38 super fun events for Atlanta families in April

Including pillow fights, diving airplanes, teddy bear surgery, horse races, and the colorful artworks of Eric Carle
2015 Atlanta Steeplechase
The 2015 Atlanta Steeplechase

Photo by Soto. Courtesy of the Atlanta Steeplechase.

Through 4/3
The Lizard & El Sol 
Where: Alliance Theatre
When: 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m.
Cost: $10 for adults; $5 for kids ages 6 to 17; free for kids 5 and under
What: Kids can help find the sun in this interactive play—featuring puppets, music, and dance—based on a Mexican folktale.

Through 4/3
18th Century Colonial Market Faire
Where: Fort Yargo State Park
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Thursday through Saturday); 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Sunday)
Cost: $5 for adults; free for kids under 12
What: Interact with “living historians” who will demonstrate what life was like in Georgia in the 1790s. Expect demonstrations, children’s activities, period music, and more.

Through 4/3
International Cherry Blossom Festival
Where: Macon, Georgia
When: Various
Cost: Various
What: When Macon resident William Fickling, Sr. brought 500 cherry trees to the city in 1973, he had no idea how well they’d do in the Georgia heat. Today, the cherry blossom fest boats three-hundred thousand trees—nearly ten times as many as you’ll find in Washington D.C. From March 25 through April 3, stop by the Festival at Central City Park, where you’ll find amusement rides, stunt shows, live music, and more.

Through 4/8 
Woven Whimsy
Where: Atlanta Botanical Garden in Gainesville
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Tuesday through Sunday during March); 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Tuesday through Sunday during April)
Cost: Free with admission ($8 for adults; $5 for kids ages 3 to 12; free for kids 2 and under)
What: Watch as North Carolina–based sculptor Patrick Dougherty creates a large-scale installation out of branches and twigs found on-site.

Through 4/10
Orchid Daze
Where: Atlanta Botanical Garden
When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Tuesday through Sunday)
Cost: Free with admission ($18.95 for adults, $12.95 for kids 3 to 12, free for kids two and under)
What: Got a little green thumb? The Atlanta Botanical Garden pairs brilliant orchids with natural wooden elements in their annual show celebrating the elegant plants.

Through 4/17
Into the Woods
Where: Aurora Theatre
When: 8 p.m. (Wednesday through Saturday); 2:30 p.m. (Saturday and Sunday)
Cost: $30 to $65
What: Is your high-schooler obsessed with shows like Once Upon a Time and Grimm? The Stephen Sondheim musical imagines how fairy-tale characters like Cinderella, the Big Bad Wolf, and Snow White fare post-happily ever after.

Through 5/22
Art AIDS America
Where: Zuckerman Museum of Art
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Tuesday through Saturday); 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Sunday)
Cost: Free
What: Teens can get a visceral sense of the AIDS epidemic’s impact in this groundbreaking show, which makes its only Southeastern stop at Kennesaw State University’s Zuckerman museum. The exhibition explores how AIDS affected American artists and their work from the early 1980s through today.

Through 5/31
Mystery of the Mayan Medallion
Where: Children’s Museum of Atlanta
When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday); 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Saturday and Sunday)
Cost: Free with admission ($14.95; free for kids under 1)
What: Budding archaeologists (and Indiana Jones fans) can decode Mayan glyphs, study jungle creatures, identify Mayan constellations, and uncover treasures in an ancient tomb in this traveling exhibition.

Through 6/16
National Parks Adventure
Where: Fernbank Museum of Natural History
When: Various
Cost: $13 for adults; $11 for children (plus the cost of museum admission)
What: The National Parks Service celebrates 100 years in 2016, and this IMAX film—narrated by Robert Redford—lets you experience the beauty of their caves, canyons, wetlands, mountains, and more.

Through 7/21
Wild Music
Where: Fernbank Museum of Natural History
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Monday through Saturday); 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Sunday)
Cost: Free with admission ($18 for adults; $17 for students; $16 for kids 3 to 16; free for kids 2 and under)
What: Fernbank’s hands-on exhibition explores sound and music in nature. Hear the sounds of whales and underwater earthquakes; compose and play your own song; learn more about how birds communicate; and more.

Through 8/14
Creatures of Light: Nature’s Bioluminescence 
Where: Fernbank Museum of Natural History
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Monday through Saturday); 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Sunday)
Cost: Free with admission ($18 for adults; $17 for students; $16 for kids 3 to 16; free for kids 2 and under)
What: You’re likely familiar with fireflies (aka lightning bugs), but nature is home to a whole host of other glowing creatures. Learn more about light-producing organisms by walking through their habitats in this exhibition.

Annual Open House
Where: UGA College of Veterinary Medicine
When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost: Free
What: Take a guided tour of the new veterinary teaching hospital (for 6th graders and up), read a book to a dog, and check out horseback riding and dog agility exhibitions. Plus, bring your well-loved furry friend to get fixed up in Teddy Bear Surgery.

International Pillow Fight Day
Where: Grant Park
When: 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: Free
What: BYO pillow (no feathers, please) to this annual supersoft slugfest.

You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown
Where: Infinite Energy Center
When: 2 p.m., 7:30 p.m.
Cost: $15 to $20
What: Agape Players, a Christian community theater troupe, presents the musical comedy based on Charles M. Schultz’s Peanuts characters.

I See a Story: The Art of Eric Carle
Where: High Museum of Art
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Tuesday through Thursday, Saturday); 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Friday); 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Sunday)
Cost: Free with admission ($19.50 for adults; $12 for kids ages 6 to 17; free for kids 5 and under)
What: Even if your kid is too young to read, he or she would likely still recognize the distinctive hand-colored collages of children’s book author and illustrator Eric Carle, best known for The Very Hungry Caterpillar. See 80 original artworks from 15 of Carle’s most popular books in this career retrospective.

Back to Your Roots Farm Fair
Where: Chattahoochee Nature Center
When: 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost: Free with general admission ($10 adults, $7 students ages 13 to 18, $6 kids ages 3 to 12, Free ages 2 and under)
What: Meet farm animals, listen to live bluegrass music, and play outdoor games at this annual springtime event. A food truck will be on hand, or bring a picnic.

Braves vs. Nationals
Where: Turner Field
When: 4:10 p.m.
Cost: $10 to $110
What: It’ll be an evening to remember when the team plays its last home opener at the Ted.

Beauty and the Beast
Where: Center for Puppetry Arts
When: 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. (Tuesday through Friday)
Cost: $10.25; free for kids 2 and under
What: Trash becomes treasure in this urban, modern-day retelling of the classic fairy tale.

Family Friday at the Atlanta Dogwood Festival
Where: Piedmont Park
When: Noon to 11 p.m.
Cost: $10 in advance and $15 at the door for an unlimited ride pass
What: In addition to the amusement rides and inflatables, Friday will feature special family-friendly entertainment. Plus, see young artists’ handiwork at the Atlanta High School Art Exhibition.

Alton Brown Live: Eat Your Science
Where: Fox Theatre
When: 7:30 p.m.
Cost: $44 to $59
What: The Food Network star and Marietta resident has spent his television career explaining the science of cooking. His one-man live variety show—famous for passing out ponchos to audience members—promises puppets, storytelling, onstage culinary demos, songs, and more.

Sheep to Shawl
Where: Atlanta History Center
When: 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Cost: Free with general admission ($16.50 adults, $13 students, $11 kids)
What: Show your kids how a sweater gets born at this annual History Center event. There will be sheep shearing, dyeing, spinning, and weaving, as well as other bygone era demonstrations like blacksmithing, candle making, and open hearth cooking.

Lemonade Days
Where: Brook Run Park
When: 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. (Wednesday and Thursday); 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. (Friday); 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. (Saturday); 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. (Sunday)
Cost: Free for entry, but ride prices vary. An unlimited daily ride pass is $20.
What: There are amusement rides and bouncy structures galore at this 17th annual fundraiser for the Dunwoody Preservation Trust. Plus: Midway games, a petting zoo, face painting, a dunk tank, and live music.

The Princess and the Goblin
Where: Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre
When: 8 p.m. (Friday and Saturday); 2 p.m. (Saturday and Sunday)
Cost: $20 to $127
What: After making its world premiere with the Atlanta Ballet in 2012, choreographer Twyla Tharp’s take on a 19th-century fairytale returns. The ballet centers on a young princess who sets out to rescue a group of local children after they are kidnapped by goblins.

Hola, Y’all
Where: Aurora Children’s Playhouse
When: 10 a.m., 11:30 a.m.
Cost: $7
What: Hear stories from bilingual children’s author Carmen Agra Deedy, who came to the U.S. from Cuba in 1964, and now lives in Decatur.

Thunder in the Valley Airshow
Where: Columbus Airport
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: $10 in advance; $15 at the door; free for kids ages 6 and under
What: Forget “touch a truck”—this event that will wow fans of all variety of things that go. Look up as planes fly through smoke rings, loop in precise acrobatics, and execute rolls and dives. On the ground, find antique restored airplanes, monster trucks, military vehicles, and more.

Bear on the Square Mountain Festival
Where: Historic Square in Dahlonega, Georgia
When: All day
Cost: Free
What: The 20th annual celebration of southern Appalachian music, art, and folklore will feature plenty of live performers, traditional storytelling, an artists’ market and old-time mountain dance, and free workshops (yodeling, banjo, celtic singing, and more).

National Park Week
Where: Various
When: Various
Cost: Free
What: This year marks the 100th birthday of the National Park Service, and what better way to celebrate than by visiting one of the country’s beautiful natural treasures—for free. Find a list of the national park service sites in Georgia here.

Georgia Renaissance Festival
Where: Fairburn, Georgia
When: 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Saturday and Sunday)
Cost: General admission is $22 for adults; $10 for kids ages 6 to 12; and free for kids 5 and under
What: You know about the turkey legs. But what’s new for 2016? “Extreme” jousting, a 30-foot-tall spinning “wheel of death,” drum circles, kilt-wearing tightrope walkers, canine acrobats, and more.

Atlanta Streets Alive
Where: Georgia Avenue and Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard
When: 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Cost: Free
What: Fire up the bikes, trikes, and wagons. A four-mile stretch connecting seven neighborhoods—Westview, West End, Adair Park, Pittsburgh, Mechanicsville, Summerhill, and Grant Park—goes car-free at one of the biggest Streets Alive yet.

Atlanta Steeplechase
Where: Kingston Downs
When: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: $30; free for kids under 12
What: Sure, the horses are the stars of the show. But our must-see events also include the hat parade and contest, the Jack Russell races, and the running of the Bear Creek Hounds.

Neil DeGrasse Tyson
Where: Fox Theatre
When: 7:30 p.m.
Cost: $50 to $100
What: Calling all science (and movie) geeks! Everyone’s favorite astrophysicist breaks down science onscreen, explaining how films like Star Wars and Interstellar get it right—and wrong.

Disney on Ice Presents Frozen
Where: Infinite Energy Center
When: 7:30 p.m. (Wednesday through Friday); 10:30 a.m. (Friday only); 11 a.m., 3 p.m., 7 p.m. (Saturday); 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. (Sunday)
Cost: $25 to $95
What: Join Olaf and the gang in this icy staging of the Oscar-winning tale. There will be plenty of now-familiar songs from the film, plus guest appearances by other Disney princesses and characters (Mickey and Minnie play hosts).

Meet the Holidays: Earth Day
Where: Children’s Museum of Atlanta
When: 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost: Free with admission ($14.95)
What: Listen to the story of “Michael Recycle,” learn a Native American rain dance, and make your own bird feeder and dinosaur fossils.

Spring Jonquil Festival
Where: Village Green, downtown Smyrna
When: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Saturday); 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Sunday)
Cost: Free
What: In addition to the usual arts and crafts booths and food vendors (snow cones, corn dogs, candy apples), find a huge kids area with inflatables, sand art, a climbing wall, and other tot-friendly activities. You can also stock up on books at the Friends of Smyrna Library sale, watch as the “master of the chain saw” turns a log into art, take a seat for the marionette puppet show, and cheer for your favorite porker at the pig races.

Peachtree Sports Festival
Where: Cobb Gallerie Centre
When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost: $8 in advance; $10 at the door; free for kids ages 6 and under
What: This youth sports festival hosts clinics where kids can practice any number of activities, from basketball to ballet to archery. College- and professional-level athletes will also give talks.

Strawberry Shortcake tea party
Where: Warbington Farms
When: 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
Cost: $10 in advance and $12 at the door (for kids); $6 in advance and $8 at the door (for adults). Advance registration is recommended.
What: Enjoy tea and refreshments with Ms. Shortcake, plus storytime, songs, and crafts. Fee also includes admission to Warbingon Farms’s “fun park,” featuring a hayride, petting zoo, and bouncy attractions.

Inman Park Festival
Where: Various (Kidzone is in Springvale Park)
When: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Cost: Free
What: Coloring? A bounce house? Please. Stop by the Kidzone here and little ones can try their hand at circus performing (juggling, silks, hoops). Saturday afternoon the annual funky costume parade offers primo people watching, and there are also live music and dance performances.

Chihuly in the Garden
Where: Atlanta Botanical Garden
When: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Tuesday); 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and then 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. (Wednesday through Sunday)
Cost: $21.95 for adults; $15.95 for kids ages 3 to 12; free for kids 2 and under
What: After his wildly popular 2004 exhibition, the renowned glass artist returns to the Atlanta Botanical Garden with 21 colorful installations. If the kids can manage to stay up past their bedtime, hit the garden at night to see the sculptures beautifully lit.