Win Tickets: Fairytale Town’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream & Crystal Ice Cream Fantasy

MidsummerPostcardWebOne of Fairytale Town’s most popular events is just around the corner. A Midsummer Night’s Dream & Crystal Ice Cream Fantasy comes to the park on June 25, 2016. On this magical night, William Shakespeare’s fairy-themed play comes to life on the Mother Goose Stage where Shakespeare Lite will present Pyramus and Thisbe from A Midsummer Night’s Dream with free theater performances at 6, 7 and 8 pm. Also part of the fun will be hands-on activities, live music by Celtic band Stepping Stone, and all-you-can-eat ice cream. This is surely to be a magical evening at Sacramento’s favorite storybook park.

Would you like a chance to win tickets to this popular event? Simply tell us your favorite Fairytale Town memory (as a child, or with your own kiddos) and you’ll be entered to win a family 4-pack to the event on June 25. Leave your memory in the comment section below no later than Wednesday, June 15 at 4pm. A winner will be randomly chosen at 5pm on June 15, 2016. Good luck!

What: A Midsummer Night’s Dream & Crystal Ice Cream Fantasy

When: Saturday, June 25, 2016, 5-9 pm

Where: Fairytale Town

Cost: Advance Tickets – $15 adults, $7 children; day-of tickets – $20 adults, $10 children

 

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Memorial Weekend Family Fun

Memorial Weekend in Sacramento

Memorial Day weekend in Sacramento seems to mark the acceptance of warm weather and the unofficial beginning of summer – and there’s a lot to do to celebrate this weekend! Enjoy diversity at William Land at the International Kids Festival, ride the ferris wheel and eat a corn dog at the Sacramento County Fair, head down to Old Town and Downtown to enjoy the Sacramento Music Festival, take in a baseball game or simply make a patriotic windsock at the Discovery Museum. Whatever you choose to do, enjoy!

11th Annual International Kids Festival at William Land Park – Hosted by Russian American Media, this one day event celebrates Sacramento’s diverse cultures by bringing together children and families of Eastern European, Asian Pacific, Hispanic, Indian, Native American and African-American descent for one big celebration! Festivities will include a magic show, pony rides, mini-train rides, jump houses, face painting as well as live music and entertainment. 5/23, 10am to 4pm.

Sacramento River Cats vs. Memphis Redbirds at Raley Field – Bring the family out to Raley Field throughout the weekend to watch the River Cats play the Memphis Redbirds on their home turf. Be in attendance on Friday for the Giants T-shirt giveaway and fireworks show, Saturday for princess and pirate night and fireworks, bring the dog on Sunday for Bark in the Park, and Monday for Nashville Sounds and a Memorial Day BBQ. 5/22, 5/23, 5/24, 5/25.

Sacramento County Fair at Cal Expo – Affordable and safe, the Sacramento County Fair is a great alternative to it’s big sister the California State Fair. Enjoy traditional county fair competitions, agricultural displays and animals, hands-on activities, entertainment, food and a carnival. General admission is $5, kids 12 and under are FREE. 5/21-5/25 at 10 am.

Sacramento Music Festival – The 42nd edition of the Sacramento Music Festival offers diverse musical talent for 2015. Some of the bands for this year’s Festival include Tower of Power, Everclear, Eve 6, Shawn Mullins, Gloriana, and the Latin-tinged rock and roll group, Malo. In addition to contemporary bands, fans of the Music Festival’s jazz roots can enjoy the sounds of artists like Sister Swing, the Dixie Company, Vivian Lee and Stephanie Trick. Popular acts Mumbo Gumbo, Tom Rigney and Flambeau, and Wonderbread 5 will also be returning, rounding out a diverse lineup of close to 300 sets of music performed throughout the holiday weekend. One of the highlights of the Sacramento Music Festival is the annual parade through the streets of Old Sacramento. The parade is free to the public, and a fun chance to hear live music and explore the historic district, and perhaps pick up tickets to the festival. Come out with the family and enjoy a taste of what the Sacramento Music Festival has to offer. 5/22-5/25, opening and closing times vary.

Create a Patriotic Windsock at the Discovery Museum – Take a self-guided tour of the museum’s Space Quest exhibit and Nature Discovery Room, then creat a patriotic windsock to fly at home during the Memorial Day weekend. 5/23-5/25, 12:30 pm to 4:00 pm.

Top 5 Sacramento Parks to Visit with your Family

By Heather Crivellone

With the beautiful spring weather here in Sacramento, there is no reason to stay inside to play.  We have some great parks around the Sacramento region. Many that offer unique structures to keep kids of all ages entertained and using their imagination to create afternoons full of fun and play!

I have visited countless numbers of local parks with my children and have put together a list of our favorites to share with our readers:

  1. Southside Park– aka the “Spaceship Park” at 2115 6th Street (near U), Sacramento. This 19 acre park has it all – but by far the most impressive attraction for the little ones is the spaceship! The theme of the play area is “the solar system” and there’s a fantastic tot and infant zone in addition to a merry-go-round. What’s not to love??
    Other amenities include: basketball, tennis and bocce ball courts, picnic areas, swimming and wading pools, a 3/4-mile jogging trail, outdoor amphitheater, and a fitness course.
    Parking is generally not a problem … with the exception of fair-weather Sundays, due to the crowds that attend the incredibly popular Farmer’s Market right across the street from the park. And a word to the wise about the restrooms: they are available, but they are not the cleanest of park bathrooms I have seen. Although the park itself is fabulous, the restrooms are not.Southside Park Sacramento
  2. Lincoln Estates Park (known to my kids as the “Rock Slide” Park) at 331 James Drive, Roseville.
    Hidden back in a suburban neighborhood, this little park is a gem!  The small playground is decent size for smaller kids, but the main attraction at this park is the cement slide! Bring cardboard from your recent Costco visits, some Band-Aids (just in case) and sit back to watch your family zip up and down the cement slides.
    My kids were literally on these slides for hours one day…which is why it has quickly become our local favorite hot spot. The park also backs up to some great hiking trails if you get bored with the park and slide, and there is plenty of shade to kick back and relax out of the sun.  The one major downfall to this park is that there is no bathrooms.
    Although, it is in the city of Roseville, so you know there is plenty of shopping and restaurants close by to escape to!
  3. McKinley Park located at 601 Alhambra Blvd, Sacramento is probably one of the most well-known and loved parks in Sacramento.
    On any given day, you can see people jogging, playing, and feeding the ducks and even getting married at this popular park! Amenities at this park include a swimming and wading pool, community center, garden and arts center, several large group picnic areas, adventure play area, tot play area, softball and soccer fields, basketball courts, volleyball, horseshoe pits, tennis courts and a jogging trail!
    My kids love this park, especially the play structure, They can literally get lost in all the climbing play areas! They do have restrooms, so you can plan a long afternoon out and about with your family at this park.  And every 2nd Friday of the month, you can visit the park in the evening for “Food Truck Mania” and enjoy dinner out and live entertainment.  It’s a great way to spend a Friday evening with family and friends!mcKinley-pgopen1
  4. Rainbow City Park in Davis, located at the corner of W. Covell Blvd. and F Street in Downtown Davis.
    The playground consists of mostly wooden play structures in the form of castles, pirate ships, boats, sandboxes and swings… a bit more exciting than the suburban area play structures made of plastic.
    The kids have fun using their imaginations, while climbing through tires and running around the large fields of this park. They have three playgrounds at this park, along with a “skate park”, a large cement slide, and several fields for playing sports on, bathrooms, plenty of shade and picnic tables. This park is well worth the drive to Davis and is perfect for a day outing.
  5. William Land Park at 3800 West Land Park Drive, Sacramento
    By far this is our family’s favorite park in Sacramento!  Not only is it situated in beautiful Land Park, but it’s home to the Sacramento Zoo, Fairytale Town, Funderland Amusement Park, a golf course and other amenities. This park can turn an ordinary day into a fun-filled family afternoon.
    The playground is enclosed (a huge relief for moms with multiple kids!) and consists of two play structures, sandbox with diggers, swings and even has a wading pool in the summertime (for the kids 7 and under).
    They do have public restrooms, but of course since it is a park, restroom, don’t forget to bring the hand sanitizer! There are plenty of benches and shade trees for a picnic so bring along a blanket and enjoy the day, as the kids won’t want to leave the playground!William Land Park Sacramento

A New Little Engine That Could At Fairytale Town

By Alyssa Green

If you have been a loyal reader of this blog, then you probably know that Fairytale Town is one of our favorite places to visit!  Unique to Sacramento, this lovely little park has been entertaining children and families for 50 years and seems to just be getting better with age.  Earlier this week, with the help of Sacramento City Manager John Shirey, the folks at Fairytale Town unveiled a new play structure.  The Little Engine That Could – a tribute to the ever popular book by Watty Piper, first published in 1930.

Little Engine That Could Collage

The Little Engine That Could is the perfect addition to Sacramento’s most beloved children’s theme park.  Not only would you be hard-pressed to find a child who isn’t familiar with this story, but the structure itself ties right in to Sacramento’s railroad history.  And the kids are already loving it!  So, if you get a chance, head on out there this weekend and let the kiddos climb all over this persistent little engine – and don’t forget to read the story before you go!

Fairytale Town new train 027 - editedAnd just in case you need a refresher of what else Fairytale Town Has to offer, here are some photos of what kids have been loving for years and years!

FT Town collage

Biking With Kids In Sacramento

By Alyssa Green

Summer is right around the corner and the kids will soon be out of school.  It’s time to start planning ways to keep them busy.  You probably have swimming on the list as well as cooling off at any of our area spray parks.  But biking should be on your list too, and here’s why.

Sacramento is a great place for family biking.  We have scenic trails, great weather and an overall easy and inviting city to navigate due to shaded streets, plenty of biking lanes, level surfaces and popular attractions located within a short distance of one another.

First, you could spend a morning biking around town.  Bring your own bikes or rent some from Practical Cycle in Old Sacramento. From there you can ride along the Sacramento River, to the nearby Crocker Art Museum, head on over to the California State Capitol and then further east to Sutter’s Fort.  You’ll find plenty of shaded streets, coffee shops, restaurants and bike racks along the way.

If city biking isn’t calling your name, hop onto the American River Bike Trail (also known as the Jedediah Smith Memorial Trail,) near Old Sacramento.  The ARBT is one of the longest, most scenic and paved biking paths in the country.   This 32 mile long trail is used by thousands of area joggers, hikers and cyclists for both recreational and commuting uses.  It runs between the confluence of the Sacramento and American Rivers north of downtown Sacramento and east to Beal’s Point at Folsom Lake.

The Trail passes through many notable places of interest including Discovery Park, Sutter’s Landing Park, the Guy West Bridge (a small version of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge,) Sacramento State University, Ancil Hoffman Park and the Effie Yeaw Nature Center, the Nimbus Fish Hatchery and Lake Natoma.  At any point on the trail you are likely to see not only beautiful views, but also native area wildlife.

For a much more low key and leisurely ride, head south to William Land Park.  The paths wind around ponds, gardens, a golf course, the Sacramento Zoo, Fairytale Town and Funderland.  All very family friendly places to let the kids take a break and run around.  Enjoy the enormous shade trees and bring your own lunch to the many picnic areas.

If this all sounds like fun and you want to try out family biking, maybe for the first time, you are in luck.  The month of May is National Bike Month which means that there are plenty of events throughout the month where you can receive the resources and information you need to get your family excited about biking in Sacramento.

First, Wednesday, May 9th is “Bike to School” Day.  Not only will your kids be encouraged to ride their bike to school, but they will most likely receive some valuable biking tips and safety information.

The Capitol Bike Fest follows on Thursday, May 10th.  Another wonderful event to encourage cycling in Sacramento with music, health and environmental booths, cycling information and free valet parking.  Lastly, on May 17th is “Bike to Work Day,” for all you grown-ups!

For more information on National Bike Month and upcoming events, click here.    For a map of the American River Bike Trail, click here.

Celebrate the Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation at this weekend’s Juneteenth Festival

By Alyssa Green

Join thousands of Sacramentans this weekend in celebrating the anniversary of the end of slavery.  From the end of the Civil War on June 19th, 1865, the  day has been observed in the U.S. as the African American Emancipation Day.  The Juneteenth Festival this weekend (June 17-18, 2011) will be at William Land Park and promises to bring people of all backgrounds, both young and old, together for this special commemoration.  There will be music, entertainment, a talent show and food.  Here is what’s happening specifically for kids on Saturday:

Juneteenth Parade at 11 am – come see the Juneteenth parade, motorcycles , marching bands, low riders, marchers, clowns and much more.

Radio Disney will be on site from noon to 2pm – promoting going green with interactive games, radio show contest, gift bags, giveaways  &  live broadcast.

Children’s Area, noon to 6pm  – arts and crafts,  jump houses, interactive games , magician , face painting etc.

Fishing Derby, noon to 4pm – Catfish will be pumped into the pond across from the Sacramento Zoo and the Fishing derby will begin at noon.  Bait and poles will be supplied and instructors on hand by the Department of Fish and Game.  This is a great opportunity for kids to learn how to fish…and have fun!

So pack up your whole family and head on over to William Land Park to join in on the celebration of freedom at Sacramento’s Juneteenth Festival.

Having fun at Funderland!

With this beautiful Spring weather, I had to venture out to my favorite park in Sacramento- William Land! Not only do they have a perfect playground for my kiddos, but it also is home to the Sacramento Zoo, Fairytale Town and Funderland. My little guy just turned 2, so I thought he would enjoy the “kiddie” rides at this small-scale amusement park for children ages 2-12…. and he did!

The park consists of several “amusement park” style rides for the kids. They can ride on an old-fashion carousel, pilot a “Red Baron” plane, ride a mini roller-coaster, spin like a top (or until the puke) in the “Crazy Cups”, take a train ride around the park and more.

Of course they have a concession stand with the best “amusement park” fare- hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy and snow-cones. But as always, I prefer to pack a lunch and picnic on one of the many benches under the beautiful trees our city has to offer!

Admission into the park is FREE and you just purchase tickets to ride on the rides. Each ride is only 1 ticket and you can purchase them individually or during the week, you can purchase wristbands (this is what I would suggest).

This really is a cute “amusement park” for the younger kids. Because they are located in the William Land Park, public restrooms are available, but be aware- they are “park” bathrooms. Bring plenty of hand sanitizer and wipes!

If you happen to be visiting the park April 16th or 17th, make sure you bring your Easter baskets. The Easter Bunny will be making an appearance and there will be several Egg Hunts throughout the day (for children under 12). Cost is $3/child and along with the egg hunt, the kids will have fun doing crafts, games, taking pictures with the Easter Bunny and more.

Bring you camera, snacks, sun block and wear comfortable shoes- as a trip to Funderland in William Land Park (located across from the Sacramento Zoo and Fairytale Town)- a visit to this fun destination can make for an all day family adventure!