I talked to my kids the other day. And they talked back. This is what happens when one kid gives up her iPad for Lent and the other finds out that electronics and seawater don't mix. I'm thinking about taking them out this weekend to look around, reacquaint them with where they live, and all it has to offer. Maybe we'll even leave with something to talk about. Here are some ideas...
GIRLS ON FILM
The ninth annual Festival of the Arts BOCA invites Palm Beach and Broward County students to a free screening of “Girl Rising,” a documentary about the strength of the human spirit and the transformative power of education, with contributions from actresses such as Meryl Streep and Selena Gomez. The film will be shown at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Mizner Park Cultural Arts Center (201 Plaza Real, second floor, Boca Raton). Nonstudent admission is $20. Info: FestivalBoca.com.
GOOD TO BE THE KING
How long has it been since “The Lion King” premiered? Well, one of the major roles, young Simba, was voiced by Jonathan Taylor Thomas, and we can’t even remember who that is. Disney’s still-eye-popping 1994 sing-along hit (filled with character-building teaching moments) will screen for free 8 p.m. Friday at the ArtsPark in downtown Hollywood. Info: 954-921-3500, VisitHollywoodFL.org. (OK, Thomas was on a show called “Home Improvement” ... whatever that was).
Family-friendly fun in Himmarshee on a Friday night? Is this a “Twilight Zone” episode? Your friends at America’s Backyard will host the First Friday Family Street Festival from 6 to 8 p.m., complete with arts and crafts, train rides, food trucks and live music from KISS Country. It’s free. Info: MyAmericasBackyard.com.
“Luau Day” is the theme of Sunday’s installment of the CityPlace Family Fun Fest series, a free monthly event that this time around also will feature the third annual Duck Derby, a benefit for Adopt-A-Family of the Palm Beaches. The Family Fun Fest is 1-4 p.m. and includes a bounce house, arts and crafts, face painting, balloon animals and games. The Duck Derby, which will put 10,000 yellow rubber ducks in a half-block “pond" in front of the Harriet Himmel Theater, offers a $5,000 grand prize to the owner of the winning duck, along with gift certificates and other prizes for other winning ducks, which will be chosen at random at 3 p.m. Adopt a duck at DuckRace.com. More info: CityPlace.com.
ANOTHER FAMOUS THOMAS
PBS TV star Thomas the Tank Engine will return to the Gold Coast Railroad Museum (2450 SW 152 St., Miami) 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday- Sunday and March 14-15, when kids can get rides on their perky blue hero, meet Sir Topham Hatt, and enjoy a day of Thomas-themed activities, storytelling and more. The “Day Out With Thomas” tour, now in its 20th year, will make 42 stops across the U.S. and Canada this year. The 25-minute train rides depart every 45 minutes from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tickets: $16-$20. Info: GCRM.org.
In recommending Breakfast at Gulfstream, I am leaning on the enthusiastic word of mouth among dads who ordinarily would not get up early enough on a Saturday to do it. So there’s got to be something there. The morning (7-10 a.m.) at Stretches at Gulfstream Park (901 S. Federal Highway, Hallandale Beach) includes a $10 all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet in the tiki-topped venue, a view of horses training and a behind-the-scenes tour of the barn. Admission, parking free. Info: TheVillageAtGulfstreamPark.com.
Tweens and teens in particular may gain a new appreciation for Shakespeare’s account of young love in the energetic “R&J [Romeo and Juliet],” a co-production by Grace Arts Center and Fort Lauderdale Children’s Theater that opens 6 p.m. Friday in the newly renovated Broward Public Library Theater. The production also will be performed March 27 at the Light Project at the Goldman Warehouse in Miami, April 14 at the Deering Estate in Miami (sponsored by O, Miami Poetry Festival) and April 17 at the Crest Theatre in Delray Beach. Tickets cost $15, VIP $25, at RomeoAndJuliet2015.eventbrite.com.
THE OLD DAYS
The Florida Renaissance Festival, which carries a "Dragons & Wizards & Thrones, Oh My!" theme Saturday-Sunday, has just two more weekends to go -- and that’s it, no festival in Miami this year. You can go all medieval on that turkey leg 10 a.m.-sunset through Sunday at Quiet Waters Park (401 S. Powerline Road, Deerfield Beach). Tickets: $9, $21. Info: Ren-Fest.com.
BEAT THE METS
The Miami Marlins play the division-rival New York Mets (who have delusions of finishing ahead of the Fish in the standings this year) at 1:05 p.m. Saturday at the Marlins spring-training complex at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, with tickets still available. Info: Miami.Marlins.MLB.com.
BLACK & WHITE MOVIE
The wise-cracking “Penguins of Madagascar” is one of those kids’ movies that will make parents smile, too. It’s the 7 p.m. Friday offering in the City of Boynton Beach’s free Movies in the Park series at the Ocean Avenue Amphitheatre (129 E. Ocean Ave.). Food, snacks and beverages are available for purchase. Info: CatchBoynton.com.