Way to put the holidays in the bag, Mama! After all your hard work, you deserve a nice, long, relaxing… wait. You’ve still got houseguests? The kids don’t go back to school for two more weeks? Your toddler is looking at you expectantly over that tray of Cheerios? Take a deep breath. We’ve got your back. Check out our blueprint for this weekend’s most awesome activities, and keep on trucking.
See Rudolph at the Center for Puppetry Arts
While this classic was booked solid before Christmas, the box office assures us that there’s still plenty of ticket availability this weekend. Based on the 1964 stop-motion animated special, the production uses rod and body puppets to chronicle the adventures of Hermey the Elf, Yukon Cornelius, the Abominable Snow Monster, Rudolph, and Santa. Held at Center for Puppetry Arts, 1404 Spring Street, NW at 18th. $16.50-$20.50 for non-members. Fri. & Sat., 11 a.m., 1 & 3 p.m.; Sun., 1 & 3 p.m. All ages. Event details.
Experience the Symphony of Snow at the Aquarium
Watch as the aquarium turns into a performance hall with seasonal songs. Don’t miss this year’s final performance! Held at the Georgia Aquarium, 225 Baker Street NW. Free with admission ($26/ child, $32/ adult). Sat. & Sun. at 12 and 4:30 p.m. All ages. Event details.
Learn About Kwanzaa at the Children’s Museum
Head to the Children’s Museum to round out their “Meet the Holidays” series with a Kwanzaa 101 course. Kids can listen to the story Kevin’s Kwanzaa by Lisa Bullard and then make their own Kwanzaa candle. Held at Imagine It! Children’s Museum of Atlanta, 275 Centennial Olympic Park Dr. Free with admission ($12.75 per person). Sat. at 12 & 3 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. Ages 8 & under. Event details.
Head to Helen for the Polar Bear Plunge
Crazy things happen in the North Georgia mountains. This we know. Put your own little notch of nutso on the belt by taking the whole family to Helen to participate in (or just watch) the family-friendly Polar Bear Plunge on the beach at Unicoi Lake. While you’re there, enjoy refreshments, music, a bonfire, and a raffle at the beach. Held at Unicoi State Park, 1788 Hwy 356, Helen, Ga. $10/ person or $25/ family to participate. Registration Sat. at 9:30 a.m., plunge at 11 a.m. All ages. Event details.
Check out (Other) Superheros at Marvel Universe Live!
If you missed it last weekend at Phillips Arena, have no fear! Catch the show this weekend at Gwinnett Arena, and thrill your adrenaline seekers with some Wham! Kazam! and Pow! (Just in case they don’t get their fill by watching you operate daily feats of awesomeness.) Held at The Arena at Gwinnett Center, 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth, Ga. Tickets start at $20/ person. Fri. at 7:30, Sat. at 11 a.m., 3 & 7 p.m., Sun. at 1 & 5 p.m. All ages. Event details.
Lend a Hand at a Family Volunteer Day
Join other families as you support pet adoptions by creating pet adoption flyers and pet bandanas. This is a family-only event by Hands on Atlanta, and all participants will be given a pet profile and art supplies for creating fliers and bandanas. Held Intown; Location information emailed upon registration. Free. Ages 5 & older. Sat., 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Event details.
Play in the Snow at Lake Lanier Islands
Check out Lake Lanier Islands inaugural season of SnowWorld, featuring man-made snow, 9 speed slides, a 13-lane tube slide, 4 snow play zones, ice skating, 8 family-friendly eateries, and firepits throughout for making s’mores. Go before December 31st and you can also check out the trip-worthy light display after the sun goes down. Held at Lake Lanier Islands, 7000 Lanier Islands Parkway, Buford, Ga. $34.99/ adults, $24.99/ children under 42″. Fri. 5 – 10 p.m., Sat. & Sun., 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. All ages (some rides have height restrictions). Event details.
Settle Down for Storytime Looking for something local, peaceful, and laced with a little “you time?” Head to Barnes & Noble in Buckhead. Your kiddos can enjoy someone else’s narrative while you sip your latte (be sure to pick one up from the Starbucks next door). Following story time, kids can make a small, take-home craft or participate in a corresponding activity. Held at Barnes & Noble, 2900 Peachtree Rd. NE Suite 310. Free. Sat. at 11 a.m. All ages. Event details.
Take a Ride on the Singalong Train
This 5-mile, 40 minute train ride will have the kids all in a dither as they sing merrily through the park. Yes. That’s a lot of singing, but the conductor interrupts the caroling intermittently as he relays the story of the first Christmas. Held at Stone Mountain Park, 1000 Robert E. Lee Blvd, Stone Mountain, Ga. Price varies by admission package, see website for details. Sat. & Sun. from 6 – 10 p.m. All ages. Event details.
Head Outdoors at the Chattahoochee Nature Center
Isn’t it time to air out that crowd of wild things you’ve got bouncing off the walls? We thought so. Head to the CNC for some romping around the grounds, followed by a 30 minute animal encounter lead by a CNC naturalist. Held at Chattahoochee Nature Center, 9135 Willeo Road, Roswell, Ga. Free with admission ($10/ adult, $6/ child; Kids 2 & under free). Sun. at 4 p.m. All ages. Event details.
Looking ahead to New Year’s Eve? Check out our selection for family-friendly events here. How do you plan to ring in 2015?
Photo: Center for Puppetry Arts