Rochester Family Newsletter December 6, 2012 | Kids Out and About Rochester

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Rochester Family Newsletter December 6, 2012

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KidsOutAndAbout newsletter
Thursday, December 6, 2012

Save the date for:

Now through Saturday!: Pirate Toy Fund main toy drive at the malls and Wegmans
December 7-8: Holiday Sleepover and Fun Night at Village Sports in Perinton
December 7-9: Peter Pan at School of the Arts (SOTA).
December 8: Meet LEGO Santa at ArtsROC in Pittsford
December 9: OrKIDStra for the Holidays
December 15: SENSE-ational Dady Brothers Concert for people of all ages & abilities at Hochstein Performance Hall


Dear KidsOutAndAbout readers:

The first time my kids and I attempted to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, we didn't even get past the Great Hall: Madison suddenly was blindsided by a migraine. She threw up right in front of the stone art from Ancient Egypt just inside the door, to the aghast stares of visitors from 100 countries. (Yes, I was that mom, protecting everyone from sliding in her child's vomit. You've probably been there yourself.) So we cut our losses and hightailed it out of the museum (refund gratefully accepted, yay to the Met). But I vowed that we'd return. And that next time it would be different.

This past weekend, we returned. And it was different. It was wonderful.

It wasn't just that Madison got enough sleep and nutritious food the night before (lack of sleep is her most common trigger). See, I prepared the kids in advance so that when we finally got back to the Met, we'd really make the most of it. I wanted their second trip to be even more memorable than their first...and in <ahem> a more positive way.

So what came out of our preparations and the trip itself is a list of Seven Magic Tips for parents for preparing a kid to visit an art museum, and helping them make the most of it once they're there (not just the best of it). How do you get a child to appreciate art? Here's my article of Seven Magic Tips! (And we also found proof that texting was around in the 18th century. See the photo in the article. I dare you to disagree.)

2) You'll see that one of the strategies for getting kids to appreciate art is by helping them become part of the experience. Well, during the holidays, there are plenty of ways to connect kids to art through experiences. Our Albany KidsOutAndAbout editor, Katie Beltramo, is single-handedly doing to resurrect the lost art of Christmas Caroling. Her new article on how to host the ultimate easy Christmas caroling party, Spread Holiday Cheer with Kids: Go Caroling in your Neighborhood, is making the rounds of the Internet, for good reason. It makes me wish Katie lived in MY neighborhood!


3) Remember, we have a huge vacation giveaway this month!  Win a weekend getaway to Syracuse!

Syracuse has a fantastic new indoor amusement park called Wonderworks (click here for Katie's review), and the folks at the Syracuse Convention & Visitor's Bureau we were so excited about Katie's review of Wonderworks and also her additional article detailing fun in Syracuse that they put together a package for our readers to WIN! Wouldn't that be a great holiday gift? The drawing is December 17. The Syracuse Family Fun Getaway Includes:


  • One night stay at the Genesee Grande Hotel
  • Admission for four to the following attractions:
  • WonderWorks
  • Adventure Canyon Climb
  • Pole Position Raceway
  • Rosamond Gifford Zoo
  • Museum of Science & Technology
  • Lights on the Lake Car Pass


To enter the drawing to win check out the details on our giveaway page!


4) Remember, the main time frame for the Pirate Toy Fund Holiday Toy Drive is this week: December 3 through 8 at the malls and at Wegmans. Drop off a new, unwrapped toy so that a needy child in our area can benefit at the holidays, and through the year. Click here for details.

5) This Sunday, December 9 at 2 p.m., OrKIDStra for the Holidays at Eastman Theatre will launch you into the holidays with a musical feast that has a modern twist. The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and the Genesee Valley Children’s Chorus will present a program that will feature the film accompanied live by the RPO. The Orchestra will also play Leroy Anderson’s popular Sleigh Ride; excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s ballet The Nutcracker; “March of the Toys” from Victor Herbert’s operetta Babes in Toyland; Mykola Leontovych’s beautiful “Carol of the Bells” and other selections. If you’ve been looking for ways to introduce your kids to classical music in a way that will connect with them, this is it! Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for children ages 12 and under. Get a 4-ticket family pack for just $40! Appropriate for ages 4 and up.

6) Want to give your family a unique holiday experience that they will remember all year long? For the next two weekends, Genesee Country Village & Museum is putting on their premier holiday event, Yuletide in the Country. On this candlelit walking tour, guests will visit eight festively decorated homes in the historic village and watch reenactments celebrating how Christmas evolved in the 19th century. Complete with visits from St Nick, a candlelit Christmas tree, beautiful costumed actors, holiday music, and knowledgeable tour guides, this is a unique Christmas experience for the whole family.  The village is at its best during the tour with cozy fires & 19th-century decorations! The tours last approximately 1½ hours, depart about every 15 minutes, and are reservation only (call 585-538-6822). Tour-goers can also delight in a delicious dinner buffet catered by D&R Depot in LeRoy for an additional fee.

7) Meet LEGO SANTA this Saturday at ArtsROC in Pittsford! From 10am-4pm on December 8, bring your empty 5¢ cans/bottles to donate to CANS for Kids, and get a free picture with LEGO Santa. You can also visit their giant Lego Batman and Robin, and build and take home a free Lego mini-Batmobile!

If you miss out on Dec. 8, you have another chance to meet Lego Santa on Dec 16: They'll have pizza with Lego Santa at Pizzeria UNO (Victor). Enjoy lunch while building a Lego Candy Cane tree ornament to take home, and take a picture with Lego Santa. There are two sessions--11am and noon--but limited seating is available so buy your tickets early! Tickets go on sale Monday at All proceeds from these events benefit CANsforKids, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising environmental awareness and promoting arts in education.

8) I love gifts (like LEGOs, come to think of it) that usher in many hours of active fun... I have found over the years that they have a lot more staying power than passive games and so constitute a bigger "bang for the buck." Rochester-area magician and magic educator Rich Stein is offering a special gift for kids and adults alike: A Rich the Magic Man Mystery Magic Set! It's a $70 value that Rich is offering for $40. Plus, if you purchase this gift by end of 2012, he will include two coupons, one for $20 off a Magic Camp next summer (he offers camps on the East Side and the West Side), plus one for $20 off the fee to have Rich the Magic Man at your child's next birthday party. To check out the kit and decide if it's in your child's immediate future, click here.

9) Many of our readers live on the west side, closer to Buffalo. Well, there's a great event this Sunday with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra! Sing along to holiday favorites, make your own artwork and enjoy milk and cookies with Santa at A Jolly Holiday with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9! Then, mark your calendars for the following weekend as the BPO hosts special guest Ronan Tynan (of the Irish Tenors!) during their First Niagara Holiday Pops Concert!  Family Concerts coming up in the new year: The Firebird with Madcap Puppets (2/17); a celebration of music  from South America, Africa and Asia in Dance, Drum and Fiddle(3/10); a musical journey on the Orient Express (4/14); and the trial of Peter vs. The Wolf (5/12). All family concerts take place at 2:30 p.m. on Sundays at Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle, Buffalo. Tickets are only $12 for adults and $7 for children. Introduce your children to the world of music for less than the cost of seeing a movie! Visit or call (716) 885-5000 for more information. **Psst...check out our spectacular ticket giveaways from the BPO below!!


10) Giveaways

Congratulations to some recent winners! Aimee from Fairport won the OrKIDStra tickets. Stages was kind enough to give away FOUR sets of tickets to this weekend's Holiday One-Act Shows (perfect for age 8 and up, to Sophie from Victor, Carrie from Rochester, AnnMarie from Rochester, and Heather from Penfield.

I love our giveaway page. We currently have giveaways for:

  • Tickets to the RPO's Gala Holiday Pops December 21-23
  • Tickets to the BPO's Holiday Pops December 16 starring Ronan Tynan
  • An overnight getaway for the whole family to visit the new WonderWorks in Syracuse!


11) Day by day upcoming FREE events (114 of them!)

12)  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: Holiday Sleepover and Fun Night! at Village Sports
Saturday: Holiday Home Tour 2012 at Cora Venishel
Sunday: Holidays at the Rochester Public Market at City of Rochester, NYA Christmas Carol at Geva Theatre Center






The Bravo Family loves the arts.
Friday: Two Holiday One-Acts: A Shoemaker & His Elves, plus A Rented Christmas at Stages (A Magical Journey Thru Stages)
Saturday: THE NUTCRACKER BALLET 2012 at Pittsford BalletMessiah at Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO)
Sunday: orKIDStra for the Holidays at Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO)




This is the Woods Family. They love nature and the great outdoors.
Friday: The Christmas tree experience at Friday-Sunday at Stokoe Farms at Stokoe Farms
Saturday: Dickens Christmas in Skaneateles: 19th Annual Celebration at Skaneateles, Town of
Sunday: Holiday Pet Photos at Lollypop Farm, Humane Society of Greater Rochester


The Smart family focuses on educational and cultural activities.
Friday: Pictures with Santa - Extended Store Hours at The Apple Shed
Saturday: Yuletide in The Country  at Genesee Country Village & MuseumFree pictures with Santa at Jungle Jolt
Sunday: Sunday Cinema at the Library: A Christmas Story at Rochester Public Library - Central Library of Rochester and Monroe CountyDino Days at Rochester Museum & Science Center (RMSC)


The Wall Family prefers indoor activities.
Friday: Festival of Trees at George Eastman House
Saturday: Hobbit Party "Second Breakfast" at Penfield Public LibraryKnuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Musical at TYKEs (Theatre Young Kids Enjoy)
Sunday: Rochester Children's Theatre: Seussical the Musical at Rochester Children's Theatre

13) There's LOTS more going on this weekend than I can possibly detail in this newsletter! So please check out these day-by-day links so you don't miss a thing!

Friday, December 7
Saturday, December 8
Sunday, December 9

Debra Ross

2012 Winners:

Favorite Kid-Friendly Museum: National Museum of Play at the Strong
Favorite Nature Center: Mendon Ponds Park / Wild Wings 
Favorite Children's Theater: TYKEs Theatre
Favorite Indoor Recreation Center: Kango Play Center 
Favorite Farm (agri-entertainment): Lollypop Farm
Favorite Amusement Park: Seabreeze
Favorite Professional Sports Team: Rochester Red Wings