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Things to do with kids in NYC this Saturday

Kick off your weekend and spend Saturday with the family at the city's best events for kids

Photograph: Courtesy Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum

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

Saturday, December 3

Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical

See the classic 1964 stop-motion tale of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer brought to life before your eyes in this special musical production. The show features beloved characters—Santa and Mrs. Claus, Hermey the Elf, Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, Clarice and Yukon Cornelius—whom Rudolph befriends along his journey after an epic snowstorm threatens Christmas. The production touts improved sets and intricate scenic designs including new “flying” elements, plus iconic songs that will have audiences dancing in their seats, such as “Fame and Fortune” and “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.” All ages.

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Theater at Madison Square Garden , Midtown West Wednesday December 7 2016 - Sunday December 18 2016

Breakfast with Santa at Rock Center Cafe

Flanked by glittery angel sculptures and New York’s famously giant Christmas tree, Rockefeller Center is the backdrop to this merry holiday breakfast with Santa. Enjoy brioche french toast, applewood smoked bacon, scrambled eggs & breakfast pastries as you watch the skaters whiz by, knowing soon you and the kiddies will be joining them after your yummy meal! But don’t forget to hit the candy bar, where the children can create their own treat filled souvenir bags before convening to the ‘Throne Room’ for pictures with Santa. All ages.

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Rock Center Café , Midtown West Saturday December 10 2016 - Saturday December 24 2016

The Charlie Brown Christmas

Pig Brooch Theatre Company pays homage to the holiday favorite by performing verbatim the television special A Charlie Brown Christmas. The show is accompanied by a jazz trio belting out all of the Vince Guaraldi favorites, while the actors have been trained to match the exact voices and physicality of the cartoon characters. This play is a gentle reminder of what the holidays signify as the Peanuts crew shows Charlie Brown what Christmas is all about. All ages.

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ShapeShifter Lab , Gowanus Friday December 9 2016 - Sunday December 11 2016

A Christmas Carol

Scrooge in the Village presents the musical version of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, a tradition now in its eighth year. The timeless story follows Ebenezer Scrooge as he is forced to face his past, present and future. Visit the free preshow family workshops held one hour prior to the 11am Sunday matinees to meet Scrooge himself. Ages 5 and up. Various dates and times.

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Players Theatre , Greenwich Village Thursday December 8 2016 - Friday December 30 2016

New York Botanical Garden Holiday Train Show

Whatever holidays you celebrate, this beautifully lit exhibition makes a festive excursion for the whole family. With 3,000 added square feet of space this year and more than a dozen large-scale model trains zipping over a quarter mile of track, it’s NYBG’s biggest train installation to date! Elaborate displays composed of moss, twigs and leaves are anchored by 150 NYC landmarks, each reconstructed painstakingly using natural materials: You’ll see the Empire State Building, the Unisphere and other familiar structures crafted from unique elements like lotus pods, hemlock cones, walnut shells, acorn caps, bamboo and cinnamon curls. New to the display is a whimsical collection of architecture and attractions from Coney Island. All ages.

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New York Botanical Garden , The Bronx Tuesday December 6 2016 - Sunday January 15 2017

George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker

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This enchanting production is the one people have in mind when they ask, "Have you been to The Nutcracker?" The New York City Ballet's full roster of ballerinas, danseurs and musicians—plus children from the School of American Ballet—perform Balanchine's classic choreography. Princess-smitten tots will fall for the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Snow Queen, but all kids will get a kick out of the one-ton Christmas tree that "grows" to 40 feet onstage, and Mother Ginger, who hides little dancers under her nine-foot-wide skirt. Ages 5 and up.

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David H. Koch Theater (at Lincoln Center) , Upper West Side Tuesday December 6 2016 - Saturday December 31 2016

Fancy Nancy: Splendiferous Christmas

The charistmatic youngster from Jane O'Connor's best-selling children's book series comes to life in this family musical from Vital Theatre Company. Fancy Nancy can't get enough of the wrapping paper, decorations and sweets that Christmas brings—after all, the holidays are the fanciest time of year! When things go awry while her family is busy decking the halls, Nancy learns that, with a little teamwork, Christmas can still be splendiferous. Ages 2 to 7.

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Church of the Blessed Sacrament , Upper West Side Saturday December 10 2016 - Saturday December 31 2016

Holiday Express: Toys and Trains from the Jerni Collection

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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 Tuesday December 6 2016 - Sunday February 26 2017

Grand Central Holiday Train Show

There’s no better place for this joyful event than one of the most history-rich train stations in New York. Train enthusiasts will love this 34-foot display of vintage Lionel model trains that zip past subway stations, around skyscrapers, through the suburbs and to the North Pole. The exhibit includes a selection of vintage “O gauge” and “N gauge” trains and half-inch–scale trolley models. All ages.

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New York Transit Museum Gallery Annex , Midtown East Until Sunday February 26 2017

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
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