Things to do:

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Week in Preview April 27th-30th

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It's Derby Week! Take a deep breath and GO BABY GO!

Here are my picks for the week:

Live it: It's the Great Steamboat Race and the Louisville Water Tower is a GREAT place to watch it live! On Wednesday, April 29th from 12:00 noon-8:00pm you can enjoy the WaterWorks Museum, Tours, Festival Food, Terrace Views & kids activities from 3-6pm. The parking fee is only $20 for a carload! Check out their website for more information.

Eat it: It's Derby, so if you can you should definitely go check out the Chow Wagon at Waterfront Park! Samplings of the food offered include BBQ, roasted chicken, gyros, and funnel cakes. Live music is also performed at various times during the day. Check it out here for more information.

Move it: The 8th annual Kentucky Derby Festival Health Fair will be held in the South Wing of the Kentucky Exposition Center, in conjunction with the Republic Bank Parade Preview Party.  Geared toward healthy lifestyles for families and kids, this event will be held from 5:00 pm to 9 pm on April 28th, with free health screenings being done onsite. Move it on over and get yourself checked out! More information can be found here.


Learn it: Have your child (12 and under) submit a poem to Carmichael's Kids National Poetry Month Poetry Contest. Submissions need to be entered by April 30th and need to be delivered in person so make sure you give yourself enough time. Go here for more information!

By Guest Contributor: 
Kelly

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Picks for Things to Do this Weekend around Louisville: April 24,25,26

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 Balloon Fest
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Download our App - click here - the events calendar and Kids Eat Free list right at your fingertips!


Friday
It's KY Derby Festival time!  Head to the Balloon Glow tonight at the KY Expo Center. Admission is free with your Pegasus Pin (remember the $8 parking fee).  The gates open at 6pm and the glow begins at 9pm.  You know, just you and 50,000 friends. It's one of the most popular Kentucky Derby Festival events!

Saturday
The Parent-Teacher Store and Toys too! is excited to start carrying Breyer Horses.  They are celebrating with some free paint-your-own horse crafts and giveaways at their store on Saturday from 1-4pm.  

Celebrate Derby time with crafts at The Diaper Fairy Cottage (open 9am-4pm) - yes, they have more than just diapers!  They will have two craft stations to make Kentucky Derby hats and Riverboats out of newspaper. They'll also have a Derby week picture contest for a chance to win a $50 gift certificate! It is free but they are also accepting donation for charity.


Sunday
Head to Indiana for the  “Indiana Frontier Experience” at Historic Tunnel Mill in Charlestown 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (also on Saturday).  Encounter the pioneers and settlers that carved homes out of the wilderness, the Native-Americans who lived there, the tradesmen who brought their skills, plus surveyors, farmers, politicians and river-men of the period. Enjoy a full cross-section of early American life in the Indiana Territory with demonstrations, craftsmen, native camps, stump speeches, battles, bare-knuckle boxing, and even a Sunday morning church service! An $8 parking fee benefits the John Work House restoration. Concessions will be available.

Have a fabuLOUs weekend,
Stephanie

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Review of Arcade and Laser Tag at Renaissance Fun Park in Middletown (Louisville)

LouFamFun writers were granted admission for the purpose of review.

 photo unnamed_zpsguh6f4n6.jpgOn recent Friday night, a group of LouFamFun writers met with our children to participate in laser tag and games at Renaissance Fun Park. We asked each writer to share their favorite part about their experience and provide tips for families who may be considering going.

Maggie- My youngest went in to laser tag apprehensive but he quickly realized how fun it was and ended up having a blast. Seeing how much fun my kids had was my favorite part. It's really hard to hear the announcements and I wish there were lockers to put purses and coats, so you will want to leave valuables at home and make sure you pay close attention to start times. Overall it's a great time!

Caryn- This was our 1st time ever to Renaissance Fun Park. It wasn't that crowded considering it was Friday night. I loved that they were going around with free samples, and that all the "tickets" loaded right onto the card - no need to hold them or risk losing them. I wish there were more tables to sit at inside - we couldn't have sat down to eat dinner if we had wanted to...but they did have a great selection of snacks, a (free) water fountain, clean bathrooms, the games appeared to all be in working order, and I saw them quickly mop up a spill. Overall it seemed very clean inside the whole place. I'd be interested to see what kind of crowd is there on a non-weekend night. And I love all the deals they run on different nights. We'll definitely try it another day of the week sometime.

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Stephanie- I was shocked at how clean the bathroom was, seriously, with lots of kids there.... pretty darn clean! Favorite part: Laser tag and genuine shock and giggles from everyone while we played. Tips: Don't bring a lot of stuff, just what can fit in your pocket so you can have hands free of everything and check out the weeknight deals. Looking forward to trying it when we can go inside and outside and spread out.




 photo f2f213f7-4236-4ea6-b02c-caa695709327_zpsrie9jrnh.jpgAllison- Overall my son and I enjoyed the laser tag, he did mention that he would have felt very nervous had we gotten split up during the game. It was a fun night and $5 was actually plenty of money for the arcade games assuming that your kid doesn't get sucked in by the machine that has the iPad in it that you can win. LOL! Even if you went for a quick $5 date with your kiddo to celebrate a good report card it is affordable. Tip: With smaller kids try it out during the week. The bigger kids were overwhelming to my kiddo and myself.


Karen- Kids AND (us) adults love the laser tag! I think for someone's first time, try (Renaissance), if possible, on a weekday evening.

Nicolle- Our favorite part was team laser tag! I can see us going back as a family and playing against each other. I agree that the announcements were hard to hear. Some of the team play instructions were lost between the excitement and chaos (Ex: how to reload, where to get extra points). My son did comment that he asked an employee for help with his phaser and was happy he could easily find the employee in the arena. I wish the laser tag line was little more organized to help decrease the amount of little line jumpers.


     photo unnamed-3_zpsdirdl2uh.jpgBrandy- My kids and I had a blast with the laser tag! Before arriving, we were concerned that the gear might be too heavy for my 6 yr old, who is under 40 lbs. However, she was able wear the vest and and shoot the phaser with no problem. My family preferred the individual laser tag over the team laser tag. The recharging was a hassle and slowed down play. I could see it being exciting for older kids or party groups. We also enjoyed playing the games, and I was pleased to see the games token/ticket system has been updated to a card system. Tip: If visiting on a weekend, and you prefer to sit down during meals, I would recommend eating before visiting. There aren't many tables for eating inside.




    In addition to arcade games and laser tag, Renaissance Fun Park offers mini golf and go carts. There is a full snack bar on site. Renaissance also offers three different birthday party packages. They often offer discounts throughout the year, so be sure to check the Specials tab on their website before planning your visit.

    By Guest Contributor: Brandy 

    Tuesday, April 21, 2015

    Review of Nature Connects: LEGO exhibit at the Louisville Zoo

     photo 20150410_161648_zpsxsolsih0.jpgNature Connects® is a LEGO® brick sculpture exhibit presented by Ford Motor Company. This limited time exhibit is free with Zoo admission or your Louisville Zoo membership. 

    Throughout the Zoo, one will find 13 exhibit areas, with a total of 23 nature-inspired brick sculptures. Sean Kenney, an artist and children’s author, built the sculptures that range in various sizes, some close to 7’ tall!

     photo 20150410_1627250-1_zpsvi1j6iou.jpgUpon entrance to the Zoo, you will be offered a small, white pamphlet. On the back side is a list of all the sculptures and their locations, information of the LEGO® Brick Bash happening May 30-13, the LEGO® Brick Yard: Stay and Play, as well as an optional scavenger hunt at the bottom.
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    On this particular day, we had 3 adults in our party and 4 kids, ranging from 5-8yrs old. The kids were immediately drawn to the idea of “searching” for the sculptures. As for the adults, we were all mesmerized by the intricacy of the sculptures, and the facts/details about each, as they are posted beside each one. There is something for everyone to enjoy with these sculptures, especially for those who are really into LEGO® construction.

    Although we read each posting, and were amazed by the amount of bricks each sculpture required, we did not participate in the scavenger hunt on this trip – but definitely plan to the next time around!! 

    This exhibit will be available April 10 – July 5, 2015.

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    *For hours of operation, visit http://louisvillezoo.org, and for additional information, visit http://louisvillezoo.org/brick


    By Guest Contributor: Karen

    Sunday, April 19, 2015

    Weekly Preview April 20th-23rd

    This post is sponsored by:
     KDF miniFun Run

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    Don't you just love the warmer, longer days? I hope you and your family are able to enjoy them!

    Here are my picks for the week:

    Live it: It's Give a Day week of service. Whether you give an hour, a day, donate blood, give food, clothing or simply help a neighbor, everyone can do something! Head over to the website and sign up to help. Go here for more information!

    Eat itKids eat FREE on Monday & Tuesday evenings when you Dine In at Bearno's. Check it out here for hours and locations.

    Move it: Try a fun game of Frisbee golf at either Iroquois Park or Charlie Vettiner Park in Louisville. This a fun game that uses a special Frisbee on a 'golf' course of 18 holes. Learn more about what Frisbee golf is here and find course locations here.


    Learn it: The U.S. Postal Service celebrates April as National Card and Letter Writing Month by issuing colorful Forever stamps sheets complete with decorative stickers. Some ideas on helping your child write letters can be found here. Take some time to practice writing letters to family or friends. I bet they will love receiving a card, letter, or postcard from you and your child!

    By Guest Contributor: 
    Kelly

    Thursday, April 16, 2015

    Picks for Things to do this Weekend around Louisville: April 17,18,19

    This post is proudly sponsored by:
     Use code LOUCAW thru 4/12 to get 50% off  (Louisville)

     Register by 4/15 for discount rates!

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    Download our App - click here - Kids Eat Free list right at your fingertips!

    Enter to win a free registration for your child to the Kentucky Derby Festival miniFun Run! Here

    Friday
    It's the Gallopalooza preview: See all the statues before they hit the streets. It's all weekend but Friday it's 5 - 9 p.m. It's located Downtown at the corner of 8th and Magazine Streets - one block north of Broadway. Tickets are $5.00 at the door. Free admission for children 3 and under.


    Saturday
    THUNDER!!! Need I say more?

    Not into the big downtown crowds? How about 18th Century Thunder at Locust Grove.  How totally unique to have this experience of a 1778 Revolutionary War Reenactment! See details here.  $4 for adults, free for kids 12 and under. 

    Sunday
    CANCELLED - Check out the Sunday 1pm University of Louisville Baseball game vs. Wake Forest.  I'm a WFU grad - so happy to see my Alma Mater here in town!  These games are free :)


    Have a fabuLOUs weekend,
    Stephanie

    PS - Spring Festivals post , it's SWEET!

    Wednesday, April 15, 2015

    Review of Suzuki Stars Music Academy in Louisville, KY

     photo IMG_7096_zps3zut5nb9.jpgThis studio opened up fairly recently and offers private or group lessons in violin, viola, cello, guitar, flute, and piano. Another unique aspect to this studio is the Suzuki Steps Baby/Toddler Class for ages 0-3 and the Introduction to Violin for ages 3-5.

     photo IMG_7097_zpsphz6wfpp.jpgI was able to recently observe a couple of violin lessons at the studio. The lessons were led by violin instructor and Academy Director Blaise Poth. Ms. Poth also happens to be my daughter's former violin teacher whom we met at her elementary school in the Suzuki violin program. She is a violinist who has been playing with the Louisville Orchestra for 30 years and also leads the Suzuki Institute at UofL. At this particular lesson, I watched two young twin girls who were 3 years old. They were in the beginning stages of the Suzuki program and were playing a practice method called "I Can Play E." They went through the steps of Suzuki, such as first using your violin feet together and then taking a bow toward each other. Then they went through these steps 1. Feet placement 2. Violin on shoulder 3. Bow Hold check 4. Bow on E, then start to play. They did very well for 3, with plenty of gentle reminders to listen first, repeat, go to rest position, violin up on your shoulder and "hide your sticker." Everything was age appropriate.  These two girls came to violin lessons from the Suzuki Steps class that is offered for babies and toddlers. I also got to observe their mother take a lesson; she had decided to start learning along with her two daughters which I thought was really neat.

    In the Suzuki Steps class, children learn musical elements through the Suzuki method, which is completely through repetition. Children master the songs in this way. Those young students often go onto learning to play an instrument, and the transition is very smooth with both programs being offered in the same space. Read our past review here. In the Introduction to Violin, children ages 3-5 are introduced to the violin in four classes; it's designed for little ones who want to learn to play violin (children must be 3 years old to begin). Ms. Poth takes the children through one step at a time, from getting the violin, to placement on the shoulder, to getting the bow, to properly holding the bow and playing.

     photo IMG_7038_zpstvr6phvx.jpgThere are three studios in the space, along with a multi-purpose space for piano lessons and recitals that are done in house. Interested students/families can contact Ms. Poth in a variety of ways indicated below. She is taking on new students, and really wants to encourage new students in the other instrumental instruction, especially viola and cello. Her cello instructor is renowned in Louisville, so it's a wonderful opportunity for anyone wanting to begin to learn to play cello. All inquiries about lessons and pricing can be made to Blaise Poth.



    Location: 3415 Bardstown Road Suite 308A, Louisville, KY 40218
    Phone: 502-654-7872 or 502-639-7272
    Website: http://suzukistarsmusicacademy.com/
    Email: blaise.poth@gmail.com
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SuzukiStarsMusicAcademy

    By guest contributor: Erin

    Tuesday, April 14, 2015

    Earth Day 2015 Events and Celebrations in and around Louisville

     photo IMG_2496_zpsf71vdy5l.jpgLouisville Zoo – Sunday, 4/19 10-5. Party for the Planet $8 Admission, free parking (other events all month long)

    Oldham County Parks & Rec Earth Day 5K Run & 2 Mile Walk – Saturday, 4/18 8am Morgan Conservation Park

    Red Orchard Park Earth Day Celebration & 5K Run/Walk – Saturday, 4/18 10-2. The 5K run/walk begins at 1pm.

    Shively Public Library – Saturday, 4/18 1:30 Earth Day Pre-K Party (ages 3-5)

    Other area events and opportunities for your family to enjoy, celebrate and help our planet!

    Bernheim Forest – Check out their calendar for various events all month long. Arbor Day 4/12, ECO Kids Discovery Day 4/18, Creatures of the Night 4/22

    Creasy Mahan Nature Preserve – Wildflower Saturday 4/18 10-2. Presentation and two walks featuring the preserve's favorite wildflowers. 
    The Nature Center is open on Monday & Wednesday during the week of Earth Day 9 -1. Enjoy the Nature Center, Preserve, crafts and activities. 

    Jefferson Memorial Forest – Volunteer opportunities available or take a hike with your family!


    Louisville Arbor Day Festival - Friday, 4/17 10-1. Iroquois Park.

    Louisville Nature Center – Self-directed Story Walk: “One Child, One Planet” 4/18 10:30-3 FREE, Restore the Forest Volunteer Day 4/25 10-1. (Children ages 7-14 may work alongside a parent.) Gardenaganza 4/16 11-4.

    The Oldham County History Center – Saturday, 4/18 10-4 “Sally Brown Day” “A Force of Nature: Sally Brown” showing all day and tree seedlings given to first 100 visitors.

    The Parklands – Check out their calendar for various events all month long. Wednesday Wonders Program 4/22 (registration required, $5 fee), Hiking, Park Clean Up Opportunities, etc.

    Yew Dell Gardens – Saturday, 4/25 10-4 & Sunday, 4/26 12-3 Plant Sale & Garden Market. Large plant sale with garden items vendors, activities for kids, tours of the grounds, bonsai show and food trucks. (Regular Admission Fee)

    By Guest Contributor: Nicolle Martin

    Sunday, April 12, 2015

    Week in Preview April 13th-16th

    This post is sponsored by:

     Register by 4/15 for discount rates!
    Register by 4/15 to get discounted registration!


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    With all this rain we are hoping to see loads of flowers in May! Be silly and dance in the rain with your kiddos if you can.

    Here are my picks for the week:

    Live it: Go hear some FREE live music at the KFC Yum! Center’s Norton Healthcare Plaza on April 16th. Each month a different up-and-coming local artist will entertain patrons over their lunch hour (11:30AM – 1:00PM). A variety of popular food trucks will be onsite to offer diverse food options for purchase as well. Check it out here!

    Eat it: Join Big Brother Big Sisters for National Night Out at Chuck E. Cheese's on Tuesday, April 14th. During the National Night Out, a percentage of sales will benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters. 5% of all register sales and 10% for mentioning BBBS from 5-9 p.m. Two locations include Hurstbourne Lane in Louisvillle and East State Street in Clarksville. Find more information here!

    Move it: Jump on over to KaZoing! for their open play. Inflatable room, Tot Lot Play room, and Craft are all open for FUN during this time! Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, & Fridays (closed on Tuesdays) 10am – 12 pm. Wednesdays 4pm – 6pm. $6 per child Ages walking and up, parent or guardian must stay. *Inflatable arenas will vary. Find them online here for more information.


    Learn it: Monday is Fun Day Monday at the Louisville Zoo! Enjoy $5 general admission courtesy of LG&E and KU, with special zoo keeper talks and appearances by LG&E and KU’s “Louie the Lightning Bug.”(Tickets can only be purchased at the Zoo). Click here for more information.

    By Guest Contributor: 
    Kelly

    Thursday, April 9, 2015

    Picks for Things to Do this Weekend around Louisville: April 10,11,12

    This post is proudly sponsored by:
     Use code LOUCAW thru 4/12 to get 50% off  (Louisville)
    LOUCAW (Louisville) to save 50% off L/XL thru 4/12
     Register by 4/15 for discount rates!
    Register by 4/15 for discount rates
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    Download our App - click here - the events calendar and Kids Eat Free list right at your fingertips!


    Friday
    Don't cook - Papa John's has Customer Appreciation Week for Louivillians - 50% all Large or XL pizzas with code LOUCAW

    Head to Bernheim - they have special spring break activities all week so why not end your week with outdoor adventure fun! Daily discovery stations and daily adventure hikes mean learning that's fun and full of exercise.  Details here.

    Saturday
    Take a short trek east on 64 to Shelbyville and check out the Mulberry Orchard Spring Festival and Craft Show.  It is free and packed with activities. It runs 11am-8pm on Saturday (also noon - 5pm on Sunday)

    In the evening - head to Whet Your Palette to paint something for spring!  Did you know they have half priced canvases from 6-8pm?  What a deal!

    Sunday
    The Flea Off Market is having a SUNDAY date - woot!  It is from 10am-5pm at Fresh Start Growers Supply (1007 E. Jefferson, near Nulu.)  It is all things eclectic and different, something for everyone in your family.


    Have a fabuLOUs weekend,
    Stephanie

    PS - Spring Festivals post , it's SWEET!