Posts Tagged ‘fun’

New Back-to-School Movie Giveaway!

August 8th, 2013 4:00pm

We know a few of us out there are less than thrilled about school starting up again. But we want to cheer you up! We are serious Disney fans over here and can’t help but be a little bit excited about the new movie, “Planes”, that comes out tomorrow! Nothing like a rip roarin’ Disney animated adventure to bring the sparkle back into our glazed over “back-to-school” eyes! So we are hosting a movie ticket giveaway starting tomorrow! Even if you aren’t a Disney fan, you gotta admit… movies are a fun indulgence! We are giving away two pairs of tickets to any Cinemark theater. Lots of ways to enter so don’t miss out!…
a Rafflecopter giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Ok, you thought all the summer fun was over but we’ve got one more big science event for you and your kids to enjoy a late night together! The Perseids Meteor shower will be making it’s big annual appearance in the western skies August 11-13th this year! You can challenge your kids with a little astronomy by having them find the Perseus constellation…that’s where the show is supposed to start. But according to experts, it will be visible in various parts of the sky so keep a watchful eye!

One of my favorite astronomy apps is called SkySafari. It has been a source of great excitement for my kids on our star gazing nights because it uses your phone/tablet’s compass/gyroscope to be able to view the sky in real time and identify constellations just by pointing your tablets/phones camera towards the sky! It scrolls across the sky as you move it, labeling every celestial body you see! It will not destroy your night vision either, using the special night vision setting. Check it out in App Store. They are currently running a sale on their full version but the “lite” version really works just awesome and is what we have used for quite some time.

Have fun on your meteor watch! Ask your kids teachers about extra credit they might be able to earn by describing the event in class!

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23rd Annual Celebration of Fine Art...come see the artists at work!

Yes, spring break is upon us and if you are anything like me, you are scrambling to keep kids busy with things other than video games and movies! In my hunt for the affordable (and hopefully sneaking in that somewhat educational!) entertainment in the Valley of the Sun, I have discovered a real gem! Today I took my five children (ages 2 through 12) to the Celebration of Fine Art in Scottsdale, AZ.

The show highlights work from over 100 artists, some local and some traveling from out of state to attend. What’s fun about a glorified outdoor art museum you might ask? Well, the coolest thing about this art exhibit is the artists are actually on site WORKING on their art! You can ask questions, see demonstrations of their technique, or just shoot the breeze about the latest trends. My kids LOVE that they can actually see the artists at work and ask questions! My youngest loved all the colors and because many of the artists enjoy bringing their pets on site, he LOVED playing with the friendly little pups resting at the foot of several of the artists. One particular artist today painted birds and could mimic a bird call so convincingly that we had to look around for a minute for the bird before we realized it was her!

Whitney Peckman was one of our favorite artists! Here she displays some of her hand sculpted and painted gourds. Amazing!

Rather than learn from art teachers who are bound by certain techniques they are required to teach, these artists have no such restrictions and they truly let their imaginations go wild with the off-the-wall techniques they’ve invented, the customized processes they’ve had to discover and the media they have developed to answer that creative call!

When we arrived home this afternoon from over 3 hours there, my kids all rushed to our art cabinet and immediately took to making their own wildly creative pieces with all their new ideas!

Looking to get inspired? This is your chance! When we arrived home this afternoon from over 3 hours there, my kids all rushed to our art cabinet and immediately took to making their own wildly creative pieces with all their new ideas!

The event runs through March 24th and is open daily from 10am to 6pm. It’s located on the SW corner of Hayden Rd. and Loop 101 (Exit 35 from the 101). Just look for the big white tents! The best part?? It’s FREE for kids under 12!!! Yes, that’s right…FREE! Adults are $10 but if you go to the 23rd Annual Celebration of Fine Art website, you can download a 2 for 1 coupon for adult tickets.

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Calling all history buffs!…

February 27th, 2013 8:44pm

Commemorative Air Force's Boeing B-29 Superfortress bomber, FIFI, first flown in 1942 and beginning active service in 1944. Best Known as the aircraft whose missions over Japan helped bring about the end of WWII.

For those of you who have kiddos that are seriously into airplanes or, in my case, World War II airplanes specifically, you need to know about an event at Mesa Gateway Airport starting Thursday, February 28th and running through Sunday, March 3rd! The Commemorative Air Force’s Boeing B-29 Superfortress bomber (the ONLY remaining flight ready example of this aircraft in the world!) will be visiting this airport along with another famous World War II bomber, the B-17 Flying Fortress, Sentimental Journey, and a P-51 Mustang, Man O’War! For those WWII aficionado’s out there, some of the other famous aircraft on tap will be the C-45 Expeditor, a Navy SNJ and a Navy N2S!

The aircraft will be on the ramp at Gateway Aviation Services, 5803 S. Sossaman Road in Mesa from 2:00pm-6:30pm on February 28 and 9:00am to 6:30pm through March 3rd. Admission is $10 per person; $20 for families with children 17 and under; and free for children 10 years old and younger. Cockpit tours are available with admission and rides in the airplanes can be purchased for an additional $65-$595. Please note there may be a discount if purchased online. For more information, visit the Mesa Gateway Airport press release.

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Laveen is having their Laveen Art League and 2nd Friday Community Market This Friday, December 14th from 6:00pm-9:00pm in the South Mountain Community College – Laveen Campus courtyard.

The Laveen Art League will have their on campus gallery open for viewing of art from the majority of Laveen Art League members. The artists that will be hanging in two rooms work in a variety of mediums, such as papercrafting, jewelry, photography, mixed media, painting, drawing and more. On Friday December 14th, there will also be children’s activities and crafts, like a “Seek and Find” activity as well as an “Art Petting Zoo”, Music and Puppetry performances, Paint and Take and a visit from Santa Himself!

Fantasy Face will be face painting at this event so come join us for some holiday glitter!

Fantasy Faces (courtesy of yours truly!) will also be hanging out with Santa to paint faces and bring some holiday glitter to your smile! So stop by and get a unique work of art you can wear all night long!

Some other vendors you might recognize are Kettlecorn, Native American Frybread, It’s a Divine Bakery, Double L Originals, The Spirit Box, Native American Jewelry (Rosina), Rider’s Ranch, Maricopa County Stormworks and City of Phoenix, Hot Dog cart, 4 Elements, Fantasy Faces, Joyce, Bethany and Capiz by the Sea!

Outside the gallery will be a wonderful selection of food and craft vendors, with beautiful handmade crafts and delicious food. While some do take debit/credit, you may want to bring some cash with you for when you find something you love!

This is a not to be missed holiday event! The location is South Mountain Community College Campus at 5001 W Dobbins Road, Laveen, AZ 85339.

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The weather is finally starting to cool down…YES! Although Arizona doesn’t often show her fall colors to just anyone, we have found a few recommendations to help you on your quest for fall! Www.azcentral.com got us started with their recommendations. But we compiled a few from our fellow hikers that we thought might interest you as well…

Let’s start with Flagstaff. The Kachina Trail is right next to Humphrey’s Peak (the highest mountain in Arizona). From Flagstaff, take U.S. 180 northwest 7 miles to Snowbowl Road. Turn north and go 7.3 miles to the large dirt parking area just outside Arizona Snowbowl. The trail begins at the south end of the parking area. The views in any direction are impressive and the Aspen forest is a joy. This is a moderately difficult hike.

Sedona has some beautiful options as well. Boynton Canyon is considered one of Sedona’s most scenic canyons and a powerful vortex site. The canyon has lush riparian vegetation, towering red sandstone formations, voodoo rock spires and an ancient Sinagua Indian cliff dwelling dating back to 1,200 A.D. The view from these ruins is stunning. The sandstone and limestone sculptures loom 1,000 feet high on both sides. At the mouth of the canyon sits Enchantment Resort!

Secret Canyon lies within the most popular area for hiking around Sedona, the Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness, centered around Dry Creek a few miles northwest of town. To get to the lower trailhead, take I-17 from Phoenix north to exit 278 onto highway 179. Turn left off the exit ramp and drive west into Sedona. At the “T” Intersection, turn left onto Highway 89A. After a few miles, turn right at the light onto Dry Creek Rd. and drive 2 miles to a right turn onto the unpaved Forest Road #152 at the sign for Vultee Arch (quite bumpy). Drive another 3.4 miles to the signed Secret Canyon parking area on the lefthand side. To get to the upper trailhead, take I-17 north to Flagstaff, head wes on I-40 to the first exit (Flagstaff Ranch Road, exit 192). Turn left at the bottom of the exit ramp, drive a short distance to a “T” Intersection and turn left. After a couple miles, you’ll come to a stop sign, turn right onto Woody Mountain Road (Forest Rd. #231) which becomes a well graded dirt road shortly thereafter. Drive for 13 miles, then turn right on FR #538. Another 5.5 miles will bring you to an intersection and sign pointing right for Dorsey Spring Trail (1 mile), Kelsey Spring Trial (2 miles). Turn left and remain on FR#538 until it ends at the Secret Mountain Trailhead.

Usery Mountain is located at 3939 N. Usery Pass Rd. in Mesa, Arizona. There are two trails at this area. The Pass Mountain trail circles the mountain and is 7.5 miles round trip, while the Wind Cave trail hikes up its face and is about 3 miles round trip. Most people head for the Wind Cave Trail. To get there, take McKellips east, turn north on Ellsworth (turns into Usery Pass Rd.) and follow that road to the entrance of Usery Mountain Recreation ARea. Turn right to enter. Park fees are $6.00 per car.

Perlata Trail in the Superstition Mountains is a great family-friendly hike. To get there, follow the US60 to Peralta Road which is just east of mile post 204 and turn north on Peralta Road. At 5.5 miles from US60, follow the sign and take the left fork up the hill to the Peralta Trailhead.

Fossil Springs hike is a fun hike where if you go far enough, there is a rope hanging from a tree and you can swing from it and land in the water! To get there, first get to the Strawberry area. Turn west on Route 708 (also known as Fossil Creek Road). The road is paved for 2.5 miles then becomes unpaved. Stay on FR708 to the 81.1 mile point where you will see the signed road to the trailhead to your right. Turn off on this access road which has some washouts, but can be driven by any car that has reasonable clearance. You will reach the loop parking area at 82 miles.

We hope these give you some fun family options for enjoying the cooler temperatures and hopefully give you a glimpse of Arizona’s fall! Make sure to make your child a calendar to remind them of the upcoming hiking adventures!

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Disney’s Frankenweenie Giveaway!

September 14th, 2012 10:44pm

Frankenweenie prize pack includes a movie poster, sticker pack, beanie hat and 2 TICKETS TO THE MOVIE!

Ok, we know you’re all excited about Disney’s new movie, Frankenweenie, which features the amazing storytelling expertise of Tim Burton (who you might remember from Nightmare Before Christmas) once again…and if you’re not, we assure you your kids are! We are definitely ready for some more spooky fun from Tim Burton and Disney! In fact, we’re so excited that we just had to call up Disney and get a gift pack just for you! Enter here for our giveaway and your chance to win a Frankenweenie Beanie hat, poster, sticker pack and yes, 2 TICKETS TO THE MOVIE!! We have TWO of these prize packs to give away but sadly, only one is going to get those coveted tickets. So enter soon and enter often! …And YOU could be our winner!

The movie features a young boy named Victor whose beloved dog Sparky (who stars in Victor’s homemade monster movies)  is hit by a car. Victor refuses to accept the loss of his friend and vows to bring him back. He has some curious success…but when the bolt-necked “monster” wreaks havoc on Victor’s neighbors, he has to convince them (and his parents) that despite his appearance, Sparky’s still the good loyal friend he’s always been.

This is a stop-animation version of the live action film Frankenweenie (1984) and reunites Tim Burton withWinona Ryder and Catherine O’Hara who previously worked with Burton on Beetlejuice.

You can also enter this giveaway on the PetsWeekly.com website (the only place to go for all things pet related!) who has joined us for this promotion in honor of Sparky, the faithful Frankenweenie! We have also created a custom Frankenweenie icon JUST for this movie and ONLY for the months of September and October to put on your child’s calendar as we all anticipate this upcoming event! Check it out in our image gallery and make your child’s calendar today for free!

Want to check out the latest trailer?…click here!
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It’s back to school time!

July 12th, 2012 12:41am

Yes, we know…you’re not ready! That’s where we can help! Summer is fast coming to a close as we gear up for another exciting school year full of class activities, programs, sports events and about a million other fun activities that we love to help our kiddos excel in! One of the hardest things for young children to understand is time management. They just don’t recognize the passing of time as acutely as we adults do. One of the best ways to help them learn this concept is to give them a visual! Our calendars can help your children understand the order of the days, weeks and even months and how this passage of time affects them in preparing for upcoming activities, whether it be practicing for a piano recital or working on a project for school. So visit our calendars page and get started now! You can make a different calendar for each one of your children so only the events specific to them are represented and print it out for them to track.

Create your very own "Mom, I'm bored" box!

We also recognize that as summer is winding down, it becomes more and more difficult to find activities that can keep your kiddos busy. You begin to hear those dreaded words, “mom, I’m BORED!”. One of the ideas that has worked wonders at our house this summer is to create a “mom, I’m bored box” and fill it with chores, fun activities the kids complained all year that they never had time to do (think crafts, reading, games, sports, etc.), learning activities (math worksheets, reading passages, etc.)…let the kids help you write them all out on separate scraps of paper so they can contribute their own ideas as well. My kids and I made a game out of it so that anytime they came to me with the “mom, I’m bored” comment, I would point their little tooshes to the box. They would have to pick an activity and the deal was, whatever they picked, they HAD to do (whether it was fun or work)! Since they helped get all the ideas in the box, they all made a competition out of it to see who got the “luck of the draw”! It has been quite comical and made our summer so much fun!

If you have some summer boredom buster ideas that have worked for your family, please share them in our forum!

We wish you luck in your back-to-school preparations and hope you share our excitement for another great year of learning and growing!

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October Festival!

October 20th, 2011 7:13pm

Ok, I know this is somewhat limiting to all of you out there not currently in Arizona. But for those of you burned out on the traditional pumpkin patches of Schnepf Farms in Queen Creek or Mother Nature’s Farm in Gilbert, we’ve got a new alternative for you! Hop on over to DeWitt Stables and let your kids enjoy “The Patch of Pumpkins, Pets and Ponies”! You definitely can’t beat the price! Kids under 3 are FREE and admission is $5.00 for 3 and up. Families can purchase a group ticket for only $25.00! They also have special rates for larger groups.

Besides picking out that perfect pumpkin from their pumpkin patch, kids can enjoy hayrides, a petting zoo, pony rides, a hay maze, a craft fair, games and even more rides! The festival hours are Fridays from noon until dark and Saturdays from 10:00am until dark.

DeWitt Stables is located at 2211 E. Quince in Mesa, just 1/2 mile north of the 202 Red Mountain on Gilbert Rd. For more information, call (480) 717-9540 or visit their website at www.dewittstables.com

Be sure to mark your calendars with our pumpkin graphic to help remind your little ones of the upcoming holiday fun! Halloween is almost upon us!

Kids will love this great petting zoo!

Pony rides are sure to delight those little western rustlers!

Don't forget to stop by the pumpkin patch for the perfect holiday pumpkin!

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If you’re looking for something fun to do with the kids this weekend (September 10-11), come and beat the heat at the Wonder Pet Expo at the Arizona State Fairgrounds. The cost for parking ($7 per vehicle) and admission ($6 for adults, children 12 and under are free) will cost you less than a trip to the movies, and everyone – parents included – will enjoy themselves with the variety of exhibitors and events at the Expo.

First, take your children over to the PetsWeekly Booth (Booth 116) to get their free puppy and kitten activity books. While the kids are coloring, you can view some of the best products on the market for pets – from keeping everyone (including Fido) safe on a road trip to tracking pets (or kids) with the newest TAGG GPS collar from Qualcomm. Once you’ve finished saying “hi” to the PetsWeekly crew, take the kids over to have their face painted, or for a jump on the moon bounce.  The Expo will also have clowns and lots of games for the kiddies to play. That’s a ton of good, clean fun!

There will plenty of other things for your children to see and do at the Expo, including taking part in a flash mob with Megan Blake and her dog, Smiley. If you and your kids want to learn the dance before the Expo, click here to see a video demonstration.

If that’s not enough to convince you to hop in the car and come on out to the Fairgrounds this weekend, Deb’s Dragons will be on stage with her amazing reptiles, the Splash Dogs will be showing off their dock diving skills, and the AZ Disc Dogs will be there, wowing kids and adults alike with their awesome disc tricks!

So get out of the heat this weekend at the indoor, fully air-conditioned, Wonder Pet Expo. There your children will be entertained and learn about the pet world all at once – creating memories to last a lifetime.  You won’t get from just another trip to the movie theater!

General Expo Information:

September 10-11, 2011

Sat. 10am-6pm

Sun. 11am-5pm

Held at the Arizona State Fairgrounds (the event will be indoors in the air-conditioned Expo building) at 1826 W. McDowell Rd., Phoenix, Ariz. Click here for directions.

Admission:

$6 for Adults

FREE for ages 12 and under

$7 a car for parking

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