Does your Family get the Saturday Morning Blues? Get Crafting with the Kids!

lowes-build-and-grow-logoSome of the best things in life are free. We can take our children to the park and watch them play – for free.  We can take a hike around a nature preserve – for free.  We can even keep them busy building and learning – for free.
You may be thinking, “where in Sacramento can they craft and learn for free?”  Well, it’s not every weekend that you can find a special free activity, but on select Saturdays, you can visit Lowe’s building supply  and join their Kids Clinic.

Each session has a unique wooden project the child can build, along with their very own apron, goggles and other tools they need to complete the project. Some projects in the past have been bird feeders, airplanes and such. Coming on Saturday, November 14 the kids will be making a racecar!  It’s simple fun for the kids and they get to take home their creations. Tip -Registration must be made prior to the visit, as these free classes fill up quickly.

Looking for something a little more artistic? Lakeshore Learning Center in Roseville offers a free crafting class every Saturday from 11am-3pm. This is a walk-in event, no pre-registration is required as kids can come and go as they please. Each week they have new holiday or seasonal crafts for the kids to explore and create. Here is a list of what is coming up in November:

November 7- Stars and Stripes Windsock
November 14- Thanksgiving Door hanger
November 21- Give Thanks! Centerpiece
November 28- Nature’s Picture Frame.

So as you begin to think about the holiday shopping that is around the corner, take a look at some of our local stores that are doing something for our kids.  Take a break from the hustle and bustle and let your children be kids and create something fun. Happy Crafting!

By Heather Crivellone

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Avoid San Francisco Parking Hassles by Taking the Ferry into the City

San Francisco Bay FerryOne of the best things about living in the Sacramento area is that there are plenty of options for family friendly day trips. Whether it’s to the Sierra Foothills, down to the beach in Monterey or enjoying some world-famous wines in the Napa valley, we have access to some of the greatest tourist destinations within just a few hours.

Recently, our family decided to do something different – we ventured out to the “big city”- not by car, not by train, but by ferry!

I still can’t believe that after so many years of living in the Sacramento area, I had never even thought about taking the ferry into San Francisco for a day trip. Now, we are hooked! If you have kids that love the idea of experiencing different transportation sources, then this is the trip for you!

We began our day with a peaceful drive to Vallejo that took us just a little over an hour.  Once we arrived into Vallejo, we easily found a parking spot across the street from the ferry building, paid our $5 daily parking fee, grabbed our backpacks and set off on our day trip adventure. We boarded the San Francisco Bay ferry around 9am and enjoyed some coffee and pastries on the ship while the kids got ready to “set sail”.

We had plenty of room to relax and play a few hands of Uno, but my kids were mostly entertained by watching the waves and enjoying the cool ocean breeze on the back deck.  In about an hour and a half, we arrived at Pier 41 and set out to enjoy a day in the city.

The ferry gave us the ease of travel, without the hassle of paying for toll bridges, parking in the city, or traffic on the Bay Bridge, and we were able to just hang out and enjoy our kids.  The cost for our family of four to ride the ferry was approximately $45 round trip.  This is what it would have cost us to park our car at the pier!
Once we were at the Pier, we enjoyed the sights and tastes of the city (Clam Chowder in a Boudin Bread bowl of course!).

We debated on  hiking up to Ghirardelli Square and riding the trolley, but we opted for yet another ferry that took us to Angel Island. On the island, we were able to escape the crowds and enjoy a peaceful hike with views that you could typically only see on a postcard!

It was by far, one of the best day trips our family has taken in quite a while.  No stress with driving, parking and fees – just a day out enjoying some of the treasures our great state has to offer, while making memories with our family. If you are looking for a fun day trip adventure, I highly recommend taking the ferry into the city.  It was a great experience for not only our kids, but our entire family!

By Heather Crivellone

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Disney on Ice’s Production of Dare to Dream Brings to Life your Favorite Disney Princesses, Past and Present

Dare to Dream 2Last night was opening night of Disney on Ice’s Dare to Dream show celebrating 75 years of Disney Princess stories. This is our third show in the past couple of years and Disney on Ice always does a wonderful job at featuring a variety of your favorite Disney movies and characters. Last night’s performance showcasing a mix of classic and modern characters from Snow White and Cinderella to Rapunzel and Tiana, was no exception.

I love the look on my daughter’s face as her favorite characters, in amazing costumes, glide across the ice with the greatest of ease singing her favorite songs. The highlights of the night were watching Flynn Rider and Rapunzel fly into the air numerous times high above the ice! It was nothing short of amazing and a bit Cirque de Soleil-esque! The other was the Maximus character from Tangled! Two people in an awesome horse costume really captured the funny and animated character from the movie!

We love that every show is hosted and narrated by the classics, Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy and Donald Duck! We sang, we danced, and we tried our hardest to catch the attention of our favorite princesses, who all made an appearance at the end. The Disney on Ice series always has us leaving with giant smiles on our faces!

Disney on Ice Presents Dare to Dream captivates audiences at Sacramento’s Sleep Train Arena through Sunday, Oct.25, 2015. Get your tickets here.

By Lindsey Adams

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Win Tickets: Enjoy a Pirate Adventure at Fairytale Town’s Safe & Super Halloween

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Don your fanciest eye patch and get ready to walk the planks at Fairytale Town’s annual Safe & Super Halloween. Your pirate adventure begins on Friday, Oct. 23, 2015. For three nights, Fairytale Town will be transformed into a swashbuckling world of pirates with seventeen candy stations scattered throughout the storybook park. While trick-or-treating, young buccaneers will also have the opportunity to search for treasure, discover the Flying Dutchman, find the Fountain of Youth and participate in hands-on activities and a nightly costume parade.

If that isn’t quite enough entertainment for you, then you’ll want to head over to the children’s theater to watch a performance of Captain Scarlet and the Magic Treasure Chest, a pirate-themed magic and illusion show about a young and brave pirate girl who harnesses illusionary powers from a magic treasure chest while encountering the famous pirate Black Beard, who covets her treasure.

Win Tickets: Sound like fun? I bet you are already making plans to attend this amazing event! You can find ticket and other event information below. But if you would like a chance to win a family 4-pack to this year’s Safe & Super Halloween, you are going to have to get a little creative. To be eligible for the tickets, you’ll need to tell us in the comment section below, why you deserve the tickets…in pirate talk. We’ll choose a winner on Monday, Oct. 19, 2015.

What: Fairytale Town’s Safe & Super Halloween

When: October 23, 24, 25 from 5 – 9pm

Where: Fairytale Town

Admission: Advanced Tickets – $7 members, $10 nonmembers; $12 at the door; children 1 and under are free; Magic Show – $1 per person

Here’s some photos from last year’s event:

Fairytale Town Halloween

11 Halloween Events to Keep your Little Ghosts and Goblins Happy

halloween_jack_o_lantern-wideThe weather may not be showing it, but it’s officially fall here in Sacramento! With the leaves beginning to change color and the ghosts and goblins making appearances, October is a glorious month full of color, fun and festivities! And Sacramento is full of events to keep you and your little ones (and not so little ones) entertained, scared, and having fun all month-long!

I have compiled a list of events that your family may want to check out this month.  Some of these events are free, some have a small admission charge and some may or may not be appropriate for your children’s age group.  Either way, there is something going on for everyone.

October 17-November 1:  The California State Railroad Museum is proud to offer diesel-powered “Spookomotive” train rides. This delightful, not frightful train is just the ticket for the family.  Ride the train along the levees of the river and listen to a whimsical Halloween story while the “skeleton” crew passes out a special toy treat for each child.  On the return trip, rock to the music of the “Monster Mash” and other creepy Halloween.  Each weekend is specially-themed: Super Heroes October 17 and 18; Princesses and Pirates October 24 and 25; and Wizards and Witches October 31 and November 1.  Tickets range from $6- $20.  Children 5 and under are free.

October 17- October 31: Sacramento Halloween River Cruise. For three weekends in October, the Hornblower will be cruising along the Sacramento River with fun, family friendly Halloween events. Cruise along the river as the evening begins to set with chilling haunted sounds and kid friendly events. The cruise is 1 hour in length and begins boarding at 2:45pm with a 3pm departure time. Everyone is encouraged to dress in their costumes for this family fun event. Tickets are $18.

October 9-24: Enjoy Spooky Ghost Tours at the Sacramento History Museum.  Journey back into town and hear ghost tales and spooky stories while walking through the history-rich streets of Old Sacramento. Friday and Saturday evenings from 6:30-9pm. $10 youths (ages 6-12) and $15 adult. **These tours are for a more “mature” audience.

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October 17: Sacramento Children’s Museum- Monster Bash from 6-8pm. Enjoy an evening of ghoulish games and treats with music and dancing… and of course, museum play! $15 general admission.

October 17:  Annual Safetyville Halloween Haunt. This is a perfect event for your youngest of children, as they can prance around in their costumes at the Costume Parade, enjoy food, drinks and raffles.  Get lost in a Hay Maze and enjoy games all throughout the Safetyville “town”.  $6 per person and 2 and under are FREE. 11am-4pm.

October 23 and 24: The Haunted Fort at Sutter’s Fort State Park.  The historic site will offer a special Halloween program based in fact, but with a creepy twist.  Visitors will go on guided tours through the darkened rooms and hear unusual tales of how California’s early pioneers perished throughout history.  This creepy tour would not be suitable for the youngest kids in your household.

October 23-26: Safe and Super Halloween- Pirates. Kids can trick or treat in a safe environment throughout the park at Fairytale Town.   Hands on activities, a costume parade and live performances will keep you entertained all night long…5pm-9pm.

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October 23: Folsom’s 7th Annual Night of 1000 Pumpkins. Admission into this event is One Carved Pumpkin per child. From 6-9pm in Historic Downtown Folsom, enjoy a large display of lit up carved pumpkins from the entire community! Vendors, live entertainment and family friendly events for everyone to enjoy.

October 24 and 25, 10am-6pmSpooktacular Halloween at Funderland.  Costume and Pumpkin Decorating Contests will take place throughout the day and offer the chance to win some prizes! The friendly Funderland Witch will be on hand telling kid friendly scary stories, and brewing up some great concoctions in the concession stand.

October 30 and 31, 5pm-8pm: Boo at the Zoo at the Sacramento Zoo.  Kids can safely trick or treat around the zoo at 25 different candy stations.  They can enjoy magic shows, costume dance party, games and more.  And of course…enjoy the animals! Admission is $8-12.

October 28 from 10am-112pm at the Crocker Art Museum: Wee Halloween  . Children ages 5 and under will decorate treat bags before being guided in small groups through the galleries, and serenaded with mini music, story and dance performances.  Costumes are welcomed.

This is by far, not all the events going on in our Capital City this month…but at least I’m hoping it gives you an idea of things to do and places to go during this fun and crazy month!

By Heather Crivellone

Win Tickets: Disney on Ice Presents Dare to Dream

Rapunzel meets MaximusMickey and Minnie will soon be back at Sacramento’s Sleep Train Arena hosting a new and exciting Disney Princess event! Join your favorites – Rapunzel, Tiana, Snow White and Cinderella – for Disney on Ice Presents Dare to Dream, October 21-24, 2015.

Relive memorable moments from Tangled, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella and The Princess and the Frog as world-class skaters bring the romance, humor and adventure of your favorite Disney films to life on the ice. Watch as Rapunzel, Flynn and Maximus embark on an adventurous Journey. See how Snow White escapes from the Evil Queen in search of true love. You’ll fall in love with Cinderella all over again as she meets Prince Charming for the first time. And lastly, you’ll have the time of your life as you boogie to the beat of the bayou in a magical journey that tells the story of Princess Tiana and her Prince Naveen from The Princess and the Frog.

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What: Disney on Ice Presents Dare to Dream

When: October 22-25, 2015

Where: Sleep Train Arena

Tickets: Kids tickets are $10 for all shows; Adult tickets start at $17, click here to purchase

Giveaway Details: We have got a pack of 4 tickets (2 adults, 2 children) for opening night to give away to one of our lucky readers. To be eligible, just answer this trivia question in the comment section below by 5pm on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015: What year did Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs open in theaters for the first time? A winner will be randomly chosen on Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015. Good luck!

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