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Kid Crooners

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Hit the Trail

Celebrate 150 years of the Chisholm Trail

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Summer’s Last Hurrah

Make the most of the season’s final days

See our calendar for 232 August events!


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AUGUST 2017

Features 10 PANDAS When mental health conditions aren’t what they appear 18 Kid Crooners Voice lessons for your budding singer 40 150 Years of The Chisholm Trail Celebrate by enjoying these fun places and events

In Every Issue 8 Editor’s Picks From Monopoly to Pac Man, fun places to play in OKC 16 Mom Humor New year, same Lunchables

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21 Calendar of Events 44 Ask the Experts Local experts weigh in on balancing after-school activity schedules 46 At Home with Koon & Sarah Meet the parents who own Creative Vega 50 Real Kids of OKC Get to know the kids who make Real Kitchen salsa 60 Kid Review Climb UP

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Earlier this summer, we began a series on youth mental health in Oklahoma to help parents navigate some of the sobering news about the state of mental health for local children.

There’s a solar eclipse happening Aug. 21! We’ve rounded up several local events that are being hosted for families to watch this natural phenomenon. Find our guide at metrofamilymagazine.com/eclipse.

We were thrilled to hear about Oklahoma City University launching a program to help meet some of the increased mental health needs in our state. Flip to page 10 to find our final installment of the series then visit www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ ocu-mental-health to read about OCU’s new program.

Are you a new mom or do you know one? We’ve put together a list of handy services for people with infants at home. From grocery pick-ups to late-night cookie deliveries, find the list at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ new-moms.

active and eat healthy all school year long isn’t always easy. Shape Your Future has creative ideas for busy parents to make sure their children are getting 60 minutes of physical activity every day and filling half their plates with fruits and veggies. Learn more about healthy lifestyles for your family at www.metrofamilymagazine. com/shape-your-future.

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4 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

Sponsored Content: Finding new ways to convince your child to stay

You’ve probably bought all your school supplies, but if you have a child with asthma there are some special preparations you need to make for your back-to-school season. Find some suggestions at metrofamilymagazine.com/asthma.


Come to our community baby shower

Publisher

Sarah Taylor

Managing Editor Hannah Schmitt

Assistant Editor Lindsay Cuomo

Contributing Writers

Heather Davis, Erin Page, Mae Kiggins, Angi Bruss

Contributing Photographers Mark Doescher & Emily Hart

Contributing Illustrator Brittany Viklund

Art Director Stacy Noakes

Marketing Director Callie Collins

Sales

Athena Delce, Dana Price

Project Manager Jessica Misun

If you’ve ever had a baby, you know two things for certain: they eat and they poop. So it’s easy to see that food and diapers are among the highest priorities for Oklahoma’s smallest residents. But the state has the eighth highest incidence of childhood poverty in the U.S. For the babies at the greatest risk of food insecurity, there is Infant Crisis Services, an organization that serves more than 1,500 babies and toddlers in central Oklahoma each month. We’re gearing up to host our second annual baby shower for the organization. We throw a party complete with food trucks (they’ll donate a portion of your purchase to ICS) and activities for kids and in exchange we ask our readers to bring formula, diapers and other baby supplies. This year, the organization is

specifically in need of diapers (preemie to size six), baby wipes and baby wash. The organization received 174 pounds of donated baby items last year and each food truck on-site donated a portion of their proceeds to ICS. We can’t wait to see how our readers show up this year to continue to make a difference for this incredible cause. So mark your calendar for 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 6 to attend the baby shower at Infant Crisis Services (4224 N. Lincoln Blvd.) and bring a donation, meet our staff and stay for lunch. Find more details at www. metrofamilymagazine.com/babyshower Hannah Schmitt Editor

Office/Distribution Kathy Alberty

Business Development Shelly Sanderson

Contact us

318 NW 13th St Ste 101 OKC OK 73103 Phone: 405-601-2081 Fax: 405-445-7509 info@metrofamilymagazine.com www.metrofamilymagazine.com MetroFamily Magazine is published monthly. Copyright 2017 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

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

This Month’s Cover

Liam C.

Cover Kids Search Winner, Age: 4 Oklahoma City native Liam C. lives with his Mom (Kelly), a registered nurse, and his Dad (Shaun), kayak coach and camp director at Cavett Kids Foundation. He appears on our cover with his white Goldendoodle, Skye. He left his fish and his black cat Nessie at home on the day of the shoot. Liam likes to go swimming, play in the backyard and go to the movies. He has had Type 1 Diabetes for three years and likes to tell people about his super cool insulin pump (called his “Pod”) and Continuous Glucose Monitor (called his Dexcom). He fields frequent questions like, “What is that thing on your arm?” like a pro, educating others about Type 1 Diabetes, an autoimmune disease in which his pancreas produces no insulin. There is no known cure, but Liam and his family are involved in promoting awareness of Type 1

Diabetes, advocating and playing hard despite frequent blood sugar checks and treating highs and lows. Liam also attended a Diabetes Camp called Camp NoHiLo this summer for the second year in a row. PHOTO BY EMILY HART WWW.NINAANDBPHOTOGRAPHY.COM

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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Saturdays for Kids: Stickball August 5 10:00 a.m. – Noon

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FAMILY BUZZ

National Breastfeeding Awareness Month:

My Personal Pumping Story BY ERIN PAGE PHOTO OF SARA WITH HER TWINS PROVIDED.

I imagined my final farewell to my breast pump would mimic the baseball-batto-the-copier-machine scene in “Office Space.ˮ Instead, as I packed it up to pass on to another mom-to-be, I couldn’t stop the tears. Intermittently across five years, that pump was my constant (and annoying) companion. I pumped in bathrooms, offices, cars and hotel rooms. As I unexpectedly mourned the end of an era, I thought about my three beautiful babies the pump helped me nourish. As I thought about the countless NICU babies, whose names and stories I don’t know but to whom I feel deeply connected, the pump helped me supply donor milk to when they needed it most. I woke up early and I stayed up late, carefully collecting, recording and storing extra ounces for donation. 1,733 to be exact. But my decision to be a human milk donor has very little to do with me. Instead, credit is due to my lifelong friend Sara Crawford. Sara and husband, Tom, gave birth to twins, Grady and Wren, on May 6, 2012, at the University of Oklahoma Medical Center’s Children’s Hospital. They were born at 32.5 weeks, Grady weighing 3 pounds, 4 ounces, and Wren weighing 3 pounds, 11 ounces. The twins would spend a long four weeks in the NICU at Children’s Hospital gaining strength to go home, with parents both elated and anxious. Soon after the twins’ birth, Sara and Tom were asked whether they wanted their babies to receive formula or donor human milk until Sara’s milk came in. Offering this choice was a new practice at the hospital and the Crawfords were thrilled.

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“My goal was to provide them breast milk, and it allowed me to do so before my body was ready,” said Sara. “I felt like I could still do my best for them; the donor milk filled that gap.” Grady and Wren had donor milk for about a week until Sara could provide them her own breast milk, fortified with high-calorie formula to help them gain weight. When the babies came home, Sara’s body couldn’t

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keep up with demand. Her decision to stop breastfeeding was an emotional one, and it made Sara all the more appreciative of the gift of donor milk. I know how fortunate I was to be able to breastfeed my children and I knew that blessing had a purpose and Sara helped me find it. Not long after her twins were born, my own first child was nearing a year of age and my freezer was packed with breast milk, Sara sent me an article about the Texas Mothers’ Milk Bank. I started the screening process. Soon after I was approved, my daughter, my mom and I drove to The Children’s Hospital, where a nurse greeted me out front with a cart to wheel 734 ounces of hard work to a freezer. When I made my final donation after my third child in 2016, OMMB was already providing milk at every major hospital in the state, making it one of the fastestgrowing milk banks in history. As of 2017, OMMB provides donor milk regularly to 11 hospitals, including two out of state that don’t have local milk banks. There are also 11 milk depots (drop-off locations) for approved donors, around the state, with three more to be added soon. Since the bank opened, OMMB has processed more than 236,000 ounces of donor milk from 1,200 donors. Grady and Wren are thriving, happy, soonto-be kindergartners. Donor milk was one piece of the puzzle that helped them thrive in their first week of life. Each time I carted my own milk donations across town, I prayed it would find its way to a baby who needed a boost of nutrition and mom who needed to know she wasn’t alone. Sara, Grady and Wren gave me the resolve to keep pumping. For a mom whose baby lies critically ill, unable to breathe on his own or too small to go home, moms like me can give a few extra minutes of our time to provide healing and hope. To read more about the milk bank, visit www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ milkdonation.


News from our advertising partners

Healthy Summer Recipes BY ANGI BRUSS

It seems everyone is a bit busier during the summer, which could be one reason why it’s so easy for you and your family to munch on junk food, especially when you just need to grab something and go. Unfortunately, those not-sogood-for-us treats can leave behind bad examples for our children and they can catch up to our waistlines. Since most of us know we’re supposed to fill half our plates with fruits and veggies, Shape Your Future, a health awareness program of the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET), has practical and delicious suggestions to get us started. “We all know that cooking can be a struggle – you get in ruts or you are rushed, or you are dealing with picky eaters,” said Sjonna Paulson, director of health communication for Oklahoma TSET. “The Shape Your Future website is full of recipes that are quick and easy to fix, has tasty, healthy takes on some old favorites and offers ways to add in different vegetables and fruits that will please picky eaters. Besides being healthy, all of the Shape Your Future recipes can help you stay on budget as well.” When you’re in a rush, the Shape Your Future website, https://shapeyourfutureok.com, has ideas to speed things up in the kitchen. For example, take a few minutes to pick out recipes ahead of time and create a grocery list to avoid impulse buys. You can also find easy meal preparation tips, make-ahead meals and ways to make leftovers into a new meal. Paulson suggested a great way to get kids excited about eating at home is by involving them in the process. “I like to look for recipes on Shape Your Future that the kids can help make,” she said. “Then we turn on music while we prepare meals together. That way, we get in a little fun physical activity while we make dinner and do prep work for breakfast and lunch for the next day.” When kids are out of school for breaks, Paulson said it’s especially important to

monitor what’s being eaten at home. “With kids not getting structured meals for breakfast and lunch as they would in school,” she said, “it can be harder for parents to provide three healthy meals and snacks each day during the summer.” If your kids are at home during the summer, Paulson recommended turning to quick snacks like carrots, raisins, light pre-cut cheese and leftovers individually portioned for simple lunches. “If your kid is headed to camp or day programs or at childcare,” she said, “be sure to ask what types of foods are served and encourage those watching your children to serve water or infused water for drinks and to get those fruits and veggies in during the day as well.” Paulson admitted making healthier food choices for your family might take a few extra minutes at the beginning, but the tips, tricks and recipes at Shape Your Future will help you serve tasty meals and build a lifetime of healthy habits for your kids. The Shape Your Future health education program is dedicated to improving Oklahoma’s health and future through nutrition, fitness education and tobacco-free lifestyles. Shape Your Future encourages parents, caregivers, children and all Oklahomans to eat better, move more and be tobacco free. Shape Your Future provides recipes that can be prepared in 20 minutes or less.

Paulson’s favorite recipes: Peach Pear Water shapeyourfutureok.com/recipes/ peach-pear-water Watermelon Basil Feta Salad shapeyourfutureok.com/recipes/ watermelon-basil-feta-salad/ Barbecue Pulled Chicken Sliders shapeyourfutureok.com/recipes/ barbecue-pulled-chicken-sliders Find more recipes at shapeyourfutureok.com/eat-better/ recipes

Don’t forget about water. Make sure your family drinks plenty of water during the hot summer months. Get physical. Children need at least 60 minutes per day of physical activity. Support local. Introduce kids to locally-grown foods at nearby farmers markets.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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EDITOR'S PICKS

Great Gaming Destinations PHOTO PROVIDED BY THE BOARDING HOUSE

If high temperatures have you dreading another outing to a park or playground, maybe it’s time to head indoors for some play. These board game cafes and game rooms offer everything from old-fashioned family fun like a game of checkers to cutting-edge gaming technology like virtual reality. Any age or interest is bound to find something fun at these metro game destinations. The Boarding House is a table game

lounge in Guthrie that’s a top pick because of its snack bar, expansive library of games and a reasonably-priced day pass rate. Choose from more than 350 games or just stop by to try your hand at the 1,000-piece community puzzle. Games range from old-fashioned classics to the newest board and card games. Play as many games as you want in a single day (you can even leave and come back the same day) for $5 for adults, $3 for ages 4-12. Kids 3 and under are free.

DZ Comics & Gaming opened in 2013 and is a hub for card and video game enthusiasts in Moore. The gaming tables on-site are open to players to try out a variety of games. If you find one you love, buy it at the shop and maybe even

8 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

sign up for a tournament. The business hosts events regularly and posts them to their Facebook page, www.facebook.com/ dzcomicsandgaming. Step inside Oklahoma City’s first virtual reality arcade Upward VR at Penn Square Mall and gear up to experience a totally new world. Although it’s pricier than traditional board game cafes (starting at $15 for 15 minutes), a visit to Upward VR is still much less expensive than purchasing actual virtual reality equipment. There are games for every age and interest. Browse the list at www.upwardvr.com.

Oklahoma City’s Game HQ is a

true destination for gamers with a large retail space of role-playing games, board

games, miniature games, card games, war games, family games, dice and more. Their 3,000-square-foot game room is available for open play and they regularly host events and tournaments for game enthusiasts. Entry into the game room is completely free but special events sometimes cost. Their schedule can be found at www.gameheadquarters.com.

Loot & XP in Norman is an ideal destination for spending some time indoors. With more than 350 board games and a snack bar on-site, plan to spend a lot of time here. Have your kids check out the full library of games at www.lootandxp.com before your visit to plan out their day of play. Find more ideas for summer fun at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/summer.


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Identifying PANDAS: When mental health conditions aren’t what they appear BY ERIN PAGE

T

his is the final part of our four-part series on youth mental health in Oklahoma. Find all the articles in the series at www.metrofamilymagazine. com/health. At age 5, Edmond resident Leah Hubler and her older brother developed a cold over Christmas break. Her brother got better. Leah didn’t. Though her cold symptoms eventually dissipated, a dry cough persisted. Most concerning, Leah’s personality changed dramatically.

10 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

“She did so well at school,” said Leah’s mom, Sarah Hubler. “But at home, she was obstinate and oppositional. She would rage over minuscule things. It was bizarre.” Minor disappointments, like a friend canceling a playdate, would send Leah into a prolonged screaming rage. Trying to comfort her by holding her would eventually turn to restraining her to keep her from hurting herself. Hubler says they couldn’t speak rationally or use reasoning to calm her down. Leah began to fear bedtime, wailing at the sight of her pajamas or hiding under laundry in her parents’ room to stay close to them. Six months later, Leah’s cough, which hadn’t been helped by steroids or inhalers, began to

be accompanied by hand flapping and violent head nodding, similar to whiplash. Hubler realized the behaviors were tics. “For an otherwise normal child to have a windfall of neurological problems and tics is not normal,” said Hubler. “Within six months, our normal, happy, cheerful, bright child has turned into this.” In the midst of that tumultuous six months, Leah and her parents made countless trips to the pediatrician, Leah began cognitive behavioral therapy and was diagnosed with Tourette’s Syndrome, anxiety disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder. After a year of researching Leah’s symptoms, Hubler


realized she’d never Googled all her symptoms together. When she did, the word PANDAS appeared on her screen.

mental health condition using psychotropic drugs, PANDAS requires antibiotics to treat the strep infection.

“It sounded like someone had followed Leah around and documented her life,” said Hubler.

At Leah’s 6-year well-check, her father mentioned PANDAS. The pediatrician had heard of the disease, but like many other medical professionals, was skeptical, calling PANDAS a controversial and clinical diagnosis. Though Leah had no symptoms of strep, she was tested for it, and the 48-hour culture showed a raging strep infection. Leah immediately started antibiotics.

Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Strep Infections, or PANDAS, is believed to be triggered by an infection. When an infection like strep occurs, the body develops antibodies to fight it. In a child with PANDAS, those antibodies instead begin to attack healthy tissue in the brain responsible for movement and behaviors, leading to tics, neurologic and psychiatric symptoms, mirroring mental health conditions. Unlike the treatment of a

“By days three and four she was calmed down,” said Hubler. “By day six, her tics were gone. I said ‘this can’t be Tourette’s because that can’t be cured by antibiotics.’”

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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Hubler had read that if Leah did have PANDAS, she needed to be on antibiotics much longer than 10 days. Leah’s pediatrician reluctantly agreed to place her on a 30day course, and the family searched for a doctor who would treat her long term. After being turned away by immunologists, rheumatologists and neurologists, they finally found a pediatric immunologist at the University of Oklahoma who agreed to keep Leah on antibiotics. Because of the lack of PANDAS knowledge in Oklahoma at the time, the Hubler family had to take Leah to Florida for an official diagnosis. Though Hubler says Leah is in a “decent place” now in terms of symptom management, she’s not the girl she once was. “She was my little girl, my only girl,” Hubler said of her daughter, who’s now 11. “She was my twirling princess, tea party, magical fairy girl. I literally feel like PANDAS stole her childhood from her.”

What is PANDAS? Researchers first became aware of PANDAS in the 1990s when they found a group of children with sudden onset OCD and tics also had recent strep infections. In 1995, the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry first published the syndrome, called PITANDS, which could be triggered by various infections. In 1998, it was renamed PANDAS, focusing on the strep infection trigger to better raise awareness and research treatment options. The same year, Dr. Madeleine Cunningham, a rheumatic fever expert at the University of Oklahoma, was recruited by Dr. Susan Swedo at the National Institute of Mental Health to help study what autoantibodies from strep could do to the brain. In 2010, PANS (Pediatric Acute-Onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome) became the broader name for the disorder, removing the requirement for strep as the infectious trigger. PANS can be caused by many other infections like herpes, mononucleosis (mono) or Lyme disease, as well as environmental triggers. PANDAS and PANS typically occur between ages 3 and 12, and according to the PANDAS Network, they affect one in 200 children. Children with PANDAS experience a wide variety of symptoms like OCD, eating restrictions, tics, behavioral regression, anxiety, irritability, sleep disturbances, depression, impulsivity, changes in handwriting, anorexia, aggression, sensory abnormalities and emotional swings. Like Leah, often children with PANDAS or PANS have been

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diagnosed with OCD, ADHD, Tourette’s, Autism Spectrum Disorder, anorexia or other mental health conditions that don’t respond fully to neuropsychiatric drugs. Cunningham and Dr. Craig Shimasaki founded Moleculera Labs in Norman in 2013 to develop testing to assist physicians in identifying and treating people with autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders like PANS and PANDAS. With the Cunningham Panel of tests, which measure the levels of antibodies directed against antigens in the brain and their ability to interfere with the brain’s neurotransmitters, Moleculera regularly receives specimens from across the world. Shimasaki reports that a survey of parents of children with PANDAS/PANS found, in general, they had taken their children from five to as many as 15 doctors prior to finding a diagnosis. “Typically these children we test have been ill or had ongoing symptoms for a fair amount of time,” said Shimasaki. “Very few things have helped them medically or they are not getting better.” Though the clinical criteria for PANDAS is abrupt onset of symptoms, sometimes overnight, Shimasaki said every child may not fall into that category. Instead, the disorder can be progressive, where symptoms gradually get worse over time and with additional infections, like what Celeste Roy’s son Christopher experienced. After successfully homeschooling Christopher for first grade, Roy placed him in private school for second grade. He got sick often, including contracting strep a number of times. “Out of the blue, I started noticing his handwriting changing,” said Roy. “He was no longer writing how I taught him. It was illegible.” Christopher developed a fungal infection under his nails that wouldn’t clear up, experienced severe separation anxiety, exhibited sensory abnormalities, had joint pain and was diagnosed with OCD, anxiety disorder and bipolar disorder. Roy reverted back to homeschooling. With three older children, Roy knew what she was experiencing with Christopher was not normal. The family saw countless doctors and therapists trying to determine a cause. It wasn’t until Roy met Cheri Coker about a year ago that she heard about PANDAS. Coker had been to upwards of 20 doctors with her son, Kadein. “Doctors told me that he was bipolar or had ADD or Autism Spectrum Disorder,” said Coker. “But I would get online and look at kids who were bipolar and think ‘This can’t

be right. Kids who are bipolar aren’t just bipolar when they’re sick.’” Kadein was also diagnosed with OCD and anorexia. Coker first heard about PANDAS after reading a study by Cunningham. “I thought ‘This has to be it,’” said Coker. “So I called Moleculera and said ‘I’m pretty sure my son has PANDAS and we can’t get help.’”

Treating PANDAS Aided by the Cunningham Panel, Kadein’s physician officially diagnosed him with PANDAS three years ago. “I thought, ‘Yes, we can finally get treatment,’ but it’s not like that,” said Coker. “The guidelines [to] treat it aren’t set yet.” Kadein has been on multiple antibiotics and antivirals. He continues to battle anorexia and OCD and bipolar-like symptoms. Children with PANDAS often experience flares when they get an infection or when they’re exposed to someone with strep. Coker removed Kadein from school in December because he was constantly sick. “Anything that elicits an immune response can trigger a PANDAS flare,” said Hubler. “The immune system isn’t just trying to fight foreign invaders, it identifies natural proteins in the brain as being the enemy and attacks them, causing OCD, ODD, ADHD and tics, while the rest of us just get a sore throat.” Leah, Kadein and Christopher can often sense when someone around them has strep, even before that person is aware of it. “Leah will call me from school to say ‘Mom, someone here has strep and I’m starting to tic really bad,” said Hubler. “Her anxiety flares and we have to remove her from the situation.” Even though Leah doesn’t always contract strep, the exposure resuscitates her symptoms, which can last for three to four days. Antibiotics no longer keep Leah’s symptoms at bay entirely but she can sleep in her own room with her door shut and can better manage her symptoms or tell her parents when she needs help. “When Leah first got sick and we put her on antibiotics, I thought we’d have two to three months of this and then she’d be cured,” said Hubler. “I didn’t realize this would be such a long-term, permanent thing. She’s about 80 to 85 percent back, and I’m going to have to be okay with that.” Hubler says Leah’s anxiety still gets the best of her. Situations that would cause typical


pre-teens some stress can make Leah physically ill. “I don’t want her to use PANDAS as a crutch to shrink from every bad situation in life, but you can’t wish away her brain’s organic reaction,” said Hubler. Like many parents of kids with PANDAS, Roy has had a difficult time finding a doctor and a treatment method that works for Christopher and their family can afford. “There was relief in knowing that I finally knew what was going on,” said Roy of Christopher’s diagnosis. “Then panic to find out if my son will have to deal with this for the rest of his life. And if there’s a doctor out there willing to help him.” Hubler feels reassured that there are now PANDAS resources in Oklahoma, including a pediatric immunologist Leah has been seeing for several months, a pediatric psychiatrist in Edmond and a physician group in Del City that treats PANDAS patients with a combination of natural remedies and western medicine. Shimasaki applauds the few physicians in Oklahoma who understand and are willing to treat kids with PANDAS, but says they are overextended because patients flock to them. “There are a lot of dedicated physicians around the country who are taking care of these kids, but they are overworked and have long waiting lists,” said Shimasaki. Many parents of kids with PANDAS are hesitant to use psychotropic drugs, often because they’ve tried them to no avail or they’re frightened of the potential side effects. Though Hubler understands that sometimes those drugs are necessary to “turn down the noise so they can heal,” she’s not certain they’re best for Leah. Christopher’s side effects from a psychotropic drug make Roy leery of anything other than supplements and Zoloft to help with his anxiety and OCD. She’s removed sugar and dairy from his diet, and he also takes supplements, vitamins, pre and probiotics and an appetite stimulant, but he still has regular joint pain, headaches, stomach pain and anorexia. In addition to the emotional toll on families, tests, medication and symptoms management leave families financially strapped. Shimasaki said Moleculera is doing its part, and that the $925 they charge for the Cunningham Panel, not always covered by insurance, doesn’t cover all of the small company’s costs. He applies for grants and raises capital from investors, local institutions and parents whose kids have recovered from PANDAS to keep their

costs as low as possible. Hubler is angry that insurance companies aren’t doing their part, not even recognizing the disease with a diagnosis code or approving intravenous immunoglobulin therapy (IVIG), which has been found to be a successful treatment option for some children with PANDAS. “Insurance companies stand in the way between our children getting better because they refuse to recognize PANDAS,” said Hubler. “They won’t approve IVIG, which they’ve found is essentially like a reboot of the immune system. Families lose their homes trying to get their kids back.” IVIG involves a two-day course of treatment in which a patient receives blood plasma containing immunoglobulin, or antibodies. The plasma is from thousands of donors, ensuring patients receive a broad range of antibodies to protect against infections and diminish PANDAS patients’ neurological symptoms. Shimisaki says IVIG “can be very effective but is very expensive.” The treatments can be anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000, and children may require more than one. “If this is the treatment that’s actually going to treat this disease, all they are doing is hurting these kids,” said Roy. “Stop trying to make a buck and start trying to save our children.” Kadein recently received IVIG, costing the Coker family $16,300. The results were immediate and breathtaking. “By the end of the day, it was like he came alive,” said Coker, who added that it was only by the grace of God they were able to scrape the funds together for IVIG. Coker hopes to appeal to their insurance company to approve coverage for additional treatments by showing how well Kadein’s done after the first round of therapy. Shimasaki echoes the need for better treatment therapy that’s less expensive and easier to access. He hopes Moleculera’s further research into markers in the brain that autoimmune antibodies could be directed toward will help in the discovery of new treatments. Though there is progress being made on the insurance front, like a bill awaiting the Illinois governor’s signature that requires insurance companies to cover treatment for PANDAS and will hopefully spur similar laws in other states, Hubler worries it will be too late for Leah. “As a parent, you’re dealing with the present, but the long term looms,” said Hubler. “The fact that she was two-and-a-half years from onset to diagnosis … there is long-term, irreversible damage that can be done.”

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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Moving forward When Leah was first diagnosed, Hubler read on PANDAS Network that as many as 92 percent of girls see a remission or grow out of it when they hit puberty. Though a long way away for Leah at the time, that statistic was heartening. The team at Moleculera receives Christmas cards, report cards and pictures of kids playing football who, thanks to diagnosis and treatment, have overcome PANDAS. But Hubler sees more and more teens and young adults, like Kadein and Christopher, still struggling with the disease. Leah loves to draw, sing and act, which help diminish her anxiety and tics, and she’s written a guide book for parents and kids with PANDAS. She struggles with and gets embarrassed by her rage. Kids at school make fun of her tics and she wishes people realized she can’t always control her responses. “My symptoms and tics hurt a lot,” said Leah. “I try to do everything I can to stop, but it’s really hard.”

Hubler said Leah’s anger surfaces when she’s bored and that she craves adventure and excitement. She worries how that will affect Leah as she matures and develops relationships with the opposite sex. Hubler herself experiences PTSD, which is why she says it’s critical for parents to find support groups through the PANDAS Network or the Oklahoma PANDAS Facebook group, where Roy and Coker met. “We live every day constantly dealing with our stressor,” said Hubler. “It’s not a battle that you get away from; our war lives with us so we are never released from that.” Coker has been immersed in advocating for her son, fighting insurance companies, doing her own research and seeking out support since Kadein was diagnosed. Though she believes in the wisdom of the medical community, Coker warns that doctors don’t know everything and parents should trust their intuition. Roy hopes that parents banding together to petition insurance companies to pay for treatment and demand doctors treat patients cost-effectively will change the direction of her own journey,

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and others’. She worries about Christopher’s flares, which usually involve rage and insomnia, hurting him or others. “Nineteen years of watching my child deteriorate,” said Roy. “I’d give up my life today if my child could be free and clear of this.” Coker remains hopeful that Kadein’s IVIG treatment will heal him completely, and that if he needs additional treatments, their appeal to their insurance company to cover it will be accepted. Coker’s daughter was recently diagnosed with Lyme disease and PANS, for which she’s on antibiotics and antifungal medications. None of her treatment is covered by insurance. In the meantime, Coker takes heart in knowing their family’s trial has not been entirely in vain. “Everything happens for a reason,” said Coker. “I [have been] able to help a lot of other people along the way.” [Editor’s Note: Find more information about youth mental health in Oklahoma at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/health.]

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MOM GETS THE LAST LAUGH

Nothing but the best ... or easiest

ILLUSTRATION BY BR

N

W.V ITTANY VIKLUND, WW

IKLUNDMADE.COM

ow seems like as good of a time as any. I’ve made the quasi-executive decision that our family will start the school year off with healthy eating. Basically, much to the disdain and chagrin of my daughters and their daddy, we are not buying Lunchables.

the fridge, grab one of the delicious lunchmeat and cheese-packed formed-plastic containers as we race from the house to the car to the school.

Please understand this: I love Lunchables. They are a busy momma’s answer to all of her morning noon and night woes. Now, I don’t feed my family Lunchables for breakfast (much), so let me explain.

Then, on those nights wherein we have softball and study groups and youth group and babysitting and homework and social “obligations” and meetings and everything else, we just grab another Lunchable and call it dinner.

In the morning, in our mad dash to get out of the door, dressed, with all required school supplies and necessary homework assignments, it’s much easier for a kid (or husband) (okay, fine, or me) to open

16 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

For the noon meal, we peel back the plastic and enjoy the turkey or ham and cheese and savory crackers. And we can’t forget the cookie! Or, if we’re lucky, the minuscule candy bar that basically requires no chewing.

I’d give up all the yummy, scrumptious, convenience of the Lunchable to have a free night so that I could stay home with my family and cook


them a nutritious, hot meal of … well, I don’t know of what because it’s been so long since I’ve actually used the kitchen as more than a place to store the Lunchables. No, for real, what do people have for supper these days? Do regular people even have supper anymore? Nonetheless, this is the year I give up the Lunchables and take back lunch! And dinner! And, okay fine, sometimes breakfast. And there’s more to my decision than just grandiose visions of a family sitting around a table complaining about grey meatloaf and lumpy potatoes (mashed or unmashed). My decision is based on having more control over what my children are ingesting and teaching them the valuable skill of planning ahead. This school year, we will meal plan! The girls, my husband and I will decide what we’ll be taking for lunches and what we’ll be making for dinner. Perhaps veggie wraps with fresh mushrooms, basil, red onions and bell peppers. Except that my girls don’t like peppers and my husband only likes tortillas

when they are wrapped around sizzling steak and cheese. Or in soup …

nuggets or a sloppy joe. Just kidding; my picky family won’t eat sloppy joes.

So maybe we’ll make some tortilla soup. Except that my younger daughter doesn’t have time to wait in line at the school microwave and my older daughter doesn’t like to reheat melted cheese …

If we did plain ol’ sammiches with their processed lunch meat and fake cheese, then we might as well just have Lunchables, sans the cute, plastic faux bento-box vibe. We could add veggies to the sandwiches, and by we I mean I because no one else likes their sandwiches with anything else aside from the so-called meat and loosely-referred-to cheese. Plus, they like white bread. May as well just eat a cup of sugar. So … maybe they should just make their sandwiches on whole wheat crackers.

We could try that cauliflower pizza crust. Except that each of my family members has threatened to shove raw cauliflower up my nose while I sleep if I try to slip that recipe in on them. They’re purists, I guess. They like their pizza crust enriched, carby and full of unpronounceable items. They can all agree on the good ol standby of a PB & J. But those get gross really fast if you make them too far ahead of time and, as those who know us well can testify, we don’t do well in the mornings. And there’s that whole half-a-swipe of PB to a half-cup slathering of J formula that my younger daughter has perfected. Not really healthy at all. My money would be on that lunch not getting made at all and them eating a school lunch of chicken

So, scratch everything I just said. My quasiexecutive decision is that I will hold my head up high as “that mom” who sends her kids to school with Lunchables on day one. There’s no shame in my lunch game (anymore). Heather Davis is a momma, a writer and lazy lunch packer with big dreams. Her book, Mondays with my Daughter, is available through Amazon.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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LOCAL FAMILY FUN

Kid Crooners Singing lessons for OKC youth

BY ANGI BRUSS

As your kids make selections for after-school activities, it’s important to note that the benefits of singing lessons for kids range from improved selfesteem and confidence levels to higher IQs and test scores. Whether your child is the next Beyonce or not doesn’t really matter. There are vocal lessons available throughout the Oklahoma City metro area and enrolling can do wonders

18 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

beyond just improving their chances of someday competing on “The Voice.” Oklahoma City mom Tracy Williford has seen her 16-year-old daughter Kyra gain so much more than a beautiful voice from taking singing lessons. “Kyra has learned to accept rejection with grace and success with humility,” Williford said of her daughter. “She’s also made lifelong friendships with people who share her passion.” Inspired to sing by watching “Hannah

Montana,” Kyra has been taking vocal lessons since she was seven years old. She started out singing as a soloist with Oklahoma Kids, a performing arts non-profit, but Williford explained that after performing in her first school musical in fifth grade, Kyra wanted the full experience including dancing and acting lessons. “Kyra always gets nervous before an audition or performance but she does it!” exclaimed Williford. “She’s solo sung the national anthem for hundreds of people without flinching. She is strong of character and


fiercely independent without much concern for what others think of her.” Kyra has taken vocal lessons at Lyric’s Academy and private lessons from an independent teacher. She’s also taken private and group dance and studied production for seven years at the Academy. “Beginners and hobby singers build confidence and proper technique habits to keep their voices strong and healthy for years to come,” explained Rozz Grigsby, director of Primary Education at Lyric Theatre’s Thelma Gaylord Academy. “Private lessons help build personal responsibility in young singers as they rehearse independently between lessons. Whether or not students plan to pursue singing in their future, good posture and breathing techniques are beneficial for anyone standing to speak before a crowd, from the Parent Teacher Organization to the boardroom.” Lyric’s Academy is just one of the many places in the metro area where your child can take singing lessons. Although most of the singing lesson providers in the metro differ in the types of services and styles they follow, they all agree singing lessons can be a tremendous confidence booster for kids. “Once students can stand on a stage and sing in front of people, there is nothing they can’t do,” said JoBeth Moad, director of the Performing Arts Academy at Oklahoma City University. “It is a great confidence builder.” Jennifer Baker, executive director of The Sooner Theatre and The Studio of The Sooner Theatre said, “We know that not every student that walks through our doors will end up on Broadway, but we can tell you that each of these students will build courage and confidence to ‘put themselves out there’ no matter what path they choose to take in life.” Ted Kuschel, owner and general manager of School of Rock Edmond, agreed. “We have seen student after student transform from shy and timid to confident and self-assured,” he said. “It takes guts to get on stage and sing in front of strangers and I think that confidence definitely carries over to other areas of their life.” As for what age to start lessons, there is a wide range depending on maturity level and what type of instruction you’re pursuing. Lyric’s Academy has seen children as young as 3 come in for lessons. Although Baker said she doesn’t encourage formal vocal training for young children, The Sooner Theatre offers an introduction

to voice, exercises for proper breath control, rhythm exercises, music selection and audition prep for their youngest singing enthusiasts. At School of Rock Edmond, teachers recommend waiting until children are about 7 to begin classes so they have the patience to sit through a 30-minute lesson. Bethany Stage provides music classes for kids age 5 and under. Teachers at the organization believe helping young children embrace music early on gives them a valuable tool for relaxing, focusing, expressing themselves and communicating.

Helping women through

life.

Whenever you decide to start, there are plenty of opportunities locally to help your budding vocalist hone their skills. Here are some details on Oklahoma City metro singing lessons. None of these activities require auditions. • Lyric Theatre’s Thelma Gaylord Academy has three voice studios in the Plaza Theatre and three rehearsal studios in the Production Center, both are located on N.W. 16th St. in the Plaza District in Oklahoma City. Private and group lessons are available for beginners or advanced singers at any age. For private instruction, each block is $120; a block is four 30-minute lessons. Group classes are generally $325 for the semester and qualify for scholarships. Scholarships disbursed year round. • Performing Arts Academy at Oklahoma City University is located at 2501 N. Blackwelder. All lessons are private one-on-one and for all ages and levels. Lessons are $50 per hour, $37.50 for 45-minutes, $25 for 30-minutes. • The Studio of The Sooner Theatre gives lessons in one of six studio rooms at 110 E. Main St. in downtown Norman in the Walker Arts District. Formal vocal training is offered for teens and adults. Lessons cost $100 per month for four 30-minute lessons.

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• School of Rock Edmond offers private vocal lessons and is located at 100 N. Broadway Ste. 124 in downtown Edmond. The cost is $140 for four 30-minute lessons per month and the first lesson is free. • Bethany Stage at 3930 N College Ave. in Bethany offers Sing with Me Music Class to allow young children to play in a musically rich environment supportive of learning and development. The class is offered for moms and their children birth to 5 years old for $40 per month.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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Top: Donald K. Rahhal MD; Devin G. McAdams, MD; Beverly A. Vavricka, MD; Misty Wayman, MD Bottom: David Melendez, MD; Karen Eyler Wilks, MD 4140 W. Memorial Road, Suite 500 Oklahoma City, OK 73120

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August

Sun

Mon

Tue

1 Mario the Maker Magician at OCCC Visual & Performing Arts Center at 7 p.m.

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7

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FREE Sunday Twilight Concert Series at Myriad Gardens from 7 – 9 p.m.

FREE First Mondays for Kids at Sam Noble from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

FREE Mo Willems Story Time at the Moore Library from 10 – 11 a.m.

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FREE An Accordion Affair Concert at Yukon Czech Hall from 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum Oklahoma at the Downtown Library from 6:30 – 7:15 p.m.

FREE Summer Songwriter Series at SandRidge Commons from 6 – 8 p.m.

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perfect for preschoolers

great for teens

FREE Summer Breeze FREE Science of the Concert Series at Norman’s Solar Eclipse at Moore’s Lions Park at 7:30 p.m. Central Park from 12:30 – 1:30 p.m.

FREE TLC (Touch, Learn, Create) Ocean Animals at the Southwest OKC Library from 10 – 10:30 a.m.

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date night idea

fitness event

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Paddle Boarding in the FREE Payne County FREE Wheeler Criterium Gardens at Myriad Gardens Free Fair opens in Stillwater in the Wheeler District from from 10:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. 5 – 8:30 p.m.

worth the drive

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Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

2

3

4

5

FREE Wide-Open Wednesdays & Western Movie Matinees at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum

FREE Concerts in the Park at Yukon’s Chisholm Trail Park from 7 – 8:30 p.m.

FREE Midwest Truck Showdown at State Fair Park from 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.

FREE Super Hero School at New World Comics from 10:30 – noon

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10

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Wild Wednesdays at the Oklahoma City Zoo from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

FREE Art in the Park at Edmond’s Stephenson Park from 9:30 – 10:30 a.m.

FREE LIVE on the Plaza in the Plaza District from 7 – 11 p.m.

FREE Cat Video Festival at Myriad Gardens at 7:30 p.m.

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FREE FIREFLY Rooftop Concert Series in Automobile Alley from 7 – 10 p.m.

FREE LOVE OKC One Day Outreach at State Fair Park from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Surf Zone Thursday at FREE TLC (Touch, Learn, Create) Ocean Animals at RIVERSPORT Adventures from 4 – 9 p.m. the Southwest OKC Library from 10 – 10:30 a.m.

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FREE Canadian County Free Fair opens in El Reno

OKC Balloon Festival at Chisholm Creek

FREE Midwest City Splash ‘n Dash at Reno Swim & Slide from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

GloRun OKC at Mitch Park from 6 – 10:30 p.m.

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FREE Rock the Route: FREE Reading Route 66 Anniversary Wednesdays Story Time at Myriad Gardens at 10 a.m. Celebration in Yukon from 6 – 11 p.m.

Find all these August events and hundreds more at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ calendar

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

AUG 1 • TUESDAY Clay Time for Kids at Will Rogers Gardens (3400 NW 36th St). Collect clay from a natural source in Will Rogers Park and then create art pieces with it. Wear closed-toed shoes and clothes that can get dirty and wet. Preregister. For ages 8-13. $10. 8:30-10am. 297-1392, www.okc.gov Mario the Maker Magician at OCCC Bruce Owen Theater (7777 S May Ave) features an old-school slapstick performace with a mad inventor twist. Best suited for ages 3-10 and their families. Adults, $20; kids (under 12), $10. 7pm. 682-7579, www.mariothemagician.com

AUG 2 • WEDNESDAY FREE Back-to-School Block Party at Passion Church (3301 N Council Rd, Bethany) features food, games, fun and more to celebrate the beginning of school. 6-8pm. 210-7754, www.passionchurch.tv Oklahoma City Energy vs Reno 1868 FC at Taft Stadium (2501 N May Ave). $10&up. 7:30pm. Also held: Aug 5 vs Real Monarchs, Aug 19 vs San Antonio, 235-5425, www.energyfc.com

AUG 2-5 Research Center Book Sale at the Oklahoma History Center (800 Nazih Zuhdi Dr) features books on a variety of topics including genealogy, Oklahoma history, US and military history, education, biographies and more as well as prints of historic photos and maps, periodicals and more. Benefits the Oklahoma Historical Society Research Center. Prices vary. Wednesday-Friday, 10am-5pm; Saturday, 10am-3pm. 522-5225, www.okhistory.org

AUG 3 • THURSDAY Herb-ilicious at Will Rogers Gardens (3400 NW 36th St) features a tour of a veggie patch to talk about and taste herb plants. Attendees will plant some to take home for use in the kitchen. Preregister. For ages 6-12. $10. 9-10:30am. 297-1392, www.okc.gov FREE Mini Cupcake Wars at the Midwest City Library (8143 E Reno Ave). Compete in rounds to see who can create the most colorful, creative and captivating cupcakes. For teens ages 12-18. 4-5pm. 732-4828, www.metrolibrary.org

22 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

FREE Mom Chat: Transition Panel at New Covenant Methodist Church (2700 S Boulevard, Edmond) features a panel of experts who can offer wisdom and guidance as you and your child transition to middle school, high school and/or college. Meet other moms and be encouraged that you’re not alone on the journey of raising kids. Childcare is available to any who RSVP. 6:30pm. 562-3227, www.newcov.tv

AUG 3-5 Adorable Affordables Consignment Sale at the Payne County Fairgrounds (Hwy 51 & Fairgrounds Rd, Stillwater) features gently used children’s, maternity and scrapbooking items, some items half price. Thursday & Friday, 9am-7pm; Saturday, 8am-2pm. 747-7304, www.adorableaffordable.net

AUG 4 • FRIDAY Babies at the Museum at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features complimentary coffee, social time, a 30-minute gallery tour and playtime with age appropriate activities including music and books. August’s theme is Rainbow and Light. For ages 0-24 months and their caregivers. Preregister. Members, free; nonmembers, $5. 9:30-11am. Also held: Sept. 1. 278-8213, www.okcmoa.com FREE First Friday Gallery Walk in the Paseo District (NW 30th & 27th St, Walker & Hudson Ave) features special themed exhibits, refreshments, live entertainment and food trucks. 6-10pm. Also held: Sept. 1. 525-2688, www.thepaseo.com FREE Midwest Summer Fest at Charles Johnson Park (29th & Mid-America Blvd, Midwest City) features live entertainment, a screening of E.T. in the park, yard games, food trucks and more. 6:30-11:30pm. 739-1293, www.midwestcityok.org FREE Movie in the Park at Shannon Miller Park (S Jackson & E First St, Edmond) features an outdoor screening of The Lorax to celebrate the end of the Build A Better World Summer Reading Program. Kona Ice will be on site for the purchase of snow cones. Attendees are welcome to bring snacks, drinks, blankets, chairs and bug spray. 7:30-9:30pm. 341-9282, www.metrolibrary.org


St. Eugene Catholic School

St. John Nepomuk Catholic School

Christ the King Catholic School

PreK3 - 8th Grade Oklahoma City, OK steugeneschool.org 405.751.0067

PreK3 - 8th Grade Yukon, OK sjnok.org/school 405.354.2509

PreK3 - 8th Grade Oklahoma City, OK ckschool.com 405.843.3909

St. Charles Borromeo Catholic School

Sacred Heart Catholic School/OKC

St. James Catholic School

PreK - 8th Grade Oklahoma City, OK stcharlesokc.org 405.789.0224

PreK4 - 8th Grade Oklahoma City, OK sacredheartokc.org 405.634.5673

PreK3 - 8th Grade Oklahoma City, OK stjames-catholic.org 405.636.6810

St. Philip Neri Catholic School

Mount St. Mary Catholic High School

Bishop John Carroll Catholic School

PreK3 - 8th Grade Midwest City, OK stphilipnerischool.com 405.737.4496

Rosary Catholic School

National Blue Ribbon School PreK3 - 8th Grade Oklahoma City, OK rosaryschool.com 405.525.9272

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic School PreK - 8th Grade Edmond, OK stelizabethedmond.org 405.348.5364

Secondary College Preparatory Grades 9 - 12 Oklahoma City, OK mountstmary.org 405.631.8865

Bishop McGuinness Catholic High School Secondary College Preparatory Grades 9 - 12 Oklahoma City, OK bmchs.org 405.842.6638

PreK - 8th Grade Oklahoma City, OK bjcs.org 405.525.0956

St. Mary’s Catholic School PreK3 - 8th Grade Guthrie, OK stmaryguthrie.org 405.282.2071

All Saints Catholic School PreK - 8th Grade Norman, OK allsaintsnorman.org 405.447.4600


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

FREE Movies Under the Stars in Piedmont (314 Edmond Rd NW, Piedmont) features an outdoor screening of The Secret Life of Pets and snacks. 8pm.

AUG 4 & 5 FREE Midwest Truck Showdown at State Fair Park (3001 General Pershing Blvd) features a family and pet friendly semi-truck show with live music, a bounce house, face painting, vendors and food. Free to attend. 9am-9pm. 532-8140, www.bellsandwhistlesokc.com

AUG 4-12 FREE American Quarter Horse Youth World Championship Show at State Fair Park (3001 General Pershing Blvd). Exhibitors 18 and under show off their skills with their American Quarter Horse partners in halter, English and western events. See website for a complete schedule of events. 948-6704, www.aqha.com/youthworld

AUG 5 • SATURDAY FREE Fishing Days in Oklahoma City (various locations). The City of Oklahoma City offers free fishing on the first Saturday of each month. No city permit is required, however a State license is for anyone 16 and older. 297-1426, www.okc.gov FREE Feeding 5000 & More at OKC Faith Church (800 S Portland Ave) features backpacks full of school supplies for kids in pre-K-12th grade (while supplies last) as well as burritos and drinks for those that attend a presentation. Donations to the church can be made online. 8am-1pm. 948-7100, www.okcfaith.com Zoo Treasure Hunt Breakfast and Stroll at the Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St) features a beat-the-heat walking tour to discover historic treasures and a fruit and pastry breakfast. All ages welcome. Preregister. Members, $20; non-members, $25. 8-9:30am. 424-3344, www.okczoo.org FREE Back-to-School Slip-Slide Family Celebration at Family of Faith Church (13500 SE 15th St, Choctaw) features family activities including inflatables, hot dogs and free school supplies for kids in grades K-5. 9am-noon. 769-8751, www.familyoffaithok.com FREE Storybook Hour at Cuppies & Joe (727 NW 23rd St). Children listen to a story while parents enjoy coffee and

24 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

conversation. 10-11am. Also held: Aug 19. 528-2122, www.cuppiesandjoe.com FREE Saturday for Kids at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St). Staff from the Cherokee Cultural Center will facilitate stickball games. Participation in the games is encouraged. For ages 4-12. Preregister; free for children and accompanying adults. 10am-noon. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org FREE Super Hero School at New World Comics (6219 N Meridian Ave) features a different amazing super hero each week and on occasion a villain or two as well. All ages welcome. 10:30am-noon. Also held: Aug 19. 721-7634, www.facebook.com/ newworldcomicsokc/ First Saturday Hands-on History at the Oklahoma History Center (800 Nazih Zuhdi Dr) features a variety of activities throughout the museum including crafts, coloring, hands-on carts and educational trunks. Free with admission. 1-4pm. 521-2491, www.okhistory.org Zoo Time with Grandparents at the Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St) feature free-flowing, indoor activities including crafts, puppet play and animal meet-n-greets. Members, $12; non-members, $15. 2-3:30pm. 424-3344, www.okczoo.org FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum Oklahoma at the Warr Acres Library (5901 NW 63rd St, Warr Acres). Find out what causes an eclipse and learn the best way to observe one without burning out your eyeballs. 2:30-3:30pm. Also held at other libraries on Aug. 8, 9, 12, 14, 16, 18 & 19. 721-2616, www.metrolibrary.org Oklahoma City Boys Ranch Town Backto-School Dinner Event at Embassy Suites (2501 Conference Dr, Norman) features a meal, entertainment and a kids’ back-toschool fashion show. Benefits Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children. 5:30pm. 463-5516, www.obhc.org FREE Red Brick Nights Street Festival in Downtown Guthrie (2nd & Harrison Ave, Guthrie) features rotating pop-up shops, food trucks and live music, on the first Saturday each the month. 5pm; music, 7pm. Also held: Sept 2. 282-1947, www.guthriechamber.com/red-brick-nights


Anniversary Show at the Rodeo Opry (2221 Exchange Ave) features national and local talent hosted by Owen Pickard. $20 & up. 7pm. 297-9773, www.ohfo.org My So Called Band at Tower Theatre (425 NW 23rd St) features the popular local ‘90s cover band in concert. $10. 9pm. www.towertheatreokc.com Alter Bridge in Concert at Frontier City Theme Park (11501 N I-35 Service Rd). Free with admission. Time to be announced. 478-2140, www.frontiercity.com FREE Back to School Round Up at Alameda Church of Christ (801 E Alameda, Norman) features a family fun day offering free backpacks with school supplies, lunch, information fair for parents and kids’ activities as well as free haircuts. 9am-noon. 321-0788, www.alameda-streams.org

BACK TO SCHOOL

CH E CK L I ST With help from Shape Your Future, you can supply your kids with ways to eat better, move more, and be tobacco free all school year long!

FREE Where’s Waldo Party at Best of Books (1313 E Danforth Rd, Edmond) features activities and refreshments. Prizes for the Find Waldo in Edmond scavenger hunt will be drawn. 1-3pm. 340-9202, www.bestofbooksok.com

AUG 4-6 FREE Firelake FireFlight Balloon Fest at Citizen Potawatomi Nation Powwow Grounds (Heritage Parkway, Shawnee) features balloon glows, balloon rides and balloon competitions as well as fishing, a kids’ zone, mini putt, art show, concerts, BMX shows and more. See website for a complete schedule of events. www.firelakeballoonfest.com

AUG 5 & 6 Oklahoma City Pet Expo at State Fair Park (3001 General Pershing Blvd) features pet-friendly exhibitors and rescue groups, live demonstrations in Obedience Training, pet care, giveaways and prizes, free nail trims, discounted vaccinations, talent and costume contests and more. Free admission. Saturday, 10am- 6pm; Sunday, 11am-4pm. 800-977-3609, www.okcpetexpo.com

Healthy infused water recipes Classroom physical activities After-school family activities Be tobacco free coloring pages Tons more!

Check it all out at ShapeYourFutureOK.com.

AUG 6 • SUNDAY Sensory Sensitive Sundays at Chuck E. Cheese (2201 Interstate Dr, Norman) features less crowds, dimmed lighting, the music and show turned down or off and limited appearances from Chuck E. 9-11am 366-8200, www.chuckecheese.com/dealsoffers/sensory-sensitive-sundays

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

Healthy breakfast recipes Healthy lunch pack recipes Healthy dinner recipes

25

(Or sign up for our monthly emails and we’ll send ideas straight to you!)


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

FREE Good to Grow: A Health and Wellness Expo at Allegiance Credit Union Operations Center (4235 N Meridian Ave) features free sport physicals, blood pressure & glucose checks. Kids can enjoy fun activities including art, cooking activities, storytelling and goodie bags. Event organizers are collecting school supplies for metro schools. Attendees are encouraged to bring donations. 2-4pm. 789-1256.

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FREE Back to School Bash at Capitol Hill Baptist Church (304 SW 134th St) features free school supplies, inflatables, games, free food, drinks and door prizes. School supplies will be given to kids present at the bash in grades preK-12th grade, while supplies last. 4-6pm. 799-9799, www.chbchurch.org Matchbox Twenty and Counting Crows in Concert at Zoo Amphitheatre (2101 NE 50th St) features their A Brief History of Everything Tour and special guest artists Rivers and Rust. $49.50. 6pm. 602-0683, www.thezooamphitheatre.com

AUG 7 • MONDAY FREE First Mondays for Kids at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave) features complimentary admission for kids 17 & under on the first Monday of each month. General admission applies to guests 18 & older. Adults (18-64), $8; seniors (65+), $6; kids (17 & under), free. 10am-5pm. 325-4712, www.samnoblemuseum.ou.edu FREE Mom Chat: Preteens & Teenagers at New Covenant Methodist Church (2700 S Boulevard, Edmond) features local author and speaker, Kristen Hatton, who speaks with moms about teens’ search for identity and worth and how this drives our kids’ behaviors. Childcare is available to any who RSVP. 6-8pm. 562-3227, www.newcov.tv Full Moon Bike Ride and Run at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a leisurely hour’s ride through downtown and timed, training runs hosted by Ultramax Sports Oklahoma. All ages welcome. $5 suggested donation. Run, 8pm; ride, 8:30pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org Family Night Out at Papa Murphy’s (various locations). Papa Murphy’s will donate 15 percent of pre-tax sales to Infant Crisis Services. Be sure to mention Infant Crisis when ordering. Pizza prices vary. Also held: Sept. 4. www.papamurphys.com

K12.COM/OKevents 844.832.5460 26

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

AUG 8 • TUESDAY FREE Mo Willems Story Time at the Moore Library (225 S Howard Ave, Moore) features games, crafts and stories about the book characters of Mo Willems. 10-11am. 793-5100, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org Adult Nature Night: Scavenger Hunt at Martin Park Nature Center (5000 W Memorial Rd). Scavenge the trails at Martin Park. This scavenger hunt may have you hugging trees or searching for the “perfect“ leaf, all while meeting new people. $5. 6:30-8pm. 297-1429, www.okc.gov FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum Oklahoma at the Edmond Library (10 S Boulevard, Edmond). Find out what causes an eclipse and learn the best way to observe one without burning out your eyeballs. 3-4pm. Also held at other libraries on Aug. 9, 12, 14, 16, 18 & 19. 341-9282, www.metrolibrary.org

AUG 8 & 9 FREE Monthly Mini Model Build at the LEGO Store in Penn Square Mall (1901 NW Expressway) features an in-store build event for kids ages 6-14. Preregister. 5pm. 840-9993, Stores.Lego.com

AUG 8-12 In the Heights at Civic Center Music Hall (201 S Walker Ave) features a spirited show from the creator of Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda, about the close-knit neighborhood of Washington Heights. $30-$100. Tuesday, 7:30pm; Wednesday, 7:30pm; Thursday, 7:30pm; Friday, 8pm; Saturday, 2 & 8pm. 524-9312, www.lyrictheatreokc.com

AUG 9 • WEDNESDAY FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum Oklahoma at the Bethany Library (7941 NW 23rd St, Bethany). Find out what causes an eclipse and learn the best way to observe one without burning out your eyeballs. 3-4pm. Also held at other libraries on Aug. 12, 14, 16, 18 & 19. 789-8363, www.metrolibrary.org FREE First Aid and CPR Demonstration at the Moore Library (225 S Howard Ave, Moore). Instructors from Heartland CPR will demonstrate hands-only CPR and basic first aid. This program is open to adults and teens. Preregister. 5:30-8:30pm. 793-5100, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org


o b La

a D r

W y

k e e

! d en

Saturday September 2nd

11 to 4pm • $5 per slider

edmond multi-activity center

Music,Fun & F d!

• water slides • food trucks • dj shorty b

backyard fun for everyone!

call 359-4630 or visit us @ edmondparks.com Follow us on


Don’t let an accident spoil your summer fun!

CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

FREE Mom Chat: Tots & Preschool Moms at New Covenant Methodist Church (2700 S Boulevard, Edmond). Connect with other moms in your season of life and enjoy some little-people-free time and adult conversation over coffee. Childcare is available to any who RSVP. 6:30pm. 562-3227, www.newcov.tv

AUG 10 • THURSDAY FREE Art in the Park at Stephenson Park (S Litter Ave & E Fourth St, Edmond) features a nature-inspired art project. Preregister. For ages 2-12. 9:30-10:30am. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com FREE Zombies at the Library at the Midwest City Library (8143 E Reno Ave, Midwest City) features a zombie hunt, games, snacks and more. For ages 12-18. 4-5pm. 732-4828, www.metrolibrary.org Canterbury Youth Voices Auditions at Oklahoma City University (2501 N Blackwelder Ave). Choirs are open to singers entering grades 2-12 from all over the metro area. Auditions are kidfriendly and require no prepared materials. Preregister. 5-6pm. 232-7464, www.canterburyokc.com

If you or your child has to wear a cast this summer, make sure it is a water cast so that swimming or bathing is not a problem! John W. Anderson, M.D.

Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon Fellowship Trained in Pediatric Orthopedics

405-947-0911 ext 270

www.okortho.com

Heroes Ball at the Skirvin Hilton Hotel (1 Park Ave). Kids can enjoy dinner, games, superheroes and a superhero movie, while grown-ups enjoy a cocktail hour, sit-down dinner and silent auction. Formal wear requested. Adults, $135; kids, $35. 6-10pm. 236-5437, hero-oica.nationbuilder.com

AUG 11 • FRIDAY FREE 2nd Friday Norman Art Walk in the Norman Arts District (downtown Norman) features a monthly celebration of the arts in Norman. 6-9pm. www.2ndfridaynorman.com The Beauty of the Beast at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman). Investigate creative art techniques by exploring different ways to make animal art and get inspiration from exploring the amazing animals in the museum galleries. Preregister. For ages 5 & up with an adult. Members, $20; non-members, $30. 6-8pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu FREE Movie in the Park at Moore’s Central Park (700 S Broadway Ave, Moore) features an outdoor screening of The Secret Life of Pets. Activities, 7pm; movie, dusk. Concession available for purchase. 793-5090, www.cityofmoore.com/centralpark

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LIVE on the Plaza in the Plaza District (1700 block of NW 16th St) features artists, live music, special events, local shopping and more on the second Friday of the month. 7-11pm. www.plazadistrict.org/live/ FREE Movie Night @ the Park at MAC Amphitheater (2733 Marilyn Williams Dr, Edmond) features a screening of the Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life. Preregister. Movies begin at dark, concession available for purchase. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com

AUG 11-14 Oklahoma City Dodgers vs Round Rock Express at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle Dr). $8 & up. Friday & Satuday, 7:05pm; Monday, 6:05pm; Tuesday, 7:05pm. Also held: Aug 24-27 vs Omaha, Aug 28-31 vs New Orleans. 218-1000, www.okcdodgers.com

AUG 12 • SATURDAY FREE Tea-Themed Story Time at Chick-fil-A Moore (2001 S Telephone Rd, Moore) features a tea-themed story time with representative from the Moore library for moms and daughters. 8-9am. 799-6100, www.cfarestaurant.com/moore/home FREE Will Rogers & Wiley Post Fly-in at Will Rogers Birthplace Ranch (9501 E 380 Rd, Oologah) features more than 100 small aircraft. Spectators can talk with pilots, see aircraft up close and enjoy children’s activities, a Cherokee storyteller, a classic car show, food vendors and a tour of Will Rogers Birthplace home and Amish barn. 8:30am-1pm. 918-341-0713, www.willrogers.com The Story of Seeds at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features an interactive, storytelling program to explore how smart seeds are. Preregister; best suited for ages 6-10. Members, $5; non-members, $7. 10-11am. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org Urban Camping at RIVERSPORT Adventures (725 S Lincoln Blvd) features classic camping favorites like stargazing and outdoor games, just steps away from modern conveniences including indoor restrooms and the Big Water Grill. $10; adventure passes available for purchase. 7pm-8am. Also held: Sept 2. 552-4040, www.riversportokc.org


Soar 2017 – Touch-a-Plane at the Purcell Airport Chandler Field (1420 Chandler Rd, Purcell) features several small planes and helicopters for children to touch and see as well as bounce houses, face painting, a DJ, food trucks and a raffle. Benefiting Luggage with Love. Free to attend. 9am-noon. 613-9518, www.LWLOK.org/SOAR

FREE Rush Springs Watermelon Festival at Jeff Davis Park (Main St, Rush Springs) celebrates the watermelon harvest with seed spitting contests, arts & crafts, carnivals rides, live entertainment, 5K Watermelon Run, free watermelon and more. 9am9pm. 580-476-3103, www.facebook.com/ rushspringswatermelonfestival/

FREE OU Flight Academy: Bernoulli’s Principle at the Norman West Library (300 Norman Center Ct, Norman). Learn how Bernoulli’s principle explains the flight of heavier-than-air objects. Preregister; best suited for grades 3-5. 9-10am. 701-2644, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

St. Yootz Day Christian Funday at Frontier City (11501 N I-35 Svc Rd) features a Newsboys concert in the Starlight Amphitheater, plus a day of fun at Frontier City. Benefits the Youth Service Fund. $25; $10 meal ticket option available. 10:30am11pm. 530-2144, www.okumc.org

Kids’ Tree Masks Craft Class at Will Rogers Gardens (3400 NW 36th St) features a walking trek through the gardens to examine trees and a tree-inspired, makeyour-own mask art making. Materials supplied. Preregister; all ages welcome. $8. 10am-noon. 297-1392, www.okc.gov

FREE Back to School Bash at Southern Oaks Library (6900 S Walker Ave) features games and activities both inside and outside in collaboration with OKC County Health Department. All ages welcome. 11am-1pm. 631-4468, www.metrolibrary.org

FREE Family Movie at the Belle Isle Library (5501 N Villa Ave) enjoy a familyfriendly screening of Hidden Figures. Pajamas welcome. 2-4:30pm. 843-9601, www.metrolibrary.org Indian Taco Sale and Indie Market at Ok Choctaw Tribal Alliance (5320 S Youngs Blvd) features traditional Indian tacos and other native dishes as well as native vendors offering crafts and handmade goods. Proceeds go to the OK Choctaw Tribal Alliance. Free to attend. 11am2:30pm. 596-9092, www.facebook.com/ okchoctawtribalalliance Back-to-School Ice Cream Social at My Chic Geek (4413 N Meridian Ave, Warr Acres) features ice cream and costumed characters. Benefits Positive Tomorrows. $5. 2-4pm. 367-7955, www.facebook.com/ mychicgeek/

MUSEUM HOURS Tuesday-Saturday 10 am-5 pm Thursday 10 am-9 pm Sunday 12-5 pm

Kehinde Wiley (American, b. 1977). Randerson Romualdo Cordeiro (detail), 2008. Oil on canvas, 48 x 36 in. (121.9 x 91.4 cm). Private collection, Golden Beach, Florida, courtesy of Roberts & Tilton, Culver City, California. © Kehinde Wiley. (Photo: Robert

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CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

Back to School Bash in Bricktown (various locations) features bouncy houses, live music, food, face painting, superheroes, outdoor games including Corn Hole, Giant Chess, Giant Checkers, Tick-Tac-Toe, water games and more. Free to attend; donations accepted. Noon-4:30pm. nie.newsok.com/ bricktownb2sb/ FREE Family Make + Take Art Project at Oklahoma Contemporary (3000 General Perching Blvd) features an art-making project inspired by works of art on view at the museum. All ages welcome; children must be accompanied by an adult. 1-4pm. 951-0000, www.oklahomacontemporary.org FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum of Oklahoma at the Choctaw Library (2525 Muzzy St, Choctaw). Find out what causes an eclipse and learn the best way to observe one without burning out your eyeballs. 2-3pm. Also held at other libraries on Aug. 14, 16, 18 & 19. 390-8418, www.metrolibrary.org FREE Cat Video Festival at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a collection of the internet’s finest cat videos as well as food trucks, live music and more. Benefits local cat charities, animal welfare organizations and shelters. Pre-show fun; 7:30pm; movie, 9pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org FREE Beats & Bites Festival at Riverwind Casino (1544 W State Hwy 9, Norman) features live entertainment by Confederate Railroad, food trucks and local vendors. 6-11pm. 322-6000, www.riverwind.com Scorpion Hike at Martin Park Nature Center (5000 W Memorial Rd) features a black light hunt through the woods to learn how these ancient arachnids got their stinging reputation. Preregister; best suited for ages 6 & up. $8. 9:15-10:30pm. 297-1429, www.okc.gov To A New Children’s Consignment Sale at the Edmond Downtown Community Center (28 E Main St, Edmond) features a semiannual sale featuring gently-used and like-new maternity, baby and children’s items ranging from clothing, toys, furniture and accessories. Saturday, 9am-6pm; Sunday, 1-5pm. 514-2363, www.toanew.com Newsboys in Concert at Frontier City Theme Park (11501 N I-35 Service Rd). Time to be announced. 478-2140, www.frontiercity.com

30 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

AUG 13 • SUNDAY FREE An Accordion Affair at Yukon Czech Hall (205 N Czech Hall Rd, Yukon) features a free concert with Lucas Ross as emcee. 2:30-4:30pm. 949-0394, www.OKaccordion.club Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic Tours at Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features in-gallery guided tours with conversation-based insights and information about the exhibition. Preregister. Members, free; prices vary for non-members. 6pm. Also held: Aug. 31 & Sept. 3. 236-3100, www.okcmoa.com FREE Wild World Back-To-School Carnival at People’s Church (various locations) features inflatables, pony rides, extreme animals, snow cones and food trucks. See website for times and locations. www.thewildworld.tv Chaparral Family Sundays at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle Blvd) features mascot meet & greets, player autograph sessions, inflatables, face painting, craft stations, train rides and photo stations. Kids also get to run the bases following the game. Activities begin 30 minutes prior to game time. $8 & up. 5:30pm. Also held: Aug. 27. 218-1000, www.okcdodgers.com

AUG 14 • MONDAY FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum Oklahoma at Downtown Library (300 Park Ave). Find out what causes an eclipse and learn the best way to observe one without burning out your eyeballs. Preregister. Best suited for ages 5 & up. 6:30-7:15pm. Also held at other libraries on Aug. 16, 18 & 19. 231-8650, www.metrolibrary.org

AUG 15 • TUESDAY FREE Toddler Story Time at Chapel Hill United Methodist Church (2717 W Hefner Rd) features story time with staff from the Metropolitan Library System. For kids ages 4 & under and their caregivers. 10-11am. 507-7311, www.mychapelhill.org FREE Summer Songwriter Series at SandRidge Commons (123 Robert S Kerr Ave) features a monthly concert by popular artists including Tyson Meade, formerly of Chainsaw Kittens and Chase Kerby from NBC’s The Voice. 6-8pm. 235-7700, www.facebook.com/crowedunlevy/


AUG 16 • WEDNESDAY FREE TLC (Touch, Learn, Create) – Ocean Animals at Southwest OKC Library (2201 SW 1364th St) features sensory-themed activity stations for children ages 2-6. 10-10:30am. 979-2200, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum Oklahoma at Belle Isle Library (5501 N Villa Ave). Find out what causes an eclipse and learn the best way to observe one without burning out your eyeballs. 6-7pm. Also held at other libraries on Aug. 18 & 19. 843-9601, www.metrolibrary.org

AUG 17-20 Summer Shootout Barrel at State Fair Park (3001 General Pershing Blvd) features hard hitting barrel racing, vendors and a trade show. See website for a schedule of events. 364-0274, www.shootoutbarrels.com

AUG 18 • FRIDAY FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum Oklahoma at Southern Oaks Library (6900

snow cones, barbecue and tacos. Friday, 6-10pm; Saturday, 10am-10pm. 485-9392, www.cityofblanchard.us

S Walker Ave). Find out what causes an eclipse and learn the best way to observe one without burning out your eyeballs. 4-5pm. Also held at other libraries on Aug. 19. 631-4468, www.metrolibrary.org

AUG 18-20

FIREFLY Rooftop Concert Series in Automobile Alley (1015 N Broadway Ave) features live music, free cookies from Insomnia Cookies, coffees & Italian sodas from Coffee Slingers and a cash bar on the rooftop patio. $5. 7-10pm. www.eventbrite.com

USA Softball All-American Games at Softball Hall of Fame Complex (2801 NE 50th St) features elite athletes in the 12 & under age division. Watch teams from across the country compete for top honors. See website for times and ticket pricing. www.teamusa.org

FREE Filmography: Oklahoma Film Series at 21c Museum Hotel (900 W Main St) features screenings of classic art house films. August’s film is Four Sheets to the Wind. 8pm. 982-6900, www.21cmuseumhotels.com/ oklahomacity/blog/2017/filmography/

AUG 19 • SATURDAY

AUG 18 & 19 FREE Blanchard Bluegrass Festival at Blanchard’s Lions Park (SW 7th St, Blanchard) features live music, workshops and jam sessions. Food vendors will also be on-hand during this free event offering

Historic Tours in Downtown Edmond (various locations). Learn about the structures and residents throughout downtown on guided, educational walking tour. Photos will be shown on the tours, revealing changes through the decades. Preregister, scheduled by appointment only. $5. 715-1889, www.edmondhistoricpreservationtrust.com

3 x USASF World Champs! • 2 x Summit Champs! • 23 x NCA National Champs!

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Edmond 405-775-9491 • Muskogee 918- 913-7833 Norman 405- 573-9974 • Tulsa 918-622-58673

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

FREE LOVE OKC One Day Outreach at State Fair Park (3001 General Pershing Blvd) features free haircuts, family portraits, health services, and various resources including food and other essentials. All goods and services are free on the day of the outreach. Volunteer opportunities available for ages 12 & up. 9am-2pm. 748-0228, www.loveokc.com Eats on 8th Food Truck Festival in Midtown (NW 8th St & Harvey Ave) features gourmet food trucks, live entertainment and more. Free to attend. Noon-8pm. 234-7960, www.facebook.com/ EatsonEighth/ FREE Storybook Hour at Cuppies & Joe (727 NW 23rd St). Children listen to a story while parents enjoy coffee and conversation. 10-11am. 528-2122, www.cuppiesandjoe.com

Maternity Coaching and Education Bump to Baby & Beyond ™ . A service designed to support individuals during the birthing experience and life transition that comes with the addition of a new baby. Call (405) 271-8767 to learn more about the pricing for

Bump to Baby & Beyond Bundles! Gift certificates are available!

FREE WestFest on Historic Western Avenue (NW 41st-43rd St) features a familyfriendly street festival with live music, food trucks, shopping, a kids area and more. Family festival, noon-4pm; concerts, until 10pm. www.westfestok.com FREE Eclipse Party with Science Museum Oklahoma at the Northwest Library (5600 NW 122nd St). Find out what causes an eclipse and learn the best way to observe one without burning out your eyeballs. 2-3pm. 721-2616, www.metrolibrary.org OKC Ultimate Wine Run at Boathouse District (725 S Lincoln Blvd) features a family-friendly run with wine and fun festivities including food, a live DJ, rides and more. All ages welcome to attend. $40 & up. 4:30-8:30pm. theultimatewinerun. com/oklahoma-city-ok/ FREE Come-Unity Family Festival at Bicentennial Park (201 N Walker Ave) features a cultural extravaganza with music, arts & crafts, games, food trucks, vendors and kids’ activities. Performers include DJ Musicman Roy, Jabee, Slawta Harris and more. All proceeds will be donated to the improvemnent of OKC Public Schools, supplies and lunch programs. 5-9pm. 593-5886, www.facebook.com/ events/250244978811222/ FREE Village Block Party at Duffner Park (10801 N Victoria Pl) features free food, water, live music, family games and the park’s splash pad. 5-9pm. www.facebook. com/events/231035037394463/

oucaremanagement.com The University of Oklahoma is an equal opportunity institution. www.ou.edu/eoo

32 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

FREE Heard on Hurd Street Fest in Edmond (Broadway between 1st & Hurd, Edmond) features local food, unique shopping and live music, on the third Saturday each month. 6-10pm. www.citizensedmond.com/heardonhurd.htm R5 in Concert at Frontier City Theme Park (11501 N I-35 Service Rd). Free with admission. Time to be announced. 478-2140, www.frontiercity.com FREE International Geocaching Day Activities at the Yukon Community Center (2200 S Holly Ave, Yukon). Learn what geocaching is and how to create caches and hunt for caches in the park. All ages welcome. 10am-noon. 340-8937, www.cityofyukonok.gov Dancing for a Miracle at Embassy Suites (2501 Conference Dr, Norman) features a ballroom dance competition by local celebrities, business leaders and philanthropists paired with professional dancers as well as a cocktail hour, silent & live auctions and dinner. $150. 6pm. 271-2208, www.okchf.org

AUG 19 & 20 FREE Train Days at the Norman Central Library (225 N Webster Ave, Norman) features trains and tracks of all layouts and sizes set up by local train enthusiasts groups. All ages welcome. Saturday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, 1-6pm. 701-2600, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

AUG 20-26 Just Between Friends Consignment Sale at State Fair Park Cox Pavilion (3212 Wichita Walk) features gently used toys, clothes, shoes and baby supplies at bargains up to 90% off retail prices. Sunday, $3: No admission charged for other days. Sunday, noon-9pm; Monday, 10am-9pm; Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday; 10am4pm, Friday, 10am-9pm; Saturday, 10am2pm. www.okc.jbfsale.com

AUG 21 • MONDAY Solar Eclipse Viewing at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl). Planetarium staff will be on-hand to assist guests in operating telescopes that will allow users to look directly at the sun and to view the eclipse safely. Special shows in the Kirkpatrick Planetarium are planned throughout the day. Free with admission. 11am-3pm. 602-6664, www.sciencemuseumok.org


THE FIRST

TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE visible in the U.S. in nearly 40 years is happening

AUG. 21.

For a list of places around OKC offering eclipse-viewing events, visit www.metrofamilymagazine.com/eclipse. FREE Great American Eclipse Viewing at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features “space” music, food and educational activities. CE certified glasses will be handed out for safe viewing. 11:30am-3pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org FREE Solar Eclipse Watch Party at Northwest Library (5600 NW 122nd St) features crafts, snacks and experiments to learn more about astronomy and space. Solar glasses will be available to safely view the sun. All ages welcome. Noon-2pm. 606-3580, www.metrolibrary.org FREE Solar Eclipse Viewing Party at the Norman West Library (300 Norman Center Ct, Norman). Viewing glasses will be available for free at the library and staff will review safe viewing practices. Noon-2pm. 701-2644, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org FREE Science of the Solar Eclipse at Moore’s Central Park Amphitheater (700 S Broadway Ave, Moore) features information, stories and activities all about the eclipse. Attendees will get a pair of eclipse safety glasses. Preregister. 12:30-1:30pm. 793-5100, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

AUG 22 • TUESDAY Adult Nature Night: Butterfly Garden 101 at Martin Park Nature Center (5000 W Memorial Rd). Learn how to invite these amazing pollinators to your home. The group will discuss what type of garden will work best for your home and what plants are most inviting to butterflies. Preregister. For ages 18 & up. $5, 6:30-8pm. 297-1429, www.okc.gov

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Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life Friday, August 11 MAC Amphitheater | 7 pm

Free Admission | Concessions $1 ea. | Don’t forget your chairs and blanket EdmondParks.com | 405.359.4630 Follow us on


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

AUG 23-26

AUG 24-27

FREE Hughes County Free Fair at the Hughes County Expo Center (7274 HWY 270, Holdenville) features carnival rides, livestock shows, agricultural exhibits, horse shows and more. Free admission. See website for a schedule of events. 379-5470, oces.okstate.edu/hughes

OKC Balloon Festival at Chisholm Creek (13230 Pawnee Dr) features daily balloon launches, night glows, a pop up shop village, live music, food vendors & beverages plus lots of fun activities for kids. Free admission; parking, $10. 5-11pm. See website for a complete schedule of events. www.okcbf.com

FREE Canadian County Free Fair at the Canadian County Fairgrounds (220 N Country Club Rd, El Reno) features a carnival, live entertainment on multiple stages, live stock exhibits, Farmhand Olympics, arts & craft exhibits, baking competitions, talent show, pet show, antique tractor pull and more. See website for a schedule of events. 262-0683, www.canadiancountyfair.com

AUG 25 • FRIDAY

F&F Rodeo Finals and Stephens County Free Fair at Stephens County Fair & Expo Center (2002 S 13th St, Duncan) features a carnival, livestock show, rodeo, food and entertainment. Free admission; tickets required for rodeo. See website for a schedule of events. 580-467-3824, www.duncanchamber.com

FREE Fiesta Fridays in Historic Capitol Hill (SW 25th between Harvey & Robinson) features hot food, cold beverages, live music, dancing, shopping and activities for kids. 7-10pm. 623-0133, www.historiccapitolhill.com

AUG 24 • THURSDAY One Work, Many Voices at Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features an in-depth conversation inspired by a single work of art in the exhibition Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic. Museum facilitators and community guests will kick off the dialogue. Preregister. Members, free; nonmembers, $5. 6-7pm. 236-3100, www.okcmoa.com FREE Back to School Bash for Teachers and School Staff at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl). Educators and museum staff will be on-hand to answer questions about field trips, free teacher resources, special events and other opportunities for schools. Guests will have the opportunity to experience special demonstrations and explore Science Museum Oklahoma’s hands-on exhibits. 6-8pm. Preregister by emailing cstone@ sciencemuseumok.org. 602-3712, www. sciencemuseumok.org/back-to-school-bash FREE Family Game Night at The Station at Central Park (700 S Broadway Ave, Moore) features a variety of different games like Monopoly, card games, ping pong and more. No registration required. All ages welcome. Kids under 6 must be accompanied by an adult. 7:30-9:30pm. 793-5090, centralpark.cityofmoore.com

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FREE Midwest City Splash ‘n Dash at Reno Swim & Slide (101 S Douglas Blvd, Midwest City) features a non-competitive biathlon-type event that consists of a fun run and swim. Kids get the opportunity to explore the world of multi-sport activities. Open to boys and girls ages 7-12. 5:307:30pm. 739-0066, www.midwestcityok.org

AUG 25 & 26 FREE Oklahoma County Free Fair at State Fair Park (3001 General Pershing Blvd) features a variety of contests from cooking and ice cream eating to equestrian skill, kiddy tractor pull, an indoor carnival and HoHo’s Central Oklahoma Clown Alley. Friday, 2-7pm; Saturday, 9am-noon. 713-1125, www.oces.okstate.edu/oklahoma OCA Range Round-up at Lazy E Arena (9600 Lazy E Dr, Guthrie) features 12 historic ranch teams as they compete in contests like the Top Hand, Top Horse and Tough Hand. Benefits the Children’s Miracle Network. Adults, $15-$30; kids (6-11), $5; kids (under 5), free. 7pm. 325-4391, www.okcattlemen.org

classics. The park’s splash pad will be open for attendees to enjoy as well as food vendors. Benefiting various non-profit organizations. 9am-2pm. 478-4783, www.e-clubhouse.org/ sites/thevillageok/index.php Canterbury Youth Voices Auditions at Capitol Hill Baptist Church (304 SW 134th St). Choirs are open to singers entering grades 2-12 from all over the metro area. Auditions are kid-friendly and require no prepared materials. Preregister. 9am-noon. 232-7464, www.canterburyokc.com Dig In! at the Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St). Play in the mud and learn about mud loving animals. Wear clothes to get dirty in and bring others to change into afterwards. For ages 4 and up. Preregister. Members, $12; non-members, $15. 10-11:30am. 424-3344, www.okczoo.org FREE SUPER! BitCon Photo Scavenger Hunt at Main Event (1441 W Memorial Rd) features a team-based adventure all across Oklahoma City. Preregister. All ages welcome. Prizes will include game systems, gift certificates and some surprises. 11am9pm. www.superbitcon.com FREE Faerie Discovery Tour at Will Rogers Gardens (3400 NW 36th St) features a stroll through the Margaret Annis Boys Arboretum to search for these magical sprites. Along the way, learn about trees and plants that would grow well in your own garden. Preregister. 11am-noon. 297-1392, www.okc.gov Faerie Gardening at Will Rogers Gardens (3400 NW 36th St). Plant your very own sprite-sized garden to attract faeries into your life. Preregister. Adult accompaniment required for children under 10. $25 per garden. Noon-2pm. 297-1392, www.okc.gov

Moore War Run at Moore High School (300 N Eastern Ave, Moore) features an annual 5K supporting the students of the Moore School District. Adults, $30; students (18 & under), $15. 7:30am. www.moorewarrun.com

FREE AMP Festival in Automobile Alley (9th St) features an all-ages festival celebrating art and music created by women with live music, food and shopping. A portion of the proceeds will go to OKC Rock N Roll Camp for Girls and Oklahoma City Girls Art School. Noon-8pm. 810-6977, www.ampfestokc.com

Spirit Sprint 5K Run at Chisholm Trail Park (500 W Vandement, Yukon) features a 5K and one-mile fun walk to benefit special needs recreation in Yukon. $25 & up. 8-10am. 354-8442, www.cityofyukonok.gov

GloRun OKC at Mitch Park (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features an evening, black light 5K race and one-mile fun run. Benefits the The Recovery Center. $25-$45. 6-10pm. 525-2525, www.trcokevents.com

FREE The Village Lion’s Club Car Show at Duffner Park (10801 Victoria Pl) features hot rods, muscle cars and fully restored

Forever In Your Mind in Concert at Frontier City Theme Park (11501 N I-35 Service Rd). Free with admission. Time to be announced. 478-2140, www.frontiercity.com

AUG 26 • SATURDAY


AUG 27 • SUNDAY Paddle Boarding in the Gardens at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave). Paddle around the Garden’s lake on boards provided by the Boathouse District. Members $8; non-members $10. 10:30am-2pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org FREE Oklahoma is about...All That Jazz Performance at the Almonte Library (2914 SW 59th St) features a musical journey through Oklahoma’s jazz history, beginning with the deep deuce jazz era in Oklahoma City, through the Greenwood jazz scene in Tulsa, through today’s contemporary jazz era. 2-3pm. 606-3575, www.metrolibrary.org FREE Snakes in the Library at Belle Isle Library (5501 N Villa Ave). See snakes up close and learn about their behavior. For ages 6 and up. 2-3pm. 843-9601, www.metrolibrary.org Chaparral Family Sundays at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle Blvd) features mascot meet & greets, player autograph sessions, inflatables, face

painting, craft stations, train rides and photo stations. Kids also get to run the bases following the game. Activities begin 30 minutes prior to game time. $8 & up. 5:30pm. 218-1000, www.okcdodgers.com

AUG 28-SEPT 2 FREE Payne County Free Fair at the Payne County Expo Center (4518 Expo Circle E, Stillwater) features livestock shows, a wide variety of agricultural exhibits, a carnival, fair food and more. Watch an oldfashioned horse pull, a lawn tractor pull, a pet parade and an antique tractor parade. See fair guide for a complete schedule of events. 405-377-1275, www.pcexpocenter.com

AUG 31 • THURSDAY FREE Locked in the Library at the Bethany Library (7941 NW 23rd St, Bethany). Kids ages 12-18 years old can use clues and solve puzzles to see if they can escape before the time runs out. Preregister, space is limited. 6-7:30pm. 789-8363, www.metrolibrary.org

FREE Rock the Route: Route 66 Anniversary Celebration in Yukon (Main St between 4th & 5th St, Yukon) features live music, food trucks, shopping, family activities and more. 6-11pm. www.facebook. com/YukonsBestMainStreet66/ Oklahoma State University Football vs Tulsa University at Boone Pickens Stadium (700 W Hall of Fame Ave, Stillwater). Prices vary. 6:30pm. 877-ALL-4-OSU, www.okstate.com

SEPT 1 • FRIDAY FREE First Friday Gallery Walk in the Paseo District (NW 30th & 27th St, Walker & Hudson Ave) features special themed exhibits, refreshments, live entertainment and food trucks. 6-10pm. 525-2688, www.thepaseo.com FREE Movies Under the Stars in Piedmont (314 Edmond Rd NW, Piedmont) features an outdoor screening of Home and snacks. 8pm. www.facebook.com/City-ofPiedmont-606886746074851/

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CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

FREE Dancing in the Gardens: 70s Disco at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features local dance instructors, a dance demonstration and a live DJ to keep the dancing going. All ages welcome. 7-10pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org

SEPT 2 • SATURDAY

PROTECT WHAT MATTERS MOST

Because you can’t always avoid a rainy day Your family counts on you to protect them. Could they get by without you? Life insurance can help fulfill the promises you’ve made to them—and help you reach financial goals. Learn how to make the most of life. Ethan H Hulme, FIC Financial Associate 1616 E 19th St Suite 102 Edmond, OK 73013

405-359-SAVE (7283) AR License 17210821

Daryl D Osmus

FIC, RICP® Financial Consultant 1616 E 19th St Suite 102 Edmond, OK 73013

405-359-SAVE (7283)

FREE Loose Caboose Antique & Craft Festival in Downtown Purcell (Main St, Purcell) features collectibles, antiques, Made in Oklahoma products, a children’s activity area, wine tasting and live entertainment. 9am-4pm. 527-2514, www.loosecaboosefestival.com FREE Fishing Days in OKC (various locations). The City of Oklahoma City offers free fishing on the first Saturday of each month at city lakes and ponds. No city permit is required; however a state license is for anyone 16 and older. 297-1426, www.okc.gov Slide Outta Summer at Mitch Park (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features nine inflatable water slides, music by DJ Shorty B and food trucks. All ages welcome. $5/slider. 11am-3pm. 359-4630, www.facebook.com/ edmondparksandrec/ University of Oklahoma Football vs University of Texas at El Paso at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium (1185 Asp Ave, Norman). Prices vary. 2:30pm. Also held: Sept. 16 vs. Tulane, 5pm. 800-456-4668, www.soonersports.com FREE Red Brick Nights Street Festival in Downtown Guthrie (2nd & Harrison Ave, Guthrie) features pop-up shops, food trucks and live music, on the first Saturday each the month. 5pm; music, 7pm. 282-1947, www.guthriechamber.com/red-brick-nights/

SEPT 2 & 3

Thrivent Financial was named one of the “World’s Most Ethical Companies” by Ethisphere Institute 2012–2016. “World’s Most Ethical Companies” and “Ethisphere” names and marks are registered trademarks of Ethisphere LLC. Insurance products issued or offered by Thrivent Financial, the marketing name for Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, Appleton, WI. Not all products are available in all states. Thrivent Financial representatives are licensed insurance agents/producers of Thrivent. For additional important information, visit Thrivent.com/disclosures. Appleton, Wisconsin • Minneapolis, Minnesota Thrivent.com • 800-847-4836 28337 R6-16

FREE Labor Day Celebration at the Chickasaw Cultural Center (867 Cooper Memorial Dr, Sulphur) features stomp dance and cultural demonstrations and special activities in the living village. Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 580-6227130, www.chickasawculturalcenter.com

SEPT 1-4 & 8-10 OKC Renaissance Festival (8901 N Eastern Ave) features food, vendors, live entertainment and educational activities. Adults, $10; kids (5-12), $7; kids ( 4 &under), free. 10am-7pm. www.okcrenfest.com

36 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

SEPT 3 • SUNDAY Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic Tours at Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features guided tours with conversationbased insights and information about the exhibition. Preregister. Members, free; prices vary for non-members. 6pm. 236-3100, www.okcmoa.com

SEPT 6 • WEDNESDAY MetroFamily’s Rock-a-Bye Baby Shower at Infant Crisis Services (4224 N Lincoln Blvd) is a giving back community party with food trucks and family activities. Readers are encouraged to bring donations of diapers, wipes, formula and more to benefit Infant Crisis Services. 11am-2pm. 601-2081, www.metrofamilymagazine.com

Find our guide to

LABOR DAY FAMILY FUN in OKC at

metrofamilymagazine.com/ labor-day SEPT 4 • MONDAY FREE OKC Hot Wheels Association Show at Crossroads Convention Center (7000 Plaza Mayor Blvd) features 40 plus tables of collectables for sale or trade. The event also includes raffles, pizza and more. 10am-5pm. www.greaterokchotwheels.com

SEPT 4-12 Oktoberfest at Choctaw Creek Park (Harper Rd, Choctaw) features homemade German food & continuous live entertainment for all ages, plus German dance groups, crafts & activities for children. Adults, $5; kids (under 12), free. See website for schedule of events. www.oldgermany.com


SEPT 7-10 FREE Cleveland County Free Fair at the Cleveland County Fairgrounds (615 E Robinson St, Norman) features carnival rides, tasty fair food, Celebrity Cow Milking Contest, 4H, FFA and OHCE exhibits and more. See website for a schedule of events. 360-4721, www.clevelandcountyfair.org Disney’s Little Mermaid at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features the tale of the beautiful young mermaid Ariel who longs to leave her ocean home to live in the world above. All ages welcome. $27.09$102.12. Tuesday-Thursday, 7:30pm; Friday, 8pm; Saturday, 2 & 8pm; Sunday, 2 & 7pm. 877-737-2929, www.okcbroadway.com

SEPT 8 & 9 FREE Pass It On Consignment Sale at Memorial Road Church of Christ (2221 E Memorial Rd, Edmond) features quality, gently-used kids’ & maternity clothes, toys, furniture and baby items. A portion of the proceeds benefits Lilyfield Christian

Adoption & Foster Care. Friday, 8am6pm; Saturday, 8am-3pm. 316-5240, www.passitonkids.com

SEPT 9 • SATURDAY

FREE Open House & Family Festival at OU Westheimer Airport (1700 Lexington Ave, Norman) features an open house, aircraft static displays, tours of the control tower and a children’s activities area sponsored by Sooner Flight Academy. Friday & Saturday, 9am-3pm. 325-7231, www. ou.edu/content/airport/events/festival.html FREE Western Days Festival at Mustang Town Center & Wild Horse Park (1201 N Mustang Rd, Mustang) features a chili cookoff, chuck wagon cook-off, a best dressed cowboy & cowgirl contest, gospel music concert, Western Stampede Run, pancake breakfast, car show, carnival, pet show, parade, rodeo and more. Most events are free to attend, participation prices vary. Friday, 10am-10pm; Saturday, 6:30am-10pm. 693-3086, www.mustangwesterndays.com

FREE Founders Day in Piedmont (Piedmont & Jackson Rd, Piedmont) features an eclectic array of junk, vintage, antique dealers, boutique & craft vendors, a parade, 5K, inflatables, the Piedmont Fire Department, an obstacle course for kids, train rides, pony rides, a petting zoo and more. Free to attend. 7:30am-2:30pm. 373-0072, www.piedmontokfoundersday.org FREE Septemberfest at the Governor’s Mansion & Oklahoma History Center (820 NE 23rd St & 800 Nazih Zuhdi Dr) features more than 50 activities including crafts, music, storytelling, historical re-enactments, agricultural exhibits, theater, face-painting and more. Families are also encouraged to bring picnics to enjoy on the lawn, and food vendors will be on site. The Oklahoma History Center will be open and free to the public all day. 10am-3pm. 522-3602, www.fomok.org/event/septemberfest

SCHOOL AGE PROGRAM The YMCA OF GREATER OKLAHOMA CITY is the area’s largest provider of schoolage childcare, providing care for more than 1,400 children each day who would otherwise be home alone after their school day ends. This program provides care before and after school for boys and girls ages 5 to 12. The entire experience for the children is built around activities that challenge them to accept and demonstrate the Y’s values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility.

NOW REGISTERING

YMCAOKC.ORG/BA METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

WEEKLY EVENTS FREE Bricktown Beach at the Chickasaw

Toddler Story & Craft Time at Unpluggits Playstudio (575 Enterprise Dr Ste 110) features a short story time and age appropriate craft with lots of gluing and coloring. Free with admission. Wednesdsays & Thursdays, 11-11:30am. 340-7584, www.unpluggits.com

Summer Signature Tours at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features a docent-facilitated museum tour to learn more about the western art on display, frontier life and the diverse cultures that shaped the west. Free with admission. Adults, $12.50; kids, (6-12), $5.75; kids (5 & under), free. Weekdays, 1-2pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.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

Bricktown Ballpark (2 Mickey Mantle Blvd) features a large sand-filled outdoor park area with umbrellas, lounge chairs, sand volleyball equipment and outdoor games. Open daily. www.downtownokc.com/bricktown-beach/

F E S T I V A L S

&

C E L E B R A T I O N S

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

Explore what trees mean to us – and the animals who live in them – at our new summer-long Treehouses Exhibit! Enjoy garden tours, cultural adventure and upcoming events like our annual Labor Day Celebration and the Monarch Butterfly Watch.

FREE Wheeler Criterium in the Wheeler District (1701 S Western Ave) features fast-pace flat track bike racing, live music and food trucks. Tuesdays, 5-8:30pm. www.facebook.com/wheelercrit Tuesday Night Classics at Harkins Theatre (150 E Reno Ave) features special presentations of classic films on the big screen. $5. Tuesdays, 7pm. 231-4747, www.harkinstheatres.com/TNC.aspx Storytime Science at Science Museum Oklahoma (2100 NE 52nd St) features a story and corresponding hands-on science activity in various locations throughout the museum. Best suited for kids ages 6 & under. Free with admission. Tuesdays, 10:30-11:30am. 602-6664, www.sciencemuseumok.org

Itti’ Chokka’ TREEHOUSES EXHIBIT NOW-SEPT. 3

LABOR DAY CELEBRATION SEPT. 2 - 3

MONARCH BUTTERFLY WATCH SEPT. 16

Wild Wednesdays at the OKC Zoo (2101 NE 50th St) features discounted admission on Wednesdays in July & August. Adults, $5.50; kids (3-11), $4. 9am-5pm. 424-3344, www.okczoo.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

FREE Wide-Open Wednesdays at National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features complimentary admission to the public, courtesy of the Oklahoma Ford Dealers. Wednesdays, 10am-5pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org FREE Western Movie Matinees at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features a screening of titles recently recognized by the Museum with prestigious Western Heritage Awards including Cimarron and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. Wednesdays, 1pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

ChickasawCulturalCenter.com Sulphur, Oklahoma • 580-622-7130

38 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

FREE Family Story Time at the Edmond Library (10 S Boulevard, Edmond). Pajamas welcome. Preregister, best suited for families with kids ages 1-5 years old. Thursdays, 6:30-7:15pm. 341-9282, www.metrolibrary.org FREE Summer Thursdays at Gaylord-Pickens

Museum (1400 Classen Blvd) features a story and craft time as well as other fun activities provided by Calvert’s Plant Interiors and OSU-OKC Farmers Market. Thursdays, 10:30am. 523-3230, www.oklahomahof.com Buddy and Me Breakfast at Full Circle Bookstore (1900 NW Expressway) features breakfast and a variety of activities each week including a silhouette artist, face painting and caricatures. Prices vary. Fridays, 9-10am. 8422900, www.fullcirclebooks.com

FREE Children’s Story Time at Full Circle Books (1900 NW Expressway). Saturdays, 10:15am. 842-2900, www.fullcirclebooks.com FREE Storytime with Mr. Steve at Barnes and Noble (540 Ed Noble Parkway, Norman) features an extremely silly story time followed by a coloring activity. Saturdays, 11am. 579-8800. FREE Crafts for Kids at Lakeshore Learning (6300 N May Ave) features a hands-on craft time for kids ages 3 & up. No reservations necessary. Saturdays, 11am-3pm. 858-8778, www.lakeshorelearning.com Floating Films at RIVERSPORT Adventures (725 S Lincoln Blvd). Bring a blanket or lawn chairs and watch water-themed films from the banks of the lower pond or rent a tube to watch from the water. Free to attend; tubes, $10. Saturdays at dusk. 552-4040, www.riversportokc.org

FREE Story Time at Commonplace Books (1325 N Walker Ave) features a weekly story time with pastries and juice. Saturdays, 10:30am. 551-1715, www.commonplacebooksokc.com Roller Skating Lesson at Skate Galaxy (5800 NW 36th St). Saturdays from noon12:45pm. Skate rental is $2. 605-2758, www.skategalaxyokc.com All Star Bowling for Differently-Abled Individuals at Bronco Bowl (133 N Mustang Rd, Mustang) invites differently-abled individuals and their friends and families to bowl on Saturdays. 11am & 1pm. $3 per game. 256-5515, www.autismoklahoma.org.


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

ONGOING EVENTS THROUGH AUG 12 FREE Remembering World War I at the Edmond Historical Society & Museum (431 S Boulevard, Edmond) marks the 100th anniversary of the end of the global war. The EHS&M is participating in the World War I Centennial Commission’s “Poppy Program” and is selling packets of poppy seeds to help fund the creation of the National WWI Memorial in Washington DC for $2. Tuesday-Friday, 10am-5pm; Saturday, 1-4pm. 340-0078, www.edmondhistory.org

THROUGH AUG 14 FREE Coded_Couture: Fashion Intersecting

Technology at Oklahoma Contemporary (3000 General Pershing Blvd)  features the work of 10 international artist-designers whose inventive techniques are rooted in new technology. MondayThursday, 9am-10pm; Friday & Saturday, 9am5pm. 951-0000, www.oklahomacontemporary.org

THROUGH AUG 26 Cowboys & Indians by Harold T. “H“ Holden and Mike Larsen at Gaylord-Pickens Museum (1400 Classen Dr) features drawings, paintings and sculptures by the prolific Oklahoma artists and Oklahoma Hall of Fame Members Harold T. “H” Holden and Mike Larsen. Adults, $7; kids (6-17), $5; kids (5 & under), free. Tuesday-Friday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, 10am-5pm. 235-4458, www.oklahomahof.com

THROUGH AUG 31 Backyard Bugs at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl) takes Oklahoma’s amazing insects to a larger-than-life level with giant animatronic insects, interactive exhibits and live insect displays to give visitors a unique perspective of a bug’s world and reveal the fascinating complexities of our six-legged neighbors. Free with admission. Adults, $15.95; kids (3-12), $12.95; kids (2 & under), free. Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm; Saturday, 9am-6pm; Sunday, 11am-6pm. 602-6664, www.sciencemuseumok.org

THROUGH SEPT 4 FREE Guerrilla Art Park 2017 at Oklahoma Contemporary’s Campbell Art Park (NW 11th & Broadway Ave) features an outdoor sculpture exhibition of sculptures submitted by six local artists, ranging from emerging to wellestablished. Open dawn to dusk. 951-0000, www.oklahomacontemporary.org

THROUGH SEPT 10 Kehinde Wiley: A New Republic at Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features early paintings, portraitures, portrait busts and stained glass, highlighting the range of Wiley’s productions. Free with admission. Adults, $12; kids (6-18), $10; kids (5 & under), free. TuesdaySaturday, 10am-5pm; Thursday, until 9pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 236-3100, www.okcmoa.com

FREE Picher, Oklahoma: Catastrophe, Memory and Trauma at Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art (555 Elm Ave, Norman). Todd Stewart’s photoessay Picher, Oklahoma: Catastrophe, Memory, and Trauma explores the otherworldly ghost town. On May 10, 2008, a tornado in the northeastern Oklahoma town of Picher struck the final blow to a one-time boomtown. TuesdaySaturday, 10am-5pm; Thursdays, until 9pm; Sunday, 1-5pm. 325-3272, www.ou.edu/fjjma Great Balls of Fire at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) explores the threat of a catastrophic impact from an asteroid or comet. Learn about answers to common questions and explore the solar system. Free with admission. Adults, $8; kids, (4-17), $5; kids (3 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, 1-5pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu

THROUGH SEPT 17 Vintage Black Heroes: The Chisholm Kid at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features panels from the original comic strip to highlight the 150th anniversary of the Chisholm Trail and pay homage to the thousands of black cowboys who drove cattle along the trail. Adults, $12.50; kids, (6-12), $5.75; kids (5 & under), free. MondaySaturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

THROUGH OCT 29 Bodies Revealed at Science Museum Oklahoma (2100 NE 52nd St) allows visitors to get an up-close look inside the skeletal, muscular, reproductive, respiratory, circulatory and other life-sustaining systems of the human body. Museum admission plus exhibit: adults, $25.95; kids (3-12), $18.95. Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm; Saturday, 9am-6pm; Sunday, 11am-6pm. 6026664, www.sciencemuseumok.org

THROUGH OCTOBER 29

THROUGH DEC. 16 FREE Barbers in Edmond at Edmond Historical Society & Museum (431 S Boulevard, Edmond) tells the story of Edmond’s barbers, through the tools of the trade, photographs and advertisements. Tuesday-Friday, 10am-5pm; Saturday, 1-4pm. 340-0078, www.edmondhistory.org

THROUGH APRIL 1 Cartoons & Comics: The Early Art of Tom Ryan at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features the cartoonist’s original characters Dan the Cop and Joe Campion, Jr. in small drawings that provide a snapshot of Ryan’s high school and Coast Guard years. Adults, $12.50; kids, (6-12), $5.75; kids (5 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org This is just a sampling of the current museum exhibits that can be found around town. Discover more at www.metrofamilymagazine. com/museums.

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Where Science Meets Cool! Bodies Revealed allows visitors to see the human body’s inner beauty in educational and awe-inspiring ways. Come explore, experience, and celebrate the wonder of the human form at BODIES REVEALED.

2020 Remington Place Oklahoma City, OK 73111 (405) 602-6664 ScienceMuseumOK.org


EXPLORING OKLAHOMA

Cattle preferred grazing in small groups. The roundup is gathering the herd together so it could be sold.

This cowboy was in charge of the whole operation.

These occurred when the cattle became frightened and ran in all different directions. These were the most dangerous phenomenon encountered on the trail.

Inexperienced cowboys.

The person responsible for the horses.

Quite literally, they were meals on wheels. The camp kitchen was located on the back of a wagon. It was a cupboard of sorts with a door that folded down that would serve as a prep table. ILLUSTRATION BY BRITTANY VIKLUND


150 Years of The Chisholm Trail Indian Territory and the trail boss would pay a fee or give a few cattle to the tribes whose land they were crossing. The part of the trail that was carved into Oklahoma’s red dirt is iconic and towns along the historic trail have planned plenty of events and activities to honor the anniversary. Celebrate this historic milestone by visiting one of these museums, exploring the trail for yourself or attending one of these special events.

©2017 Kumon North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Chisholm Trail, an 800-mile path from the tip of Texas to railroad towns in Kansas, straight through Oklahoma. The trail allowed Texans to sell their cattle to Eastern markets; the cattle were worth 10 times what they were in Texas. The Chisholm Trail supported multiple “boom” towns in Kansas and opened the door for the meatpacking industries that arose in New York, Chicago and Kansas City. During this time Oklahoma was

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Museums

EDMOND - NORTH • 405-715-1111 775 W. Covell Rd., #150, Edmond, OK 73003 EDMOND - WEST • 405-216-9800 245 South Santa Fe Ave., Edmond, OK 73003

Chisholm Trail Museum in Kingfisher

NORMAN • 405-364-1600 1320 N. Interstate Dr., Norman, OK 73072

This museum, located about an hour northwest of the metro, gives visitors a look into the life and history of the Chisholm Trail. Kids will love seeing a real chuck wagon and other odds and ends from trail life. Don’t miss the section on Jesse Chisholm, the trail’s namesake. The museum also houses many antiques from life in early Oklahoma and preserves buildings in the Pioneer Village.

OKLAHOMA CITY - NORTH • 405-752-2000 9300 N May Ave., Ste. 200, Oklahoma City, OK 73120 OKLAHOMA CITY - NORTHWEST • 405-721-7323 6220 Northwest Expy., Oklahoma City, OK 73132

Chisholm Trail Heritage Center in Duncan The Chisholm Trail Heritage Center is located about an hour and a half south of the metro and seeks to celebrate and preserve the history of the Chisholm Trail and western culture. Kids love the interactive center where they can try their hand at roping, create a branding iron or sit in a saddle. The museum also offers two movies that explore the Chisholm Trail. If you don’t have time to visit the museum but still want to introduce your kids to the Chisholm Trail, visit the Kids Corner of the website to find coloring pages and information about in life the west.

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OKLAHOMA CITY - SOUTH • 405-691-8900 10600 S. Pennsylvania Ave., #5, Oklahoma City, OK 73120 YUKON - SOUTH • 405-265-0075 501 S. Mustang Rd., Yukon, OK 73099

kumon.com


Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center in Enid The Heritage Center, located about an hour and a half northwest of the metro, has a special exhibit celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Chisholm Trail that runs through Sept. 16. The exhibit includes a chuck wagon, campsite and photos of cattle drives and many other things kids will love exploring. Beyond the Chisholm Trail, this museum is home to four historic buildings: an original Land Office from 1893, a home, the first church in Enid and Turkey Creek School. Family Farm Day is Oct. 21 and is a fun way to discover farming in Northwest Oklahoma. You can follow the Chisholm Trail through the town of Enid by following the hoof prints. The city petitioned hoof prints to be painted on the streets and sidewalks through town that follow the original route of the trail. The trail begins south of town on Highway 81.

Books/References Here are a few books you can find about the Chisholm Trail at a local library. “The Chisholm Trail: An American History” by William Sanford “The Chisholm Trail” by Cynthia Mercati “Storm and Stampede on the Chisholm” by Hubert Collins

Events

Cattle Drive—Sept. 12-23 Location: Pond Creek, Oklahoma to Wichita, Kansas In honor of the 150th anniversary of the Chisholm Trail, a small cattle drive will follow the original route of the Chisholm Trail from Pond Creek, Oklahoma to Wichita, Kansas. Many of the towns along the route will be holding celebrations and the public is encouraged to attend. The public also is invited to visit the camp every night. To follow all the fun, find O-K Chisholm Trail 150 Cattle Drive on Facebook. They will be posting videos about cowboy life, live footage of the drive and updates to the schedule. Even if you can’t visit the drive, this will be a wonderful resource this fall if you want to introduce your kids to cowboy life.

Chisholm Trail My feet are in the stirrups, I am seated in my saddle, As I ride around These darned old cattle.

CATTLE DRIVE PHOTO BY MAE KIGGINS

Chisholm Trail Celebration—Sept. 13 Location: Downtown Medford The cattle drive will be visiting the town of Medford (located about two hours north of the metro) on Sept. 13 and town officials are organizing a celebration. The cattle drive will go through town about 1 p.m. After the drive leaves town until about 4 p.m. there will be demonstrations including rope-making, leather-stamping and blacksmithing. Don’t miss the western photos, a chance to visit with cattle drivers, wagon or horseback rides, the cake walk and other old-fashioned games and activities for families. Visit the City of Medford’s Facebook page for more information at https://www.facebook.com/ medford.ok/. Chisholm Trail Celebration—Oct. 21 Location: Express Ranch, 12500 W. Wilshire Blvd. in Yukon Dozens of western-themed organizations are coming together in Yukon to host a day of celebration for 150 years of the Chisholm Trail. Hands-on learning experiences, photo opportunities, live music and 150 horseback riders wearing period clothing are just a few of the things planned for the event. Kids can enjoy pony rides, roping demonstrations and seeing the Express Clydesdales while learning about Chisholm Trail history. The free event will be hosted from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Come along, Boys and listen to my tale: I’ll tell you of my troubles on the old Chisholm Trail. Come a ti yi yippy, yippy yay, yippy yay, Come a ti yi yippy, yippy yay. -Cowboy Folk Song

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Explore the Trail in the Metro

Chisholm Trail Park in Yukon

Community Sponsor of Exploring Oklahoma:

This is one place to visit that preserves some of the original route of the Chisholm Trail. Now, it is a beautiful all-inclusive park for people of all abilities full of gardens, walking trails and fountains. It also connects with Freedom Trail Park, a kid’s paradise.

Adventures start with peace of mind.

Bob Moore Subaru

13010 N. Kelley, Oklahoma City, OK 73114 405-749-9049 www.bobmooresubaru.com Purchase or lease any new (previously untitled) Subaru and receive a complimentary factory scheduled maintenance plan for 2 years or 24,000 miles (whichever comes ďŹ rst.) Customer must take delivery before 12-31-2017 and reside within the promotional area. At participating dealers only. See retailer for the Subaru Added Security Maintenance Plan for intervals, coverages and limitations, program details and eligibility.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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Ask the experts

Finding Balance

Tips to manage after-school activities and unstructured free time.

Trudy Ruminer

Lisa Marotta

Heather Pike

The ideal balance will likely vary greatly between families and also between children. There are many variables to consider in determining what that balance should look like for your family/child. That being said, there are a few questions to ponder regardless of your family’s dynamic that may help you decide.

I view “ideal balance” as a reasonable proportion of “have to” responsibilities to “want to” activities. This definition reflects the fluid nature of family life and incorporates structured and unstructured time in the formula. Ideal balance is not a fixed goal. It is an ongoing process of assessment and re-adjustment. Before you say “yes” to a new “want to” or “have to” commitment gather as much information as possible to evaluate how it will impact your current family balance.

Balance is so important for the entire family but especially for a child with special health care needs. I encourage families to not let therapies take over their lives and be a substitute for fun, typical after school activities. If your child is receiving physical therapy, consider enrolling him or her in a gymnastics class for fun and to provide peer interactions. It’s also so vital to have unstructured down time and just enjoy your child. It’s not easy to find the perfect balance and sometimes that requires setting priorities and not saying “yes” to every opportunity or activity that comes your way.

• What is the current stress level of the family as a whole and what is the stress level of each family member individually? • Are the current activities bringing more enjoyable moments or more stress and discontent? What is the purpose of the activity? • Is the activity fulfilling its purpose? If the answers to those questions don’t add up it may be helpful to sit down together as a family to re-prioritize. Freeing up space in your family’s schedule to allow you and your child time to relax and play is important. Having fun reduces stress and anxiety, increases feelings of selfworth, increases creativity, gives children an outlet to work out fears and problems and promotes feelings of contentment. Protecting your child’s free time and providing an environment conducive to relaxation and play is as important as making sure they do their homework. Playing together as a family is just as essential. When free time is limited, it may be necessary to find creative ways to maximize that time by incorporating play into your evening routines such as picnicking in the back yard or allowing for a few extra minutes to play at bath time. For more on this topic Alvin Rosenfeld, M.D. and Nicole Wise have written a thought provoking book titled: “The Over-Scheduled Child: Avoiding the Hyper-Parenting Trap.ˮ

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During the short time that you are raising your family, you are establishing life habits and values. When it comes to lifestyle balance, you don’t want the send the message that busy is better, and that boredom is bad. Intentional planning will afford your family the time you crave for connection, creativity and catching up on rest and responsibilities. There are so many shiny opportunities available for after-school enrichment; it’s not surprising that families can quickly become overextended. Start small. Especially during the school year, one activity per child (per season) is a great place to start. Consider your child’s interests and abilities when choosing an activity, in addition to how this commitment will affect homework, dinner time and other priorities of family life. Most parents are understandably concerned about quitting, so it is easier to add an activity than take one away. Summer enrichment tends to be offered in smaller chunks of time and is a great way to add variety without overloading the schedule and can be flexible with the changing interests of your child.

Anne K. Jacobs There are benefits to both unstructured time and scheduled activities. Structured extracurricular activities are a valuable way for young people to develop new skills, broaden and deepen their knowledge in different areas, learn about dedication and commitment and learn how to push themselves to succeed. However, all youth need some free time that is their own. They need time to play, be creative, tackle boredom and daydream, even into their teen years. Adolescence is a time of tremendous cognitive development so having some down time to sit around and “do nothing” is vital. As one of my clients aptly summed it up, “I just need some time to think my own thoughts.” I wish I could give a specific recommendation but the answer is not so simple. Achieving balance is a constant process of making adjustments to tweak your situation. I offer up a few questions to consider.


LET THE

• Can we afford this activity? • Is your child getting the sleep she needs? • Is your child appearing to be overwhelmed regularly? • Does your child complain about never having time to hang out with friends? • Are you all running so much that you rarely have dinner together? • Are activities interfering with other events important to you such as spiritual activities, holidays, or family traditions? • Are each of the activities feeding an important value that your child or your family holds dear? Every choice we make has a price whether it is a financial cost or time that we will never get back. Your family deserves to take time to think critically and discuss these decisions. Do not be afraid to say “no.ˮ

Greg Gunn There are a certain number of activities that are probably non-negotiable in the family. These are structures that are at the top of the parenting priorities including homework, a certain amount of sleep, family time, perhaps a family meal together and maybe religious activities such as church or youth groups or other family traditions. The balance is making sure the most important values in your family are addressed first and add in others as there is time, finances and desire. When your family decides to engage in extracurricular activities, be actively involved in supporting them, but do not create an atmosphere that fosters bad attitudes, rebellious attitudes or disappointment in their performance. No matter if your child participates in several activities or no activities, the most important activity they will participate in is a strong relationship with their family. Children don’t usually rebel against authority, they rebel against a lack of relationship. Know your kids, let them be who they are, support them in their strengths and work with them in the weaknesses. If the priorities are being squeezed out, the balance may be off.

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Madison Clark There is so much pressure to be involved in a million afterschool activities and sports, but that does not work well for many families. Every family and child is different, so shape your schedule based on your family’s priorities and how your family functions best. When trying to determine an ideal balance for your family, start with the end goal in mind. • What do you hope for your child? • What skills do you want them to develop or strengthen? • What time commitment can you reasonably handle? If your top priority is to help your child learn to work well with others, you may consider enrolling in an after-school sport and also make some intentional play dates with friends. If building academic abilities is most important, consider using a tutoring service, intentional time for homework or an academic club. Some families may thrive on a different activity every night, but many families do best with one or two commitments per week. Unstructured time for play and family connection needs to be a part of your schedule, too. Play is how children explore, learn, connect and build new skills. If families are too busy with activities and structure, children are not given an opportunity to grow their imaginations and build essential life and social skills. Unstructured free time is where children are forced to get creative, leading to exciting developments in their ability to problemsolve. Joining your child in some of this unstructured time is wonderful for building strong attachment and strengthening relationships. [Editor’s Note: Our panel of local experts answers questions each month on timely parenting and family issues. Find an archive of their advice at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/experts.]

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At Home With

Koon & Sarah

K

oon Vega and Sarah Srisathit live with their 5-year-old son Attitan in a 1910 craftsman on a corner lot in Mesta Park. Sarah grew up around Shawnee and met Koon more than a decade ago when she was traveling to Thailand, his home country. They now reside in Oklahoma City where they’ve built a branding business called Creative Vega. They’re the first to admit that marriage, parenting and building a business together has had its challenges. They opened up about what they’ve learned along the way.

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BY HANNAH SCHMITT PHOTOS BY EMILY HART

Tell us about your background and how you met. Sarah: I grew up around the Shawnee area then went to Oklahoma Christian for college. I went on a mission trip to Thailand and ended up staying at the church Koon grew up in. We met but didn’t spend a lot of time together. I went on after that to teach in South Korea. In the three years I was away from Thailand, Koon and I kept up a little bit chatting on Yahoo Messenger. He didn’t even speak English at first but we had a lot in common. We both loved Smashing Pumpkins and we had similar style. I returned to Thailand and he was with a group picking me up from the airport. It was like we were best friends. There was just this crazy connection and it just felt seamless. I got there in May, he asked me to marry him in June and three months


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later we were married. It was so crazy and fast and 15 years later here we are. We got married in Thailand and lived with his parents there for a year. We returned to Oklahoma and lived with my mom about eight months but it was such a contrast from Bangkok, a densely populated area.

So what was it like to move from Thailand to Oklahoma?

MAKE ANY DAY

Sundae Funday!

Koon: All of a sudden I’m in this place where there are these sunrises and sunsets and stars you can see! But there were no people. I was like, ‘I’ve got to get out of here and be where I can see people on the streets.’ Sarah: So on faith, we moved into Oklahoma City. Neither of us had jobs but we were determined to make it work. We got jobs within the first couple months. Koon started doing contract work for an ad agency. In Thailand, he worked for a television production company writing jingles for big companies. I was working full-time as a data analyst and soon after that I became a landman for a small broker. But when the economy crashed, I was out of a job. Koon: It just seemed like a good transition time to start Creative Vega. That first year our backs were really against the wall. I had a lot of clients when I was doing contract work but the second my website went live, the calls stopped coming. I was suddenly the competition. So we decided we would just focus on creating relationships. So we did a lot of free work for people in that first year just to support local non-profits and to build relationships. Now it’s been almost eight years that we’ve never had to go out and look for clients. They just come to us.

What has it been like to work together? Sarah: It was horrible at first. It was so damaging to our relationship. Our selfishness and our pride blew up all the time. So many times I said, ‘I’m done and I’m never working with you again.’

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grew up in church but we never really talked about how the Holy Spirit could change our hearts. In an hour of talking with that man, I saw Koon soften and I could see his heart changing. That saved our marriage. Koon: Since coming through that, we’ve really been able to work together and parent together a lot better. We started working as a team. We support each other because the last thing you want your kid to see is that you’re not on the same team.

How would you describe your parenting style? Koon: Rock-and-roll, jump up and down and be loud. I recently noticed I have a tendency to say “no” too often. I’m trying to just wait, watch him do things and then talk about it with him later. Sarah: Rock-and-roll is right for Koon. He has a relationship with Attitan I will never have. He can learn things from Koon I could never teach. It’s so great to have different approaches. It teaches him at home that people are different out in the real world, too. Koon may reward him with ice cream. That’s their special thing. Would I do that? No! I come home like, ‘Ice cream? Again?’ But that’s their thing and Koon and I will be different. I’ve learned to look at the differences as ways to enrich Attitan’s life. My parenting style is one that’s always changing as I learn. We’re learning to be really open with him that we haven’t been parents forever. I have no experience but him. We never try to cover up making a mistake. It’s learning, forgiving, gracious parenting. Koon: Definitely a lot of grace and forgiveness. It took us a long time to grow up and be mature enough to have a child. We had him when we were 38 and even then we were still very childish in a lot of ways. But we admit to him we don’t know everything and we all learn together.

Do you do anything at home to bring Thai culture to Attitan?

Koon: I was highly critical of everything she did. It was a really stressful and really difficult point in our relationship.

Koon: Sarah loves Thai food even more than me. One of the reasons she married me I think is so I could cook her Thai food.

Sarah: We stumbled through all that and after Attitan was born, it was like an explosion. Babies magnify every problem. It was like, ‘Oh, here’s something you should have dealt with in your relationship a long time ago because now you have to sort it out with a baby.’ We went to counseling for a year and it didn’t work. I called my friend to tell her Koon and I were going to get a divorce. She suggested a different counselor who agreed to see us. We went to him and he told us we didn’t need a counselor, we needed a spiritual mentor. Koon and I both

Sarah: Yes, I had to have a way to stay connected to Thai food some way, somehow.

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Koon: I cook a lot of Thai food for Attitan and that’s a big way to teach him about the culture. Good Thai food is like an explosion in your mouth. It’s all about really strong flavors and he loves it. I also try to speak Thai with him but I need to do that more. I would love to be able to just speak it all the time with him someday but I don’t speak it enough at home right now. But I know Attitan will grow up here in this world. As much as I want to speak Thai here, there are things he


needs to learn in English. For example he’s really into building bridges right now. When I talk to him using words like “architectureˮ or “engineeringˮ that serves him because he lives in a country that speaks English. I wonder sometimes if it’s just too much to add Thai words to that right now.

You both work from home. Is it difficult to find balance? Koon: Work is not something I can separate from my life. I enjoy my work and what we have is dynamic. Sarah: I grew up in a household where you worked 8 to 5 and spent time with the family at night so it’s been a learning experience. Koon: We don’t have that kind of structure. I usually start work around 10 a.m. and sometimes I work really late. But I get to spend time with my family for the first four hours of the day. We can build LEGOs, have breakfast. If Sarah needs something during the day I can help her. We see each other all day and I’m very grateful for that.

What does parenthood mean to you? Koon: Fatherhood is being there. Not just physically, but emotionally. My Dad wasn’t there for me much. He was working all the time. I know he loves me but it wasn’t expressed. Fatherhood is being there in the moment with Attitan. It’s constantly fighting the urge to grab my phone. If I’m going to play with him, I’m all in playing with him. If

we watch a movie together, I’m just watching the movie and not doing anything else. Sarah: I see Koon’s approach as being so empowering to Attitan. I’m usually all about getting things done. So if I need to clean the house, for example, I want Attitan to be busy with something else so I can get it done. But Koon makes him feel big enough to help and do things, too. Koon: If I need to unload the dishwasher, I make it a game and I involve him. It takes longer, but I can see he absorbs that time. When we do things together he can see I have flaws. I might not always do things right but he can see me make mistakes and apologize. I never had a good example of that so I want to change that for him.

THIS YEAR,

BE GREATER THAN My fear of math

Sarah: I’m sure my perception of motherhood will continue to evolve as I evolve as a mother, but for now, it seems to mean it’s just a whole lot of learning and growing right along with the very child that made me a mother. Learning and improving on myself helps him to see that we really never reach a level of perfection and it’s okay to make mistakes because we can learn more from them. My friend’s husband, Daniel Teigen, recently said, ‘We want our ceiling to be our children’s floor.’ I think that sums it up. I want to make sure I push that ceiling as high as I can, spiritually, mentally and physically so I can make sure my child starts off at a much higher level than I ever reached. [Editor’s Note: This interview has been edited for style and clarity.]

As your child gears up to head back to school. Mathnasium is here to help set the stage for success! Our unique teaching method is designed to strengthen math foundations, boost confidence, and ultimately, make math make sense. Whether your child is ahead of the curve, performing at grade level, or falling behind, together, we can make this school year greater than last year!

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LOVEWORKS PARTICIPANTS. PHOTO BY MARK DOESCHER.

BY ERIN PAGE

Real Kids of the Metro As Norman Homeland shoppers peruse the aisles, they’ll notice a new made-in-Oklahoma product on the shelves: Real Kitchen salsa. What shoppers may not realize is that salsa was dreamed up, cooked up and marketed by local middle school students through a free after-school program called LoveWorks. LoveWorks participants range in age from 11 to 14, live in Norman and surrounding cities and represent all socioeconomic backgrounds. These pre-teens are given real-world opportunities to test drive various career paths, meet community leaders and professionals and hone in on their own unique skills and passions. Through personal character development, leadership projects, community outreach, mentorship and career exploration, the non-profit’s staff and volunteers empower students’ creativity and resourcefulness while encouraging academic and leadership growth. Since its inception in 2011, LoveWorks has served more than 8,000 students, including the group of 12 students dedicated to the

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organization’s Real Kitchen arm. Combining the culinary arts with entrepreneurship, the student-led business also started in 2011 with the development of the salsa recipe that has dazzled at local farmers markets. The team perfected the salsa recipe, thanks in part to feedback from loyal customers. They branded it, marketed it, managed their budget, paid invoices and sought out places to sell it. They’ve learned how much work is required to not only start a business but also to make it profitable. Financially, Real Kitchen has been self-sustained since its first day, and students have been at the forefront of trimming cost per goods sold to earn as much profit as possible. As their dreams grew and demand exceeded the team’s culinary abilities, they hired a co-packer to make and package the salsa for them. This spring, several students met with Homeland executives to pitch selling their salsa in the store. Store leaders decided the brand was a good fit and the salsa hit the shelves at the Homeland at 24th and Robinson. In early May, the store at 12th and Alameda also began stocking Real Kitchen’s salsa. LoveWorks executive director Michael Hirsch knows most students don’t get this kind of hands-on learning until they’re in college or after. He believes creating and

giving students an opportunity to lead in various ways not only better prepares them for adult life but also gives them a direction and sense of purpose in a time when most kids are struggling to find themselves. For now, all profits made on the salsa go back into funding the business but Hirsch hopes as Real Kitchen grows, they will be able to hire and compensate student staff members and give back to LoveWorks. Four members of the Real Kitchen team described how this kind of experiential learning has impacted their futures. Lukas Miles and Julia Neel are middle school students who’ve been involved with LoveWorks and Real Kitchen for about a year. Miles, 12, will be in seventh grade at Irving Middle School this fall and enjoys playing football in his spare time. Neel, 13, is homeschooled and will be in ninth grade in the fall. She enjoys volunteering with her family at s local homeless shelter. Madison Kohout and Brittany Brown are high school students who serve as mentors to the Real Kitchen team. Kohout is one of the original Real Kitchen members, starting her journey with the project in eighth grade. Now 15, Kohout will be a junior at Norman High School where she plays in the school’s symphony orchestra. She is a volunteer at the


Norman library, leads a middle school Bible study and is involved in Family, Career and Community Leaders of America. Brown, 17, will be a senior at Norman North High School, where she is a member of the choir.

What’s your primary role at Real Kitchen? Lukas: I’m mainly involved in sales and marketing because I’m always out there selling. Julia: I’ve primarily been involved with sales but recently Michael has asked me to start designing ideas for a T-shirt. That’s what I’ve always been interested in—designing shirts and possibly labels. Madison: I’ve been involved with Real Kitchen since the beginning and I’ve been involved in every team from marketing to culinary to finance, but right now I’m in sales, which is where my strengths lie. It’s been great to see something evolve that I’ve been involved with since eighth grade. To be in Homeland and see this much progress is so exciting and brings a feeling of accomplishment. Brittany: I’m on the financial team; I love math and calculating profits. I’m also on the marketing team and I love being involved with the demos at Homeland. I’m also involved with communication and represent Real Kitchen by speaking at conferences and presentations.

What have been the most valuable lessons you’ve learned as part of Real Kitchen? Lukas: The most valuable lesson for me has been working together with everybody. I’m a very independent person and I like to do things on my own. But if it were just me, I wouldn’t have gotten anywhere. Julia: I’ve learned more confidence in my ability to talk to people and pitch our product. You get so much hands-on learning with business, but there are lots of different spots for kids no matter their interest, from sales and culinary to finance and design. Madison: You can do anything you set your mind to; there are no limitations or barriers. If you have an idea, express it to your team. Let others in so they can help you accomplish things far beyond what you can do on your own. Brittany: Accepting rejection is part of life and part of business. I’ve learned not to let hearing ‘no’ drag me down. For every no you might hear, there’s still a possibility of a yes. I know now that denial doesn’t mean defeat—it means keep pushing.

How did you feel when you found out Homeland in Norman would be carrying your salsa? Lukas: It was kind of like going into a job interview because you don’t know what the outcome is going to be but you hope for the best. It was nerve-wracking. When he said ‘yes’ we were trying to hold it in, but we were giving high fives behind the table. Something we started that was so small is going into a store … it’s so great. Julia: I felt amazed! It’s kinda weird because you see all these products by gigantic businesses … and then seeing our product on the shelf and knowing I’m involved is really cool. Madison: I was so pumped! We’ve worked so hard, from selling at farmers markets and finding a co-packer, and seeing it all come together was mind-blowing. Brittany: Two years ago, this was just a goal. I was part of the pitch team and it was exhilarating. When Mark with Homeland said ‘yes,’ I could feel my heart burst. It was amazing to hear how excited he was to get our salsa on the shelves. When I walked into the store and saw the demos and saw it on the shelves … that was a moment that will be with me forever.

How do you hope to see Real Kitchen grow over the next year? Lukas: I hope to see it go into more stores and become more well known so more kids can participate on the team. We could use as many people as we could get! Julia: We’ve had interest from other states, so I hope to see us expand across Oklahoma and into other states. In addition to seeing Real Kitchen grow, I’ve liked watching my younger sister grow and learn more about business, too. Madison: I hope we get into more stores and become more well known. This would mean a bigger opportunity for even more students to get involved. At LoveWorks, we want to inspire and impact, and this would allow us to help more kids find what they’re passionate about. Brittany: I want us to push the boundaries of where our salsa is available. These middle school students have so much passion and potential. We have so much pride in it. I want people to know more about our backstory and passion.

How has being part involved with LoveWorks and Real Kitchen influenced what you want to do when you grow up?

Lukas: Before, I wanted to be a veterinarian and work at a vet clinic. Since then, I experienced entrepreneurship and I love it. So now I’m thinking of opening my own vet clinic. Without LoveWorks, I wouldn’t have known how to do it. Julia: I’ve always been interested in business, but before Real Kitchen I just wanted to do whatever I could that would make money. Now I’ve learned it’s important to be passionate about what you’re doing. I want to be able to use my creativity in whatever my career path is to help myself and others. Madison: I was set on going into the medical field, but now I’ve changed my career path to wanting to be a CEO or in a leadership position to helping businesses grow. I’m looking forward to taking classes on entrepreneurship at Moore Norman Technology Center. Brittany: I thought I wanted to be a middle school counselor or an accountant. But now I want to be an entrepreneur. I hope to help businesses push the limits of what they can do, or open my own.

What one word best describes you? Lukas: Positive Julia: Creative Madison: Spunky Brittany: Peculiar

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

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Picture your child on MetroFamily’s cover! We’re looking for local kids ages 2-12 with big smiles and bright personalities to grace our upcoming covers in 2018. It’s easy to enter:

Register online for our Cover Kids Search program and pay $25 for one entry or $50 total for up to five entries. Deadline to enter is Sept. 29.

All families who enter the contest will be required to attend an exclusive and fun Cover Kids Search Party to be hosted from 1-5 p.m. Oct. 8 at the Park House Event Center of Myriad Gardens. PLUS, if you are one of the first 100 to enter, your family will receive a goody bag at the event that is FULL of great surprises and FREE admission to the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory on the day of the event!

Thank you to our sponsors:

Find all the details and enter at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/cover-kids


Rock-a-Bye Babies MetroFamily’s Community Baby Shower Benefitting Infant Crisis Services Wednesday, Sept. 6

11am to 2pm at Infant Crisis Services parking lot, 4224 N. Lincoln Blvd, OKC

You are cordially invited to attend this fun “giving back” community baby shower! • Bring items from the Infant Crisis Services Wish List (listed at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/shower) • Enjoy entertainment for the kids! • PLUS eat delicious food from popular food trucks (and a portion of their proceeds benefits ICS!)

WHY? Infant Crisis Services needs our help to feed and diaper needy babies and toddlers in our community! Thank you to our sponsor:

Find more at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/shower


Resource Directory

The “Yellow Pages” for OKC area parents. 54

Family Services (page 54)

58

Liceology

Education (page 55)

58 59

Erna Krouch Preschool Opportunities Scholarship Fund

55

Harn Homestead My Gym Children’s Fitness Center Unpluggits Playstudio

Sensational Kids

After-School Activities (pages 56-57)

59

Child Care (page 59) Dynamic Kidz Zone

Akasha Skye Math Tutoring

Gan Israel Early Learning Center

Artsy Rose Academy

Party Guide (pages 60-61)

60 61

Edmond Fine Arts Institute Ginger’s Music

58

Family Fun (pages 58-59)

Skeletons: Museum of Osteology

Special Needs (page 55) TOTAL POSS-ABILITIES

56 57

Once Upon A Child Pass It On Kids Consignment Sale

Vesta Foundation Solutions

55

learning tree toys, books & games

Allison’s Fun Inc. Dust Bowl Lanes & Lounge

Girl Scouts Western Oklahoma

Forever After Parties

OCU Community Dance Center

Frontier City/White Water Bay

Oklahoma History Center

Goldfish Swim School

School of Rock Edmond

Mad Science of Central Oklahoma

The Studio at Sooner Theatre

Mobile Laser Forces

Studio J School of Dance

Myriad Gardens

Velocity Dance Center

Skate Galaxy OKC

Restaurant & Shopping (page 58) Jimmy’s Egg

61

Foster Care (page 61) Saint Francis Community Services

Find more at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/directories

August: Free head checks for children CALL TODAY

FAMILY SERVICES

405.418.6487 (NITS)

Experts in Sinking Concrete Bowing Walls Nasty Crawl Spaces

professional head lice removal service

CALL TODAY FOR YOUR FREE ESTIMATE!

820 N.E. 63rd Street

Oklahoma City, OK 73105 www.liceology.com

54 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

405-698-1109 | vestafamily.com


EDUCATION

We offer scholarships to low-income and special needs children at over 55 member schools across Oklahoma.

LEARN MORE AT OSFKIDS.ORG

Play • Learn • Thrive

We are now accepting referrals for PT at both locations with services to begin August 21st! Services Include: Occupational Therapy & SpeechLanguage Therapy for Children of All Ages & Abilities

Download our NEW app today and you’ll be easy clicks away from dozens of local events and resources!

Start having more #OKCFamilyFun today!

(405) 840-1686

www.SensationalKidsOKC.com

Two locations to serve you

14715 Bristol Park Blvd., Edmond 5701 SE 74th St., OKC

metrofamilymagazine.com/app

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55

SPECIAL NEEDS

Text “metrofamily” to 95577 today and a message will lead you to download the app appropriate for your Apple or Android device. PLUS you’ll be subscribed to receive occasional text messages from MetroFamily.

In-network providers for the following insurance companies: BC/BS Tricare United Healthcare Health Choice Soonercare Oklahoma Health Network


AFTER-SCHOOL ACTIVITIES

405-348-3377 420 S. Santa Fe in Edmond

Ballet, Pointe, Jazz, Tap, Hip Hop, Boys only Hip Hop & Contemporary Visit our website for more information studiojdanceok.com

Beginners are our Specialty

Enroll Today Welcoming Environment Live Stream Monitors to view your child's progress 24/7 Easy Online Enrollment Hassle Free Recital

Classes for ages 2 and up

Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop

POWER

G. R.L.

Unleash it at Girl Scouts. 11122 N Rockwell Ave Ste A-11 OKC

405-721-8807

admin@oklahomacitydancestudio.com

www.oklahomacitydancestudio.com

56 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

Picture this: a safe, no-limits place where she can try new things, take on challenges, build community, and inspire others! That’s Girl Scouts. A place where “Can I?” quickly turns into “I will!” Where your G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™ can transform her ideas into action, turn her questions into adventure, and grow her confidence through practice. WE BELIEVE IN THE POWER OF G.I.R.L.! Join now at girlscouts.org/join. Girl Scouts is offered throughout the academic year. Grades K-12 , annual membership fee is $25.


AFTER-SCHOOL ACTIVITIES

ENROLL BEGINNING AUGUST 14! Audition and Non-audition classes for grades pre-K-12 Musical Theatre Productions Acting • Musical Theatre Theatre Dance Technique Tap • Hip Hop Private Voice & Guitar and more!

www.soonertheatre.com • (405) 321-9600

Leaf and Flower Printing class Revel in the beauty of nature and create handmade cards or paper artwork! Participants will survey local plant species and make their own leaf or flower print.

800 Nazih Zuhdi Dr., OKC 73105

405-522-0793

Saturday, September 23, 2017 1 to 4 pm $12 per person and supplies are included All Ages - Register online at OKHistory.org

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

57


RESTAURANTS & SHOPPING

Fall Sale

September 8-9, 2017 HOURS Friday - 8 am - 6 pm Saturday - 8am - 3 pm (1/2 price sale on Saturday)

We have the looks your kids need to start the year off in style.

LOCATION

Memorial Road Church of Christ 2221 E. Memorial Rd. Edmond, Ok

Buy or sell good quality children’s clothing, toys and other items. For more information:

Passitonkids.com Contact Lilyfield passiton@lilyfield.org

405.216.5240

Lilyfield Christian Adoption & Foster Care is excited to host the Pass It On Kids sale where all the proceeds will help more children find loving families!

13801 N. PENNSYLVANIA AVE, N. OKLAHOMA CITY, OK 73134 405-286-3114 | ONCEUPONACHILDOKCNORTH.COM

playing Family Favorites indoors? how about tegu magnetic wooden blocks? we have a wide selection of sticky monsters in sets of 6-42 pieces!

7638 N. Western, OKC 405-848-1415

birth to teens

Fun for the entire family! through Sept. 1 9am-2pm Harn House tours 9:30am, 11am & 1pm 1721 N. Lincoln Boulevard, OKC

405-235-4058

www.harnhomestead.com

58 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

FAMILY FUN

SUMMER HOURS


Looking for

child care or preschool?

Dads, Grandparents & Nannies too!

Our program is now open for enrollment.

• 6 weeks to 5 years • Full time or part time • Excellent, caring teachers • Small class sizes • Open to the community

Award winning children’s program Experts in children’s fitness Ages 6 months - 8 years Birthday Parties

Enroll Anytime

Free Class!

Try a free class at MY GYM by signing up at my gym.com/edmond 838 W Danforth/Edmond 405-324-9182

CHILD CARE

FAMILY FUN

Mommy and Me Classes

Enroll now!

405-413-6091 www.jewishokc.com/ELC 3000 West Hefner Rd., OKC

Sparktacular Parties Open Paint & Play All Day Indoor Playground Paint-n-Takes Ceramics Clay Workshops Grown-ups paint nights 405-340-PLUG • www.unpluggits.com

Affordable Childcare PreK - 13 years

BEFORE & AFTERCARE TRANSPORTATION PROGRAM OKC/EDMOND PUBLIC SCHOOLS

HOMEWORK ASSISTANCE SNACKS PROVIDED • ALL DAY CARE DURING SCHOOL CLOSING (SPRING, SUMMER BREAKS, SNOW DAYS, ETC...)

DYNAMIC KIDZ ZONE

13754 LINCOLN EDMOND, OK 73013

405.570.2809 EMAIL: cck2610@sbcglobal.net FB: Dynamic Kidz Zone OPEN MONDAY - FRIDAY BEFORE SCHOOL CARE 7:00AM - 7:25AM AFTER SCHOOL CARE PICK UP 3:00PM - 3:30PM PARENT PICK UP 3:30 - 5:30PM

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59


PARTY GUIDE

BIRTHDAY PARTIES OR GROUP GATHERINGS! Birthday Parties start at $350 for up to 8 guests, includes admission, a meal and a reserved party area! Patio Parties at White Water Bay include admission and a meal with a private area for a reserved time. BBQ Bash and Picnic in the Park at Frontier City include a meal with a reserved area. Special rates available for all groups with 15 or more people! Save up to 50% off general admission! Little League, Daycare, Family Reunions let us help plan your event and make it one of a kind!

Contact group sales at GroupSales@FrontierCity.com or 405-478-2140 x 214 for more information.

Family Favorites

We come to you! Call us for your child’s next birthday party!

405-285-9643

okc.madscience.org

MOONBOUNCES • SLIDES • OBSTACLE COURSES • WATER SLIDES

PICK-UP A MOONBOUNCE FOR ONLY $175 FOR THE ENTIRE WEEKEND!!

For more info, call or log on to

www.AllisonsFunInc.com (405) 447-1118

60 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

421 NW 10th • 405.609.3302 dustbowlok.com


PARTY GUIDE

IT’S COOL TO PARTY AT THE POOL! Two hours of private access to Goldfish Swim School Invitations & envelopes Balloons, tropical decorations & centerpieces

LET THE

#OKCFamilyFun

BEGIN!

Cupcakes & beverages for the children

Limited Time Membership Offer 1 YEAR CHARTER MEMBERSHIP COST: $1,068

EDMOND

www.goldfishswimschool.com facebook.com/goldfishedmond 405.696.7500

ONE YEAR OF LESSONS, FREE BIRTHDAY PARTY, AND MORE!

Download our NEW app today and you’ll be one click away from….

“What about FOSTER CARE

my sister?”

“Will we be able to stay together?”

Give hope. Change a life. Become a foster parent.

Learn more at www.fostercare-ok.org www.fostercare-ok.org 1-877-263-1890 or call 877-263-1890

• OKC’s most comprehensive calendar of events • local savings and contests • a park, splash pad or museum near you • seasonal fun via our lists and much more!

Easy to use and available for all devices! Simply text “metrofamily” to 95577 and the message you receive will lead you to download the app. PLUS you’ll be subscribed to receive occasional text messages from MetroFamily.

Start having more #OKCFamilyFun today!

metrofamilymagazine.com/app

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

61


Kid Review: Climb UP

Kid reviewer’s name: Samuel Roldán Age: 10

What made the experience stand out? I had never done anything like Climb UP before. It was all about setting a challenge for yourself and seeing if you could beat your own goal. I went with my fourth grade class this past year and I enjoyed climbing so much that I wanted to tell other kids about it so my Mom took me back so we could write about it.

What was the best part? Being able to think you can do something and then testing your ability was what I liked best. I’m still working on one of the walls I want to be able to climb completely. I love how peaceful it felt, which you wouldn’t guess about extreme climbing. It felt the same to me as yoga or meditation because it’s not noisy and you’re just concentrating. I also liked going with just my Mom.

What was the worst part? I couldn’t make it to the top of the wall I wanted to climb. I was only five pegs away but I kept falling. I was so close! It wasn’t frustrating; it was motivating. I will come back and reach the top another day. I mean, even if I’m still a few pegs away, I could have grown some by then anyway so my height could help get me there. I really need like seven more inches to get up there. It also takes a long time. My Mom’s back started to hurt about halfway through so she had to stop and wait for me. I was worried she wasn’t having a good time. She told me later she did have fun.

Will other kids like this venue and why? They will like it because the results are immediate. You don’t have to keep score on anything, there’s no winning team or losing team and you’re in charge of how fast or slow you go. You can’t blame anyone else if you don’t make it to the top because you make all the decisions. I like that it’s up to you and I think other kids will like that too; adults like teachers and parents tell kids what to do but

62 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / AUGUST 2017

they really can’t at this activity. Sometimes, I get tired of trying to compete with other people in school, like to be the fastest or the best or just doing as I’m told. Climb UP is more like you against yourself.

Would this venue be enjoyed by your siblings? Why or why not? Not yet. My younger brother, Isaac, is 5. I think he would be a little afraid but he could want to later. Our baby brother is 2 and he’s the best climber I’ve ever met. He climbed the street sign outside our house and our refrigerator. When he’s older, I think he’ll be a frequent customer. It’s really best for kids like me, fourth grade and up, I’d say. I went with my fourth grade class before summer break and everyone liked giving it a try because they could go at their own pace. Even kids who aren’t super athletic could have a good time because there’s not a ball to chase or people yelling. It is so calm and quiet. I felt relaxed.

If you could do this again knowing what you know now, what would you do differently? I would go on a day that isn’t rainy so I could climb on the outside of the silos. That looks really cool. I’m not afraid of heights but the good thing is you don’t really notice how high up you are because you’re just focused on the climbing. I would also start out right away with a chalk bag for better grip instead of waiting until I started to fall and was already tired before getting one. My parents don’t let me lift weights but I feel like I need more strength in my arms. It really wears you out. I fell asleep on the way home.

Does what you saw match up with anything you’re learning in school or have seen before in a book, on TV, etc.? Perseverance is a virtue we talk about at my school but it takes longer to see that you’re getting better at something like a school subject. I’ve worked on my math all year, for

example, and my best grade came at the end but it took forever to get better. That kind of progress feels slow but this kind of progress is very fast. I could tell right away when I was starting to feel tired or when I was doing better. Other than that, I haven’t really seen anything about climbing before specifically.

What do you think you’ll remember most about Climb UP? I’ll remember the satisfaction I felt of getting to the top and that it’s good to keep trying when you don’t. Get more tips for exploring Oklahoma City with your kids at our Weekend Warrior blog, http://www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ Weekend-Warrior.


MetroFamily Magazine August 2017  
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