Family Programs

Each week at Thanksgiving Point are tons of educational and fun activities for families of all ages and abilities! Our Family Programs include, Tales for Tots, Monday Night Activities, and Design Challenge, just to name a few. All activities are FREE for Thanksgiving Point Members, as they are included with venue admissions.

The programs are always adapting and changing throughout the year so check back often for updates. They are also led by our trained educational team to ensure each person at the activity has a great time learning and playing together as family and friends. Click each drop-down menu below to learn more about these one-of-a-kind educational opportunities at Thanksgiving Point and to see dates, locations, and times for each one. See you soon!

Join us for our hands-on storytelling adventures, Tales for Tots, held each Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings at 11 am. Staff will engage guest with interactive storytelling followed by process-driven and play-based art, literacy, and/or science activities that connect to the story theme of the day.

Tuesday – Museum of Ancient Life
Wednesday – Farm Country
Thursday – Museum of Natural Curiosity
Friday (June - September) – Ashton Gardens 


Upcoming Schedule:


Museum of Ancient Life 



October 16 | Monsters Love Colors by Mike Austin
Did you know that monsters love to scribble, scribble, mix, dance, and wiggle! Why? Because monsters love to make new colors!

October 23 | Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler
The witch and her cat are happily flying through the sky on a broomstick when the wind picks up and blows away the witch's hat, then her bow, and then her wand!  Luckily, three helpful animals find the missing items, and all they want in return is a ride on the broom

October 30 | Little Boo, 2014 by Stephen Wunderli
The leaves fall, the wind blows, and one little pumpkin seed tries and tries to be scary. But he doesn't scare anyone . . . not the snowflakes in winter, not the bees in spring, not even the watering can! The wind tells him to be patient―he'll be scary soon enough. But waiting is hard. Will the little seed ever be really, truly scary?


Tales for Tots will be celebrating National Novel Writing Month during the month of November by giving Thanksgiving Point Explorers (staff members) the opportunity to write and share their very own children’s stories at our Tales for Tots Program. We hope to inspire our community to get creative and get writing!

November 6 | If You Happen to Have a Dinosaur by Linda Bailey & Colin Jack
There are oodles of uses for a dinosaur -- from a fine umbrella to an excellent kite and a dandy pillow, not to mention a reliable burglar alarm and the perfect excuse to forget your homework.

November 13 | William the Proper Penguin by Thanksgiving Point Explorer Brindizi Hamblin
William is a penguin. A proper penguin to be precise. He thoroughly enjoys top hats, bow ties, and listening to opera music. But who will help William when he gets a troublesome case of the hiccups?

November 20 | Thanks for Thanksgiving by Julie Markes
Everyone knows that Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks—the question is, where to begin? From the turkey on the table to warm, cozy cuddles, life is full of small things and bigger pleasures. But what's most important is being able to share them with family! Gathering Book written by Lindsey McBride.

November 27 | The Helpful Dragon by Thanksgiving Point Explorer Joanna Lam
There once was a dragon born from a painting in a flash of lightning and boom of thunder. Learn about different dragons found in Chinese Mythology, as Painted Dragon realizes his actions help more then he thinks they do.


Farm Country 



October 17 | We're Going on a Leaf Hunt by Steve Metzger
There are lots of beautiful fall leaves to find! Three friends have a big adventure hiking over a mountain and through a forest to collect leaves of all kinds and colors.

October 24 | Plumply, Dumply Pumpkin by Mary Serfozo
Peter’s looking for the perfect pumpkin. Come join the search and see what he does when he finds a pumpkin that’s just right!

October 31 | There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat! by Lucille Colandro
What won't this old lady swallow? This time around, a bat, an owl, a cat, a ghost, a goblin, some bones, and a wizard are all on the menu!


Tales for Tots will be celebrating National Novel Writing Month during the month of November by giving Thanksgiving Point Explorers (staff members) the opportunity to write and share their very own children’s stories at our Tales for Tots Program. We hope to inspire our community to get creative and get writing!

November 7 | The Big Umbrella by Amy June Bates and Juniper Bates
By the door there is an umbrella. It is big. It is so big that when it starts to rain there is room for everyone underneath. It doesn’t matter if you are tall. Or plaid. Or hairy.

November 14 | Bee Gets A Sweater by Keith Faulkner
Bee, a plain black insect, is cold, so Spider offers to knit a sweater, but it takes a while to hit on exactly the right pattern. Gathering Book written by Thanksgiving Point Coordinator Amber Thomas.

November 21 | ‘Twas The Night Before Thanksgiving by Dav Pilkey
On the night before Thanksgiving, a group of children visit a turkey farm and meet Farmer Mack Nuggett and his coop of cockerels. The children and turkeys giggle and gobble, and everything is gravy. As the trip comes to an end, the children leave the farm with full hearts.

November 28 | Things That Roll by Thanksgiving Point Explorer Mirielle Sanford 
Heads will roll at the gentle humor in this unique picture book that is both informative and charming all rolled into one.



Museum of Natural Curiosity



October 18 | Go Away, Big Green Monster! by Ed Emberley
As kids turn the die-cut pages of this vibrantly illustrated book, they'll watch the Big Green Monster grow before their very eyes. Then, when they're ready to show him who's in charge, they'll turn the remaining pages and watch him disappear!

October 25 | The Monster at the End of This Book by Jon Stone
Furry old Grover begs the reader not to turn the page.... for a monster is at the end of the book!


Tales for Tots will be celebrating National Novel Writing Month during the month of November by giving Thanksgiving Point Explorers (staff members) the opportunity to write and share their very own children’s stories at our Tales for Tots Program. We hope to inspire our community to get creative and get writing!

November 1 | Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert
Fall has come, the wind is gusting, and Leaf Man is on the move. Is he drifting east, over the marsh and ducks and geese? Or is he heading west, above the orchards, prairie meadows, and spotted cows? No one's quite sure.

November 8 | Olivia Forms a Band by Ian Falconet
There are going to be fireworks tonight, and Olivia can hardly wait to hear the band. But when she finds out that there isn't going to be a band, she can't understand why not. How can there be fireworks without a band?! And so Olivia sets to putting a band together herself.

November 15 | Two Brave Knights by Thanksgiving Point Explorer Margaux Pugh
The story of a child’s imagination as it unfolds in a thrilling tale of knighthood and adventure.

November 22 | No Tales for Tots due to the Thanksgiving Holiday

November 29 | Ascend by Thanksgiving Point Explorer Melissa Fraughton
Amelia’s mother just married the king of Heartopia, and she is going to ascend to the throne and become a princess! She has a lot to learn first. What does it take to be a good princess? How will Amelia rise to the challenge?


Ashton Gardens

No Tales for Tots during the Ashton Gardens Winter Season.


Enjoy a morning full of music and movement exploration at the Museum of Natural Curiosity and Farm Country. Led by our education staff, Melody Makers is the perfect opportunity for little kids to dance and move in a fun and friendly environment. Included with regular venue admission.

Tuesdays at 11 am: Museum of Natural Curiosity

Thursdays at 11 am: Farm Country



Museum of Natural Curiosity


November 20 | Let’s Give Thanks
What are you thankful for? Let’s sing songs about thanksgiving and learn a new songs “I Know an Old Lady Who shallowed a Turkey. 

November 27 | A Dragon on The Doorstep
What would you do if you found a dragon on your doorstep? Do you think he wants to play? Today we will sing, dance, and play with our dragon friends.

December 4 | Splash into the Ocean
Come splish and splash with all our underwater friends. Sing, dance or swim to the music of the sea.

December 11 | Blast Off Into Space
3...2...1... Blast off! Zoom in a rocket ship, pretend to be an astronaut, and journey through space with songs and play.

December 18 | It's Christmas
Remember the symbols of the winter season as you sing and dance to your favorite holiday songs!

December 25 | No Melody Makers



Farm Country                                         




November 22 | No Melody Makers due to the Thanksgiving Holiday

November 29 | Color Me Music
Discover the colorful world of music. Do you have a favorite color? Colors are all around us and in the music we sing.

December 6 | Jingle All the Way
Jingle Bells, Jingle Bell and ring-a-long. Have fun with bells, tambourines, triangles and other sounds with instruments that ding.

December 13 | Musical Adventures
What kind of music do you like? Fast beats? Slow and smooth? Join us on a musical adventure as we explore different music styles.

December 20 | Holiday Classics
What are your favorite holiday songs? Come sing and dance with Frosty the Snowman, Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer and many more holiday friends.

December 27 | Count Down to the New Year
3, 2, 1 The New Year is almost here. What songs can you sing to ring in the New Year? Join in our musical games and learn songs that count down.


It’s not every day you could meet an alligator or greet a skunk. Animals are all around us, some live in your backyard, some live far away, but all are important to our world. Come get up close and personal with some of the most interesting animals you will meet as we explore some of the curious critters that make our world wonderful.

Second Saturday of each month at 11 am: Museum of Natural Curiosity

Fourth Saturday of each month at 11 am: 
October-February at the Museum of Ancient Life
March-September at Farm Country



Museum of Natural Curiosity  


November 10 | Animal Defense
Some animals have built in tools they use to defend themselves. Which ones can you think of? Defense is a very important part of the animal world, and us humans can learn quite a bit from them! Come join us in learning from our friends at Wild Wonders.

Museum of Ancient Life


October 27 | Ancient Bugs
Bugs and invertebrates have been here for a loooong time. What about them do you think helps them survive so long? They are surely incredible! Come Meet some bugs yourself and see how they compare to their ancient counterparts.

November 24 | Measure Up
How do you measure up to the creatures of yesterday? Join us at the Museum of Ancient Life to explore just how large dinosaurs were.


Featuring new activities each week, Monday Nights at Thanksgiving Point focus on a single theme with various activities designed to entertain and educate the whole family. 


 4:30 - 7:30 pm.  Location varies by season.  See below. 

January, February, March: Museum of Ancient Life
July, August, September: Farm Country
April, May, June: Ashton Gardens
October, November, December: Museum of Natural 




Museum of Natural Curiosity 


October 22 | Bird-A-Rama
What do you know about birds? Where do they live? What do they eat? Take a closer look at their nests, eggs and feathers types. Also, what do you know about crows? And can a scarecrow scare away a crow?

October 29 | Imagination and Play
Halloween is right around the corner.  Do you like to dress up for the occasion?  Join us today as we explore imagination. Make a play, create artwork, make a costume design and more.

November 5 | Layers of the Rain Forest
Canopy, emergent, understory and forest floor?  What do these names have in common? Be an explorer as you discover the exotic life between the layers of the rain forest.

November 12 | Build It Up
What can you build? A tower, a boat, a canal, a slide? Build creations and test your structures against mother nature. Enjoy a fun evening filled with the spirit of engineering.

November 19 | Featuring the Best of Leap Into Science
Learn about magnetic magic, balance, light, mirrors and reflection. Enjoy the experiences, exploration, and activities that feature the in-depth “Leap into Science.”

November 26 | Un-be-LEAF-able
Tonight's activities are all about Trees, Leaves and their structures.  Guests will have the opportunity to take a closer look at how one of the most important organisms in our ecosystem functions and what makes these TREES so AMAZING!!!


Looking for a fantastic Friday night activity? On the first and third Friday of every month from 5:30-7:30 pm, get your game on with a variety of classic and new board games during our Family Game Night. Family Game Night is a family-focused evening for kids and parents of all ages. 

First Friday of each month: Museum of Natural Curiosity

Third Friday of each month: Museum of Natural Curiosity (October-May)

Third Friday of each Month: Ashton Gardens (June-September)




October 19 | Halloween Costume Party
Party with us! Enjoy a Halloween twist on your favorite party games.

November 2 | Matching Games
Can you match it? Come test your skills and play our fun matching games.

November 16 | Thanksgiving Bingo
Come create a Thanksgiving bingo card and test your luck. May the luckiest card win!



Come have fun while innovating! Design Challenge is a museum program that gets everyone engaging in the engineering design process. Make a team with your family and join us! It is free to participate. Each month you’ll have the opportunity to come learn about an engineering concept and put your knowledge to the test by designing and completing a challenge. All supplies will be provided but if you wish to take your project home there will be a small fee to cover the cost of supplies. Come ready to design, build, test and prototype a solution to any given problem.

Third Saturday of each month from 2-4 pm: Museum of Natural Curiosity



October 20 | Design Your Own Museum

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to design a museum? Come use your imagination to brainstorm then build your own prototype museum exhibit. 

Next month’s challenge is going to incorporate recycling so start collecting clean materials to bring and design with.

November 17 | Recycle Up

Bring in your recyclables and use the engineering process to design and build something beneficial. 



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