Welcome to the Love Middlesbrough Family Fun page!
From child-friendly restaurants to green spaces to fantastic schools, Middlesbrough is great for families! Activities from art to sports offer plenty of entertainment, alongside regular shows for children at Middlesbrough Town Hall and Middlesbrough Theatre.
Places To Go
Middlesbrough has two fantastic museums, Dorman Museum and Captain Cook Birthplace Museum, which are perfect for an exciting, educational family day out. Both museums also have on-site cafes, and run free family craft sessions in the school holidays.
Dorman Museum is perfect for curious and imaginative young minds, with exhibitions about local and world history, earth in space, water (with the popular interactive fish floor), and an extensive gallery of taxidermy bird specimens. The museum is set just outside Albert Park, which offers 30 hectares of wide, green space, as well as tennis courts, roller skating, lawn bowls, swan boat hire and a weekly parkrun.
Captain Cook Birthplace Museum tells the story of local lad Captain James Cook, including his early life in the area, his voyages of discovery, and the people, culture, nature and lands he encountered. The museum is at the heart of Stewart Park, which has in recent years benefitted from an HLF grant awarded to bring the park into the twenty first Century. The park offers 120 acres of open space, and an extensive pets corner with animals including fallow deer, highland cattle, llamas and goats, which is hugely popular with children. The park hosts monthly farmers markets and a weekly parkrun.
mima offers free family craft sessions with their art trolley, and also have a family-friendly on site cafe. mima is ideally located on Centre Square, which is perfect for relaxing in the sun on benches or burning off some excess energy.
The town also has an important programme of large-scale family friendly events.
Reindeer Parade and Christmas Lights Switch On
Middlesbrough's annual Reindeer Parade and Christmas Lights Switch On is definitely the highlight of the events calendar. Featuring a colourful parade and Santa on a beautiful sleigh pulled by his very own reindeer, it's a magical experience for all the family to enjoy. In previous years the reindeer parade has been followed by the Christmas Lights Switch On in Centre Square, offering live music and special guests, food and a fairground before the all important countdown. All together now - 5, 4, 3, 2, 1...!
Middlesbrough Mela is an annual multi-cultural celebration held in early summer. The two day weekend celebration typically includes a vibrant parade of local schools and community groups, a fairground, the Mela Bazaar including delicious food, clothes and gifts, sports and games for children, and live music performances from a variety of genres, with both local and national acts.
Annual festivals Local History Month (May) and Discover Middlesbrough (October) encourages residents to get out and about and find out more about their town. Previous activities have included historic tours highlighting the locations of Middlesbrough's first industries in Middlehaven, visits to buildings old and new, a poetry festival, seasonal craft sessions, theatre, and photography exhibitions.
With a diverse variety of events, there's something for all ages.
Captain Cook-themed Word searches and colouring sheets
With gratitude to the Captain Cook Tourism Association for their kind assistance.
As well as fab sporting facilities at Middlesbrough Sports Village, leisures centres and parks, Middlesbrough holds annual runs which are great for all abilities - from fun runners to wheelchair athletes to experienced runners and members of running groups.
Taking part in the 2k or 3k fun run is a great way to spend time as a family, raise money for charity, and introduce children to running in a fun and relaxed way. And if they'd like to get dressed up that's even better!
Don't forget to check out the video of the Taylor Wimpey 10k and mima 3k fun run from September 2015.
Free weekly 5k parkruns also take place every Saturday at 9am in Albert Park and Stewart Park; all are welcome but are required to register first.
Watch: My Favourite Place in Middlesbrough videos by local children
My Favourite Place videos were created in Animex Take Two workshops set up and run by Gazillion Productions Ltd, Animex International Animation Festival, Teesside University and Middlesbrough Extended Schools with special thanks to Animex 2010, Big Lottery Fund, Extended Schools, Teesside University, Middlesbrough Council and Cineworld Cinemas.
Love Where You Live postcards
A handful of entries from the UK's biggest Art competition. mima working with Middlesbrough and Teesside Philanthropic Foundation held a postcard art competition with a massive Forty One Thousand Pounds up for grabs to support good causes locally on the theme of Love Where You Live. View some of the thousands of entries. Photos by Yaffa Phillips.
A fun activity to try is to draw what YOU love about where you live!