The new issue of Columbus Parent starts arriving on Monday! The theme for October is “Having a Baby” and we tried some new things that we hope you’ll enjoy. Instead of the kids, we “well-dressed” the expectant mom. We’ve also amassed a very comprehensive directory of the Central Ohio hospitals where people give birth (with useful data on each) plus listings for the kinds of services and products that expectant families need (prenatal massage, anyone?). And the centerpiece/showpiece of our issue and our website is the in-depth experience we enjoyed following Maddy Bumgarner, a truly extraordinary labor and delivery nurse, during a day in her life (and met a new life who arrived that day).
As always you can use our zip-code searchable database http://www.columbusparent.com/content/pages/locations.html to find a pick-up location near you!
With the Buckeye football season in full swing, you and your family may want to go tailgating before a game.
You can keep kids from getting bored at tailgating parties by planning games for them to play. Try adding a football theme to some of their old favorites — hot potato with a Nerf football, a relay race where participants must don football gear before running their leg of the race fun, BINGO with football vocabulary or Simon Says with ref hand signals.
Be sure to serve some kid-friendly snacks. Let kids decorate cookies or cupcakes with scarlet and gray frosting and sprinkles.
Make sure you choose a tailgating spot where kids have a safe place to play.
- Melissa Kossler Dutton
The time to vote has come in Columbus Parent’s Win the Cover contest!
We received a mind-boggling 394 entries in all and, starting at 12 noon today, you will be able to view the entries and register your votes.
First of all, just to explain something about the entries received: Some people entered more than one photo of the same child. We used only the first photo submitted.
Now about the voting: Use the links on the contest page to browse the photos. The photos have been divided in to eight groups for easier viewing. The order and grouping of the photos are random.
In order to vote, click on a thumbnail photo and then follow the directions under the photo to register your vote (basically you vote by entering a comment under the photo and including the word “VOTE” in it). You can vote for as many photos as you would like, but if you vote more than once for the same photo, only the first vote will count.
Votes will be accepted until 12 noon on Monday, Oct. 17. We have extended the voting period until then to reflect the delay we imposed before starting voting. At that time, no more votes will be taken. We will tally the votes (and eliminate any duplicates). If any voting irregularities are found (including but not limited to the creation of multiple email addresses on the same computer and IP address) or any unsportsmanlike behavior occurs which reflects poorly on an entrant, we will take appropriate action to correct for it, including disqualifying an entry if necessary.
Each entry has its own unique URL address which you can copy and share with family members and friends, so that they can also vote. You may also use the "Share this" button to share the link on your favorite social network.
The top five vote-getters will be determined based on the official approved votes, and we will announce who the finalists are no later than 12 noon on Monday, Oct. 24. Our panel of experts will then review the five finalists’ entries and determine a winner. Their decision will be final, and we will announce it on our website and on our Facebook page no later than 12 noon on Friday, Oct. 28.
If you have any questions about the process, please send them to: firstname.lastname@example.org and include the words “Cover Contest” in the subject heading.
LAST REMINDER: Voting starts tomorrow at noon for our Win the Cover Contest!
And now, from our intrepid games reviewer, Shawn Sines, comes his assessment of a timely title — Spider-Man: Edge of Time.
Spider-Man: Edge of Time (T for Teen, $60, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii)
Last year Spidey games made a great comeback after a few lackluster movie tie-ins with Spider-Man Shattered Dimensions. That title featured four different versions of the wall-crawler, each with distinct powers and different gameplay.
“Spider-Man: Edge of Time,” which is made by the same team of talented folks, drops the roster down to two – Amazing Spider-Man and his futuristic counterpart, Spider-Man 2099.
Edge of Time presents an altered future set in motion by the premature death of Peter Parker and leading to a dark and dangerous change to Spider-Man 2099's reality. So, 2099 hops a time tunnel back to the modern era and teams up with his predecessor to prevent Peter's demise. “Spider-Man: Edge of Time” is a fun action game that shines a spotlight on one of the best alternate versions of the arachnid superhero character.
It drives me crazy when I open my kids’ lunch boxes and see that they barely touched the food. Not only is it wasteful, I hate the idea of them going back to class hungry.
I've tried numerous things to make them more interested in their packed lunches and finally hit on a winner.
As often as possible, I send sauces or condiments in their lunch for them to add to the food. If my son has left-over stir fry, I throw in a mini-package of soy sauce. When I pack mac-n-cheese in his thermos, I include a packet of hot sauce. I'll pack pickles for a ham sandwich.
I even found a tiny bottle of parmesan cheese to send with spaghetti.
My son loves seasoning his food to his taste. I love seeing the food containers come home empty.
-Melissa Kossler Dutton
REMINDER: Due to the high number of entries in our Win the Cover Contest, the voting period will not begin until 12 noon on Wednesday, Sept. 28. It had originally been scheduled to start on Monday, Sept. 26, but we feel it would be best to take two full days after the entry period ends on Sunday, Sept. 25, to set up and test the voting platform. The voting will continue, as planned, until Oct. 15. Five finalists will be selected, based on vote totals, and our panel of experts will select the winner to appear on our December cover. But we’ve already got plans brewing to feature many of the submitted photos in our December issue and in an online slide show — that’s how great they are!
Horseback riding isn’t just for kids. If you’re itching to hop on a horse and ride, here’s your chance. YWCA Camp Willson in Bellefontaine has a series of horseback riding classes specifically for women.
On Sunday afternoons during the month of October, visit Camp Willson’s sprawling 455 acres for the Adult Women’s Horseback Riding Club. From 2-4:30 p.m., female instructors will teach the group how to ride and enjoy the trails the campgrounds have to offer. With more than 45 horses on-site, there’s bound to be a horse that fits your skill level. All riding levels are welcome.
The cost for the five-week club is $200, or $45 for each individual session. Sign up by calling 1-800-423-0427. For more information regarding Camp Willson and its camps and activities, visit their website: ywcacampwillson.org.
And another reminder: Due to the high number of entries in our Win the Cover Contest, the voting period will not begin until 12 noon on Wednesday, Sept. 28. It had originally been scheduled to start on Monday, Sept. 26, but we feel it would be best to take two full days after the entry period ends on Sunday, Sept. 25, to set up and test the voting platform. Voting will continue, as planned, until Oct. 15. Five finalists will be selected, based on vote totals, and our panel of experts will select the winner to appear on our December cover. But we’ve already got plans brewing to feature many of the submitted photos in our December issue and in an online slide show — that’s how great they are!
The EarthDance Festival is making its way to Ohio Wesleyan University’s campus for the third year in a row on Sept. 24. Since 1997, the festival celebrated worldwide promotes peace through various genres of music.
Bring the family along to the celebration, where there will be live entertainment including belly dancing and Israeli folk dancing. There will also be crafts and fun for kids, and a dinner for $5 a person.
This year, EarthDance is partnering with Delaware’s Stratford Ecological Center, and a portion of the proceeds will benefit the 236 acre farm and nature preserve. The center offers a myriad of outdoor activities like hiking and family camps.
EarthDance is from 4-10 p.m. in Ohio Wesleyan’s Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave., Delaware. More information on the festival and its goals can be found on their website: earthdancenetwork.com.
- Heather Weekley
From The Columbus Dispatch’s arts editor, Nancy Gilson, comes a cornucopia of suggestions for great new kids’ books!
Young readers will find themselves informed and entertained by three new historical picture books -- especially one written with tongue in cheek.
“Big Wig: A Little History of Hair” (Scholastic, 48 pages, $18.99, ages 8 to 12) by Kathleen Krull, illustrated by Peter Malone
Krull won the 2011 Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award for her body of work, so she probably gets her facts straight.
And what fun she has with the facts in her newest book.
She begins with prehistoric Africa, when everybody had hair all over their bodies -- until evolution determined we need it only on our heads for protection from the sun. She goes on to spill more surprising -- and, sometimes, outrageous -- information about our crowning glory.
Aristotle rubbed goat urine on his head to cure his baldness; and Hippocrates, the father of medicine, tried a brew of opium, wine, green olive oil, horseradish and pigeon poop. (Presumably, neither worked.)
Krull writes in a smart tone nicely countered by Malone's silly gouache paintings.
“The Bravest Woman in America” (Tricycle, 32 pages, $16.99, ages 5 to 9) by Marissa Moss, illustrated by Andrea U'Ren
During her 69 years of life, Ida Lewis rescued more than 18 people while tending the Lime Rock Lighthouse in Newport, R.I.
As a young woman, she assumed the job from her ailing father, keeping an eye out for sailors in trouble.
Moss tells her story in brief, clear text; and U'Ren provides stunning watercolor, ink and acrylic paintings. The best one is a scene of Ida watching from the lighthouse as four boys tip over in a wave-tossed sailboat.
She rescues them, of course.
“Dream Something Big: The Story of the Watts Towers” (Dial, 36 pages, $17.99, ages 5 to 9) by Dianna Hutts Aston, illustrated by Susan L. Roth
Anyone who has seen the Watts Towers in Los Angeles will appreciate how they came to be.
The three artistic structures -- the tallest is nearly 100 feet -- are a marvel of pottery chips, tiles, seashells and glass fragments, all collected and fashioned into towers by Simon Rodia, an Italian immigrant who barely spoke English.
Roth's collage-style illustrations mirror the towers' eclectic style of construction; one scene includes fragments of black-and-white photos of the real towers.
Aston doesn't delve much into Rodia's personal story: His towers were vandalized (probably by Watts residents who didn't appreciate them), and he abruptly left the neighborhood in 1955 -- 34 years after he had begun the project.
The story, though, pays homage to Rodia's masterpiece and encourages children to follow their creative visions.
* * * * * * * * *
The father of the title character in Roald Dahl's Matilda -- a bully -- tells her, "I'm right and you're wrong, I'm big and you're small, and there's nothing you can do about it."
Oh, the lives of the young.
Fortunately, contemporary children's authors (as did Dahl) champion little people, producing fun picture books for those too young to read.
Toddlers and preschoolers should enjoy these five:
“Everything I Need To Know Before I'm Five” (Schwartz & Wade, 36 pages, $17.99, ages 1 to 5) by Valorie Fisher
The brilliantly colored concept book covers numbers, opposites, shapes, colors, weather and the alphabet with appealing photos of toys.
The few words and letters used should spark conversation between children and grown-ups.
“I Am Small” (Scholastic, 22 pages, $8.99, ages 1 to 3) by Emma Dodd
Children will identify with the starring chubby penguin who feels his size in an icy land: "The world is big and I am small. . . . The ocean is deep and I am small."
So goes his world as he experiences wind, stars, snow and -- finally -- the enveloping love of his parent.
“Maisy's Amazing Big Book of Learning” (Candlewick, 48 pages, $14.99, ages 2 to 5) by Lucy Cousins
The popular mouse stars in a colorful concept book, a companion to other Maisy titles. Here, Maisy encounters questions about numbers, the senses, noises and more. Clever flaps reveal answers.
“Why Do I Have To Make My Bed? Or, a History of Messy Rooms” (Tricycle, 32 pages, $16.99, ages 4 to 7) by Wade Bradford and Johanna van der Sterre
The age-old complaint spans many generations -- and none of the children ever gets an answer.
The premise allows author Bradford and illustrator van der Sterre to describe household and farm chores from modern days back to cave days, with plenty of humor to go along with the facts.
“The Wicked Big Toddlah Goes to New York” (Knopf, 40 pages, $16.99, ages 4 to 8) by Kevin Hawkes
A couple from Maine -- complete with New England accents and a little boy the size of the Statue of Liberty -- take in Big Apple sites.
When Toddie is separated from his normal-sized parents, he is fine on his own until he realizes he's lost.
In his sequel to The Wicked Big Toddlah, Hawkes has great fun with his enormous character and his not-so-subtle theme of empowering little ones.
Roald Dahl would approve.
Get your om-nom-noms on a night of pizza-based fun! The annual Slice of Columbus takes place tomorrow evening, Sept. 21, at Huntington Park from 5-10 p.m. (It’s the place where the Clippers play, dontcha know)
You can enjoy pizza from local shops and vote on your favorite. Activities will include live music and various children’s activities. Proceeds from the event will benefit Nationwide Children’s Hospital.
Tickets cost $15 for an individual at the event or $35 for a family pass (which includes admission for up to two adults and three children, plus gives you five Pepsi products). Kids ages 5 and under are admitted free.
For more information, go to https://giving.nationwidechildrens.org/Page.aspx?pid=282.
Don't pack away those swimsuits just yet; there is still plenty of time for young water enthusiasts to whet their appetite for fun at Worthington City Pool's new Lagoon.
The splash pad was just unveiled this spring and will remain open through September and October, weather permitting. The spray ground is designed for toddlers up to pre-teens, but “kids” of all ages are welcome to jump in!
The splash pad is free to those who have summer 2011 pool memberships, for all others the cost is $1. The plan is to open the Lagoon again next April, two months prior to the opening of the main pool.
Learn more at www.worthingtonpools.com/splashpad.
Instead of spring cleaning, COSI is taking care of business in the fall! After COSI’s annual maintenance, the science center will celebrate with a Community Open House on Sept. 18.
Round up the family and visit COSI between 10 a.m.-7 p.m. to enjoy exhibits, shows and 3D films. COSI’s current film is ‘Ultimate Wave Tahiti 3D,’ which give viewers a surfing experience. The center boasts an impressive list of exciting exhibits including Adventure, Space and Lily Pad. The exhibits provide hands-on interaction and learning for kids. The Community Open House also promotes back to school fun with resources and information for parents and children.
COSI is located Downtown Columbus near Genoa Park. Parking during the Community Open House is a reduced rate of $2 a car. Check out cosi.org for more information about the exhibits and activities.
Embrace the start of the autumn season and support autism at the Leeds Farm 5th Annual Autism Harvest Festival on Saturday, Sept. 17. From 8-10 a.m., families with children who have autism can visit the pumpkin farm (located at 8738 State Route 36, Ostrander) to enjoy fall activities and receive information and resources regarding autism.
Leeds Farm opens to the public at 10 a.m. on that Saturday, and remains open on weekends through the end of October. The harvest season fun includes hayrides, zip lines and farm animals. And get those carving tools ready: Also available are pumpkins and gourds for picking!
More information about Leeds Farm and their harvest weekends can be found at www.leedsfarm.com.
The Jack Hanna Fall Fest continues this weekend, Sept. 17 and 18, at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium.
The fall-celebratory festival is filled with special activities and attractions such as pumpkin carving, country music, kid-friendly entertainment and other seasonal treats.
And Columbus Parent has partnered with the Zoo and Fifth Third Bank for a special ticket offer. Just go to any Fifth Third bank, and you can purchase a family four-pack of tickets (two adults and two kids) that also includes free parking for $30. That’s a savings of more than $20 over regular admission prices.
For more information about the Jack Hanna Fall Fest, just go to www.columbuszoo.org.
Need a fun, inspirational weekend away? Refresh and recharge at the YMCA Camp Willson Women’s Weekend. Camp Willson’s beautiful outdoor landscape in Bellefontaine plays host to the getaway, which takes place Sept. 16-18.
Beginning on Friday evening, ladies can partake in a myriad of activities. If you’re feeling sporty, options include boating, horseback riding and hiking. Enjoy arts and crafts activities or simply relaxing with spa treatments like massages and facials.
Women’s Weekend guests stay in the Camp Willson cabins, which accommodate between 7 and 14 women. Sign up by yourself, or recruit friends and receive $10 off the registration fee. Cost for the weekend is $148, and includes meals. To register, call 1-800-423-0427 or find a form online at ymcacampwillson.org.
It's time for the next big giveaway contest at Columbus Parent. From today through this Friday, we'll be taking entries for TWO family four-packs of VIP tickets to The New Albany Classic (it's on Sunday, Sept. 25).
What do VIP tickets get you? Well, first of all, general admission tickets for two kids and two adults to The New Albany Classic, which is an all-day event packed with world-class equestrian competition, food and family fun. Your tickets will also get you into the Tween Brands Concert at the Classic, which this year features the musical talent of Big Time Rush, Greyson Chance and New Hollow (ask any tween within screaming distance who these guys are if you don't know). But, wait! There's more! Your VIP credentials will get you into the VIP concert-viewing area (SQUEE!) and backstage photo ops with the aforementioned musical talent (THUD — that's your tween passing out with excitement if you win).
To enter, just click here. Two winners will be randomly drawn from all eligible entries after Friday, Sept. 16, and they will need to pick up their prizes in person and with photo ID before Sept. 25.
You may not find a bunch of clown cars, floats, or candy, but you will find you will thoroughly enjoy this parade of thoroughbreds, work horses, and plow ponies. Delaware has hosted the All Horse Parade for more than a quarter-century now.
The Sunday event kicks off the Delaware County Fair (which begins on Saturday, Sept. 17 and runs through Saturday, Sept. 24). The parade features more than 500 horses pulling carriages, sleighs, wagons, a fire engine, even a hearse.
The parade is billed as the largest all-horse, non-motorized vehicle parade east of the Mississippi.
Admission is free, and while you'll want to watch where you walk if you cross the parade route, there are plenty of volunteer “scoopers” on patrol!
Don't labor over lunch this Monday! Head on over to The Hills Market's Annual Labor Day Hog Roast. The outdoor basket lunch includes a smoked Ohio pulled pork sandwich, nestled alongside Hills' Famous Baked Beans and Hills' Own Coleslaw. Rain or shine, enjoy the feast while listening to live bluegrass music. No reservations required, just a hungry stomach. (If it rains, there is plenty of covered seating available.)
The Labor Day Arts Festival in Upper Arlington is celebrating its 45th year with plenty of arts and crafts, entertainment and food!
The annual kid-friendly event is the perfect place to spend time as a family while celebrating the three-day weekend. The festival takes place on Monday, Sept. 5 at Northam Park, 2070 Northam Rd. in Upper Arlington. From 10 a.m.-5 p.m., more than 200 artists will have their work showcased, and entertainment performances include the Upper Arlington High School marching band and BalletMet. Kids can partake in fun craft activities like printmaking and balloon sculptures.
An added bonus: This year brings Columbus area food carts to the Festival! Enjoy treats from Cheesy Truck, Leslie's Creperie and The Local Munch Box, among others.
Admission to the Labor Day Arts festival is free. Uoah.net/index has a complete schedule of the weekend events.