This month, the Vanderbilt Museum and Planetarium will offer a variety of programs to keep the kids busy during the winter recess. The 43-acre Vanderbilt estate was transformed into a museum in 1950, when William K. Vanderbilt II donated his property to the county, stipulating that it be used as a museum and house his collection of marine, natural history, and ethnographic artifacts.
The Penguins and Polar Bear Workshop gives children the opportunity to learn about polar animals and their habitats while exploring the museum's wildlife exhibit; the workshop will conclude with a polar art project. Other workshops include the Scarab Mummy Pendant Workshop, a Zebra Mask Workshop, and a Watercolor Collage Workshop. All of the programs include a tour of related Vanderbilt Museum collections along with a creative art project that children can take home.
During the break, the Planetarium will host hourly state-of-the-art shows like A Trip to the Planets, Journey through the Solar System, and Laser Beatles. The shows feature moving images from the Vanderbilt's video library and the latest NASA space missions, projected on the 60-foot domed Sky Theater and accompanied by music and laser lights. The new SkyLase laser-projection system that debuted on New Year's Eve enhances the shows' visuals by filling the dome with laser images. The Vanderbilt Planetarium, which opened to the public in 1971, is still the largest facility of its kind in Long Island.
Where: The Vanderbilt Museum and Planetarium, 180 Little Neck Road, Centerport
When: February 19-27; see full schedule online.
How much: $7; $3 children 12 and under. Daytime planetarium $5; $3 children 12 and under. Workshops $20-$35.
For more information: 631-854-5579 or www.vanderbiltmuseum.org
Also see: February Family Activities in Suffolk County, Long Island
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