Page 1


VOLUME 20 A Newsletter for The Discovery Center of the Southern Tier ISSUE 3

Winter 2011-2012

DIRECTOR’S LETTER The frost is off the pumpkin; the wishbone has dried and a wish has been made in tradition; the beloved holidays are upon us and we end a year that has been so devastating for so many of our children and families and area residents. How does one feel when witnessing thousands of lives that have been put asunder? What words are appropriate for those who have been the victims of flooding and winds and distressing events? Our hearts and thoughts go out to every village, town, hamlet and city affected. So many of us assessed and responded to the needs of our neighbors and individually or collectively we provided comfort and many hands. There is still more to be done. I look ahead to this season of celebration: the smell of our extensive exhibit of gingerbread; the displays of Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanza and the activities that go along with each of these holidays. By putting our creative forces in motion, we hope to make children and their families happy and immersed in the season. Special events during December such as Breakfast with Santa; a fun family show, THE SNOWMAN IN MY WINDOW; the return of the delightful JCHS Sophisticats; Holiday Break activities and a family New Year’s Eve party are done to bring joy and fun for all who visit. Into the new year we will rock for Martin Luther King Day, have a dragon parade to celebrate Chinese New Year, say “I love you” on Valentines’ Day and honor individuals and contributions and stories during Black History Month. Then spring will finally come and The Story Garden will once again come to life and offer enchantment, exploration and exciting adventures for months on end. We offer diversion; we offer fun; we offer love and a happy day. Come often, stay as long as you like and enjoy every minute. And know that everyone of you has a special place in our hearts. Our wish for all is a healthy, happy and prosperous 2012!

Our Winter Hours Closed: Dec 24th & 25th - Merry Christmas!, and Jan 1st & 2nd - Happy New Year! Open: Mondays: 10am-3pm Just for toddlers – birth through preschool age. Open 10am-4pm to all on Dec. 26th, Jan. 16th—Martin Luther King Day, and Feb 20th President’s Day! Tuesday – Friday 10am-4pm Saturday 10am – 5pm Sunday noon – 5pm If The Binghamton City School District is closed due to weather, The Discovery Center is closed.

SPECIAL EVENTS Holiday Magic Party – Saturday, December 3rd Feel the magic of the holidays with a fun filled day to celebrate the winter season. Have breakfast with Santa, a holiday picture with him, enjoy the sights of our Disney themed Gingerbread Village, listen to the music of the BU Crosbys, and take in a S.T.A.R. (So. Tier Actors Read) production of The Snowman in My Window in our Ahearn Playhouse and enjoy learning about holidays around the world with make and take crafts. Additional fees apply to some activities. Breakfast with Santa - 9-11:30 am - Enjoy a pancake breakfast with a chance to chat with Santa! Pre-sale tickets $5 adults, $3 children; at the door $6 adults, $4 children. Photos with Santa by Beyond the Print in Vestal, NY 10am-12pm-$5 unlimited people for a 5x7 to be picked up at the museum or Beyond the Print in Vestal, NY. Pizza Lunch - 11:30am-1pm nominal fees. S.T.A.R. Show in our Theatre - The Snowman in my Window - 1:30pm Free with admission.

December Break Activities When school is out, fun is in at The DC! Explore New Year traditions around the globe with food, crafts, and fun in preparation for our New Years Around the World Party on Dec. 31 st. We’ll head to Poland to hear the tale of Leviathan the dragon and make a dragon puppet to take home; visit Greece to try the tasty St. Basil Cake; learn why flower boats were created in Brazil; create a Jack Straw in Hungary to ward off evil misfortunes; enjoy Welsh cakes and signing in Wales; and build a sand pyramid called a chedi as we visit Thailand. Activities offered Dec. 23rd (closed Dec. 24th and 25th) and Dec. 26th-30th at 11am.

New Year’s Family Bash Bring in the New Year with a family friendly party! The fun starts at 11am as we visit different countries around the world and learn how to say “Happy New Year” in different languages, play games, and celebrate every hour with balloons, party blowers, and confetti. Why should the fun just be for adults at midnight? The museum closes early at 3pm.

MLK Day Celebration—January 16th Martin Luther King Jr. Day is not a day to stay home and watch TV, but a day to spread his message of peace, friendship and non-violence. Head to The DC to do just that! Don’t miss the Peace Parade, puppet show, friendship bracelets and so much more. Brought to you by our friends from Seton Catholic and Vestal High Schools’ Peace Clubs. Activities from 11am-3pm. Free with admission.

Gung Hay Fat Choy! Happy Chinese New Years! February 4th 11am-3pm Celebrate The Year of the Dragon with The DC! Binghamton University Students, the Confucius Institute of Chinese Opera and The Institute for Asia and Asian Diasporas at Binghamton University present hands-on activities to celebrate the Year of the Dragon! Make a Chinese New Year lantern, have your name written in Chinese and create a paper dragon to take home. Enjoy a special guest performer of Chinese music for the New Year. Offered free with admission!

SPECIAL EVENTS Celebrate Black History - Friday, February 17th school holiday Become entranced by the American folksong Follow the Drinking Gourd and learn how the secret message in this song enabled slaves to make their way north to freedom. Taken at face value, the drinking gourd refers to a hollowed out gourd used by slaves as a water dipper. In the song, it was used as a code name for the Big Dipper formation which points North - the route to freedom. Enter into our Starlab for a magical star show to learn about more constellation stories and legends. Offered every half hour from 11-2pm to a limited number of people per show. Free tickets available at the front desk. Suitable for ages 5 and up.

Come Play on President’s Day—Monday, February 20th What better way to learn about presidential history than with your tummy! Grab your presidential passport and visit our tasting stations to learn about past presidents- what they looked like, their contributions, and best of all, a sampling of their favorite snacks. Redeem your completed passport for an American flag. Activities from 11am-3pm. Free with admission.

FREE PROGRAMS Explore and More A weekend visit to the museum is fun-filled with our Explore and More program. Offered Saturdays at both 11am and 3pm and on Sundays at 3pm, you’ll explore new topics, make an art project, try a science experiment and so much more! December’s theme: Favorite Winter Tales Dec 3rd & 4th: Jan Brett’s The Mitten. Make a mitten ornament for your tree or wreath. Dec 10th & 11th: Read Reindeer Moon with us and make ‘reindeer food’ to sprinkle on your front lawn this Christmas. Dec 17th & 18th: Read Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah by Susan L. Roth and play the dreidel game. Dec 24th & 25th - Closed. Happy Holidays! Dec 31st - Join us for our New Year’s Party. January’s theme: Wacky Holidays Jan 1st - Closed. Happy New Year! Jan 7th & 8th - Drinking Straws were patented. Test 4

your building skills as we design structures of all shapes and sizes out of straws Jan 14th & 15th - International Letter Writing Week. Make some beautiful stationary to write a letter to a friend. Don’t forget your address! Jan 21st & 22nd - Invention of Braille. Learn how to read Braille and write your own name with this touch system of writing. Jan 28th & 29th - Frisbee Fun. Sometimes the most simple toys are the most fun! Make one to take home. February’s theme: Artsy Fun Feb 4th: - Happy Chinese New Year! Feb 5th - Make a Chinese Lantern. Feb 11th & 12th - Splitter Splatter Heart Cards. Have fun with this painting technique to make a special valentine to give away. Feb 18th &19th - Make an edible log cabin in celebration of President’s Day. Feb 25th & 26th - Out of this world! Design a recycled robot out of kitchen boxes.

FREE PROGRAMS Funday Mondays The Discovery Center will open just for toddlers (birth through preschool age) on Mondays from 10am to 3pm*. Big size fun will be had by our littlest friends as they explore the museum and make new friends with out the crowds that can sometimes overwhelm our littlest visitors. Bring a picnic lunch to enjoy in our Somersaults Café or outside in The Story Garden for some fun in the sun! *Note: Museum will be open to everyone on Mondays when school is out.

Tunes & Tales- Tuesdays 11am When you want to come and escape cabin fever, join us in Books and Beyond for Story Time every week. Enjoy a special guest reader and go on a reading adventure with your friends or family. You are invited to stay and participate in a story related activity. Feel free to bring a snack or lunch to enjoy in our Somersaults Café.

Healthy Beginnings- Tuesdays 1pm Come and enjoy our new hands on program that is full of fun and knowledge for all ages. We are excited to teach you and your child about nutrition and healthy living to incorporate into your every day routine. Our goal is to provide a wonderful experience that empowers families to make healthy choices as they grow and learn together.

Little Hand Science- Wednesdays at 1pm There is nothing young fingers like to do better than to explore the world around them! New hands-on activities and stimulating demonstrations are geared toward the budding scientist’s mind and will challenge every youngster’s senses and get them excited about learning.

Tremendous Thursdays at 1pm Bring your energy and imagination and come prepared to frolic, play, and learn about all the surprises we have planned for you on this tremendous day of the week. This program is designed especially for our preschool and younger friends visiting.

Center Kids Our new theme - Community Occupations and Helpers - was inspired by all the magnificent people that work and volunteer to make our community a wonderful place to live. Center Kids is the second Saturday of the month from 1-3pm in front of Burlington Coat Factory in the Oakdale Mall. No Center Kids in December! See you January14th.

SCHOOL PROGRAM NEWS Looking for a Great Teacher’s Gift? Look no further! With our Museum to You programming, a museum educator will bring in hands-on educational programs right to your child’s school. With titles like Fossil Detectives, Touch Local History, Acorns Away, Egg-citing Eggs and many more, teachers are certain to find a program that helps meet learning goals and make learning fun. What a great gift! You can also pool money with other parents and make it a classroom gift from the entire class. You will receive a teacher gift packet that includes a gift certificate good towards a program of their choice, a school program guide to help make their selection, a special sticker, and a special surprise for each student in the class. Contact Nicki at 773-8661 ext. 205 for more info.

New School Program - Sugar Skull Workshop Travel to Mexico to learn about the tradition of creating a calaveras de azucar- a colorful sugar skull that was created in celebration of The Day of the Dead- Dia de los Muertos- to remember those loved ones that have passed. We’ll learn how to speak Spanish and use icing and shiny papers to create a skull of your own to take home. Perfect for Spanish classes, Social Studies units, or holiday themed lessons. This colorful and spooky holiday will delight your students! For grades 3-5 BOCES Enhanced Learning (for programs ordered 5. through BOCES): Enjoy Day of the Dead Cakes. NYS Standards: LOTE 1, 2; SS 3; Arts 3.


SCOUT PROGRAMS We are excited to offer programs inspired by the latest GS guide- Girl’s Guide to Girl Scouting! A workshop at the museum brings a day of fun: activities that bring the badges to life using the museum’s exhibits and kid approved learning materials. Workshop fee allows for museum playtime and families can join the fun for a reduced fee (troop leader must stay with girls during workshop). You can even spend the night in our exhibits for a sleepover! Cost for sleepovers is $24 per girl with a minimum of 20. Buddy up with another troop to meet minimum. Fee includes dinner, workshop, museum play, and breakfast. Program runs from 6pm-9:30 am. Visit for complete description of sleepover activities. Sleepover dates for all levels:

Ornaments from Around the World - Dec 10th Matroyska Magic - Jan 28th Ace of Cupcakes - Feb 25th To register for programs or email updates, send an e-mail to Nicki at or call 773-8661 x 205 Service Opportunities at the museum – Are you looking for a fun way to have your scouts give back to our local community? We have lots of opportunities for volunteers. Call Nicki for info.


Snow-stravaganza – Dec 3 10am -12pm. Mark your calendars for a day full of winter fun! Have breakfast with Santa, get a holiday picture taken, join our Scouts Only Snowman Workshop from 10am-12pm ($5), and end the day with a special S.T.A.R. production of The Snowman in My Window that teaches the true meaning of the holiday time. (See Special Events for full details and $.) Troops that make a gingerbread creation for our Disney themed Gingerbread Village receive free admission to enjoy museum wide activities and theatre production (fees apply for breakfast, photos, and workshop)

Vi Pink Petal Workshop - Be a Sister to Every Girl Scout Jan 21st 10:30am-12pm $8 ($9 with the petal patch). Travel around the world with Vi as we look at girls in other countries to learn that we may look different, eat different foods, and speak different languages, but we are all the same inside. We’ll read postcards from 5 countries and try a special activity; a food, craft, or game from that country.

Matryoshka Magic - Jan 28th 2-3:30pm $8. Learn the true magic of matryoshka dolls, also known as Russian nesting dolls. The concept of one-inside-another has been used in other types of stacking toys, but the magical appeal of each colorful, hand painted matryoshka doll has delighted children and adults alike for over a century. Girls will learn how these dolls were made, enjoy an old story where a matryoshka saves the day, and create wonderful crafts to take home. Mari Orange Petal Workshop - Keeping a Cupcake Promise Feb 11th 10:30am-12pm $8 ($9 with the petal patch). Learning to be responsible is an important life skill and in this workshop. Scouts will role play different scenarios and identify responsible choices. Sometimes being responsible isn’t always fun, but it is


the Girl Scout Way! Girls will create a chore chart to take home to encourage responsible behavior at home. Thinking Day 2012 - Feb 18th 10:30am-12pm $7 ($8 with the fun patch). Theme for World Thinking Day 2012 is Millennium Development Goal 7: “we can save our planet” the aim is to raise awareness of the environment and the impacts our lifestyles and choices have on it, so together we can, as one movement, speak out and take action to save our planet. We’ll look at air, water, soil, and recycling and learn many ways that we can make a difference.

BROWNIES Snow-stravaganza! Dec 3rd 10am-12pm $5. See description in Daisies Section

Snacks Legacy Badge - Jan. 21st 1:30-3pm $9 ($10 with the badge). Bring your apron for an afternoon of cooking and nutrition fun. Explore healthy eating choices with our food pyramid puzzles and whip up some tasty snacks. The workshop ends on a sweet note as we taste test new cookie flavors designed by your workshop friends. Each girl takes home a ‘cookbook’ of recipes used during class.

Matryoshka Magic - Jan 28th 2-3:30pm $8 See Description in Daisies Section

Thinking Day 2012 - Feb 18th 10:30am-12pm $7 ($8 with the fun patch) See Description in Daisies

Follow the Drinking Gourd - Black History Star Show Feb 18th 2-3:30pm $8($9 with a Star Map Fun Patch). Learn about the American folksong Follow the Drinking Gourd and how its secret message enabled slaves to make their way north to freedom. Taken at face value, the drinking gourd refers to a hollowed out gourd used by slaves as a water dipper. In the song, it was used as a code name for the Big Dipper formation which points North; the route to freedom. See a magical star show in our Starlab to learn about more constellation stories and legends.

JUNIORS Ornaments from Around the World - Dec 10th 10:30am-12 pm $8 ($9 with a fun patch). Take an around the world adventure to learn about holiday traditions from all over the globe. Girls will visit different stations each representing a different country to learn different languages and special landmarks of those countries. Girls will get crafty as they create a special ornament to take home for their tree or wreath.

Simple Meals Legacy Badge - Jan 21st 3:30-5pm $9 or $10 with a badge. Get hands-on with cooking in our classroom kitchen to make some fun snacks. We’ll think about the many tools that chefs use, look at healthy eating choices, and of course, whip up some fun snacks of our own. Girls will be a fabulous meal planner as they take home a book of recipes we used during class. Wear your own apron to spice up the fun!

Follow the Drinking Gourd - Black History Star Show - Feb 18th 2-3:15pm $8 ($9 with a Star Map Fun Patch). See description in Brownie Section.

PRESCHOOL & AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAMS Discovery Kids Club - For grades K-5 “The Place to Be After Three” Discovery Kids Club is a place where school-aged children can go after school to make friends and learn to appreciate themselves as individuals through a variety of creative experiences. We place a strong emphasis on community building, leadership, and community service. Our educators will work with you to ensure your child’s after school adventure is the kind of experience childhood memories should be made of! We offer a hands on curriculum exploring arts and sciences. Children enjoy our interactive exhibits, outdoor play in The Story Garden and Taekwondo classes with Mr. John. Homework help is available and healthy snacks are provided. Kids Club hours are MonFri 3-6pm plus long days on most Binghamton City Schools holiday breaks. Kids Club follows the BCSD Calendar and is closed on snow days. BCSD transports full-time Kids Club members in grades K-5 to our program. Parents must provide transportation for children from outside BCSD. 2011-12 Fees: $60/ wk. $65 non-refundable deposit due. Call 607-773-8661 x 208 for more information or visit

Discovery Kids Preschool All the A,B,Cs and 1,2,3s of learning fun! Discovery Kids Preschool gives your child the jump start they need to foster a love of learning. We offer separate 3 & 4 year old morning and afternoon programs. Our program allows children to utilize our hands-on museum and explore the Story Garden, our interactive outdoor environment. Our professionally trained teaching staff will work closely with you to ensure your child’s experience is one they will cherish for years to come. For more information please call (607) 773-8661 ext. 208. Cost for morning program $72/wk., afternoon program $60/wk. and for full day (please send a bagged lunch) $125/wk. Preschool hours for both 3 & 4 year olds: 8:30am-11:30am & 12noon2:30pm Monday-Friday. Binghamton UPK is a free program for Binghamton residents only and children must turn 4 before December 1, 2011. UPK program hours for 2011-2012 are 12noon-2:30pm. Register today! Healthy snacks are provided. Kids Club hours are Mon-Fri 3-6pm plus long days on most Binghamton City Schools holiday breaks. Discovery Kids Preschool follows the BCSD Calendar and is closed on snow days.


We Love Volunteers!

Arts Partners is pleased to announce that its Arts-inEducation program has received local support from the Roger L. Kresge Foundation. This will make it possible for Arts Partners to re-grant over $13,000 to schools in Broome and Tioga Counties for multi-day arts integrated Arts-in-Education residencies this school year.

Supporting the museum doesn’t always mean donating money. A donation of your time is priceless! You can help stuff envelopes for fundraisers, run an activity table at a special event, or use your skills of painting or carpentry to help maintain and build new exhibits. Groups and organizations of all sizes are very welcome to fulfill their service hours with us! Volunteers ages 16 and up are welcome. Contact Nicki at 607-773-8661 ext. 205 for more information.

A Review Panel consisting of teachers, artists and administrators decides which projects are funded and their decisions will be publicized in December. Please look for further information on funded projects in the newspaper or check The Discovery Center’s website. For information on how your school or cultural organization can apply for matching grants to support quality Arts-in-Education projects in Broome and Tioga Counties, call 773-8661, ext. 203 or email: Visit our webpage: for more information. Arts Partners is a Local Capacity Building Program of the New York State Council on the Arts, administered by The Discovery Center.

Thank you, Circle K! Over 25 college students from the group Circle K International spent a busy morning here at the museum painting and sprucing up. Circle K is a worldwide service organization with over 12,600 members in 17 nations. Students traveled from universities from distances of 6 hours away and stayed at the Binghamton YMCA while they volunteered at various locations around the Southern Tier. Thank you for your time here, Circle K! 7.

The Discovery Center of the Southern Tier 60 Morgan Road Binghamton, NY 13903

Non-Profit Org. US Postage PAID Binghamton, NY Permit #192

Save the date ‘cause it’s going to be a party! Friday, April 20, 2012

The Discovery Center’s ‘Sowing the Seeds’ Spring Fling Featuring music by BROTHERHOOD A Dinner Dance at Terra Cotta, State Street, Binghamton ‘Big Kids’ only! For more information or advance sale tickets, call 773-8661 x 204

Thank You! Thank You! Thank you doesn’t seem enough to the Broome County Community Charities, Wendy’s Walk For Kids, The Binghamton Senators Charity Golf Tournament—Coughlin & Gerhart, all the players and sponsors, Miller Auto Team, Ann & Juni Williams, Keli Cooper, Jeff Coghlan and the awesome Wendy’s Walk staff and the camaraderie of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Broome and Tioga, Magic Paintbrush Project, and The Dave Williams Foundation for Adoption. Good luck to next year’s charities! Thanks to Nancy and Jim Hargrave, The Junior League of Binghamton, Nancy Phillips & the Oakdale Mall, City of Binghamton Departments of Parks and Public Works, WSKG, Senator Tom Libous and BOOKS, City of Binghamton Fire Department, MeadWestvaco, Wendy’s, Willow Run Foods, Mario’s Pizza, Pizza Hut, Frito Lay, Crowley and JP Hood, Binghamton Senators, Binghamton Mets, Department of Soil and Water, J & K Plumbing, Four County Library System and all of our wonderful volunteers, especially Felix and David!

Winter Newsletter - Discovery Center  

News from The Discovery Center of the Southern Tier 2011-2012