February 8, 2013

Week 6 - Weekend Events Round-up: Feb 8-10

The snow day today certainly wasn't a planned activity for me. OK nothing about this week has been "planned" except for the things that look like that are now un-planned due to parental health issues. Soon I will write about being part of the sandwich generation. No that is not the Subway kid or anything like that, but simply the generation of us adults that were older when we had our kids, so now we manage our active young children as well as our aging and or ill parents. This week I got hit with a double whammy that had my divorced parents both in and out of the hospital. It's exhausting none-the-less. So instead of heading to a blogger conference at Castaway Bay I'll likely be taking care of someone or another, or perhaps sleeping. (I think I may have gotten 12-hours of sleep in total since last week.) And before I get called out or yelled at because "I don't care for someone" or I am complaining - Of course I would take care of my family, but that doesn't make it any less exhausting. Life is fun isn't it?

So what are YOUR plans this weekend? Heading to the Ann Arbor Chinese New Year celebration? Spending time indoors at the Museum of Natural History? Making Valentine's Day cards with the kids? Going ice fishing, cross country skiing at Rolling Hills or sledding? Well no matter what, I'll have an idea or two for you and the family - And the kids will love no matter what activities you find for them! So check it out, here's your weekend events round-up.

Saturday, February 9

The day looks to be going to the birds, with two fantastic programs about raptors! First up is Hawk Tales at Leslie Science and Nature ( 1831 Traver Road Ann Arbor) where kids ages 1-5 can get up close and personal with a story and greeting with amazing raptors at 10:00 a.m. Pre-registration is required 734-997-1553 with a cost of $2/child. Later that day, the kids can meet more Live Birds of Prey at Hudson Mills Metropark (8801 N. Territorial Rd., Dexter) at 11:00 a.m. Come to the activity center for the “Lords of the Sky – The Exciting World of Birds of Prey” discussion and meet and greet of a few of the Howell Nature Center's feathered friends. Preregister at 734-426-8211. The cost for this fun activity is $5 per adult/$3 per child.

Want to get outdoors after Friday's snow day? How about participating in the 8th Annual Independence Lake Ice Fishing Derby? The event begins at 7:00 a.m. and runs all day until 5:00 p.m.  The family may catch Northern Pike, Bass, Bluegill and Crappie, with prizes awarded for differnt age groups! Registration begins at 7:00 at the Beach Center. Don't forget to bring your own bait. The derby entry fees are $10/adults and $5/ kids, 12 and under - however the event offers a free lunch and entry fee into the park!

If you aren't interested in fishing, you can still get the kids outdoors for Nature Stories for Kids at the County Farm Park – Field Operations Bldg. (the building closest to playground). Starting at 1:00 p.m. the kids can share stories, information and play games about some fun winter creatures. Dress for the weather though because outdoor fun will also ensue. This free event is geared for kids 6-8.

If being outdoors doesn't warm your heart, perhaps making Valentine's Day cards for Veteran's will. From 11:00 a.m. - noon at the Ann Arbor District Library (Pittsfield Branch - 2359 Oak Valley Dr., Ann Arbor) kids ages 5-10 can bring in a Valentine or make one at the library to be delivered to patients at C.S. Mott Children's Hospital or Veterans Hospital. Cards will be collected February 5-11. If you make a card to deliver, please remember: sign it with your first name only, leave it unsealed and please do not use glitter. Also please do not include messages about getting well or feeling better because many of the patients are in the hospital for a long time. The Ypsilanti District Library (8975 MacArthur Blvd., Superior Twp.) will also have a card making event for older kids and teens (with the bonus of making chocolate too!) at 2:00 p.m. Be sure to pre-register though 734-482-3747.

Another great way to spend time this weekend is through better understanding where you came from with a hands-on demos at University of Michigan Museum of Natural History ( 1109 Geddes Ave., Ann Arbor). The free program called "DNA and Race" runs Saturday's at 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. and is geared for kids ages 5 and up. Explore DNA and better understand how it makes up our bodies. Kids will also explore the relationship between DNA and and the idea of race. Does DNA determine skin color? What’s the relationship between skin color and what we think of as race? Are there any biological or genetic markers that define race?

Shhh, don't tell the kids, but Spy Day at the Ypsilanti District Library (8975 MacArthur Blvd.,
Superior Twp.) might also be fun. Kids and teens older than age 6 Learn some tricks of the spy trade with invisible ink, decoders, and more starting at 2:00 p.m.

Want the kids to learn a little about the science of cooking? Then the Family Reading Science Workshop at the Ypsilanti District Library (229 W. Michigan Ave., Ypsilanti) may be just the ticket. Kids ages 6-11 have two opportunities to learn how geology relates to food and they will even take home their own bread starter! This free event happens at 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. so be sure not to miss it!

Sunday, February 10

It's all about getting outdoors this weekend and there is another fun event happening today. At 2:00 p.m. head over to Devine Preserve for a from "Woods to Wetland Walk." Explore the oak hickory woods, then head out into some wetland areas looking for animal tracks and winter plant identification along the way. This is a free program sponsored by Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation. Remember to dress warm, especially wear good footwear!

Families have one more chance to experience the hands-on demo at University of Michigan Museum of Natural History ( 1109 Geddes Ave., Ann Arbor) at 3:00 p.m. today. At 1:00 there is also another chance of checking out the science of cooking demo that was featured at the library on Saturday. And certainly don't forget about the free dinosaur tours that happen every weekend!

What about staying warm and finding fun, free activities indoors? Fear not the teens will love to head to the Ann Arbor District Library (3090 E. Eisenhower Pky., Ann Arbor) for the Beaded Edge, where they will learn to crochet with beads. This free teen event runs 1:00-4:00 p.m. If you have basic crochet skills, we'll show you how to crochet with thread and beads to make a lovely decorative edge for a pin cushion or sachet.

Your youngest family members might get a charge out of Kamishibai, or Japanese Storytelling. At 1:00 p.m. head to the Ann Arbor District Library (3333 Traverwood Dr., Ann Arbor) for a fabulous free storytelling event! Kids will experience Kamishibai storytelling from the 12th century, with Masanari Nohara of Ann Arbor Japan House. The program involves a set of illustrated boards inserted into a small stage that, in Japan, was usually mounted on a bicycle and taken out one by one as a story is told.

So do you have enough ideas to get your weekend started? I thought so. Have a healthy, wonderful, and warm weekend, filled with fun events and activities with the kids.


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  2. Brad I'm so glad that you love the tour. It sure is fun isn't it?