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Critic's Picks: Family

By Joanna Weiss
Globe Staff / September 13, 2009

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TALES FROM THE LAND OF GULLAH Play games and cook meals inspired by the Gullah people, who have lived on islands off the coast of Georgia and South Carolina since they were slaves in the 18th century, and given us such songs as “Michael Row Your Boat Ashore.’’ Sept. 19-Dec. 31. Boston Children’s Museum. 617-426-6500, www.bostonchildrensmuseum.org

THE WIZARD OF OZ 70th ANNIVERSARY HI-DEF EVENT Join families across the country for a nationwide screening of the remastered classic, shown for the first time in high-definition. Robert Osborne, host of Turner Classic Movies, will introduce the event. Sept. 23, 7 p.m. The Framingham 15, Braintree 10, and Burlington 10. 888-262-4386, www.amctheatres.com

DISNEY’S A CHRISTMAS CAROL TRAIN TOUR The 3D film comes out in November, but the Disney promotional machine is in full gear, rolling into South Station with a free exhibit of train cars carrying artifacts from the film and behind-the-scenes footage. Sept. 25-27. South Station. www.christmascaroltraintour.com

WEEKEND FESTIVAL: FANTASTICAL CREATURES Discover the dragons and sea serpents in the museum’s collection in this special festival, which also includes performances, artist demonstrations, live animal presentations, and art-making with cardboard-sculptor James Grashow. Oct. 3-4. Peabody Essex Museum, Salem. 978-745-9500, www.pem.org

THE ADVENTURES OF HAROLD AND THE PURPLE CRAYON The Enchantment Theatre Company takes on Crockett Johnson’s books about a boy with an active imagination, using life-size puppets, masked actors, magic, music, and large-scale video animation. Oct. 24. Colonial Theatre. 800-982-2787, www.broadwayacrossamerica.com

A TALE OF TWO CITIES Wheelock Family Theatre presents this new adaptation of the Charles Dickens novel, which raises age-old and timely questions about loyalty, violence, poverty, honor, and terrorism. Oct. 30-Nov. 29. Wheelock Family Theatre. 617-879-2300, www.wheelock.edu/wft

PUPPET SHOWPLACE THEATRE HALLOWEEN EXTRAVAGANZA The theater’s new artist-in-residence, Brad Shur, stars in performances of “Dr. Doohickey’s Monster Machine,’’ which uses hand and rod puppets to bring little monsters to life. Oct. 31 and Nov. 1. Puppet Showplace Theatre, Brookline. 617-731-6400, www.puppetshowplace.org

THE WIGGLES GO BANANAS LIVE! TOUR The Australian kids’ band brings its traveling tour to Worcester, along with a new song called “Monkey Man’’ and a message about literacy. Go with the knowledge that you’ll be singing “Hot Potato’’ and “Fruit Salad’’ for many days afterward. Nov. 3, 3 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. DCU Center, Worcester. 800-745-3000, www.ticketmaster.com

WAMPANOAG NATION SINGERS AND DANCERS Traditional clothing, handcrafted instruments, and social songs and dances will be featured in this performance, which celebrates the harvest season and Native American culture. Nov. 17. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum. 617-514-1644, www.jfklibrary.org

THE VELVETEEN RABBIT The children’s story about worn dolls and growing pains, dramatized with puppets and live actors and originally commissioned by the Honolulu Theatre for Youth. Dec. 4-14. Boston Children’s Theatre. 617-424-6634, www.bostonchildrenstheatre.org JOANNA WEISS

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