Boston offers plenty of family activities for cold winter days

BOSTON ? Boston is a city known for its world-class ballet, opera and theatrical performances but there are countless other adventures waiting. From play sessions with harbor seals to museums, there is something for every family and every budget.Sports fans will want to check out the Sports Museum of New England in the TD Banknorth Garden (formerly the Fleet Center). The major exhibit areas of the museum are organized by sport. The displays include the Boston Bruins, Hartford Whalers, Celtics, New England Patriots and the Boston Red Sox. The concourse gallery contains artifacts about boxing, rugby, soccer, and of course the Boston Marathon.There are life-size statues of Carl Yastrzemski, Bobby Orr, Larry Bird, and Harry Agganis. There is an Old Boston Garden hockey penalty box one can sit in, and an open theater with Old Boston Garden seats. Admission is $6 for adults and $4 for children. Tickets may be purchased at the TD Banknorth Garden Box Office, which is next to the Pro Shop.For budding marine biologists, the New England Aquarium is offering the opportunity to go behind the scenes and participate in a play session with the harbor seals at Central Wharf. Participants help staff members entertain the animal by tossing them a fish popsicles, playing with their bubble machine or even giving the seals a water spray massage.The program is offered every day at 11 a.m. and reservations are required. The program is $30 per person and is limited to three participants per session. Reservations may be made by calling 617-973-5206.If you’re looking for a little fresh air and exercise skate on over to Frog Pond on the Boston Common, which is a hopping spot for ice skating enthusiasts. . Although dependent on the weather, Frog Pond has its own ice-making system. It also offers skate rentals and hot cocoa at the Pond Cottage. Skating is free for children and $4 for individuals, who are 14 or older.The 2,900 square-foot ice skating rink at the Charles Hotel is also open for the season for all winter enthusiasts, including area residents and hotel guests. It is open from 2 p.m. until 8 p.m. weekdays and from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. on weekends. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children. Rental skates are available.

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