All Ages

The Circus is in Town

Posted on July 21, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event |

A circus is coming to Waltham, but it is a circus with a unique twist.

The circus is called Circus Smirkus and every summer, a company of talented Smirkus Troupers go on a two-month performance tour around New England. The troupers are all kids (ages 12-17) with adult performance coaches on hand. They are from around the world and after a tough audition process, learn their routines and head out on the only full season American youth circus tour under their own big top – an European style one ring tent. During the season, these youth also learn about responsibility, teamwork and giving as they work together traveling in the Circus.

Circus Smirkus is presented in most towns by a local non-profit youth or community organization. The ticket sales and sponsorships they raise through the Circus Smirkus performances provide a major souce of income for their programs.

Limited tickets at the door so best to buy in advance, though there are some fine print details to review on their website regarding online ticket purchases.

Massachusetts performances are July 23-25, at Gore Place (Gore Street, Waltham). Performances on Friday and Saturday are at 2pm and 7pm. Performances on Sunday are at 11am and 4pm. Adult ticket prices are $25, which may be steep for some though similar to an IMAX ticket price for others. Kids under 2 are free and kids from 2-12 are $18.

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Family Fun Fest and Huge Yard Sale

Posted on July 16, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event |

Do you like fun? Do your kids like fun? Do you like yard sales too?

Image from Event Organizer

Then you will love the Family Fun Fest and Huge Yard Sale this Saturday, July 17th from 9am-3pm at the First Congregational Church of Milton. There will be over 20 families selling gently used children items and household items: Everything from baby gear, children’s clothing, toys, books, cds, videos, decorator items, electronics and more. (Cash only though.)

There will be great fun for adults too: silent auction, artists and crafters, local businesses, chair massages and more. For the kids? Where to begin…. There will be demo classes from Mama’s Move Center like Itsy bitsy Yoga (baby or toddlers) at 10:30am, Lil Sports (2yrs and up) at 11:15am and Musical Movement (walkers and up) at 12pm. There are a lot more exhibits and activities for the little ones.

There is plenty of free parking too!

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Free Friday Fun at the Boston Harbor Islands

Posted on July 15, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event |

Image from

This Friday, July 16, 2010, enjoy a free roundtrip ferry ticket to the Boston Harbor Islands – The Georges Island or Spectacle Island! Pack a lunch and enjoy a day at one of these great state parks.

Here are the specific details:

Tickets must be obtained at the Boston Harbor Island’s ticket kiosk located on Long Wharf North (near the Aquarium, and just up the dock from Christopher Columbus Park, next to Marriott Long Wharf).  There will be signs directing people to the correct location.  The ticket kiosk will officially open at 8:00 a.m. and will be distributed on a first come, first serve basis. Due to capacity constraints, each adult will be eligible to receive a maximum of 5 tickets.

The first ferry leaves Long Wharf at 8:30 a.m. The last ferry leaves the islands at 8:30 p.m.

(Note: Once tickets have been distributed for all seats on all boats, they will offer up to 2,000 vouchers for $8 boat rides for those turned away.  The Children’s Museum will also offer 50% off admission for those turned away.)

Spectacle Island

Just 15 minutes from downtown Boston, Spectacle Island features hiking, swimming, boating, and learning. Stop in at a “green” visitor center with exhibits about the history and evolution of the island. Go swimming on a sandy beach supervised by trained lifeguards, with a new rinsing area and changing station.  Rangers provide daily tours of the island. Walk on 5 miles of trails and take in panoramic views of the harbor and city from the tallest hill on the Boston Harbor Islands. Enjoy a brand new shade shelter at the top of the North drumlin, picnicking gazebos and more. Spectacle Island has Summer Shack food service and refreshments, toilets, and drinking water.

Take the opportunity to enjoy some great activities on Spectacle Island on the 16th:

· Morning Hatha yoga on the beach: 9:30am

· Face painting artists on the Visitor Center porch: 10:00am – 2:00 pm

· Ranger guided tours: 10am, 12pm, 2pm, 4pm

· Swimming at the life-guarded beach

· Evening Jazz with David Ehle on the Visitor Center porch: 4:00- 7:00pm

Georges Island

Georges Island is a 25 minute ferry ride from downtown Boston.  Georges is dominated by historic Fort Warren, a Civil War-era fort known for its graceful granite archways and reputed ghost, the Lady in Black. The fort and its grassy parade ground are a popular place for a scenic low-stress walk. Take a ranger-guided tour. Picnic under a shade tree, or grill using one of the islands many grilling areas. See the ramparts, fish off the pier or talk a walk on a rocky beach. Get exceptional views of the surrounding islands, Boston Light and Massachusetts Bay. Georges Island has new visitor center to greet day trippers, a new children’s playground, Summer Shack food service and refreshments, drinking water and toilets.

Events on July 16:

· Ranger guided tours of Fort Warren: 10:30am, 12:30pm, 2:30pm, and 4:30pm

· Civil War lawn games and costumed tours

· Plays in the Park: 11:30am and 1:00pm on the Fort Warren Stage

· Explore camping islands or take a boat ride via the interisland shuttle for $3/pp


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Action Family Network 15th Annual Family Fun Day

Posted on July 14, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event |

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Play at Patriot Place (Part Two)

Posted on July 14, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event |

Patriot Place (Foxboro) is having a fun filled summer for families. Every day, throughout the summer, local stores at Patriot Place are offering a variety of activities to beat summer boredom.

Each day offers a great list of activities. See my post on the schedule for Tuesdays and Wednesdays here.  For the rundown of the activities planned for the other days of the week, check this out (through August 18th unless otherwise noted)!


Bounce House Fun (11-12pm): The kids can have fun bouncing away in the North Marketplace area of Patriot Place.

Balloonist (1-3pm): Have balloons made into flowers or a special hat in the North Marketplace area of Patriot Place.

Face Painting (12-4pm): Have the kids’ face painted and/or make sidewalk art with chalk outside Life is Good.

Parachute Games and Obstacle Course (1-3pm): Brigham and Women’s/Mass General Health Care Center’s Rehabilitative Medicine team will utilize a parachute to play a variety of games while giving your arms and core a great workout. The obstacle course is designed for kids to test their speed, jumping, balance and climbing skills against the clock. Recommended for children age 2-12. Take the time to also take advantage of Blood Pressure and Blood Glucose screenings for you.


Bubble Show (11:30-12:30pm – July only): See a Bubble Show Music Party with music, bubbles and interaction! Best for kids 3-8 and weather permitting outside of Life is Good. (If raining, it will be in the 2nd floor lobby of the Showcase Cinema.)

New England Revolution Clinics (1:30pm – Friday July 23rd only): The New England Revolution Coaches will be hosting a free soccer clinic for kids 5-12 years old. Chances to win autographed goodies and tickets to a Rev game! Weather permitting so check in advance at 508-203-2100.


Kidtoons (12pm): On the 2nd Saturday and Sunday in August (08/14 & 15) enjoy a G-rated, animated movie for the kids: Strawberry Shortcake Glamberry Ball! Tickets are only $3.50.

Face Painting (12-4pm): Have the kids’ face painted and/or make sidewalk art with chalk outside Life is Good.

Rock the Plaza (times vary): enjoy some shopping and catch a concert or two throughout the day.


Rock the Plaza (times vary): enjoy some shopping and catch a concert or two throughout the day.

Enjoy the fun!

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Play at Patriot Place

Posted on July 12, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event |

Patriot Place (Foxboro) is having a fun filled summer for families. Every day, throughout the summer, local stores at Patriot Place are offering a variety of activities to beat summer boredom.

Each day offers a great list of activities. Here is a rundown of the activities planned for Tuesday and Wednesday this week (and every Tuesday and Wednesday through August 18th)!


CBS Scene Restaurant (11am): A costumed character will make an appearance and a special guest reads a story, with a short movie to follow. The event is free and filled with surprises.

Kidville (12:30-2:30): For guests who enjoyed the CBS Scene Storytime, enjoy a special rate of $8 ($5 for each additional child) for your child to run, climb, slide and tumble at the Kidville Playspace!

Kidville (2pm): Each week, Kidville offers a fun craft.  For July 13th, enjoy playdough bins with tools and trucks. The event is free and located outside the store. July 20: Paint the Wall, July 27: Paper Mosaics, August 3: Balloon Painting, August 10: Rubbing Plates, August 17: Mystery Project!

Life is Good (12-4pm): See the Putt Putt Golf and Dog Bowl Challenges while enjoying free balloons and stickers. (Free)

Bass Pro Summer Camp (12pm): Visit the Bass Pro Summer Camp website to see the list of demonstrations and events this store has to offer for kids. Lots of free fun.


Red Robin (9:45am):  Enjoy the reading favorite children’s stories each week followed by great activities for the kids with everyone’s favorite character… Red! Bring the family and be treated to a free kids meal (up to 2 per family).

Showcase Cinema (10am): Kids get free admission to a select children’s film when they present a book report. (Note: accompanying parents/guardians and children under six receive free admission and do not need to submit a book report.) For an official book report entry form, visit the theatre lobby or logo onto The movie schedule: July 14 – Charlotte’s Web, July 21 – Hotel for Dogs, July 18 – Bee Movie, August 4 – Monsters vs. Aliens, August 11 – Over the Hedge

Old Navy (2-4pm): Stop by Old Navy to have some fun with arts and crafts activities, and great summer sales.

Baskin Robbins (12-2pm): Visit the pastry chefs and learn the art of making frosting flowers and how to decorate a cake! Space is limited so please reserve your space by calling: 508-543-9031. Sessions will run: 12-12:30pm, 12:30-1pm and 1:30-2pm. If cake decorating is not your thing, stop by to enjoy a FREE Baseball Cap with a purchase of a 2-Scoop Sundae and a bottle of water!

Too busy on Tuesdays and Wednesdays this summer or are you looking for more fun? Then stay tuned for a listing of the fabulous events scheduled for Thursdays and Fridays this July and August!

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“July 4th” Fun on July 5th!

Posted on July 4, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event | Tags: , |

Extend the Independence Day holiday fun! On July 5th, enjoy a hearty pancake breakfast sponsored by the Natick Kiwanis Club. The breakfast takes place at the St. Paul’s Church from 7:00am – 12:00pm.

From Natick Friends of the 4th

After breakfast, pick a spot to watch the 55th Annual Parade. The Parade starts at the 9/27 Plaza and travels down Route 27 to Route 135 in Natick Center.  After the parade, head to the Natick Common (Junction of Rt 27 and 135) for treasures and bargains at the “Flea Market on the Common”.

If you are hungry, stop by the Bakery on the Common for a great sandwich or an iced coffee and stick around for the Concert on the Common. Boston Soul Revue will be playing at 7pm on the town green.

If mini-roller coasters are your thing, drive north to Lexington for the Lexington Lions Club Annual Fourth of July Carnival. From 1:00pm – 7:00pm, enjoy food, fun, games and rides. From 1pm-5pm is Kiddie Day and tickets are 33% off. Click here for a coupon.

Enjoy the festivities and if you know of other events on July 5th in your neighborhood, share here!

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Boston HarborFest Family Friendly Activities

Posted on June 28, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event | Tags: |

Image from Boston Harborfest

Fourth of July is just days away, and there are some fantastic events in Boston for the Independence Day celebration.

The main event is Boston Harborfest. Six days of summer fun in the city. Each day there is an event showcasing our country’s red, white and blue.

Wednesday, June 30

Kicking off Harborfest on Wednesday, June 30th, is a great activity for families. It is called Two by Sea: Family Fun. Held from 1pm-4pm at the Old North Church (193 Salem Street, North End), kids and adults can hear the story of the famous lanterns and make a paper lantern to take home. Admission is just $2 per family.

Throughout the day, there are free performance at the New England Aquarium Plaza called Whiskers, Flippers and Fun. Watch Harbor seals dive, glide and play during the 15 minute mini-shows held at 9:45am, 11:15am and 2pm. (Held everyday from June 30th-July 5th)

For older kids, you may like the Re-enactment of the Boston Tea Party.  Get onboard the Liberty Clipper at Central Wharf at the New England Aquarium, and raid a British ship with the Sons of Liberty. Throw tea in the harbor and fire the cannons. Admission ranges from $20-35 and reservations are recommended. The event starts at 3pm and ends at 5pm.

Thursday, July 1

On Thursday, July 1st, there are some great activities for kids. The first is the 16th Annual Children’s Day at Boston’s City Hall Plaza. From 10am-3pm, there is juggling, music, dance, ballons and more, and it is all free!

Other kid friendly events include the Colonial Children’s Faire at the Old South Meeting House (310 Washington Street, Downtown Crossing, Boston) from 11am-2pm.  Kids can play colonial games like snail, ninepins or jackstraws and kids can make their own patriotic craft. Admission is $6 for adults, $1 for kids 6-18, and kids under 6 are free.

What about a sail in the Boston Harbor? The LIBERTY Kids Sail is from 9:30am-11:00am on the Liberty Clipper docked at Central Wharf (next to the New England Aquarium). Adults are $30, but kids under 12 are free. Reservations are required.

Image from Boston Harborfest

Or how about Kids Debate the Tea Tax. Kids are either a Patriot or a Loyalist and debate about the tax on tea. Participate or observe at the Old South Meeting House (310 Washington Street, Downtown Crossing, Boston). Adult Admission is $6. Kids Admission is $1 (ages 6-18) or free for kids under 6.

The Whiskers, Flippers and FunCaptain Kidd’s Treasure Hunt, and the Reenact Tea Party are also taking place again.

Friday, July 2

On Friday, July 2nd, take a ferry from Boston to George’s Island for Plays in the Park for music, stories and dance by kids for kids. Shows are 11:30am-12:15pm or 1pm-1:45pm. The performance is free, but the ferry is $14 for adults and $8 for kids 3-11. Kids under 3 are free.

The Whiskers, Flippers and FunCaptain Kidd’s Treasure Hunt, Two by Sea: Family Fun and the Reenact Tea Party are also taking place once again.

Saturday, July 3

In addition to reoccurances of Whiskers, Flippers and FunCaptain Kidd’s Treasure Hunt, the Reenact Tea Party and the Two by Sea: Family Fun, there is also another kids event called How Did Colonial Children Play? The event is sponsored by the Boston National Historical Park (15 State Street, 2nd floor) where kids can play some old fashioned games: like marbles, jack straws, and London Bridge. Times are 11am-12pm and 3pm-4pm.

There is also The Redcoats are Coming. Starting at Long Wharf, the soldiers arrive
by sea at 11am and march up King (State), Queen (Court), and Tremont streets to the Boston Common by noon.  Then from noon-4:30pm on the Boston Common, Redcoats perform military demonstrations and skirmish with Colonial militia.

If military reenactments aren’t your thing, then head out to Fly a Kite on Spectacle Island from 1:30pm-2:30pm. Bring or make your own kite. (Materials provided while supplies last and there is a limited of one kite per family.) Admission ranges $8-$14 for ferry fare.

There are more fantastic events throughout the long weekend, especially for adults. So check out the official Boston Harborfest website for more details and ideas.

Have a great holiday and many thanks to all our past and present servicemen and women!

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Boston Bash

Posted on June 18, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event | Tags: , , |

Head to the South End Branch of the Boston Public Library this Monday, June 21st, from 3:00 – 5:00 PM (685 Tremont Street) for free ice cream, kids music and a book signing.

Photo Credit (

The Community Music Center of Boston and Union Park Press is hosting this FREE event to celebrate the publication of “Boston Baby: A Field Guide for Urban Parents”.  Activities include free interactive music and movement stations (for ages 5 months – 7 years!) with instructors from Community Music Center of Boston (an accredited non-profit South End music school now in its 100th anniversary year), FREE Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream, and a book signing by Union Park Press author Kim Foley Mackinnon!

Sounds like a great Monday afternoon to me!

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Fabulous Father’s Day Freebies

Posted on June 16, 2010. Filed under: All Ages, Event | Tags: |

It is my husband’s first Father’s Day so it would be fun to splurge on something super duper for him. Yet, why should I fork over some fives when there are super somethings for free?!

Here is a quick list of fabulous Father’s Day freebies. But check back. More may be added! And if you know of a great find, let me know in the comments below.

So treat your Dad or your husband on behalf of the kids, but stash your cash. (Shhh, don’t tell him!)

  • Bowling| Father’s Bowl Free on Father’s Day at Kings, Boston. Call for reservations: 617-266-2695
  • Ice Cream| Free Cup or cone for Dads on Father’s Day at any Boston area TCBY
  • Gourmet Dining| Dads get a complimentary entree for brunch (11am-2pm) and dinner (5:30pm-10pm) on Father’s Day at the Fairmont Copley Oak Room. Call for reservations and details: 617-267-5300
  • Pub Grub| Dad’s eat free at Smokey Bones on Father’s Day. Just become a Bones Club Member (no cost) and the offer is valid with the purchase of another meal
  • Zoo| Free admission to the Stone Zoo (Stoneham) or the Franklin Park Zoo (Boston) for all Dads on Dad’s Day.
  • Art| The Museum of Fine Arts (Boston) is hosting a free Community Open House for all on Sunday, and includes entry to all special exhibitions, the permanent collection, guided tours and family activities. The DeCordova Museum (Lincoln) has free admission for the Fathers.
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