Happy New Year! Welcome January 2021 with virtual fun, winter hikes, nature center playtimes, storytimes and more!
Snow Queen at Home
Through Feb. 28, 2021. In the Imagination Stage adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s famous winter fairy tale, a powerful friendship is put to the test as four narrators bring to life the story of Gerda and Kai, life-long best friends whose relationship is broken by the unfeeling Snow Queen. Imagination abounds in this magical story of courage, wit, and unshakable resilience! Best for ages 5+. Ticket purchase includes a special 25-minute live interactive prequel story, where kids will be able to join characters from the story of The Snow Queen on Zoom on a pre-show journey.
Field Work Fridays
Fridays, 9 a.m.–noon. Every Friday rain or shine, volunteers can join staff naturalists to tackle a stewardship project in need of support. Projects include invasive plant removals, trash clean-ups, gardening, citizen science monitoring, and more. No prior training or experience is necessary. Ages 8 and up. Registration required. jugbay.org
Storytime with the Chesapeake Children’s Museum
Join the CCM every Friday at 10:30 a.m. on Facebook, where they’ll introduce a new children’s book each week, occasionally incorporating songs or crafts to do AT-HOME.
Kid’s Wednesday Afternoons at the Nature Center
January 6, 13, 20, 27. Kids ages 7 to 12 can join in the fun at Robinson Nature Center to explore the wonders of nature, play outdoors with friends, learn outdoor skills and have an afternoon away from home! Kids will enjoy nature walks, games, investigations and more. This program is held outdoors and in accordance with Howard County’s COVID Safety procedures. Children should dress for outdoor winter play. $30 per person. 1–4 p.m. Call 410-313-0400 to sign up (no online registration). Robinson Nature Center, Columbia. howardcountymd.gov/Robinson
Half-Price Friday Nights
Enjoy access to the National Aquarium’s award-winning exhibits for half the price of general admission during Half-Price Friday Nights. The program runs year-round, allowing you to spend Friday evening after 5 p.m. with the sharks, fish, puffins and other amazing creatures that call the Aquarium home. Tickets are available online or Friday evenings on-site. National Aquarium, Baltimore. aqua.org
BMA – Free Family Sundays at Home
Get craft ideas and downloadable art projects for free art-making workshops. Headed to the Museum? Grab a free art-making kit complete with step-by-step guides and art supplies on Sundays 2–5 p.m., and at the BMA’s branch location, BMA Lexington Market, on Fridays 11 a.m.–1 p.m. artbma.org
Chesapeake Arts Center Girls Who Code Club
Thursdays. Girls Who Code Club is a free extracurricular program for 6th-12th grade girls that teaches students about computer science in a fun and safe environment! Led by instructor Farin Wilson, this new club meets in the CAC Computer Lab on Thursdays, 1/21–6/10/21, 4–5 p.m. Please contact the CAC office at 410-636-6597 to apply. chesapeakearts.org
Try It! Classes at CAC
These classes are designed to expose students to all facets of the arts without any commitment! Students ages 7-12 can try dance, ceramics, visual art and more, one week at a time. Classes are 4-5 p.m. Schedule is as follows: Mondays Steam Lab, Tuesdays Visual Arts, Wednesdays Dance, Thursdays Ceramics, and Steam Lab. Each workshop is $10. Students must pre-register and follow all Covid-19 safety protocols. Please email email@example.com to register. Chesapeake Arts Center, Brooklyn Park. chesapeakearts.org
A Christmas Carol
Through January 18. Marley, Scrooge, Tiny Time and the restless spirits of Christmas past, present and future will be presented in the Annapolis Shakespeare Company’s presentation of A Christmas Carol. Stream the performance from the comfort of home. $65. Advance registration required. Annapolis Shakespeare Company, Annapolis. annapolisshakespeare.org
Dec. 21 to Jan. 19. This brand-new festive production features singing and dancing to celebrate the holidays with your family and friends. Enjoy some of your favorite holiday music featuring the Unified Jazz Ensemble. Only 8 Performances! Streaming options begin Dec. 22. $30–$65. Annapolis Shakespeare Company, Annapolis. annapolisshakespeare.org
Friday January 1
Polar Bear Plunge
Covid-19 has not slowed down the need for Special Olympics to fundraise and the annual plunge powers on, though virtual this year. plungemd.com
Maryland Parks First Day Hikes
January 1-3, 2021. Maryland State Parks will be offering self-guided hike opportunities across the state. First Day Hike “I Hiked” Stickers will be available while supplies last! Be sure to follow Maryland State Parks policies to slow the spread of Covid-19, including keeping a 6-foot distance from anyone outside of your household and wearing a face covering when in close proximity to others and when indoors. dnr.maryland.gov
Calvert Cliffs State Park: First Day Fossil Hike!
Head to Calvert Cliffs at 10 a.m. for a fossil hike with the rangers! The trail is approximately 3.6 miles round-trip, stroller accessible, and leads right to the Chesapeake Bay. There will be stops along the hike to discuss the geologic history of the park, and with the assistance of park staff, look for fossils (including shark’s teeth) once at the beach. Finish the hike with refreshments around a cozy fire at the pavilion. Dogs on a leash are welcome! Register via email to CalvertCliffs.StatePark@Maryland.gov or to call Calvert Cliffs State Park at 443-975-4360. dnr.maryland.gov
Jug Bay First Day Hike
9 a.m. – Noon. This year join volunteer naturalists, Mike Quinlan and Gordon Reynolds, on an exploration of the Sanctuary’s extensive trail system. See what the Sanctuary looks like naked, when the leaves are off the trees. Dress for the weather. Sturdy footwear, binoculars, and cameras recommended. Ages 10 and older. Free with $6 per vehicle park admission. To register go to the Jug Bay website Event Calendar and click on the event. Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary, Lothian. jugbay.org
Gunpowder Falls State Park: First Day BIKE on the Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail
Led by Crew Members of the Maryland Conservation Corps, this First Day Bike Route starts at 9 a.m. and will begin at the Paper Mill Parking Lot, and will continue to the Phoenix Road Parking Lot and back. Pre-registration is required. Limited space available! Contact Ranger Nicole Staab at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to RSVP. Paper Mill Parking Lot off of the Torrey C. Brown Trail. dnr.maryland.gov
Beverly Triton Nature Park First Day Hike
Get outside on a hike with a ranger to explore the park and enjoy the wildlife with family and friends. Wear shoes you don’t mind getting muddy and dress for the weather. 1 p.m. Masks required. To register call 410-222-1978, e-mail email@example.com, or register online. South River Farm Park. https://tinyurl.com/yyr9yspl
Watson Adventures’ Around the World Virtual Family Scavenger Hunt
This virtual adventure will send you off to explore the world’s best museums and historic locations via links to eye-popping websites. Your challenge: follow the clues, find amazing objects, and answer tricky questions about them. Stops along the way include a 360-degree view of the ancient streets of Pompeii, Italy, prehistoric cave paintings in France, a swim around the Great Barrier Reef and a live panda cam in China. For ages 10 and up. $19 per person. Teams of up to six can play together or remotely. 2–3:30 p.m. Advance booking is required. watsonadventures.com
Lights on the Bay
Last day to enjoy this annual holiday lights show. $20 per car. 5–10 p.m. Sandy Point State Park, Annapolis. lightsonthebay.org
Learn the skills of identifying birds by sight and sound. Binoculars and field guides are available to borrow. Wear comfortable walking shoes and dress for the weather. 7–10 a.m. Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary, Lothian. Free with $6 per vehicle park admission.
Winter Wild Walk
Jan. 2, 16. On the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month head to Mt. Pleasant for a winter wild walk with the Howard County Conservancy. Explore the beautiful grounds with naturalists to discover the magic of winter and to catch glimpses of wildlife. $10. Walk begins at 9 a.m. Pre Registration required. Mt. Pleasant, Woodstock.
Home for the Holidays at Toby’s Dinner Theatre
Jan. 2–3. Toby’s will be decked out for an evening of non-stop holiday entertainment filled with great music, humor and heart! Great for all ages! Theater is limited to 100 patrons, general admission seating. Doors open 6 p.m. on Saturday, 10:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Sunday. $49–$65. Toby’s Dinner Theatre, Columbia.
Zoo Lights at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore
Last day for Zoo Lights! Drive or walk through a festival of lights shaped like wildlife. Plus, get that warm glowing feeling inside knowing you are supporting the Zoo’s animal care and conservation work. Advanced reservations are required. Drive-through ($45) 5–9 p.m. Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. marylandzoo.org
Ages 16 and up can head to Claybakers for a girls night out from 5-10 p.m. No cover! Bring the beverages of your choice and receive 25% off your pottery project, no glass fusing at this time. Reservations recommended. Claybakers, Annapolis. theclaybakers.com
The Thomas Point Shoal Lighthouse: A Chesapeake Bay Icon at Annapolis
The history of Thomas Point Shoal Lighthouse (TPSL), including the rise of the port of Baltimore, the early lighthouses on the peninsula, and the construction of the screwpile on the shoal. Also includes a look at the lighthouse keepers and an overview of the current state of the lighthouse. $10. Lecture is held virtually at 7 p.m. Presented by The Annapolis Maritime Museum & Park. amaritime.org
Facebook Live: 100th Birthday Party Storytime!
Celebrate the Anne Arundel County Library’s 100th Anniversary with a virtual party for preschoolers! Bring a party hat and join the fun with stories, songs, and rhymes that build early literacy skills. Children ages three to five (with caring adult). facebook.com/aacpl
Friday Late Night Planetarium Show: Wildest Weather in the Universe
This program for ages 18 and up is held in the Robinson Nature Center state-of-the-art digital planetarium and features a full-dome movie preceded by an adult-level planetarium presentation about current happenings in our night sky and space science. $8 per person. Please call 410-313-0400 to reverse your tickets; no online registration available. Robinson Nature Center, Columbia. howardcountymd.gov/RNC/programs
Virtual Family Fun – Who Lives In A Tree?
Do you know where bats go during the daytime? Or where exactly a squirrel rests when it’s not scurrying through the canopy? This virtual guided learning exploration of urban wildlife and its various habitats is offered to families with children between the ages of 3 and 8. From 9–10 a.m., viewers will embark on a virtual adventure through the Urban Food Forest at Browns Mill, learning about the food forest’s history, plant life, and its many critters and critter homes along the way. Event is free, but pre-registration is required. treesatlanta.org
Winter Silent Hike
Join Anne Arundel County Trails Park Rangers for this excursion at the new Forney section of Bacon Ridge Natural Area. Starting with a brief informational meeting on what wildlife may be seen and on the benefits of a silent hike. Warm up afterwards with complimentary hot cocoa while discussing the highlights and reflecting on the experience. Approximately 1.5–2 hours. Bacon Ridge Natural Area 1214 Severn Chapel Road, Crownsville. aacounty.org/departments/recreation-parks
Free Family MakerSpace Workshop – Soap Clay
These workshops will be held indoors in the Chesapeake Arts Center STEAM Lab in the main building. All ages are welcome, but caregivers must be present. Pre-registration through the CAC website is required and space is limited. Class is held multiple times throughout the day. Participants must wear masks and practice social-distancing. Chesapeake Arts Center, Brooklyn Park. chesapeakearts.org
Virtual Workshop for Early Learners: Time Capsules
Join the educators from the Andy Warhol Museum for a virtual workshop from 10–10:45 a.m. for ages 3-6 with a parent. $10 per child. Participants will engage in a mix of storytelling, hands-on synchronous art making, movement and independent exploration while creating a time-capsule. Andy Warhol was an avid collector and created over 600 Time Capsules from the early 1970s until his death in 1987. Within those boxes, archivists have uncovered the image sources for some of his iconic works, letters from family and friends, food, gifts and more. What will be found in your family’s time capsule? warhol.org
Physically-Distanced Creature Features
Enjoy a visit to the Nature Center and meet a new, live animal friend. These half-hour programs will introduce you to a member of Maryland’s wildlife community through a presentation of one of the Nature Center’s animal ambassadors along with a craft, game or activity. Ages 3 and up. 3–3:30 p.m. $5 per person. Seating is limited to ensure social distancing. Call 410-313-0400 to reserve your spot, no online registration. Robinson Nature Center, Columbia. howardcountymd.gov/RNC/programs
Deale Presents: Dinosaur STEM Storytime
Rawr! Let’s join a paleontologist to learn about dinosaurs through stories, songs, and simple preschool science activities. Ages 3–7. Registration required. Hosted by the Deale Library. aacpl.net
Jug Bay Preschool Explorers!
Bring the little ones to explore nature! Learn about a nature topic and then head out to experience the Sanctuary. Look, feel, listen, and discover at preschooler speed. Dress for the weather as the event is held outside when possible. Parents play along with their children. Ages: 3-5. Fee: $6 per child, payable the day of the program. Registration required. Please bring and wear your COVID masks. Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary, Lothian. jugbay.org
Chesapeake Bay Waterfowl: Exploring Mysterious Species
History of waterfowl in the Bay from the time of Captain John Smith to the present-day as they compete with humans for optimum habitat. Discuss Chesapeake Bay studies of the canvasback, King of the Bay, and latest tracking studies of sea ducks using satellite telemetry. Explore how species such as mute swans, Canada geese, and snow geese, are destroying habitat for other waterfowl species. $10. Lecture is held virtually at 7 p.m. amaritime.org
Virtual New Year Scavenger Hunt
Calling all kids, teens, adults and families! Celebrate the new year with a virtual scavenger hunt! Register as a team and work together to find items around your house. You will be prompted to seek out and find. Race against the clock to find the items in multiple rounds in order to earn the most points. 3:30-4:30 p.m. Hosted by the Deale Library. aacpl.net
Twelfth Night Virtual Ball
Riversdale House Museum invites you to bring this treasured event into your living room! Don your festive attire for an evening of dancing with instruction and period music. A peek through the candlelit home, a look at popular foods, and origins of Twelfth Night traditions are just some of the other highlights of this festive eve. Participants will receive email with link and detailed instructions. Advance registration required by January 13. $16 residents of Prince George’s County; $20 non-residents. 6:30 p.m. For more information and questions email firstname.lastname@example.org
Arabic-English Bilingual Storytime with Discoveries
Enjoy stories and songs while being introduced to basic Arabic words! Prior Arabic knowledge not required. From 10:30–11 a.m., find us live on the Discoveries: the Library at the Mall Facebook page: www.facebook.com/discoveries
Google Museum Tours
Enjoy some priceless art from the comfort and safety of home. Google has partnered with over 2,500 museums worldwide to offer virtual tours. From the Anne Frank Museum in the Netherlands, to the Acropolis Museum in Greece to Maryland’s own Walter’s Art Museum in Baltimore you can explore the galleries with no need for a passport or better yet, no gift shop! artsandculture.google.com
MLK Days at Annmarie Garden
Celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Virtually, with uplifting community engagement activities. There will be FREE Virtual artmaking sessions with resident artist Esther Iverem, held on 3 different days on Zoom. Choose from January 16, 17, or 18 options. 11 a.m–noon. You can also get free pickup kits and do the art projects from home.
Family Sundays Planetarium Show: On World, One Sky
Enjoy the stars on a Sunday afternoon from 1–2 p.m.! Each program features a full-dome movie preceded by a live, family-friendly planetarium presentation where you discover what’s in the night sky that month. Portions of the program may be held outside of the planetarium. $5 per person. Please call 410-313-0400 to reverse your tickets; no online registration available. Robinson Nature Center, Columbia. howardcountymd.gov/RNC/programs
Take a Virtual Walk on Mars
Itching to get out of the house? For some really out of this world scenery, hop a ride with NASA’s Curiosity rover and explore the surface of Mars in a 360-degree view while learning about space exploration. accessmars.withgoogle.com
Paint Your Pet
Capture your pet’s personality on canvas. Simply upload your pet photo (any animal!) after signup and Muse PaintBar will sketch it beforehand for easier painting. 5:30-8:30 p.m. $50 per person (anyone attending must purchase a seat whether painting or not for social distancing requirements.) Muse PaintBar, Annapolis. musepaintbar.com
Robotics at Pongos
Earn your robotics badges with this fun, in-person workshop. Children will work through the activities required to earn the Programming Robots, Designing Robots, and Showcasing Robots badges. This workshop is for Junior and Cadette Girl Scouts, but is open to any children in grades 4–8 interested in robotics. All materials and equipment are provided. 1:30–4:30 p.m. $25. Advance tickets required. Pongos Learning Lab, Crofton. pongoslearninglab.com
Junior Makers Birdhouse
Students will be shown how to construct a birdhouse out of pre-cut wooden pieces. Students will stain their completed birdhouses. 4–7 p.m., ages 7–15. $45. Chesapeake Arts Center, Brooklyn Park. chesapeakearts.org
Picture Book Pals Live: Meet Maisy and Friends
Develop school readiness skills through stories, songs, fingerplays and rhymes. Children up to age 5. 20-30 minutes beginning at 11 a.m. Register to receive an immediate registration confirmation. Hosted by Howard County Public Library. howardcounty.librarycalendar.com
Ladies Night at Running Hare Vineyard
Every Thursday is Ladies Night at Running Hare Vineyard! 25% off drinks for ladies and 50% off slushee refills in the Running Hare RTIC tumblers. The Hungry Hare Taco truck will be open as well for your snacking needs. 4–9 p.m. Running Hare Vineyard, Prince Frederick. runningharevineyard.com
Jr. Naturalist – Geocaching 101
Nature Center staff through experiments, demos and fun activities. InGeocaching 101: Learn how GPS technology works and get the chance to find geocaches hidden throughout the nature center’s property. Take-home a badge at the end of each program. Register online or by calling 410-313-0400. Robinson Nature Center, Columbia. howardcountymd.gov/RNC/programs
National March for Black Lives
On January 23, 2021, unite in Washington, DC for the March for Black Lives. We stand together in solidarity with our partners and community for the protection of our rights, our safety, our lives, and our families–recognizing that our vibrant and powerful POC communities are the strength of our country. Noon–3 p.m.
A wonderful, messy, slimy workshop for kids! Students will learn alternative techniques for making slime using household products to creatively design hand-held manipulative. Experiment with the assorted ingredients to observe their chemical reactions. Fun science you can stretch! 10:30 a.m.–noon. Ages 6 and up. $30. Chesapeake Arts Center, Brooklyn Park. chesapeakearts.org
Find out the theme for the challenge at the beginning of the program. You’ll have ten minutes to design your creation while listening to music or a story! At the end, share your creation with the group. You can use any supplies you want, or pick up a Design Challenge kit from Eastport-Annapolis Neck Library for inspiration. Children under age 8 must be accompanied by an adult. 9-9:30 a.m. Registration for this event will be open from January 9, 9 a.m. to January 23, 9 a.m. aacpl.net
Free Family MakerSpace Workshop – Bottlecap Ladybugs
These workshops will be held indoors in the Chesapeake Arts Center STEAM Lab in the main building. All ages are welcome, but caregivers must be present. Class is held multiple times throughout the day. Pre-registration through the CAC website is required and space is limited. Registration opens approximately 4 weeks prior to each workshop. Participants must wear masks, practice social-distancing and follow the CAC’s C.A.R.E.S. safety protocol. Chesapeake Arts Center, Brooklyn Park. chesapeakearts.com
Skunk Cabbage Swamp Stomp
Join Siobhan Percey for an off-trail adventure in search of the fascinating skunk cabbage plant. Siobhan studied this unusual wetland inhabitant and will share her knowledge with a walk along swamp edges in search of their winter blooms. Wear boots that can get wet and muddy. Bring your own flashlight. COVID masks required. Limited to 10 participants. Ages 12+. 1–3 p.m. Free with $6 vehicle admission fee. Registration required. Jug Bay Natural Area, Upper Marlboro. jugbay.org
Get Your Craft On! – Zoom Edition
Get ready for Valentine’s day with an easy 3D folded paper heart made from old books. They will make a sweet gift or the best decorations! Ages 11 and up. This event will be hosted live on Zoom and requires registration. Supplies needed: book(s) (any size works from mass paperback to hardcover), scissors, ribbon, string, or yarn (for hanging). 6–8 p.m. via Zoom. After registering, please feel free to stop by the library to pick up either books or yarn, via curbside pickup or by making an appointment, to complete your supply list. Hosted by the Anne Arundel County Public Library. aacpl.net
History at Home: Day of Play
ow did children learn and play 200 years ago? Blast into the past and virtually explore the lives of the children at Riversdale. $4. Cost includes kit to be picked up. Ages 7–11. 1–2:30 p.m. Register by January 20. tinyurl.com/HstryatHome
We Sing and Dance at Busch Annapolis
Time for preschoolers to get their wiggles out! 11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. Sing and dance with Busch Annapolis Library Staff. Register to receive a Zoom link. Hosted by Busch Annapolis Library. aacpl.net
Frozen Experiment Shows
Put the “cool” in winter by joining the Robinson Nature Center for a Frozen Experiment Show! We’ll use liquid nitrogen and frozen items to wow you with how cool “cold” can be. You can also pick up a “Frozen Fest at Home” kit to continue fun, winter activities at home after your show. Shows recommended for ages 4 and up. Registration required. 45 minute shows on the hour from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Call 410-313-0400 to enroll. $5 members, $7 for non-members. Robinson Nature Center, Columbia. howardcountymd.gov/RNC/programs
Virtual Sensory Storytime with Discoveries Library
Sensory Storytime is designed for young children with autism spectrum disorders, sensory integration issues, or other developmental disabilities. 10:30–11 a.m. This will be a Facebook Live event with Discoveries staff. aacpl.net
Concrete Plant Stand Workshop
Using a 5 gallon bucket as our mold, we’ll cast a concrete plant stand. Students will be able to pick up their finished piece the following week. 11 a.m.–1 p.m. Ages 12 and up with an adult. $45. Chesapeake Arts Center, Brooklyn Park. chesapeakearts.org
Glen Burnie Library Presents Winter Wonderland Storytime
Families with young children enjoy a variety of stories, songs, rhymes and movement activities while building early literacy skills. Music, books, and more! Celebrate Winter from 11 a.m.– Noon with the Glen Burnie Staff on Zoom! aacpl.net
Annapolis Artisans Market—Winter Sale
Jan. 30–31 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
Located in the heart of the Design District, the Annapolis Artsians Market is home to a dozen creative businesses. You can shop for unique furniture, art, home decor, gifts and more. You will also be able to meet the artists behind what you buy.
Enjoy a relaxed, fun atmosphere while you shop, enter for the chance to win a gift card to any Local By Design location. It’s a one-of-kind shopping experience, and a chance to discover that perfect treasure for your home!
Beyond Books: Raising an Anti-Racist Child
The Jewish Museum of Maryland hosts this free live-stream event featuring speaker Imani Romney-Rosa Chapman, a consultant and leadership coach, in conversation with Rabbi Jessy Dressin. Chapman will dive into the challenges and opportunities of raising an anti-racist child, from refining our own analysis of race to understanding the intersections between race and child-development. You can register in advance or the program will also live-stream on the Museum’s Facebook page. jewishmuseummd.org
Cosmic Yoga for Kids
Yoga, mindfulness, and relaxation videos on YouTube for the littles! A great resource to keep everyone from going stir crazy in the winter. Dozens of videos to choose from, all geared towards pre-school and early elementary age children. youtube.com/CosmicKidsYoga