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Local & Regioinal Family Fun Activities
Reading Museum and Planetarium
500 Museum Rd, Reading, PA 19611
Dr. Levi W. Mengel, founder and first director of the Reading Public Museum, wholeheartedly believed in the value of a “sensory education.” As a teacher at Boys' High School in the Reading School District, Dr. Mengel used his personal collection of antiquities in his teaching to help bring history alive for his students in the early 1900s. The Museum’s present location, which welcomed its first visitors in 1929, was a generous donation to the Reading School District from local industrialists Ferdinand Thun and Irvin F. Impink. Presently, the Reading School District still owns the museum and its grounds.
Admission fee required.
Reading Recreation Commission
320 S 3rd St, Reading, PA 19602
The award-winning Reading Recreation Commission (RRC) is a community partnership between the City of Reading and Reading School District, funded in part by tax dollars, that provides quality recreation programs and facilities to the residents of Reading. The partnership between the two entities allows the RRC to provide better recreation services in a more cost-effective way. The RRC provides neighborhood-based recreation and learning opportunities for all ages - with an emphasis on affordable programs for children - at schools, parks, playgrounds, and at two recreation centers. Programs include youth and adult instructional sports programs and leagues, fitness classes, summer playgrounds, club activities, cultural arts programs, after school programs, and community special events. Additionally, healthy and delicious meals are prepared onsite at 3rd & Spruce and 11th & Pike and are currently distributed three days a week (T,TH,F) at three locations – City Park, 3rd & Spruce, and 11th & Pike. Pantry boxes for families are distributed every Friday. Please follow the Reading Recreation Commission on Facebook to get the latest information and updates.
Olivet Boys & Girls Club
The Club currently operates five clubhouses in Reading, with additional satellite sites in Robesonia and Shillington. The programs address the region’s most pressing and immediate youth issues of education support, after school programming, and mentoring – all of which are provided by caring and knowledgeable staff. The Club adheres to the national Boys & Girls Club of America’s initiative to help young people between the ages of six and eighteen get a healthy start and enter school ready to perform to the best of their ability cognitively, physically, socially, and emotionally. Reading School District students are easily registered into the program as the Club’s goal is to reach and serve as many youths as possible. The programs and services are available during non-school hours and during the summer at free or greatly reduced costs.
After School Cost/Summer Camp Registration Cost Required
Scholarship Information please contact Alec Reinert
(610) 373-1314 ext. 206
Berks History Center
940 Centre Ave, Reading, PA 19601
Founded in 1869 as the Historical Society of Berks County, the Berks History Center (BHC) is a museum and research library (the Henry Janssen Library)The BHC showcases the unique local history, a vast collection of artifacts and documents, and the diverse cultural heritage of Berks County.
Museum admission fee required.
2910 New Holland Rd, Reading, PA 19607
Nolde Forest encompasses more than 725 acres of deciduous woodlands and coniferous plantations. A network of trails makes the center’s streams, ponds, and diverse habitats accessible to both students and visitors. Reading School District students have the opportunity to take field trips during the school year as the teaching stations offer places for students to work and benches for those who wish to sit and enjoy the sights and sounds of the natural world.
Free-The park is open every day of the year, sunrise to sunset.
GoggleWorks Center for the Arts
201 Washington St, Reading, PA 19601
Goggleworks Center for the Arts is a place to develop skills, ask questions, experiment freely, and investigate the human spirit. The After School Arts Program (ASAP) offers students, ages 7-18, residing in the Reading School District and beyond, the opportunity to explore, experiment, and develop their creativity through hands-on, collaborative projects at no cost to their families.
Free-guided tour of our campus every Wednesday at 1:00 pm
Youth & Teen Classes/Workshops Registration Cost-100% Financial Scholarships are available
Reading Public Library
100 South Fifth Street, Reading PA 19602
The Reading Public Library is accessible with informational, educational, and recreational needs of library consumers today. Reading School District students, alongside anyone with a library card (even a digital library card) can borrow items directly from any Berks County library. Whether it be hard copies or eMedia. RPL also offers adult computer & internet classes as well as ESL classes.
Free-all events and borrowing media.
2083 Tulpehocken Rd, Reading, PA 19610
Park with multi-use trails, sports courts & fields, play equipment, picnic areas & holiday events. Free-Parks and Recreation
98 Duryea Dr, Reading, PA 19602
The Pagoda, located atop Mt. Penn is an historical landmark that has served as a shining beacon for Greater Reading for more than 100 years. It is owned, loved and cared for by the city and citizens of Reading, Pennsylvania. Visitors from around the world come to see the Pagoda. This out-of-place and yet extraordinary building has an unforgettable view and is a comforting sight for many, especially the red glow of lights at night.
Admission fee required.
Hawk Mountain Sanctuary
1700 Hawk Mountain Road, Kempton, PA 19529
Founded in 1934, Hawk Mountain is the oldest and largest, member-support raptor conservation organization in the world. Hawk Mountain is a private, non-profit wildlife sanctuary and hiking is limited to designated trails. Admission fees and or membership dues support their raptor conservation mission, sanctuary stewardship, and trail maintenance. Hikers are asked to access the trail system from the trailhead entrance after paying admission or pay when exiting.
Trail Admission fee required.
575 Saint Bernardine Street, Reading, PA 19607
Berks Nature strongly supports Berks County’s number one industry, agriculture – and the protection of our special natural areas. Home to Berks Nature’s headquarters, Eco-Camp, and a new Nature Preschool, the Nature Place sits among nearly 100-acres in Reading’s Angelica Creek Park. Reading School District students are frequent visitors to Angelica Creek Park as teachers often schedule field trips there.
Free Trail Admission-walk/bike
Eco-Camp Registration costs required.
Reading Science Center
645 Penn St, Reading, PA 19601
Jim Cinelli, a Lehigh University graduate and president of an environmental engineering firm, recruited others in the Berks County community with a passion for science and engineering – retired industry professionals, local teachers and college professors, and many who just wanted to share their love of science with young people. In 2018, the Reading Science Center was created. On weekends and evenings you’d find them retrofitting exhibits purchased from or donated by museums as far away as Minnesota and Pittsburgh, planning hands-on experiments like “lava lamp” and “dancing raisins”, and installing a replica of the Saturn V spaceship.
Admission fee required.
Blue Marsh Lake is a 6,100 acre-project having a 1,150-acre lake. Facilities include a day use area with swim beach, bathhouse, food concession, picnic areas, volleyball courts, pavilions available for rental; visitor center; three boat launches; and a stilling basin. Trails include a 30-mile multi-purpose hiking/biking trail and three interpretive trails, one being ADA accessible. Activities include swimming, picnicking, boating, water-skiing, hiking, equestrian and mountain bike riding, fishing, hunting, bird watching and other nature-oriented and outdoor activities.
Free-hiking, biking trails, picnicking
Berks County Heritage Center
1102 Red Bridge Rd, Reading, PA 19605
The Berks County Heritage Center is a historical interpretive complex commemorating important eras of our cultural history. The Gruber Wagon Works, a National Historic Landmark, the C. Howard Hiester Canal Center, Wertz's Covered Bridge, Melcher'sGrist Mill, Deppen Cemetery, Bicentennial Eagle Memorial, Police and Veteran's Memorial, Doctor's Grove, theDistlefinkand a salad and herb garden are all encompassed within the Heritage Center.
Admission fee required.
Conrad Weiser Homestead
28 Weiser Dr, Womelsdorf, PA 19567
The story of Conrad Weiser and the historic site is told through an exhibit located in three different buildings at the Conrad Weiser Homestead. The exhibit begins in the Visitor Center with two galleries dedicated to Conrad Weiser’s career and accomplishments. The exhibit continues in the Weiser House with an exhibit gallery and a furnished period room. The gallery deals with the importance of Weiser’s farm as a destination for many different kinds of people in the 18th century. The Education Center houses an exhibit gallery that explains what happened to the site after Conrad Weiser’s death, the 19th century efforts to honor Weiser, the creation of the landscaped park in the 1920s, and the Conrad Weiser Homestead historic site today. After seeing the exhibit, visitors are encouraged to discover the Spring House, the Gravesite , and the landscaped park grounds. Special talks and programs are often scheduled within the historic area.
Free admission but relies solely on donations from visitors.
Daniel Boone Homestead
400 Daniel Boone Rd, Birdsboro, PA 19508
The Daniel Boone Homestead, the site of the legendary pioneer's birth in 1734, offers a unique glimpse at the diverse and dynamic community that formed in the Oley Valley during the colonial period through exhibits, programs, and tours. Administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, the site includes 579 acres of land, the Boone House, six other eighteenth- century structures, a lake, picnic areas, and recreational facilities.
Mid Atlantic Air Museum
11 Museum Drive, Reading, PA 19605
The Mid Atlantic Air Museum was organized to ensure the professional stewardship of a collection that reflects the history of aviation and to enhance the public's appreciation and understanding of that history. The Museum's collection emphasizes the Mid-Atlantic region's unique contribution to flight,but is broad enough to chronicle a general history of aviation, including military aviation.
Virtual tour: http://www.maam.org/tourstrt.html
Admission Fee to the museum required.
Hopewell Furnace National Park
2 Mark Bird Lane, Elverson, PA 19520
Hopewell Furnace showcases an early American landscape of industrial operations from 1771-1883, Hopewell and other "iron plantations" laid the foundation for the transformation of the United States into an industrial giant for the time. The park's 848 acres and historic structures illustrate the business, technology and lifestyle of our growing nation.
Free- hiking, walking, picnicking
French Creek State Park
843 Park Road, Elverson, PA 19520-9523
Once an industrial complex for the fledgling United States of America, today French Creek State Park is an oasis for people and wildlife. Straddling the Schuylkill Highlands, the 7,730-acre park is the largest block of contiguous forest between Washington D.C. and New York City. The forests, lakes, wetlands, and fields are a destination for the people of southeast Pennsylvania to hike, fish, camp, and bike.
Free- hiking, walking, picnicking
Franklin Institute of Philadelphia
222 N 20th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103
As the most visited museum in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and a top-five tourist destination in the City of Philadelphia, The Franklin Institute is one of the leading science centers in the country, and serves as both a prominent educational and cultural resource, and as an anchor of the local economy. Science and technology have the potential to solve some of the most critical issues of our time, to improve our lives, and to inspire our curiosity about the world around us. Every day The Franklin Institute provides resources that help people to connect with science and technology in creative ways that resonate with learners of all ages and backgrounds. The Institute directly reaches more than 1 million people each year with informal learning experiences that engage students, adults, and families. Though its historic museum is a central learning space, the Institute has evolved to provide people with educational resources in their own neighborhoods through hands-on activities in classrooms, workshops in libraries, community centers, and other settings, and through ways to interact online.
Free educator Pass form: https://www.fi.edu/sites/default/files/202021EducatorPass.pdf
Albright College's Science Research Institute on YouTube
Science Research Institute is an Albright program that involves students in their own education, providing a framework for the students to bring their own creativity and innovation to their work
More about the SRI:
The Academy Of Natural Science of Drexel University
1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Founded in 1812, the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University is a leading natural history museum dedicated to advancing research, education, and public engagement in biodiversity and environmental science. Visitors to the Academy have the opportunity to get face-to-face with towering dinosaurs, meet live animals, and explore a tropical garden filled with live butterflies. Philadelphia’s natural history museum offers surprises for all ages, from changing interactive science exhibits to a children’s discovery center, a fossil dig, and opportunities to interact with real science experts.
Freedman Art Gallery at Albright
1801 N 12th St, Reading, PA 19604
The Freedman Gallery hosts approximately 10 exhibitions each year with shows rotating in the main gallery and project space. The gallery’s mission calls for a focus on “contemporary, living, American artists.” Exhibitions are typically organized by the gallery’s curator and may include works from the Albright collection, loans from private collectors, galleries, and museums, or loans and installations that come directly from artists. Types of media include painting, ceramic, glass, wood and metal sculpture, textiles, photography, printmaking and new media (digital/video arts).
Admission to the Freedman Gallery is always FREE.
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