Author Archives: Calgary's Child

APRIL FUN IN CALGARY!

Looking for something to do with the kids? April is full of theatre and performing arts in Calgary – there are all kinds of great shows and musical performances to enjoy with the whole family, plus Calgary’s usual selection of great festivals, trade shows, and more!

Calgary Baby & Tot Show: for Bump, Baby & Beyond
April 2 & 3; BMO Centre, Stampede Park; calgarybabyshow.com
Local and national exhibitors will showcase the latest in technology, apparel, furniture, products and toys. Interactive workshops and seminars from leading authorities will be available to provide you with insight and presentations. Parented play areas, arts & crafts, and entertainment for the whole family! For more information, to purchase tickets online and save, and to download the show guide, visit the website.

Bert Church Live Theatre in Airdrie Presents, Prairie Mountain Fiddlers
April 2; Bert Church Live Theatre in Airdrie; ticketpro.ca
This will be a foot-stomping, toe-tapping afternoon full of good old-time fiddle music! To purchase tickets, visit the website.

Meet & Eat at The Square
April 6 to June 29; 555 Strathcona Blvd SW; facebook.com/StrathconaSquareShoppingCentre
Meet & Eat at the Square is back! We are bringing the most delicious Food Trucks in Calgary to Strathcona Square for Spring & Summer! Food Trucks will be on site every Wednesday & Saturday, May through June from 11:30am-2:00pm. Calgary’s culinary travelling cuisine offer ethnic, styles, pricing and flavors that you have to come experience for yourself. Come to Strathcona Square every Wednesday & Saturday, May through June, to expand your tastebuds with some of Calgary’s BEST Food Trucks!

Family Fun Days at Aggie Days
April 9 & 10; Stampede Park, Agrium Western Event Center; ag.calgarystampede.com/events/aggie-days
Enjoy interactive agriculture activities including cow milking, sheep shearing, livestock auctioneering, an amazing corn maze and meet a variety of farm animals and more! For more information, visit the website.

Loose Moose Theatre for Kids Presents, Sherlock Junior
April 9 to May 1; Crossroads Market – 235, 26 Avenue SE; loosemoose.com
Shows are on Saturdays at 1pm and on Sundays at 1pm & 3pm. Loose Theatre For Kids Presents, Sherlock Junior. To purchase tickets and for more information, call 403-265-5682 or visit the website.

Bert Church Live Theatre in Airdrie Presents, DuffleBag Theatre: The 3 Musketeers.
April 17; Bert Church Live Theatre in Airdrie; ticketpro.ca
Actors retell the original adaptations of select fairy tales and Shakespearean classics with humor and a twist! To purchase tickets, visit the website.

Calgary Performing Arts Festival
April 18 to May 7; Taylor Centre for the Performing Arts at MRU; cpafestival.ca
The Calgary Performing Arts Festival is one of the largest performing arts events in Calgary, and one of the largest amateur competitive festivals in North America! For more information, performance times and to purchase tickets, visit the website.

The Adventures of Robin Hood
April 22 to April 24; 161, 115 – 9 Avenue SE; vertigotheatre.com/the-adventures-of-robin-hood/
Check website for showtimes. In a forest somewhere near you, there is a band of brothers seeking to rid the land of evil and return hope to the poorly treated. They are lean, mean, justice-fighting machines. Nothing is as it seems in this Sherwood Forest, but one thing is for sure, no rogue is safe! (Nor the piggy banks of rich folks). Internationally-acclaimed Visible Fictions returns to Calgary following a nearly soldout production of Jason and the Argonauts (2013). Be prepared to unleash your imagination in this updated take on the classic Robin Hood tale. Recommended for Ages 7+

StoryBook Theatre Presents, Goodnight Moon, the Musical
April 22 to May 7; 375 Bermuda Drive NW; storybooktheatre.org
StoryBook is excited to be bringing everyone’s favorite bedtime book vibrantly alive on stage in a full-length new musical. Watch as Bunny’s room magically comes alive as he dances and sings his way to sweet dreams through nursery rhyme scenes with dancing bears with chairs, the Cat and the Fiddle, the Cow Jumping Over the Moon and even a trip through the night sky with dancing constellations. Recommended for ages 3 and up. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the website.

YYC’s Largest Used Kids Sale (TTMAC Sale)
April 30; 7904, 43 Avenue NW; ttmac.org/sale
You do not want to miss Calgary’s largest sale of quality-used kids clothes, toys and gear! Arrive early for the best selection!

Easter Roundup

EasterRoundUpMarch 18 to 28, 10am to 4pm; Spring Rally in the Alley at Heritage Park Historical Village. Come to the Gasoline Alley Museum for a Rally like no other! Take part in games and activities that will recreate the thrills and excitement of the International Isle of Man Tourist Trophy Race. First held in 1907, it is one of the most prestigious motorcycle races and is the ultimate challenge for riders and machines alike. For more information, visit www.heritagepark.ca

March 19, 20, 25 & 26; Easter Hunt Fun at Butterfield Acres Farm. First, the Legend of the Easter Bunny. Then off with an Easter basket to do some hunting! Follow up with a little Spring planting to take home, visit some very cute farmyard babies and to say ‘Thanks for Helping!’ the Easter Bunny will have a little treat for the kids! To purchase advance tickets only, visit www.butterfieldacres.com

March 22, 9:30 to 11:30am & 6:30 to 8:30pm; Family Easter Craft & Cookies at Southland Leisure Centre. Make some Easter crafts for your family and friends, and enjoy some light refreshments.

March 22 to March 24, 10am to 4pm; Spring Break Fishy Fun at Bow Habitat Station. Join Bow Habitat for fishy fun! Free activities included with your Discovery Centre admission, and additional opportunities to visit the trout in the Fish Hatchery. For more information, visit www.bowhabitat.alberta.ca

March 23, 10am to 12Noon; Free Children’s Nature Program – Wonders of Devonian Gardens. Bring the kids for an exciting morning of learning and exploration at The City of Calgary’s free, drop-in nature program! Young explorers will learn about fish, plants, bugs and more through games, crafts and stories. Themes will include Fancy Fish, Plant Power, Secret Lives of Lady Bugs and Shapes in Nature. No day camp, day care or home school groups larger than five children, please. For ages 3 to 12 (and must be accompanied by an adult). This free program runs on Wednesdays until April 27.

March 23, 10am to 7pm; March 24, 10am to 7pm; March 25, 12Noon to 5pm; Easter Petting Zoo at Westbrook Mall. Stop by the mall and visit with cute animals from Butterfield Acres Farm! And on March 25 from 12Noon to 5pm, get one free 8 x 10 photo with the Easter Bunny (located beside Virgin Mobile). For more information, visit www.westbrookmall.com/events

March 24 to 29; Disney On Ice Presents, Dare to Dream! Join your favorite Disney Princesses in a celebration of 75 years of Disney Princess stories, including two-modern day princesses Rapunzel and Tiana; the always elegant Cinderella; the princess who started it all, Snow White; and more! All your favorite princesses take to the ice in a spectacular finale at the ultimate Disney Princess event of a lifetime! For show times and to purchase tickets, visit www.disneyonice.com/ca/en-ca/dare-to-dream

March 25, 9am to 11am; Easter Egg Hunt for Dogs (and Kids) at Calaway Park. Burn off some energy. Grab your furry friend and children and hunt for dog-treat filled eggs on the front lawn with the Rocky Mountains as a backdrop. All funds raised through pledges will support National Service Dogs in providing specially-trained service dogs for children impacted by autism. For more information, visit www.calawaypark.com

March 25 & 26; Spring Sparktacular at TELUS Spark, the New Science Centre. Hop on down to Spring Sparktacular. Join for the classic egg drop challenge, lots of treats and much more! Admission for kids 3 and under is free. For more information, visit www.sparkscience.ca/events

March 25 & 26, 10am to 2pm; Easter at the Calgary Farmers’ Market. Put a little Spring in your step and join in the Easter festivities at the Calgary Farmers’ Market! Hop on over to the main stage and get your picture taken with the Easter Bunny and decorate an Easter cookie too. Cash or food donations to the Calgary Food Bank are welcome. For more information, visit www.calgaryfarmersmarket.ca/community/events/2016/03/25/

March 25 & 26, 9am to 3pm; Easter Eggstravaganza at the Calgary Zoo! In partnership with Calgary’s Child Magazine. It’s getting Greener at the Zoo. Join for fun-filled family activities and learn more about green initiatives and conservation efforts! This year, the Zoo will celebrate a ‘green’ Easter with your favorite animals. Participants receive chocolate treats and can take part in a number of sustainable activities including cookie decorating, chocolate-making, sustainable crafts, seed-planting, an Easter Bunny hop, face painting and more! All Easter Eggstravaganza activities are free with regular Zoo admission. For more information and to pre-purchase tickets and avoid the admission line, visit www.calgaryzoo.com/easter

March 26, 1 to 5pm; Vaisakhi Mela 2016. For thousands of years, April has been the time when farmers have put their sickles to harvest and collected precious crops. Without a good harvest, communities would perish, and so there was always great joy when a good harvest resulted at Vaisakhi time. The Spring season has always been an important and decisive time for the people of the northern hemisphere. Come out and help celebrate this free cultural, family-friendly event! Takes place at the Genesis Center Feature Gymnasium. For more information, visit www.vaisakhimela.ca

March 26, 10am to 4pm; Bowness Spring Craft Fair and Easter Eggstravaganza. The Spring Craft Fair takes place at the Bowness Community Centre Main Hall from 10am to 4pm. Easter Eggstravaganza takes place throughout the Centre including an Easter Egg Hunt and crafts from 11am to 3 pm. And there is free skating from 11am to 3pm with skates and helmets provided by the Kidsport Skate Shack. For more information, visit the website.

March 27, 1 to 5pm; Mount Engadine Lodge’s Family Easter Scavenger Hunt. Wander down Mount Engadine’s picturesque paths on an exciting scavenger hunt! Get into character and have your face painted like your favorite wilderness animal, and make sure to stop off at the campfire to roast marshmallows. There will be a BBQ with pulled pork or portabella mushroom burgers and sides with a cash donation to the Bow Valley Food Bank! Mount Engadine Lodge in Kananaskis is located at 1 Shark Road (35 kilometres south of Canmore on Smith Dorien Highwy). For more information, visit www.mountengadine.com

March 27, 12Noon to 3pm; XL 103’s 2nd Annual Easter Egg Hunt. This Egg Hunt is for both kids and adults! Easter activities begin at Noon, including games and photos with the Easter Bunny. The Easter Egg Hunt will begin at 1pm with a separate area for toddlers ages 2 to 5 years old, so they can hunt at their own pace. Check in at the XL 103 Info Booth prior to the Egg Hunt for a map of the hunt area and rules/regulations. The first 30 kids to check in starting at noon will receive an Easter hunt package. Hundreds of prizes, including cash and concert tickets, and over 75 pounds of chocolate and candy to be won! Rules and regulations can be found on the website: www.xl103calgary.com/easter

Family Dates in February

p80-Annoyingthingstheydo[1]Looking for a fun day out for your family now that the fun part of February is over? Never fear, Calgary’s Child is here! We’ve got a whole bunch of suggestions to get you out of the house and enjoying all that the season has to offer.

Canmore Winter Carnival
Everyday from Feb 1, 2016 – Mar 13, 2016
Check website for schedule of events. Canmore Winter Carnival. This year’s event will be the biggest and the best yet! Two World Cup events will be part of the carnival along with 45 days of events including ice carving, snow sculpting and the popular Kid ‘n’ Mutt races, plus more!
Location: Canmore, AB
Link: www.tourismcanmore.com/canmore-winter-carnival

9th Annual Reel Fun Film Festival
Everyday from Feb 22, 2016 – Feb 28, 2016 at 8:00 am – 9:00 pm.
The Reel Fun Film Festival continues to delight with a list full of fun films for kids aged 1 to 101! The variety of films scheduled this year is remarkable from comedies to documentaries – come and see for yourself! And don’t forget about the Reely Fun Film Day on Saturday, February 27 with interactive workshops to take the action from the screen right into your hands! For more information, visit the website.

Vintage Motorcycle Exhibit at Heritage Park Historical Village
Everyday from Feb 6, 2016 – Apr 24, 2016
Check website for hours. Experience a Ride Through Time with this vintage motorbike exhibit on display in Gasoline Alley Museum. Learn all about the history of biking in Alberta through this family-friendly exhibit featuring hands-on activities and a little something for everyone. For more information, visit the website.
Location: 1900 Heritage Drive SW
Link: www.heritagepark.ca

YYC Hot Chocolate Fest
Everyday from Feb 1, 2016 – Feb 28, 2016
Participating cafés and restaurants create delicious and unique signature Hot Chocolate to support Calgary Meals on Wheels. Customer votes decide which drink will win the coveted title of “Calgary’s Best Hot Chocolate” and each rating entered gives customers a chance to win prizes throughout the month!
For more information, visit the website.
Location: Participating cafés and restaurants
Link: www.yychotchocolate.com

TELUS Spark Material of the Season: Paper
Everyday from Jan 2, 2016 – Feb 29, 2016
TELUS Spark Material of the Season: Paper. Join daily in the Creative Kids Museum for programs and a variety of hands-on activities, perfect for families with children ages 8 and under and their caregivers. Would you rather build a tower using tissue paper or cardboard? Even though these materials seem very different, they have a lot in common! For more information, visit the website.
Location: 220 St. George’s Drive NE
Link: sparkscience.ca

Herein We Dwell: Unexpected Images of Calgary in the 1890s
Everyday from Feb 3, 2016 – May 29, 2016 at 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
A rare glimpse into the everyday life of 1890s Calgary is presented with little seen historical images of early neighborhoods and people. Guest curated by Peter Duthie, founder of Folio Gallery, former Exposure Photography Festival Chair and educator.
Location: Lougheed House – 707, 13 Avenue SW
Link: www.lougheedhouse.com/events/event/now-photography-exhibit-february-3rd-may-29th-2016/

Penguin Walks at the Calgary Zoo
Everyday from Feb 4, 2016 – Mar 1, 2016 at 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Daily until March (as conditions permit). Waddle in for a visit! The gentoo penguins may be the fastest swimmers, but the king penguins know how to get around too – in wintry weather they like to take their keepers for walkabouts around the zoo grounds. Every morning at 11am, keep pace with the king penguins during their outings. Any cancellations of the walk due to poor weather will be posted on the Zoo website and social media channels at 10am the morning of. To purchase tickets, visit the website.
Location: Calgary Zoo – 1300 Zoo Road NE
Link: www.calgaryzoo.com/tickets

Skate in Nature
Everyday from Dec 23, 2015 – Feb 28, 2016 at 11:30 am – 2:30 pm
Wipe away those winter blues! Grab your skates and head down to Bowness, Carburn or Prince’s Island Park this winter for The City of Calgary’s free Skate in Nature program. Enjoy some fresh air with family and friends, get toasty by the fire, and learn how local plants and animals adapt to the cold weather with some fun nature activities. Program runs from December through February and will be weather dependent. Visit calgary.ca/parks for program dates and times.
Location: Bowness Park, Carburn Park and Prince’s Island Park
Link: calgary.ca/parks

BODY WORLDS at TELUS Spark
Everyday from Jan 16, 2016 – May 31, 2016 at 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm
One of the world’s most groundbreaking exhibitions is coming to TELUS Spark. BODY WORLDS Vital is your opportunity to see, first-hand, the connection between body and movement. Understand the impact that healthy choices and lifestyle changes have on our physical body and wel-lbeing through this amazing exhibition.
Location: TELUS Spark
Link: http://sparkscience.ca/events/travelling-exhibitions/body-worlds-vital/?fullSite=1

FAMILY DAY WEEKEND FUN!

Looking for something fun to do with the family this weekend? Look no further – we’ve got the best picks of what’s up in Calgary!

YYC Hot Chocolate Fest
Every day in February

During the month of February, participating Calgary cafes and restaurants create delicious and unique signature Hot Chocolates to support Calgary Meals on Wheels. Customer votes decide which drink will win the coveted title of “Calgary’s Best Hot Chocolate,” and each rating entered gives customers a chance to win prizes all throughout the month! Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter and be sure to invite everyone you know to indulge in their favourite and join the fun! http://yychotchocolate.com/

Family FISHtival
Bow Habitat Station: Saturday Feb 13, 2016 at 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

Join for some family fun on the long weekend as you learn the tips and tools you’ll need at the annual Family FISH-tival! There will be free outdoor activities including casting games, ice fishing safety and marshmallow roasting. Warm up inside the Discovery Centre & Fish Hatchery with even more family fun and feed the fish – at a special rate of $5 per person (children 3 and under – free). http://bit.ly/BHSFishtival2016

We are Family Drop-In Days with The City of Calgary Parks
Feb 13 – 15, 2016 at 11:00 am – 3:00 pm

February 13 at Carburn Park, 11am to 3pm; February 14 at Prince’s Island Park, 11am to 3pm; and February 15 at Devonian Gardens, 11am to 3pm. We Are Family Drop-In Days with The City of Calgary Parks. Celebrate the Family Day weekend in nature! Bring the family down to one of the city’s beautiful outdoor rinks for some fresh air, ice-skating and fireside nature activities. If you prefer an indoor celebration, join at Devonian Gardens where there will be lots of family-friendly entertainment including nature-themed games, fun crafts and cool animal artefacts.

Cineplex Family Favourites – Hotel Transylvania 2
Particpating theatres: Saturday Feb 13, 2016

February 13: Hotel Transylvania 2. Enjoy a classic family movie! Admission to Cineplex Family Favourites is only $2.99 per person, including GST. For a list of participating theatres, visit the website. www.cineplex.com

Family Day Weekend Climbing & Gymnastics Drop-In at Southland Leisure Centre
Sunday Feb 14, 2016 at 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm

The whole family is welcome to a special Family Day Weekend Climbing (Indoor Rock Climbing) and Gymnastics Drop-in!

Olympic Oval Family Day Skate
Monday Feb 15, 2016 at 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm

The U of C Olympic Oval is pleased to once again be the host of Olympic Oval Family Day Skate, in celebration of the provincial Family Day holiday. This event features free public skating on The Fastest Ice in the World! Parking at the Oval is also free (Lot 10). The Tim Hortons Truck will be on hand to serve up coffee with proceeds going toward support for Oval Program Athletes and the Intact Oval Bursary Program. Helmets rule! It is mandatory that all skaters wear an accepted helmet (CSA approved) during public skating sessions. This policy is implemented as a proactive safety measure to help protect skaters and ensure all users of the Olympic Oval enjoy their time skating. Bring or rent from the Skate Shop (while supplies last)! Protect your brain, skate smart! http://oval.ucalgary.ca/familyday

What’s Up This Weekend? February 3 – 11

Looking for fun activities you and your family can do this weekend in and around Calgary? Here are our top picks:

Wonders of Devonian Gardens – Free Children’s Nature Program.
Every Wednesday, Feb 3, 2016 – Apr 27, 2016 at 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Wednesdays, from February 3 to April 27. Bring the kids for an exciting morning of learning and exploration at The City of Calgary’s free, drop-in nature program! Young explorers will learn about fish, plants, bugs and more through games, crafts and stories. Themes will include Fancy Fish, Plant Power, Secret Lives of Lady Bugs and Shapes in Nature. Topics will rotate on a weekly basis. Note: No day camp, day care or home school groups larger than five children, please. For ages 3 to 12 (must be accompanied by an adult).

Herein We Dwell: Unexpected Images of Calgary in the 1890s.
Everyday from Feb 3, 2016 – May 29, 2016 at 11:00 am – 4:00 pm. A rare glimpse into the everyday life of 1890s Calgary is presented with little seen historical images of early neighborhoods and people. Guest curated by Peter Duthie, founder of Folio Gallery, former Exposure Photography Festival Chair and educator.

Feb. 5 to 20 – StoryBook Theatre Presents, Lord of the Flies.
Everyday from Feb 5, 2016 – Feb 20, 2016 at 12:00 am – 12:00 am. February 5 to 20. Tuesday to Saturday shows are at 7pm. Saturday and Sunday shows are at 2pm. Wednesday and Thursday shows are at 12:30pm. StoryBook Theatre Presents, Lord of the Flies. Lord of the Flies is based on the 1954 dystopian novel by Nobel prize-winning English author William Golding about a group of British boys stuck on an uninhabited island who try to govern themselves with disastrous results. For ages 10+. This production is not suitable for sensitive children. Parents should research the original novel before deciding to attend this production. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the website.

Opening Reception to Herein We Dwell: Unexpected Images of Calgary in the 1890s.
Friday Feb 5, 2016 at 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm. A rare glimpse into the everyday life of 1890s Calgary is presented with little seen historical images of early neighborhoods and people. Join in celebrating the opening of Herein We Dwell: Unexpected Images of Calgary in the 1890s. Free event. Cash bar available. RSVP to jgunst@lougheedhouse.com or call 403-244-6333, Ext. 103.

Feb. 6 to Apr. 24 – Vintage Motorcycle Exhibit at Heritage Park Historical Village.
Everyday from Feb 6, 2016 – Apr 24, 2016 at 12:00 am – 12:00 am. February 6 to April 24; check website for hours. Experience a Ride Through Time with this vintage motorbike exhibit on display in Gasoline Alley Museum. Learn all about the history of biking in Alberta through this family-friendly exhibit featuring hands-on activities and a little something for everyone. For more information, visit the website.

Cook With Your Kids.
Saturday Feb 6, 2016 at 10:00 am – 11:30 am. A one-time class for adults and children to learn basic cooking skills while spending delicious, nutritious time together. Families can prepare a healthy dish and sit down and enjoy their meal together. Suitable for children 6 years old and up. One parent can register with up to two children. http://poppyinnovations.ca/classes-events/edible-education-gate-plate-cooking-classes/

Saturday Feb 6, 2016 at 11:00 am – 3:00 pm Youth Forum Culture Fest 2016.
This Youth Forum will have interactive booths led by multiple community partners and CIWA programs. The event is free and promises to be full of fun activities, performances, raffle prizes and an inspiring keynote address!

Cineplex Family Favourites – Zathura.
Saturday Feb 6, 2016 at 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
February 6: Zathura. Enjoy a classic family movie! Admission to Cineplex Family Favourites is only $2.99 per person, including GST. For a list of participating theatres, visit the website www.cineplex.com

Wildwood 2016 Lego Building Contest. Everyday from Feb 6, 2016 – Feb 7, 2016 at 12:00 pm – 12:00 pm You are invited to enter the Wildwood 2016 Lego Contest. The contest is open to kids and adults. Please drop off your completed creations at the Drop-Off on Saturday, February 6 from 4 to 6pm. Then come out to the viewing on Sunday, February 7 from 1 to 3pm to see all the amazing creations. There will be an awards ceremony at 3pm and the draw for the raffle prize.

Loose Moose Theatre for Kids Presents, Snow White.
Saturday Feb 6, 2016 at 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Saturdays and Sundays from January 30 to February 21. Saturdays shows at 1pm and Sundays shows are at 1pm and 3pm. Loose Moose Theatre For Kids Presents, Snow White! To purchase tickets, call 403-265-5682 or visit the website.

Feb. 6 & 7 – Elska: Middle of Nowhere.
Everyday from Feb 6, 2016 – Feb 7, 2016 at 3:30 pm – 4:45 pm
February 6: show is at 3:30pm. February 7: shows at 1pm and 3:30pm. Arts Commons Presents, Elska: Middle of Nowhere. Explore Elska’s island, a wondrous place off the coast of Iceland, full of curious creatures, fascinating fauna and infectious pop beats. Called “the Bjork for kids,” Elska enchants with fun lyrics and a catchy techno-pop sound, interwoven with story-telling that will enchant parents and children alike. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the website. https://artscommons.ca/Elska

Calgary Pro Musica Presents, Marita and Her Heart’s Desire.Sunday Feb 7, 2016 at 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm There are 2 showtimes: 1 to 3pm and 3:30 to 5pm. Marita and Her Heart’s Desire is a magical, mysterious and funny story of a little girl who believes the moon can grant her heart’s desire. She sets off to talk to the moon, which Marita thinks is sitting right on the roof of Harper’s Department Store. On her way, she is joined by a slinky cat, a no-nonsense rat, a jaunty dog and a helpful mouse, all of whom want their hearts’ desires too. The story is told through music and is performed by Canadian superstar violinist, Scott St. John and an ensemble of Calgary’s finest musicians Program also includes Ferdinand the Bull by Alan Ridout for violin and narrator. Come early to visit the craft room and other activities one hour before each show. Recommended for kids aged 5 to 12 but created with the entire family in mind. Stay after for free cookies and juice.

Weekends from Jan. 30 to Feb. 21 – Loose Moose Theatre for Kids Presents, Snow White.
Sunday Feb 7, 2016 at 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Saturdays and Sundays from January 30 to February 21. Saturdays shows at 1pm and Sundays shows are at 1pm and 3pm. Loose Moose Theatre For Kids Presents, Snow White! To purchase tickets, call 403-265-5682 or visit the website. www.loosemoose.com

Marita and Her Heart’s Desire. Sunday Feb 7, 2016 at 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Violinist Scott St. John brings musical fairytales to life. Marita and Her Heart’s Desire is a magical, mysterious and funny story of a little girl who believes the moon can grant her heart’s desire. Come early to visit the craft room and other activities one hour before each show. Recommended for children ages 5 to 12, but created with the entire family in mind. Stay after for free cookies and juice!

Marita and Her Heart’s Desire. Sunday Feb 7, 2016 at 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm
Violinist Scott St. John brings musical fairytales to life. Marita and Her Heart’s Desire is a magical, mysterious and funny story of a little girl who believes the moon can grant her heart’s desire. Come early to visit the craft room and other activities one hour before each show. Recommended for children ages 5 to 12, but created with the entire family in mind. Stay after for free cookies and juice!

Handel’s Dixit Dominus.
Sunday Feb 7, 2016 at 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Completed in 1707, Handel’s Dixit Dominus (pronounced “dee-kzeet doh-mee-noos”) contains some of his most thrilling and hauntingly beautiful choral music. A co-production with the Red Deer Symphony Orchestra, VoiceScapes and guest singers, this performance will be on period instruments (based on those from Handel’s time). Also on the programme are Handel’s Concerto Grosso, Op. 2 and his Nisi Dominus, another seldome-heard gem for choir. The pre-concert talk will take place at 7:30 p.m. and the concert will start at 8:00 p.m.
Family Skate Night at Village Square Leisure Centre. Monday Feb 8, 2016 at 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Come in out of the cold for a night of skating with your family. Bring your skates and helmets. Loaner skates and helmets are available on a first come, first served basis. This is a free event!

Family Valentine’s Crafts and Cookies at Southland Leisure Centre.
Tuesday Feb 9, 2016 at 9:30 am – 11:30 am. Two times available to attend: 9:30 to 11:30am & 6:30 to 8:30pm. Celebrate family month and Valentine’s at Southland! Make some Valentine’s crafts for your family and friends, and enjoy some light refreshments. This is a free event!

Feb. 11 to 15 – Family Quest at Heritage Park Historical Village.
Everyday from Feb 11, 2016 – Feb 15, 2016 at 12:00 am – 12:00 am

For all the information about these great events or a list of other family friendly activities happening this weekend check out our calendar: www.calgaryschild.com/calendar

 

Facing Scary News With Your Kids

by Parenting Power

The news coming out of Paris in November felt shocking, scary and sad. Since that time, many parents have asked for our take on the best way to discuss these kinds of situations with their children. Wanting to do the right thing, and not knowing quite what to say, some parents have shifted the subject and decided not to say much.

At Parenting Power, we believe that kids really need the family to feel like a safe place when the world at large feels scary. The root word of courage is “coeur” or heart. Love is the strength we need when we feel fear. As parents, we really can help our kids to feel that love and strength in scary times.

See which of these tips might work for you:

  1. If you have children who are too young to have seen or heard anything about the terrorism, you don’t need to introduce it to them. Please be clear that if you are watching it on TV or listening to it on the radio when they are home, they are hearing it and do need some clarity – even if it is in very simple, age-appropriate terms:

There were some scary things on TV. Thankfully, our family is safe and there are lots of people trying to help.

  1. Be very aware of how often you are checking the media about this topic. Many children have difficulty understanding that news agencies have to fill their air/screen space with news on a recurring basis. When kids hear about the killings every 15 minutes, they may feel that a new killing is happening every 15 minutes. Gather your information and then turn it off while the family is present (or choose to listen only when your kids aren’t around and then relate the details that you feel are relevant.)
  1. Make yourself aware of what your kids are hearing and understand about the situation. They are likely hearing about it at school, extra curricular activities and when out with friends. A good way to talk about any uncomfortable issue with your children is to start out by asking them questions:

Have you been talking about world events at school?

What have you heard about the event?

How are you feeling about the situation?

When we start with a question, we have the opportunity to find out what our kids know, to correct misinformation and then to have a discussion.

One of our favourite books, The Family Virtues Guide by Linda Kavelin Popov, refers to the virtue of tolerance:

“Tolerance is being able to accept things that you wish were different. When you practice tolerance, you don’t expect others to think, look or act just like you. You accept differences. When you are practicing tolerance, you are able to sort out what is important from what is not.”

This is a great time to check in with the family and decide what is truly important to your family.

  1. Fear is often linked to a feeling of powerlessness. When we talk about these scary things with our kids, we get to talk about our values and beliefs. These feel concrete and safe. In addition, we can give our kids a feeling of power (how we can effect change) by figuring out what our family will do in the face of this situation.

What can we do today to help?

How will we make today feel better?

How can we show respect for all human beings?

What can we control?

The reality is this: if we don’t quite understand what is happening, how can we expect our kids to make sense of it? They need to know that they have a safe place to ask questions and that the family will face the adversity as a team.

What to do this weekend – January 15-17

Checklist for Weekend FunLooking for fun and festive activities you and your family can you do this weekend in and around Calgary? Here are our top picks for family friendly activities:

  • This weekend kicks off IceMagic Festival at Lake Louise! Experience the incredible talent of international ice carvers as they delicately balance grueling physical labour with precision artistry in this 34-hour competition.
  • While you’re in Banff National Park visit the 5th Annual SnowDays. There are a variety of events that combine history, culture and cutting edge winter action.
  • Learn how to Cook With Your Kids at the Calgary Farmer’s Market. Families can prepare a healthy dish and sit down and enjoy their meal together.
  • See the connection between body and movement at BODY WORLDS Vital which opens at Telus Spark Saturday January 16. Understand the impact that healthy choices and lifestyle changes have on our physical body and wellbeing through this amazing exhibition.
  • Visit the Puppet Pop-Up Studio: Year of the Monkey. Inspired by the Chinese astrological calendar and the upcoming Chinese New Year, W.P. Puppets will be making monkey puppets from paper and cord at the Chinese Cultural Centre.

For all the information about these great events or a list of other family friendly activities happening this weekend, check out our calendar.

Calgary’s Best Family New Year’s Eve Parties

We’ve got the best family-friendly events for you to enjoy this New Year’s Eve, starting at 9am and going right through until midnight! No matter your family’s age and stage, we have an event for everyone to enjoy.

Noon Year’s Eve at TELUS Spark
220 St. George’s Drive NE
9am to 5pm; big countdown starts at 11:50am
Ringing in the New Year for everyone with early bedtimes, TELUS Spark will count down to high noon with hydrogen balloon explosions! The celebration culminates in a bubble wrap dance party where nearly 2,000 square feet of bubble wrap covers the Atrium floor for stomping and popping. And the event is so much more. Noon Year’s Eve will be a full day of family-friendly activities! Purchase tickets at sparkscience.ca/signaturetickets

Zoo Year’s Eve
1300 Zoo Road NE
6 to 9pm; fireworks begin at 8pm
Roar in the New Year at the Calgary Zoo with your family! Enjoy all that ZOOLIGHTS has to offer, plus some wild live entertainment and a spectacular fireworks display. The fireworks and entertainment show are presented by GlobalFest and will feature an array of dance performances, improv games, a live DJ in the skating rink as well as a live graffiti artist in the ENMAX conservatory. Purchase tickets at https://websales2.calgaryzoo.com/public/default.asp?cgcode=3

New Year’s Eve Pool Party at Village Square Leisure Centre
2623, 56 Street NE
In the Gymnasium from 4:30 to 6:30pm; Pool Party from 5:30 to 8:30pm
Play, swim, jump, splash and slide into 2016! Join in the gymnasium for arts & crafts, games, obstacle courses, bouncy house and the “Take a Selfie” photo booth! Then the party will head to the waterpark where there will be a DJ pumping out the sounds as families enjoy the wave pool, slides, hot tub and safari splash! Don’t forget to stay until the very end to enjoy the Pool Party Countdown! For more information, visit calgary.ca/NYE

The City of Calgary New Year’s Eve Family Dance Party
Municipal Building – 800 Macleod Trail SE
7 to 9pm
There will be music and activities for the young and young-at-heart. Wear neon or white and anything that glows! Bring your dancing shoes. There will also be a Kids Countdown at 9pm! For more information, visit calgary.ca/NYE

The City of Calgary New Year’s Eve Outdoor Celebrations
Olympic Plaza – 228, 8 Avenue SE
8pm to 12am
Bundle up, bring your skates or borrow some. Enjoy music, ice sculptures and carving demos, singing and storytelling by the fire, a spectacular countdown to midnight and fireworks. No matter where you are or which party you’ve decided to attend, share your experiences at the events by using #yycnye. For more information, visit calgary.ca/NYE

Airdrie Festival of Lights Family-Friendly New Year’s Party
From Calgary and other locations south of Airdrie, take Deerfoot Trail and Hwy. 2 to the third Airdrie exit (Veteran’s Boulevard). Stay left on the exit and travel west about 1 kilometre, while moving to the inside (left) lane. Turn left at the traffic signals at Main Street, then travel 2.7 km south, and turn right into Nose Creek Park.
7 to 9pm; There will be a DJ, carnival games, prizes and a whole lot of family fun inside a heated tent. This is all in addition to the miniature train rides, hot chocolate, fire pits and lovely lights! There will not be fireworks. The Airdrie Parade Committee is planning a fireworks display offsite at Ed Eggerer Park for 6:30pm; however, the fireworks are visible from Nose Creek Park. For more information, visitairdriefestivaloflights.com

Airdrie New Year’s Eve Fireworks
800 East Lake Boulevard
6:30 to 7:30pm
Ring in the New Year with the Annual New Year’s Eve Fireworks! Bring the whole family out to enjoy a spectacular fireworks display over East Lake in Airdrie. For more information, visit airdrieparades.com

Okotoks Kids New Year’s Eve Party & Fireworks
Okotoks Recreation Centre
10:30am to 3:30pm; fireworks at 7pm
Join at the Okotoks Recreation Centre for free family fun and activities to celebrate ringing in 2016! Don’t forget to find a spot around town to watch the fireworks, being set off from Lineham Park at 7pm!

A Luminous New Year’s Eve
Knox United Church – 506, 4 Street SW
8 to 10:30pm
Be warmed by the glow of luminaries and candles as you enter Knox United Church, then surrounded by “Luminous Voices” of Calgary’s only professional chamber choir. Enjoy some of the gems of choral music from the haunting and meditative polyphony of Italian Renaissance composer Palestrina to vibrant and joyful music of “Passing of the Year” by Jonathan Dove. Admission includes complimentary champagne and chocolates at intermission – a great way to spend New Year’s Eve! Purchase tickets the door or visit brownpapertickets.com/

(For Parents Only) Fort Calgary’s 1920s Speak Easy New Year’s Affair
7pm to 12am
750, 9 Avenue SW
Step into the past to ring in the future! There will be cocktails and canapés from 7 to 7:45pm; a four-course dinner from 8 to 10pm; and a live swing band, The Bow Django’s, at 10pm! Tickets are $150 per person. To attend the dance only, tickets are $40 per person (you can gain access to the dance at 9:30pm). For more information and to purchase tickets, visit fortcalgary.com

Calgary’s Child Podcast

From print, to television, radio and online Calgary’s Child is everywhere you need us to be.  Now we are testing the waters for a new format, one you can listen to any time and anywhere you have an internet connection.

On our first episode host Christina Roswell chats with Patty Kilgallon, the chief Executive Office with The Children’s Cottage Society. They are dedicated to preventing harm and neglect to children and to build strong families through support services. The Children’s Cottage is a recognized leader in providing effective programs and services to help ensure Safe Children in Healthy Families.

We also sit down with Tammy Johnston, a financial advisor and author of A Financial Foundations Story. Johnston takes a holistic approach to working with their clients. Tammy came up with the concept of Financial Foundations.

Plus, Ellen Percival, publisher of Calgary’s Child Magazine takes us through the do’s and don’ts of the perfect picture with Santa.

We hope you enjoy our first podcast and we look forward to hearing your feedback!

 

20 Inexpensive Ways to Entertain Your Kids in the Winter

by Jeremy Zongker

It’s winter break…. or maybe it’s a snow day. Whatever it is, the kids are home from school, you’re broke and they’re driving you a little crazy. Besides begging a relative to take them for a few hours, what can you do to entertain and enjoy your kids when it’s cold outside and you’re stuck indoors?

1. Encourage the budding movie maker – Have the kids write, act, and produce their own mini-movie. Most still digital cameras have the ability to record short movie clips if you don’t have a video camera of some sort – you can always record the “movie” in short segments and then piece it together with Windows Movie Maker (or the equivalent) on the computer, later. If your kids are a little too young to come up with their own screenplay from scratch, have them act out a scene from their favorite book, television show or movie and encourage them to create a new ending.

2. Soda bottle bowling – Raid the recyclable bin for empty plastic soda bottles. Set them up like bowling pins on one end of your living room, hallway or in the basement, and roll a ball at them like you’re bowling. You can make the game more challenging by adding some water to the bottom of the soda bottles (if you still have the caps!) or by bowling blindfolded.

3. An “Unbirthday” – Take a clue from Alice in Wonderland and celebrate your child’s Merry UnBirthday! Bake and decorate a cake, blow up some balloons if you’ve got them, and have the other children create gifts (drawings, play doh masterpieces, etc) to give. To prevent any issues and arguments, let everyone take a turn in the “unbirthday” role and receive gifts from the other siblings.

4. Bottle cap Shuffleboard – Create a triangle on the end of the kitchen table out of masking or painter’s tape, and create 3 sections: the tip of the triangle is worth 30 points, the center is worth 20 points, and the larger base of the triangle is worth 10 points. On the other end of the kitchen table, place a piece of tape to create the push-off line. Use bottle caps (4 per player, and mark with stickers or paint to determine who the caps belong to) and push them so they slide from the push-off line toward the triangle. Players can push another player’s cap off the triangle (or even off the table!) and the winner is the person who reaches 200 points first.

5. Classic card games – Often forgotten in a world of technology, classic card games like “Go Fish”, “Crazy 8’s”, and the “Old Maid” can be played with a standard deck of cards. Introduce your children to the games you used to play.

6. Photographic memory – Everyone looks at the same photo for 30 seconds. Remove the photo and write down as much as you can remember about the photo. Person with the longest list of items that are really in the photo wins.

7. Animate a stick figure – Find a pad of paper or a post-it pack. Start in one corner of the page and draw a stick figure. Lift up the page and draw the same figure on the next page, but move an arm or leg just slightly, and continue on each page of the pack. On each page, you’ll draw your stick figure just positioned a little differently. When you flip the pages with your thumb, you’ll have an animated stick figure!

8. Walk on stilts – Turn two coffee cans (or plastic containers, as they tend to be these days) upside down so the lids are on the bottom. Poke a hole through the center of the can from the top. Thread a piece of rope into the hole and tie a knot inside the can. Make the rope long enough so that when the child stands on the can, they can hang onto the ropes while walking with the cans as their stilts!

9. Group story – You can do this on paper, or use a recorder to tell the story out loud. Have each person sit in a line and take turns telling a small part of a made-up story. The first person in line starts the story and stops after a specific period of time. The next person in line picks up where the first left off, continuing the story. You can write it down and the read it aloud, or record it with a tape player or digital recorder and listen to it when you’re finished. It’s sure to get a few laughs!

10. Indoor bubbles – Who says you can’t play with bubbles indoors? Put two drops of dish detergent in the center of a plate and add a few drops of water. Give the kids a straw, and let them blow bubbles on the plate. You may want to give your child traditional bubbles and a bubble wand and let him or her blow bubbles in the bathtub.

11. Build an indoor “snow” fort – For some reason, kids love to build forts. Give them some blankets to hang on the back of chairs, couches and other items to hide underneath. Give each child a box or bag of crumpled up newspaper “snow balls” and let them have an indoor snow fight. Forts are great for playing house, or any number of activities active imaginations can drum up.

12. Card towers – Get out a deck or cards (or several) and use them to build a tower. Lean one card against another, creating a triangle with the table top or floor. Create a second triangle a couple inches to the left or right of your first one, and connect the two with a card laying flat over top. See how tall you can make your tower – either with all children on the same team, or as a competition.

13. Blindfolded penny hunt – Clear a room of breakables or anything that could hurt a child if they bumped into it. Blindfold each child and give them a paper bag or small container. Scatter a bunch of pennies around the floor and set them loose crawling around for pennies. The person who gathers the most pennies wins.

14. Marble race – You need an empty toilet paper or paper towel tube for each child and a marble or small bouncing ball for each. (Keep an eye on the little ones!) Create a finish line with some masking tape on the floor or table, and position the kids on the other end with their cardboard tubes and marbles. Send the marble or ball through the tube launcher and see who crosses the finish line first.

15. Count and roll the change – If you’ve got piggy banks and buckets of change around the house, give the kids the task of counting them and rolling them. You can deposit their rolled change into their banks on your next trip to the bank, or let them buy something with their rolled money.

16. Floating pasta toss – You know the carnival game where you throw lightweight plastic balls at a stack of fishbowls? Try the kitchen version: fill a casserole dish or roasting pan with water. Use a permanent marker to write some numbers on the inside of plastic lids (soda bottle lids, juice bottle lids, margarine containers, etc). The numbers become point values for keeping score. Give each child a few pieces of pasta which they can color with a marker (different color for each child) and let them stand near the floating targets and toss their pasta in to earn points.

17. Micro golf – You’ve heard of mini golf? In the micro version, you’ll be putting with popsicle sticks (or unsharpened pencils) and sending a marble into the holes. First, create your micro golf course: lay a cardboard box on it’s side and create a few holes in a few different places just large enough for the marbles to drop into. You could use more than one box and build ramps with additional cardboard or the kid’s train tracks if you’re really feeling creative! Set up obstacles on your micro golf course with blocks, toilet paper tubes, and other toys around the house. Next, create your “putters” with your popsicle stick or unsharpened pencil, and add a piece of foam or cardboard to the end to make the putter head. Finally, let the games begin! See who can get their marbles into the holes with the shortest number of putts.

18. Pillowcase races – Most of us don’t have potato sacks around the house, but you can probably dig out some older pillowcases. Have each child stand in a pillowcase at the starting line and hang on to the opening. Whoever hops over the finish line first wins.

19. Find it in print – Gather some books, magazines and newspapers. Have the kids go on a “Where’s Waldo” type adventure, finding various things in print that you call out, try:
things that move
things that bark
animals that eat meat
something you find in a kitchen
things that breathe
etc!

20. Make a tornado in a bottle – In a plastic soda bottle, fill it three quarters of the way full with water and add a couple drops of food coloring. Place an inverted soda bottle on top of the first bottle, so their openings line up. Wind the bottle necks tightly with tape to secure them with a water-tight seal. Hold the bottles with two hands and swirl the water in a circular motion, flip upside down and set it on the table to watch what happens.

For more tips and information, please visit destroydebt.com, an online community which helps people manage and reduce debt.