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Things to do with kids in NYC this weekend

Looking for things to do in NYC with your brood? Hit up these fun weekend-long happenings

Photograph: Courtesy Essex Steam Train

RECOMMENDED: See the best things to do with kids this weekend

December 3–4

The Holiday Shops at Bryant Park

Recommended

Browse the booths at Bank of America Winter Village to find your family members the perfect Hanukkah or Christmas gift this season! You'll find plenty of talented artisan pop-up shops to choose from, plus there's always great food (and warming cider)! to grab while you're exploring. After you're done shopping, strap on your skates and take a spin at The Rink (free, skate rental $20). All ages.

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Bryant Park , Midtown West Until Monday January 2 2017

Peter & the Wolf

Recommended

Presented by Works & Process, Isaac Mizrahi narrates Prokofiev's musical tale, in which a boy catches a big, bad wolf with the help of some animal friends. Brad Lubman conducts the Ensemble Signal while a cast brings Peter, Grandpa, the bird, the cat, the duck and the Wolf to life with John Heginbotham’s choreography. Ages 5 and up.   

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Peter B. Lewis Theater at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum , Upper East Side Friday December 9 2016 - Sunday December 11 2016

Gazillion Bubble Show

Recommended

Created by Fan Yang, 16-time Guinness-record holder for blowing the biggest soap bubble, this show is an ode to airborne orbs. In the newest incarnation of the show, Yang's son, 20-year-old Deni Yang, takes over, presenting magic, lighting effects and bubbles—giant bubbles, walls of bubbles, helium bubbles and bubbles within bubbles. Ages 5 and up.

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New World Stages , Hell's Kitchen Friday December 9 2016 - Saturday December 31 2016

Santa Special

All aboard the Santa Express! Bring your little ones on an hour-long journey with Mr. and Mrs. Claus on the Essex Steam Train and watch their faces light up as the family travels back in time. Each child will get a visit from Santa and a chance to pose for pictures in railways cars adorned with vintage décor. Rudolph and his friends will be spreading cheer throughout the train and little elves will hand out holiday gifts to all the boys and girls. First class passengers on the 10:30am train can join the holiday characters for a special Reindeer Breakfast of eggs, bacon, biscuits, cereal and other yummy treats ($15 per person). All ages.

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Essex Steam Train Saturday December 10 2016 - Wednesday December 28 2016

Christmas Lights Tour

Recommended

There is no more wonderful a place in all five boroughs to incite the holiday spirit than in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn, where you’ll find some of the most over-the-top Christmas light displays in the country. Having been featured in specials on both PBS and TLC, this neighborhood—which has truly earned the nickname Dyker Lights—attracts over 100,000 people every year, for their spectacle of decorations that you really must see to believe. One way to enjoy the spectacle is a three-and-a-half-hour (heated!) bus tour, held annually by A Slice of Brooklyn, which departs and returns in a convenient Union Square location. Alternatively, you can skip the bus altogether, bundle up and make a walking trip of it–word is the best displays are from 11th Avenue to 13th Avenue and from 83rd to 86th Street. Leaves from Union Square. All ages.

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Union Square , Union Square Until Friday December 30 2016

Holiday Express: Toys and Trains from the Jerni Collection

Recommended

Minitrain aficionados are certain to be transfixed by the scenic components of this show, featuring trains from the Jerni Collection of handmade toys dating all the way back to 1850. Four large multimedia screens in the rotunda serve as a backdrop to take this trainscape the extra mile. Theatrical lighting and accompanying music immerse viewers in the exhibit on the museum's first floor as they browse model trains from decades past. The exhibit shows off more than 300 trains and toys, including eight overhead trains and a cool crawl-through space leading to a pop-up bubble, putting kids smack in the center of the display. Families can continue exploring the world of classic toys and trains through a slew of programs, including kid-friendly activities, storytelling, and crafts projects. All ages.

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New-York Historical Society , Upper West Side Until Sunday February 26 2017

Straight Up Magic

Award-winning illusionist Jason Bishop (the CW's Masters of Illusion) will blow your child (and you!) away with his flawless slight-of-hand and full-stage tricks. With the help of his assistant, Kim, and his canine companion, Gizmo, Bishop appears to walk through brick walls, levitate, and other feats of magic. During his stay at the New Victory stage he'll also debut his brand new site-specific illusion where he appears to teleport. Talk about some hocus pocus! Ages 6 and up.

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Until Sun Nov 27

New York at Its Core

The Museum of the City of New York’s new permanent exhibition “New York at Its Core” will present the full 400-year history of the city. From its beginnings as a Dutch settlement to the urban force it is today, the exhibition will guide viewers through the evolution of one of the greatest cities in the world. The attraction features three interactive galleries based on four themes - money, density, diversity, and creativity - and more than 400 significant objects from NYC icons, including Alexander Hamilton, Walt Whitman, “Boss” Tweed, Emma Goldman, JP Morgan, Fiorello LaGuardia, and Jay-Z. The museum will celebrate the opening of the exhibit with a weekend-long public festival Gotham Groove (Nov 19 10am - Nov 20 6pm) with 32 hours of live music, spoken word performances, films, dance, and interactive activities for the whole family. All ages. Advance registration required for Gotham Groove.

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Museum of the City of New York , East Harlem Until Sunday December 31 2017

Pip's Island

Like Sleep No More but for kids, this interactive theater experience will let adventerous kids be part of the action. In this production, families unlock a portal that leads them onto the shores of a magical island. There, alongside the show’s characters Pip, Pebble and Finn, they explore dozens of different environments, meet and feed fantastic creatures and earn “Spark” badges for completing goals (specially designed in collaboration with childhood development experts).

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Skylight Modern Wednesday December 7 2016 - Sunday January 8 2017

LOS KIDS

The Little Orchestra Society presents the second season of its LOS KIDS series, where children (and their parents) get to "meet" classical music greats through storytelling and live music. Each show focuses on a particular composer and his masterpieces, starting with the music of Vivaldi in "A Man for Four Seasons" (Nov 12, 13), then to Beethoven in "Making the Fifth" (Dec 17, 18), followed by Felix and Fanny Mendelssohn in "Sibling Revelry on a Midsummer Night" (Feb 11, 12) and finally Bernstein in "An Upper West Side Story" (Mar 4, 5). With help from a silly guide named Professor Clifford O. Treblemaker, youngsters will pick up historical tidbits about the maestros (who are actors in costume) and learn about their creative processes as they watch professional musicians and guest soloists perform recognizable pieces. Ages 3 to 10.

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Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College , Lenox Hill Saturday December 17 2016 - Sunday March 5 2017
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