Weekend Family Fun: NJ Makers Day Events, The Magic Flute, KB Whirly and More!

The weekend is here and that means it’s time for fun! We’ve rounded up some family-friendly happenings in our area. Take a look!

Saturday is NJ Makers Day! There are events happening all over the state focused on creativity and learning. In Essex County, there are 17 listings including Montclair, Maplewood, West Orange, Glen Ridge, and more. For more information and schedules, visit the website.

Montclair Public Library (50 South Fullerton Avenue, Montclair) will host “Era Uma Vez, na Biblioteca”: Storytime in Portuguese on Saturday from 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM. “Erma Uma Vez, na Biblioteca” (Once Upon a Time, at the Library) welcomes all families to be part of this experience of storytelling in Portuguese. The program will be run in Portuguese and will feature stories interwoven with little songs and rhymes. The storyteller, Ana Cristina Coura, is an educator with a background in psychology who has taught children in Brazil for many years. This event is for newborns to 9-year olds. Registration is required.

Barnes & Noble at Clifton Commons (395 Route 3 East, Clifton) will host The Magician’s Hat Storytime on Saturday at 11:00 AM. This inspiring story is about kids who reach down into a magician’s hat and discover something better than they could ever imagine – books that help them become whatever they want to be. Activities to follow.

Also on Saturday, Michaels of Clifton (348 Route 3 West, Riverfront Center, Clifton) will host a Kids Club Foam Easter Egg workshop from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Children between the ages of 3 and 8 can make a quick project. Sign up in store or online, or just drop in. Parent or guardian must remain on premises. Cost is $2 per child and includes supplies. A Kids Club Easter Egg Canvas workshop is available for children ages 6 and up at the same time, with a cost of $5 per person.

Liberty Science Center (222 Jersey City Boulevard, Jersey City) will host the next installment of their Family Weekend Series on Saturday from 10:00 AM to 12:30 PM. This month’s event is It’s Mophi Time! Get an introduction to 3Dprinting and the MakerLab as you build objects using the iPad app Morphi. Each session is $25 per participant, $20 for LSC Members, which includes admission to the science center for the day. These sessions are perfect for children ages 4-11. Call or email to reserve a spot.

On Saturday, Newark Museum (49 Washington Street, Newark) will celebrate NJ Makers Day with Hi-Tech Fashion from 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM. Enjoy scheduled tours of the Korean art collections to find inspiration in traditional motifs, color palettes, and design of Korean art objects. Then, take your inspiration to the MakerSPACE to create your own custom fashionable items. Make paper patterns custom-cut to fit; operate a laser cutter to engrave and cut materials like felt, leather, and neoprene; wire up “soft” circuits using conductive thread and electronic components to illuminate garments, and add finishing details like seams, buttons, and embellishments.

Newark Museum will also host its weekly Family Gallery Program at 2:00 PM. Through storytelling, music, movement, and/or sketching, families with children of all ages engage with the Museum’s diverse collections. New activities each week highlight a different collection. This week’s theme is storytelling. Meet in the lobby. This week’s theme is Memory Drawing. From 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM on Sunday, drop in to the regular weekly MakerSPACE program and experiment with the tools and materials of artists.

Central Presbyterian Church of Montclair (46 Park Street, Montclair) will host its monthly Second Saturdays program at 3:00 PM this Saturday. Opera Theatre of Montclair will present a special interactive performance of Mozart’s The Magic Flute. Be prepared to volunteer as a dragon, a spirit, a forest animal, or one of Paapageno’s birds! Suggested donation of $10 per family to support the Opera Theatre of Montclair’s and Central Presbyterian’s community programs.

Little Ivy Academy will host two NJ Makers Day events on Saturday. One will be at the Wayne PAL building (1 Pal Drive, Wayne) from 11:00 AM to 2:30 PM and the other will be at their Ridgewood Campus (600 East Glen Avenue, Ridgewood) from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM. Admission is free. Children can build and program LEGO robots, create and code video games, animate digital stories, invent awesome electronic games, and more.

Just Kidding at Symphony Space (2537 Broadway, NYC) will present KB Whirly, a high energy, multi-limbed “one-man band” show that will dazzle and delight. Featuring a back-pack drum kit, foot-powered percussion, a musical loop machine, and award-winning song craft, the audience can expect traditional and original songs with lively storytelling and interactive music-making. The show is appropriate for ages 2-7. Tickets start at $17 for non-members and $14 for members. For families with children on the autism spectrum or with sensory sensitivities, this performance features brighter lighting in the audience and lowered sound levels. Patrons are free to move about the theatre during the show.

On both Saturday and Sunday, Frelinghuysen Arboretum (353 East Hanover Avenue, Morris Township) will host Winter Weekend Photo Scavenger Hunts. Families are welcome to participate any time between 9:00 AM and 3:30 PM. Grab a camera or a phone and stop by the Hagerty Education Center for a nature photo scavenger hunt and win a prize. Scavenger lists change every month and March’s theme is “Pop Up.” Cost is $10 per family; cash only.

On Sunday from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM at the Frelinghuysen Arboretum, participate in Rollin’ in Dough: Make Your Own Playdough. Children ages 4-7 can make homemade playdough, creating their own custom color and using natural scents to make their dough smell like flowers, herbs, or fruit. This activity is $5 per child. Preregistration is recommended but walk-ins are welcome. Call 973.326.7601 to register.

At 3:00 PM on Sunday, NJPAC’s Victoria Theater (1 Center Street, Newark) will host National Dance Institute: Harlem Night Song. The spectacular young dancers of National Dance Institute’s Celebration Team arrive at NJPAC with this vibrant production that celebrates the work of legendary artists like Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Florence Mills, Jacob Lawrence, and Hector Lavoe. Tickets are $5.

Mayo Performing Arts Center (100 South Street, Morristown) will host Sing Along with The Muppet Movie on Sunday at 2:00 PM. This family-friendly, interactive experience lets you renew your rainbow connection with the 1979 classic Jim Henson film. Children and adults are invited to yell out famous lines, blow bubbles, dance in the aisles, and of course, sing along! Tickets start at $20.

Bergen Performing Arts Center (30 N. Van Brunt Street, Englewood) will host Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live on Sunday at 1:00 PM and 4:00 PM. Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo guides your family on a breathtaking tour that begins in pre-historic Australia. You’ll meet and interact with an eye-popping collection of amazingly life-like dinosaurs and other creatures brought to life by a team of skilled performers and puppeteers. Tickets start at $15. A VIP meet and greet is also available.

Also on Sunday, the Drop-In Studio at Montclair Art Museum (3 South Mountain Avenue, Montclair) continues between 1:00 PM and 4:00 PM. The Helen & Bill Geyer Art Studio will be stocked with a range of art materials to explore with a seasoned MAM studio instructor. Open ended activities are designed to spark creativity in artists of all ages and abilities. This is free for members and included in Museum admission for non-members.

Rubin Museum of Art (150 West 17th Street, NYC) hosts Family Sundays. Drop into the Museum between 1:00 PM and 4:00 PM for casual art-making and family-friendly activities for children and their accompanying adults. Designed for children ages 3 and up with accompanying adults, the art activities change monthly and connect with the art and ideas of the Himalayas. At 2:00 PM, enjoy the family exhibition tour and go on your own thematic gallery search. March means it’s time to celebrate the festival of Holi by creating a dazzling landscape of colors.

For more family friendly events, check out Baristanet Calendar.

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