Sticking close to home can be a good option for spring break in my humble opinion. Trust me, there’s plenty to do here in our own backyard without taking to the road or the air in search of greener spring break pastures.
Here are a few note-worthy “staycation” adventures you and your spring breakers should definitely try out during your time off.
Photo: Nasher Sculpture Center
Looking to add a little culture and creativity to your life? Spring break is the perfect time to hightail it down to your local museum for a little look-see. There are all sorts of art-related programs and events for kids of all ages. Here are just a few to check out.
- Kick off spring break this Friday at the Dallas Museum of Art for their first-ever Family Mystery Night. In this museum mash-up of ‘Night at the Museum’ and the game of Clue, you and your junior sleuths must figure out who is innocent and who is not. Solve the mystery and you could win prizes.
- The Nasher Sculpture Center for free programming from March 13-18. You can create art with Kendra Greene, take a tour of the garden, or go off on an adventure of your own with an interactive guide of the artwork in the garden. Stay late on Friday, March 16 for ‘Til Midnight at the Nasher, a concert, and film in the garden.
- The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth is offering spring break family programming for school-age kids March 12-15. Each session is led by artist Christopher Blay, and a docent and includes a gallery project. focuses on a different discipline from selected works in the Modern’s collection. There are two sessions per day, at 11:45 a.m. and 2 p.m., March 12-15 and best of all, it’s free.
- The Amon Carter Museum of American Art also has free spring break programming going on March 13-16. Evey day from 1 to 3 p.m. you and your kiddos can enjoy art projects, creativity challenges, gallery games, food trucks, lawn games and more.
If ever there was a perk for living in Texas it would be the fabulous weather we get in early spring. While our neighbors to the North are still knee-deep in snow we get sunshine, mild temps, and soft breezes. The weather will be spectacular and definitely spring-like this week, so head outside for a little fresh air with these outings.
- Stop by the Fort Worth Botanic Garden for a closer look at one of nature’s most misunderstood creatures–the bat. At Bats in the Garden kids can have a positive first experience with a live encounter with some of the bats they might find in their own backyard. During the 60-minute program, they’ll also learn bat conservation and how the little guys benefit plants and gardens. The encounters happen Saturday, Sunday, and Monday and require advance tickets. Don’t wait, this is likely to sell out.
- Bring the whole herd on a wild and wooly adventure at Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge. Take a scenic hayride tour of the refuge and learn more about the plants, animals, and history of the Nature Center. Along the way, you’ll stop by the bison pasture and throw a treat of range cubes over the fence to the herd. The bison feeding hayride happens Tuesday and Thursday, March 13 & 15 at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Pre-registration is required.
- Texas Discovery Gardens will be heralding spring next week with their Spring Break Safari. Each day of the week has a special nature theme accompanied by activities and crafts throughout the week. You and your itty bitties can dress up like a Monarch on Monday, and meet a snake on Tuesday and learn about our feathered friends on Thursday. Each day is something different so you can keep coming back for new fun all week long. Be sure to check out the butterfly house exhibit while you’re there. It’s a little extra, but well worth it.
- Take advantage of the excellent weather with a kayak trip offered by the Trinity River Audubon Center.Your trip starts with instruction and all the equipment you’ll need at the center. You’ll then be transported upstream to a launch point where you’ll start your 2-hour guided tour back down the river and through the Great Trinity Forest. You and the gang can get an up-close view of herons, beavers, river otters and other wildlife seldom seen by city slickers such as yourself.
- There’s no better way to welcome spring than a night of music under the stars. Grab your picnic basket and your lawn chair and head to Square at Old Town in Coppell for a free, family-friendly concert series. March 9 you can dance and sing along to the hits from the 70s, 80s, and 90s with The Wonderfuls. And March 16 you can two-step the night away with Raised Right Men.
Just because the kids are out of school doesn’t mean they have to stop learning. Fire up the synapses with one of these events that are not only educational but also fun.
- Besides spring break, there’s another reason to kick up your heels next Wednesday. That’s that’s because Pi Day happens on March 14! Celebrate the quirky little mathematical constant with walkSTEM, a guided math walk through the Dallas Arts District, and a Pi Day Math Festival at the at the AT&T Performing Arts Center from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Both the walk and the festival are free and teach kids to look for math around us and how it impacts our world. The festival will feature math-related activities from a variety of exhibitors like the Dallas Symphony; Dallas Zoo; Dallas Arboretum; Dallas Public Library; Bold Idea and many others.
- Another great staycation option is Spring Break at the Frontiers of Flight Museum. Kids and adults can enjoy daily activities like exploring cockpit simulators, the paper airplane challenge, and meeting the museum’s living history performers. At the end of the week on March 16 the museum will host Space STEM Live, an event exploring NASA’s three big questions (How did we get here? How does the universe work? and, Are we alone?) with engaging learning stations, shows, and presentations,
- Spring break is also a good time to catch up on your reading and explore a bookstore or two. Intrabang Books in Dallas has got a couple of great programs for kids who love history and science. First, on Tuesday, March 13, there’s a conversation with Penelope Bagieu, the author and illustrator of “Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked The World.” The graphic novel profiles the lives of feisty female role models like Nellie Bly, Josephine Baker and Naziq al-Abid. Stop by for a dose of inspiration, fun, and girl power. On Thursday, March 15, get in touch with your inner scientist at a Spring Break Robot Workshop. Highlights include coding stations, a robot obstacle course, art with robots, and even a special robot-themed story time for the littles. Folks from Tech EdVentures will also be on hand to answer all your robot questions.