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, Melody Makers, and Dirt on Dinos, 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 weekly storytelling adventure, Tales for Tots, held each Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 11:00am. Staff will engage guests with interactive storytelling as well as movement and/or music activities that connect to the story theme of the day.

Mondays - Museum of Ancient Life
11am-11:20am (Please purchase a 10:30am or 11am ticket for this program).

Wednesdays - Farm Country
11am-11:20am (Please purchase a 10:30am or 11am ticket for this program).

Fridays - Butterfly Biosphere
11am-11:20am (Please purchase a 10:30am or 11am ticket for this program).

Included with regular venue admission.

Family groups will be encouraged to space 6 ft. apart in on open area of the museum using colored dots to indicate individual seating areas. Little to no props will be used and will be thoroughly sanitized after each program. The program will run about 15-20 minutes once a week. More offerings will become available as COVID-19 restrictions are released. Masks are required for all participants 3 years of age and above.  



Upcoming Schedule:



Museum of Ancient Life 



July 26 | Charlotte and the Rock by Stephen W. Martin
Charlotte has always really wanted a pet, so when her parents present her with one for her birthday she expects a cat, dog, or maybe a bird. Instead, she receives a rock, but that doesn't stop Charlotte from loving her rock as if he were real. If only he could love her back...or can he?

August 2 | It’s About Time by Stuart J. Murphy
It's About Time. Time to wake up, to learn, to play, to read, to cuddle up in the blankets and to dream. A twenty-four-hour day is full of great things to do! 

August 9 | If the Dinosaurs Came Back by Bernard Most
How would life be if dinosaurs were among us? In this delightful book, a small boy imagines a world where dinosaurs have jobs appropriate for their size in the world today.

August 16 | Splashdance by Liz Starin
Ursula, a bear, and Ricardo, a human, are preparing for the water ballet competition. But a new regulation at the community pool--no bears--leaves Ursula cut from the contest. Luckily, she encounters a group of undaunted animal swimmers at a local pond, and together they figure out a way to participate in the competition and make sure everyone is welcome at the pool once and for all.

August 23 | Noisy Night by Mac Barnett
It's a noisy night in this city building! The residents of each floor can hear their neighbors above them and are wondering what's going on above their heads.

August 30 | The Big Umbrella by Amy June 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. There will always be room.




Farm Country



July 28 | There’s No Place Like Space by Tish Rabe
Explore the magic of outer space with the Cat in the Hat as he travels to all eight planets in our solar system in this out of this world adventure!

August 4 | Who Ate all the Cookie Dough? by Karen Beaumont
Kanga wants to make cookies, but someone has eaten all the cookie dough. Who could it be? Join in the fun and find out!

August 11 | Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr.
When all the letters of the alphabet race one another up the coconut tree, will there be enough room? Of course, there is always enough room in this rollicking alphabet chant!

August 18 | Who Took the Farmer’s Hat by Joan L. Nodset
The farmer had a hat, an old brown hat. Oh, how her liked that old brown hat! But then the wind came, and blew the hat away. And as fast as the farmer ran, the wind raced even faster. Would the farmer ever find his favorite hat?

August 25 | 1 Big Salad by Juana Medina
One avocado deer saunters across the spread, two radish mice scurry by, until finally ten watercress seahorses swim onto the scene - all of the ingredients in one big salad!



Butterfly Biosphere 



July 23 | Perfect Square by Michael Hall
It was a perfect square until… A perfect square is transformed in this adventure story that will transport you far beyond the four equal sides of this square book.

July 30 | Babies in the Bayou by Jim Arnosky
There are lots of babies in the bayou, and even though they might have sharp white teeth, hard shells, webbed feet, or quick claws, their mothers still need to watch over them and protect them from harm.

August 6 | Frank the Seven-Legged Spider by Michaele Razi
Frank is a spider who loves to weave amazing artistic webs. But then he wakes up one day to discover he's missing a leg. Is he still a spider if he only has seven legs?

August 13 | Bugs for Lunch by Margery Facklam
From a mantis perched and ready to prey on ladybugs and butterflies, to the honey-drenched fur of a big brown bear munching on a hive full of bees, this delicious menu of appetizing delicacies is sure to delight.

August 20 | I am too Absolutely Small for School by Lauren Child
Lola is not so sure about school. After all, why would she need to count higher than ten when she never eats more than ten cookies at a time? Once again, it's up to ever-patient big brother Charlie to persuade Lola that school is worthwhile.

August 27 | A Rock can Be by Laura Purdie Salas
Rocks may seem like boring, static objects—until you discover that a rock can spark a fire, glow in the dark, and provide shelters of all shapes and sizes.


Join us for our popular Melody Makers program. Led by our education staff, Melody Makers is the perfect opportunity for little kids and their adults to dance and move in a fun and friendly environment. Come see what each unique staff member has to offer with a variety of engaging songs and themes each week.

Venues are timed ticketed. Please reserve a ticket for the 10:30 am or 11:00 am time slot to participate in this program.


Tuesdays - Ashton Gardens
11am-11:20am (Please purchase a 10:30am ticket for this activity.)
Location: Please reserve a ticket for the 10:30am or 10:45am time slot to allow time to meet us near the concessions and restrooms behind the garden’s main amphitheater. Let the music guide you to our special spot. After playing with us, bring a picnic and enjoy the sunshine.

Thursdays - Farm Country
11am-11:20am (Please purchase a 10:30am ticket for this activity.)
Location: Farm Lobby


Included with regular venue admission.

Family groups will be spaced 6 ft. apart in our outdoor area using colored dots to indicate individual dance spaces. Little to no props will be used and will be thoroughly cleaned after each program. The program will run about 15-20 minutes once a week. More offerings will become available as COVID-19 restrictions are released. Masks are required for all participants 3 years of age and above.



Featured Song for July: 

Five Little Dinosaurs
These little dinosaurs are having so much fun playing, that they are inviting us all to come play with them. Join us for this fun counting song to the tune of Five Little Ducks.


Featured Song for August: 

Down By the Bay
Did you ever see a llama wearing pajamas? Join us down by the bay to sing this popular song that is full of silly rhymes.

One Friday a month, visit the Butterfly Biosphere to put your entomologist skills to the test solving the mystery! 


August 20 | 5-8 pm

An Olympic Torch Travesty

The long jump sand has been raked smooth, the diving pool is pristine, the camouflage path is lush, and the agility course has been constructed. The Summer Insect Olympics are ready to begin, but the Olympic Torch was stolen the night before the Opening Ceremonies! Only the athletes had access to the field, so interview some Insect Olympians to discover who committed the crime. You may need to try out their sports to gain their trust - and be careful, one of them may not be telling the truth.

Butterfly Biosphere
Included with regular venue admission.



Join us for The Dirt on Dinos program at the Paleontology Lab window every Wednesday. Our program will be taking place outside the lab where we will have interesting artifacts on display, in closed cases, for viewing only. Friendly staff will help answer questions from safe distances while wearing masks.  Bring your best questions and imagination! Can you imagine how large a mask would be for a T-rex? Come learn about the science happening every day here at Thanksgiving Point!

Wednesdays - Museum of Ancient Life
10am - 12 Noon

Included with regular venue admission.

Family groups will be encouraged to space 6 ft. apart.

Every fourth Monday of the month from 5 pm - 8 pm at the Museum of Natural Curiosity.


June 28: 

Family STEM Nights: Incredible Insects

Do you know how incredible insects can be? Come explore with us as we learn more about pollinators, beneficial insects, and why they are so important!

June 28 - Museum of Natural Curiosity
5-8 pm

Included with regular venue admission.


Temporarily suspended due to COVID-19. Please check back for more information soon.

We are excited to introduce our new Itsy-Bitsy Science sensory bins, happening every Tuesday at the Butterfly Biosphere. Itsy-Bitsy Science is designed specifically for families with children ages 5 and under. This hands-on experience lets children explore insects and the natural world through their senses, making early science concepts playful and fun!

Tuesdays - Butterfly Biosphere

Included with regular venue admission. 

Beginning April 7th


Join us Wednesday mornings at 10:00 am in the Learning Garden at Ashton Gardens for a look at gardening basics! From water and soil to plant parts and pollinators, this program gets the whole family out into the garden exploring and discovering. Geared towards the little ones in your life, this program will help their roots grow deep into the world of gardening.

Wednesdays - Ashton Gardens, Learning Garden (April 7 - October 13th)

10am (Please purchase a 9:30 or 10:00am ticket for this program.)

Included with regular venue admission.

Staff will ensure that materials are sanitized properly after use. Family groups may have their own set of materials if applicable. Outdoor spaces will be used and guests will be encouraged to sit at a safe distance. Masks are required for all participants 3 years of age and above.


Fish Food for Thought: The Alligator Gar is sometimes referred to as a “living fossil” because scientists can trace them in the fossil record back 100 million years!
Join our Museum of Ancient Life staff on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 1pm to watch these agile predators hunt for their lunch!

Wednesdays and Saturdays - Museum of Ancient Life

Included with regular venue admission.

Family groups will be encouraged to space 6 ft. apart.

Stop by the critter cart on your trip around the Butterfly Biosphere. At the regular show times (12pm, 2pm, 4pm, and 6pm) our Explorers will be handling a bug for you to see. The bugs will be out for approximately 30 minutes. Although you won't be able to hold it yourself right now, you can still engage with our Explorers and their bug friends. Just stop by anytime during one of these half hour blocks to say hello!

Monday-Saturday - Butterfly Biosphere
12pm, 2pm, 4pm, 6pm

Included with regular venue admission.

Staff will encourage families to rotate through display area at safe distances.


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