It’s time for a much-needed break from school. If your family is planning a staycation in DFW or traveling here from elsewhere, you will be happy to know that there is no shortage of fun this week. We rounded up the best family activities, events and day camps to keep everyone smiling.
Children’s Opera Theater
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The Fort Worth Children’s Opera Theater performs The Ugly Duckling and Billy Goats Gruff for two days. Both shows allow parents to introduce children to opera with familiar stories that are fun and entertaining.
These shows are appropriate for all ages and run about 40 minutes. On Monday, The Ugly Duckling will be performed at 11 a.m. and Billy Goats Gruff at 2 p.m. On Tuesday, the schedule is reversed.
Bring a nonperishable food item for the Tarrant Area Food Bank and receive a complimentary ticket for a future performance. $5. Scott Theatre, 1300 Gendy St., Fort Worth, 817-731-0833. www.fwopera.org.
‘The Wizard of Oz’ at Artisan Center Theater
Click your heels and follow Dorothy on a classic journey of self-discovery, complete with musical favorites.
The production is based on the film and appropriate for all ages. It runs through March 21 with special performances during spring break, 10 a.m. and noon Tuesday-Friday. Regular performances are 5 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. and noon Saturdays. $5-$10.
Artisan Center Theater, 444 E. Pipeline Road, Hurst, 817-284-1200. http://artisanct.com.
Spring break at the Science Center
River Legacy Living Science Center in Arlington has a week of activities planned for families, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. daily.
Monday, a naturalist leads a 30-minute guided hike every hour for observation and “I Spy.” Tuesday, a reptile encounter lets visitors get up close with snakes and turtles. This activity is held every half-hour during the event and also includes a craft.
In “Be a Bug Detective” on Wednesday, families can borrow a bug box and magnifying glass to take on a 30-minute guided hike to learn about local insects. Thursday’s animal encounter is with an opossum and takes place every half-hour.
Friday, collect items from nature for an art project that involves easel painting and leaf rubbing.
Activities are recommended for age 2 and up; hikes are stroller-friendly. $2-$3. River Legacy Living Science Center, 703 N.W. Green Oaks Blvd., Arlington, 817-860-6752. www.riverlegacy.org.
Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge
The Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge has both indoor and outdoor activities for spring break. Monday and Friday from 1 to 3 p.m., participate in a guided hike through the refuge to observe spring wildflowers and local wildlife. It’s free with paid admission.
Tuesday and Thursday, 10-11:30 a.m. or 1-2:30 p.m., take a hayride to the bison range and feed the animals while learning about their habitat and care. The activity is $16, $8 members; call for reservations.
Weather permitting, Wednesday is Canoefest, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Participants must be age 5 or older and parents must sign a waiver for minors. Life vests, paddles and canoes are provided.
Inside the Hardwicke Interpretive Center, come and go between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. daily for nature crafts and to visit local animal ambassadors. All activity fees are in addition to general admission, $2-$5. Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge, 9601 Fossil Ridge Road, 817-392-7410. www.fwnaturecenter.org
Spring Break Extravaganza at the Library
The Fort Worth Public Library hosts a free, family-friendly event for all ages as part of the Worth Reading program. Book-based activities for young children are come-and-go at Central Branch Library, 1-3 p.m. daily.
Tuesday, listen to story time and do butterfly and frog crafts based on The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle, and Frog and Toad by Arnold Lobel. Wednesday, make a puppet with a paper bag, stick or sock. Thursday’s story and craft combination is based on The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister.
Older children, ages 6-10, learn about engineering and use circuits to build a flying saucer, doorbell, alarm and other hands-on projects at Amp It Up. This event takes place at various branches throughout the week. See the library website for the schedule.
Free. Fort Worth Central Branch Library’s Youth Center, 500 W. Third St., 817-392-7323. http://fortworthtexas.gov/Library.
Spring Break Extravaganza at the Kimbell
The Kimbell Art Museum has daily activities scheduled for spring break week.
Hours are 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, noon-4 p.m. Friday. Activities include Alexander Calder-style collages, Seaside Village 3-D models and Monet landscape paintings. In the teen studio, instructors guide participants in mixed media and sculpting. There are also guided tours, storybook readings and short films throughout each day.
Free. Kimbell Art Museum, 3333 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth. 817-332-8451. www.kimbellart.org
Cowtown Goes Green
Stockyards Station hosts its annual Cowtown Goes Green festival for St. Patrick’s Day from noon to 4 p.m. Families can enjoy live entertainment from Irish dancers and gunfight shows. Activities include face painting, pony rides, a petting zoo, and armadillo races. 5 Second Rule performs live Irish music. A Western-Irish parade follows the cattle drive at 4 p.m. Free. Fort Worth Stockyards, 130 E. Exchange Ave., 817-625-9715. www.stockyardsstation.com.
Music in the Air
Log Cabin Village, “Fort Worth’s living history museum,” hosts a festival of music 1-4 p.m.
Learn how to make instruments from materials found in nature. Listen to Buttermilk Junction Old Time String Band and learn about instruments in the 1800s.
$7.50-$8. Log Cabin Village, 2100 Log Cabin Village Lane, Fort Worth. 817-392-5881. www.logcabinvillage.org.
Benbrook Stables Horse Camp
Spring break camp at Benbrook stables offers horseback riding lessons for children age 5 and older.
Learn to ride bareback, Western and English styles. Each day, campers begin by feeding, grooming and tacking up horses. They learn nutrition, stall maintenance, horse safety and riding basics. Additional activities include hayrides, outdoor games and crafts.
Dress comfortably for the weather and bring a sack lunch and drink. Attend a single day or all week. Each session is 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Register by phone. $55 per day. Benbrook Stables, 10001 Benbrook Blvd. 817-249-1001. www.benbrookstables.com/BenbrookStables/EquestrianCenter.html.
Central Market Southlake Kids Camp
Drop your child off for a cooking class at Central Market for hands-on learning and age-appropriate kitchen skills.
Monday (ages 5 to 7) and Tuesday (ages 8 to 10) from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., the class is “That’s Italiano.” Make mozzarella sticks with marinara, fried ravioli, pepperoni pizza rolls and cannoli poke cake. Wednesday, kids ages 11-13 participate in “So You Think You Can Cook.” Campers plan, shop, and create three dishes for judges in a reality television-style contest. Judges will present the Golden Spoon Award for originality, taste and presentation.
Register online. $45-$50. Central Market Southlake, 1425 E. Southlake Blvd., 817-310-5665. www.centralmarket.com/cooking-school.
Studio Art House Southlake
Studio Art House hosts its spring break camp. Classes are organized by age, 5-7 and 8-12. The morning session is 9 a.m.-noon; afternoon is 1-4 p.m. Monday morning, use clay to sculpt a candy bar during “Clay Candy.” In the afternoon at “Paint Your Pet,” use a personal photo of your pet to paint an 8-by-10 canvas with acrylic.
Tuesday morning, use charcoal to draw baby animals with texture at “Animal Babies Galore.” In the afternoon, “Clay Owl” involves sculpting with clay and painting the finished owls. Wednesday morning, sculpt with clay and paint the results at “Clay Rose.” In the afternoon, bring a photo of a favorite toy for “Paint a Toy” and use acrylic on an 8-by-10 canvas.
Thursday morning, paint a lucky charm with acrylic on an 8-by-10 canvas in “Dew Drop Shamrock.” In the afternoon, “Sculpt a Bobble Head Pet” will use clay and a photo from home. Friday morning, learn different art principles and paint on a shirt at “Design a T-Shirt.” In the afternoon, learn the basics of cartoon drawing at “Cartooning Camp.”
Register online or by phone. $40 per session. Studio Art House Southlake, 631 E. Southlake Blvd., Suite C., 817-416-4278. http://studioarthouse.com.
Satur(Day) Kids Camp at SiNaCa Studios
SiNaCa Studios hosts a one-day camp for kids ages 8-16. From 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, students will learn through observation and hands-on experience in each of the three glass studios.
Make a glass sculpture, a set of kiln-forged coasters and glass beads. Participants will be divided into small groups for an age-appropriate and safe experience. Tuition includes lunch and all necessary glass and other supplies.
Register online. $425. SiNaCa Studios, 1013 W. Magnolia Ave., Fort Worth. 817-899-0024. Sinaca.org
Fort Worth Museum of Science and History
The museum and Omni IMAX Theater are open for extended hours, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and noon-7 p.m. Sunday.
In addition to the permanent exhibits, the current temporary installation is “What’s Up Doc? The Animation Art of Chuck Jones,” which includes sketches, photographs and animated films featuring Bugs Bunny and other Looney Tunes.
Humpback Whales is now playing in the theater. Narrated by Ewan McGregor, it provides a closer look at the world’s largest mammal.
To ensure entry to the exhibits or films, purchasing tickets in advance is recommended. Exhibits, $13-$15; films, $3-$7. Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, 1600 Gendy St., 817-255-9300. www.fwmuseum.org/spring-break.
Bureau of Engraving and Printing Spring Break Employee Craftsmanship Demonstrations
The BEP offers tours of its Western Currency Facility year-round and provides additional activities Tuesday-Friday. Visitors can observe intaglio engraving, learn about plate making, see how currency was originally printed on a spider press, and watch mutilated currency be reassembled.
Children can also engrave and print their own currency design, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Tours are available 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. daily, with the last tour beginning at 4:30 p.m.
No registration is necessary, but be prepared to pass through security and leave phones and bags in your car. Free. Fort Worth Bureau of Engraving and Printing, 9000 Blue Mound Road, 817-231-4000. www.moneyfactory.gov
Perot Museum of Nature and Science
The Perot extends its hours for spring break (10 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Saturday) and offers additional daily activities.
The current temporary exhibit is “The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes.” Daily activities will include live demonstrations in the T. Boone Pickens Life Then and Now Hall at 10:30 a.m. and 3 p.m., story time in the Earth Lounge at 11 a.m., hands-on experiments in the Texas Instruments Engineering and Innovation Hall 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. and 3-5 p.m., planetarium shows in the auditorium 12:30-4:30 p.m., and science trivia in the Texas Instruments hall at 2 p.m.
Activities are free with general admission. Reservations are not required, but anticipate large crowds. Some activities may have limited availability. $5-$17. Perot Museum of Nature and Science, 2201 N. Field St., Dallas, 214-428-5555. www.perotmuseum.org.