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Family Performance: English Sword Ale

Families will be on the edge of their seats watching this thrilling show in which performers wielding double-handled swords move in rhythm—to stately longsword dances or even rap numbers, accompanied by live folk music. All ages.

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"The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec: Prints and Posters"

MoMA takes viewers back to La Belle Époque in this survey of the graphic art of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864–1901), surely one of the best-known and beloved names in art history. All of his iconic images are here, along with the landmarks of late-19th-century Parisian nightlife referenced therein. Bring the whole family and get transported to Paris. All ages.

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