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Top Ten Things to do for Spring Break in Chicagoland – 2012

Turn your child’s spring break into a stay-cation, and plan now for a fun time close to home. We’ve pulled together a list of ten things to entertain, educate and enlighten you and your child. We realize not every school schedules Spring Break for the same dates, so check dates carefully before heading out, and be sure to let us know of activities in your area.

1. Spring Break Musical Theatre Boot-camp

Metropolis 111 West Campbell St. Arlington Heights, Il 60005 847-577-2121

The Metropolis in Arlington Heights is offering Musical Theater Boot-camp March 26th – 30th. There are three camps, one for children grades K-3 ( The Lion King), Grades 4-8 ( South Pacific) and Highschool (Footloose). The students will take part in an intensive five day camp with instruction in choreography, singing, and acting. At the end of the program, students will perform for family and friends on March 30th. Cost: $195

The Metropolis
111 W. Campbell St.
Arlington Heights, IL  60005
For more information and to sign up on line

2. Chicago Children’s Museum at Navy Pier

Chicago Children’s Museum at Navy Pier

Spend time with your child at this great hands on museum. If you happen to be visiting on a Wednesday, the museum offers a program in the Kraft Artabounds Studio called Kids Create from 10am-1pm where your child can enjoy playing with water, paper, paint and other materials. ( Yeah! sounds like a fun mess that you don’t have to clean up)

Cost: Children and Adults $12, Seniors $11, Children under 1 Free

Target offer Free Admission on the First Sunday of the month for children ages 15 and under.
Kraft offers Free Family night every Thursday from 5 pm – 8pm
$1 off coupons can also be printed on line of the Chicago Children’s Museum website.

Chicago Children’s Museum
700 East Grand Ave. @ Navy Pier
Chicago, IL 60611

P: 312-527-1000

3. Introduction to the Opera by the  Da Corneto Opera Trio

Chicago Cultural Center

The Chicago Cultural Center is offering a young peoples concert March 29th introducing students to the Opera. This is a great opportunity to expose your child to this art form and perhaps dispel some preconceived notions about Opera. This program is designed for Chicago School Children grades K – 6. Because this program is quite popular and designed for school groups you may need to sit in the back, however the event is free.

When: March 29th, 10am and noon
Where: The Chicago Cultural Center
78 East Washington Street
Preston Bradley Hall
Chicago, IL  60602

P: 312-744-6630

4. Attend a Live Theatrical Performance

Both the Metropolis in Arlington Heights and The Raue in Crystal Lake are offering family series productions during spring break.

April 6th and 7th – The Three Little Pigs – Musical based on traditional fairy-tale. Recommended for Pre-K  - 3rd grade

Adults $14, Children $12, tickets can be purchased online

The Metropolis
111 W. Campbell St.
Arlington Heights, IL  60005

P: 847-577-2121

March 23rd – Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales – New twists on traditional fairy tales. Recommended for ages 8 – 11

Ticket prices $25, $22, $19.  Tickets can be purchased online at

Raue Center for the Arts
26 N. Williams Street
Crystal Lake, IL  60014

P: 815-356-9212

5. Skating in the Sky at the John Hancock

Skating in the Sky at the John Hancock

Imagine skating 1,000 feet high, overlooking Chicago’s Lakefront, Magnificent Mile and Lake Shore Drive. This 900 square foot indoor synthetic rink is only open until April 8th, so hurry before it’s gone.  Don’t worry about lugging your skates with you, rent them for just a dollar on the 94th floor.

Cost: $5 for each 25 minute session plus the cost of admission to the observatory.

Open 9am – 11pm with the last session starting at 10pm

John Hancock Observatory
875 N. Michigan Ave.
Suite 1330
Chicago, IL  60611

P: 312-654-5019

6. Crown Family Playlab at the Field Museum

The playlab is a family friendly environment where children learn while they play, dress up, and explore. There are activities suitable for children up to the age of 12. Stop back often as the there will be new activities and adventures with each visit.

Open daily 10am – 4pm.  Cost: Free with the price of basic admission to the museum.
Museum Admission: Adults – $29, Children(3-11) – $20

Crown Family Playlab at the Field Museum
1300 S. Lake Shore Dr.
Chicago, IL 60605

7. Step Back in Time

Expose your child to what life was like in a different era. Both the Clark House Museum and the Arlington Heights Historical Museum will offer a glimpse into life in another era.

The Clark House Museum in Chicago is a Greek Revival style home that was built in 1836 for the Henry B Clark family. See what life was like in Chicago before the Civil War when you visit Chicago’s oldest home.

Guided tours Wednesday - Sunday 12 noon & 2 pm

Adults $10, Seniors and Students $9, Children (5 – 12) $6, Children under 5 Free

Clark House Museum
1827 S. Indiana Ave.
Chicago, IL  60616

P: 312-326-1480

The Arlington Heights Historical Museum is a great place for kids and adults to get a taste of local history. The museum complex comprises an 1882 Victorian home, a coach house, soda pop factory, the Banta home and a log cabin. The Heritage Gallery is also on the grounds with local history exhibits. The museum is only open on Saturdays and Sundays at 2:00 & 3:00 p.m. The fee for an adult is $4.00 and $2.00 for children. The museum is only about a 5 minute walk from the Arlington Heights Metra Station. Head north on N. Vail Ave., then left on W. Fremont St.

Arlington Heights Historical Museum
110 W. Fremont St.
Arlington Heights, IL 60004

Tours: Sat. and Sun. 2 pm and 3 pm

$4 Adults $2 Children

8. Explore your creative side at the The Art Institute – Ryan Education Center

The Art Istiture of Chicago

The Ryan Education Center host a number of events designed specifically for children  as well as families. A number of activities are free such as The Artist Studio where students can create a collage inspired by a masterpiece using everyday objects. Some of the workshops charge a nominal fee such as the teen workshop on comics and illustrations for children ages 13 – 19.  We recommend checking ahead of time as some of the events need advanced reservations and some allow you to just drop in, in order to participate.

The Art Institute
111 South Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL  60603

P: 312-857-7161

Adults $18, Children under 14 Free, Students/Seniors $12, Chicago residents $2 discount with ID, Free Family Wednesday the 1st and 2nd of every month

Hours: Monday – Wednesday  10:30 am – 5:00 pm
Thursday 10:30 am – 8:00 pm
Friday – Sunday 10:30 am – 5:00 pm

9. Go to the show at the the Omni Max Theater in the Museum of Science and Industry

Museum of Science and Industry

The Omni Max Theater is the only 5 story, domed, wrap around theater in Chicago. Now through May 28th the theater is featuring two shows.

1.Rocky Mountain Express – Ride the rails through the Canadian Rockies
2. Tornado Alley – Experience the power of tornadoes while riding on Vortex 2

Museum of Science and Industry
57th Street and Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60637

P: 773-753-1351

For tickets and time check

Ticket prices for entrance to the museum and the show: Adults $23, Seniors 65+ $21, Children 1 – 3 $16

10.Spring Break at Lincoln Park Zoo

There are some great Spring Break programs offered by Lincoln Park Zoo this year: for children ages 4 through grade 4.

Ages 4 & 5 Use Your Senses Safari – $30 – Tues. March 27th or April 3rd Time: 9 am – 11:30am 12:30 pm – 3 pm

Grades 1st & 2nd African Adventure – $65 – Wens. March 28th or April 4th Time: 9 am – 3 pm

Grades 3rd & 4th Scientist on Safari - $65 – Thurs. March 29th or April 5th Time: 9 am – 3 pm

Registration is required and space is limited.

In addition, Story Time is presented by Little Gems International every Wednesday and Friday at 9:15am and 10am. The children are entertained with stories and songs, and encouraged to sing and dance along. This is a free activity and is located at the Zoo’s, Farm in the Zoo.

Lincoln Park Zoo
2001 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL

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