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Fairfield County Family Newsletter May 3, 2012

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There are 91 Events coming up in and around Fairfield County that are FREE!

Dear KidsOutAndAbout readers:

Most people think that KidsOutAndAbout is all about connecting you with fun things to do with your kids. Of course, that's absolutely true. But there's a deeper reason I publish the site: Getting "out and about" with your kids gives you the opportunity to draw connections between your kids and the rest of the world. You know your kids best, and you know what they know. As a parent or caregiver, you're in a unique position to help your kids make meaning, THEIR meaning, out of their world. YOU help them make those connections, giving them effortless cultural literacy--knowledge of the world around them. What they learn on these trips gives them a place to "hang their hat," to become ever more curious as a natural lifelong habit. That's why when you're out and about, it's great to talk, and point, and think, and talk some more.
 
Sometimes what you're doing when you're out and about is NOT talking, but helping them quietly observe the world on their own. One of my favorite nature games with my kids is to have us all go outside somewhere--in the woods, on a trail, or even in our own back yard. We close our eyes, and are silent for a minute or two. And we LISTEN. As we hear unique sounds, we hold up our fingers to count them. (Folks who do not hear can count things they see in a category, e.g., things that are light green.) And then we talk about what we observed. Simple, yes, but powerful.

2) It's getting warmer and warmer... time to start heading out to the parks, playgrounds, and, soon, the BEACHES! KidsOutAndAbout has compiled a complete (we really do mean it!) list of parks, playgrounds, and beaches in Fairfield County. Some wonderful places to play the Nature Listening Game!

3) Saturday is also Free Comic Book Day throughout the U.S. It's another simple concept: If you go into a participating comic book store, they will give you a free comic book. FreeComicBookDay.com has locations and details. Participating in our area:

  • ALTERNATE UNIVERSE LLC., 398 Bridgeport Ave, Milford
  • ROGUE COMICS, 3002 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport
  • CAVE COMICS, 57 Church Hill Road, Newtown
  • HEROES COMICS & CARDS, 197 Westport Avenue, Norwalk

4) Saturday night, May 5, will be a Supermoon: The biggest full moon of the year. (It is also my 43rd birthday. Coincidence? You be the judge.) I asked Steve Fentress, Director of Strasenburgh Planetarium in Rochester, NY (where KidsOutAndAbout.com originated) to tell us about it, so we could tell our kids:

The moon's orbit around Earth is almost like a circle that's a little off center. The orbit is about 13 percent closer to us on one side than the other. Each full moon occurs at a different point in the orbit. So, out of all the full moons in a year, one of them has to be the closest, and this year it's the full moon in May. This one is unusual because the moment the moon is exactly full (11:35pm) is so close to the moment the moon reaches the point in its orbit closest to Earth (11:36pm, according to the U.S. Naval Observatory).  The fact that the moon is unusually close makes the May 2012 full moon about 30 percent brighter than this year's smallest, farthest full moon, which is coming on November 28.

If it's a clear night, I think it's worth staying up for, don't you?

5) If you just found us this weekend at the Danbury Kids Expo or the Ridgefield KidsFest, WELCOME! June and I had such a good time meeting all of you. We hope you liked all of the great info (and fun giveaways) that we had. Special thanks to the following organizations that provided tickets and passes for our giveways:

6) Wise Learning and Roseann Capanna-Hodge, LLC are very excited to be hosting their first FREE community event for ALL children, inclusive of students with ADD, ADHD, Asperger’s, NVLD, Dyslexia, Auditory Processing, ASD,  Executive Function, etc.  The Family Social: A Celebration of Learning Differences will have games, prizes, crafts, face painting, martial arts demonstrations, animal, and more!  It takes place on Sunday, May 20th from 1pm – 4pm at 898 Ethan Allen Hwy, Ridgefield.

7) We also found out about all kinds of great resources for kids and families this past weekend. One of the nicest people we have ever met is the owner of College Nannies and Tutors, Craig David Rosen. We loved his enthusiasm and his genuine love for kids. College Nannies and Tutors offers a complete set of nanny placement, on-call nannies and professional babysitting services.

8) Each day, we have been posting a Summer Camp of the Day on our Facebook Page. Here are the ones we highlighted this week:

The Beatles Performance Camp
Imagine Nation Summer Camp
The Globe Players Acting Camp, Shakespeare on the Sound
Pottery and Ceramic Camp at Lakeside Pottery
Woodcock Nature Center

Do you have a favorite summer camp that should be our Summer Camp of the Day? Please email me!



9) CTMomsonline is having their annual Diaper Drive. They are collecting diapers and wipes to benefit over twenty local human services agencies. Do you have leftover diapers that your children have outgrown? Did you buy too many diapers and suddenly find your child potty trained? See a sale at a local store for diapers or wipes?  They will be accepting all brands of diapers, pullups, wipes, unopened diaper creams and powders; anything to keep little tushies happy, dry, and protected!  They will also collect any coupons, gift cards and check or cash donations.  The monetary donations will be combined with the coupons, and the best value diapers will be purchased and added to the lot.  They hope to provide over 20,000 diapers to our area charities this month!

While it may seem that cloth diapers are a great alternative for low-income families, there are actually many reasons why they may not work for some families. Many daycares will not accept cloth diapers and most laundromats prohibit laundering them in their facilities. Diapers and wipes are also not able to be purchased with food stamps or WIC checks. Also, children whose families do not have access to an adequate supply of disposables may spend long periods of time in soiled diapers. Please consider making a donation to this worthwhile cause. Click here for the location nearest you at which you can donate!

10) New Canaan Nature Center is hosting its 2012 GARDENFEST this Saturday, May 5, from 10am-2pm. This is a FREE Event! The plant sale will include perennials, flowers, herbs & heirloom vegetables that have been homegrown in the Nature Center greenhouse and local gardens! There will be demonstrations on pruning, shrub care, and composting. Children's activities include planting, birdhouse making, and Mother's Day Cards.

11) There are 92 upcoming FREE things to do on the KOA calendar!

12) One of the most popular events that we talked about at the Festivals this past weekend is this Saturday's third annual Fairy & Wizard Festival from Caroline's Enchanted Garden at the Bellamy-Ferriday House in Bethlehem. It looks like one of the sweetest events EVER! The third annual Enchanted Fairy & Wizard Festival will be a fun-filled afternoon of hands-on craft activities, music, pony rides, story telling, magic and more. This year, participants will be invited to build their own fairy houses along a rustic, woodland path designed especially for the occasion.  The inspiration for the design of the fairy houses will come from renowned garden writer Betsy Williams, who will be there for the day and deliver a talk and fairy plant walk. I'm so pleased that this has become an annual festival! Remember, it's this Saturday, May 5!

13) Get your tickets NOW before they are GONE! The summer theatre of New Canaan is performing The Wizard of Oz, My FairLady, Pinkalicious, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat this summer! These are all great show for introducing your children to musical theatre! They'll be dancing all night and begging for a coat of many colors while they pretend to follow the yellow brick road!

14) Does your organization offer camps, classes or events that would be of interest to local families? You can list them for free on KidsOutandAbout. Just click here to find out how!

15) It should be a good weekend for a drive up to Hartford. The Connecticut Science Center has new exhibit opening called "Dinosaurs Unearthed!" Have you ever met a kid who wasn't fascinated by dinosaurs?

16) Speaking of Hartford, remember that Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is coming to the XL Center next week! The show is a brand-new one called DRAGONS! It will be Thursday, May 10 through Sunday, May 13. Click for exact times.

17) Here are the day by day links for what's happening this weekend:

Friday, May 4
Saturday, May 5
Sunday, May 6
Find us on Facebook!
18) Folks who "Like" the KidsOutAndAbout.com Fairfield County listing on Facebook find out about stuff in advance and even can enter Facebook-only giveaways, so make sure to Like us! These Facebook-Only Giveaways happen frequently, so don't miss a thing..."like" us today!

19) I'm sure you can think of other folks who would enjoy finding out what's up for kids and families every week, so please, think of a few friends and forward it along! Here is the direct link they can use to sign up, themselves.

20) Heads up for next week! Not only will we be conducting our annual poll to find the Top 20 Places to Visit in and around Fairfield County, but we'll also be announcing a fantastic membership contest in a separate email. Stay tuned!

Have a great weekend! Get out and about!

Debra Ross
Publisher, KidsOutAndAbout.com

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