THURSDAY, JANUARY 14
Operation Pedro Pan Exhibition: The Cuban Children’s Exodus
Final weekend: From 1960-’62, more than 14,000 unaccompanied Cuban children left their homeland in what became the largest recorded child refugee exodus in the Western Hemisphere. This fascinating exhibit displays testimonies, photographs, letters and other items from the children, now adults.
Details: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, and noon-5 p.m. Sunday, at HistoryMiami, 101 W. Flagler St., Miami; www.historymiami.org; free with museum admission ($8 adults, $5 kids 6-12, under 6 free).
Ringling Bros. And Barnum & Bailey Presents : Circus Xtreme
The Greatest Show On Earth returns with a bang, featuring its usual array of death-defying stunts, amazing acrobats, exotic animals and crazy clowns, ramped up to an extreme level that will leave kids and adults breathless.
Details: 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday; 11 a.m., 3 and 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; and 6 p.m. Monday; at the AmericanAirlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; Ticketmaster; $16-$75.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 15
Kids’ Happy Hour: Funtastic Fridays
Enjoy a DJ, face-painting, games and bounce houses and see why Local 10 (WPLG) viewers ranked this event No. 8 on their “Top 10 Places to Take the Kids in South Florida” list. Bring a blanket and stick around for the 2011 comedy “We Bought a Zoo,” directed by Cameron Crowe (“Say Anything,” “Jerry Maguire,” “Almost Famous”) and starring Matt Damon and Scarlett Johansson, about a father who buys a rundown zoo and the various absurd challenges the family faces. Film is from 8-10 p.m., weather permitting.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 16
Art Deco Weekend: Kids’ Club At The Playground
Just being at Art Deco Weekend will be fun enough for your little ones, but kids will also have their own special place to play, learn, listen, dance and create, with the help of interactive programs, stage shows and presentations from the Miami Design Preservation League, Perez Art Museum Miami, History Miami, Bass Museum, Fantasy Theater Factory, Sprouted Chef culinary service and much more.
Details: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Art Deco Weekend, Ocean Drive and 13th Street (in the park), Miami Beach; www.artdecoweekend.com; free.
Good Folks, Great Music: South Florida Folk Festival
Music, family and environmental awareness come together as the festival, now in its 22nd year, features more than 40 musical artists performing on two stages (including Spuyten Duyvil, Zoe Lewis, The Kennedys, No Fuss and Feathers, and local fave Amy Carol Webb), songwriting competitions, workshops, a “jam area” for amateurs and great food and drink. Presented by the Broward Folk Club and assisted by the wildlife organization STOP (Sea Turtle Oversight Protection).
Details: 11:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Saturday and noon-8:15 p.m. Sunday at Hugh Taylor Birch State Park, 3109 E. Sunrise Blvd., Fort Lauderdale; www.southfloridafolkfest.net; $40 single day, $75 full weekend.
Inspiring Young Hearts: MUSEic
MUSEic Mentors are back with even more local musicians, dancers, performers and artists to help lead kids into a world of music fun. Budding young musicians will have an opportunity to be inspired by music as they bang on drums, play with keyboards, take dance lessons, paint records, sing Karaoke and even build their own songs live on a computer.
Free Family Fest: Story Pirates
Based entirely on stories written by elementary school students, “Story Pirates” celebrates creative writing by young dreamers from coast to coast. It’s a loud, hilarious sketch comedy musical performed by professional improvisers and musicians. And part of the show is made up on the spot by the kids in the audience. Story topics are gleefully wacky, ranging from kung fu ninja babies fighting crime to cats flying and tickle monsters who rule the world.
Details: 1:30 p.m. Saturday at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, Knight Concert Hall, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami; 305-949-6722 or www.arshtcenter.org; free — check online for first-access pass info.
Musical Theatre For Young Audiences: Jungle Book
Sing along to this music-filled spectacle based on Rudyard Kipling’s time-honored stories of young Mowgli, who was raised by wolves in the Indian jungle, and his magical adventures growing up in the animal kingdom. Join Mowgli as he learns about friendship and survival with the help of friends like Bagheera the black panther and Baloo the lovable bear, and foils his nemesis, Shere Khan the tiger.
Holiday Laughs: Elf The Musical
You can officially put a bow on the holiday season with the final performance of this stage adaptation of the 2003 Christmas comedy film starring Will Ferrell as the fish-out-of-water elf Buddy who heads for New York City to find the true meaning of Christmas.
Details: 4 p.m. Saturday at the Showtime Performing Arts Theatre, 503 SE Mizner Blvd., Royal Palm Plaza, Boca Raton; www.showtimeboca.com; $14, $10 kids under 12.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 17
Bawk-Bawk-Ba-Gawk! Chicken Dance
Beloved children’s books by best-selling author Tammi Sauer come to colorful life in this giddy musical adventure about Marge and Lola, two chickens on a mission to win tickets for the Elvis Poultry Show. But can these two feisty chicks show their toughest competition how to rock the barnyard?
Family Fun Series: Elephant & Piggie’s “We Are In A Play”
Kennedy Center-commissioned adaptation of Mo Willems’ award-winning Elephant & Piggie books will have you doing the “Flippy Floppy Floory” dance all day long with best friends Gerald and Piggie, who find themselves on an excellent musical escapade, backed by nutty backup singers. Come early for free pre-show face painting and art activities, then stick around for complimentary post-show snacks.
Got The Blues? Sunshine Music Festival
Fourth-annual all-day family-friendly blowout once again features the Grammy-winning Tedeschi Trucks Band, who will be performing material from its upcoming third studio album, “Let Me Get By,” which comes out Jan. 29. Also on the bill are renowned folk duo The Indigo Girls; New Orleans funk band Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue; rock supergroup the Hard Working Americans; legendary Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna guitarist Jorma Kaukonen; and many more.
Details: 11 a.m. Sunday at Mizner Park Amphitheatre, 590 Plaza Real, Boca Raton; Ticketmaster; $49.99-$99.99; kids 2 and under free.
MONDAY, JANUARY 18
Celebrate The Dream: Mlk Parade, Unity March And Festival
Annual gathering features a parade and unity march from 9-10 a.m., immediately followed by an all-day, multicultural festival honoring the legacy of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., featuring music, dance, art, storytelling and more.
Details: 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Monday; starts at NW Fifth Avenue and Sistrunk Boulevard, to Andrews Avenue south to Huizenga Plaza at Las Olas and Andrews Avenue, Fort Lauderdale; www.artscalendar.com; free.
Miami Children’s Museum: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Take some time to celebrate diversity and teach your children about our civil rights hero at MCM. Kids can add their fingerprints to the Museum’s Diversity Dove and write out their dreams for the world on their own “I Have A Dream” clouds.
Details: Noon-3 p.m. Monday at the Miami Children’s Museum, 980 MacArthur Cswy., Watson Island, Miami; www.miamichildrensmuseum.org; $18, $14 for Florida residents, free for kids under 12 months.
FREE FOR ALL
Pop-Up Kids Program: GoGo Moad!
Explore function and design in this “DIY: Design It Yourself” event inspired by the Arango Design Foundation that invites kids to create their own Floating Box Pop-Up Cards. Whether it’s made with someone special in mind or created to serve a specific function, they’ll take home a special, personalized work.
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