Best Things to Do with Metro Detroit Kids This January

Planning your family fun for the month? We've got you covered with the best upcoming events in Macomb, Oakland, Wayne and Washtenaw counties.

There are always so many fun things to do with kids in southeast Michigan, so how is a busy parent supposed to keep track of it all? With our list of the best things to do this month, of course!

This January we’ve found tons of family-friendly fun, including Martin Luther King Jr. Day events along with some winter fun like indoor and outdoor ice skating rinks, winter festivals and sledding hills. Here is our curated list of the can’t-miss activities for metro Detroit and Ann Arbor in January 2024.

So, what are you waiting for? Take a look at our list and start advance prep for your next family outing.

Don’t see an event you love? Check out our online calendar for even more events and fun things to do this weekend. 

Macomb

Photo credit: iStock/Pilin_Petunyia

Romeo WinterFest in Downtown Romeo

Jan. 3, 2024

  • Address: Downtown Romeo
  • Cost: Free

Enjoy horse-drawn wagon rides, kids crafts and games, ice sculpture show, live music, snowman-building contests and more. There will also be a best dressed contest.

Glow Stick Nights at the Dodge Park Ice Rink

Jan. 6, 13, 20, 27, 2024

Families can head out to Dodge Park Ice Rink to receive a free glow stick (while supplies last). Jan. 6 is 70s night, Jan. 13 is 80s night, Jan. 20 is 90s night and Jan. 27 is 00s night.

Celebrate MLK Day at Clinton-Macomb Public Library – North Branch

Jan. 15, 2024

Ages 3-12 are invited to North Branch to hear a story and make a craft to celebrate the life and contributions of MLK Jr.

Celebrate MLK Day at Clinton-Macomb Public Library – South Branch

Jan. 15, 2024

Ages 3-12 are invited to South Branch to hear a story and make a craft to celebrate the life and contributions of MLK Jr.

Hiplet Ballerinas at Macomb Center for the Performing Arts

Jan. 21, 2024

See this performance showcasing Hiplet’s trademark sass, hip movements and struts to popular music from Black Violin, Prince, Beyoncé and more.

Oakland

Photo credit: Kate Bell

Bowers Farm Winter Park 2024 at Bowers School Farm

Jan. 5-Feb. 25, 2024 (Wednesdays-Sundays)

Celebrate winter through tubing, concessions and more at Bowers Farm.

Wild Lights at the Detroit Zoo

Through Jan. 7, 2024

The Detroit Zoo is aglow with millions of LED lights. Purchase your tickets in advance to guarantee your experience. Dress for the weather.

United We Walk at West Bloomfield Middle School

Jan. 14, 2024

Participants celebrate MLK Jr.’s birthday at the 30th annual walk at West Bloomfield Middle School. This year’s theme is, “The King in Me: We Walk in Unity, Equality and Community.”

Pontiac Winter Festival at City Hall

Jan. 20, 2024

Enjoy tons of winter fun at this festival including ice skating, Polar Express ride, food, hot chocolate, shopping and more.

The Big, Bright Light Show in Downtown Rochester

Through Jan. 21, 2024

  • Address: Downtown Rochester area
  • Cost: Free

Downtown Rochester is decked in 1.5 million lights, brightening up buildings every evening.

Harlem Globetrotters at Athletics Center O’Rena

Jan. 27, 2024

Watch the Harlem Globetrotters as they go head-to-head against the Washington Generals in an exciting, trick-filled basketball game.

Galileo at Cranbrook Institute of Science

Through June 2, 2024

Visitors will learn about Galileo’s groundbreaking discoveries through engaging artifacts and hands-on experiments. The interactive exhibit includes experiments in physics, mathematics, astronomy and natural sciences that even little ones can wrap their minds around.

Washtenaw

Photo credit: iStock/Marcio Silva

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration at Ypsilanti District Library-Superior

Jan. 15, 2024

Celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day with a performance by Mosaic Youth Theatre of Detroit at Ypsilanti District Library-Superior.

Ann Arbor Folk Festival at Hill Auditorium

Jan. 26-27, 2024

The 47th annual Ann Arbor Folk Festival is an event that benefits The Ark, a nonprofit for folk music. This two-night event features well-known and up-and-coming artists.

Wayne

Photo credit: Robert Day

Cirque de Soleil CRYSTAL at Little Caesars Arena

Jan. 4-7, 2024

This one-of-a-kind production brings the circus arts to the ice at Little Caesars Arena. See seven jaw-dropping traditional circus acts all thrillingly adapted for Cirque du Soleil’s first foray onto the ice.

Winter at Valade Fire & Ice Festival at Robert C. Valade Park

Jan. 5-7, 2024

Enjoy medieval fun with a winter twist with ice carving competitions, turkey legs, ax throwing, archery, performances, photo opportunities and more. On Saturday at 6 p.m., see the Fire and Ice Tower (a seven-foot ice structure) lit to become a giant bonfire.

Decked Out Detroit Winter Midway 2023

Through Jan. 7, 2024 (Thursdays-Sundays)

Experience winter fun at the Monroe Street Midway this holiday season. Activities include bumper cars, arctic slide, puck-putt, an arcade, winter art experiences and more.

Towers of Tomorrow at the Michigan Science Center

Through Jan. 12, 2024

This exhibit features 20 Lego skyscrapers from around the world, including the Empire State Building, Burj Khalifa, Willis Tower, Q1 and more.

Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. at The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation

Jan. 13-15, 2024

Swing by the museum to learn about the contributions Dr. King made to the civil rights movement and other civil rights artifacts, including the Rosa Parks bus. It offers new featured programs, performances and living history demonstrations, plus special tours and screenings in Giant Screen Experience.

Mandela: The Official Exhibition at The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation

Through Jan. 15, 2024

Mandela: The Official Exhibition takes guests on a journey through the life of the world’s most iconic freedom fighter and political leader, Nelson Mandela. This immersive and interactive experience features previously unseen film, photos and historical artifacts and personal effects on loan to the museum.

MLK Day at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History

Jan. 15, 2024

Families can enjoy an MLK event that features educational workshops and programming, lecture, film and a prayer breakfast.

Northern Lights at Beacon Park 

Through Jan. 16, 2024

Children of all ages can enjoy this event as it transforms Beacon Park into a winter wonderland. It features a light display with more than 125,000 LED lights, holiday music and more.

Wicked at the Detroit Opera House

Jan. 24-Feb. 18, 2024

Long before Dorothy arrived in Oz, Glenda and the Wicked Witch were friends. Find out what happened that turned them into mortal enemies years later.

Dinosaur World Live at the Fisher Theatre

Jan. 27, 2024

Enjoy an interactive family-friendly show all about your favorite dinosaurs live on stage.

Lillian Schwartz: Whirlwind of Creativity at The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation

Through March 1, 2024

See the works of multimedia artist, Lillian Schwartz, at this career-retrospective exhibition. It features more than 100 artifacts and explores three core themes including, “Moving Forward,” “Making Art in a Science Lab” and “The Limits and Possibilities of Machines.”

Ruth E. Carter: Afrofuturism in Costume Design at The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History

Through March 31, 2024

  • Address: 315 E. Warren Ave., Detroit
  • Cost: $30/adults 18-61, $20/seniors 62-plus, $15/ages 5-17 and military, free/ages 4 and under. Free admission is available on the first weekend of each month. | Get tickets

This exhibit features the Oscar-winning costumes of designer Ruth E. Carter. The exhibition features more than 60 of Carter’s original designs, including costumes from “Black Panther,” “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” “Malcolm X,” “Do The Right Thing” and more iconic films.

This post is updated annually.

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Kari Zaffarano
Kari Zaffarano
Kari Zaffarano is a mom of one and Metro Parent's Audience Development Coordinator. She tracks down the best events every week and shares the inside scoop with families in print and online. She enjoys reading, traveling and exploring metro Detroit with her son.

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