Daily activities for kids and the family are abound in Long Island! Whether you want to spend the day with your children at a zoo, a museum, or just outdoors, we've got it all here. Want to see what's going on next weekend or when you have those few days off? Check out the NY Metro Parents' calendar!
Family Music Series-Amahl & the Night Visitors - Sands Point Preserve
December 01, 2013 - Sands Point
Amahl and the Night Visitors (1951) is a magical one-act opera by 20th Century composer Gian Carlo Menotti with an original English libretto by the composer. In this warm and compassionate story, Menotti has captured the essential spirit of Christmas. The story begins with the Three Kings, following the star of Bethlehem, stopping for shelter at the home of young Amahl, a poor, disabled shepherd boy who lives with his widowed mother. Amahl has a problem with telling tall tales and, occasionally, lying, and his desperate mother attempts to steal the Kings� gold for her son. Important lessons are learned when Amahl, inspired by the Wise Men�s story about a kingdom �built on love alone,� offers his own simple gift to Jesus. And then a miracle happens� This charming story will delight the whole family!
Rapunzel - The Showplace at Bellmore Movies
December 01, 2013 - Bellmore
"Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair to me!" Based on the original Brothers Grimm classic fairytale, this musical is sure to please even the most dedicated Tangled fans! The performance runs for one hour and is followed by a meet and greet with the cast.
Brunch and Social - Jonathan's
December 01, 2013 - Garden City Park
Singles Association of Long Island, ages 25 plus, will meet for brunch. All drinks are cash and carry. Social hour gathering at noon at the bar. Brunch at 1pm. RSVP by 11/29.
SHREK THE MUSICAL - BayWay Arts Center
December 01, 2013 - East Islip
In a faraway kingdom turned upside down, things get ugly when an unseemly ogre ? not a handsome prince ? shows up to rescue a feisty princess. Throw in a donkey who won't shut up, a bad guy with a short temper and a cookie with an attitude and over a dozen other fairy tale misfits, and you've got the kind of mess that calls for a real hero. Luckily, there's one on hand...and his name is Shrek. Full of all-new songs,dancing and breathtaking scenery, Shrek is part romance, part twisted fairy tale.
Festival of Lights - Long Island Children's Museum
December 01, 2013 - Garden City
Join in celebrating Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights. Come learn about the history and traditions of this festive holiday and why people light candles on a menorah. Make your own hand-painted wooden spool menorah to treasure year after year.
Let's Celebrate Nature! - The Maritime Explorium
December 01, 2013 - Port Jefferson
Create a holiday decoration using materials found in nature.
Frosty - John W. Engeman Theater at Northport
December 01, 2013 - Northport
Join Jenny and Frosty on their chilly adventures as they try to save the town of Chillsville from the mean old Ethel Pierpot and her evil machine that will melt all the snow. Jenny calls on her Mom, the mayor, and all of you to help her save her home, get Frosty to the North Pole, and make this holiday season a Winter Wonderland for one and all.
Meet Me in St. Louis - Studio Theatre
December 01, 2013 - Lindenhurst
Meet Me in St. Louis is the story of a family's life as they anticipate the wonders of the 1904 World's Fair. The stage version includes seven of the best-loved songs from the classic 1944 MGM movie including "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas, "The Trolly Song," "The Boy Next Door," and ten other numbers by film composers Martin and Blane.
ANNIE, JR. - Smithtown Center for the Performing Arts
December 01, 2013 - Smithtown
The popular comic strip heroine takes center stage in one of the world’s best-loved musicals. With equal measures of pluck and positive attitude, little orphan Annie charms everyone’s hearts, despite a next-to-nothing start in 1930’s New York City. She is determined to find her parents, who abandoned her years ago on the doorstep of a New York City Orphanage run by the cruel, bitter Miss Hannigan.
Long Island Ballet Theatre Presents 'The Nutcracker' - Jeanne Rimsky Theater at Landmark on Main Street
December 01, 2013 - Port Washington
The Long Island Ballet rings in the holidays with its 27th annual performance of the classic Tchaivosky production.
Madeline and the Bad Hat - Madison Theatre at Molloy College
December 01, 2013 - Rockville Centre
The third in the Madeline series, ArtsPower’s Madeline and the Bad Hat focuses on the unbreakable bonds of friendship and family. Madeline is none too pleased when Pepito, the son of the Spanish ambassador, moves in next door. He seems insufferably arrogant and conceited. Under the guidance of Miss Clavel, the caretaker of the girls at Madeline’s boarding school, Madeline learns not to judge a book by its cover.
The Laurie Berkner Band Holiday Celebration Concert - Tilles Center for the Performing Arts
December 01, 2013 - Brookville
The concert, by these children's music superstars and preschool television favorites, will include music from the critically acclaimed 2012 album, A Laurie Berkner Christmas (Two Tomatoes Records/Razor & Tie). According to the Associated Press, ?If you have kids under the age of five in your house, this is probably the only Christmas album you need this year.? The band will perform tracks such as Jingle Bells, Laurie?s original song Candy Cane Jane, and the Hanukkah song Candle Chase, among many more festive seasonal favorites.
Family Sunday at the Museum - Nassau County Museum of Art
December 01, 2013 - Roslyn Harbor
The museum offers a 1pm docent-led family walk through of the current exhibition and beginning at 1:30pm, supervised art activities for the whole family. Special family guides of the main exhibition are available in the galleries.
Trace Adkins - The Christmas Show - NYCB Theatre at Westbury
December 01, 2013 - Westbury
Legendary country singer Trace Adkins singing songs from his new Christmas album and more!
B12 National Tennis Tournament - National Tennis Center
December 01, 2013 - Flushing
Didn't make it to the US Open or Wimbleton this year? Come out and watch exciting tennis as juniors from around the US battle it out on the court.
A Merry Mini Nutcracker - The Brookside School
December 01, 2013 - Merrick
A Merry Mini Nutcracker is an abridged production of the holiday classic and great for young children.
Laughter on the 23rd Floor - Broadhollow Theater at Elmont
December 01, 2013 - Elmont
Laugh out loud mayhem ensues with Neil Simon's semi-autobiographical take on the memories of his work on Sid Caesar's "Your Show of Shows." Set in 1953; take a hilarious behind-the-scenes peek at the 'Max Prince Show' as a talented group of writers struggles to work together through each other's neuroses, egos and nonstop jokes to create some of television's classic comedic moments.
The Toys Take Over Christmas - Vanderbilt Carriage House
December 01, 2013 - Centerport
A toymaker refuses to sell any of the dolls he makes, but his magic made them realistic so on Christmas Eve, they all come to life and find their way into your hearts.
Winter Open House - The Long Island Museum
December 01, 2013 - Stony Brook
Take a break from the holiday hustle and bustle to enjoy complimentary admission to the museum's world class exhibitions. This year's feature exhibition is Coney Island and Jones Beach: Empires by the Sea. Explore the differences between New York's famous summer playgrounds.
Fall Into Art series--Photo Ornament - Whaling Museum and Education Center of Cold Spring Harbor
December 01, 2013 - Cold Spring Harbor
Adults and supervised kids ages 6 and older are invited to join
artist Alicia Milinis, whose work is on display at the Museum. She will lead a workshop to create photo ornaments. Bring a copy of your favorite photo. Limited space. RSVP ext. 10.
Christmas at the Lighthouse - Montauk Lighthouse
December 01, 2013 - Montauk
Santa will be available for family photos and there will be refreshments of hot chocolate, warm cider, and cookies. Sarah Conway and the Christmas Trio will perform from 2-3pm.
Free pony rides for children are provided from 11am-3pm. Face painting will be available for children of all ages from 12-3:30pm. The gift shop and museum will be open, but the tower climb will not be available. If Lighting the Lighthouse is postponed due to inclement weather, Christmas at the Lighthouse will be held on December 8.
IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE--A LIVE RADIO PLAY - Smithtown Center for the Performing Arts
December 01, 2013 - Smithtown
Inspired by the classic film, thie live radio play is performed as a 1940’s live radio broadcast in front of a studio audience. Six actors perform the dozens of characters as well as produce the sound effects. All the magic of Bedford Falls comes to exhilarating life right in front of you as you are transported to 1940 and to George Bailey’s Christmas Eve.
Annual Holiday Tree Lighting - Southside Hospital
December 01, 2013 - Bay Shore
North Shore-LIJ Southside Hospital will have its Annual Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony in the front of the hospital on Main Street (Montauk Highway) in Bay Shore. The event will begin with a heated Holiday Shopper’s Village, a petting zoo, the Hibernian Festival Singers, the Long Island Gay Men’s Chorus and Santa will be making a special appearance with gifts for all of the children. Southside will also be providing hot chocolate, cookies and hot apple cider.
Holiday Spectacular with Santa - The Holtsville Ecology Center
December 01, 2013 - Holtsville
The Brookhaven Wildlife Center and Dan Losquadro, Supt. of Highways are hosting the 1st annual Holiday Spectacular with Santa. Have your picture taken with Santa, walk through the beautifully decorated Christmas displays, and shop Vendor Alley. The event will run weekends Nov. 30-15. All proceeds pay for the food and veterinary care for the over 100 injured and non-releasable animals living at the Holtsville Ecology Center.
Fall Learn and Play for Pre-schoolers - Suffolk County Farm & Education Center
Through December 12, 2013 - Yaphank
Age-appropriate 1 hour sessions have been designed to accentuate the child/parent learning experience. Mon, Tues and Wed are programs for children ages 15mos-3years. Thursdays classes are for children ages 2-5 and their siblings and Fridays classes are for children aged 3-5. Registration and detailed information pertaining to the classes can be found onliine at ccesuffolk.org (under Farm, Early Childhood). September 30-December 12, 2013.
Toys for Tots, U.S. Marines Program - Cold Spring Harbor Fish Hatchery & Aquarium
Through December 17, 2013 - Cold Spring Harbor
Drop off your new, unwrapped toy or purchase one in the gift shop with 10 percent discount for any toy donated to Toys for Tots.
Christmas Tree and Poinsettia Sales - Queens County Farm Museum
Through December 24, 2013 - Floral Park
Popular varieties and sizes of trees, evergreen wreaths, poinsettia, Amaryllis, and paperwhites will be for sale with proceeds benefiting the Farm Museum.
Make Holiday Ornaments - Cold Spring Harbor Fish Hatchery & Aquarium
Through December 24, 2013 - Cold Spring Harbor
Make holiday ornaments that you can display on the Hatchery's Christmas tree.
Theatre Three's production of A Christmas Carol - Theatre Three
Through December 28, 2013 - Port Jefferson
Celebrate the season with Long Island?s own holiday tradition. Follow the miser Ebenezer Scrooge on a journey that teaches him the true meaning of Christmas?past, present and future. As described by Newsday??There could scarcely be a finer tribute to [Dickens?] legend than A Christmas Carol at Theatre Three." November 16-December 28, 2013.
Behind-the-Scenes Tours - Long Island Aquarium & Exhibition Center
Through December 31, 2013 - Riverhead
Go behind the scenes at the aquarium and see firsthand all that's involved in creating a home for the aquatic residents, including helping to feed the clownfish.
'The Longest Night: A Winter's Tale' - Vanderbilt Museum and Planetarium
Through December 31, 2013 - Centerport
This new, seasonal show is a timeless fable of courage, generosity and renewal that also explores the concept that winter is a time for Earth to rest, waiting for new growth in the spring. The heroine, a young girl from a family of nomadic storytellers, embarks on a simple quest that leads her to a dragon's nest. What will she discover there, and how will it help her save her village? The production combines live-action puppetry with 3-D animation. November 23-December 31, 2013.
Heckscher Helps the Hungry - Heckscher Museum of Art
Through December 31, 2013 - Huntington
The Museum is partnering with Long Island Cares Inc., The Harry Chapin Food Bank, in support of those in need. Help collect food for people and pets in the community. Visit the Museum in November and December to drop off your non-perishable donations and receive half-price admission as a special thank you. November 1-December 31, 2013.
Zumba Birthday Party - The Dance Treatment
Through December 31, 2013 - Garden City Park
Visit this beautiful venue and plan an exciting time for your little one's birthday. The Dance Treatment will cater to all your party needs.
Free Trial Classes in Italian, Spanish, French, and Mandarin Chinese - Language Workshop for Children
Through December 31, 2013 - Manhasset
Capture your child’s prime time to learn a new language. Call The Language Workshop for Children at 212-628-2700 for your FREE trial class. Offering French, Spanish, and Mandarin Chinese, LWFC programs include Languages for Tots® (6M-3Y), Languages for Children (3-8Y), Regular Preschool (2.10-4Y), and Summer Camp (3-9Y). CNN called LWFC Director Francois Thibaut: “One of a very few experts in teaching languages to small children.” Parents Magazine named the LWFC, “6 Programs Worth the $.” Students absorb their new language in stimulating play groups using the LWFC’s unique language building songs, immersion games, and older kids work with sentence building stories (and can bake and do arts and crafts too). LWFC learning materials won six major children’s educational media awards.
Sculpture Mystery: The Great Art Caper - Hofstra University Museum
Through January 01, 2014 - Hempstead
Uncover clues to help solve a mystery in the outdoor sculpture collection. Pick up your caper kit at Emily Lowe Gallery, have fun while discovering more about these works, and at the end of the caper return to Emily Lowe Gallery for a prize. For everyone ages 4-9 and their grown-up companions all year-round. The program runs through January 1, 2014.
Sculpture Exploration Backpack - Hofstra University Museum
Through January 01, 2014 - Hempstead
Kids and their grown up companions can stop in at the Hofstra University Museum's Emily Lowe Gallery, and pick up a backpack. At the end of your tour, return the backpack and each child will receive a small gift from the Museum. The program runs through January 1, 2014.
GingerBread Lane - New York Hall of Science
Through January 12, 2014 - Queens
Jon Lovitch is a chef and the creator of GingerBread Lane, an annual display of homemade and handmade gingerbread houses that he drafts, designs, bakes, plans, builds, and decorates for an entire year. This season will be its 20th.
The concept for Gingerbread Lane changes each year, depending on what Lovitch has seen at gingerbread competitions, in magazines, at holiday displays, sometimes even drawing ideas from houses he spots while driving.
Lovitch purchases the materials after the holiday season, and begins designing and constructing the exhibit by March. All work is completed by late October and reviewed for detail until the exhibit begins. Beginning in November, Lovitch works between 80 and 90 hours for the final three weeks before GingerBread Lane opens for display. Each gingerbread house requires approximately three hours to complete and many of the complicated projects within the village require upwards of 35 hours. Each annual GBL takes about 1500 hours to make.
GBL is made from only "real" edible ingredients: gingerbread, royal icing, and candy. In contrast, other gingerbread competitors use dried pasta, uncooked rice and beans, and edible clay, among other ingredients. This year, GBL uses both gingerbread bricks and candy bricks for the structures.
The 2013 GBL weighs more than 1.5 tons, covers a continuous surface of nearly 300 square feet and is 11 feet high at its highest point. It will be competing for a Guinness World Record for largest gingerbread exhibit, and will be the largest GBL ever.
While the layout and composition change yearly, GBL always includes Eggnog Bay, Gum Drop Row, Peppermint Central Park, Candy Cane Place, and Toffee Boulevard. New this year is Ribbon Candy Ridge and a "behind-the-scenes" window, giving a peek into the makings of GBL with ovens, models, and ingredients...made entirely from royal icing. Five two-foot-high nutcrackers, also made of royal icing, stand guard over the back of the exhibit.
This year's village includes an estimated 1750 lbs. of icing, 400 lbs. of candy, and 500 lbs. of gingerbread dough; and comprises 152 gingerbread houses, 65 trees, four gingerbread cable cars, five gingerbread train cars, an underground candy subway station, candy trees, and sugar signage.
GingerBread Lane always sits out in the open, rather than behind glass, a fact that can really be appreciated when one smells the homemade gingerbread.
All gingerbread structures are given away free on the last day of the exhibit. Since December 2000, GingerBread Lane has also hosted annual workshops for families and after-school programs for children. Each year, Lovitch works with underprivileged and disabled children by shipping GingerBread Lane pieces across the country for those unable to view the display.
gingerbread-lane.org; Twitter: @GingerBreadLane; Facebook: GingerBread Lane, #gingerbreadlane.
Peter Max Exhibition - Nassau County Museum of Art
Through February 23, 2014 - Roslyn Harbor
This exhibition of work by famed pop artist Peter Max juxtaposes portfolios of his mostly black-and-white drawings on paper against many of his larger and more color-saturated works in a variety of media. This showing is the first in-depth look at Max�s original drawings. Covering a wide range of subjects � portraits of friends and political figures, ocean sunsets and undulating landscapes, characters from Disney and The Wizard of Oz, planetary and celestial bodies in space, angels and demons, flowers and hearts, as well as Mona Lisas and Statues of Liberty to name only a few � these never-before-seen drawings comprise one of the most recognizable and commercially successful artistic practices of our times. The exhibit runs through February 23, 2014.
AftermodernisM: Works on Paper - Nassau County Museum of Art
Through February 23, 2014 - Roslyn Harbor
This exhibition focuses on the exploration of the drawing skills and innovations of a number of artists. Some of these works on paper are preparation for larger works on canvas. The exhibition is organized for the museum�s Contemporary Collectors Circle (CCC) by CCC co-chairs Elaine Berger and Alison Wolfson. The exhibit runs through February 23, 2014.
Candy Craft Days - Sugarbeez Candy Store
Through February 28, 2014 - Huntington Station
Come be creative with candy. Build a chocolate house and decorate it for the holidays. Make a pretzel pizza or some pucker powder art. Special crafts every month. Sugarbeez supplies the candy and the space - you just need your imagination. Great for all ages. Check the website for open sessions or call to schedule your own private craft session.
Flight of the Butterflies in 3D - NY Hall of Science
Through April 11, 2014 - Corona
Join millions of real butterflies on an amazing journey to a remote and secret hideaway. Weighing less than a penny, the monarch butterfly makes one of the longest migrations on Earth. Follow the monarchs' perilous journey to the remote mountain peaks of Mexico in this 3D film. For the first time ever, witness the transformation from caterpillar to butterfly, inside a chrysalis, thanks to advanced MRI and micro CT scans.
The award-winning production team, including Oscar-winner Peter Parks, followed the year-long migration cycle of the monarch butterflies, from Canada, through the United States to remote 10,000-foot-high peaks in the Sierra Madre Mountains of Mexico.
The film has won numerous awards including the 2013 Grand Teton Award in the category of Best Immersive 3D/Large Format at the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival and awards at the 2013 Giant Screen Industry Awards, including Best Film, Best Cinematography, Best Film for Lifelong Learning, and Best Educational Program.
Outdoor Sculpture Biennial - Adelphi University
Through May 31, 2014 - Garden City
See the work of 10 skilled sculptors located throughout the scenic 75-acre arboretum on the Garden City campus.
This outdoor installation showcases the talents of Miggy Buck (NY), John Clement (NY), Maria Hall (NY), Ed Haugevik (NY), William King (NY), Anti Liu (NY), Johnny Poux (NY), Kim Radochia (MA), Christopher Saucedo (NY), and Hans Van de Bovenkamp (NY). Works of art encompass use of various materials-steel, bronze, aluminum, concrete and reflective mirrors. These man-made creations are transposed into poetic visual narrations.
The exhibition runs through May 31, 2014.
Saturday Respite - Theresa Academy of Performing Arts
Through June 21, 2014 - Lido Beach
Saturday Respite program runs each Saturday and students have a snack and participate three of the following activities: yoga, dance, drama, drumming, art, cooking, or music.
Students range in age and work with a 1-on-1 volunteer to guide and support the student. Students with special needs and typically developing students are welcome. Please RSVP at [email protected]
Sculpture Art Caper and Exploration Activity - Hofstra University Museum, Emily Lowe Gallery
Through September 30, 2014 - Hempstead
Adults and children can explore the outdoor sculpture collection on Hofstra’s beautiful campus with activity-filled animal, shapes or people-themed HUM Sculpture Exploration Backpacks or by solving an Art Caper mystery in which they unravel the clues found in the sculpture collection. Activity materials may be picked up at the Emily Lowe Gallery during museum hours (see website for current hours).
Bethpage Federal Credit Union Global Explorer - Hofstra University Museum, Emily Lowe Gallery
Through September 30, 2014 - Hempstead
Children ages 6 and up and their families can explore and discover the beauty of the world’s cultures using activity-filled backpacks that enhance experiences with authentic objects from the Hofstra University Museum’s collections. While exploring specific works displayed in the David Filderman Gallery, children create their own keepsake artworks inspired by the art and cultures they discover. Families may pick up the backpacks at the Emily Lowe Gallery during museum hours (see website for current hours).
Penguin Encounter - Long Island Aquarium & Exhibition Center
Through December 31, 2015 - Riverhead
Imagine a close-up meeting with an African penguin – a 45-minute interactive experience where children ages 5 and up and adults go behind the scenes and learn how animal experts care for these playful birds. You'll see the inner workings of the Penguin Pavilion exhibit,learn how staff cares for the exhibit's residents and enter the Penguin Preschool to meet the penguins. Reserve your spot at [email protected]