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Weekend Family Events - Thanksgiving Weekend

Wednesday, November 25, 2015 by Julie G
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Good food to eat, photos to be taken, memories to be made. This weekend is all about friends, families, sharing old traditions, making new ones and of course, giving thanks. Thanks for elastic waistbands! Before the inevitable food coma sets in, you can start your Thanksgiving Holiday weekend with a family bike ride through Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens. Then sit back and watch the one and only Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. The Big Apple Circus also has a show on Thursday afternoon as well as shows all weekend long. Santa is in town for pictures and gift requests at Macy's and at Elfprov a musical interactive comedy show at the Broadway Comedy Club. There are tons of shows, shopping and special holiday programming this weekend. Enjoy the holiday! Here are this weekend's picks.
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Annual NYC Pilgrim Pedal Thanksgiving Day Ride
This ten- to 12-mile family bicycle ride starts and ends in Manhattan but goes through Brooklyn and Queens. This fun tour is for everyone and includes prizes for the best costume and best-themed bike. “Costumes” can be anything simple that’s related to Thanksgiving. You don’t have to don a full-on, zip-up costume although that would be fun! Just make sure that whatever you choose can be worn safely while riding. One of the best features of this tour is the sit-down social during the breakfast stop for coffee and pancakes or eggs at a favorite Brooklyn diner midway through this casual ride. Riders must wear properly fitted helmets and agree to ride bicycles in good working condition. Taking place on Thursday at 8:00AM to 11:30AM. Meeting at East 23rd Street and FDR Drive in Manhattan. The cost is $27 per person and includes breakfast.
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89th Annual Macy's Thanksgiving Parade
The nation’s most beloved spectacle returns for another year of magic as the 89th Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade kicks off the holiday season. The parade kicks off at Central Park West and 77th Street at 9:00AM. The parade turns at Columbus Circle onto Central Park South, then veers South onto 6th Avenue and marches from 59th Street to 34th Street. At 34th Street, the Parade makes its final turn and stops in front of Macy's Herald Square. The Macy’s Parade signature elements include its giant balloons, floats of fantasy, performers and the one-and-only Santa Claus, will ring in the holiday season with an unrivaled celebration.
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Big Apple Circus Presents The Grand Tour
Taking place at Damrosch Park at Lincoln Center all Thanksgiving weekend long is the Big Apple Circus: The Grand Tour. The Grand Tour is a circus extravaganza set in the 1920s and featuring acts from the four corners of the globe. Ships, trains, automobiles, and airplanes will serve as the backdrop for breathtaking acts of wonder, accompanied by the seven-piece Big Apple Circus Band playing live at each performance. Acts will include clowns, jugglers, acrobats, and aerialists, from Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, and North and South America, as well as domestic and rescue animals, all creating performances that will leave audiences smiling and cheering. There are tickets for Thursday at 1:00PM available as well as Friday at 11:00AM, 3:00PM and 6:30PM. And on Saturday and Sunday at 12:30PM and 4:30PM. Tickets from $25 - $150.
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Star Wars and the Power of Costume The Exhibition
Featuring 70 hand-crafted costumes from the first six blockbuster Star Wars films, this exhibition reveals the artists’ creative process and uncovers the connection between character and costume. The costumes shaped the identities of these now famous characters, from the menacing black mask of Darth Vader and the gilded suit of C-3PO, to the lavish royal gowns of Queen Amidala and a bikini worn by Princess Leia when enslaved by Jabba the Hutt. A special presentation for the showing at Discovery Times Square in New York will feature seven additional costumes from the highly anticipated film, Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Taking place all weekend long at Discovery Times Square. Thursday from 11:00AM to 5:00PM, Friday and Saturday from 10:00AM to 9:00PM and on Sunday from 10:00AM to 7:00PM. Tickets cost $27.50 for adults and $20 for kids.
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Macy's Santaland
Santa is stopping by your favorite Macy's! It's the perfect opportunity to share everything on your holiday wish list. He's only there for a limited time, so catch him while you can! Have your photo taken with the man himself. Taking place all weekend long. Friday from 7:00AM to 9:00PM. Saturday from 8:00AM to 9:00PM and on Sunday from 10:00AM to 9:00PM. Check the Macy's website to make reservations.
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Holiday Weekend Family Programs
Taking place all weekend long at the New York Transit Museum is special holiday family programs. Enjoy Subway Symphony and join in for an interactive “sound-along” to recreate joyful, noisy travel by train! Learn about recycling, subway-style! Retired Red Bird subway cars took a dive into the Atlantic Ocean to form a new home for fish. Dive into this fun program and paint your own vibrant scene of an underwater world of recycled cars. Or try your hand at Sounds-Portation Bingo. If you think you’ve heard it all when it comes to transportation in New York City, join in for a few rounds of a transportation sounds- themed bingo game. You’ll match city sounds of travel with images and objects found at the Museum. Taking place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 11:30AM to 3:45PM. All activities are free with museum admission.
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The Three Bears Holiday Bash
The Three Bears Holiday Bash is a variety show that celebrates the holiday season in song, dance and puppetry. This production quickly becomes a comedy of errors when Baby Bear invites Santa to star in Mama and Papa Bear's annual holiday show. The audience also gets to join in on the fun with a “12 days of Christmas” sing-a-long during the performance! The Three Bears Holiday Bash draws from the stories of Hanukkah, The Night Before Christmas, and Kwanzaa, making it a great way to get into the holiday spirit! There are tickets available for Friday at 11:00AM the later shows that day are sold out. Saturday and Sunday shows at 1:00PM have tickets available. Tickets cost $10 for adults, and $7 for children under 12. The show takes place at the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre in Central Park.
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Living History Days: Thanksgiving Weekend
The Third New Jersey Regiment will be back to the New-York Historical Society! Stop by the Museum this weekend to meet members of the Third, ask them questions about what life was like for a common soldier during the American Revolution, see their uniforms up close, and even handle some of their fascinating gear! Taking place at the DiMenna Children's History Museum on Friday and Saturday from 11:00AM to 4:00PM. This event is free with museum admission.
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Thanksgiving Family Workshop: Purrfect Puppet Animations
Before cats took over the Internet, they were the stars of numerous classic cartoons. In this workshop, families will make stop-motion videos inspired by famous animated cats, bringing feline puppets to life under the camera. Taking place at the Museum of the Moving Image on Friday at 2:00PM, Saturday at 12:45PM and 2:00PM and on Sunday at 12:45PM. For this activity, in addition to museum admission, there is a $5 materials fee per child (free for Family-level members and above). There is no charge for accompanying adults.
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Breakfast with Santa NYC / ELFPROV
Enjoy continental breakfast buffet (fruit, yogurt, bagels, donuts and other bite sized treats), coffee, juice and bottled water as families take selfies with Santa. They have their best elves on hand to help take family photos. After photos are taken the show begins. Elfprov is a hilarious interactive musical comedy for the whole family. Taking place on Saturday and Sunday at 9:30AM at the Broadway Comedy Club. Tickets cost $25 for general admission. VIP tickets cost $50.
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The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
This enchanting musical is based on C.S. Lewis' adventure story about four children of war-torn England, who accidentally enter the land of Narnia by climbing through a magic wardrobe. This strange and wondrous place is ruled by the cold-hearted White Witch, who makes the winter last year round. Although they seem unlikely saviors, the children fulfill an ancient prophecy by defeating the witch, thus restoring sunshine and peace to the spell-bound Narnia and returning the great Lion King Aslan to his throne. This show takes place at Queens Theatre on Friday at 1:00PM and 3:00PM. Tickets cost $14, members tickets cost $12.
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George Balanchine's The Nutracker
Tschaikovsky’s iconic score transports you to a world of wonder where mischievous mice are foiled by toy soldiers come to life, and a blizzard of ballerinas reveals the enchanting Land of Sweets. This is “the mother of all Nutcrackers” (The New Yorker) — the version that originated a beloved American tradition. Taking place at Friday at 8:00PM, Saturday at 8:00PM and on Sunday at 1:00PM and 5:00PM. Tickets are $35 and up. Taking place at the David H. Koch Theater in Lincoln Center.
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3rd Annual Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar
The Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar is a unique holiday event hosted and curated by Brooklyn Makers. They're kicking off Small Business Saturday with an amazing 2-day event that brings together the best of Brooklyn under one roof at 501 Union in Gowanus. You will find over 40 local makers to complete your holiday list with, delicious food from local favorites, free cocktails, cider and Health Ade Kombucha, live DJ, a professional photo booth and they're making it fun for the kids with craft workshops for the little crowd both Saturday and Sunday. The Holiday Bazaar takes place on Saturday and Sunday from 11:00AM to 6:00PM at 501 Union.
This event is free to attend.
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Annual Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony
Head to Park Slope for the Annual Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony.  There will be live music with Rolie Polie Guacamole featuring Amelia Robinson from Mils Trills. An opera performance from 15 year old pop opera sensation Sarah Stevens. There will also be carolers, sweet treats from local vendors, hot chocolate and arts and crafts with puppetry Arts and the Prospect Park YMCA. Also bring your gently used coats to donate to the NY Cares Winter Coat Drive 2015. Don't forget Santa will be there too! Taking place on Saturday at 6:30PM on the corner of 4th Street and 5th Avenue in Park Slope Brooklyn. This event is free to enjoy.
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Family Art Project: Harvest Time Hangings
Head to Wave Hill in the Bronx for a family art project. Gather fall leaves, cones, pods and seed heads. Weave them together with other materials from the gardens and meadows to create a decorative wall hanging celebrating the bounty and beauty of the season. Taking place on Saturday and Sunday from 10:00AM to 1:00PM. On Saturday admission is free to the ground until noon. On Sunday admission costs $8 for adults, $4 for students and seniors, $2 for children 6and up and free to members and children under 6.
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Breakfast with Santa
This holiday season, bring Christmas to life for your family with a magical morning at Stella 34 Trattoria in Macy's. Make their Christmas dreams come true when they meet and have breakfast with Santa Claus (and his elves) in the store that brought you the Miracle on 34th Street! The experience includes a delightful Italian breakfast feast, a Prosecco Bellini for adults to sip and enjoy, a visit from Santa and his elves, a photograph with Santa Claus (a $39.95 value at Santaland).
Takeaway treats and carolers singing holiday favorites! There are two breakfast sessions available one at 8:30AM and one at 10:00AM on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Pricing begins at $40 for children and $55 for adults.
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Thanksgiving Holiday
Join the Prospect Park Alliance for holiday programming at Lefferts Historic House, the Audubon Center, and the Carousel. Enjoy Nature Exploration at the Prospect Park Audubon Center. There will be a Bird Nerds Game Hour where you can test your knowledge of birds in this fun, mildly competitive hour of puzzles, Bingo, card games, and more! Also happening, an Alliance naturalist will lead children and families to areas near the Audubon Center, where you can learn about the nature that is all around us and participate in a Citizen Science project. Also, join Alliance Naturalists in learning more about the animals in the Audubon Center’s collection and even assist in an actual feeding. Take a ride on the Park’s beloved 1912 carousel. And be sure to stop by the Lefferts Historic House for paper quilting. Their annual show with the Brooklyn Quilters Guild is on display in the month of November. While you are there, make your own paper quilt collage to take home or add it to their community patchwork. The Prospect Park Audubon Center activities take place from 1:00PM to 3:00PM and are free to enjoy. Carousel rides cost $2 per ride, $9 for a book of 5 tickets. There is a suggested donation of $3 for the Lefferts Historic house. All events take place on Sunday.
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Winter On A Flatbush Farm
Get ready for winter as they did in the 19th century farming village of Flatbush. Learn how to make a candle, watch a master spinster spin wool thread, and enjoy Dutch treats made at their outdoor hearth from a Lefferts family recipe. St. Nicholas will visit at 3:00PM! Taking place on Sunday from 1:00PM to 3:00PM at the Lefferts Historic House in Prospect Park. There is a suggested $3 donation. *Be sure to check the Holiday Thanksgiving Programming happening at Prospect Park on Sunday at the Audubon Center as well.
Check out lots more great family events this weekend in NYC!
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