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 Sesame Street Live!
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RECOMMENDED: See the best things to do with kids this weekend

Saturday, Feb 15

1.0_Logo_01.25.2019
Photograph: Courtesy CMOM
Museums, Childhood

"Superpowered Metropolis"

Children's Museum of Manhattan, Upper West Side

Ahead of its move in 2021, the Children's Museum of Manhattan will premiere a Gotham-inspired interactive exhibit this Valentine's Day. "Superpowered Metropolis" introduces patrons to Zip, Zap and Zoom, our urban pigeon mascots who are here to help little ones with brain-boosting activities. As children wander through a scaled-down version of the city, they'll tackle missions that ask them to solve problems, think before they act and examine things from fresh points of view. Ages 6 and under. 

Photograph: Courtesy Museum of the City of New York
Museums, Sport

"City/Game Basketball in New York"

Museum of the City of New York, East Harlem

If your kids love to shoot hoops, you won't want to miss "City/Game Basketball in New York," a new exhibit that explores the game as a whole and those in NYC who play it. Learn more about the game's MVPs, history and impact in our neighborhoods. All ages. 

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Photograph: Courtesy "Survival: The Exhibition"
Museums, Special interest

"Survival: The Exhibition"

New York Hall of Science | Queens, NY, Queens

What would you do if faced with an emergency? This fascinating interactive exhibit explains the tactics needed to overcome real-life situations, from staying hydrated in the desert to withstanding extreme cold. After learning CPR, discerning the difference between edible and non-edible plants, to name a few scenarios, exhibit visitors can end their experience with a visit to the Adventure Zone Ropes Course and Zip Line. Ages 5 and up. 

Photograph: Courtesy New York City Transit Museum
Museums, Transportation

"Streetscapes & Subways: Photographs by Pierre P. and Granville W. Pullis"

New York Transit Museum, Boerum Hill

Take a step back in time to the start of NYC's transit system with photos from Pierre P. and Granville W. Pullis. This new exhibit provides a glimpse of the turn of the 20th century, when construction just began for the subway system. All ages. 

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Sesame Street Live!
Photograph: Courtesy Sesame Street Live!
Theater, Children's

Sesame Street Live! "Let’s Party!"

Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, Midtown West

Join Elmo and his buddies for the interactive show Sesame Street Live! Let's Party! at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden. Although the gang has a little bit of trouble planning their own festivities, you and your youngsters will certainly be keeping busy—between dancing to the show's popular tunes and figuring out how to get the celebration underway. All ages. 

Museums

Jeff Leatham's Kaleidoscope: The Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Garden

New York Botanical Garden | Bronx, NY, The Bronx

It's cold outside, but the greenhouses at the New York Botanical Garden are kept at a tropical temperature that's perfect for the thousands of orchids in bloom as a part of the annual Orchid Show. This year's stunning display comes from the mind of Jeff Leatham, the artistic director of the George V—that's the tony Paris hotel where Presidents and Prime Ministers stay when visiting the City of Lights. In Leatham's display, each gallery has a different color and effect: It's like walking through a Kaleidoscope. You can read more about the show here. All ages.

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Photograph: Courtesy Brooklyn Children's Museum
Museums, Science and technology

"Under the Canopy"

Brooklyn Children’s Museum, Crown Heights

After the successful run of "Survival of the Slowest,"—a traveling exhibit that explored evolutionary science from the perspective of nature's slowest creatures—the popular family attraction has decided to provide a glimpse into the rainforest, right from NYC. "Under the Canopy," takes a look at the ecosystem as a whole, as well the critters who populate it. In other words, get ready for more animal meet and greets (think snakes, lizards and other cool creatures)! The new exhibit in partnership with Little Ray's Nature Centres is guaranteed to be a hit because of a familiar face: Roger, The super-cute sloth from "Survival of the Fittest." All ages. 

New York Historical Society. PBDW architect renovations
Photogrpah: Jonathan Wallen
Museums, History

Meet the Presidents at the New-York Historical Society

New-York Historical Society | Manhattan, NY, Upper West Side

A special permanent gallery at the New-York Historical Society dedicated to the country's Presidents includes a detailed recreation of the White House Oval Office: Here's your chance to even sit behind (a copy of) the Resolute Desk and pose for the cameras. All ages.

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Photograph: Courtesy Erika Kapin Photography
Things to do

Kids Week At The Intrepid Museum

Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Hell's Kitchen

School's out, but the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum is bustling with activity. Spend winter break participating in Kids Week (Feb 15–22), an annual indoor celebration of all-things STEAM. There will be over 120 activities, including pop-up planetarium shows, maker spaces, performances, live animal meet and greets and so much more. Have a look at the full itinerary on the museum's website. See you there! All ages. 

Perfect Monster
Photograph: Photo credit: Chad David Krause
Theater, Children's

How to Eat Like a Child… from TADA! Youth Theater

TADA! Theater, Flatiron

A kid’s guide to being a kid with numbers such as "How to Torture Your Sister," "How to Beg for a Dog" and "How to Stay Home from School" The hilarious TADA! production featuring kid actors was first staged in 1984. All ages.

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Riddle of the Trilobites New Victory Theater
Photograph: Michael A. Naddeo
Theater, Children's

Riddle of the Trilobites at the New Victory Theater

New Victory Theater, Midtown West

Ever hear an arthropod sing? "Riddle of the Trilobites" is an original musical 500 million years ago, when all life dwells in the sea and trilobites rule the ocean floor. Talk about drama: Young Aphra discovers that the fate of the entire trilobite kingdom rests on her shelled shoulders, so she and her pals must puzzle out the riddle of life before their homes are destroyed. This funny, silly musical developed by New York's CollaborationTown and the Flint Repertory Theatre takes the stage at the always-interesting New Victory Theater. Ages 6 and up.  

Image: Courtesy Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History
Image: Courtesy Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History
News, City Life

"Worlds Beyond"

We can't wait to see "Worlds Beyond Earth," the new show that will premiere at the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History on Jan 21. It celebrates the Age of Exploration we're living in right now—humans have only made it as far as the moon, but we have sent out probes and spacecraft to collect data and send it back to Earth. Think about it: Robotic explorers have been to the surface of the moon, and documented the icy and volcanically active surface of Jupiter's moon Io, and observed the showers of liquid methane on Saturn’s moon Titan. "Worlds Beyond Earth" transports you to the far corners of our solar system and beyond with detailed scenes drawn from scientific data. Plus, it's narrated by Academy Award-winning actor Lupita Nyong’o—the cosmos never sounded so good. This is the first new show to run at the Hayden Planetarium since Dark Universe," narrated by Neil deGrasse Tyson, premiered in 2013.

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Photograph: Courtesy Children's Museum of the Arts
Museums, Childhood

"Inside Art"

Children's Museum of Manhattan, Upper West Side

This brand-new exhibit is bound to keep your children entertained for hours on end. Its name is quite literal, as little ones can crawl and climb life-size installations and sculptures. Ten renowned artists came together to make the impressive pieces, including a massive tabletop mystery puzzle, a “groundhog burrow” for humans and a spandex wall of tropical patterns to stretch and climb through. Ages 3–10. 

The GIANT Room
Photograh: Courtesy the GIANT Room
Things to do, Play spaces

“Unseen Worlds” at the GIANT Room

The GIANT Room, Chelsea

Kids can give their imaginations a workout at “Unseen Worlds,” an interactive exhibition that mixes together science, art, design and technology. Visitors to the GIANT Room add to the display by going to the Open Studio and making projects inspired by the unseen worlds of bugs, microbes, yeast, bacteria and fungi. The GIANT Room in partnership with Cooper Union School of Engineering provides cool gear like a laser cutter, 3D printer, microscopes, solar panels, electronics and programmable LEDs! All ages.

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Photograph: Courtesy Bryant Park Corporation
Things to do

Read-to-Skate Story Time

Bryant Park, Midtown West

Bryant Park will keep the winter fun alive on Saturdays with the help of Cali Co Cat. Kiddos' favorite character will read the best stories in town, and afterward, littles have a chance to earn a free skating session on the ice rink. If you attend two story times and one New York Public Library program at the 42nd St location (and/or take out a NYPL book), you'll be entitled to a free skate. Have an adult who wants to get in on the action? Those youngsters who attend three story times will get a skating freebie for one adult, too. Bonus points? Free books are given out while supplies last. Learn more about the program and scoring those sweet deals here. All ages. 

Photograph: Courtesy Aviator Sports + Dillon Clancy
News, Sports & Fitness

Ice bumper cars

An amusement park staple is getting a wintry makeover.  If your little ones can't find their balance while ice skating in NYC, why not give ice bumper cars a try? They're making a Kings County debut, and deserve prime-time real estate on your winter bucket list.  Venture to Aviator Sports, the gracious host of Big Bounce America, for the super-cool experience. Taking a cue from the Winter Village at Bryant Park, one of Brooklyn's most popular family attractions will offer families (with kids ages 7 and up) a chance to enjoy a 15-minute session for $13 on a first-come, first-serve basis. Time to channel those Coney Island summer days, but with a few cold-weather modifications! Before your bumper-car outing, here are a few things to note:  Sessions run on Fridays from 7:30–10:30pm, Saturdays from 2–5pm and 7:30–10:30pm and Sundays from 1–5pm. Aviator Sports states that there are 3 sessions per hour. Riders must be at least 7 years old, 36 inches tall and under 300 pounds.  Flat-toed shoes are required (no ice skates).  A parent or guardian's signature is required for riders who are under 18.  Call 718-758-7549 to learn how to add this experience onto birthday parties for kids. 

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Photogrpah: Courtsy of the WIlliam Vale
Photogrpah: Courtesy of the William Vale Hotel
News, City Life

New rooftop "ice" skating rink at the William Vale

The William Vale hotel in Williamsburg just debuted a rooftop skating rink with million-dollar views of the Manhattan skyline.  The Vale Rink sits on the 23rd floor of the hotel, and could be considered one of the best spots for ice skating NYC kids and families love. Admission to the rink (including skate and locker rentals) costs $20 for adults, $12 for children 12 and under—another upside to the new spot.  But take note: This isn't an ice rink. The Vale Rink is a Glice rink with an ice-like synthetic surface developed in Switzerland. Glice has an icy shine that looks wintery, but the plastic doesn't melt—there's no puddling in the midday sun. More importantly, there won't be any wet pants or sopping socks on your little skaters. The William Vale Hotel set up tent lounge next to the rink where parents can relax with a grown-up drink, and where kids can go for an aprés-skate hot chocolate. It is open from 2–10pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays; 2pm–midnight on Fridays; noon–midnight on Saturdays; and noon–10pm on Sundays. Note that children 6 and under must have accompaniment on the ice and those 13 and under must have a guardian present; the smallest skate size 11 girls/9 boys. 

Museum of Ice Cream
Photograph: Time Out/Ali Garber
News, Weird & Wonderful

The Museum of Ice Cream

Ready your camera roll and prepare for a sugar rush: The Museum of Ice Cream has returned to NYC! The Soho flagship will open its pastel pink doors to sugary goodness on Saturday,, and we're willing to bet that the immersive experience—part playground, social media backdrop and sweet shop—will steal the limelight from this weekend's Christmas events for kids. (Apologies in advance, Santa.)  There are a few things to know before embarking on the adventure. For one, you might be inclined to prop your kiddos in the interactive rooms—the rainbow walkway, an ice cream-themed subway car—but let's face the music. Your littles aren't interested in photo ops, no matter how adorable they might be. Truthfully speaking, kids are  going to want to play. If you have a youngster who's dying to jump into a world of sweets, pay close attention after the slide. More vigorous than it looks, the playground staple will transport visitors to the "melting caves," a dark yet luminous room that acts as a gateway to the best part of the experience: The playground. Expect swings, ice cream basketball and yes, even a pool. Instead of water, there are giant sprinkles, and you'll debate taking a dip.

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Photograph: Courtesy Matteo Prandoni/BFA.com
News, Weird & Wonderful

Sloomoo Institute

New Yorkers take their immersive experiences quite seriously, and this fall promises a slew of sensory-filled adventures.  After indulging in creamy goodness at the Museum of Ice Cream's new Soho flagship, head over for a creative afternoon at Sloomoo Institute. This 8,000 square-foot entertainment hub, also in Soho, guarantees a slimy encounter like no other.  "We are all excited to bring the wonder and happiness of slime to the world in a large way,” says Karen Robinovitz, one of the three co-founders of the installation, alongside Sara Schiller and Toni Ko. “Our hope is that people of all ages will come to Sloomoo Institute and delight and evoke their inner child.” Sloomoo acts as an art exhibit and art class for kids, too. Visitors big and lil' will enter a black light cove with glow in the dark slime, let an EEG machine provide a sneak peek of your brain on slime and much more. For creative youngsters who love STEM project, this is one of the coolest fall activities for kids taking place this year.  Tickets are on sale ($38) and include an 8-ounce custom slime and other fun trinkets. For those who take their sliming super seriously, visitors can participate in a Sloomoo photoshoot (for an additional $30) where slime pours down on eager participants a la 90's Nickelodeon days.

kids.dough02 copy.jpg
Photograph: Melissa Sinclair
Things to do

Smorgasburg

25 Kent, Greenpoint

The venerable epicurean extravaganza spends Saturdays in Williamsburg and Sundays in Prospect Park. No matter your preference, there's a little something for everyone. While kids can delight in sweets like fried cookie dough, those with a more expansive palate can opt for offerings such as seafood from Lobsterdamus, Boutros' pork shawarma tacos or PopdUp brewed teas, among seemingly hundreds of other dishes. This year, the new Pizza Cupcake and Fluffies Soufflé Pancakes (available Saturdays and Sundays) will be on hand to wow visitors! Note that admission to the food fest is free, but each vendor charges various prices. All ages. 

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Photograph: Courtesy Joshua Bright
Things to do, Classes and workshops

Wave Hill's Family Art Project

Wave Hill, The Bronx

Every weekend, Wave Hill hosts an art workshop class catered to toddlers and families. Using the seasons, holidays and—of course— Riverdale's gorgeous grounds as a muse, the morning workshop tackles a variety of DIY projects. From painting and planting to coloring and sculpting, this offering is perfect for the creative kiddos in your crew. On Saturdays, arrive before noon to score free access to the venue. All ages. 

Photograph: Courtesy Rock & Roll Playhouse
Things to do, Concerts

Rock and Roll Playhouse Kids Concert Series

Multiple venues

This is one event parents might enjoy just as much as the kids...maybe even more so. Rock & Roll Playhouse is a family-friendly concert series that introduces littles to the greats—The Beatles, Queen, U2, to name a few—as the house band plays some of the most popular tunes. The weekend happening adds a few kid-friendly elements such as stories and crafts to make the program extra epic. All events in Industry City (Saturdays at 12:30pm) are free, but tickets are required. Shows at Brooklyn Bowl (Sundays at noon) are $12. Head to the event's website for a full lineup. Ages 10 and under. 

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Photograph: Courtesy Pixabay + LAWJR
Things to do, Walks and tours

Sugartooth Tours

Various locations, Hell's Kitchen

Get the scoop on all-things sweet. Sugartooth Tours, a local dessert tour company, explores different neighborhoods to uncover the tastiest treats throughout NYC, so bring your appetite. You'll want to explore the newest offering, Village to Village Cupcake and Cookie Crawl (Fridays, Saturdays at 3pm) but don't miss out on favorites like Bright Lights & Broadway Bites Dessert Tour (Saturdays at 11am, Sundays at noon), Sweeter Than Sugar Chelsea & West Village Dessert Tour (Saturdays and Sundays at 4pm) and more. Learn more online. All ages.  

Photograph: Courtesy of the The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
Museums, Military and maritime

British Airways Concorde at the Intrepid

Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Hell's Kitchen

Catch a glimpse inside the cockpit of the fastest commercial aircraft to ever fly across the Atlantic (at an impressive 2 hours, 52 minutes and 59 seconds). At the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, visitors are able to participate a new 20-minute experience of the British Airways Concorde, which provides insight into the plane's amazing technology. Please note visitors are required to climb stairs to board the Concorde. Ages 5 and up. 

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Photograph: Courtesy Evan Joseph Images
Things to do

Empire State Building's Reimagined Observatory Experience

Empire State Building | Manhattan, NY, Midtown West

NYC's most popular Instagram landmark underwent a renovation that is practically as breathtaking as its views of Manhattan. The $165 million reimagined Observatory Experience at the Empire State Building allows visitors to learn about all aspects of the iconic building: from the moment it was built to its place in pop culture today. Galleries focus on the construction, opening day and everything in between. Catch 70+ screens depicting the building's place in the NYC skyline, see if your favorite celebrity has made a visit and, of course, get a taste of King Kong! Giant ape fingers pierce the wall of a 1930s-themed office. Yikes! All ages. 

Museums

The Butterfly Conservatory: Tropical Butterflies Alive in Winter

American Museum of Natural History, Upper West Side

It's a balmy 80 degrees in the museum's 1,200-square-foot vivarium, which houses up to 500 butterflies living among tropical flowers. The free-flying butterflies often land on the shoulders of visitors, allowing tykes to come into direct contact with monarchs, zebra longwings, paper kites other species as they emerge from their chrysalises. Outside the vivarium, youngsters can watch a short film and read displays on the life cycle of butterflies, how to protect their habitats and what kinds of adaptations certain species have. All ages.

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Imagining Women Ann-Sophie Fjellø-Jensen NY Hall of Science
Photograph: Ann-Sophie Fjellø-Jensen
Museums, Science and technology

Imaging Women in the Space Age at the New York Hall of Science

New York Hall of Science | Queens, NY, Queens

This comprehensive exhibit includes vintage and current images of women as aviators and astronauts, looking at fashion, television, film, pop culture—even Barbie and LEGO astronaut dolls are included. You will see photographs of pioneering astronauts including Sally Ride, Mae Jemison and Ellen Ochoa. After seeing this show your little astronaut will shoot for the stars. Free with admission. All ages.

Photograph: courtesy New York Transit Museum
Museums, Special interest

Reign of the Redbirds at the New York Transit Museum

New York Transit Museum, Boerum Hill

Reign of the Redbirds looks at the iconic subway cars that came to be known as Redbirds that first appeared in New York in 1959, and that were in kept in service until 2003. These workhorses evoke an era of great transformation in New York, and many of them met a poetic ending: decommissioned red cars were scuttled off the coast and helped anchor an artificial reef. Reign of the Redbirds is in the museum's atmospheric home in a decommissioned subway station under the streets of Downtown Brooklyn. Note: Museum is closed major holidays. $10, $5 ages 2-17, free 2 and under.

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Tyrannosaurus Rex, 4th floor halls
Photograph: Courtesy Craig Chesek
Museums, Natural history

“T. rex: The Ultimate Predator”

American Museum of Natural History, Upper West Side

Prepare to dig deep like a true paleontologist thanks to "T. Rex: The Ultimate Predator." The Museum of Natural History's new exhibit will give visitors a peek into how the massive creatures came to be. Patrons will get a good look at the new findings about the tyrannosaurs genus, with a special focus on our main man, the T. rex. Unlike what people may think—and what movies led us to believe—T. rex is simply one part of the species' 100-million-year evolution. Who knew that tyrannosaurs species actually include small, agile creatures? For real! All ages. 

Crickets Children's Museum of the Arts
Photograph: Courtesy Children's Museum of the Arts
Museums, Art and design

Love Crickets, Save the Planet at CMA

Children's Museum of the Arts, West Village

Love Crickets, Save the Planet is like an art farm only with crickets, which makes it way cooler than an art farm. (Not to bag on ant farms, which are pretty great.) This site-specific installation by artists Jude Tallichet and Adam Chad Brody gives kids an intimate look at these amazing insects—a bug-eye's view of the world you don't always see. $13, pay-what-you-wish Thursdays from 4-6pm. All ages. 

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Spyscape
Photograph: Courtesy Scott Frances
Museums, Special interest

“DRIVEN: 007 x SPYSCAPE”

Spyscape, Midtown West

NYC's museum dedicated to all-things espionage will soon shed some light on 007. The first James Bond exhibit in New York examines the creativity that went into bringing the movies to life. Car aficionados: You'll be pleased to know that Bond's Aston Martin DB5 will on display. There are also many interactive components to the exhibit: You can check out gadgets and gizmos in the Q's lab, get a behind-the-scenes look at how the Skyfall finale came to be and so much more. All ages. 

Photo Courtesy Cosmic Picture, Ltd.
Movies, Family and kids

'Superpower Dogs 3D'

New York Hall of Science | Queens, NY, Queens

The amazing life-saving dogs in this immersive 3D movie are like real-life PAW Patrol pups. Find out the remarkable stories of canines and their human companions who work hard everyday to rescue people in snowy avalanches and off the coasts of warm beaches. There's even a pair of Bloodhound brothers who are helping save endangered species in Africa. 45 minutes. All ages  

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Photograph: Courtesy NYC GO and Off Broadway Week
Theater

Blue Man Group

Astor Place Theatre, Downtown
4 out of 5 stars

  A sea of toilet paper, neon paint splashes and three blue men have kept audiences laughing and amazed in this long-running Off-Broadway hit. Stand by as these other-worldly fellows learn about the environment around them...and make a bit of noise in the process (largely thanks to the large tubs of paint). You'll laugh, you'll catch one of the group members in the audience and you'll love the wonky happenings throughout the performance. If you catch a show in the first row, wear the poncho—chances are you're going to get splattered with something! Ages 5 and up. 

Photograph: Courtesy NYC GO and Off Broadway Week
Theater

Gazillion Bubble Show

New World Stages, Hell's Kitchen
4 out of 5 stars

Husband and wife duo Fan and Ana Yang have traveled world-wide to dazzle their audiences with their self-titled masterpiece, "bubble artistry." As lights flicker and music plays, prepare to catch some of the wonkiest looking bubbles you've ever encountered. Kids and parents alike will love how these soapy spectacles create a can't-miss experience. Ages 5 and up.

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The Lion King
Photograph: Courtesy Joan Marcus
Theater, Musicals

The Lion King

Minskoff Theatre, Midtown West
Open run
4 out of 5 stars

Director-designer Julie Taymor takes a reactionary Disney cartoon about the natural right of kings—in which the circle of life is putted against a queeny villain and his jive-talking ghetto pals—and transforms it into a gorgeous celebration of color and movement. The movie’s Elton John–Tim Rice score is expanded with African rhythm and music, and through elegant puppetry, Taymor populates the stage with an amazing menagerie of beasts; her audacious staging expands a simple cub into the pride of Broadway, not merely a fable of heredity but a celebration of heritage. Minskoff Theatre (Broadway). Music by Elton John. Lyrics by Tim Rice. Book by Roger Allers and Irene Mecchi. Directed by Julie Taymor. With ensemble cast. Running time: 2hrs 40mins. One intermission.

Frozen
Photo: Courtesy Deen van Meer
Theater, Broadway

Frozen: The Broadway Musical

St. James Theatre, Midtown West

For the first time in forever, Disney's "Snow Queen"-inspired movie about sisterly love and a talking snowman is coming to Broadway. Elsa, Anna, Kristoff and the whole gang will turn the St. James Theater into a winter wonderland full of songs from the original soundtrack. Expect phenomenal sets and stage-magic, plus a certain Oscar-winning song to get stuck in your head.

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Photograph: Courtesy Rockefeller Productions
Theater, Children's

Paddington Gets in a Jam

DR2 Theatre, Gramercy

The U.K.'s most popular marmalade-loving bear is making his way to NYC this winter. Catch Paddington in a Jam, a production from Jonathan Rockefeller, in Union Square. The creator of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show brings Paddington's journey to life on stage—which is perfect for those who can't resist the famed character's movies and stories. Although audiences might be inclined to have some jam during the performance, note that food is prohibited in the theater! Ages 3–8. 

Photograph: Courtesy Justina Wong
Theater, Puppet shows

Yeti, Set, Snow

Central Park Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre, Central Park

Who can resist a snow day? Looks like Widget and Twig found someone who would rather take a pass. In Yeti, Set, Snow!, an original play from City Parks Foundation, a dynamic duo stumbles upon a yeti, Pascetti, who would rather not deal with flurries and the cold. Time will tell if Pascetti’s new friends will have him singing “Let It Snow.” Ages 3–8. Note: There are no performances on: Nov 28, Dec 24, Dec 25, Jan 1, Jan 2 and Jan 3. Note that showtimes on Nov 29 are: 11am, 1pm and 3pm. 

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Photograph: Courtesy Jeremy Daniel
Theater, Children's

New Victory Theater's 2019-2020 Season

New Victory Theater, Midtown West

The NYC theater scene is gearing up for a kid-friendly lineup. During the 2019-2020 season at the New Victory Theater, families will be able to hang with their favorite picture-book fishes, listen to Aesop's fables and much more. The schedule, which is available on the theater's website, is as follows:   The Pout-Pout Fish: Oct 12–20 for ages 4–7 Aesop's Fables: Nov 1–2 for ages 7 and up  RE:PLAY: Nov 15–Dec 1 for ages 6 and up  42 FT–A Menagerie of Mechanical Marvels: Dec 6–Jan 5 for ages 5 and up  Cartography: Jan 10–19 for ages 10 and up Riddle of the Trilobites: Feb 7–23 for ages 6 and up  Drumfolk: Feb 28–Mar 15 for ages 7 and up  Treasure Island: Mar 20–29 for ages 8 and up  Magic Shadows: Apr 3–19 for ages 5 and up  Snow White: Apr 24–May 4 for ages 7 and up  Jabberbabble: May 9–17 for ages 4–7 Fierce 5: May 30–June 14 for ages 9 and up 

Wicked
Photograph: Courtesy Tristram Kenton
Theater, Musicals

Wicked

Gershwin Theatre, Midtown West
Open run
4 out of 5 stars

This musical prequel to The Wizard of Oz addresses surprisingly complex themes, such as standards of beauty, morality and, believe it or not, fighting fascism. Thanks to Winnie Holzman’s witty book and Stephen Schwartz’s pop-inflected score, Wicked soars. The current cast includes Jackie Burns as Elphaba and Amanda Jane Cooper as Glinda.

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Dear Evan Hansen
Photograph: Joan Marcus
Theater, Musicals

Dear Evan Hansen

Open run
5 out of 5 stars

In this captivating original musical, actual teenager Andrew Barth Feldman now plays the title role of a high school student thrust into social relevance after a classmate's suicide. (Jordan Fisher takes over the role on January 28.) Benj Pasek and Justin Paul's score combines well-crafted lyrics with an exciting pop sound, and Steven Levenson’s book gives all the characters shaded motives. Read the full review.

Theater, Musicals

Aladdin

New Amsterdam Theatre, Midtown West
Open run
3 out of 5 stars

Aladdin. New Amsterdam Theatre (see Broadway). Music by Alan Menken. Lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice. Book and additional lyrics by Chad Beguelin. Directed by Casey Nicholaw. With Adam Jacobs, James Monroe Iglehart, Courtney Reed. Running time: 2hrs 20mins. One intermission. Aladdin: In brief Disney unveils its latest cartoon-to-musical project: the tale of a boy, an uncorked spirit and an aerodynamic rug. Composer Alan Menken adds new tunes to the 1992 original soundtrack, and Chad Beguelin provides a fresh book. Reputed highlights include James Monroe Iglehart's bouncy Genie and the flying-carpet F/X. Aladdin: Theater review by Adam Feldman What do we wish for in a Disney musical? It is unrealistic to expect aesthetic triumph on par with The Lion King, but neither need we settle for blobs of empty action like Tarzan or The Little Mermaid. The latest in the toon-tuner line, Aladdin, falls between those poles; nearer in style (though inferior in stakes) to Disney’s first effort, Beauty and the Beast, the show is a tricked-out, tourist-family-friendly theme-park attraction, decorated this time in the billowing fabrics of orientalist Arabian fantasy. “It’s barbaric, but hey, it’s home,” sings the genial Genie (a game, charismatic Iglehart) in the opening song, and that’s the tone of Aladdin as a whole: kid-Oriented. As in the 1992 film, the Genie steals the show from its eponymous “street rat” hero (Jacobs, white teeth and tan chest agleam). The musical’s high point i

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Mean Girls
Photograph: Courtesy Joan Marcus
Theater, Musicals

Mean Girls

Open run
4 out of 5 stars

Theater review by Adam Feldman  Teenage girls rule in the tart but sweet new Broadway musical Mean Girls. But their system of high-school government is far from a democracy: It’s a reign of terror, angst and mall fashions, where popularity is arrogated and then ruthlessly enforced. Having spent her childhood being home-schooled in Kenya, nature and math enthusiast Cady (Erika Henningsen) is initially confused by the rigid caste system of her new school in Chicago. She tries to be nice, but the ruthlessness of American teenage culture brings out Cady’s predatory instincts. She reverts to the mean. A canny crossbreed of Heathers and Hairspray, the musical has been adapted by Tina Fey from her own 2004 cult movie, and updated to reflect the new realities of smartphones and social media. Fey is one of the sharpest comic writers in America, and the show remains, in some sense, her vehicle: an auto de Fey, burning with bookish anger at the limits young women place on each other and themselves. (Her film role as a pushy calculus teacher is amusingly evoked by Kerry Butler, who also plays the other adult women.) But this version of Mean Girls is not just a copy of the original. The most famous lines from the screenplay are here, but Casey Nicholaw’s energetic staging wisely breezes past them; the newer jokes get bigger laughs, while the score—by Jeff Richmond and Nell Benjamin—successfully builds on Fey’s knowingly corrective tone. (“This is modern feminism talkin’,” sings a high-

Come From Away
Photograph: Matthew Murphy
Theater, Musicals

Come from Away

Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre, Midtown West
Open run
4 out of 5 stars

One of the more unlikely musicals on Broadway this season, Come from Away is the tense but humane story of an airport in Gander, Newfoundland, where 38 planes and more than 6,000 passengers were forced to land on September 11, 2001. The book, music and lyrics are by the Canadian team Irene Sankoff and David Hein. Read the full review.

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Photograph: Courtesy Matthew Murphy
Theater, Drama

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Lyric Theatre, Midtown West
Open run
5 out of 5 stars

Theater review by Adam Feldman  The world of Harry Potter has arrived on Broadway, Hogwarts and all, and it is a triumph of theatrical magic. Set two decades after the final chapters of J.K. Rowling’s world-shaking kid-lit heptalogy, the two-part epic Harry Potter and the Cursed Child combines grand storytelling with stagecraft on a scale heretofore unimagined. Richly elaborated by director John Tiffany, the show looks like a million bucks (or, in this case, a reported $68 million); the Lyric Theatre has been transfigured from top to bottom to immerse us in the narrative. It works: The experience is transporting. Jack Thorne’s play, based on a story he wrote with Rowling and Tiffany, extends the Potter narrative while remaining true to its core concerns. Love and friendship and kindness are its central values, but they don’t come easily: They are bound up in guilt, loneliness and fear. Harry (Jamie Parker) is weighted with trauma dating back to his childhood, which hinders his ability to communicate with his troubled middle son, Albus (Sam Clemmett); it doesn’t help that Albus’s only friend is the bookish outcast Scorpius Malfoy (the exceptional Anthony Boyle), son of Harry’s erstwhile enemy, Draco (Alex Price). Despite the best intentions of Harry’s solid wife, Ginny (Poppy Miller), and his friends Hermione (Noma Dumezweni) and Ron (Paul Thornley), things turn dark very fast. Set designer Christine Jones and lighting designer Neil Austin keep much of the stage shroude

Theater, Musicals

Stomp

Orpheum Theater, East Village
Open run

This shrewd garbage heap of clog dancing, prop comedy and chest-thumping percussion spins out impressive (if numbing) variations on vaudeville by way of English punk.

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Photograph: Courtesy Elizabeth Shrier
Things to do

Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park

Bryant Park, Midtown West

Every year, Bryant Park transforms into a winter village complete with an outdoor ice skating rink right at the center. Shop from local vendors selling food and drinks and get an early start on those holiday wish lists. Wonderful pop-up shops for kids and families abound, as well as eateries with sweet and savory cusines from around the globe. Holiday festivities are scheduled from the opening day, as Oct 31 will welcome kiddos for Tricks and Treats from 4–6:30pm. Later in the season, little ones can visit Santa from Dec 14–22, so tell your crew to start brainstorming! All ages.

Photograph: Courtesy New York Historical Society/The Jerni Collection
Museums, Childhood

Holiday Express: All Aboard to Richard Scarry’s Busytown at the New York Historical Society

New-York Historical Society | Manhattan, NY, Upper West Side

The holiday model-train show at the New-York Historical Society is always a stunner, and this year celebrates Richard Scarry’s Busytown to honor the 100th anniversary of the author and illustrator’s birth. You’ll see Huckle Cat, Lowly Worm and other favorite characters, plus trains, trains and more trains. All ages. 

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Things to do, Classes and workshops

Children's Gardening Program: Sprouts at the New York Botanical Garden

New York Botanical Garden | Bronx, NY, The Bronx

This six-week program lets children ages 3-5 (and their accompanying adult) explore nature up close by wandering through the greenhouses and winter gardens of the New York Botanical Garden. Your little Sprout will be able to touch, taste and grow different flora—every kid loves playing in the dirt! Ages 3-5.

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