Kids’ Almanac (Mar. 10-17)

(pi pie by Eric Sonstroem)

(pi pie by Eric Sonstroem)

Prepare for a salamander invasion, hone your basketball skills or recycle your jeans


Remember to turn your clocks ahead one hour this Sunday, March 13 at 2 a.m.

Pi Day & Olympiad math winners

There’s no better time than the week of Pi Day to announce the local winners of the SUNY-Ulster Math Challenge Quiz during the recent Science Olympiad! Congratulations to Brandon Dolson of Valley Central High School, Sam Zang of Fallsburg High School, Andrew Allspach of Goshen High School and Alejandro Duran of Kingston High School. These superstars received $50 gift cards and SUNY-Ulster Math Team tee-shirts for their achievement.

Looking to make math more enticing to your own kids? How about enjoying pie on Pi Day? Pi Day is March 14 (get it? 3.14), which represents the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter; and to celebrate, you could surprise your kids with pies for an entire meal, or even a whole day! Think pizza pie, quiche (egg pie), chicken or vegetable pot pies, blueberry pie or my favorite: chocolate cream pie. At the end of Pi Day, my kids fill pie pans with whipped cream and smash them into each other’s faces, and mine. Guess who loves math now?

For more information about Pi Day, visit

Leprechaun traps

Quick! St. Patrick’s Day Eve – before your kids outgrow this one! Save a shipping box or two (or it could even be a shoebox) and have your kids decorate it with designs intended to lure a leprechaun, such as sparkle or irresistible phrases such as “Gold inside!” Then, have them place some bait inside (glittery objects or pennies, of course), which, when grasped by the leprechaun, will trap him. Set the traps on St. Patrick’s Day Eve: Wednesday, March 16.

When someone successfully catches a leprechaun, it means that you get to keep all of his gold! But you cannot blink, or the leprechaun escapes. Sometimes, children wake up the next morning to a trap that’s destroyed, showing evidence of a struggle caused by an enraged leprechaun who, in the end, thwarted all efforts to capture him. The good news is that during the scuffle, the leprechaun often leaves chocolate gold coins behind that fell from his pockets.

Some mornings, we find that the leprechaun has caused mischief, such as using “the necessary” and turning our toilet water green, or leaving a trail of green glitter where he entered the room with the trap. Some families put their traps outside, preventing the leprechaun from ever coming into the house. What will your family’s leprechaun-trap traditions be?

Ladybug Girl and Bumblebee Boy

Local husband-and-wife team David Soman and Jacky Davis are the creators behind the wonderful Ladybug Girl and Bumblebee Boy series; and in case you haven’t heard, there’s a live show to check out this weekend! On Saturday, March 12 at 2 p.m. at the Tarrytown Music Hall, families can enjoy the stories and songs of Ladybug Girl and Bumblebee Boy. Tickets cost $25 and $35.

The Tarrytown Music Hall is located at 13 Main Street in Tarrytown. For tickets or more information, visit For more information about the series, visit

Savannah Stories stage workshop at Rosendale Theatre

Some people go away during spring break. Well, here’s a chance for the adventures to come to you – and no airfare is needed! From Saturday to Friday, March 19 to 25 from 12 noon to 4 p.m., children ages 8 to 14 can be a part of Savannah Stories, an exciting performing arts immersion week for young people with a focus on theater arts, music and dance. Daily activities include theater games, storytelling, creative play and music, culminating in a performance of an excerpt from Debbie Lan’s full-length musical, Savannah Stories. Tuition costs $115.

The show takes place on Friday, March 25 at 5 p.m. at the Rosendale Theatre. Tickets to the show cost $5 for children, $10 for adults. The Rosendale Theatre is located at 408 Main Street in Rosendale. For more information, to register for Savannah Stories or to buy tickets for the show, visit

Teen Jean Drive in Wappingers Falls

Sometimes, what holds me back from clearing out is not being sure how to connect my items with someone who needs them. Here’s a solution! This month, unload your jeans and you help local kids and teens who can really use them. Clean out your closet and drop off your gently used jeans at the Grinnell Public Library District. All of the jeans collected will go to the Children’s Home of Poughkeepsie.

The Grinnell Library is located at 2642 East Main Street in Wappingers Falls. For more information, call (845) 297-3428 or visit

Volunteer Weekend at Frost Valley

Been meaning to get to Frost Valley? Has it been a while since you’ve created some outdoorsy memories with your family? Here’s a way to enjoy some time there while helping out, and you don’t even have to cook! Arrive on Friday, March 18 for a campfire briefing; work a full eight-hour shift on Saturday; and enjoy Frost Valley’s camp programs through lunch on Sunday. All meals and camp-style lodging are provided, and the cost is only $25 per volunteer!

Volunteers must be at least 16 years old. Got children under 12? They need a non-volunteer adult to accompany them to activities. The cost for non-volunteer guests participating in the camp programs is $129 per person, including camp-style lodging.

Frost Valley is located at 2000 Frost Valley Road in Claryville. To reserve your volunteer spot, call (845) 985-2291, extension 450, or visit



Rethinking Testing panel discussion at SUNY-New Paltz

If your children or grandchildren do, did or will attend public school, or you live in a community with a public school, here’s an update on what’s happening: On Friday, March 11 from 6 to 8 p.m. at SUNY-New Paltz’s Lecture Center 108, Rethinking Testing: Mid-Hudson Region presents “Public Education in New York State: Where Do We Stand?” Panelists will address such questions as:

What, if anything, has changed since the advent of the opt-out movement?

How have graduation requirements changed?

Will tests still affect teacher evaluations? How?

Why is test refusal still important?

What could public education look like without high-stakes standardized tests?

This event is free and open to the public. SUNY-New Paltz is located at 1 Hawk Drive in New Paltz. For more information, call Nancy Schniedewind at (845) 257-2827 or visit



Women’s history program at Historic Huguenot Street in New Paltz

I had no idea how much our individual voices matter until writer and musician Colleen Geraghty shared the importance of women’s everyday journals from history during her speech at the Celebration of Women’s Voices Conference a few years ago. That information ignited me.

Come learn more about the essential influence of the 51 Percent at “Finding American Women’s Voices through the Centuries: Letters, Journals, Newspapers and Court Records,” which takes place on Saturday, March 12 at 12 noon at Historic Huguenot Street’s Deyo Hall. Over a light lunch, professional genealogist Jane Wilcox celebrates the strength of women throughout the centuries, including highlights from Historic Huguenot Street’s archives. The cost is $25.

Historic Huguenot Street is located in New Paltz. For reservations or more information, call (845) 255-1660 or visit


“Animals in Winter” program for preschoolers at Sam’s Point in Cragsmoor

Explorer, scientist and conservationist Jacques Cousteau said, “People protect what they love.” So let’s start children’s enjoyment of nature while they’re still young! The Sam’s Point “Preschoolers in the Park” program begins this Saturday, March 12 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 noon at the Sam’s Point area of the Minnewaska State Park Preserve.

This monthly program takes place on the second Saturday of each month through June. It engages the senses and includes a short hike and a different theme for each session. The March 12 program is titled “Animals in Winter.” This program is free and open to the public, but Minnewaska charges a $10 parking fee.

The Sam’s Point Visitor Center is located at 400 Sam’s Point Road in Cragsmoor. For more information or to register, call (845) 647-7989 or visit


Scenic Hudson volunteer Open House at River Center in Beacon

It’s March. How are those New Year’s resolutions going? Looking for hands-on ways to help the environment? Or are you a teacher interested in interesting and relevant science field trips? Come one, come all to Scenic Hudson’s “Learn & Serve Open House” this Saturday, March 12 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Scenic Hudson’s River Center. Enjoy light refreshments while learning about volunteer and educational opportunities at Scenic Hudson’s many parks.               This event is free and open to the public. Scenic Hudson’s River Center is located at 8 Long Dock Road in Beacon. For more information or to reserve your spot, call (845) 473-4440, extension 273, or visit


Maple sugaring at Ashokan Center & Randolph School

We made it through the oat bran craze. We survived blue algae. Could maple syrup be the next superfood? Here are two sugaring events taking place this weekend to check out!

The Ashokan MapleFest takes place on Saturday, March 12 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Ashokan Center. Activities include tree-tapping, learning how syrup is made, blacksmithing and hiking, as well as live music by Jay Ungar & Molly Mason and family entertainment by Story Laurie and Ira McIntosh. Prices are $5 for entry (children under age 5 get in free), $6 for the pancake breakfast and $5 for the blacksmithing experience.

The Ashokan Center is located at 477 Beaverkill Road in Olivebridge. To reserve your spot or for more information, call (845) 657-8333, visit or RSVP on the Facebook page at

Randolph School’s seventh annual MapleFest takes place on Saturday, March 12 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Activities include a pancake breakfast from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and a host of things to do from 12 noon to 4 p.m. such as storytelling by Jonathan Kruk, live music, children’s crafts, screenprinting, puppets, a photo booth and more. The cost for the pancake breakfast is $10 for adults and $5 for children, with a family rate of $25 for up to five people. After pancakes, the maple activities from 1 to 4 p.m. are free!

The Randolph School is located at 2467 Route 9D in Wappingers Falls. A shuttle is available to and from the parking area, located at Wappingers Town Hall at 20 Middlebush Road. For more information, call (845) 297-5600, visit or see the event page at

Woodstock Playhouse presents Alice in Wonderland

Here’s a wonderful introduction to live theater for your family: Alice in Wonderland at the Woodstock Playhouse this Saturday and Sunday, March 12 and 13 at 2 p.m. Not only will your kids enjoy the 45-minute performance (no intermission), but after the show, they can also meet and take photos with Alice, Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum, Humpty Dumpty, the Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts! Tickets cost $10 for children and seniors and $12 for adults, along with a $2 service charge for each ticket.

The Woodstock Playhouse is located at 103 Mill Hill Road in Woodstock. For tickets or more information, call (845) 679-6900 or visit

Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck presents Origami Tales

If you ever passed those crisscross-folded notes to your friends in high school, you may have an appreciation for origami. This Saturday, March 12 at 11 a.m., Origami Tales takes paper-folding to a whole new level at the Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck. Performer Kuniko Yamamoto uses storytelling, music, paper-folding and audience participation to share tales from Japan – and all of the masks, puppets and scenery elements are made from origami! 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

“Big Night” for amphibians in Chatham

Are you prepared for the Big Night? These amphibians will be out and about before you know it! Before the spring temperatures warm and amphibians emerge en masse, crossing streets et cetera on “Big Night,” come learn more about what to look for at the Columbia Land Conservancy (CLC)’s Big Night. This free outing and information session takes place on Saturday, March 12 from 1 to 3 p.m. at the CLC office, followed by a short walk to Borden’s Pond to find amphibians. This event is free and open to all ages.

The Columbia Land Conservancy is located at 49 Main Street in Chatham. For more information or to register, visit



Iyoya Children’s Art Show at Vassar’s Palmer Gallery

Honor the artistic gifts of our littlest ones at the annual Iyoya Children’s Art Show at Vassar College’s James W. Palmer Gallery in the Main Building. The exhibition is on display from Sunday, March 13, including an opening reception at 2 p.m., through Friday, March 18. These young student artists hail from the Overlook Primary School, Noxon Road Elementary School, G.W. Krieger Elementary School, Warring Magnet Academy of Science and Technology, Morse Young Child Magnet School, Hagan Elementary School, Nassau Elementary School, Lagrange Middle School, Todd Middle School and Wimpfheimer Nursery School at Vassar College.

Gallery hours are from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Vassar College is located at 124 Raymond Avenue in Poughkeepsie. For more information, call (845) 437-5370 or visit


SUNY-Ulster presents the Storycrafters

You get cajoled into reading a story every night; why not sit back and have someone tell a tale to you for a change? This Sunday, March 13 from 2:30 to 4 p.m. at the College Lounge in SUNY-Ulster’s Vanderlyn Hall, bring your crew to hear the Storycrafters in “Our Roots Are Showing: Tales and Songs from the Jewish and Gaelic Traditions.” This dynamic duo incorporates music and song into their stories, while weaving in lots of audience participation. The cost is $15 for adults, $10 for students ages 6 to 13 and free for children under age 6. After the show, stay for light refreshments and a meet-and-greet with the performers.

SUNY-Ulster is located at 491 Cottekill Road in Stone Ridge. For reservations or more information, call (845) 338-8131 or visit To learn more about the performers, visit

“Mother Nature’s Music” at Hudson Opera House

Did you make it to last week’s family concert with violinist/violist Helena Baillie? Well, here’s another one for you! This Sunday, March 13 at 3 p.m., the Hudson Opera House presents “Classics on Hudson: Mother Nature’s Music.” The musicians will highlight natural sounds that have influenced composers throughout time, featuring Shostakovich’s The Storm, Sibelius’ The Spruce, Rorem’s The Lordly Hudson and Mozart’s Twelve Variations on “Ah vous dirai-je, Maman” (“Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”). This concert is free and open to the public.

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

Kids’ Day Out basketball clinic at Marist College

How about a couple of hours to yourself to run errands while your kids get a terrific workout, all for a good cause? The Kids’ Day Out basketball clinic takes place at Marist College’s McCann Center this Sunday, March 13 for children ages 7 to 17. Led by college athletes and coaches, the girls’ session takes place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.; the boys’ clinic runs from 2 to 5 p.m. The cost is $10 per child, and preregistration is required. Proceeds benefit the Marist College Scholarship for Students with Disabilities. Remember to bring a college textbook or DVD from within the last five years for a free raffle ticket.

Marist College is located at 3399 North Road in Poughkeepsie. To register or for more information, call (845) 575-3274, e-mail [email protected] or visit


Erica Chase-Salerno has begun her dance with Ibrance! She can be reached at [email protected]

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