We've rounded up the best July events for kids and families in Brooklyn. Find fun things to do throughout the month.
A Night at the Theater
Staten Island's Harbor Lights Theater Company prides itself as a bridge between the Broadway and community theater. But it's hardly a Waiting for Guffman scene; led by stage and screen veterans Tamara Jenkins and Jay Montgomery, Harbor Lights has benefitted from a host Broadway veterans such as Grammy winner Stephen Schwartz and actress Kathy Najimy, and Broadway talent living in Staten Island. The Company's production of Meredith Wilson's The Music Man will be as professional and high-quality as anything on the Great White Way. The libretto follows a con man who poses as a youth band leader selling instruments and uniforms and attempts to skip town with the cash. Eventually he learns the wrongs of his ways and falls in love with the town piano teacher. Young theater enthusiasts will truly enjoy this! July 8 through July 17. 8pm. Age: TW, TE, AD. $30; $25 students and seniors. Snug Harbor Cultural Center, 1000 Richmond Terrace, Staten Island. 866-811-4111.
Break Your Diet Now!
Every July, Governors Island plays host to Good Beer Month, a four-week celebration of really good suds -- with nary an Anheiser-Busch product in sight (all offerings are entirely craft-brewed). The culminating activity of that event is a barbecue that ranks as pure debauchery -- food-wise, at least. At Cook Out NYC, expect expert grill masters, brewmasters, food constantly coming off the grill, kimchi (and a kimchi-eating contest), food and merchandise vendors, and entertainment. It's worth breaking that Atkins diet for just a day! July 10. 11:30-5pm. Ages: All. $25-55. For more info: 212-440-2200.
Trees Do Grow in Brooklyn
Our area truly comes alive during July, when you can get lost in Prospect Park and imagine yourself deep in the Eastern Woodlands, or take off in a kayak through the reeds and thickets of Jamaica Bay's wildlife estuary. Indeed, you needn't go far to feel communion with nature, while the inner city barks at your heels.
Sea lubbers can sail aboard the legendary Clearwater, a sloop synonymous with folk music icon Pete Seeger, who launched it in 1969 as a sailing lab dedicated to environmental awareness. Reservations are recommended. July 10. 3-6pm. Age: All. $50; $15 children. 290 Conover Street (at Fairway supermarket), Red Hook. 845-265-8080.
Another great activity that takes place on water, at least if you're standing on Governors Island, is Go Fly a Kite. With its harbor winds and beautiful surroundings, this great destination is excellent for kiting, especially when the Governors Island Alliance provides some free kites. July 23. 11am. Age: All. FREE. For more info: 212-440-2200.
At Brooklyn Bridge Park, City of Water Day offers a day of water-related activities. Education workshops, fishing, and seining under the Manhattan Bridge mix with entertainment and food. July 16. 10am-4pm. Age: All. FREE. Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1 and Pier 6. Old Fulton Street (Pier 1); Furman Street and Atlantic Avenue (Pier 6), Brooklyn Heights/DUMBO. 718-802-0306.
Who You Gonna Call?
Ghostbusters will make an appearance at Brooklyn Bridge Park's screening of the classic film (rated PG), part of the park's Movies with a View series. Enjoy the film along with a gorgeous backdrop of lower Manhattan. There will also be DJ'd music beforehand and a selection of film shorts curated by BAMcinematek. July 14, 6-11pm. FREE. Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1, One Fulton Street, DUMBO/Brooklyn Heights.
Whistle for Ezra
Those of us who know from great children's literature know Ezra Jack Keats, the Brooklyn-born son of Jewish immigrants whose picture books combined masterful collages with loveable stories featuring an African American boy (Peter) growing up in the big city. Keats's work was groundbreaking in its multiculturalism, and it arrived at the height of the civil rights era. At the Ezra Jack Keats Family Concert at Celebrate Brooklyn, Dan Zanes (pictured), another Brooklyn-associated practitioner of child-friendly media, collaborates with the Brooklyn Youth Orchestra and dancers from the Bed Stuy Veterans for a program honoring Keats and his trailblazing work. July 16. 4pm. Age: All. FREE. Prospect Park Bandshell, 9th Street and Prospect Park West. 9th Street entrance, Park Slope.
Unleash your swashbuckling self at the Red Hook Pirates Festival, presented by the EnviroMedia Mobile. Visitors can learn about conservation and environmentalism amidst a sea of vendors, musicians, artists, contests, and more activities than you can shake a sword at. July 30, 11am-5pm. FREE. IKEA/Erie Basin Park, 1 Beard Street, Red Hook.
Also see: Bronx Zoo Debuts New LEGO Exhibit this Summer
Family Outing: Fort Montgomery State Historic Site
Our Online Calendar, for even more upcoming family events in Brooklyn and the NYC area