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Sunday, June 30, 2013

WINNER! Atlantis Water Park passes

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Summer is here, so hit Atlantis Water Park to cool off!

So conveniently located in Clarksville right off of I-65 , you won't spend a ton on gas for a day trip!!

It's open 11am-6pm daily and admission is $10 or less, depending on when you go.

 photo atlantiswaterpark-1_zps0ab17916.jpg It is open through early August. It features water slides, a wave pool and a kids splash area.  Then, there's lounge chairs for sunning or shaded spots for cooling off as well as concessions.

They also have a fabuLOUs Atlantis & Holiday Inn Package Special that you can take advantage of all summer for a little staycation?!
It includes one night stay at Holiday Inn Lakeview 4 Day Passes to Atlantis for just $99.00 plus tax
(Pass MUST be used during time of stay)

So who won the 4 day passes????? It's Christy Anson!!
Please email info@louisvillefamilyfun.net from the email address you entered with and send your mailing address!

June Family Book Review

 photo IMG_3632_zpsa28c5c04.jpgThis month's book feature is the TIME for Kids, Big Book of Where. Where do lemurs live? Where was the largest Maya city? Where did the Titanic sink?

Do your kids ask the question "where" a lot? Mine sure do. Often followed by many "whys!" My youngest doesn't quite ask the who, what, where, and when questions yet. He just says "Momma" 1000 times until I look at him, and then he shows me the bulldozer for the 10,000th time! This book compiled by Time Home Entertainment is that indeed: very entertaining. My daughter was engrossed with this book for about a week or more. She is really into science and loves facts: and this one contains 801 of them! This book was right up her alley because it's very colorful and has all those nice tidbits of information contained all in one place. Each chapter covers each of the seven continents, and there are chapters covering the oceans, space, and stuff around your home.

Check this book out at your local library, whether it's Louisville Free Public Library or Oldham County Public Libraries, or another one. The library is always stocked full of these TIME types of books, whether it's the Scholastic records books or other compilation books that are full of the question/answer formats that so many kids love to read. And remember, summer reading is still in full swing so get those awesome reading prizes for your kids!

Guess what? We have a copy to giveaway as well! Be on the lookout on LouisvilleFamilyFun.net to see when this book will be ready for a new reader! Happy reading, as always!

By guest contributor: Erin

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Things to do this weekend around Louisville - June 28,29,30

It's the last weekend in June and it's hot, the evening storms keep rolling through and my kids have a few extra freckles on their faces.  Looking for things to do to let your June go out with a BANG?

How about some fireworks?
There are 2 events going on this weekend to celebrate Independence Day - see the details here.
They take place in Norton Commons and Riverview Park. Fun times on both ends of the city!
And, one on Sunday at Middletown United Methodist Church -from 3-8pm
(I think this one does not feature fireworks)

Plan your 4th of July family fun with this post

What else?
Bryant's Blueberries has fresh, juicy blueberries ready for the picking! They have listed on their website that they will be open on Saturday for picking!  You need cash or check and it's $2.25 per pound.  You should probably bring your own pans for transporting the blueberries home!  It's about 30 miles from downtown Louisville. See our past review by clicking here.
Directions per their website: From Louisville or New Albany: Take I-64 west to the Georgetown Exit (#118). Go right (west) on SR 64 for 10 miles. Turn left on Oak Park Rd (opposite Insight Eye Care-before New Salisbury stop light!) 1 mile on left.

Those are my picks!  Not happy with then, well, fine. Make your own picks via our calendar above that has many many more options. Or, hang out at home and create your own family fun - I have some ideas pinned on my summer board on Pinterest.


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Review of Seneca Park in Louisville

 photo IMG_3470_zpsc23e2cbe.jpgSince springtime has finally decided to show herself here in Louisville, I took advantage of a gorgeous, brilliant sunny morning recently and took my 20-month-old to Seneca Park for a couple of hours. We had such a great time...well until the wind started blowing and my allergies kicked in...

 photo IMG_3461_zps26750a13.jpg photo IMG_3462_zpsee347f95.jpg photo IMG_3460_zps6a2cc152.jpg We went on a weekday morning and it was not crowded at all. Seneca Park has a wonderful playground area for children. There are two play areas with the usual stairs, climbing spots, slides, and bridges. One area is designed for smaller toddlers and the other area is designed for older toddlers and preschoolers. Since mine is under 2, we stayed at the smaller play area. He had a ball, the day we went he was really into climbing the small steps that lead up to the slides and bridge. He slid down a few times and played with the steering wheel. We went over to the baby swings for a little while, but since he is a monkey he can't be contained for very long! There is also a separate set of swings for older children.

 photo IMG_3468_zpse4f4a955.jpg photo IMG_3469_zps6c31f6ed.jpgThe park is very clean and maintained. We stepped inside the restrooms while we where there and they were clean as well. They are conveniently located right next to the playground. After playing for a little while, we decided to hop in the stroller and take a walk along the huge walking/jogging path that is the main draw to Seneca Park for so many. It is a wonderful place to exercise. The park also has soccer goals set up in the grassy areas, plenty of trees for a shady picnic spot, and tennis courts. Other amenities at the park include a cross country trail, horseback riding trails, and ball fields. There are multiple water fountains around the trail, which is 1.2 miles.

While taking our stroll, we also saw many bikers out taking advantage of the bike paths along the roads around Seneca Park. Adjacent to Seneca Park is the Seneca Golf Course if you are interested in golfing. Seneca Park is one of the many Metro Parks in Louisville and perhaps one of the oldest. It was acquired in 1928 and is part of the Olmsted Parks history. Seneca Park is located at 3151 Pee Wee Reese Road; it is open daily from dawn until dusk.

By guest contributor: Erin

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

LouFamFun $10 Challenge - June

 photo 10ch2_zps97a75867.jpgSo my girl and I started the day off with 10 bucks.  Instead of racking my brain trying to create a day of magical childhood memories I decided to put a different spin on it.  My now 7-year-old is quite the free thinker.  In fact she is probably the free-est thinker in the 2nd grade.  “So ‘Noodle’”, as I have called her since she was 2, “What’s on our agenda today?  We have 10 bucks, use it wisely”.  Without hesitation Noodle responds, “Let’s go to the Beckley Station Park at the Parklands”.  So it’s 9:30am and we’re off…

 photo 10ch3_zpsadaccf64.jpg photo 10ch1_zpsc617a844.jpg“THIS IS AWESOME!!!” She screams!  For time management purposes, I don’t take cues from that nutty little chicken nugget often enough, so the idea of the day being left to her discretion was a very exciting concept. It’s just us today.  Her brother is at a friend’s house and will not be a part of the equation until later on tonight.  On that note, we lather on the sunscreen, pack a lunch and head out on our excursion.   We begin our day by hiking a nature trail near the paddling access called Coppiced Woods Trail, which is a soft-surface trail through the woods surrounding William F. Miles Lakes.

If you hike the entire thing, which we did, it is 1.87 miles long.  We took a couple breaks to skip stones, have a snack and check out the nature hanging out around us.  It took a total of 2 hours.  We finished up on the awesome playground they have there. “What’s next?” I ask her.  “Hmmm”, she says.  It’s about 11:30am so our day is still young.

 photo 10ch4_zps89472137.jpgNext my little love-bug mentions my other favorite freebie activity.  “Can we Geocache?” she asks.  For those of you that are not familiar with this super cool treasure hunting activity, you should be.  Here’s a link to more on that at What is Geocaching?  “You betcha”, I respond.  There’s a free app on my phone that I can pull up and instantly, no matter where we are, it will give us 3 geo locations to choose from.

Tom Sawyer State Park is quite the hot spot for these things and a great place to pop a picnic…so we’re off…again.  We find a box of treasure, switch out a couple little goodies and we take our bounty and set out to eat, picnic style.  Under the shade of a White Dogwood Tree munching on our grub we end up flat on our backs diagnosing the shape of funny little clouds.  I brought a long a couple books, but they stayed in our bag as we gabbed about girl stuff.  I cherish our girl time.  I wonder quietly to myself how much longer I’ll be cool.  I do the math…not much longer. 

After our lunch I decide to surprise her with a little treat.  We swing over to the Homemade Pie Kitchen in Springhurst for a kid’s scoop of their yummy ice cream.   A kid’s scoop is $2.12 and it’s just enough.  So two of them came to $4.49 with tax and we’re left with $5.51 in our stash.  We enjoy our ice cream and set of for our finale. 

It was time to pick up her big brother so he could join in the fun.  Unfortunately, it started to sprinkle on our beautiful day.  That is just how things go here in Louisville during the spring.  A gorgeous day may include a slight chance of showers at a seconds notice.  It’s a good thing that there are so many fabulous inexpensive indoor options here in Louisville.  I suggest Incredible Dave's as our final destination.  It’s a great place to go when you’re trying to appeal to a group of varying ages.  I had to be very blunt about our budget upfront.  If you’ve never been to Incredible Dave’s it can be quite overwhelming.  There are tons of things to do.   I wouldn’t normally put this on my list of inexpensive things to do.  Just like any other place like that, the individual cost of activities can add up quickly, which is why I split the money between them and let them decide how it was spent.  They are much more selective about how they choose to spend it when it comes out of their own little pockets.  They chose to split a couple rounds of Hwy 66 bowling.  This is a miniature version of bowling for kids.  Perfect for kids who want to play and for parents who don’t want the ground to shake every time they drop regular bowling ball.  They burnt up the rest on ski ball.   We had an amazing day and we all came together at the end for some great family fun. 

They both fought a car nap on the way home. After dinner we snuggled up on the couch with a movie (Marmaduke which is one our favorites). The movie really just provides the background noise to our giggling as we share little highlights of our day. Every one retires with a smile on their face and the $10 challenge was an absolute success; brother even requested a $10 day of his own. The planning has already begun. What would you do with your $10? 

By guest contributor: Whitney

Monday, June 24, 2013

CONTEST! 4 Day Passes to Atlantis Water Park

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Atlantis Water Park wants you to enjoy a splashing good day of family fun! Summer is here, so hit the water park!  It is really easy to get to in Clarksville right off of I-65.  It's open 11am-6pm daily and admission is just

 photo atlantiswaterpark-1_zps0ab17916.jpg The Water Park is open through early August. It features water slides, a wave pool and a kids splash area.  Of course, there's lots of lounge chairs for sunning or shaded spots for cooling off as well as concessions.

Did you know that they also have an Atlantis & Holiday Inn Package Special that you can take advantage of all summer for a little staycation?!
It includes one night stay at Holiday Inn Lakeview 4 Day Passes to Atlantis for just $99.00 plus tax
(Pass MUST be used during time of stay)

We are giving away one of these packages to a lucky reader in this sponsored giveaway!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Personal Opinion: Toy Testers Needed!

This is a sponsored post, please read and consider checking out this business!

Toy testers needed! 
Boys & Girls ages 4-8

 photo LOGOJPEG_zpsc3cc9698.jpgPersonal Opinion, a marketing research facility in St. Matthews, needs boys and girls ages 4-8 who have never participated in toy research, and whose siblings have not participated within the past year. 

 photo Room3_zpsf5bda31c.jpgThe kids come in to their facility just off Breckenridge Lane and look at toys and then get a nice toy to take  home as a thanks for their participation. Because a parent has to help the 4-5 year old children, the parent of children of those ages receives a small cash incentive as well as the child getting a toy.

The children usually really enjoy it, and it takes about an hour to complete.

Parents can contact us at 502-899-2400

Sign up for future alerts about potential research panel opportunities via their website: Click here

Saturday, June 22, 2013

All About 4-H in Louisville, KY and other surrounding counties

4-H: The four H's in the very familiar green clover logo stand for Head, Heart, Hands, Health. When I worked for the library system, I met some awesome 4-H leaders who spend hours driving all over Jefferson county to connect with kids from elementary school all the way through high school. 4-H is a fun, engaging, and educational program that your child might really benefit from and reap so many rewards. This feature is designed to inform you of what is involved in 4-H, how you can get your kids signed up, and what summer activities and camps are going on around Louisville and the state.

 photo photo6.jpg I like to think of 4-H as a "scouting" opportunity for city kids. 4-H is not related to the Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts, but many of their activities are similar. 4-H started as an agricultural endeavor in the rural areas of the country, and still stays true to its original intentions. What has become of 4-H over the years has resulted in a way to reach the inner city and kids who don't have opportunities to be exposed to the agricultural world. Today, those connections are made through cooperative extension offices, with 4-H groups meeting in every county, in every state of the U.S. It's a really dynamic program!

Some programs that I got to see firsthand at the library were babysitting workshops, electricity experiments, nutrition, communication/speech preparation, science with magnets, hands-on cooking, and learning to grow and cultivate small container gardens with plants such as tomatoes and cilantro.

4-H is open to students ranging in ages 9-19. This summer, 4-H is partnering with the Louisville Free Public Library to bring summer science activities and opportunities to participate in 4-H fair project days. Some of the science topics include electricity, kitchen science, and CSI. On select days your kids can complete a 4-H fair project such as bamboo windchimes, quilling, and staining wood boxes, just to name a few. There is also a program for students under age 9 called Clover Buds. You can sign your kids up for these programs by calling your closest LFPL branch library.

 photo photo2.jpg One big program that happens every summer is the Jefferson County 4-H Fair. Participants from 4-H groups all over the state of Kentucky submit projects to the fair and are judged and can earn a little bit of cash too. Click here to read about LouFamFun's coverage of 4-H at last year's KY state fair.

This summer, check out 4-H at the library; it's a great way to see what it's all about and maybe start attending a club or meet-up in the fall with other 4-H'ers.
Here is the summer fair project day schedule for five local libraries. Sign-up is required:

4-H Fair Project Days
Southwest Library - June 24th (call 502-933-0029)
10:00 a.m. - noon - Bamboo Windchimes
2:00 - 4:00 p.m. - Decoupage
Middletown Library - June 25th (call 502-245-7332)
10:00 a.m. - noon - Wreaths
2:00 - 4:00 p.m. - Texture Wall Hanging
Jeffersontown Library - June 26th (call 502-267-5713)
10:00 a.m. - noon - Jewelry
2:00 - 4:00 p.m. - Placesettings
Westport Library - June 27th (call 502-394-0379)
10:00 a.m. - noon - Quilling
2:00 - 4:00 p.m. - Wood boxes - stain
Okolona Library - June 28th (call 502-964-3515)
10:00 a.m. - noon - Huck Toweling
2:00 - 4:00 p.m. - Quilling

4-H can be found in many surrounding counties including Spencer, Bullitt, Shelby, and Oldham. To find out more about the Jefferson County Extension program, contact their office through their website, or by calling 502-569-2344.

By guest contributor: Erin

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Things to do this weekend in and around Louisville - June 21,22,23

There's so many options! I browsed the LouFamFun website calendar up and down to make my picks! Definitely explore the calendar because these are just my personal choices for what I think will surely be fun for all.

Head on up to Goshen for a free outdoor movie - details here. The fun starts at 7pm at North Oldham Baptist Church with concessions and free popcorn but the movie doesn't start until a little after 9pm. It's Madagascar 3! Or, head to the FridayFest in Highview park. It features local music, and community socializing from 6-10pm. Family friendly summer concerts and movies, YEAH!

Saturday, start your day out with some fresh goodies from a farmer's market. I think the St. Matthews Farmer's Market  (8am -noon) is not only a fantastic place to shop for produces and other farm goods but very entertaining for the kids. Since it's rather large, there's lots to looks at and a buzz that makes it fun for the whole family.  I mean, look at this map of all of the vendors!

If you follow this blog and have for a while, you know that I am a huge fan of any event that provides some educational opportunities as well as entertainment and this one I found is really unique.  What a great way to show kids what BICENTENNIAL means but taking them back in time? On Sunday there's a Vintage Bicycle Exhibit and Parade at Bicentennial Park corner of Pearl and Spring in New Albany. The exhibit starts at 11:30, there's a Parade on Main Street at 1:45 and a free ice cream social at Division Street School from 2-4pm.  Now, that is a different event, love it!

There's my picks, something for each day - you can't do it all (although I try).

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Review of Wendell Moore Park and Aquatic Center

 photo wendall1_zps8f55abd9.jpgWendell Moore Park is a great park off Highway 393 in La Grange. It is 107 acres of walking trails, picnic shelters, playgrounds, a lake for fishing from bank or dock, softball fields, tennis courts, a basketball court, and restrooms. It has nice, wide open areas with trees to climb, rocks to jump on, and nature to observe. It also shares a parking lot with the John Black Community and Aquatic Center. Wendell Moore is still a work in progress with more trails to be built, but when it is finished, it will be home to approximately 3.25 miles of multi-use trails. The trails are very stroller, child, and dog friendly.

 photo wendall4_zps1ae53e05.jpg photo wendall3_zps92f3cb72.jpgI enjoyed taking my kids and my dog to the park on a Saturday afternoon. They had a great time on the playground, walking trails, trees, and investigating around the lake. We sat at one of the shelters with our picnic lunch, and appreciated the clean, unlocked restrooms and water fountains. The entire park felt very safe and clean. Across the parking lot, the Aquatic Center was gearing up to open, but unfortunately, it wasn't open yet with our visit. The pools (and awesome water slide!) are open from Memorial Day weekend, May 25, 2013 and will be open through September 7, 2013.

I highly recommend you visit the park and Aquatic Center this summer! Here is some helpful information for the John Black Community and Aquatic Center:

$5 for ages 13 to 59
$4 ages 3-12
$3 60+
ages 0-2 free

 photo wendall2_zps8a9b536e.jpg Pool passes available ($25 fee for non-Oldham County residents)
Must be 13 years or older to enter alone.
Must be 42" tall with swimming skills to go down the water slide.
Any children 3 and under must wear swim diapers under their swimsuits.
Swim lessons, birthday parties, swim team, and water exercise available.

By guest contributor: Caryn

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Top 10 Things to do on your family vacation to Louisville, KY

 photo 9ae69e61-439b-4717-b041-dee1cabb1748_zps02394ee3.jpg10. Belle of Louisville  While sightseeing cruises on the Belle of Louisville are not available in the coldest winter months, this is one of my family’s favorite summertime activities. Tickets range from $12-42, depending on the season, time of day, and whether you do the buffet. There is a snack bar and drink bar available for most cruises. Click here for more info.

9. Louisville Zoo  The Louisville Zoo is open year round and provides a great opportunity for family fitness and learning. The newly-opened award-winning Glacier Run exhibit is alone worth the price of admission.  Tickets range from $10.50-17.95. Click here for more info.

8. Muth’s Candies  Check out the unique shops and restaurants in the Nulu district, including Muth’s Candy Company to try Modjeskas. The Modjeska is a uniquely Louisvillian candy, invented here and named after a famous Polish actress who worked in Louisville in the 1880s.

7. My Old Kentucky Home State Park  This historic park was the inspiration for Stephen Collins Foster’s song My Old Kentucky Home. Tour guides dress in period attire and tell the story of the generations that lived in the home. Click here for more details. (See our review here)

6. Kentucky Derby Museum  The Kentucky Derby Museum has something to offer every member of the family from the 360 degree movie to the Urban Bourbon exhibit. Admission is $6-14 and kids under 5 are free.

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5. Waterfront Park  There are always special events going on at Louisville Waterfront Park, but even just walking through the great lawn and playing on one of the many playgrounds and spraygrounds can be a wonderful adventure. Check out all of our recent ideas here. Best of all, it’s free! 

4. Kentucky Science Center  The Kentucky Science Center has something for everyone, from educational IMAX movies to the many hands-on exhibits for all ages. Admission ranges from $5-18.
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3. Louisville City FC  Louisville soccer fans fill Slugger Field to cheer on our favorite local pro team in purple.  It's an affordable, family fun thing to do together and the games run from March-September so much of the year, you can schedule a time to go!

 photo top104_zpse3982cb3.jpg2. The Louisville Slugger Museum  I admit it: I only recently discovered this place myself. I can’t believe it took me so long to find this amazing monument to the great game of baseball as well as the place where they make the world-famous Louisville Slugger baseball bats. The tour guides are passionate, which makes the tours a lot of fun. Tickets range from $6-11 and kids 5 and under are free. Click here for more info.

1. Twin Glass Studios  Louisville has an amazing art culture, including several hot shops in the area. This new kid on the block happens to be one of my favorite glass studios because it is so family friendly. The owner designed the space specifically to accommodate families and groups who wanted an intimate blow-your-own or fused-glass experience. Just don’t leave this to the last day of your trip, as your work of art has to cool down slowly in a kiln overnight. Most projects range from $40-60. Click here for more info.

By guest contributor: Maggie

Monday, June 17, 2013

Review of BreyerFest at the Kentucky Horse Park ( and a link for discount tickets!)

We had the privilege of going to Breyerfest 2012. BreyerFest is a three-day model horse festival held each July at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY. There are horse performances, a petting zoo, pig races, face painting, toy horse painting, entertainers, a Trade Show, stores, meet-and-greets with the horses that inspired the Breyer models, and more.

There's a Groupon deal!
BreyerFest Denim and Diamonds

$16 for One-Day Admission for an Adult and Child to BreyerFest Denim and Diamonds at Kentucky Horse Park ($32 Value)
More details at Groupon

Review continued........................

 photo breyerfest2_zpsbeb327b0.jpgWe were a little caught off guard that there was a $5 fee for parking after buying the BreyerFest tickets ($20 for adults, $10 for kids for a single day of the festival. Children 6 and under are free but don't get a model horse).The Horse Park is still open for regular business, so regular parking fees applied. We first went to pick up our little model horses that came "free" with your ticket. There were 4 different models to choose from, and they came in their own cloth pouch. Then we headed over to the main arena where there were horse shows of all types going on all day. We saw miniature horses, dressage, saddle horses, costumed horse and riders, and we even saw a horse jump through a ring of fire! There was no set seating that we could see, and the kids enjoyed coming and going to the arena as they pleased. You could also eat in the arena, which was a great, shaded place to get a snack. We started to walk through the many tent shops on the top level of the arena, but with two small children, we decided being surrounded by hundreds of breakable model horses was not for us. We did notice they sold everything from models, toys, expensive jewelry, as well as signs hung up asking for different models to buy or trade. One thing to keep in mind, if you do buy a Breyer Horse model, it must be left outside of the arena at a holding area or in your car if you leave the arena. I overheard one woman who was annoyed that they would not let her carry her horse packages back inside.

 photo breyerfest10_zps52111b34.jpgWe then headed outside to the petting zoo area. The petting zoo had a good number of different animals in a fenced in area. You could pay a quarter to get a handful of food to feed whoever would come to the fence. While we were there, they had pig races which were really fun to watch and root for. Right next to the petting zoo, there was a ring for unlimited pony rides with your BreyerFest wristband. My daughter went a half dozen times, and would have gone more if I let her. We also let the kids do the $5 camel ride which they thought was terrific. Next we headed over to another outdoor area with a large tent and multiple concession stands. They had jumping obstacle courses for kids, a fake horse with multiple grooming supplies to play with, jugglers, magic shows, and more. But my kids' favorite part was the model horse painting. They were each given a free, little Breyer Horse and they took a seat at one of the long tables set up. At each table were paint and brushes. They could paint it however they wanted, and leave it to dry and pick up later. It was nice to sit and be in the shade for a while!

 photo breyerfest8_zps9885c2e2.jpgOne of the things I liked best about the festival, was that you were allowed to bring in food and drink. We brought a cooler for our lunch, so we didn't have to rely on the concessions or hope there was something my kids would eat. Plus it made the trip a little cheaper. On a side note, there were multiple port-a-potties at each of the outside areas. Of course, my daughter refused to use them, requiring us to walk to the nicer bathrooms in the arena or one of the museums. After lunch, we went to the Kentucky Horse Park attractions which are included in our tickets. There are so many things to do and see, we didn't even get to them all. We did pay a little extra to go on a horse-drawn wagon tour of the park. We were a little disappointed that the tour guides told us that kids under the age of 6 needed to sit on a parent's lap. We heard them announce this at each ride, and saw that they filled each wagon to full capacity. I understood why they did it, but it made it an uncomfortable ride for me!

After the tour, we went in a few of the Horse Park buildings, but we spent most of our time at the Kid's Barn. The Kid's Barn had stall after stall of activities and neat things to see. They even brought out a real horse for the kids to groom!

 photo breyerfest5_zps995bea8f.jpgWe also went to a Horses of the World show. Before the show started, I ran to the Tack building next door to buy some ice cream which was very reasonably priced. My kids enjoyed eating it during the show and it helped to keep us cool. The seats for the show were in the shade and there was a nice breeze which made it even more enjoyable. My kids loved this show and talked about it for days. Basically, they had 20 different breeds of horses, many of them rare, parade around the ring while the narrator gave information on them. Some did tricks, some wore costumes, and some simply did a series of figure eights before they left the ring. After the show, all of the horses came out for the audience to pet and ask questions. My kids had to pet every horse. Then we went over to a little building next door where they had 2 mechanical horses to ride. One was broken, but the other would canter for a few minutes with just a quarter. The ride lasted so long, both my kids were able to ride the same horse with only one quarter! By the time we went through the police horse stable, my kids were getting pretty tired. I would have liked to have stayed and looked through some more of the museums and the Hall of Champions, but we will just have to go back another time.

All in all, it was a great day, and very worth the money. Seeing the BreyerFest and the Horse Park in a single day may be overwhelming, but without young kids, you may be able to do everything in a single day. Both the BreyerFest and the Horse Park have lots of shade and indoor sites, so it would not be too bad in super hot or rainy days, though I'd prefer mild weather. I had a great time, and I know my kids will be asking to go again next year!


WINNER! 2 round-trip tickets to Cancun from Vacation Express

 photo vacationexpress_zpsb1704cb0.jpgThe Cincinnati airport options are great for Louisville residents as well!  It's not too far north of Louisville and has a lot of non-stop flight options that would make the drive there worth it.  So, who won the TWO non-stop airline tickets to Cancun, Mexico!?!??!?!?

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The winner will receive a certificate for two round trip tickets to 
 Cancun, Mexico on Sunwing Airlines departing from Cincinnati
Non-Stop Champagne Flights!  And, a $50 per person discount coupon towards your hotel stay!

The winner is.................JACOB SMITH

To claim: please email info@louisvillefamilyfun.net using the email address used when entering the contest!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Things to do this weekend in and around Louisville - June 14,15,16

It's already the middle of June?! How is that possible? The hot summer days sure did hit Louisville this past week. But the forecast for this weekend looks really nice. Here are our picks for your family's entertainment this Father's Day weekend.

On Friday and Saturday is Jeffersonville's 5th Annual Smokin' on the River: BBQ, Blues, and Brew Festival at Jeffersonville Riverstage. This festival is going to be super fun-it's become the 2nd largest barbeque festival in the state of Indiana! There will be lots of tastings, barbeque competitions, and a kids fun zone and more! The fun begins Friday at 11am and ends Saturday evening. Two of our favorite phrases: free and family-friendly!

We love the libraries around Louisville! Don't forget about all the prizes and rewards your kiddos can receive with summer reading! This Saturday, June 15, the Middletown Library is hosting a FREE family art day with Louisville Visual Art Association. It's a drop-in workshop from 1pm-3pm that will include art projects, storytime, and a free healthy snack from Whole Foods!

Sunday is Father's Day. Celebrations will be left up to you! We have published a post with some deals and events going on around Louisville. There are lots of brunches happening at some fancier places and there's river cruising on the Belle of Louisville. Spend the day doing what your family loves to do on Father's Day and end the evening with a free scoop of ice cream (courtesy of The Comfy Cow!) or FROYO (courtesy of Sweet Frog Louisville!) for dad.

It should be a beautiful weekend for the outdoors. Find a new park, head to one of LouFamFun's Top 10 places to dine al fresco, or have some fun with these outdoor game ideas that we compiled.

Make this weekend fabuLOUs as always!

By guest contributor: Erin

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Review of Huber's Winery Tour, a great Parent's Night Out option

 photo wine5_zps5889c3cb.jpg photo e3918b06-d312-4e08-b473-26c99c5596cb_zpsa8135189.jpgDuring the cooler weather, we decided to try a winery tour at Huber's Orchard & Winery. We have visited Huber's for plenty of you-pick fruits and vegetables, kid's activities, as well as eaten their delicious meals, but we had never tried a wine tour. Huber's has over 600 acres of fruits and vegetables, and is one of the oldest wineries in Indiana. They have now become so large, and sell to so many states, that they are no longer considered a small business winery by the State of Kentucky, and can no longer participate in some of Kentucky's festivals.

 photo wine1_zps8a139783.jpgThe tour began behind the register in the wine barn. It was a guided tour of the cellar, barrel room, distillery, and bottling facility. There are several staff members who give the tours, and you may even have a tour given by an eighth-generation Huber. It was very informative, personal, and interesting. I enjoyed hearing about the machines that bottle hundreds of bottles a day, down to the old-school bottling method that is still used for a certain type of drink which involves 4 people to physically pour and seal each bottle. Our tour ended with wine-tasting at a long bar set up with a selection of wines to choose from, and a plate of cheese, crackers, fruit, and chocolates to bring out the flavor. We also received a souvenir glass for each member of our party, and a bottle of wine to take home from a select list.

 photo wine3_zpse8b2a32c.jpgThere are several wine tours to choose from, from individuals to groups, and each comes with different offers from food to wine bottles to a trip out to the vineyards with a guide. The tours—which require a reservation—take place during business hours, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday–Saturday and from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. The final tour each day begins at 4 p.m. They prefer at least a 2 week reservation notice.
For more details, check out their wine tour packages here.

By guest contributor: Caryn

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Top Ten Tips for Camping with the Family

 photo camping_zps199b5ffc.jpg
1. Do your homework- Camping as an adult is challenging enough.  If you plan to bring the kids make sure you plan basic activities ahead of time.
Hiking: I like to visit hiking blogs for reviews to distinguish which trails are child appropriate.  Distance and terrain are always of most importance.  Do your homework and you’ll be less likely to have the dead weight riding piggyback as you hump up the last stretch of a mountain you didn’t know was there.  Kentucky especially has tons of trails that are all incline.  Those trails are great for a workout, not so great for trekking with a toddler.   Here is a link to a site I use to check out new trails.  
Learning: Most state parks have great resources for history and local species information.  Do yourself a favor and print it out.  All of it.  When they ask "why and what" you can look it up.  Or if you’re a “google it” girl like me you can just pull it up on your smartphone.  However, having a signal while you’re enjoying the outdoors slightly defeats the purpose and can be unlikely, so print it out and save yourself the headache.  If you have any nature savvy kids that collect species identification books like my 4 year old, bring them along.  It’s a great way to introduce the power of research. 

2. Footwear – Comfortable, safe and functional.  Crocs are great for slipping in and out of the tent, but for goofing around in nature they just don’t cut it and can be downright dangerous.  Bring the crocs or flops, but make sure to pack comfy tennis shoes and socks.  Blisters are a beast and can ruin everyone’s good time.  Remember, you may be good at hopping over puddles, but chances are whatever footwear you bring is going to get wet and muddy so make sure they are durable and washable.  Waterproof is always a plus.  Good shoes are expensive, but if you’re a camping family or plan to become one, they are certainly a worthwhile investment.  Check out these adorable little waterproof boots.  

3. Campfire Food – It’s safe to say that one of the fondest memories that make a kid’s first camping experience is cooking over a campfire.  Marshmallows…YES…Hotdogs…sure, ok.  We now have interest people.  Get creative.  Do a Pinterest search on campfire food and create your grocery list.  Having a meal plan is priceless. 

4.  Checklists – making sure you have everything efficiently packed for yourself is difficult enough.  Packing for your kids as well always adds to the challenge.  Clean underwear or their favorite teddy bear take on a whole new meaning when the kids are sleeping under the stars for the first time.  Homely comforts are always a good idea.  We all know if they don’t sleep, we aren’t sleeping either.  Do yourself a favor and make a list for everything.  You may feel like you’re over doing it, but reassure yourself that if ever you let your OCD get the better of you, this is the appropriate time.  You are in good company.  There are general checklists available online for just about every aspect of camping.  Use them and you will be thankful later. 

5. Plan and RESERVE your location carefully and in advance – (Especially during a holiday weekend) All of our state parks have a great reservation service called Reserve America.  This site is such a great resource.  It allows you to see which site each park currently still has available for reservation.  If you have children with special needs it allows you to determine the accessibility and layout of each campground.   We enjoy camping in wooded area sites while some people are just the opposite.  Whenever I have a specific question about my site I call the park ranger and they are usually extremely helpful with regards to specifics.

6. Take lots of wet wipes – When our children are messy and there is no running water wet wipes are our best and only hope.  Camping is all about getting dirty and having fun with nature so a certain level of filth and funk is to be expected.  That doesn’t mean we can’t wipe them down every so often to keep them from contaminating the rest of us. 

7. Pack a First Aid kit - scratches and cuts are common when we camp and having an antibacterial wipe and a Band-Aid can really save the day and keep their little parts safe from infection.  I always throw together a couple first-aid packs in Ziplocs with sunscreen, Neosporin and a few Band-Aids of varying sizes.  You just never know.

8. Make them work for their supper – Well, what I truly mean by that is…anyone who has made a campfire know that is takes a lot of patience and consistent attention.  Well…kinda like your children.  One of my least favorite chores at a campsite is going around and picking up kindling, which is just a fancy word for little sticks or leaves or anything that will burn beneath the large logs.  Which is perfect, because every time I go anywhere with my kids I am constantly asking them to put down the sticks, because in a normal situation they will eventually either harm themselves or someone close to them…usually me or a sibling.  So here’s their big chance.  Pick-up sticks…make a pile…whoever collects the most wins.  It will be a hit and it will allow you to reserve your energy for something beyond bending over a million times just to find that the stick you thought you found was just a stinkin old root and won’t budge…grrr.  Aren’t kids great?  You can even pay them in graham crackers.  Total win/win.

9. Trial Run - Maybe your kids are a little green and you’re not quite sure they can hang.  Have a trial run right in your own backyard.  Sometimes this is just as fun and provides all the conveniences of home just steps away.  There is something magical about stepping out under the stars with your children and truly spending time with them and introducing them to simple things that do not require batteries or a remote.  We all need to unplug.  It’s a wonderful thing to do for yourself and an even better thing to do for your family.  So set up a tent behind the porch, crack some glow sticks and talk about what animals are making that sound they never heard before.  Turn everything off and turn family time on.

10. Make memories – I will always say, when it comes to camping it comes down to three things.  Planning, preparations and a healthy appetite for adventure.  Kids grow up so quickly and camping with them is a great way to slow time down.  Relax and listen to them.  Share in their curiosity and make it an adventure they will never forget.  Bring baggies for souvenirs like rocks and shells. 

Kentucky and the surrounding area are home to some of the most beautiful natural treasures.  Camping is a great inexpensive way for you and your family to find appreciation for those things.  Nature is inspiring and sometimes physically demanding.  So, be prepared, but most importantly be impressed and share the experience of camping with your little ones.  They will be grateful that you did.

By guest contributor: Whitney

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Review of The Parklands of Floyds Fork Canoeing in Louisville, KY

 photo canoe_zps66ce65a6.jpgI recently attended a media canoe trip that began in Pope Lick Park and ended in The Strand.  During the peaceful and scenic trip, the guides kept telling us we were only five miles from Shelbyville Road or that we were only 20 miles from downtown.  I couldn’t believe it.  We saw a Blue Heron, two foot Gar, water snakes, frogs, and plenty of other wildlife.  There was no noise from traffic and almost no litter.  How could a park that was so pristine and isolated exist so close to the hustle and bustle of Louisville?  And how did I not know about it?

The whole time I was there I tried to visualize exactly where I was.  As soon as I got home I got on their website and looked at the map.  The Parklands of Floyds Fork is a massive new park system in Eastern Jefferson County comprised of five distinctive parks.  Beckley Creek Park, Pope Lick Park, The Strand, Turkey Run Park, and Broad Run Park make up approximately 25% of the Louisville Loop.  If Louisville were a clock, these parks would occupy the space between 3 and 6, running from Shelbyville Road in Eastwood to Bardstown Road.

There is also an interesting bit of local folklore associated with this area.  Have you heard of the Goatman of Pope Lick?  What about the Pope Lick Monster?  I hadn’t, either.  Apparently there’s a creature that is half man and half goat living in the area.  Luckily for him they are working to restore his natural habitat.

The Parklands of Floyds Fork are a public park system, so you can use them any time during normal operating hours.  Want to go kayaking after work?  Take your gear and go for it. They do not offer canoe or equipment rentals, so you either have to use your own equipment or rent it elsewhere. Click here to check water levels.  Want to go fishing?  Take your fishing license and hit the water.  There are also playgrounds and spraygrounds, soccer fields, hiking trails, summer camps, and so much more.  The entire park system will be open in 2015, so check their website before you head out. Click here for a complete map of the Parklands. I’ll see you on the water.

By guest contributor: Maggie

Monday, June 10, 2013

Father's Day Deals & Events in and around Louisville, KY

Comedy Caravan's Funniest Person in Louisville Competition
Wednesday, June 12, 7:45pm (doors open at 7pm)
Contestants can enter and compete for Funniest Dad in Louisville! See the website for more information; amateurs wanted!

Fairdale Library
Thursday, June 13, 3pm
Celebrate dads at a special storytime, ages 3-9.

Okolona Library
Friday, June 14, 2pm 
Create something special for Dad, all ages.

The Richwood Nursing Facility in LaGrange, KY
Friday, June 14, 2pm-3pm
Featuring a free car show + (free food!) for that special guy on Father's Day.
1012 Richwood Way, La Grange, 40031

Father's Day Brunch at The Cafe
Saturday, June 15 (hours of operation 7am-4pm)
713 Brent Street, 502-589-9191

Cookies and Canvas Family Day with Wine and Canvas
Saturday, June 15, 2pm-4pm
A Father's Day event at Bravo Cucina Italiana; call 502-994-7130 for more details.

Muhammad Ali Center Hosts Dads Free on Father's Day
Sunday, June 16 (hours of operation 12pm-5pm)
The Center invites dads to visit this Louisville attraction with FREE admission! Regular admission is $9 for adults and $4 for children ages 6-12; children 5 and under are free. 502-992-5340

Kentucky Show! Salutes Kentucky Fathers!
Sunday, June 16, 1pm-4pm
Fathers will receive a FREE admission to Kentucky Show! this Father's Day. They'll also receive a FREE KentuckyShow! book. Regular admission is $7; children 6 and under are free. Read our recent review here.

Dads are Moooooovelous at Comfy Cow!
Sunday, June 16, hours vary click here for locations.
Dads receive a FREE regular cup or cone on Father's Day!

Sweet Frog Louisville Celebrates Dads!
Sunday, June 16 (hours of operation 1pm-9pm)
Dads receive a complimentary 12 oz cup of froyo on Father's Day! 

Sky Zone Louisville: Fathers Fly Free!
Sunday, June 16 (hours of operation (11am-7pm)
Fathers get a free admission all day to jump in the indoor trampoline park. 502-909-3500

Ford’s Fathers Day
Sunday, June 16, 10am-4pm (Zoo hours of operation)
Celebrate Father's Day at the Louisville Zoo with free general admission for fathers courtesy of Ford Motor Company.

Father's Day Brunch at Goose Creek Diner
Join the diner on Father's Day for a special Sunday brunch buffet.
Call 502-339-8070 to make a reservation.

Father's Day Supper at Harvest (a locally grown restaurant)
Sunday, June 16, 6:30pm
624 East Market Street, 502-384-9090

Father's Day Brunch at Proof on Main
Saturday, June 15, 10am-1pm
Sunday, June 16, 10am-2pm
702 West Main Street, 502-217-6360

Second Sunday Art Workshop: Celebrate Dad!
Sunday, June 16, 12pm-3pm
Drop-in craft time for Father's Day at Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft; $6 per person.
Sunday, June 16, 1:30pm-4:30pm
Dining cruise features barbeque and bourbon tasting; sightseeing only cruise option as well.

Family Fun Day at Churchill Downs, presented by Kroger
Sunday, June 16, 11:30am-4pm
Games, crafts such as card making for Father's Day, and meet Churchill Charlie.

Father's Day Cookout at Shelby Park
Sunday, June 16, 2pm-4pm
Free food, fun and games for the whole family.
600 E. Oak Street

Metro Parks Golf Discount Book
Purchase a $25 coupon book as a Father's Day gift for the golfer. The coupon book will save that special guy on many amenities at all 9 Metro Parks golf courses. The book can be purchased at any Metro Parks golf course. Call 502-456-8134 for more information.

21 Live Deal for 2013 Bluegrass Golf Tour for $99. Another great Father's Day gift for the golfer! Click here to purchase this great deal and golf 18 holes at 8 premier golf courses in Kentuckiana.

Groupon and other deals on the Daily Deals and Discounts pageTake the honorary dad/grandad/stepdad/father-in-law, etc. to Huber's for a family day out. Click here for a link to the $29 Groupon deal! Many other deals posted such as Heitzman's Bakery, Puccini's, and The Popcorn Station, Homerun Burgers & Fries and more!

Pick up a blank comic book from The Parent-Teacher Store and Toys Too! and have your kids make Dad a special comic book story!

Free We ♥ Dad Banner to print from supermomments.com

By guest contributor: Erin

Sunday, June 9, 2013

The Zany Brainy Magic Shows this Summer with Steve-o the Magician

This is a sponsored post, please consider attending these free events!

 photo steveo_zps9beb7980.jpgMy children love every Steve-o Magic show!  We are so lucky that he teams up with the Louisville Free Public Library every summer and his shows are free.  Check out the following list of dates, library branch locations and times for the free Zany Brainy Magic Show from Steve-o the Magician.  It'll be a great reason to explore a library you haven't been to and spend sometime inside to beat the heat.

11-Jun Fern Creek 2:00 PM

14-Jun Main- Teens 6:15 PM

1-Jul Main- Children's 2:00 PM

2-Jul St. Matthews 2:00 PM

10-Jul Iroquois 2:00 PM

16-Jul Western 2:00 PM

17-Jul Fairdale 4:00 PM

18-Jul Portland 2:00 PM

10-Aug Highlands 2:00 PM

10-Aug Okolona 11:00 AM


Friday, June 7, 2013

Things to do this weekend in and around Louisville - June 7,8,9

Are the kids super excited to be out of school for the summer and asking to head out for some family fun?  Good thing it's about that time when all of the summer concerts and festivals start to roll out for the weekend!

My picks for the weekend will cost you nothing, nada, zippo.  I definitely think you should pick a summer concert to check out this weekend. It's not going to be overwhelmingly hot, so it'll be the perfect weekend to be out to dance and enjoy some tunes. The full list of summer concerts can be found here.  I'd go for the Jeffersonville Riverstage concert!

Also on Friday - it's Cards Under the Stars! A free outdoor movie with festivities before the movie help on the U of L Campus.  Tonight, it's "Escape from Planet Earth" and it all starts at 6:30pm with the movie showing at sundown. Details here. (cancelled if it rains).

This weekend it's the big Lyndon Festival.  That's my big-bad-family-fun pick.  You can head there on Friday night but I think Saturday is definitely the day - go late in the afternoon and end the night with fireworks!  It's in Robsion Park Friday 5-10pm, Saturday 1-10pm.

And for Sunday, well, just relax.  You can't go go go all the time!


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Review of First Friday Trolley Hop in Downtown Louisville

 photo trolley_zps3fbfacb9.jpgOn Oaks Day, I took my daughter downtown to the First Friday Trolley Hop for a couple of hours of mom and me time. The trolley hours are 5pm-11pm. Of course the more family-friendly hours of the trolley hop are from 5pm to approximately 8pm; after that time frame the crowd and atmosphere becomes more adult-like.

We parked at Louisville Slugger Field for free. The website newsletter states "free parking is available at Slugger Field at Main and Jackson (except during Louisville Bats game nights), Fourth St. Live! Garage after 6pm, and street meters after 6pm." We hopped on the trolley at the front of Slugger Field's parking lot on Main Street. The trolley's course runs down the Main and Market corridor.

 photo trolley4_zpsc47c87a8.jpg photo trolley2_zpsfda0fd37.jpg photo trolley1_zps66b0068a.jpgWe started the hop around 6pm and ended about 8pm. There were many people boarding the trolleys and getting off at various stops along the way. We got off the trolley near 21C Museum Hotel and stepped inside for a few minutes to check it out. When we were leaving, a limousine had pulled up to the curb and my daughter was dying to see who was in it! We hopped back on and drove down the rest of Main Street to 10th and over to Market Street. We passed by Old 502 Winery which was buzzing with people; the Grind food truck was parked there. We took the trolley to the Nulu district and got off near Taco Punk. We were looking for a place to grab a bite to eat and considered Taco Punk, but then saw Lil Cheezers food truck at the curb and decided to grab two grilled cheese sandwiches from them. Our food + two drinks was $16, which was kind of pricey but was the only money we spent on our adventure, and it was local as well.

 photo derby_zpsc19bd81c.jpgMy daughter and I ate at a small table and chairs outside of Please & Thank You and just enjoyed our girl time together and people watching. After we were done eating, we walked into WHY Louisville (WHY Lou Two) on East Market Street. Inside people were shopping for unique gifts and souvenirs, especially during this busy Derby time. A cool feature set up near the window display was pony rides for $.25! We were planning on walking around there some more, but then it started raining and the sky turned gray, so we hung out under a doorway near the trolley stop until the next trolley came. It took us right back to Main Street and Slugger Field where we were parked. Trolleys were coming about every 5-10 minutes, and getting on and off the trolley was very easy. You can board a trolley at any stop marked with this T sign. The map and schedule is available on the trolleys, or you can download it here.

 photo trolley3_zpsd22ed020.jpgMy daughter is ten, and she and I love getting out around the town and exploring together. We had a blast sightseeing and exploring our great downtown. The hop was definitely family-friendly during the time we were there. As a message that I received back from the event coordinators about this hop says, "People of all ages are welcome to the Trolley Hop! It is a family-friendly event, although some of the bars and restaurants that participate later in the evening (after 9 p.m.) are catered to a more adult atmosphere." I found it very easy-going and family-friendly. I would not have any problem taking our younger child along some other time. I saw a few parents with kids on the trolley and out walking the areas where we were. You and your kids can definitely enjoy an evening out together without any adult-influence and be home by 8:00pm. Or you can make it a date night and enjoy the nightlife as a couple.

The First Friday Trolley Hop runs every first Friday of the month: the next one is Friday, June 7 starting at 5pm. Click here for a newsletter and complete listing of all participating venues. The First Friday Trolley Hop Facebook page has up-to-date information listed daily. This trolley hop is completely free, rain or shine, and runs year-round.

By guest contributor: Erin

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Spotlight on Swimming Fun for children with disabilities or special needs in Louisville

Kids love being able to splash around and get wet! Sometimes, that can be a challenge for those with physical limitations or sensory sensitivities. Did you know there are several places around Louisville that offer unique opportunities for swimming that cater to these challenges? Here are several for you to explore!

 photo HomeInnocents_zpscc61d7bf.jpgHome of the Innocents Aqua Therapy Pool
The therapy pool is fully accessible for special needs individuals, equipped with a chair and stretcher lift, ramp, exercise benches and splash area for small children. The pool is a salt water pool with UV filter and heated to 92 degrees for therapeutic benefit.

In partnership with FEAT of Louisville, Home of the Innocents is began offering private swim lessons to children with autism in January 2013. Click here for more details! They also offer parent and caregiver open swim times, and time for outside therapists who wish to use the therapy pool for their clients.

General admission is $6. Punch cards and monthly memberships are also available. You’ll need a consent form your child’s doctor before going. Here is that release: Click here to download therapy pool consent and release forms

All About Kids
 photo logo-AAK_zpsb3635709.jpgAll About Kids offers open swim sessions in their indoor, heated pool on Fridays 7-9pm, Saturdays 7-9pm and Sundays 2-4pm. The cost is $7 for members and $9 for guests.  Therapists are also encouraged to schedule private time to work with their clients as well. For more information, call 502-809-1FUN (1386).

 photo marytpool_zpsf3ffdea1.jpgMary T. Meagher Aquatic Center
The Mary T Meagher Aquatic Center has open therapy pool time as well. This would allow you to go swimming  with your child without the crowds, in a small indoor pool or work with your child’s therapist privately. Like most therapy pools, you’ll need a release signed by your child’s doctor before you go. The entrance fee is $3.50 and time is limited to one hour only. In addition, the aquatic center also collaborates with Metro Adapted Leisure for aqua exercise classes for disabled adults. They meet on 5/9, 16, 23, 30. The cost is $22 per 1 hour session from 1-2pm.

 photo Header_zps3e1cd47e.jpgSpecial Olympics
For children ages 7 and older, the Special Olympics offers training and competitive sports, including swimming in their spring session (February-June). If you are interested in any activities with Special Olympics, visit their website at: http://www.soky.org/ or contact 502-326-5002.

We’d love to know your favorite places that you take your children who are disabled or have special needs so we can share with other fabuLOUs families! 

By guest contributor: Jennifer