10 things to do with kids this week in Pittsburgh, from superbubbles to a ‘Jumanji’ watch party

Kids love exuberant fresh-air activities as well as relaxing family time. It’s all about balance. We offer both extremes – and a little in between – with this week’s picks for things to do with kids in Pittsburgh.

1. Bring on the Bubbles (at home)

Teachers aren’t the only ones who benefit from Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s Creative Curriculums. Kids and their grownups will find terrific fun with these lessons that include cool activities on specific art themes. In Bring on the Bubbles, for example, kids learn how to create wands and stir up a recipe for superbubbles while fulfilling specific PA education standards. Find the curriculums here, ready to download and print.

2. Join the ‘Jumanji’ Watch Party (at home)

We can hear the boom-boom-booming jungle drums already! Catch the classic film that started all the excitement at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 25. Carnegie Museum of Natural History hosts the “Jumanji” Watch Party, where museum scientists add their insight to the exotic creatures and logic of the crazy and dangerous game. Registration is $10.

3. Celebrate Kids Kingdom’s birthday (in person)

Pittsburgh Zoo’s Kids Kingdom commemorates its 25th anniversary with enrichment programming this week through Friday, Sept. 25. Each day, the focus shifts from kangaroos to otters to beavers. Giveaways are part of the fun, which is free with zoo admission. Check here for the daily schedule.

4. Get RADical (in person and at home)

Check out this week’s free RADical Days virtual and in-person offerings. View the complete calendar here.

Head to the Owl Prowl at Beechwood Farms Nature Preserve from 7:30-9 p.m. Monday, Sept. 28, throughFriday, Oct. 2. Register early for limited space.

North Hills Art Center offers a take-home craft project to be assembled, painted and returned to contribute to the beauty of the center’s community garden. Pick up your choice of materials from Sept. 29-Oct. 9 and return by Oct. 10 to add your artistry to the installation.

Accept the challenge of the obstacle course outside the Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall. Kids can balance on a log over lava, stomp like a dinosaur and jump over a river. The sidewalk course is available daily.

5. Bake cookies with a sprinkle of social justice (at home)

Pittsburgh artist and cookie activist Jasmine Cho presents “Portraits in Icing: The Intersection of Representation, Race and Cookies” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 24. Hosted by Heinz History Center, the program is an outreach of the “Smithsonian’s Portraits of Pittsburgh” exhibit. Cho’s demonstration examines how she uses cookies to start conversations about social justice. The virtual session is $5. Try your hand at cookie art and pick up a $10 cookie kit.

6. Spin into family discussions (at home)

The point of the Family Spinner game is to encourage mealtime conversations. Give the arrow a whirl and watch where it points. Depending on where the arrow lands, kids use the themes — like Kindness, Challenge and Victory — as prompts to share an example from their day. Family Spinners, created by Dr. Deborah Gilboa and Ilana Schwarz, are available free from Eat’n Park with kids’ meals, family meals or by request.

7. Head to the pumpkin patch (in person)

Shenot Farms opens its pumpkin patch on Saturday, Sept. 26. Enjoy fresh air on the half-mile to the field. Access is $2 on Fridays-Sundays, free Mondays-Thursdays, free every day for ages 2 and younger.

Soergel’s Farm offers free access to its apple orchard and pumpkin patch for daily picking, plus the Petting Zoo.

Triple B Farms welcomes families to Fall Fun that includes pumpkin, apple and sunflower picking. The $10 timed tickets include two corn mazes, visits to the animal barn and hayrides. Free for ages 2 and younger.

Trax Farms’ Harvest Days includes a 3-acre corn maze, farm animals, a pumpkin patch and a hayride in its $10 ticket. Kids 2 and younger are free.

Simmons Farm’s fall festivities include hayrides, mazes and rubber duck races, along with pumpkin, apple and flower picking. Purchase timed tickets in adavnce.

8. Compete in the Garbage Olympics (in person)

Families can join one of the 34 Pittsburgh neighborhood teams participating in the fourth-annual Garbage Olympics on Saturday, Sept. 26. Olympians will pick up trash from city streets and parks while following safety protocols. The Mayor’s Clean Pittsburgh Commission will provide bags, gloves, personal protective equipment (PPE) and “nifty nabber” litter grabbers. Find teams, captains and meeting spots here.

9. Watch movies under the stars (in person)

This week’s Allegheny Parks’ free drive-in movie series offers a mixed bag of PG programming. “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” screens on Thursday, Sept. 24, at South Park and Saturday, Sept. 26, at Hartwood Acres. Catch “Grease” on Friday, Sept. 25, at South Park. And get your giggles on with “Secret Life of Pets 2” plays on Tuesday, Sept. 29, at Boyce Park.

10. Build a deluxe cardboard playhouse

Let’s face it. Kids are perfectly capable of making a playhouse out of an empty box with minimal fuss. But why should they get all the fun? This project lets Mom and Dad join in, too. These instructions from Home Depot show how to take all those cardboard boxes that are filling up the garage and turn them into something magical. Finish with details like window boxes, skylights and colorful shingles for the coolest playhouse ever. Kids are likely to come up with personalized design ideas, too, like a castle turret, dog door or mailbox.