Five Festive Kids' Activities for Winter Break
A guide to all ages entertainment over winter break
Visions of sugarplums and a week off from school are certainly dancing through many children's heads by now. However, when the presents are unwrapped, some parents still have to work, and others don't celebrate the holidays, so what's a young'un to do during the week leading up to New Year's Day? Fortunately, there's plenty happening, and we've rounded up five fantastically festive ideas for Erie area kids. – Miriam Lamey
Asbury Woods' Winter Wonderland
Take a crisp evening stroll along Asbury Woods' boardwalk and "ooh" and "aaah" over the twinkling lights and displays which will frame the path from Dec. 27 – 30. Starting at 6 p.m., tiptoe through the woods, then stop by the new Otto Behrend Celebration Garden to enjoy the musical light show – a new attraction this year. Round out the evening in the Nature Center for refreshments – free hot chocolate and s'mores will be available to members – and the opportunity to make themed children's crafts. Be sure to check out the center's holiday train display. The cost is $6, and free for children ages three and under.
6 p.m. on Dec. 27 – 30 // Asbury Woods, 44105 Asbury Rd. // 835.5356
Artlore Studio's Winter Art Camp
Calling all creative kids: Artlore Studio will offer a Kids' Art Camp during the week of Dec. 26 – 30 with two sessions: the first from 9 a.m. to noon, the second from 1 to 4 p.m. All budding artists will have the chance to explore different media and express themselves through painting, collage, fabric art, and more. This year, the studio will also host an art show, where kids can show off and sell their work. "Kids love the fact that they actually learn the art forms; it's not a paint by numbers camp," say Artist/Owner Lena Logvina and Owner Stephen Trohoske. "Kids of all levels and interests seem to welcome the challenge and enjoy a friendly, nonjudgmental environment." Attendees will learn new skills and have the opportunity to "unleash their imagination and create beautiful works of art," the duo add. Only eight spaces are available per session, and cost is $120.
9 a.m. or 1 p.m. from Dec. 26 – 30 // Artlore Studio, 3402 W. Lake Rd. // 572.8876
Tom Ridge Environmental Center, Outside the Window: Snowflakes
Ever heard little voices wonder how snowflakes are made? At Outside the Window: Snowflakes on Dec. 28, children ages three to five (with an accompanying adult) will explore the mystery and beauty surrounding these chilly white phenomena, which come together for snowball-creating, fort-building, and angel-making. Young scientists will read a story about snowflakes and create a snowflake-themed craft. The number of participants is capped at 15 and the event costs $3 per child.
10:30 a.m. on Dec. 28 // Tom Ridge Environmental Center, 301 Peninsula Dr. // 835.1384
Tom Ridge Environmental Center, Discover-E: Wild Animal Tracks
The snow might be covering the ground – and look a bit samey – but that means a blank canvas for tracking wild animals. On Dec. 29, a park educator will show children ages nine to 12 how to discover and identify the tracks animals leave here in the winter. The group will meet indoors and proceed outside for a short walk where it is highly likely a wild animal track or two will be spotted. The event closes with the chance to engage in some themed arts and crafts. Class size is limited to 20 children, and the cost is $3 per child. Register by Dec. 23 to secure a spot.
11 a.m. on Dec. 29 // Tom Ridge Environmental Center, 301 Peninsula Dr. // 833.7424
ExpERIEnce Children's Museum's Noon Year's Eve
New Year's Eve parties for adults only? Not so, thanks to the ExpERIEnce Children's Museum's creative solution: NOON Year's Eve. For about 10 years, the facility has hosted an earlier party so families can celebrate together, albeit by ringing in the noon year at 12 p.m. And what's a mere 12 hours? Kids too little to stay awake won't miss out on the party. This year, the event will include the opportunity to make a firework craft, and there will be party hats and noisemakers for all. Additionally, families will be able to toast the noon year with apple juice, enjoy cookies, and have a blast with a balloon drop when the clock strikes noon. The event costs $2 per person for members and $9 for non-members. Happy Noon Year!
10 a.m. on Dec. 31 // ExpERIEnce Children's Museum, 420 French St. // 453.3743