Fun things to do with kids this weekend in Chicago(land)


We're not joking: April's Fools weekend is a great time to be a kid (or a parent!) in Chicagoland. Check out some wacky scavenger hunts, unexpected art and food activities, and a trio of hilarious shows that will have you giggling all the way to May. Not seeing something that tickles your family's collective funny bone? Our full calendar has all of this weekend's fun, family-friendly events, in both the city and the suburbs.

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Family Workshop: Art Beyond Boundaries

Artist Helio Oiticica wanted his art to electrify the eyes, body, and mind. His work challenged the traditional boundaries of art and invited viewers to become active participants. Enjoy a special viewing of Helio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium followed by experimental art making in the studio.


Sunset Fire & Picnic on the Prairie

Enjoy an early spring picnic while learning about the role of fire in managing natural areas, and then watch from a safe distance as trained staff burn the prairie at sunset. Picnic fare available for purchase or bring your own.


Family Day: Build a Bust

Build a bust of yourself as Socrates or a Caesar. Using cardboard and plaster, we’ll make sculptural self-portraits inspired by plaster and marble busts on view in the Smart Museum’s special exhibition Classicisms.


Naperville Plays presents Make it Cool: Innovation and Play

Triple the fun with exciting hands-on activities and on-site exhibits provided by Naper Settlement, DuPage Children’s Museum and Naperville Public Library.


Navigation Unplugged

Discover how people got around before GPS. Learn the basics of orienteering (using a compass) and cartography (the art of making maps) through various activities, then put your skills to the test on the trails. April 1: Deer Grove Forest Preserve, 1650 N Quentin Rd, Palatine; April 8: Bemis Woods South, 1100 Ogden Ave, Western Springs; April 15: Wolf Road Woods, 9800 Wolf Rd, Willow Springs.


The Wizard School Scavenger Hunt

Go in search of art that echoes characters, places, and enchanted objects in the famed Harry Potter books and movies. Be prepared to track down flying owls, Hagrid-like giants, centaurs and unicorns like those you'd see in the Forbidden Forest, dragons that seem straight out of the Triwizard Tournament, and eerie figures as scary as any Death Eater or Dementor.


April Fool’s Day Scavenger Hunt

Bring the family and work as a team to solve the puzzles in this unique scavenger hunt.


Madagascar - A Musical Adventure

Join Alex the Lion, Marty the Zebra, Melman the Giraffe, Gloria the Hippo and the hilarious, plotting penguins as they bound onto the stage in this musical adventure. The show follows these zoo friends as they escape from their home in New York’s Central Park Zoo and find themselves on an unexpected journey to the madcap world of King Julien’s Madagascar. This special one-hour presentation is filled with larger-than-life characters, non-stop adventure, and an upbeat score. All performances are followed by a Question & Answer session with the cast.


Giggle, Giggle, Quack

Running a farm is hard work, so Farmer Brown takes off for a well-deserved vacation, leaving his brother Bob, an accountant from the city, in charge. Soon the animals run wild, taking advantage of Bob’s lack of experience. Will the animals come clean about their devious tricks, or is there more to Brother Bob than meets the eye? Audio description and touch tour on April 1; open captioning on April 8; autism/sensory-friendly performance on April 15. No performances April 16.




A hilarious 90-minute improv comedy show where two teams create comedy scenes, songs, and games right on the spot based on audience suggestions. Appropriate for all ages.


Weekend Family Class: Pizza Party

Pizza has lots of ingredients from the garden—tomatoes, wheat, herbs and vegetables. Learn how these plants grow and how they are used to make pizza. Participants will plant their own herb garden to take home.


Pancakes with a Python

Sabrina the python and her scaly friends will join you as you dine on pancakes, sausages and milk. While you eat, a naturalist will teach about the slithering residents of the nature center. Later, touch some reptile friends and make a fun craft.


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