Capital District Family Newsletter July 5, 2012
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2012 Winners: Top 20 Places To Bring Kids in the Capital District
50 Ways to Love Your Summer -- Leaving the Technology Inside!
Summer Camp Lists for 2012
Outdoor Fun Centers within Driving Distance
Where to play mini golf
Playgrounds in the Capital District
15 Not-To-Miss Tips for Taking Your Kids Hiking
How to Recognize Poison Ivy for when you're hiking with kids
There are 271 Events coming up in the Capital District that are FREE!
Below, Katie will tell you about her new article: Review of Hersheypark in Hershey, PA. She took her family there last weekend, and when she sent it over to me, she remarked, "I wish I'd read it before I went!" You will be glad to have it, if Hersheypark is in your future!
Speaking of theme parks in Pennsylvania, Mark Asch's review of Sesame Place is well worth a read, too if you're headed in that direction.
2) I know many of you are headed to the Adirondacks this summer. We have a big set of reviews of kid-friendly stuff to do in the Adirondacks, including a review of the Enchanted Forest / Water Safari in Old Forge.
3) Have you seen our Camp Mom article yet? It's great for parents who are spending even part of a summer home with their kids: All kinds of ideas for how to help kids make the most of their summer!
4) My kids are outside eating watermelon in the sprinkler RIGHT NOW (yep, I'm keeping an eye on them while I write the newsletter)... this is one of the 50 Ways to Love Your Summer that don't involve cost OR technology! Check them out and get some ideas!
5) On the other hand, if you love a good traditional summer camp (and the peace and quiet it brings you while the kids are there), there is still time to sign your child up for many area summer camps! Check out our big summer camp calendar here! It's listed WEEK-BY-WEEK so you can plan your summer accordingly!
6) The most important page on our site these days -- especially for Camp Mom organizers, is the Everything That's Free button, which is linked from every page on KidsOutAndAbout. There are currently 271 upcoming events on the calendar that are utterly, totally, FREE.
7) If you'd like to get out and about in the local area this summer, we've got a great resource for you! As you know if you've read this newsletter for the last month, we have tallied the results for our 2012 survey. So click through to see the full list of the Top 20 Places to Take Kids in the Capital Region... it will give you great ideas for summer fun!
8) We LOVE fruit picking with the kids -- and we love our community's response to our comprehensive Where To Pick Summer Fruit in the Capital District page. It's cherry, blueberry, and raspberry season! Check out that page to find who has picking available, and make sure to call the farm ahead of time to be sure they're picking; hours are usually weather-dependent.
--Debra Ross, Publisher
From your editor, Katie Beltramo:
You might think that after having a holiday in the middle of the week, everyone would just settle down. But if that's what you were thinking, you were totally wrong. There are tons of celebrations this weekend.
9) The Sunkiss Balloon Festival is early this year, happening this weekend instead of the usual September. It's at the Warren County Airport near Queensbury, New York on Saturday and Sunday, with plenty to do beyond balloons including face painting, fitness classes, bounce houses, music, and more.
10) They're kicking off Albany Public Libraries' Summer Reading program with a SummerFest Party at Albany Public Library's Delaware Branch. This free outdoor party will include bounce houses, activities, games and prizes, magic, music and dancing, and snacks.
11) It's also Familypalooza at the Adirondack Museum on Saturday. Admission for kids is FREE for the day (adult admission for the museum is the usual $18). They'll have festive outdoor fun for all ages, including a scavenger hunt, live music from the Zucchini Bros., a bounce house, hands-on activities, live animals, and much more!
12) Up for some fun culture in Great Barrington? Check out MOMIX Botanica at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center. MOMIX is an innovative dance company of dancer-illusionists who blend movement, circus, athleticism, and magical effects, and they're performing on Friday and Saturday night.
13) On Sunday, it's GE Kids Day at the Plaza! with plenty of activities and information for families.
14) Last week, my family and I visited Hershey Park in Hershey, Pennsylvania for the first time ever. We had a wonderful time. It really felt much more like a resort than just a day trip to an amusement park. But
there are some things that I wish I'd known ahead of time, and I'm sharing them with you in my review.
15) Finally, I wanted to alert you that Circus Smirkus! will be at Saratoga Race Track on Monday and Tuesday of next week. Circus Smirkus is a traveling circus of kids who have been training for years to participate, and they're good. A few weeks ago my husband and I got sucked into a documentary on PBS (oh, if only we had a nickel for every time that happened) called Circus Dreams about a year in the life of Circus Smirkus. I'd heard about the circus, vaguely, before, but after watching the movie, we knew that we simply must go this year. I'm excited. Plus, it's all human, no animals, so if you are someone who eschews the typical circus, this is a great choice for you.
16) The Bravo Family, the Wall Family, the Woods Family, the Smart Family, and the Walker Family are our fictional families that take their kids to activities based on their particular interests. Here is what they are up to this weekend:
This is the Woods Family. They love nature and the great outdoors.
Friday: Delegan Pond Exploration Open Hours at Wilton Wildlife Preserve and Par
Saturday: Campfire Storytelling at Thacher Nature Center
Sunday: Back Pond Hike
The Smart family focuses on educational and cultural activities. They also shop smart!
Friday: ‘TUTE FOR TOTS—Shapes
Saturday: SummerFest Party at Albany Public Library's Delaware Branch
Sunday: Music Haven Concert Series: Diblo Dibala With Zorkie Nelson
The Bravo Family loves the arts.
Friday: SPECIAL EVENT—1st FRIDAY
Saturday: Cabaret--Musical in Washington Park
Sunday: The Rymanowski Brothers Orchestra - polka: A Free Concert at Freedom Park in Scotia
The Wall Family prefers indoor activities. Here is their weekend itinerary:
Friday: Animal Homes, Tracks & Bones at The Children's Museum of Science and Technology (CMOST)
Saturday: Science Discovery Demos: Physics @ Schenectady Museum
Sunday: Historical Figure Program at Grant Cottage State Historic Site
Everything that's free (upcoming events that are free...271 of them on the calendar right now!)
Top 20 Places to Take Kids in the Capital District
Indoor Play Centers
Places to have birthday parties
Clubs/Scouts/Teams for Kids and Parents
Parks / Outdoor recreation areas
Organizations & schools that provide resources for kids with special needs
Upcoming shows and performances
19) Folks who "Like" the KidsOutAndAbout.com Albany listing on Facebook find out about stuff in advance and even can enter Facebook-only giveaways, so make sure to Like us! These Facebook-Only Giveaways happen frequently, so don't miss a thing..."like" us today!
20) Have you wondered about creative places to host your child's birthday party in the Albany-Troy-Schenectady area? There are 122 Birthday Party Locations on our list; check them out!
21) We're sure you can think of other folks who would enjoy finding out what's up for kids and families every week, so please, think of a few friends and forward it along! Here is the direct link they can use to sign up, themselves.
Enjoy the weekend!