Weekend Family Fun: Lenape Day, Scarecrows, Zooper Animals, and More!

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The weekend is here! There are so many fun and family-friendly activities happening in our area, so you won’t be bored for a minute and we’ve rounded them up right here for you.

MATILDA The Musical will continue this weekend at The Growing Stage (7 Ledgewood Avenue, Netcong). Inspired by the twisted genius of Roald Dahl, the Tony Award-winning Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical is a captivating masterpiece from the Royal Shakespeare Company that revels in the anarchy of childhood, the power of imagination, and the inspiring story of a girl who dreams of a better life. Performances are Saturday and Sunday at 4:00 PM. The show will close October 20th. Tickets are $28 for adults, $18 for young people, and $22 for seniors.

Just Kidding at Symphony Space (2537 Broadway at 95th Street, NYC) will continue its season on Saturday with Joanie Leeds & The Nightlights at 11:00 AM. Tuneful melodies and rich, funny lyrics give irresistible zip to songs about sunglasses at the beach, goodnight hugs, popcorn popping, and more. Tickets are $14 for members and $17 for non-members.

Newark Museum (49 Washington Street, Newark) will host Creative Play on Saturday at 10:00 AM. Three- to five-year-olds and their caregivers enjoy a special time before the Museum opens to the public. Explore the Museum’s art and science collections through storytelling, song, playful activities and an art-making project. October’s theme is Color – Hop on Board the Color Train! Children will be introduced to, as well as reinforce, primary and secondary color. Utilizing the Museum’s comprehensive collection, explore the galleries with a culminating activity in a studio setting. From 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM, enjoy Design Thinking Drop-Ins. Inspired by the Museum’s collections and special events, month themes are designed for visitors of all ages to drop in and experiment with the tools and materials of artists. Stay as long as you’d like. October’s theme is Brainstorming with S.C.A.M.P.E.R.

Newark Museum will also host several activities weekly on Saturday and Sundays, from 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM:

  • Family Drop-Ins – October’s theme is Mindfulness: Be Here Now! Author Ram Dass. In our fast-moving lives, we find a need to slow down and be in the moment. Let’s contemplate and create in a conscious and inspiring environment, the Newark Museum!
  • Imagination Station – Spark your creativity while thinking outside the box. Have fun while achieving the challenge.
  • Family Back Pack – A fun self-guided tour for the entire family! Utilize a spy glass, a timer and more, as well as prompts as your family interacts with great works of art to explore Community / Animals / People / Places!
  • Self-Guided Family Programs – These guides were developed to encourage three- to five-year-olds and their families to discover together. Designed to encourage observation and conversation, they are available free with Museum admission at the Front Desk and in the Education Lobby. Choose from the Red, Yellow and Blue Gallery Guides.

You can find information about all of the programs at the Newark Museum on their website.

Watchung Booksellers (54 Fairfield Street, Montclair) will host Saturday Morning Author/Illustrator Storytime with Michele McAvoy and her book Cookie & Milk on Saturday at 10:30 AM. Cookie is a genius – Milk, a daredevil. Cookie loves math and science. Milk loves adventure and adrenaline. What could two little girls who are nothing alike possibly have in common? Follow this dynamic duo through their skateboard stunts and tubular-tastic surfs to discover what lies beneath true friendship. Michele McAvoy has created a genuine story that breaks stereotypes and is sure to entertain, excite, and endear young readers and parents alike.

Barnes & Noble Clifton Commons (395 Route 3 East, Clifton) will host Storytime and Activities Featuring Elbow Grease vs. Motozilla on Saturday at 11:00 AM. Elbow Grease is back to face off against Motozilla, but it’s going to take teamwork from his four big brothers. Enjoy this exciting story about the importance of believing in yourself. Activities to follow, plus, get a coupon for the Café for a $4 grilled cheese sandwich with milk or juice.

Glen Ridge Free Public Library (240 Ridgewood Avenue, Glen Ridge) will host Touch-a-Truck on Saturday from 9:30 AM to 12:00PM. Stop in to see up close all the special vehicles the DPW uses to keep Glen Ridge clean and moving! Caregivers are required to stay with their child at all times and supervise their movements in and around the vehicles.

Essex County Environmental Center (621-B Eagle Rock Avenue, Roseland) will host Eco-Art: Adaption Artistry on Saturday from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM. Visit our habitats and explore how wildlife survives. Use your imagination to design your own tinfoil and plaster creature adapted to survive a series of imaginary conditions. Advance registration and minimum number of participants are required by calling 973-228-8776. Cost is $30 per family (up to two adults and two children) or $10 per child; $12 per adult.

Enjoy Lenape Day at Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center (247 Southern Blvd, Chatham Twp) on Saturday from 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM. Great fun for the entire family! Join this annual festival celebrating the Lenni Lenape with dancing, drums, and historical talks by the Ramapough Lenape People. Enjoy games, crafts, touring a replica wigwam and more.

Cooper Gristmill (66 Route 24, Chester Twp) will host Junior Inventor Day on Saturday from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM. Enjoy hands-on tinkering with machines and be inspired by the historic inventions of Oliver Evans, which run in the Mill today. This event is free.

The Morristown Festival of Books will be held all day on Saturday in Downtown Morristown. This free event includes Kidfest, located at The Presbyterian Church Parish House (65 South Street, Morristown). Kidfest gives kids the opportunity to hear authors and get autographs, sing and dance with live music, finish a story or create their own at The Writer’s Circle creative writing workshop, have a caricature drawn, take home awesome balloon creations and create spooky Halloween crafts. There will also be games, activities, snacks, and books, books, books! For a schedule and list of authors, visit the website. This event is free.

Frelinghuysen Arboretum (353 East Hanover Avenue, Morris Twp) will host a Scarecrow Building Workshop on Saturday from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM. Learn to create a scarecrow for this year’s Scarecrows in the Garden program. Join this fun workshop designed for families, scout groups, and individuals. A scarecrow structure is provided, as well as materials for stuffing. Bring your own clothes or costume for your scarecrow, or rifle through the bins of possibilities at the Arboretum. A seasonal snack is included. Cost is $10 per scarecrow frame. Preregistration is required by calling 973-326-7601. This activity if for ages 5 and up.

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Catch a free performance by Michael & the Rockness Monsters on Saturday at Waterside NYC (Waterside Plaza, NYC) at4:00 PM in celebration of their new album, Seeing Life in 2020. On Seeing Life in 2020, Michael & the Rockness Monsters lead an engaging look-back at songs from the past hundred years, with a tune to represent each decade. The collection features jazz, folk, country, blues, funk, pop, rock, TV, and film- it’s a joyous, educational, and entertaining musical voyage for all ages. The band hopes this collection will serve as a starting point for families to explore and connect with unknown times and types of music. The shared experience can start conversations about history, the future, culture, politics, and news. This event is free.

Each weekend, Dimenna Children’s History Museum (170 Central Park West at 77th Street, NYC) makes available a History Detective Briefcase. Calling all history detectives! Check out a free (with museum admission) History Detective Briefcase from the Membership Desk and use it to explore the Luce Center on the 4th floor, with its fascinating array of historical artifacts. Each briefcase provides fun, interactive, family-centered challenges—like games, sketching, and other activities—that help you discover even more about the past. At the end of your visit, simply return it to Membership! The Museum is open on Saturday from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM and Sunday from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Admission is $22 for adults, $17 for Seniors/Educators/Active Military, $13 for students, $6 for kids age 5-13 years old, and free for kids 4 and under.

In addition, on Saturday from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM, the Museum will host “Our Revolution” as Performed by Living Voices. Experience the story of African American Continental Army soldier Peter Freeman through solo performances, archival film, images, and sound, with the theater company, Living Voices.  This event is free with Museum admission.

On Sunday, Barnes & Noble Clifton Commons (395 Route 3 East, Clifton) will host Baby & Me Storytime Featuring Noses (Peek-a-Flap Series). This event is for and children 0-24 months old and their caregivers. A book will be read, and attendees will be invited to participate in activities featuring sensory growth for the little ones. Plus, get a coupon for the café.

Turtle Back Zoo will host Nature Adventurers – Zooper Animals on Sunday from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM. Wizards, witches, superheroes…animals? Don your best (outdoor play friendly) costume and go on a special Halloween adventure as your character. Hike the woodland trails and gain superpowers through minigames and observing the “powers” of wildlife along the way. The quests can only be completed if you work together – can you do it? Tickets may be purchased alone or with a Nature Adventurers backpack to take home filled with goodies helpful for nature play in both this activity and self-guided adventures. Spare masks and capes will be available for those who need a costume. This activity is not at the Zoo. Meet at the Cherry Lane Parking Lot (Cherry Lane, West Orange), directly across from the Regatta Playground. Tickets are $10-$20.

Montclair Art Museum (3 South Mountain Avenue, Montclair) will host their Drop-In Studio on Sunday from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. Drop by MAM’s Helen & Bill Geyer Art Studio to explore a range of art materials and processes based on artwork on view in the galleries. Each week features a new art-making activity and gallery talk inspired by current exhibitions. Reservations are not required, and visitors of all ages are welcome! This program is free for members and included with Museum admission for non-Members.

Axelrod Performing Arts Center (100 Grant Avenue, Deal) will present Pinkalicious on Sunday at 2:00 PM. Based on the popular book by Victoria Kann and Elizabeth Kann, this is the tale of Pinkalicious, who can’t stop eating pink cupcakes despite warnings from her parents. Her pink indulgence lands her at the doctor’s office with Pinkititis, an affliction that turns her pink from head to toe–a dream come true for this pink-loving enthusiast. Alas, Pinkalicious needs a way out of her pink predicament, and joined by her family they find unity and appreciation in the quirks that define us all. The show is directed by Teresa Pond. Show tickets include free pink cupcakes for all children! Tickets are $22.50-$25.

The Rubin Museum (150 West 17th Street, NYC) will host October Family Sundays: Diwali Delights on Sunday from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, celebrates the triumph of light over dark and good over evil as depicted in the Hindu epic Ramayana. Learn more about traditional Diwali activities by making your own diya lamps. Drop into the Education Center for some art making and enjoy the 2:00 PM family exhibition tour. These events are free.

For more upcoming events, check out Baristanet Calendar.

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