Author - Joy Peters

1
40+ Ideas for School Halloween Treats
2
My Little Pony: The Movie — Fun Time!!!
3
The Abominables Musical at Children’s Theatre Company – Review
4
FFTC’s Guide to Twin Cities Halloween Fun
5
Twin Cities Marathon – Family Style
6
Expectation Station – An MEA Weekend Performance by DanceCo
7
Extended Another Year! MELSA smARTpass Program – An Arts Access Program for Metro Public Library Users
8
Where To View the Solar Eclipse in the Twin Cities – Plus Other Fun Events
9
Get Your FREE 2017 Museum Day Tickets
10
10 Free Things To Do With Kids In Downtown Minneapolis in Summer

40+ Ideas for School Halloween Treats

A few years ago, the members of a parenting group I belong to were discussing a letter sent home regarding school Halloween treats. This particular school was concerned with fat count and all treats had to be within certain fat guidelines. Other schools have allergy restrictions or limits on sugar. Some schools require only pre-packaged food for insurance reasons. This feels like another parenting hoop to jump through; but with so many treat-filled holidays, it is understandable.

That year, I and most of the parents in my group were leaning toward Clementine Jack-o’lanterns. However, I wondered,

“What if everyone brought Clementines as their treat?”

That’s a LOT of sticky clementines. So, I searched the web and found some alternate ideas for school Halloween treats. Not every one of these ideas is going to fit every dietary demand and some will be less expensive than others. Hopefully this round up will give us some ideas.

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My Little Pony: The Movie — Fun Time!!!

Calling all Pegasisters and Bronies! It is countdown time to My Little Pony: The Movie. It opens in theaters on October 6th!  I don’t know about you, but I have a little man who loves My Little Pony and has been begging to go see the movie. So, to celebrate, we have coloring pages to share!
My Little Pony: The Movie

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The Abominables Musical at Children’s Theatre Company – Review

So, the Abominables is a Hockey Musical? Hmmm. That should be interesting.

Sometimes it is obvious that I’m a transplant to Minnesota:

  • I don’t make hot-dishes; I make casseroles.
  • I didn’t teach my children Duck, Duck, Grey Duck; I taught  them Duck, Duck, Goose.
  • I drink from a Bubbler.
  • And don’t get me started on spices and cheese.

I’ve found that these differences are forgivable; but I also suffer from a couple Minnesota mortal sins: (1) I can take or leave the State Fair – Whatever.  (2) Hockey – No Thank You!

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FFTC’s Guide to Twin Cities Halloween Fun

We are just “dying” to share our roundup of Halloween fun in this frightfully full list of family friendly October events in the Twin Cities! Check back often as we’re always adding in new events.

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Twin Cities Marathon – Family Style

The Twin Cities Marathon is October 1st in 2017.  I think if I were to run a marathon, I would want to do it alone. To me, that is one of the joys of distance running — alone time.  However, whether you plan to run the marathon, it is something on your some-day list, or you just want to go watch, there are other fun ways to make it a family event while encouraging life long fitness all weekend.

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Expectation Station – An MEA Weekend Performance by DanceCo

My family and I had an opportunity to preview the upcoming Expectation Station and we are so excited for the full show. Expectation Station is an original Dance adventure created by DanceCo and featuring a Who’s Who of Twin Cities family entertainment. Engineer Paul of the Choo Choo Bob Show will be the storyteller, while the Roe Family Singers will be backing him up with music. The show will be presented at the Avalon Theatre (home of In the Heart of the Beast Puppet Theatre).

Expectation Station

Tickets are on sale now.

DanceCo was created by Matthew and Brittany Keefe. After moving to the Twin Cities with their young daughter, they discovered all the amazing things our city has to offer families, but found the area of dance relatively untapped and decided to fill it by starting DanceCo.

“DanceCo’s upcoming show is inspired by a year of parenting. Regularly, my daughter and I saw the Roe Family Singers perform and we went to Engineer Paul’s Story time at the Choo Choo Bob Train store. I watched my daughter fall in love with trains and train songs, just like her Dad. I saw an opportunity to craft a stage production that combines trains and their music with dance and theatre to make something new and delightfully different. A show that grandparents, parents and kids can enjoy together.” -Matthew Keefe

What to Expect From Expectation Station

Expectation Station is a train story told through dance and song. Wikipedia’s List of Train Songs fills 71 single-spaced pages of text. This is where the Keefe’s started; but I promise they’ve narrowed it down to a reasonable number. Our preview did not get to include Engineer Paul or the Roes, so we are looking forward to seeing the full production.

Last year, I reviewed the newly-formed DanceCo’s inaugural production – Wolf Tales. Because it was dance, I took my oldest daughter, assuming she would be the most appreciative. She did enjoy it, but I wished I could have brought my boys, too. This year, I brought the whole family, and I’m glad I did. My older two children enjoyed the performance, but it was my kindergarten son who had shiny, excited eyes throughout the whole performance (a truth you can see in the video above). He struggled to stay seated, which was okay, so did a lot of other kids and sometime’s they were invited to participate.

Our toddler also enjoyed the whole performance. This is saying a lot, because 2-year-old children just don’t sit still for anything. (Okay, the video above shows she was sometimes squirmy.) While the younger kids are going to be the most enthusiastic, all of my kids want to go back for the full production.

Expectation Station Details

Dates/Times: October 17-22: Tuesday-Saturday Matinee 10 am; Friday-Saturday Evening: 7pm; Additional Weekend Shows: Saturday 2pm; Sunday – 12pm and 2pm
Price$10/person. Find Tickets Here.
Venue: Avalon Theater, 1500 East Lake Street, Minneapolis, MN.

**Disclosure: We have been offered tickets to this show, but this review was essentially written before that offer was extended; nor did it change any opinions.

Extended Another Year! MELSA smARTpass Program – An Arts Access Program for Metro Public Library Users

The MELSA Libraries (Anoka County, Carver County, Dakota County, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Saint Paul, Scott County, Washington County), that the smARTpass Program will be extended another year, beginning September 1, 2017. Library patrons will continue to have this option for free or reduced-price tickets to arts activities and museums. Like the Museum Adventure Pass that went before it, this program is not guaranteed to be around forever. We recommend taking advantage of it but also thanking the venues for their support. It would be sad to lose this resource.

MELSA smARTpass program Read More

Where To View the Solar Eclipse in the Twin Cities – Plus Other Fun Events

On August 21st, the U.S. is going to see the biggest solar eclipse since I was in early grade school. A lot of parents are young enough that they don’t remember the last one, so this can be an exciting family event for everyone. It will run from approximately 11:45 to 1:00 p.m. While we won’t get a total eclipse here in Minnesota, we’ll still get enough to make it interesting. If you won’t be traveling to see the total eclipse but still want to get in on the fun, we do have a few places to view in the Twin Cities. This is what we’ve found so far. Leave us a comment if you know of other viewing areas

Where View the Solar Eclipse in the Twin Cities - Plus Other Fun Events

Standard Disclaimer: Don’t Look Directly at the Sun! Check with your local library. Some are giving out eclipse viewing glasses for free. Supplies are limited.

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Get Your FREE 2017 Museum Day Tickets

The 2017 Smithsonian Museum Day is past. Check back in fall of 2018. In the meantime, we offer year-round ideas for free or discounted admission to local museums and historic places  here.

In 2017, Smithsonian Museum Day is Saturday, September 23rd. On this day, visitors can get two free tickets to participating museums. Tickets are available while supplies last starting August 25th through the Smithsonian website. Minnesota always has several participating museum (not always the same museums). Some of these museums are cheap year round and many require a road trip. Each year, we lay them all out for you here, listing the museum and its address, an approximate drive-time from the Twin Cities, and the prices you would pay any other day.

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/museumday/venues/museum-day-live-2017/?state=MN&zip_code=&name=

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10 Free Things To Do With Kids In Downtown Minneapolis in Summer

Grab the stroller, hop the bus, bring a picnic or cash for lunch, and you can make a day (or more) of it in downtown Minneapolis.  There is so much going on and much of it is free and family-friendly.

Downtown Minneapolis

Why wait for an out-of-town guest to explore downtown? I’ve outlined 10 Free Things to Do with Kids Downtown to get you inspired. These activities are not all on the same day of the week, but it would make for a really long day if you powered through all ten activities at once. If you want to play tourist, you could probably get through all of them in a few days. Read More

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