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Easter Events Around Town

Have a ‘hoppy’ Easter (yeah, we went there) with these family-friendly events!

Easter at the Calgary Farmers’ Market
Put a Little Spring in Your Step! Join in the Easter festivities from 10am to 2pm on April 18 to 20! Hop on over to the stage and get your picture taken with the Easter Bunny and decorate an Easter cookie, too (while supplies last). The Calgary Farmers’ Market will be accepting cash or food donations for the Calgary Food Bank to snap a bunny photo and to ensure no one goes hungry this Easter (recommended $5 donation). And remember, the Market is open all Easter weekend, Thursday to Sunday, 9am to 5pm! Website.

Easter Eggstravaganza at the Calgary Zoo
Easter Eggstravaganza at the Calgary Zoo, proudly sponsored in part by Calgary’s Child Magazine, takes place April 19 & 20, 9am to 2pm. Hop on down to the zoo where kids of all ages can play, explore, create, and learn. This year, once again, there will be 4 activity zones (creative, play, sweet, and enviro) for your family to spring through. In each zone, you’ll meet the local partners who have brought activities, prize draws, and tasty treats! Kids 12 and under can visit the 4 treat stations for a free treat. What a sweet way to celebrate! Easter Eggstravanganza is included with regular admission to the Zoo. To purchase your admission tickets now, visit the website.

National Service Dogs Easter Egg Hunt for Dogs (and Their Humans)
Friday Apr 19 at 10am to 12pm. Join for a fun-filled morning as your dog(s) hunt for treat-filled eggs on the beautiful south lawn of Calaway Park. All funds raised go to supporting National Service Dogs work. Visit the website to sign up and start collecting pledges! This is an outdoor event, so dress for the weather!

Easter Petting Zoo at Westbrook Mall
Meet the Easter Bunny and make some furry friends! On April 19, Westbrook Mall is hosting an Easter petting zoo for the whole family to enjoy. Join Westbrook Mall and give your kids an opportunity to interact with friendly farm animals or get your photo taken with the Easter bunny from Noon to 5pm and receive a free 4 x 6 photo! Website.

Easter Eggstravaganza! at Trico Centre for Family Wellness
Saturday Apr 20, 10am to 12pm. Join Trico Centre for an eggstravagant morning of fun! There will be face painting, crafts, games, and more! This holiday event is free for members. Website.

Easter Fun at Marlborough Mall
Saturday Apr 20, 10am to 6pm. Visit Marlborough Mall for some egg-citing Easter activities! Stop by from 12 to 6pm and get a free 4 x 6 picture with the Easter Bunny. While you are there, participate in the Easter Egg Hunt and interact with some adorable barnyard animals (from 10am to 6 pm) at the Petting Zoo located by the Family Park. Website.

Looking for exciting summer camps? Try something different.

Provided by the City of Calgary

Have you ever heard, “Hey Mom watch this!”? That is your child taking pride in showing off a new accomplishment. It is important for kids to try new things as they grow up. New experiences broaden their imagination and decrease their discomfort with things unknown. Children develop confidence and independence as they develop new skills.

The City of Calgary’s 186 affordable day camps at 18 locations throughout Calgary offer fun ways to spark new interests and uncover hidden talents. Do your kids enjoy being creative? Art, dance or performing camps are a safe bet. Are your children into sports and games? We have a wide variety of sports camps, from Explore Sports and gymnastics to skateboarding and hockey. Kids love nature and being outdoors? They’re sure to enjoy Nature Discovery camp or Outdoor Adventure camp where they will learn to kayak or canoe. The City of Calgary has a perfect camp for every kid.

For parents, flexibility is just as important. You might need a place to send your kids for just a few hours in the morning or afternoon, or a way to keep your kids active and entertained for a full week. The City has half-day camp options – you can even mix and match. Try Arts Combo camp in the morning and Cartoons & Comics in the afternoon.

Daily camps are ideal if you’re looking for a camp that’s just a day or two during the week to send your children. If you’re looking for the best bang for your buck, you might want to try one of our two-week sailing camps – a tremendous value when compared to similar camps.

“I just wanted to send out a huge THANK YOU to you and the staff for making sure Dana’s needs are always met at camp. You guys are awesome, and we love being a part of the camp and atmosphere there.”  Cheryl Claridge, parent – Kudos to Southland Leisure Centre day camps

Start planning your kids’ summer early to find the right combination of activities, location and friends.

The City of Calgary day camp staff are selected based on experience, ability to relate to children and leadership skills. Leaders create a friendly, safe and fun environment for campers. Staff receive training and are certified in Standard First Aid and CPR as well as High Five® Principles of Healthy Child Development.

We welcome and include all children. Please make us aware of any disabilities or behavioural needs that may affect your child’s participation. While our goal is inclusive participation, there are times when a child requires more support than our current ratios can provide.

With so many affordable camp options available close to your home or work, we’d bet there is one that’s perfect for your kids. Find that camp online at calgary.ca/daycamps.

Clear the Slate and Move On!

Provided by Parenting Power

Have you ever found yourself critiquing yourself repeatedly for a mistake you made a while ago? Perhaps you wish that you had used a better “comeback” or had been calm-cool-and-collected instead of out-of-control-heated-and-LOUD!

You are not alone! We all make mistakes in our interactions with other adults and especially in interactions with our kids. Mistakes happen, and provide learning opportunities. It’s up to us to take the opportunity and make the most of it. When we do, we likely won’t make that mistake again. This leaves room for us to make other mistakes instead.

So how do we learn from our mistakes? We look at what happened, what we might have wanted to have happen and then make a plan for what to do differently if the same situation occurs again. It’s pretty simple actually.

In her book, Powerful – Building a Culture of Freedom and Responsibility, Patty Mccord shares a technique for sharing honest concerns with co-workers. The exercise is called Start, Stop, Continue:

“Each person tells a colleague one thing they should start doing,  one thing they should stop doing, and one thing they’re  doing really well and should keep doing”

When we make a mistake, we can use this same exercise: What can I start to do differently? What can I stop doing and what am I doing well, because that can continue!

Then, we clear the slate and move on! There is no need to revisit this issue. If you need to apologize for your behaviour, take responsibility to do that and then give yourself the freedom to move forward.

The same thing is true for our kids. When they make mistakes, AND THEY WILL, allow them to own the behaviour, make amends if necessary, learn from the behaviour and then move on. There’s no need to remind your children of their mistakes. They are likely already doing so inside their own heads.

Allow your actions to teach your kids the freedom to make mistakes and learn from them. There is no need to spend hour after hour looking back at what might have been or worrying into the future about the damage you may have caused. Taking responsibility and then letting go is what creates this freedom.

This week, ask yourself these questions:

Am I so worried about being a good parent that it’s getting in the way of my actual parenting?
What can I clear off of my slate or my child’s slate?
What am I doing well that I can continue?

Learn more from Julie and Gail at parentingpower.ca!

Born to Sing

PAID ADVERTISEMENT FOR CALGARY GIRL’S CHOIR

Everyone is born to sing, and we do it almost unconsciously. We sing along to our favourite songs, soothe babies with lullabies and sing teaching songs like the ABCs. Singing plays a powerful role in development – it helps teach language skills, bonds us with our parents, and is foundation for a strong music education.

“A child who plays before he sings may remain unmusical for a lifetime. That is why we encounter so many skillful pianists who have no idea of the essence of music.”  – Zoltan Kodály

While the voice is a part of our identity, it is also our instrument and should be fostered
and not shelved. This belief led Ms. Elaine Quilichini to found the Calgary Girls Choir
(CGC) in 1995.

“The voice is our own, natural instrument and to use it is one of the greatest gifts we have. I think singing is fundamental to being human. That to express yourself through singing makes you more fully human and allows you to really express what’s in your heart and in your spirit. It satisfies you in a way that speaking alone doesn’t.”

Guided by the child-centred Kodály philosophy, Ms. Quilichini’s Calgary Girls Choir
provides exceptional music education and encourages the development of confidence,
integrity and musicianship. She says:

“I wanted to give young women a voice and provide life-changing experiences through choral music, singing and artistic expression. To give girls a place not only to use and develop their voice but a belief that they are entitled to be heard and respected and should expect nothing less.”

The CGC is comprised of three levels – Dolce, Viva and Brava, which meet once a week
to sing and learn together. Choristers in Dolce (ages 5-9) enjoy an active and fun
program where music is learned through traditional children’s folk and art songs, nursery rhymes, dance, and games. Play and physical response to the songs is an important aspect of each class. Viva, the program for Grade 4-7 girls, advances musical skills through a wide and varied repertoire. Choral training develops with an emphasis on the artistic refinement of performance, vocal technique, inner hearing, rhythm, and learning Solfège – a relative pitch system which uses pitch syllables (do, re, mi, etc.) to develop a keen musical ear. Brava (Grades 7 to age 24) learn challenging pieces with polished expression and are recognized internationally for their exquisite and moving performances.

“An artist needs to learn their craft to really be able to freely express themselves – in visual art, dance or dramatics. It’s the same with singing. To really fully express the joy of being human, the more you learn to use the voice, the more it satisfies you.” – Elaine Quilichini

Your daughter can experience the joy of singing at Calgary Girls Choir’s upcoming trial
classes, “Come Do Re Mi with CGC!” On March 12 and 13, girls between five and
thirteen can participate in a rehearsal designed to give them idea of what it would be
like to sing with the CGC. Just be sure to sign up ahead of time on the Calgary Girls
Choir website or on their Facebook Page under Events.

 

Have We Forgotten How to Eat Together?

provided by Presidents’ Choice® 

Eating together – we’ve done it since the beginning of time, when hunters and gatherers shared their spoils. Kids eat together on the playground, and college students dine in shared dorm rooms, but as we get older and take on day jobs, are we still eating together?

Apparently, not so much. A recent national survey commissioned by President’s Choice® found that although Canadians spend significantly less time eating meals with friends and family compared to screen time, there is still a desire to spend more time at the table.

With technology becoming more accessible than ever and permeating our everyday lives, it’s important to take the time to put that mobile phone or tablet down, to enjoy the company around you. Research has shown on average, almost 1 in 3 Canadians (29%) are spending more than 4 hours of their free time engaging with screens each day! Additionally, when people eat together, they see each other as equals and connect with one another.

The simple act of regularly sharing a meal with friends and family can provide numerous benefits and contribute to a healthy lifestyle including the formation of healthy eating habits, early childhood development and building stronger interpersonal relationships.  In fact for the first time since its inception, Canada’s Food Guide, released in early 2019,  encourages Canadians to cook more often and eat meals with others in an effort to instill healthy eating habits.

Much like the recommendations in Canada’s new Food Guide, President’s Choice® has been on a mission to bring Canadians back to the table to Eat Together.  For three years, President’s Choice® has been committed to bringing Canadians back to the table to share a meal with many Canadians participating to date.

President’s Choice® is encouraging Canadians to take the pledge this year to Eat Together at pc.ca/eattogether and donate to PC® Children’s Charity™. Every pledge will also receive a  $1.00* donation to the PC® Children’s Charity™ to help children in Canada eat together with their friends and families.

About the President’s Choice® Survey:

From Wednesday, December 12, 2018 to Thursday, December 13, 2018, an online survey of 1,510 randomly selected adult Canadians who are Maru Voice Canada panelists was executed by Maru/Blue. For comparison purposes, a probability sample of this size has an estimated margin of error (which measures sampling variability) of +/- 2.4%, 19 times out of 20. The results have been weighted by education, age, gender and region (and in Quebec, language) to match the population, according to Census data. This is to ensure the sample is representative of the entire adult population of Canada. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

Things To Do Around Town

The end of January and (let’s face it) the entire month of February can feel like a bit of a drag – but it doesn’t have to be! We have some great activity suggestions all around the city to get you out of the house and enjoying the snowy weather.

Silver Springs 13th Annual LEGO Competition
Jan 26; Silver Springs Community Centre hosts its 13th annual LEGO Competition! The public viewing is from 12Noon to 2pm. Drop by and view the awesome entries! Try out the speed-build competition. Free admission. If you are interested in entering the competition, call 403-288-2616. silverspringscommunity.ca

Dive-In Movie at Southland Leisure Centre
Jan 26; Experience the movies like never before! Come settle in for a night at the movies in the water park. Lounge poolside or watch from the water. You’ll enjoy a great film and an even better time with friends, family, and neighbors. Concession and popcorn will be available. There will also be nightly door prizes. All ages welcome. For movie titles and more information, visit the Facebook page. facebook.com/SouthlandLeisureCentre

Mad Science Planets & Moons Workshops
Multiple dates; Brought to you by The Calgary Public Library, presented by Mad Science. Join Mad Science and explore the solar system by impersonating the planets to compare their sizes and distances from the sun. Learn the difference between a solar and lunar eclipse and how space probes harness the gravity of distant planets to use less fuel. Build and keep a Mad Science® Gravity Assisted Launcher! Suitable for ages 6 to 12. Spaces are limited. To register, visit the Calgary Public Library website. calgarylibrary.ca

Family Valentine’s Crafts & Cookies at Southland Leisure Centre
Feb 14; Two activity times available: 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.

Family Fun Fest at Granary Road
Feb 16 and 17; Family Fun Fest at Granary Road won’t be one to miss! Join for a memorable weekend with lots of activities to share and join in on with friends and family. With games such as bean bag toss and Jenga, from skating (don’t forget your skates) to shuffleboard on the pond, hot cider and marshmallow roasting, wagon rides and furry friends, there is something for the whole family! Make sure to check out the market. Don’t forget your camera. granaryroad.com

FISHtival! at Bow Habitat Station
Feb 16; Kick off Alberta’s Family Fishing Weekend with free outdoor family fun and reduced admission to the Discovery Centre. Visit Investigation Stations to learn about Alberta’s fish, wildlife, and winter recreation! Investigation stations are open from 10am to 4pm. Last admission to the Discovery Centre at 3:30pm. Outdoor Fun: Snowshoeing; Predator-Prey Game; Marshmallow Roasting; Magnetic Ice Fishing Game; Casting Practice. Indoor Fun: Fly Tying with the Hook ’n’ Hackle Club and Family Fishy Games. Please leave strollers at home or in your vehicle during the event. Due to ongoing renovations of the Sam Livingston Fish Hatchery, none of the investigation station activities will take place in the fish hatchery. $5 admission. bowhabitat.alberta.ca

Family Day Weekend Activities at Southland Leisure Centre
Feb 17; 3pm – 5pm. The whole family is welcome to this special Family Day Weekend for Indoor Rock Climbing and Gymnastics Drop-In! calgary.ca/southland

Annual Fun’derful Family Day Celebration at Trico Centre for Family Wellness
Feb 18; 10am to 2pm. Join Trico and Shine FM on Family Day for their Family Day celebration! Join for YYC Princess appearances, Glamorgan’s Bakery Cookie Station, KLM’s Musical Instrument Zoo, discounted Family Leisure Swim ($5 per adult and $2 per child), free admission to Family Leisure Skate, Nerf Wars, Arts & Crafts, and more! tricocentre.ca

Fantastic Family Fair and Skate at Village Square Leisure Centre
Feb 20; 6pm to 8pm. Come out and enjoy fun games and activities. Bring your skates and helmet for a free skate. This event in partnership with Hand in Hand Parent Link Centre.

Calgary Folk Music Festival’s 4th Annual Block Heater Festival
Feb 21 to 23; Calgary Folk Music Festival’s 4th Annual Block Heater festival, presented by ATB, is a magical weekend of concerts and collaborative sessions held at Festival Hall, Studio Bell, the King Eddy, and the new Central Library. Featuring Ashley MacIssac, Basia Bulat, DJ Logic, The Handsome Family, Matt Mays, Pokey LaFarge, Snotty Nose Rez Kids, The Wet Secrets, plus many more! For full schedule lineup and to purchase tickets, visit the website. calgaryfolkfest.com

Toboggan Safety

Emergency Medical Services (EMS) would like to remind parents and children of some basic toboggan/sledding safety tips as the winter season continues. Injuries may result from collisions with stationary objects on the hill, such as trees or rocks, or even collisions with other people. Unprotected falls can also result in more serious injury if you lose control at high speeds. However, everyone can be safe and have fun on the toboggan hill by following these simple reminders.

Equipment

  • Always ensure your toboggan or sledding device is in good repair. Inspect it for any damaged or missing parts before each use;
  • Be certain the operator is fully capable of staying in control of the sled at all times;
  • Children should wear a certified, properly fitted helmet designed for other high impact sports such as hockey, cycling, or climbing.

Hazards

  • Avoid hills that are too steep or too icy;
  • Choose hills free of all obstacles such as trees, rocks, utility poles,
    or fences;
  • Beware of loose scarves or clothing containing drawstrings which could present a strangulation hazard if they become caught or snagged.

Plan ahead

  • Dress warmly in layers and anticipate weather changes;
  • Consider bringing extra sets of gloves and toques to exchange wet garments for dry ones;
  • Take breaks, out of the cold, to warm up;
  • Ensure frostbite hasn’t affected any exposed skin;
  • Even when properly protected from the elements, the finger tips, toes, ears, the tip of the nose, and other high points on the face such as the forehead and cheek bones can be affected by frostbite;
  • If frost bite has occurred, treat it by first removing the individual out of the cold environment;
  • Gently warm the affected skin by placing a warm hand over it, or by placing the affected part in warm, not hot, water, until re-warmed.

CABIN FEVER? THE CITY OF CALGARY HAS THE CURE

Provided by the City of Calgary

When the holiday season ends, and the dead of winter sets in, there is an inevitable gloominess that typically hits most families. The bored looks. The cranky behavior. The lack of patience. The constant irritability… The symptoms are easy to diagnose. It’s cabin fever.

This winter, don’t let everyone stay trapped in the house. Find new ways to spend more quality time with your family, starting with The City of Calgary’s aquatic facilities, leisure centres and arenas.

With two wave pools, seven public skating arenas and 12 pools in Calgary, The City’s recreation facilities provide fun and affordable family drop-in activities that are close to home. Choose between swimming, skating, shinny hockey, badminton, basketball and even rock climbing! Best part is, these drop-in activities won’t break your budget. The City offers a special family admission rate at their recreation facilities for one low price. Even better, kids two and under are free.

Don’t wait until it’s too late. Protect yourself against cabin fever this winter. Find an activity that fits your family at calgary.ca/cabinfever.

THE FOOTHILLS ARE AGLOW WITH TWINKLING LIGHTS!

The days in December are short – but the nights are full of twinkling lights! Bundle up and enjoy some of the many wonderful light displays all across the foothills.

Residential Christmas Light Displays
One of our family traditions every year is to get Peters’ milkshakes and visit the many beautiful community displays! If your family goes over and above to decorate each year or if you’d like to find the best residential displays near you, check out the Lighten Up Calgary website. lightenupcalgary.ca

23rd Annual Airdrie Festival of Lights.
Join for the 23rd season of the Airdrie Festival of Lights! There is no charge to attend, and parking is always free. Enjoy a hot chocolate or ride the trains for $2 and warm up by the fire! Donations graciously accepted. Santa Visits takes place December 1, 4, 11, 18, 22, and 23 from 7 to 8pm. New this year, the 12 Days of Christmas display grouping and Kids’ Only Shopping Experience. Check the website for event details, and more. Website.

Legacy Christmas Light Parade 2018
Legacy’s 4th Annual Christmas Light Parade is back! With over 120,000 lights, all December, Legacy will be lit up with lights for you and your family to enjoy. It is free for anyone to come drive through the community or come out and walk through the tunnels of lights. The public parks, as well as over 20 Show Homes in the community, have been decorated for Christmas! Come enjoy the many lights and displays and join the Legacy. Website.

32nd Annual Lions’ Festival of Lights
The 32nd Annual Lions’ Festival of Lights will illuminate Confederation Park Golf Course along 14 Street NW again this holiday season from December 1 to January 8. Drive by Calgary’s largest Free Christmas light showcase nightly between 6pm and midnight or take the family for a sled ride through the park amongst the 450,000+ bulbs! The Grand Opening event, complete with fireworks, will be held on December 1 at 5pm. Website.

ZOOlights at the Calgary Zoo
ZOOLIGHTS: The glow starts with you. ZOOLIGHTS, presented by Olympia Trust Company, is back with more holiday cheer, festive spirit, and family fun than ever! Come experience how 2+ million lights, 200 displays, crackling fire pits, and fun-filled activity zones (with many new additions!) transform the Zoo into a magical winter wonderland. Most magical of all is its ability to bring friends and family together during the holiday season! To purchase tickets to ZOOlights, visit the website.

Christmas Lights at Spruce Meadows
Visit Spruce Meadows for a beautiful two kilometre drive through the grounds while you stay warm and toasty in your car! Enjoy over a quarter of a million lights in their roadside displays. It’s the perfect choice if it’s a little too cold outside to wander around.

Cochrane Light Up Parade of Lights
Cochrane Light Up is proud to bring the first annual Parade of Lights to Cochrane! Visit main street on December 8th from 6-7pm for an evening of amazing floats, and free family fun for the entire town! Don’t miss face painting and special guests for all spectators to enjoy!

Do you have more magical light displays to tell us about? Email us at calgaryschild@shaw.ca with the details!

Save Your Holiday With The New PC® Insiders Collection™

Content provided by President’s Choice®; use your best judgement and choose what is right for your family.

The holidays are the most magical time of the year, but with the high expectations we often put on ourselves to impress, it can also be a stressful season especially when you need to think about meal prepping for the family and kids!

In fact, according to a recent survey by President’s Choice®, more than two-thirds of Canadians (67%) want to show their love towards family and friends by putting in a lot of effort in the kitchen over the holidays. That said, all of that effort is leaving over half of us feeling spent! 51% of Canadians agree that all of the holiday prep work leaves them feeling exhausted.

This year, the PC® Insiders Collection™ for Holiday is making it easier than ever for Canadians to spend less time prepping and more time enjoying. Although messing with the “mains” is probably not an option, we believe some shortcuts are necessary to give you more time to spend with family and friends. From delicious appetizers that you pop in the oven to sweet treats that you simply place on a platter, this year’s PC® Insiders Collection™ for Holiday is full of products that are quick and easy to serve.

You can find all the delicious products from the collection online. To name a few, this season’s Must Try products feature:

There are also several new Holiday recipes to go with these great new products, including:

  • Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Cream Lemon Butter Sauce featuring PC® Gnocchi with Butternut Squash Potato Dumplings
  • Roasted Asparagus with Crispy Prosciutto Chips featuring PC® Asparagus Spears and PC® Memories Of Eggs Benedict Hollandaise Sauce
  • Chocolate Hazelnut Bûche de Noel featuring PC® Crunchy Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
  • Maple Bourbon Cider Mule featuring PC® Honeycrisp Sweet Apple Cider and PC® Jamaican-Style Ginger Beer

Check them out online and ease your holiday prep!