Kids’ Almanac: (Feb. 11-18)

(Photo by Kate Ter Haar)

(Photo by Kate Ter Haar)

“Who, being loved, is poor?”
– Oscar Wilde


Swing a foam sword, hoot like an owl, sculpt some ice or check out model trains


 It’s bird-count season!

Think nature is for the birds? Well, this weekend you can help science by counting them! Simply register at, then count any birds that you see in a 15-minute block on any one or more days from Friday, February 12 to Monday, February 15, using a checklist for each date and location. Then submit your findings! This is doable for all ages.

Take some photos while you’re at it, and enter the GBBC Photo Contest for some great birdfeeders and other bird accessory prizes. Categories are Overall, Bird in Its Habitat, Behavior, Group Shot (two or more birds), Composition and People Enjoying Birds. To learn more about this terrific and important hands-on event, visit

Prefer to do your citizen science with a group? On Saturday, February 13 at 9 a.m., join the Columbia Land Conservancy for a bird count, including a presentation about birds and their calls, binoculars and bird guides. For more information, visit If your kids aren’t that enthused about birds yet, stop by the Forsyth Nature Center on Lucas Avenue in Kingston and touch base with caretaker Mark DeDea, and watch what happens. Happy birding!



Valentine’s Day Eve date night at Poughkidsie

Wish you could go on a date without having to clean up for a babysitter? This Saturday, February 13, drop off your kids ages 3 to 8 years at Poughkidsie’s Valentine’s Day Eve for playtime, movie fun and pizza (allergen-free available!). And you get to enjoy a grownup dinner with your love, including special discounts at Poughkidsie partner restaurants. Valentine’s Day Eve takes place from 6 to 9 p.m. at Poughkidsie at a cost of $29 per child, or $49 for two siblings, plus discounts for Poughkidsie members.

Poughkidsie is located at 50 Springside Avenue in Poughkeepsie. For reservations or more information, call (845) 243-3750 or visit


Wayfinder “Living Legends” event at Zena’s Sudbury School

A full day of imaginative adventure: Got a kid who’d love to connect in a fantasy world that he or she helps to create? The Wayfinder Experience invites your child aged 8 years and up to attend “Living Legends” this Saturday, February 13 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the Hudson Valley Sudbury School. Participants learn games with swords, magic and improvisational theater skills, and the day culminates in a production with costumes, foam weapons and a wonderful storyline.

The cost is $40 per person, but newcomers pay only $10, and others can get $10 off for bringing a new person. The Hudson Valley Sudbury School is located at 84 Zena Road in Kingston. For reservations or more information, e-mail [email protected] or visit


Ice Sculpture Festival in Tannersville

Wouldn’t you love to try ice sculpting just once? You could have your chance this weekend! Simply block out your schedule for the Tannersville Ice Sculpture Festival this Saturday, February 13 to register between 9:30 and 10:30 a.m. at Maggie’s Krooked Café, then sculpt for a few hours, then enjoy the awards ceremony at 3:30 p.m. This event takes place along Main Street in Tannersville, is free and open to the public, and ice blocks are available for purchase.

Maggie’s Krooked Café is located at 6000 Main Street in Tannersville. To participate or to reserve an ice block, call (518) 858-9094.


The Stinky Cheese Man at Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck

If you’ve heard of Cinderumpelstiltskin, then you have probably read Jon Scieszka’s hilarious children’s book, The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales. His retelling and rearranging of traditional fairy tales turns the stories upside down and connects directly with kids through clever humor and funny plot twists, and it won a Caldecott Award.

And now you can take your family to see a staged production of this work! On Saturday, February 13 at 11 a.m., the Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck presents The Stinky Cheese Man. I suggest reviewing some of these favorites with your crew before you go, so they can get the most out of the jokes: Story of Chicken Little; The Princess and the Pea; The Ugly Duckling; The Frog Prince; Little Red Riding Hood; Jack and the Beanstalk; Cinderella; Rumpelstiltskin; The Tortoise and the Hare; and The Gingerbread Man. Tickets cost $7 for children, $9 for adults and seniors. =

The Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck is located at 661 Route 308 in Rhinebeck. For tickets or more information, call (845) 876-3080 or visit To learn more about the author, visit


Washington’s birthday at Washington’s Headquarters

This weekend, celebrate America’s favorite Pisces, whose qualities included being creative, compassionate and loving and caring for the world. It’s George Washington’s birthday, and the Washington’s Headquarters State Historic Site hosts festivities and special events from 12 noon to 4 p.m. this Saturday through Monday, February 13 to 15. Each day begins with our first president cutting his own birthday cake, and activities include historical presentations, live music, military demonstrations, a hands-on bookplate craft and more, including the chance to meet with the general in his office. Admission is free, although donations are welcome.

The Washington’s State Historic Site is located at 84 Liberty Street in Newburgh. For more information and a complete schedule, call (845) 562-1195 or visit or


Gardiner Library presents Bill Robinson’s World of Animals

Do your kids have a love of animals? How about taking them to an interactive animal presentation this Valentine’s weekend? On Saturday, February 13 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., join Bill Robinson’s World of Animals at the Gardiner Library. The program features live animals, and it’s free and open to the public.

The Gardiner Library is located at 133 Farmers’ Turnpike in Gardiner. For more information, call (845) 255-1255 or visit To learn more about the presenter, visit


Ellenville Library hosts “O is for Owls”

“Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you?” Did you recognize this peculiar phrase as the call of a barred owl? You can learn all about these nocturnal feathered friends this Saturday, February 13 at “O is for Owls” at the Ellenville Public Library. The program takes place from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. and is recommended for children ages 5 to 10 years.

The Ellenville Public Library is located at 40 Center Street in Ellenville. For more information, call (845) 647-5530 or visit



Fishkill Model Train & Railroad Hobby Show

It’s a big weekend for some of you, seeing Deadpool and also celebrating Valentine’s Day; but here’s a cool family event to check out: the Fishkill Model Train and Railroad Hobby Show. This Sunday, February 14 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Fishkill Recreation Center, enjoy a variety of model train displays and layouts, kids’ activities, LEGO city exhibits, Thomas the Tank Engine, dealer and vendor tables and raffles and prizes all day long. Whether your kids like The Little Engine that Could, or they’re building their own models, this is a fun outing for all of you. Admission costs $7 for adults and $2 for kids under 12.

The Fishkill Recreation Center is located at 793 Route 52 in Fishkill. For more information, call (845) 616-0931 or visit



Recycled art workshop at Hudson Opera House

Your family will never see recycling bin contents the same way again after attending this week’s “Recycle, Reinvent, Reimagine” winter break art intensive at the Hudson Opera House. This is exactly why I never want to throw anything out! On Monday, February 15, Wednesday, February 17 and Friday, February 19 from 1 to 4 p.m., join Ken Polinskie, master paper artist, for making imaginative creations, such as transforming a carton into your child’s favorite animal or superhero, or a picture frame from cardboard tubes and paint. These workshops are free and open to the public for youth ages 7 to 14 years, and registration is encouraged.

The Hudson Opera House is located at 327 Warren Street in Hudson. For more information or to register, call (518) 822-1438 or visit



Drop Forge & Tool in Hudson hosts “Befriend Your Sewing Machine” workshop

If you’d like to toss around the catchy expression, “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without,” but need skills to back it up, check out “Befriend Your Sewing Machine,” offered this Tuesday, February 16 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Drop Forge & Tool. Instructor Cal Patch is ready to help you get to know this household piece of equipment, including how to thread your machine and wind a bobbin, sew a simple seam and hem edges. You will make either a pillowcase, totebag or drawstring pouch. The cost is $60 and includes light snacks and beverages. Plus, Cal is so cool, you’d probably pay $60 just to watch her work.

Drop Forge & Tool is located in Hudson. For a list of supplies and to be one of the 8 people lucky enough to register, visit


Bob Berman talk at SUNY-New Paltz

Talk about a superstar! (See what I’m doing here?) You read him here in Almanac Weekly; now astronomer Bob Berman is coming to SUNY-New Paltz! This Tuesday, February 16 from 8 to 9 p.m. in the Coykendall Science Building, Bob presents “Weird Coincidences in the Universe.”

“Is Nature intelligent, or random? Humans love finding natural patterns that might provide the answer. But first we need to really explore the laws of chance – and also understand where seeming correspondence is a mere matter of coincidence. Or is it?”

The Mid-Hudson Astronomical Association business meeting takes place at 7:30 p.m., and Bob’s talk begins at 8 p.m. This event is free and open to the public. SUNY-New Paltz is located at 1 Hawk Drive in New Paltz. For more information, visit, and to learn more about the speaker, visit


Art day camp at OMI International Arts Center in Ghent

Give your kids more than time off from school this week: Nurture their natural creativity! This Tuesday through Thursday, February 16 to 18 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., the OMI International Arts Center is ready to engage your children in 2-D and 3-D art projects, music and movement, special workshops with a visiting artist, storytelling and of course, play! Tuition for three days of fun costs $190, with a discounted rate of $350 for two children.

The OMI International Arts Center is located at 1405 County Route 22 in Ghent. For more information or to register, call (518) 728-9256 or visit


Erica Chase-Salerno’s hair is starting to grow in, but no sign of chemo curls yet. She can be reached at [email protected]


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