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Moms and dads who have opinions to share about parenting in Atlanta! As a member, you’ll offer input on articles, contribute your talents and ideas, and get involved with Atlanta Parent’s special events and projects. (It’s a volunteer position with perks!) n
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4 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Inside 3 O March Vol. 31 / Number 3
YEARS OF ATLANTA PARENT
Features 14 36
End Sibling Strife
Your children can learn to live in harmony, if you follow three steps that emphasize each child is a special person.
8 Publisher’s Note 10 News You Can Use 12 The Frugal Family Kids Eat Free
Baby’s Night Out
Dining with an infant or toddler can be fun for everyone – including other diners – if you pick the right time and place and plan ahead.
Leading scientists agree, Maria Montessori was on to something when she developed her teaching method more than a hundred years ago. Your child can benefit from her approach, even if he doesn’t attend a Montessori school.
“Successful’ Housework Redefined
Family Fun Guide 61
Exhibit: Amusement Park Science
63 Free Fun:
Phoenix Flies Children’s Events
A treasure hunt is always fun! Geocaching helps kids learn GPS and directional skills too.
19 Birthday Party Planner
Honor your child’s special day with a splurge party he’ll always remember, or a themed party that fits her interests. Or think outside the box, and take a trip on MARTA or venture into the culinary world. Plus, you’ll find extensive listings of party resources, from performers to jump places.
at Gwinnett Environmental Center
Open Art Studios
Eating Out: Burger Roundup
St. Patrick’s Day Events
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Atlanta’s Award-Winning Parenting Publication PUBLISHER Liz White
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6 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Publisher’s Note Chef’s Specials, Crème Brule and Cheerios Today’s young moms and dads grew up with eating out as a part of their lifestyle, so it makes sense to continue the tradition when they have their own kids. Many families have two parents working, so there is a lot less time to prepare home cooked meals. Dining out is convenient and more affordable than ever, with a growing number of restaurants (not just fast food) welcoming families. For new parents, it can be tricky to juggle a newborn and possibly a sibling or two. Our feature article on “Dining Out with Baby” offers some great ideas about how to have a successful restaurant experience, for your family – and for other diners. Growing up, eating out as a family was reserved for very special occasions. For my family of eight, McDonald’s was an unexpected treat. We did dine out more with my daughter, though upscale restaurants expected us to get a babysitter. Now, some nicer restaurants have kids’ menus and work hard to make sure families have a pleasant experience. With a bit of planning, your family doesn’t have to be the focus of unwanted attention, with a fussy baby or an overtired toddler just shy of a meltdown. To celebrate my mother’s 86th birthday, we gathered at Brio in Dunwoody – eight adults, a toddler and an 11-month-old. We had PlayDoh and Cheerios for them, and both were content and quiet for almost two hours. We never expected them to last that long, and my daughter and son-in-law were prepared to leave if needed. Anytime you take young children out to eat you risk an unhappy child, but you can lower that risk by being prepared and knowing your child’s limits. After we spent two hours at the circus, for instance, we knew the kids were tired and stopped at the Varsity on the way home, where the noise and activity level is high and a fussy child wouldn’t stand out (they were, however, well behaved). Take a night to enjoy one of Atlanta’s many restaurants with your family and bring along the Cheerios, toys and a smile.
How to Reach us: Telephone 770.454.7599
Snail Mail 2346 Perimeter Park Drive Atlanta, Georgia 30341
We welcome your views and comments. Letters that appear in the magazine may be edited for content and space.
8 Atlanta Parent March 2014
ItFigures by Cynthia Washam
Exercise is not Enough
Fun and Games 1
Rank of G.I. Joe dolls among the “100 Toys That Define Our Childhood,” compiled by the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis from 24,000 survey responses
visit Perimeter Plastic Surgery
Number of children’s books movie star Jamie Lee Curtis has written, including a New York Times number-one bestseller
Cost on Amazon for a Fresh Metal Tailwind toy drone, modeled after the unmanned aircraft used to target overseas terrorists and militants
Number of LEGO pieces Indiana engineer Brian Alano used to create a five-footsquare replica of the Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the Indianapolis Colts
Number of months it took him to complete the project
Rank of LEGOs on the 100-toys list
Visit Website for Details
• Read Dr. Mark Deutsch’s Credentials • See Before and After Pictures • Mommy Makeover Details • Liposuction, Tummy Tucks • Breast Implants • Injectables • Facial Plastic Surgery
Patient - Before
Patient - After
Cost for one of 11 T-shirt designs created by artist Aaron Rose and inspired by the Monopoly board game
Rank of Monopoly on the 100-toys list
Mark F. Deutsch, MD, FACS
Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery
Atlanta & Fayetteville
www.perimeterplasticsurgery.com Sources: Foxnews.com, Writer’s Digest, Amazon.com, Indystar.com, Bloomberg.com, Discovery.com, Chiff.com,
Big or Small Save Them All March 2014 Atlanta Parent 9
News You Can Use
by Amanda Miller Allen
Book, Toy – What a Deal!
Buy a beginner book and matching plush toy for just $5 through Kohl’s Cares, a philanthropic program of Kohl’s Department Stores. The books, for ages 3 and older, are: Put Me in the Zoo with a dog plush, Go, Dog, Go! with a dog plush, The Nose Book with an elephant plush, Hand, Hand, Fingers Thumb with a monkey plush, and Big Dog … Little Dog with a Fred and Ted plush. To see the toys, visit kohls.com/feature/ kohlscares.jsp; order online or buy at a department store.
How Children Read Kids ages 2-10 average more than 40 minutes a day of reading:
29 minutes on print 8 minutes on computers 5 minutes on digital platforms 62 percent
of kids have access to e-readers or tablets, but only half use them because parents encourage print books. Source: Study by The Joan Ganz Cooney Center involving 1,500 parents.
Come Out and Play Atlanta ContactPoint, a nonprofit promotes wellness and targets the obesity epidemic, is conducting free days of sports, fitness and nutrition education every month at metro parks. More than 30 sports and activities will be played each play date. Locations and dates this spring are: Boulevard Crossing on March 30, Candler Park on April 19 and Washington Park on May 17. Find more information at atlcp.org.
10 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Free Pancakes for Charity Free pancakes again will be available at IHop restaurants on National Pancake Day, March 4. The ninth annual promotion hopes to raise $3 million in donations for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, Shriners Hospitals and other charities. A short stack of pancakes costs nothing, but the restaurant chain encourages people to make voluntary donations. More information at ihoppancakeday.com.
Put Cart Safety First
Get ready to lose an hour’s sleep – Daylight Saving Time begins at 2 a.m. March 9. Remember to set your clock ahead one hour.
Parents don’t think of shopping carts as dangerous, but a recent study found that about 24,000 children are treated annually in emergency rooms for concussions or head injuries involving carts. The study, by Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, said falls accounted for 70 percent of the injuries. Others were injured by running into or falling over a cart, a cart tipping over or getting their hands or feet caught in the cart. Carts that place children lower to the ground, such as the whimsical car carts, are safer, the researchers said. atlantaparent.com
March 2014â€ƒ â€ƒ Atlanta Parent 11
frugalfamily by Dalia Faupel
Kids’ meal deals abound in metro Atlanta, so dining out doesn’t need to cost a fortune. Restaurant programs are subject to change, so call ahead to confirm details before you dine.
Free Kids’ Birthday Meals Celebrate with a free kids’ birthday meal! Most programs require sign-up prior to your child’s birthday month to get your meal certificate or coupon before their big day. n Zaxby’s Kids Club Register your child for the Zax Kidz Club and receive a Free Kidz Meal Card on their birthday. Kids must be 10 years of age and under to join. kidzclub.zaxbys.com/ for-parents
Kids Eat FREE Cans Taqueria (Alpharetta)
n Provino’s Italian Restaurant (8 metro area locations) Children can get a free kids’ meal with proof of birthday. provinos.com
Corner Tavern (Midtown Atlanta)
n Burger King Sign up for the kids club to get a free BK kids’ hamburger on your child’s birthday. bkcrown. com/Register/NewParent.aspx
5 Seasons Brewing Co. (Sandy Springs)
Get one free kids’ meal with the purchase of an adult entrée every Sunday. 5seasonsbrewing.com Get one free kids’ menu item (for kids 12 and younger) with every full-priced adult entrée Sun.-Thurs. only. Drinks are not included, subtitutions or alterations cannot be accommodated. canstaqueria.com/
Get one free kids’ meal per adult meal purchased at full price Tuesdays, 6-8 p.m. thecornertavern.com/west-midtown
n Captain D’s Sign up for the Kids Birthday Club and your child will receive a special birthday greeting and a Free kid’s Meal on their birthday. Kids must be 12 or younger to participate. captainds.com/join-kids-club/
Flying Biscuit (Candler Park and Midtown Atlanta) Get one free kids’ meal (for ages 12 and younger) 4-7 p.m. with the purchase of a menu item costing $6.95 or more. flyingbiscuit.com
Gezzo’s Surf and Grille (McDonough and Locust Grove)
Get one free kids’ menu item for every adult entrée purchased every Tuesday. Gezzos.com
Gezzo’s Surf and Grille
Deals About Town n Turner Field Tours Leading up to Atlanta Braves Opening Day and the 40th anniversary of Hank Aaron’s 715th home run, families can score a deal on Turner Field tours. For the month of March, a family of four can tour Turner Field, including the Braves Museum & Hall of Fame for $40, using code FAMILY40. This promotion is good for walk-up tours only.atlanta.braves.mlb.com/ atl/ballpark/tours/index.jsp
12 Atlanta Parent March 2014
n Georgia Aquarium Kids 12 and younger who visit the Aquarium on March 8 dressed as a royal or a scallywag for Pirate & Princess Day get free admission with each paying adult. Craft activities and costumed character meet and greets are planned. georgiaaquarium.org
n Zoo Atlanta March 15 is Pajama Day! Kids (ages 11 and younger) wearing pajamas can get $3 off general admission and participate in slumber party-themed games and activities. zooatlanta.org
Cover Kids Contest All entries must be postmarked by June 20, 2014. To register and more info visit:
Atlantaparent.com/coverkids Ages 0-12 years $25 entry fee lâ€‚ NEW group category $45 entry fee lâ€‚
No More Squabbles
End Sibling Strife with a ThreeStep Plan
by Lara Krupicka
hey’d barely tumbled in the door from school when it started. “Mom! I called that seat first!” “Mom! She took two cookies and I only got one!” And there I was, playing referee – again. Do you feel like you spend much of your time with your kids trying to solve spats and silence the bickering? And you hope that one day there might be harmony? Guess what? Hope comes in the form of one simple word: “special.” Here are three ways “special” can increase the peace in your home: 14 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Parents to Kids: Treat Each One as Special Even though we know it, we sometimes confuse our desire to be fair to our children with treating them equally. Dr. Scott Turansky, co-author of Say Goodby to Whining, Complaining, and Bad Attitudes…in You and Your Kids! (with Joanne Miller), suggests that parents try instead to treat kids independently. He notes: “parents inadvertently encourage competition by treating them the same. Kids look for inequities.” Turansky often reminds parents that “fair doesn’t mean equal.” We know we should treat our kids differently from each other because they are different from each other. However, framing it as treating them “special” is more positive. When each child in a family feels valued, there’s less chance for conflict due to competition. Look for ways to engage each of your children in an activity all their own, that you don’t share with any of their siblings. Maybe you can play chess with one child and scrapbook with another. Point out the strengths of each child’s temperament and ways each one adds to your family. You might say, “Susie, I appreciate how much you love being around people. You do such a good job making our friends feel welcome when they visit.” Or, “Daniel, you make a good leader. I like how other kids look to you to help decide what to do when you’re playing.”
Parents to Conflict: Address Issues Individually When bickering and fights erupt, parents tend to tackle the offenders as a unit. Instead, Turansky advocates separating children. “Work with one kid at a time. Give each one a separate plan, particular to them.” With this concept in mind, we can observe each child’s role in the conflict and isolate the factors involved. Then we can tailor the problem-solving strategy to the individual child’s age, personality and strengths. We should emphasize the unique solutions each particular child brings to atlantaparent.com
the situation. Making them feel special as peacemakers empowers kids to become more effective at resolving their conflicts. For example, sometimes arguments ensue when one child wants to be left alone, while another craves attention. Taking them each aside gives you the chance to draw their attention to the positives of the interaction. You can say, “Jane, your younger brother really looks up to you. Do you think maybe he’s just wanting to be with you because of that?” And you can suggest to the younger one that his enthusiasm might be overwhelming to his sister and propose that he invite her to do something fun after she’s had some time alone.
Kids to Kids: Teach Them to Value Each Other Parents need to create a loving home environment where everyone treats each other as special. Make it a habit to take time
We know we should treat our kids differently from each other because they are different from each other.
However, framing it as treating them “special” is more positive. When each child in a family feels valued, there’s less chance for conflict due to competition. to celebrate each other’s accomplishments. Talk with each child about ways they could do something unexpected for their siblings. Encourage them to speak well about and to one another. Then praise them liberally when they do these things. When kids begin developing a pattern of displaying these behaviors, the level of conflict subsides. After all, it’s hard to be angry with someone who has done something kind for you. We saw the benefits one year when my then 7-year-old daughter’s birthday approached. Everyone in the household grew tired of Evelyn’s (hourly) exclamations of how many days were left until her celebration. Her sisters hounded her to stop and fights erupted over her right to have
a birthday countdown. Then one day my oldest daughter found a solution. She began announcing each morning the number of days remaining for her sister. Evelyn loved the recognition and her excessive counting down stopped. Being made to feel special by her sister solved the struggle they’d been having. Turansky points out that the key element is remembering that we’re trying to teach our child how to relate to other children. “It’s your child’s first class in relationship school,” he says. “They’re building the skills necessary to be successful.” Look for ways to implement these three approaches to bickering in your family. When “special” becomes the byword in your home, peace and harmony will reign. c
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FOR FULL SCHEDULES AND PROGRAM DETAILS. March 2014 Atlanta Parent 15
Recipes for Bubble-Mania l Basic Bubbles: Mix two tablespoons of dish
soap with one cup of water. Ultra Dawn detergent seems to work best. l Magic Bubbles: To create larger bubbles, mix
one tablespoon of glycerin with two tablespoons of dish soap. Add nine ounces of water. l Color Bubbles: Add one cup of liquid
Have a Bubble Blast!
tempera paint to two tablespoons of dish detergent. Mix in one tablespoon of liquid starch. Be sure to use paints that easily wash out of clothes. *Recipes from www.creativekidsathome.com.
Create Your Own Wands l A Wand for Big Bubbles: Create giant
bubbles at home with this simple trick. Cut two straws in half, making each section six inches long. Cut a string 25 inches long. Pull the string through the straws, tie the string in a knot and hide the knot inside a straw. Place your hands on the straws and pull, creating a square or rectangle shape. Dip the shape into a pan of bubble solution and gently draw it through the air.
by Sarah E. King
March 16-22 is National Bubble Week, celebrating endless possibilities to blow, pop and produce bubbles of all sizes. Take advantage of a sunny day, round up the family and head outdoors to celebrate, using some of these tips and tidbits from Atlanta Parent.
l Budget-Friendly Wands: Bend a paper clip
into a fun shape and dip in bubble solution. Use a fly swatter to produce lots of tiny bubbles or bend a coat hanger into a circle to make one large bubble. Hula-hoops are a good way to make large bubbles by simply dipping one in a baby pool filled with bubble solution.
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For parenting resources you can actually use.
You’re There. atlantaparent.com Don’t forget to sign up for our weekly e-newsletter while you’re there. 16 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Tricks to Try
Kevin R. Jackson, DDS
Diplomate, American Board of Pediatric Dentistry
l Predictable Pops: Amaze your friends as you
predict which bubble will pop first. Blow a bubble and watch the top of it closely. When a black band begins to form on top of the bubble, it’s ready to pop. Blow a stream of bubbles, and announce which one will pop first. l Create Bubble Art: This messy art project is
sure to craft some interesting pieces. You need: Tempera or poster paint in 3-4 colors White construction paper Bubble solution Bubble wand or drinking straw 3-4 small containers A teaspoon and a cup Pour one cup of bubble solution into each of the four containers. Add one teaspoon of paint to each container. Stir gently. With a partner, take turns blowing bubbles with a straw or wand. Your partner will catch the bubbles on a piece of paper, creating brightly colored splotches. *Idea provided by www.sdahq.org/sdakids.
“Every Child Deserves a Healthy Smile!”
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More than 200 million bottles of bubble solution are sold each year.
Bubble Trivia l Children have been blowing bubbles since the
17th century. l 13,627 baseballs could fit inside the largest
free-floating bubble ever documented. l The longest bubble documented was 105 feet
Hints for Better Bubbles l Blow gently. If you are getting a lot of small
bubbles, you are blowing too hard. l Make sure your bubble wand or anything your
bubble may touch is wet. l Don’t slosh your bubble wand around in
bubble solution. This creates suds and foam, which are bad for bubbles. l Bubbles are best in cool, humid temperatures.
Try to stay in shady areas.
Stay Safe While Having Fun l Popped bubbles create slick surfaces. Wear
shoes with a good grip. l Soap solution bubbles can be irritating for the
eyes. Avoid contact with your face. l Chasing bubbles can be fun, but avoid areas
near roads or heavy traffic. c
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 17
18 Atlanta Parentâ€ƒ â€ƒ March 2014
5 top party themes for girls:
Mickey Mouse Angry Birds Cars Thomas the Tank Engine Toy Story
Minnie Mouse Monster High Hello Kitty Disney Princess Yo Gabba Gabba
The amount 25 percent of families spend on a birthday party. 50 percent of families spend $100 on a party.
“Happy Birthday To You”
THE AMOUNT U.S. FAMILIES SPEND ANNUALLY ON KIDS’ CARDS, GIFTWRAP AND PARTYWARE.
amount spent $10-$20 Average on a birthday gift.
25,000 evites are sent every hour.
is the most popular song in the English language.
WEIGHT OF BIGGEST BIRTHDAY CAKE IN THE WORLD (MEASURED 102 FEET LONG AND 52 FEET WIDE)
Sources: Hallmark, Party City, howstuffworks.com, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ibiblio.com, Evite.com, Guinness World Book of Records.
5 top party themes for boys:
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 19
OU T of th e BOX
Fresh Party Ideas for 2014: Looking for new ways to celebrate your kids’ birthdays? We’ve collected some clever themes that’ll inspire you to give the heave-ho to ho-hum!
n Skill Set Fans of the Hunger Games trilogy and Brave may be thrilled to learn a new skill: archery! Panola Mountain State Park offers beginning archery classes that can be the basis for an active birthday party. Antoinette Norfleet of Conyers hosted a Hunger Games-themed archery party for her 13-year-old son. Park staff allowed the group of 15 to reserve a private class ($10 per child), and then added special touches. The kids drew badges to learn which district they’d be representing, targets bore the images of Hunger Games characters, and the guest who hit the mark most often won a prize. Following the class, the whole party headed to a Catching Fire screening and ate cake. “This was really an adventure instead of a party,” Norfleet said. “My son felt like everybody had a great time and it was exciting for the kids to try something new.” TIP: Check our calendar for activities that may interest your child. Learning a new skill, whether it’s a sport, art form or hobby, provides party guests with special memories of a celebration.
n Breakfast Club Preschool aged children may find afternoon parties a yawn, but early morning can be ideal for celebrations. Kim Curnutt of Brookhaven hosted a doughnut party at Dandy Donuts in Chamblee for her 5-year-old son on a weekday morning, effectively making it a preschool pre-party! The quick and easy breakfast bash lasted just 30 minutes and the doughnuts cost less than $20 for her 12 guests. “We just brought gallons of milk and our own cups and decorations,” Curnutt said. “Shop staff even helped me set up!” TIP: Some breakfast restaurants have meeting rooms that can accommodate private parties and certain movie theaters, like Movie Tavern, offer morning screenings where groups wearing PJs are welcome.
20 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Get SMARTA Transportation-obsessed kids often find the journey more important than the destination. Roswell mom Tara Barnett’s 7-year-old son loves riding MARTA, so she organized a small excursion party. She allowed him to invite a small number of friends, assigning one adult per child, and let them each go through the process of buying their roundtrip MARTA card at the station. Then they hopped on a southbound train to Centennial Olympic Park. “The kids sat together and kept track of the stops,” she said. “It was exciting for
them to go through the tunnels and look out the windows.” Each boy wore swim trunks and brought a towel and dry clothes along in backpacks so they were prepared to play in the Fountain of Rings. Then they ate lunch together and had milkshakes from the park restaurant to toast the birthday boy. Barnett said her son called this his best party ever, yet it was one of the least expensive she’s planned. TIP: Look for more transportationthemed party ideas on page 22.
n Kitchen Kids
n Store Ours Atlantan LaKeisha Fleming’s 7-year-old son loves the Home Depot first Saturday kids’ workshop programs so much that she decided to hold his birthday party at a store. After calling several locations, she found one willing to host his 30 first-grade friends. The manager allowed her group to come in after the regular workshop time so that they wouldn’t have to share the space, and permitted a cake to be brought in. Store staff made the group feel welcome by setting up balloon decorations and games for the kids, and multiple employees assisted with make-your-own toolbox projects. “Each guest even got a Home Depot apron to take home,” Fleming said. “Several moms told me I won party of the year!” TIP: Explore partying at your child’s favorite place to shop, eat or play for a party venue that’s unexpected and unusual.
n Game On! Electronic games like Minecraft, Candy Crush and Just Dance! are hot with kids and can easily become party themes. Marteeta Spradling of Covington created a Minecraft party for her twin 8-yearold sons at their request. Although there weren’t any commercially made Minecraft party supplies available during her planning, she made decorations and favors with a little help from an etsy.com designer. For the big day, she enlisted a neighborhood friend to make a “Creeper” character cake and she served refreshments, including Creeper-inspired lime green punch. Spradling also rented a video game bus to allow all the guests to play Minecraft together. “Our party was a huge hit,” Spradling said. “Every time we look at the pictures from the party the boys say, ‘Mom that was our best birthday party ever.’” TIP: Pinterest is a treasure trove of ideas for game-themed parties, and as game celebrations catch on, pre-made party supplies are finding their way into local and online stores. atlantaparent.com
Inspired by her kids’ love of the popular cooking competition show Chopped, Marietta mom Vyanti Joseph arranged an at-home version. She hosted a small group, including her three boys (ages 15, 13 and 10,) giving each participant a basket of mystery ingredients. In three rounds, the kids prepared an appetizer, entrée and dessert using these ingredients (no raw meats were used.) Their game didn’t include elimination, but awarded points for creativity, taste, and appearance. Using basic kitchen gadgets under parental supervision the kids assembled dishes for the “judges.” Joseph said, “I was amazed at the creativity. Some of the dishes were surprisingly good. In fact, one of them is now a go-to dinner recipe for our family!” Taking a culinary celebration theme further still, Joseph made a cake for her youngest son based on his favorite YouTube comedian’s popular prank calls (he calls bakeries to order a “complicated” birthday cake). “We made it for him just as the comic described it. Half red velvet and half ice cream cake with crazy 3D icing and Peeps all over it,” Joseph said. “He lit up when he saw it!” TIP: Play with food at home or restaurants, including Uncle Maddio’s Buckhead and Dunwoody locations, where guests can build their own personal pizzas (from dough to sauce and toppings) and then craft while they’re cooking. – Dalia Faupel
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 21
Three Themes, All Ages One size may not fit all, but these three birthday party themes can be customized to please boys and girls of any age. by Dalia Faupel and Jennifer Haslam
Ages 2-4 Preschoolers love to shake maracas, ring bells and dance. Hire a music teacher to lead a groovin’ party at home or at a local park, and let guests “make” an instrument like an egg shaker or drums made from chopsticks and empty food containers. Put together a CD of your child’s fave tunes as a favor! Start here: themusicclass.com kindermusik.com Gigsalad.com
Ages 5-10 Try hosting a party at a local music store where kids can participate in an introductory group lesson and learn about multiple instruments. Or invite a professional musician to your party location who’ll let kids get hands on, and possibly have unique instruments to show from around the world. Send home photos of the jam session! Start here: kenstanton.com atlantasteelpan.com newschoolofmusic.com
Ages 11+ Too cool for music school? Rent or borrow a karaoke machine and let tweens and teens rock out like stars. Or, hit the road with a couple of friends to take in a music show. Atlanta Parent’s calendar lists concerts (free and ticketed), festivals, and musical theater productions throughout the year. Start here: nationwidekaraokerentals.com atlantaparent.com ticketmaster.com
On the Go
Ages 2-4 Future pilots can touch the sky through pretend play. Create a faux hot air balloon with a huge laundry basket, table cloth, cloud cut-outs and a HUGE balloon (like Atlanta Parent reader Jennifer Marie Barmmer) or build an airplane or spaceship from recycled materials and have kids pose for photos in it. To see the real things with wings, reserve space at a local airport with prime takeoff and landing viewing and grab a bite at the on-site restaurant. Start here: web.co.dekalb.ga.us/pdkairport/about.asp mccollumairport.com boxcreations.com
22 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Ages 5-10 Visit Peachtree Station, the arrival and departure terminal for all Amtrak Trains in Atlanta, and view the trains coming and going (check the schedule first!) Take guests on the 45-minute trip from Atlanta to Gainesville via Amtrak train for $16 a ticket, and have another parent meet you at the Gainesville station with a car for the trip home. A train-themed museum can also be the perfect place to get everyone onboard the party train! Start here: amtrak.com southernmuseum.org srmduluth.org
Ages 11+ Atlanta Motor Speedway and Dixie Speedway host a family-friendly racing series for car enthusiasts. AMS Thunder Thursdays are grassroots racing nights with kids as young as 8 driving. At the Dixie Speedway, your group can tailgate and watch the races. For those with the need for speed, Andretti Indoor Karting and Games can get party guests behind the wheel. Start here: dixiespeedway.com atlantamotorspeedway.com/events/thunder andrettikarting.com
Ages 2-4 Host an eco-friendly, swap party in your own backyard, and invite guests by electronic invitation. Use reusable partyware and play outdoor, “old-fashioned” games that don’t require buying supplies. Ask guests to bring a gently used book or a toy to swap and you’ve got an instant party favor for each guest. Start here: viridianblues.blogspot.com/2012/05/giftswap-birthday-party-idea.html wired.com/geekdad/2009/08/ simpleoutdoorplay/ preserveproducts.com/products
Ages 5-10 Host a recycled art party by asking guests to bring reusable items to create a collective collage or sculpture. Or plan a party at a favorite park or local nature center for an edutainment experience focused on the environment, animals and conservation. Make sure the final activity of party guests is to leave the area just as they found it, or maybe even better! Start here: wyldecenter.org/hosted-parties gastateparks.org thecraftycrow.net/recycled/
Ages 11+ Let the birthday child plan a party that highlights his or her interests but still gives back. An animal lover can organize a group tour of a local pet adoption center and ask guests to donate newspapers or blankets in lieu of gifts. Before the visit, bake doggie treats together. Sports fanatics can plan a sports-themed party that includes collecting old sports equipment to donate to charity. Start here: pebbletossers.com atlantahumane.org bgcma.org/in_kind_donations
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 23
Parties Worth a
Think About What Your Child Loves, Then Create the Experience by Sherry V. Crawley
Think fast: What birthday from your childhood stands out? Maybe you had an amazing cake, or perhaps a party with a big surprise. So how can we give our kids a day to remember without going over-the-top? We can splurge, if we balance extravagance with practicality, and spend the money on the most important feature of the celebration. I think I finally got it right on my son’s last birthday, and it all started with a popsicle. SPLURGE on Refreshments It’s kind of unhealthy how obsessed I am with the King of Pops. Luckily, I have handed down my affection for all things from the rainbow umbrella to my son. He was smacking on grapefruit mint and chocolate sea salt pops when he was a mere babe. For his last birthday, my son really wanted to have his party at a local park. I made creative choices but kept it simple – a supermarket cake, an inexpensive fee to rent the gazebo, and coloring book pages and lollipops for favors. That freed up the majority of my budget to splurge on – you guessed it! – popsicles. I knew he wouldn’t remember the games or the decorations, but a chance to eat all the popsicles he wanted AND hang out with the guy with the rainbow umbrella? That was a winner. Although it was expensive, my son and the guests loved it. The look on his face when that cart rolled up the path was worth every penny. The pops kept everyone cool(ish), and we got to take the leftover pops home (score!). When planning a party, think about what your kid really loves. What can you do that will thrill their little hearts? Select one element that will have a huge impact on your guests and your child’s memories, and keep the rest of the details in check. Here are two other examples of parties from Atlanta families that featured a splurge on one aspect, resulting in a magical yet not over-thetop day. 24 Atlanta Parent March 2014
More Ways to Splurge Going big on one element will make the party an event to remember, without budget shock. n Cake and Food: Does your kid constantly watch Cupcake Wars? Is she crazy about frozen yogurt? A sheet cake from the grocery store won’t do – a bakery can craft a dream confection to serve as the centerpiece for your party. Or set up a sundae bar catered by your child’s favorite treat shop. n Entertainment: An outdoor movie screen, a pony carousel – what will make your kid say, “wow!”? n Favors and Goody Bags: Send your guests home with a thoughtful memento of the big event. Get a hardback book for each child that is a reminder of the party theme, or send the little ladies on their way with manicure/pedicure gift certificates. n And For You, Photos: You will be so busy handing out juice boxes that you will hardly have time to enjoy the special moments, let alone time to find your camera. Consider hiring a professional photographer to take photos.
SPLURGE on the Venue How can you go wrong with ponies? When planning his 3-year-old son’s party, Clifton Askew of Atlanta looked close to home for inspiration. His little man was awfully fond of a horse that lived in the neighborhood. So he turned to Chastain Horse Park to make his party a hit. The venue is pricey, but Askew said that many items are included in the fee. For example, while each kid took a turn on a pony, the other party guests had fun with a horseshoe craft that is included in the party fee. “The coordinator at Chastain recommended that we bring him for a pre-ride. So he had been there before,” Askew said. “My son got to ride first at his party, and he knew the pony’s name and was comfortable thanks to the earlier visit.”
Splurge Party Venues Kids are sure to have fun at one of these sites, or consider less expensive venues such as a skating rink, an aquatics center, a movie theater, a bowling alley, or an arcade – most any place that kids love will offer a birthday party package. n Georgia Aquarium: Parties, on Saturdays and Sundays, are designed for 15-50 people (children and adults) in a themed party area, with themes of Deepo, Dolphin, Ocean, Pirate, Mermaid, Shark or Young Scientist (for ages 11 or older). The 1.5-hour party includes a party coordinator; themed sheet cake, ice cream and drink for each guest; party paper products and utensils; birthday craft and photo; gift bag for all guests; $10 aquarium gift card for the birthday boy or girl, and a behind-the-scenes tour; before or after the party, guests enjoy admission to the aquarium and its shows. Cost is $45 per person, plus tax (15 guests would be $675). georgiaaquarium.org n Hunger Games Unofficial Fan Tours: The company takes fans of the Hunger Games series to visit filming locations in and around Atlanta, and will customize a party for birthday groups. The company has three standard birthday packages, for $30 or $50 per person with a 10-person minimum or $69 per person with a 25-person minimum. The least expensive is a party at your home with archery lessons, cupcake decorating, poison, knot tying, pita toss, a snack pack, Archery Tag in a large yard or nearby park (if allowed) and survival certificates for each guest. The other two involve van or bus tours of filming sites and more survival games and activities. hungergamesunofficialfantours.com n Six Flags: Parties, held at 2 p.m. on regular operating days, require a minimum of 10 guests. For $42.99 per person, or about $430 for 10 guests, the package includes admission to the park
With only eight children as guests, the family was able to make the budget work. Askew advises considering ways party elements can do double-duty. “We ordered some blow-up horses online to decorate with. You can’t have balloons around the horses. So we hung them up for decorations and then we cut them down and gave each kid one. They had so much fun running around riding them.” Cont’d on page 26
and an all-you-can-eat meal in Bugs Bunny’s Carrot Club (meal includes pizza, breadsticks, Coca-Cola beverages, cupcakes and ice cream), plus free parking. The birthday honoree’s admission and meal are complimentary. sixflags.com/overgeorgia n Six Flags White Water: Cabana birthday packages for a minimum of eight guests come in Standard ($405, with additional guests $35 each), Deluxe ($461, with additional guests $42 each) and Premium ($525, with additional guests $50 each). The Standard party price includes all day admission for eight guests, free tube rentals and a personal cabana; a birthday souvenir for the honoree, who also receives complimentary admission on his party day; and a meal of pizza, tossed salad, mini-funnel cake and Coca-Cola beverages. Other packages add amenities to the Standard package. sixflags.com/whitewater n Skyview: Soar high over Atlanta in a climate-controlled gondola, then hold your party in the Under the Skyview VIP Space, which has furniture, plants and a security guard. Rent the space for three hours for $850, which includes a flight for each of your guests; catering available. skyviewatlanta.com n Zoo Atlanta: Daytime party package costs $450 plus tax and includes rental of a party pavilion for 90 minutes, 16 admission tickets (adults and children), guest seating for up to 50 guests, disposable tablecloths and paper products and catering for 16 guests (one large slice pizza per person, chips, juice box or bottled water, brownie or cookie). Each additional guest is $22 plus tax. Add an animal encounter, face-painting clown or other extras at additional cost. zooatlanta.org
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 25
Parties Worth a SPLURGE
SPLURGE on Party Favors Bouncy balls, stickers, candy…you know the drill. Party goody bags are pretty predictable. But when planning a birthday luau for her preschool daughter and her best friend, Snellville mom Monica Haddox, wanted to make every child feel special, not just the birthday girls. With 75 kids attending, that was quite a project. She crafted “treasure boxes” for each kid – putting trinkets in up-cycled boxes that once contained staples. “I didn’t want any of them to look the same because there were a lot of brothers and sisters,” Haddox said. Though the items in the boxes each totaled about $4, the boxes then went into a goody bag that also
included a lei and chocolates. She held drawings for special items like gift certificates for frozen treats, movie tickets and hula hoops. Her now 5-year-old daughter Jamison helped organize and fill the bags. Haddox said that was a great chance to get her child excited about sharing with her friends and family. Haddox got the other birthday girl, Serwaa Appaasamoah, involved as well by setting up “glam” tables for each of the girls decorated in their favorite colors. They brought items from home to display that showed their personalities. The party was at an aquatic center, so Haddox purchased scads of pool noodles. The kids played with them at the party and then took them home. “I purchased things that I wanted to decorate with but I knew I didn’t want to bring home so I raffled them off. I gave each parent a ticket and called out numbers. They really got into it!” One tip from Haddox: she used an online business card printer to design and order custom thank-you notes that she placed in each goody bag, thanking the kids for being there. “I wanted the party to be meaningful for our birthday girls but also for the parents and children who cared enough about them to share this important day with us.” c
Steal the Idea n King of Pops Party: 100-pop minimum purchase Sunday-Friday ($200 or more), 200 pop minimum Saturday; team member on site is $25 an hour, including driving time. atlanta.kingofpops.net. n Chastain Horse Park: Parties for 15 or fewer guests cost $550, which includes a coordinator, two pony leaders and a person to assist with crafts and games; table coverings, if desired, and set up and clean up. Guests take home horse-related crafts they make. Parents provide refreshments, paper goods and decorations. chastainhorsepark.org. n Birthday Luau: Bethesda Park Aquatic Center in Gwinnett will rent the entire center for private parties after hours (other counties offer similar services). Cost (includes lifeguards) for a private party starts at $333 for Gwinnett residents, for a party with fewer than 50 people ($666 for non-residents).
Touch Learn Perfect Educational Entertainment Children of all ages Special Needs Birthday Parties
M R I N O G F R P E A P RROTS E M A T PARROT PRODUCTIONS
Brenda Bean supported by husband Jack
email@example.com 770-715-5337 parrotproshows.com
26 Atlanta Parent March 2014
BIRTHDAY PARTY PLANNER
Make a Wish!
A Zoo to You - Wildlife Wonders. A variety of animals: alligators, kangaroos, monkeys, zebras and parrots. Petting zoo and pony rides available. $200 and up. 706-348-7279. Exotic Paradise Animal Shows. Owls, parrots, cockatoo, iguanas, tortoises, monitors, a variety of insects and arachnids. Full show $250; half show, $195. 770-969-1112 or 954592-0047.
Want ponies for your party, or a superhero, perhaps? Looking for an inflatable arena for an off-site birthday bash? Our annual guide will help you find plenty of new ideas and inspiration.
Little Red Barn Mobile Petting Farm. Brings friendly, miniature farm animals and ponies to you. $375/hour and up. 678-493-5860. Mr. Greg’s Reptile Roadshow. Alligators, snakes, lizards and more. $175 for ages 4-6, 30 minutes; $200 for 7 and up, 45 minutes; $225 for 8 and up, 1 hour. 678-764-3636. Raisin’s Ranch Pony Parties. Party helpers bring mini horses to you. Add bunnies for petting and a craft. $250 and up. 770-617-1521. Reptile Wrangler. Critter shows with reptiles and giant bugs. Select from a collection of over 24 critters including alligator, snakes, lizards, turtles/tortoises and giant bugs. $125 and up. 770-489-3512. Parrot Productions. Tame, performing parrots talking and snuggling with children at your location. Ages 3 and up. $150 and up. 770715-5337. Sam’s Path Petting Zoo. Monkeys, camels, parrots, kangaroos, fox, zebras. $300 and up. 706-717-8837. Summer and Friends. Pony rides, face painting, clowns, balloon art and concessions. $145 and up. 678-508-0475.
INDEX Entertainers From clowns to critters, magicians to makeovers, these folks help get the party started. l Animals....................... 27 l
Costumed Characters.................. 28
Dance and Music........ 28
Miscellaneous ............ 28
Storytelling/ Puppet Shows............. 28
Places to Go The experience is the party at these places with a built-in theme. l Amusement Center/ Arcades....................... 28 l
Arts and Crafts............ 29
Dance/Music/ Theater........................ 30
Jump Places............... 31
Party Places................ 32
Clowns A and E Clowns. Face painting, balloon twists, comedy magic, sing-a-longs and bubble shows. $155/hour and up. 404-345-1094. Tommy the Clown. Professional clowning, mime, magic, comedy, balloons, plate spinning and juggling. $160 and up. 678-462-1009. Cont’d on page 28
Sports/Athletics/ Gymnastics................. 34
Supplies & Rentals Balloons, bounces and everything else it takes to make your event a success. l Equipment Rental........ 35
Special Needs Parties Locations that specialize in parties for kids with special needs. .....35 Parrot Productions
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 27
BIRTHDAY PARTY PLANNER
Copy Cats For Kids. TV and movie look-a-likes, princesses, superheroes, cartoon characters and face painting. $95 and up. 770-424-2287.
Southern Outdoor Cinema. Movie screens, sound systems, digital projection and DVD players for indoor and outdoor parties. $349 and up with delivery, set up and tear down included. 678-689-8143.
Dream Friends Entertainment. Characters and entertainment. Princesses, superheroes, Hannah Montana and cartoon characters. $115 and up. 404-319-0180.
Tumblebus Atlanta A Gym on Wheels with tumbling, rock climbing, monkey bars, trampoline and more. Ages 18 mos.-6 years.15-child maximum. $200/hour and up. 770-529-5771.
Fun-O-Rama Parties. Theme décor, face painting, balloon art, costumed entertainers, inflatables and rental. $75 and up per event. 770-572-1737.
Big Thinkers Science Exploration. Interactive, hands-on birthday parties. Experiment with rockets, bubbling potions and more. Ages 4-12. $199 and up. 678-392-1500.
Kidazzl Parties. Theme characters, magic, song, dance, games, musical activities, face painting, balloon twisting. $199/hour 770-318-3652.
Club Scientific. One-hour interactive science parties with demonstration and take-home projects. Pick from different themes. Goody bags included. Ages 4-13. $225 and up. 800-399-8309
Mystical Parties. Princesses, superheroes and more. Face painting, balloon animals, glitter and Henna tattoos. All ages. $110 and up. 404-775-9594. Party Animals Entertainers. Clowns perform magic, face paint, balloon twisting and more. $125 and up. 770-645-0901.
Dance and Music Jason’s Music Party. Interactive, live musical entertainment. Ages 1-8. $175 and up. 678708-2321. Little Beat Music DJ. DJ services, children’s music CDs, bounce house rental and more. $275 and up. 877-545-2328. Music Together with Ms. Gail and the Jumpin’ Jam Band. Interactive musical parties. Up to age 6. $175 and up. 678-437-3304.
Gaming Game Truck Party. Air-conditioned video game theater with over 40 multi-player games and seating for 16 playing together. Laser tag. $340/90 minutes. 770-755-5100. Games 2 U Entertainment. A mobile gaming and entertaiment provider in Atlanta. $249/20 kids. 770-807-0212. Peach State Gamerz. Mobile video game theater and mobile laser tag. Up to 35 gamerz. Ages 6 and up. $299 each/2 hours or $525/ both. 844-442-6379. Xtreme Gaming 360. Portable gaming karts for video games. Provides set-up anywhere with electricity. Ages 5 to adult. $150-$300. 678859-4605.
Magic Bill Packard’s Magic Man Entertainment. Bill Packard the Magic Man and other magicians, balloon twisters, face painters, clowns, characters. $150-$300. 770-926-1168. Dan Garrett Magic. “Dan the Wizard”; show for ages 4-12. Harry Potter theme available. Also shows for older kids. $275 and up. 770-981-0310. Magic Debbie. “30 Years of Fun and Laughter!” Voted Greater Atlanta Magician of the Year. Interactive Comedy Magic Show - Birthday Child Is The Star! $250 and up. 404-630-1120. Magic Ladder Entertainment. Party services include theme parties, magic show, face painting, balloons and more. $300 and up. 770-307-7646.
28 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Big Thinkers Science Exploration
MisterGreggy.Com. Comedy magic shows, Rocky Raccoon puppet, balloons, face painting, magic classes. 45 mins. - 2 hrs. $195 and up. 404-4524620.
Miscellaneous Alison Agency. Clowns, characters, balloons, face painting, magic. $125 and up. 770-509-9409. Artzy Party. Mobile painting party brings all art supplies and table coverings. $120 and up/hour for ages 3 and up. 404-895-7069. Caricatures By Fitzroy. Black and white pencil drawings for each guest. Custom-designed logo for the birthday child. Ages 1-12. $100/hour. 678-851-5656. Clay Time Mobile Ceramics Studio. Paint your own ceramics or make a clay project. $100 and up. 404-313-1425. Cupcakesbyrae/Decorating Children’s Parties. Learn how to color icing and pipe the icing onto the cupcakes, and then decorate them like we do! Ages 4-13. $250/8 children. 770-243-3038. Fun Bus. Tumble, climb, jump, swing and slide. 1 hour of fitness fun with music and games. Ages 2-7. $235 and up. Metro Atlanta, 770-569-7529; North Gwinnett, 770-676-6356. Georgia Outdoor Laser. Laser tag party comes to you, includes set up. 100 minutes. Ages 8-12. $300/12 players; $450/20 kids. 404-314-2129. KidzArt Parties Choose from two packages. Mobile party or come to several party locations. Ages 4 and up. $150-250. 770-321-4078. Mobile Masterpieces Inc. Mobile art studio for 3-hour party. Each guest paints 16x20 acrylic canvas to take home. Ages 7 and up. $35/person and up; 6 child minimum. 404-909-7541. My Fairy Godmother Parties Princess parties, tea parties, dress-up, pamper parties, face painting, crafts, games and more. $159 and up. 404-4534596. Red Hot Fire Truck Events. Take a ride or sound the siren of a real, red fire truck. “5-Alarm Fun” package includes fire truck ride, squirting water from a real fire hose, goody bag, fire helmet, kid-size firefighter gear and more. $225-$500. 404-925-1221.
Club Scientific Northwest Georgia. One-hour interactive science parties with demonstration and take-home projects. Pick from different themes. Goody bags included. Ages 4-13. $225 and up. 800-974-3510. GA Bubbleman. 1-hour interactive show with bubbles from pinheads up to the size of a person. $150 and up. 770-717-9158. High Touch-High Tech, Inc. Hands-on science experiment parties using volcanoes, silly putty rockets, gemstones and more. Ages 5-12. $275-$350. 770-667-9443. Imagine That! Science, technology and art birthday parties with party favors. $190 and up. 770-455-1980. Science Creations. Science parties, horseback riding, rockets and more. $150 and up/10 children, ages 3-13. 678-531-2357.
Storytelling / Puppet Shows Auntie Renee Speaks. Storytelling, puppet shows, games, arts and crafts. $95 and up. 770-402-0564. Lori’s Stories. Storytelling, music and interactive performances. Have a custom song written for the birthday child. $180 and up. 678-425-6229 Mama Koku Storytellin’. Interactive storytelling. $175/hour. 404-305-8549. Piccadilly Puppets Company. Shows with puppets, music, audience participation and stories. Make-a-puppet activity also available. $175 and up. 404-636-0022.
Places to Go
Amusement Center/Arcades Chuck E. Cheese. Includes food, cake, tokens, special show and visit from Chuck E. Cheese. $11.99-$21.99/child for 2 hours; 4-child minimum. 10 locations. www.chuckecheese.com Dave and Busters. 2-hour parties include kids’ meal, eat and play combo, or youth buffet. Unlimited soft drinks and Power Card with chips also provided. $17.99-$24.99/child; 10-child minimum. Duluth, 770-497-1152; Lawrenceville, 678-847-5400; Marietta, 770-951-5554. Fun Junction USA. Fun Junction USA. Super value, extreme ride, indoor playmaze and laser tag party packages available. $180 and up; 10-child minimum. 1675 Hwy 85 North, Fayetteville. 770-460-5862.
Laser Voyage Café. Two games of Pirate laser tag, arcade tokens, party tables, email invitations, free return pass for birthday child, 2 for 1 return pass guests. $175 and up. 1866 Buford Hwy., Duluth. 678-514-3430. Legoland Discovery Center. Free entry for birthday child, 75 minute package includes pizza, private room. 1 adult free for every five children. Birthday child receives annual pass. $35 per child; 10-child minimum. 3500 Peachtree St., Atlanta 404-848-9252. Malibu Grand Prix. Miniature golf, bumper boats, go-karts, arcade and more. All packages include pizza, soda,1 hour party room and balloons. $12.99-$20.99/ child and up, 8-child minimum. 5400 Brook Hollow Pkwy., Norcross. 770-4167630. Monster Mini Golf. Indoor monster-themed glow in the dark 18-hole mini golf course and arcade games. Many packages, party room included. $175 and up/12 kids. 2505 Chastain Meadows Pkwy. NW, Marietta. 770-423-2212. Mountasia Family Fun Center. Miniature golf, go-karts, game room, party host, tickets. $12.99-$20.99/person and up, 8-child minimum. 175 Barrett Pkwy. Marietta. 770-422-7227. Sandy Springs Funhouse. Multi-level lazer tag arena, inflatable obstacle course, arcades, private party rooms and more. $150 and up. 6650-B Roswell Rd., Sandy Springs. 404-843-1121.
Groovy Little House of Art
Arts and Crafts All Fired Up. Pottery painting parties include 90 min. of studio time. Three party packages available. $16-$25/child. 53 S. Main St., Alpharetta.; 1563 N. Decatur Rd., Atlanta. Alpharetta, 770740-7800; Emory Village, 404-270-9048. Art a la Carte Studio KidzArt and Club Scientific party packages available. $250.00 2790 Sandy Plains Rd., Marietta. 770-884-8188. Art and Soul. Pottery parties, tie-dyed shirts, finger painting, jewelry beading and planters. Ages 4 and up. $13.50-$18/child. 4920 Roswell Rd., Atlanta. 404-303-9959. Art Station. Pottery parties including supplies and 3 hrs in party room. Dance Studio option. (Weekends preferred). $200 for 10 children, $15/additional child. 5384 Manor Dr., Stone Mountain Village. 770-469-1105.
Build-a-Bear Workshop. Ages 3 and up make their own stuffed animals. Party of six includes party favors for all children and a special gift for the guest of honor. $10-$25/child and up. 5 locations. www.buildabear.com Cork and Canvas. 2 hours in studio, 16x20 painted canvas with instruction. Ages 10 and older. $299 for 12 children; $20/additional child. 122 Norcross St., Roswell. 770-687-4251. Farmhouse in the City. Dress-up, face painting, crafts, scavenger hunts and time with Farmhouse animals. Canvas Kids and photo booth for ages and older. $299 and up for up to 12 guests. 1094 Green St., Roswell. 770-530-1563. Groovy Little Art Place. Canvas and Pottery Parties. Ages 5 and older. $8/person and up. 736 Johnson Ferry Rd. Marietta. 678-468-6452.
Call to schedule your party TODAY!
child’s party in
party room!! Kids parties 2 for ages 5 – 1
Cont’d on page 30
404-846-0908 C Everyone at the party will have a great time: C Decorating an apron or chef hat C Decorating their own cake box
C Touring the bakery (when available)
C Frosting and decorating a layer of cake C Singing with the karaoke machine C Playing fun cake games:
Musical cupcake game • Pin the candle on the cake
1299 Collier Rd, Atlanta 30318 C firstname.lastname@example.org Party Planner
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 29
BIRTHDAY PARTY PLANNER Pigtails and Crewcuts. Themes include: Ahoy Matey, Princess, Darling Divas, Let’s Luau or Howdy Partner party; Includes dress-up, craft, party favors. Prices vary by location, $250/7 children and up. Buckhead, 404-963-5612; Buford, 770-271-1990; East Cobb, 770-5658765; Roswell, 770-993-3303; West Cobb, 770-795-9450.
Imagine That! and Future Tech. Science, technology, and art birthday parties with party favors. $190/hour for 12 kids. 4330 Georgetown Sq.,Ste. 505, Dunwoody. 770-455-1980. Just Fired. A “paint your own” pottery studio with a private room. “Make-it/Take-it” parties are $12/child; “Traditional Ceramics”; parties are $15/child. Minimum 6 children. 4290 Bells Ferry Rd., Kennesaw. 770-516-3777.
Salon Red Kids. Parties include hair updo plus manicure, make up, sparkle tattoo or seasonal craft. $195-$235 for 6 children; $20/ additional child. 123 E. Ponce de Leon Ave., Atlanta. 404-377-6230.
The Kipling House. Birthday parties in an arts and crafts cottage. Party includes crafts in a theme developed with our party professionals. Packages start at $225 for 11 children. 110 Kipling Dr., Marietta. 770-973-9150. Little House of Art. Includes arts and crafts, invitations, balloons, plates and cups. $250/12 children. 1418 Dresden Dr., Atlanta. 404-8141910. Out Of The Box Art Studio. Pottery and art parties. Parties include pottery wheel, handbuilding, beading, clay, painting, drawing or a combination. $18/person and up. Ages 4 and up. 11940 Alpharetta Hwy., Alpharetta. 678-867-7713. Purple Hippo Art Studio. Includes invitations, paper products, art instructor and materials. $250 for 10 children ages 3 and up; $18/additional child. 5517 Chamblee Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody. 770-730-0605. Splatters. Tie-dying, pottery painting, mosaics and canvas painting. Includes birthday plate. $13 and up; 6-child minimum. 5354 McGinnis Ferry Rd, Alpharetta. 678-710-0103. Spruill Center for the Arts. Art, media and other themes for ages 5 and up. $200 and up for 10 children; $15/additional child. 5339 Chamblee Dunwoody Rd, Atlanta. 770-394-3447. That Pottery Place. Includes a 2-hour private party room. All supplies included. $15/child, minimum of 5 children. 2050 Lawrenceville Hwy., Decatur. 404-371-4557. Vinings School of Art. 2 hours includes private room with instructor. Pottery, clay, acrylic paintings and mix plaster. Ages 2 and older. $195 for up to 10 children; $245/15 children; $295/20 children and up. 1675 Cumberland Pkwy., Smyrna. 678-213-4278.
Wonder Colors Art Studio. Formal art parties. Materials, invitations and paper goods provided. $18-$20/child. 3461 Lawrenceville-Suwanee Rd., Suwanee. 770-831-7417. Yellow Llama. Create custom T-shirt artwork and Yellow Llama gift bag. 2 hour party in the store. Parents can bring cake and ice cream. $265/12 children; $12/additonal child. 2321 Main St., Tucker. 770-493-8030. Zone of Light Studio. Themed art parties that can be totally customized. 2 hour parties. $250/ up to 15 children. 1174 Zonolite Place, Atlanta. 678-948-8059.
Beauty/Glamour Diamond Girlz Day Spa and Boutique. Several party packages to choose from, Diamond Diva facial party, glam party, fashion shows, spa treatment, music, mini mani-pedi, hair do’s and more. Ages 3-15. $255-$500/8 girls. 11705 Jones Bridge Rd., Johns Creek. 678-240-9056. Glamour Girls Day Spa. Princesses, Tweens and Teens, Ages 2yrs.+, Spa Memberships, Customized SPArty packages to fit all budgets up to 20 girls, Fashion Shows, Dressup, Glamtini and Popcorn incl. in all pkgs., Glamoursine Pickup and more. $299 and up/8 girls. 1350 Wooten Lake Rd., Ste. 204, Kennesaw.; 551 Johnson Ferry Rd., Marietta. 404-919-4526.
Sugar and Spice Kids Spa. Several theme party packages to choose from: arts and crafts, manicures, pedicures, and fashion show, hair updos and 1-2 sparkle tattoos. Sleepovers available. $250 and up (max 10 children). Stonecrest, Mall, Lithonia. 678-672-4100.
Cooking Chamberlain’s Chocolate Chocolate-making parties include instruction, chocolate, goodie bag and more. $185/8 children. 6365 Spalding Dr., Norcross. 678-728-0100. Greene’s Fine Foods. Candy making activities, tour and learn how candy is made. Full-service theme party packages available. $250/10 children and up; $25 additional child; 12-child maximum. 141 E. Trinity Place, Decatur. 404378-2001. Henri’s Bakery. Decorate your cupcake or cookie parties; tea sandwiches, plates, cups, and juice provided. Includes apron, hat and balloons. $18/child; 10-child minimum; 25 maximum. 61 Irvy Ave., Buckhead. 404-237-0202. Young Chefs Academy. Cooking birthday parties. Druid Hills location accomodates special needs. Ages 4-18. 90 min., $275 and up. North Druid Hills, 404-633-2633; Sandy Springs, 404-255-9263; Marietta/Acworth, 770-427-2665.
Dance/Music/Theater ARTS @ Cobb. Private parties with music, face painting, art, theater, and more to your home. $75 minimum. 678-923-6054.
5% OFF Party Packages
Parties include: • Pony Rides • Petting Zoo • Play Area • Picnic Area
Day Care, Mother’s Morning Out, Church Groups & Day Camp outings available
30 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament. 2-hour show and four-course dinner in an 11th century-style castle with music, sword fighting and jousting. Ages 4-12, $41.75; 12 and up, $50.23; 10-person minimum. 5900 Sugarloaf Pkwy., Lawrenceville. 888935-6878. The Royal Dance Academy. Interactive princess dance party, arts and crafts and more. Includes facility and clean-up. 2 hours, $200 for 10 children, $10/additional child. Ages 3-8. 7784 McGinnis Ferry Rd., Suwanee.; 5752 A N. Vickery St., Cumming. 770-232-2997.
Jump Places BounceU. Private Parties, open bounce, structured play, giant inflatables. $149 and up; 10-child minimum. 1634 Cobb International Blvd., Kennesaw. Kennesaw, 770-919-2226. bouncu.com Catch Air. Playhouse, wall climbing, moonwalks, movie and more. Includes party room, drinks and invitations. $129 and up. Six locatons. www.catchairparty.com Everland Play. Indoor playground party with inflatables and climbing areas. 90 min party with pizza, drinks, paper products, and Everland Mascot. $179 and up; min 6 children. 2355 Mall of Georgia Blvd., Buford. 678-765-6390. Glow Galaxy Private party with one of two glowin-the-dark play arenas with sports court and mini-golf course. Supplies included. Pizza option. starts at $190 for 12 children. 6527-D Jimmy Carter Blvd., Norcross. 770-368-3008.
HippoHopp. 90 min. in play area and 45 minutes in party room. Drinks and paper goods included. Six packages for up to 40 children, $169 and up. 1936 Briarwood Ct. NE, Atlanta. 404-634-4964. hippohopp.com Jump for Joy Adventure Island. Party package includes jump time on inflatables. Add-ons include pizzas, drinks. 90 min., $99 and up. Sugarloaf Mills, 678-847-0073. Jump Its. Indoor private party facility with inflatables and music. Various party packages available. $119-$349. 102 Greystone Power Blvd., Dallas. 770-505-2891. Jump Oasis Party Studio. 2-hour party provides 60 min. of play and 60 min. Private party room with pizza, drinks, and host. $99 and up. 2320 Hewatt Rd., Snellville. 678-713-4503. Monkey Joe’s Party and Play. Inflatable playgrounds with moon bounces, slides, jumps and private party rooms with drinks and paper goods. $139 and up for 2 hours for 8 children. $10/additional child. Pricing varies by location. 8 locations. www.monkeyjoes.com Sky Zone. All-trampoline, walled playing courts. Includes one hour jump time and shoe rental, 40 min. in private party room, invitations, paper supplies, food and drinks. Add-ons available. Starting at $18/ person, minimum 10 kids. Kennesaw, 678-426-4400; Roswell, 678-745-9900; Suwanee, 678-745-9900. www.skyzone.com The Bounce House Amusement Center. Jump, laser and video game parties. Two jump arenas and toddler area. Private jumping and party room packages for up to 25 kids; full arena private party for up to 40 kids. $155 and up. Ages 2 and under jump free. 765 Ash St., Canton. 770-345-5867.
Museums Atlanta History Center. Custom parties for all ages and interests. $250 and up. 130 W. Paces Ferry Rd., Atlanta. 404-814-4110. Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Includes unlimited access to the museum for 10 kids and 10 adults; 2 hours in private room, dinosaur throne, T-shirt for the birthday child, favors. $275 and up; addons available. 767 Clifton Rd. NE, Atlanta. 404-929-6318. Georgia Aquarium. Theme parties like Deepo Party, Island Party, Pirate Party or Ocean Party. Includes activities, decorations and a themed cake, admission to the aquarium. 90 minutes. 15-person minimum. $675 plus tax; $45 plus tax/ additional person. 225 Baker St. NW, Atlanta. 404-581-4121. Interactive Neighborhood for Kids. Parties include admission to the museum for 16 kids, 90 minutes in the party room and a T-shirt for the birthday child. $150 and up. 999 Chestnut St., Gainesville. 770-536-1900. Southeastern Railway Museum. Parties in restored rail cars or outdoor pavilion. Includes admission for up to 20 guests. Catering available. 2 hours, $150 and up. 3595 Buford Hwy., Duluth. 770-476-2013. Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History. Self-guided tour and access to train depot. Parties in outdoor pavillion or classroom. $100 and up to reserve train depot. Admission, $5/child. Reservations required. 2829 Cherokee St., Kennesaw. 770-427-2117, ext. 3184. Cont’d on page 32
Cont’d on page 28
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 31
BIRTHDAY PARTY PLANNER The Children’s Museum of Atlanta. Includes admission to the museum, party room, host and each guest receives admission for future date. Food and dessert additional. $200 + tax and up. Max. 44 guests. Ages 1-8. 275 Centennial Park Dr. Atlanta. 404-527-3693.
Fairhope Stables. Horseback rides with picnic area. $375 for up to 12 kids. 2755 Bunten Rd., Duluth. 770-813-1287.
Fruition Farm. Horseback rides at two locations; Peachtree City has indoor party room, Vinings location, rain or shine. Extras include hayride, cake, extra riding time. Ages 4 and up. $250/12 children for 3 hours. 404-512-0834.
Art Barn - Farmer Sue and Her Barnyard Buddies. Private party with farm animals, create an art project and take a hayride. 2 hours. $395 for 15 children; hand-led ponies, additional $100. Ages 2-12. 208 Roper Rd., Alpharetta/ Canton. 678-319-0286. Big Boot Ranch. Half-hour horseback riding, petting zoo, hayride, moonwalk, private pavilion and more. Off-site pony parties and moonwalk rentals also available. 250 for 15 children. 677 Panola Rd. Ellenwood. 770-808-6262. Cagle’s Family Farm. Barnyard birthday parties at a working farm. $350 and up. 362 Stringer Rd., Canton. 770-345-5591. Chastain Horse Park Pony Parties. Includes pony rides, horse-related arts and crafts and games in brand new party barn. 2 hours. Ages 4 and up. $540 minimum. 4371 Powers Ferry Rd., Atlanta. 404-252-4244. Chattahoochee Nature Center. Includes a guided hike, nature activities, live animal encounter, refreshments, party favors and use of a party room. $250 and up for 12 kids and 4 adults. 9135 Willeo Rd., Roswell. 770-9922055, ext. 237.
Private Pony Parties starting at $250
(404) 556-9628 Vinings and Fairburn
Want to Get This Party Started
Dunwoody Nature Center. Must be a DNC member. Includes DNC educator, stickers and themed party favors. $150 and up. 5343 Roberts Dr., Dunwoody. 770-394-3322. East Cobb Stables. Weekend outdoor pony ride parties. 2 hours. $249 for up to 10 kids, $299 for up to 20 kids. $499 includes bounce house, 2 ponies, cotton candy machine for up to 20 kids. 1649 Johnson Ferry Rd., Marietta. 678560-9154. Elachee Nature Science Center. Nature and live animal parties. Hikes, exhibit tours or handson science programs, plus goodie bags and postcard invites. Ages 4-12. $150 for 12 kids and 12 adults. 2125 Elachee Dr., Gainesville. 770-535-1976. Ellenwood Equestrian Center. Birthday parties with horseback riding, above-ground pool and indoor recreation room. $200 and up. 500 Clark Rd., Ellenwood. 404-317-2670.
Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center. Admission, crafts or guided activity, host, paper products and invitations. Three themes based on age. Age 5 and up. Tree Top Quest available. $15-$18/child, 10-child minimum. 2020 Clean Water Dr., Buford. 770-904-3500. Linda’s Riding School. Parties at the farm with covered arena or at your home. Includes ring lead-arounds for ages 7 and under, lessons and trail time for ages 8 and up. Home parties, $300 and up; farm parties, $195 and up. 3475 Daniels Bridge Rd. Conyers. 770-922-0184. Pettit Creek Farm. Includes fishing, pony rides and petting zoo. Add-ons include hayrides, moonwalks, and invite your favorite animal. $225 and up. 337 Cassville Rd., Cartersville. 770-386-8688. Pony Up Ponies. Mobile pony rides, licensed and insured. Riders up to 100 lbs. Parties starting at $200. 678-378-1889. WildeWood Farm Inc. An encounter with horses and nature. $225 and up for 8 riders. $15 each additional rider. 9533 Old Preserve Trail Ball Ground. 770-843-2478. Zoo Atlanta. Includes 90-minute pavilion rental, admission and catering for 16 guests. Additional entertainment options. $450 + tax. 800 Cherokee Ave., Atlanta. 404-624-5650.
Party Places American Girl Boutique and Bistro. Deluxe: 90 min. in private room with game, craft, dining service. 6-14 kids, 8 years and older. $45/child; $35/adult. Bistro: Dining service. 3 years and up. $28/child. $18/adult. $29-$45/child; $18-$35/ adult. North Point Mall, 1202 North Point Cir., Alpharetta. 877-247-5223 Baskin-Robbins. Party room reservations required. Decorate a Mini Cake Party $20.99/child or Ice Cream Sundae Party $14.99/child, 10-child minimum. Ice cream cake, $9.99. 230 Hammond Dr., Sandy Springs. 404-252-6311.
CALL: 7 2-173 770-57 6317 3678-64
The Best Place to Start is with Atlanta Parent Party Advertisers! 32 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Foxhall Equestrian. Sports lawn, inflatables, games, party room, hay rides and more. $500 and up for 10 children. 8000 Capps Ferry Rd., Douglasville. 770-489-4380.
WWW.FUNORAMAPARTIES.COM Party Planner
Lake Lanier Canopy Tours at Lake Lanier Islands Resort. 29 zip lines. Min 50 lbs.- Max 250 lbs. Ages 8 and older. $30-$100/person. 7000 Lanier Islands Parkway, Buford. 678622-3990. Little Shop of Stories. Book-themed parties include room, storytime, juice boxes, invitations, paper goods. 2 hours. $175 for 12 children; $5/ additional child. 133 East Court Square., Decatur. 404-373-6300. Lollipop Dreams. Posh spa birthday parties. Many packages available. Ages 3-12. $225-875. 448 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd., Atlanta. 678-528-8981. Olivia’s Dollhouse Tearoom. Specializes in private dress up tea parties and making all of your princess’s dreams come true. Parties start at $250. 3 and up. 5075 Abbotts Bridge Rd., Johns Creek. 404-908-9073.
Bean Head Toys. Choose the “Garden” or “Jungle” room, then select a theme: Mad Scientists, Mock Sleepover, Pirates, Pinkalicious, Pet Party, Princess, Lego, Train and more. Age 4 and up. $195 and up. 220 Johnson Ferry Rd. N.E., Sandy Springs. 404-851-2980.
RY Robotics Explorers. Lego and robotics parties. Ages 6-12. $30/child; minimum 10 children. 715 Hembree Place, Roswell. 770772-6622.
Bubbles and Brushes Art Studio. Art parties for children where they paint and bedazzle. Ages 1-16. $15/child. Minimum 10 kids. 314B Newnan Crossing Bypass. Newnan. 678-899-7035. Center for Puppetry Arts. For members only. Includes performance, birthday announcement before performance, crown and throne for birthday child. $200 for 1 hour room rental for 10 children ages 2 years and older, extra tickets are $8.25/person with every 10th person free, Create-A-Puppet add-on $4.50/child. 1404 Spring St., Atlanta. 404-881-5149.
Funopolis. 5-acre indoor/outdoor complex, laser tag, mini-golf, bumper boats and cars, go-carts, mini-bowling, arcades, four party rooms, and more. 90 min., minimum 8 children. $15.50/child 40155 Hwy 441 S, Commerce. 706-335-3866.
minigolf football soccer basketball air cannons glow-in-the-dark inflatables lighted interactive game floor
Piece of Cake. Cake decorating and cake games. Ages 5-12. $300 and up. 1299 Collier Rd., Atlanta. 404-846-0908.
Posh Tot Events. Events held at the historic Gilbert House. Full-service theme parties, baby showers, and camp. $495 and up. 38 Sloan St., Roswell. 770-685-2644.
The Music Class. Birthday Bash includes singing, dancing, movement and instrument play, CD party favors, invitations and thank you cards. Up to 15 children, $300 includes use of our Buckhead facility, parties at your location start at $200. Buckhead, Dunwoody, E. Cobb, Roswell, Atlanta, Johns Creek, Sandy Springs, Smyrna, Suwanee, Toco Hills, Woodstock, Decatur, Morningside. 770-645-5578.
Circus Camp Birthday Parties. Learn to fly on the trapeze, spin on the Spanish web and aerial silks. Face painting. Includes party room. Ages 5-teen. $400/2 hours for 12-children. Dunwoody and Decatur locations. 404-370-0001.
Glow-In-The-Dark Play Area Features:
Party Rooms with glow & regular lighting
6527 JIMMY CARTER BLVD. NORCROSS ❖ 770-368-3008
Open Play Times (See website for times)
Treetop Quest. An Exhibit at the Gwinnett Environment Center. Treetop obstacle course and ziplines. Ages 4-12. $160/5 children, birthday kids FREE. Can bring own food and supplies. 2020 Clean Water Dr., Buford. 770-904-3500.
Tumbletots Preschool and Birthday Parties. Private parties with indoor playground, moonwalk, theme cake, crafts, tattoos, storytime, balloons and gift bags. Ages 1-7. $200/12 children; $10/additional child. 6375 Jola’s Joyful Events. Spa parties, princess parties Spalding Dr., Suite D, Norcross. 770-729and tea parties for girls. Ages 3-13. $99/8 girls. Transportation Georgia’s “Official” Museum 9660. 770-609-5474. It’s PARTY Time! Kid’s Day Out! Cont’d on page 34 Celebrate your special occasion: Train Rides | Gift Shop Birthday Parties, Anniversaries, Family Reunions Pre-School Thursday (every 2nd Thursday of the month) Weddings & Corporate Events Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation. Various facilities available to rent for birthday parties. $35/hour and up. 770-822-8840.
Southeastern Railway Museum Southeastern Railway Museum
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March 2014 Atlanta Parent 33
BIRTHDAY PARTY PLANNER We come to you! Miniature farm animals & a pony to ride. • Birthdays • Fieldtrips • Church Productions • Pony Carousels
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Sports/Athletics/ Gymnastics Bowlmor Lanes. Includes 90 minutes of bowling, pizza and sodas, paper products and shoe rental. Ages 12 and under. $16.95/child plus tax, 8-child minimum. 2175 Savoy Dr., Atlanta. 770-451-8605. Adrenaline Climbing. “Parties on the Rocks”. Ages 5 and up. $150-$240 for 10 climbers. 460 Brogdon Rd. NE, Suwanee. 770-271-1390. All American Skating Center. Packages includes drinks, popcorn and skate rental for up to 10. $99 and up. 5400 Bermuda Rd., Stone Mountain. 770-469-9775. Andretti Indoor Karting and Games. All-inclusive packages include 1 hour in the party area, tableware, decorations, invitations, ice cream cake, kids’ meal for each child, arcade credit and host. $325 to $425, 10-child maximum. 11000 Alpharetta Hwy, Roswell. 770-992-5688. Athletic Club Northeast. Indoor/outdoor pool, rock wall, gym, arts and crafts or combination. $200 and up. 1515 Sheridan Rd. NE, Atlanta. 404-566-4580. Atlanta Braves All-Star Kids Party at Turner Field. Group party ideas customized for children of all ages. Tickets $6 and up. 755 Hank Aaron Dr. SE, Atlanta. 404-614-1404. Atlanta Hawks. $5 for Double Doozie cookie and Harry the Hawk autographed photograph or $5.50 for unlimited popcorn and beverage, birthday message on arena scoreboard. Ages 12 and younger. Tickets $14/person and up, varies with package; 10-child minimum. 101 Marietta St., Atlanta. 866-715-1500, ext. 4. Atlanta Rocks Indoor Climbing Gym. Includes use of the facility, one instructor for every six climbers, harness and climbing shoes for each guest. $25/climber for 2 hours, 10-person minimum for party room. 1019 Collier Rd. NW, Atlanta. 404-351-3009. Atlanta School of Gymnastics. 90 min. for parties. $175/ 1-10 children; $210/ 11-20 children; $250/ 21-30 children; $310/ 31-40 children. 3345 Montreal Station, Tucker. 770-938-1212.
UTUs CUSTOM TCRAFTS PARTIES ARTS & HER ~ SIGNER IN FOR THE DE
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Atlanta Swim Academy. Swim parties in indoor heated pools. Party room. Certified lifeguard, pool toys and floats. $225 and up. 732 Johnson Ferry Rd., Marietta. 770-973-3120. Braves Museum/Tour Turner Field. Admission includes the Braves Museum and Hall of Fame and visits to the press box, broadcast booth, clubhouse, dugout and more. Groups of 20 or more should make reservations two weeks in advance. Group rates for children’s birthday parties start at $5/child and $7/adult. 755 Hank Aaron Dr., Atlanta. 404-614-2311. Brunswick Bowling. Includes bowling, balloons, invitations, shoes, food and paper products. $13.99/child and up. East Cobb, 770-988-8813; Kennesaw, 770-427-7679; Lawrenceville, 770925-2000; Marietta, 770-435-2120; Norcross, 770-840-8200; Roswell, 770-998-9437. Brunswick Zone XL Bowling, pizza, drinks, cosmic bowling. Laser tag, private party room, video game room available. $160-$230, 10-child minimum. Laser tag, $17.99-$22.99. 775 Cobb Place Blvd., Kennesaw. 770-427-7679. Choi Kwang Do Martial Art. 2 hours of activties, clean up and will cut cake with sword. Parents provide cake and food. Ages 4-11. Free. 4994 Lower Roswell Rd., Marietta. 770-875-5157.
34 2014 30 February 2014 34 Atlanta Parent March March 2014
Concourse Athletic Club. Indoor heated swimming, sports, ballet, hip-hop dance, creative movement, gymnastics and kid’s yoga, certified lifeguard, coaches w/toys and games included. Party room and invitations included. $275 and up. 8 Concourse Parkway, Sandy Springs. 770-698-2018. Fayetteville Fun Bowl. Includes 90 min. of bowling and 30 minutes in the party room. $100 for 8 children, $12.50/additional child. 124 North 85 Pkwy., Fayetteville. 770-461-8822. Gym South Gymnastics and Cheerleading. Parties are 90 min.; include 1 hour of gymnastics and games, and 30 minutes for cake and presents in the snack bar. Tablecloth and drinks included. Packages $130 and up. 119 North 85 Pkwy., Fayetteville. 770-461-5528. Gymboree. Play and song activities using parachutes, tunnels, bridges and more. Ages 1-5. $219/15 children. Alpharetta, 770-772-4000; Mall of Georgia, 678-482-4440; Sandy Springs, 404-256-2223; Toco Hills, 404-320-0060; West Cobb, 770-499-0023. Ice Forum. Skating parties include admission and rental, 45 minutes in party room, unlimited drinks. $100 package for 8 children; $12.50/ additional child. Duluth, 770-813-1010; Kennesaw, 770-218-1010. Intown Tumbling and Yoga for Kids. One and a half hour tumbling or yoga party. 45 minute instruction, cake/food time, and a little time to play. Ages 3 and up. $200 and up. 828 Ralph McGill Blvd., Atlanta. 678-310-9388. Jump Start Gym. Gymnastics or Mighty Mites, or a combination. 90 min. Includes birthday banner, gym time, instructor, activities. Ages 3 and up. $200 and up. 5920 Roswell Rd., Ste. C, Sandy Springs. 404-252-5867. Laser Quest. Two Laser Quest missions/person, 20-minute game, free pass for birthday child, two for one passes for guests and a private party room. $15.50/person, 8-child minimum. 3650 Satellite Blvd., Duluth. 770-814-8801. MetroPlex Atlanta Bowling area, skating rink, playland and super-sized video arcade. $161.95/10 children and up. 1959 Metropolitan Pkwy., Atlanta. 678-637-9351 Midtown Athletic Club at Windy Hill. Parties include use of facility, host, drinks, paper products, decorations and activities for ages 4 and up. About $295/party. 135 Interstate N. Pkwy., Atlanta. 770-953-1100. Modern Gymnastics. Gymnastics parties. Ages 3 and up. Sat. and Sun. afternoons. 12 kids for $150 and up, $7 per additional child. 736 Johnson Ferry Rd. NE, Marietta. 770-977-3637. My Gym Children’s Fitness Center. Songs, dances, games, puppet shows, spaceflight and more. Ages 1-9. 90 minutes - 2 hours. $300 and up for 20 children. 267 W. Wieuca Rd., Buckhead. 404-252-1201. Nellya Fencers. Instruction on technique/footwork. After drills and practice, participants compete. $300/10 guests; $25/additional child, 2 hours. 1530 Carroll Dr., Atlanta. 404-603-3600. North Atlanta Fencing Center. Experience the fun and excitement of sword play on your birthday. Ages 8 and up. $200 for two hours for up to 10 guests. $20 for each additional guest. Includes birthday boy/girl. 10029 Hwy. 29, Woodstock. 770-485-3556. Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf. Miniature golf. $7/ child. 3380 Venture Pkwy., Duluth. 770-623-4184.
Supplies & Rentals Equipment Rental
A-1 Tent and Party Rentals. Moonwalks, dunk tanks, tents, tables, chairs and more. $30 and up. 770-458-7740. Action Packed Parties. Tropical waterslide, Pirate Ship, 3D Disney Princess Castle, obstacle courses, moonwalk/slide combos and moonwalks and more. $89 and up. 770-466-3437. Better Moonwalks of Georgia. Moonwalks, giant slides, combos with slides, games, dunk tanks and concessions. $35 and up. 770-844-9978. Sky Zone
Rome Braves. Package include invitations, 15 Home Run Hill tickets, food, drinks, reserved picnic tables, mascot visit, stadium announcement, video board salute and on field recognition. $250 and up for 15 children; $11/additional child. 755 Braves Blvd., Rome. 706-368-9388. Sandy Springs Parks and Recreation. Gymnastics parties with relay races, obstacle courses and tumble track. Ages 2 and up. $165 up to 28 kids with 2 instructors. Hammond Park Gym, 705 Hammond Dr., Atlanta. 770-730-5600. SeaVentures. Swim, snorkel and scuba parties in an indoor, heated pool. Includes use of party room. $200 for swim up to 14 kids; $300 for scuba up to 8 kids. 2880 Holcomb Br. Rd., Alpharetta. 770-992-3772. Skatetown. Includes pizza or hot dog, drinks, popcorn, decorations, tableware, skate rental and more. $115 for 10 children; $10.50/additional child. 5570 Old National Hwy., College Park. 404-768-0095. Sparkles Family Fun Center. Pizza, game tokens, admission, skate rental, party room, soda, paper supplies. $159 and up, 10 child minimum. Hiram, 770-943-4446; Kennesaw, 770-428-3941; Lawrenceville, 770-963-0922; Smyrna 770-432-6222. Sports-a-Rama. Flag football, dodgeball, kickball and wiffle ball parties. $15-$20/child and up. 736 Johnson Ferry Rd. NE, Marietta. 770-977-9789. Stars and Strikes Getaway-n-Play. Includes bowling, shoe rental, hostess, pizza, drinks, paper goods, invitations, balloon bouquet, bowling gift cards. Option: laser tag/game center. $129.99 and up, 6-child minimum. Cumming, Sandy Springs, Dallas, Stone Mountain. 678-965-5707. The Cooler- Alpharetta Family Skate Center. Roller- or ice-skating. Includes 45 min. in party room, popcorn, drinks and birthday T-shirt for party child. Fri., Sat. and Sun. only. $180 and up, 8- child minimum; $13-$15/additional child. 10800 Davis Dr., Alpharetta. 770-649-6600. The Little Gym. Gymnastics-based. Private and instructor led. Includes invitations, paper goods, drinks, use of inflatables and parachute. 90 min. Pricing varies by location, $285 and up. Smyrna/ Vinings, 770-434-6661; Snellville/Lawrenceville, 770-982-0901. Tree Climbers International, Inc. Safe climbing with a rope and saddle. Ages 7 and up. $25/ climber, minimim $300. Dekalb County’s Blackburn Park. 404-377-3150. Twin Bridges Lake. Includes use of pole, line, hook, sinker and floater. Extra fish stocked in the lake. Picnic and staging area available. $7.50/person, 10-person minimum. 1119 Braselton Hwy., Lawrenceville. 770-963-6739.
Burgess Amusements. Rides, inflatables, concessions and carnival games for your event. $500 and up. 770-788-9109. Fun-Fare. Moonwalks, slides, obstacle courses, dunk tanks, rock walls, concessions and carnival games. $99 and up. 770-425-3033. J and S Funtastic Entertainment. Miniature train rides, 24-foot rock climbing wall, moonwalks, water slides, combos, concessions, carnival games and more. $99 and up. 770-973-2633. Jumping for Joy Moonwalks. Tents, moonwalks, slides, cotton candy, popcorn, snow cone machines. $135 and up including free delivery and set-up.770-789-7675.
• Great Costumes • Cartoon Characters • Princesses • Superheroes • Easter Bunny • Face Painting • Balloon Tying • Clowns • Magic
Kool Bounce. Moonwalks, obstacle courses, carnival games, popcorn, cotton candy, snow cone machines, picnic tables and more. $80 minimum rental. 770-995-6777. O’Brien Productions. Trackless train, DJs, rock walls, inflatables, concession items and party supplies. $250 and up. 770-422-7200. Shaw Special Events. Moonwalks, inflatable slides, popcorn, snow cone and cotton candy machines. Packages available. $99 and up. 770-934-8600. Space Walk of Marietta. Inflatables, rides, games and concessions. $99 and up, delivery or pick up available. 404-585-1831 Suburban Rental. Inflatables, carnival games, concessions, tables, chairs and more. No minimum. 678-569-1271. The Rental Place. Tents, tables, chairs, linens, popcorn, cotton candy, frozen drink machines, and more. Prices vary. 770-594-9000. TLC Rents. Concessions, tenting, children’s tables and chairs, and karaoke. $1 and up. 404-873-0833.
Alligators, Monkeys, Farm Friends and more!
Live animals of all kinds! Hands-on, Fun, Educational
Special Needs Parties Healing Hooves. Meet and groom miniature horses. Pony rides. Customized to children’s needs. $250 and up. 770-712-3234.
Monkey Joe’s Private parties at an indoor jumping facility. After-hours parties and other events available for special needs children. $300 and up 700 Holcomb Bridge Rd., Suite 200, Roswell; 5055 Post Rd., Cumming. 678-381-0400. Sensations TheraFun. 90-minute private party with zip line, climbing wall, trikes, bikes and free play. Birthday child takes home canvas with handprints of party guests. $425/20 kids, $15/each additional child. 1704 Chantilly Dr., Atlanta. 404-634-3500. c
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 35
Dining Out With Baby by Akila Sankar McConnell
obody wants to be that parent with the screaming baby at a nice restaurant on a Saturday night. But, fast food and Chuck E Cheese are not new parents’ only options. Atlanta’s vibrant restaurant scene – from down-home Southern fare to delicious international flavors to the new food truck craze – can be baby-friendly. Kim Bigelman, Atlanta mother to 11-month-old Clara, started taking Clara out to eat soon after she was born. “We have always been impressed with Atlanta restaurants’ hospitality to an infant,” she says, especially at St. Angelo’s Pizza in Vinings. Many other local restaurants also try to appeal to young families. Rich Chey, owner of Doc Chey’s Noodle Houses and Osteria 832 Pizza and Pasta, estimates that about 50 percent of his restaurant patrons are families with children. He explains why being family-friendly is important to him: “My partner and I started our first restaurant when we had young families and realized that there weren’t many family-friendly options in the Virginia Highland neighborhood.” Chey recommends that, in general, families arrive for dinner early. Eating dinner at 5 or 6 p.m. ensures fewer guests to bother if your baby makes a fuss, faster service, and a more attentive wait staff. Alternatively, if you know that your baby can sleep through 36 Atlanta Parent March 2014
noise and usually falls asleep in the car, consider putting baby to sleep in his carseat and bringing baby asleep to the restaurant in the carseat carrier. Before venturing out with your baby for the first time, consider your child’s temperament. Do you have a sleepy newborn? A colicky crier? A boisterous baby? Sleepy newborns are particularly easy to take to dinners because they’ll nap through most of the meal. On the other hand, babies with colic or reflux often struggle with the “witching hour” (6-9 p.m.), so lunch or brunch might be a better option for a first meal. In addition to choosing the right time to eat, parents should think about the right restaurant. Many popular Atlanta restaurants offer kids’ menus, which is a direct invitation to families. At Radial Café in Candler Park, kids eat free on Mondays through Fridays and the restaurant will bring out the child’s meal first so that the child doesn’t need to wait. Chai Pani in Decatur has one of the more creative children’s menus in Atlanta, with a dal and rice option that would work well for babies that are eating solid food. Though it might seem counterintuitive, loud restaurants often work best rather than quiet restaurants because any noises your baby makes won’t interrupt diners. At a quiet restaurant, the smallest sigh or babble will echo throughout the restaurant and may draw unwanted glares. Restaurants with patios are also great options because babies love being outdoors. And Mexican restaurants tend to be baby-friendly because of their casual, boisterous atmosphere. Marianne Ortiz Lodin, Atlanta mother of 4-year-old Joaquin and 1-year-old Valentina, recommends Verde Taqueria because it combines all of these attributes with reasonably priced tacos, healthy food options, a nice patio, and a bubbling, kid-friendly environment.
Sweet Melissa’s in Decatur offers live music on the weekends, which keeps the smallest diners entertained and drowns out noisy baby screams. Food trucks are not only Atlanta’s hottest dining trend, they are also a great choice for parents with babies in tow. The Atlanta Food Truck Park at Howell Mill Road has plenty of benches and picnic tables and your baby will enjoy seeing the sights and sounds from his or her stroller during warmer months. Once you’re set on your dining location, don’t forget to bring along gear that will help keep your baby calm and happy. Before your baby is old enough to sit unassisted, parents should bring the baby into a restaurant in a carseat, stroller or soft carrier. While some parents opt to bring a portable high chair for sitting babies, most kid-friendly restaurants will have high chairs available. A hungry baby is an unhappy baby so, first, make sure that your baby is fed. If you are breastfeeding, Georgia law provides that you may breastfeed your baby in any place where both you and your baby are permitted to be, meaning that you may breastfeed at restaurants, with or without a nursing cover. If you are bottle feeding your baby, most restaurants will gladly provide heated water to mix formula packets, though you may need to specify how hot you would like the water to be. After your baby begins eating purees and solid food, you may want to bring along the following to keep your baby fed: a packet or jar of purees, crackers or Cheerios, a baby spoon, an easily cleanable bib, baby wipes to clean hands and face, and disposable placemats. Many kidfriendly restaurants will bring out children’s meals first to prevent meltdowns. Unfortunately, every parent knows that meltdowns are sometimes unavoidable. If your baby starts crying, take a deep breath and try walking outside to give your baby a change of scenery. If that doesn’t work, remember that it’s only one meal and try again another time. c
Family-Friendly Restaurants Inside the Perimeter l Atlanta
Fish Market (Buckhead) – high energy, upscale environment; babies’ favorite meal: sautéed salmon and whipped potatoes l Osteria
832 (Virginia Highland) – kid-friendly atmosphere; babies’ favorite meal: spaghetti with butter and cheese l Sweet
Melissa’s (Decatur) – popular brunch spot in Downtown Decatur; babies’ favorite meal: kids’ yogurt pancake topped with bananas l Taco
Mac (many locations) – mini high chairs fit into booths which keep kids constrained and out of waiters’ way; babies’ favorite meal: mini corn dogs and grilled cheese sandwiches l Verde
Taqueria (Brookhaven, Westside) – huge patio and lots of babies; babies’ favorite meal: cheese quesadillas and guacamole
Outside the Perimeter l Jason’s
Deli (many locations) – comfortable and cushy high chairs; babies’ favorite meal: kids’ baked potato l Johnny’s
New York Style Pizza (many locations) – often includes an arcade and play area for children; babies’ favorite meal: fresh pieces of cooked dough l Marietta
Diner (Marietta) – breakfast and a huge menu of lunch and dinner choices are served 24 hours a day; babies’ favorite meal: big pancake or Belgian waffle with fruit l Mimi’s
Café (Perimeter, Mall of Georgia) – focused on French cuisine and popular for brunch; babies’ favorite meal: appetizer of Cheerios, crackers, and fruit l Sushi
Tomi (Peachtree City) – Southside sushi spot known for fresh seafood; babies’ favorite meal: sliced avocado and plain rice balls.
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 37
38 Atlanta Parentâ€ƒ â€ƒ March 2014
New Rules Aim to Make
Child Car Seats Safer
We provide customized solutions that fit your family’s individual needs. Every Nanny is put through a rigorous background check and all are CPR trained. And we’re always there when you need us, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. At Nanny Poppinz we understand, because we’re moms too.
he National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is taking two actions this year to improve safety of child car seats. It has revised weight limit guidelines for the LATCH system for child safety seats, and it is proposing side impact tests to measure how well a child safety seat protects the child in a T-bone type accident. Revised rules for LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) took effect in February. The federal agency lowered the maximum weight for LATCH use from 70 to 65 pounds – that’s the weight of the child plus the weight of his car seat. In tests using a 77-pound crash dummy, the anchors became strained and did not work properly. Vehicles manufactured after 2002 have the LATCH system, designed to simplify car seat installation by using frame-mounted brackets in the rear seats. To determine whether you should continue using the LATCH system, consult your vehicle manufacturer’s or the safety seat manufacturer’s manual for the maximum weight allowed; another guideline is to add your child’s weight, plus the weight of the seat to make sure the total is under 65 pounds. If the weight exceeds 65 pounds, the car seat can
be secured with the vehicle’s seat belt system. Children too large for a child safety seat should be secured in a booster seat and seat belt/shoulder harness. The LATCH rules don’t apply to booster seats. The booster seat is sometimes secured to the LATCH system, to keep the seat from sliding around when the child isn’t in the vehicle, but it’s the harness system that is protecting the child and LATCH is only securing the seat. You can check your child’s car seat installation for free with a technician at a car seat inspection station, often a fire station. For a list of inspection stations, visit nhtsa. gov or safekids.org. The proposed side-impact guidelines for child seats would require seats to protect a child from a serious head or chest injury if a vehicle is T-boned by another vehicle traveling 30 miles per hour. The NHTSA estimates the new guidelines would save five lives annually and prevent 64 serious injuries. The public has 90 days to comment on the proposed guidelines. If the new guidelines take effect, car seat manufacturers would have three years to meet the new safety standard. – Amanda Allen
You can check your child’s car seat installation
for free with a technician at a car seat inspection station, often a fire station.
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Need a new car seat? Consider these options:
Don’t Sweat It! Budget Friendly In the car, a calmer and less fussy baby, leads to a safer and less distracted drive for parents. Evenflo is introducing its temperature regulating fabric to its Symphony™, SecureKid™ and Triumph™ models. The NASAdeveloped Outlast® technology is a temperature regulating fabric that keeps babies and toddlers comfortable during hot and cold weather. Evenflo also tests all their seats at speeds that replicate the Side Impact Testing for New Car Assessment Program and those of NHTSA’s newly proposed side impact test protocol. The seats will be available in April at Babies “R” Us. $169.99-$249.99.
Does your child have Asthma???
Stylish & Safe Splurge The Clek Foonf seat provides many levels of technology to keep your child safe including the Rapid Energy-Absorbing Crumple Technology safety system that reduces forces in a collusion up to 40%, a higher weight limit to stay rear-facing longer, an anti-rebound bar to increase seat stability and a rigid latch system for easy forward facing installation. The seat is narrow and come in a variety of colorful crypton fabrics that complements your car’s interior. When you are done with the seat, if you don’t pass it in to a friend, it is 100% recyclable. Available at New Baby Products and buybuy Baby. $399.99-499.99.
Consider volunteering for a clinical research study conducted at Emory University. This clinical trial is for children 1- 5 years of age, who suffer from wheezing. We are trying to see which asthma medication works best for preschool children. You may be asked to participate for as long as 12 months in this study. The study will also determine the best pain reliever/fever reducer for preschool children with asthma symptoms.
Qualified participants will receive at no charge:
How do children learn?
• Asthma medications • Pulmonary Evaluation • Physical Exam • Compensation for time and travel
We’d like to ﬁnd out – and you and your child can help!
Contact Emory AsthmaNet Study Coordinators for more information:
Jennifer Dodds 404-727-5176 • firstname.lastname@example.org Denise Whitlock 404-712-1773 • email@example.com
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Dining Out With Baby Lessons From Montessori
Atlanta Parent’s Camp Expo Dates:
The Tools of Technology January 25 Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. North Point Mall Alpharetta
February 22 Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Town Center Mall Kennesaw
March Saturday, 11 22 a.m.-4 p.m. Perimeter Mall Atlanta
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Social Support for Your Child
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Currently seeking families with babies to school-age children to participate in fun, game-like studies. Each study is usually a brief, one-time visit and you are with your child at all times. We study language, learning, memory and how children understand space and numbers. Children receive a small gift as thanks for participating.
For more information, call 404-727-7432 or visit: www.psychology.emory. edu/childstudycenter atlantaparent.com
Baby Resources Northside Pediatrics
s parents, we all want happy, healthy babies. It doesn’t take long to develop the confidence and calm of an experienced parent. Your baby will give you the most important information—how he or she likes to be treated, talked to, held, and comforted. As your baby grows, there are common problems and questions which arise that can be upsetting and puzzling to new parents. There are many approaches to various problems and these vary from child to child. Loving your child, common sense, and the ability to adapt to particular situations are the keystones to successful child rearing. Choosing the right pediatric practice is one of the most important decisions you can make for you and your baby. During your baby’s first year, you will visit your pediatrician’s office many times for check-ups, shots, and other unanticipated baby events. You should rely on your pediatric practice for answers to your questions, including those about infant feeding and nutrition; development; immunization schedule and conditions common in newborns.
Emory University Child Study Center
ow do children learn and grow? How do they think and remember? How do they change as they grow older? These are some of the questions that Emory University Child Study Center is constantly asking...and you and your child can be part of uncovering new answers! The center invites Atlanta area families to participate in studies focused on language, learning, memory. It also investigates the role that brain development plays. Emory faculty, graduate students, and undergraduate students conduct research studies on each of these fascinating areas. The Child Study Center studies how children learn and develop by watching and interacting with them and their parents. Each study is carefully planned to be fun and interesting. It usually involves one or two sessions, and typically takes place at the Emory University campus in a comfortable setting. Parents with newborns through schoolage children are encouraged to participate. Parents may stay during the session and play with their children and observe the study sessions. Parking is free and convenient. If you are interested in participating please, visit www. psychology.emory.edu/childstudycenter or contact the center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 404-727-7432. The center will contact you when an appropriate study becomes available.
Being comfortable with the practice and how they treat you and your baby is important to your well-being. Many new parents don’t realize that your baby’s pediatrician is also your “go-to” when there are middle of the night fevers, terrible two tantrums or emotional outbursts at age 15. Take time to interview, understand and select a pediatric practice that best fits you and your family’s needs. At Northside Pediatrics, we focus on total wellness of children from birth through age 21. We call our comprehensive care philosophy 360Care™. That means we spend more time with each child because some things that can impact your child’s long-term health can’t be determined quickly. When it comes to your children, we will not compromise on quality. We follow the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines. It’s a higher standard, and many families in Atlanta are looking for that. Call 404-256-2688 (Sandy Springs) or 770-928-0016 (Woodstock) to schedule an appointment at Northside Pediatrics. For more information, visit www.northsidepediatrics.com.
Families Of Children Under Stress (FOCUS)
hen a baby is diagnosed with a lifelong disability or serious medical condition, parents just want to kiss and make it better. This can be a scary and emotional time, and some parents may be so overwhelmed by the medical terms and by their emotions that they really do not understand; they might not even know the questions to ask! Parents often feel relieved to know that they are not alone, that another parent has walked the road they are on. Families Of Children Under Stress (FOCUS) offer comfort and encouragement and is there to help – to listen and cry, to inform and educate, and to offer programs for the families and the baby with special needs through our support groups and programs. Seek support so you can have the information and tools to help your baby and to help meet your emotional needs. FOCUS offers support groups all over metro Atlanta; a newsletter with stories by families about their experiences and information about equipment and resources; an education conference; community respite programs; and several annual activities for the entire family. FOCUS believes that if your baby has special needs, then your family has special needs – FOCUS cares. If your child has a physical, cognitive or developmental disability, please call FOCUS at 770-234-9111 or go to our website at www.focus-ga.org.
Special Advertising Section
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 41
1100 SOUTH MARIETTA PKWY., MARIETTA
42 Atlanta Parent March 2014
A Camp for Everyone
There are camps to meet every interest, price range and schedule. Knowing your options, as well as your child’s personality, will help you identify the best programs for your child. The following information will help you as you start your search. n Overnight Camp: Most offer a variety of programs for children starting at age 7. Overnight camp options include coed, single sex and specialty camps that focus on a particular program. Overnight camps offer varying overnight accommodations, such as cabins, tents and tepees. n Day Camp: Similar to resident camps, these camps take younger children, starting at age 4, and everyone returns home at the end of the day. n Specialty Camps and Programs: Campers can embark on adventures as varied as learning how to ride a horse, water ski or dance. If your child has a special interest, there likely is a camp that specializes in it. n Campers with Special Needs: A physical, medical or mental disability is not a roadblock to a camp experience. Each year more than 1 million children with special needs benefit from summer camp. Some camps specialize in serving certain groups while other camps integrate campers with special needs into the total camp population. n Session Lengths Vary: Children may stay at camp for a few days, a few weeks or the entire summer. At camp, there’s a session length for every child, budget and schedule.
Recycle this magazine 44 Atlanta Parent March 2014
n Cost: Camp prices vary greatly. Most day camps cost from $100-$500 per week. Overnight camps range, on average, from $400-$850 per week. Many camps and other organizations offer financial assistance based on need. c atlantaparent.com
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Facilities, meals, recreation, and team building are available for birthday parties, families, or group retreats and meetings. To strengthen family relationships check out our Father-Son Adventure Weekend, Mother-Daughter Weekend, Homeschool Family Day Camp, and Married Couples Romance Weekends at DeerRunRetreat.org/upcomingevents.
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To exhibit or for info call Jordan Lisvosky at 678-222-1911 or email@example.com atlantaparent.com
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10 Weeks of Summer Sports Camp for only $750 PS CAM EAK il 4 R B Apr ING SPR arch 31- 1 -1 M 7 April
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March 2014 Atlanta Parent 47
♥ SUMMER CAMP starting May 27th ♥ Kindergarten through 5th grade ♥ 7:00am – 6:00pm, lunch included ♥ Weekly themed entertainment ♥ $200.00 per week*
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firstname.lastname@example.org www.stjohnchildren.org atlantaparent.com
Overnight Camp You’ll have the best shot at registering your child at your top pick now rather than later. Believe it or not, some overnight camps are already full for their summer season. Here’s a month-by-month guide to preparing for the camp experience. n Now: If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to finalize your top picks for an overnight camp. Call each camp on your list of finalists and talk with the director and other references to see if the camp is a match for your child. Now that you’ve selected a camp, be sure to send in all registration forms and fees on time. You should also receive an information packet with details on what your child can expect from the camp experience. Your child may have to submit a physical form. If so, schedule it early and mark it off your to do list. n Two-Three Months Ahead: Camp time will be here before you know it! Spend these months preparing your child for camp. If you can, visit the camp during an open house so your child can meet the director and tour the facilities. Now is the time to start making travel arrangements and stocking up on supplies. Your camp should provide a list of clothes and toiletries your child will need during his session. n Just Weeks Away: Summer is here! As your child starts his session, prepare yourself for his departure and start writing a few letters. c atlantaparent.com
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 49
Lessons from MONTESSORI
Science Behind Teaching Method Can Benefit All Children
by Malia Jacobson Young children aren’t usually known for intense concentration. Kids are expected to bounce from one activity to another with the attention span of a gnat. That’s why parents are surprised by what they see when they tour a Montessori school: Children as young as 3 are happily engaged in independent, focused work for long stretches. They don’t see lecturing teachers prodding reluctant kids to complete assigned work. The children are self-motivated. This ability to focus at a young age is a hallmark of Montessori education, though the teaching method is hardly new: Maria Montessori’s first school opened in 1907. But a trend toward getting students more engaged in education is sparking new interest in this century-old style of learning, and new science is showing how this type of learning benefits today’s young minds. “At Montessori schools, children have very little limitation,” says Trayce Marino, head of school at Montessori School at Emory in Decatur. “If a child sees an older child doing something and he wants to tackle it, we give that child the support and tools to do so. We let them explore their interests.” Over the past decade, organizations like Mindfulness in Education Network, Association for Mindfulness in Education, and Mindful Schools have sprung up, validating the Montessori model. These organizations train teachers, host conferences, and produce research aimed at helping children become more focused, motivated, and intentional in the classroom. Why does student engagement matter? Scientists refer to a “flow” state of prolonged, energized work that produces both calm satisfaction and profound joy in learning.
50 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Whole Body, Whole Mind
Maria Montessori was an early advocate for sustained focus and internal motivation. Her methods deliberately encourage intense concentration as the best context for early learning. Montessori’s approach to motor development stimulates cognitive development and deep concentration. When children begin Montessori education at 3 or 4, they work on motor-skills activities like sweeping, polishing silverware and pouring. These aptly-named “Practical Life” activities prepare kids for greater independence and self-reliance in daily tasks, but there’s something bigger going on – the development of higher cognitive functions essential to concentration and attention. “We see everything as interrelated,” Marino says. Measuring ingredients for a baking project, for instance, uses fractions and a student can relate fractions in baking to fractions in math. Montessori tasks like wiping a table or washing dishes develop fine motor control, but they also activate areas of the pre-frontal cortex essential to executive function, which paves the way for greater concentration and focus, says Stephen J. Hughes, a pediatric neuropsychologist specializing in attention, concentration, planning and organizing. “Dr. Montessori wrote about the close relationship between cognitive development and motor development in 1949; 50 years later, scientists made the same connection,” Hughes says. This whole-body approach is part of the reason numerous studies show that Montessori-educated children have an academic edge over children educated in traditional classrooms. If your children are exposed to similar methods at home, or through teachers trained in engagement methods, they, too, might have an edge. Cont’d on page 52
About Montessori in Atlanta
etro Atlanta has 24 Montessori schools accredited by the Association Montessori Internationale and about 40 others accredited by the American Montessori Society or other organizations. Other schools may follow some Montessori education methods, but aren’t official Montessori schools. Most Montessori schools are private and cover kindergarten to sixth grade, but a few, such as Arbor Montessori in Decatur, Montessori Academy at Sharon Springs in Cumming, Montessori School of Covington and Springmont in Sandy Springs (formerly known as First Montessori, the first school in the Southeast) teach middle-school students. Counterpane Montessori School in Fayetteville has a full K-12 program. DeKalb County School District has Montessori kindergarten and elementary programs at Briar Vista, Huntley Hills and Midway elementary schools, though Briar Vista is the only school to fully implement the Montessori curriculum. Students are selected by lottery. Any school can claim to be a Montessori school, because the name isn’t trademarked, and some schools may not employ certified Montessori teachers, who must complete a full year of training in the education method in addition to their college degree. Check the school’s accreditation and credentials.
Montessori’s well-known graduates include Sergey Brin and Larry Page, the founders of Google, and Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon. Atlanta can claim actress Dakota Fanning, who grew up in Conyers, among successful former students. For more about Montessori: n American Montessori Society, amshq.org n Association Montessori Internationale, montessori-ami.org
Most Montessori schools are private and cover kindergarten to sixth grade, but a few teach middle-school students.
imagine Your Child? What do you want for
IMAGINE A SCHOOL WHERE YOUR CHILD LEARNS…
• By Individual Instruction An • A Love of Learning Authentic • To Think Outside the Box AMI Accredited Montessori • Independence School • Respect for Others • A Solid Foundation • Foreign Language, Music, Cooking, Gardening and More HALF OR FULL DAY, YEAR ROUND PROGRAMS
Montessori School at Emory
Montessori School of Cumming
3021 N. Decatur Road Decatur, GA 30033
4601 Post Road Cumming, GA 30040
Now enrolling children ages 15 months – 12 years • www.MontessoriSchoolsofGeorgia.com atlantaparent.com
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 51
MONTESSORI Here’s more that parents can learn from Montessori:
Johns Creek Montessori School of Georgia Excellence in Montessori Education 6450 East Johns Crossing │ Johns Creek, GA 30097 (770) 814-8001 │ www.johnscreekmontessorisog.org
● Vibrant, multi-age learning communities ● Montessori certiﬁed teachers in every classroom ● School leadership team with advanced education degrees ● Regular parent involvement activities ● Flexible academic program schedules
Free the child’s potential, and you will transform him into the world. –Maria Montessori
Educating students 2½ - 6 AMI Recognized – Authentic Montessori
www.carlislemontessori.com email@example.com 404-949-0053 1036 Lindbergh Dr. | Atlanta, GA 30324
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Environment, Schedule, Shared Focus
One way Montessori promotes focus is through a carefully prepared environment, a key component of Montessori learning. In Montessori classrooms, specially-designed materials, from child-size brooms to lacing cards to counting beads, are prepared to be aesthetically appealing and accessible for young children. Simplicity, beauty, and order are paramount. Children choose their activity, and choosing one’s own activity promotes sustained engagement. Montessori-taught children choose their own work from a palette of developmentally-appropriate options that grow progressively more complex and challenging. Montessori schools incorporate concrete learning goals into a child’s educational plan, but children are free to choose when and how to complete their work within a specified time frame. Montessori believes that when children are motivated by their own interests, deep concentration is a natural result.
Montessori-taught children choose their own work from a palette of developmentallyappropriate options that grow progressively more complex and challenging. During a 90-minute work period, children can take their work through its beginning, middle and end. Working through this natural sequence promotes competence and mastery; children can repeat the activity as many times as they want. Though the terms focus and concentration conjure up images of a child working alone, Montessori-style learning encourages kids to engage in tasks with a classmate or two, a critical skill in the age of teamwork. Classrooms typically are grouped in age ranges, so younger children can learn from older ones and older children can teach and lead (ages 15 months to 3 years, ages 3-6, ages 6-9 and 9-12). Children benefit with greater confidence, longer attention spans, and natural selfmotivation, lessons parents want them to learn along with their academics. c atlantaparent.com
Spotlight on Montessori Schools Atlanta Montessori International School
Cresco Montessori School
tlanta Montessori International School (AMIS) nurtures the potential of the whole child and cultivates the growth of a diverse international community. In multi-age classrooms, children learn together in respectful, peaceful Montessori environments specifically designed to follow the child’s needs from 8 weeks to 15 years. AMIS programs promote independence, initiative, confidence, responsibility, strong academics, self-discipline, leadership and a lifetime love of learning. AMIS is open Monday to Friday 7:30 am - 6:00 pm. Core school hours are 8:30 am - 3:15 pm. Extended day option available to all students. The Infant and Toddler communities enjoy a year-round school program. AMIS offers a Summer Program to all Montessori children in the area. AMIS promotes a multi-cultural, multi-language Montessori atmosphere from language exposure for young children to international travels for older students. Elementary and Jr. High participate in an extensive Music, Orchestra, Voice, and Visual Arts programs. Call for weekly tour days and times. For more information please call 404-325-6777 also visit us at www.amischool.com. 1970 Cliff Valley Way, NE, Atlanta, GA 30329. AMI affiliated and AdvancED SACS accredited.
resco Montessori School is a year-round GAC certified private school, and full-service childcare center. Serving families in Marietta, Buford, Johns Creek and Woodstock for 10 years. Cresco Montessori School is open 6:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m., for children from 6 weeks old to 6 years old. Students can attend for a half day, school day or full day. Cresco Montessori offers free Georgia Pre-K, scholarships and a GA Tax Redirection Program. Cresco also provides an afterschool and summer camp program along with many enrichment activities for children up to 12 years old. A focus on family is an important component of the school. Each year, Cresco Montessori hosts fall flings and spring carnivals for students, parents and siblings to enjoy. Each Montessori classroom is prepared with a range of materials to allow children to progress through the curriculum as their skills develop. Montessori classrooms intentionally include a mix of ages, so that younger children can learn from older children, and older children develop leadership skills and confidence. Visit www.crescomontessori.com for more information. Daily tours are available at each location from 9:30-11:30 am.
Johns Creek Montessori School of Georgia
ocated near the intersection of 141 and McGinnis Ferry Road in Johns Creek, Johns Creek Montessori School of Georgia provides excellence in Montessori education for children 15 months to six years old. JCMSOG provides an authentic Montessori environment, where each individual’s needs are respected and everyone works together for the good of the community. The focus is always on helping the children to develop themselves in a caring, peaceful environment. Helping children to develop independence assists them in their physical and emotional development. As the child’s sense of security in her ability to care for herself and her environment grows, her brain has more energy or “bandwidth” for increased academic learning. Additionally, this focus on development of muscular control is a first step in developing self discipline. Each of JCMSOG’S vibrant classroom communities is outfitted with high quality Montessori materials designed to meet each child’s individual developmental needs, so that no atlantaparent.com
matter a child’s learning style or pace, the right equipment is on hand to give him exactly what he needs. In addition to college degrees, each of the JCMSOG teachers, or Community Guides, has completed an additional one to two years of Montessori studies in order to receive their certification from a MACTE-accredited organization. They are trained to work with each child individually, guiding them to the lessons or activities best suited for that child’s particular developmental needs. The multi-age groupings in our classroom communities allow for non-competitive, mutually beneficial relationships between children. The younger children learn by observing the older children. The older children test their learning by repeating lessons for their younger friends. The Johns Creek Montessori School of Georgia difference is best experienced in person. Please schedule a time to observe the “Montessori Magic” by calling 770-814-8001 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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March 2014 Atlanta Parent 53
Lessons from MONTESSORI Montessori in Your Home
ot every family can afford a Montessori education, but parents can teach some of the same principles at home. The American Montessori Society recommends these strategies: n Create an Ordered Environment: This allows children to find what they need and offers fewer distractions, so kids can focus on the project at hand. Suggestions: Provide low shelves or drawers for clothing, keep a step stool in the bathroom and kitchen so kids can reach the sink, put toys and games on low, open shelves, put healthy snacks on a low shelf so kids can serve themselves, put drinks in small pitchers and allow kids to pour their own. n Teach Real-Life Skills: Let kids wash tables, organize shelves, prepare their snacks and assist younger children; younger children can peel vegetables, fold clothes, match socks or care for pets. Tweens can prepare dinner, read to siblings, help with home maintenance or manage their own bank account. n Promote Concentration: Figure out what interests your child, then set him or her up with the tools to explore that interest, without interruption.
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n Nurture Inner Motivation: By expressing encouragement and appreciation for your child’s efforts, you help develop pride and pleasure from within; children will apply themselves when they feel there is value to their work. Some of the traits that set Montessori schools apart from traditional schools, according to the society: n Emphasis on creating a love of learning, not memorization of facts. n Teacher serves as a guide for learning. n Self-discipline is encouraged. n Children learn life skills, such as how to measure for a recipe. n Children are grouped by age ranges, not by grades, so a classroom might include 3- to 6-year-olds or 6- to 9-year-olds. n A child learns at his own pace and chooses his own work based on his interests. n Internal feelings of success reinforce learning. n Children can move around the classroom and speak with others.
Put drinks in small pitchers and allow kids to pour their own.
n Children are encouraged to collaborate and help each other.
Spotlight on Montessori Schools M
Montessori Schools of Georgia
ontessori Schools of Georgia offers you two conveniently located schools: the Montessori School at Emory and the Montessori School of Cumming. Montessori provides the finest quality education available for children ages 15 months to 12 years. Three specific educational programs designed for Toddler, Primary and Elementary age children are based on the developmental needs and characteristics of each age group. Children are given one-on-one instruction from their teacher which creates an individualized program that engages their interests and skill levels. The Montessori Schools of Georgia offer several options. Full day, half day, 10 month or year round formats are available. Afternoon enrichment programs are also offered from 3pm to 6pm, in which children enjoy experiences in the creative arts and sciences such as music, art and foreign language. Also, early morning drop-off is available at 7 a.m. The Montessori School at Emory, founded in 1993, has an
Stepping Stone Montessori
tepping Stone Montessori is proud to be a new member of the Cumming community! They are located at 820 Sanders Rd. Cumming, GA, just minutes from Hwy 400. Open Monday thru Friday, 6:30am to 6:30pm, they are a 12-month school. The classrooms are multi-age: Infant classes (6 weeks to 15 months), Toddler classes (16 months to 3 years) and Primary classes (3 years – 6 years). At Stepping Stone, children learn through curiosity, exploration, and experience and believe that working freely and independently is an art form that lays the foundation for all future academic possibilities. Lessons are introduced to the children based on the Guide’s observations for readiness, after which the child may choose the lesson independently as often as he/ she likes, allowing repetition and mastery. Children are also given lessons on Grace and Courtesy to support their place in society. Stepping Stone also has an amazing outdoor environment where kids will plant flowers and vegetables hence letting them discover the wonders of nature. Visit their website for other very exciting programs & benefits. Call 770-205-0317 or visit www.steppingstonemontessori.com atlantaparent.com
urban campus setting complete with beautiful classrooms, large garden areas, a soccer field, basketball court, a working kitchen for young aspiring chefs, and its own gymnasium. For more information about the Montessori School at Emory, call 404-634-5777. The Montessori School of Cumming is situated on four wooded acres with nature trails and an outdoor classroom. The classrooms have beautiful views with cathedral ceilings. A huge playground provides room for soccer as well as imaginative play. For more information about the Montessori School of Cumming, call 770-205-6773. Montessori enjoys world renowned success because it draws on children’s inherent love of learning. Please call to schedule a tour at either Montessori School at Emory or Montessori School of Cumming. Learn more at www. MontessoriSchoolsofGeorgia.com.
Learning Spotlights available in our July & August issues – just in time for
back to school. Call Atlanta Parent at 770-454-7599 to learn how you can participate in this advertising program.
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March 2014 Atlanta Parent 55
Integrating Academics • Friendships • Life Skills We offer a curriculum more individualized in response to student needs and interests, more flexible in format, and more varied in modes of teaching than that encountered in traditional schools. The curriculum cultivates learning, language skills, and social emotional development .
FRENCH CLASSES FOR CHILDREN Saturday program ages 18 mo-12 yrs • Buckhead location at Atlanta International School New Class: Bébé et Moi (Baby and Me) for children ages 18-36 months
THE P I
Register for Classes Grades K-6 • Rolling Admission
The Piedmont School of Atlanta (404) 382-8200 www.ThePiedmontSchoolOfAtlanta.org
OPEN HOUSE: Thursday, March 13 • 11 am-12:30 pm Sunday, March 23 • 1-2:30 pm RSVP to Catherine.Trapani@tpsoa.org
Register online at: www.frenchschoolatlanta.org
Are you Overwhelmed & Confused in ﬁnding the best solutions for your child with special needs?
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In-home behavioral strategies Advocacy within the school system Functional life skills Assistive technology/communication Therapeutic services across settings
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email@example.com Keeping It Specially Simple
56 Atlanta Parent March 2014
A Great Way to Boost Science Processing Skills by Jan Pierce
ave you noticed that any time you’re outside with children they naturally begin to pick things up and “collect” them? It’s part of their natural curiosity about the world and it is a wonderful thing. Nurture that curiosity by encouraging the children in your life to make collections of all kinds. Younger children can choose three or four treasures to save and display. Older children are able to do ever more detailed collections of all kinds. Cont’d on page 58
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 57
Basic Science Processing Skills Enhanced through Creating Kid Collections n Observation: Noticing alike and different, noticing unique features, using our five senses to record information. n Classification: Sorting and organizing according to a property such as size, shape or color. n Measurement: Finding the length, width, or other quantity using a measuring tool. n Communication: Sharing information with others, relating facts. n Making inferences: Using data to speculate on factual information. n Making predictions: Using data to predict an outcome. n Interpretation of factual data: Making meaning from data gathered, answering questions posed. n Experimentation: Posing questions, designing a test, logging data and trying out possible solutions to problems. n Inquiry: Asking appropriate questions to determine an outcome or evaluate a circumstance
Kid Collections In addition to awakening the wonder at the vast bounty of our natural world, children also respond to the “fun of the hunt” involved in collecting things. From an educational point of view, collections also lend themselves to basic math and science learning. Younger children can sort by size, color, shape and pattern. Older children will learn to identify, label, organize into categories and classify their treasures in many different ways. Parents can support these learning activities by allowing collections display space in the home. Many children enjoy creating their own “museum” for a period of time. They will naturally want to add drawings, short informational descriptions, and charts. Voila! You have created an engaged learner! What to collect? The possibilities are endless. Some favorites from the natural world include rocks and minerals, shells, feathers, bark, leaves, pinecones, insects, butterflies and moths. Other collectibles might include coins, stamps, stickers, miniature toys, dolls, bottle caps, comic books, gum wrappers, buttons or marbles. If there are a lot of them around, you can collect them. Support your children’s wonder and joy in the intricacies of nature by creating lists
of beautiful things seen, favorite hikes or places to play and anything else that builds children’s appreciation of the beauty around us. Display the charts and lists on walls to be read and enjoyed in times to come. Such activities will increase logical thinking skills and will involve organization of factual information in the process of writing. Children who develop a passion for their collections will also gain self-confidence and will learn to share their passion with others. They can be proud of their unique collections and they’ll want to talk about them, share and trade items with others, and otherwise engage in social skills. They will “own”
Decatur OPEN HOUSE March 22, 3:30-5:00 pm 404-828-0810 134 New Street, Decatur 30030 East Point OPEN HOUSE March 15, 3:30-5:00 pm 1460 East Cleveland Avenue, East Point 30344 404-768-2111
Ask about The Green School Elementary Program at East Point For more information, call 404-768-2111 or visit www.LittleLinguistsPreschool.com
58 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Resources n Practicing Science Process Skills at Home by Debbye Vitti and Angie Torres, 2006. n Research Matters to the Science Teacher, National Association for Research in Science by Michael J. Padilla, University of Athens, Georgia, 1990, 2013. *This article first appeared in The Mother’s Heart Magazine in the May/June 2013 issue
their collection in such a way as to gain in responsibility and care-giving of something valuable to them. They’ll increase their knowledge-base of a certain subject area. If they have chosen to collect bird nests, they may also learn all about the habitats of birds, their diet, their size, shape and defining marks. They’ll want to observe birds in their natural habitat and they’ll ask questions, make inferences, synthesize information and engage in many scientific processing skills. They will be independent learners. Adults can further encourage such independent learning by purchasing appropriate books, field guides and posters related to the collection of the day. You might even want to have a disposable camera or binoculars on hand for capturing images during impromptu nature walks. Keep poster board on hand to be ready for those inspired lists, charts and drawings that will make up displays of collected items. See the following list of ideas to get you started. Happy collecting! c Jan Pierce, M.Ed., is a retired teacher and freelance writer. She explores the out of doors with her three grandsons who are avid collection-makers.
Craft items to keep on hand for displaying collections: n Cardboard boxes and the inside dividers n Tape n Glue n Markers n String, twine n Scissors n Fabric scraps n Clothespins to hang items n Lumber scraps n Styrofoam trays n Cans n Plastic containers with lids n Old picture frames n Saran Wrap n Clear contact paper n Paper bags n Plastic bags n Clip Boards for recording data n Children’s binoculars n Waxed paper
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8180 Mall Parkway, Suite 810 • Lithonia 770-484-4994 • Dr. Shannon M. Parris www.ChildrensDentistryAtStonecrest.com
8052 Mall Parkway, Suite 102 • Lithonia 678-323-7144 • Dr. Melissa Brown www.FamilyDentistryAtStonecrest.com
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A FREE FAMILY RESOURCE EXPO!
A Day of Discovery, Learning and Entertainment presented by Atlanta Parent
Northlake Mall Saturday, May 3 l 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Stroll through our neighborhoods:
Destination Va enue v A y t i cation v i t c A Camp Court Healthy Highway Baby Block ning Lane r a e L The Green Wa y Main Street and more!
Northlake Mall l 4800 Briarcliff Rd. NE l Atlanta, GA 30345
To exhibit, call Jordan Lisvosky at 678-222-1911 or visit atlantaparent.com
Family Fun Guide * Free Fun
Not-to-miss events for March
ver Disco hing c Geoca 5 6 Page
Southeastern Cowboy Gathering
Booth Western Art Museum Sat. March 8, 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. A family weekend celebrating cowboys includes visits with Buffalo Bill and Annie Oakley costumed characters, a chuck wagon cooking contest, fancy gun tricks, cowboy church, live cowboy music and a gallery walk with cowboy artist Martin Grelle. 501 Museum Dr., Cartersville. 770-387-1300. Adults, $10; ages 12 and younger, free; additional costs for chuck wagon meal tickets and concert. boothmuseum.org.
Scooby-Doo Live! Musical Mysteries
Conyers Cherry Blossom Festival
Scooby-Doo Live! Musical Mysteries
Georgia International Horse Park March 22-23, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Fox Theatre March 29, 2 and 5 p.m.
Celebrate Cherry Blossom season with Japanese cultural performances, more than 300 artists, live musical performances, festival foods, and children’s activities including bounce houses, rock walls, and mazes. Learn about and purchase cherry trees from master gardeners. 1996 Centennial Olympic Pkwy., Conyers. 770-6022606. Admission, free. One day parking, $5; two day parking, $8. conyerscherryblossomfest.com.
Scooby-Doo, Shaggy, and the rest of the Mystery Machine crew investigate a haunted theater in this family-friendly musical. The performance, based on Warner Brothers’ Scooby-Doo! cartoon, runs 80 minutes with a brief intermission. VIP tickets include a meeting with Scooby-Doo and a show poster-gram. 660 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-8812100. $18-$92. foxtheatre.org.
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Family Fun Guide Come Along for the Ride!
f your kids have ever complained that their carousel horse is slower than others, they could be right! My boys, ages 6 and 7, and I learned about the mechanics and physics of rides we enjoy at carnivals and amusement parks during our visit to the GEHC’s new Amusement Park Science exhibit. A cute character named Newt (an informative salamander named for Sir Isaac Newton) appears on placards to introduce each of the 12 interactive stations. We quickly learned that amusement park rides are real-life ways to demonstrate basic physics concepts governed by Newton’s Laws. Each hands-on station showcases parts of familiar rides like bumper cars, carousels and roller coasters. By far, our favorite station was Create a Coaster, where the boys built their own roller coasters with wooden tracks. The boys didn’t even realize that they were learning about potential and kinetic energy through play! At the Bump-O-Ramma bumper car simulation, they had a blast learning about actions and reactions as they tried to collide with each other’s cars. We also experimented with the Angular Momentum spinning pole and discovered that holding parts of your body in different positions, like lifting a leg in figure skater style, can change how quickly a spinning body moves. This exhibit requires manipulation of levers, knobs and gears at each station. My kids enjoyed
Trucks and More Trucks! Calling all car and truck enthusiastic kids to two Toucha-Truck events this month. Pretend to drive tractors, police motorcycles, fire trucks, dump trucks and more. n Touch-a-Truck – Decatur. March 8.
10 a.m.-1 p.m. Calloway Parking Lot. 120 West Trinity Pl. Free. decaturga.com n Touch-a-Truck – Kennesaw. March 15.
10 a.m.-2 p.m. Downtown Kennesaw. 2828 Cherokee Street. Free; train rides, $2; slides, $1. kennesaw-ga.gov. 62 Atlanta Parent March 2014
seeing the cause and effect of their actions, and I explained the physics concepts that are detailed on boards by each element. We couldn’t leave without entering the Discover H20 permanent exhibit, which is by far the most hands-on, kid-friendly area for all ages. At large interactive stations, kids can learn about all things water, and they might even get a little wet in the process! A ball pit illustrates the lifecycle of water, and it’s perfect for toddlers. Since each exhibit is so interactive, and the kids will want to do everything, I recommend allowing at least two hours for exhibit exploration. The GEHC is truly a hidden gem! – Felicia Barman
If You Go Amusement Park Science Exhibit Gwinnett Environmental & Heritage Center 2020 Clean Water Dr., Buford 770-904-3500; gwinnettehc.org n Hours: Mon.-Sat., 9 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sun., 1-4 p.m. Through April 30. n Admission: Adults, $7.50; children (ages 3-12), $3.50; age 2 and younger, free
Atlanta Parent Magazine’s CAMP EXPO Perimeter Mall March 22. 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
It’s your last chance in 2014 to visit Atlanta Parent Magazine’s Camp Expo! Talk with camp representatives and former campers from over 50 day and overnight camps in the Southeast and beyond, and enjoy music and giveaways by Star 94. 4400 Ashford Dunwoody Rd., Atlanta. 770-4547599. atlantaparent.com. Free. Family Fun Guide
FREE FUN atlantaparent.com
Phoenix Flies Children’s Events An annual celebration of Atlanta’s historic sites includes free educational activities for kids ages 6 and older. Reservations are not required; just drop in to participate.
Box City Atlanta Preservation Center 327 St. Paul Ave. SE, Atlanta. 404-688-3353 Tues., March 11, 1 p.m.; Sat., March 15, 3 p.m. Kids plan and build their own city during an interactive program covering the basics of architecture, planning and how buildings with historic value can be saved.
The History of Atlanta for Young Preservationists Atlanta Preservation Center 327 St. Paul Ave. SE, Atlanta. 404-688-3353 Tues., March 18, 1 p.m.; Sun., March 23, 3 p.m. Atlanta Preservation Center’s Director of Education Paul Hammock presents a one-hour show-and-tell about Atlanta’s history including how places and people combined to make our city unique.
Guided Walking Tours of Historic Atlanta Neighborhoods The 90-minute tours are familyfriendly and do not require reservations. Wear comfortable shoes and plan on walking 1 to 1½ miles through historic neighborhoods. n Ansley Park: Rhodes Hall, 1516 Peachtree St., Atlanta. Sat., March 8 and 22, 11 a.m. Meet on the front porch of Rhodes Hall. n Grant Park: Atlanta Preservation Center-LP Grant Mansion 327 St. Paul Ave., Atlanta. Sun., March 9 and 23, 10 a.m. Meet at the Atlanta Preservation Center/ LP Grant Mansion.
Family Fun Guide
n Historic Downtown: Candler Building, 127 Peachtree St., Atlanta. Fri., March 14 and 21, noon.; Sat., March 22, 11 a.m. Meet in the lobby of the Candler Building. n Inman Park: King Keith House, 889 Edgewood Ave., Atlanta. Sun., March 9, 16 and 23, 2 p.m. Meet in front of the King Keith House. n Sweet Auburn: APEX Museum, 135 Auburn Ave., Atlanta. Wed., March 12, 1 p.m.; Sat., March 22, 1 p.m. Meet at the APEX Museum. For more information: 404-6993353 or preserveatlanta.com
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Volcano Eruptions and Snow in One Show
y 5-year-old son Aiden and I headed to the Center for Puppetry Arts to see “Weather Rocks,” ready to learn all about hurricanes, snow and rain. Who knew we’d see a volcano erupt or feel raindrops falling on our heads? When we settled into row B, we were excited to realize that our section could see a bit of the backstage area, and we could get glimpses of the puppeteers operating the characters on stage. It was amazing to watch how much they have to do with their hands to control different parts of a puppet’s body. The educational show features a group of musical meteorologists who share the secrets of weather patterns and events. It had great entertainment value for preschoolers, but the educational messages would best reach kids ages 6 and older. There was a lot of music, dancing and some truly unique puppets. My son’s favorite was the dancing sun and the “cool” snowman who wears sunglasses. Amazing effects included a volcano that “erupted” from the stage floor and raindrops that literally fell from the sky, along with some fog and strobe light moments. Even the youngest audience members were fascinated by the climate changes inside the theater! We explored the museum before the show, which is included with the ticket price, and enjoyed seeing Kermit and Miss Piggy, along with Captain Hook, Peter Pan and Cinderella puppets. During the puppet-making workshop after the show, Aiden glued, cut and decorated a sun puppet to take home. Many of the kids took their creations and put on their own little show from a curtained area in the workshop room. The whole room held a lot of smiling faces, both parents and children. – Kim Curnutt
If You Go “Weather Rocks” Center for Puppetry Arts, 1404 Spring St. NW, Atlanta. 404-873-3391; puppet.org n Dates: Through March 23; Tues.-Fri., 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m.; Sat., noon and 2 p.m.; Sun., 1 and 3 p.m. n Cost: Ages 2 and older, $16.50
64 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Family Fun Guide
Gone Geocaching Going on a treasure hunt with your kids is easier than you think! Geocaching is a worldwide scavenger hunt that has people of all ages using GPS devices to find caches, which are hidden containers holding log books to sign and usually toys and trinkets. Many “hiding spots” are right here in metro Atlanta!
y 5-year-old son Liam and I were introduced to geocaching by Park Ranger Toft at Red Top Mountain State Park. He helped us set up an account on geocaching.com and download the Geocaching App on my smartphone. The app showed us thousands of registered hidden caches within the park. Who knew? We picked a low-difficulty hunt and were on our way. Liam, armed with our GPS device, led Ranger Toft and me with three goals: count down the feet, keep the arrow pointing up, and find the hidden cache container. Our hunt led us to a pile of downed trees, and after a bit of searching through hollowed branches, we discovered a hidden military ammunition container. Victory! Inside the cache we found a notepad where we logged our names. Then we picked our prize: an orange plastic centipede, which we replaced with a small toy we brought along. (One of the main rules of geocaching is to put something into a cache if you take something out.)
If You Go Red Top Mountain State Park 50 Lodge Rd. SE, Cartersville 770-975-4226; gastateparks.org/ geocaching More than 50 other Georgia State Parks have registered caches Hours: Anytime during regular park hours Cost: Free; parking $5 Basics: geocaching.com
What a thrilling family activity! Not only did our geocaching adventure lead us to an amazing state park, it also taught my son GPS and directional skills. Most importantly, it opened my son’s eyes to hidden treasures in the world. Caches can be anywhere. Many families geocache wherever they go and we think we will, too. – Valerie Shepherd
Geocaching Basics n What is it? It’s like searching for pirate’s treasure! Geocaching is an outdoor activity that anyone can participate in. Use a GPS-enabled device – even a smart phone works – to reach a set of GPS coordinates, and then find a geocache (container) hidden there. The cache may have an assortment of mini-treasures, and you can pick your prize. n How did it start? In 2000, when precisely accurate GPS coordinates became available to the public, an Oregon man started the game by hiding a first stash of items for other to find. The hobby, similar to letterboxing, became popular as people online learned about the treasure hunt. n How do you begin? Visit a cache listing website like geocaching.com or opencaching.com – both are free - and search for caches in your area. Caches are ranked by degree of difficulty, so you can adjust for the ages in your group. Grab your GPS device and go! n Where are caches hidden? Anywhere outdoors! Caches can be found in parks, on trails, or even outside businesses. n What are the rules? If you take an item from a cache, replace it with something else, like a small inexpensive toy. Replace a cache exactly where you found it. Report any issues with cache conditions on the website where you found it listed. n Can we hide a cache? Hiding a geocache and registering it can be fun as well, but it’s best to find several caches before creating one. With experience, you’ll know more about cache types and how to hide one.
Family Fun Guide
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Fun begins with Fencing
Calling all Beginners!
Let us introduce you to the coolest Olympic sport around!
SUMMER CAMPS • (ages 7-10) FENCING IS FUN! PROGRAM (ages 5-7; 8-10; 11-13) TRY IT CLASS • (ages 5 + up) COMPETITIVE START PROGRAM (ages 5 + up) $25 discount code for Summer Camps and Fencing is Fun is 546
Training Champions of all Ages REGISTER NOW!
All programs under the direction of U.S. Olympic Coach, Maestro Arkady Burdan
1530 Carroll Dr. NW Atlanta 30318 (404) 603-3600 www.nellyafencers.com
Atlanta Parent online is the go-to resource for finding that perfect
Open for Art
On days when you want to encourage your kids’ artistic sides without cleaning up the mess, visit one of metro Atlanta’s family-friendly art spots for open studio hours. For a flat fee, your pint-sized Picassos can paint, collage, and craft using a wide assortment of materials. Here are a few places to get you started: Little House of Art
Bubbles and Brushes Art Studio 314B Newnan Crossing Bypass, Newnan 678-899-7035; bubblesandbrushes.com n Hours: Mon.-Sat., 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.-6 p.m. n Cost: $5 per hour
Purple Hippo Art Studio 5517 Chamblee Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody 770-730-0605; purplehippoartstudio.com n Hours: Tues.-Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun., noon-5 p.m. n Cost: $15 for two hours
1418 Dresden Dr., Suite 110, Atlanta 404-814-1910; thelittlehouseofart.com n Hours: Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; check calendar for other dates n Cost: $10 per hour
For Teens Only:
High Museum of Art 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta 404-733-4400; high.org n Hours: Themed open studio sessions held on the first Friday each month, 4-7 p.m. n Cost: Free with high school identification
The Bee’s Knees Art Studio
Visit atlantaparent.com 66 Atlanta Parent March 2014
195 North Perry St., Suite B, Lawrenceville 770-696-6882; thebeeskneesart.com n Hours: Tues., Wed., and Fri. 10:30 a.m.-6 p.m.; Thurs., 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Sat., noon-6 p.m. n Cost: $10 for two hours
Family Fun Guide
Playground: Wills Park Wills Park offers not one, not two, but three playgrounds! Our favorite is “Wacky World,” the wooden kingdom with towers, bridges and passages, with sections for older and younger kids. The architecture of this play structure seems to inspire imaginative play, and on any given day, you can find plenty of kids meeting up for playdates here, or making new friends while navigating the rope bridge, climbing to a tower lookout post, or taking a spin in the tire swing. We especially like the bench seats in the play area, covered picnic tables and bathrooms close at hand. Near the basketball courts and recreation center, the yellow playground offers equipment for younger kids, and the covered purple playground near the ball fields has climbing structures and swings for big kids. The nearly
two-mile long walking trail around the park is mostly flat, which makes it easy for stroller walks or beginner bike rides, and the mature trees offer plenty of shade. We often bring our dog to play in the fenced offleash area, so the whole family gets outdoor time here!
n Features: Three playgrounds, basketball courts, outdoor swimming pool (open during summer months), ball fields, disc golf course, equestrian center, tennis courts, dog park, walking trail, a community garden, a rec center, and five picnic pavilions. n Location: 11925 Wills Rd., Alpharetta. Parking is available in multiple lots. – Dalia Faupel
Egg Hunt Saturday, April 12
Join us for an EGGcellent adventure featuring timed egg hunts, games with Radio Disney AM590, a walk-around dinosaur mascot and more! Advance registration required. Visit fernbankmuseum.org/egghunt for details.
Family Fun Guide
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 67
Photo by Olivia Rae James
Whether you’re in the mood for a quick weeknight bite or a big family dinner, we’ve rounded up some reader faves for burger joints around the metro area.
TheBurgerBunch by Jennifer Haslam n Five Guys Burger
More than 30 restaurants in Atlanta fiveguys.com Five Guys offers more than 250,000 custom burger combinations. Burgers, hot dogs, fries, and toppings are all fresh. Peanuts are served in bulk, so guests can snack while waiting. Smaller versions of burgers, drinks and fries are available for kids. n Yeah Burger 1168 Howell Mill Rd., Atlanta 404-496-4393; yeahburger.com Other location: North Highland Ave. Yeah Burger’s motto is “keeping it real” which means local, organic, all-natural food. Choices include veggie, bison, turkey and grass-fed beef patties, cheeses and veggies, and sauces like bacon jam and sriracha, along with the basics. Hamburgers, chicken tenders, and Applegate Farms hot dogs fill out the kids’ menu.
n SmashBurger 2625 Piedmont Rd., Atlanta 404-237-2374; smashburger.com Other locations: Roswell Rd., Windward Pkwy., Ernest W. Barrett Pkwy., Medlock Bridge Rd. SmashBurger serves freshly cooked 100 percent Angus beef burgers with classic toppings, and choices like fried egg, guacamole, grilled mushrooms or bacon. Gourmet Smash Fries are seasoned with rosemary, olive oil, and garlic (yum!). Kids’ options include burgers, hot dogs, or chicken strips, along with shakes, malts and floats.
Family Dinner Out n The Counter 850 Mansell Rd., Roswell 678-461-9661; thecounterburger.com/roswell Everyone gets a clipboard with an order sheet at The Counter to complete the fivestep build-your-own-burger process. The restaurant rarely makes the same combination in a day. Options include beef, chicken, turkey, bison, or veggie patties along with locally sourced cheeses, toppings and buns, or a bunless burger in a bowl. Little ones can eat mini-sliders or grilled cheese, and sip shakes in flavors like birthday cake.
n Grindhouse Killer Burgers 209 Edgewood Ave., Atlanta 404-522-3444; grindhouseburgers.com Other locations: Piedmont Ave., S. Lumpkin St. (Athens), Hartsfield-Jackson Airport (D Terminal) Grindhouse offers beef, turkey, or bean and quinoa veggie patties. Toppings include jalapenos, brisket chili, black bean spread, and even pimento cheese, Carolina coleslaw, and chipotle sauce. Rugrats Meals have hotdog or mini-burger selections. n Hamburger Mike’s 1533 Jodeco Rd., Stockbridge 678-814-4525; hamburgermikes.com Other location: Hwy 155 South, McDonough This hamburger joint serves Angus beef, smoked turkey or black bean patties that you can top off with cheese (no extra charge) and everything else you want at the condiment bar. The Mini Mikes menu for kids includes burgers, mini-hotdogs, chicken nuggets and corn dogs. Mikes offers a Family Meal for $23.99 that combines two regular meals (priced at $8.99) and two kids’ meals. n Lucky’s Burger and Brew 1144 Alpharetta St., Roswell 770-518-5695; luckysburgerandbrew.com Lucky’s, named for the owners’ beloved golden retriever, serves beef, turkey and black bean burgers in canine-themed combos including the Memphis Blood Hound (red onions, cheddar cheese, candied bacon, and mango barbeque sauce.) Children can order a burger, chicken fingers, chicken breast, grilled cheese or hot dogs. The non-burger section of the menu includes chicken and fish sandwiches. The patio is dog-friendly! n Moxie Burger 255 Village Pkwy., Marietta. 770-627-3201; moxieburger.net A neighborhood burger joint founded by a Marietta native aims to please the whole family with options like the Moxie Burger, made with bacon, fried green tomatoes and pimento cheese. Build your own burger with topping choices like avocado, fried egg or fried green tomatoes. Salads, Hebrew National hotdogs and chicken nuggets are also on the menu. n Village Burger 1426 Dunwoody Village Pkwy., Dunwoody 770-522-1600; villageburger.com Dunwoody’s neighborhood burger restaurant features The Village (two beef patties), The House Burger (a single), BLTs with avocado, and turkey and veggie burgers. Children can order hamburgers, hotdogs, grilled cheese, turkey burger or a chicken sandwich. The grand finale of the meal is either chocolate or vanilla frozen custard with more than 10 topping options.
Lucky’s Burger and Brew
68 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Hungry for date night suggestions? Visit atlantaparent.com/event/reviews/eating-out for our full list.
Family Fun Guide
A Hot Spot for History If You Go Marietta Fire Museum 112 Haynes St. (Fire Station No. 1), Marietta. 770-794-5491; mariettaga.gov/city/fire/museum n Hours: Mon.-Fri., 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sat. and Sun., by appointment only. n Cost: Free
five-alarm fire of excitement was blazing in my backseat as I drove my 5-year-old son to the Marietta Fire Museum. He couldn’t wait to get inside Fire Station No. 1 off the Marietta Square to investigate the 150-yearold building that houses not just memorabilia of the Marietta Fire Station, but also pays tribute to the heroics of firefighters who have served there. While you can tour the museum on your own, we asked for a guide, and, happily, an on-duty firefighter was available to answer all our questions about the items on display. Most impressive are the five vintage vehicles: 1921, 1929 and 1949 ladder fire trucks, 1952 rescue truck, and the extremely rare 1879 “Silsby Steamer” fire truck. The Steamer is one of only five in existence in the world, and the model was revolutionary at the time it was built, able to pump 500 gallons of water per minute! Everything in the museum was used by Marietta firefighters. Lining the walls of the museum are photos (some dating back to early 1900s) of many of the blazes the Marietta firefighters handled. Glass cases with fire hats, radios and other firehouse necessities (such as nozzles, bells and an original fire pole) reminded us just how far technology has come, as well as safety, in rescue efforts. If you’re lucky enough to visit on a non911 kind of day, you may also get a tour of the adjacent working fire station, which my son was thrilled to do! While admission is free, donations are appreciated. – Valerie Shepherd atlantaparent.com
Family Fun Guide
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 69
March S M T W TH F S
Visit our Calendar at atlantaparent.com for calendar updates and ongoing events and attractions in Atlanta.
Events may be canceled or changed after our deadline.
Submit your Family-Friendly Calendar Event at least 8 weeks prior to the event by visiting atlantaparent.com/event/submit.
Please call the event beforehand to confirm dates and times.
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ATLANTA SCIENCE FESTIVAL
classes Yoga for Kids. Johns Creek Yoga. Preschool and children’s yoga classes each Sat. Ages 3-6, 9:3010:30 a.m.; ages 7-9, 11 a.m.-noon. 11705 Jones Bridge Rd., Johns Creek. 678-951-8841. $12. Saturday Morning Art Classes. Vinings School of Art. Take a drawing, painting or pottery class. Supplies included. Ages 2-13. Sat. 10 and 11 a.m. 1675 Cumberland Pkwy., Smyrna. 678-2134278. Pre-register. $15, siblings $12. Crafts at Lakeshore Learning. Lakeshore Learning. Make a different craft each week. Sat. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 4287 Roswell Rd., Marietta. 770-578-3100. Free. Home Depot Kid’s Workshop. All locations. Learn tool safety while building a craft and receive a kid-size orange apron. First Sat. of each month. March 1. 9 a.m.-noon. Homedepot.com. Ages 5-12, free. Marie-Grace & Cecile’s Embroidered Card Craft. American Girl. Sew a dancer’s silhouette on an embroidery card. March 3. 4-6 p.m. 1202 North Point Cir., Alpharetta. 877-247-5223. Ages 8 and older, free. Gavel Club. Beulah Family Life Center. Learn the art of public speaking. Every Tues. 7-8 p.m. 2340 Clifton Springs Rd., Decatur. dawnbreakerstm. com/youth. Ages 11-18, free; project books $10. Lil’ Bean Heads Crafts. Bean Head Toys. Create an art project. March 5 and 19. 3 p.m. 220 Johnson Ferry Rd., Sandy Springs. 404-851-2980. All ages, younger children may need assistance. Free. Isabelle’s Funky Fashion Headpiece Craft. American Girl. Create a decorative headpiece for dolls. March 6, 13, 20, and 27. 4-6 p.m. 1202 North Point Cir., Alpharetta. 877-247-5223. Ages 8 and older, free. Toddler Thursdays. High Museum of Art. Create masterpieces to complement the museum’s current exhibits. Ages 2-4. Thurs. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-5000. Free with museum admission. Adults, $19.50; ages 6-17, $12; 5 and younger, free. Mommy and Me Preschool Program. Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History. Different activities each week. March 6, 13, 20, and 27. 10 and 11:30 a.m. 2829 Cherokee St., Kennesaw. 770-427-2117. Recommended for ages 3-5. Adults, $7.50; ages 4-12, $5.50; ages 3 and younger, free. Teen Open Studio. High Museum of Art. DIY painting projects. March 6. 4-7 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-5000. Ages 14-18, free with high school identification. Kid’s Yoga. Cross Life Christian Montessori School. Parent and me yoga class open to the public. March 7. 9:30 a.m. 1000 Hembree Rd., Roswell. 770-475-3812. Reservations required. Ages 2-6 with parent, free.
70 Atlanta Parent March 2014
30 Atlanta Locations. MARCH 22-29 Exploration Expo at Centennial Olympic Park. MARCH 29. 11 A.M.-4 P.M. Scientists invade Atlanta for a week-long festival at more than 30 metro-area locations. Family-friendly science exhibits, demonstrations, workshops and performances include Super Hero Science Night at the Children’s Museum of Atlanta, Drum Lines and Sound Waves at Georgia Perimeter College, storytimes at many Clayton county libraries and Chemical on the Green at Kennesaw State University. The week concludes with a free Exploration Expo on March 29 featuring mindbending games, exhibits and science-oriented live performances at Centennial Olympic Park. 265 Park Ave., Atlanta. Event costs vary. atlantasciencefestival.org.
Discovering Dolls. McDaniel Farm. Learn about the history of dolls and make one to take home. March 8 and 29. 10:30 a.m.-noon. 3251 McDaniel Rd., Duluth. 770-904-3500. Pre-register. Ages 9 and older, $10. 2014 Turtle Tours. Heritage Sandy Springs Museum. Introduce history through stories, hands-on exhibits and crafts, museum mascots Sandy the chipmunk and Spring the turtle. March 8. 11 a.m. 6075 Sandy Springs Cir., Sandy Springs. 404-851-9111. Recommended for ages 2-5. Donations encouraged. How to Ride a Bike for Kids. Washington ParkAtlanta Beltline. Introduction to riding a bike. March 9. 2-4 p.m.1125 Lena St., Atlanta. 404-446-4410. Free. Second Thursday Program. Southeastern Railway Museum. Parents and tots program including circle time, songs, activities, and a craft. March 13. 10:30 a.m.-noon. 3595 Buford Hwy., Duluth. 770- 476-2013. Ages 2-12, $7 per child, 1 adult free, additional adult, $8. Pioneer School. McDaniel Farm. Experience a traditional 1800’s school day with games, spelling bees and chores. Wear period dresses or overalls. March 22. 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. 3251 McDaniel Rd., Duluth. 770-9043500. Pre-register. Ages 7 and older, $15.
Family Fun Guide
ArTLab. High Museum of Art. DJ and design classes. March 29. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-5000. Ages 14-18, $20. Rebecca’s Charity Box Craft. American Girl. Decorate a charity box to collect spare change. March 30. 1-3 p.m. 1202 North Point Cir., Alpharetta. 877-247-5223. Ages 8 and older, free.
exhibits Abelardo Morell: The Universe Next Door. High Museum of Art. Exhibit of Abelardo Morell’s photography places everyday objects in a variety of settings. Through May 18. Tues.-Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Fri. until 8 p.m. Sun. noon-5 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-7335000. Adults, $19.50; ages 6-17, $12; ages 5 and younger, free. Hidden Heroes. Museum of Design. See the design history of common objects like the paper clip, zipper, and light bulb. Through May 11. Tues.-Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Wed. until 8 p.m. Sun. noon-5 p.m. 1315 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-979-6455. Adults, $10; ages 6-17, $5; ages 5 and younger, free.
CITIZENS AND SOLDIERS: THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR
Orchid Daze. The Atlanta Botanical Garden. An exhibit intertwining the beauty of orchids and the artistic influences of Vincent Van Gogh, Claude Monet, and Paul Gauguin. Through April 13. Tues.-Sun. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. 1345 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta. 404-876-5859. Adults, $18.95; ages 3-12, $12.95; ages 2 and younger, free.
Atlanta History Center MARCH 15. 11 A.M.-4 P.M. A family-friendly day honoring the Civil War includes home front activities, encampments, demonstrations on the Smith Family Farm, live Civil War music performances and tours of the Civil War exhibition. 130 West Paces Ferry Rd., Atlanta. 404-8144000. Adults, $16.50; ages 4-12, $11; ages 3 and younger, free. atlantahistorycenter.com.
Amusement Park Science. Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center. Discover the science behind amusement park roller coasters with a hands-on bumper car simulator and a create-a-coaster design station. Through April 30. Mon.-Sat. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. 2020 Clean Water Dr., Buford. 770-904-3500. Adults, $10.50; ages 3-12, $6.50; ages 2 and younger, free. Sonic Sensation. The Children’s Museum of Atlanta. Explore the science of sound with a soundproof scream chamber, a movie soundtrack production exhibit, and an invisible orchestra play area. Through June 1. Mon.-Fri. (closed Wed.) 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat.-Sun. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Free admission after 1 p.m. every second Tuesday of the month made possible through the generous support of Target. 275 Centennial Olympic Park Dr., Atlanta. 404-6595437. $12.75; younger than 1, free. Whales: Giants of the Deep. Fernbank Museum of Natural History. The exhibit features lifesized whale skeletons, a walk-through replica whale heart, and a design-a-dolphin experience. Through Aug. 24. Mon.-Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. noon-5 p.m. 767 Clifton Rd., Atlanta. 404-929-6400. Adults, $18; ages 3-12, $16; ages 2 and younger, free
Wit in Wood. Heritage Sandy Springs. See the whittle work of Moses Robinson, from animals to dancing couples. Wed. and Sat. through April 2. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. 6075 Sandy Springs Cir., Atlanta. 404-851-9111. Adults $3; ages 6-12, $1; 5 and younger, free.
Go West! High Museum of Art. American West exhibit with paintings, sculpture and artifacts from 1830 to 1930. Through April 13. Tues.-Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Fri. until 8 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. Adults, $19.50; ages 6-17, $12; 5 and younger, free.
Today’s West! Booth Western Art Museum. An exhibit displaying contemporary art from the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Open daily (except Mon.) through April 13. Tues.-Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Thurs. until 8 p.m. Sun. 1-5 p.m. 501 Museum Dr., Cartersville. 770-387-1300. Adults, $10; ages 12 and younger, free.
Out Fishin. World of Coca-Cola. Exhibit spotlighting Norman Rockwell’s creations for CocaCola’s advertising from 1928 to 1935. Daily through May. 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. Wed. and Thurs. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 121 Baker St., Atlanta. 404676-5151. Adults, $16; ages 3-12, $12; 2 and younger, free.
Family Fun Guide
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 71
St. Patrick’s Day Festivities
Celebrate the luck o’ the Irish with family-friendly fun.
Atlanta’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Atlanta’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Atlanta’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Midtown
Smyrna St. Patrick’s Day Fest. Smyrna Market Village. The festival
Atlanta. This year’s parade includes bag pipers, drum corps, Irish dancing, decorated floats, drill teams and Clydesdales with their Dalmatian, Clyde. The parade travels down Peachtree St. starting at 15th St. and ends at 5th St. March 15. Noon-1:30 p.m. Free. atlantastpats.com
includes rides, inflatables, joisting, redhead contests, games and live music. March 16-17. 2-11 p.m. 2840 Atlanta Rd., Smyrna. 770-435-1887. $5 in advance; $10 at the door. smyrnastpatricksdayfest.com.
Atlanta St. Patrick’s Day 5K. Piedmont Park. A family-friendly 5k run with
Shamrock at the Station. Atlantic Station. Head over to Atlantic Station after the parade for live music, balloon art, hair painting, crafts, temporary tattoos and sand art. Festivities continue with a concert by the cover band The Ruckus. March 15. Family Activities, 2-6 p.m. Concert, 7-10 p.m.1380 Atlantic Dr., Atlanta. Free. atlanticstation.com.
Irish costume contests, pot of gold drawings, Irish beads for all runners, Irish jig contest, and more. March 15. 8:30 a.m. 400 Park Dr., Atlanta. $35. rungeorgia.com.
The Music of Ireland: A St. Patrick’s Day Concert. Roswell United Methodist Church. Irish concert includes the flute, fiddle and harp performances accompanied by the Mulligan School of Dance Irish step dancers. March 14. 8 p.m. 814 Mimosa Blvd., Roswell. 770-594-0512. $12-$22. mosingers.com.
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Family Fun Guide
Calendar Centennial Olympic Games Exhibit. Atlanta History Center. Learn about the 1996 Olympic Games held in Atlanta. Mon.-Sat. 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Sun. noon-5:30 p.m. 130 West Paces Ferry Rd., Atlanta. 404-814-4000. Adults, $16.50; ages 4-12, $11; 3 and younger, free. Dairies in DeKalb. DeKalb History Center. This exhibit focuses on the history of dairy farming in DeKalb County in the 20th century. Mon.-Fri. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 101 East Court Sq., Decatur. 404-373-1088. Free. Dolphin Tales. Georgia Aquarium. The live show incorporates dolphins, actors, and special effects. Multiple shows per day, times vary. Reservations recommended. Sun.-Fri. 10 a.m.5 p.m. Sat. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. 225 Baker St., Atlanta. 404-581-4000. Adults, $35.95; ages 3-12, $29.95; ages 2 and younger, free. Sea Monsters Revealed: Aquatic Bodies. Georgia Aquarium. An exhibit of sea creatures includes an 18-foot-long, 3,000 pound whale shark. Sun.-Fri. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sat. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. 225 Baker St., Atlanta. 404581-4000. Adults, $35.95; ages 3-12, $29.95; ages 2 and younger, free. Titanic: The Artifact Exhibit. Atlantic Station. Experience the wonder and tragedy of this illfated ship. Mon.-Thurs. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Fri.- Sun. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Last ticket sold an hour before closing. 265 18th St. (second floor), Atlanta. 404-496-4274. Adults, $24; ages 3-11, $16; ages 2 and younger, free. Bodies: The Exhibition. Atlantic Station. An informative view into the human body. Mon.-Thurs. 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. Fri.-Sun. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Last ticket sold an hour before closing. 265 18th St., Atlanta. 404-496-4274. Adults, $24; ages 3-11, $16; 2 and younger, free. Anne Frank in the World: 1929-1945. Parkside Shopping Center. Learn about the life of the Frank family in Amsterdam. Includes replica of Anne’s room. Tues.-Thurs. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Fri. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sat.-Sun. noon-4 p.m. 5920 Roswell Rd., Sandy Springs. 770-206-1558. Ages 10 and older, free. Puppets the Power of Wonder. Center for Puppetry Arts. See a trash can rise up into a phoenix, a replica puppet storage room, watch a video of Jim Henson interviewing his favorite puppeteers and more. Museum hours: Mon.-Thurs. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. noon-5 p.m. 1404 Spring St., Atlanta. 404-873-3391. Exhibit only, $8.25; exhibit plus show, $16.50.
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movies Jerusalem. Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Discover the land sacred to three major religions through the stories of Jewish, Christian and Muslim families. Through April 3. See fernbankmuseum.org for show times. 767 Clifton Rd., Atlanta. 404-929-6300. IMAX tickets: Adults, $13; ages 3-12, $11; 2 and younger, free. Journey to the South Pacific. Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Travel to the lush tropical islands of remote West Papua, where life flourishes above and below the sea. Through June 5. See fernbankmuseum.org for show times. 767 Clifton Rd., Atlanta. 404-929-6300. IMAX tickets: Adults, $13; ages 3-12, $11; 2 and younger, free.
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ATLANTA FAIR Turner Field Gray Lot THROUGH APRIL 6 MON.-THUR. 5-10 P.M.; FRI. 5-11 P.M.; SAT. NOON-11 P.M.; SUN. 1-11 P.M.
music Sea Symphony. Bailey Performance Center at Kennesaw State University. The Georgia Symphony Orchestra performs Vaughn Williams’ Sea Symphony with readings from Walt Whitman. March 8. 3 p.m. 1000 Chastain Rd., Kennesaw. 770-429-7016. Adults, $25; ages 18 and younger, $10.
Family-friendly fun includes the Ferris wheel, bumper cars, rides for young children, fun house, games, corn dogs and funnel cakes. See live performances from various local musical groups. Vendors and food trucks exhibit daily. 655 Central Ave., Atlanta. 404-913-3247. Ages 12 and older, $3-$5; ages 2-11, $1; younger than 2, free. Rides and games cost extra. atlantafair.com.
Friday Jazz. High Museum of Art. Listen to jazz musicians perform. March 21. 5-10 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-5000. Adults, $18; ages 6-17, $11; 5 and younger, free. Atlanta’s Young Artists. Michael C. Carlos Museum. Instrumental concert by pre-college musicians. March 23. 4 p.m. 571 Kilgo Circle, Atlanta. 404-7275050. Free. Atlanta Jewish Music Festival - Family Day. Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta. Live music performances, drum circles, vendors and more. March 23. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 5342 Tilly Mill Rd., Dunwoody. Adults, $5; families (2 adults and unlimited children), $18. Bangerz Tour. Phillips Arena. Miley Cyrus and Icona Pop perform hits from their pop albums. March 25. 7 p.m. 1 Philips Dr., Atlanta. 800-653-8000. $39.50-$89.50. Spring Concert. Callanwolde Fine Arts Center. The Callanwolde Concert Band performs their annual spring concert. March 30. 3 p.m. 980 Briarcliff Rd., Atlanta. 404-872-5338. Free. S
nature Adventure Cubs. Zoo Atlanta. Learn about animals on the African savanna, tour the zoo and meet an animal ambassador. March 5 and 8. 10-11 a.m. 800 Cherokee Ave., Atlanta. 404-624-9453. Recommended for ages 3 and 4. $12 per person includes zoo admission. Garden Stroller Strut. Atlanta Botanical Garden. Meet in the Hardin Visitor Center to explore the garden. Each Fri. 10:30-11 a.m. 1345 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta. 404-876-5859. Recommended for ages 1-2. Adults, $18.95; ages 3-12, $12.95; ages 2 and younger, free.
Child Models We’ve booked kids for $2,000 per day and more, others at $50 - $60 per hour.
Reptile Day. Panola Mountain State Park. Learn about local reptiles with the Georgia Reptile and Georgia Herpetological Societies. March 15. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. 2600 Highway 155 SW, Stockbridge. 770-3897801. $3; parking, $5.
Night Hike. Chattahoochee Nature Center. Walk the trails under the new moon with a CNC guide. The night includes a campfire marshmallow roast and an animal encounter. March 29. 7-9 p.m. 9135 Willeo Rd., Roswell. 770-9922055. Reservations requested. $10.
Full Moon Night Hike. Panola Mountain State Park. Take a ranger-led night hike starting a few minutes before sunset. Bring a flashlight, boots and water. March 15. 7 p.m. 2600 Highway 155 SW, Stockbridge. 770-389-7801. Pre-register. $7; parking, $5.
Cardboard Forest. Chattahoochee Nature Center. Bring empty cardboard boxes, tubes and other recyclable items (soup cans or plastic bottles) to create a woodland forest . March 31-April 2. 11 a.m. –12:30 p.m. 9135 Willeo Rd., Roswell. 770-992-2055. Adults, $10; ages 3-12, $6; 2 and younger, free.
Frogs, Frogs, Frogs. Atlanta Botanical Garden. Learn about the frogs in the garden and create a frog craft. March 22 or 29. 1-2 p.m.1345 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta. 404-876-5859. $6 per child plus garden admission; adults, $18.95; ages 3-12, $12.95; ages 2 and younger, free. Sun Over Panola Mountain. Panola Mountain State Park. Study the sun and the rest of the solar system using a specially designed telescope. March 29. 1 p.m. 2600 Highway 155 SW, Stockbridge. 770389-7801. Pre-register. $5; parking, $5.
special events Autism Awareness Day. The Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History. A familyfriendly day with three model train layouts to operate, sensory room with puzzles and activities, and viewings of the “Great Locomotive Chase” movie. March 1. 9 a.m.-noon. 2829 Cherokee St., Kennesaw. 770-427-2117. Adults, $7.50; ages 4-12, $5.50; ages 3 and younger, free.
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Fulton County Free Saturday. High Museum of Art. Admission is free for Fulton County residents with I.D. on the first Saturday of each month until 1 p.m. March 1. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-5000. Free.
Jackson Pearce Author Visit. Little Shop of Stories. Young adult author Jackson Pearce signs and reads from her newest novel, TSARINA. March 1. 7 p.m. 133 A East Court Sq., Decatur. 404-373-6300. Purchase of any of Ms. Pearce’s books required for book signing.
Dr. Seuss’ Birthday. Douglas County Libraries. A family celebration with storytimes, crafts, snacks, and movies. March 1. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Dog River Library, 6100 Georgia 5, Douglasville. Lithia Springs Library, 7100 Turner Dr., Lithia Springs. Douglas County Library, 6810 Selman Dr., Douglasville. 770-577-5186. Free.
Dr. Seuss’s Birthday Party. Little Shop of Stories. Celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday with readings from his books, cupcakes, and a visit from the Cat in the Hat. March 2. 3 p.m. 133 A East Court Sq., Decatur. 404-373-6300. Free.
Read Across America. Washington Park Branch Library. Stories, games, and craft activities celebrating Read Across America. March 1. 2:30 p.m. 1116 Martin Luther King Jr. Dr., Atlanta. 404-752-8760. Reservations required. Free. Read to Me, Dr. Seuss. Mountain View Regional Library. Wear a crazy hat, make a snack and listen to Dr. Seuss’ stories. March 1. 3-4 p.m. 3320 Sandy Plains Rd., Marietta. 770-509-2725. Reservations required. Free. All Things Vanilla. Atlanta Botanical Garden. Learn about the Vanilla Orchid, sculpt with vanilla play dough, and make an ice cream sundae. March 1. 11 a.m.-noon. 1345 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta. 404-876-5859. $6 per child plus admission; adults, $18.95; ages 3-12, $12.95; ages 2 and younger, free. Teen Night. High Museum of Art. A Go West! themed night with performers, giant paint by numbers activity, Western photo booth and dyeing bandana craft. March 1. 7-10 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-5000. Ages 1418, free with high school ID.
Toddler Tuesdays. Legoland Discovery Center Atlanta. Guided play and storytimes each Tues. through May 20. Tues. noon, 2 and 4 p.m. 3500 Peachtree Rd., Atlanta. 404-848-9252. Ages 3 and older, $12; ages 2 and younger, free. Southeastern Cowboy Gathering. Booth Western Art Museum. Buffalo Bill and Annie Oakley costumed characters, a chuck wagon cooking contest, fancy gun tricks, cowboy church, live cowboy music and a gallery walk with cowboy artist Martin Grelle. Visit website for activity times. March 6-8. Thurs., 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Fri., 10 a.m-5 p.m. Sat., 9 a.m.-6:30 p.m. 501 Museum Dr., Cartersville. 770-387-1300. Adults, $10; ages 12 and younger, free; additional costs for chuck wagon meal tickets and concert. SEC Women’s Basketball Tournament. The Arena at Gwinnett Center. The top Southeastern women’s college teams compete for the top spot in the SEC Women’s Basketball Tournament. March 5-9. Wed., 6 and 8:30 p.m.; Thur.-Fri., noon, 2:30, 6, and 8:30 p.m. Sat., noon and 2:30 p.m. Sun., 3:30 p.m. 6400 Sugarloaf Pkwy., Duluth. 770-8137600. $10-$100.
Family Fun Guide
Teen Arts Night. City Center. Teens can bring instruments, poetry, artwork, and short stories to share. Includes a slice of pizza and a soda. March 7. 6-8 p.m. 8534 Main St., Woodstock. 678-494-4251. Ages 12-15, $5. Spring into Summer Boat Show. Gwinnett Convention Center. Boats, fishing clinics, and more. March 7-8. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. March 9. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. 3400 Sugarloaf Pkwy., Duluth. 770-813-7600. $5-$8. Spring Fling. Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Celebrate the arrival of spring with baby animals, games, and crafts. March 8. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. 767 Clifton Rd., Atlanta. 404-929-6300. Adults, $18; ages 3-12, $16; ages 2 and younger, free. Shrek Festival. Woodruff Arts Center Galleria. Ticket-holders to either March 8 performances are invited to Shrek-Land, a Families Centerstage Fundraiser, with live performances, crafts, music and more. March 8. 2 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-5000. Ages 5 and older, $20$35. Pirate and Princess Day. Georgia Aquarium. A day of pirate fun includes costumed-pirates, Radio Disney Dance Party, arts and crafts, nail art, and more. Sat., March 8. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. 225 Baker St. NW, Atlanta. 404-581-4151. Adults, $35.95; ages 3-12, $29.95; ages 2 and younger, free. Ages 12 and younger, who are dressed as pirates and princesses, receive free admission with each paying adult. Timmy Failure: Now Look What You’ve Done Book Signing. Fox Tale Book Shoppe. Stephan Pastis signs his latest book in the Timmy Failure series. March 13. 4:30 p.m. 105 East Main St., Woodstock. 770-516-9989. Free.
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 75
Calendar American Craft Council Atlanta Show. Cobb Galleria Centre. Show features over 225 craft artists. March 14-16. Fri. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sun. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. 2 Galleria Pkwy., Atlanta. 612-206-3100. Adults, $13 one day, $28 three day; ages 12 and younger, free. Abilities Expo. Georgia World Congress Center. Exposition for people with disabilities includes vendors, face painting, an adaptive climbing wall, and performances by the Walk and Roll Dance Team. March 14-16. Fri.-Sat. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. 11 a.m.4 p.m. 235 Northside Dr., Atlanta. Pre-registration requested. abilitiesexpo.com/atlanta. Free. Boogie Down at the Playground. Clinton Nature Preserve. The Junior League of Douglas County family celebration follows the Botanical Boogie 5K and fun run with bounce houses, music, dancing, games, Dr. Seuss storytimes and more. March 15. 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. 8720 Ephesus Church Rd., Villa Rica. 770-715-3581. Free. Harlem Globetrotters. Philips Arena and Gwinnett Arena. The “Fans Rule” tour returns with trick shots, stunts, and comedy. March 15. 1 p.m. Philips Arena. 1 Philips Dr., Atlanta. 404-586-0723. 7:30 p.m. The Gwinnett Arena. 3400 Sugarloaf Pkwy., Duluth. 770-813-7600. $22-$156. Citizens and Soldiers: The American Civil War. Atlanta History Center. Home front activities, encampments, demonstrations on the Smith Family Farm, and tours of the Civil War exhibition. March 15. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. 130 West Paces Ferry Rd., Atlanta. 404-814-4000. Adults, $16.50; ages 4-12, $11; ages 3 and younger, free. Megillah Madness: Family Purim Program. Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta. Purim Songs, Megillah reading, magic performance, and children’s Purim costume parade. March 16. 10 a.m.-noon. 5342 Tilly Mill Rd., Atlanta. 678812-4000. Free. West Cobb Purim Carnival. Mountain View Prep. Megillah reading, costume contest, bouncy house, face painting and food for purchase. March 16. 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. 2320 Baker Rd., Acworth. 678-264-8575. Adults, free; children, $12. Callanwolde Estate Tour. Callanwolde Estate. Guided tour of Charles Howard Candler’s estate built in 1920. March 17 and 20. 11 a.m. 980 Briarcliff Rd., Atlanta. 404-872-5338. Reservations requested. Free. Atlanta International Car Show. Georgia World Congress Center. Domestic and import cars, events for car enthusiasts, and appearances by Captain America, Thor, and SpongeBob costumed-characters. March 26-30. Wed.-Thur. noon-9 p.m. Fri. noon-10 p.m. Sat. 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Sun. 10 a.m.-8 p.m. 235 Northside Dr., Atlanta. 770-916-174. $10. Pajama Day. Zoo Atlanta. Special zoo keeper talks, arts and craft activities, visit Zhu Zhu panda costumed-character and wear pajamas. March 15. 9:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. 800 Cherokee Ave., Atlanta. 404-624-5600. Adults, $21.99; ages 3-11, $16.99; ages 2 and younger, free. 2014 Model Train Show. Cobb Galleria Centre. Show includes kid’s train operating area, vendors, door prizes, and a train resale table. March 15-16. Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 2 Galleria Pkwy., Atlanta. Adults, $10; ages 12 and younger, free. Southeast Bike Expo. Georgia International Horse Park. Cycling vendors, demonstrations and races. March 15-16. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 1996 Centennial Olympic Park Dr., Conyers. sebikex.com. $15.
76 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Family Fun Guide
FARM DAY SLAM: The Art of Poetry. High Museum of Art. Writing workshops in the High Museum of Art’s galleries take place before the SLAM in the Alliance Theatre’s Black Box Theatre. March 21. Writing in the Galleries, 5:30-7 p.m. SLAM in Alliance Black Box Theatre, 7-9 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-4900. Ages 14-18. Free admission with high school ID.
Chattahoochee Nature Center MARCH 29. NOON-4 P.M. A family day celebrating spring features live animals from the Art Barn at Morning Glory Farm, crafts with Farmer Sue, photo taking in front of a mini-barn with CNC’s own box turtle and other creatures, storytime with Miss Julia, alpacas from Crafdal Farm and farm-to-table gardening demos. 9135 Willeo Rd., Roswell. 770-9922055. Adults, $10; ages 3-12, $6; 2 and younger, free. chattnaturecenter.org.
Tibet Week at Emory University. Carlos Museum. Observe Tibetan monks working on a sand mandala. Drop-in children’s sand painting activity on Fri. March 24. 1-5 p.m. March 25-28. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Children’s activity. March 28. 5:30-8:30 p.m. 571 South Kilgo Cir., Atlanta. 404-727-0519. Free. Reservations required for children’s activity. A Day in a Plane. DeKalb-Peachtree Airport. An event for children with disabilities to see planes, sit in cockpits, and more. March 29. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. 2000 Airport Rd., Atlanta. 770-458-3251. Reservations required. Free. elaineclarkcenter. org/news-and-events.html Great British Car Fayre. Downtown Alpharetta. British cars, local vendors, The Big Chicken Beatles Band, arts and crafts, and food for purchase. March 29. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Milton Ave. at Main St., Alpharetta. 678-297-2811. Free.
Blue Grassroots Music and Arts Festival. Stone Mountain Village. Live music, food for purchase, folk dancing, kids areas. March 29-30. Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sun. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. 875 Main St., Stone Mountain. 770-413-0607. Free.
Wren’s Nest Storytelling. The Wren’s Nest. Ramblers host storytelling each Sat. 1 p.m. 1050 Ralph D. Abernathy Blvd., Atlanta. 404-7537735. Adults, $8; ages 5-18, $5; 4 and younger, free.
Play Day! Boulevard Crossing Park - Atlanta Beltline. Kids can try different sporting activities. No experience required. March 30. 1-5 p.m. 500 Englewood Ave., Atlanta. 404-446-4410. Free.
Children’s Storytime. FoxTale Book Shoppe. Storytimes are followed by dance and songs. Mon. and Sat. 11 a.m. 105 East Main St., Woodstock. 770-516-9989. Free.
Storybook Time. Atlanta Botanical Garden. Listen to stories about bugs, animals and plants in the Children’s Garden Amphitheater. March 5 and 26. 10:30-11 a.m. 1345 Piedmont Ave., Atlanta. 404-876-5859. Adults, $18.95; ages 3-12, $12.95; ages 2 and younger, free. Storytime at Bean Head Toys. Bean Head Toys. Stories read in the indoor tree house, then kids make a craft to take home. Thurs. 10:30 a.m. 220 Johnson Ferry Rd., Sandy Springs. 404851-2980. Free.
Family Fun Guide
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 77
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Storytime at Little Shop. Little Shop of Stories. Storytelling three times a week. Thurs. nights kids can come in pjs. Milk and cookies provided. Tues. 11 a.m.,Thurs. 7 p.m., and Sun. 3 p.m. 133 A East Court Sq., Decatur. 404-3736300. Free. Storytime by the River. Chattahoochee Nature Center. Join the volunteer librarian as she uses books, puppets and songs to share stories about nature. Ages 3-5. March 5. 10:30-11:30 a.m. 9135 Willeo Rd., Roswell. 770-992-2055. Adults, $10; ages 3-12, $6; 2 and younger, free. Storytime at Fernbank. Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Storytelling by Rob Cleveland. March 8. Noon. 767 Clifton Rd., Atlanta. 404-9296300. Free with museum admission. Adults, $18; ages 3-12, $16; 2 and younger, free. The Next Chapter JV Book Club. FoxTale Book Shoppe. Book club for ages 6-12. Discussion, activity, and snack. March book is Wonder by R.J. Palacio. March 14. 4:30 p.m. Free. Mommy and Me Story Hour. Panola Mountain State Park. Nature-themed stories, songs and circle time. March 25. 11 a.m. Pre-registration required. 2600 Highway 155 SW, Stockbridge. 770-389-7801. Ages 3 and younger, $5; parking, $5.
theater Shrek the Musical. Alliance Theatre. A musical about an ogre rescuing and falling in love with a princess. March 1, 2, 9, 15 and 16. 1 and 3:30 p.m. Sat. March 8. 1 and 4 p.m. 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-5000. Ages 5 and older, $20-$35. Knightly News. Various Locations. The Atlanta Opera’s performance is based on traditional tales with modern characters. March 2. 3 p.m. Elm Street Cultural Arts Village. 8534 Main St., Woodstock. March 22. 11 a.m. The Atlanta Opera Center. 1575 Northside Pkwy., Atlanta. March 30. 3 p.m. Decatur High School. 310 N. McDonough St., Decatur. 404-881-8885. Ages 5 and older, $7. Great Expectations. Center for Puppetry Arts. Puppet show based on Charles Dickens’ novel using hand-carved marionettes. Through March 2. Sat. 8 p.m. Sun. 5 p.m. 1404 Spring St., Atlanta. 404-873-3391. $25. Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. Synchronicity Theatre. Play adapted from Grace Lin’s book about Minli and her quest to change her family’s fortune. Through March 9. Fri. 7:30 p.m. Sat. 1 and 4 p.m. Sun. 2 and 5 p.m. 173 4th St., Atlanta. 404-484-8636. Adults, $20-$40; ages 2-12, $15. Red Badge of Courage. 7 Stages Theatre. Journey through the battle-scarred fields and forests of the Civil War. Combines puppets, animation and actors. Through March 23. See website for times. 7stages.org. 110 S. Euclid Ave., Atlanta. 404-523-7647. Ages 12 and older, $10-$20. Weather Rocks! Center for Puppetry Arts. Meteorologist working in the clouds sing weather related songs in a variety of genres from rock to gospel. Through March 23. Tues.-Fri. 10 and 11:30 a.m. Sat. noon and 2 p.m. Sun. 1 and 3 p.m. 1404 Spring St., Atlanta. 404-873-3391. Ages 4 and older, $16.50.
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Family Fun Guide
Rapunzel. Gwinnett Performing Arts Center. Southern Ballet Theatre performs the beloved fairy tale. March 7-9. Fri. 7:30 p.m. Sat. 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Sun. 2:30 p.m. 3400 Sugarloaf Pkwy., Duluth. 770-813-7600. $14.50-$18.50. BalletFest. Southern Polytechnic State University Joe Mack Wilson Student Center Theatre. Performances highlighting dancers from 25 dance companies around the South. March 8-9. Sat. 5 and 8 p.m.; Sun. 2 p.m. 1100 South Marietta Pkwy., Marietta. 770-516-7229. Adults, $17; ages 18 and younger, $12. Treasure Island or Who’s Got the Map? City Center Auditorium. A family-friendly comedy based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island. March 14 and 21. 7:30 p.m. March 15, 16, 22, and 23. 2 p.m. 8534 Main St., Woodstock. 678-494-4251. Ages 2 and older, $12. Peter Pan. Gwinnett Performing Arts Center. The Northeast Atlanta Ballet performs a ballet based on J.M. Barrie’s classic tale. March 14-16. Fri. 7:30 p.m. Sat. 10 a.m., 2 and 7:30 p.m.; Sun. 2 p.m. 3400 Sugarloaf Pkwy., Duluth. 770-8137600. $11.50-$19.50. The Princess and the Pea, Y’all! Aurora Theatre. A puppet show by That Puppet Guy. March 22. 10 a.m. 128 East Pike St., Lawrenceville. 678226-6222. $7. You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown. Douglas County High School. A musical based on Charles Schulz’s Peanuts cartoons by Douglas County High School. March 27-29. 7 p.m. March 30. 2 p.m. 8705 Campbellton St., Douglasville. 770-651-6574. $10. Pirate Goodie & the Magic Chest. Aurora Theatre. Pirate Goodie Twoshoes and his parrot Pete hunt for treasure in this show with magic, music and puppets. March 29. 10 a.m. 128 East Pike St., Lawrenceville. 678-226-6222. $7. Cinderella. Gwinnett Performing Arts Center. Cinderella finds her prince with the help of her fairy godmother in the Gwinnett Ballet Theatre’s production. March 29-30. Sat. 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Sun. 2:30 p.m. 3400 Sugarloaf Pkwy., Duluth 770-813-7600. $20. Scooby-Doo Live! Musical Mysteries. Fox Theatre. Scooby, Shaggy, Daphne, Velma, and Fred investigate the mystery of a haunted theater in this family-friendly, musical. March 29. 2 and 5 p.m. 660 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-881-2100. $15-$42.
beyond atlanta Macon Cherry Blossom Festival. Macon, Georgia. Events and activities throughout Macon. March 1-31. cherryblossom.com. Prices vary. Forsythia Festival. Historic District of Forsyth, Georgia. Live performances, food vendors, and arts and crafts market. March 8. 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. March 9. Noon-5 p.m. forsythiafestival.com. Admission, free. St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Savannah. Irish pipe bands, floats, military units, Irish dancers and more. March 17. 10:15 a.m. Downtown Savannah. savannahsaintpatricksday.com. Free. River Exhibit. Tennessee Aquarium. A collection of over 10,000 freshwater fish. Daily. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. 1 Broad St., Chattanooga. 800-262-0695. Adults, $30.95; ages 3-12, $20.95; 2 and younger, free. c
Cherokee Hillside UMC Spring/Summer Children’s Consignment Sale. Hillside United Methodist Church. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 4474 Towne Lake Pkwy., Woodstock. 770-9244777. www.hillsideumc.org All 4 Kids. Old Walmart Building. Mar. 13-15. Thurs. 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m., Fri. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 10029 Hwy. 92, Woodstock. www. all4kids.com FBC Kids Sale. First Baptist Canton. Mar. 14-15. Fri. 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. 1 Mission Point, Canton. www.fbckidssale.com
Cobb All 4 Kids West Cobb Sale. Cobb County Fairgrounds. Feb. 27-Mar. 1. Thurs. 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m. (No strollers before 11 a.m.), Fri. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 2245 Callaway Rd., Marietta. www.all4kids.com Kids Kingdom Consignment Sale. Orange Hill Baptist Church. Feb. 27-Mar. 1. Thurs. 6-9 p.m., Fri. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-noon. 4293 Austell Rd., Austell. 770-948-9388 ext. 53. www. orangehill.org Everything for Children Consignment Sale. St. Andrew UMC. Feb. 28-Mar. 1. Fri. 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-noon. 3455 Canton Rd., Marietta. 770-926-3488. www.thepumpkinchurch.org Pass It On Children’s Consignment Sale. Acworth United Methodist Church. Feb.28-Mar. 1. Fri. 9 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-noon. 4340 Collins Circle, Acworth. 770-974-3312. www. acworthumc.org/passiton Tots to Tweens Consignment Sale sponsored by Northwest Atlanta Moms of Multiples. Sandy Plains Baptist Church. Mar. 1. Sat. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. 2825 Sandy Plains Rd., Marietta. www.nowamom.org Lil’ Lambs Closet. First United Methodist Church of Marietta. Mar. 6-8. Thurs. 6-8 p.m. ($5 early shopping fee, Thurs. only), Fri. 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. No strollers. 56 Whitlock Ave., Marietta. 770-429-7850, ext. 7860. www. lil-lambs.org
Consignment sale season has arrived! Don’t miss out on your chance for bargain prices on children’s toys, clothing, books, baby gear and more. Call or check the website of the sale before you go. For an up-to-date list, visit atlantaparent.com.
Twice Blessed Children’s Consignment Sale. McEachern Memorial United Methodist Church. Mar. 13-15. Thurs. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-9 p.m. (No strollers), Fri. 9:30 a.m.- 6 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. (No strollers). 4075 Macland Rd., Powder Springs. 770 9433008, ext. 1212. www.twice-blessed.org Clothing Kids for the Kingdom Spring/ Summer Consignment Sale. Summit Baptist Church. Mar. 14-15. Fri. 9 a.m.9 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-noon. 4310 Moon Station Ln., Acworth. 678-409-2197. www. clothingkids.org All 4 Kids. Mt. Paran North Church of God. Mar. 21-22. Fri. 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m. (No strollers before 11 a.m.), Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 1700 Allgood Rd., Marietta. www.all4kids. com Born Again Blessings Children’s Consignment Sale. Cobb County Civic Center. Mar. 21-22. Fri. 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-noon. 548 Marietta Pkwy., Marietta. 678-646-1613. www.bornagainblessings. com KinderMart Childrens Consignment Spring Sale. Smyrna First United Methodist Church. Mar. 21-22. Fri. 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m. (No strollers before 11 a.m.), Sat. 9 a.m.noon. 1315 Concord Rd., Smyrna. www. kindermartsale.com Lil’ Blessings Consignment Sale. Kennesaw First Baptist Church. Mar. 21-22. Fri. 9 a.m.7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 2958 N. Main St., Kennesaw. 770-427-3109. www.kfbc.org
Coweta Consigning Closets “Infant-Teen” Consignment Sale. SonRise Baptist Church. Feb.28-Mar. 1. Fri.-Sat. 8 a.m.-4 p.m. 6 Shenandoah Blvd., Newnan. 678485-8708. www.ConsigningClosets.com
DeKalb Five and Dime Kids Consignment Sale. Epworth UMC. Feb. 28-Mar. 1. Fri. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. and 5-8 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 1561 McLendon Ave. NE, Atlanta. www.fiveanddimekids.com The Glenn Sale. Glenn Memorial Youth & Activities Building. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m.(No children before noon), Sat. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. 1669 North Decatur Rd. NE, Atlanta. 404-754-4255. www.glennsale.com Oak Grove Young Children’s School Spring/Summer Consignment Sale. Oak Grove UMC. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 9:15 a.m.-1:30 p.m, Sat. 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. 1722 Oak Grove Rd., Decatur. www.ogycsconsign.org Decatur Consignment Sale. Rehobeth Presbyterian Church. Mar. 8-9. Fri.-Sat. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Cash or local checks only. 2729 Lawrenceville Hwy., Decatur. 770-414-6099. www. decaturconsignment.com Intown Atlanta Parents of Multiples Club Children’s Consignment Sale. Clairmont Presbyterian Church. Mar. 15. Sat. 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m. (No children or strollers). Cash or checks only. 1994 Clairmont Rd., Decatur. www.atlantamultiples.com Dunwoody United Methodist Church Kids Consignment Sale. Dunwoody UMC. Mar. 2022. Thurs. 5-8 p.m. (No children), Fri. 9:30 a.m.-1 p.m. (Strollers or carriers only), Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. (Strollers or carriers only). 1548 Mt. Vernon Rd., Dunwoody. 770-394-0675, ext. 284. www. dunwoodyumc.org KidStuff Consignment Sale. Kingswood UMC. Mar. 20-22. Thurs. 5-9 p.m. (No children under 10), Fri. 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 5015 Tilly Mill Rd., Dunwoody. www.kingswoodumc.org/missions/ kidstuff.htm Kids’ Used Clothes n’ Stuff Sale. Decatur First United Methodist Church Gym. Mar. 21-22. Fri. 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 300 E. Ponce de Leon Ave., Decatur. 404-372-7478. www. kidsusedclothesnstuff.com Cont’d on page 80
CCC MOPS Children’s Consignment Sale, Cumberland Community Church. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 3110 Sports Ave. Smyrna. 404-496-8915. www. cccmopssale.com Mt. Bethel Spring/Summer Consignment and Bake Sale. Mt. Bethel UMC. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 9 a.m.- 7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-noon. 4385 Lower Roswell Rd., Marietta. www.mtbethelccs.com Due West Treasure Chest. Due West UMC. Mar. 13-15. Thurs. 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m., Fri. 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-noon. 3956 Due West Rd., Marietta. www.duewest.org/pages/community/ Consignment_Sale
Tykes, Tots & Teens Consignment Sale
Family Fun Guide
March 2014 Atlanta Parent 79
Fayette Peachtree Kids Market. Saville Studios and Crosspointe Church. Mar. 14-15. Fri. 9 a.m.5 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 401 Dividend Dr., Peachtree City. 404-931-4243. www. peachtreekidsmarket.com
Forsyth Creekside MOPS Consignment Sale. Creekside UMC. Feb. 27-Mar. 1. Thurs. 8-9 p.m. ($5 donation for entry), Fri. 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 673 Peachtree Pkwy., Cumming. www.creekside.net Kid’s Spring Consignment Sale. Cumming First United Methodist Church. Feb. 27-Mar. 1. Thurs. 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. (No strollers), Fri.-Sat. 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. 770 Canton Hwy., Cumming. 770-887-2900. www.cfumcga.com
Fulton Angels Attic Upscale Consignment Sale. Johns Creek UMC. Feb. 27-Mar. 1. Thurs. 6-8 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 11180 Medlock Bridge Rd., Johns Creek. 770-497-8215. www.johnscreekumc.org All 4 Kids. Roswell Town Center. Mar. 6-8. Thurs. 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m., Fri. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 608 Holcomb Bridge Rd., Roswell. www.all4kids.com Roswell United Methodist Church Preschool and Kindergarten Consignment Sale. Roswell United Methodist Church. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. (No strollers before noon), Sat. 8 a.m.-noon. 814 Mimosa Blvd., Roswell. www.rumc.com/rumck RCOG Kid’s Consignment Sale. Restoration Church of God. Mar. 20-23. Fri. 9:30 a.m.5:30 p.m., Sat. 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., Sun. 1-4 p.m. 410 Rucker Rd., Alpharetta. 404-2776650. www.restorationchurchna.org St. James UMC Spring Consignment Sale. St. James UMC. Mar. 28-29. Fri.-Sat. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. 4400 Peachtree Dunwoody Rd., Atlanta. 404-261-3121. www.stjamesatlanta.org
Gwinnett Second Childhood Consignment. Brookwood Marketplace. Mar. 5-8. Wed. 5-8 p.m. (No strollers allowed), Thurs. noon-8 p.m., Fri. 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. 2623 Peachtree Pkwy., Ste. 300, Suwanee. 770-713-6628. www. secondchildhoodconsignment.com McKendree Kids Clothes Closet. McKendree UMC. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 6-8 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.12:30 p.m. and 1-3 p.m. 1570 LawrencevilleSuwanee Rd., Lawrenceville. 770-339-9801. http://www.mckendreeumc.com/mckendreekids-clothes-closet MOPS Consignment Sale. North Metro First Baptist Church. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-noon. 1026 Old Peachtree Rd. NE, Lawrenceville. 770-995-9055. www. northmetro.net/mops
80 Atlanta Parent March 2014
Family Fun Guide
Classified Pages Marketplace North Metro First Baptist Church MOPS Spring/ Summer Consignment Sale. North Metro First Baptist Church. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-noon. 1026 Old Peachtree Rd. NE, Lawrenceville. 770-995-9055. www.northmetro. net/mops Mountain Park UMC MOPS Consignment Sale. Mountain Park UMC. Mar. 14-15. Fri. 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. 1405 Rockbridge Rd., Stone Mountain. www.mtnparkmops.bravesites. com Babies, Kids and Teens plus Furniture and Home Décor. Christ the King Lutheran Church. Mar. 26-29, Wed.-Thurs. 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m., Fri. 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 5575 Peachtree Pkwy., Norcross. www.iConsignMine.com
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Hall Kidz Consignment Sale. The River Community Church Gym. Mar. 21-22. Fri. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-noon and 12:30-2 p.m. 5043 Thompson Bridge Rd., Murrayville. 706-865-7389. www. consignmentkidz.com
SE R V I C E S
Henry Second Time Around Kids Consignment Sale. McDonough First United Methodist Church Gym. Mar. 7-8. Fri. 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Sat. 8:30 a.m.-noon. 151 Macon St., McDonough. www.secondtimearoundkids.com
C L ASSE S
Twice is Nice Consignment Sale. Hampton First Baptist Church. March 28-29. Fri. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. 85 McDonough St., Hampton. 770-946-4804. www.HamptonFirstBaptist.org
Jackson Lollipop Kids Consignment Sale. Jefferson Civic Center. Mar. 6-8. Thurs.- Fri. 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 8-11 a.m. 65 Kissam St., Jefferson. www. lpkidssale.com
Paulding Heavenly Hand-Me-Downs Childrens’ Consignment Sale. Dallas First United Methodist Church. Mar. 28-29. Fri. 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 141 E. Memorial Dr., Dallas. www.heavenlyhandmedowns.org My Kidz Closet Children’s Consignment Sale. Community Fellowship Church. Mar. 13-15. Thurs.-Fri. 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. 612 Cohran Store Rd., Douglasville. www. mykidzclosetgeorgia.com
Rockdale Tykes, Tots & Teens Consignment Sale. GA International Horse Park. Mar. 8-15. Sat. Mar. 8, 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Sun.-Fri., 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.-11 p.m. (Closed from 6-7 p.m.) 1996 Centennial Olympic Pkwy., Conyers. 678-9842909. www.TTTsale.com
Walton Bright Beginnings Preschool Spring Consignment Sale. First Baptist Church of Loganville Gym. Mar. 6-8. Thurs. 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 4-8 p.m., Fri. 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. 680 Tom Brewer Rd., Loganville. 770-466-2770. www.bbpreschool.org c
ELECTRICAL SERVICES The Bush Centre for Ballet: Classical Ballet Program (Ages 3-adult). Contemporary lyric jazz, pointe, pre-pointe. Annual recital. Summer Camp. Sandy Springs. www.bushballetcentre.com. 404-256-5542.
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To advertise please call Jennifer at 678-222-1912. March 2014 Atlanta Parent 81
by Angela Larson
‘Successful’ Housework, Redefined
here is nothing that makes me want to puke – and I mean spew vomit 15 miles per hour 40 feet across the room – than “experts” telling me how “successful” people manage their housework. I succumb, again and again, and read the articles thinking maybe I’ve missed something. It’s fantastic that some people can afford to hire someone to clean, but my reality is different. I would have to work an extra three hours to pay someone for three hours of cleaning. So I’ve changed my attitude: Housework is not all bad. Here are seven family values in clean up duty: Fostering Living Skills. I’m in constant amazement at how perfectly fingers are designed for eating. However, I don’t want my utensil-starved children to enter college without understanding the basics of fork and knife engagement. I say, let them experience silverware. Move it from the table to sink, from dishwasher to drawer, and maybe they’ll get curious about why we have forks and knifes.
Cooking is Life. My children love to eat, to work with hand tools, and are willing to help tenderize anything – they are boys. At ages 7 and 9 they knew how to make a skateboard park out of a roasting pan, stage “singing in the rain” with a chicken under the faucet, and stuff veggies in it’s rump for fire power. Chefs may call this buttering the pan, cleaning and dressing the chicken, but I’ll call it whatever is required to have kitchen help.
Gathering Laundry for Covert Communications. Routinely changing someone’s sheets and emptying their pants pockets before stuffing it all in the wash offers a wealth of information. It ranges from the cookie crumbs and the pizza crust in their bed sheets that tell me when they are breaking house rules and eating in their room to the more sophisticated hints of their life beyond home. Recently a young Stephanie [name changed to protect the innocent] was so desperate to tell my son he’s cute that she wrote it down and handed it to him. He left it in his pocket.
Groceries Offer Educational Opportunities. A grocery store trip was the stuff of nightmares until we started a game called “seek, find and fill our shopping cart.” The shopping help is great, but they have learned much more including: Resource Allocation. I like to give them a list of ingredients for their favorite meal and a budget $5 too short to pay for it all. They have amazed me with their cost saving strategies, from choosing cheaper brands, altering recipes to exclude vegetables, and even conspiring trades with each other.
Doing Laundry is Fun! If kids can work a remote, video game and/or any smart screen, then they can figure out a washing machine and dryer.
Bathroom Clean Up Supports Better Hygiene. “Hey mom, what’s the sticky yellowish-brown stuff on the floor?” asks my naive youngest son, on his
82 Atlanta Parent March 2014
knees spraying cleaner around the toilet. “It’s dried pee,” I reply. “Next time, don’t sprinkle when you tinkle.” “Oh, I get what you mean… now.” Enough said. Enjoying a Sense of Completion. Completed housework means a clean home. There is satisfaction gained in the dishes being done, being able to walk across the floor barefoot without sticking, and sitting on the couch without being poked. Housework isn’t the problem, it’s how we’ve been told to view housework that needs improvement. c atlantaparent.com
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