Family Days

Don't miss these fun-filled family programs, which include lots of museum activities for participants of all ages—art workshops, performances, gallery activities, and more.

Lego Building Challenge Fall 2018

General: Sunday, October 7 • 1:00pm - 3:00pm General: Monday, October 8 • 11:00am - 1:00pm General: Monday, October 8 • 2:00pm - 4:00pm

Lego® Building Challenge Columbus Day Weekend 2018 Theme: Animals

October 7-8

Building Session Dates and Times:

10/7 Sunday Afternoon Challenge Session 1:00-3:00 PM

10/8 Monday Morning Challenge Session 11:00 AM-1:00 PM

10/8 Monday Afternoon Challenge Session 2:00-4:00 PM

Registration Fee: $5 per person (includes museum admission, registrations are non-refundable)

Online Registration is not available on the date of the event.  Walk in registration may be available; please call during business hours.

Team registration: each team may include one to four people.

Time: 1 ½ hours for construction, ½ hour for judging and awards

Size Limit: 10” x 10” base

Bring friends, family, and colleagues to work together to create beautiful LEGO® structures. This year’s theme is animals. Let your imagination run wild, share your vision, and win awards with teams from across the capital region. Basic building blocks will be supplied; however, contestants may also bring in their own.

Challenge Specifics:

  • Models must be built using only LEGO® bricks and elements. You may bring in your own pieces or we will provide you with basic bricks in a variety of sizes and a 10” x 10” base.
  • Entries must be original designs based on the theme. Commercially sold kits or published designs are not permitted.
  • Project entries must be completely assembled within the one and a half hour time limit. All assembly must be completed on site during the challenge; no pre-built parts will be permitted.
  • Your team may choose to practice building your model prior to the day of the building challenge.
  • Feel free to bring sketches, drawings, and photographs to use as reference.
  • Judging will occur during the assembly time as well as after final assembly. Participants will have the opportunity to describe their structure as part of the judging process.
  • During the competition, children under 12 must be supervised by the adults who brought them; they cannot be left alone.

Please note that space is limited, and pre-registration is required.

For more information contact Sarah Clowe at 518-463-4478- ext 435 or e-mail to

If using a mobile device to register please switch your viewing options to full desktop view in order to complete the registration.

Participation in the event assumes consent for photographs to be used for museum purposes unless participants otherwise notify The Albany Institute of History & Art.

LEGO® is a trademark of the LEGO® Group of Companies which does not sponsor, authorize, or endorse this event.

FAMILY STORY TIME: Tales of Birds and Beasts

0-5: Saturday, September 8 • 10:30am - 11:00am 0-5: Saturday, September 22 • 10:30am - 11:00am 0-5: Saturday, October 13 • 10:30am - 11:00am 0-5: Saturday, October 27 • 10:30am - 11:00am 0-5: Saturday, November 10 • 10:30am - 11:00am 0-5: Saturday, December 1 • 10:30am - 11:00am

Join Albany Public Librarians for a special story time at the museum to tell tales of caterpillars, unicorns, polar bears and more! There will be stories, songs and rhymes for children ages 0 to 5 and their families.

Free, but registration is recommended.

To register, please email or call (518) 463-4478 ext. 404.

FAMILY PROGRAM Mummy Birthday Party

General: Sunday, October 28 • 12:00pm - 4:30pm

Come celebrate the 109th anniversary of the arrival of our mummies at the Albany Institute. Children are invited to bring in a small doll or stuffed animal and learn about the mummification process by mummifying their toy! Families will also enjoy an interactive dance performance with the Ellen Sinopoli Dance Company and face painting.

Included with museum admission

Pet Care for the Whole Family

Family: Saturday, November 3 • 1:00pm - 2:00pm

In this special program you will learn tips and tricks about caring for dogs, cats, and other small pets.

Join Ashley Pierce from Cornell Cooperative Extension, Albany County to learn more about pet and small animal care!  Ashley is an Agriculture Educator with a background in animal science.  Throughout the year she manages youth 4-H livestock and canine clubs, teaches community dog obedience classes, and runs her own small farm.  In addition to her work for CCE, she trains working German Shepherd Dogs for competitions, police K9 units, and working homes.  Although dogs will be the primary focus, there will also be discussion on caring for cats and other small pets. 

FAMILY PROGRAM Terrific Turtles

General: Saturday, November 10 • 11:30am - 12:30pm

Join educators from the Albany Pine Bush to learn about the turtle species that live there and examine a real turtle!

Have you ever seen a turtle in the Pine Bush? Well, they are there! In this program, educators from the Albany Pine Bush will lead a presentation about turtles and the types of turtles found in the Pine Bush. A live Wood Turtle from the Discover Center will be brought for participants to see and ask questions!

Free but registration is required. To register email or call 518-463-4478 ext. 404.

Please note: For the safety of the turtle the program is limited to 30 participants.

Free Admission Day: Columbus Day (2018)

Monday, November 12 • 10:00am - 5:00pm

Enjoy free admission to the galleries courtesy of M&T Bank!



Don't miss our LEGO Challenge: Animals, which is also happening today! Cost is $5 per person and teams may be up to four (4) people. Register to participate here.

Free Admission Day: Veterans Day Observed (2018)

Monday, November 12 • 10:00am - 5:00pm

Enjoy free admission to the galleries courtesy of M&T Bank.


FAMILY PROGRAM Family Paint Workshop 1-13-19

Ages 6 & up: Sunday, January 13 • 1:00pm - 3:00pm

Ages 6 and above
All painters must register.
Museum admission is included with registration.
$25 non-members; $20 members per painter

Join us for an afternoon of painting fun for the whole family!  This special paint workshop is a great parent child bonding opportunity and makes the perfect holiday gift, too.  

For more information about the paint workshop contact Sarah Clowe at 518-463-4478 ext. 435 or e-mail 
Registration tips:
If using a mobile device to register please change viewing settings to full desktop view to allow purchase to be completed.

Emergency contact information is not necessary to fill out with registration since this is not a drop off program.


Participation in the event assumes consent for photographs to be used for museum purposes unless participants otherwise notify the Albany Institute of History & Art.