Geek out this spring break with these family-friendly events

Nicole Bremer Nash lists some of the upcoming programs offered in the United States for geek families during the spring break season.

As the weather warms up, many school children in the Northern Hemisphere are looking forward to spring and summer break. You can make it the best holiday ever with these trip and program ideas for 2012 that are sure to please geeky kids and parents alike.

  • February 17 - April 22: The Field Museum in Chicago has a special exhibit called "Opening the Vaults: Mummies" that gives an up close and personal look at the creatures that have shown up in so many sci-fi fantasies. Plus, the Field Museum is home to Sue the T-Rex!
  • March 4 - May 27 (on Saturdays and Sundays): The American Museum of Natural History in New York City offers "Mystery at the Museum: An Accomplice Adventure" for families with children ages 10 and up. It's a mystery a museum.
  • March 10 - July 22: The Children's Museum of Indianapolis is featuring a LEGO Travel Adventure exhibit. Visitors will decide where they want to go, and then build LEGO vehicles to get there. (Museum admission does not include trips outside the museum.)
  • March 31 - April 15: The San Diego Zoo is featuring a "Make a Date" program with your favorite animal. The program features events like the Meerkat Munch Bunch, Dr. Zoolittle's "Show Me the Buggies," and a Primate Popsicle Party. Geeky kids who love animals will love you forever if you take them to these events.
  • April 7: The Children's Creativity Museum in San Francisco is holding a special learning workshop on LEDs. This museum focuses on combining science and art (for example, art workshops that deal with gravity).
  • April 21: The Louisville Science Center in Kentucky offers the best accommodations for viewing the Thunder Over Louisville air show and fireworks display. The Center's ThunderBlast features food, museum entry, and science games and experiments to keep the kids learning, busy, and happy all day long. If you visit Louisville for this grand annual event, be sure to visit other local attractions like the Louisville Slugger Museum.
  • April 27-29: LEGO KidsFest will be in Denver, Colorado. I recently took my child to one and can honestly say it is worth the trip and the ticket price. Activities include Ninjago games, open builds, and learning sessions with LEGO Master Builders (these are LEGO employees who design sets). *This review is based on my personal opinion and is unsolicited by LEGO and LEGO KidsFest.*
  • May 26 - January 1, 2013: The Louisville Science Center exhibit "Science in Play" is designed to introduce younger children to scientific concepts through play with features like a noodle forest and a magnet wall among others. For those living nearby, also check out the Louisville Science Center's spring break camps -- they are perfect for geek kids who love to learn and play.
  • Ongoing: The St. Louis Science Center has a Life Science Lab exhibit, where visitors learn about myriad life sciences from birds to fish.

For more ideas about family-friendly geek outings, check out our geeky museums and exhibits gallery and read my Geek Gifts 2010 review of The Geek Atlas.

Another fun outing that your kiddo would likely never forget is to take him or her to a geek convention. PAX East 2012 is held April 6-8 in Boston, and Toronto Comic Con 2012 is held April 14-15 at the Metro Toronto Convention Center. In our 2011 galleries from those events, you can see that kids attended and dressed up for PAX East 2011 and Toronto Comic Con 2011.

If you plan to stay home this spring break, you might try some of the ideas in my Geekend posts No lab coat necessary to get geeky with science and Geeky spring science experiments.

Tell us in the discussion what special geeky spring break plans you have this year. We'd love to hear about some of the family-friendly geek events going on where you live.

By Nicole Nash

Nicole Bremer Nash is Director of Content and Social Media for HuTerra, where she uses SEO and social media to promote charitable organizations in their community-building and fundraising efforts. She enjoys volunteering, arts and crafts, and conduct...