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A month’s worth of free kids events in April for the whole family.
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Easter egg hunts and activities for tots to older kids begin this week.

Check out some of the highlights for Phoenix-area residents below, and a more comprehensive listing at azcentral.com/things-to-do/kids.

If “free” is the key word when you want to find something to do with the kids, we have you covered with a listing of free April events for families.

Through 4/7: Spring-break bowling

Uptown Alley! presents a Spring Break Passport that gets kids 18 and younger one game of bowling, shoe rental and choice of a $15 game card or $10 game play card and one game of laser tag. The passport can be used Monday through Thursday and on Fridays until 6 p.m. Individuals can buy as many passports as they want.

Details: 10 a.m.-midnight Mondays-Thursdays and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. on Fridays. Uptown Alley,13525 N. Litchfield Road, Surprise. uptownalleysurprise.com.

4/7: Kids in Focus Exhibit Opening

This opening gala features photos of underprivileged youths as they explored their worlds through a 6-week mentoring program. The 10-13-year-olds are students at Children First Leadership Academy and Boys and Girls Club Parson’s Branch. The images will remain on display through June 11.

DETAILS: 5:30-7:30 p.m. Friday, April 7. Arizona Science Center, 600 E. Washington St., Phoenix. Call for prices. 602-716-2000, azscience.org.

4/7-23: ‘The Secret Garden’

Mary Lennox, a young English girl sent to live with her great uncle and his ill son, discovers a secret garden on the mansion’s grounds. With a little love and care, she brings life back to the garden and the home in a tale of forgiveness and renewal. The Tony Award-winning show is based on the novel of the same name, written by Frances Hodgson Burnett.

DETAILS: Thursday, April 7-Sunday, April 23. Call for times. Valley Youth Theatre, 525 N. First St., Phoenix. $20. 602-253-8188, vyt.com.

4/8: RJ’s Egg Hunt

This second annual egg hunt and the largest in the South Mountain community is for ages 10 and younger and includes 40,000 eggs, prizes and raffles. Arizona Cardinals representatives will attend, as well as Team Smile providing free dental care.

Details: 8:30 a.m.-noon, Saturday, April 8. Salvation Army Kroc Center, 1375 E. Broadway Road, Phoenix.  Free. www.facebook.com/psmkroc.

4/8: Gilbert Global Village Festival 

Celebrate cultural traditions from around the world at this family friendly event. See traditional and contemporary forms of dance, music and art while tasting ethnic foods. The event also features arts and crafts, and children’s activities.

Details: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, April 8. Gilbert Civic Center, North Campus, 50 E. Civic Center Drive. Free. 480-503-6229, gilbertaz.gov.

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4/8: Moonlit Drive-in Movies: ‘Moana’

The third annual Moonlit Drive-in Movie Series at the Promenade in Scottsdale returns with a 32-foot inflatable screen. Watch a movie from your car, a blanket or lawn chair in the parking lot near Nordstrom Rack. Free balloon animals, contests and other activities will begin before the movie between 6:45 and 7:30 p.m.

DETAILS: 6:45 p.m. Saturday, April 8. The Promenade, 16427 N, Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale Free. scottsdalepromenade.com.

4/8: El Mirage Easter Egggstravaganza

This annual event includes egg hunts, free photos with Hoppy the Bunny, rides, egg coloring, a petting zoo, games, raffles for free bicycles, music, and food.

DETAILS:  9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, April 8. Gentry Park, 14010 N. El Mirage Rd., El Mirage. Free. 623-935-6405, www.cityofelmirage.org.

4/8: Phoenix Children’s Festival

This outdoor children’s festival features five zones of fun, food, interactive experiences and adventurous activities for children and families.

DETAILS: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, April 8. CityScape Phoenix, One E. Washington St., Phoenix. $10 admission (group discounts available); food/beverage/ride tickets sold separately. 480-947-7772, cityscapephoenix.com.

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4/8: 11th annual Laura’s Run

Laura’s run helps people who are fighting lung disease by supporting the Norton Thoracic Institute at Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center. People and dogs of all ages are welcome to attend a 10K, 5K, 1 mile run/walk, kids’ dash and doggie trot. Live entertainment, a silent auction, runners’ brunch, custom T-shirts and finishing medals, age-group awards, real-time results and online photos will all be included.

DETAILS: Day of race registration starts at 7 a.m. Shotgun start at 8 a.m. Saturday, April 8. Kiwanis Park, 101 W. Baseline Road, Tempe. $25-$35. 602-406-1046, SupportStJosephs.org/LaurasRun.

4/8-16: ‘The Grumpiest Boy in the World’

“The Grumpiest Boy in the World” is the story of Zachary Briddling, who is totally normal. He is of average height and look and even his dreams are average, but he dreams of more. He sets out on an adventure of self-discovery to find a place where he might feel special and learns to find his place in the world. A story for those who have ever felt out of place or ordinary and wanted to discover what made the unique.

DETAILS: Saturday, April 8-Sunday, April 16. Call for times. Tempe Center for the Arts, 700 W. Rio Salado Parkway, Tempe. $12-$26. childsplayaz.org.

4/9: Amazing Jake’s Easter egg hunt

Hunt for colorful, prize-filled Easter eggs, pose for photos and have breakfast with the Easter bunny.

Details: 8-10 a.m. Sunday, April 9. Amazing Jake’s Food and Fun, 1830 E. Baseline Road, Mesa. $10. 480-926-7499, www.amazingjakes.com.

4/9: Fairytale Tea

This whimsical fundraiser is sponsored by the Happily Ever After League, or HEAL, which provides assistance to moms who have cancer. Groups can purchase a table and decorate it in the theme of their choice, from “A Secret Garden” to Cruella DeVille, or you can purchase tickets just to attend and see the creations. Corporate sponsorship is available.

Details: 1-3:30 p.m. Saturday, April 9. The Camby, 2401 E. Camelback Rd., Phoe

Through 4/16: ‘Peter Rabbit’ 

This timeless tale of Peter trying to get out of the farmer’s garden will be told entirely with music and puppets, no words. Showtimes will be 10 a.m. Wednesday and Fridays, 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sundays.

Details: Wednesday, March 29 through Sunday, April 16. $7 for kids over age 2, $10 for adults, under 2 are free. Great Arizona Puppet Theater, 302 W. Latham St., Phoenix. 602-262-2050, azpuppets.org.

Through 4/16: ‘For Mrs. Radio: a young child’s gallery’

Scottsdale elementary school students create paintings, sculpture and installations for the exhibit honoring the memory of Pima Elementary School art teacher Allison Vredevoogt, who was known as “Mrs. Radio” to her students.

Students learned about modern and contemporary artists in the classroom before creating their own pieces using contemporary materials and techniques.

Details: Through April 16. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays-Saturdays, noon-5 p.m. Sundays and during events. Free. [email protected] Gallery at the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 E. Second St. scottsdaleperformingarts.org.

Through 5/29: ‘Planet Shark: Predator or Prey’

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An exhibit with teeth that educates and entertains with technology that makes visitors feel submerged among sharks. The exhibit includes a vast array of shark teeth, rare fossils and stunning facts about one of the world’s scariest predators.

Details: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily. Arizona Science Center, 600 E. Washington St., Phoenix. $18; $13 for ages 3-17 for general admission, then an additional $11.95 for adults and $9.95 for ages 3-17 for Planet Shark. 602-716-2000, azscience.org.

Reach the reporter at sonja.haller[email protected]. Follow at twitter.com/sonjahaller.

Republic reporters Kerry Lengel, Chelsey Heath, Tynin Fries, Owen Baldner and contributor Alison Stanton contributed to this article.

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