Posts from — February 2010
Do you realize that the weather forecast is snow showers for today, and tomorrow, and the next day, and the next day? I mean, come on!
The listings for the week are gradually getting a little bit smaller as I realize that many of the events are actually recurring events that just aren’t necessarily advertised that way. So when you’re making plans, don’t forget to take another look at the What About TODAY? page, because it’s growing.
But meanwhile, if you have additions, I’d love to hear about them.
Guilderland Library has a take it and make it craft this week designed for 5- to 10-year-olds.
Monday, March 1
- The Children’s Museum of Science and Technology opens up registration for its Summer Camp to non-members today.
- Saratoga Spa State Park has a program on Seeds and Seedlings especially for homeschoolers from 10-11:30 am. You need to pre-register, and it’s $3 per person or $5 per family.
- Guilderland Public Library has a College Admissions Seminar from 7-8:30 pm.
Tuesday, March 2
- [Can you believe it? I've got nothing. But the What About TODAY? page has 9 different things listed for today].
Wednesday, March 3
- There’s a Snowshoe Hike at Moreau Lake from 10 am to noon. It’s $2/person and extra if you need to rent snowshoes. Call to register.
- The Children’s Museum at Saratoga is having a Suessian Celebration from 12-3 pm.
Thursday, March 4
- There’s a Wetlands Walk from 1-3 pm at Moreau Lake State Park. In case, like, you’re not wet enough? I’m sorry–I’m just bitter. Because my children’s disgusting hand-me-down snow boots are constantly either: a) banging around the dryer or b) just stinking up the joint. Anyway, the walk is $2/person and extra if you need to rent snowshoes. Call to register.
Friday, March 5
- Wiggle and Giggle from 10-11:30 am at the Children’s Museum at Saratoga.
- At 11 am there’s Story Art at the New York State Museum. It’s for toddlers and preschoolers. You don’t have to pre-register, but you’re supposed to pick up tickets at the front desk.
- There’s an Insect Investigation for 2- to 5-year-olds starting at 10:30 am at the Children’s Museum of Science and Technology. It’s $2 for non-members and pre-registration is required.
- At 11 am, the Colonie Center Barnes & Noble will have a Read Across America! Storytime.
- Scotia-Glenville Pipe Band is presenting Celtic Jam for free at 7 pm at Scotia-Glenville Middle School.
February 28, 2010 1 Comment
The girls are outside playing in the snow. I was just singing a song to them as they got ready. It goes like this:
You keep my buttocks dry!
I simply don’t know why
Anyone would want to go
Out there in the snow
Without. . .
[here you begin the song again and continue to repeat until one of your children says, "Mommy, could you please stop singing?" It has an actual tune, too, but I don't know how to write music--sorry.]
I’ve been grouchy and feeling a little sick all day. Which is why I haven’t gotten around to posting. I was pretty irritated, actually, that neither of the girls’ early morning activities were canceled because I hate to drive in the snow. Of course it’s subsided into wimpy rain-snow, so even I can handle that.
A week from today, we’re going to see Bill Cosby at Proctors–yay! I advised this as a Christmas present for my cute husband, who’s gained a new appreciation for his old stand-up since having kids. Enough so that when I told M whom we were seeing, I could just explain: you know, the chocolate cake guy.
And, really, I am going to go to Fleet Feet tomorrow–you can go without an rsvp or registration or anything.
February 27, 2010 No Comments
It’s another busy weekend for us–ice skating, dance classes, kid’s birthday party, my husband over-volunteering again, a meeting for me, miscellaneous.
Is anyone else feeling disoriented by the weather? There are blue skies and warm temperatures and little birds tweeting, and then it’s snowing again, and then it’s raining? It’s making me a little nutty, I tell you. Although I supposed that I should be thankful that my basement isn’t flooding and we still have power that I’m not on Snow Day #3 like my sister–just realized that I don’t want to jinx myself. Not that I believe in that sort of thing. Except, I do, kind of.
I would love to grace you with some clever prose, but the truth is that I haven’t taken a shower in almost 48 hours and I have to pick up J at her friend’s in, like, 20 minutes or so. So this post will be sacrificed for the comfort and hygiene of all who come into actual physical contact with me. On to the weekend line-up:
If you missed it, I just posted about children’s opera as well as other theater coming up this weekend. Also, don’t forget about the What About TODAY? list of events: just because they do it all the time doesn’t mean it ain’t fun.
- It’s Troy Night Out from 5-9 pm.
- East Greenbush Library has a Family Movie Night at 7 pm. It’s Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs. It’s drop in & free.
- So sad! The Wilton Wildlife Preserve‘s Annual Moonlight Snowshoe has been cancelled.
- They’ll be playing with clay at the Children’s Museum at Saratoga from 9:30-10:30 am. It’s free with admission, but you’re supposed to pre-register.
- At Five Rivers, there’s a program called Who’s Under the Snow? at 10 am.
- At 10 am, there’s a Baker Trail Snowshoe Hike at Moreau Lake State Park.
- There’s an Animal Tracking Outing at Cherry Plain State Park at 10 am.
- There’s a Cabin Fever Story Break at the downtown Schenectady Public Library at 10:30 am. There’s also a Storytime at the Rotterdam branch at the same time.
- There’s a Lions and Lambs Storyhour at the Colonie Center Barnes & Noble at 11 am.
- At the Children’s Museum of Science and Technology, they’ll be experimenting with magnets at 1 pm. Pre-registration is required and it’s $2 for non-members.
- There’s an Alice in Wonderland Movie Premiere Party at Rotterdam Square Mall from 1-3 pm.
- Art for All is running from 1-4 pm at the Albany Institute of History & Art. It’s free with museum admission.
- At 2 pm there’s a Tracking for Kids program at Five Rivers.
- Nacre Dance Company is offering a free open rehearsal from 2-4 pm at the Universal Preservation Hall, 25 Washington Ave. in Saratoga Springs.
- There’s a Full Moon Snowshoe Hike at Grafton Lakes State Park at 7 pm. Pre-registration is required, and $5/person includes snowshoes.
- You can take a Snowshoe Walk at 10 am at Thacher Park. You can rent snowshoes for $5, but you should call to reserve them.
- The 2nd Annual Boys & Girls Club Be Great Walk is being held from 10 am to noon at the Rotterdam Square Mall.
- The music at the Schenectady Greenmarket this week is a children’s sing-a-long with Music Together teacher Terri Roben from 10 am to 2 pm.
- The Schenectady JCC has a Purim Community Festival from 10:30 am to 1 pm.
- You can Discover the Pine Bush at 1 pm. $2/person or $5/family, and you must pre-register.
- From 2-5 pm, members of the Bethlehem High School Jazz Band will be performing at the Bethlehem Public Library.
- There’s a musical Purim Celebration Klezmer Style at 2:30 pm at the downtown Schenectady Public Library.
- There’s a High School Festival at 4 pm at Troys Savings Bank Music Hall with Albany Pro Musica. Tickets are all $7/general admission. When I spoke with someone at Albany Pro Musica, she said that since there would be intervals between the various high school choirs’ performances, there’d be the opportunity to escape if kids lost interest.
February 26, 2010 No Comments
Okay, I’m just twisting down a shame spiral right now because not only did I neglect to mention yet another theater experience (I added items to the last post, in case you missed it), but I also found a typo in an old post. Am I losing my touch? Did I ever have a touch? I am feeling discouraged, and this, along with the fact that my cute husband is deeply overworked and the rain is quite possibly turning to snow and piling onto the roads while I sit here waiting for J to finish her gymnastics class has put me into a foul mood. I’m going to try to shake it off.
As I started looking into the plans for the weekend, I was overjoyed to see that the Lake George Opera is doing their first of several area performances of The Three Little Pigs. Now, I don’t understand opera. And I don’t just mean, I can’t understand Italian or German. . . I just don’t “get” it. Do you remember in Pretty Woman, when Julia Roberts sees her first opera? She gets so excited she “nearly peed her pants”, and Richard Gere tells her that people are divided into two groups: those (clever and passionate types) who instinctively love opera, and those pathetic poseur losers who just wish that they were that cool? I mean, he puts it more nicely than that, but we know what he means. Well, I’m firmly entrenched in the not-as-cool-as-the-leggy-hooker camp. That said, I was able to watch the Lake George Opera group doing The Three Billy Goats Gruff not too long ago, and it was great. The kids all loved it, and frankly, it was just my speed, too. I mean, I knew the story and I could understand the words because they’re singing very clearly in English. They make it accessible for kids and, in doing so, accessible for me! woo, hoo!
Now, if that’s not enough to tempt you, they perform for free! A 45-minute opera for your and your children’s cultural edification! Performed in various venues, starting with this Saturday at the Schenectady Civic Players’ theater at 2 pm. I’ll be adding their performances into my regular listings, too, but it’s worth it to mark your calendars now if you know that there’s a time and place that works for you.
February 25, 2010 2 Comments
I’d mentioned To Kill a Mockingbird once before, I thought, but I should have included it again here. That, coupled with the information on The Miracle Worker in today’s Gazette, made me feel a little silly about this post. I wasn’t even aware of the Curtain Call Theatre. And Bethlehem High School, too! So I’ve added the information here. Sorry.
I thought that we were due for a Theater Roundup because there’s quite a bit coming up. If I’ve left something good out, please add them in the comments. If you’re not currently a bring-your-kids-to-the-theater person, please click here so that I can dismiss the most popular reasons why people deprive themselves and their children of some theater. You don’t want to deprive your children, do you? I mean, what kind of parent are you?
So, I checked out some of our favorite Capital District venues, and here’s what I found:
- Capital Repertory Theater has To Kill a Mockingbird all weekend, beginning with a pay-what-you-will performance on Thursday, 2/25.
- The Curtain Call Theatre has The Miracle Worker this weekend, with a matinee on Sunday.
- Holy cow! All of the tickets to the Wizard of Oz at Steamer 10 Theatre are sold out! Luckily, they’re following it up with Rumpelstiltskin in March.
- Proctors has The Little Mermaid on Sunday, March 7th at 2 pm and on Monday at 10 am. They suggest it for the preschool to 2nd grade age range. Then Annie‘s on March 13th & 14th. The Magic of Lyn is playing twice on Friday, March 19th. Stories That Dance is playing twice on Thursday, March 25th. (For a couple of these, the link only sends you to one of the performances, but I bet you can find the other one, too).
- The Palace Theatre has Doktor Kaboom! on March 26th and Playhouse Disney Live! on April 3rd.
- At The Egg, Justin Roberts will be singing on Sunday, April 11th, and the New York Theatre Ballet will be dancing Sleeping Beauty on Sunday, April 18th–it’s a performance designed for kids. They’ve also got A Year with Frog and Toad showing on March 15th–there’s no option to purchase for this one online, since it’s a school group performance, but any group can purchase tickets to performances like these, so if you’d like to go, get your group together quick: there were about 30 seats available.
Early spring means that we’re moving into high school musical season. High school musicals are a great option for family entertainment. They’re relatively inexpensive and accessible, and you can support some “big kids” in your community. I was looking around for some possibilities, and let me just tell you, it is not particularly helpful to Google “Troy High School Musical” . Stinkin’ Disney.
- Niskayuna High School’s performing Bye Bye Birdie this weekend. The Saturday matinee is at 2 pm, with slightly cheaper tickets: $12/adult, $10/student.
- Schenectady High School’s Blue Roses Theatre Company will be showing The Diary of Anne Frank March 10-13, with a matinee at 2 pm on the 13th.
- Waterford-Halfmoon High School students will be performing Peter Pan March 11-13 at 7 pm. Tickets are $5.
- The Guilderland High School’s Guilderland Players will be showing Anything Goes March 11-14, with a matinee at 2 pm on the 14th. Tickets are $7 or $5 each.
- Shenendehowa High Schools’ students will also be performing Anything Goes the next week, March 18-20, but all performances are in the evening. Tickets are $12.
- Ballston Spa High School will be presenting Into the Woods on March19th & 20th, with a matinee on the 20th at 2 pm. Tickets are $10.
- At Mohonasen High School, they’re performing Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat March 25-28, with a matinee on the 28th at 2:30 pm. Tickets are $12/adult, $6/child.
- At Bethlehem High School, Stage 700 will present Once on This Island from March 25-28, with at matinee on the 28th at 2 pm. $10/adults, $6/students.
- Hoosick Valley High School students will be performing Suessical March 26-28, with a matinee at 3 pm on the 28th.
- South Glens Falls High School will have evening performances of 42nd Street March 26-28.
Of course, at this rate I’m a little bit concerned that everybody’s rehearsals will have been cancelled due to snow. Hopefully they’ll all remember their lines!
February 24, 2010 1 Comment
Sure I was grousing about the snow, but when I went outside this morning, I couldn’t help but feel a little bit giddy. The giddiness subsided a bit over the next hour and a half of clearing driveways and sidewalks, but still: this is a quality snowfall. Perfect packing for snowpeople and snowballs, enough for a quality fort and for snowshoes to work effectively, and the temperature: warm enough so that hopefully the kids will have more staying power than usual. I know that this is a repeat for some of you, but here’s a roundup of past snow posts for you:
February 24, 2010 No Comments
It’s still freakin’ snowing. No, that’s not the news. Although I think that I’ve had about all I can take of embracing winter at this point.
But, anyway, have you all heard. . .
The Friendly’s at St. James Square in Niskayuna closed. Umm, their service was always super-horrible in my experience, so I am perhaps not as sorrowful as many.
The Toys R Us on Wolf Road is adding an expanded Babies R Us section, according to the TU’s Parent to Parent blog.
Speaking of TU blogs, Don Ritter wrote up a huge history of Thacher Park on his blog.
February 23, 2010 1 Comment
Was your reaction, from what?
Fleet Feet on Wolf Road in Albany is starting their spring No Boundaries training program. You pay $75 to get someone to kick your non-running butt into training so that you can run a 5K on Father’s Day.
I have to tell you, I’m sort of intrigued by this one myself.* I’ve never been a runner. I’ve never even been tempted to run, which is saying quite a bit when I used to live right along the NYC Marathon route in Brooklyn. Where I was, it was early enough in the route that everyone would be relatively fresh, and there were all sorts of spunky groups wearing antlers or feather boas for fun, and people always have their names on their t-shirts so that you’ll cheer for them, and I really enjoyed going and cheering my heart out for strangers. And then I also enjoyed going inside to warm up and eat a yummy bagel with cream cheese and perhaps take a little nap.
I’ve always said that the reason I don’t run is because it bothers my knees. Which it does. But at some point I realized, I think maybe it bothers everyone’s knees? Except that all of the people who run just suck it up and take it? Is this true? Earlier this year, I read Born to Run, and I just loved it. It made me wish I were cool enough to run. And I actually stopped wearing shoes while working out at home, and all sorts of crampy-achey foot issues that I’d had for years have disappeared, which is excellent. I haven’t gotten sucked into buying a pair of Vibram Five Fingers yet, but it’s a possibility.
Anyway, I’ve been working out pretty regularly, but I feel like I’m not working out hard enough–well, and still not often enough, either, but that’s another issue. On the few occasions I’ve attempted to run, I am doubled over and panting within moments. I mean, it is pathetic. Moments doesn’t mean, like, 12 minutes. I mean, like, during the first song on my playlist. And somehow it’s way beyond anything that happens when I’m just at home doing jumping jacks.
Now, apparently, this whole Couch-to-5K thing is something people do with the help of the people at www.CoolRunning.Com, and that sounds like a lovely idea, and also, of course, free. But I just don’t think that I could be sufficiently motivated by the mute computer. I think that I need the guilt of a hectoring trainer, the shame of spending money that will be wasted if I abandoned the project, and the companionship of people who are equally inept and whiny. So, is there anyone out there who’s a complete non-runner who’d like to give it a try with me?
*Publicly stating that I am interested in doing this does not, in any way, mean that I am obligated to actually do it, nor does it mean that I will do it. The only thing that it really means is that if you see me rolling my eyes at people with 26.2 oval bumper stickers on their cars, it’s because I am a teensy bit jealous. Although, also, it’s showing off. I mean, really. I don’t put my GRE scores on a bumper sticker. So what if it was more than 15 years ago? Those kind of critical thinking skills don’t just disappear, you know. Wait, they do? Okay, now I’m going to have to find some of that leftover chocolate cake.
February 23, 2010 5 Comments
So, the Children’s Museum at Saratoga sent me an email about discounted Great Escape tickets, and it linked to this groovy promotion for nonprofits: buy tickets for $19.99 for one of the specified days–tickets are usually $40.99 + tax. For each ticket bought, $5 goes back to the nonprofit that promotes it. If you want to purchase through the Children’s Museum, you can call them at 518-584-5540. Really, this is an excellent mutually beneficial arrangement: the nonprofits get an easy fundraiser, the parents get a price break, and Great Escape folks get great advertising and people in the park early so that kids will spend the rest of the summer asking when they can go again. Yeah, we know that’s why they’re doing it. I’m okay with being manipulated like that. We haven’t ever been to Great Escape. So, now that my kids are 5 and 7, can we handle it? Is it worth the money? Do I need to buy these tickets?
Pondering the splendor of Great Escape and Splashwater Kingdom reminded me that there was another email going around about White Water Bay, the indoor water park at Great Escape Lodge, explaining that sometimes day passes are available, with the cheapest at $25 for a half day. So I thought that I’d supplement today’s post with information about that. Well first, if you follow the links, it appears that you can buy them online. But click it, and, for me at least, it always said “Not available at this time”. Huh. So I called the phone number that they told me to call. Actually, they gave two phone numbers. I started out by calling the more general number, 518-824-6000. I waited on hold for nine minutes (because my phone times each call, a helpful feature). Then a lady answered and told me that I had to call the hotel directly, which was the other number, 518-824-6060. Okay, my bad. Of course that’s going to be a better number.
So I tried the second number, pressed various numbers which put me into different voice mailboxes, was briefly distracted by a kid dispute over a balloon, and then got cut off a couple of times. Finally I called and wasn’t cut off, and after over 5 minutes, another lady answered. When I told her that I was interested in purchasing day passes, she told me to call the 824-6060 number directly. I told her that I had, and then she explained that if you’re on hold too long at the hotel, it bounces back to the main line, where they can’t help you, so you just have to call again. No, I’m serious: I thought that I misunderstood, so I repeated it all, and that’s what happens. Okay. . . .
I was feeling a little bit bad for all of those phone-answering folks–because I’ve been there, man. So I just tried again as I was typing in the last paragraph, and I only had to wait on hold for 3 1/2 minutes. The lady seemed quite surprised that the online feature wasn’t working (although I remember feigning that sort of surprise, myself, back when I worked customer service), and she told me that the day passes are basically always available. Hmmm. Maybe it took so long earlier today because all of the parents had finally gotten their kids back to school, and then they said, “That February break went on forever. For the love of all that is good and holy, I’d better plan something immediately so that I don’t completely lose my sanity during April break.” Perhaps it was just bad timing on my part.
So anyway, I was grousing about this to my friends over lunch, and one of them knew someone who’d gone to the indoor water park and loved it, and one of them had a friend who’d arrived to find out that the whole place was shut down due to an “accident”, and they waited some ungodly amount of time for them to clean and sanitize the place, and then just as everyone was allowed back in, “it” happened again. I wonder if there’s a Poop Guarantee of some sort? I can’t bring myself to call back and ask.
Anybody have endorsements or warnings to share on this one? What age is the “right” age for going?
February 22, 2010 1 Comment
We ended up going to Cella Bistro last night. Mmmmmm. . . wild mushroom salad. Super tasty. Today was the first day that I really felt like spring was around the corner. The girls must have spent 2 hours playing in the backyard.
Cute husband’s working for the rest of the day (on a Sunday! I know!), so I’ve barely scraped this post together–alas, no witty prose for you. There are also a few different fun theater events coming up, so I’ll be posting about them sometime this week. I also noticed, while I was poking around and looking for fun for you, that Tumbling Tykes is offering classes for the toddler/early preschool set in Clifton Park in March.
Meanwhile, here’s what else is going on:
Monday, February 22nd
- The Little Book House at Stuyvesant Plaza has a Storytime at 11 am.
- At the Mont Pleasant Branch Library, they’re celebrating Chinese New Year with teens at 3:30 pm and for elementary school kids at 4:15 pm.
Tuesday, February 23rd
- The Clifton Park-Halfmoon Library has a drop-in Storytime for 4- to 6-year-olds at 10:15 am or 1:15 pm
- The Clifton Park-Halfmoon Library has a Pajama Storytime at 5:45 pm or 6:30 pm.
- At 6:30 pm, there’s a Pajama Storytime at the Niskayuna Branch Library.
- The Bethlehem Public Library has Pajama-Rama at 7 pm. It’s designed for kids 3 to 6.
- The Albany Jewish Community Center has their Annual Purim Carnival from 5:30-8 pm. They’ll also have information about their summer camp.
Wednesday, February 24th
- At 10 am there’s a Storytime at the Quaker Street Branch Library.
- Clifton Park-Halfmoon Library has a Storytime for 2- and 3-year-olds at 10:30 am.
- Moreau Lake State Park has a Snowshoe Hike to Potter’s Point from 1 to 4 pm.
- The Clifton Park-Halfmoon Library has a Storytime for 3- to 6-year-olds at 1:15 pm.
Thursday, February 25th
- The Schenectady Museum’s FETCH! Lab is Float My Boat. It’s from 2:30-4 pm on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Free with museum admission
- Moreau Lake State Park has a Hudson River Eagle Watch from 10 am to noon.
- At 10:30 am, there’s a Family Storytime at Schenectady’s main branch.
- Saratoga Spa State Park has a Preschool Naturalists program at 11 am. It’s $3 per child or $5/family, and you have to register.
- The Duane Branch Library has a Chinese New Year Celebration for kids in grades 6 to 10 at 3:30 pm and for elementary school kids at 4:15 pm.
- The Barnes and Noble in Niskayuna has a Teen Book Club at 7 pm.
Friday, February 26th
- There’s a Porcupine Dine Snowshoe Hike at Moreau Lake State Park at 10 am.
- Doktor Kaboom! is at the Palace Theatre at 10:30 am. I’m a liar. It’s next month. But you can get a group together now to go for the discount, so it’s not a total loss, right?
- At 10:30 am there’s a Family Storytime at the Scotia Branch Library.
- There’s a Lions and Lambs Storytime at the Colonie Center Barnes & Noble at 11 am.
- At Schodack Island State Park, there’s night ice skating until 8 pm.
Know about some other fun going on in the Capital District? We’d all love to hear about it.
February 21, 2010 3 Comments