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july 2021

Still figuring it out? Check out our last-minute

EDUCATION GUIDE What type of schooling is best for your child?






That time you flossed, but your hip didn’t. 8 a.m.–8 p.m. every day including holidays Walk in or make a reservation online LOCATIONS

Smarter, faster urgent care. Visit-related X-rays, lab work, and medications onsite and included in your co-pay or flat fee.



CARMEL 26135 Carmel Rancho Blvd., Suite B-1


MARINA 2930 2nd Avenue, Suite 120


MONTEREY 2020 Del Monte Avenue, Suite B


Contents july 2021

in each issue: 08 Father’s Day Local dad, Rob Weisskirch covers parenting topics from a dad’s point of view.

on the cover

Annie Kay will be turning 13 on July 21. She is an avid soccer player, lover of the arts and animals. Annie moved to Carmel from Nashville last year with her parents Jason and Karen. She has 4 older siblings Alex, Kaitlin, Claire, and Allison. She is excited to be entering 7th grade this fall at Santa Catalina. Photo by Michelle Findlay 831-262-9192



Ticket to Ride. We’re betting you didn’t know that there were so many awesome train rides in Northern California. Any of them would make a great summer outing.


Where to Play Miniature Golf. The Monterey Bay is known for golf but you may have to travel a little farther for putt putt.


How to Take a Family Trip on a Budget. Even if the budget is a little tight, there are ways to plan a thrifty vacation that won’t break the bank. by Kimberly Blaker


Summer Day Trips Your Kids Are Going To Love. Three “one-tank” trips within two hours of Monterey that the entire family will enjoy. by Ni Sun-Suslow


Road Trip Tips. Travel looks a little different this summer. Our tips may help you avoid disappointment on an upcoming trip.


Ten Easy Ways to Help the New Kid in School. Teach your kids to look for the new kids, not past them. by Katy M. Clark


What Type of School is Best for Your Child? There are a variety of options available to local parents. You aren’t limited to private or public. by Cheryl Maguire


Last Minute Education Guide. Still undecided on the best choice for your kids this school year? Here are a variety of options for your family.

Back to School is just a month away. We’re helping you get ready! MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021


Season-long access to California’s Great America, including special events Season-long access to the new South Bay Shores waterpark FREE Parking at Great America Exclusive ride times and discounts Bring-a-Friend discounts on select dates 10% off select food and merchandise

Visit for the latest safety protocols ©2021 Cedar Fair, L.P. GA21-093 and to reserve your ticket today



from the publisher… California has opened up and families are ready to (safely!) roam this summer. Whether it’s a day trip to a fun destination close to home or a longer trip, it feels great to be exploring. We’re here to help! Looking for something fun to do over the coming month? Maybe one of the following will inspire you: a train ride (see page 10 for thirteen great options), miniature golf (see page 12 for putt putt courses across the area), or three awesome day trips within two hours of Monterey (see page 16). While you’re getting inspiration, be sure to check out the details on our California Great America South Bay Shores giveaway. Enter at to win four tickets and a parking pass. With the start of the school year just over a month away, we thought a “last-minute” education guide might be welcome. In my conversations with parents, it seems that many are still undecided about this school year. Some are pondering a switch to private, a few have considered continuing with virtual schooling, and at least one family has decided to make the switch to homeschooling. If you’re in that “not sure yet” boat, check out the article on page 22 that defines the various options available. Then turn to our guide on page 26 for information on some available options. Our big news this month is the return of in-person events. Our first (and the first at Del Monte Center in over a year) is the upcoming Back to School Bash. It will be a fun event with vendors, entertainment, free giveaways and much more. You can stop by and chat with representatives from area schools, after-school activities, preschools directors, medical professionals, and many others. Some Del Monte merchants will have specials and it’s all free. If you’re a local business or organization and interested in having a booth at the event, give us a call at 831-582-1373 or email

Monterey Bay


P.O. Box 806 Pacific Grove, CA 93950

831-582-1373 Publisher Andrea Breznay 831-582-1373 Sales Executive Danika Mallobox 831-582-1770 Cover Photographer Michelle Findlay ALBERT HOFFMAN Contributing Writers andrea breznay kimberly blaker cheryl maguire ni sun-suslow rob weisskirch Editorial Submissions are welcome. We reserve the right to edit, reject or comment editorially on all material contributed. We cannot be responsible for return of any unsolicited materials. Articles and advertisements in Monterey Bay Parent do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the publisher nor does the publisher assume responsibility for statements made by our advertisers or editorial contributors. Acceptance of advertising by Monterey Bay Parent 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.

Happy July--enjoy getting out and about.

Monterey Bay Parent is available free of charge at over 250 distribution points throughout Monterey and Santa Cruz counties as well as digitally at

Andrea Breznay/Publisher

Monterey Bay Parent is ©2021 by Monterey Bay Parent, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without written permission is strictly prohibited.

Serendipity Pre-School LLC We open the eyes and hearts of children to the wonder and discovery of learning. y mily am F Fa



✯Finalist✯ Monterey Bay


• A quality educational program for children ages 3 to 5 • Full and part-time preschool & Pre-K classes • Serving Peninsula families since 1981

1231 Seventh Street, Monterey, 93940 6

831-375-9743 MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021



Saturday, August 14 10:00 am to 3:00 pm All the info you need for a successful 2021-22 school year.

Del Monte Center, Monterey

Vendors from local businesses and organizations Lots of giveaways • Entertainment • Special guests and so much more Now accepting vendor applications!

Call 831-582-1373 or log onto for info



Picnics, Barbecues, and Summer Fruit



armer weather and longer days means picnics and barbecues and the arrival of summer fruit. I am lucky to have a daughter who has become an adventuresome eater, ready to consume anything grilled or a new variety of plum from the Farmers’ Market. This attitude and behavior was a combination of luck and design. My wife and I have deliberately tried to expose our daughter to a wide range of flavors, textures, and spices so that she will eat the foods we eat, find foods to enjoy at a restaurant, and take advantage of the breadth of flavors in the world. Kids’ food preferences begin in utero. Yup, certain flavors can pass through the placenta into the amniotic fluid: vanilla, carrot, anise, garlic, ginger, curry, etc. So, as babies develop, they get exposure to the range of flavors typical in a mother’s diet and demonstrate a preference for foods with those kinds of flavors. This makes sense, given that these are the kinds of foods in the family’s diet. In addition, flavors can pass through breast milk, so babies continue to get exposure to similar flavors after birth. This may explain why you may see some young children eat spicy foods– they had exposure to them since they were in the womb. Dads also play an important part in the development of food habits. In one study of fathers of preschoolers, more than half said that they were equally responsible for organizing the meals and deciding on the quality and quantity of foods consumed by their children. In another study, fathers of 20-month-old children who consume more fruit and reduce their sugarsweetened beverages have kids who continue to eat fruit and have low consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks into childhood. In addition, fathers’ behaviors at mealtimes model attitudes and behaviors towards foods. So, if Dad is picky or questions new foods or preparations, kids can adopt those same attitudes and patterns. I know of one father who won’t eat any


meat on the bone, makes a face at new preparations, and is quick to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich when the dinner meal includes new flavors. Not surprisingly, his kids, now teens, stick to known foods and are wary of ethnic restaurants. I am not a fan of coconut in our house and am on the lower end of spicy foods. Luckily, my daughter relishes the taste of coconut, and she enjoys relatively spicy food. Pickiness in eating is common in children, particularly in toddlerhood. Kids may suddenly refuse foods that they had eaten before. When my daughter was younger, she would sometimes say she didn’t like certain foods. We then corrected her to say that she doesn’t like them yet. The “yet” was essential to remind her to keep an open mind that she may return to that food later. As a toddler, she went through a phase of not liking tomatoes. This crushed me, given the tomatoes I grew in the backyard. However, I did not give up. She got a little tomato to try during the growing season, but I couldn’t change her mind. Then, one day she came home from preschool and declared that she liked tomatoes again because they had them on a salad that day. Currently, my daughter doesn’t like mushrooms. We keep them out of her portion or leave them in large enough chunks to pick out. However, she will try them in a dish to see if she likes them yet. So far, the verdict is no. In my daughter’s preschool, the staff adopted a saying that each kid had to take “one polite bite.” We continued to capitalize on this saying at home as well. Experts agree that this tactic may help kids try new foods. Many children need to have new foods introduced up to a dozen times or more before accepting them. In addition, kids are more likely to accept new foods when they are paired with something familiar. If a kid likes ranch dressing, that might be paired with a new vegetable. Kids also respond more

Father’s day by Rob Weisskirch

favorably to sweeter foods, so adding a sauce on the sweeter side might help. Kids who help in the growing of foods build excitement in tasting them. Helping in meal preparation can get them invested in eating the product of their efforts. The consensus among the experts is that turning mealtimes into a power struggle does not work. What does work? Getting kids hungry! Increasing activity and reducing snacking, so they come to the table hungry means they are more likely to eat the foods prepared for them. With the abundance of summer, dads can use their role at the table to bring a sense of adventure about eating new foods to their children. Robert (Rob) S. Weisskirch, MSW, Ph.D., CFLE is a Professor of Human Development at California State University, Monterey Bay and is a Certified Family Life Educator. He and his wife are parents to a chatty, elementary school aged daughter and reside in Marina.


Centers open in Monterey and Salinas!

All services are available, please call for more information about our strict COVID safety practices and procedures.

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Ticket to Ride

Northern California Trains Billy Jones Wildcat Railroad, Los Gatos Ride aboard a real steam engine as it goes through beautiful Oak Meadow and Vasona Parks. Tickets are just $3.00 per person and operating hours are posted on website. 233 Blossom Hill Road, Los Gatos, 95032, California State Railroad Museum, Sacramento The museum tells the story of trains in California from the Transcontinental Railroad to the present day. After touring the museum, enjoy a 50 minute round trip ride along the scenic Sacramento River, as you experience railroading first hand as it was in the early part of the 20th century. There is a separate fee for museum admission

and train rides and tickets can be purchased online. Children under the age of 5 are free for both. 125 I Street, Sacramento 95814, Howarth Park, Santa Rosa The simulated 1863 C.P. Huntington steam train takes guests on a quartermile train ride through a tunnel, to the pond, across a bridge, and into the forest. All riders under 42 inches in height must be accompanied by someone at least 16 years of age. Tickets are $2 each. The park also has a carousel, animal barn, and pony rides. 630 Summerfield Road, Santa Rosa 95405, Niles Canyon Railway, Fremont This railway runs full-size trains behind steam or diesel powered locomotives through Niles Canyon. Select weekend dates are available through August. Check website for dates and ticket information. 37029 Mission Boulevard, Fremont, 94536, The Little Puffer, San Francisco Zoo One of San Francisco Zoo & Gardens’ most unique attractions isn’t an animal, instead it’s a rare miniature steam train known affectionately as “Little Puffer.” All visitors, including SF Zoo Members, must reserve a date and time and purchase tickets online, prior to your visit. Tickets are $7 per person, children under 3 may ride free. 1 Zoo Road, San Francisco 94132,


Railtown 1897 State Historic Park, Jamestown Visit the historic state park or ride behind a historic steam or diesel locomotive on a train trip through California’s scenic Gold Country. Your 6-mile, 45-minute roundtrip train ride will take you past the water tower from Petticoat Junction and transport you from the backyards of Jamestown to the rugged hillsides of California’s Mother Lode country. After your ride, you can explore the grounds, have a picnic, and spend the day. 10501 Reservoir Road, Jamestown, 95327 Redwood Valley Railway, Tilden Park, Orinda Redwood Valley Railway in Tilden Regional Park offers steam train rides along a scenic ridge on a scaleddown steam train. The Steam Trains at Tilden Park are open on their summer schedule now. Advanced reservations are not be required. Tickets for adults and children are $3.50 (children under 2 years old ride free). 2481 Grizzly Peak Blvd Orinda, 94563 Roaring Camp Railroads, Felton Families have two options: The Redwood Forest Steam Train which travels over trestles, through redwood groves and up a winding narrowgauge grade to the summit of Bear Mountain. Conductors narrate the history of Roaring Camp, the railroad and the forest along the way. Or, MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021

rural stops. Tickets must be booked online in advance. Open rear-round on Saturdays and Sundays and on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 10:30 am to 5:00 pm during the summer. 5848 Highway 12, Suisun City, 94585,

choose the Santa Cruz Beach Train departing from the Santa Cruz Mountains. You’ll travel through Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park, down the scenic San Lorenzo River Gorge, across a 1909 steel truss bridge and through an 1875 tunnel before arriving at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Ticket pricing varies and can be purchased online. 5401 Graham Hill Road, Felton, 95018

Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad, Fish Camp Experience the beauty of the Sierra National Forest with a fun train ride. You can enjoy a scenic rail ride, have a great dinner on board, or take a special seasonal ride. The daily narrated 1-hour scenic railroad rides takes you along the Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad. Tickets are $16-28 depending on age and can be booked online. 56001 Highway 41, Fish Camp, 93623,

Skunk Train, Mendocino County Step back in time for a ride through the redwoods on the world-famous Skunk Train. Since 1885 the Skunk has made its way through old-growth redwood groves, over scenic trestle bridges, through spectacular tunnels, and into the heart of the Noyo River Canyon. You can choose from two routes. Ticket prices vary depending on route and tickets may be purchased online. 100 Laurel Street, Fort Bragg, 95437 299 East Commercial Street, Willits, 95490 Sonoma TrainTown, Sonoma TrainTown, evolving since 1958, was founded by Stanley L. Frank of Oakland, a printing magnate and adamant table-top model builder. TrainTown features a quarter scale railroad on four miles of track. Each train trip lasts 20 minutes and goes through tunnels, over bridges and makes a stop at Lakeview – a miniature town and petting zoo. Tickets are $8.25 per person for every rider over 12 months old. 20264 Broadway, Sonoma, 95476, Western Pacific Railroad Museum, Portola The museum grounds hold over 100 pieces of historic railroad rolling stock. Visitors are encouraged to climb aboard and experience the collection in a hands-on way. Ride with the crews of today’s “Western Pacific Railroad” on a leisurely journey around the museum grounds in a vintage caboose. The trains run weekends from Memorial Day to Labor Day from noon to 3:30 pm. Train rides are approximately 1 mile in length and take about 10 minutes. Portola is about an hour from Lake Tahoe. 700 Western Pacific Way, Portola, 96122, Western Railway Museum, Suisun City The Museum features historic railway exhibits, vintage streetcar and interurban train rides, a large shaded picnic grounds, museum store, library archives, and Depot Cafe. Hour-long trips depart four times daily recreating the experience of riding a historic electric railcar between two MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021


Nothing says summer like a round of putt putt golf! Both Monterey and Santa Cruz each have one indoor course. San Jose offers several options including one with water slides. There are several courses in San Francisco including “Urban Putt” a very cool, high-tech experience. If you’re heading south to the Paso Robles area, you’ll find a center in Atascadero with mini golf and something intriguing called “gemstone sluicing.” Wherever you end up, mini golf is great fun and an activity that all ages can enjoy together. Don’t let the summer go by without at least one round of miniature golf! Be sure to check the mini golf course website before your outing. Most of the centers require reservations and COVID precautions are still in place. The operating hours are also still in flux and may be different from the hours listed at press time. Most of the websites also have current pricing. ATASCADERO

MR. PUTTERS Mr. Putters’ Putt Putt is San Luis Obispo County’s premier full 18 hole miniature golf course. Located in downtown Atascadero. Mr. Putters is the setting for birthday parties, fun family evenings, group events, and team building. You can also pan for precious gems or dig for fossils in the Sluice Box. Each participant gets a bag of pay dirt which they sluice. As the pay dirt washes away the participant sees the gemstones that are left behind. They then collect the gemstones in their souvenir bag and use the identification card to see which ones they discovered. 5625 EL CAMINO REAL ATASCADERO, 93422, (805) 466-7888 WWW.MRPUTTERS.COM


HIGHWAY 1 GOLF The only mini golf on the Monterey Peninsula, this creative course has you traveling from a Redwood Tree in Northern California to the completion at the Santa Monica Pier. During your adventure you’ll make stops in San Francisco, Santa Cruz, Monterey, Carmel, and Big Sur. Use 3D glasses to make the obstacles come to life. The course features interactive obstacles and iconic images in black light that adorn the walls of the 9-hole mini golf course. Pro tip: join the E-Mail Club online and receive a free do-it-all ticket when you visit on your birthday.



GOLDEN TEE GOLFLAND Golden Tee Golfland features two unique mini golf courses in a beautifully landscaped environment. Golfland also features an arcade with all the latest games. 2533 CASTRO VALLEY BLVD. CASTRO VALLEY, 94546, (510) 537-2168 WWW.GOLFLAND.COM/CASTROVALLEY

Where to play miniature golf Who will make the first

Hole in One? 12


SUBPAR Families can enjoy a round of 18 holes and get a free sample of chocolate (or better yet an ice cream sundae) in the Ghiradelli store. Subpar also offers an arcade and several packages for upcoming events. 900 NORTH POINT, SAN FRANCISCO COST: ADULTS: $12, KIDS UNDER 18: $8 SUBPARMINIGOLF.COM

URBAN PUTT Located in the heart of San Francisco’s mission district, Urban Putt is the city’s first indoor miniature golf course. Urban Putt offers guests a fun, only-in-San Francisco experience with a fantastical, high-tech 14-hole mini-golf course. The venue features mini San Francisco landmarks and a family-friendly menu with a full restaurant and bar. FYI, it’s all adults after 8 p.m. 1096 SOUTH VAN NESS AVENUE, SAN FRANCISCO, 94110, (415) 341-1080 WWW.URBANPUTT.COM



EMERALD HILLS GOLFLAND Experience a whole new level of fun at Emerald Hills Golfland as you play your way through your choice of challenging miniature golf courses. The park also features a huge video game arcade and a full snack bar, plus three waterslides. Golfland has some of the newest games in their arcade. Tickets can be redemed for prizes at our redemption counter. All-inclusive tickets offer waterslides rides all day plus miniature golf.

Call your local branch or visit


MILPITAS GOLFLAND Two challenging miniature golf courses plus a huge video game arcade, and snack bar. The Milpitas Golfland also has Laser Tag and a Lazer Maze. 855 E. EL CAMINO REAL, SUNNYVALE, 94087 (408) 245-8434 WWW.GOLFLAND.COM/MILPITAS

SUNNYVALE GOLFLAND You get your choice of two miniature golf courses plus a video game arcade and a full snack bar. 855 E. EL CAMINO REAL, SUNNYVALE, 94087 (408) 245-8434 WWW.GOLFLAND.COM/SUNNYVALE


BUCCANEER BAY MINI GOLF This two-story, 18-hole course has a playful pirate theme with an adventurous black light cave. It is located inside Neptune’s Kingdom at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. . SANTA CRUZ BEACH BOARDWALK 400 BEACH STREET, SANTA CRUZ, 95060, (831) 423‑5590 HTTPS://BEACHBOARDWALK.COM



If you’re ready to break out of pandemic lockdown with a little vacation but your wallet is looking a lot empty, check out our tips on getting away on the cheap!

How to Take a Family Trip on a Small Budget Traveling is a great way to enjoy new experiences, learn about the world, bond with your family, and take a break from the monotony of daily living. But the cost of travel can be prohibitive. So many of families don’t get away as frequently as they’d like or miss out on places they’ve dreamed of visiting. Fortunately, there are lots of ways to travel and explore the world without breaking the bank. DON’T DISMISS A VACATION Visit WITH family or friends When thinking about where to travel on a small budget, visiting places near family or friends can help keep the costs down. Depending on the situation, it could reduce or eliminate the need for a hotel, rental car, or eating out every meal. Traveling to an area near family or friends can also reduce your entertainment cost since spending time visiting and catching up will serve as part of your entertainment. It’s also an excellent opportunity to have your own local tour guide since your family or friends there will know all the hot-spots, attractions, and not-to-be-missed sight-seeing.

allowing you to enter your travel dates and preferences to compare prices and features from different companies. These websites are particularly helpful for comparing costs in a single place and keeping track of your findings. Some of the most popular include, Priceline, Expedia, Kayak, and Trivago. Search smart: CLEAR THOSE COOKIES! When searching online for travel deals, there are a few tricks to know in order to get the best deals. Many websites use cookies and can see when you’ve been searching for specific hotels or flights. There is some evidence, according to William McGee, aviation advisor for Consumer

Reports, that pricing may be based in part on your search history. An easy fix is to clear the cookies in your browser before visiting the same travel website again, so the site can’t track you following specific companies, destinations, or deals. There are also many theories about the best time to book your flight, with the most common being on a Tuesday afternoon, six weeks before your trip. While this exact date is subject to debate, it does seem that airline fare sales tend to start on Tuesdays. Your best bet is to start checking fares early and pay attention to any patterns. Some airlines also have better deals if you book at least two weeks before your trip.

Compare costs With so many airlines, hotels, and tours to choose from, planning a trip can be overwhelming. Fortunately, many websites simplify this by



Road trip! If you’re traveling as a family, the cost of airline tickets for everyone adds up quickly. Depending on how far you plan to travel, a road trip might be a good option. Your journey can become part of your vacation. Gas for one car which can hold everyone will likely cost much less than airline tickets for multiple people. It can also be better for the planet. 831.625.DANCE

Discounts and deals Websites like Groupon and LivingSocial offer significant discounts on specific travel deals. Because they only offer deals to particular places within a range of dates, this is a good option if you want to travel but don’t have a specific destination or dates in mind. Depending on your age and interests, some companies host trips and tours with lodging, attractions, and travel costs included. Traveling with a tour group can result in deeper discounts than traveling alone. Topdeck and Contiki are popular group tour hosts that cater mainly to young adults and offer specific budget travel options. For all ages, Flash Pack and Austin Adventures are excellent choices. Companies such as Costco or AAA also offer travel packages at discounted prices. By signing up for a free membership on certain websites, such as, you can earn free hotel-stay nights and get exclusive discounts on hotels. Another way to reduce your travel cost is to save up money for travel with a travel rewards credit card that caters to your travel interests. Many airlines offer credit cards on which you can earn miles to redeem for future travel. Some specific travel destinations, like Disney, also have credit cards you can use to earn rewards toward future vacation costs. Capital One and many other credit card companies also offer similar travel reward credit cards that provide greater travel flexibility.

26135 Carmel Rancho Shopping Center Suite

Travel locally It’s easy to overlook fascinating or exciting attractions, sightseeing, and activities that are close to home. If you have the travel bug but lack the time or money for a big trip, do some research to see what opportunities and adventures you can find nearby for a weekend or day trip. “One-tank” trips from the Monterey Bay include family-friendly cities located in the counties of San Luis Obispo, Sonoma, and Marin. A short visit to Paso Robles (so many fun child-centered attractions!) or a visit to Sausalito with its awesome children’s museum and numerous hiking options could be the perfect answer. It’s easier to pack food for a short journey, which can also save you money instead of eating every meal out. You might be surprised at what exciting new things you’ve been missing out on locally or nearby. Realize that with a little creativity and effort, traveling doesn’t need to be out of reach just because of a small budget. If you plan ahead and travel smart, you can find lots of opportunities to explore the world around you. Editor’s Note: See the article on page 16 for local day trip suggestions. You’ll also find articles on one-tank trips at For road trip tips, turn to page 18. Kimberly Blaker is a freelance parenting and lifestyle writer. MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021



Fa F vorites


✯winner✯ Monterey Bay


Tia Brown Laura Jeselnick







26135 Carmel Rancho Shopping Center Suite B-6 Carmel, CA 93923


Summer Day Trips Your Kids Are Going To Love With California just reopening and summer in full swing, it’s time to venture out a bit from our Monterey Bay enclave. As a parent of three under five, I am in constant search of stimulating weekend activities to expend their staggering amounts of energy. Last summer involved blowup mini pools in the backyard and debating whether we, too, needed to buy a trampoline. This summer, luckily, is different. Here are my top three recommendations for a day trip that the entire family is bound to enjoy. Each one offers the makings for a very special day of summer fun.

1. CALIFORNIA’S GREAT AMERICA AND SOUTH BAY SHORES WATERPARK For the first time this summer, Great America has opened a transformed waterpark. The Tide Pool Lagoon is a brand new attraction appropriate for



those under five, with eight kid-sized water slides that line the perimeter of a zero-depth-entry pool. Perfect for those unsteady first steps into the water. There are oversized lounge and sun deck areas for parents to relax and perhaps enjoy wine or beer from their new outdoor bar (Sand Bar). For those who are older and looking for a bit more of a thrill (or heart attack), there is the Shark Reef Plunge. The four, six-story-tall body slides send riders, enclosed in launch chambers, on a nearly vertical free fall, when the floor drops out from under them at the top. My palms are sweating just thinking about this. 4701 Great America Pkwy, Santa Clara Tickets and reservations are required. Single-day admission is $38 (also includes access to Great America), and

parking is $25. Pre-K Passes available online (free admission to both South Bay Shores and Great America for ages 3-5 all season).


Gilroy Gardens celebrates its 20th birthday by throwing the “Best Birthday Party Ever!” this summer (launched June 26th and running through Labor Day). This special event features character shows, Party Patios, and a giant birthday card for kids to sign for the park. In addition, while not brand new like the first two on this list, the Gilroy Gardens Water Oasis is just graduating from toddlerhood and is perfect for those hot summer days. Geared towards littler ones (ages 2-6), the original Oasis area consists of a Lagoon, an 18” deep wading

Win four general admission park tickets and one parking pass. These digital tickets do not need a reservation and include access to the waterpark. They can be used any regular operating date this season. Value is $152!


pool, along with two miniature water slides (36” height requirement). There is also the Splashpad, where children can play with dump buckets and giant spray flowers, and for the littlest ones, there is Water Journey, where they can manipulate the flow of water with paddles to learn about the river delta. For parents, there are (thankfully) shade-filled areas for lounging, a food tent to refuel those ravenous kids (and ourselves with two mixed drink options: Mai Tai and a Blue Margarita), and a safe and contained space for our children to release that bountiful summer energy (lifeguards and security on-site!).

Our partner physicians

3050 Hecker Pass Hwy, Gilroy Tickets and reservations are required. Single-day admission is $38 (children under three free), and parking is $17 when purchased online ($20 at the gate).


To clarify, this is not LEGOLAND in Carlsbad (near San Diego, which is also open now). This is the Bay Area’s smaller and completely indoor playground. Discovery Center opened its doors for the first time on June 14, featuring a 4D cinema, interactive train ride (those under four require an adult), and its very own MINILAND featuring Bay Area landmarks. For the littlest ones (ages 2-5), there is the Duplo Park: a play area with a small hill and slide for climbing and soft bricks to play with, a pirate ship-themed soft play area (36” height requirement), and places for storytime and a chance to meet various LEGO characters. 870 Great Mall Drive, Milpitas Tickets and reservations are required. Single-day admission is $23 (children under two free).

Reid Giedt, MD

Ni Sun-Suslow, Ph.D. is a mother of 3 under 5 and a neuropsychologist in private practice (www.rbneurospych. com). She enjoys arts and crafts, exploring Monterey Bay (and beyond), and energy-expending child activities.

To enter, go to and click on “Contests” link. Contest ends July 15.

You may enter once per day, per adult. There are no prize substitutions.


Christine McCuistion, MD

and associates

Tonya Blakemore, MD

Robert Naimark, MD

Jennae Lee, MD.

Please welcome our newest care team member, Amy Winter, M.D. Dr. Winter was born and raised in Monterey. After finishing her residency at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids, Michigan, she has started a family of her own and returned to serve the families in our local community.


With transitioning into a less masked and socially distanced world, it is understandable that many of us may continue to harbor anxieties about going into crowded places, especially those that are exclusively indoors. As a mother, I understand there remain many unknowns, and I feel the strong pull towards “playing it safe” to protect my children from illness. However, as a clinical psychologist and researcher, I also understand it is important to trust in the data and start moving towards behaviors that will improve my family’s mental and physical health. The decision to venture out with little ones this summer is an individual one, as we all have to balance the risks and benefits for ourselves. However, when ready, these three fun options may start to make up for those underwhelming backyard blow-up pool days of Summer 2020.

Jerrie Lim, MD

Amy Winter, MD

Dr. Winter is now accepting new patients.

All of our physicians provide pediatric outpatient care at the office and inpatient care at Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital Call us today to schedule an appointment!


260 San Jose Street, Salinas


Summer 2021

Road Trip Tips The great American road trip is back! But, it’s undergone some changes. If you’re planning a road trip this summer, especially an extended one, there are some important things to think about. Here are five tips to make your summer ride a smooth one.


Don’t toss the mask. In April, the CDC said: “People who are fully vaccinated with an FDA-authorized vaccine can travel safely within the United States.” But that doesn’t mean that you should ditch the mask. The pandemic isn’t over yet. Depending on your destination and where you will be stopping along the way, you may still need (or choose to) mask up. Plus, public transportation is still a mask zone. Businesses can ask you to either show proof of vaccine or wear a mask, and some may require a mask regardless of vaccination status. Plus, since kids under 12 still can’t be vaccinated, they should wear masks indoors and in some crowded outdoor situations. Mom and dad may want to keep that mask on to keep them company and set an example. To add another layer of protection for your kids and anyone who is unvaccinated traveling with you, check The New York Times Covid Tracker to see if there are any hot spots near or at your destination. interactive/2021/us/covid-cases.html


Do your research. Many attractions are on reduced hours or require reservations ahead of time. This is especially true for those that are indoors. Usually, part of the fun of a road trip is being a little spontaneous, but for Summer ‘21, planning is a better option. Plan your trip and make reservations for the attractions you don’t want to miss. You can fill in the rest of the time with last-minute finds or recommendations from locals once you arrive at your destination.


Camping may not be an option. One of the biggest shortages this summer seems to be camping reservations. Campsites all across the country are reporting record reservations. If you haven’t made reservations yet, you may be disappointed. One option, if you are able to travel last minute, is to get on cancellation lists. If you can be ready at a moment’s notice to pack your car or RV and head out, you may be able to score a coveted spot when the campsite gets a cancellation.


Don’t expect the same level of service. There is a marked shortage of service employees. Restaurants are struggling to find enough staff for their kitchens, and dining rooms and hotels are short in almost every department. You may face longer waits at restaurants, and your hotel may not be cleaning rooms on the same schedule. Many hotels that previously supplied breakfast as one of the perks may be supplying a “pack and go” option (if at all). Be prepared to go with the flow or call ahead to be sure your expectations will be met. As for restaurant meals, be patient. Give the kids a snack ahead of time to ward off meltdowns or get creative with picnics to avoid long waits.


Look at your budget. Due to supply and demand, everything from gas to groceries is higher this summer. Road trips used to be a more budget friendly option, but this summer you’re probably going to have higher than normal travel expenses. Plan to stay on budget by looking for ways to save money: carry easy-to-pack foods for breakfast and snacks, research free local attractions, and investigate renting from a website like instead of booking a hotel. (See our article on page 14 for budget-friendly travel ideas).

Spring and summer whale watching

Whales and dolphins in their natural habitat • Fun and educational for the entire family

• Tours led by experienced Biologists • Following social distancing and CDC guidelines • Dog friendly

Trip details and pricing at or call 831-375-4658 18



Fine motor skills Music, arts and craas • Social and emooonal skill building • Language development • Mullcultural educaaon • •

Student Registraaon Form • Emergency Contact Form • Proof of child's age • Student Residency Form • Immunizaaon Records • Proof of Residence •

e.g., lease agreement, uulity bill, etc.

• Download forms at • Pick-Up/Drop Boxes at school sites Marina Preschool - 831.384.0255 Seaside Preschool - 831.392.3456 TK and Kindergarten - 831.645.1217

We are commiied to providing enriching programs to support families by delivering high quality learning experiences to children. * Preschool based on income eligibility. Most families will qualify. The Monterey Peninsula Unified School District is commiied to equal opportunity for all individuals in educaaon and in employment. MPUSD prohibits discriminaaon, harassment, innmidaaon, and bullying based on actual or perceived age, ancestry, color, physical or mental disability, ethnicity, gender, gender expression, gender idennty, geneec informaaon, immigraaon status, marital status, medical informaaon, naaonal origin, parental status, pregnancy status, race, religion, sex, sexual orientaaon, or associaaon with a person or a group with one or more of these actual or perceived characterisscs. If you believe you, or your student, have been subjected to discriminaaon, harassment, innmidaaon, or bullying you should contact your school site principal and/or the following individuals at the MPUSD District Office at 700 Pacific Street, Monterey, CA 93940: Title IX Officer and Title VI Officer: Dr. Manny Nunez, Assistant Superintendent, Human Resources (phone: 831-645-1272, email: mnunez@mpusd.n or visit for more informaaon. Title II Coordinator: Kaae Rivera, Senior Director, Special Educaaon Services (phone: 831-645-1293, email: Title V and 504 Coordinator: Donnie Everee, Assistant Superintendent, Mull-Tiered Systems of Support (phone: 831-645-1261, email: Title 5 Officer: Ryan Altemeyer, Associate Superintendent, Business Services (phone: 831-645-1269, email:



By Katy M. Clark

10 Easy Ways to Help the New Kid in School Teach your kids to look for the new kids, not past them


eing the new kid in school is a phenomenon that many kids will experience in their lives. School districts and government agencies officially refer to it as “student mobility”, defined as any time a student changes school for reasons other than grade promotion. Student mobility can be voluntary, such as changing schools to participate in a magnet program, or involuntary, due to a change in a parent’s job. I was the new kid myself several times growing up. I can tell you that I was not thinking about what kind of statistic I was when I was the new kid. All I knew was that I was alone, nervous, and scared! The experience of being the new kid has encouraged me to teach my own children to look for the new kids and reach out. 20

Here are ten ways I’m teaching my kids to help the new kids at school. 1. Recognize that there will be new kids at school, kids who do not know anyone. Look for them, don’t look past them. 2. Say hi. Ask where they are from. Does she have any pets or siblings? 3. Sit with the new kid at lunch. 4. Invite the new student to hang out after school. 5. Did I mention just talk to the new kid? It’s okay if you’re not best friends. Maybe you won’t have anything in common. But if you never even talk, then you won’t find out if you have anything in common or not. 6. Compliment the new student. Maybe she’s wearing a shirt with a sports team that is also your favorite sports team. Once when I was the new kid a girl told me she liked my watch band. It was a small comment, but it meant so much to me. 7. Tell the new kid about clubs, sports, or other activities at school. One year I was invited to join

the basketball team and gained a whole team of friends. 8. Sit with him on the bus or stand with him at the pick-up loop. Even if it’s just for a day or two. 9. Help the new student find things like the gym and the cafeteria. 10. Be welcoming and inclusive in group work in class. Remember, the new kid knows no one and things may have run differently at his old school. Parents, teach your kids to look for the new students and take any of these concrete steps to be kind and helpful. As a result, the new kid won’t feel so alone and will be one step closer to finding her way in a new school. And if you see any new moms or dads standing alone at the pickup loop after school or wandering the halls looking lost? Then it’s your turn to say hello. If you never even talk to the new parents, then you won’t find out if you have anything in common or not. Katy M. Clark is a writer who embraces her imperfections as a mom on her blog, MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021



What Type of School is Best for Your Child? By Cheryl Maguire


ext year my twins will be entering their first year of high school. Their grades will soon “count” if they apply to colleges. The type of high school they attend will also be a considered factor by the college admission boards. I attended a typical public high school and my husband attended a public magnet high school. He went to a private school for elementary through middle school. We both feel we received a good high school education that prepared us for college, but since we attended different types

of high schools we wanted to explore all of the options for our twins. We researched all the different types of high schools. Even though I’m focusing on high schools, most of these options are also available at younger grades. Types of Schools Charter: Charter schools are free public schools that are independently run by teachers, parents, community leaders, and businesspersons. These school receive funding from the sending public school, state and federal grants, and private fundraising.

Local charter schools include Oasis Charter School in Salinas, Monterey Bay Charter in Pacific Grove, and Big Sur Charter School in Monterey. Home School A homeschool is when a student is educated at their home by either a parent, tutor or an online program. States regulate and have requirements that must be met for parents to homeschool. Students can also enroll in an online public school or home charter school. Local options include Salinas City Virtual Academy and Monterey County Home Charter School. International Baccalaureate In order to offer one or more International Baccalaureate (IB) programmes of education, schools must complete an authorization process. The IB programmes focus on fostering critical thinking and building problem-solving skills, while encouraging diversity, curiosity, and a healthy appetite for learning and excellence. International School of Monterey is an example of a local IB school. Private A student must pay tuition and submit an application to attend a private school. A private school is funded by student tuition payments, endowments, grants, and donations. Some private schools are affiliated with a religion. Most private schools offer financial aid and scholarships. See the education guide on page 14 for private school options. Public Public schools offer a free education

EDUCATING CHILDREN IN MONTEREY COUNTY SINCE 1967 • WE MAKE LEARNING CHILD’S PLAY! • Offering Preschool and Pre-Kindergarten • Open to ages 2-5 • We work on developing reading readiness, introducing number concepts, and creating social adjustment using a theme-based curriculum • Science, language, social studies, and nature curriculum • Open 7:30 am to 6 pm • Call for rates


Now enro lli for 2021-2 ng school ye 2 ar.

831-883-2616 MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021

to students living within the district. The funding for public schools is from local, state and federal tax dollars. These schools are supervised by local government authorities. There are twenty four school districts in Monterey County serving approximately 78,000 students. There are ten districts in Santa Cruz County, serving approximately 13,000 students Public School Choice: Some districts offer school choice which means you can attend a school outside of your district. The school is still free, but you provide transportation. Most schools have a limited number of openings and you may need a reason for the transfer that fits within specific parameters.   Factors to Consider When Making a Decision Cost: If you are unable to afford the private school tuition or can’t get scholarships or financial aid, then you would be limited to the free public school options.   How Does Your Teen Learn: If your teen is more of a hands-on learner, then they may benefit from attending a less traditional public school, private school or a home study program. Whereas if your child thrives from competition, they might benefit from attending a more rigorous academic-focused option. School Reputation: There are many different resources for comparing a school’s reputation including the school’s graduation rate, spending per pupil and college readiness. Some websites that review these factors are US News and World Reports,, and The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). But don’t rely solely on ratings. Talk to friends and neighbors to get firsthand input from parents and educators. School Size: The class size may be an important factor if your teen is easily distracted or requires assistance to learn. Even though public schools can make accommodations for students with special needs, sometimes a smaller class is more helpful to the child. A private school usually offers small class sizes.   What Will We Decide? After my twins receive their grades this year, we will then determine if their educational needs are best being served at their current school. We will discuss with them the factors such as class size and ways they feel they learn best. Then we will visit other schools in the surrounding area to compare those options to their current public school. We will also ask our twins which type of school they would prefer to attend since they are the ones that will be going there. Since we are actively involved in their education, hopefully any school they attend will help prepare them for college or the workforce. Cheryl Maguire holds a Master of Counseling Psychology degree. She is married and is the mother of twins and a daughter. Her writing has been published in The New York Times, Parents Magazine, AARP, Healthline, Your Teen Magazine, and many other publications. You can find her at Twitter @CherylMaguire05. MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021

Monte vista christian school

Grades 6-12 100 acre campus Day/Boarding Transportation Equestrian program Accepting applications


*Home School Program – Grades TK-12 *Independent Study Program – Grades 9-12 *Fully Accredited by WASC! *No Interdistrict Transfer Required to Enroll!

At Monterey County Home Charter School, students are given a rich, individually designed, tuition-free education while studying in a nonclassroom-based environment. Enrichment and intervention classes, workshops, field trips, tutoring sessions, concurrent enrollment, and weekly meetings with fully credentialed teachers give students every opportunity to succeed.

For more information or to enroll, contact: Monterey County Home Charter School 901 Blanco Circle, Salinas, CA 93912

(831) 755-0331 •

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✯Finalist✯ Monterey Bay





W W W. S T E V E N S O N S C H O O L . O R G



EMPOWERING STUDENTS TO SHAPE THEIR FUTURES WITH CONFIDENCE. Discover the opportunities awaiting your student at Kirby School. Contact our Admissions team to learn more about our test-free application process and to schedule a tour. Visit for details.

425 Encinal St., Santa Cruz, CA 95060 | 831-423-0658


Monterey Bay Parent Magazine July 2021


LAST-MINUTE EDUCATION GUIDE Are you still undecided about what your children should be doing for the 2021-22 school year? We know there are a lot of options: public, private, homeschool, hybrids: it’s all pretty confusing. If you’re still figuring it out, here is essential information about some of your options. See their ads for more info and then check their websites for next steps. CATEGORY NAME GRADES CONTACT INFO


P All Saints Day School Preschool-8

8060 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel, 93923 • 831-624-9171


P, SN Chartwell School 1-12

2511 Numa Watson Road, Seaside, 939551 831-394-3468 •


P Kirby School 6-12

425 Encinal Street, Santa Cruz, 95060 831-423-0658 •



Lanterns Global Monterey Tides


B, P, R HM

Monte Vista 7-12 Christian School

2 School Way, Watsonville, 95076


Monterey County TK-12 Home Charter School

901 Blanco Circle, Salinas, 93901



Monterey Peninsula Unified School District


C Oasis Charter School K-6 VP Salinas City K-6 Virtual Academy

1135 Westridge Pkwy, Salinas, 93907



P, R San Carlos School

450 Church St, Monterey, 93940 831-375-1324 •


P, R

1500 Mark Thomas Dr., Monterey, 93940 831-655-9351 •


B, P, R Santa Catalina School 9-12

1500 Mark Thomas Dr., Monterey, 93940 831-655-9356 •


P Stevenson School PreK-8

24800 Dolores Street Carmel, 93921 831-574-4600 •


B, P Stevenson School 9-12

3152 Forest Lake Road, Pebble Beach, 93953 24 831-625-8300 •

P, R

680 Belden St., Monterey, 93940 831-656-9434 •


9501 York Road, Monterey, 93940 831-372-7338 •




Santa Catalina Lower PreK-8 and Middle School

Trinity Christian 6-12 School

P York School 9-12

CATEGORIES BO: Boarding Option • C: Charter • HM: Homeschool/Independent Study P: Private • PS: Public • R: Religious Affiliation • SN: Special Needs • VP: Virtual Public 26



Favorites ✯winner✯ 2020-21

Monterey Bay






1 TIMOTHY 4:12

Partner with Trinity And Transform Your child's Life Compared to all other private schools on the peninsula, we offer three unique things: A Christ-Inspired Education that will transform your student's life! The most affordable option for a private middle school and high school on the peninsula with financial aid available. A daily program founded upon academics - athletics - arts in which every student in included!

GRADES 6-12 | IN-PERSON ENROLLING NOW For more information about Trinity Christian scan the QR code or visit 680 Belden St. Monterey (831) 656-9434 MONTEREY BAY PARENT • july 2021




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• A supportive community through our private Facebook group • Exclusive content on our website • Discounts for Monterey Bay Parent events, contests and giveaways, and early access to tickets and special promos • Discount directory for members with money-saving offers in a variety of categories like restaurants, attractions, and classes. • In-person events and playgroups • Classified ads so you can sell and share baby and child-related items • A mailed copy of Monterey Bay Parent Magazine each month

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General & Cosmetic Dentistry

Vista Robles Dental Group Offering:

• Family dentistry • Pediatric dentistry • Restorative dentistry • Cosmetic dentistry • Accepting new patients • Courtesy insurance billing for most dental insurances

Dentists Linda Martin DDS and Esmeralda Muñoz DDS, of Vista Robles Dental Group can give you a healthy beautiful smile that you can take pride in. Modern cosmetic dentistry techniques make it easier than ever for you to have a bright, even smile.

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Stop struggling, start learning. One in five school-aged children struggle with a learning difference, such as dyslexia. Chartwell School has been teaching students the skills and strategies to read and thrive for over 35 years. Learn more about Chartwell School and how we transform the lives of children who think and learn differently. Limited space available GRADES 1-12 for Fall 2021. On campus tours available. More information at or call 831-394-3468.



Profile for Monterey Bay Parent Magazine

Monterey Bay Parent July 2021  

A regional publication for parents, grandparents, and educators living on the Monterey Bay, California. The July issue features summer activ...

Monterey Bay Parent July 2021  

A regional publication for parents, grandparents, and educators living on the Monterey Bay, California. The July issue features summer activ...


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