Kids’ Almanac (Mar. 31 - Apr. 7)

The Little Mermaid will be performed on stage at Coleman High in Kingston this weekend.

Enjoy giant puppets, catch a salamander, make a Peeps diorama and don’t get April Fooled!


“April 1. This is the day upon which we are reminded of what we are on the other 364.”
– Mark Twain


Ulster BOCES Culinary Arts team wins statewide ProStart competition

Congratulations to Ulster BOCES Culinary Arts students Wayne Rockwell (Onteora High School), Dante Fauci (Highland High School), Gianna Ogno (Wallkill High School), Maya Gray (Saugerties High School) and Karina Rendon (Highland High School) on their recent win in the prestigious 2016 New York State Restaurant Association’s ProStart competition. Part of the event was preparing a three-course meal within 60 minutes using only two butane burners and no running water or electricity. Sounds like when I go camping! (Except that’s only one course, and I don’t get judged on taste, knife skills, safety, sanitation and teamwork.)

The students practiced after school for five months in preparation for the competition, which included 115 other budding chefs. Now they head to Dallas, Texas and represent New York State at the National ProStart Invitational at the end of April. Good luck, Team Ulster BOCES!



April Fools prank ideas

If you want to prank your kids this April Fools’ Day, my favorite two tricks are freezing their bowls full of milk and cereal, making it impossible to sink a spoon into; and adding gelatin to a glass of milk or juice, which looks like liquid but remains stubbornly in place when the child tips the glass or inserts a straw for a sip. A new one that I’m trying this year is wrapping grapes in those small, colorful Easter candy foils. Let me know how you pranked your kids this year!


Peeporama at Red Hook Library

I love everything about this Red Hook Public Library Peeporama event, and I couldn’t resist sharing it: It’s a gathering for kids to make dioramas with marshmallow Peeps! It takes place this Friday, April 1 at 4:30 p.m. This event is free and all materials will be provided, but space is limited, so call to register.

The Red Hook Public Library is located at 7444 South Broadway in Red Hook. For more information or to register, call (845) 758-3241 or visit


Coleman High in Kingston presents The Little Mermaid

Disappointed that you can’t get tickets to see the smash musical Hamilton? Well, you know what they say: The seaweed is always greener in somebody else’s lake. Wait, that quote reminds me of something…I know! Forget Broadway; take your kids to see The Little Mermaid over at John A. Coleman Catholic High School this weekend!

The Coleman High School Musical Theater presents performances this Friday and Saturday, April 1 and 2 at 7:30 p.m., Sunday, April 3 at 3 p.m. and next weekend on April 8 and 9 at 7:30 p.m., April 9 at 1:30 p.m. and April 10 at 3 p.m. Tickets cost $16 for adults and $11 for children. Advance reservations are recommended, with walk-in tickets sold as available.

John A. Coleman Catholic High School is located at 430 Hurley Avenue in Kingston. For more information, call (845) 338-2750 or visit



High Meadow School in Stone Ridge hosts Bright Ideas Festival

When is the last time that you had a bright idea? Perhaps you and your crew are looking for some inspiration? Check out the Bright Ideas Festival this Saturday, April 2 from 1 to 5 p.m. at the High Meadow School. This free event is open to the public of all ages and features hands-on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) activities such as solar telescopes with Mid-Hudson Astronomy; stop-motion animation workshops with Spark Media; friction fire and nature-based crafts with Wild Earth; 3-D printing and Tinkercad; original student presentations; and a special performance by Mad Science at 4 p.m. No reservations are needed; just head on over.

The High Meadow School is located at 3643 Main Street in Stone Ridge. For more information, call (845) 687-4855 or visit


Pond Study outing at Minnewaska

Our family keeps a net in the back of the car for spontaneous pond outings. The more we learn about these special places in nature, the more we can return to them for additional fun and exploration.

This Saturday, April 2 from 10 a.m. to 12 noon, you and your kids ages 7 to 10 years are invited to “Pond Study for Kids!” at the Minnewaska State Park Preserve’s Peter’s Kill Area. This hands-on program teaches about the amazing amphibians that live here by exploring vernal pools for frogs, salamanders and insects and making a frog mask. A similar program for this age group is offered to homeschoolers here this Thursday, April 7 from 1 to 3:30 p.m.

These programs are free and open to the public, but registration is required, and a parking fee is applied at the entry of $10 per vehicle. Meet up at the Peter’s Kill Park Office, located at 5281 Route 44/55 in Kerhonkson. To register or for more information, call (845) 255-0752 or visit

Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck presents Barefoot Dance Company

Looking for something different to do this weekend? How about some amazing young dancers and fantastic music? Now you’ve got an event that appeals to all ages, and it’s happening right here. This Saturday, April 2 at 11 a.m. at the Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck, you can enjoy a performance of the Barefoot Dance Company. Curious about modern dance? This is the perfect introduction for you and your kids.

Tickets cost are $7 for children, $9 for adults and seniors. The Center for Performing Arts is located at 661 Route 308 in Rhinebeck. For tickets or more information, call (845) 876-3080 or visit


Intro to Zentangling workshop at Olana

If you already draw happily and easily, then Zentangles are probably a no-brainer for you. But for the rest of us who find even easy doodles a joyless challenge, Zentangles have something to offer, too. They are simply designs that come from a place of focus, pleasure and celebration and feel natural to draw, without any particular goal in mind. They offer a freedom in art that many of us have experienced otherwise as frustrating and hopeless.

Zentangles are worth learning about, and the Olana State Historic Site Wagon House Education Center is hosting a program about them at “Zentangle: Introduction” this Saturday, April 2 from 3 to 5 p.m. for ages 6 and up. No artistic skill is required, and participants marvel about their mood elevations in doing it; plus, it’s a fun activity for the whole family to try together.

The cost is $20 per person and includes all supplies: a pouch, pens and paper to keep. Remember to dress for the short hike included during the workshop to enable drawing outside. Preregistration is required. The Olana State Historic Site is located at 5720 Route 9G in Hudson. For more information or to register, call (518) 828-0135 or visit



Arm-of-the-Sea performs Rejuvenary River Circus at Phoenicia Elementary School

Interested in a family outing with amazing large puppets and a focus on our local environment? Then you want to grab some seats for the Rejuvenary River Circus: A Story about the Life of a River taking place this Sunday, April 3 at 2 p.m. at the Phoenicia Elementary School. Not only is this a performance that the whole family will learn from and enjoy, but it’s also free!

The Phoenicia Elementary School is located on School Lane in Phoenicia. For more information, call (845) 688-7811 or visit To learn more about the show, visit


Susannah Appelbaum reads from new novel at Inquiring Minds in New Paltz

Clear your calendars and your bookshelves, because Young Adult genre local author Susannah Appelbaum is hitting the circuit with her latest novel, Divah. The story straddles two of your favorite places: New York City and Paris; crosses timelines with characters like Marie Antoinette as well as Marilyn Monroe; and 17-year-old Itzy Nash is the middle of this battle between angels and demons.

You can hear some of this riveting excitement for yourself at her readings at the Inquiring Minds bookstore this Sunday, April 3 at 4 p.m. in New Paltz, as well as on Friday, May 6 at Inquiring Mind in Saugerties. Inquiring Minds is located at 6 Church Street in New Paltz. For more information, call (845) 255-8300 or visit To learn more about the book and the author, visit



Germantown Library hosts DUI fatality prevention talk

Been wondering how to make drunk driving risks and tragedies feel more real to your teens, especially during prom season?

This Tuesday, April 5 from 6:30 to 8 p.m., bring your teens and their friends and your neighbors’ kids and head over to the Germantown Library for “Sean’s Legacy: A Talk with Mark D. French, a Father Who Turned Tragedy into a Mission to Educate a Community and Save Lives.” His son, Sean, 17 – a junior at Chatham High School, Honor Roll student, volunteer and athlete – was a passenger in a car in a drunk-driving car crash. Another passenger suffered paralyzing injuries. The driver, also 17, had been arrested 18 days before for drunk driving. Now, Sean’s Law requires the immediate suspension of a license upon the arrest of a 16- or 17-year-old driver on drunken driving charges.

Mark’s plan is to talk about the upcoming Sean’s Run Weekend, taking place Saturday, and Sunday, April 23 and 24 in Columbia County, including the history behind the run, purpose, activities and its impact. The Germantown Library is located at 31 Palatine Park Road in Germantown. For more information, call (518) 537-5800 or visit To learn more about Sean’s Legacy April events, visit



SUNY-Ulster presents Young Adult Job Fair in Kingston

“Get a job…Sha na na na, sha na na na na…” Is your 16-to-24-year-old ready to apply for a job? Have your young person come to the 2016 Young Adult Job Fair this Wednesday, April 6 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at SUNY-Ulster’s new Kingston campus. Participants must bring résumés and come ready for interviews, including proper attire and clean and neat appearance. That includes the following restrictions: no leggings, no tee-shirts, no hats, no tank tops, no miniskirts and no undergarments showing. No income eligibility is required.

SUNY-Ulster’s new Kingston campus is located at 94 Mary’s Avenue in Kingston, across from the former Benedictine Hospital. For more information, call (845) 340-3170 or visit



“One Wish” for Juvenile Diabetes at Vassar Brothers Medical Center in Poughkeepsie

Does your kid or another youngster you know have Type 1 Juvenile Diabetes? Here’s a cool chance for these youth to connect to something bigger through a fun art project: wishes! This Thursday, April 7 at 7 p.m. at the Vassar Brothers Medical Center, children, teens and siblings affected by T1D are invited to participate in a unique art project for the Hudson Valley “One Wish: Hope Gala” auction. The work will highlight “One Wish” by each child with a word or temporary tattoo on the hand, which will be pulled together for the final work.

The Vassar Brothers Medical Center is located at 45 Reade Place in Poughkeepsie. For more information or to reserve your spot, call (914) 606-0513, e-mail [email protected] or visit


Erica Chase-Salerno just completed her first cycle of Ibrance and Letrozole pills for this new chapter of her Stage IV breast cancer journey. She can be reached at [email protected]


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