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The best Christmas events for kids in New York City

These Christmas events are the best! Take the kids to see cool holiday markets, see amazing Christmas plays and more.

Avi Gerver
November 5, 2014: Tech rehearsal for the 2014 Radio City Christmas Spectacular starring the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall.

RECOMMENDED: Christmas for kids in New York

Want to find the best Christmas events in town? These kid-friendly picks will have 'em out ice skating, snowman-building and even catching snowflakes on their tongues. Take a trip to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular (our Radio City Christmas Spectacular guide can help), stop by one of many amazing holiday train shows, see the Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting and more this season. Oh, and don't forget to top it off with a cup of the best hot chocolate, breakfast with Santa and a trip to one of the city's coolest ice-skating rinks

Christmas events for kids

Winter's Eve

Recommended

Families flock to the Upper West Side to usher in the holiday season at this annual bash. The fun-filled block party kicks off with a neighborhood tree-lighting ceremony and festive tunes from the Chapin Family in Dante Park (Broadway and 63rd St) before the merry crowd continues along Broadway between Columbus Circle and West 68th Street. Stop in at Kids' Central at Raymour & Flanigan (Broadway and 66th St) to hear high-energy tunes from the Dream Jam Band and get in on free craft projects, then check out live ice sculpting by OKAMOTO STUDIO and grab treats from area restaurants. Stay tuned for announcements about other musicians, dancers and performers bringing live entertainment to the sidewalks and public spaces surrounding Lincoln Square. All ages.

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Until Mon Nov 30

Swedish Christmas Children's Workshop

Prep for the holiday season the Swedish way during this julpysseldag, or "Christmas craft day." Projects include woven hearts, yarn tomtar (benevolent elves) and paper angels and experience a candlelit Saint Lucia procession. Reservations recommended to event_reservation@amscan.org. Ages 5 to 10.

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05 Dec 2015

Holiday Sing-A-Long with Dan Zanes and Friends

Get in the holiday spirit with Grammy-winning kindie crooner, Dan Zanes, at this annual family concert celebrating the festive songs of the season. Little ones can sing along to classic Christmas music and create their own dance party at the intimate venue. Expect to hear a few numbers from Dan's holiday album, Christmas in Concord, including upbeat riffs on traditional hymns and carols. Doors open at 10am. All ages.

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Until Sun Dec 6

St. Nicholas Day

Head to New York City's oldest house, located in the Flatbush neighborhood of Brooklyn, to learn about Dutch Christmas customs and meet St. Nick himself. Kids and families can sip hot cider, decorate a wooden clog and enjoy traditional live music. When the big man in red arrives on horseback, little ones will even have the chance to feed carrots to his trusty steed. Stick around for a tree lighting as the sun sets. All ages.

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05 Dec 2015

Bartow-Pell’s Annual Holiday Family Day

Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum is hosting a family day where families can check out their eight Storybook Christmas Trees, each one with a theme based on a children’s book about New York and decorated by leading New York designers. Kids can curl up for some holiday storytelling as Sonia Manzano from Sesame Street reads from her new book Miracle on 133rd Street. Throughout the day, families can participate in crafts and get some holiday shopping done, plus the kids can pose for pictures with Santa Claus for an additional fee. Registration is required. All ages.

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05 Dec 2015

Winter Family Fair

Celebrate winter with the Morgan’s annual Winter Family Day! This year, the festivities are dedicated to Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. There will be strolling musicians, costumed characters and opportunities for tots to dress up in literary ensembles. Don't miss out on a puppet show, ornament-making workshop and a festive read-aloud! Ages 3 to 12.

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Until Sun Dec 6

Polar Express Children's Holiday Tea

The Peninsula New York is hosting a holiday tea-time in their Gotham Lounge. Kids can come decked out in their pajamas and settle in for a book reading while snacking on tea and cookies.

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05 Dec 2015

Radio City Christmas Spectacular

Recommended

Every year, this holiday stalwart gets families in the spirit with Santa appearances, colorful sets and, of course, one-of-a-kind dance numbers from the impressive Rockettes. Enjoy classic routines like New York at Christmas, in which dancers journey through the city on a double-decker bus, and keep an eye out for exciting new additions as well. The show now incorporates advanced technology throughout, taking the audience on a wild ride via 3D glasses and a flying LED screen, and one number even sends a host of helium-filled, GPS-enabled iridescent snowflakes floating high above the audience, transforming Radio City into a sparkling winter wonderland! All ages.

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Until Sun Jan 3

Fancy Nancy: Splendiferous Christmas

Based on the children’s book series by Jane O’Connor, this new holiday musical tells the story of Nancy, who loves all things posh and glamorous. When her plan to decorate the Christmas tree with her brand-new sparkly tree topper doesn't exactly work out as planned, she has to find a way to accept that Christmas can still be splendiferous. Ages 3 to 10. 

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Until Sun Dec 27
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