20 Things To Do in Brooklyn Over the Winter Break

Fireworks at Grand Army Plaza (Photo Credit: prospectpark.org)

After the presents are open and the food is all is eaten, most parents and kids will need activities to keep them active during the long Winter Break. Here are 20 Activities and Events to consider. 

Family Bowl at the  Brooklyn Bowl
Brooklyn Bowl, one of New York’s most popular bowling alleys is having a Family Bowl from 12 – 8 pm and from 12-2pm, Bowling and shoes are FREE

When: December 27, 2011, Christmas Eve from 12 – 8 pm. From 12-2 pm, Bowling and Shoes are FREE
Where: 61 Wythe Avenue, Brooklyn, NY
Phone: 718 – 963-3369
Website: brooklynbowl.com

American Ballet Theater’s The Nutcracker
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s beloved holiday classic The Nutcracker is now being performed by the American Ballet Theatre at BAM. Principal Dancers Veronika Part and Marcelo Gomes lead the cast of American Ballet Theatre’s The Nutcracker with  choreography by ABT Artist in Residence Alexei Ratmansky.

When: Through December 31, 2011 @ 7 pm.
BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, Brooklyn, New York
Tickets: Starting at $25.
How to Buy: By Phone @ 718.636.4100;  Online www.abt.org or www.bam.org or in person BAM Box Office (Peter Jay Sharp Building, 30 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, New York)

The Firefly Star
Three Kings Day, El Dia de los Reyes is a bilingual production presented by the Shadow Box Theatre. The Firefly Star – El Dia de los Ryes, stars, Raton Perez, the heroic little mouse, Senorita Margarita, the ladybug, and the Three Kings who, like Santa Claus, bring gifts to all the children. Your children will be singing and dancing with cast performers as they help the show’s heroes save the day. Children will also  learn about  Christmas, Chanukah, and Kwanzaa in a group sing along.

When: December 28 at 10:30 am and 1pm
January 5-6, morning performance time schedule varies 10, 10:30, and 11:30 AM; Call 212-724-0677 for specific showtimes.
January 7 at 11 am
Running Time: 50 minutes
Ages: 3 to 7
Where: P.S. 3/The Bedford Village School, 50 Jefferson Avenue, Brooklyn, New York
Tickets: $10 in advance; $15 at the door
How to buy: 212- 724 -0677 to pay by phone and visit shadowboxtheatre.org for other payment methods

20th Annual Quilt Show: Turning Twenty
See the best quilts from New York City and beyond at this popular annual exhibit. The exhibit will also showcase quilts from the previous 19 shows.

When: December 26- December 31 from 12-4pm
Where: Audubon Center, Prospect Park  at the Boathouse is located just inside the Lincoln Road/Ocean Ave. entrance to Prospect Park

New York Transit Museum Holiday Family Programs
Zoomin’  Zoetropes - Check out Bill Brand’s installation, Masstransicope, which brings the optical illusion created by zoetropes to subway riders everyday.

When: December 24 at 1:30 pm

Museum Shape Hunt – Kids will search out shapes on street signs, vehicles and more.

When: December 27 – 30 at 11 am
Great Subway Search - Kids and adults will enjoy a scavenger hunt throughout the transit museum.

When: December 27 – 30 a at 2:30 pm
Where: Corner of Boerum Place and Schermerhorn Street


Storytime and Sing A Long at The Moxie Spot
Enjoy the mornings with various storytime and sing a long events at the Moxie Spot.

When: Various dates and times the Week of December 26. Click here for complete schedule. 
The Moxie Spot, 81 Atlantic Avenue at Hicks, Brooklyn, New York
Phone: 718-923-9710


Needlecrafts  at Lefferts Historic House Museum
Put away the video games and bring the kids to try your hand at needlepoint or have them write out their New Year’s resolution with a quill style,  all done in a 19th century house.

When: December 26- January 2, 2012 from 1-3 pm
Where: Lefferts Historic House Museum in Prospect Park, Flatbush Ave at Empire Blvd, Prospect Park, Brooklyn
Ages: 5 and up
Phone: 718-789-2822
Website: prospectpark.org

Perch Cafe and Bar Sing A Longs
The week of December 26 showcases three Sing A Longs for the kiddie set: Lloyd – Kids Sing A Long with Kids, Ivan “Drumalong” Kids Sing A Long and Rollie Pollie Guacomole

When: Week of December 26, various dates and times.  Visit Perch Cafe for the week’s schedule.
Where: Perch Cafe and Bar, 365 Fifth Avenue, Park Slope, Brooklyn, NY

W.O.R.D. UP! Reading Series Words of Real Distinction featuring New York City Councilman Albert Vann
This month’s W.O.R.D. UP! (Words of Real Distinction) reading series celebrates the art of literature and a debut Kwanzaa holiday reading session with The Honorable Albert Vann, New York City Councilmember, 36th District.  Kwanzaa is celebrated all around the world. Explore this African-inspired holiday by viewing our Kinara and learning about the traditions, culture and meaning of this holiday. Due to popular demand we recommend arriving early to W.O.R.D. UP! as seating is on first-come, first-served basis.

When: December 28 at 1 pm
Where: Brooklyn Children’s Museum, , 45 Brooklyn Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11213
Ages: All ages
Website: brooklynkids.org

Toy Inventor’s Workshop: Rockets!
‘Tis the season for toys, but ingenious kids know how to make their own fun. We’ll learn the basics of propulsion and Newton’s laws of motion, then it’s: 3-2-1 blast off!

When: December 28 at 1:30 pm
Where: Brooklyn Children’s Museum, , 45 Brooklyn Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11213
Ages: All 5 and up
Website: brooklynkids.org


Kwanzaa: A Celebration of Family, Community, and Culture
A candlelit feast and gift giving often marks the festivity of Kwanzaa. Learn about the holiday’s traditions and celebrations at the Brooklyn Children’s Museum.
When: Various Dates and Times, the  week of December 26. Click here for more information.
Where: Brooklyn Children’s Museum, , 45 Brooklyn Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11213
Ages: 6 and up
Website: brooklynkids.org

The movie of the evening is the ever popular Happy Feet preceded by a short film.

When: December 30, short begins at 6:15 pm followed by the movie at 6:45ish 
The Moxie Spot, 81 Atlantic Avenue at Hicks, Brooklyn, New York
Phone: 718-923-9710

Morning Bird Walk: Bring in the New Year with Birds
Enjoy the a morning walk on the first day of the year and explore the Lullwater and Peninsula Nature Trails. Guided by the Brooklyn Bird Club, you and your kids will discover the beautiful plumage and fascinating behavior of the Park’s wintering ducks.

When: January 1, 2012 @ 10 am
Where: Audubon Center at the Boathouse (in Prospect Park), Brooklyn, Near the Lincoln Road/Ocean Avenue entrance, Brooklyn
Baby Story Time with Miss Nina
Miss Nina brings her pink guitar and original songs to Story Time Sunday  guaranteed to keep both adults and kids movin’ and groovin’. Click here to learn more about Sunday’s guest performer,  Nina Stone,  2010 Parents’ Choice Award Recipient for her debut CD “Singing & Dancing Together.”
When: Sunday, January 1, 1:00 pm
Where: Greenlight Bookstore,  686 Fulton Street at South Portland,  Brooklyn, New York
Phone: 718-246-0200 

The Polar Express in 4D  or Happy Feet in 4D The New York Aquarium
This popular holiday classic based on the Caldecott Medal winner Chris Van Allsberg’s childrens book is being shown in 4D at the New York Aquarium. The Polar Express tells the tale of  a doubting young boy who takes a train ride to the North Pole and embarks on a journey of self-discovery that shows him that the wonder of life never fades for those who believe.

When: Now through January 2, 2012. Movies rotate throughout the holiday season.
Where: New York Aquarium, Surf Avenue & West 8th Street in Brooklyn, New York
Website: Visit New York Aquarium for more information and additional events.

Arts and Recreation
Amazing craft activities and fun nature play at the Boathouse.
When: December 30 and 31 from 1-3pm
Where: Prospect Park at the Boathouse is located just inside the Lincoln Road/Ocean Ave. entrance to Prospect Park
New Year’s Eve Fireworks
Ring in the New Year at Brooklyn’s biggest party that includes Fireworks, entertainment and more.
When: December  31 at 11pm
Where: Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn, New York

  • Go Ice Skating at Abe Stark Rink (Coney Island Boardwalk) or Aviator Sports (3159 Flatbush Avenue.)  Both offer skaters of all ages and abilities to skate their rinks. Abe Stark Rinks open weekends and holidays only. Aviator Sports is open year round, visit their site for daily times.
  • Take a ride on the newly restored Jane’s Carousel located in the DUMBO section of  The Brooklyn Bridge Park.
  • Enjoy a delicious cup of hot chocolate. Click here to check local venues to enjoy a breather during the busy winter break.
  • Enjoy a Christmas movie with your family. Here are Brooklyn Mama’s 5 favorite Christmas movies to rent.

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