Shake the dust off yourself and the kids, pack up the family car, and get ready to make some memories. We have 12 awesome things for the family to do in April, May and June. Have a blast this spring, and don’t forget to take some pictures.
1. Continue the Tradition
@ Broadway Market
999 Broadway in Buffalo | (716) 893-0705
Admit it, every Easter you tell yourself you’ll get there, but miss the opportunity to experience one of Buffalo’s best traditions. This year, make it a point to visit the Broadway Market during its peak season. Kids can meet the Easter Bunny, and adults can compete in the marshmallow Peep eating contest on the 12th. Dyngus Day at the Market is on the 21st, and features the Buffalo Kielbasa Contest at noon.
The Broadway Market is open daily 8am-5pm, with extended hours leading into Easter. There is no cost to visit, but we can guarantee you will not go home empty handed.
2. Fish for Hidden Treasure
@ Aquarium of Niagara
701 Whirlpool St. in Niagara Falls | (716) 285-3575
If unpredictable weather keeps you indoors, head north to the Niagara Aquarium on the 19th for the annual SEAster Egg Hunt. Spend the day searching for eggs hidden in the aquarium’s displays. Later, meet with the Easter Bunny and aquarium mascot, Beaker the Penguin. Make sure you catch the sea lion show and a penguin feeding while you are there.
The Aquarium of Niagara is open every day from 9am-5pm. Parking is free and admission is $10 for adults, $6.50 for children.
3. Get Fit and Fabulous
@ Independent Health Family Branch YMCA
150 Tech Dr. in Amherst | (716) 839-2543
On the 26th of April, the Amherst branch of the YMCA will hold its Free Family Expo and Kids Day. You don’t have to be a member to enjoy all the face painting, balloon animals, family relay races, and “Minute to Win It” games you can handle. Just show up and be ready to have fun and stay healthy.
This one day free event takes place from 1pm-4pm. The YMCA “join fee” will be waived for anyone who wants to become a member. The Amherst Police Department will also be on hand for car seat safety checks, child ID booklets and fingerprinting.
4. Nurture Nature on Earth Day
@ Hawk Creek Wildlife Center
Grover Rd. and Luther Rd. in East Aurora | (716) 652-8646
Celebrate Earth Day by getting close to some of nature’s fiercest flying predators and a few ferocious wildcats. The Hawk Creek Wildlife Center’s “Destination Earth” event held on the 26th (11am-4pm) showcases a live flying bird show, and a full face-to-face meeting with a Bald Eagle. This event is packed with hands-on entertainment and giveaways to the kids.
Hawk Creek is only open to the public for special events, so don’t miss out. Parking is free, and adult admission is $12. Children’s admission is $8, or families can purchase a $28 pass covering up to 2 adults and 3 children.
5. Appreciate Spring in Full Bloom
@ Cherry Blossom Festival in Delaware Park behind the Buffalo History Museum
1 Museum Ct, Buffalo, NY 14216
What better way to kick off May than with a peaceful walk through the Japanese Garden at Delaware Park? The first ever Cherry Blossom Festival begins April 23rd and runs until May 4th. The final day of the festival is Family Day, and highlights will include music, scavenger hunts, cherry tree planting, and a pink and white parade.
Family Day activities run from 1pm-4pm in Museum Court of the Buffalo History Museum. Parking is free, but limited. Admission to the History Museum will be free for members and adults with children.
6. Stop and Smell the Flowers with Mom
@ Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens
2655 South Park Ave. in Buffalo | (716) 827-1584
Don’t buy mom the same old boring bouquet this year. Step out and stroll through any one of the Botanical Garden’s 12 houses, while basking in the beauty of orchids, cacti, begonias and bonsai trees. If the weather cooperates, get outside and soak up some sun in the Perennial Peace Garden. Kids can participate in fun activities and craft making on the weekends in the Wegmans Family Garden.
The Gardens are open 10am-5pm every day. Adult admission is $9, children 3-12 are $5, and children under 3 get in free.
7. Enjoy a Ride on Thomas the Train
@Medina Railroad Museum
530 West Ave. in Medina | (585) 798-6106
Every year, every little kid’s favorite tank engine pulls into Medina, NY bringing smiles to the faces of his happy passengers. A Day Out With Thomas takes place May 9, 10, 11, 16, 17, and 18. The short road trip will be well worth it, as you watch the little ones meet with Sir Toppam Hat. As an added bonus this year, Thomas can talk.
Thomas begins leaving the station at 9:15am, and rides continue all day until 4:45pm. Tickets range from $19 to $21, depending on the day. Order tickets on the website early as this event sells out fast. Parking is free.
8. Travel Back to Simpler Times
@ Olcott Beach Carousel Park
5979 East Main St. in Olcott | (716) 778-7066
Journey out to the Olcott Carousel Park to show the kids what it was like before video games and smart phones. In addition to the 1928 style two row carousel, the park is also host to 5 vintage kidde rides all set to the tune of a 1931 Wurlitzer Organ. If that’s not enough, right around the corner is the beautiful Krull Park on Lake Ontario. It’s a great spot for a picnic.
Opens on Memorial Day weekend daily from 12-6pm, and there is plenty of free parking available. Rides at the Carousel Park are 25 cents. That’s right, 25 cents.
9. Take Dad Out to the Ballgame
@ Buffalo Bison’s Baseball at Coca-Cola Field
275 Washington St. in Buffalo
On the 7th, the Bisons host their annual Star Wars Night complete with characters from the movie and novelty lightsabers. Sure it’s a week before Father’s Day, but trust us, dad isn’t going to mind a bit. When will he ever have another chance to meet a Wookie? Make sure you stick around for the On-Field Battle and fireworks after the game.
The game starts at 6:05pm. Tickets start at $11. Family four-packs cost $66 and include tickets, hot dogs, and Coca-Cola for everyone.
10. Go Underground
@ Lockport Caves
5 Gooding St. in Lockport | (716) 438-0174
A hidden gem in the Western New York area, the Lockport Caves offer something out of the ordinary for a family excursion. Walk beneath the city and learn a little bit about these man-made tunnels forged in the infancy of the historic Erie Canal. Highlights include an underground boat ride and tour of the Lockport Locks.
The majority of this 70 minute tour is spent walking and underground (60°F), so be prepared with comfortable shoes and appropriate attire. Daily tours begin June 9th from11am-4pm on the hour. Adult admission is $12.50, children $7, and kids under the age of four get in free.
11. Crash into a Day at the Races
@ Holland Speedway
2 North Main St. in Holland | (716) 537-2272
Race fans can start their engines on the 14th by attending Holland Speedway’s Crash-O-Rama. There will be plenty of vehicular mayhem as the event promises a demolition derby, boat trailer race, stock roller derby, and a full-size school bus figure 8 race. Get out and watch the crunch of twisted metal in a fun, safe family environment.
Gates begin opening at 2:30pm, the festivities start at 6pm. It is advised to arrive early to avoid long lines. Admission is $25 for adults, $10 for students 8-15 years old, and children under 7 get in free.
12. Look Up and Be Amazed
@ Darien Lake
9993 Alleghany Rd. in Darien Center | (585) 599-4641
We witnessed his walk on the wire over Niagara Falls, and held our breath while he methodically crossed the Grand Canyon. Now you can kick off the summer watching Nik Wallenda and family perform their high-flying, high-wire act at Darien Lake. This untethered performance is sure to excite the whole family. According to Darien Lake’s website, Nik says, “My family and I are thrilled to be back in the area and spending our summer at Darien Lake.”
Wallenda’s show goes from June 23rd until September 1st, and runs twice daily. Entry to the show is included in the price of park admission or with your season pass.
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