January events for kids
Take a look back at Andy Warhol's iconic pieces—portraits, pop and photo silkscreen paintings and other pieces of work—during the Whitney's retrospective that highlights all aspects of his career. During Family Day (Dec 1 from 10:30am–3pm), kids can create their own artistic gems inspired by the late icon. Check the museum's website to see when its Open Studios (Saturdays and Sundays from 10:30am–3pm in November and December, minus holidays) will dedicate its weekly kids’ project to all-things Warhol. All ages.
Big kids can spend their winter break from school expanding their creative minds. Each day Dec 26–28 and Jan 2–4, the museum is offering a different full day class. Children can learn how to make and bind their own art book or zine (Dec 26); enjoy a deep dive into the various drawing techniques and traditions (Dec 27); or work with clay and cameras to create their own claymation stories (Dec 28). Come back the next week to learn how to sketch and design characters like you might find in Disney or Pixar animations (Jan 2); turn Hayao Miyazaki-inspired drawings into animations (Jan 3); and create experimental films. Ages 6 to 12.
Disney on Ice is bringing its rendition of the wintry mega-hit animated musical to the New York area just in time for the New Year. Alongside the beloved tale of Elsa, Anna, Olaf, and Kristoff, Mickey and Minnie Mouse will host the performance and even invite old favorites like the Disney Princesses, characters from Toy Story, Finding Nemo and The Lion King to the ice. We can't think of a better way to gear up for snowman-building season! All ages.
While parents might be content to peruse the boat selection at this annual event, younger attendees can enjoy life pretending to be on the high seas. The expanded Touch-a-Boat Tour includes 10 working vessels where kids can hop aboard and learn all about their favorite mode of floating transportation. Kids can even fill out their own "passport" as they travel from boat to boat. Don't forget to take a picture from behind the helm! All ages.
No school, no problem. Steve & Kate's new pop-up program, BREAK, is designed to keep kiddos entertained at various points throughout the year when class is not in session. Pint-sized attendees will find a variety of summer camp offerings featured in BREAK, as well as exclusive activities. The fee for each child includes snacks, lunch and hours spent at the venue. For a list of NYC Steve & Kate's BREAK locations, click here. Ages 5–12.
When it comes to family-friendly entertainment, Symphony Space has it down to a science with its "Just Kidding" series, complete with an extensive lineup of performers and musicians that everyone in your crew will love. Enjoy a morning of Wild West fun with Frogtown Mountain Puppeteers' show The Legend of The Banana Kid (Nov 10 at 11am, 2pm); swing and sway along with Lucy Kalantari and the Jazz Cats (Dec 1 at 11am); learn about a little girl and her insect BFF thanks to I Spy Butterfly (Dec 15 11am, 2 pm); feel wowed during the dance extravaganza STAM-PEDE (Jan 6 at 3pm) and so much more. The schedule has something for everyone, so check out the full list of offerings here. All ages.
Get ready to have your mind blown at this massive gingerbread house display. In it, you won’t find just a couple of houses made of gingerbread cookies, candy and icing. That would be child’s play compared to this 500-square-foot village that has won the Guinness World Record for 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. Master builder Jon Lovitch designs, bakes and builds each feature over the course of the year. All ages.
From mid-December through March, spend chilly weekend mornings at Film Forum's popular family-friendly movie series. Watch time-tested faves like It's a Wonderful Life (Dec 15 and 16), Charlie Chaplin’s The Circus (Dec 22 and 23), Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (Jan 19 and 20), The Muppet Movie (Feb 2 and 3), and more. Visit filmforum.org to view the complete schedule and grab your tickets. All ages.
Amid the messy streets and cold temps, we may sometimes forget that winter in New York is supposed to be awesome. (Seriously.) The Parks Department reminds us why we should love the colder months thanks to Winter Jam, its annual winter sports festival in Central Park. Families can learn or take part in snowshoeing, skiing and sledding. Bring your own snow sports gear or borrow the equipment on load at no cost, then while away the hours sipping hot chocolate and enjoying the outdoors during this ultimate snow day. The rain date for the 2019 event is Feb 2. Enter the park at 72nd St, as the festivities will take place in the Bandshell area. All ages.
Kids can spend the day off school learning some new art techniques at the Children's Museum of the Arts. In this mixed-media full-day class young artists experiment with texture, scale, and color to create 2D and 3D portraits. Ages 6–12.