Vacation opportunities abound for children

Posted Dec. 24, 2008, at 6:32 p.m.

Mittens? Check. Sled? Check. Hot cocoa? Check. Something else to do, when your toes are frozen and going sliding is getting old? Check — because here’s a list of some of the many activities available to schoolchildren, during the long winter break. Keep your little ones engaged, and keep yourself from running ragged trying to find things for the kids to do.

The Maine Discovery Museum (Admission, $6.50; hours, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sundays; location, Main Street, Bangor):

• “To The North Pole” — The museum kicks off three days of Arctic-themed activities on Friday, Dec. 26, with a workshop from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on igloos and Inuits. From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 27, the science of snow and ice will be shared, and at 2 p.m. Dec. 28 kids can learn about polar bears, seals and other creatures that live on ice floes.

• “Silly Fun With Silly Putty” — Make your own Silly Putty workshop, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, Dec. 29.

• “Meet the Lizards” — Get up close and personal with some reptilian friends.

• “Songs of Home and Hearth” — Maine fiddle player and singer Hope Hoffman will lead kids in a singalong, with songs about family and home life, 2 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 30.

Challenger Learning Center (30 Venture Way, Bangor; to register your child, call 990-2900 or visit www.clcofme.org):

• “Planets: Hands-On Planetary Fun!”— 9 to 11 a.m. Monday, Dec. 29; $16, for ages 5 to 9.

• “Astronaut Life”— Learn about what it takes to be an astronaut, 1 to 3 p.m. Monday, Dec. 29; $16, for ages 5 to 9.

• “Space Station”— Build your own model of a space station, and find out what happens in the real International Space Station laboratory. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 30; for ages 8 to 13; cost is $48.

Owls Head Transportation Museum (Call 594-4418, www.owlshead.org):

From Saturday, Dec. 27, through Wednesday, Dec. 31, and again from Jan. 2 through Jan. 4, the Owls Head Transportation Museum will offer activities for kids from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., including gliders, cut-out and build paper cars and airplanes, a toy city and coloring. A variety of ability levels will be accommodated, so children of all ages are welcome. No preregistration is required to participate.

Children’s Museum of Maine (Hours 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday; admission $8; location, Free Street, Portland):

• “Soapy Snowmen” — Make a snowman out of soap, 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 27.

• “Christmas in Denmark”— Traditional Danish dancing, decorations and food, 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 27, and 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 28.

• “Kwanzaa Celebrations” — Learn about Kwanzaa traditions and make a kinara, a special candle holder, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 28.

• “Wildlife Show” — Special wildlife show, 1 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 30.

• “We Are Maine: Celebrate Canada!” — Learn about Canada and make a paper goose, 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 30.

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