more regions

KidsOutAndAbout Rochester latest e-newsletter

Click here to receive our free weekly e-newsletter every Thursday morning!

Rochester Family Newsletter August 28, 2014

Upcoming FREE events: 787 of them!


Upcoming concerts & performances
Upcoming festivals
14 Tips to Get Your Child Ready For Nursery School 
Ready for Back to School? We're Here to Help!
Catching ZZZ's to get A's: Getting Your Child on a Regular Back-To-School Sleep Schedule

Save the date for:

September 6-7: Clothesline Festival at Memorial Art Gallery
September 13: Greentopia festival (KOAA is media sponsor)
September 13: Stokoe Farms season opening weekend
September 15: Special one-day Geva sale for A Christmas Carol
September 18-27: Fringe Festival (KOAA is media sponsor)
September 27: Barktober Fest at Lollypop Farm (KOAA is media sponsor of their Puppy Playhouse kids zone)
September 27: Stokoe Farms 5K Run/2 Mile Walk: Trees for Troops

Dear KidsOutAndAbout readers:

What does a tough New Yorker do when she and her toddlers are confronted by a copperhead snake on the edge of a bluff in the Deep South? 

That, dear readers, is what we call a tease, and it's an important part of storytelling.

I just got back from a trip to Nashville to open our new Nashville site (tell your Tennessee friends, please!). I brought home all kinds of mementos: A daughter decked out in new black cowboy boots and hat; an appreciation for what it takes to correctly hit a small target seven yards away with a Colt .45 (I was mostly unsuccessful); and a deep love of a certain 1400-foot granite wall. But more than that, I brought back a new understanding of stories.

My friend Vanessa (pictured above with me, I bet you can guess who is who) lives near Nashville, and she and her family are the best storytellers I know. My daughter Ella and I spent a lot of time listening during this trip. It struck me, not for the first time, how the collected stories of a family are a powerful tool for family bonding. Their rhythms help both young and old maintain a connection to the past, and also convey messages about family values that are crucial to kids as they develop a sense of identity.


I used to listen for hours to Vanessa's late father Charles Tomlinson tell stories about his life as an Alabama forester (some of them are collected in his book A View From My Stump). In the past, I had thought that this was a talent particular to the Tomlinson family; Charles's three kids and their spouses have certainly continued the family art form. I did my best, during this trip, to discover their rules and rhythms, and now I think anyone could learn it with some practice. 

When telling a story, the first thing to do is decide what point you're trying to make, because a story without a message is... er... pointless. Then, think of an introductory tease (see my snake example above) that gives a hint of what the story might be about, but doesn't include the punch line. Develop the story, unfolding the details, drawing out the tension: The most clever storytellers are able to make it seem at first like the story they're telling has nothing to do with the tease, but of course, really it does. Then near the end, there is always the twist, the Ah-ha! moment, or the telling of the crazy unexpected curve ball. and finally, you need a closing statement of what was learned--best told humorously--which marries back up with the tease.

Telling stories is the art of making meaning of what you've experienced and then giving that meaning as a gift. Especially at this time of year, they are particularly important: Stories let you tie up your summer with a bow and preserve it for history, to help make this time a memorable chapter in your child's life story. Regardless of whether you have already launched into a new school year or are about to do so, think about the stories of Summer 2014, and tell them to each other. They can be gentle or dramatic, profound or quirky, funny or scary. Just remember: Stories, like love, increase in value for everyone the more they are given. 

--Debra Ross, Publisher

P.S. Some stories end with a bang; in the case of the poisonous snake above, that was literally the case. And in case you're wondering, that wasn't me, but Vanessa's sister-in-law, who originally hails from Queens, NY but nevertheless tells a great Southern story. Clearly, too, she has excellent aim and a steady hand. Don't ever hiss at her kids. 

2) The Wings are home Friday and Saturday for the final two home games of the regular season against the Buffalo Bisons, Triple-A affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays. With just a few games left, the Wings remain in the hunt for a second consecutive postseason berth.

Both Friday and Saturday are Fan Appreciation Nights, meaning the Wings will be giving away hundreds of prizes to our great fans throughout the night. On Friday (7:15 first pitch), the first 2,000 fans will receive a Stan Musial bobblehead courtesy of ESL Federal Credit Union. Be sure to stick around for a post-game fireworks show courtesy of the local area Honda dealers.    

The home slate wraps up on Saturday (7:05 first pitch) with a pair of giveaways to help you get ready for the offseason. The first 500 fans will receive a snow brush courtesy of Basch & Nickerson. Also, the first 5,000 fans will receive a 2015 Red Wings magnet schedule so fans can spend the winter planning their trips to Frontier Field next summer. The final fireworks show of the season courtesy of ESL brings the 2014 home schedule to a close with a bang!

3) Babes in Toyland auditions for age 7-14

RAPA is excited to announce auditions for BABES IN TOYLAND, a new production to take place in December at the Theatre on the Ridge! Young actors ages 7-14 are invited to audition on Sept 7 or 8 at RAPA’s East End Theatre. No appointment is needed. For more info, click here!


4) Boardwalk Arcade and Pinball Playfields

Strong National Museum of Play Exhibits Closing: Last weekend will be Saturday & Sunday, September 6 & 7
The upcoming week will be your last chance to enjoy seaside amusements at The Strong National Museum of Play in all their beeping, blipping, vibrant glory. Stroll through a scene that evokes the heyday of 19th- and early 20th-century resorts such as Coney Island and Atlantic City. Play classic arcade games, test your skill at redemption games, snap a photo with beach props and cut-outs, and much more. Then challenge yourself on historic and pioneering pinball machines and wrap your arms around Hercules, the world’s largest commercial pinball machine. View other unique artifacts, including pinball playfield prototypes, original sketches by pinball-machine designers, and more from The Strong’s collections.

5) Tomorrow, August 29, kids 16 and under get in free to the New York State Fair. All of the rest of the days, kids 12 and under get in free, so if you're thinking of bringing your teen, tomorrow is the day to do it! The New York State Fair runs through Monday, September 1, at the Fairgrounds in Syracuse.

Here are the schedules of daily events for ThursdayFridaySaturdaySunday, and Monday.

6) Jump Club will honor Kango memberships: Here are the details
Jump Club is now honoring Kango memberships and "play-a-lot packs"!  With the recent closing of Kango Play Center, many of their customers were left with credit for prepaid passes to the facility.  The local owners of Jump Club and Kango were able to work together and make arrangements for these customers to use this credit at Jump Club.  If you have Kango credit, please contact Jump Club by email at [email protected] to get set up.  Include your first and last name and "Kango" in the subject line and Jump Club will reply promptly with details.  No phone calls please.

7) The end of the summer is a great time to get your ducks in a row and health care appointments made for your kids. Many folks start wondering when their kids are in early elementary school whether they will need to have orthodontic treatment. It seems that kids are getting braces so young nowadays! Well, there is a reason for that, and our new article by orthodontist Terry Giangreco, 12 Early Signs of Signs of Orthodontic Problems in Childrenhelps parents learn what to look for, and shows why orthodontists recommend an evaluation by age 7. He also provides tips for finding the right orthodontic provider.

8) KidsOutAndAbout is excited about next month's Rochester Fringe Festival: There are more family-friendly performances than ever before. For the next 5 weeks, we'll be highlighting some of them here. 

Flower City Vaudeville

Sat., Sept. 20 10:30am, Sat., Sept. 27 10:30am • 60 mins • All Ages • $15, Kids $5 • RAPA’s East End Theatre

A family favorite at the first two Fringes, Flower City Vaudeville returns with dexterous mix of comedy, old-time radio mystery, musical interludes, and daring feats with whips and knives! The beautiful bygone days of variety entertainment come back to life with a wide array of whimsi­cal acts that will keep you on the edge of your seat. As City Newspaper says: “They don’t do showbiz like this anymore!”


9) Why does Stokoe Farms care so much about the Trees for Troops program?  Because of the giant bear hugs they get from returning soldiers who just happened to receive a real Christmas tree in the middle of the desert on  a desolate December night.  We may think we know what it’s like to sit in a tent, in a war zone during Christmas, but unless we have been there ourselves, we don’t.  So grab your spouse, your kids and your friends and Run OR Walk the 3rd Annual Trees for Troops 5K Run/2 Mile Walk at Stokoe Farms.  Saturday, September 27th at 9:30.  100% of runner entry fees goes directly to sending real Christmas trees to real soldiers!
T-shirts, cash prizes and tickets to Harvest Fest!

10) Back to school time? Really? Well, we've got you covered with some valuable KidsOutAndAbout articles.

Is your child just starting preschool? Worried about how it will go? Our Albany editor, Katie Beltramo, provides a new article 14 Tips to Get Your Child Ready For Nursery School that is particularly useful.

Trying to get back in the rhythm of school and get off to a good start? Katie has more tips: Ready for Back to School? We're Here to Help!

Sleep: Usually, kids need to wake up earlier during the school year than during the summer. Help your child do that with these practical tips: Catching ZZZ's to get A's: Getting Your Child on a Regular Back-To-School Sleep Schedule.

FoodPacking lunches is usually one of the worst back-to-school chores for a parent. But making sure kids actually EAT their lunches... that's another thing entirely. We have several articles to make both the planning and the execution easier.
Making a Nutritious Lunch Fun for Your Kids
Lunchboxes: Packing lunches that pack punches

11) SAVE US! 
Did you know we post lots of interesting events, articles, and ideas to Facebook that might not make it to this newsletter? 95% of our readers are on Facebook, but only about 10% actually see our posts in their feed. Here’s a way to get you that info beyond just “Liking” our Facebook page: Now you can SAVE it! If you head to our Facebook page and hit the 3 little dots next to “Message,” it now gives you the option to SAVE us. This will put a link to KidsOutAndAbout on the left-hand side of your Facebook feed so you can look at it at any time. SO useful!

12) Giveaways: We have a last giveaway of the summer: another set of tickets to Brown's Berry Patch. Head over to our giveaway page to enter

13) THURSDAY HIGHLIGHTS (Lots more here):

Thursday, August 28: Open Gym Time at TSE 10am-1pm at Unity Health System Total Sports Experience. Come on in and bring the kids for some fun and fitness on our indoor fields. We will provide some equipment, or you can bring your own. You provide the supervision. Cost: $5.00 per child (no charge for parent).

Thursday, August 28: KIDS EAT FREE EVERY DAY DURING AUGUST AT UNO at UNO Chicago Grill - Victor. Kids eat FREE every day in August at UNO with this coupon!

Thursday, August 28: Children's Theatre Auditions  at Best Foot Forward . Auditions for "Jungle Book Kids" Ages 4-9 and "The Princess and The Frog" Ages 4-17 Wednesdays August 27th and Thursday August 28th from 4-6pm. For more info go to

Thursday, August 28: Free Music Together demonstration classes!  at Once Upon A Tune Music Together, Webster NY. Singing, dancing, drumming, jamming together!

Thursday, August 28: Kids' Marathon - Kids Can Do 26.2! at YMCA - Southeast (Pittsford). A great way to keep your child active this summer and introduce them to the joy of running/walling. Children walk, run, or jog 25.2 miles on their own, and then run the last mile at the Victory YMCA Fun Run!

Thursday, August 28: Hochstein Walk-in Registration at Hochstein School of Music & Dance. No appt. necessary! See a Dean and get started on your summer/fall lessons!

14) FRIDAY HIGHLIGHTS (Lots more here)

Friday, August 29: Last weekend of Red Wings 2014 Season in Rochester! at Rochester Red Wings. Come cheer on the Rochester Red Wings in an evening game at Frontier Field! Family-friendly baseball at its finest!

Friday, August 29: American Red Cross Babysitter's Training  at Fairport Public Library. Provided by the American Red Cross, this course is designed to provide 11-15-year-olds the knowledge and skills necessary to safely and responsibly give care for children and infants.

Friday, August 29: Bring Your Kids To Fondue at The Melting Pot Restaurant. August 18th-31st KIDS EAT FREE with the purchase of any four-course adult entrée.* Introduce them to the wonderful world of melted cheese and chocolate.

Friday, August 29: Labor Day weekend - last chance for Summer Programs! at Seneca Park Zoo. Our Summer Programs come to a close on Monday, Sept. 1.

Friday, August 29: Rhythm Connect--Drum with Me! Parent Child Class at Rhythm Connect. Rhythm Connect--Drum with Me! Parent Child Class

15) SATURDAY HIGHLIGHTS (Lots more here)

Saturday, August 30: Free Music Together demonstration classes!  at Once Upon A Tune Music Together, Webster NY. Singing, dancing, drumming, jamming together!

Saturday, August 30: Supersonic Space at Rochester Museum & Science Center (RMSC). Find out how much you would weigh on other planets! Watch rocket launches and recreate constellations using K'NEX. Discover some of the amazing aspects of outer space. End your summer by seeing a star show at the Strasenburgh Planetarium.

Saturday, August 30: Skate and Shoot Youth at Bill Gray's Regional Iceplex. Come join us at the Bill Gray's Regional Iceplex for skate and shoot. It runs from 10:00-11:20AM for ages 17 and under . Check out our website for further details at

Saturday, August 30: END OF SUMMER RAPTOR VIEWING at Wild Wings, Inc.. Location: Wild Wings Inc. - Mendon Ponds Park Aug. 22-Sept. 2, 2014 10:00am-2:00pm Friday-Tuesday Amber, our 30-year-old Red Tail Hawk, can be seen perched in the summer sun close up along with many other amazing Birds of Prey! Free admittance!

Saturday, August 30: Edgerton Model Railroad Club Open House at Edgerton Model Railroad Club. Edgerton Model Train Display - Open the last Saturday of every month. Admission and parking are free, but donations are always welcome. Visit us online at: for further information. Open 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM.


16) SUNDAY HIGHLIGHTS (Lots more here)

Sunday, August 31: ALLBREED CAT SHOW SPONSORED BY NATIONAL SIAMESE CAT CLUB at Monroe Shorthair Cat Club. The National Siamese Cat Club will be holding their annual CFA cat show on August 30th and 31st at the Sweden-Clarkson Center 4927 Lake Road, Brockport. Hours 9:00am to 4:00pm. Adults $5.00, kids 5-12 are $3.00. PH:585-865-5220

Sunday, August 31: KIDS EAT FREE EVERY DAY DURING AUGUST AT UNO at UNO Chicago Grill - Victor. Kids eat FREE every day in August at UNO with this coupon!

Sunday, August 31: Native American War Canoe Tour  at Baycreek Paddling Center. One hour Native American themed tour in the BayCreek War Canoe. All ages welcome on this fun adventure!

Sunday, August 31: Native American War Canoe Tour  at Baycreek Paddling Center. One hour Native American themed tour in the BayCreek War Canoe. All ages welcome on this fun adventure!

Sunday, August 31: New York State Fair! at New York State Fair. The New York State Fair in Syracuse: from Aug. 21 to Labor Day, Sept. 1. 375 acres filled with fun, food, entertainment, animals and educational exhibits means it's tons of fun for the whole family!

17) The Bravo Family, the Wall Family, the Woods Family, the Smart Family, and the Walker Family are our fictional families that take their kids to activities based on their particular interests. Here is what they are up to this weekend.


The Walker family focuses on health and physical fitness.
Friday: New York State Fair! at New York State Fair
Saturday: New York State Fair! at New York State Fair
Thursday: Kids' Marathon - Kids Can Do 26.2! at YMCA - Southeast (Pittsford)



The Bravo Family loves the arts.
Friday: Rhythm Connect--Drum with Me! Parent Child Class at Rhythm Connect
Saturday: Labor Day weekend - last chance for Summer Programs! at Seneca Park Zoo
Thursday: Cirque en Vol at Seabreeze Amusement and Water Park



This is the Woods Family. They love nature and the great outdoors.
Friday: Animal Tales Drop-In Story Time at Lollypop Farm at Lollypop Farm, Humane Society of Greater Rochester
Saturday: END OF SUMMER RAPTOR VIEWING at Wild Wings, Inc.
Thursday: Summer Park Hours at Hidden Valley Animal Adventure



The Smart family focuses on educational and cultural activities.
Friday: American Red Cross Babysitter's Training  at Fairport Public Library
Saturday: Bring Your Kids To Fondue at The Melting Pot Restaurant
Thursday: Board Gaming Time at the Arnett Branch Library at Arnett Branch Library



The Wall Family prefers indoor activities.
Friday: Summer All Day LEGOs Day at Walworth Library at Walworth-Seely Public Library
Saturday: Edgerton Model Railroad Club Open House at Edgerton Model Railroad Club
Thursday: Welcome to Kindergarten! storytime at Brighton Memorial Library


18) And here's your weekend , presented day-by-day for your convenience...

Friday, August  29 
Saturday, August 30
Sunday, August 31

Debra Ross

Congratulations to all Rochester-area organizations who made the list of 2014's Top 20 Places to Take Rochester Kids

2014's Top 20:
1. Strong National Museum of Play
2. Seneca Park Zoo
3. TYKEs Theatre
4. Rochester Museum & Science Center
5. Seabreeze
6. My local library
7. Lollypop Farm
8. Stokoe Farms
9. Genesee Country Village & Museum
10. Bounce-It-Out
11. Jungle Jolt
12. Rochester Children's Theatre
13. Jump Club
14. YMCA
15. Darien Lake Amusement Park
16. Wild Wings Nature Center at Mendon Ponds
17. Jewish Community Center
18. Brown's Berry Patch
19. Wickham Farms
20. Clubhouse Fun Center

Click here to find out who won in each category!

© 2012, This information may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without the express written permission of