Hi everyone!  Summer is officially here and there are lots of fun events to enjoy this weekend.

This weekend head out and enjoy Celebrate the Summer Solstice on Governors Island, Coney Island Cyclone’s 90th Birthday Celebration, Movie Night: Fantasia at Narrows Botanical Gardens, Bug Day at New York Hall of Science, Eid Around the World at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, School’s Out for Summer Playdate: Family Concert ft. the Music of David Bowie! at Brooklyn Bowl, Sister Act, AbunDantly! at Kings Theatre, BackLot Art Festival 2017 in Kaufman Arts District, Pride Cultural Festival at the Children’s Museum of the Arts, Seining in Brooklyn Bridge Park, Outdoor Storytime at the Crown Heights Brooklyn Public Library, Metropolitan Opera Recital in Socrates Sculpture Park, Hydrangea Hurrah at Madison Square Park, Make It Verde! at the High Line and Swedish Midsummer Dance Festival in Wagner Park.

Also check out long running events like The Reluctant Dragon at Puppetworks, MakerYard at Brooklyn Children’s Museum, Shakespeare’s Richard III in Carroll Park, Splash Pad at Lakeside in Prospect Park,play:groundNYC on Governors Island, Ed Center in Brooklyn Bridge Park, Dynamic H2O at Children’s Museum of Manhattan, Victorian Garden at Wollman Rink in Central Park and The Princess, The Emperor and the Duck at the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre.

Check out the calendar for all the weekend events and have a blast with the family. Also like us on Facebook for last minute events and updates.

Happy Summer!

~ Deirdre (mom to O & C)

Friday June 23rd

Outdoor Storytime at the Crown Heights Brooklyn Public Library
Friday June 23rd 1030-1115a.  Free.  This event will also happen the third Friday July-September.  Join us for outdoor storytime at the Wingate Park playground at the corner of Brooklyn Avenue and Rutland Road.  We’ll cover our traditional repertoire of stories, rhymes and songs… but outside! This is a fun and educational program for ages 18 months – to 5 years (with a caregiver). All programs are weather permitting. Please call the branch the morning of if the weather looks ominous.  Thank you to the Friends of Wingate Park group for their collaboration.

Swedish Midsummer Dance Festival in Wagner Park (Battery Park)
Friday June 23rd 5-8p.  Free.  Dancing 630-8p.  Enjoy this unique celebration of the summer solstice. Learn folk dances from Barnklubben Elsa Rix and Swedish Folkdancers of New York. Make midsummer wreaths. Enjoy a parade, children’s games, and Swedish delicacies.  Traditional music by Paul Dahlin and Fiddlers from the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis. Dances led by Ross Sutter, Scandinavian folklorist.

Celebrate the Summer Solstice on Governors Island
Friday June 23rd 530-10p.  Free.  Celebrate the Summer Solstice on Governors Island.  With the days getting warmer and the nights getting longer, what better way to kick off the season than a special evening on Governors Island in the glow of the sunset? In celebration of the Summer Solstice, Governors Island will stay open until 10PM on Friday, June 23. Take a quick ferry from Lower Manhattan over to the Island after work to enjoy spectacular sunset views from the Hills on one of the longest nights of the year, kick back with cocktails and food in Liggett Terrace and experience the rare opportunity to roam the Island after hours.  The Trust for Governors Island hosted a special evening event back in May to kick off the public season, and we invite you to stay late with us again now that the weather is warmer.  The Island will open to the public on June 23 at 10AM and will remain open until 10 PM. Food and beverage will be available for purchase from Island vendors including Little Eva’s, Fauzia’s Heavenly Delights, Blue Marble, Mister Softee and more. All ages are welcome!  All ferries Friday evening will depart from the Battery Maritime Building, 10 South Street in Lower Manhattan for Soissons Landing, Governors Island.  See website for ferry schedule.

Movie Night: Fantasia at Narrows Botanical Gardens (Bay Ridge)
Friday June 23rd 830p.  Free.  Rated G. Start time is at Sundown, approx 8:30 (ish). An innovative and revolutionary animated classic from Walt Disney, combining Western classical music masterpieces with imaginative visuals, presented with Leopold Stokowski and the Philadelphia Orchestra. The eight animation sequences are colorful, impressive, free-flowing, abstract, and often surrealistic pieces. They include the most famous of all, Paul Dukas’s “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” with Mickey Mouse as the title character battling brooms carrying endless buckets of water.

See all Friday events.

Saturday June 24th

Make It Verde! at the High Line (Chelsea)
Saturday June 24th 10a-1p.  RSVP here.  FREE, for children and their caregivers.  Rain or shine.  Location: On the High Line at 16th St.  Families are invited to join us for our Make It! festival series. Create, listen, build, and learn as a family through stories, art, nature, and design!  Each month we explore new themes with interactive activities for children and their caregivers. Activities include our Mobile Garden with High Line Gardeners, a large-scale art project from local teaching artists, interactive storytelling, dance, and music performances to get you moving!  Saturday, June 24: Make It Verde!  In partnership with the Loisaida Center, join us for a day of dancing, music, and creating things with recycled materials. Portions of this program will be offered in Spanish and English.  See the website for information on the future events.

Hydrangea Hurrah at Madison Square Park (Flatiron)
Saturday June 24th 12n-3p.  Free.  Madison Square Park Conservancy is excited to present the second annual Madison Square Hort Day: Hydrangea Hurrah celebrating our beautiful hydrangea collection. Hydrangea Hurrah is a family-friendly event for our favorite summer blooms with a host of free, fun activities including guest speakers, park tours, floral demos, a kids zone with games, and musical entertainment.

Bug Day at New York Hall of Science (Flushing)
Saturday June 24th 12n-4p.  Free with NYSCI admission.  Hold bugs, make your own Bobble Bug, or explore the science of beeswax at this one-day, annual event. You can learn about and handle a variety of bugs, including an array of insects and spiders presented by members of the New York City Entomological Society and NYSCI’s own hissing cockroaches. Meet a local beekeeper and sample some honey. Learn the difference between entomology and entomophagy, and even taste a bug!  See the website for all the details.

Eid Around the World at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan (UWS)
Saturday June 24th 11a-5p.  Free with Museum admission.  Eid al-Fitr is an important holiday celebrated by Muslims throughout the world. It is the celebration that marks the end of Ramadan. Join us on Saturday, June 24th for a celebration sponsored in partnership The Culture Tree and the Muslim Volunteers for New York. Kinding Sindaw Dance Ensemble rounds off the weekend with a performance and dance workshop on Sunday at 2p & 3p.  See the website for all the details of the event.

Metropolitan Opera Recital in Socrates Sculpture Park (Long Island City)
Saturday June 24th 7-830p.  Free.  No RSVP required.  Produced annually in association with SummerStage and the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation, The Met’s Summer Recital Series returns to Socrates for its sixth season, featuring talented members of the Met’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program performing arias and duets from a variety of opera favorites like Carmen, Don Giovanni, and Rigoletto.

See all Saturday events.

Sunday June 25th

Pride Cultural Festival at the Children’s Museum of the Arts (SOHO)
Sunday June 25th 10a-5p.  Free with Museum admission.  CMA’s Cultural Festival is an opportunity to honor the many ways families come together in community. LGBT​Q​ artists have influenced the progress of art and society throughout history. ​ CMA’s PRIDE Festival celebrates the culture of the LGBT​Q​ community ​and how families see themselves in the expressions of artists. Join us for a Voguing Workshop led by Quenton Stuckey, an artist skilled in many forms of expression including performance, vocal, movement and film. Interactive workshops at 12:00 and 2:00. Voguing Workshops for our CMA Cultural Festival for PRIDE on Sunday, June 25 at 12:00-12:30 and 2:00-2:30.  See the website for all the details.

School’s Out for Summer Playdate: Family Concert ft. the Music of David Bowie! at Brooklyn Bowl (Williamsburg)
Sunday June 25th doors 12n & show 1230p.  Tickets: $10.  The Rock and Roll Playhouse, a weekly family concert series hosted at Brooklyn Bowl and the Capitol Theatre, allows kids to “move, play and sing while listening to works from the classic-rock canon” (NY Times). Using the songs created by the most iconic musicians in rock history, The Rock and Roll Playhouse offers its core audience of babies and kids games, movement, and stories and an opportunity to rock out. The Rock and Roll Playhouse is an early and often first introduction to a child’s lifelong journey with live music and rock and roll.

Coney Island Cyclone’s 90th Birthday Celebration
Sunday June 25th starting at 2p.  Free.  Face painting, photobooth fun, tattos, giveaways & much more.  A lady never reveals her age, but after 90 YEARS the sassy Coney Island Cyclone is ready to celebrate! Celebrate the Cyclone’s #MIGHTY90with a special performance from Brooklyn’s own FABOLOUS! Enjoy more music from Power 105’s DJ Will, plus Angela Yee of The Breakfast Club and the world-famous Harlem Globetrotters!  Built in 1927, the Coney Island Cyclone has delighted generations of thrill seekers from all over the world: from the young to the old, boys to girls, and Captain America to Beyoncé.  The Coney Island Cyclone is a true historical gem. Currently in the best shape of her life, the old girl wants to party!  Location:Luna Park in Coney Island

Seining in Brooklyn Bridge Park
Sunday June 25th 4p.  Free with RSVP.  RSVP here.  Location: Main Street Beach.  Learn about the remarkable creatures of the East River as our scientists use a 20-foot seine net to humanely catch and release these unique critters.  The Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy reserves the right to cancel due to extreme weather conditions.

AbunDance Academy of the Arts: Sister Act, AbunDantly! at Kings Theatre (Flatbush/Ditmas Park)
Sunday June 25th 6p.  Tickets: $60.  Join AbunDance Academy of the Arts as they proudly present “Sister Act, AbunDantly”, a theatrical performance featuring students and performing artists who all represent Brooklyn, in a Major Way. With influences from the original 1990s classic movies “Sister Act” and “Sister Act 2”, “Sister Act, AbunDantly!” tells the story of a compassionate and successful Broadway Star who returns to her hometown of Brooklyn to inject the Arts into every corner of the Borough. An inspiring story for all ages, expressed primarily through Dance, Theatre and Live Music, “Sister Act AbunDantly!” brings Broadway to Brooklyn for all ages to enjoy!

See all Sunday events.

All Weekend

MakerYard at Brooklyn Children’s Museum (Crown Heights)
Thursdays-Fridays 2-5p and Saturdays-Sundays 11a-4p until October 22nd.  Free with Museum admission.  Inspired by adventure playgrounds, MakerYard, Brooklyn Children’s Museum’s newest exhibition, invites children to test their motor skills and imaginations as they construct, build, and invent structures and other creations using everyday materials such as cardboard, tape, fabric, string and recyclables. Parents and caregivers are invited to sit back and let children explore independently, or work collaboratively to create together.

BackLot Art Festival 2017 in Kaufman Arts District (Astoria)
Saturday-Sunday 11a-10p.  All events are free, however events at the Museum of the Moving Image (MMI) require paid admission to MMI. MMI is offering 2-for-1 admission during the Festival.  Among the events taking place are Cultural Pride, a live “wearable fashion show” performance piece by artist Maria de Los Angeles, highlighting the intersection of performance, fashion and sculpture in collaboration with artists Jodie Lyn-Kee-Chow, Lizzy DeVita, Andrew Hawkes, Jayeon Yi.  Performances by Rosary Solimanto and Benjamin Lundberg.  There will be screenings of Steven Spielberg’s The Color Purple, Empire of the Sun and Always at the Redstone Theater at the Museum of the Moving Image; screenings of films by Astoria resident Keith Bearden and Signe Baumane at The Zukor Theater at Kaufman Astoria Studios; a pop-up gallery at the Queens Council on the Arts, an fine art exhibit at The Easement; book crafting at The Astoria Book Shop; a performance by violinist and Astoria resident Josh Modney at Nomad Cycle; an art installation at RaR Bar; musical performances at The Astor Room; The Art of Cocktail Making at Mars; and many more.

Shakespeare’s Richard III in Carroll Park
Wednesdays through Sundays at 730p until June 25th.  Free.  The award-winning Brooklyn theatre company, Smith Street Stage, returns to Carroll Park for its eighth year of free outdoor Shakespeare-under-the-stars. This summer’s production will be Richard III, and all tickets are free, no reservation required.  Richard III tells the story of a country in turmoil and a madman lusting for power. As the ruthless and charismatic Richard claws his way to the throne, a nation is forced to the breaking point in this chilling tale of a tyrant, his enablers, and those who attempt to resist.  The stage will be set at the east end of Brooklyn’s beautiful Carroll Park, along Smith Street. Ground seating is open to the public, as well as a limited number of chairs. Many theatre-goers bring picnic blankets, some bring chairs of their own. For more information, visit www.SmithStreetStage.org

Victorian Garden at Wollman Rink (Central Park)
Daily until September 10th at various times and admission & ride prices varies by day.  See website.  Enter park from 59th St. and 6th Avenue and walk north.  Victorian Gardens is a traditional family amusement park featuring one-of-a-kind handcrafted rides, games of chance, classic concessions, face painting and live entertainment.

Splash Pad at Lakeside in Prospect Park
Open daily until September 4th.  Hours are Monday-Saturday 10a-7p and Sunday 10a-6p.  Free.  One Brooklyn’s coolest summer spots, the Splash Pad is designed for children under 12 and their parents and care-givers. With over 20 water jets, the Splash Pad provides state-of-the-art water play and admission is free to the public.

Dynamic H2O  at Children’s Museum of Manhattan
Open weather permitting.  Free with Museum admission.  See website for Museum hours.  For all ages.  Outdoors. Open weather permitting. This summer our splashy Dynamic H2O exhibition,  in CMOM’s Sussman Environmental Center, is the hot place for children to cool off!  With 800 sq. ft. of hands-on interactives and cool colorful graphics, the exhibit offers visitors a fun place to chill while they learn how New York City gets its water and the role water plays in our local environment.  An interactive water table helps children trace the path of New York City’s water as they play and explore. The story begins with the water cycle up in the clouds. Children can release a rain shower and place small floating droplets in the resulting river to follow as they progress downstream toward the city. As the water flows past floating lily pads, there’s an area where children can create waterfalls, build dams and pretend to fish. The opportunities for fun and discovery continue as the water streams toward a build-your-own city that awaits future engineers and architects.  Children can pump water to the top of a skyscraper, create their own 92 mile aqueduct, and construct a city at the water’s edge! They can even try their hand at water-focused careers playing the role of marine scientist, chemical engineer, or even sewage treatment worker.

play:groundNYC on Governors Island
Saturdays-Sundays 11a-3p until October 1st.  Free.  There is a Family Play area, open to all ages, adjacent to our Junkyard play area. Adult supervision is required.  Please note that the ages for both the Junkyard Play area (6 and older) and Family Play area (5 and under) are recommended.  We have 50,000 square feet of space in which we supply young people with materials for building, exploring, imagining and destroying. Some tools provided are nails, hammers and saws, paint, tires, wood, fabrics and more. Expect your child to get messy! Our junkyard play area is for kids only, with a  recommended age of  6 and up. Parents can enjoy a grassy area with some shade to enjoy some time relaxing. Please note, while we do not allow parents into the older kids area, children are free to come and go. It is up to each family to decide if the parents stay waiting outside the playground or choose to go enjoy other parts of the island for a while. Please note there are  play:groundNYC playworkers in the JunkYard at all times. Note: Shoes: Closed toe and thick soled shoes are required to enter our junkyard play area. In order to reduce risk of injury, rubber shoes (i.e. Crocs) and shoes with cut-outs (i.e. Keen sandals) and soft soled-shoes (i.e. Converse) are NOT permitted.  See the website for all the details.

The Reluctant Dragon at Puppetworks (Park Slope)
Saturdays & Sundays now until August 20th at 1230p & 230p.  For 3y+.  Admission for a Child is $9, an Adult $10.  No credit cards accepted.  Reservations are suggested: 718-965-3391 (current day or advance reservations) or e-mail us: puppetworks@twcmetrobiz.com (NO same day e-mail reservations).  The Reluctant Dragon: Kenneth Grahame’s 1898 English Mystery adapted for Marionettes by Michael Leach.

NYTM Train Operators Workshop at the New York Transit Museum (Downtown Brooklyn)
Saturdays-Sundays 330-430p until June 25th.  Free with Museum admission.  Limited Capacity. Suggested for ages 10+.  Drop by our Computer Lab to take control of a NYC Subway car and operate it over virtual miles of track, using some incredibly realistic software!

The Princess, The Emperor and the Duck at the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre (Central Park)
Tuesday-Fridays 1030a & 12n and Saturdays & Sundays 1p until September 17th. Tickets are $8/children and $12/adults. A modern retelling of three classic Han Christian Andersen tales. Set in Africa, China and our own Central Park, The Princess, The Emperor, and The Duck retells storyteller Hans Christian Andersen’s world-famous fairy tales — The Princess and the Pea, The Emperor’s New Clothes and The Ugly Duckling — bringing the Theatre to life with new marionettes and hand painted scenery. Guided by a narrating Owl, audience members fly into each story with the original tales that teach important life lessons still relevant to children today.

Ed Center in Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 1
Tuesdays & Thursdays 3-5p and also Saturdays and Sundays from 1–5p. Free. The Ed Center is open for free, drop-in hours two afternoons a week! Get to know Brooklyn Bridge Park with our 250 gallon aquarium filled with critters from the East River, a 10’ scale model of Brooklyn Bridge Park, crafts, a reading corner, and much more!

To see all the events click here for the calendar!