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December 19, 2013 at 5:20 PM

Kids out of school? 8 fun things to do

Gorilla meets wreath. Photo by Ric Brewer / Woodland Park Zoo.

Gorilla meets wreath. Photo by Ric Brewer / Woodland Park Zoo.

The youngsters are about to be released from scholastic servitude and now the Season of Driving You Crazy starts in earnest.

Here we have eight suggestions for keeping them entertained in the days leading up to Christmas. Please add your own ideas to the comments thread — other parents/grandparents/aunts & uncles will thank you.

FESTIVALS/DISPLAYS

Winter Celebration: Christmas comes early to the animals at Woodland Park Zoo. This weekend, they’ll receive special treats and toys from zookeepers to enrich their habitats. Read more in Madeline McKenzie’s story.

EMP Museum: In the same story, McKenzie fills you in on happenings at EMP, including back-to-back showings of what the museum bills as one of the worst films ever made, “Santa Claus Conquers the Martians,” 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday. The exhibition “Fantasy: World of Myth and Magic” also continues through Jan. 5.

Model Train Festival: Budding engineers will be fascinated by the giant train display at the Washington State History Museum. Yes, it’s in Tacoma, but a little drive is not a bad way to pass the time, either. The festival continues through Jan. 1.

Holiday lights: For an overview of public light displays, such as Garden d’Lights at the Bellevue Botanical Garden; WildLights at Woodland Park Zoo; ZooLights at the Pt. Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in Tacoma; Clam Lights at Gene Coulon Memorial Beach Park in Renton; and Redmond Lights at Redmond City Hall Plaza, click here.

STAGE SHOWS

“Oliver”: This Dickensian tale has been transformed into feel-good family musical, via the magic of theater. It runs at the 5th Avenue Theatre through Dec. 31. Read Seattle Times theater critic Misha Berson’s review.

"James and the Giant Peach." By Chris Bennion.

“James and the Giant Peach.” By Chris Bennion.

“James and the Giant Peach”: Another venture into theatrical darkness and light takes place at Seattle Children’s Theatre through Jan. 12. Fans of author Roald Dahl will love it, according to our review.

“The Best Christmas Pageant Ever”: Seattle Public Theater’s annual staging of the family-oriented comedy – based on a children’s book by Barbara Robinson – continues through Christmas Eve.

“Cirque Dreams Holidaze”: This touring spectacle boasts acrobatic gingerbread men, toy-soldier wire walkers and flying reindeer – at the Paramount through this weekend. Honestly, we have little intel on this show (have you seen it? Tell us how it is). But here’s a video if you want a peek:

0 Comments | Topics: Best Christmas Pageant Ever, Cirque Dreams Holidaze, James and the Giant Peach

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