The Top 10 Things to Do With Kids in Philly This February

Lego art, giant trolls, holiday celebrations, and even the circus! February is short on days but packed with family-friendly fun.

things to do in philly kids franklin institute lego

The Art of the Brick, opening this month at the Franklin Institute in Philly, will have a huge Lego play section for kids — and also a whale! / Photograph courtesy of The Art of the Brick

It’s cold and dark, but there are plenty of ways to have fun in Philly. From Legos to giant trolls, there are new adventures on the way. Here are the best family-friendly events to add to your calendar this month.

The Art of the Brick at the Franklin Institute

You may remember this Lego-art exhibit coming to the Franklin Institute back in 2015, but your kids most likely don’t — they probably weren’t born yet! Plus, it’s bigger and better with new pieces, including a Philly-specific piece designed especially for this exhibit. This time around, in addition to brick-renderings of iconic pieces like The Scream and Starry Night, the exhibit includes PERNiCiEM: The Endangered Species Connection, which pairs 13 large-scale Lego sculptures created of endangered animals with wildlife photography by Dean West. Also new? A 9,000-square-foot Lego play space where kids of all ages can get creative for hours.

Black History Month

Black History Month

Celebrate Black History month by attending tours, events, exhibits and more. / Photograph by Steve Weinik, courtesy of Mural Arts Philadelphia

There are so many ways to celebrate Black History Month in Philadelphia. All month long, you can catch free events like story times and crafts at the library, re-enactors at the Betsy Ross House, and historical tours. Also on February 3rd, the African American Children’s Book Fair gives you a chance to expand your kid’s library and meet authors and illustrators. Also not to be missed, the Art Museum is offering free admission on February 4th for a Black History Month celebration, and National Liberty Museum is planning a day of all-ages programming including workshops and discussions to celebrate 50 years of hip-hop in their new music-focused exhibit. See more Black History Month events in our guide.

Trolls at the Zoo

Giant trolls are coming to the Philadelphia Zoo. / Photograph courtesy of Atlanta Botanical Garden

Danish artist Thomas Dambo’s massive, folklore-inspired trolls have arrived at the Philadelphia Zoo. Six of these whimsical figures will reside throughout the zoo through April 15th, and if you bring your Zoo Key, you can also hear the story of each of the trolls, which are made from reclaimed materials — to inspire people to consider their relationship with the planet. Thomas Dambo’s Trolls: Save the Humans is included with the price of zoo admission. Read more about the installation in our preview.

Lunar New Year

The Philadelphia Suns the perform the Lion Dance for Lunar New Year / Photograph by Laura Swartz

The Year of the Dragon begins February 10th, but the celebrations are already under way around town. The Crane Center and Rail Park host free family-friendly activities on February 10th, including crafts and, of course, lion dance performances. On Sunday, February 11th, catch the Chinatown parade or head to the Art Museum for free admission and celebration. See more events in our guide.

Getaway at the Greenhouse

Getaway at the Greenhouse returns with lots of kid-friendly fun. / Photograph courtesy of Philadelphia Parks and Recreation

The weekend of February 10th and 11th, the Horticulture Center in Fairmount Park will be transformed into an indoor oasis with lounge areas, an obstacle course and family-friendly activities from 11 a.m to 4 p.m. There will also be food, drinks (alcoholic and NA) an a coffee bar available to purchase. Admission is free, but timed tickets for the (free) obstacle course are required.

Valentine’s Day

“Mini Golf With Love” at Franklin Square / Photograph by Cari Feiler Bender

Love is in the air, and there are plenty of family-friendly ways to celebrate, from heart-shaped pizza (Slice tells us it’s making a comeback) to free crafts at the library.

Some more special events? Fleisher Art Memorial is hosting its annual Print Love-In event, where people of all ages can make Valentines while exploring printmaking techniques, from block print to screenprint. The first two sessions of the day are open to families — the final one is adults-only. Register online.

Enjoy some sweet treats with Bloomsday Cafe or Madison K Cookies. Both have Valentine’s cookie-decorating workshops on February 10th.

Plus, through February 25th, Franklin Square’s mini golf switches over to a Valentine’s Day theme. “Mini Golf With Love” adds special love-themed decorations and music to the Philly landmarks. Of course, you can still catch the Electrical Spectacle light show every 30 minutes beginning at 5 p.m. daily and running through 9 p.m. There are warm drinks, fire pits, rides on the carousel, and iceless “street curling” rinks to enjoy, too.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus

The circus is coming to town! / Photograph courtesy of Feld Entertainment

“The Greatest Show on Earth” is back after a years-long hiatus. What’s not back? Animal performers are no longer part of the circus, after years of public outcry and ethical concerns. This circus is “reimagined,” focusing on high-flying thrills. Think aerial artists, acrobatics, juggling, something called the “human rocket,” bike stunts, and lots more. The circus runs from February 16th through 19th at the Wells Fargo Center.

Meet a Sloth!

Meet a sloth at the Academy of Natural Sciences

Under The Canopy: Animals of the Rainforest opens at the Academy of Natural Sciences on February 17th. The new exhibit includes life-size, climbable animal sculptures as well as educational interactives. And, best of all, there will be immersive animal habitat displays with live animals, including a two-toed sloth! Daily talks inside the exhibit will include animal feedings, sloth training, and museum educators explaining what makes these animals unique and how they adapt to live in the rainforest. The exhibit is included with museum admission and runs from February 17th through September 2nd.

Go Skating

Skating at Dilworth / Photograph by Jeff Fusco

You can’t beat a spin around the rink with music playing and lights twinkling. Check out Rothman Rink in Dilworth Park through February 25th. Bonus: On Mondays and Tuesdays in February, they’re offering free admission. (Skate rental is not included.) And don’t miss Superhero Skate on Saturday, February 3rd.

For more icy fun, hit up the 30-years-running Blue Cross RiverRink. The latter’s Winterfest offers a cozy lodge, food and drink, rides, photo ops, fun and games, and river views to make it fun even for those not interested in strapping on a pair of skates.

Looking for a lower-key skating experience? Be Well Philly has a complete guide to rinks in the city and beyond.

Namaste India at the Please Touch Museum

Namaste India opens on January 26th. / Photograph courtesy of Please Touch Museum

The Please Touch Museum’s new special exhibit focuses on the art, food and culture of India. Namaste India includes hands-on activities that simulate playing cricket, riding a tuk-tuk, preparing roti, and more playtime for little ones. The exhibit runs through May 3rd, and is included with museum admission.