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Best Things to Do with Kids in Philly This Week

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?? This calendar is updated every Monday with the best events of the week. You can always find it on inquirer.com/kidscalendar

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Indoor holiday traditions may be back (both Nutcracker and The snack come back this week), but last year’s surge in outdoor activities extends this winter as well. Delco hosts its own pop-up ice rink. The free library hosts hours of outdoor storytelling. And Santa Claus will use his magic to appear in public spaces in Roxborough, Passyunk Square and, there is a good chance, in a mall or outdoor park near you.

(Seasonal / in person / multi-day) An outdoor ice rink debuts at Delco, along with the required lounge, heated tent, and hot drinks. Skaters register for 90 minute sessions. 4 years and over. ($ 12 admission, $ 10 skate rental, from December 3 to 31, schedules vary, 4599 West Chester Pike, Newtown Square, flightonice.com)

(Seasonal / in person / multiple days / free) Old Saint Nick stops by the avenue a few times this month to pose for DIY photos with humans and pets. Children can drop off Christmas wish lists in a mailbox at the Singing Fountain, which has a direct line from South Philly to the North Pole. All ages. (Free Dec. 8, 5-7 p.m., Dec. 18, 3 p.m.-5 p.m., Dec. 19, 12 p.m.-2 p.m., Tasker Street and E. Passyunk Avenue., visiteastpassyunk.com)

(Seasonal / in person / multi-day / free) There is a lot to explore (although less to touch) among the dozens of pop-up vendors west of Town Hall at the Annual Christmas Village. On Wednesdays, the free library adds carols and a vacation-inspired story hour at LOVE Park. 3-5 years. (Free on Dec. 8, 15, 22, 11 a.m., 1600, boulevard JFK, facebook.com)

(Seasonal / Virtual / Free) Fairmount Park’s historic mansion, Cedar Grove, broadcasts a live colonial kids cooking show with a historical twist, including explaining what plum pudding is to Generation Alphas. Registration closes December 9 at noon. 6-12 years old. (Pay what you want, December 10, 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., philamuseum.org)

(Food / in person) Buy a Gingerbread House or Sugar Cookie House Kit at the Cafe at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and you’ll get entry for two to learn how to build it ($ 50 to $ 55 per kit), with cocoa and hot Cider. Entrance to the museum not included. 5 years and over. ($ 25 for those 19 and over, $ 23 for those 65 and over, $ 14 for students with ID, free for those 18 and under on December 10, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy., philamuseum.org)

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(Dance / in person / several days) Same tradition, different protocol. Anyone visiting the Balanchine-by-way-of-Philadelphia-Ballet tradition will be required to show full proof of vaccination (guests 12 and older) or a negative COVID lab test (guests 11 and under). Sold out opening night. 4 years and over. ($ 25 to $ 220, from December 10 to 31, 240 S. Broad St., philadelphiaballet.org)

(Seasonal / In-Person / Free) Every neighborhood should throw a holiday launch party as fun as the Ridge Avenue party event. The afternoon brings visits from Santa Claus and Snow Queen Elsa, live dance performances, Rudolph ornament making, mailing of wish lists and lots of goodies. 2 years and over. (Free, Dec. 11, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., 6170 Ridge Ave, roxboroughpa.com)

(Dance / in person / over several days) The Lady Hoofers resume their lively, tap-dancing performance of Nutcracker, taking place in Paris and with a score including Tchaikovsky and Ellington. Proof of COVID vaccination or negative PCR test within 72 hours of entry required. 4 years and over. (Dec 11, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. & Dec. 12, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 480 S. Broad St., ladyhoofers.org)

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(Seasonal / in person / multiple days / free) The Wanamaker Building resumes holiday activities, in part asking fans of Dickens Village to reserve seats to navigate the dimly lit hallways where animatronic dolls play A Christmas Carol. Father Christmas is only available by virtual arrangement. In December, Macy’s Favorite Light Show will be once a day (December 1-31). 5 years and over. (Dickens Village: until December 23, 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., hours vary December 24, 26-31, 1300 market street, macys.com)

(Seasonal / in person / multiple days / free) Until December, the Wanamaker building hosts once a day its iconic dancing light show, narrated by Julie Andrews, accompanied by an organ. Masks mandatory, social distancing rules in force. Schedules subject to change. 2 years and over. (Free, Dec 1-24, 10:30 a.m., Dec 26-31, 11:30 a.m., 1300 market street, macys.com)

(Science / in person / kid-friendly / multi-day) There have always been steam trains at the Franklin Institute, but until the end of the year a new exhibit is adding tracks and cars are adding even more steam to the collection. The models loop around a 25 foot heavenly tree. 2-14 years old. ($ 23 for ages 12 and over, $ 19 for ages 3 to 11, free for ages 2 and under, until December 31, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday to Sunday, 222 N. 20th St., fi.edu)

(Seasonal / in person / free / several days) After dark, multicolored projections transform the west facade of the town hall, adding to the magic of the ice rink and the winter garden. All ages. (Free, until January 1, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays, until 10 a.m. on weekends, 15th and Market Sts., centrecityphila.org)

(Seasonal / in person / kid-friendly / multi-day) Montco convention center unveils a new indoor winter wonderland with synthetic ice rink (30-minute sessions at a time, admission $ 5 to $ 10, rental of $ 10 skates), a million-bulb Liberty Bell, pictures with Santa Claus (and, on Thursdays, Gritty), and enough decorations to make a Hallmark Christmas movie feel underdressed. 2 years and over. ($ 20 to $ 30 for ages 13 and over, $ 14 to $ 23 for ages 5 to 12, free for ages 4 and under, until January 2, 2022, dates and times vary, Perkiomen Mill Loop, Oaks, tinseltownholiday.com)

(Theater / in person / in progress) Return to the seats and Under the sea, Walnut Street returns for kids with one of Disney’s biggest hits, starring Diana Huey as Ariel. Proof of vaccination for children 12 and over, negative COVID-19 test for children 11 and under, and government-issued photo ID for those 18 and over are required. ($ 25 to $ 175, until January 2, 2022, 825 Walnut Street, walnut treestreetheatre.org)

(Seasonal / in-person / kid-friendly / multi-day) The lush groves and trees on the edge of Chestnut Hill get an extra dose of kid-friendly appeal when Morris dresses up and reopens his G-scale trains for the holidays . The setup is even more magical on weekends after dusk, when reservations are recommended. Ages 1+. ($ 20 for ages 18 and over, $ 18 for those 65 and over, $ 10 for ages 3 to 17, free for ages 2 and under, until January 2, 2022 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 100 E. Northwestern Ave., morrisarboretum.org)

(Seasonal / in person / over multiple days) Cuddly singing and swaying trees and characters draw kids into the holiday magic at Elmo’s house, Big Bird – you know the others. A family zone provides a warm place near fireplaces, hot chocolate, cookie decorating and other Sesame friends. The rides, shops and snacks are open. The water park is not. 0-7 years old. ($ 89.99 for one-day tickets, $ 99.99 for two-day tickets, free 23 months and under, until January 2, 100 Sesame Road, Langhorne, sesameplace.com)

(Seasonal / in person / over multiple days) When the animals lie down, a million lights come on throughout the zoo. Ticket holders discover trees made of butterflies, flamingos and an octopus, walk through an aquarium-like tunnel, encounter 200 electric penguins, and encounter many more light bulbs transformed into ethereal spaces and larger-than-life creatures . ($ 25 12 years old and over, $ 20 2-11 years old, free for children under 2 years old, until January 9, hourly admission from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., 3400 West, avenue Girard., philadelphiazoo.org)

(Museum / in person / over multiple days) Dorothy, Toto and their friends visit Memorial Hall for three months, taking games and Miss Gulch’s bike with them. Reservations required. 1-10 years. ($ 19, free for children under 1, until January 12, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 4231 Republic Avenue, pleasetouchmuseum.org)

(Seasonal / in person / multi-day / free) Visibly sparkling from Vine Street Freeway, Franklin Square lights up to the sound of holiday music every half hour (daily from 5 p.m.). Customers should plan to set aside a few dollars for a carousel ride, mini-golf ($ 8 to $ 15), and cocoa, fortified or not. All ages. (Free, until February 27, Sun-Thu 10 am-9pm, Fri-Sat 10 am-10pm, 200 N. Sixth Street, historicphiladelphia.org)

(Seasonal / In-Person / Multi-Day) It’s time to put on your skates and welcome winter to Dilworth Park. Skaters of all ages can enjoy sessions on the rink and lounge in the cabin for hot drinks and food. Reservations and masks are encouraged. ($ 5 to $ 17, until February 27, 1 S. 15th Street., centrecityphila.org)

(Seasonal / in person / kid friendly / multi day) Winterfest reopens to glide (and wobble) around the outdoor rink, play carnival games and hang out by the fire. 4 years and over. (RiverRink: $ 5 admission, $ 10 skate rental, until March 6, 2022, 101 S. Columbus Blvd., delawareriverwaterfront.com)

(Science / in person / over several days) Water from very near and far, as interpreted by scientists, artists and artist-scientists, gives viewers a new insight into the daily magic of two-thirds of our earth and 60% of our body. ($ 20- $ 22 adults, $ 16- $ 18 children, free for members and under 2, until April 17, hours vary, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway., ansp.org)

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