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APRIL 2019

Hold the phone... for our huge Summer Camp Guide!

Mentorship Matters 7 places to find (and be) a mentor

They can do that?

6 surprising digital resources at your local library

+ Dozens of spring and Easter festivals for OKC family fun!


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Features 8 Beneficial Screen Time Six free digital resources at your local library 10 Beyond Chicken Nuggets Adventurous (and delicious) kid’s meals in OKC 16 Mentorship Matters Seven places to find a mentor 46 Summer Camp Guide Dozens of ideas for summer learning and fun

In Every Issue 6 Ages & Stages Easter celebrations 14 Day in the Life Meet a single mom with a teen son, career and a side gig

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18 Calendar of Events 100+ events to celebrate Easter and spring across the metro 38 Foster Families Family advocates for reunification 42 Exploring Beyond Oklahoma Discover new sights and old favorites in the DFW area 62 Kid Review Lyric Theatre

46

42

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our website for our popular lists featuring local farmers markets, street festivals, Earth Day festivities and Easter happenings. All of these and more can be accessed at www. metrofamilymagazine.com/springfun-guides.

Only Online Family Favorites: It’s time to nominate your family’s favorites in our annual “best of” contest. From dance studios to splash pads, pizza restaurants to places to explore nature, our Family Favorites awards make it easy for OKC families to find the best local resources and places to go. And we need YOUR opinions to make sure your favorites make the list! You can nominate your favorites before April 15. As a bonus, every time you vote in at least 15 of the subcategories, you will earn an entry into the contest for a weekend trip to the Gaylord Texan Resort in

4 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

Family Favorites

The first round of voting will result in finding three finalists for each category. Voting to determine the winners will continue April 23 to May 6. The winner in each category and two finalists will be highlighted and honored in The Everything Guide, published in July. www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ familyfavorites. Spring fun ahead: Check out

Sponsored Content: New weighted Manimo plush animals provide comfort and a deep therapeutic effect for children with ADD, ADHD, ASD, anxiety or other disorders. Learn more at www. metrofamilymagazine.com/toyswith-benefits. These unique stuffed animals are available at learning tree toys, books & games.


BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS

Publisher

Sarah Taylor

Managing Editor Hannah Schmitt

Assistant Editor Lindsay Cuomo

Contributing Writers

Erin Page & Heide Brandes

Contributing Photographers Bridget Pipkin & Kimera Basore

Art Director Stacy Noakes

Marketing Director Callie Collins

Sales

Athena Delce, Dana Price

Project Manager Jessica Misun

Office/Distribution Kathy Alberty

Contact us

318 NW 13th St, Ste 101 OKC OK 73103 Phone: 405-601-2081 Fax: 405-445-7509

A

ll it takes is one person or one unique experience to set a person on a different, better path. Perhaps you’ve seen this phenomena happen in your own life or for someone you love. Years ago, my then middle school daughter asked to take a summer day camp to learn HTML. This was not long after the introduction of the internet to the mainstream population so although we already had a computer at home, it still seemed a strange request. After the two-week camp, she spent the rest of her summer creating a website of her own about interior decorating for teens. Now she is a top vegetarian cooking blogger in the country, writing, creating and influencing millions of others with her blog posts. I’ve been inspired through the years of stories of those who were angry and lost as children or youth but when one caring adult showed up in their lives and encouraged them, it made all the difference. Whether it was a teacher, coach, youth leader or other mentor, they helped these kids become aware of a different future and find hope when perhaps they had none.

You’ll find plenty of summer camps that can inspire your child to try something new starting on page 46, and you’ll likely be as inspired as I am in reading about the value of mentorships and knowing where local kids can find quality mentors on page 16. Our foster care series continues this month with an amazing story of mentorship and redemption between a foster family and a biological family, culminating in a better situation and stronger relationships for the children involved. We hope you find what you need in this April issue to help your kids spark an interest that benefits them for a lifetime. And that you are inspired to find help or be the help as a mentor locally to someone who needs you. Blessings, Sarah, Publisher PS: We’re happy to announce that editor Hannah and her husband welcomed a healthy baby girl into the family in late February. Congrats to all!

sarah@metrofamilymagazine.com www.metrofamilymagazine.com

MetroFamily Magazine is published monthly. Copyright 2019 by Inprint Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Articles and advertisements in MetroFamily do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the magazine or Inprint Publishing, Inc. We do not assume responsibility for statements made by advertisers or editorial contributors. The acceptance of advertising by MetroFamily does not constitute an endorsement of the products, services, or information. We do not knowingly present any product or service which is fraudulent or misleading in nature. Circulation audited by

Proud member of

Also a member of Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, Edmond Chamber of Commerce & Moore Chamber of Commerce

This Month’s Cover Elin (7), Ava (10) and Gabriel (13) appear on this month’s cover. Elin loves to dance and takes ballet lessons twice a week, but her favorite activity is loving on the family’s puppy, Max. Ava loves to sing and performs with the Edmond Fine Arts Institute. She has an upcoming role in their production of “The Secret Garden.” Gabriel is a class clown and was voted Most Dramatic at school last year. He’s also the first chair bassoon player at Central Middle School.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

5


Baskets, Bunnies and Fun, Oh My!

Easter celebrations for every member of the family.

&

ages stages

BY LINDSAY CUOMO

Babies & Toddlers Squeeze in some post-naptime fun at The Easter Carnival at New Covenant United Methodist Church on April 13. Kicking off at 3 p.m., families can enjoy food, bounce houses, train rides, a petting zoo and more at this community carnival. Sam Noble Museum hosts families for a fun evening of celebration on Wednesday, April 17 from 4 - 7 p.m. At their FREE Eggstravaganza, little ones can enjoy spring themed crafts, face painting and games, followed by age-divided egg hunts to round out the fun. And, the Easter bunny will also be there!

Add some variety to your festivities and attend one of the many exciting events Oklahoma City has to offer. Be inspired by these ideas for every age and stage and find even more on our calendar starting on page 18.

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Elementary age People’s Church is bringing back their popular Easter Land on April 20 & 21. The one weekend theme park offers carnival rides, a petting zoo, an egg hunt with over 35,000 eggs and more. Easter Land kicks off following each service and kids can get a wristband to participate in the fun by attending a PC Kids class. Visit www. easterland.tv for a complete schedule. The Great Egg Hunt at Yukon High School on Saturday, April 20 is primed for fun. Kids of all ages can bounce in the inflatables,

pose for pictures with costumed characters, cuddle with real live bunnies and race to collect a basket full of eggs. There will be 60,000 eggs filled with treats and prizes and some lucky hunters can win bikes, iPads and more. Celebrations begin at 9 a.m. and the hunt kicks off at 11 a.m.

Teens If your teen thinks they are past their egg hunting days, the Egg Hunt 5K just might change their minds. Eggs are scattered along the course and each egg holds fun prizes including tickets to popular sporting events and gift cards to local retailers. Kids 12 and under can tackle the half-mile course also lined with goody-filled eggs. The race takes place at Stars and Stripes Park on Saturday, April 13. Registration to the 5K is $35 and half-mile Kids Bunny Hop is $5. Sign up at parks.okc.gov. Families can also lace up their sneakers the following Saturday and race in the annual Easter Run on Saturday, April 20 benefiting The House of Healing, a non-profit organization that mentors teenage girls. 10K, 5K and a one-mile options are available. Find more details about these events and much more at www.metrofamilymagazine. com/easter.


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METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

7


Six Can’t-Miss Digital Resources at Your Local Library WORDS & PHOTO BY HEIDE BRANDES

Like most parents, Morgan Stidger worried about what her child watched or played on her phone and computer. But then she learned about a program at the Oklahoma City Metropolitan Library that could help. While at a toddler playtime, she was told about a digital learning site called Speakaboos, offered free with her library card. “My son took to it very quickly and easily. It is easy to use and I don’t mind him playing it because it helps with his speech delay,” Stidger said. “My son has had intense speech therapy for two years but as soon as he started using Speakaboos, he was attempting to sing along with the songs.” While many parents are anxious about their child’s relationship with technology and what quality entertainment they are exposed to, the Metropolitan Library System has a slew of free digital learning resources designed to support learning and literacy. Katherine Hickey, the children’s librarian at the Metropolitan Library System, said a simple library card can open a whole world of entertaining digital sites that also support learning and child development. “We have services for the early childhood crowd as well as the elementary age and middle school kids,” she said. “I think the library is still perceived as a repository of books, so if someone isn’t frequenting the library on a regular basis, I think it could be really easy to overlook all of our digital services.” Hickey shared some of the best learning services offered to families and children available at the library, all free with a family’s library card.

Speakaboos Speakaboos is a library of more than 200 interactive stories and songs designed to make reading your child’s favorite activity. Designed for readers between the ages of 2 and 6, Speakaboos introduces children to vocabulary through popular characters like “Thomas the Train” or “Dora the Explorer.” “Kids can do this with their parent or they can do it by themselves. I’ve had parents tell me this is what they give their kid when they’re in quiet time in their room because they know it supports their learning and they’re having fun,” said Hickey. “So you can have the app read a book to you, sing to you or you can play great interactive games. It has a read and play option where Speakaboos can read the book to you, but has words so you can read along.”

Parents should follow the instructions because if they go directly to the app store, the service will not be free.

“Learning a language can be a bonding activity between parent and child. And studies have shown that the most important predictor for lifelong success for children is having a close relationship with your caregiver,” Hickey said. “So whether you’re learning a language or going to the park or coming to the library or doing anything, the more quality time you spend with your kids more successful they’re going to be. So it’s really an investment in them.”

Little Pim

Britannica for Kids

Speakaboos was developed by a team of educational researchers to meet the developmental goals of kids, Hickey said. Speakaboos can be accessed at www. metrolibrary.org/speakaboos.

Little Pim is another free digital resource offered at the library that teaches small children different languages. “It’s sort of like Rosetta Stone for kids. I liked this one because it really is for the small kids,” Hickey said. “A lot of times when people think about learning a language, they think of kids that are in already in school but very young kids can use this service.” The adult version of Little Pim is called Mango, but Little Pim was developed using the Entertainment Immersion Method based on how children naturally acquire language. Fun videos are segmented into five-minute episodes to accommodate a young child’s attention span. The program engages a child’s love of play and learning through repetition. Simple

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sentences are broken down into easy-tounderstand parts and are reinforced through repetition by native speakers.

“For elementary-aged kids, what we have to offer at this level is homework help,” Hickey said. “We do offer subscriptions to databases that schools don’t necessarily have a subscription too. This is where we can really offer something special to the kids to supplement what they’re doing in school.” For children doing reports or essays, Britannica for Kids is an online encyclopedia written just for children in fun colors and a layout that is easy to navigate. “I don’t know if you’re like me and you had a big set of Britannica encyclopedias growing up. That’s all online now and so we have the Britannica library for children and we also have it for young adults, so it’s an encyclopedia that’s written at the reading level of kids,” Hickey said.


All the learning databases available at the library can be accessed through metrolibrary.org/research.

National Geographic for Kids

“So basically, it’s everything you would find if you had to come to the library and researched it yourself,” said Hickey. “One of my favorite little tricks is that you can click the little check mark and it’ll pull up the formatted citation.”

National Geographic for Kids not only has beautiful videos and pictures but reference level content as well.

Viewpoints in Context Opposing Viewpoints in Context is a digital learning site that helps children think through complex social issues by presenting both sides of an argument. From capital punishment to immigration to women in combat, this cross-curricular research database supports science, social studies, current events and language arts classes. The informed and differing views help learners develop critical-thinking skills and draw their own conclusions and is a great resources for children in debate classes or writing critical essays. “The program provides a summary and presents a list of articles from different viewpoints that argue different things,” Hickey said. “It’s really helpful if kids are arguing one point and they really want to understand what the other side believes. It’s super easy to read because it’s meant for a younger audience.

Culturegrams Perfect for students who have to write essays or learn about different countries and cultures, Culturegrams goes beyond basic facts and figures on more than 200 countries, with up-to-date reports detailing daily life and culture, history, customs and lifestyle from an insider’s perspective. “This is really helpful to teach a global perspective. So a lot of kids come into the library and they have to do a report on a certain country and this is where we always start,” Hickey said. “You can click on whatever country you want to learn about and it’ll present a profile of that country with a description of the culture, of the economy, of social issues and all the basic information like the flag and the population.” The kids’ edition of Culturegrams has a collection of more than 185 country reports, complete with images, an historical timeline, fun facts and sections on history, population, “life as a kid” and more.

“If your child is writing about a country or about a culture, this is another great resource. But what I really like is that it has all of the magazines and the books you can read online,” Hickey said. “So if it’s 10 p.m. and your kid won’t go to bed and says ‘I want to read another book about dinosaurs’ and you’ve already gone through your entire collection, you can come here and find a book about dinosaurs and pull it up on your tablet and read it.” The program has all of National Geographic’s award-winning magazines, books, apps, games, toys, videos and events on its website, and is the only kids brand with a world-class scientific organization at its core. Hickey said that while many of the learning resources open to families are usually subscription based, the Metropolitan Library allows access for free. “The library is a public asset and exists to support the information needs of the people in its community. So really the people of Oklahoma City have already paid for this through their taxes,” Hickey said. “We want to be good stewards of their taxpayer dollars and provide really high quality resources. The role of the library is to ensure that everyone, regardless of their economic status, has the potential to learn what they want to learn about.” All the programs are available at metrolibrary.org/databases, listed alphabetically. Stidger said both she and her child have grown in vocabulary, thanks to the Speakaboos program offered at the Belle Isle Library. “Everyone I have told about the free resources doesn’t know about it, but they seem excited for some useful screen time,” Stidger said. “I would urge parents to try it for themselves and see how they like it. My kids really like to play on my phone while I workout and I feel better about them playing Speakaboos than watching mindless shows.” For more information about all resources for kids, visit www.metrolibrary.org/ children.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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BEYOND Nuggets & Fries One mom’s recommendations for adventurous kid meals in OKC BY MAGGIE MURDOCK NICHOLS. PHOTOS PROVIDED.

At 9 months, our daughter proved she loved to eat adventurously. She outgrew the meals we were sharing with her and needed her own! When eating out, we began asking for kid’s menus and were mostly disappointed. Corrie is used to eating what we eat. I don’t make any special accommodations for her when I cook at home. We consistently offer Corrie a variety of textures, flavors and spices. We found that many kid’s meals at restaurants offer overly salted, starchy foods, processed meat and a soft drink. With some searching, we did find quality kid’s meals and now I’m ready to share these finds with you. In putting this list together, I admit that health may not always be the first priority. We often eat healthy, but we’re not obsessive about it. Therefore, Corrie doesn’t always eat healthy either. I want her to have a positive relationship with food and that includes not calling foods “bad” or implying that she should feel “bad” for eating it. I’ve also found that bringing another mouth to feed to the table is expensive! Corrie made quite a dent in our food budget before she could even walk. I know kids can be picky and opinionated and sometimes you just need them to eat without an argument so you can enjoy your own meal. I kept all these factors in mind as I selected my top picks. Corrie helped, too. Follow the key below and dine on! And post your family dining adventures on Instagram and tag @metrofamilyokc so we can follow along on your foodie fun. Follow Maggie @maggiemurdy for more ideas for toddler-centric dining and local adventures. CORRIE AT OSO PASEO

Family Style Some restaurants don’t have a kid’s menus and I don’t fault them for it! Selecting a meal to share as a family is a great way to get buy in from everyone at the table.

Local We prioritize eating local food and supporting local people! We’re rarely disappointed with local dining experiences.

Nutritious I applaud restaurants who are unwilling to waive standards on their kid’s menus. Eating outside of the home is a great place to introduce new foods. The novelty of the whole experience may encourage kids to chow down on something new and nutritious!

Authentic Ethnic food really takes the cake for a variety of flavors and textures. One of our daughter’s first favorites was kimchi. Meals become an experience when the whole family is offered food within the same genre of that restaurant’s specialty. Hold the chicken nuggets please!

Cheap Ideally, kid’s meals are always cheap. I’ve noted meals that are under $3 or free.


Bedlam BBQ Bedlam exudes the feel of a backyard family picnic with taste and feel! www.facebook. com/BedlamBarBQ

Cafe Kacao Family owned and family friendly, Kacao honors their Guatemalan roots. You’ll be back again and again! cafekacao.com

Chick-Fil-A Need I say more? This is a safe space for rowdy and picky kiddos. They offer grilled nuggets and other healthy options. www. chick-fil-a.com

Cultivar Mexican Kitchen

Spend Summer At The Sooner!

One of my favorite things about this place—it’s loud! Scream on, toddlers! www.cultivarmexican.com

Flatire Burgers This is a family-friendly staple located in Edmond. Check out the patio on good weather days! www.flatireburgers.com

One, Two and Threeweek performing arts camps for kids entering Pre-K - 6th grade

Acting, Singing, Dancing, and a little MAGIC!

COOLGREENS

Coolgreens Baby-led weaning paradise! Order a sampler plate and let the kiddos taste away. They may try something new while you aren’t looking. www.coolgreens.com

HUNNY BUNNY BISCUIT COMPANY

The Hall’s Pizza Kitchen

June 3 - Aug 4

The Hall’s specialize in hospitality for the whole family. There are great desserts in addition to the delicious pizza and other main dishes. www.thehallskitchen.com

Now Enrolling!

Hunny Bunny Biscuit Company Delicious breakfast in an adorable setting. Our daughter is ravenous at breakfast time so we love the portion sizes! www. hunnybunnybiscuitco.com

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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(405) 321-9600

soonertheatre.com


I AM PEPPERONI GRILL

A

GIRL

SCOUT Girl Scouts are Go-Getters, Innovators, Risk-Takers and Leaders. Cathy Ferguson (pictured above) competed in the 1964 Olympic Games in Japan and brought home a Gold metal.

The Kitchen at Commonplace Books Kiddos are invited to belly up to the table and enjoy a carefully crafted meal. A small space, tables are shared. Community can be found here and books can be browsed just next door. www.commonplacebooksokc. com/kitchen

McAlister’s Deli Dine-in kid’s meal are $1.99 with the purchase of an adult entree. Take out meals are $2.99. www.mcalistersdeli.com

Nashbird

GSWESTOK.ORG/JOIN

With a location in Penn Square and north Edmond, this local restaurant is ultra welcoming to families. www.pepperonigrill.net

Pho Lien Hoa With quick service and lots of activity, this is a great place for kiddos. They offer a kid’s portion and are always careful with hot broth around kiddos. Ask for scissors to cut the noodles. Located near the Gold Dome off N.W. 23rd Street.

S&B Burger Joint

Kids eat free on Mondays! Hot dang, their chicken can be hot and spicy. Ask for no spice if your kiddo isn’t a fan of the heat. www.nashbirdchicken.com

Great tunes, burgers and more, S&B is ideal for kiddos. They eat free on Tuesdays! And with nine locations, you’ll likely find one near you. www.sandbburgers.com

Oso Paseo

Saturn Grill

Nestled in the Paseo and “Oso” delicious, the kid’s meals are equally good and nutritious! Kid’s drinks are served in an adorable honey bear bottle making for a very Instagrammable meal. www.osopaseo.com

Careful attention is paid to every meal here, including kids’ meals. You can expect quality! Find it in Nichols Hills Plaza. www.saturngrill.com

Join a network of girls who aren’t afraid to take risks and take action!

JOIN TODAY

Pepperoni Grill

12 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019


Ted’s Cafe Escondido An Oklahoma staple, Ted’s boasts of multiple locations and endless chips and salsa! Kids eat free on Mondays. www.tedscafe.com

Tokyo Japanese Restaurant Tokyo along N. Western near Olie is a great place to let kids have a go at chopsticks while they explore Japanese cuisine or sushi in a smaller quantity and at a great price. www.tokyookc.com

The Wedge COOLGREENS

The Deep Deuce location is conveniently located near the downtown fun. The location on Western has one of my favorite playgrounds. Dine al fresco and let the kids roam! www.thewedgepizzeria.com

www.yukonok.gov

Saturday, May 4 | 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Hands-on crafts, kayaking, archery, laser tag, live entertainment, inflatables, pony rides & more! $5 in advance | Adults Free | $7 day of event Yukon City Park - 2200 S. Holly - Yukon, OK Ticket Outlets: Children’s New World | All YNB Locations | Dale Robertson Center Jackie Cooper Gym | Yukon Community Center www.yukonok.gov Please call 405.350.8937 for more information. cityofyukonokgov

@cityofyukonok

@cityofyukonokgov

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

13


A Day in the Life

SUSAN PORTER AND SON, PORTER CHAPPELLE

Susan Porter

SUBMITTED BY SUSAN PORTER PHOTOS BY KIMERA BASORE

Susan Porter is the youngest child of Oklahoma’s first African American Senator, E. Melvin Porter. She works as regional manager of operations for Heartland Dental, a dental service organization that supports six dental offices throughout Oklahoma City, Enid and Lawton. She’s also a personal and professional growth coach through her own company, Mojo Original. As if that didn’t keep her busy enough, Susan does her best to keep up with her 14-year-old son, Porter Chappelle. Here’s a day in the life of the single mom: 6:00 a.m. Alarm goes off and after I hit snooze three

times I am finally up at 6:15. I spend time giving gratitude and praying before starting my day. I am a big fan of KOCO in the morning so it is on throughout the house as I prepare for the day.

6:30 a.m. I drink a cup of hot water as soon as I am up and moving around. Depending on my schedule, I will either do a few exercises at home, tidy up the house or immediately start getting ready and packing lunches.

6:45 a.m. This is my son’s first call to get up. He needs

to snooze a bit so I give him five-minute increments until he is finally up by 7:00. Since I either work from home or rotate my time between offices, his wake-up time depends on where I have to be.

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7:30 a.m. If I am not working from

home, this is the time we are out the door. He gets to school (Heritage Hall) between 7:45 and 8 a.m. and then I am off to an office for a visit or back home for conference calls.

8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Mondays are

heavy call days so I usually work from home. My entire day is sitting at my desk on back-to-back calls and checking emails. Tuesday through Friday my days consist of visiting offices and collaborating with doctors and administrators about their practice. We review office metrics, business results, team development, doctor goals, coaching opportunities, patient satisfaction and our projections for the current month. I speak with my six practice managers throughout the week and provide support as needed. My job is to build relationships and get results. I provide coaching and guidance to them and the doctors, helping to develop their communication, partnership and business acumen. Patient satisfaction, happy team members and successful practices are my priorities. I will spend anywhere from an hour to all day in my offices. It really depends on their need. It is so great to see how excited the team gets when they know they have changed someone’s life. To see a patient walk through the door unwilling to smile and walk out the door grinning from ear to ear can bring tears to your eyes. It is equally rewarding when someone walks

in with pain and our doctors and team members can provide relief by taking care of their dental needs. My day will wrap up by 5 p.m. or sometimes later if I have a business dinner after work. Most days my Mom will pick my son up from school. On the rare occasion I can pick him up is a highlight for us both.

5:30-6:00 p.m. I stop at my Mom’s to

pick up my son. She is my lifesaver and as a single mom, I could not have the career I do without her support.

6:00-10:00 p.m. Once home, my son

and I immediately change clothes and spend a few minutes relaxing and talking about our day before he starts homework and I start dinner. My evenings consist of dinner, housework and working on Mojo Original. Twice a month I host Facebook Live “Mojo Talks” focused on personal and professional growth. Other days, I am working on my book, additional training content, calls with clients or relaxing and watching TV. Besides homework, my son spends his evenings taking care of the geckos he breeds and sells or interviewing someone for his podcast PBR Talks. His two favorite things are geckos and bull riding.

10:00 p.m. We are both night owls so

we are usually down for the night around 10:00 p.m. He watches an episode of “Golden Girls” and I will catch a recorded show before finally falling asleep.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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The Value of Mentorship A little investment makes a big impact

BY ERIN PAGE. PHOTOS PROVIDED.

An Oklahoma City Public Schools elementary student was failing, but now makes Bs thanks to newfound confidence in his reading ability. A former Douglas High School student spiraled into poor decisions after his mom passed away, but now holds a job at Tinker Air Force Base, is married, has bought his first home and volunteers at his alma mater. Eleven Norman middle schoolers developed an augmented reality game on a wristband that they presented to national and international brokers at the annual New York Toy Fair. A metro foster child who’d been in 11 homes and attempted suicide turned her life around, receiving thousands of dollars in college scholarships and graduating from the University of Oklahoma. These students all have one thing in common: a mentor who showed up consistently to love them unconditionally. That elementary student benefits from weekly reading tutors and a meal through Oklahoma City nonprofit Whiz Kids. Currently serving 950 first through sixth grade students at 36 locations around the metro, Whiz Kids closes the achievement gap for kids reading below grade level. The former Douglas High School student gained mentors and life-long friends through Youth for Christ, offering weekly leadership and mentorship programs at nearly 40 metroarea middle and high schools. The faithbased ministry focuses on building positive relationships with students. The Norman middle schoolers are members of Loveworks Leadership, Inc., offering experiential learning, leadership and entrepreneurship opportunities to middle and high school students, networking and learning from community leaders and business, like Trifecta Communications, which has mentored the group of students since last summer. The foster child found hope in a network of supportive mentors and engaging activities through Boys & Girls Clubs of Oklahoma County’s after-school program. Through Youth Leadership Exchange, a project of Leadership Oklahoma City, she gained

16 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

leadership skills and volunteered around the community. She was named the city and state Boys & Girls Clubs Youth of the Year. Jane Sutter, president & CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Oklahoma County, said she loves watching the more than 800 metro kids who make use of their four locations daily grow and flourish under the attention of caring adults. “Boys & Girls Clubs alumni from around the country were surveyed about their experience, and 54 percent said it literally saved their life,” said Sutter. “Most people don’t realize what a big impact a little intervention can make.”

Why Mentor Britanie Ramirez, director of Whiz Kids Oklahoma, sees that impact every day. Approximately 73 percent of fourth grade students in Oklahoma read below proficiency level, according to Whiz Kids, and Ramirez says whether students can pass their third grade reading test correlates to what they can accomplish in their futures.

BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS

participant as a sales coordinator for the organization’s REAL Kitchen company, which created and sells salsa to stores around the metro and is now mentoring younger students. “Seeing the life change in our students and their eventual desire to give back and pour into younger students restores my hope in the future,” said Hirsch.

“It can literally change the direction of a child’s life,” said Ramirez, who calls Whiz Kids a mentorship program hidden behind literacy. “We give kids confidence as learners.”

Matt Hankinson, director of Youth for Christ Oklahoma, challenges potential mentors to think back on their own awkward teen years to the person who believed in and supported them. Though Hankinson says his parents were top-notch, it was his own mentor, Terry, who showed him that he could live a clean life and still have fun.

Many Whiz Kids volunteers have been active for decades, with some staying connected for years after the program, attending kids’ graduations and weddings.

“He was an outside voice speaking wisdom to me,” said Hankinson, who believes everyone is called to mentor and share life with young people because it allows all parties to grow.

Brent Wheelbarger, CEO of Trifecta Communications, brought his expertise in emerging technology to Loveworks Leadership students for a week during an experiential learning camp. Not long after, his team decided to make the experience longterm, interviewing and selecting students to become part of their start-up business creating augmented reality wristbands.

Shawn Johnson, Youth for Christ campus coordinator for Douglas middle and high schools, says many potential mentors overthink it, feeling they are too busy to develop a relationship with a young person.

Meeting with students twice a week since, it’s the students who have led the charge in developing the game’s story, drawing concept art, developing 3D models, coding and marketing, all within a limited budget. “It’s been educational for us to see how these kids see the world,” said Wheelbarger. Michael Hirsch, executive director of Loveworks, said the current generation has been labeled unfairly, but he sees the goodness of humanity shine through them. He recently hired a former Loveworks

“Just bring them alongside you,” said Johnson. “Take them grocery shopping with you, show them how you love your wife and kids, how you balance your checkbook.” Though Johnson says students on the east side of the metro may have a reputation, at the end of the day, they are all just kids. And Sutter says that’s what makes it fun. “They have a spirit and curiosity that we lose as adults when we get stuck in the day-today,” said Sutter, who is still connected to the young woman she mentored throughout her childhood, now pursuing a master’s degree. “You feel renewed and blessed by a child who looks up to you. And they say the funniest things.”


2019

Summer Camps

Why Kids Need Mentors “All kids, regardless of their backgrounds, need positive adult influences and role models from beyond their family in order to be successful and grow up as strong individuals who are involved in community,” said Sutter. “Even kids with awesome parents need other adults in their life encouraging them, helping them dream big and supporting them along the way.” For financially challenged families, parents don’t often have the time or resources to invest a lot of attention into individual kids. Because students can only visualize what they know is possible, they benefit tremendously from being shown the world outside their school and home. “We take these kids on college visits, to restaurants to eat different foods, to check out different sports, to fish, go horseback riding or tubing,” said Hankinson. “So many of them are boxed in and we want to show them how big the world is and that it’s theirs for the taking.” Johnson has watched his mentee develop from an eighth grader he says was a bit of a clown into a senior taking charge of the Youth for Christ core leadership group at his school, leading the opening prayer each

week and planning to attend Langston this fall. The knowledge that he has people who care about him in addition to his family has given him the confidence to flourish. Hirsch says when mentors help students discover their purpose and passions, it influences every aspect of their lives. “When you begin to discover your purpose, it impacts academic performance, behavior in school, an attitude of respect in the home, the way they interact with siblings,” said Hirsch. “Finding your purpose and passion gives you a hope you carry with you the rest of your life.”

Vampirina { Prince and Princess Fairytale Adventures { Fancy Nancy { American Doll { Jo Jo Siwa Dance { Music Video Dance { Boys Hip Hop { Spotlight Acting

RESOURCES Big Brothers Big Sisters, Oklahoma City bbbsok.org/oklahoma-city/ 405-943-8075 Big Brothers Big Sisters, Norman bbbsok.org/norman/ 405-364-3722 • Seeking mentors to meet monthly or more with a child, out in the community or at the child’s school • Kids can be enrolled online to be matched with a mentor Boys & Girls Club of Oklahoma County www.bgcokc.org/ 405-521-9292 • Seeking one-on-one mentors to meet weekly with a child, as well as volunteers to participate in club activities with groups of children as schedule allows, at Memorial Park and school club sites Loveworks Leadership, Inc. www.loveworksleadership.org 405-397-9576 • Seeking mentors for weekly after- or before-school activities and to present

leadership lessons, summer experiential project learning and businesses, business leaders and entrepreneurs to help students hone business skills • Students ages 11-14 can apply online Whiz Kids Oklahoma whizkidsok.org 405-602-2815

Visit our website for details

• Seeking weekly reading tutors at sites around metro, as well as churches and organizations to host sites

www.danceunlimitedpac.com

Youth for Christ Oklahoma City www.yfcokc.org/home 405-942-2771 • Seeking mentors for middle and high school students • List of participating schools for students can be found online Youth Leadership Exchange www.lokc.org/ylx/ 405-463-3331 • Students in grades 9-12 can apply online for leadership skills and community service class METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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Classes offered in ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, jazz funk, improv, contemporary, stretch, strengthen and music theater.

405-242-4612 1217 E. Hefner Rd.


TOP 5 EVENTS April 7

FREE Open Streets OKC in the Uptown 23rd District

April 12 - 14

Family Camp Out at Arcadia Lake

April EVENTS CALENDAR

April 23 - 28

Festival of the Arts at Bicentennial Park

April 25 - 27

FREE Norman Music Festival in Downtown Norman

April 27

$1 Picnic Day at Chester’s Party Barn & Farm

CALENDAR SPONSORED BY

CRESTONERIDGE.COM


April 4

Montmartre Chalk Art Festival at the University of Science & Arts of Oklahoma (1727 W Alabama, Chickasha) features artists of a variety of ages, live music and more. Free to attend. 7:30am-1:30pm. 574-1302, usao.edu/ events/spring-triad-montmartre-2019 FREE Words + Crafts at the Mitch Park Pavilion (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features a fun art activity using nature and popular children’s books as inspiration. Preregister. Best suited for ages 2 & up. 10-11am. Also held: May 2. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com

FREE Open House & Tours at Sacred Heart Catholic School (210 S Evans Ave, El Reno). Prospective families can tour the campus and learn more about the school. 4:30-5:30pm. 2622284, www.elrenosacredheart.com 3D Archery at the MAC at Mitch Park (2733 Marilyn Williams Dr, Edmond). Learn how to shoot a compound safely at 3D targets from varying heights and distances. Preregister. Best suited for ages 8 & up. $4. 5:30-7pm. 3594630, www.edmondparks.com Cork & Canvas at Coles Garden (1415 NE 63rd St) features an evening of live music, appetizers, wine pairings and silent and live auction packages. Benefits Positive Tomorrows. For 21 & up. $50. 6-9pm. 556-0582, www.positivetomorrows.org

April 4 - 6

Oklahoma City Farm Show at State Fair Park’s Bennett Event Center (3101 Gordon Cooper Blvd) features the latest in agriculture equipment, horse-training seminars, cattle chute demonstrations and more. Free to attend. Thursday & Friday, 9am-5pm; Saturday, 9am-4pm. 507-4377969, www.oklahomacityfarmshow.com

FREE Native Crossroads Film Festival at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features films, music videos, documentaries, animations, short films and video game demonstrations. See website for show times. 3254712, www.nativecrossroads.org

April 4 - 7

“The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features a production based on the novel by Mark Haddon, adapted by Simon Stephens. $37 & up. Thursday & Friday, 7:30pm; Saturday, 1:30 & 7:30pm; Sunday 1:30pm. 594-8300, www.okcciviccenter.com

Therapeutic screenings are still free at the McCarty Center

April 4 - 8

Oklahoma City Dodgers vs San Antonio Missions at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle Dr). Prices vary. Thursday-Saturday, 7:05pm; Sunday, 2:05pm; Monday, 11:05am. Also held: 4/16-18 vs Omaha, 4/19-22 vs Iowa, 4/29-5/2 vs Round Rock. 218-1000, www.okcdodgers.com

April 5

FREE Little Hands Art Camp at the Edmond Library (10 S Boulevard, Edmond) features story time and tips for parents to encourage artsy fun at home. Preregister. Best suited for families with kids age 3 & under. 10 & 11am. 341-9282, www.metrolibrary.org Under the Big Top at Oklahoma City Farmers Market (311 S Klein Ave) features an evening of carnival games, hors d’oeuvre and exciting auction items. Benefits Calm Waters. $100 & up. 6:3010pm. 841-4800, www.calmwaters.org Oklahoma City Thunder vs Detroit Pistons at Chesapeake Energy Arena (100 W Reno Ave). Prices vary. 7pm. Also held: 4/9 vs Houston. 208-4800, www.nba.com/thunder

The J. D. McCarty Center for children with developmental disabilities conducts FREE therapeutic screenings of children who have unique challenges or a disability, or for parents who have concerns about their child’s development. Our screening team is composed of a pediatrician, nurse, social worker and psychology clinician. When the team has completed their screening process they will sit down with you to review what services are available for your child here at the McCarty Center as well as through other community, state and federal programs. Today, more than ever before, we are an important resource for Oklahoma parents. We have been working with children for 72-years to help them achieve their highest level of function and independence.

April 5 - 7

Medieval Fair of Norman at Reaves Park (2501 Jenkins Ave, Norman) features themed vendors, crafts, food, games, demonstrations and live entertainment. Free to attend; parking, $5. 10am-7pm. www.medievalfair.org

University of Oklahoma Baseball vs Texas Christian University at Dale Mitchell Park (401 Imhoff Rd, Norman). Prices vary. Friday, 6pm; Saturday, 2pm; Sunday, 1pm. Also held: 4/9&10 vs Texas Southern, 5/3-5 vs Texas Tech. 325-2424, www.soonersports.com

The screening is absolutely free-ofcharge. Call 405.307.2800 and ask to speak to a social worker for more information and to make your appointment.

J. D. McCarty Center

for children with developmental disabilities

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

19

2002 E. Robinson Norman, Oklahoma 73071 405.307.2800 or 1.800.777.1272 www.jdmc.org


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

Oklahoma State University Baseball vs West Virginia University at Allie P. Reynolds Stadium (701 N Duck. St, Stillwater). Prices vary. Friday, 6:05pm; Saturday, 2:05pm; Sunday, 1:05pm. Also held: 4/16 vs Dallas Baptist, 4/1820 vs Texas, 4/23 vs Oral Roberts. 877-All-4-OSU, www.okstate.com Oklahoma State University Softball vs University of Kansas at Cowgirl Stadium (598 N Duck St, Stillwater). Prices vary. Friday, 6:30pm; Saturday, 1pm; Sunday, noon. Also held: 4/16 vs Tulsa, 4/26-28 vs Texas Tech, 5/3 & 5 vs Oklahoma. 877-All-4-OSU, www.okstate.com University of Oklahoma Softball vs Baylor University at Marita Hynes Field (2500 S Jenkins Ave, Norman). Price vary. Friday, 6:30pm, Saturday, 7pm; Sunday, noon. Also held: May 4 vs Oklahoma State. 325-2424, www.soonersports.com

Through April 6

Just Between Friends Consignment Sale at State Fair Park’s Cox Pavilion (3212 Wichita Walk) features gently used toys, clothes, shoes and baby supplies at bargains up to 90% off retail prices. See website for discount days and hours. www.okc.jbfsale.com

April 6

Dogwood Days Festival in Downtown Idabel features vendors, children’s games, live entertainment, fair food, a barbecue cook off and more, celebrating the beautiful blooms of thousands of dogwood trees. Free to attend. 8am-4:30pm. 580-286-3305, www.idabelchamberofcommerce.com

Arcadia Lake Sweep at Spring Creek Park (SE 15th St, Edmond) features a workday to clean up the lake’s shores and parkland. Trash bags and cleanup assignments given at registration. Bring gloves and sunscreen. 8-11am. 216-7471, www.arcadialakeok.com Made in Oklahoma Festival in Seminole (Main St, Seminole) features food, wine, crafts and more made in Oklahoma as well as live entertainment, a poker run and more. Free to attend. 9am-4pm. 3823640, www.seminoleokchamber.org FREE Reading with a Ranger at the Norman West Library (300 Norman

20 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

Center Ct, Norman) features stories about the great outdoors and a craft with a National Park Ranger. 10-10:30am. 7012644, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org FREE Week of the Young Child Celebration at the Norman West Library (300 Norman Center Ct, Norman) features a musical performance, balloon artist and more. 10am-noon. 701-2644, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org FREE Saturday for Kids at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St). Hear intriguing tales about bison and other Western wildlife and create a craft to take home. For ages 4 – 12. Activities available while supplies last. Stories begin at 10:15, 10:45, 11:15 & 11:45am. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org Opening Day at Frontier City (11501 N I-35 Service Rd). Frontier City will be open for its 2019 season. 10:30am8pm. 478-2140, www.frontiercity.com Kids Fest at Cox Convention Center (1 Myriad Gardens) features hands-on activities at over 70 booths, face painting, roaming characters, a Maker’s Fair area, door prizes, stage entertainment and much more. Preregister, save on admission and receive other perks. Adults, $7; kids, free. 11am-4pm (last entry at 2:30pm). 601-2081, www.metrofamilymagazine.com/kidsfest/ FREE Earthfest at Martin Nature Park (5000 W Memorial Rd) features eco-friendly fun for the entire family including kids’ activities, nature games and more. 11am4pm. 297-1429, www.okc.gov Turkish Food and Art Festival at the Raindrop Turkish House (4444 N Classen Blvd) features traditional folk dances, art demonstrations and music as well as food and handmade arts and crafts for sale. Preregister. Free to attend. 11am-7pm. 702-0222, www.facebook.com/raindropokc FREE Family Day at the Ranch at Will Rogers Birthplace Ranch (9501 E 380 Rd, Oologah) features handson activities and demonstrations that illustrate everyday life on the ranch during Will Rogers’s childhood. 1-3pm. 800-324-9455, www.willrogers.com


Fantastic Contrasts, a concert by the OKC Philharmonic at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features a musical study with Gershwin’s jazzy and virtuosic rhapsodies for piano and orchestra contrasted with Shostakovich’s bombastic symphonic statement. $19 & up. 8pm. 594-8300, www.okcciviccenter.com

FREE Spaghetti Eddie Concert at The Village Library (10307 N Penn Ave, The Village) celebrating the re-opening of the library following renovations. All ages welcome. 2-3pm. 755-0710, www.metrolibrary.org FREE Hound Hunt at the Edmond Dog Park (E 33rd & Rankin, Edmond) features a pet-friendly egg hunt where dogs can sniff out eggs filled with dog treats. Attendees can also enjoy food trucks, doggie vendors and live music. 2-5pm. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com Men’s Gymnastics Championship at McCasland Fieldhouse (151 E Brooks St, Norman) features a meet for the division title. $10; youth, $8. 4pm. 325-2424, www.soonersports.com FREE PLS READS Movie at Sooner Theatre (101 E Main St, Norman) features a screening of the movie The Hate U Give (rated PG-13) and a brief introductory about the theme and film adaptation. 6-8pm. www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

Oklahoma City Energy vs Portland Timbers 2 at Taft Stadium (2501 N May Ave). $11 & up. 7:30pm. Also held: 4/20 vs Orange County SC, 5/4 vs Tacoma Defiance. 235-5425, www.energyfc.com

April 6 & 7

Redbud Classic at Nichols Hills Plaza (Avondale & Western Ave) features a 10/33/50 mile bike tour, 10k, 5k, 5K wheelchair event, two-mile walk & stroller derby and a kids’ fun run. Benefits Teach For America. Prices vary. See website for complete schedule. 842-8295, www.redbud.org

April 7

FREE Open Streets OKC in the

Uptown 23rd Street District (NW 23rd St between Robinson & Western Ave) features health and wellness activities, food trucks and more. Some city streets will be closed to motorized traffic to encourage active transportation. Noon4pm. www.openstreetsokc.com OKC Philharmonic Discovery Family Series: Schoolhouse Jamboree at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features hands-on activities and a family-friendly concert that explores music inspired by math, English, science and more. Pre-concert fun includes an Instrument Playground, Conductor’s Corner performers meet & greet and more. Activities, 1pm; concert, 2pm. 842-5387, www.okcphilharmonic.org/discovery

April 8 - 13

Kids Consignment Sale at Yukon Shopping Hills (1093 S Cornwell, Yukon) features gently used items for babies and children. Free to attend. MondayFriday, 8am-7pm; Saturday, 8am-4pm. www.kidsconsignmentsale.com

#1 RANKED CHEERLEADING & TUMBLING GYM IN OKLAHOMA

• 3 x USASF World Champs! • 3 x Summit Champs!

Family Favorites

• 25 x NCA National Champs! • 24 x National and over 100 x State PowerTumbing Champs! CLASSES & TEAMS - AGE 4 & UP ALL LEVELS Competitive & Non-Competitive Cheer & Tumbling Birthday Parties • Cheer and Tumble Clinics & Camps Edmond 405-775-9491 • Muskogee 918- 913-7833 Norman 405- 573-9974 • Tulsa 918-622-58673 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

21


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

April 9

Read Across Oklahoma at the Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St) features a day of storytelling, reading-related activities and more. Free with admission. 9am-1pm. 425-0262, www.okczoo.org

FREE Teen Terrarium Creations at the Norman East Library (3051 E Alameda, Norman). Learn how to build your own terrarium and explore how ecosystems work. Preregister. For ages 12-18. 6-7:30pm. 217-0770, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org American Girl Live at Rose State College Hudiburg Chevrolet Center (6000 S Trosper Pl, Midwest City) features a stage production of the all-new musical with original songs, new friends and iconic characters. $25.75 & up. 7pm. 594-8300, www.okcciviccenter.com

BISON TALES April 6 10:00 a.m. – Noon Hear intriguing tales about bison and create a craft to take home. Stories begin at 10:15, 10:45, 11:15 and 11:45 a.m.

FREE FOR THE FAMILY!

6 Guitars at OCCC Visual and Performing Arts Center Theater (7777 S May Ave) features a virtuosic performance by Chase Padgett as he becomes six different guitar players, highlighting their distinct voices and styles. $10 & up. 7:30pm. 682-7579, tickets.occc.edu

April 10

Autism Awareness Day at the Oklahoma State Capitol (2300 N Lincoln Blvd) features a resource fair on the fourth floor rotunda with organizations and service providers providing educational information to legislatures and families. Free to attend. 9am-1pm. 842-9995, www.autismcenterok.org FREE Seeds of Kindness at the Norman East Library (3051 E Alameda St, Norman). Kids ages 5-11 can decorate pots and plant flowers to donate to local senior centers. Preregister. 4-5pm. 2170770, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

April 11

1700 Northeast 63rd Street Oklahoma City, OK 73111 Mon – Sat, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Sun, Noon – 5:00 p.m. (405) 478-2250 nationalcowboymuseum.org/kids Program support provided by the Robert Glenn Rapp Foundation

Fishing 101 at Mitch Park Pond (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features an introduction to pond fishing including how to set up tackle, bait a hook and more. Everyone that signs up for this class will receive a free fishing pole and small tackle box courtesy of Cabela’s. Preregister. Best suited for ages 8 & up. $10. 5:30-7pm. 3594630, www.edmondparks.com

22 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

Uptown Uncorked at Tower Theatre (425 NW 23rd St) features music, drinks and food from restaurants in the district. $50-$75. 7-10pm. uptown23rd.com/uptownuncorked The Stray Cats & Lee Rocker at the OCCC Visual and Performing Arts Center Theater (7777 S May Ave) features a rockabilly music concert. $15 & up. 7:30pm. 682-7579, tickets.occc.edu

April 12

Easter Animal Enrichment Event at the Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St). Watch your favorite animals enjoy special Easter themed treats. Free with admission. 10am-2pm. 424-3344, www.okczoo.org FREE 2nd Friday Norman Art Walk in Downtown Norman (Main St, Norman) features a celebration of arts and creativity. Enjoy a variety of featured artists and art activities as well as live music and specials at local restaurants and businesses in the district. 6-9pm. www.2ndfridaynorman.com FREE LIVE on the Plaza in the Plaza District (1700 block of NW 16th St) features artists, live music, special events, local shopping and more. 6-10pm. www.plazadistrict.org/live/ FREE Movie Night @ the Park at the MAC Amphitheater (2733 Marilyn Williams Dr, Edmond) features an outdoor screening of Ferdinand. Concessions, $1. Movie begins at dark. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com

April 12 & 13

FREE American Ninja Warrior at the Oklahoma State Capitol (2300 N Lincoln Blvd) features a live taping of the obstacle course competition show on NBC. The show will be filmed in two sessions, one each night. Tickets are required. 8pm. on-camera-audiences. com/shows/American_Ninja_Warrior

Western Heritage Awards Weekend at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NW 63rd St) features a celebration of those whose works in literature, music, film and television reflect the significant stories of the American West. Reservations required. Prices vary. See website for schedule. 4782250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org


REGISTRATION OPEN NOW Southwest Street Rod Nationals at State Fair Park (3001 General Pershing Blvd) features Oklahoma’s largest gathering of pre-1984 automobiles and street rods with specialty automobiles, a street rod parade, swap meet, arts & crafts, children’s games and more. 13 & older, $19; Kids 6-12, $6; 5 & under, free. Friday & Saturday, 8am-5pm; Sunday, 8am1pm. 901-452-4030, www.nsra-usa.com Family Camp Out at Arcadia Lake (9000 E. 2nd St, Edmond) features outdoor activities including fishing, mountain biking, hiking and more. Set up and borrowed tents included. $60 per family of four. Friday, 6pm to Sunday, 11am. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com Sprint & Slalom National Team Trials on the Oklahoma River (800 Riversport Dr) features a three-day, allages competitive event. Free to attend; parking, $5. See website for schedule. 552-4040, www.riversportokc.org

April 13

FREE Oklahoma State University Flying Aggies Fly-In and Car Show at the Stillwater Airport (2020 N Airport Industries Access Rd, Stillwater) features static aircraft displays, a variety of vintage and contemporary cars, airplane rides, a kid’s zone and local vendors. 9am-1pm. 833-1730, www.flyingaggies.com/fly-in-car-show

FREE Easter Eggstravaganza at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church (308 NW 16th St) features an Easter story, games and an Easter egg hunt. For kids 2 years old - 5th grade. 9:30am. 3483292, www.holytrinityedmond.org FREE Community Easter Egg Hunts at Minnis Lakeview Park (12520 NE 36th St) features an Easter egg hunt and an appearance by the Easter Bunny. 1-3pm. 769-3301, www.communityhealthok.org Egg Hunt 5K at Stars and Stripes Park (3701 S Lake Hefner Dr) features an officially timed race with a twist! Racers will hunt eggs along the course. Kids ages 6-12 can participate in a half-mile course and kids 5 & under can hunt eggs in the Tiny Tot Egg Hunt. Preregister. $5-$35. 9:15am-noon. 2972279, www.facebook.com/OKCParks/

FREE Eggcellent Adventure at Natural Grocers (3325 South Boulevard, Edmond) features giveaways, alpacas from Just Right Alpacas, pet adoptions, egg coloring, an egg hunt and Easter treats for kids of all ages. 10am-3pm. 341-4700, www.naturalgrocers.com FREE Easter Egg Hunt at Crown Heights Nazarene Church (920 NW 46th St) features an Easter egg hunt, story time, craft, games and photos. For ages 1-12. A lunch will be served. 10am-1pm. 524-1903 WANDERLUST Pop Up Shops at the Wheeler Ferris Wheel (701 W Sheridan Ave) features 80 plus vendors and food trucks. 10am-5pm. 810-6977, www.revolve-productions.com FREE Moore Easter Egg Scramble at Buck Thomas Park (1903 NW 12th St, Moore) features age-divided egg hunts with prize eggs and candy. Bring your basket and camera for pictures with the Easter Bunny. Activities, 10am; hunts, 10:30am. 793-5000, www.cityofmoore.com

SUMMER BREAK

April 12 - 14

CAMP CONTEMPORARY

FREE Eggstravaganza at Mustang Town Center (1201 N Mustang Rd, Mustang) features an egg hunt with 25,000 eggs, inflatables, games, face painting, an appearance by the Easter Bunny and more. 10am-12:30pm. 3763411, www.cityofmustang.org/parksrec Super Saturdays at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features balloon animals, animal-themed yoga, crafts, scavenger hunts and more. 10am-2pm; food trucks, 11am-1pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu OEDA NEDA Walk at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a family-friendly walk benefiting the National Eating Disorders Association. Fundraising encouraged. 10am-1pm. 896-0599, www.okeatingdisorders.org FREE See You Saturdays at Oklahoma Hall of Fame (1400 Classen Dr) features themed experiences and learning opportunities for families to enjoy together including crafts and guided tours. All ages welcome. 10am-5pm. 235-4485, www.oklahomahof.com

May 28 - June 28 Fairgrounds Camps for 5- to 12-year-olds provide exciting studio experiences across artistic disciplines, including ceramics, robotics, installation, printmaking and more! Register at

okcontemp.org.

oklahomacontemporary.org METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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405.951.0000 | @okcontemporary 3000 General Pershing Blvd. OKC


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

FREE Arts Trek at the Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art (1900 W MacArthur St, Shawnee) features a family friendly arts adventure that combines an arts festival with a performance walk. Enjoy art displays, demonstrations, hands-on art activities, performers and food vendors. 11am-5pm. 878-5300, www.artstrek.org

Saturday, 4/20 & Sunday, 4/21

$

5 OFF

ALL-DAY PASS *In-Park purchase only. Does not apply online.

Pass Includes Unlimited Go-Karts, Climbing Wall, Rookie Karts, Frog Hopper, Bumper Cars, Miniature Golf, and Kidz Zone, amd 1 round of Laser Tag

WATER PARK OPENS 5/11! A ENJOY IT ALL WITH R PLATINUM PASS FO 99 ! $ 14 /MONTH

Includes Admission to the Water Park Daily, a 3-Hour Fun Park Wristband Every Day, and more! See website for details. ENJOY

2 NEW

ATTRACTI ONS FOR 2019 !

AndyAlligators.com (405) 321-7275 •

fit

3300 MARKET PL NORMAN, OK

FREE Covered in Color: Sidewalk Chalk Competition and Art Festival at Charles J. Johnson Central Park (S.E 29th Street and Mid-America Blvd) features a chalk competition, open chalk zones, live entertainment, art vendors, food trucks and more. 11am-4pm. 7398239, www.visitmidwestcity.com Oklahoma Sooners Spring Football Game at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium (1185 Asp Ave, Norman) features the annual spring game as well as pre-game activities. 2pm. 325-2424, www.soonersports.com FREE Second Saturday: Drop-in Studio at Oklahoma Contemporary (3000 General Pershing Blvd) features an artmaking project inspired by works of art on view at the museum. All children must be accompanied by an adult. 1-4pm. 9510000, www.oklahomacontemporary.org FREE Shawnee Redbud Festival at Celebration of Life Park (301 E Main St, Shawnee) features a free meal, live music, street vendors and performers. 5-8pm. www.facebook.com/SEFFShawnee/ Oklahoma Songwriters Festival at Tower Theatre (425 NW 23rd St) features a songwriter showcase where songwriters perform hits they’ve written and tell the stories behind the songs. $14-$40. 7pm. www.oklahomasongwritersfestival.com Carmina Burana at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features music selections such as “O Fortuna” and more performed by Canterbury’s ensemble of singers and a large orchestra. $15-$62. 7:30pm. 232-7464, www.canterburyokc.com/concerts/

April 13 & 14

Heavener Runestone Viking Festival at Heavener Runestone Park (18365 Runestone Rd, Heavener) features a variety of music, costumed Vikings, children’s activities, crafters and festival food. Costumes encouraged. $5; kids

24 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

(5 & under), free. 9am-5pm. 918-653-2241, www.facebook.com/HeavenerRunestone/ FREE Saviour: A Modern Oratorio at Crossings Community Church (14600 N Portland Ave) features a pop-classical oratorio which takes its audience from creation through resurrection. Tickets are required. 6-7:15pm. 3021258, crossings.church/saviour

April 14

FREE Easter Egg Hunt at Edmond First United Methodist Church (305 W Hurd, Edmond) features food trucks, an Easter egg hunt, inflatables and more. Bring blankets or lawn chairs. All ages welcome. 12:45pm. 341-0107, www.fumcedmond.org Plein Air Paint Out at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St). Join other art lovers in the Museum’s beautiful gardens during an open painting event. Bring your own art materials to capture a trail, scenic vista, portrait or water scene. Free with admission. All ages welcome. 1-4pm. 4782250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org FREE Open Streets Norman in West Norman (River Oaks Dr, Norman) features exercise demonstrations and wellness activities to encourage your family to get moving. City roads around the event will close to motorized traffic to encourage active transportation. 1-5pm. www.facebook.com/C4Tomorrow/ FREE Community Easter Egg Hunt at Kiwanis Park (1101 S Midwest Blvd, Midwest City) features a community Easter egg hunt for families with toddlers up to kids in 5th grade, hosted by Wickline United Methodist Church. 2-3pm. 732-0356, www.wickline.church

FREE Easter EggStravaganza at St. Matthew United Methodist Church (300 N Air Depot Blvd, Midwest City) features an Easter egg hunt for kids ages 2-12 and a bible school with games, crafts and more. 2-4pm. 732-6831, www.stmatthew.org FREE Family Easter Celebration at Church of the Servant (14343 N MacArthur Blvd) features inflatables, games and a helicopter egg drop (weather permitting). For toddlers through 5th grade. 3-5pm. 7214141, www.servantokc.org


FREE Easter Carnival at New Covenant United Methodist Church (2700 S Boulevard St, Edmond) features an afternoon of fun games, food, bounce houses, a photo booth, train rides, a petting zoo and more. All ages welcome. 3-5pm. 525-3200, www. newcov.tv/events/easter-carnival

April 16

FREE Llama Llama Red Pajama Party at the Belle Isle Library (5501 N Villa Ave, Bethany) features story time and llamathemed crafts and activities. Pajamas are encouraged. For kids ages 12 & under. 6-7pm. 843-9601, www.metrolibrary.org

FREE Earth Day Seed Bombs at the Choctaw Library (2525 Muzzy St, Choctaw). Make seed bombs to grow in your garden. All ages welcome.9:3011:30am. 390-8418, www.metrolibrary.org

April 16 - 20

89ers Days Celebration in Downtown Guthrie (various locations) features a

carnival, parade, 1889-style baseball game, Chuckwagon Feed and more. Most events are free. See website for schedule of events. 282-2589, www.89erdays.com

April 17

FREE TLC (Touch, Learn, Create) Bugs at Southwest Oklahoma City Library (2201 SW 134th St) features themed sensory activity stations for children ages 2-6. 10-11:30am. 9792200, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

Revenge of the Plants at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave). Learn about some of the wackiest vegetation in the world—carnivorous plants. Each child will take a small carnivorous plant home. Preregister. Best suited for ages 8 - 11. Members, $12; nonmembers, $15. 6-7pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org FREE Eggstravaganza at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features a spring party of Jurassic proportions, complete with spring crafts,

face painting, an egg hunt and more. In addition to the activities, museum exhibits will be available for viewing. 4-7pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu

April 18

FREE Crime Teen Investigation: The Body in the Library at the Choctaw Library (2525 Muzzy St, Choctaw). Analyze footprints and fingerprints, examine evidence and compile clues to find out who’s responsible for the body in the library. For ages 9 & up. 4-5:30pm. 390-8418, www.metrolibrary.org Sensory Easter Night at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features festive booths for children to visit and collect eggs. The Easter Bunny will have a designated spot for photos throughout the evening. Preregister. Best suited for families with children with sensory sensitivities under age 12. Siblings welcome. Members, $10; nonmembers, $12. 6-8pm. 4457080, www.myriadgardens.org

If your child struggles to read, write, or pay attention, it could be a learning difference. Trinity School’s mission is to provide a safe and nurturing educational experience for children with learning differences through programs designed to meet each student’s specific needs.

Summer Intensive July 8-19

Monday-Friday, Grades K-12

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Summer Fun! 321 NW 36th St., Oklahoma City, OK 73118

(405) 525-5600 www.trinityschoolokc.org

Visit our website for more information! Open Enrollment! Call today to schedule a tour! METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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FACT:

It takes four weeks to go from egg, larva, pupa to adult.

CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

Prairie-to-Table Dining at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features a special prairie-themed menu prepared by the Petroleum Club of Oklahoma City. Reservations required. Members, $55; nonmembers, $65. 6-8pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org FREE Snakes! Class at the Warr Acres Library (5901 NW 63rd St) features a presentation with live snakes. Larry Daniels from the Oklahoma Herpetological Society will present information about caring for snakes as pets and instruction on recognizing venomous and poisonous snakes. 6:307:30pm. 721-2616, www.metrolibrary.org Mysteries of the Overholser Mansion Tour at the Henry Overholser Mansion (405 NW 15th St) features an after-hours tour of the mansion with the chance to examine archival materials and hear some amazing stories. Preregister. $20. 7-8:30pm. 525-5325, www.okhistory.org Day of Remembrance at the Oklahoma City National Memorial (620 N Harvey Ave) features a ceremony to remember those who were killed, those who survived and those changed forever by the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. No admission charged for the ceremony. 8:45am. 235-3313, www. oklahomacitynationalmemorial.org

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Infants – Private Kindergarten & After School

Primrose School of Edmond 15000 N. Western Ave. Edmond, OK 73013 405.285.6787 PrimroseEdmond.com Each Primrose school is a privately owned and operated franchise. Primrose Schools® and Balanced Learning® are registered trademarks of Primrose School Franchising Company. ©2017 Primrose School Franchising Company. All rights reserved. See primroseschools.com for ‘fact’ source and curriculum detail.

Outdoor Adventure Days at the MAC at Mitch Park (2733 Marilyn Williams Dr, Edmond) features outdoor adventure activities including rock climbing, hiking, mountain biking and more. Participants will go off-site for some activities. Preregister. Best suited for ages 8-17. $25. 9am-5:30pm. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com FREE Cox Community Day at the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum (620 N Harvey Ave) features free admission to the museum for all visitors. 10am-6pm. 235-3313, www. oklahomacitynationalmemorial.org FREE Norman’s Community Egg and Candy Hunt at Andrew’s Park (201 N Daws St, Norman) features pictures with the Easter Bunny, inflatables, family activities and age-divided hunts for ages 8 & under. Activities, 5:30pm; Hunt, 6:30pm. 366-5472, www.normanfun.com

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METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

April 19 & 20

Stillwater Arts Festival in Downtown Stillwater (various locations) features juried artists, a food court, artist demonstrations, children’s activity area and live entertainment. Free to attend. Saturday, 10am-6pm; Sunday, 11am5pm. 747-8070, www.stillwater.org

Visionaries: A Triple Bill by the Oklahoma City Ballet at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features three selections showcasing contemporary and classic ballet styles. $15-$65. Friday & Saturday, 8pm; Sunday, 2pm. 848-8637, www.okcballet.org

April 19 - May 3

The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales at Oklahoma Children’s Theatre (2501 N Blackwelder Ave) features an adaptation of Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith’s children’s book of fractured fairy tales. Best suited for ages 5 & up. Adults, $11; kids (2-12), $9. See website for show times. 951-0011, www.oklahomachildrenstheatre.org

April 20

The Great Egg Hunt at Yukon High School (1777 S Yukon Parkway, Yukon) features an Easter egg hunt, food trucks, inflatables, live bunnies, costumed characters, photo booth, pictures with the Easter Bunny and giveaways. All ages welcome. 9am-noon; hunts, 11am. 3542436, www.facebook.com/discoveryokc/

Natural Easter Egg Dyes at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave). Learn some history about plant dyes and the tradition of Easter egg dyeing while also discovering how the colors are made. Preregister. Best suited for ages 6-10. Members, $12; nonmembers, $15. 10-11:30am. 4457080, www.myriadgardens.org FREE Games in the Park at the Southern Oaks Recreation Center (6818 S Walker Ave) features bean bag toss, washers, potato sack races, horseshoes, face painting and more. Participants are welcome to bring their own games to share. All ages welcome. 10am-noon. 631-5441, www.okc.gov Happy Hoppy Easter Party at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features age-divided Easter egg hunts, games, crafts, refreshments and pictures


with the Easter Bunny. Preregister. For ages 2-8. Preregister, a limited number of spots are available. 10am1pm. Members, $10, Non-members $12 (includes a free ride on Mo’s Carousel). 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org FREE Community Easter Egg Hunt and Cookout at New Life UMC (1105 NW 27th St, Moore) features an Easter egg hunt, free food, games and pictures with the Easter Bunny. Noon-2pm; hunt, 12:30pm. 794-8393, www.moorenewlife.org Funny Bunny Easter Egg Hunt for Dogs at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a pooch-centered hunt with doggie treats and puppy prize filled eggs. Preregister. Pets must be on a leash and have proof of current vaccinations. 2-3pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org FREE Community Easter Egg Hunt hosted by First Baptist Church of Edmond at Mitch Park (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features Easter egg hunts with over 35,000 eggs, bubbles, face painting,

food trucks, crafts and more. 4-6pm. 341-0253, www.fbcedmond.org/easter Easter Run at The Cube at Council Road Baptist Church (7903 NW 30th St, Bethany) features a 10K, 5K and a fun walk as well as free family fun including inflatable games, Easter egg hunts, face painting and food trucks. Benefits The House of Healing. $15-$35. 9am-noon. 401-2661, www.house-of-healing.org

FREE Easter Egg Hunt at Pawnee Bill Ranch and Museum (1141 Pawnee Bill Rd, Pawnee) features an Easter egg hunt spread out over acres of the historic site. The hunt begins with Pawnee Bill (portrayed by Kevin Webb) firing his pistol. For kids 12 & under. 10am-12:30pm. 918-762-2513, www.okhistory.org/pawneebill

Easter on the Green at Will Rogers Park (3400 NW 36th St) features egg hunts, face painting, Easter plantings, crafts and picture with the Easter bunny. Preregister. All ages welcome. $2. 9am-noon; hunts, 9:30 & 11am. www.okc.gov/parksignup

FREE Choctaw’s Annual Easter Egg Hunt at Choctaw Creek Park (2001 N Harper Rd, Choctaw) features an agedivided egg hunt for kids 12 & under with 15,000 candy-filled eggs, an Easter Bonnet contest, pictures with the Easter Bunny, inflatables and more. 10am1pm. 281-6854, www.choctawcity.org

FREE Easter Celebration at the Chickasaw Cultural Center (867 Cooper Memorial Rd, Sulphur) features an Easter egg hunt and a variety of activities including games, stomp dance, cultural demonstrations and family-friendly films. 10am-5pm; hunts, 1pm. 580-622-7130, www.chickasawculturalcenter.com

FREE Easter Egg Hunt and Carnival at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church (10600 N Council Rd) features an egg hunt and Easter carnival with a cupcake walk, face painting, balloon artists, petting zoo, pony rides, two moon bounces and lunch. All ages welcome. 10amnoon. 721-0590, www.stpaulsokc.com

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CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

Earth Day Celebration at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl) features fun and educational children’s activities to celebrate Earth Day. Free with admission. 11am-2pm. 6026664, www.sciencemuseumok.org Easter Eggstravaganza at Orr Family Farm (14400 S Western Ave) features Easter egg hunts, photos with the Easter Bunny as well as the farm’s regular attractions. $11.50 & up. 11am-4pm. 799-3276, www.orrfamilyfarm.com

Swim Lessons at Goldfish are for ALL Kids! For parents who have children with special needs, it may be difficult to find a recreational, physical and meaningful activity that focuses on your child’s ability rather than their disability. Swimming is an ideal activity because it can showcase special abilities or hidden talents in each student. Our small class sizes allow your child to receive individualized attention and develop fine motor skills while improving social skills and having fun!

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FREE Easter Egg Hunt at Western Oaks Christian Church (8100 NW 23rd St) features age-divided Easter Egg Hunts, a bounce house, face painting, crafts and cotton candy. All ages welcome. 11am12:30pm. 789-8812, www.woccdoc.org Party for the Planet at the Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St) features a family-fun Earth Day celebration with live entertainment, Keeper Connections, interactive scavenger safari for kids, hands-on activities and more. Free with admission. 11am3pm. 424-3344, www.okczoo.org Earth Day Celebration at SixTwelve (612 NW 29th St) features a cakewalk bake off, community trash free potluck, seed & plant exchange and a dance party. Free to attend. 11am. 2088291, www.facebook.com/612okc/ FREE Easter Eggstravaganza at God of No Limits Family Ministries (7200 S Walker Ave) features free food, games and prizes. 1-3pm. 6058657, www.godofnolimits.com FREE Midtown Walkabout in Midtown Oklahoma City (various locations). Area merchants will be providing specials, discounts, in-store activities and promotions, and giveaways. 2-6pm. downtownokc.com/midtown-walkabout/ FREE Ruff Ruffman’s Sensational Science Camp at the Warr Acre Library (5901 NW 63rd St) features fun, handson activities with Ruff Ruffman and his friends using science inquiry and engineering design processes. Preregister. For ages 12 & under. 2:30-3:30pm. 721-2616, www.metrolibrary.org FREE Easter Egg Hunt at Crown Heights Christian Church (4020 N

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Western Ave) features a family-friendly Easter egg hunt for kids in up to 5th grade and dessert. 3-4:30pm. 5285568, www.crownheights.church FREE Lil Al’s Chef Club at the Almonte Library (2914 SW 59th St). Learn how to make some eggscellent, springtime treats that anybunny can make. Preregister. For kids ages 5 - 12. 3-4:15pm. 606-3575, www.metrolibrary.org FREE Heard on Hurd Street Fest in Edmond (Broadway between 1st & Hurd, Edmond) features local food, unique shopping and live music. 6-10pm. www. citizensedmond.com/heardonhurd.htm FREE Easter Egg Hunt at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church (2501 N. Blackwelder, OKC & 900 N Sooner Rd, Edmond) features an Easter egg hunt, inflatables and more for families with children from ages 1 - 5th grade. 10am. www.stlukesokc.org

April 20 & 21

FREE Easter Land at People’s Church (various locations) features a one-weekend theme park with carnival rides, a petting zoo, Easter egg hunts and more. Kids need to be checked into PC Kids class to get a wristband for Easter Land. See website for schedule & locations. www.easterland.tv

April 21

FREE Easter Celebration at Nichols Hills United Methodist Church (1212 Bedford Dr, Nichols Hills) features an Easter celebration with worship services and an Easter egg hunt. All ages welcome. Services, 8:30 & 10:50am; hunt, 10:15am. 842-1486, www.nicholshillsumc.org

FREE Easter Activities at Winners Church (16000 N Western Ave, Edmond) features an Easter egg hunt for toddlers and kids ages 3-18 with eggs filled with candy and prizes, refreshments and a worship experience. Hunt; 4pm; Worship, 5pm. 822-5911, www.winners-church.com FREE Easter in Edmond Services at New Covenant United Methodist Church (2700 S Boulevard, Edmond) features an Easter worship experience with live music and an inspiring Easter message. Childcare available for children 4 & under. 8:45, 11:00, & 11:03am. 562-3200, www.newcov.tv


April 22

FREE Norman Children’s Chorus Chamber Choir at Norman West Library (300 Norman Center Ct, Norman). Hear songs about spring, animals, tongue twisters and nursery rhymes. All ages welcome. 6:30-7pm. 701-2644, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

April 23 - 28

Festival of the Arts at Bicentennial Park (500 Couch Dr) features over 200 artists, food, entertainment and more. Benefits Arts Council Oklahoma City’s year-round, free and low-cost programming. Free to attend. TuesdaySaturday, 11am-9pm; Sunday, 11am-6pm. 270-4848, www.ArtsCouncilOKC.com

April 25

FREE Escape Thanos at the Midwest City Library (8143 W Reno Ave, Midwest City). Discover clues, solve puzzles and open the lock to help the Avengers defeat Thanos once and for all. For ages 12 & up. 4-5pm. 732-4828, www.metrolibrary.org FREE Off-road Mountain Biking at Mitch Park (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond). Ride the trails of Mitch Park with the Oklahoma Fliers. Preregister. Best suited for ages 8 & up. 5:30-7pm. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com

FREE Duct Tape Creations at the Bethany Library (5901 NW 63rd St, Warr Acres) features a craft time to create a variety of projects using duct tape. Supplies provided. Preregister. For kids 9 & up. 6:30-8pm. 7212616, www.metrolibrary.org

CRAZY FAMILY SCHEDULE? SAVE TIME WITH THESE HEALTHY HACKS. Your family is on the go, but that doesn’t mean your health has to slow down. Try these 25 hacks to help your family stay healthy. Try these to get started:

MAKE A SMOOTH MOVE. Freeze smoothie packs ahead of time to make snack time a breeze. Less prep time means more time to chill out.

BE PROACTIVE.

FREE Ping Pong Mania at The Station at Central Park (700 S Broadway Ave, Moore) features a family friendly evening of Ping Pong. All experience levels welcome. Best suited for ages 6 & up. 7:30-9:30pm. 793-5090, centralpark.cityofmoore.com

April 25 - 27

FREE Norman Music Festival in Downtown Norman (Main St & Jones Ave, Norman) features a three-day independent music festival with more than 300 performers at indoor & outdoor venues. www.normanmusicfestival.com

Store active wear in your car in case an adventure pops up — like a trip to the park!

MAKE TWO, FREEZE ONE. Free up time by doubling your recipes. Eat one and pop one in the freezer for a busy night! Hungry for more hacks? Get all 25 at

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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SUMMER IS COMING

CATCH

Wave THE

CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

April 25 - 28

RexFest in Downtown Oklahoma City (Sheridan & Walker Ave) features an interactive art exhibit called a luminarium created by Architects of Air (AoA). Visitors can walk through the inflatable sculpture, which disperses light and color while creating a sense of wonder. Benefits the Foundation for OKCPS to benefit art programs in OKCPS schools. Adults, $10; kids, $8. Thursday-Saturday, 10am-7pm; Sunday, 8am-5pm. rexfest@johnrexpta.org

April 26

SMO 21 at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl) features a cash bar, themed activities and experiences as well as access to the museum’s permanent exhibits and the museum’s cafe. $21-$25. 6:30-10pm. 602-6664, www.sciencemuseumok.org/smo21

Safari Soirée at Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St) features food, drinks and animal experiences. Benefits the zoo’s conservation efforts. $75 & up. 7-11pm. 425-0618, www.zoofriends.org

April 26 & 27

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Family Invertebrate Fossil Field Trip at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features a close-up look at some of the museum’s invertebrate specimens and an exploration of a fossil site with marine fossils you can take home. Best suited for ages 7 & up. Preregister, space is limited. Members, $100; nonmembers, $120. Friday, 6pm; Saturday, 9am. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu

April 26 & 27

Rain: A Tribute to the Beatles at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features a production that brings the greatest hits of the epic recording to life, in addition to early Beatles favorites. $21.73 & up. Friday, 8pm; Saturday, 2 & &pm. 594-8300, www.okcbroadway.com Red Fern Festival in Downtown Tahlequah (Muskogee Ave, Tahlequah) features hound dog field trails, children’s activities, car show, a chili cook-off, live music, vintage plane fly-in and more. Attendees can also tour some of the famous locations from the

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30 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

novel. Friday, noon; Saturday, 9am7pm. www.redfernfestival.com

April 26 - 28

Iron Thistle Scottish Festival at Mollie Spencer Farm (1001 S Garth Brooks Blvd, Yukon) features Traditional Scottish heavy athletics, bagpipe and Celtic bands, dance groups, vendors, Scottish and American cuisine, kids’ activities and more. 10 & older, $8; 9 & under, free. Friday, 6:30pm; Saturday, 10am6pm; Sunday, 10am-5pm. 834-1876, www.unitedscotsok.com/iron-thistle/

April 27

Moore Arts and Crafts Marketplace at Moore’s Central Park (700 S Broadway Ave, Moore) features local vendors selling handmade items and other types of arts and crafts. Free to attend. 9am-3pm. 7394332, www.cityofmoore.com/centralpark Family Workshop: Microworlds at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features Explore the hidden parts of soil and dive into the microscopic world of nature. Member, $6; nonmember, $8. 10-11:30am. 4457080, www.myriadgardens.org Gardening with Worms at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a hands-on lesson about what should and should not be added to make compost healthy and safe to use. Participants will also get to create their very own “worm hotel,” complete with worms, to take home. Be ready to get a little dirty! Preregister. Best suited for ages 6-10. Members, $7; nonmembers, $9. 1-2pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org Indie Trunk Show at State Fair Park’s Pavilion (3001 General Pershing Blvd) features more than 200 local artists, crafters, makers and boutiques. $7. 10am-5pm. 6403964, www.indietrunkshowokc.com FREE Family Health Fair at the Village United Methodist Church (2501 W Britton Rd) features health screenings, child car seat checks, Tai Chi demos, chair massages, healthy cooking demos, bounce house, giveaways and more. 10am-2pm. 751-8116, www.villagemethodist.org


Trashy “You look a little tire-d, pick-up can I give you a lift?” line #34

Sell. Buy. Repeat. SELL THE TOYS, CLOTHES AND EQUIPMENT YOUR KIDS HAVE OUTGROWN FOR CASH TODAY. SAVE ON THE BRANDS YOU TRUST WITH OUR EVERYDAY LOW PRICES!

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CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

Happy Hour ! Mondayshoes

ling & S 1/2 Price Bow se. Every Open to Clo Monday!

TEDxYouth@OKC at Oklahoma City University Meinders School of Business (NW 27th St & McKinley Ave) features speakers representing 17 different Oklahoma high schools addressing topics such as education, mental health, personal development and wellness. The event will also include a variety of workshops addressing these same topics. $15-$30. 10am-4pm. 520-812-9710, tedxyouthokc.com FREE Steamroller Print Fest at Artspace at Untitled (1 NE 3rd St) features artist demonstrations, printmaking, food trucks, live music, hands-on kids’ activities and more. 10am-6pm. 815-9995, www.1ne3.org FREE Chess Workshop with the Moore Chess Club at the Moore Library (225 S Howard Ave, Moore). Sharpen your chess playing skills with the members of the community group. All ages welcome. 1-4pm. ishkissenger@gmail.com

Ask about our party packages!

I’m Not Running at OCCC Visual and Performing Arts Center Theater (7777 South May Ave) features a broadcasted production in partnership with National Theatre Live. $15. 6pm. 682-7579, tickets.occc.edu

Family Fun Night at Kickingbird Golf Club (1600 E Danforth Rd, Edmond). Play 9 holes with the family with special junior tees and a putting course. $8 green fee; $8 carts. 5pm. 341-5350, www.kickingbirdgolf.com

May 2

FREE Kites Over Enid Festival at Autry Technology Center (1201 W Willow Blvd, Enid) features two days of kite flying action including demonstrations by experienced kiters. 10am-4pm. 580-233-3643, www. visitenid.org/visitors/kitesoverenid/

April 28

Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon in Downtown Oklahoma City (various

Midtown OKC

421 NW 10th | 405.609.3302 dustbowlok.com

Celtic Woman at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features a performance by Celtic Woman celebrating Ireland’s rich musical and cultural heritage. $39 & up. 3pm. 297-2264, www.okcciviccenter.com

April 30

April 27 & 28

n at 4P M Mon Open a -Fri t 11AM Sat & S un

FREE Earth Day Festival at Reaves Park (2501 Jenkins Ave, Norman) features family fun activities teaching the importance of protecting our earth including hands-on art projects, musical entertainment, mascots, pet adoption and more. Noon-5pm. 3665473, www.normanfun.com

FREE Festival’s Got Talent at Bicentennial Park (500 Couch Dr) features a talent competition for children grades K-12. Performers are preselected from auditions happening before the festival begins. 3:30-5pm. 270-4848, www. artscouncilokc.com/festival-of-the-arts/

FREE YMCA Healthy Kids Day at the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City (various locations) features games, healthy cooking demonstrations, arts, crafts and more. See website for locations and times. ymcaokc.org/healthy-kids-day

Our Hour s Ope

locations) features a Boston qualifying USATF-sanctioned 26.2 mile single loop marathon as well as a relay, half marathon, 5K and kids’ marathon. Prices vary. 6:30am. www.okcmarathon.com

32 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

Basic Kayaking at Mitch Park (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond). Learn the basics of this water sport. Preregister. Best suited for ages 8 & up. $4. 5:30-7pm. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com

FREE Words + Crafts at the Mitch Park Pavilion (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features a fun art activity using nature and popular children’s books as inspiration. Preregister. Best suited for ages 2 & up. 10-11am. 3594630, www.edmondparks.com My Favorite Murder Live at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features a live production of the hit true crime comedy podcast hosted by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark. $37.50-$57.50. 8pm. 5948300, www.okcciviccenter.com

May 3 & 4

Oklahoma Home Educators Convention at Cox Convention Center (1 Myriad Gardens) features speakers and workshops designed to equip, inform and encourage both new and


experienced home educators in their home educating journey. This year’s keynote speaker is Israel Wayne. $60-$70. Friday, 8am-6:30pm; Saturday, 9am5:30pm. 810-0386, www.ochec.com

May 3 & 4

El Reno Fried Onion Burger Day at Downtown El Reno (various locations) features world’s largest fried onion hamburger, carnival rides, games, live entertainment and more. $10; entry is free on Saturday. Friday, 5:30-10pm; Saturday, 10am-5pm. elrenoburgerday.com

May 3

Space Day Celebration at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl) features hands-on activities and live demonstrations at the museum, in addition to the permanent exhibits Destination Space with real NASA artifacts and the Mercury Capsule Simulator. Free with admission. 9am-2pm. 6026664, www.sciencemuseumok.org

May 3 - 5

FREE Cinco de Mayo en Calle Dos Cinco Celebration in the Historic Capitol Hill District (Harvey Ave, 25th & 24th St) features a family-friendly, cultural street festival with live entertainment, food trucks, salsa tasting contest, traditional Mexican dress show and more. 6-9pm. 632-0133, www.HistoricCapitolHill.com

FREE Arts Festival in Downtown Edmond (30 W 1st St; between Second & Campbell St, Edmond) features more than 100 artist booths, food vendors, live music, painting demonstrations, children’s area and more. Friday & Saturday, 10am-8pm; Sunday, 11am-5pm. 249-9391, downtownedmondok.com Norman Native American Frontier Days in Norman (various locations) features a parade, trail ride, Native flute demonstrations, pow wow, rodeo and car show. Some events are free to attend. See website for a complete schedule. www.facebook.com/NNAFD2019

WIC Can Help

BALANCE

Your Family’s Nutrition And Help Your MONEY Go Further

Rose Rock Music Festival in Downtown Noble (304 S Main St, Noble) features a carnival, art and craft vendors, festival food, live music, parade, car show and more. Free to attend. Friday, 5pm; Saturday & Sunday, 10am. nobleok. org/rose-rock-music-festival/ USRowing Central Youth Championship on the Oklahoma River (800 Riversport Dr) features two days of spirited racing from top junior crews from the region. Free to attend. See website for schedule. 552-4040, www.riversportokc.org/events

May 4

FREE Comic Book Day at participating retailers (various locations). Participating retailers across the country offer a free comic book to introduce new readers to the comic book medium. See website for locations. www.freecomicbookday.com

FREE Family Bike Ride at Mitch Park (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features a safety talk and family bike ride the park. 8:30am. 359-4796, www.edmondok.com

Preservation Oklahoma is proud to advocate for the places where Oklahoma history lives. Oklahoma City is full of rich history with iconic structures that are worth saving.

WIC or Women Infants & Children is a USDA Food and Nutrition Service federally funded supplemental feeding program administered by WCD Enterprises, Inc.

ELIGIBILITY

• Pregnant women • Women with a baby mostly breastfeeding up to 1 year old • Women with a baby up to 6 months old • Infants • Children up to 5 years old

RJ Edwards House

First Christian Church

Fire Station #10

Why not call to see if your family qualifies?

1-800-492-3942

Visit www.wcdwic.org for more information. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Help preserve Oklahoma City's historic structures by visiting preservationok.org/advocate @PreservationOK #PastToTheFuture

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

33


Weekly EVENTS CALENDAR

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FREE Wheeler Criterium at Wheeler Park (1701 S Western Ave) features biking racing, live music and food trucks. Tuesdays, 5-8pm. www.wheelerdistrict.com

a nature-themed story time. Preregister. Thursdays & Saturdays, 10:30-11:15am. 297-1429, www.okc.gov/parksignup

FREE Art Adventures at Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art (555 Elm, Norman) for ages 3-5. Young artists are invited to experience art through books. Tuesdays, 10:30am. 325-3272, www.ou.edu/fjjma

FREE Mother Goose on the Loose Story Time at the Piedmont Library (1129 Stout St NW, Piedmont) features a variety of activities such as rhymes, songs, puppets and instruments. For ages birth to 3. Fridays, 10am. 3739018, www.piedmont.okpls.org

Family Skate Night at Skate Galaxy (5800 NW 36th St). Admission includes basic skate rental. (Family package coupon available at www. metrofamilymagazine.com/coupons). $6. Thursdays, 7-10pm; Sundays, 6-8pm. 605-2758, www.skategalaxyokc.com

FREE Littles Story Time at Commonplace Books (1325 N Walker Ave) features a half-hour, all-ages story time. Saturdays, 10:30am. 534-4540, www.commonplacebooksokc.com

Fortnite Dance Party at the MAC at Mitch Park (2733 Marilyn Williams Dr, Edmond). Learn dances from the popular game Fortnite during a onehour class taught by young teens. For ages 3-17. Parents welcome to stay. Preregister. $7. 4:30-5:30pm Tuesdays. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com FREE Preschool Story Time at the Mabel C. Fry Public Library (1200 Lakeshore Dr, Yukon) for ages 3 to kindergarten. Tuesdays, 11:30am. 354-8232, www.yukonok.gov/citydepartments/mabel-c-fry-public-library/ FREE Reading Wednesdays Story Time at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a nature-themed story time and craft activity. Best suited for ages 2-5. Walkups welcome. Wednesdays, 10am. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org Early Explorers at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl) features come & go, hands-on science activities for kids ages 6 & under. No registration required. Free with admission. Wednesdays, 10-11am. 602-6664, www.sciencemuseumok.org Toddler Story & Craft Time at Unpluggits Paint & Play (575 Enterprise Dr, Ste 110) features a short story time and age appropriate craft. Free with admission. Wednesdays & Thursdays, 11-11:30am. 340-7584, www.unpluggits.com FREE Nature Tales at Martin Park Nature Center (5000 W Memorial Rd) features an activity time for kids ages 2 to 7 with

Where do you

find help

FREE Story Time at Barnes and Noble (13800 N May Ave) features a special story time with games and occasionally costumed characters. Saturdays, 11am. 755-1155, stores.barnesandnoble.com

when you’re one in a million?

FREE Learn to Skate Lesson at Skate Galaxy (5800 NW 36th St) features a FREE roller skating lesson. No sign up required. Skate rentals start at $2. All ages welcome. Saturdays, noon. 6022758, www.skategalaxyokc.com

900,000

FREE Crafts for Kids at Lakeshore Learning (6300 N May Ave) features crafts for kids ages 3 & up. No reservations necessary. Saturdays, 11am-3pm. 8588778, www.lakeshorelearning.com FREE Storytime & Activities at the Norman Barnes & Noble (540 Ed Noble Parkway, Norman) features a themed story time and related activity. Saturdays, 11-11:45am. 5798800, stores.barnesandnoble.com Discovery Time at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features interactive, hands-on activities such as stories, crafts and discovery table specimens. For preschool & elementary-aged kids. Free with admission. Sundays, 2:30pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu FREE Moore Chess Club at the Moore Library (225 S Howard Ave, Moore). Learn to play or improve your skills with other local players. All ages and skill levels welcome. Sundays, 1-4pm. ishkissenger@gmail.com

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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Ongoing EVENTS CALENDAR

Through May 26

Ansel Adams and the Photographers of the West at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features works by Adams and other photographers such as Edward Weston, Brett Weston, Eliot Porter, Laura Gilpin, Philip Hyde and William Garnett. Adults, $12, kids, (6-18), $10; kids (5 & under), free. Wednesday-Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 236-3100, www.okcmoa.com


All exhibits are free with admission unless otherwise stated. Admission to the venues is listed. Through April 27

FREE William “Frank” Flood’s Tool Chest at the Moore-Lindsay Historic House Museum (508 N Peters Ave, Norman) features the carpentry and construction tools of early Norman resident Frank Flood. Flood was a builder, carpenter, contractor and university instructor who lived in Norman from 1892-1915. Tuesday Saturday, 11am-noon & 1-4pm. 321-0156, www.normanmuseum.org

Through April 28

FREE Against the Grain: Furniture Works of Art at Myriad Gardens Visitor Center (301 W Reno Ave) features the work of Oklahoma artist Zach True Hammack. Building on a love for art and design and a passion for their family’s Native American heritage, Hammack using salvaged and reclaimed wood so every piece has a backstory. Monday Saturday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, 11am-5pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org

April 3 - 28

Bright Star at Lyric’s Plaza Theatre (1727 NW 16th St) features an ensemble of onstage musicians and dancers and a powerful tale of love, life, and hope set against the rich backdrop of the 1920s and ‘40s American South. Recommended for pre-teens and older. $25-$55. See website for show times. 524-9312, www.lyrictheatreokc.com

Through May 12

Off the Wall at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features a detailed look at one hundred years of sculpture. Adults, $12; kids (6-18), $5; kids (5 & under), free. WednesdaySaturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon5pm. 236-3100, www.okcmoa.com

Winged Tapestries: Moths At Large at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features the art of Jim Des Rivieres. Adults, $8; kids (4-17), $5; kids (3 & under), free. MondaySaturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, 1-5pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu Ancient. Massive. Wild. – The Bison Exhibit at the National Cowboy &

Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) celebrates the history and significance of the United States’ first national mammal and highlights the importance of its preservation and conservation. The exhibit features interactive experiences that combine history, artifacts and hands-on activities. Adults, $12.50, students, $9.75; kids (6-12), $5.75; kids (5 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

Through May 19

Artster Oklahoma at the Oklahoma Hall of Fame (1400 Classen Dr) features artists Michelle LaVasque and Espanta Steppe as they connect with other Oklahoma artists. The artists are the central focus of the exhibit that chronicles the artists in their studios. Adults, $7; kids (6-17), $5, kids (5 & under), free. TuesdayFriday, 9am-5pm; Saturday, 10am-5pm. 235-4458, www.oklahomahof.com

Book a Free Field Trip for your school, church, or day care today!

Through June 30

Will Work For... A Mike Wimmer Project at the Oklahoma History Center (800 Nazih Zudhi) features 17 portraits of models holding the iconic cardboard sign that completes the phrase “Will Work For …” He asked people of every social group what they would work for; what inspires them as individuals to sacrifice their lives, their labor and their love enough that they will work for it. Free with admission. Adults, $7, kids (6-18); kids (5 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm. 521-2491, www.okhistory.org

Through July 14

Horseplay at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features Tom Lovell’s sketches and studies of this Western icon. The rarely seen prep work reveals how Lovell, known as America’s preeminent horse trainer, developed ideas and practiced movement, anatomy, proportion and personality. Watch horses take shape across mediums and styles. Adults, $12.50; students, $9.75; kids (6-18), $5.75; kids (5 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

Find more information about these exhibits and other current museum exhibits at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/museums.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

37

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Better together The Brown Family BY ERIN PAGE. PHOTOS BY KIMERA BASORE

Jennifer and Evan Brown have more than 30 total years of experience working for the Oklahoma Department of Human Services, and seven years experience as parents of a daughter, but nothing could have prepared them for the sound of their foster sons, ages 5 and 6, sobbing uncontrollably at bedtime. In a moment of desperation, Jennifer recalls starting to sing “Hush Little Baby,” which she can’t remember ever having sung before. The littlest brother stopped crying and looked at her incredulously. “He said ‘my mom used to sing that to us,’” said Brown. “I realized how much they missed their mom and that they deserved to have contact with her.” When Brown talked with the boys about their parents and their initial removal from their home, they recalled how much they and their mom cried. Having witnessed many removals in her time with DHS, Brown says that’s not always the case. Knowing the trauma the kids endured in being removed from their home, the subsequent unplanned movement from their first foster home and separation from their sister, the Browns felt regardless of what permanency would look like, they needed to see their parents. Though the case was heading toward terminating parental rights with no contact, the Browns wanted to develop a relationship with the biological parents, amidst advocating for the speech and trauma therapies the boys needed, keeping them connected to their sister in another foster home, working with their schools to determine academic standings, managing often challenging behaviors and ensuring their daughter was getting the attention and counseling she needed.

38 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

LEFT TO RIGHT: EVAN AND JENNIFER BROWN WITH DAUGHTER CAROLINE AND BIO PARENTS RAILENE AND JOSEPH

Initially, Brown asked doggedly for the mom’s phone number so she could simply send photos and updates. It had been more than seven months since the boys’ mother, Railene, had heard anything about her sons. “We didn’t know if they were alive, who was taking care of them, how they were being parented, who their teachers were,” said Railene. “I had to go to sleep and wake up knowing my kids were somewhere I didn’t know. The worst feeling is the unknown.” Wary of the foster care system she was in as a child, Railene was shocked when their case worker said the Browns wanted to meet her and the boys’ father. “They wanted to have a relationship with us,

not just take care of the kids,” said Railene. Brown advocated for the boys to call their mom on Mother’s Day, then for regular phone calls and finally for supervised visitation. “She saw the good in us no one else could see,” said Railene. “She knew we were trying and she knew we loved our kids.” Brown says it’s easy to vilify anyone in the absence of a relationship, but taking the time to get to know her foster children’s parents has given her a greater understanding of their circumstances and choices. She’s found they have much more in common than they don’t and watching them work together to heal has been as miraculous as childbirth. “They are good parents and they love their kids,” said Brown. “They are working so


hard, learning to be safe together, to be safe with the kids, doing parent child interaction therapy. They want more and they want better.”

Becoming a foster family Though the Browns have a long tenure in OKDHS Child Welfare Services, it wasn’t until fall 2017 that they became foster parents themselves. Their first placements were kinship foster care, kids they already knew whose mom was on Jennifer’s caseload when she was in foster care herself, but breaking the cycle to lovingly care for her three kids herself. She stayed in touch with Brown, calling if she needed help finding resources, Brown ensuring the kids always had holiday gifts, and the families celebrating their kids’ birthdays together. After their mom’s death, the kids moved in with paternal family members until they had to be removed. As the Browns realized there would be a lag in approving the kids’ maternal relatives to care for them, they decided to step in. “I couldn’t let the kids get split up, and I had told their mom that I would always take care of her kids,” said Brown. For 72 days, the Browns transported the kids back and forth to their school on the other side of town and kept them connected to safe family members, all while Brown advocated for the maternal relatives to be approved, the process slowed by a delay in the required paperwork. “I kept saying I was willing to put my job on the line for these people,” said Brown. “I knew they would keep these kids safe. I trust them completely with my own daughter.” Though Brown says the kids adjusted just fine to living in their home, they are now thriving with their relatives, the chaos in their young lives finally at a minimum. “Their mom was a really good mom, a hard worker, and I know she would be so proud,” said Brown. “I think they will continue to thrive and they’ll be able to talk about their mom.” While the Browns had those kids in their care, they decided to become traditional foster parents as well, realizing their knowledge of resources and supportive church family would give them some advantages in helping foster children heal. It was several months before they got a call for placement, for the boys currently in their care, who arrived frightened and unsure. Thanks to the honesty of their case worker, they were well aware of the challenges they

would face, manifested from behavior issues and the trauma the kids endured. “I couldn’t understand them at all, and they were wild,” said Brown. “We thought their behavior came from the trauma of their parent’s history, and some of it is and they own that, but it turns out much is from ADHD.” Along the way, Brown has found solidarity and comfort in her relationship with Railene, who reassures her that mothering her boys is not always an easy feat. “I’m not carrying the whole burden anymore and wondering what I’m doing wrong,” said Brown. Railene says her boys have always required much patience and internal strength and need a lot of affirmation. Now as they work through their anger, she believes fervently they couldn’t have found a better set of foster parents than the Browns. “Anybody else would have given up on them or transferred them out of their home because they are too much to handle,” said Railene. “They are amazing.” That praise includes the Brown’s daughter, who although open and willing to be a foster sister, has endured struggles right along with her parents, initially sometimes the target of the boys’ fear or aggression. In addition to ensuring their daughter receives trauma therapy and is consistently connected to her counselor at school, they regularly talk about personal and body safety with all of the kids and they have set very clear boundaries about what they will and won’t tolerate in their home. “I have told [foster son] that he deserves to be in a loving, safe home, but so does [my daughter],” said Brown. “We have to guarantee her safety, and his parents are on board with that, too.” Brown says much of what they are dealing with, talking about body parts, privacy and not hitting, are normal childhood conversations all families have regardless of whether children in the home are related. She makes sure all the kids have time away from each other, or special one-on-one time with them or other special adults in their lives. It’s been a big adjustment for the only child to share her parents and deal with the chaos that now exists in her home, but she embraces her role in helping her foster brothers heal. “I tell her all the time that God is looking at her and saying ‘well done good and faithful servant,’” said Brown. “She is so kind and so pure-hearted.”

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

39


SAY YES to Foster Care

gs Help siblin r e stay togeth

Let us take the journey alongside you.

www.circleofcare.org Statewide Toll Free | 866-978-2956

Find inspiration and information about becoming a foster parent

Co-parenting in action

Railene is the first to admit that, like all parents, she has made mistakes.

When the boys’ parents were approved for supervised visitation, the Browns invited them to spend an entire day in their home even though visits are usually just for a few hours. They feared a short visit would feel like the boys were getting ripped away from their parents again. Railene hadn’t seen her kids in almost two years.

“They were taken because of domestic violence, and it was my fault I kept them in the situation I was in,” said Railene.

“They made us feel really comfortable and like their home was ours, too,” said Railene. “The visits are like we are all a family.” Railene loves getting to bathe and put her boys to bed. Everyone participates in household chores, sometimes they all cook together or occasionally go on an outing, but the Browns also give the boys’ parents the space and affirmation to parent their kids themselves. The team of four parents work together to determine the best parenting methodologies for the boys. “When it comes to discipline or anything, we all have an input and agree together on what we should do,” said Railene. When behavior charts aren’t fulfilled or there are complaints about brushing teeth, Brown reports that to Railene who discusses it with her boys over the phone or during a visit. Railene says Brown is in contact with her throughout every day, letting her know about illnesses, upcoming field trips or behavior issues at school.

This is one part of a year-long series highlighting foster families in the Oklahoma City metro. For more, visit www.metrofamilymagazine.com/foster.

www.metrofamilymagazine.com/foster

40 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

She regrets all she has missed out on as their mom, not getting to take her boys to their first day of school or put her daughter’s hair in her first ponytail, but the advocates she has received in the Browns have encouraged her to keep fighting and not give up hope. Brown has never felt like it’s her place to ‘forgive’ the boys’ parents for their past behavior but rather to love them where they are, for who they are. She has gained as much from the experience as she’s given. “I watched this mom look at [her son] and say ‘I did this to you and I am sorry,’ and he took a big sigh … he’s probably blamed himself for so long so,” said Brown. “To get to be part of that was beautiful.” All parties are hopeful the case will move toward reunification and all are intent on the Browns remaining forever fixtures in their lives. “At first I wanted to have a good relationship with them because I wanted to have access to the kids [if they went home],” said Brown. “Now, I want them to make it and I want to be a support for them. We would miss them like crazy, but they were never ours in the first place. Our role is to stand in the gap.”

METROFAMILY’S FOSTER CARE SERIES IS GENEROUSLY SPONSORED BY


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EXPLORING BEYOND OKLAHOMA WITH CHILDREN

Take Me To

TEXAS

New sights and old favorites in the DFW area BY ERIN PAGE. PHOTOS PROVIDED.

Whether for a quick weekend getaway or a weeklong adventure, the Dallas-Fort Worth area offers a host of fun for kids of all ages, just three hours south of Oklahoma City. Peruse the possibilities for both tried-andtrue activities and attractions, newcomers and a few quirky additions.

On The Way At Bedre’ Fine Chocolate’s Manufacturing Facility in Davis, Okla., watch through floor-to-ceiling windows as confections are produced and packaged. Taste-test samples, purchase favorites individually or in pretty packages, take advantage of nice restrooms and burn some energy at the outdoor playground. In Gainesville, feed the flamingos, watch the big cats, giraffes and bears, ride a tiny train and stretch legs at the large community playground at Frank Buck Zoo, or tour Circle N Dairy to bottle feed calfs, milk a life-sized cow simulator and sample milk products.

Stay Everything’s bigger in Texas, and that includes the Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine. Boasting 10 restaurants, indoor gardens, oversized board games, two pools and running trails, this resort alone can keep the whole family entertained for a long weekend. Don’t miss Paradise Springs, the outdoor water park, free for guests. The park is small, making it easy to keep up with multiple kids, without feeling overcrowded. A multi-level play structure, splash pad and small slides are perfect for young children, a winding lazy river is fun for all ages, and the large family lagoon offers waterslide and zip line adventure for older kids. The onsite bar and grill will deliver straight to your lounge chair.

42 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

Other favorites: The Hilton Anatole features Jadewaters which is an extensive resort pool area with water slides, lazy river and kids splash zone, and Gepetto’s Marionette Theater showing childhood favorites like “Jack and the Beanstalk” and “Peter Pan.” And the Omni Dallas has a rooftop pool and hot tub offering beautiful views, especially at night.

Play & Eat Minutes away from the Gaylord Texan in the Grapevine Mills Mall are Sea Life Grapevine Aquarium and LEGOLAND Discovery Center. The aquarium’s 30 displays are home to more than 5,000 sea creatures, and even small kids stay engaged with a book to collect stamps along the way. Name, rescue, rehabilitate and release a mock turtle in the sea turtle rescue center, and get hands-on with crabs, sea stars and urchins in interactive exhibits. Educational talks and feeding times occur throughout the day with creatures from stingrays and sharks to seahorses and jellyfish. The aquarium’s smaller size makes it an easy trip for younger kids. LEGOLAND includes rides, an obstacle course, a small outdoor waterpark and LEGO play zones. Discounted tickets to either attraction, or a combo ticket to both, are available online. For kids 13 and up, the Escape Game Dallas has a location in the mall, too, offering onehour immersive mystery-solving adventures, like recovering a stolen painting or finding

CRAYOLA EXPERIENCE IN PLANO

a stash of gold. Rest your legs, grab a bite and enjoy the jungle and extensive menu offerings at the Rainforest Cafe, also in Grapevine Mills Mall. Tiny conductors will love the Grapevine Vintage Railroad, in historic downtown Grapevine, offering hourlong to half-day routes in 1920s Victorian coaches on Saturdays and Sundays. Whether via the Grapevine rails or on your own, at the Historic Fort Worth Stockyards, catch the twice-daily cattle drive, puzzle your way through the Cowtown Cattle Pen Maze, and love on livestock at the petting zoo. Nearby Joe T Garcia’s Mexican Restaurant, started in 1935, serves handmade tortillas and enchiladas in casual but beautiful indoor and outdoor dining rooms (expect a wait and bring cash as credit cards aren’t accepted). Familyowned Kincaid’s Hamburgers is the place for a burger, or Angelo’s will satisfy barbecue cravings. After dinner, pair the lightness of shaved ice with the creaminess of ice cream at Lumi Snow, whose creative, towering concoctions boast flavors like campfire classic and breakfast trash. Other Fort Worth favorites include the Kimbell Art Museum, with free admission to the Kimbell collection, sensory-friendly play space for kids 5 and under and drop-in studio art projects for families with kids 12 and under, and the American Airlines CR Smith Museum, where pilots-to-be learn how an airline works through interactive, kid-friendly exhibits. Cap off a cultured day at Coyote Drive-In, showing double features nightly.


TOP: FORT WORTH STOCK YARDS. RIGHT TOP: TEXAS DISCOVERY GARDEN. RIGHT MIDDLE AND BOTTOM: DALLAS ARBORETUM AND BOTANICAL GARDEN.

Science Museum Oklahoma members receive free general admission (with ID and member card) at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History or Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Dallas. Likewise, a Myriad Botanical Gardens membership gets you in free to the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden, which includes a new 8-acre Children’s Garden full of interactive exhibits and discovery trails, and Texas Discovery Gardens in Plano, where kids can discover an enchanting two-story butterfly habitat or learn the benefits of more than 20 slithery species in the new Snakes of Texas exhibit. Foster kids’ creativity at Crayola Experience in Plano, where their digital artwork comes to life through augmented reality, they can watch crayons being made and name and wrap their own crayon labels. Families will feel right at home at nearby Whistle Britches’ roomy outdoor patio while enjoying chicken and biscuits. For families seeking adventure, Plano’s Whirlyball, a mash-up of lacrosse and basketball played in bumper cars, delivers quirky competition for ages 9 and up. Venture northwest to Hope Park, part of Frisco Commons Park, with designated areas for ages 2 to 5 and 5 to 12. In addition to typical playground equipment, find tiny storefronts mimicking locations in town, a train and a giant xylophone. Kids will love the food, participating in the chicken dance and the vintage tractor and firetruck out front at Babe’s Chicken Dinner. Enjoy the outdoors in the midst of a bustling city at Dallas’ Klyde Warren Park. The

Children’s Park with interactive fountains, playgrounds and a kid-sized amphitheater offers weekly storytelling and theater activities. Check out reading materials, board games, table tennis or croquet equipment for free, and grab lunch from the onsite restaurant or food trucks. On a rainy day, kids ages 2 and up can test their inner American Ninja warrior at Obstacle Warrior Kids in Dallas, offering open-play admission daily. History buffs and kids with CSI inklings shouldn’t miss The Sixth Floor Museum in Dallas, chronicling the assassination and lifetime contributions of President John F. Kennedy. Opt for an eccentric Dallas eatery, like the always entertaining Magic Time Machine, where zany wait staff dress as pop culture icons and decor vignettes include a teepee and carousel, or Fuel City, a truck stop serving tacos consistently rated the best in the area. An ode to the family ranch formerly on the site,

watch longhorn, donkeys and even buffalo and zebra graze its 8 acres, get your car washed for free and check out the impressive collection of taxidermy. Indulge your sweet tooth at Cake Bar, serving Southern-style scratch-made cakes, cookies and ice cream, the perfect way to celebrate your crazy fun trip to DFW.

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Kids’ Perspective BY HANNAH SCHMITT. PHOTOS BY BRIDGET PIPKIN OR PROVIDED

What’s It Like to Go to Camp? On page 46 of this issue, you’ll find our annual Summer Camp Guide. A savior for local parents, the guide outlines top summer camp opportunities for kids in a huge array of themes, activities and regions. But just because you find a good camp doesn’t mean your kids are going to want to attend. Going to summer camp for the first time can be intimidating for both parents and kids. So this year, we asked a handful of local kids who’ve been to camp about their experiences to help ease some jitters beforehand. Here are their thoughts.

Ian C., 10 Attended YMCA Camp Classen, fall 2018

What was your favorite part of camp? I liked horseback riding, hiking through rivers and kayaking. Least favorite part? Being up late and coming home. It was so much fun I didn’t want to leave. Did you learn anything that surprised you? You get soaking wet while kayaking! Do you want to go back to camp? Yes, I had so much fun. I want to do it all again. Best advice for other kids? It was hard to be away from home the first night but it gets better.

Connor C., 10 Attended YMCA Camp Classen, fall 2018

What was your favorite part of camp? I enjoyed really good food, horseback riding and mountain climbing. Least favorite part? Cutting owl pellets was gross and it rained a lot before we went and while we were there. Did you learn anything that surprised you? I learned about snakes and ways to tell if they are poisonous or not. Do you want to go back to camp? Yes, it was really fun. I got to do a bunch of stuff. It was just plain awesome. Best Advice for other kids? Keep your head down when hiking so you don’t bump your head.

Sasha L., 12 Attended Camp Classen in summer 2017 and Camp McFadden in summer 2018

What was your favorite part of camp? Making new friends and there were a whole bunch of activities to try. Least favorite part? In Camp Classen, we had to sleep during the siesta time each day. In Camp McFadden there were big breaks between activities. Did you learn anything that surprised you? In Camp Classen, the cabins had freezing air conditioning. I didn’t know that we were going to shoot BB guns in Camp McFadden. Do you want to go back to camp? Yes, I would like to go back to Camp McFadden again or even try a new camp.

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Anna E., 8 Attended Camp E-Ko-Wah (Girl Scout Camp) in summer 2018

What was your favorite part of camp? Archery, roasting marshmallows, tie-dying, swimming and Counselor Hide and Seek. Least favorite part? Bedtime! I didn’t want the fun to end. Did you learn anything that surprised you? How fast I made friends. Do you want to go back to camp? I can’t wait!

Summer @CCS

Sierra I., 12 Attended Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama, in summer 2018

What was your favorite part of camp? We got to do different simulated missions. My favorite simulated mission was we went to one of Mars’s moons and did some experiments. Least favorite part? Having to come back home. Did you learn anything that surprised you? Yes. I learned that somewhere, a moon’s name was Enceladus. Reminds me of enchiladas! Do you want to go back to camp? Yes, I am going back next year to the robotics camp there.

July 8-11 & July 22-25

Adeline M., 11 Attended Falls Creek in summer 2017 and summer 2018

What was your favorite part of camp? I really enjoyed participating in the Talent Show. I also liked being able to pick our own activities like art and swimming. I liked being with my friends and worshiping God together. Least favorite part? My least favorite part was having to dance in order to get lunch! Did you learn anything that surprised you? I learned how to balance a feather in my hand. The trick is to look up at the tip of the feather and watch it. Do you want to go back to camp? Yes!

Ava B., 10 Attended Kamp Kanakuk for one week each summer for the past four years

What was your favorite part of camp? The blob [an inflatable on the water], parties and making new friends. Least favorite part? Going to bed early. Did you learn anything that surprised you? We learned a lot about being “ third.” Putting God first, others second and yourself third. Do you want to go back to camp? Yes! Every year.

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Offering a great selection of PS-12 classes.

View your choices and register online at 45

summeratccs.com

Note: Dates for sports camps may vary.


Summer

Camp and Activities Guide

Summer is the perfect time for families to kick back and enjoy a more relaxed routine. All that relaxation also frees our minds up for new experiences and learning opportunities. That’s what summer camps are all about: trying new things, learning new skills, meeting new friends. You’ll find dozens of options for all that and more for your kids in the guide below. For a searchable version of this guide, visit www.metrofamilymagazine.com/summer-camps. Aqua Tots Swim School 8405 N. Rockwell Ave., Ste. 1-4 Oklahoma City, OK 73132 405-721-1871 www.aqua-tots.com

Artsy Learning Center 1215 36th Ave. NW, Norman 405-343-4064 www.artsylearningcenter.com

Offered in June & July, fast track swim camps are two-week intensive camps designed to jump start student swim skills and are perfect for new swimmers and returning students who wish to brush up on their skills. Year round swim education programs offer eight levels, starting at 4 months old, incorporating self-save and learn to swim strategies. Class are capped at four students to ensure each child has maximum swim time and are 30 minutes long.

Kids ages 3-7 can paint, create obstacle courses and experience yoga, dance & science. Weekly themes include superheroes, pirates & mermaids, tie dye & snow cones, pets, & more. Kids ages 7-12 can take part in an art enrichment camp. Projects are movie based using techniques by famous artists. Themes include Pokemon, Lion King, Toy Story, Secret Life of Pets and more.

Artsy Rose Academy 7739 W. Hefner Rd. 405-603-8550 www.artsyrose.com

June 11-July 25; $250-$800

May 28-Aug. 16; $45-$85

ArtWorks Academy of Performing Arts 3251 Market Pl., Ste. 130, Norman 405-397-1824 www.ArtWorksAcademy.com

Spend your Summer Break at Artsy Rose Academy! Summer art camps are offered for 12 action-packed weeks and include drawing, canvas and watercolor painting, mixed media pieces, Disney, LEGOS and more. For ages 5-15. Half-day or full-day options available Monday-Thursday as well as Fun Day Friday camps and, new this year, night-time camps. Before/after care available.

June 10-Aug. 8; $90-$250 Performing arts classes and camps for 18 months to 18 year olds. Theatre camp themes include: Treasure Trunk, Fairy Tale, World of Wizardry. Theatre production camps, musical theatre intensive and art camps also available. Dance camps themed around popular kids’ movies and TV shows. Before/after care and scholarships available.

Camp Cadence Horse Camp 14150 S. Pine St., Edmond 405-348-7469 www.cadenceequestrian.com

Camp Canterbury             2501 N. Blackwelder Ave.                                 405-232-7464      www.CanterburyOKC.com      

Weekly camps begin May 27; overnight camp, July 7-13

June 3-7 $200-$250

$250 half day; $395 full day

Offers a one-week choral music day camp for students entering grades 2-8. Students are taught by Canterbury Youth Voices staff in choral music technique and artistry and also have the opportunity to participate in breakout classes in other art forms. Before/after care and scholarships available.

Come learn all about horses or expand your skills at Camp Cadence! Safe camp horses; no previous horse experience necessary. Indoor and outdoor riding. For ages 5-16. Before/after care available.

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Camp ClapHans 2002 E. Robinson St., Norman 405-307-2865 www.campclaphans.com

Camp Fire Heart of Oklahoma’s Camp DaKaNi 3309 E. Hefner Rd. 405-254-2080, www.campdakani.org

June 9-July 17 $325/session

July 3-26; Day camp; $235-$310; Overnight camp, $410

Residential summer camp for children with developmental disabilities ages 8 to 18 to experience traditional summer activities. One-to-one camper to staff ratio. Before/after care and scholarships available.

Day camps offered from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for campers age 5-13 to unplug and engage in outdoor education, build self-worth, confidence and interpersonal communication skills. Extended care is available from 7 a.m.- 6 p.m. Overnight camp is for campers 1117 years old. Scholarships available.

Camp Invention Locations in Yukon, Choctaw & Norman 800-968-4332, www.invent.org/camp June 10-July 26 $230-$240/session

Camp McFadden 9137 E. Hartford Ave Ponca City 580-762-9955 www.campmcfadden.com

Unmask your child’s creativity this summer in the all-new Camp Invention, where children transform their wild imaginations into epic creations. Campers in grades K-6 will code robots and use collaboration and creative problem solving during hands-on STEM activities. Use promo code PLAY15LISTING to save $15 (expires 5/10).

June 9-July 19; $100-$500

Child Care, Inc. 405-942-1250 www.childcareinc.com

City of Edmond Parks and Recreation 2733 Marilyn Williams Dr. Edmond 405-359-4630 www.edmondparks.com

May-Aug. 1; $150/week for 24 hour care Full time care for infant through age 12 as well as short-term dropin options. Summer programs for school age children include field trips, educational tours, art classes, crafting and more.   Locations: Acorn Children’s Center: 3601 N.W. 51st, OKC; Kindercastle Children’s Center: 309 Bizzell, MWC; Linwood Early Learning Center: 3034 N.W. 17th, OKC; Children’s Lighthouse 3 OKC locations: 540 N. Council Rd., 5816 N.W. 36th St., 6624 N.W. 63rd St. 

Offering three-day overnight camps for ages 6-9; six-day overnight Outdoor Adventure Camps for ages 8-16; three-day day camp programs for ages 5-9; and Leadership Development and Kayak camps for high schoolers. Before/after care and scholarships available.

June 1-Aug. 7 Camps available in a variety of topics such outdoor adventures like fishing, archery and kayaking as well as science, kids in the kitchen, sewing, photography and lots of art! Some camps are five days in length, others are shorter. For ages 2-15. Scholarships are available.

Cottonwood Creek Ranch 907 N. Chisholm Rd.  405-888-7379  www.cottonwoodcreekranch.com/ horse-camp/

Crossings Christian School 14400 N. Portland Ave. 405-842-8495 www.summeratccs.com

June 24-Aug. 9; $325/week

Campers enjoy Biblically-integrated sport, academic and enrichment programs taught by Crossings Christian School teachers and faculty. For kids in preschool to 12th grade in Oklahoma City and the surrounding area. Dates for sports camps may vary; check the website for those dates.

Week-long camps offered from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for ages 6-12 to learn how to brush, saddle and ride horses, with lessons taught by qualified trainers and safe horses. Other activities and crafts included. Before/after care available.

July 8-11 & July 22-25; $140/week

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Dance Unlimited/Spotlight Acting Academy 1217 E. Hefner Rd. 405-242-4612 www.danceunlimitedpac.com

Dragon Kim’s Taekwondo and Fitness 2600 E. 2nd St, Edmond 405-341-1016 www.dragonkimstkd.com/summer-camp

June 10-Aug. 1; $50-$200

This summer camp is specifically planned with students ages 6-11 in mind. No previous Taekwondo experience is needed. Camp will focus on a character quality and physical technique with games that reinforce flexibility, balance, accuracy, integrity, team spirit, speed, reflexes, self-control, indomitable spirit, power, footwork, respect and courtesy.

Classes offered in ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, jazz funk, improv, contemporary, stretch, strengthen and music theater as well as a dance intensive for recreational dancers. Ages 3 to 16 welcome. Camps divided by age/level based on enrollment. Edmond First United Methodist Church 305 E. Hurd, Edmond  405-341-0107  www.fumcedmond.org  June 17-July 25 $80/week

June 17-21 & July 22-26; $150

Ginger’s Music 6008 N.W. 120th Ct. 405-722-2379  www.gingersmusic.com June 24-28 $60-$105

Day camps with themes such as Secret Agent, Animal Planet and Cooking offered from 9-11:30 a.m. Monday-Thursday each week for ages 3 through 2nd grade.

Developmentally-appropriate music adventure camp for ages 8 months to 8 years with exciting themes like glow in the dark camping, jungle jamming, barnyard fun and more. Parents stay with young children during camp.

Girl Scouts of Western Oklahoma 6100 N. Robinson Ave., 405-528-4475 www.girlsgocamp.org June 4-July 27

Goldfish Swim School - Edmond 10 N.W. 146th St., Edmond 405-696-7500 www.goldfishswimschool.com

Multiple camps offered throughout the summer. Day camps are offered for girls grades K-8 on a weekly basis. Each week has its own theme and field trips to go along with it! Campers are picked up and dropped off at the Oklahoma City location. Resident camp offered for all girls grades 1-12. Among the fun activities are horse caring and riding, canoeing and ropes courses. Before/after care and scholarships available.

June 2-Aug. 8 $111.25-$1175.85

Harn Homestead Day Camp 1721 N. Lincoln Blvd. 405-235-4058, www.harnhomestead.com June 17-21; $175

KaleidEscape at St. Mary’s Episcopal School 505 E. Covell Rd., Edmond 405-341-9541 www.smesedmond.org/our-community/summer-programs.cfm

Allows kids from ages 6-11 to spend five days exploring Oklahoma’s Territorial heritage, life on an 1880’s homestead, the relevance of the ‘waste not want not’ motto to all decades of Oklahoma’s history, as well as an appreciation for the museum’s 10-acre surroundings. Programming will take place in and around the 1897 Schoolhouse with programming in historic buildings throughout the week. Space is very limited, so register early to get a spot. Before/after care available.

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Classes fill up on a first come, first serve basis throughout the summer. Limited availability each week. Discounts provided for multiple children. Call to register today!

June 3-June 28; $180/week Camps for children ages 3-11 available in four sessions with various themes. Each one-week session meets daily from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Activities include robotics, art, nature, exploration, culinary skills, invention and more. Before/after care available.


NS I NAT I O MORE THAN 30 YEARS OF INS PI RING YOUNG IMAG

PERFORMANCES The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales April 19th - May 3rd, 2019 Recommended for ages 5+

CLASSES

a High-energy, hands-on stem camp

Young Company Treasure Island Peter Pan Beauty and the Beast The School Play. A farce.

Treasure Island June 19th - 23rd, 2019

Beauty and the Beast

July 24th - 28th, 2019

FAIRY TALE BALL Living the Dream

CAMPS Epic Adventures Summer Camps May 28th - August 15th, 2019 Summer Camp enrollment is now open!

locations in Choctaw and norman!

April 13th, 2019

GO TO OUR WEBSITE FOR DETAILS!

WWW.OKLAHOMACHILDRENSTHEATRE.ORG ENROLL: 606-7003 TICKETS: 951-0011

Save $15 using promo code: PLay15regprint at invent.org/camp

Oklahoma Arts Council • Inasmuch Foundation Allied Arts • National Endowment for the Arts Oklahoma City University

Enrollment begins April 15, 2019 Classes begin June 3, 2019

normanfirehouse.com | 405.329.4523

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Keystone Adventure Farm & School 19201 N. Western Ave, Edmond 405-216-5400 www.keystoneadventureschoolandfarm.com

Lyric’s Thelma Gaylord Academy 1727 N.W. 16th St. 405-524-9310 x100 www.thelmagaylordacademy.com

$55-$70/day or $250-$310/week

June 3-Aug. 2; $250-$450/session

Summer on the Farm is a kid’s summer dream come true! Campers entering kindergarten through 5th grade can enjoy fishing, kayaking, a creek for exploring, sandboxes, gardening and caring for farm animals. Options available beginning the last week of May and continue through mid July. Registration accepted until maximum enrollment is reached.

Theatre camps for ages 7 and up, including opportunities for: 101 Dalmatians production camp, James and the Giant Peach production camp, Junie B. Jones Jr production camp, technical theater camps and one-week training camps. Some sessions require an audition; see website for details. Before/after care and scholarships available.

Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art 1900 W. MacArthur, Shawnee 405-878-5300 www.mgmoa.org

Metro Gymnastics 7420 Broadway Ext. Ste. A 405-848-5308 www.metrogymokc.com

June 1-July 30; $5-$80/class or camp

Mondays @ Metro are one-day gymnastics camps for boys and girls ages 4-10 featuring fun and exciting weekly themes and games. Campers get to exercise, enjoy a craft and burn energy with gymnastics. Ages 5 and up can stay and have a blast in one of the cartwheel or back handspring skill clinics.

Classes taught by experienced art educators for ages 3 through 18. Options range from primary art camps with parents to theater, painting and illustration lessons for older kids. Scholarships available. National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum 1700 N.E. 63rd St., 405-478-2250 www.nationalcowboymuseum.org June 1-July 31 The museum is offering day care/day camp summer break specials. Visit the National Cowboy Museum for a fun, interactive experience with your children’s group. Select from several exciting programs designed for kids ages 4-12 or choose a self-directed tour. One-week advance reservations required; space is limited. Group admission rates apply. Call (405) 478-2250 ext. 241 to schedule your group.

$30/child 9 a.m.-noon or $65/child from 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

New View Oklahoma 501 N. Douglas Ave. 405-250-6279 www.nvoklahoma.org June 23-28 July 19-22, $50 Participants grades 3-8 who are blind or visually impaired will have a one-on-one buddy for a week filled with “adventurous” activities. Enjoy rock climbing, indoor ski diving and so much more. Kids ages 14-17 can be volunteer buddies. Scholarships available.  

Nichols Hills United Methodist Church Sports Camp   1212 Bedford Dr., Nichols Hills 405-842-1486 www.nicholshillsumc.org

Norman Firehouse Art Center 444 S. Flood Ave., Norman 405-329-4523 www.normanfirehouse.com

June 10-14; $75

June 3-Aug. 2; $95-$190/session

Children ages 4 years through 6th grade may participate in basketball, cheerleading, soccer or Team 45, which teaches kids ages 4 & 5 the fundamentals of motion, rhythm and balance all while experiencing God’s love. Spots are limited. Scholarships available.

Creativity in the visual arts is fostered and embraced during the Children’s Summer Art Program. Five different sessions available for three age groups: 5-6, 7-9, and 10-14. All sessions meet 9:30 a.m.-11:45 a.m. each day. Visit website for class schedule. Scholarships available.

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Oklahoma Children’s Theatre 2501 N. Blackwelder Ave. 405-606-7003 oklahomachildrenstheatre.org May 28-Aug. 15 $120-$500/session Art camps guided by experienced teaching artists to inspire campers to make their own masterpieces. Camp offered from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for the following ages: 6-7, 8-9, 10-12, and 13-15. Before/after care and scholarships available.

Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden 2000 Remington Pl. 405-424-0218 www.okczoo.org/camps June 3-Aug. 9 $96-$300/session Choose from a variety of week-long themed summer day camps for children ages 4 to 15. Choose from themes such as Zoo Vet: The Next Generation, Animal Training 101 and Master Zoo Chef. Oklahoma History Center Junior Curator Camp 800 Nazih Zuhdi Dr. 405-522-0765 www.okhistory.org

Oklahoma Contemporary 300 General Pershing Blvd. 405-951-000 bit.ly/OCsummer May 28-June 28 $200-220/session Five weeks of day camp/art camp experiences for ages 4-12 to explore creativity in every medium. Camp themes include monsters and superheroes, clay and costumes, poetry, dance and DJ’ing, robotics and much more. Before/after care and scholarships available.

July 15-19 $130/OHC member, $150 non-member Oklahoma Junior Curator Camp is a fun and productive summer activity for students ages 8 to 12. Registration opens June 3 and closes July 10. For more information or to receive a reminder when registration opens, please email education@okhistory.org.

Adventure Camp Leadership Development, Kayak Camp, Mini Camps, Three Day Camps Week Long Camps

For more information, contact Rebecca Skarky, Director of Admissions, at 405-524-0631 ext. 123

Pre-K through eighth grade 600 NW 44 Street, OKC 405-524-0631 westminsterschool.org

Westminster School admits students of any race, color, religion, or national and ethnic origin. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, or national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, financial aid program, athletic, and other school-administered activities.

Canoeing, fishing, kayaking, camping, archery, zip line, ropes course and more... Located along the west shores of Kaw Lake (near Ponca City) 580-762-9955 • campmcfadden.com METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

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OSU-OKC Cooperative Extension Services 2500 N.E. 63rd St. 405-713-1125 bit.ly/ocesflyer May 30-July 17; $10-$50/workshop  One- to three-day workshops are held for ages 8-19 with subjects such as Babysitting 101, S.T.E.M., Financial & Job Readiness, Kids in the Kitchen, Sewing, Jr. Master Gardener, Food Showdown, Healthy Living for Kids and 4-H Project Camp. Scholarships available. 

Horse Camp makes friends for life!

Oklahoma Swim Academy 14701 N. Kelley Ave., Edmond 405-509-5415 www.oklahomaswim.com $60-$400/month Oklahoma Swim Academy teaches all ages a love of safe swimming, offering Parent-Tot classes (4 months-24 months), Survival Swim Lessons, SwimFloat-Swim, Stroke Development and Adaptive Aquatics Programs.

Summer horse camp is a great way to get your kids outside and enjoying all the healthy activities that our equine partnerships offer. Plenty of fun, learning and lifetime friendships are just a few of the benefits! Space is limited, limited find out more at our website and get your reservations in soon!

RIVERSPORT Adventures 800 Riversport Dr., 405-552-4040 www.riversportokc.org/camps June 2-Aug 8; $175-$300 Week-long day camps for kids in grades 2-12 are available in the Boathouse District along the Oklahoma River and at Lake Hefner. Each offers a unique experience. Novice camps introduce kids to rowing, paddling, kayaking or sailing, and many have added adventure activities such as zip lining, the SandRidge Sky Trail and RIVERSPORT Rapids whitewater rafting. Enrollment is accepted up to the day before each camp starts or until full. Rose State College Kids College & Teen Scene 6420 S.E. 15th St., Midwest City 405-733-7392, www.rose.edu/kids

VISIT OUR WEBSITE FOR 2019 CAMP DATES!

June 3-July 25; $79/camp Now in its 17th year, Rose State continues to offer a variety of summer camp opportunities to build children’s imagination, creativity and knowledge. Kids College is designed for children going into grades 1-6. The Teen Scene program is geared specifically for preteens and teens going into grades 7-10. Sample subjects include Aerospace Discovery, Archery, Candy Chemistry and Cartoons, Comics & Manga. Sam Noble Museum 2401 Chautauqua Ave., Norman 405-325-4712 samnoblemuseum.ou.edu May 31-Aug. 2; $10-$325/session Summer Explorers classes are one-day camps or week-long camps for children ages 4 to 11. Camps run Monday-Friday and the majority are two-hour sessions and full-day sessions. Participants get to experience science first-hand in classes such as Creepy Crawlies, Dinosaur Detectives and Grossology. Scholarships available.

907 N. Chisholm, Oklahoma City, OK 73127

405-888-7379

CottonwoodCreekRanch.com

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Shiloh Camp 448 N.E. 70th St. 405-858-7011 June 3-28; $30/week Come to Shiloh Camp this June for a life changing week full of adventure, sports, arts and meaningful relationships. Teen Week, ages 12-16, June 3-7; Kid Week 1, ages 8-12, June 10-14; Kid Week 2, ages 8-12, June 17-21; Kid Week 3, ages 8-12, June 24-28. Register online at www.shilohcamp.org Silver Wind Stables 24413 N. May Ave., Edmond 405-604-1653, www.silverwindstables.com June 3-June 28; $200-$500 Campers ages 5-18 will be assigned a horse for the week and will learn how to care for and ride their horses. The camp is completely equestrian focused, with activities designed to increase knowledge and confidence around horses. Students will explore both English and Western styles of riding, go on trail rides, play games on horseback and enjoy visits from experts. No experience necessary. Call for more camp dates in July & August. SoccerCity OKC  4520 Old Farm Rd.  405-748-3888 www.soccercityokcity.com June 1-Aug. 25; $95/session Ages 3 to 16 enjoy soccer drills, games and scrimmaging against other campers. Camps are led by trained instructors and are held from 9 a.m.-noon or 1-4 p.m. Their year-round Lil Kickers program for ages 18 months-9 years also continues in the summer. SPARK Child Care Program 1001 N.W. 25th St. 405-525-0018 www.fpcokc.org/spark May 28-Aug. 6; $135/week SPARK provides all-day care for kids in grades pre-K to 8th grade. This year’s theme is Time Trekkers. Join us as campers travel back in time to learn about different people and places throughout history. Fun classes, interesting clubs, swimming trips, field trips and more are also provided. Studio J School of Dance 420 S. Santa Fe Ave., Edmond 405-348-3377 www.studiojdanceok.com

Eliot Porter, American, 1901–1990. Cliff, Moonlight Creek, San Juan River, May 23, 1962, (detail), printed 1980 from the portfolio Glen Canyon Dye transfer print Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Nicholas V. Duncan

June 10-July 18 Prices start at $72 Summer camps for ages 3-11 in themes like Fancy Nancy, Disney Pop Star, Lego Ninja Hip Hop, Barbie Ballet, Jojo dance party and Princess & Prince camp. Dance classes also offered for ages 2-18. Scholarships available.

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The Studio of The Sooner Theatre 110 E. Main St., Norman 405-321-9600 www.soonertheatre.com June 3-Aug. 2; $125-$475/sessions Multiple sessions of theatre camps for performers of all ages to learn new techniques, build character and get comfortable on stage. Scholarships available.

Thunder Youth Basketball Multiple locations: OKC, Edmond and more May 30-July 31 okcthunder.com/youthbasketball youthbb@okcthunder.com Lock in your spot for one of 12 camps for boys and girls ages 6-14 taught by certified Thunder Youth Basketball Coaches. Limited availability; register early.

AUTISM TREATMENT CENTER ABA & SPEECH THERAPY

TechyKids OKC 9500 N. Pennsylvania Ave 405-673-1203 www.techykids.com June 10-14 & July 15-19 Early Bird, $375; $425 after 6/1 Learn robotics, coding, design and 3-D modeling. Kids ages 7-12 years can create their own technology-inspired projects. The projects and tools are catered to each campers skill and age level. Utilizing a unique personalized learning system, kids of various ages are able to be in the same camp. Participants are paired with a peer of similar ability level or paired with campers who are comfortable working together. Tiger Safari’s Interactive Zoological Park 963 County St. 2930, Tuttle 405-381-9453 tigersafarizoo.com June 4-7 & July 9-11 Safari Camp provides an immersive, educational experience in a unique setting. Campers create a deeper connection to wildlife as they perform hands-on, minds-on exploration of nature, sciencebased investigations in the Zoo’s living laboratory, have up-close experiences with the Zoo’s animal ambassadors and have fun learning about animals from around the world. Campers ages 4 to 14 are welcome. Activities are age and grade-appropriate, and themes change regularly for an always-fresh experience.

Experience Summer Fun at

• Dance camps for ages 3-11 • In studio performance at end of camp • Summer dance classes for ages 2-18

INSURANCE ACCEPTED CENTER-BASED & IN HOME

844-422-2669

THERAPYANDBEYOND.COM

54 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

405-348-3377 www.studiojdanceok.com

420 S. Santa Fe in Edmond


Trinity School OKC 321 N.W. 36th St. 405-525-5600 www.trinityschoolokc.org

Twist & Shout 14801 N. Lincoln Blvd, Edmond 405-775-9491 www.shouterspirit.com

July 8-19 $350-$550

June 3-Aug. 16

Offers reading, language arts and math classes as well as individual and group reading therapy for kids in kindergarten-12th grade. Register by May 24.

Weekly Monday-Thursday cheer and tumbling camps for ages 6-18. Campers learn from expert teachers. Camps meet for two hours each session. Scholarships available.

Velocity Dance Center 11122 N. Rockwell Ave, Ste A-11 405-721-8807 www.oklahomacitydancestudio.com

YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City Branches located across the OKC metro area, Chickasha, Guthrie and Stillwater www.ymcaokc.org/daycamp

$5 & up

Late May-mid August; $105 to $150 per week

Join us this summer for themed classes and pop-up camps! See website for details.

Think Outside, No Box Required! YMCA Summer Day Camp is a place where kids discover not just the wonders of day camp, but the joy of exploring their unique traits, talents and interests and the power of sharing their strengths and skills to benefit the group. Camps available for kids ages 5 through 13. Financial assistance is available. Registration forms available at their website.

Enroll for Summer Camps! Multiple weekly camps for ages 4-16 will be held June-August. $95/camp. Half-day sessions: 9-12 p.m. & 1-4 p.m.

PLUS: Lil’ Kickers classes continue! Check our website for details and enrollment or

Call TODAY!

soccercityokcity.com 4520 Old Farm Road, OKC (west of Meridian, south of 122nd)

405-748-3888

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

55


SUMMER BREAK GROUP SPECIALS NEW MORNING ACTIVITIES

IN JUNE AND JULY AT

THE COWBOY MUSEUM

Summer Activities Guide

These attractions offer special summer activities to kids and families. Andy Alligator’s Fun Park & Water Park 3300 Market Place Dr., Norman 405-321-7275, www.andyalligators.com May 11-Sept. 15; $16.95 Featuring more than four acres of aquatic family fun, Andy Alligator’s Water Park is the perfect place to beat the heat this summer. Two new attractions, the Wipeout and The Sling Shot water inflatables, add to the fun of all the other water rides and slides. Every Friday in July, all Fun Park attractions are just $5 each including go-karts, bumper cars, Frog Hopper, Rock Wall, Kids Zone, Batting Cages, Mini Bowling, Gator Golf and Laser Tag. Chickasaw Cultural Center 867 Cooper Memorial Dr., Sulphur 580-622-7130 www.chickasawculturalcenter.com One of the largest tribal cultural centers in the country, the Chickasaw Cultural Center shares the unique history and vibrant culture of the Chickasaw people through cultural demonstrations, art, exhibits, films and special events. Special summer activities offered; find details on website.

Wild in the West Interactive Programs Monday – Friday Animal Tracks, ages 4 – 6 Best of the West, ages 7 – 12

Hands-on Art-Ventures

Monday Clay Day! Roll, Squish and Shape, ages 4 – 12 Thursday Western Crafts, ages 4 – 12 Day Care / Day Camp / Group Rates

start at $3.50 per child Reservations required. Visit

nationalcowboymuseum.org/summerspecials

or call (405) 478-2250 ext. 241

Dust Bowl Lanes 421 N.W. 10th St. 405-609-3302 www.dustbowllounge.com Fun retro bowling alley that is open additional hours for summer. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Thursday-Sunday, 4 p.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Wednesday for families with children. Myriad Botanical Gardens 301 W. Reno Ave. 405-445-7091, www.myriadgardens.org  June 24-Aug. 9, Monday-Friday, 10amNoon; Suggested donation of $2 per child Drop in to enjoy fun, weekly walk-up activities that explore the world of plants. Daily themes include Make-it Mondays, Tasty Tuesdays, Reading Wednesdays, Think Green Thursdays and Find-it Fridays. Bring a picnic and towels and play in the Thunder Fountain for free afterwards. Groups of 10 or more, please contact Lily Christman, at 405-445-5162, for more information about group activities. Oklahoma Hall of Fame Gaylord Pickens Museum 1400 Classen Dr. 405-235-4458 www.oklahomahof.com Every Thursday from Memorial Day to Labor Day, families can enjoy a story and craft with free admission. Story time begins at 10:30 a.m. and is followed by a craft and summer activities to enjoy together.

nationalcowboymuseum.org

56 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019


Skate Galaxy OKC 5800 N.W. 36th St. 405-605-2758 www.skategalaxyokc.com Enjoy day skate sessions 11 a.m.-2 p.m. on Wednesday through Friday from June 5 to Aug. 9. $6 per skater (includes basic skate rental). Family Nights are held on Thursdays, 7-10 p.m. $6 per skater (includes basic skate rental). Purchase a summer pass for $40/person and get unlimited summer day skate sessions (includes basic skate rental; not transferable).

Tiger Safari’s Interactive Zoological Park 963 County St. 2930, Tuttle 405-381-9453, tigersafarizoo.com April 20, May 18, June 8, July 6 & Aug. 3 $20 per person You and your companions can go on a cozy walking adventure in the company of an expert guide. Hear insider stories about the animals or ask burning questions you might have about wildlife. Afterward roast marshmallows by the fire. All the fixings provided, and maybe be even a movie! Safari Night Out includes admission and monkey and deer treats.

SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology 10301 S. Sunnlylane Rd. 405-814-0006 www.skeletonmuseum.com

Unpluggits Paint & Play 575 Enterprise Dr., Ste. 110, Edmond 405-340-7584 www.unpluggits.com

$8-$20

June 3-Aug. 9; $19

Enjoy special Zoo Day events, owl pellet dissections, Adult Forensics Nights, Jr. Forensic classes, and homeschool programming plus free scavenger hunts & prizes! Discounted group rates available. Classes and events offered weekly. Registration can be completed online at their website.

Clay HandBuilding Workshops offer a variety of projects including Father’s Day gifts, coil pots, wind chimes and more. The clay pieces will be completed during the two-hour workshops and campers can return any time to paint the project. All steps are included in the cost of the workshop.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

57


SUMMER CAMPS RESTAURANTS & SHOPPING

JUN E 3 - 7 FOR GR A DES 2 - 8

SI N GI N G, FUN , AND FR IEN DS! V ISIT CA NTER BURYOKC.COM FOR M OR E INFOR M ATION!

Music Camp’n Horse Camps Jungle • Farm • Beach & more

Camp Cadence, Since 2007

Register online now at GingersMusic.com!

Ages 8mos-8yrs

722-2379

Shiloh Camp, serving inner city youth with the love of Christ through sports, arts, and meaningful relationships.

Sports • Dance Adventure Course Choir • Canoeing Crafts • Animals Basketball • Zipline & more! June 3-7

NOW ENROLLING for 2019-2020 classes.

ENROLL NOW

6008 NW 120th Ct/OKC

Teen Week

Got a tight schedule? Need a certain night?

Kids Weeks

June 10-14; June 17-21; June 24-28

REGISTER NOW

WWW.SHILOHCAMP.ORG

Day Camp for Ages 8-16

448 NE 70th, OKC 405-858-7011

58 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

Full Day Camps $395/week

Half Day Camps $250/week

June 3 - June 7 June 10 - June 14 June 17 - June 21 June 24 - June 28 July 8 - July 12 July 15 - July 19 July 22 - July 26 July 29 - Aug. 2

May 27 - May 31 June 3 - June 7 June 10 - June 14 June 17 - June 21 June 24 - June 28 July 8 - July 12 July 15 - July 19 July 22 - July 26 July 29 - Aug. 2 Aug 5 - Aug 9

Overnight Camps Girls Only $995/week July 7 - July 13

CADENCE EQUESTRIAN

Classes for ages 2 and up

Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop

Enroll online at: www.cadenceequestrian.com

11122 N Rockwell Ave Ste A-11 OKC

(405) 348-7469

admin@oklahomacitydancestudio.com

405-721-8807


at Keystone Adventure School and Farm

OSU Cooperative Extension Service offers numerous youth programs this summer just for YOU! For more information May 30-31 Babysitting 101 call 713-1125

June 6-7 Kids in the Kitchen or access our website at http://oces.okstate.edu/oklahoma/youth-workshops June 10-12, July 17-18 Sewing 2500 NE 63rd St. OKC, OK 73111

!

Now Enrolling

June 17 S.T.E.M.

June 20 4-H Project Camp July 16 Plant-it-Earth

ÿŧŧ‫ڐڐڔڕܯږڑڒܯڕڐڔ‬żƣǜŏƫŏƸ

www.keystoneadventureschoolandfarm.com

At Territorial Fun Day Camp, ages 6-11 will have fun exploring Oklahoma history through games, crafts and other activities.

June 17-21, 9am to 3pm $175 (before/after care available for extra fee; siblings discount available)

ENROLL TODAY 405-235-4058 mgregg@harnhomestead.com 1721 N. Lincoln Blvd, Oklahoma City

REGISTRATION FOR SUMMER CAMPS IS OPEN!

www.harnhomestead.com

okcthunder.com/youthbasketball

LOCK IN TODAY

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

59

SUMMER CAMPS

SUMMER ON THE FARM


SUMMER CAMPS RESTAURANTS & SHOPPING

FAMILY FUN RESTAURANTS & SHOPPING

April Showers Mothers' Day Flowers Handprint Plate Special Salad Size - $19 Dinner Size - $24 All that is needed is a handprint and we do the rest! Allow 10 days.

Open Paint & Play All Day Indoor Playground Paint & Take Ceramics Clay Workshops Grown-ups paint nights

EDUCATION

405-340-PLUG • www.unpluggits.com

60 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019


SHOPPING RESTAURANTS & SHOPPING

PARTY GUIDE

New MarkDowns! Carousel Consignment

Furniture Just as Nice the Second Time Around

2201 W. Edmond Rd. (405) 285-1250

SPECIAL NEEDS

(405) 693-1937 fo reve raae r p a r r e s . co m

IT’S COOL TO

PARTY AT THE POOL! Two hours of private access to Goldfish Swim School Invitations & envelopes Balloons, tropical decorations & centerpieces Cupcakes & beverages for the children

EDMOND | 405.696.7500 www.goldfishswimschool.com

421 NW 10th • 405.609.3302 dustbowlok.com METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

61


Lyric Theatre

Kid Reviewer: Isaac Roldán, age 7

What made the experience stand out? I had never been to Lyric Theatre before. We went to see “Curious George and the Golden Meatball.” The theatre is small and cozy so it feels like you’re close to the stage even though we sat in the back. I also really liked trying out some props in front of a cardboard picture of George. And they had a newspaper with information about the show that also had games on it. I completed all of those when we got home and my Mom read me the recipe it had for meatballs. Banana was one of the ingredients, which sounds like a funny thing in meatballs. I want to try making them. The part that was really different, though, was that live people make the show, so it’s not like a movie or TV. They’re actors and they do their job right in front of you. What was the best part? I liked learning about the theatre. All of the actors were grown-ups but not too old either. My Dad teaches at UCO and some of the actors said they go to college there. I could be in a play later. Even though I’m kind of shy, I think I could do it and if I changed my mind, I could help construct the set instead. The story comes to life when people act it out but there are a lot of people who work on the play we don’t get to see. I love seeing what they make, especially when the buildings change a lot on the stage. What was the worst part? I wanted to ask a question but I didn’t get called on at the end of the show. I’ll try again next time. Will other kids like visiting Lyric Theatre? They will love the experience because you can see amazing things there and nearby. We took

62 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / APRIL 2019

a walk in the Plaza District and there was art on a wall with a three-eyed fish. My Mom took me to eat red velvet cream pie at Pie Junkie after the show. The stores nearby have aliens and sugar skulls and cool things. The theatre is like that too. You can find art in there made by real people right in front of you; they pretend and it’s a kind of art with costumes and music. Seeing Curious George was the best part of my weekend. I know he wasn’t real because I’m 7; that’s a man, not a monkey, but I kind of want to keep thinking he was the real George. Kids are creative and they’ll see how other people can be creative too. Would this experience be enjoyed by your siblings? Why or why not? My younger brother, Gabriel, is 4 and he thought the monkey was really George. Younger kids don’t really understand that the actors are just pretending but they like to go anyway. I saw some babies there but we didn’t bring our baby. My oldest brother, Sam, is 11 and he really likes plays. You can be in a drama club in middle school and he’s in that.

book “Short” by Holly Goldberg Sloan, which is about “The Wizard of Oz” and a little girl who goes to theatre camp to be a Munchkin. I would like to do that and now I know you can do that at Lyric Theatre but I would like to see kids instead of adults after they go to the camp, like what they can do. It kind of helps if you know the story already and I know “Curious George” from PBS Kids and from some books. Maybe I’ll know the next story I see the play of if I go again sometime. It’s like this musical called “Hello Dolly” that I made my Mom take me to last year because I kept seeing commercials for it on TV. I really wanted to see that but I was totally lost on the story. I didn’t get it but watching the people dance was still fun. What do you think you’ll remember most about visiting? I’ll remember the whole day! Pie helps you remember. Seeing a play is something every kid should do.

If you could do this again, knowing what you know now, what would you do differently? I would try to meet all the actors before the show so I can see how they change. I saw their photos in the program but that’s not the same and I want to talk to all of them. Does anything you learned match up with what you’re doing in school or have done before? Yes, I went to see “Junie B. Jones” in December with my first grade class on a field trip but I don’t know what theatre we went to then. My Mom is reading me the new chapter

ISAAC’S BROTHER, GABRIEL, AT PIE JUNKIE.

Find more Kid Reviews at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/kid-reviews.


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