Monday, January 31, 2011

Red Kite Roundup - A special show for children with autism

Chicago Children’s Theatre presents a special show for children with autism as part of their education initiative, The Red Kite project. The Red Kite project is a seven month development workshop and co-production that culminates with a multi-sensory installation performance for children with autism at Chicago Children’s Museum.

Red Kite Roundup takes place at Millennium Park February 1-20. The show is intended for children ages 5-14, and it allows children with autism to take part in Chicago Children’s Theatre’s immersive, simulated camping experience. Actors guide children on their own personal journey complete with chasing butterflies, hiking and camping under the stars.

The show is limited to just 10 children (with an adult) to meet the special needs of each child in attendance. All tickets are $10 each and advanced reservations are required. For more information, visit or

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Family Events and Activities for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Kids are off school on Monday and many businesses are closed. There are several activities taking place for your family to enjoy while also learning more about Martin Luther King Jr.

Here are a few highlights, and you can find more events celebrating the holiday and the day off at

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Art Institute
Celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.! Hear a storytelling program with Gwen Hilary, accompanied by the music of Enoch Williamson at 11:30 or 12:30, and visit a drop-in workshop to make a portrait of someone who is a hero to you. Enjoy a free gallery walk at 12:15 or 1:15. Included with regular admission.

2011 Dr. King Day Celebration

DuSable Museum of African American History
The DuSable Museum of African American History will celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and The Civil Rights Movement during our annual Dr. King Day Celebration! The day will be filled with live performances, storytelling, films, trunk shows, food, and activities for the entire family. The theme for the 2011 celebration is “COMMUNITY.” 10am – 5pm. Adults $10, Children 12 and under $5.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration

Brookfield Zoo
Plan your visit to allow time to join us in the Discovery Center, Savannah Room for a special presentation by Dr. Elijah Ward, Director of African-American Studies and Assistant Professor - Sociology, Anthropology & Criminal Justice at St. Xavier University, "Understanding the Roots of Race." Following the talk you can share your dream on a Tibetan prayer flag which will be flown in Hamill Family Play Zoo. Traditionally, prayer flags are used to promote peace, compassion, strength, and wisdom. Noon. Free.

What Does It Mean, Dr. King?

Chicago Children's Museum
What was the Civil Rights Movement and what does it mean for kids today? Take a journey back in time and learn about freedom through interactive theater and songs. At 11am, 1, 2 & 3pm. Included with regular admission.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Chicago Museum Free Days - and even some Free Weeks

If your budget is tight but you don't want to miss out on visiting some of Chicago's best museums this year, make sure you check with our listing of 2011 Chicago Museum Free Days.

January seems to have quite a lot of free days, and even free weeks at some locations.

Here's the rundown:

Adler Planetarium
January 4, 5, 10-14, 18, 19, 24-27
February 1, 2, 7-10, 15, 16, 22, 23, 28
March 1-3, 8, 9, 15, 16

Art Institute
Free Winter Weekdays: From January 3 through February 4, the museum is offering free admission, every weekday, all day long (late evenings included)!

Chicago Botanic Garden
Always free.

Chicago Children's Museum
The first Sunday of every month is free admission for ages 15 and under.
Kraft Free Family Night is every Thursday from 5-8pm, free admission for everyone.

Chicago Cultural Center
Always free.

Chicago History Museum
Free Mondays.

Field Museum
Free admission the 2nd Monday of each month, with additional free days throughout the year.
January 3, 10, 11, 13, 18, 19, 24, 26 and 31
February 2, 3, 8, 9, 14, 15 and 17
March 14
April 11
May 9
June 7, 13

John G. Shedd Aquarium
Jan. 10, 11, 16-21, 24, 25 & 31
Feb. 1, 7, 8, 14, 15, 20-24, 28

Museum of Contemporary Art
Free on Tuesdays.

Museum of Science and Industry
January 3-7, 10-14, 17-21, 24-28, 31
February 1, 8, 14, 15, 22
June 1, 2, 6, 7, 8, 9
September 6-9, 12-16, 19-23, 26-30

National Museum of Mexican Art
Always free.

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum
Thursdays are "suggested donation days."

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Ice Skate in the Sky at the John Hancock Observatory!

The world's highest ice skating rink is now open! You and the kids can now enjoy ice skating indoors without a worry about the weather - and with a 1,000 high view of the Chicago skyline and scenery!

From January 1 - March 31, this 900 square foot, synthetic ice rink is open from 9am - 11pm. You can purchase a 25 minute skating session for just $5 (on top of regular admission fee), and you can bring your own skates or rent them for just $1. Last tickets are sold at 10pm.

Every Monday from 3-5pm, the rink features a skating lesson from a Chicago Blackhawks Youth Hockey coach. The space for lessons is limited, so if you're interested, book one soon.

Visit for more information and some fine print regarding waivers and rules.