Events great for kids, February 19–25

     Tales of strange and wonderful beasts — unicorns, dragons, griffins — exist in every culture, and may be magical or elusive, dangerous or cuddly.

     They often need protection from a human friend, and in turn, have abilities that can help humans achieve their goals.

     Children aged 8 to 12 in this Uptown Stories workshop will imagine a world populated by mythical beasts and the humans who love them. Snacks for kids and beasts will be provided, but be sure to pack a lunch for this epic workshop.

     Register here.

     Pay what you can. Monday through Friday, February 19 through 23, at Our Saviour’s Church in Hudson Heights 178 Bennett Avenue (at 189th Street).

 

 

Tuesday

     Amphibians — love ’em, hate ’em, no matter.

     Come find all about them and their reptiallian cousins on this break-week exploration event for kids.

     Free. Tuesday afternoon at 1 at the Payson Center in Inwood Hill Park.

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday

     Winter is a spectacular season for observing bald eagles in Upper Manhattan. See if you can spot any on this adventure with our Urban Park Rangers, designed specifically for the younger set.

     Take your binoculars or ask a park ranger to borrow a pair. 

     Free. Thursday afternoon at 1; meet at the Payson Center in Inwood Hill Park.

 

 

Saturday

     Cuéntame un Cuadro (Tell Me the Story) is a story-telling program in Spanish for families with children ages 4 to 12.

     Discover fun facts about Hispanic art from the museum’s renowned collections while the family learns and creates together.

     During this event, writer Mariel Escalante will talk about the Portrait of Pedro Mocarte by Francisco de Goya y Lucientes.

     The Hispanic Society Museum and Library is closed for renovations, but their programs—like Cuéntame un Cuadro—are moving to different spaces around the community.

     Free. Saturday at noon at Word Up Community Book Shop/Libraría Comunitaria in Lower WaHi on Amsterdame Avenue and 165th Street.

 

 

Sunday

Planning ahead

     Sign up now for a permit to use one of the city’s tennis courts this spring and summer. The closest are in Fort Washington Park, along the Hudson in the 170’s.

     $20 for children 17 and younger. Adults’ permits run $100, and for those 62 and older, just $20.

     You’ll need a photo. Here’s the link.

 

 

 

 

     Take your kids to a community book shop to hear their favorite stories read out loud by experienced, trained readers. Just like their teachers in the classroom, but with new faces and new friends.

     Free. Saturday mornings at 11 at the Word Up Community Book Shop/Librería Comunitaria, in Lower WaHi on Amsterdam Avenue at 165th Street.

 

 

     Do you have a child who’s interested in soccer? The Uptown Soccer Academy has what you need.

     The group meets twice a week on the Dyckman Fields for practice. Children ages 6 through 16 learn the basics and hone their skills. In the winter, practice moves indoors. There’s a summer camp, too.

     Free. Monday and Friday afternoons from 4:30 to 6.

 

 

     Two writing workshop begin this week for kids who like to create stories.

     The Elements of Fiction introduces basic elements of fiction for stories of adventure, fantasy, mystery, or realistic. Through writing exercises and learning to constructively critique each other's work within a supportive environment, young writers will develop an idea into a believable yet surprising story. For ages 9 to 11. Tuesday afternoons from 3:15 to 5:15

     In a workshop for 12 to 16-year-olds, In this workshop, you can write whatever they want: personal memoir, screenplay, TV pilot, political manifesto, rock opera, sports investigation, epic poem, western comedy, horror-romance, spy-sci-fi, or some sort of strange, new thing, they’re not even sure what to call it. Tuesday evenings from 5:30 to 7:30.

     Register here.

     Tuesdays through March 13 (but no class on February 20) at Our Sviour’s Church in Hudson Heights on Bennett Avenue at 179th Street. A reading of the kids’ stories takes place on March 25.

 

    

     All kids ask questions. What if they ask something you can’t answer?

     The Gotham Philosophical Society has a workshop for kids are encouraged to think for themselves and create dialogue with others in order to gain a deeper and more meaningful understanding of a broad range of complex issues, ideas, and phenomena. Each week the class will explore a different topic.

     This workshop will be offered in two sections, one for kids ages 8–11 (3rd–5th grades), and another for kids ages 11–15 (6th–8th grades). 

     The course for younger kids runs from 3:30 to 4:30, and for older kids at 4:45 to 5:45.

     $25 to $200. Monday afternoons through March 26 (but no meetings on February 19 or March 12), at the Hebrew Tabernacle of Washington Heights, in Hudson Heights on Fort Washington Avenue at 185th Street.

 

 

     The Washington Heights Music Fest in collaboration with W.H.A.M. hosts a monthly open mic for artists, poets, singers, writers and performers. Refreshments will be provided.

     All ages are welcome, so the acts should be appropriate for everyone. 

     The first monthly musical open mic will be followed by session on the first Friday of the month. Hosted by Jason Rosario.

     $5. Friday night, March 2, from 6 to 9 at the Word Up Community Book Shop in Lower WaHi on Amsterdam Avenue at 165th Street. On the first Friday of the month.

 

 

    Let your child express her creativity at a weekly workshop where she can draw outside the lines.

     All supplies are provided at the sessions, which are sponsored by Creative Art Works.
     For children in grades 3, 4, and 5. Drop-off care is provided.

     Free. Saturday mornings in March from 10 to noon at the United Palace in Lower WaHi on Broadway at 175th Street.

 

 

 

 

     Music is the theme of the rechristened Washington Heights Salsa, Blues and Shamrocks 5K.
     The route is Fort Washington Avenue from Lower WaHi to the Cloisters and back, so prepare for a busy street. In 2015 more than 6,000 runners finished the 3.2-mile race. An separate start for kids is part of the Rising New York Road Runners program.
     Fee varies by age and classification. A Sunday morning, March 4, at 9 starting at J. Hood Wright Park in Lower WaHi.

 

 

     Join a walking tour of the Heather Garden in Fort Tryon Park with horticulturist Madeline Byrne, who will show you the first signs of (almost) spring.

     Learn about the plants currently in bloom and the garden’s history, and you can compare the Heather Garden with the plants found at the New York Botanical Garden, where Byrne has over 15 years’ experience.

     Free. Sunday afternoon, March 4, and 1 in the Heather Garden.

 

 

    Drop by for the Nature’s Workshop series, focusing this week on pollinating animals.

     Without pollinating animals, most of our flowering plants would be unable to reproduce. Throughout evolution, flowers and animals have relied on each other for life itself. 

    Kids will learn about the connections between plants and pollinators and how to encourage them in urban landscapes. The series explores its topic in depth and allows them to develop a skill, participate in a hands-on project, and indulge their curiosity.

     Free. Sunday afternoon, March 4, at 2 in the Payson Center in Inwood Hill Park.

 

 

     Take your kids for a dollar!

     Benjamin Bagby, the consummate raconteur, employs a peculiar genius to reimagine thousand-year-old songs and epic poems, enticing his audience to join him on an adventurous romp through the Middle Ages.

     In this performance he brings to life the famous Anglo-Saxon elegy, The Wanderer.   

     $50; children, $1; tickets include museum admission. Sunday afternoon, March 4, at 3 at The Cloisters in Fort Tryon Park.

 

 

     Take your pre-schooler to an Irish pre-dance and movement class that builds strength, developing gross motor skills, coordination, and body awareness.

     Dance and educational games help teach children to  count and identify colors. (Sometimes with a few words in the Irish language!)

     Upbeat traditional Irish music and songs, combined with popular toddler songs, clapping, stamping, and shakers are used to explore rhythm and a variety of time signatures.

     Chilren must be accompanied by an adult.

     Free. Thursday afternoon, March 8, at 4 at the Inwood branch of the public library on Broadway between Dyckman and Academy Streets.

 

 

     The WaHi Jazz Festival offers a special concert just for kids.

     For information about the rest of the festival, click here.

    $10 per family. Saturday morning, March 10, at 11:30 at Le Cheile in Hudson Heights on 181st Street at Cabrini Boulevard.

 

 

     The Urban Park Rangers are well-versed in outdoor lore, and they can teach you the tips and tricks that will enhance your knowledge of the natural world, and might just save your life.

     Can you start a fire from scratch ? Fire is mankind’s greatest discovery. Learn primitive and modern methods for making fire safely and responsibly while exploring the great outdoors.

     All Rangers’ programs are family-friendly, but are recommended for ages 8 years and older.

     Free. Saturday afternoon, March 10, at 1 in Inwood Hill Park near the intersection of Seaman Avenue and Isham Street.

 

 

     Take your kids for a dollar!

     The Cloisters mark the eve of the feast day of Saint Gregory the Great—the papal namesake of Gregorian chant—with a scholarly program of early music.

     The Axion Estin Chanters, who are experts in the Byzantine repertoire, and Pomerium offer up sonorous Greek chants and western hymns dedicated to the saint, who enjoyed equal veneration in the East and West.

     $40; children, $1. Sunday afternoon, March 11, at 1 and 3 in the The Fuentidueña Chapel of the Cloisters in Fort Tryon Park.

 

 

     Jazz Power Initiative offers a series of free jazz youth master classes where performers are encouraged to explore the rhythms of jazz by dancing and singing songs. 

     The master class is free, but guardians must register their youth here: http://conta.cc/2BQUurU. Open to youth 11–17 years old. Students who successfully complete at least one Jazz Power Master Class will be invited to participate in the 12-week youth training program, which runs April through June.

     Free. Tuesday evening, March 13, from 4:30 to 7 at the United Palace in Lower WaHi on Broadway at 175th Street.

 

 

     Will Sarah Brown save his soul?

     Find out the the Pied Piper’s teen production of Anything Goes, by Cole Porter.
     Friday nighta, March 16 and 23 at 7; Saturdays, March 17 and 24 at 3 and 8; and Sunday afternoons, March 18 and 25, at 4 at Holy Trinity Church on Cumming Street at Seaman Avenue.

 

 

     The Urban Park Rangers will be your guides to the solar system, discussing the science, history, and folklore of the universe.

     Tonight is the new moon, when the sky will be clearer than usual — weather permitting.

     Astronomy programs feature the use of telescopes and binoculars to observe specific astronomical events. If you don’t have your own viewing gear, you can use the Rangers’.

     Free. Saturday night, March 17, at 7 at the Payson Center in Inwood Hill Park.

 

 

     Polish your soft-soled shoes for an evening of dance, fitness, and fun.

     Participants in the dance-a-thon will enjoy the sounds and songs from the 70s, 80s, and 90s, and the last person standing wins a prize.

     To register, visit spring-dance-jhw.eventbrite.com.

     Free. Friday, March 23, from 4 to 8 at J. Hood Wright Park in Lower WaHi on Fort Washington Avenue at 175th Street. In the event of rain, the event will take place indoors at the recreation center within the park.

 

 

 

     Discover which trees and natural materials are used to build modern day and tribal musical instruments. 

     The Nature’s Workshop series explores a topic in depth and allows kids to develop a skill, participate in a hands-on project, and indulge their curiosity.

     Registration is required for this program. To register, please visit nyc.gov/parks/rangers/register. Registration opens on March 14.

     Free. Saturday afternoon, March 24, at 1 in Inwood Hill Park near the intersection of Payson Avenue and Dyckman Street.

 

 

     Take your kids for a dollar!

     The award-winning poet and performer Denice Frohman joins the Aizuri Quartet for The Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross, Haydn’s profound account of Christ’s final utterances at Calvary.

     Commissioned in 1786 for the Good Friday services at a church in Cádiz, Spain, and later adapted for string quartet, Haydn’s work originally featured a priest interpreting the words attributed to Jesus. In this updated version, Frohman replaces those words with new poems—all written especially for the Cloisters performance.

     $65; children, $1. Saturday afternoon, March 31, at 2 in the The Fuentidueña Chapel of the Cloisters in Fort Tryon Park.

 

 

    Let your child express her creativity at a weekly workshop where she can draw outside the lines.

     All supplies are provided at the sessions, which are sponsored by Creative Art Works.
     For children in grades 3, 4, and 5. Drop-off care is provided.

     Free. Saturday morning, April 14, from 10 to noon at the United Palace in Lower WaHi on Broadway at 175th Street. Also on April 21, and 28, and May 5 and 12.

 

 

     Will earth turn uninhabitable when everyone in the world buys from the same store? If so, at least we’ll leave robots behind to clean up our mess.

     The 2008 Pixar film Wall-E stars a robot who has his work cut out for him.

     $5 to $15. Sunday evening, April 29, at 5 at the United Palace in Lower WaHi on Broadway at 175th Street. Also on May 6.

 

    

     After young Riley is uprooted from her Midwest life and moved to San Francisco, her emotions—Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness—conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house, and school.

     The 2015 Pixar film Inside Out helps explain why we feel what we feel.

     It’s part of the Movies at the Palace series, taking place at the stunning United Palace, formerly the Loew’s 175th Street Theatre that first opened as a deluxe movie theatre and vaudeville house in 1930.

     $5 to $15. Sunday evening, June 3, at 4:30 at the United Palace in Lower WaHi on Broadway at 175th Street.

 

    

     The annual Drums Along the Hudson began in 2002 as a traditional Pow Wow to celebrate Native American heritage and culture, and also to commemorate the Lenape people who first inhabited Inwood Hill Park, or Shorakapok (“edge of the water”).

     The event features dancers and drummers from around the world, combining Native American heritage, culture and art with the diversity of New York City. Activities include a Tree of Peace planting, international cuisine, Native American storytelling, a Pow Wow and crafts.
     The event has attracted a growing audience, numbering from 400 in the first year to over 8,000 in recent years.
     Free. A Sunday in early June in Inwood Hill Park at Indian Road and 218th Street.

 

 

 

     The Little Lions Camp is a kid-centered, fun-based day camp whose main focus is keeping kids physically and creatively active.

     For kids entering first grade through age 12, the day camp gives kids the oppotunity to experience Division I sports facilities.

     This week: water wars.

     About $450. Monday through Friday, July 23–27, at the Baker Athletic Complex in Inwood.

 

 

 

     The Little Lions Camp is a kid-centered, fun-based day camp whose main focus is keeping kids physically and creatively active.

     For kids entering first grade through age 12, the day camp gives kids the oppotunity to experience Division I sports facilities.

     This week: Olympic training.

     About $450. Monday through Friday, July 30 through August 3, at the Baker Athletic Complex in Inwood.

 

 

     The Medieval Festival is the most famous event in the Heights, drawing tens of thousands of visitors to the neighborhood.

     Lords, ladies, knights and commoners converge in Fort Tryon Park in the area around the Cloisters.

     Free. A Sunday afternoon in late September or early October from 11:30 to 6 in Fort Tryon Park.   

 

 

     The Feast of St. Frances Cabrini honors the patron saint of immigrants, who welcomed newcomers to Upper Manhattan and whose remains are venerated in a shrine in Hudson Heights.

     Over a weekend, the St. Frances Xavier Shrine hosts a series of masses for several nations’ communities, in French, Italian, Filipino, Spanish and English.
     The highlight of the feast is a procession, led by an Italian band, on Saturday at noon. 

     Free. A weekend in early November at the Shrine in Hudson Heights at 701 Fort Washington Avenue near Margaret Corbin Circle.

 

 

     Holiday shopping invariably means higher prices. What if you bought for your true love everything mentioned in a famous carol?

     The good news for traditional shoppers last year: the price of the gifts mentioned in The Twelve Days of Christmas increased only 0.7 percent, despite the surge in cost of turtle doves. (Really!)

     Prices for drummers and gold rings go up and down. Here’s where to find the prices for 2017.

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