3 January events to jumpstart a year of fun

"The Black Creativity plaque" by sculptor Preston Jackson

Welcome the Year of the Rooster at the kid-friendly Chinese New Year Celebration. Guests can attend a traditional Chinese tea ceremony, create a festive lantern and discover their Chinese Zodiac animal (shout-out to my fellow Pigs!). The highlight is sure to be the kids’ Dragon Dance, where littles can don the traditional costume to put on a big-time show. Cock-a-doodle-doo, indeed! Free. Noon-4 p.m. Jan. 21.


Garfield Park Conservatory, 300 N. Central, Chicago. (312) 746-5100.


When we say this party is poppin’, we definitely aren’t exaggerating. The Popcorn Party takes place on National Popcorn Day, the yummiest of all holidays, and includes art projects, games and other fun, all themed around our favorite salty snack. Of course, there will also be popcorn to munch on throughout the celebration (extra butter, please!). We’re already bursting with anticipation. Free. 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Jan. 19.


Chicago Women’s Park and Gardens, 1801 S. Indiana, Chicago. (312) 328-0821.


It seems only fitting that the Museum of Science & Industry chose Martin Luther King, Jr. Day for its Black Creativity Family Day program. After all, the annual event celebrates the black community’s role in STEAM fields. So families can meet and interact with professionals in Jr. Science Cafés, enjoy workshops in the Innovation Studio, and visit The Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition, the nation’s longest-running exhibition of African-American art. We’re confident in saying that Dr. King would approve. Free for Illinois residents. 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Jan. 16.


Museum of Science and Industry, 5700 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago. (773) 684-1414.


Kids Eat Chicago

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