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NYC festival and fair guide for families: spring 2014

Plan your family’s perfect springtime with our spring festival and fair guide, including the Jazz Age Lawn Party, Figment and more!

  • NYC festival and fair guide for families: Calhoun Carnival

  • Picasa

    NYC festival and fair guide for families: On a Wing Family Festival in Central Park

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    NYC festival and fair guide for families: Hippo Playground Spring Fair

  • Photograph: JCC Summer Camps Photo Archive

    NYC festival and fair guide for families: UWS Celebrates Israel Family Street Fair

  • Photograph: Eric Harvey Brown

    NYC festival and fair guide for families: Dance Parade

  • NYC festival and fair guide for families: 5th Annual Kings County Fair

  • Photograph: Phyllis B. Dooney

    NYC festival and fair guide for families: Taste of Tribeca

  • Photograph: Jeffrey Gurwin

    NYC festival and fair guide for families: Ninth Ave International Food Festival

  • NYC festival and fair guide for families: Mamapalooza

  • Photograph: Filip Wolak

    NYC festival and fair guide for families: World Science Festival

  • NYC festival and fair guide for families: Brooklyn Film Festival kidsfilmfest

  • Photograph: Dani Piderman

    NYC festival and fair guide for families: Children's Festival of Flowers

NYC festival and fair guide for families: Calhoun Carnival

51st Annual Calhoun Carnival

  • Price band: 1/4

Held rain or shine since 1963, this annual spring fair features favorites like rides, games, raffle prizes and a barbecue. Proceeds benefit the Parent Association Annual Tea, plus fund awards for teachers and staff. Free. All ages.

  1. The Calhoun School 433 West End Ave, at 81st St, 10024
  2. Sat May 3
More info

On A Wing: Family Festival

  • Free

Every year, the On A Wing Family Festival features events that celebrate all of New York’s winged park residents. Stop by this fest to gawk at native raptors, put some feathers under the microscope, craft an owl and go on a bird-watching tour with park rangers. On May 3, learn all about bees, while May 10th's event focuses on why birds matter. Then, meet live bats and birds of prey at the fest's finale on May 17. All ages.

  1. Central Park, Belvedere Castle Midpark, enter at 79th St
  2. Sat May 17
More info

Hippo Playground Annual Spring Fair

This festival, now in its 31st year, comes complete with a bouncy castle, pony rides, a petting zoo, a maze, face painting, games and more. The proceeds will help raise funds for Hippo Playground maintenance and public programs. Details for this year's festival are still TBA; see the website for details. All ages.

  1. Riverside Park, Hippo Playground 91st St, at Riverside Dr
  2. Until Sun May 4
More info

UWS Celebrates Israel: Family Street Fair

  • Free

Spring has finally sprung, and that means at least one thing: more street fairs! This Israeli-themed one is designed with families in mind, featuring dance performances, live music, rock climbing, a bouncy obstacle course, face painting, and of course—tasty street grub. Other events like a scavenger hunt will take place throughout the day. All ages.

  1. JCC in Manhattan 334 Amsterdam Ave, at 76th St
  2. Until Sun May 4
More info

5th 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. Until Mon May 26
More info

Taste of Tribeca

  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

Sample grub from Tribeca's best eateries at this 20th annual alfresco tasting, which benefits art education at P.S. 150 and P.S. 234. Cost of entry gets you a tasting card that you can use to score six dishes—featured eateries range from stalwarts (Landmarc, the Odeon) to hot newcomers (Aamanns Copenhagen)—while checking out live music and family-friendly entertainment, including face painting, arts and crafts and more. Tickets go on sale March 1. Duane St between Greenwich and Hudson Sts. All ages.

  1. Manhattan
  2. Sat May 17
More info

Ninth Avenue International Food Festival

  • Free

Chow down on eats from around the world and buy handcrafted goods from local vendors (and Etsy crafters). Games and activities for the little ones abound, and live music and dance performances will take place on a stage at 55th St. The festival will take place on Ninth Ave from 42nd to 57th Sts. All ages.

  1. Manhattan
  2. Sun May 18
More info


  • Critics choice
  • Free

This 11-year-old celebration on the Hudson is all about motherhood: Mamas are honored with music, live stand-up routines and lots of activities for little ones. The lineup is still TBA, but last year, kiddos were treated to NYC-based kindie rocker Moey's Music Party as she led the "Princess Revolution" (no damsels-in-distress allowed), and the Gymboree play tent. All ages.

  1. Riverside Park, Pier I W 70th St, at the Hudson River
  2. Sun May 18
More info

World Science Festival

  • Price band: 1/4

Shhh: Your kids might actually learn something while having fun at this five-day educational celebration. No details for the 2014 festival have been released yet, but last year's fest included the Ultimate Science Street Fair at Washington Square Park with interactive exhibits, experiments and games for science enthusiasts, plus a stargazing party led by professional astronomers, a Cool Jobs show and more. Visit worldsciencefestival.com for updated information. All ages.

  1. Various locations
  2. Wed May 27 - Sun May 31
More info

Brooklyn Film Festival kidsfilmfest

  • Price band: 1/4

Young film buffs can spend an hour watching live action and animated shorts from around the world in this cinema extravaganza created just for kids. While this year's lineup is still TBD, last year's featured twelve new short films ranging from two to twelve minutes, including tales about a boy who finds a video game console with special powers (CTRL), a silly study hall mishap that lands three boys in big trouble (Detention), a baby dinosaur who lives in a city ravine (Peaceosaurus), and an underwater friendship between a whale and a toddler who fell overboard (Whale Song). Be sure to arrive early; tickets sell out quickly. All ages.

  1. IndieScreen 289 Kent Ave, at South 2nd St, 11211
  2. Sat May 30
More info

Children's Festival of Flowers

  • Free

Kids can explore the Jefferson Market Garden and the various flowers, shrubs, and shade trees that bloom there. The festival will also include educational and art activities, as well as live music and entertainment. All ages.

  1. Jefferson Market Garden Greenwich Ave, between Christopher and 10th Sts
  2. Until Sat May 31
More info

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