Excellent Art Classes for New York Kids

69229.jpgThe Henry Street Settlement’s Abrons Arts Center offers affordable, superb programs for all ages and skill levels in dance, music, theatre, and the visual arts. This Winter, due to some reshuffling of classes, some of the classes are under-enrolled. If you are looking for art classes for you toddler through high schooler, this is a wonderful opportunity to take advantage of one of New York's incredible cultural institutions.

A Film Festival For Kids

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The New York International Children's Film Festival is a two week long event packed with the best film for kids from around the world. Beginning February 29th and running the first two weeks of March, a highly selective collection of animation, live action, documentary, and experimental films created for children 3-18 will be shown. This is the largest film festival for kids in North America and has sold out in advance for the past several years, so if you want to go, buy tickets now.

Ever dream of going to the Oscars? The awards ceremony for the NYICFF is a child appropriate version with a catered reception afterward where your little Spielberg can schmooze with the film-makers.

Why hot tap water is dangerous for kids

Ever try to save a little time heating water by starting with hot tap water? Apparently, you should never drink or cook with hot water from the tap. According to an article in The New York Times, "hot water dissolves contaminants more quickly than cold water, and many pipes in homes contain lead that can leach into water. And lead can damage the brain and nervous system, especially in young children."

Mamma Mia, did you say free?

On Tuesday February 5 and 12 and Wednesday February 6 and 13 kids aged 6-18, Kids Night on Broadway lets kids see a Broadway show for free when accompanied by a full paying adult. Although many of the shows have sold out, there are still some shows with space still available, including Stomp, Phantom, Mamma Mia, Spamalot (with the one and only Clay Aiken) and my personal favorite, Avenue Q though that one is definitely for a kid closer to age 18 than 6.

Free Passes to Botanic Garden Lunar New Year Celebration

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Today begins the two week Lunar New Year celebration in New York City with fun family events through out the city. This weekend is the Flower Market in Chinatown and although they publicize that there are children's activities, I have gone the last few years and been disappointed. Save going to Chinatown for the parade and cultural festival next weekend.

This year I'm excited about the Brooklyn Botanic Garden Lunar New Year Celebration and Flower Market. In addition to a beautiful Flower Market selling traditional Asian plants and cut flowers (where better to buy plants and flowers than from the experts at the Botanic Garden), there will be many interesting workshops, activities, food and performances for both kids and parents.

Kids will be able to create paper versions of New Year flowers, make citrus sachets using material from culturally significant plants, and pot up a lucky bamboo stalk to take home, while learning about its historical meaning in parts of Asia. Adults can even have a turn learning the ancient Chinese art of brush painting in a hands-on workshop.

The Year of the Rat will be welcomed with a full lineup of exciting entertainers, including spectacular music and dance performances for the whole family by some of the most renowned Asian performance groups in the world. I think kids will enjoy the Qi Shu Fang Peking Opera. - opera with martial arts, acrobatics, and music! The Red Silk Dancers use silk fans, fiery ribbons, and shiny metal clashes in “Silk and Sword�. And kids will be awed by the Korean Traditional Music and Dance Institute of New York's dance and powerful drumming.

An extraordinary exhibition on loan from the Beijing Museum of Fine Arts, featuring contemporary paintings, papercuts, and textile art made by peasant women living in China, will be on display in the Steinhardt Conservatory Gallery for families to enjoy.

When the kids get munchy visit the Terrace CafГѓВ© which will feature a special menu of culinary delights from China, Korea, and Vietnam, including Korean kimchi, a special soup, and celebratory sweets!

The whole thing takes place indoors on Sunday, February 3 from 10am-4pm. All the workshops and performances are free with admission and we're giving away two free adult admission passes (kids under 12 are free). You can check the BBG website for a full schedule of performances, events and more information.

Just leave a comment on this post for a chance to win a pair of adult passes to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden Lunar New Year Celebrations. A winner will be selected at 6pm tonight and notified by email.

And check back at the site later in the day for some more weekend activities.

Kicking off camp month with ACA camp fairs

campguide.jpgIn the country people spend the cold winter months planning their gardens. In New York City people spend their winters planning their summer vacations. Throughout February, Mommy Poppins will be bringing you lots of information about camps and summer programs for kids from toddler up through teens.

To get a jump start on the whole process, you may want to visit one of the American Camp Association camp fairs on Saturday, February 7 at Downtown Manhattan Friends Seminary or on Sunday, February 8 at The Berkeley Carroll School in Park Slope.

Visiting a camp fair is good way to scan through lots of different camps at one time and hone in on a couple that seem to fit your child's interests. Expect camps to have videos about their programs and Camp Directors to be available to answer questions. If you have an older child, definitely bring them along so they can check it all out for themselves.

See the times and locations of upcoming camp fairs.

For more information on summer camps, visit our Summer Camp Guide.

 

Best Posts of 1/08

This month we've been doing lots of indoor activities posts. Now we've gathered all our winter fun posts in to The Mommy Poppins Winter Fun Guide. It makes finding activities easy.

TOP POSTS FOR JANUARY

100 Things to Do With Your Kids in NY Before They Grow Up

Find Spring Inside a Giant Dome

Free Play at Tribeca’s New Indoor Play Space

Mamalu Indoor Playspace and Cafe is Mamaliscious

Mommy Poppins Readers’ Top 25 Places for NYC Kids

More Mommy Poppins news after the break.

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