Grab Your Calendar ~ November 2013

HoustonFieldTrips.comLooking for something interesting to do in the Houston area this November?  Here are events, field trips, and concerts in the greater Houston area that would be of interest to homeschool/unschool families.  (In date order.  Events that run for the entirety or majority of the month are listed at the bottom.)

1st ~ Last day to see “Cat in the Hat” at Main Street Theater.  “The sun did not shine. It was too wet to play. So we sat in the house. All that cold, cold, wet day.” So begins the wildly popular Dr. Seuss classic that generations of children have read growing up. But never fear, the Cat in the Hat appears, with Thing One and Thing Two (bringing mayhem and fun!), to take Sally, her brother and the fish on a madcap adventure!  Homeschooling families can sign up for day time performances without having to be part of a group.  $6 per person.  No children under 3.  Contact the theater to register.

5th & 6th ~ Texas Renaissance Festival “School Days”.  Students step back in time as they enter the sights and sounds of New Market Village, an authentic recreation of a 16th century English Village.  Students will interact with King Henry VIII and his queen, as well as William Shakespeare and hundreds of other costumed characters representing the culture, art, science and literature of the Renaissance Period.  Tickets are $8 and can be purchased at the gate.

7th-10th ~ Children’s Festival at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion.  7th & 8th are School Days and require pre-registration.  Pricing varies based on number of shows registered for.  Weekend tickets are $8/pp in advance or $10 at the door.  The focus of Children’s Festival is on the performing and visual arts for children, including award-winning children’s performers that are a must-see with their unique ability to inspire children with programs that not only amuse, but also communicate positive messages. Children’s Festival is an exciting way to help young children broaden their horizons, tap into their talents, ignite their creativity, appreciate other cultures and develop a love and appreciation for the performing arts. Children’s Festival is designed for children ranging from pre-K to intermediate, but kids of all ages are encouraged to join the fun. Bring the whole family!

8th-10th ~ Houston Gem & Mineral Society has a wonderful show at the Humble Civic Center and Arena Complex.  Homeschool groups can register for “School Daze”, participate in a scavenger hunt, and explore the exhibits ~ for FREE!  Registrations are due by this Friday, November 1st.  If Friday doesn’t work for you, visit their website to print discount coupons for General Admission on Saturday or Sunday.  Here’s what we enjoyed last year.

9th ~ Pioneer Day at Jesse H Jones Park & Nature Center.  Volunteers and re-enactors demonstrate settler life in Stephen F. Austin’s colony during the 1820s and early 1830s. Old-fashioned crafts, demonstrations, and period re-enactments bring the homestead to life.  Free

HoustonFieldTrips.com

Art Car Museum
(click picture to link to our review)

9th ~ World Art Car Day.  Bring the kids to the Art Car Museum from 12-3pm for the annual Children’s Mini-Art Car Workshop. Museum will provide a toy car and all of the paint, glue and decorating essentials for your child to create their very own miniature art car.  Also, you can check out the Texas Sculpture Group exhibition “in-DEPTH” and some cool art cars while there.

16th & 17th ~ Republic of Texas Militia Muster – A Living History Encampment at Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site.  The local militia offered not only protection for the colonists, but also an excuse for a social gathering. Join reenactors and interpreters as they recreate a typical militia muster as would have been seen in the Republic.  The encampment  is open on Saturday from 10:00 AM thru 5:00 PM and on Sunday from 10:00 AM thru 1:00 PM. This program is open to all ages but children must be accompanied by an adult.  Admission is Free.

17th ~ Building Community is the theme of this month’s Bayou Bend Family Day.  Celebrate citizenship by learning about early U.S. settlers as well as station-guided house tours of the first floor (children under 10 are welcome!), access to Bayou Bend’s remarkable historic gardens, Craft activities suited for young children, and more.  Presented with Rienzi (both houses open for programs; complimentary shuttle between the two locations).  FREE.

22nd-24th ~ Civil War Weekend at Liendo Plantation.  The Living History Day at the Historic Liendo Plantation is a unique way to experience the grandeur and passion of the Victorian era versus the harsh reality of the war fought between States and Brothers.  Friday is “School Days” and admission is $5/per person.  Weekend admission is $10/adults & $5/Senior Citizens & Children.  Cash Only.

Through November 15th see “in-DEPTH” at the Art Car Museum.  Texas Sculpture Group Exhibition.  Admission is free.

Opening to members on November 18th and to the general public on the 22nd ~ see Zoo Lights at the Houston Zoo.  For this special night-time spectacular, the Houston Zoo will be transformed into a winter wonderland, filled with brilliant displays of colorful lights and festive holiday music.

Through December 15th see “Edgar Degas: Private Impressionist Works on Paper by the Artist & His Circle” at the Stark Gallery on the Texas A&M University Campus.  Discover a deeper appreciation of the art of Edgar Degas and his circle of friends–Mary Cassatt, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, and Paul Cézanne–among other noteworthy artists. The exhibition was organized by Landau Traveling Exhibitions, Los Angeles, CA in association with Denenberg Fine Arts, West Hollywood, CA. Generously supported by the Division of Student Affairs.  Free.

The Pass-it-On Christmas, performed by A.D. Players, begins on November 22nd and runs through December 21st.  A zany troupe of actors enacts the adventures of a shepherd boy and his lamb as they cross the countryside telling anyone they can about the birth of Jesus.  Tickets are $10 each or $6/pp for groups of 10 or more.  Our experiences with AD Players are here.

“Uprooted” at Holocaust Museum Houston is on display through February 2, 2014.  The exhibition includes numerous artifacts and documents on view for the first time. The Abramowicz-Mescherowsky-Teixidor and Levenback-Bielitz collections permit the examination of the difficult choices faced by these particular Jewish families – choices like placing a child alone on a Kindertransport or whether to remain in hiding and, in some cases, join the resistance or having to flee to foreign countries. The exhibition exemplifies the hope that safety could be found and lives re-established elsewhere, despite the annihilation policies of the Nazi government.  Admission is free.

If you have any events you’d like to recommend, please contact us.

Categories: Announcements, Grab Your Calendar, November | Leave a comment

Grab Your Calendar ~ October 2013

Looking for something interesting to do this October?  Here are events, field trips, and concerts in the greater Houston area that would be of interest to homeschool/unschool families.  (In date order.  Events that run for the Grab Your Calendar Oct ~ Field Trips for Homeschooling Familiesentirety or majority of the month are listed at the bottom.)

1st-4th ~ “Strega Nona” is at Miller Outdoor Theatre each day this week.  11am.  Strega Nona has a magical touch. With a song and three kisses, she can create a delicious pasta meal. Her new helper, Big Anthony, is an enthusiastic young man with a short attention span. Can he resist the temptation to try his own hand at magic when Strega Nona leaves town? Big Anthony learns a big lesson about respect for other people’s property and the importance of paying attention.  Produced by Houston Grand Opera.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Performances are FREE!

2nd ~ Homeschool Day at Space Center Houston.  This fun-filled day is designed especially for home school and virtual school students and their families. Many exciting events planned for students of all ages, including: Mad Science experiments, robotics workshops, and fun and informative speakers.  $12.95/pp

3rd-5th ~ Festival Chicano at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  7pm each night.  A cultural celebration of 34 years of Chicano music from Tejano and Conjunto, to Mariachi and Orchestra in one of the oldest ongoing events of its type in the world.  The event is FREE, but it is a “ticketed” event: please see the website for more details.

3rd-6th ~ Greek Festival at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral.  Dance Programs, Live Music, Kids Area, Food, Drinks, & Desserts!  Cathedral Tours ongoing.  Variety of ticketing options available via the website.

5th ~ “Amanecer Colombiano” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Showcasing the beauty and traditions of Colombia, lively and rhythmic Colombian music will have performers and audience dancing to the beat.  Produced by Ambassadors International Ballet Folklorico.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

9th ~ “Swing, Jive, & Pop into Dance” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am. Houston Metropolitan Dance Company incorporates history, fashion, music and the arts into an interactive blast of excitement.  The company dances through the eras of the 1930’s Lindy Hop, bops into the 1950’s, grooves into the 1970’s and ends into the Hip Hop music of today.  Students, teachers and audience members have the opportunity to converse with the dancers and participate in an energy filled hour of dance while learning fun historical tidbits of information.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Performances are FREE!

10th ~ “PUSH! – Push Physical Theater” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  PUSH has been called “a cross between fine art sculpture and the hit movie The Matrix,” but its co-founders (with tongue firmly in cheek) describe it “like regular theatre, but more painful.” The dancers’ physical feats are awe-inspiring, but the cherry on top of this acrobatic sundae is PUSH’s ability to engage their audience through vibrant visual storytelling.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Performances are FREE!

12th ~ CreekFest is a Festival of the Arts & Adventure Race held in the Cypress Creek Cultural District in Spring, Texas.  The one-day festival is organized by the Houston Northwest Chamber of Commerce to promote the parks, museum, library, visual and performing arts, and other community resources in the Greater Cypress Creek Area.  Through events such as hands-on art projects, artist demonstrations, concerts, and literacy activities, families can learn about the fine arts at the Centrum, Barbara Bush Library, and the Pearl Fincher Museum of Fine Arts.

12th ~ Astronomy Day at George Observatory in Brazos Bend State Park.  This annual October event is free with state park admission, open to the public and includes activities for all ages. Festivities begin in the afternoon, but this event really comes to life after dark when the stars begin to shine.  Dozens of telescopes—including our large research telescopes—will be available to give everyone a chance to enjoy the delights of the night sky, including star clusters, planets and galaxies.

12th ~ Chemistry Open House at Texas A&M University.  Every year Texas A&M’s Department of Chemistry hosts a free, open to the public, Chemistry Open House to celebrate National Chemistry Week. This year’s participants include the Departments of Biology and Physics & Astronomy, students from the Dwight Look College of Engineering and SACNAS, and the Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History.  The Chemistry Open House features the popular Chemistry Road Show, guided lab tours, hands-on and computer activities, door prizes and science goodie bags. The Chemistry Road Show is recommended for all ages and includes demonstrations of popular science.

12th ~ Cy-Fair VFD Fire Fest allows the community a glimpse into the life of a fire fighter by providing demonstrations on vehicle fires, vehicle extrications, and landing the Life Flight helicopters. Children can get an up-close look at the fire trucks, play with an actual fire fighting hose, and help put out simulated fires. Families can see some history about each station through story boards depicting the evolution of our fire department.  10am – 2pm.  FREE.

12th-13th ~ Katy Rice Harvest Festival is two big days of excitement and family fun with two stages of continuous live entertainment, craft and food booths, carnival and more.

19th ~ Houston Fire Fest is an annual fun, family event, hosted by the Houston Fire Museum, and is one of the fund-raising events of the Fire Museum. We help raise awareness among children and their parents about fire and life safety – while having a lot of fun!  10am-5pm.  FREE.

20th ~ Hispanic Heritage is the theme of this month’s Bayou Bend Family Day.  Explore contributions to U.S. culture by Spanish-speaking nations as well as station-guided house tours of the first floor (children under 10 are welcome!), access to Bayou Bend’s remarkable historic gardens, Craft activities suited for young children, and more.

23rd ~ “Ransom of Red Chief” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Children’s Express Theater brings O’Henry’s literary classic to life with this hilarious musical adaptation.  This is the story of two crooks who plan a get-rich quick scheme to kidnap the very energetic son of a local banker. But, the kidnappers get much more than they bargained for with the rambunctious Red Chief.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

30th ~ “Swing, Jive, & Pop into Dance” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am. Houston Metropolitan Dance Company incorporates history, fashion, music and the arts into an interactive blast of excitement.  The company dances through the eras of the 1930’s Lindy Hop, bops into the 1950’s, grooves into the 1970’s and ends into the Hip Hop music of today.  Students, teachers and audience members have the opportunity to converse with the dancers and participate in an energy filled hour of dance while learning fun historical tidbits of information.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

“The Story of the Lone Star State” is performed October 1st – 26th at Interactive Theater.  The play begins in pre-Columbian Texas and flies through 600 years of History in 60 minutes.  The play covers tales of the Indians, Spanish Exploration, Mexico’s race for independence from Spain, the Texas Revolution, the origin of the Cowboy and more than one reference to bluebonnets!  Purchase your tickets here.

Running through November 1st, the Art Car Museum presents “in-DEPTH”.  Texas Sculpture Group Exhibition.  Admission is free.

Childhood in Early Texas at Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site.  Every Thursday in October.  An interactive, hands-on program for the entire family, targeting students ages 5-12. Discover what life was like for a child in the mid-19th century. In the museum, learn about childhood chores, clothes, and schools, and then make some old-fashioned toys to take home.  At Barrington Farm, experience life on an 1850s era farm to learn more about the crops, livestock, and daily life of early Texans.  $8/child, $6/adult.  Lunch not provided, picnics welcome! Reservations and payment in advance required.

Through December 15th see “Edgar Degas: Private Impressionist Works on Paper by the Artist & His Circle”at the Stark Gallery on the Texas A&M University Campus.  Discover a deeper appreciation of the art of Edgar Degas and his circle of friends–Mary Cassatt, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, and Paul Cézanne–among other noteworthy artists. The exhibition was organized by Landau Traveling Exhibitions, Los Angeles, CA in association with Denenberg Fine Arts, West Hollywood, CA. Generously supported by the Division of Student Affairs.  Free.

Through November 1st see “Cat in the Hat” at Main Street Theater.  “The sun did not shine. It was too wet to play. So we sat in the house. All that cold, cold, wet day.” So begins the wildly popular Dr. Seuss classic that generations of children have read growing up. But never fear, the Cat in the Hat appears, with Thing One and Thing Two (bringing mayhem and fun!), to take Sally, her brother and the fish on a madcap adventure!  Homeschooling families can sign up for day time performances without having to be part of a group.  $6 per person.  No children under 3.  Contact the theater to register.

“Uprooted” at Holocaust Museum Houston is on display through February 2, 2014.  The exhibition includes numerous artifacts and documents on view for the first time. The Abramowicz-Mescherowsky-Teixidor and Levenback-Bielitz collections permit the examination of the difficult choices faced by these particular Jewish families – choices like placing a child alone on a Kindertransport or whether to remain in hiding and, in some cases, join the resistance or having to flee to foreign countries. The exhibition exemplifies the hope that safety could be found and lives re-established elsewhere, despite the annihilation policies of the Nazi government.  Admission is free.

If you have any events you’d like to recommend, please contact us.

Cover & Post images courtesy Donna Bonilla Photography.

Categories: Announcements, Grab Your Calendar, October | Leave a comment

Grab Your Calendar ~ September 2013

You may have noticed that the “Grab Your Calendar” for August went missing.  Not only is August a slow month for events, but our family is in the middle of a move and we just didn’t have the time to devote to a post.   We have tried to forward events we come across via our Facebook page ~ so please feel free to join us there as well.

Looking for something interesting to do this September?  Here are events, field trips, and concerts in the greater Houston area that would be of interest to homeschool/unschool families.  (In date order.  Events that run for the entirety or majority of the month are listed at the bottom.)IMG_1458

1st & 2nd ~ Last days to see  “Animals Assembled” at the Houston Zoo.  Constructed by LEGO Certified Master Builders, each animal in this special limited-time exhibit is life-size and made up of thousands of LEGO bricks.  There are more than two dozen LEGO brick animal sculptures, representing more than ten species. Once you’ve seen the LEGO brick animals, make sure to check out their real-life counterparts throughout the Zoo.

4th, 5th, or 6th ~ An American Treasure: The Constitution as a Guide for President Washington at the George Bush Presidential Library & Museum.  President George Washington (Dean Malissa) brings the content of the Constitution alive, noted by the First President of the United States as his “presidential guide book.” Learn about Washington’s life, leadership and crucial role in the implementation and interpretation of the Constitution and the establishment of the American government.  Presentation will be held twice daily and is free.  Register directly with the museum.  (admission to the museum is separate)

12th ~ “One Night in Frogtown” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Tad, a saxophone-playing frog, sets out to discover the sources of the faraway music that only he can hear. Along the way, Tad meets blues, classical, and rap frogs, all of whom enjoy playing music with him, but seem unable to appreciate any music that is different from their own.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

14th ~ Hummingbird Festival at Kleb Woods Nature Preserve.  9a-3p.  Everything you want to know about hummingbirds – identifying, attracting, & gardening for hummingbirds.  Admission is free.  Bring your own refreshments as nothing with be available for sale.

15th ~ Texas Children’s Arts Festival at Bayou Bend Collection & Gardens.  An afternoon celebrating art—created by and for children—that helps forge a connection to Texas and American heritage. Children and their families may take part in art-making workshops; participate in a collaborative group project; play interactive games; and see demonstrations that emphasize the way that art keeps everyone connected to the past, how it improves the present, and why preserving it is important for the future.  Free.

17th ~ “Totally Vocally” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Produced by Young Audiences of Houston and Ball In The House.  Through classic and contemporary cover songs and original works, Ball in the House teaches many aspects of music and performance. In this interactive presentation, audience members explore not only the definition of “a cappella”, but also the technology behind the group’s sound system, the various voice parts and how they fit together to make harmony and songs, beatboxing, and the history of a cappella singing from chant through doo wop.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

18th ~ “Imagination Movers” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Alternative rock for pre-schoolers?  Imagination Movers visits Miller to deliver exactly that.  Formed in New Orleans, LA, in 2003 by longtime friends Rich Collins, Scott Durbin, Dave Poche, and Scott “Smitty” Smith, Imagination Movers are a fun, vibrant band that concentrates on writing and releasing songs and albums for children.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

23rd ~ Children’s Museum of Houston Homeschool Day “Chemistry”.  10am-2pm.  For one day only we offer Home School students unlimited access to our fourteen galleries of non-stop, action-packed fun. Home School students will explore science, technology, history, culture, health, environment and engineering hands-on at the ultimate Playground for your Mind™!  Pre-registration is required.  Individuals $8/pp, Groups of 15+ are $6/pp.

25th ~ Swing, Jive and Pop! Into Dance” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Houston Metropolitan Dance Company’s “Swing, Jive and Pop into Dance” incorporates history, fashion, music and the arts into an interactive blast of excitement.  The company dances through the eras of the 1930’s Lindy Hop, bops into the 1950’s, grooves into the 1970’s and ends into the Hip Hop music of today.  Students, teachers and audience members have the opportunity to converse with the dancers and participate in an energy filled hour of dance while learning fun historical tidbits of information.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

28th ~ Museum Day Live! by Smithsonian Magazine.  In the spirit of the Smithsonian Museums, who offer free admission everyday, Museum Day Live! is an annual event hosted by Smithsonian Magazine in which participating museums across the country open their doors to anyone presenting a Museum Day Ticket ~ for FREE.  Limited number of free tickets available – Preregistration is required.

28th ~ “Mexicanisimo” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Delight your senses with beautiful traditional and contemporary folkloric dance from Mexico.  Produced by Ambassadors International Ballet Folklorico.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

28th & 29th ~ Garden Faire & Fall Festival at Mercer Arboretum.  This two-day event features a variety of entertainment and free activities for the kids including “Stan the Train Man” train rides around the picnic loop and a Kids’ Korner Activity Area sponsored by The Mercer Society.  Admission is free.  Concessions and wares for sale.

30th ~ “Strega Nona” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Strega Nona has a magical touch. With a song and three kisses, she can create a delicious pasta meal. Her new helper, Big Anthony, is an enthusiastic young man with a short attention span. Can he resist the temptation to try his own hand at magic when Strega Nona leaves town? Big Anthony learns a big lesson about respect for other people’s property and the importance of paying attention.  Produced by Houston Grand Opera.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Perfromances are FREE!

Beginning September 7th and running through November 1st, the Art Car Museum presents “in-DEPTH”.  Texas Sculpture Group Exhibition.  Admission is free.

Through December 15th see “Edgar Degas: Private Impressionist Works on Paper by the Artist & His Circle” at the Stark Gallery on the Texas A&M University Campus.  Discover a deeper appreciation of the art of Edgar Degas and his circle of friends–Mary Cassatt, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, and Paul Cézanne–among other noteworthy artists. The exhibition was organized by Landau Traveling Exhibitions, Los Angeles, CA in association with Denenberg Fine Arts, West Hollywood, CA. Generously supported by the Division of Student Affairs.  Free.

Through November 1st see “Cat in the Hat” at Main Street Theater.  “The sun did not shine. It was too wet to play. So we sat in the house. All that cold, cold, wet day.” So begins the wildly popular Dr. Seuss classic that generations of children have read growing up. But never fear, the Cat in the Hat appears, with Thing One and Thing Two (bringing mayhem and fun!), to take Sally, her brother and the fish on a madcap adventure!  Homeschooling families can sign up for day time performances without having to be part of a group.  $6 per person.  No children under 3.  Contact the theater to register.

If you have any events you’d like to recommend, please contact us.

Categories: Announcements, Grab Your Calendar, September | Leave a comment

Grab Your Calendar ~ July 2013

IMG_0871Looking for something interesting to do this July?  Here are a few events, field trips, and concerts in the greater Houston area that would be of interest to homeschool/unschool families.  (In date order.  Events that run for the entirety or majority of the month are listed at the bottom.)

2nd ~ Hear Ye! Hear Ye! at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Experience the artists of tomorrow as musical prodigies ages 4 – 18 perform.  Produced by Houston Young Artist’s Concert.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

3rd & 4th ~ Waller Freedom Fest 2013 is sure to be a fun celebration for the whole family! Co-sponsored by the City of Waller and the Waller Ministerial Alliance, our purpose is to celebrate the freedom we enjoy as citizens of the U.S.A., as well as the freedom that is made possible for all through Christ Jesus. Freedom Fest is a completely family friendly event, and we hope you’ll choose to celebrate the 4th of July with us this year.  Festival is Free, but there are paid activities.

4th ~ The George Bush Presidential Library and Museum is proud to host the College Station Noon Lions Club’s Fourth of July “I Love America” Celebration.  9:30 a.m. to 8:15 p.m. with FREE admission for everyone all day; building closes at 8:30 p.m.  Concessions and games for children begin at 5 p.m., and live music entertainment at 6 p.m. including The Docs and Clayton Gardner.  The evening will culminate with a performance by the Brazos Valley Symphony Orchestra, presented by HEB and Wells Fargo.

23rd-26th ~ Express Children’s Theatre and Miller Outdoor Theatre present the Children’s Hilltop Festival.  All performances begin at 11am and are free.

23rd ~ Dream of Doors ~ This new production focuses on the struggle of several iconic figures from the Civil Rights era who are engaged in the movement to open doors of human opportunity for everyone.   Four doors on stage symbolize equality, justice, education, and jobs.  The story is the journey to open each door, which will test the endurance and self-determination of those involved.   A musical odyssey written by Thomas Meloncon.

24th ~ Three Billy Goats Gruff ~ All the three billy goats want to do is get across the bridge so they can eat the grass on the other side, but there’s a grumbly, grouchy, bully of a Troll under the bridge who is determined not to let them pass.  They do finally get across, and even make a new friend in the process.   A rollicking musical production by Kevin M. Reese.

25th ~ Legends of Wind & Fire ~ The Quest for Fire, How Winter Was Born, Tring-Tring & Kai-Kai and Why Penguins Can’t Fly are the myths and legends of the native American people from Argentina to Brazil.  Told by a Mapuche Indian and her cousin and brought to life by a cast of animal characters, these tales are rich with music, culture and lore.  A bi-lingual English/Spanish production written by Edith Pross.

26th ~ The Ransom of Red Chief ~ O’Henry’s literary classic comes to life with this hilarious musical adaptation.  This is the story of two crooks who plan a get-rich quick scheme to kidnap the very energetic son of a local banker. But, the kidnappers get much more than they bargained for with the rambunctious Red Chief.  Written by Patricia Barry Rumble.

Through Labor Day, see  “Animals Assembled” at the Houston Zoo.  Constructed by LEGO Certified Master Builders, each animal in this special limited-time exhibit is life-size and made up of thousands of LEGO bricks.  There are more than two dozen LEGO brick animal sculptures, representing more than ten species. Once you’ve seen the LEGO brick animals, make sure to check out their real-life counterparts throughout the Zoo.

Enter the world of CHOMP! where you can stand eye to eye with some of nature’s creepiest, most dangerous creatures. All Summer, Space Center Houston will be hosting live animal shows every day, free with admission! Learn how NASA scientists are mimicking the traits of alligators, poison dart frogs, and other animals on display to help astronauts live in space. Kids can test their survival skills by weaving through spider webs and balancing on platforms as they navigate their way through an obstacle course.  You’ll find Texas Snakes & More out there every weekend doing shows.

Speaking of Texas Snakes & More ~ check out their calendar of public events to find something happening near you.

Want to get out of the heat?  Don’t forget that many movie theaters are offering free and reduced admission all Summer long.

If you have any events you’d like to recommend, please contact us.

Categories: Day Trips, Events, July | Leave a comment

Planning Awesome Family Day Trips

This post appears in the Natural Family Today e-book “Natural Family Guide to Summer” which you can download for FREE when you subscribe to their newsletter.  

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Day trips are a great option during the Summer months. They are an economical way for your family to explore an area outside of your everyday perimeter without a huge financial or time investment. From a day on the beach to an all day adventure at a nearby amusement park there are a variety of options to meet the needs of families no matter what your ages and stages. 

Where to Go?

A variety of factors come in to play here. The ages of your children, how far you are willing to travel, your budget, and what interests your family. Be sure you are taking your children’s “car tolerance” into consideration. Some families can handle a day trip that is 3 hours each way, while others may need to limit themselves to an hour round trip. You are  probably already familiar with the closest amusement park, so I wanted to share some ideas that may bring your family closer to nature.  (As this post was written for a broad audience, links provided are for national organizations and are not specific to the Houston area.)

Aquarium
• ArboretumIMG_1305
Audubon Preserve
• Beach
• Boat Tour
• Botanical Garden
Bureau of Land Management
• City/County Park
• Environmental Learning Center
• Japanese Gardens
• Lake
National Park Service
• Nature Preserve
• State Park
US Forest Service
Zoo

Our family has been traveling, camping, and enjoying field trips with our children for 10 years. We’ve found two things significantly contribute to the “success” of a trip:

1. Being Prepared
2. Don’t sweat the small stuff & just enjoy the adventure.

Be Prepared

Know all you can about the location. Where is it located? This may seem simple, but many families rely on their GPS only to end up milesfrom their desired destination or stuck on a street that hasn’t been completed yet. Venues with websites usually offer directions & maps ~ use them. Where is the parking? Are there bathrooms? (Yes, we went to a park once to find they had locked all the bathrooms on weekdays.) What is the appropriate age for visitors? Do they have any special events/programs that day? Is there a place inside or nearby to picnic? Are they busier on certain days of the week or certain weeks of the Summer? Can they accommodate any special needs you have? Can you bring outside food? Is it appropriate for strollers or wheelchairs? Is there an area for diaper changing or nursing?

Invite your children to help prepare. Have conversations with children about the plans for the day. Discuss any family rules about distance from the parent (holding hands, arms reach, line of sight, etc.) Plan where they should go or who they should talk to if you’re separated.  Until they memorized our cell numbers, we used a Sharpie to write it on the inside of our children’s shoes. If applicable, let them know of any specific times for presentations, snacks/lunch, exploring or at least the order of events. Ask them which ones are important to them and make those a priority. If there will be “extra costs” once inside that you’ve decided to skip (like the midway games at the fair), be clear with your children that it isn’t in the budget this time around. Oh, and our kids’ favorite, “How long is the drive?” We like to print an
extra copy of our directions from Google maps so they can help navigate.

Stock the car. Nothing dampens a trip (and everyone’s mood) like having to leave because you ran out of diapers or the 4-year-old spilled his drink & doesn’t have another shirt. If you’re tight on trunk space, prioritize on what is most important (or most likely to be needed) and be sure to bring it along. We regularly bring: prescription medication, first aid kit, sunscreen, change of clothes (even an extra shirt for Dad & Mom), extra snacks, water, picnic blanket, rain ponchos, camping chairs, Kleenex, a roll of paper towels, beach towels, and a collapsible wagon. Also be sure to include activities to keep all the passengers busy. While iPads and DVD players can be nice ~ we’ve been pleasantly surprised how much our children enjoy games like Car Bingo, mazes, connect-the-dots, tic-tac-toe, and other printable car games. Audio Books make a great selection for the car. Borrow from your local library or you can make your own CD’s for
only the cost of the disk. 

Set a budget. Planning for all the expenses helps avoid any fretting or family strife in the middle of the trip. Consider things like: fuel, tolls, admission, and parking fees. Do they accept cash, checks, &/or credit cards? Are there any additional costs for extra activities/experiences once there? Will you be bringing or buying snacks & meals? How
much do you have to spend on souvenirs? Are the kids allowed to spend their own money?

Enjoy the Adventure

At some point, decide that you are as prepared as possible and you are just going to enjoy yourselves. Don’t stress over small hiccups, be flexible, and keep the attitude that everything is a learning experience ~ even if it doesn’t go as planned.

Categories: Announcements, Day Trips, Events, Field Trips, Free, September | Leave a comment

Grab Your Calendar ~ June 2013

IMG_1899Looking for something interesting to do this June?  Here are a few events, field trips, and concerts in the greater Houston area that would be of interest to homeschool/unschool families.  (In date order.  Events that run for the entirety or majority of the month are listed at the bottom.)

1st & 2nd ~  The Art Car Museum hosts “full circle ~ a collage and assemblage exhibition of five artists whose works involve the appropriation and repurposing of materials. Logos, religious imagery, newspaper clippings, or found objects are employed in these intricately designed works. The exhibition considers purpose and intent and examines social responsibility.  Not all exhibits are appropriate for younger children.  Admission is free, donations are appreciated.  See HFT’s review of our visit.

5th ~ Swing, Jive and Pop! Into Dance at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Houston Metropolitan Dance Company’s “Swing, Jive and Pop into Dance” incorporates history, fashion, music and the arts into an interactive blast of excitement.  The company dances through the eras of the 1930’s Lindy Hop, bops into the 1950’s, grooves into the 1970’s and ends into the Hip Hop music of today.  Students, teachers and audience members have the opportunity to converse with the dancers and participate in an energy filled hour of dance while learning fun historical tidbits of information.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

12th-14th ~ Disney’s High School Musical Jr. at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  It’s the first day after winter break at East High. The Jocks, Brainiacs, Thespians and Skater Dudes find their cliques, recount their vacations, and look forward to the new year. Basketball team captain and resident jock Troy discovers that the girl he met on his ski trip, Gabriella, has just enrolled at East High. They cause an upheaval when they decide to audition for the high school musical. Produced by TUTS Humphreys School.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

14th ~ Texas Music Festival Orchestra’s Legendary Masterpiece at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavillion.  8pm (gates open at 7).  More than 100 gifted musicians from around the world are showcased in a free concert titled Legendary Masterpieces. In conjunction with the Immanuel and Helen Olshan Texas Music Festival, an intensive four-week study program at the University of Houston’s Moores School of Music, the Texas Music Festival Orchestra takes the stage June 14. Under the direction of Horst Förster, these young artists perform Richard Strauss’s “Don Juan,” Op. 20 and Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5. The finalists and winner of the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Young Artist Competition will be announced. Join us in supporting and celebrating these talented young artists. Pre-concert activities in the North Plaza begin at 7 p.m.  FREE.

17th ~ Sounds Like Fun! at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  The Sounds Like Fun! series returns to Miller with a relaxed and dynamic music experience designed for the whole family.  Produced by the Houston Symphony.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

24th ~ Hear Ye! Hear Ye! at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  Experience the artists of tomorrow as musical prodigies ages 4 – 18 perform.  Produced by Houston Young Artist’s Concert.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

IMG_1879Through Labor Day, see  “Animals Assembled” at the Houston Zoo.  Constructed by LEGO Certified Master Builders, each animal in this special limited-time exhibit is life-size and made up of thousands of LEGO bricks.  There are more than two dozen LEGO brick animal sculptures, representing more than ten species. Once you’ve seen the LEGO brick animals, make sure to check out their real-life counterparts throughout the Zoo.

Enter the world of CHOMP! where you can stand eye to eye with some of nature’s creepiest, most dangerous creatures. All Summer, Space Center Houston will be hosting live animal shows every day, free with admission! Learn how NASA scientists are mimicking the traits of alligators, poison dart frogs, and other animals on display to help astronauts live in space. Kids can test their survival skills by weaving through spider webs and balancing on platforms as they navigate their way through an obstacle course.  You’ll find Texas Snakes & More out there every weekend doing shows.

Speaking of Texas Snakes & More ~ check out their calendar of public events to find something happening near you.

Texas Music Festival runs May 31st-June 29th.  The Immanuel and Helen Olshan Texas Music Festival ® was founded in 1990 to provide young professional musicians with a challenging musical environment in which to develop skills in orchestral, chamber music, and solo performance. The intensive four-week orchestral fellowship program on the University of Houston campus is guided by renowned guest conductors, members of Houston’s orchestras, faculty from the Moores and Shepherd schools of music, and other distinguished artists.  Most performances are free.

Want to get out of the heat?  Don’t forget that many movie theaters are offering free and reduced admission all Summer long.

If you have any events you’d like to recommend, please contact us.

Categories: Announcements, Events, Grab Your Calendar, June | Leave a comment

Free Family Movies Summer of 2013

Interior of a Movie Theater

Did you know that many local movie theaters offer Free or discounted movie admission over the Summer?  This is a great opportunity to get out of the Texas heat and enjoy some air conditioned fun time.

While we find learning happens all the time, those families looking for a little more “education” to their films will be pleased to learn that documentaries like Chimpanzee and African Cats are playing.  There are also film versions of the popular books Mr. Popper’s Penguins and The Lorax and the based-on-a-true-story Big Miracle.

Check theater links for exact dates, times, and restrictions.

Free Admission

Alamo Kids Camp at Alamo Drafthouse Houston ~ various weekdays at 11am.  Historically they have shown movies every week, but only post which movie a few weeks in advance, so check their website often.

Santikos Theatres is offering free admission on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10am.

Discounted Admission

Summer Movie Clubhouse at Cinemark.  Purchase a 10 film pass for $5 or individual admission is $1.  Coupons are available to print for discount on concessions.

Regal Summer Movie Express ~ Tuesdays & Wednesdays at 10am for nine weeks. Admission is $1 and a portion of the proceeds will benefit the Will Rogers Institute.

Studio Movie Grill’s Children’s Summer Series is $1 for children and $2 for adults.  Monday through Friday at 11am.

Package Deals

Carmike Cinemas  ~ Thursdays at 10am.  Package for $4 that includes admission and a kid’s tray with popcorn, drink, & snack.

If you know of any other Summer movie offers, we’d love to add them.  Feel free to submit a comment below or via our Contact Page.

Categories: $5.00 or less, Announcements, August, By Age, Elementary, Free, High School, July, June, May, Middle School, Toddlers / Preschool | 2 Comments

Grab Your Calendar ~ May 2013

IMG_1364Looking for something interesting to do this May?  Here are a few events, field trips, and concerts in the greater Houston area that would be of interest to homeschool/unschool families.  (In date order.  Events that run for the entirety or majority of the month are listed at the bottom.)

1st, 2nd, & 3rdDaniel and the Dreamcatcher” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Produced by Houston Grand Opera. Daniel and the Dreamcatcher tells the story of a young boy who must confront his fears of the giant living in his closet.  This show is a wonderful introduction to opera, and is perfect for students in grades 2 – 6.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

3rd-5th ~ General Sam Houston Folk Festival in Hunstville.  Step Back In Time To The 1800s And Enjoy!  The General Sam Houston Folk Festival will celebrate its 26th year on the Sam Houston Museum grounds, the grounds where Sam and Margaret lived with their children.  Friday admission is $3/pp.

9th-11th ~ Houston Art Car Parade is now a weekend full of festivities.  Powered by Orange Show: Center for Visionary Art, the weekend now includes a Sneek Peek, Main Street Drag, and Art Car Ball in addition to the parade itself.  See the website for more details & locations.

11th ~ Mom Appreciation Day at Blessington Farms.  In appreciation of moms and all they do, Blessington Farms is providing FREE ADMISSION FOR MOMS to Farm Funland on Saturday, May 11th. Families will enjoy hay rides, getting up close to heritage chickens, barrel train rides, pedal cars and Sand Mountain. Pack a picnic lunch and enjoy picking fresh berries at the farm for dessert.  No admission fee for picking berries (pay per pound picked).  Farm Funland $5/person. Moms get in free on 5/11/2013. (Kids under 18 months are always free.)  9:30am – 2:30pm.

17th ~ Fantastic Mr. Fox” is playing at Alamo Drafthouse Houston.  11am.  Based on the popular Roald Dahl book.  Free!

17th-19th ~ Pasadena Strawberry Festival is sponsored by the San Jacinto Day Foundation.  The Buzzberry Kids Adventure Zone looks particularly interesting.  See the website for various costs.

18th & 19th ~ R.M.S. Titanic: A Love Story by Academy Players of Houston Baptist University.  7:30 pm at the Belin Chapel on HBU Campus.  R.M.S Titanic: A Love Story is a play about Christian marriage, virtue, and gentlemanly bravery aboard the ill-fated Titanic, performed by The Academy Players, a theater group of homeschool students, ages 8-18.  There is no charge to attend.

19th ~ “Houston Treasure” a Bayou Bend Family Day.  Family Days are always free and open to the public.

28th ~ The Green Rabbit (El conjito verde) at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Produced by Young Audiences of Houston and Teatro de la Rosa of Fort Worth.  Follow the journey of Marisol, who falls in love with the Green Rabbit prince in this popular children’s Mexican folktale.  Complete with colorful masks and audience participation.  Bilingual (English and Spanish). All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

29th ~ Swing, Jive and Pop! Into Dance at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Houston Metropolitan Dance Company’s “Swing, Jive and Pop into Dance” incorporates history, fashion, music and the arts into an interactive blast of excitement.  The company dances through the eras of the 1930’s Lindy Hop, bops into the 1950’s, grooves into the 1970’s and ends into the Hip Hop music of today.  Students, teachers and audience members have the opportunity to converse with the dancers and participate in an energy filled hour of dance while learning fun historical tidbits of information.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

30th & 31st ~ AD Player’s The Jungle Book at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Mowgli has been raised and protected by the Seeonee wolf pack his entire life, but his mortal enemy, the vicious tiger  Shere Khan, has a plan to scatter the pack.  It will take all the wisdom Mowgli has learned from his friends Baloo the Bear and Bagheera the Panther to survive the tiger’s vengeful scheme.  This thrilling adventure is about growing up and the strength of true friendship.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

31st ~ Homeschool Day at Splashway Waterpark in Sheridan.  We cannot help but recognize the great work that Homeschooling families are achieving for this cause. We would like to offer your family a break from this extremely important work, and allow you to spend a day of fun and relaxation in a quality Christian environment. In a newly expanded facility, we offer over 30 slides for children of all ages, along with a lazy river, a wave pool, and more!!!  See website for pricing and pre-order discounts.

Beginning May 25th The Houston Zoo presents, “Animals Assembled” ~ Constructed by LEGO Certified Master Builders, each animal in this special limited-time exhibit is life-size and made up of thousands of LEGO bricks.  There are more than two dozen LEGO brick animal sculptures, representing more than ten species. Once you’ve seen the LEGO brick animals, make sure to check out their real-life counterparts throughout the Zoo.

Through June 2nd, The Art Car Museum hosts “full circle ~ a collage and assemblage exhibition of five artists whose works involve the appropriation and repurposing of materials. Logos, religious imagery, newspaper clippings, or found objects are employed in these intricately designed works. The exhibition considers purpose and intent and examines social responsibility.  Not all exhibits are appropriate for younger children.   See HFT’s review of our visit.

Fabergé: A Brilliant Vision at the Museum of Natural Science.  An additional $5 with a general admission ticket.  FREE for Museum members.  Simply hearing the name Fabergé evokes the splendor and extravagance of late 19th and early 20th century Imperial Russia. The House of Fabergé designed the renowned Imperial Easter Eggs for the Romanov family, as well as an array of objects d’art, luxurious gifts, and practical items for the wealthy patrons of Europe.

Main Street Theater regularly offers children’s shows throughout the year.  Through May 24th they will be performing Charlotte’s Web.  School day performances are $5.50.  Weekend rates are higher.  Children under the age of 3 (including sleeping babies) are not allowed in the theater.

Enter the world of CHOMP! where you can stand eye to eye with some of nature’s creepiest, most dangerous creatures. Starting May 25th, Space Center Houston will be hosting live animal shows every day, free with admission! Learn how NASA scientists are mimicking the traits of alligators, poison dart frogs, and other animals on display to help astronauts live in space. Kids can test their survival skills by weaving through spider webs and balancing on platforms as they navigate their way through an obstacle course.  You’ll find Texas Snakes & More out there every weekend doing shows.

If you have any events you’d like to recommend, please contact us.

Categories: Announcements, Grab Your Calendar, May | 2 Comments

Grab Your Calendar ~ April 2013

Looking for something interesting to do this April?  Here are a few events, field trips, and concerts in the greater Houston area that would be of interest to homeschool/unschool families.  (In date order.  Events that run for the entirety or majority of the month are listed at the bottom.)

IMG_12784th & 5th ~  The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe ~ presented by HBU’s School of Fine Arts.  This performance date is reserved for Homeschool families.  Show starts at 10am.  Cost is $15 per family.

5th & 6th ~ Physics & Engineering Festival at Texas A&M University.  The Department of Physics & Astronomy and the Department of Aerospace Engineering at Texas A&M University invite the public to an entertaining and informative event. People of all ages will find funny, puzzling, and fascinating hands-on experiments. Everyone is invited to participate.  Free.

6th & 7th ~ Houston Children’s Festival benefiting Child Advocates, Inc.  Offering several stages, The Festival is divided into themed Family Adventure Zones and delivers over 300 exciting activities.  2013 Festival features Dora the Explorer, Sid the Science Kid, Victoria Justice, and Laura Morano.

8th ~ Homeschool Day at Children’s Museum of Houston.  The theme for April is Chromatography!  Closed to the general public, home school students will explore science, technology, history, culture, health, environment and engineering hands-on at the ultimate Playground for your Mind™!  Pre-registration is required.  The museum is open from 10am-2pm.  Cost is $8/pp or $6/pp for groups of 15 or more.  Neither the Cafe nor the “Tot Spot” are open on Homeschool Days.

8th ~ The Houston Grand Opera to Go will present “Daniel and the Dreamcatcher” at the Katy Branch Library on Monday, April 8 at 4:00 p.m.  Opera to Go is a wonderful way to introduce your children to the joy of a musical story.  In this story, Daniel is afraid of the monster in his closet who likes to shrink things. But when the monster shrinks his family, Daniel has to decide to be brave and confront his fears.  Free.

13th ~ “All About BUGS”activity from 9am – 12pm at the Edith L Moore Nature Sanctuary.  This is a ‘whole family’ program. Parents should participate with their children.  Guided Nature Walks at 10 AM and at 11 AM.  Visit Ecology Stations! — Make a Family Craft! — Explore the Trails!  Explore Our Log Cabin! — Meet Live Animals!  FREE!  Donations encouraged. No reservations needed.

13th ~ Scout Fair at Reliant Arena from 10am – 3pm.  Scouts from 16 counties will unite in one place to showcase their Scouting skills. Sample the amazing dutch oven creations and other delicacies in the outdoor cooking area. Visit the midway with over 50 experts representing merit badges. Enjoy live entertainment, watch demonstrations, interact with participating booths from our community partners…pick up free offers.  Open to the public.  Free admission (Parking $10)

13th & 14th ~ The Woodlands Waterway Arts Festival in Town Center weekend event is a celebration of visual, culinary and performing arts. The Festival gives patrons the rare and special opportunity to meet and talk with artists from around the country, sample great food, watch the Art of Food demos, enjoy live music and entertain their families at our interactive ‘ARTOPOLY’ area.  Adult tickets are $10.00, a Weekend pass is $15.00, and children 12 and under are admitted for free. Cash ONLY at all gates and food vendors.

13th & 14th ~ Japan Festival at Hermann Park’s Reflection Pool and Japanese Garden.  Saturday 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. Sunday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Presented by the Japan-America Society of Houston. Each year, the event provides a rich blend of stage entertainment and an impressive array of food and beverages for everyone to enjoy.  Free admission.

14th ~ Earth Day Houston on Discovery Green.  The FREE one-day celebration will focus on the merits of mindful, sustainable living while educating and encouraging Houstonians to do their part to preserve, conserve and enhance our city and the Earth.  Earth Day Houston showcases more than 30 green non-profits, each educating visitors on how they can make Houston greener.

16th & 17th ~ Legends of Wind & Fire” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Produced by Express Children’s Theater.  The Quest for Fire, How Winter Was Born, Tring-Tring & Kai-Kai and Why Penguins Can’t Fly are myths and legends of the native American people from Argentina to Brazil.  Told by a Mapuche Indian and her cousin and brought to life by a cast of animal characters, these tales are rich with music, culture and lore. A bi-lingual English/Spanish production written by Edith Pross.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

20th ~ San Jacinto Day Festival and Battle Reenactment  from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. on the San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site in La Porte. Full day of music, entertainment, food, games and fun set amidst living history.  The Battle Reenactment, the most popular event of the day, dramatizes the decisive battle where General Sam Houston led his Texian soldiers to victory over the Mexican Army.  Admission is FREE.

20th ~ 20th Anniversary Vet School Open House at Texas A&M University.  A&M opens all the doors to the college and both hospitals and lets the public see exclusively behind the scenes of Texas A&M’s premiere veterinary school. Tours through both the small and large animal hospitals, exhibits, demonstrations by all kinds of animal groups (agility dogs, trick horses, etc.) and animal exhibits!  Petting zoo, a reptile room, even fistulated cows!  Free.

21st ~ Lure of the East”, a Bayou Bend Family Day.  Family Days are always free and open to the public.

27th ~ Meet the Museums of Zone 2.  Houston Museum District:  Asia Society Texas Center, Buffalo Soldiers National Museum, Czech Center Museum Houston, Holocaust Museum Houston, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, Houston Museum of African American Culture, Lawndale Art Center, and The Weather Museum are all featured.  Some, but not all, of the museums are waiving normal admission charges and are free for the day.

29th & 30th ~ Daniel and the Dreamcatcher” at Miller Outdoor Theatre.  11am.  Produced by Houston Grand Opera. Daniel and the Dreamcatcher tells the story of a young boy who must confront his fears of the giant living in his closet.  This show is a wonderful introduction to opera, and is perfect for students in grades 2 – 6.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre Children’s Performances are free.

Through June 2nd, The Art Car Museum hosts “full circle ~ a collage and assemblage exhibition of five artists whose works involve the appropriation and repurposing of materials. Logos, religious imagery, newspaper clippings, or found objects are employed in these intricately designed works. The exhibition considers purpose and intent and examines social responsibility.  Not all exhibits are appropriate for younger children.   See HFT’s review of our visit.

Fabergé: A Brilliant Vision at the Museum of Natural Science.  An additional $5 with a general admission ticket.  FREE for Museum members.  Simply hearing the name Fabergé evokes the splendor and extravagance of late 19th and early 20th century Imperial Russia. The House of Fabergé designed the renowned Imperial Easter Eggs for the Romanov family, as well as an array of objects d’art, luxurious gifts, and practical items for the wealthy patrons of Europe.

AD Players’ “The Jungle Book” will be on stage from April 16th – May 4th.  Mowgli has been raised and protected by the Seeonee wolf pack his entire life, but his mortal enemy, the vicious tiger Shere Khan, has a plan to scatter the pack. It will take all the wisdom Mowgli has learned from his friends Baloo the bear and Bagheera the panther to survive the tiger’s vengeful scheme. This thrilling adventure is about growing up and the strength of true friendship.  10:30am.  Cost is $12/pp.  Groups receive a discount.  See HFT’s review of AD Players.

Main Street Theater regularly offers children’s shows throughout the year.  Through April 6th your family can enjoy “Miss Nelson Is Missing” based on the book by Harry Allard.  Beginning April 17th – through May 24th they will be performing Charlotte’s Web.  School day performances are $5.50.  Weekend rates are higher.  Children under the age of 3 (including sleeping babies) are not allowed in the theater.

Through April 14th, Schlitterbahn Galveston is offering discounts to homeschool families that prepay for tickets.  Groups also receive free tickets for every 20 people registered.

If you have any events you’d like to recommend, please contact us.

Categories: Announcements, April, Grab Your Calendar | Leave a comment

A.D. Players ~ Children’s Theater

We’ve been attending the Children’s Theater performances at A.D. Players for a little over a year now.  Our family has enjoyed plays based on books like The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, The Velveteen Rabbit, and Bunnicula as well as adaptations of fairy tales like Cinderella and Thumbelina.  Lasting approximately an hour, these are the perfect introduction to theater for kids of all ages.

After the show, the cast remains on stage to answer questions from the audience about everything from acting and props to decisions about differences from the books.  While videography and photography are prohibited during the performance, the actors will line up after the performance and pose for pictures with your children/family.  The cast also gladly autographs a cast photo (purchased for $1) or your program.  We have found all cast members to be kind, engaging, and deeply interested in the children’s questions and comments.

IMG_1056

Recommended ages:  All ages.  We’ve attended with infants through high school with all having a wonderful time.  On occasion the length of a show may prove to be too much for some toddlers.

Anything we wish was different?  Because they do not sell concessions during the day time shows, it would be nice if they would allow snacks in the theater.  This would be especially helpful to families with small children.  Their current policy is bottled water only.

How do I set up a trip?  The shows are open to the public.  Individual tickets are $12/each and can be purchased online or by phone.  Group rates are available for $6/each with a minimum of 15 attendees.  A 25% deposit is required and final payment is due 2 weeks before the show.

A note about parking.  The “Three Maps to Bethlehem” production was held this year at the St. Luke’s Rotunda.   However, unlike years past, most shows are now at the Mainstage Theater.  There isn’t a lot of parking, so carpooling is highly recommended if feasible.  Parking is free.

What else is there to do nearby?  The Mainstage theater is located less than 5 miles (approx 10min drive) from Hermann Park and the Museum District.  If you want spend the whole day out, consider an afternoon at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston Museum of Natural Science, Houston Zoo, or any of the sights Hermann Park offers.

“The Jungle Book” will be on stage from April 16th – May 4th.  Mowgli has been raised and protected by the Seeonee wolf pack his entire life, but his mortal enemy, the vicious tiger Shere Khan, has a plan to scatter the pack. It will take all the wisdom Mowgli has learned from his friends Baloo the bear and Bagheera the panther to survive the tiger’s vengeful scheme. This thrilling adventure is about growing up and the strength of true friendship.

For those on a strict budget, or to just enjoy the performance again: “The Jungle Book” will also be at Miller Outdoor Theatre on May 30th at 11am.  All Miller Outdoor Theatre performances are free.

Categories: $10.01-$15, $5.01-$10, Elementary, Field Trips, High School, Houston, Middle School, Toddlers / Preschool | 4 Comments

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