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Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

Celebrate the unofficial start of summer with Memorial Day events like outdoor concerts, new exhibits and ceremonies to honor those in the armed services.

  • Photograph: Luciana Golcman

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Dinosaur Safari at the Bronx Zoo

  • Photograph: Julie Larsen Maher

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    New York Aquarium reopens

  • Photograph: Gary Gershoff

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Victorian Gardens reopens

     

  • Photograph: Filip Wolak

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Governors Island Family Fun Festival

  • Photograph: Kirstin Burns

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Memorial Day Fair at Sunnyside Gardens Park

  • Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Summer Salute to Heroes Festival

  • Photograph: Whitney Browne

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    DanceAfrica

  • Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    4th Annual Kings County Fair

  • Omar's Summer Blast-Off at Fantasy Forest Amusement Park

  • Courtesy Brooklyn Children's Museum

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Memorial Day Medals workshop at the Brooklyn Children's Museum

  • Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    18th Annual Lower East Side Festival

  • Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    4th Annual Kings County Fair

     

  • Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Tap Your Heart Out

  • Photograph: Aaron Brashear

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Memorial Day Concert at Green-Wood Cemetery

  • Courtesy Odyssey Marine Exploration

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Odyssey's "Shipwreck!: Pirates and Treasure" at Discovery Times Square

  • Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    "Block Party" at Liberty Science Center

  • Photo courtesy of Google

    Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

    Doodle for Google at AMNH

Photograph: Luciana Golcman

Memorial Day events and activities for New York City kids 2013

Dinosaur Safari at the Bronx Zoo

More than just high time for buying white shoes, Memorial Day weekend means three full days of activities with the family. With the openings of some of our favorite summer attractions like city beaches, Governors Island (celebrate by hitting up Saturday’s family festivall), Victorian Gardens in Central Park, Queens’ first amusement park, the Bronx Zoo’s wild summer exhibition Dinosaur Safari, and the Sandy-damaged New York Aquarium, this weekend looks to be action-packed with Memorial Day events and activities. Say “Happy birthday” to the Brooklyn Bridge, which is celebrating its 130th anniversary this weekend, but more importantly, say “thank you” to the soldiers and veterans at home and abroad at one of the city's special Memorial Day events. Scroll through our picks for each day of the long weekend and have a wonderful Memorial Day!


RECOMMENDED: Memorial Day for kids


  1. Saturday
  2. Sunday
  3. Monday

Saturday, May 25

Dinosaur Safari

  • Price band: 2/4

Just in time for summer zoo visits, the Bronx Zoo debuts Dinosaur Safari, a guided wagon tour past life-like, animatronic dinosaur species—from the vegetarian, long-necked Brachiosaurus and imposing Tricerotops to the iconically scary Tyrannosaurus Rex—that illuminates the phenomenon of adaptation. Accompanying the exhibit is a new theatrical show, Adaptations! A Dinosaur Musical, which debuts on opening weekend at the Asia Theater (May 25–27 at 12:30, 1:15, 2:30, 3:30pm); various meet-and-greets throughout the summer (including Ice Age's costumed characters Sid and Scrat May 25–26 at 1, 2:30, 3:30pm); fossil impressions, Ice Age crafts or dinosaur-themed projects; and "Dinosaurs Rock," an exhibit of life-size dinosaur artifacts and fossils at Grizzly Corner (July 27–Aug 11 11am–4pm), with special presentations on weekends (Sat, Sun 1, 2,:30, 3:30pm). All ages.

  1. Bronx Zoo Wildlife Conservation Society 2300 Southern Blvd, at Fordham Rd, 10460
  2. Tue Jul 29 - Sun Nov 2
More info

Summer Salute to Heroes Festival

Head to Pier 86 for a day of musical performances by The Voice's Angie Johnson, the USO Show Troupe, the Manhattan Dolls (Saturday only), Trailer Radio (Saturday only), and the Callbacks (Sunday only). Between shows, check out interactive displays and activity stalls of the Intrepid Museum and other event sponsors. All ages.

  1. Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum Pier 86, Twelfth Ave, at 46th St, 10036
  2. Until Mon May 27
More info

18th Annual Lower East Side Festival

  • Free

Stop by the weekend-long festival on Saturday for activities designed for families, like the Youth Program in the Johnson Theater (2-5pm). Kids and tweens can catch performances by their peers at local dance schools; afterwards, they can head downstairs to the Cabaret and watch short films, animation and LES-centric projects submitted by neighborhood artists. Composer and satirist Richard West hosts the outdoor block party featuring live music, comedy and poetry performances (with appearances by some yummy food vendors) on East 10th Street. All ages.

  1. Theater for the New City 155 First Ave, between 9th and 10th Sts
  2. Until Sun May 26
More info

Family Festival at the Cloisters: In Search of the Unicorn

Kids and their families can spend the day at the Cloisters at this mythical-beast-themed festival. Mary Pop Osborne will read from her book, Blizzard of the Blue Moon, about a boy and a girl who travel through time with a unicorn and land in the Cloisters. Kids can also work on mythical art projects and go on a self-guided art hunt through the museum. Ages 4 to 12.

  1. The Cloisters Fort Tryon Park, 99 Margaret Corbin Dr
  2. Until Sun May 26
More info

4th Annual Kings County Fair

  • Price band: 1/4

Older kids can enjoy a bevvy of stomach-churning roller coasters, while little ones have fun on tamer rides. Other classic carnival treats include a Ferris wheel, cotton candy and funnel cakes. All ages.

  1. Aviator Sports and Events Center Floyd Bennett Field, Hangar 5, 11234
  2. Thu May 16 - Mon May 27
More info

"Tap Your Heart Out"

  • Free

In honor of National Tap Dance Day, NYC company Dance Dot will be hosting a variety of free tap-dancing classes at Nola Studios. Each class caters to a different level, whether beginner, intermediate or advanced. No registration is needed, as the one-day event is open to the public. Stick around for giveaways and discounts on future classes. Free. All ages.

  1. Nola Studios 250 W 54th St, between Broadway and Eighth Ave, 11th floor
  2. Until Sat May 25
More info

DanceAfrica

  • Price band: 2/4

Artistic director Chuck Davis oversees another round of the annual DanceAfrica festival paying tribute to the cultures of Africa and its Diaspora. The performances include Zimbabwe's Umkhathi Theatre Works, Atlanta-based Giwayen Mata and New York's own Harambee Dance Company, plus the BAM/Restoration DanceAfrica Ensemble. All ages.

  1. BAM Howard Gilman Opera House 30 Lafayette Ave, between Ashland Pl and St. Felix St
  2. Until Mon May 27
More info

New York Philharmonic Young People's Concert

  • Price band: 2/4

"Music With an Accent: World's Fair" introduces mini maestros to the classic compositions of Rimsky-Korsakov, Copland, Respighi and others from around the globe. Little ones will make some music of their own at the preshow Kidzone fair (12:45pm), meeting the musicians, trying out different instruments and playing tuneful games. Ages 6 to 12.

  1. Avery Fisher Hall (at Lincoln Center) 132 W 65th St, at Broadway
  2. Until Sat Dec 7
More info

"Doodle 4 Google"

  • Critics choice
  • Free

The annual nationwide contests asks students (grades K-12) to submit their own version of the Google logo based on the 2013 theme: "My Best Day Ever." In addition to seeing the winning design on the Google homepage for 24 hours on May 23, the top submissions from each of the 50 states, judged on such criteria as artistic merit, creativity and ability to communicate, are on view at AMNH through July 14. All ages.

  1. American Museum of Natural History Central Park West, at 79th St, 10024
  2. Sun Jul 14
More info

"Shipwreck: Pirates & Treasures"

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

This pirate-themed show presents more than 500 artifacts found by deep-ocean expeditions the world over—from ancient bottles to stashes of silver—and gives kids the chance to explore virtual shipwrecks with various interactive exhibits. A highlight of the exhibition is the shipwreck of the Civil War–era SS Republic, found by Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (the show's producer), in 2003; it conveys much of what daily life was like back in the late 1800s. Ages 4 and up.

  1. Discovery Times Square 226 W 44th St, between Seventh and Eighth Aves
  2. Until Sun Jan 5
Buy tickets

New York Theatre Ballet presents Peter and the Wolf

  • Price band: 2/4

Part of its "1-Hour Family Ballet" series, the New York Theatre Ballet presents their production of Peter and the Wolf, based on the classic story. As Peter travels through the woods and meets different animals, kids will learn about musical instruments and instrument families. Ages 3 and up.

  1. French Institute Alliance Française, Florence Gould Hall 55 E 59th St, between Madison and Park Aves
  2. Until Sun May 26
More info

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