Top 5 things to do for the whole family this winter!

We know that thinking of things to do with the kids in the lead up to the festive season can sometimes be stressful! So we've come up with top 5 things to keep the kids (and you) entertained. 

5. It's that time of year again, Panto time, (oh yes it is!)! This year Middlesbrough Theatre is hosting the classic fairy-tale story of Sleeping Beauty, where Princess Aurora is under a magical sleeping spell for eternity unless she can be awoken by true loves kiss! A fun filled performance awaits, Starring Anne Hegerty (ITV’s The Chase) as Carabosse & Philip Green as Muddles the Jester. Don’t miss out, book tickets now.

4. Would your little ones love a chance to meet Santa himself? He's popping up in a few places around Middlesbrough but catch him fast as he is very busy!

He will be in his very own gorgeous grotto in Captain Cooks Square on 7 & 8 and 14 & 15 December where he is ready to hear all the Christmas wishes of children across Middlesbrough – they'll recieve a gift too! Book here

He will also be popping over too Cook’s Café in Stewart Park for Breakfast with Santa on Saturday 30th November and Saturday 7th, 14th and 21st December from 9am-10am. It costs £9.95 for children and includes a small breakfast and drink, a present from Santa and plenty of fun! It's £7.95 for adults and includes a full English breakfast a pot of tea or a coffee, call 07772 484585 to book. 

And finally, he'll be parking his sleigh up at Bistrot Pierre for breakfast on 30 November and 1, 7, 8, 14, 15, 21 and 22 December. It costs £6.95 per child, and they'll be able to decorate a pancake, take part in a colouring competition, meet and greet Santa and get a mini gift to take home. Book here

3. Newham Grange Farm is getting all festive! Dig out your winter hat and discover the new Christmas Village which features mini houses and wooden huts. Arts and crafts and story-telling with Mrs Claus will be happening on the same dates as Daisy and Dan's very own show! A Letter to Santa – A Daisy and Dan Adventure will take place in the big white tent – see if you can help them get their letter sent off to Santa before Christmas! Children 

With plenty of play areas and plus a well-stocked café full of treats you could easily spend the day at the farm, whatever the weather!

Plus Farm mascots Daisy and Dan have invited some friends to stay at the farm’s pop-up magical village this Christmas. So make sure you pick up a discovery sheet from the Welcome Centre on arrival and see if you can spot all of their new friends – a treat awaits if you can find them all! Plus don’t miss the farm’s incredible dazzling Christmas lights and festive arts and crafts!

2. When the wintery weather puts a spanner in the works of your outdoor plans, why not take a peek at our hubs, libraries and museums, they are all on Facebook! They always have plenty of fun events and exhibitions to while away the hours and keep everyone entertained, or even just pop down to the library with the family and pick up a good wintery story to share!

1. Our number one spot of course goes to one of our Magical Middlesbrough Christmas events! Get those cosy winter woollies on and head to the town centre to follow the Walking with the Snowman trail! The Snowmen are cleverly painted to match up with the twelve days of Christmas song, can you tell which Snowman matches which verse?

Maps can be picked up from five different central locations and kids will love spotting the gorgeously painted and friendly characters!

Feeling inspired after a busy day snowman hunting why not head home and create your own delicious gingerbread versions!

We would love to see some of your tempting Christmas treats so don’t forget to tag us in your pics!

Here is a ginger bread recipe you could try  


200g/7oz self-raising flour

100g/3½oz caster sugar

100g/3½oz butter, plus extra for greasing

1 large free-range egg, lightly beaten

1 tsp vanilla extract

For the decorations

White and blue fondant icing

White and black writing icing


48 small chocolate balls


Pre heat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.

Mix the flour and sugar together in a bowl, then rub in the butter with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

Add the egg and vanilla essence and mix to form a soft dough.

Roll out onto a well-floured work surface and cut into rounds. Place on greased baking sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.

Cool on a wire rack. When completely cool decorate.

Roll out the white fondant icing and cut out circles the same size as the biscuits, brush the backs of the circles with a little cooled boiled water and stick them to the biscuits, smoothing down the icing as you stick it on.

Roll out the blue icing and cut out more circles, then cut these in half and using a little more water and stick on top of the white icing for the hats.

Brush the hats with water in places where you want the sprinkles to stick and then sprinkle!

Pipe decorations on the hat with the white writing icing, then pipe a small blob for the hat bobble and another for the nose – stick on the chocolate balls. Pipe black eyes and mouth then leave to set.


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