Weekend Fun: Spring Break Begins, NYC Fairs, Skippyjon Jones

The Best Events and Activities for NYC Kids, Teens, Tweens and Families April 23-24

To the delight of millions of NYC public school students, spring break is finally here. Of course, families will find plenty going on around town this weekend to kick off the vacation. Catch a show: the hysterical Bello Mania is back at the New Victory Theater and Theatreworks USA's Skippyjon Jones Snow What—a kooky version of the Snow White fairy tale—is playing at the Kaye Playhouse.

Outdoor festivals abound this weekend. Check out the action-packed Tribeca on Location Family Street Fair; the High Line's kickoff to its new season of programming, Culture Shock; the Dumbo Family Festival in Brooklyn Bridge Park where you can also check out the newly opened Brooklyn Boulders climbing wall; or the artsy, dragon-filled St. George Day on Staten Island.

If you are looking for inspiring ways to spend the next week, we've got a list of 50 incredible things to do, awesome staycation ideas, a slew of seasonal day trip destinations and the rest of our Spring Guide, all packed with suggestions.

We wish those celebrating a Happy Passover.


Bello Nock's amazing antics at Bello Mania always wow the kids (and parents). Photo courtesy of the production.

All Weekend

Bello Mania — Midtown West
From the April GoList: Seeing Bello Nock in action is a spring break tradition for my 11-year-old son and me. We saw Bello Mania when it premiered in 2013, last year and again last weekend! It's a great show—funny and full of spectacular feats including his signature stunt where he climbs all the way to the New Vic ceiling on a swaying pole right over the audiences' heads.

3D Peanuts Screening and Comic Strip Workshop — Astoria
If you missed the Peanuts gang in their first full-length Hollywood movie, you can catch screenings of the flick through Thursday at the Museum of the Moving Image. After the film, kids can participate in a creative workshop designing their own character and comic strip. Film screening is free with paid admission; additional fee for workshop.

Earth Day Festival — the Bronx
Celebrate our big blue marble at the Bronx Zoo. Festivities include nature walks, an Earth fair, a musical about recycling and keeper chats. Free with general admission.

Saturday, April 23

St. George Day — Staten Island
Another April GoList pick: Celebrate Earth Day and the arts near the Staten Island ferry terminal at this annual fest. There's a ton of fun on tap, including local artists selling their wares and leading workshops, live music and dance performances, storytelling and poetry, an Earth Day Zone full of eco info, an entire area devoted to kids with arts and crafts, and a puppet show that recounts the St. George dragon-slaying legend with a less gruesome ending. The highlight of the day is the 35-foot puppet dragon parade. FREE


Stilt walkers dazzle at the annual Tribeca Film Festival's street fair. Photo courtesy of the festival.

Tribeca on Location: Tribeca Film Festival Family Street Fair — Tribeca
More April GoList fun: The beloved Tribeca Film Festival Family Street Fair—always the highlight of the festival's family programming—has a new name: Tribeca on Location. This community celebration will feature engaging ways to learn about the behind-the-scenes magic of filmmaking through events and workshops. But don't worry! There will still be all the old favorites including street games, vendors, performances by Broadway shows and the interactive Games for Change Public Arcade. The concurrent Tribeca/ESPN Sports Day will also be back with more athletic amusements. FREE

New York Road Runners Youth Jamboree — Randall's Island
The NYRR hosts a no-cost track and field event for kids at Icahn Stadium. No experience necessary. Children are grouped by grade and gender, and get to run, jump and throw. The preregistration deadline has passed, but you can sign up onsite starting at 7:45am. FREE


Score a turn on the brand-new climbing wall in Brooklyn Bridge Park during the Dumbo Family Fest. Photo courtesy Dumbo Boulders.

Dumbo Family Fest — Dumbo
Hit this annual family party to check out the brand-new Dumbo Boulders outdoor climbing wall, get a glitter tattoo, enjoy live music and performances and play games on the park's new lawns. This year the organizers have created a 20-foot-long wooden replica of the Brooklyn Bridge for the fest. The first 2,000 people to arrive will get to decorate the mini-bridge by painting white carnations on the towers and the deck. FREE

46th Annual Earth Day Celebration — East Harlem
The Museum of the City of New York hosts its annual Earth Day shindig within its galleries. Explore the Activist New York exhibit scavenger hunt-style, design an Earth Day T-shirt, enjoy music, stories and healthy snacks, too. Free with paid museum admission.

Culture Shock — Greenwich Village, Chelsea, Meatpacking District
Head to the High Line to kick off their new season of cultural programming with an outdoor family fest. Enjoy a variety of live music, including a bilingual sing-along (Spanish/English), spoken word and dance performances, Lego building, superhero fun and a DJ dance party. FREE


Meet Elephant and Piggie at The New-York Historical Society. Photo courtesy of the venue.

Elephant and Piggie Meet and Greet — Upper West Side
The stars of the Elephant and Piggie book series will greet and pose with young fans at The New-York Historical Society, as part of the museum's ongoing kid lit exhibit, The Art and Whimsy of Mo Willems. Free with paid admission.

See all Saturday events.

Sunday, April 24

Collaborative Giant Hula-Hoop Weaves — Hudson Square
A hula-hoop weave? This we've got to see! Kids will work together to weave a new project at the Children's Museum of the Arts (CMA), relying on a giant hula hoop. The event takes its inspiration from the museum's ongoing Sew What? exhibit, specifically Sheila Pepe’s hoop-studded installation. Free with paid admission.


All ages will love making new furry friends at the pop-up petting zoo at the Queens Botanical Garden's Arbor Festival. Photo courtesy the garden.

Arbor Festival — Flushing
In honor of Arbor Day, kids enjoy all kinds of nature fun at Queens Botanical Garden, including a petting zoo, pony rides, games and crafts, face painting, composting workshops, garden tours and live music. Parents can take in the cherry blossoms here—and even a beer tent.

Skippyjon Jones Snow What — Upper East Side
One of top family theater picks for the season. This rollicking musical from Theatreworks USA is based on one of Judith Schachner's popular picture books about a quirky Siamese feline who goes on pretend adventures as his alter ego, Skippito Friskito, a sword-wielding, Zorro-like Chihuahua. Snow What is an hourlong reimagining of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs packed with peppy songs.

Worldwide Pin Hole Camera Day — Staten Island
The historic Alice Austen House Museum will provide pinhole cameras, paper and the chance to use the darkroom to develop one picture per person (additional exposures available for a fee). Darkroom reservations suggested. FREE

See all Sunday events.

Don’t forget: There are always LOTS of other great kid and family happenings in our Event Calendar.

Top photo: Balloon animal fun at the Tribeca Film Festival's family street fair. Courtesy the festival.

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