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6 family-friendly activities happening this April break in Boston

A mother unlocks her son's bicycle before heading home for the day. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
A mother unlocks her son's bicycle before heading home for the day. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Looking to keep your family busy this April break? From biking and kite making to a “party for the planet,” here are local events that can help keep your children engaged, entertained and learning while school’s out this spring.

Boston Marathon Days at the Museum of Science (April 15, 16)

All ages, general admission tickets required

If you have ever wondered what it takes to run a long-distance race like the Boston Marathon, an event this weekend at the Museum of Science is for you.

Head over to the Museum’s Hall of Human Life to learn how the body has adapted for the athletic performance of marathoners. You can also test out a heat blanket — just like those given to runners after tackling those brutal 26.2 miles — and step in front of an infrared camera to see how it helps athletes recover post-race. This is a great opportunity for kids and parents to learn some cool facts before Marathon Monday. Events go from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and are included in the cost of a general admission ticket.

April Vacation Week at the USS Constitution: Wind-Powered Fun (April 15-23)

All ages, admission by donation

Make your way down to Old Ironsides to explore the importance of wind as it powers a ship through themed crafts and projects.

You’ll be able to build a naval ship or make a wind spinner or suncatcher this week at the USS Constitution Museum. Special dates include Wednesday, April 19 (completely free admission), when you can join in an activity to make your own colorful windsock, and Friday, April 21, when you can make your own kite and fly it on the Commandant’s Lawn. Visit the website for full details. Admission is by donation.

Biking Basics with the Boston Public Library (April 19-20)

Ages 6-12, free with registration

Get outside and enjoy the spring weather when you attend a session on biking basics with the BPL. Join MA Safe Routes to School and the Boston Public Library for a session on smart biking skills and bicycle maintenance for children in fifth to eighth grades on April 19. There’s also an introduction to bike, trike and scooter safety on April 20 for children in first to fourth grades. Children will be shown where to find safe bike routes, gain new skills and enjoy an active day outside by attending this educational session. The event is free with registration.

Imaginative Worldbuilding at the BPL’s Leventhal Map Center (April 19)

Ages 8-12, free admission

Imaginative children who love fantasy are sure to enjoy an upcoming workshop on worldbuilding through the Boston Public Library and the Leventhal Map and Education Center.

Visit the Children’s Room in the Central Library in Copley Square from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. to learn how maps can shape imaginary worlds. After learning a little map lingo and exploring examples from fantasy and science fiction books, children will have the opportunity to create their own maps. Materials are provided and kids will have a map to take home by the end. Admission is free.

April Vacation Week at the Museum of Fine Arts (April 19-22)

All ages, general admission tickets required

If there’s a future Picasso in your crew, you’re in luck: the Museum of Fine Arts is hosting a week full of interactive family tours and drop-in artmaking activities from April 19-22.

Visitors of all ages will have the opportunity to explore color while making suncatchers, Ukrainian Easter eggs or realistic-looking paper flowers. Children 10 and older are also invited to drop-in on a felting activity with Alex Makes Art. Find the full list of MFA April vacation events here. Most events will occur between 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and are included in the cost of a general admission ticket.

Party for the Planet at the Franklin Park Zoo (April 22)

All ages, general admission tickets required

Franklin Park Zoo is hosting its annual "Party for the Planet" celebration in honor of Earth Day on April 22.

Spend the day at the zoo connecting with nature and learning about conservation efforts happening around Massachusetts. You'll have a chance to chat with zookeepers, play games, engage in animal enrichment activities and contribute to sustainability efforts. Plus, they’ll be recycling old cell phones, so if you have some tech to get rid of, bring it along!

The event will occur — rain or shine — from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Access is included with a general admission ticket to the zoo but families and teachers of the Boston Public Schools can receive free admission with this link.


Hanna Ali Associate Producer
Hanna Ali is an associate producer for newsletters at WBUR.



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