The best kids events in Philadelphia this week

📅 This calendar is updated every Monday with the best events for the week. You

📅 This calendar is updated every Monday with the best events for the week. You can always find it at

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It’s happening. Philly’s marvelous, magical public pools have started, one by one, to close. You can find their exact last days here (FYI: Kelly pool’s last day is Tuesday, Aug. 17), but your final chance to swim will be Sunday, Aug. 22. Summer: Why you gotta go so fast? Still, there’s lots to do outside the water, like meet great, 18th-century Black Americans in Old City, make something fab for your coffee table at the Museum of Art, learn to fish and orienteer, and more.

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(History / in-person / multi-day) Historical reenactors aren’t meant for kids only, but they love them best. For a few more weeks, this Old City museum highlights the lives of Black Revolutionary War soldier Edward “Ned” Hector, who fought to receive a pension for his service, and Helena Harris, a Black 18th-century educator who taught white students in Philadelphia, who’ll share her experiences — and what kids in her day liked to do during the good times and bad times. Ages 5+. ($21 adult, $18 senior, student, teacher & military, $13 ages 6-17, free 5 & under, daily through Sept. 6, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., 101 S. Third St.,

(Art / in-person / multi-day) More sculptural and glittery than tie-dye, artist Lynda Benglis’ sparkle knots serve as inspiration for projects kids can make in the South Vaulted Walkway. Ages 2-14. ($25 adults, $23 seniors, $14 students, free 18 & under, Aug. 19, 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Aug. 20, 10:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m., Aug. 21-22, 26, 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Aug. 27, 10:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m., Aug. 28-29, Sept. 2, 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Sept. 3, 10:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m., Sept. 4, 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m., 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy.,

(Nature / in-person) Waze doesn’t work when you’re trying to get through a forest. Instead, orienteering experts use maps and a compass to find their ways to natural checkpoints. This Northeast Philly workshop teaches the younger set how to do just that, sans apps. Registration required. Ages 8-12. ($5 per child per activity, Aug. 17, 1:30-3:30 p.m., 8600 Verree Rd.,

(Seasonal / in-person / outdoors / free) Even the food is free at this event that’s aimed at turning families onto fishing. There will be free instruction (equipment provided), print-making (fish-themed, naturally), music by a math teacher who raps, and naturally, water-based fun. Ages 2+. (Free, Aug. 22, noon-3 p.m., 5501 Tacony St.,

(Sensory-friendly / seasonal / outdoors / free) Virtual no more, City Councilperson Derek Green’s annual festival for students on the spectrum offers sensory-friendly games and activities, local food, and loads of info for parents who have kids with autism. Registration required. Ages 5-18. (Free, Aug. 22, 2-5 p.m. 3500 Reservoir Dr.,

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(Yoga / in-person / multi-day) Last year, USA Today called Mt. Cuba “North America’s best botanical garden.” This year, the 1,083-acre preserve keeps things humble with every-other-Saturday yoga for the fam, on the grassy lawn. BYO mat. Stick around after for a woodland walk. Ages 4+. ($15 ages 18 and up, $8 ages 6-17, free under 6, Aug. 21, 10:30-11:15 a.m., 3120 Barley Mill Rd., Hockessin, DE,

(Storytime / in-person / multi-day) Mornings can be especially long for parents of early risers. Mt. Cuba does its part on Thursdays with read-alouds for little ones in a most bucolic setting. Ages 1-5. ($15 adults, $8 ages 6-17, free 5 & under, Aug. 19, 26, Sept. 2, 10:30-11 a.m., 3120 Barley Mill Rd., Hockessin, Del.,

(Art / in-person / multi-day / kid-friendly) The Philadelphia Museum of Art summer children’s programming, formerly called Art Splash, is now Art Kids. The series includes small, by-reservation, in-person classes and playdates, virtual programming, and Art Kids Studio, a four-days-a-week drop-in crafting sesh informed by the works of contemporary artists Lynda Benglis, Howardena Pindell, and Faith Ringgold. Ages 2-14. ($25 adults, $23 seniors, $14 students, free 18 & under, through Sept. 5, Thurs., Sat., Sun., 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Fri., 10:30 a.m.-7 p.m., 2600 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy.,

(Science / in-person / multiday) Our animatronic friends from the Cretaceous Period return to Allentown’s science museum in an exhibit that’s delightfully more hands-on than last year’s. Visitors can scan, dig for, and observe fossils as they learn why dinos took off and mammals took over. Reservations recommended. Ages 2+. ($14.95, free under age 3, through Sept. 6, Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun., noon-5 p.m., 3145 Hamilton Blvd. Bypass, Allentown,

(Science / STEM / in-person / multi-day) The Mercer welcomes back hands-on learning with an exhibit on loan from the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. Odometers that measure your running speed and a scale that weighs you in chickens are complemented by a Bucks County couple’s personal collection of antiques that measure. Reservations required. Ages 2-10. ($8-$15, through Sept. 6, Tuesday-Sunday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., 84 S. Pine St., Doylestown,

(Art / in-person / multiday) This new exhibition brings interactive games and displays featuring Elephant, Piggie, Knuffle Bunny, the Pigeon, and more quirky, iconic Mo Willems characters to the Please Touch. Will your kids let the pigeon eat a hotdog, or Duckling have a cookie? Just like in the books, it’s up to them. Reservations required. Masks for ages 2+. Ages 1-8. ($19-$22, through Sept. 12, 9 a.m.-noon, 1:30-4:30 p.m., Wednesday-Sunday,, 4231 Ave. of the Republic)

(Seasonal / in-person / outdoors / free) A sure sign of summer is the return of Spruce Street Harbor Park, which opens in time for Memorial Day weekend. Starting Wednesday, you can visit the waterfront pop-up park for food and drinks on the lawn or down at the floating barge bar. Other activities include lounging in one of the many colorful hammocks or playing an arcade game or two. (Free, through Sept. 26, 301 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd.,

(Skating / in-person / multi-day) Rubber mats have replaced the ice: The RiverRink has reopened for roller skating. Just like in winter, capacity is limited, masks are required, reservations are recommended, sessions last 90 minutes, Independence Blue Cross cardholders get in free, and songs are Top 40. There’s a pay-to-ride Ferris wheel too. Ages 4+. (Admission: Free-$5, skate rental: $10, through Sept. 26, 101. S. Columbus Blvd.,

(Animals / in-person / multi-day) Twenty-four life-size animatronic dinosaurs and their saber-tooth tiger and woolly mammoth friends: They’re not just for the Academy of Natural Sciences or stadium parking lots anymore. The prehistoric predecessors to the zoo’s real-life residents take you on a trip through time. Also new: a limited-edition Dino-Key unlocks true dino stories throughout the exhibit. Ages 2+. (Zoo admission: $19-24; Big Time admission: additional $6; members only: through Sept. 30, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m.,

(Outdoors / in-person / free) It’s all about the small pleasures lately, and passing through Franklin Square while “Motownphilly” plays, lights glow, and water spouts from the park’s historic fountain is one of them. Shows take place on the half hour. All ages. (Through Sept. 26, noon-10 p.m., 200 N. Sixth St.,

(Outdoors / in-person / multi-day) Foliage is nice, but chances are, if you’re still wearing short pants, you’re more into little trains that run between the plants, and, this year, among the Eiffel Tower, Hagia Sophia, Egyptian pyramids, and Great Wall of China. Morris Arboretum resurrects its engines and cars, adding to an eminently explore-able oasis that includes a canopy climbing net, wire sculpture dangling from treetops, a looping stick maze, and charming Fairy Woods. Ages 1-12. ($20 adults, $18 seniors, $10 ages 3-17, $2 ACCESS cardholders, free under 3, through Oct. 11, Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat.-Sun., 9 a.m.-5 p.m., 100 E. Northwestern Ave.,

(Biking / in-person / free / multi-day) Volunteers have dug out the gaps between the person-made hills along Parkside, and the track is ready for bike riding. You don’t need to have your own dirt bike, BMX bike, or even helmet: Those are available to borrow, free of charge. Closed-toe shoes, masks, and for riders under 18, signed waiver required. Ages 5+, with 5-and-under days to be announced. (Free, Tuesdays-Saturdays through Oct. 30, noon-5 p.m., based on weather and volunteer availability, Parkside Ave. N.,

(Art / free / in-person) The message of Camden’s six-site outdoor art exhibit: Don’t trash your city. The message kids will leave with: That a 36-foot-long sculpture of a cat made out of old car hoods, a 15-foot-tall, trash-collecting creature, and mealworms that eat styrofoam are pretty cool. Ages 2+. (Free, through Oct. 31,, various locations)

(Nature / virtual / free / multi-day) A new, super-attractive, extra-informative series of online nature tours gives you a glimpse into four parks (you’ll go to Tacony Creek Park twice) through five months. Each adventure is available in English and Spanish and teaches visitors about what to look at — and look out for — outdoors. In addition to expansive Tacony (for May and June), the tours include 3-acre Ethel Jordan Park in Abington, community-centric Vernon Park in Germantown, and the lush campus of Abington Friends School. Ages 5+. (Free, through Oct. 31,

(Art / science / in-person / multiday) It’s quite possible your kids haven’t been inside a museum — especially not a museum that’s purposefully interactive — in a while. Now there’s plenty of time to book a timed spot for them to mask up (and maybe even vax up?) to explore the colorful, creative problem-solving exhibit at the Franklin Institute, which was just extended past Thanksgiving. You’ll be back again next year for an all-new Harry Potter exhibit. Ages 5-12. ($35 ages 12 and up, $33 seniors and enlisted military, $31 ages 3-11, free 2 and under, 222 N. 20th St., through Nov. 28, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.,

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