Page 1

Holiday Happenings

and Santa Sightings! Dad’s Humor on Buying Gifts Understanding Wolves

Holiday Gift Guide Stocking Stuffers

Games & Toys

STEM & Tech

Mom’s Gifts

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


From tumbles and tears, to fevers and flu, we can help. Oregon Medical Group has over 70 family medicine and pediatric physicians and providers ready to care for you. We also offer walk-in visits at our NOW Immediate Care clinics. NOW clinics offer the same quality medical care you receive in your “home clinic”. And when you’re done? Your records are shared with your Oregon Medical Group primary care provider. Now that’s coordinated care!

NOW Immediate Care Crescent: 2830 Crescent Ave. • 541-686-9000 NOW Immediate Care Willamette: 1711 Willamette St. • 541-465-2380 All Clinic Locations and Phone Numbers:

Don’t have a “medical home”? 2

D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

Oregon Medical Group is welcoming new patients at many of its locations. We’d be happy to meet you, or to answer questions. Visit our website to learn more, or call our New Patient Greeter today: 541-242-4444.









Canadian Bacon, Pepper Bacon, Crispy Bacon, Mixed Onions, Traditional Red Sauce on our Original Crust


Limited time offer. Offer valid for Large Signature Bacon Bacon Bacon pizza on Thin or Original crust only. No substitutions. Additional charge for additional toppings. Available at participating locations. Not valid with any other offers.

Online ordering valid only for participating locations.

EUGENE 1508 Coburg Rd in Sheldon Plaza 541-686-6615

EUGENE 2911 W 11th Ave Intersection of W 11th/Oak Patch 541-431-6882

EUGENE 1711 Willamette St 541-344-5189

SPRINGFIELD 1810 Olympic St Mohawk Shopping Ctr 541-741-8886

SPRINGFIELD 5727 Main St McKenzie Shopping Ctr 541-744-2475

we welcome

17-1258 PRNT-BBB11

at participating locations

©2017 Papa Murphy’s International LLC





Red Sauce and Premium Pepperoni on Original or Thin Crust


IN-STORE ORDERS ONLY. Expires 3/1/18. Valid at participating locations. Not valid with other offers. Cannot be sold, transferred or duplicated. Limit 3. 964-PRNT112817




Phone ahead, order online or find a store near you at


Two layers of Original Crust stuffed with Red Sauce, Salami, Pepperoni, Italian Sausage, Ground Beef, Mixed Onions, topped with Traditional Red Sauce, Tomatoes, Green Onions IN-STORE ORDERS ONLY. Expires 3/1/18. Valid at participating locations. Not valid with other offers. Cannot be sold, transferred or duplicated. Limit 3. 993-PRNT112817





Chicken raised without antibiotics, Spinach, Sun-dried Tomatoes, Feta, Zesty Herbs with Olive Oil, Garlic on Thin Crust

IN-STORE ORDERS ONLY. Expires 3/1/18. Valid at participating locations. Not valid with other offers. Cannot be sold, transferred or duplicated. Limit 3. 1493-PRNT112817


Limited time offer. Offer valid for Large Gourmet Delite ® Tuscan Chicken & Sausage pizza on Thin crust only. No substitutions. Additional charge for additional toppings. Available at participating locations. Not valid with any other offers.


GOURMET DELITE® TUSCAN CHICKEN & SAUSAGE PIZZA: Chicken, Sausage, Spinach, Roma Tomatoes, Parmesan, Olive Oil & Garlic, Zesty Herbs on Crispy Thin Crust


Online ordering valid only for participating locations.

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


8 OR




Ho F A M I L Gif liday Y tG



december Discovery Box Wolves in Winter


6 EarthTalk E-Bikes 12 Mom’s Gift Guide 20 Winter Camps 24 A Dad’s Eye View It's Not About the Gifts

Calendar of Events

Publisher Correction. The Discovery Box feature in our November issue was contributed by The Science Factory and authored by Karyn Knecht.


D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M




Distributed through Eugene, Springfield, Creswell, and Junction City elementary and middle schools, most area private schools, and over 400 commercial locations throughout Lane county. PUBLISHER

Pacific Parents Publishing EDITOR


Rick Epstein Hannah Kruse Kelli Matthews GRAPHIC DESIGN/LAYOUT

Springer Design & Illustration



Christi Kessler • 541.484.0434 Sandy Kauten • 541.683.7452

$12.00 OFF $12.00 OFF


P.O. Box 21732 Eugene, OR 97402 541.683.7452 Email: Web: Facebook:

ash Free Car W ! & Vacuum

2099 River Road • 541-461-2645 2915 Willamette •541-345-9636

reserved. No part of this publication may be copied or reproduced without prior expressed written permission from Pacific Parents Publishing.

Radiator Flush

Coupon expires 12/31/17.

Coupon expires 12/31/17.

Buy 1 Get 1 FREE

Opinions expressed by contributors or advertisers are not necessarily the opinions of this publication.

© 2017 Pacific Parents Publishing. All rights

a Full Service Conventional Oil Change

SOUTH EUGENE & UO 30 W. 29th Ave (at Willamette)

541-484-7272 NORTH EUGENE/FERRY ST BRIDGE 54 Division (just off River Rd)

541-461-7272 Order online at Open Lunch & Late Night Locally Owned & Operated


Buy any size PIZZA at Regular Menu Price and get one of equal or lesser value FREE! Now Offering Pan and Gluten Free Crusts! Not to be combined with other Coupons or Discounts. Delivery Fee extra. Expires 1/28/18.

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


Earthtalk from the Editors of “E” the Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: What are some ways we can encourage more commuters to ditch their cars in favor of bikes? — Dennis Northrup, Avon, CT


ne of the best things we can do as individuals to fight climate change is to reduce the number of miles we drive in our fossil-fuel powered cars. But replacing those car rides with more fuel-efficient options isn’t so easy, especially if you don’t live near a transit hub. Given all the new bike lane infrastructure across the countr y and the availability of battery-assisted bicycles to help you around, there’s never been a better time to ditch the car in favor of pedal power. If you’ve only got a short way to go, your good old bike might work just fine. But if you need to get further than you’re comfortable riding under your own power, why not upgrade to something with batter y assistance? You can retrofit your current conventional bike with a battery-powered rear wheel, such as Superpedestrian’s Copenhagen Wheel ($1,499), lovingly referred to as the “TwoWheeled Tesla,” given its sleek design, Bluetooth connectivity and biometric monitoring. Or


DIYers might prefer to spend their weekend tinkering with Aosom’s battery-powered rearwheel replacement kit ($219) instead. If you’re ready to buy a new electric-assist bike, there’s a lot to choose from. Some top choices inc lude S tromer ’s ST2 ($6,500), Elby’s 9-Speed ($3,700), the Espin Sport 350W ($2,000) or Raleigh’s Superbe iE ($1,700). City slickers might

D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

prefer Brooklyness’ CMYK 5.0 Folding Electric Bike ($999), which pedal-assists for 50 miles per charge and can fold up into a neat little 25-pound bundle when you get there. Brooklyness is also getting ready to release the first production models of its new helmet design, the Classon, which has sensors built in to detect cars approaching your blind spots, motion-activated brake and turn signals to keep drivers and pedestrians in the know about where you’re going, and a video camera to document your adventures. Another way technology is facilitating bicycle commuting is through the release of various apps to help riders optimize their routing. For instance, Lanespotter aims to be the Waze of cycling by providing riders with real-time data to find bike lanes and trails nearby, filtering mapping options based on other cyclists’ routing choices and safety recommendations. If you live in Atlanta, Minneapolis, New York City, Philadelphia, Portland (Oregon), San Francisco, St. Louis or Washington DC, you can download and start using

Lanespotter (free) today. And then there’s bike sharing, a growing phenomenon from coast-to-coast whereby riders can pick up a bike in one part of town and drop it off in another to speed up their commute. New York-based Motivate has designed and implemented bike share networks in nine U.S. cities to date, with the largest in New York (10,000 bikes) and San Francisco (7,000 bikes). A typical ride on one of Motivate’s bikes costs $3, and many of the systems are integrated with larger transit networks. For instance, Bay Area riders can pay for their “GoBike” using the same refillable Clipper card that gets them onto BART trains and MUNI buses.

CONTACTS: Superpedestrian, content.; Brooklyness,; Lanespotter,; Motivate, www. EarthTalk® is produced by Roddy Scheer & Doug Moss and is a registered trademark of the nonprofit Earth Action Network. To donate, visit Send questions to:

Battery-assisted E-Bikes, like this “Superpedestrian” with the famed Copenhagen Wheel, are helping to bring back cycling as a viable option for commuters looking to drive their cars less.

MACEY IS ON HER WAY. THANKS TO PEOPLE LIKE YOU. Meet Macey. When she was 5, her parents got the call no family expects. Brain cancer. The news could have been devastating, but they knew she had an amazing team behind her. And after nine hours of surgery at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital, there was hope.

Macey at Doernbecher. Today, she’s a thriving 9-year-old. Your generosity makes all the difference.

At Doernbecher, the leading edge is everywhere, thanks to generosity from people like you. For Macey, that meant two of the country’s best pediatric brain surgeons. For kids across the Northwest, it means new discoveries, breakthrough treatments and more smiles. Please make a gift today. So that whenever the call comes, Doernbecher’s lifesaving care will be there.


O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


From High-Tech 2017 O R E G O N FA M I LY


Gift Guide

The GoTrax Hoverfly was our favorite pick of the year, hands down. See page 10 for more details.


D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

to High-Touch Gift Ideas for Kids of All Ages


by Kelli Matthews

ids are multi-faceted little beings — fueled by curiosity for new experiences and an interest in the world around them. Gift giving can provide a unique challenge for parents or other loved-ones to find toys, games and gadgets that encourage their curiosity and also provide the playtime that young brains need. We tested two dozen such toys, games and gadgets for this year’s holiday gift guide and we’re sure you’ll find something that’s just right for the kid in your life. Look for the to see which ones were our absolute favorites! TOY TESTERS: Xander, Age 5: If it’s not hands-on, don’t bother. He wants to tinker, build and explore — especially with toys that he can coopt mom, dad or big brother to try with him.

Braxton, Age 11: He’s tested toys for all six gift guides and this year helped to sort through all the options to pick his favorite ideas. He wants to be challenged, entertained and doesn’t mind if a toy or gadget sneaks in a little new know-how or a new skill. (Xander and Braxton are my kids.) Brandon, Age 12: Always up for a challenge, Brandon loves building sets and engineering kits that require focus and determination. Brandon is the Oregon Family Magazine publisher’s son. Sammi, Age 7 and Allison, Age 13: These sisters love tech and science toys with a girlie twist. While far enough part in age to be interested in different things, they’re also close enough to enjoy working on projects together. Sammi and Allison are the daughter’s of my lifelong friend, Carissa.

Interactive Friends An interesting theme emerged from this year’s roundup. Several of our favorite toys focused on creating and interacting with new “friends.” What better way to encourage programming and building?

Cue & Dot from Wonder Workshop Wonder Workshop has three programmable, interactive robots. We tried two of them — Cue (ages 11+) and Dot (ages 5+). Xander and Braxton were in love with these two the moment they turned them on. Each comes with easy-to-use apps that provided some guided activities so your kid can get to know how the robot functions. Once the basics are out of the way, they can either continue

to more advanced activities or just “free play” with an open canvas on which to build programming and code. Dot’s free play was a little overwhelming for my five-year-old on his own, but we found plenty of clever activities to do together — our favorite was created a door alarm. Hang a programmed Dot on the door of the bedroom and the door opening triggers Dot to replay a message that your kid records (ours was, “hey there! where do you think you’re going?”). Each robot has a distinct

personality and memorable one-liners that I hear my kids repeating all the time. Programmable, • interactive Cue • $199.99 and $79.99 and Dot appeal to both beginner and advanced roboteers!

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


Parker Bear


Parker is a new twist on a traditional teddy bear. With a set of wooden doctor’s tools and an easy-to-use augmented reality mobile app, your child can practice diagnosing and treating Parker’s ailments. Augmented reality (AR) creates virtual layers when the mobile device is pointed, in this case, at Parker. You can see if he has a tummy ache or maybe a broken bone. Then when it’s all said and done, he’s an excellent soft, cuddly friend to watch a movie or share some quiet time.

The OffBits are decidedly low-tech — each kit uses “spare parts” like nuts and bolts — but the end result is a set of fun new friends that you can build and rebuild Get your bot creativity on with OffBits! into a range of bots and vehicles. Recommended for 6 and up, but it was still a fun project for my 5 year old and I to build together. He helped with some of the easier parts and had fun playing with them when we were done. The kits are at such a great price point, it’s easy to pick up a few friends to build and play with.

• • $59.99

Parker Bear is soft and cuddly with a fun twist.

Cozmo My 11-year-old couldn’t have been more excited about the new Cozmo from Anki and when we got our hands on one to try, it did not disappoint. This little ‘bot is fun, challenging and engaging with personality plus. Cozmo is packed with interactive features and games that has kept my tween engaged and challenged — he needs care and interaction to stay happy and healthy. With the newly released Code Lab programming language, Cozmo owner’s can tap into his advanced robotics technology to program the robot. The 2017 Cozmo is a also little sleeker in a collector’s edition with a pretty hot looking Liquid Metal finish. • Toys ‘R’ Us or • $179.99 Keep your tween engaged and challenged with Cozmo.

• or • $14.95

Get Outside The weather looks an awful lot like Winter in the Willamette Valley, but it’s still important to get some outside time — maybe even more important! We’re moving, grooving and exploring our outside world with these three products.

GoTrax Hoverfly XL If we had to pick one favorite product from this year, my 11-year-old would, hands down, pick the GoTrax Hoverfly. And with all the great stuff in this year’s guide, that’s a high bar. I must admit, I was skeptical of the hoverboard. But the founder of GoTrax helped me to understand that the “bad press” from hoverboards in the past came from cheap models without safe batteries or charging functions. The GoTrax Hoverfly is an “offroad” hoverboard with thick tires and a substantial frame. The board comes with a great instruction book, a “learning” mode that’s a little slower so you can find your balance and the company’s website has some really great blog articles about exploration and travel. GoTrax provides an all-around great experience from the minute you open the box.

with a 5x scientific scope with built-in LED that helps kids investigate sea life, from sea stars to kelp beds, without getting wet! No major discoveries yet, but we expect our developing scientific observation skills to pay off soon.

Board Blazers Your kids thought skateboarding or scootering was fun before Board Blazers — just wait! These under board LED lights amp up the fun for skateboards, scooters or longboards at twilight. And for teens out later at night, the lights are not only awesome looking, but increase visibility and make boarding safer. I found that the four little lights attached easily and kept the kids outside long after they’d have normally been whining about being cold or bored (without actually being cold or bored). I call that a big win. • Amazon • $19.95

GeoSafari SeaScope


Board Blazers make night time the right time for skating and scooting!

D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

Sometimes we just need to chill out. And with kids who are running non-stop with school, sports, after school activities and more, it can be especially important to have some down time. These five toys, tools and gadgets can help calm busy minds with creativity.

•; Amazon • $36.99

• • $299 We have a big pond in our backyard that provides countless hours of speculation about what’s under the water every year. The SeaScope magnifies underwater exploration

Chill Out

The Creative HALO speaker will send your (and your kids') music over the rainbow.

Creative HALO Bluetooth Speaker There’s nothing like music to help relax, focus or shake your groove thang. Our whole family gives the Creative HALO speaker our enthusiastic endorsement. It has great, rich sound for that shared playlist of pop singalong songs or soothing wind-down tunes for a cozy Sunday at home. Download an app, and program the lights on the front of the speaker to suit your mood or your music. I like the “full spectrum” infinite rainbow lights, while my tween likes to change the lights to match his favorite sports team colors. Oh, and it can also function as a speakerphone. • or Amazon • $69

Cottage Theatre presents

December 1-23

A curious cavalcade of charismatic creatures


Music by Stephen Flaherty • Lyrics by Lynn Ahrens • Book by Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty Co-Conceived by Lynn Ahrens, Stephen Flaherty, & Eric Idle • Based on the Works of Dr. Seuss Rocketbook Color allows your kids to to save, erase and re-create their masterpieces.

Directed by Keith Kessler • $25 Adult, $15 Youth (6-18)

Sponsored by

700 Village Drive · Cottage Grove · · 541-942-8001

HOWL AT THE MOON! Winter Solstice Celebration

Rocketbook Color The mommy guilt when I need to recycle my young artist’s work is strong. Rocketbook Color helps with a clever solution using pages that work with Crayola wet and dry erase crayons and markers and an app! The 12-page book has 8 blank pages for free-form art, 2 dot-grid pages for structured drawings and 2 lined pages for handwriting. I was especially interested in the lined pages for my kindergartener to practice his letter and number writing. The app was easy to use and it integrates with Google Docs, Evernote, Dropbox, Box, Microsoft Onenote, Slack, iCloud, and iMessage.


• • $22

Infinite Spin makes a fidget spinner as it should be: seen but not heard.

Infinite Spin Fidget Spinners The fidget spinner fad confuses me, but when Infinite Spin offered to send one for review, I figured we should try it. The spinner is a weighty metal with extraordinarily smooth movement that’s completely silent. That’s right! You can’t hear the little ball bearings at all. So different from plastic spinners available at every department store. After playing with this spinner, I can see how some kids (or adults) would appreciate having a fidget spinner like this one to calm a busy mind. • • $24.97

Live Music | Performances | Crafts at the museum and the Many Nations Longhouse

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15 | 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. $5 general admission | Free admission with a food donation to FOOD for Lane County

1680 East 15th Avenue, Eugene | 541-346-3024 |

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7



Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur I was absolutely intrigued by this product. I love creative cocktails. Handcrafted in Brooklyn, New York, Barrow’s Intense is created from only four ingredients - 200 pounds of fresh ginger per batch, water, sugar and neutral cane spirit. It smells amazing. I tried it in a couple of simple cocktails, based on what I had in my cabinet and I can’t wait to try it in a food recipe. It’s not available in Oregon stores, so you’ll need to buy online. Visit the website for online retailers and lots of recipe ideas.

Gift Guide

• • $24 - $40

Beso del Sol Sangria Sometimes mom just needs a simple, light, yummy beverage. Beso del Sol sent me three types of sangria in TetraPacks (sort of like juice boxes for grown ups). The Red Sangria was my favorite and the single-serve, resealable packaging is awesome! Serve over ice and even add your own fruit. • WinCo Foods • $4+

Hydro Flask Wine Tumbler


hether looking for a gift for your Mom or to treat yourself, I reviewed some delightful smells, tastes and feels for this “stocking stuffers for Mom” guide. I know, it’s a terrible job, but someone had to do it.

Smells High Street Soap Moms know sometimes the only time we have to a few minutes of uninterrupted time is in the shower, if we’re lucky. High Street Soaps are great for your skin and also use the power of fragrance to transform your mood. Relax, breathe deep and enjoy.

Willow & Birch Apothecary The WillowBirch lip balms are my new favorite find. Truly the best lip balm I’ve found (and I am very picky). The all natural ingredients include things like sweet almond oil and Catskill Mountain beeswax. Three flavors: Chai Spice (my favorite), Cocoa Mint and Cafe Mocha. Pair your new lip balm with perfume made from an exclusive blend of essential oils. I tried (and loved) the English Fog perfume with bergamot, clove and ylang ylang. • • $6+

• • $10+

ADORATherapy Gal on the Go Mood Boost Smells have a powerful affect on our mood. Why not harness that? ADORATherapy comes in small on-the-go, stick-in-your-purse sprays that use a combination of essential oils that can be used anytime. The set comes with Seductive, Beautiful, Smart, Balanced, Inspired, Awake and Peaceful sprays. • • $70 for a set of 7


Source Vitál Apothecary The Holiday Skin Care gift set cleanses, soothes and nourishes your skin. I particularly liked the Silt Scrub, a fragrant, natural scrub with Colloidal Freshwater Silt with naturally occurring humic acids. But the whole kit makes your skin smell and feel wonderful.

Keep your beverage of choice safe, the right temperature, and close at hand with HydroFlask.

• • $17.95 - $24.95

Tastes QUIN Candy Portland-based artisanal candy maker has some delicious options for simple gifts or stocking stuffers. The marshmallow caramels might be made of rainbows and unicorns. I’m not kidding. But if caramels aren’t your thing, I strongly endorse QUIN’s fruit lollipops, too. But really, have some of the caramels. You can often find QUIN at Marché Provisions at 5th Street Market and Market of Choice or you can order online. Come for the marshmallow caramels, stay for the fruit lollipops.

D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

• • $2+

Recipe for relaxation: One Hydro Flask wine tumbler, one TetraPack of Beso del Sol Sangria (above), add ice and… that’s it. The new Hydro Flask wine tumbler is a great way to enjoy your favorite wine at the right temperature. While probably intended for outdoor wine drinking at parks or on day hikes, it works just as well for keeping your beverage safe (a.k.a. not in a breakable glass) in a living room full of rowdy kids at the end of a long day. Ask me how I know. • • $29.95

Bean Box Moms need their morning coffee. Need. The Bean Box Coffee Sampler delivers four small coffee bags from one of Seattle's top roasters. The result is coffee that feels a little extra special. And we can all use a little of that in our morning routine. You can even have a box delivered every month during the year along with chocolates. • • $24+

Feels Cozy Reader Club The Cozy Reader Club, based in Wilsonville, Ore., takes curling up with a good book to the next level with its

subscription box. Reading is a great way to relax and ease your stress — combine a great women’s fiction novel with locally-made treats like candies or cookies, warm cozy beverage like coffees and teas, handcrafted items like pillow covers, candles or handmade socks and your mom will be in heaven. Be sure to subscribe by December 13 to get the first box in time for Christmas. • • $64.95

BelEssence The transition to winter weather can be brutal on your skin. A great moisturizer makes all the difference. It can be hard to pick skin care for mom, but this is an easy choice. I tried the intensive anti-aging cream and I’m hooked. The moisturizer is creamy without being heavy (which is key for great moisturizer). It really feels like a much more expensive cream. BelEssence products are natural, cruelty free certified, made in the US, paraben and sulfate free. • • $31

Medicine Springs Sport Formula Hot Spring Spray Even if you love working out, you often get sore and tired muscles. Rather than rely on ibuprofen, try a natural approach with Medicine Springs. The formula includes minerals found in hot springs throughout North and South America that have been sought for a millennia for their healing properties. With this “hot spring” spray, sore muscles don’t have to slow you down. Medicine Springs also has bath products to complement the on-the-go sprays. • • $9.99

Crayola Signature Series Detailing Gel Pens Coloring can have a positive affect on your stress level. But coloring, hand-lettering and organizing your life with your planner all require really great writing utensils. And “really great” in this case means Crayola. I know! I was surprised, too. The Crayola Signature Line is not just for kids and includes dual-tipped markers, blend and shade colored pencils and these gel pens. The pens are metallic and sparkly, writing equally well on light and dark paper. Pair with a new coloring book or sketch book and you have a perfect gift. • or Amazon • $19.99

Tech Armor ActivePower Power Bank Okay, so a power bank is a bit of a stretch for the “feels” category of our gift guide, but hear me out. Little is more stressful than watching your battery move into the red and knowing that you are no where near a charger. Keep that kind of stress at bay with this power bank. It’s light, easy to carry and powerful - it will give you two full charges on a phone (or one on a tablet). • • $39.99 Moms definitely deserve wonderful smells, tastes and feels for the holidays. Feel free to clip this article, circle your faves and leave it in an obvious place for your family to find.

The Cube

Quality materials make Earth Paints a natural choice.

The Cube provides a new twist (pun intended) on the Rubik’s Cube. This speed cube from aGreatLife incorporates a generation’s worth of ideas to make cube 3D puzzles better (including an online solution guide to help). It is a fun, inexpensive and unique gift for everyone… perfect for kids or teens. They come in a bunch of sizes, too (from 2x2 to the more familiar 3x3x3 size). Oh, and besides the cubes, aGreatLife has all sorts of clever, inexpensive gifts like kites, craved wooden slingshots and whistles. • • $12

Earth Paints The Children’s Earth Paint Kits are made here in Oregon. The kits come with packets of vibrant, gorgeous paint colors in powder form. Add equal parts water and powder and you get beautiful earth-based paints that you can use on rocks, wood, fabric, glass, paper and more. The colors are made with natural earth and minerals — just like paint colors have been made throughout history. My kids have always loved playing with paints and we’ve often relied on cheap materials for their at-home projects. But I am so impressed with the quality and colors of this kit! The Earth Paint Kits would make great classroom gifts, too. • • $19.95 - $29.95

Taking Shape Science, Technology Engineering Art and Math (STEAM) is still all the rage — for good reason. STEAM toys help to build critical thinking and problem solving skills. We found a new batch of toys and kits for kids to develop these skills in sneakily fun ways.

Groovy Lab in a Box In each Groovy Lab in a Box is a unique engineering design project that uses project-based learning to teach kids ages eight and up about STEAM. While probably ok for kids 8 and up, our 13-year-old tester found it appropriately challenging (and rewarding). His mom says that it kept him engaged for hours and he was so proud of himself when he was able to build something that actually worked. You can get a one-off box or subscribe so you get a new box every month. • • $36.95

Roller Coaster Challenge This game is more than just a building kit - and that’s very much what set it apart for Braxton (besides the fact that he loves roller coasters of all sorts). The kit comes with 40 cards to challenge your logic and building prowess. Outside the challenges, the set provides tons of fun with freeform coaster building, too. Roller Coaster Challenge • Amazon blends logic and planning to • $29.99 give plenty of thrills.

City Engineering & Design Kit With big, easy pieces and tons of great ideas to get you started, this building set is great for younger elementary school kids. My five-year-old needed a bit of support and encouragement, but we had fun building a zip line and parking garage together. The garage stayed together for several hours while he tested all his die cast cars to make sure they could navigate around. • or Amazon • $24.99

IllumiCraft Light Up! Cell Phone Speaker Dock This kit encourages girls to build a simple electric circuit that creates a speaker dock that lights up. The sound gets amplified through the box (not electronically). Our teen girl tester enjoyed putting this kit together and was especially pleased when all the lights worked and her design was a success. As mom said, she probably won’t use it for a speaker dock — she’s 13 and prefers her headphones — but little sister Sammi decided it worked great for her. This kit is probably best for upper elementary age girls (before they discover headphones). • or Amazon • $19.99

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


Magnaflex by WowWee The big, bright colorful pieces in this creative construction set immediately appealed to our five-year-old tester. Each individual piece has a strong magnet on both ends that can be used to join the pieces and create tons of great projects. We made a crown, an octopus and a rainbow from the instructions provided. Beyond building specific things, I have to admit it was just as fun playing with the magnetic ends, making patterns and exploring the magnets’ polarity. • Amazon • $19.99 - $49.99

Soft Circuits from ChickTech ChickTech is a Portland-based nonprofit focused on facilitating hands-on technology-centric events and

Boom Blast Stix

programs to empower, support, and increase the confidence of women and girls. The Soft Circuits Kit provides materials for two projects — an LED bracelet and an interactive totebag. The kit is totally accessible and helps girls to learn the basics of electronic circuits and coding with Arduino. It took a little patience and focus, but our teen tester was stoked about the projects she was able to create. Plus your purchase will support broader ChickTech programs.

Boom! The goal is to lock and stack the “stix” as high as you can before the pieces explode all over the table. Simple in concept, but high in anticipation! And there’s definitely a bit of thinking about the physics of the game in the strategy or locking and stacking. • or Amazon • $14.99 I’m sure you’ll find something unique, creative and maybe even a little educational on this year’s gift guide for the kids in your life! Boom Blast Stix is a simple but exciting game the combines strategy and physics.

• • $99

Explore Whether your kid is interested in a country on the other side of the planet, how seeds grow or why our fingerprints can identify us as individuals, the four products here will help him or her explore their world.

Oregon Scientific SmartGlobe Explorer Augmented Reality Oregon Scientific SmartGlobe’s have been a big hit with our reviewers in previous gift guides. This year was no exception. The updated SmartGlobes have a pretty amazing augmented reality feature. After downloading an app for your Apple or Android phone, you can point the phone at the globe and animated content pops up giving you a new way to explore landmarks, animals and even dinosaurs. The globe also splits in half for even more exploration of the solar system and earth’s internal structure. My tween is taking social studies for the first time as a sixth grader and the globe is reinforcing much of what he’s learning in school. I get a lot of “Mom! Did you know?” • Amazon • $129.99

Project Mc2 Perfume Maker The Project Mc2 products provide a little glam tech for girls interested in science. This kit provides girls with the tools to formulate their own perfumes using cosmetic chemistry and also lets them combine fragrant household items like vanilla or flower petals to create unique scents. Our testers agreed it was a fun project. Their mom added that following the directions reinforces the science and chemistry behind perfume. • Amazon • $29.99


D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

Forensics Fingerprint Lab My young detectives got such a kick out of this kit. Thankfully everyone that’s come through the house in the last week has now been fingerprinted. The kit is pretty basic — collect fingerprints by dusting them with black powder and then lifting them with clear stickers. There’s also a bit of info in the box about fingerprints and why they’re used by detectives. It's no mystery why • Amazon Forensics Fingerprint Lab is so fun! • $14.95

Back to the Roots It may be winter, but the Back to the Roots indoor garden kits will let you harvest herbs, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes or chili peppers all season long. These indoor gardening kits are 100% Guaranteed to Grow. We’ve set up mint, basil, cherry tomatoes and an oyster mushroom garden and the kids are excited to see their progress. We have a big backyard garden in the summer, but this is way more hands-on and up-close for sharing the experience. The kits include everything you need, including biochar technology inside that prevents over & under watering. The Back to the Roots website even has some curriculum about mushrooms (I definitely learned some things reading through it). • • $19.99 $99.99

Project Mc2 is the perfect blend of fashion and science.

Back to the Roots gives kids a hands-on, closeup gardening experience year-round.

• Tree Trimming


• Tree Removal

For Gifted, Talented and High-Ability 3rd-10th Graders

• Emergency Services • Land Clearing

Winter Wonderings provides a variety of challenging, engaging Saturday courses designed specifically for gifted, talented, and high-ability 3rd-10th graders. Participants discover new and exciting areas of study in a fastpaced learning environment.

Call 541-226-7153 or 541-510-5551 •

The program takes place on the Oregon State University campus in Corvallis every Saturday, Jan 20 - Feb 24.

For more information visit

Your family. Our support. Counseling and psych assessments for kids, teens and families.

Pantone 320U Blue • For Appointments Call or Text 541-868-2004 O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


for ages 6 - 12. Due to limited space, Eugene Library card and pre-reg is required. Downtown Library, 4pm, FREE! Ph 541.682.8316



Story Times Springfield Public Library story times. Preschool Story time (ages 3-6) Weds 10:00am. Lap sit story time (ages 0-3) Weds 10am, Sensory Storytime (for kids with sensory integration issues or special needs) every other Thurs. Ph 541.726.3766 Barnes & Noble weekly story time. Whimsical Weds 7:00pm. Toddler-Time, Weds 11:00am. Saturdays at 11:00am, Ph 541.687.0356 Downtown Public Library story times. Baby Story time (ages 0-1) Fridays @ 10:15 & 11:15am. Wonderful Ones Story time, 10:15 & 11am, Terrific Twos Story time, Tues @ 10:15 & 11:00, Preschool Story time (ages 3-6), Weds @ 10:15 & 11:00, Sensory Storytime (for kids with sensory integration issues or special needs) Weds @ 1:00pm. Pajama Story time every Tues of each month at 6:30pm. Features stories, rhymes, and songs for children 0-6. STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) Storytime, Mondays @ 3:30pm. Ph 541.682.8316

Family Story Time (all ages). Fridays at 10:15am @ Bethel Branch Library. Ph 541.682.8316 STEAM Storytime. For preschoolers and kindergarteners with their caregivers. Mondays, 3:30pm, Ph 541.682.8316, FREE!

On-Going Events Saturday Kids Workshops at MECCA. From magnetic puzzles to robots to sock creatures. No need to pre-reg. All materials are included. Kids under 10 accompanied by an adult. Each week features a different creative reuse project. MECCA, 11am – 3pm, $3-5, Ph 541.302.1810 Play Date. Young kids and family - drop in on First Friday evenings for creative fun together. Downtown Library, 6pm, Ph 541.682.5000 Minecraft Mondays. Play together, share tips, and get creative with building challenges with Minecraft on Eugene Public Library’s computers,

Eugene Public Library. Family Music Time, Downtown Library on Tues 6:30pm; Weds 10:15am; Thurs 10:15am; and Sat 10:15am. Bethel Branch, Family Music Time will be held on Fridays at 10:15 am and in Spanish on Saturdays, 11:15am. Sheldon Branch, 10:15am, Ph 541.682.8316 Saturday Market. The oldest, open-air market in the United States offers great food, local crafts and live entertainment. Every Saturday, April-Nov, 8th & Oak St. Rain or shine. 10:00am – 5pm, Ph 541.686.8885, FREE! Public Skate @ The Ice Center. Call for skate times. Ph 541.682.3615 Legos: NEW! Bring the kids to build, play, and explore with the Library’s big and varied collection of Legos. Grades K - 6. Downtown Library, every Wed at 4:00 pm/Sheldon every Sat at 10:15am/Bethel every Sat at 2pm. FREE! Ph 541.682.8316 “2PM Talks.” A docent-led talk every Tues thru Sun at the Museum of Natural and Cultural History, included with price of admission. Ph 541.346.3024 The Science Factory Children’s Museum. Our ever-changing array of exhibits features something for everyone! Explore science topics including astronomy, mechanics, optics, water quality, and nanotechnology. Planetarium shows: Seasonal Stargazing. Legends of the Night Sky: Perseus and Andromeda. Phantom of the Universe, and a Pre-K double feature. Also, our Evening Laser Shows are back starting Dec 1! See website for times. Ph 541.682.7888

1 FRIDAY First Friday Artwalk. A guided tour begins at 5:30pm at Vista Framing & Gallery, and more ending at 8:00pm. ArtWalk is from 5:30-8:00pm and always FREE! Ph 541.485.2278 Tots Discovery Day. Winter Animals. Come in from the cold and learn about some of the animals that live it up in the winter! They burrow, hibernate, get fluffy and change color. The Science Factory, 9am-12pm, $0-5, Ph 541.682.7888 PJ Masks Live! Time to Be a Hero! A heroic new live show that features characters from the PJ Masks TV show. Hult Center, 6pm, $29.5056.25, Ph 541.682.5000 Free First Friday. Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art and Museum of Natural and Cultural History allow you to enjoy the museum’s new exhibits and old classics for FREE today! 11:00am-5pm Seussical. A magical, musical extravaganza featuring all of our favorite Dr. Seuss characters. The Cat in the Hat narrates the story of Horton the Elephant, who hears a faint noise coming from a speck of dust on a clover. Fun for the whole family. Cottage Theater, Thurs – Sun­­, Dec 1- 23rd. Fri – Sat, 8:00pm/Sun, 2:30pm. $15-25, Ph 541.942.8001 Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. This irresistible family musical is a re-imagining of the Biblical story of Joseph, his eleven brothers and the coat of many colors. One of the most enduring shows of all time, a magical musical full of unforgettable songs. Actors Cabaret, 7:30pm, $16-40.95, Ph 541.683.4368

Kids’ Adventure Club

Join Today

Free Family Day Events Crafts, raffle prizes & snacks Elementary age kids Event dates at



A holiday adition for the entire family!

December 22–24 | Hult Center Eugene, Cascades & Coast Adventure Center 3312 Gateway St • Springfield OR 97477 • 541.484.5307

(Next to Michaels & Best Buy in the Crossroads Center)


D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M / C A L E N D A R

Don’t miss our FREE Holiday Celebration in The Lobby, Sunday Dec. 24 at Noon | 541-682-5000 | Hult Center Box Office

The Nutcracker - Eugene Ballet December 22nd - 24th

2 SATURDAY Family Music Time. Sing and dance your way into the weekend with a different performer every week! This week, Samuel Becerra plays lively music of South America and Mexico. Downtown Library, 10:15am, FREE! Ph 541. 682.8316 2017 Springfield Christmas Parade. The Springfield Parade is back on! The oldest and coldest Christmas parade is in its 65th year! Santa Claus promised to escort the finish of the parade to usher in the holiday season. See decorated cars, horses, and floats of all kinds. Start the day with the annual Tuba Concert at noon! Downtown Springfield, 1pm, FREE! Ph 541-988-0955 Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. See the 1st

3 SUNDAY Kids Craft Market. This week, find great gifts for others or yourself at the Kids’ Craft and Maker Market. All kids get free tickets to trade for kidcrafted items. Bring and exchange used children’s books, too. Downtown Library, 2pm, FREE! Ph 541.682.8316

5 TUESDAY Teens at 4:30. Lord of the Rings activities. Come make your own “precious” and other cool Lord of the Rings activities. This program is for teen ages 12+. Springfield Public Library, 4:305:30pm, FREE! Ph 541-726-3766 Foo Fighters Live. Matthew Knight Arena, 7:30pm, $52-102

6 WEDNESDAY Ideas on Tap: Oregon’s Forbidden Winter Skies. xplore the fascinating astronomy research happening at the university and at its Pine Mountain Observatory. Discover tricks for observing Oregon’s “forbidden” (that is, often cloud-covered!) winter skies. Marketplace@ Sprout! 6-8pm, Ph 541.346.3024, FREE!

7 THURSDAY Little Family Yoga with Brynne Blevins. Springfield Public Library, 10:30am, FREE! Ph 541.726.3766 Eugene Ballet Presents the Nutcracker. A special, preview version of the Eugene Youth Ballet’s performance of The Nutcracker! No tickets or registration required. Springfield Library Meeting Room. 4:30-5:30pm, FREE! Ph 541.726.3766

8 FRIDAY Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. See the 1st Little Wonders: Stories and Activities for Pre-K. This month: Rock and Roll. Explore rock types, patterns, and shapes, and learn about the different kinds of rocks you can find in Oregon. Museum of Natural and Cultural History, ages 3-5, 10:30am – 11:30, $3-10, Ph 541.346.3024 Second Friday Art Walk. Starts at Springfield City Hall, 5:00pm, FREE!




Emerald Valley Opry. Featuring: Dallas McCord, Western Poet. Kathy Boyd & Phoenix Rising, bluegrass. Slow Ponies, Silver Screen Western Music. Xtra-Mile, Country/Rock. Powers Auditorium Willamette High School, doors open 5pm, concert 6:00-9:30pm, $3-$8/under 7 free, Ph 541.688.0937

Teens at 4:30. Game Day. Virtual Reality, big screen video games, board games and more. Come play a favorite or learn a new game. This month’s featured game is Bears-vs-Babies. Springfield Public Library, 4:30-5:30pm, FREE! Ph 541-726-3766

Wolf Talk. Oregon’s Wolf Management Story – the fun, the sad, the fascinating. In a human-dominated landscape, wolf management is a controversial subject that’s often focused on social issues rather than on the wolves themselves. Museum of Natural History, 3-4pm, inc. w/ admission, Ph 541.346.3024

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. See the 1st Frozen Trail Run Fest. Multiple length races, and loops… up and around Buford Park. 8am, $20-55, visit Level32 racing to register.

Wetland Wander at Meadowlark Prairie. Wetland Wanders are casual walks through the West Eugene Wetlands. Walks are free and open to the public. Bring water and appropriate layers, WREN will provide binoculars. 9-11am, FREE!

continued on next page…

Family Music Time. Sing and dance your way into the weekend with a different performer every week! This week, Rob Tobias for classics, originals, and tunes made up on the spot. Downtown Library, 10:15am, FREE! Ph 541. 682.8316 Mount Pisgah Mushroom Walk. Come along to learn about identification, characteristics, habitat, natural history and the role of fungi within an ecosystem. Meet at the Arboretum Visitor Center rain or shine. 10am-noon, $5, Ph 541.747.3817 Native American Craft Fair. Native artisans from the Northwest share their work in a variety of genres including beading, basket making, printmaking, painting and graphic arts. Artists will be creating some work at the event. Amazon Community Center, 11am-6pm, FREE! Ph 541.682.5010

10 SUNDAY Family Fun. ”Move Like a Mammoth” with Museum of Natural and Cultural History. Learn how prehistoric animals including mammoths, saber tooth cats, and giant ground sloths ran, leaped, climbed, and ate their way through Oregon’s history. Explore fossils, bones, and teeth to compare ancient animals with those who live here today. Downtown Library, 2pm, FREE! Ph 541.682.8316

11 MONDAY Brit Floyd. Brit Floyd brings the music of Pink Floyd to life once again with the new stage show, “Immersion World Tour 2017”. Hult Center, 8pm, $38-65, Ph 541.682.5000

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M / C A L E N D A R • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


Holiday Happenings On-Going Saturday Market Holiday Market. A vibrant hub for local artisans with nearly 200 booths featuring locally handcrafted gifts, international food and entertainment. An iconic Eugene event - a must see for locals and visitors every season. Lane Events Center, Every Fri/Sat/Sun – 10am-6pm through Dec 24th FREE! Ph 541.686.8885 Christmas at Village Green Resort. Enter a winter wonderland and find yourself surrounded by twinkling lights, artisan vendors, fire pits, and holiday cheer! Peruse a traditional Christmas market modeled after European Christmas markets. Sip on a cocoa, relax by the fire, play games in the new family lounge overlooking the gardens and be sure to visit Santa. Live entertainment from 6:30 – 8pm. Nov 24th – Dec 17th, $5-10, Ph 541-942-2491 Giving Tree. Visit the Giving Tree located near JC Penney in Valley River Mall and pick an ornament that designates gift donations for thousands of underprivileged children in our community. Items requested include toys, clothing, sporting equipment, gift cards, and more. Dec 1st – 24th Ph 541.236.2600 December 1st Winter Cabaret. Family-friendly Broadway musical inspired cabaret-style show with loads of dancing, drama, comedy, and mayhem. Upstart Crow Studios features Stage Door, a pre-professional performing youth troupe ages 10 - 18.  Willamalane Adult Center, 7-9pm, Ph 541.736.4444 Prospectors Holiday Bazaar. The Historic Dr. Snapp House will be decorated for the holidays. Browse handmade gifts and goodies while enjoying this beautifully decorated historic home! Dec 1-3rd, Cottage Grove, Fri 4-8pm, Sat 10am8pm, Sun 11am-3pm. Ph 541.942.2411 16th Annual Nativity Display. More than 1,000 Nativities on display at this free, family-friendly event. Features live choral and instrumental music from around the region. Take a picture with your family in front of a life-sized nativity. All faiths and community members invited. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Dec 1st – 3rd. Fri 5-9pm, Sat 11am-8pm, Sun 3-8pm. FREE! Ph 512-739-2492

Olive Plaza Holiday Bazaar. Items for sale include: Handmade quilts, kitchen items, hand crafted jewelry, knitting and crochet, wall art, holiday décor and plants, and misc. gift items. Coffee and hot dogs for sale. 10am – 6pm, FREE! Ph 541.357.0725 December 2nd Lowell Covered Bridge Tree Lighting. Music provided by the Lowell High School Band and caroling with “Stand Out”. Enjoy refreshments while you visit with Santa Claus. A lighted Boat Parade will follow on the Dexter Lake Reservoir. 5-6:30pm, Jasper-Lowell Rd and Hwy 58, FREE! Ph 541.937.2157 Experience Christmas Concert. Christmas melodies with a spectacular video and lighting production brought to you by Contemporary Music Industry students. The event will be filled with high-energy gospel, classic jazz, contemporary acapella, innovative choral, drams and acoustic “living room sessions”. NW Christian University, 7pm, Sun 2:30 & 5pm, $5-10, Ph 541.343.1641 Walterville Christmas Bazaar. Shop handmade crafts for the holiday season while feasting on snacks and desserts. Walterville Grange, 9am-4pm, FREE! Ph 541.747.9297 Springfield Christmas Parade. The oldest and coldest Christmas parade is in its 64th year! Santa Claus has promised to visit, escorting the finish, and ushering in the holiday season. See decorated cars, horses, and floats of all kinds. Start the day with the annual Tuba Concert at noon at Twin River/Doc Rios School ! Dec. 2nd Downtown Springfield, 1pm, FREE! Ph 541.988.0955 Westfir Bridge Lighting Festival. Santa Claus is coming to Westfir and he’s arriving by fire truck! Live music, real reindeer, face painting, a bonfire, props for selfies, cookies and hot drinks, pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus! New this year - an Ugly Sweater Contest! Office Covered Bridge, Dec. 2nd 6-8pm, FREE! Victorian Family Holiday. Decorate gingerbread cookies, write letters to Santa and make holiday crafts at the Shelton McMurphey Johnson House. Fun for the entire family! December 2nd, 11am-2pm, FREE! Ph 541.484.0808

Haiti Holiday Marketplace. Shop holiday gifts from Haiti and handmade items from local artisans while supporting Chances for Children’s Women Empowerment Programs. Oakway Center, 9am – 5pm, FREE! Ph 541.485.4711 Howard Elementary Holiday Bazaar. Part of several other holiday bazaars hosting on the same day. They will have maps to show you were to go from Howard Elementary, 9am-2pm, FREE! Ph 541.933.5336 December 3rd Eugene Gleeman Holiday Concert. Local all-male chorus will perform a festive holiday concert with old and new favorites. Wildish Theater, $12-15, Ph 541.868.0689 Eugene Gleeman Holiday Concert. Local all-male chorus will perform a festive holiday concert with old and new favorites. Wildish Theater, $12-15, Ph 541.868.0689 December 7th Candlelight Tours at Shelton, McMurphy, Johnson House. Decorated for the holidays, by candlelight. Tours start at 6:10pm. Dec 7th, 14th and 21st 13th annual Veneta-Fern Ridge Light Parade. Brightly lit parade floats will make their way through the streets, delivering holiday cheer to onlookers young and old. Starts at 8th St & West Broadway, Veneta. December 7th, 7pm, FREE! Ph 541.935.8443 December 9th Christmas in Coburg Light Parade. Following the Community Sing Along and the lighting of the official Coburg Christmas Tree, get ready for the annual Coburg Parade of Lights! Downtown Coburg, Dec 9th and 10th, 7pm, FREE! Ph 541.912.8291 A Holiday Show on Ice. A Night at the Movies. The Eugene Figure Skating Club presents an evening of family fun on ice! Join us as we skate to your favorite movie music! Lane Ice Arena, 7:30-8:45pm, Price is one new, unwrapped book for Relief Nursery (for ages 6 and under). Ph 541.682.4292 Día de la Familia: Winter Celebrations Around the World. Bring your family to the JSMA and experience visual and performing arts focused on current exhibitions from Italy, Latin America and China. Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art. 12-3pm, FREE! Ph 541.346.3027

Greek Pastry and Gift Fair. Authentic Greek pastries and unique gifts for the holidays. Enjoy Greek dishes such a baklava, kourambiethes and koulourakia. Savor rich Greek coffee at the Kafenion, or choose from a selection of menu items like gyros, domathes, spanakopita and more. St. George Greek Orthodox Church, 11am3pm, FREE! Ph 541.683.3519 Winter Light Fair. Candle dipping, a puppet show, crafts, cake walk, Crystal Cookie Cave, Nutcracker Ballet, food and games, a tea room, the Golden Goose store, live music, and more! Eugene Waldorf School, 11am – 3pm, FREE! (activities are $2) December 10th Make We Merry – Eugene Concert Choir. Our holiday concert will delight all ages with colorful pageantry featuring the Lords and Ladies of the Eugene Vocal Arts in Renaissance dress, the 100-voice Eugene Concert Choir and special guests. Hult Center, 2:30pm, $44-105, Ph 541.682.5000 December 15th Howl at the Moon Winter Solstice Celebration. Bring the whole family for a howling good time at the museum. Live Music and performances, craft beer samples, food available for purchase, crafts, face painting, and more! Museum of Natural History, 5-8pm, FREE! Ph 541.346.3024 December 15th Oakway Center Tree Lighting. Live Reindeer, Winter Willy the Snowman, Music & Refreshments. 5pm December 21st Winter Solstice Celebration. Campfires, storytelling, sweet treats, and natural crafts to celebrate the shortest day and longest night of the year. All ages welcome. Dorris Ranch, 6pm, $6-8, Ph 541.736.4544 December 22nd The Nutcracker by Eugene Ballet Co. There’s a joyful magic at every performance as hundreds of aspiring young dancers join the EBC on stage, while the Sugar Plum Fairy transports all to the Snow Kingdom and the Land of the Sweets. You’ll cheer and boo at the battle with the notso-scary Mouse King and his Pirate Henchmice, as Clara and The Nutcracker win the day. Hult Center, December 22nd – 24th, Fri 7:30pm, Sat 2:00pm & 7:30pm, Sun 2:00pm. $30-66, Ph 541.682.5000

Willamalane Preschools Preparing kids for success in kindergarten ... and beyond 250 S. 32nd St., Springfield • CALL TODAY: 541-736-4544


D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M / C A L E N D A R

Preschool Art & Science Storytime – Festival of Lights. Designed for precocious preschoolers to teach about science and art in harmony. Preschoolers will conduct experiments, read, learn, create, and talk about the world around them. This is an advanced storytime - please enjoy if your will enjoy this particular program. Ages 0-6, Springfield Library Meeting Room. 10:30-11:15am, FREE! Ph 541.726.3766

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. See the 1st


Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. See the 1st

Mount Pisgah Bird Walk. Learn to use vocalizations, habitat and behavior clues for identification of the fall migrants and year-round feathery residents. Meet at the Arboretum Visitor Center rain or shine. Mt Pisgah, 8-11am, $5, Ph 541.747.3817



Family Music Time. Sing and dance your way into the weekend with a different performer every week! This week, sing, move, and play with Pia and Jason Robbins. Downtown Library, 10:15am, FREE! Ph 541. 682.8316

Teens at 4:30. Teen Flick. Free movie, free popcorn, free pizza. It’s all good. Springfield Public Library, 4:30-5:30pm, FREE! Ph 541-7263766

Howl at the Moon Winter Solstice Celebration. See Holiday Happenings.

17 SUNDAY Family Fun. Kids and family: Listen and dance to joyful Zimbabwean Marimba Music played by the Chapwiti Youth Ensemble of Kutsinhira Cultural Arts Center. Downtown Library, 2pm, FREE! Ph 541. 682.8316

21 THURSDAY Little Family Yoga with Brynne Blevins. Springfield Public Library, 10:30am, FREE! Ph 541-726-3766

22 FRIDAY The Nutcracker – by Eugene Ballet Company. See Holiday Happenings.

Nativity Display See 'Holiday Happenings'

Santa SIghtings Photos with Santa. Santa will be available for photos and visits at his winter home, located in Center Court at Valley River Center. Reservations available, but not required! Dec.1st – 24th Hours vary, $29-35, Ph 541.683.5513 Pet Photos with Santa. A special time is reserved for your furry (dogs and cats only please) to have a pic with Santa. Dec. 11th Valley River Center, from 5pm-8pm only. Holiday PJ Night. Throw on your most festive jammies and come see Santa! Valley River Ctr, Dec. 8th, 5pm – 8pm. Breakfast with Santa. Come and join a festive holiday breakfast and take pictures with Santa. Don’t forget your camera! Reptile Man. Join us for the Reptile Man’s annual visit to Springfield Public Library featuring 15-20 reptiles from around our world at each presentation. No registration req, seating is first come, first serve. Springfield Library, 11am-12 & 1-2pm, FREE! Ph 541.726.3766

23 SATURDAY Read to a Greenhill Dog. Ages 7-12, Springfield Public Library, 2-4pm, FREE! Ph 541-726-3766 The Nutcracker – by Eugene Ballet Company. See Holiday Happenings.

Registration is required, the event fills quickly. Petersen Barn, December 9th, 9:3010:30am, $5, 541.682.5521 Cookies and Hot Chocolate with Santa. Treat the entire family to cookies and hot chocolate with Santa. Registration required. Amazon Community Center, 1-1:30 & 1:30-2:00pm, $5 family, Ph 541.682.5373 Santa at 54th Street Public Market. Visit Santa at the Fifth Street Public Market between NEWTW!ST and Velvet Edge/ Freudian Slip.  Fridays 4-7pm, Sat & Sun, 1-5pm. Photos for a fee. And, no matter what the forecast, there’s always a winter “snow” flurry every Fri/Sat from 6-6:30pm.  Ph 541.484.0383

Jingle Bells Run. Start Christmas weekend with Eclectic Edge’s Jingle Bell Run! The 5K course is an out and back on the Fern Ridge Bike Path. The 15K is also on the path, with turn-around points. Race day check-in. See Eclectic Edge website. Family Music Time. Sing and dance your way into the weekend with a different performer every week! This week, sing, move, and play with Kris Olsen. Downtown Library, 10:15am, FREE! Ph 541. 682.8316

continued on next page…


Microdermabrasion Removes dead skin cells for a brighter, clearer complexion. OR

Chemical Peel

Improves tone and texture to reveal a healthy glow.

Youthful Skin Awaits You


160 Oakway Rd., Ste. 100 • Eugene Located inside Lussuria (Behind DSW Shoes) Coupon required. Must mention at time of booking and present at time of service. Not valid with other offers. Expires 1/20/18.

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M / C A L E N D A R • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7




Family Fun. Kids and family: drop in for a new activity every week. This week, enjoy snowy stories and make sparkling snowflakes and other wintry crafts. Downtown Library, 2pm, FREE! Ph 541.682.8316

Family Music Time. Sing and dance your way into the weekend with a different performer every week! This week, music educator Jodie St. Clair of Eugene Suzuki Music Academy leads the fun. Downtown Library, 10:15am, FREE! Ph 541.682.8316

The Nutcracker – by Eugene Ballet Company. See Holiday Happenings.


26 TUESDAY Teens at 4:30. Pajama Time! Wear your pj’s, bring your blankie and snuggle up with some hot chocolate and cookies. We’ll be watching movies, reading books and chillin’. All events free and open to the public. Springfield Public Library, 4:30-5:30pm, FREE! Ph 541.726.3766

29 FRIDAY Lego Club. All bricks provided. FREE and open to the public. Springfield Public Library, 2-4pm, FREE! Ph 541-726-3766

First Run. Start the new year with a scenic run or walk. Choose between a 10K and 5K run/ walk on New Year’s Eve or on New Year’s Day (or both)! Post event celebration, refreshments and special bar pricing hosted by McGrath’s Fish House on New Year’s Day. Participants from both events will be eligible for awards. Shirts available for purchase while supplies last. Valley River Inn, 11:59pm (or Mon at 10am) Family Fun. Kids and family: drop in for a new activity every week. This week, celebrate “Nearly New Year’s” together with fun games, activities, and crafts! Downtown Library, 2pm, FREE! Ph 541.682.8316 Happy New Year!!!!

Snowshoeing at Salt Creek Falls

WIN T E R WinteR BreaK cAMP 2300 Leo Harris Pkwy Eugene ● 541541-682682-7888

CA MPS Winter Kids' Camp

December 18-22


Visits to the Museum of Natural History, Children's Museum and the Science Factory!

 Hands-on Science st


 1 - 4 Grade

Play Get active with the DAC

 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

through swimming, skating, and bowling!

 $40/day ($35 Member Rate)  Register online today!

For info and booking call 541-484-4011 ext. 251 or email

Winter Break Gymnastics Camps!

Where Fitness is Fun and Confidence Grows! Making a positive difference in the lives of Lane County’s youth for 44 years

• Great Classes • Birthdays • Parents Night Out

Camps! Fun & Affordable! 541-343-4222 329 West 3rd Avenue

National Academy of Artistic Gymnastics 1 2 0 5 o a k p atc h rd, e u g e n e, | 5 4 1 - 3 4 4 - 2 0 0 2 | w w w. n a a g - g y m n a s t i c s. o rg





National Academy of Gymnastics



Whole Earth Nature School


gr. K-5

Science Factory Winter Break Camp



US Gymnastics Academy



D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M / C A L E N D A R

• •

• •

• •

• • •

• • • • • •

• •


• • • •

• • •



Indoor Sports


Theater Arts

Field Trips



Arts & Crafts

Reading/ Writing


• • • • • •

Climbing/ Ropes

DAC Winter Camps

Outdoor Sports

Bounce Gymnastics

Math & Science

Camp Dates: December 18 - 22 & 26 - 29 AGES



Relax Kids' will be able to relax during our craft days, movie days and during a variety of games and activities!

Explore, Create, Imagine Eugene's World Class Neighborhood Supermarket


RAIN BOOTS 532 Olive St. 541-342-6820 Mon-Sat 10-6 Sun 10-5


NO ANTIBIOTICS OR GROWTH HORMONES • Multiple themed rooms • Date night, family outing or special occasion • Corporate functions • Gift Certificates available • 100% Family Friendly • Private booking options available



Peking Ducks, Geese, Smoked Turkeys, Game Hens, Organic Turkeys, Boneless Hams, Boneless Turkey Breasts and Bone-In Turkey Breasts

Save $5 per person Use Code OFM2017 When Booking

25th & Willamette • Eugene

Daily 8am-10pm • 541-345-1014

Downtown Eugene • 181 E Broadway • 541.342.6107 Mon-Sat 10-6 & Sun 11-5 •

303 S. 5th Street Springfield, Oregon 541-726-3836

Expires 1/31/2018 *Excludes Nutcracker and Bio Lab


Have realistic expectations. All children misbehave at times and it is inevitable that you will have some discipline hassles. Trying to be the perfect parent can set you up for frustration and disappointment.


Parenting Education where you want it, when you want it! To learn more and to sign up visit

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


Discovery Box by Hannah Kruse, UO Museum of Natural and Cultural History


inter in our part of the world can be long, cold, and hard for wildlife. Animals handle the seasonal challenges in different ways: Bears fatten up and hibernate, geese take flight and migrate, and squirrels ride it out while surviving on food they’ve

stored away during the summer. Not every animal has it hard, though. Winter is prime time for one of North America’s most iconic animals, the grey wolf. As temperatures fall, wolves grow thick, warm coats to combat the chill of coming

winds. To preserve its body heat, a wolf can lie curled with its tail over its snout to filter and catch its warm breath. They can also sleep close together, taking in the collective warmth of their pack mates. A pack of grey wolves is made up of a parent couple and their pups from the past 2 to 3 years. Sometimes other young, unrelated wolves will join them. By winter, the current year’s pups are nearly full grown and already have some hunting experience. They need all the hunting power they can get, as their prey animals spread out widely in search of their own sustenance. Wolves feed mainly on ungulates—large, hooved animals such as moose, deer, elk, and caribou. In winter, ungulates have fewer food sources, so they are weaker than in the warmer months. Their hooves also make it



D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

difficult to travel through deep snow. This is where wolves have a great hunting advantage: their paws spread out and act like snowshoes on the surface of ice and snow. They can usually outrun their weakened prey with ease. Late winter to early spring is mating season for wolves. The mating pair will dig out a den where the mother will give birth after just 63 days of gestation. By spring, the pups are ready to get out of the den and explore the world. Grey wolves are not as prevalent as they once were. Some estimates say they occupy only 10% of their original territory in the United States. The species is currently stateor federally- protected across most of the country. Oregon wolves have faced major challenges over the last 150 years. Beginning in 1843, Oregon leaders offered hunting bounties as part of an effort to eradicate wolves from the territory. A century later, eradication was complete, and wolves weren’t spotted in Oregon for over fifty years. In the late 1990s, wolves started to venture back into their Oregon habitats, and the state’s wolf population has been slowly increasing ever since. At the end of 2016, the estimated minimum population size was 112 wolves (that’s up from just 14 in 2009). Wolves are top-level predators in a food chain. Without them, entire ecosystems can go out of balance. Want to learn more about wolves and how they help keep ecosystems healthy? Check out Wolves and Wild Lands in the 21st Century, an exhibit now on view at the Museum of Natural and Cultural History. You can also head to the museum on Friday, December 15 for Howl at the Moon! Winter Solstice Celebration. From 5:00 to 8:00 p.m., live music, crafts, and hands-on activities guarantee a howlin’ good time for the whole family! Find out more at natural-history. The Museum of Natural and Cultural History is located at 1680 E. 15th Avenue, on the UO campus. Museum hours are Tuesday through Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Visit us online at

Now Offering In-Home Tutoring Enjoy the same great tutors and service at competitive rates, now in the comfort of home. SAT/ACT Prep • Homework Support • Foreign Languages

541-733-1749 1144 Gateway Loop, Suite 100, Springfield OR 97477


Top-ranked degrees


undergraduate degrees


graduate programs

Albert Diaz

B.S. in Computer Science Manteca, California

O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


A Dad’s Eye View by Rick Epstein

It’s Not About the Gifts (Especially When I Buy Them)


o, what do you girls want for Christmas?” My sister-in-law Eleanor asked my daughters. It was Thanksgiving and we were waiting for our bodies to convert the main course into blubber before taking on pie and coffee. Ten-year-old Marie said, “I don’t know.” Three-year-old Wendy said, “A live chicken that lays golden eggs.” Six-year-old Sally snatched an American Girl doll catalog off a side table, flipped it open and pointed to items circled in indelible marker. “I’d like Molly’s sunglasses and Felicity’s corset and, if you can, Addy’s bed, please.” Aunt Eleanor laughed and started to look for pencil and paper, but Sally said, “Keep the magazine; we get new ones all the time.” Twelve years later, Sally at 18 is still easy to buy gifts for – as long as you can keep up with her financially and don’t mind feeling that she’s placing an order. Her Uncle Jim, my younger brother, is another one who knows exactly what he wants. But he’s particular to the point of eccentricity. When he shops for a shirt, he looks for the right color, style and fabric, of course. But he’ll also casually moisten a finger and touch the shirt in order to see how dark it would turn in the event of perspiration. Jim is an art professor and an oil painter, and he’s passionate about aesthetics. One Christmas I bought him a pair of brown leather gloves. The


D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

gift was a partial success; he liked the right-hand glove. But he hated the left-hand glove. He said the seams were sewn too loosely and the color was “mottled,” although it looked OK to me. Jim went back to the department store where I’d bought them, and they let him search their inventory to find a more pleasing left-hand glove. But it was Dec. 26 and there were only two or three pair in his size to examine. All were bad. To his credit, Jim did not ask the men’swear personnel for the addresses of the people who’d purchased the missing gloves. But he did get them to phone other branches of the store looking for more gloves for him to scrutinize. In late January, he showed up for a visit happily flexing his gloved hands. “Thanks, Rick,” he said. “These are great.” That was generous of him, since I’d done little more than launch his quest. Gift-buying for Jim is not a high point of my holiday season. Generally we get a list from him and obey it – to the letter. When I see shoppers desperately talking on cell phones, I wonder if they are calling Jim to ask, “Does it have to have three buttons?” or “What if the color isn’t so much beige as it is somewhere between wheat and camel?” But getting gifts from Jim is another matter. He puts a lot of thought into them, buying things that are beautiful and classy, such as a futuristic fountain pen for me or an exquisite Chinese silk purse for one of the girls. That’s because Jim is not picky because of a smallness of spirit. He’s picky because he has a vision of how he wants things to be, and he strives to make the elements of his world measure up. Over the years, I’ve been in for a lot of improvement myself, and I can tell you he’s strict, but fair. You’d think Jim would be unbearable, but he’s not. He’s affectionate and practically a comic genius. He always spends Christmas with us, and it’s one of the best aspects of the holiday. He’ll tell us funny stories of his latest corrective clashes with students, professors, administrators, neighbors, his landlord and all the other skunks, slackers, ingrates, louts, cheaters and blowhards he encounters. He can make me cry with laughter. Plus, he’s as much fun to tease as when he was 6. If the gifting is a chore, so what? For some, Christmas is all about the gifts, and for others it’s all about faith. For me it’s about embracing the people I love. But you never know. Maybe this will be the year I’ll find something that will surprise and delight my little brother. Angels will sing. Rick can be reached at

Reduce, Reuse & Recycle for the Holidays: Item



Gift Boxes Use cereal, shoe or other boxes instead of buying new. Ribbons & Bows


Flatten gift boxes Recyclable curbside & at neatly for easy storage Lane County recycling & reuse. stations.

Reuse last year’s bows, Purchase used from or create them from MECCA-right next door yarn, dried flowers, to the Eugene train video/audio tape, or station! Mylar food wrappers.

Not recyclable. Reduce & reuse in year ’round gift giving. Save ribbons & bows in a sturdy box for reuse next year.

Wrapping Use comics, maps, Paper posters & cloth wrapping. If you purchase wrapping paper, chooses recycled content.

Purchase used from MECCA. Use reusable gift bags & boxes. Open gifts with reuse in mind.

Greeting Cards

Recyclable curbside & at Reuse greeting Lane County recycling cards as next year’s postcard greetings, gift stations. No plastic or foil. tags or use them for ornaments & crafts. Donate to MECCA 541-302-1810

Save money & paper with postcards or email greetings. If you purchase cards, be sure to find post consumer recycled content cards.

Find fun family craft ideas at:

Recyclable curbside & at Lane County recycling stations. Not recyclable: foil & plastic coated papers or gift bags.

Save more than moneyShop reused at MECCA Right next door to the Eugene train station!

Brought to you by Lane County Waste Management


Little Timbers Winter Indoor Skills Academy

M-W from 5-6pm International Fitness Sportsplex 6 week program Age 4-10 • Cost $110

Young athletes will improve quickness, agility and endurance with a stronger core and increased flexibility. Individual and small group programs for young athletes or tweens and teens who want to be on their game. Aligned Fitness • Michael Graves, CPT, PES • (541) 868-5757 •

Winter Indoor Footskills & Futsal Program Saturdays from 10am-Noon International Fitness Sportsplex 7 sessions • Age 8-15 Cost $120 or $25/session

Eugene Timbers Fútbol Club 541-343-5100

Winter Skills & Speed Camp Dec. 19-21 • 10am-1pm Age 7-15 • Kick City $40/day or $100 for 3 days

820 charnelton st • eugene • oregon • 97401 • 541-349-9642

Join us as we continue to encourage body positivity, inclusivity and personal growth


New Unlimited Childcare Packages on Sale

New Yoga practitioners welcome Intro offer $39 for 1 month unlimited yoga O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7


Shop this holiday at the


Education Resource Guide

50% OFF

Coming in January!

a single item with this ad 685 E. Broadway, Eugene (541) 344-1029 Expires December 31st, 2017 Cash value 1/20th of 1 cent

Our mission: To provide vocational opportunities to individuals with barriers to employment.

The U.S. Gymnastics Academy Great Starts Here®

Fun • Fitness • Self Confidence Coordination • Social Development

Winter Break Camp Dec. 18th - 22nd

World Class Coaches State-of-the-Art Facility

4540 Commerce St • 541-255-2883 •

Better Lawns & Gardens, Inc.

Call 541-683-7452 to Advertise

➤ Complete Lawn & Landscape Maintenance ➤ Lawn Restoration ➤ Leaf Pick Up

➤ Dethatching & Core Aeration ➤ One Time Projects ➤ Commercial and Residential

Programs to Fit Your Budget

541-915-1615 • Free Estimates w w w. b e t te r l aw n s a n d g a rd e n s . n e t


D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

Yucky-feeling Youngster? We’re here for you. For ear infections, sprains, rashes, colds, and other non-life-threatening conditions, PeaceHealth Urgent Care is ready to help:  All insurance accepted

To start feeling better today, visit us at:

Gateway Marketplace Urgent Care 860 Beltline Road, Springfield


 No appointment necessary  On-site imaging  Experienced and caring staff

Valley River Urgent Care 1400 Valley River Drive, Eugene

541-222-7375 West 11th Urgent Care

Urgent Care


D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O R E G O N F A M I L Y. C O M

3321 W. 11th Avenue, Eugene



December 2017  

Oregon Family Magazine