The options for finding fun family activities in New York City are limitless. Below we've compiled the best of today's events. Whether your family prefers music and museums or theater and libraries, check out today's family activities in Manhattan. Making plans for next weekend? Take a glance at the NY Metro Parents' calendar!
Want to see what's going on next weekend or when you have those few days off? Check out the NY Metro Parents' calendar!
At The Clay Bar - Children's Museum of the Arts
April 15, 2013 - SoHo
Create your own clay pals, pets, monsters, or decor at the clay bar.
Tae Kwon Do & Fitness Kung Fu for Children and Young Adults - New York Public Library - Countee Cullen Library
April 15, 2013 - Harlem
Learn to defend yourself while getting fit. Sixth degree Black Belt Master Wentworth Small leads fitness through Wu Shu Movements and Fitness Kung Fu. Participants will learn the fundamentals of discipline, balance, health, and wellness. The course promotes self confidence and is a good way to meet new friends.
The Orchid Show - The New York Botanical Garden
Through April 22, 2013 - Bronx
The 11th annual exhibition celebrates this storied flower in all its amazing forms with thousands of brilliantly colored orchids. The largest exhibition of its kind in the United States also offers insight into caring for orchids, music from around the world, and a gorgeous setting for evening cocktails.
Elaborate and kaleidoscopic displays throughout the galleries of the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory explode with orchids in an amazing array of colors, shapes, sizes, and textures. Tens of thousands of blooms -- blue and purple vandas, green and yellow cymbidiums, delicate pink and white moth orchids, and more -- stand out amid stately palms and exotic tropical leaves.
This year, The Orchid Show is designed by Francisca P. Coelho, Vivian and Edward Merrin Vice President for Glasshouses and Exhibitions at the Garden. Coehlho is best known for her plantsmanship and key role in the design and development of high profile shows in the Conservatory.
There will be demonstrations, Q&A's, guided tours, lectures, evening events, and classes. An All-Garden Pass includes admission to the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, Everett Children's Adventure Garden, Rock Garden, Tram Tour, and more. Through April 22.
Orchid Care Demonstrations - The New York Botanical Garden
Through April 22, 2013 - Bronx
A series of hands-on demonstrations shows you how to grow and care for orchids at home. Topics vary each weekend and cover the most frequently asked questions on topics such as Potting and Dividing Orchids, Basic Orchid Care, and Fragrant Orchids.
Music from the World of Orchids - The New York Botanical Garden
Through April 22, 2013 - Bronx
Orchids intrigue and inspire people in every country and culture. Enjoy a selection of music from around the world as different artists play popular tunes from a featured continent each weekend.
The Orchid Show Q&A - The New York Botanical Garden
Through April 22, 2013 - Bronx
Garden guides highlight parts of the permanent collection and special exhibition to add insight to your experience of The Orchid Show.
'A (Tooth) Fairy Tale' - Vital Theatre Company, McGinn/Cazale Theatre
Through April 28, 2013 - Upper West Side
Collecting teeth and delivering quarters is tiring work, and The Tooth Fairy is ready for a vacation. Luckily, she meets a young boy named Samuel who is sick and tired of being a kid, and all the rules that go with it. But when Samuel and the Tooth Fairy arrange to switch places, nothing goes exactly as planned as adventures ensue across the Upper West Side of Manhattan and throughout New York City. A (Tooth) Fairy Tale is a wild, silly adventure filled with shiny quarters, sugary candy, and learning who you're really meant to be. Through April 28. Saturdays and Sundays at 11am and 1pm.
Macy's Sunday Story Time - DiMenna Children's History Museum at New-York Historical Society
Through April 30, 2013 - Upper West Side
Enjoy a different story every week with DiMenna Children's History Museum at New-York Historical Society. Support for the Macy's Sunday Story Time provided by the Macy's Foundation.
The Panoramic River: the Hudson and the Thames - Hudson River Museum
Through May 19, 2013 - Yonkers
In the late 18th century, British artists developed the large-scale panorama, which became a popular form of entertainment in Europe and the United States. The Hudson River Museum's exhibition, "The Panoramic River: the Hudson and the Thames," explores the panoramic vista as the ideal expression for a new, all-embracing way of seeing the landscape that influenced how the public and artists perceived it as well. By the early 19th century, painters such as Robert Havell Jr. worked to express this panoramic perspective in their choice and depiction of vistas. Havell and other artists in the exhibition such as Thomas Cole, Jasper Cropsey, and John Kensett, favored the chain of cities, suburbs, and countryside along these two rivers, where horizontal planes and historical associations gave form to both artistic and cultural expression.
"The Panoramic River" features loans from museums, galleries, and private collections. Museums lending paintings include: Baltimore Museum of Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Fenimore Art Museum, The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center at Vassar College; Maryland State Archives; Metropolitan Museum of Art; The New-York Historical Society; and Princeton University Art Museum.
"The Panoramic River" is organized by Hudson River Museum co-curators Bartholomew Bland, Director of Curatorial Affairs, and Laura Vookles, Chief Curator of Collections. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with additional essays by Pat Hardy, Curator of Paintings, Prints and Drawings, Museum of London, and Geoff Snell, Doctoral Student, University of Sussex and the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, England.
The exhibition and the accompanying catalogue have been made possible by a generous grant from the Mr. and Mrs. Raymond J. Horowitz Foundation for the Arts, Inc. On view through May 19, 2013.
Shababa™ Saturday Mornings with Karina - 92Y
Through May 25, 2013 - Upper East Side
Celebrate the joys of Shabbat with the Shababa™ community in this intergenerational family Shabbat experience including singing, art projects, playground visits, holiday themed celebrations, and more. Saturdays, ongoing, 10:30am-12pm.
Shababa™ Saturday Club - 92Y
Through May 25, 2013 - Upper East Side
Let your child explore and expand their connection to Shabbat, Jewish holidays, and Jewish values in a warm, informal communal setting. The staff will engage them through creative and traditional approaches. Saturdays, ongoing, 10:30am-12pm.
Manolo Valdes Monumental Sculptures - The New York Botanical Garden
Through May 26, 2013 - Bronx
Drawing inspiration from the natural landscape of the Botanical Garden, seven towering sculptures by acclaimed Spanish artist Manolo Valdes showcase the relationship between art and nature.
Jazz for Kids - Jazz Standard
Through May 26, 2013 - Gramercy
The Jazz Standard Youth Orchestra (JSYO), which includes about 25 talented musicians between the ages of 11 and 18, burns through jazz classics while listeners enjoys Blue Smoke's brunch menu (lunch menu, kids menu, and full bar are also available). Jazz Standard donates $1 from each kid's menu item sold to Spoons Across America.
10-Foot Cops - Children's Museum of Manhattan
Through May 27, 2013 - Upper West Side
The Children's Museum of Manhattan is hosting 10-Foot Cops: The NYPD's Mounted Unit, a glimpse into the history and daily lives of officers from New York City's Mounted Police Force. Opening January 26 and running through May 27, the exhibit is on loan from the New York City Police Museum, which is temporarily closed due to damage sustained from Hurricane Sandy. NYCPM will reopen in the Spring of 2013.
Since its origins in the 19th century, the NYPD's Mounted Police has been regarded as one of New York City's most elite units. Unique, highly visible, and known by their colorful nickname, 10-Foot Cops, these officers are involved in all aspects of policing the city.
10-Foot Cops uses more than 40 original artifacts to explore the lives the men, women, and horses at the heart of this mounted unit. Children can have their picture taken sitting in a saddle and see uniforms, paintings, historic photographs and illustrations. The exhibit also includes a replica of a NYPD horse stable and shorts from the 1940 NYPD film "Training Police Horses" and a clip from the Department's "Inside the NYPD" from 2007. Visitors will come away with an appreciation of the training and dedication required of both police officer and horse alike from the story of the mounted unit's rich history and their continuing day-to-day policing operations in parks, on city streets and at parades and public demonstrations.
Little New-Yorkers - DiMenna Children's History Museum at New-York Historical Society
Through May 31, 2013 - Upper West Side
On Tuesdays and Fridays kids ages 2-4 can explore New York City through singing, stories, and activities. Each class will include story readings, time with historic toys, free exploration, a special Little New-Yorkers hello song, and time in the museum or a craft project, which will alternate each week. Some of the stories that will be featured include Larry Gets Lost in NYC, Don't Let the Pigeon Ride the Bus, The Little Red Lighthouse and the Great Gray Bridge, New York from Above, and Knuffle Bunny.
The Cultural Sunday School, Kidschool, Preschool, and Bar and Bat Mitzvah Programs - City Congregation for Humanistic Judaism
Through June 02, 2013 - Upper West Side
Two Sundays a month, tots and teens have fun exploring Jewish history, traditions, holidays, culture, and ethics. The innovative Bar/Bat Mitzvah program involves classes and an individual mentored journey to discover roots, connections, and beliefs.
Dunhuang: Buddhist Art at the Gateway of the Silk Road - China Institute Gallery
Through June 09, 2013 - Upper East Side
Dunhuang: Buddhist Art at the Gateway of the Silk Road will be on view at China Institute Gallery from Feb. 7 through June 9, 2013.
The western gateway to China, Dunhuang is one of the world's most esteemed art shrines and cultural heritage sites. The exhibition will explore art and ritual practices from the golden eras of the Northern (420-589) and Tang (618-907) dynasties.
Among the highlights will be objects from the art of Buddhist practice including clay sculptures, wooden figures, silk banners, molded bricks, and paper cuts.
The exhibition is organized by China Institute Gallery and Dunhuang Academy under the direction of Willow Weilan Hai Chang and is curated by Fan Jinshi, Director, Dunhuang Academy.
Face to Face - Children's Museum of the Arts
Through June 09, 2013 - SoHo
For twenty-five years, The Children's Museum of the Arts has provided children of all backgrounds the creative tools needed to promote self-expression and esteem through visual and performing arts. In celebration of its 25th anniversary, CMA is proud to present Face to Face, an exhibit that offers a fascinating exploration of self-identity through still, moving, and living portraits, as portrayed by children using traditional methods of painting and drawing as well as technology.
The main exhibit will consist of 40 portraits selected from CMA's Permanent Collection of children's art from over 50 countries, dating back to the 1930's. These pieces represent
a range of historical moments, cultures and medium and will be hung salon style throughout the gallery.
To incorporate CMA's philosophy of hands-on art-making, the exhibit will be accompanied by a variety of interactive installations that examine the texture, shape and sound of portraits. CMA will set up hands-on stations that will encourage visitors to become part of the exhibit, including reimagined versions of a typical self-portrait station. The CMA Media Lab will also create a photo booth in which visitors can take photos that will be projected on the wall. These photos will stream into a montage that will be accessioned into the collection and will also serve as a fascinating time-lapse of the exhibit as a whole.
Face to Face also offers aspiring young artists the opportunity to submit their own works for a chance to become part of the museum's Permanent Collection. CMA will accept 25 original original works, in honor of 25 years of operation, to be selected by the museum's curatorial team. One selected piece will be chosen by an online viewer's choice campaign, hosted through CMA's website and social media platforms.
To explore dimension, the exhibition will include a large-scale Pin Impression Board, offering several panels for visitors to experiment with and view their face as artwork.
CMA will also present their first ever Artist-At-Work station in the Fine Arts Studio. Here, guest artists will volunteer their time and allow visitors to observe them in action as they create original portraits.
Wynn Newhouse Awards' Artists Exhibit - The Palitz Gallery at the Lubin House
Through June 13, 2013 - Upper East Side
Works of eight Wynn Newhouse award winning artists, all with disabilities, will comprise an exhibition at the Palitz Gallery in Manhattan, to be held April 15 through June 13, 2013. An informal reception for current and past winners, judges, and friends of the program will be held at the gallery in May.
The Wynn Newhouse awards (wnewhouseawards.com) are bestowed upon exceptionally accomplished fine artists who have risen to the top tiers of their profession despite being challenged by infirmities recognized by the Americans with Disabilities Act. The award was established in memory of collector Wynn Newhouse, who recognized and championed the talent and creativity of artists with disabilities. The awardees were chosen in January by an invited panel of judges who are highly respected in both the arts and disabilities communities. More than 35 artists were nominated for the 2012 award. In total, eight artists were chosen to receive the prestigious award and accompanying monetary prize.
This year's judges included: J. David Farmer, Director, Dahesh Museum; Mark Parsons, Artist, Pratt Institute; Kathryn Price, Curator, Williams College Museum of Art; and Ealan Wingate, Director, Gagosian Gallery.
'Pippi' - Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre
Through June 23, 2013 - Upper West Side
City Parks Foundation is proud to announce the encore run of its hit 2007 production, Pippi beginning January 15, 2013 at the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre in Central Park.
More info from the press release:
Pippi is a fresh retelling of the classic "Pippi Longstocking" tales by Astrid Lindgren, adapted for the stage by award winning playwright, Zakiyyah Alexander. The production features nearly two dozen, hand-made marionettes crafted by the expert puppeteers from the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre.
In addition to the brilliant artistry of the production, kids and families will enjoy the incredible adventures of quick-witted and super-strong Pippi as she overcomes bullies and burglars, all while fending off social conventions that threaten to prevent her friends from being creative.
"We welcome kids and families to enjoy this revival of 'Pippi,'" said Alison Tocci, President of City Parks Foundation. "The Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre is one of the most enchanting children's theaters in the country and a perfect place to honor Astrid Lindgren, Sweden's legendary author of children's literature."
Pippi is directed by Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre's Artistic Director Bruce Cannon, with original set design by Kevin Roach and a dynamic score from Darryl Kojak.
Inclusive Weekend Classes - Children's Museum of the Arts
Through June 30, 2013 - SoHo
An opportunity for children with physical disabilities ages 7 and older and their able-bodied siblings or friends to participate in a drop-off art class together.
This program is intended to make the museum's art-making accessible to all needs and provide an opportunity for siblings to spend time with each other and with peers who have similar experiences.If a child with a physical disability doesn't have a sibling to attend the session with him or her, the child may bring along a friend instead.
Each session offers a new workshop that is designed to meet the needs of the participants. This program is staffed with CMA teaching artists and a licensed occupational therapist(s).?This program is based on a class-like model in which the teaching artists and the OT work to facilitate the group experience, with a keen eye towards the special needs of the participants;?if your child requires dedicated one-on-one attention you should consider bringing a paraprofessional or other adult to help facilitate your child's experience.
Parents are encouraged to drop off their children, though they are welcome to stay if they wish or remain close by in another part of the museum.
To sign up for a session, discuss your child's needs with the program director in advance of the session. Contact Rachel for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our Global Kitchen: Food, Nature, Culture - American Museum of Natural History
Through August 30, 2013 - Upper West Side
Food is the one thing that unites every culture, race, and generation: over one billion people work in agriculture and every person eats. Food is used as a social ritual, a holiday tradition, a symbol of comfort, a gift, and an excuse to catch up with friends. The curators of this exhibition hope it will encourage visitors (both grown ups and kids) to examine a thing we all do everyday -- eat! -- and think about everything that goes into that act more consciously. The exhibition touches on a lot of serious issues such as the scarcity of food predicted for the future, alternatives to avoid that shortage, and childhood obesity.
MoMA Art Lab: People - The Museum of Modern Art
Through August 31, 2013 - Midtown West
In MoMA's latest interactive space, MoMA Art Lab: People, visitors of all ages can discover the ways in which artists represent the human form. Investigate body language through art-making activities, digital play, and other creative explorations. Stop by before or after visiting MoMA's galleries.
'Pippin' - Music Box Theatre
Through December 22, 2013 - Midtown
Everything has its season, and this season, Pippin returns to Broadway for the first time since it first thrilled audiences 40 years ago! With a beloved score by Tony Award� nominee Stephen Schwartz (Wicked) that includes the favorites ?Magic to Do,? ?Glory? and ?Corner of the Sky,? Pippin tells the story of a young prince on a death-defying journey to find meaning in his existence. Will he choose a happy but simple life? Or will he risk everything for a singular flash of glory?
Direct from an acclaimed run at Boston?s American Repertory Theater, Pippin is directed by Diane Paulus, director of the 2009 and 2012 Tony Award winners for Best Musical Revival (Hair and The Gershwins? Porgy and Bess). This captivating production features sizzling choreography in the style of Bob Fosse and breathtaking acrobatics by Les 7 Doigts de la Main, the creative force behind the nationwide sensation Traces.
Whales: Giants of the Deep - American Museum of Natural History
Through January 05, 2014 - Upper West Side
Whales: Giants of the Deep will transport visitors to the vibrant underwater world of the mightiest animals on Earth as it encourages museum-goers to explore the latest research about these marine mammals as well as the central role they have played for thousands of years in human cultures. Through a variety of interactive exhibits, kids (and their grownups, who will find themselves just as fascinated!) experience a re-created dive to the depths of the sea with a sperm whale on the hunt for a giant squid, crawl through a life-size replica of the heart of the blue whale ? the largest living animal on the planet ? listen to whale croons, and meet whale riders, scientists, and former whaling families. At the heart of its mission, the exhibition explores the close connections humans and whales have shared for centuries.