Things to do:

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Picks for Things to Do this weekend around Louisville: August 22,23,24

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Check out our podcast about Develop New Albany and hear about the cool stuff they have going on!


Is it really fair that kids are back to school and this weekend it's going to be HOT HOT HOT?
We all know the Kentucky State Fair is still going on this weekend, but what else?

Looks like we might be in for some rain - check out our indoor fun post here.
If you are like....NOOOO! Bring on FALL!!!  Get excited by visiting our Fall Fun Links page

Friday
Renaissance Fun Park has a cool deal going on now.  See details here.  It's an special  - Unlimited Go Karts, Laser Tag, and Mini Golf ALL DAY for just $20 Per Person!! Please note: does not include cost of Fun Card ($1), which you can keep forever and use again

Saturday
Clarksville Parks & Rec is having a Touch a Truck event from 8am - 1pm at the Clarksville Little League Complex!  Details here and here.

Sunday
In the morning, you can find a spot to watch the IRONMAN event. We love having out on US42 and cheering for the cyclists (while eating donuts, isn't that terrible?)

In the evening, join us at Valley Dairy Freeze for Water Fight Night - RSVP and details here.  15% off the entire menu for dinner and treats, a water squirter activity to try to win free ice cream. Other door prizes handed out as well!

Have a fabuLOUs weekend!

Here's a FUNNY Back to School video for you!
Stephanie

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Review of Charlestown Family Activities Park in Charlestown, Indiana

 photo photo1_zps4ea5cf3f.jpgSplashes and Slides and Ships Oh My!! As a treat for dragging the kids to the gym every morning, I surprised them with a trip to the Charlestown Family Activities Park. It is located in Charlestown, Indiana… Not too far of a drive from anywhere in the area. It was about 10 minutes off I-65. The address is 1000 Park street, across from the Charlestown High School.

 photo photo2_zps85cf1598.jpgThere is a $3 per person charge above the age of 2, which was not bad considering the quality of the facilities. They also rent out party rooms on site for birthdays or gatherings. I was initially nervous about going solo with a 4 and 2 year old, but this park quickly put my mind at ease. My kids tend to be a bit busy — resembling pin pong balls — so fencing around the entire playground and splash area was a huge bonus! If you come at a busy time, it might be difficult to keep an eye on more than one child if one is in the splash area and one is on the playground, because the two locations are separated by picnic tables with umbrellas.

The play ground was fantastic with tons of slides, walkways, bridges and hideouts! Both of mine absolutely loved all the climbing! Upon initial arrival to the park, everything was very clean and neat, and stayed that way everywhere we went. Bathrooms were large and clean. There were plenty of places to sit or enjoy a picnic. The concession area had simple fare food items at reasonable prices for added convenience. The background music was Disney/child themed which was nice and appropriate for the location. You could also roller skate in a covered area…not my little one’s cup of tea now, but several people were taking advantage.

 photo photo3_zps034392e9.jpgWe thoroughly enjoyed the playground and splash park. I highly recommend water shoes or sandals for the little ones as I spotted a few wipeouts with shoeless little ones. So, if your little man wants to channel his inner fireman with a water-shooting Nemo, or your little lady wants to channel her inner mermaid, this is definitely a great spot to stop on the sunny side of the river!

By guest contributor: Morgan

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Review of Pearl Street Treats in Jeffersonville, Indiana

 photo big4_zpsdeaeed7a.jpgBack in late summer, my family and I headed downtown to the Big 4 Bridge to walk over to Jeffersonville, Indiana for the first time! It was so much fun! We had visited the Big 4 Bridge several times over the past year or so since it opened to Louisville, and were so excited to be able to do the full walk together as a family. We had actually spent the entire evening downtown that day enjoying a Louisville Bats baseball game and walking around the waterfront.

 photo big4_zpsef5bff6d.jpgWe ventured over the bridge into Jeffersonville in the early evening hours and as we walked down the ramp on the Indiana side, we ran almost right into the cutest little eatery, Pearl Street Treats. A cute flower lined front porch greeted us as we walked up the steps inside. It was pretty crowded in the tiny little store which features a handful of flavors of self-serve frozen yogurt. It was pretty typical of your frozen yogurt shops with the toppings bar, but also serves drinks and gourmet chips. The price is $.50 per ounce for the yogurt. My daughter said to her it was different because it was the closest froyo she has had that tastes more like ice cream, which she liked. They also carry homemade treats for dogs! The shop serves itself very well with its location at the bottom of the ramp! It seems that the owner of this local shop is going to have her hands full now that the bridge is fully functional!

Pearl Street Treats is located at 301 Pearl Street / 812-288-8850
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday 11am-9pm
Friday-Saturday 10am-10pm
Sunday 1pm-9pm
Closed Mondays

By guest contributor: Erin

Monday, August 18, 2014

Labor Day Events and Things to Do for Families

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Here are some ideas for Labor Day Weekend around Louisville!

That Louisville Bats have games all weekend and remember - there are fireworks on Friday night!

The University of Louisville has a big weekend starting Friday, August 29. The field hockey team plays at 4pm, then the new soccer stadium opens with a women's soccer game at 6pm/men's game at 8:30pm. Click here for ticket information-range from $5-$9-fireworks will go off at halftime!

The F. A. T. Friday trolley hop will run on Friday, August 29. Many businesses will host special offers, live music and refreshments. Free trolleys will run along Frankfort Avenue from Cannons Lane to River Road from 6:00-10:30. 

WorldFest - Admission to WorldFest is free!  It takes place Friday, Aug. 29-Sept. 1 from 11 a.m.- 11 p.m. and Monday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.  Over 90 performances, food, shopping and more!  Check out our review here.

City of New Albany is having a Labor Day celebration on the river - it's a movie night.  There will be food for purchase, fun games and a movie showing at dark (around 9pm).

Family - palooza - Sept. 1st - Blankenbaker Campus: 11am-5pm 920 Blankenbaker Pkwy Louisville, KY 40243 -   Indiana Campus: 11am-4pm 1309 Charlestown New Albany Road Jeffersonville, IN 47130 - Oldham Campus: 11am-4pm 6201 Crestwood Station Crestwood, KY 40014
It's an event put on by Southeast Christian Church.   The largest event will be at the main campus on Blankenbaker. Here's our review

If you are up for shopping, there's always the big Flea market which offers free admission. It's at the KY Expo Center -  Friday 12-6 , Saturday 10-6 , Sunday 11-6 , Monday 10-5  There's a special antique section this year.

Then there's the KY Bluegrass & Bourbon Festival  which takes place at the Louisville Water Tower Saturday, August 30 - (5-11pm) Sunday, August 31 - (5-11pm). It's $10 before 6pm, $14 after 6pm but kids 10 & under are free - parking is also free.

Head to a golf course at one of the Louisville Metro Parks.  On Labor Day weekend, they usually have a special (a family of up to four members can play nine holes at any Metro Parks course for just $20)  Their website isn't updated yet so check first! That includes greens and cart fees. Families can take advantage of the deal after 4:30 p.m. on three days: Saturday, Sunday, and Monday of Labor Day weekend.

There's also the Mayor's Hike Bike and Paddle  for those that want to be active on Labor Day Monday. It's at Waterfront Park and well...you hike, bike and paddle.

Have a great long weekend!
Stephanie

Want to win tickets for the Louisville Bats?  
Contest over - winners have been emailed!
We have 6 ticket vouchers to give away - we'll pick 2 winners for 3 tickets each and you can head out to Slugger Field for Labor Day weekend for their last home stretch of the season!  You must be 18 or older to enter and by entering, you agree to these terms.
To enter: Email info@louisvillefamilyfun.net  and put AUGUST BATS in the subject line! One entry for email address. Contest ends 8/21 and winners will be selected at random and emailed 8/22.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Review Fleur-de-Lis Academy of Ballet in Louisville, KY

 photo IMG_20140812_165137_766-1_zps970aac81.jpgRecently, my 3 year old daughter attended a ballet class at Fleur-de-Lis Academy of Ballet. She has never done ballet and my most recent exposure to it was when I was 5, but I was very impressed with the class! The owner and teacher, Ariadne Connor, was very energetic, exciting, engaging, and everything she did was developmentally appropriate. She clearly has a lot of experience and a passion for ballet and to help others appreciate it as much as she does.

 photo IMG_20140812_165655_092_zps0a2e9cb6.jpgThe class started with some basic warm up stretches to songs and music. She sang and showed the students how to move. They soon stood up and practiced some of the basic positions, but she didn’t stress that they were perfect – it was more of an introduction to the idea for such young students. They then spent time with scarves; they ran across the room jumping over them while acting like different animals, and eventually used them in their hands while twirling and spinning. It was very active and fun. My daughter had a blast and keeps asking when she gets to go back.

There are many class options for various ages, although some are already full. Classes start August 25th. The studio opened this summer and will be fully running in a couple weeks. As time continues, they will expand their space, allowing for more classes to be taught in the future.

The studio is located in the Mellwood Arts Center. I would definitely suggest going a little early your first time if you are unfamiliar with the center, as it took us a little while to find the studio. A couple helpful hints are to find the elevator, go to the second floor, go left, and then right. It really isn’t hard to find if you know what to look for!

 photo IMG_20140812_165825_611-1_zps1a6e2fc5.jpgAfter going to this one class, I would highly recommend it if you are looking for an activity for your child. As far as ballet classes go, it is very inexpensive, at only $15 per class (compared to 20-30 at many other places). If your child is interested in ballet at all, I am sure they would really like this studio. There is plenty more information about the studio on their website.

By guest contributor: Lauren

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Picks for Things to Do this Weekend: August 15,16,17

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Check out our podcast with the Louisville Visual Arts Association - let's talk about art in this city!


Back to school time is hard on family fun - new routines throw us off and we settle in to try to get used to them. But, you still need to make time for some entertainment, giggles, exploration and fun!

What's going on this weekend?

Friday - Sunday:  How about heading to the Kentucky State Fair?  Here's our post of favorites and tips with links to the KY State Fair info page.  Click here to see what's on schedule for this weekend.

Saturday: Are you having a baby and want to get your little ones ready to greet their new sibling?  The Diaper Fairy Cottage is having a fun class called "Getting Ready for Baby" 10am-noon for $15/child v (suggested for 3-6 yos). Space is limited so give them a call to pre-register. Details here.

Or, how about a trip to Holiday World? It's going to be hot so don't say goodbye to summer just yet.   Want to win 2 tickets to go this weekend (must be able to pick them up on Friday between 9am and 4pm - Newport Rd/Watterson Expy area).
Contest over - winner has been emailed



Gosh, or maybe event Pet Day at Creasey Mahan Nature Preserve. I'm having a hard time deciding this weekend. It's 10-2pm and free, bring pets of course.

Whatever you do, have a fabuLOUs weekend,
Stephanie

PS - Click here to learn how you might be able to get a free meal at the new Noodles & Company coming to Louisville!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Review of Riverside, The Farnsley-Moremen Landing in Louisville, KY

 photo 20140712_154256_zpsd3b3614d.jpgInitially when the city announced plans to offer the cultural pass, I was skeptical. We’ve already been so many places and I didn’t think they’d really offer anything different and exciting. Boy was I wrong! There are places like the Louisville Zoo and The Kentucky Science Center on there, both of which we have memberships for. But I was excited to see places like The Filson, Yew Dell Gardens, and Riverside on there.

We were in the Portland neighborhood visiting Good Garbage when we decided to break out the cultural passes and visit nearby Riverside/Farnsley Moremen Landing. I don’t think I had ever been there myself, and it was definitely the first time for the rest of my family.

We enjoyed a picnic in the beautiful picnic shelter before heading into the visitor’s center for our tour. We had the tour guide completely to ourselves, which left my kids plenty of opportunities to ask questions and participate in the experience. We learned about the history of the home and surrounding lands. We saw artifacts and paintings, and learned about the role of slaves on the farm. We also learned about outhouses and chamber pots, fireplaces and bed warmers.

 photo 20140712_155417_zpse1d47414.jpg photo 20140712_161600_zpsb41f7535.jpgThis tour was on the longer side, so it was a little difficult at times for my 5 and 7 year olds to stay quiet and engaged. But they made it through and they learned a few things, and I appreciated the opportunity to learn more about Louisville’s history. Even if you don’t have a cultural pass, you can pay the max rate of $15 per family, which makes this a very affordable family outing. Read more about the Louisville Cultural Pass here.

By guest contributor: Maggie

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Date Night Needed in Louisville, KY - Parents, Get a Sitter

 photo patrick_zpsb3e4684b.jpgLet me preface this by saying I love my kids with all my heart. I really, really do. I love being with them, playing with them, reading with them, cheering them on in different sports and watching them sleep – some nights more than others. Now the fine print: sometimes I love to miss them! Let me give a “for instance”.

The For Instance 

Last week, I had to take my soon to be three year old to the doctors with me because I had a busted ear drum. I’m not sure if it was a sinus infection but I’m more inclined to believe it’s a result of my screaming toddler whenever I have to cart him away from some activity he has gotten himself involved in that he deems fun and exciting – like licking the cat or using a sophisticated ladder of kitchen items to try to reach the “secret” cache of chocolate.

 In any case, he was fine for the first hour with his snacks, cars, pencils and paper I was so proud of myself for bringing, but after that he got squirmy and when it was my turn in the lab chair to get blood drawn for some routine maintenance, he was pretty much over being at the doctors. So, as soon as he saw I was in a compromised position with my arm out of my bulky sweatshirt and the tech about to stick me, he managed to wiggle away, go into the hallway and then said, “Be right back!” before he took off like a cheetah past offices, patient rooms and stunned admins. So I had to jump up, arm still out of my sweatshirt, muffin top bouncing wildly and chase him. His response when he saw me coming was, “Faster, Mommy! You go faster!” So after I did catch up with him, and held him firmly between my knees while simultaneously trying to keep him from ripping the needle out of my arm, I was very ready to just get back in the car and have the day be over.

The Sitter-Worthy Option Chosen 

So yes, sometimes I like to miss them. That being said, it’s hard to get out. It seems like the more kids you have the smaller your babysitting pool. I have three and watch a lot of Dateline so that makes my pool even smaller because of trust issues. I do have my parents close by but only about half the year. So when I actually spring for a sitter or am blessed with a free night, I really want it to be worth the money and/or effort.

 photo ls_zps99148996.jpgThankfully there are a lot sitter-worthy options in Louisville and I think my favorite one of those is Bristol’s in Prospect for several reasons. First of all, their wontons are an incredible culinary delight and one of the best things this side of heaven. Second, you can always get a table. Always. Third, their staff takes great care of you and lets you set the pace of your dinner. I have been there dressed up and dressed down. It’s a relaxing atmosphere and the best part is I don’t have to think. It’s not a place to go to see and be seen. It’s great food and even at a little bit of a splurge, it’s definitely sitter worthy when you need to unwind.

Sure there will be weeks when you argue with your daughter over her wanting to be a real life Rapunzel but screams every time you try to brush her hair and you may want a different, more lively escape. But I’m here to say, Bristol at Prospect is great place to exhale – just don’t forget to breathe back in and repeat.

By guest contributor: Dana

Monday, August 11, 2014

LouFamFun Writers' Tips for Visiting the Kentucky State Fair

These tips were written after attending the 2013 Kentucky State Fair:


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Check out our podcast about all things Kentucky State Fair!

Erin: "Most years we always wait until the end of the fair to visit, usually the last weekend of the fair. It helps a little as it's a little less crowded, but this year I wanted to go earlier because our daughter had two 4-H entries that won 1st place at the Jefferson County Fair, which meant they automatically went onto the Kentucky State Fair! We went during the week to be sure to see her art projects early and see the most animals we could for our toddler's entertainment. If your child (age 9+) has access to a 4-H club near you, I highly recommend it! They work on projects all year that can be entered in the fair, and because they are an urban extension service, they cover the entry fees - plus! There's nothing like arriving at the fair, looking for your artwork, and finding it. It's so cool!"

Maggie: "We tried something new at the fair this year-wrist bands for unlimited rides.  They used to only offer them on certain days, but now they’re offered every day for different prices.  We went on Friday night so our wrist bands were $20 apiece.  What a deal!  My kids got to ride all the rides they wanted, going on most of them at least a dozen times.  The downside to this, of course, is that the lines for rides were longer than I have ever seen them before.  We had to wait sometimes 5-10 minutes for some of the rides.  But everyone had fun and we stayed later than we ever have before riding all the rides we could handle.  We’ll definitely do this next year!"

Brandy: "We happened to be walking past the Farm Credit Mid-America Show Ring as the stands were filling up for Miller's Border Collies show. We were too late to snag a seat, found a great place to stand off to the side near the goats. The owner brought the dogs out one by one and together they demonstrated how Border Collies round up animals on a farm. The dogs respond to verbal commands as well as different whistles. For this show they worked together as a team to herd ducks into different pens in the ring. Every now and then one of the younger dogs would get a little ahead of himself and the owner would call out "lay down" and the dog would flatten out like a pancake. The kids got a kick out of that! The show was brief, but entertaining and was a nice break from the afternoon sun."

Caryn: "This year I decided to try out the final day of the fair. I had fears of large crowds and out of stock vendors, but we gave it a try. Surprisingly, it didn't seem any more crowded than a regular weekend,  and we were only disappointed by the bee and honey group having run out of honey sticks - a tradition for our family. Several of the vendors had "Last Day" sales on merchandise with great deals! But the best thing about the last day of the fair was the horses.

On the last day of the fair, all the show horses have gone home and the draft horses come out to play. Have you ever wondered how many pounds a horse can pull? You can find out at the Draft Horse Pull competition, which happens to be one of the oldest sports in the world. This year the competition started with the lightest weight horses pulling 4,000 pound sleds. As the horses got heavier, and as the competition continued, the weight on the sled got heavier. I was amazed at how fast those horses pulled the wood sled full of cinder blocks, and how fast they took off to pull the sled as soon as they were hooked up. More than once the teams tried to take off before they were hooked up, pulling the handlers behind them. They are amazingly strong!

Each team took their turn pulling the sled about 28 feet. As the sled approached 8,000 pounds, the horses started to have some difficulty. We watched as the teams were unable to pull the sled the full distance and were eliminated from the competition. I really enjoyed watching and cheering the horses on, but my kids were ready to leave after about 45 minutes and needed to be distracted with ice cream and snacks to remain for the full 2 hours of competition. It was a very casual atmosphere where you could come and go as you please, eat and drink, and chat with your neighbors. The announcer did a great job of introducing the teams, talking about their other wins, and telling us more about the sport. Next time, I think I'll sacrifice our good seats in exchange for watching just the last part of the competition when the horses start to really show off. It was lots of fun, but a little long for my kids.

The last part of the fair we enjoyed was the animals getting packed up for home. Watching the farmers try to get some of the animals in their trailers was like watching The Running of the Bulls, but with pigs knocking over families and children as they raced down the aisles (no one was hurt, just startled). It was entertaining to watch, not to be part of, and it was something new we had never seen at the fair mid-week. Overall, I'd say there are positives and negatives to attending the last day of the fair, but we enjoyed it just as much as the less crowded times."

The 2014 Kentucky State Fair is August 14-24, 2014.

You can also see past reviews:
2010
2010 again
All Day Round Up - visiting for a FULL day!
4H & Food

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Bright Horizons Early Education and Preschool

This is a Sponsored Post
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TIME FOR SCHOOL:  ARE YOU PREPARED?
By Bright Horizons Early Education and Preschool; Bright Horizons at Louisville, Kentucky
 photo brighthorizonspic2_zpsee120fe1.jpgThe first day of school can be difficult for children of all ages. Children entering school for the first time are often anxious, but even children who have already attended school can be upset or concerned on the first day. 

What can you do to help make the first day easier for your child? Here are some tips:
·         Talk to Your Child
Remind your child that she is not the only student who is a bit uneasy about the first day of school. Teachers know that students are anxious and will make an extra effort to make sure everyone feels as comfortable as possible.
·         Choose a Buddy
If possible, find out the names of other children in your child's class. Find another child in the neighborhood with whom your youngster can walk to school or ride with on the bus.
·         Be a Cheerleader
Point out the positive aspects of starting school: It will be fun. Tell your child he'll see old friends and meet new ones. Refresh his memory about previous years when he may have returned home after the first day with high spirits because he had a good time.

Transitioning from Summer to School
 photo brighthorizonspic1_zps03ff68af.jpgWhile it is wonderful to give children the opportunity for a more relaxed schedule during the summer, August is the time for gradually easing children back into a routine to avoid an abrupt transition when school starts. 

Here are some ideas for easing the transition into school:
·         Get into the Routine
Start re-implementing your regular routines during August. If you let your child stay up a little later during the summer, gradually get back to the bedtime you expect once school starts.
·         Practice
"Rehearse" packing lunches in the morning, so that you will know how much extra time it will take and what supplies you will need to have on hand. If your child will be purchasing lunch, begin collecting dollar bills and change in a location in the kitchen so you will have it handy. Do a "dry run" of the new morning routine, whether it's walking to the bus stop or driving to the new school to see how much time it will take. Remember, it almost always takes more time than you think, especially when the unexpected happens (e.g., you have to go back to the house to get homework, sneakers for gym, lunch, etc.).
·         Phase Out Naptime
Yes, we all love sleeping children, but if your child takes a nap, begin decreasing nap time so that he or she will be ready for a full day without a nap by the time school starts.
·         Check Out the School
If you haven't done so already and if the school welcomes the practice, make a visit to the new school to meet your child's teacher and other familiar faces. If this doesn't work with your schedule, arrange for a relative or neighbor whose child attends the same school to take your child before the official school year begins.
·         Have a Back-Up Plan
Make sure you and your child know the routine for before- and after-school care. Have a back-up plan for what to do in case you are late. You probably had a plan for your current child care center, but be sure that your emergency pick-up people know where the new school and after-school program is located and what the pick-up routine is there. It is better to prepare ahead of time than encounter an emergency.
·         Create Morning Moments
For happier mornings, develop a special "getting-ready" routine and stick with it. When children can predict what's coming next, they feel competent and are much more likely to cooperate. For younger children, a relaxing routine might start off with some snuggle time and independent play, followed by a nutritious breakfast. For older children, it might include time to collect homework and plan for afternoon activities.
It's impossible to protect our children from the world and school is a big step towards their independence. With our reassurance and patience, our children's transition to school can be rewarding for all of us.

For information and articles relating to school readiness, visit the Bright Horizons
 Ready for School website.

Bright Horizons at Louisville is located at 632 South Fourth Street in Louisville.  We are pleased to offer infant, toddler, preschool, and kindergarten prep programs for learning, as well as school’s out programs and camps for school age children.