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Wednesday, April 30, 2014

A Summer Break Itinerary for vacationing in and around Louisville, KY

Listen in on our podcast about this post:
Are you thinking about summer?  Check out our recent podcast for great ideas



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Louisville is a great place for a family vacation. Here is a suggested itinerary for your summer break family vacation in Louisville.

 photo 2012-09-22_145843_zps47df6a21.jpgSunday: Start in Bardstown, KY. It’s just about 45 minutes from Louisville. Visit My Old Kentucky Home State Park, Main Street in Bardstown, The Bourbon Heritage Center (Read about bourbon tourism for families here), and then finish off the day on My Old Kentucky Dinner Train.
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Monday: Visit a couple of museums on Museum Row. There are so many great museums, from the Louisville Slugger Museum to the Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft. There are eight museums to choose from as well as great dining options.

 photo 2013-02-07_114719_zpsea87b261.jpgTuesday: Take a walk across the Pedestrian Bridge at Waterfront Park. You can walk all the way to Indiana while enjoying beautiful views of downtown Louisville (coming soon)! Then enjoy al fresco dining at Captain’s Quarters, a Louisville favorite. Check out this list of our Top 10 al fresco dining spots!

Wednesday: Visit the Falls of the Ohio State Park in Southern Indiana. Then check out the Howard Steamboat Museum to learn about the Ohio River’s rich steamboat heritage. After that head over to Schimpff’s Confectionery and Museum  for a treat and to see candy related artifacts.

Thursday: Visit Old Louisville. Take one of the many tours offered at the Old Louisville Visitor’s Center! The Conrad-Caldwell House offers tours Wed-Sun at 1 and 3 pm. And be sure to visit Louisville’s historic Central Park. Or if historical tours aren’t really your thing, visit the recently renovated Kentucky Kingdom.

 photo 2013-07-20_124314_zps410eb44c.jpgFriday:  Visit Bardstown Road and Nulu for eclectic and unique shops and restaurants. There are funky record shops like Better Days and Guestroom Records on Frankfort Avenue. The Great Escape is a great spot for comics and used media. And Why Louisville has stores that double as roadside attractions in both locations. Visit Mayan Café, Dragon King’s Daughter, or Café Mimosa for dinner. Then visit Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen, which serves fantastic ice creams and desserts individually, or Muth’s Candy, which has been open in the same location since 1921, for dessert.

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Saturday:  Before you depart for home, head down to the Louisville Visitor’s Center on South Fourth Street.  It’s a great way to learn more about Louisville’s history and landmarks and see what you might have missed!

By guest contributor: Maggie

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Review of Lotsa Pasta, St. Matthews in Louisville, KY

 photo 2013-10-03_135914_zps0b411cbd.jpgSt. Matthews has a wonderful eclectic collection of specialty shops and restaurants, and it seems like there’s always a new place to try. But my tried and true place in St. Matthews to grab a quick lunch is the deli at Lotsa Pasta. I’ve always gone to Lotsa Pasta for the specialty groceries. Their cheese shop has the best selection of cheese in town, and Will the “cheese dude” can tell you more about the various cheeses than you ever thought you could know.

After you get schooled on my favorite aged Beemster cheese, step down to the deli counter and order a roast beef or turkey and goat cheese Panini. They also have multiple combinations of meat, cheese, bread, and toppings to build your own cold sandwich. There are various side dishes in the deli case, from Chicken Chipotle pasta salad to homemade soup. They also offer catering, boxed lunches, and premade meals you can take home and tell your family you made from scratch.

 photo 2013-10-03_135928_zps3d6521bb.jpgPerhaps the best thing about dining at the Café at Lotsa Pasta is the beautifully landscaped patio. The flora attract humming birds and bumble bees alike, and if not for the occasional noise from traffic you would never know you were just feet from Lexington Road. It really is one of the best kept dining secrets in St. Matthews!

By guest contributor: Maggie

Monday, April 28, 2014

Review of Papalinos Pizza - Springhurst Location in Louisville, KY

 photo papa2_zps639f2a9d.jpg photo photo_zpsa25c1c6f.jpgRecently I shared a pizza with Stephanie for lunch at Papalino's in the Springhurst shopping center. There is an original Papalino's on Bardstown Rd and they recently opened this location in the east end.

We met for lunch during the week and the pizza place was hopping with locals, mostly on their lunch breaks from work. The style, decor, and ambience of the restaurant was very cool and inviting. They have regular tables, a few booths, and high tables. They had a nice bar area and tvs with news or sports to view.

 photo papalinos_zps44fc18aa.jpgWe shared a 14 inch original NY-style pizza, thin crust, red sauce, and we topped it with pepperoni, green peppers, and carmelized onions. Base price for a small is $14 + toppings. We could have devoured it, but we took it slowly and saved a couple of pieces for leftovers (but it was very hard)! This pizza was spectacular! If you like NY-style pizza and are looking for a pizzeria in Louisville that serves it, try Papalinos!

You can find their menu by clicking here. They offer appetizers, salads, desserts, and specialty pizzas with looked mouth-watering from their descriptions. They also have vegan offerings. They have a kids menu option - pizza on a stick! How cute is that for $5? They also recently mentioned on their Facebook page that they have a dog-friendly patio and they host local musicians on occasion!

This is a great family place for pizza, and with this location in Springhurst makes for a great early dinner before a movie with Tinseltown being so close. Or pop into The Parent-Teacher Store and Toys Too! before eating here: shop a little, eat a little, keep it local!

Papalino's Springhurst is located at 3598 Springhurst Blvd.
Hours: 11am-12am most days.
Phone: 502-736-2700

By guest contributor: Erin

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Review of Kentucky Derby Festival Chow Wagon and Kroger Fest-A-Ville in Louisville, KY

 photo IMG_4941_zps47898904.jpgThis past week, I went downtown to the opening day of the Chow Wagon and Kroger's Fest-a-Ville at Waterfront Park. I had my toddler with me in his stroller. We started out the day by playing for a little while at the playground near the Orange Parking Lot off of River Road. That is where I found plenty of parking. I did attend during the day on a weekday, so I did see a lot more parking options than you might on a typical weekend day. There were even some open metered parking spaces right on Witherspoon Street and the other side streets near Slugger Field. The parking lots that run along River Road close to the intersection of Witherspoon had ample parking. Do be aware that if you park in the Orange Lot, which is the closest one to the festivities, you will have to walk all the way around to the front entrance of the Chow Wagon as it is all gated off around the Great Lawn.

 photo IMG_4934_zpsd9d06045.jpgYou will need a Pegasus Pin to enter the Chow Wagon and Fest-a-Ville; they are selling them right at the gate and they are $5. Remember, children under 6 do not need one. We walked in and just ventured around, taking in all the food sights and surveying the kiddie rides that were set up. You must purchase tickets for the food and drinks, as well as for rides (the tickets for rides are separate). They were selling the tickets at $1 a piece or in a pack of $20. All purchases of food/drink have to be made with tickets, so be sure to have cash with you as I did not notice if they take credit cards but I doubt they do. Remember, we just posted a Top 10 Tips for Derby Festival for Families! It is full of great information.

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We had a nice time walking around and enjoying some kettle corn at a picnic table on the great lawn. There were two stages set up, one way down by the water at Joe's Crab Shack and another over on the Fest-a-Ville side. I asked what was the difference between the Chow Wagon and the Fest-a-Ville-and one attendant told me it was all connected and there really isn't any difference. The Chow Wagon is the original area that the Derby Festival made the dining and food experience, which began in 1972. The Fest-a-Ville portion is just more for music entertainment. Two bands were playing while we were there and there are several set to play throughout the festival. There are more than 20 free live concerts to check out. Enjoy the Pegasus Play-Ville, midway rides/games, an inflatable playground, and helicopter rides as well. See the kdf.org website, and our tab all about Kentucky Derby Festival for more information.

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The Chow Wagon and Fest-a-Ville continue through Derby Eve, May 2. Hours are 11am-11pm, except Sunday 1pm-11pm.

By guest contributor: Erin

LouFamFun Volunteer Challenge - April

For this month's volunteer challenge idea, I decided to share my volunteer experience that I just had as a World Book Night Giver! What a fantastic and fabuLOUs thing this was for me!! I had a blast!

World Book Night is a national program with 25,000 volunteers giving 500,000 books away, for FREE, to people in their own communities. 6,200 of them to be exact! I love this story I read recently where a giver was giving away the books, and one of the receivers said "There's got to be a catch. You can't be giving these away for free." It is a nonprofit campaign to share the love of reading with non and/or light readers, and it has such a positive impact! As a children's librarian, it fed right into my love of literacy and sharing books with others!

I signed up online when I saw a Facebook post about World Book Night toward the end of last year, I believe it was close to the holidays when I sent in my online application. World Book Night is April 23, Shakespeare's birthday. When you apply online, you'll be asked some very generic questions and I honestly don't know how they choose the givers. I found out I was a World Book Night Giver in early February. The process is very simple and it's all done online. You choose your pick-up location, with many spots to choose from that are close to you in vicinity. My pick-up location was the Barnes and Noble bookstore on Hurstbourne Parkway.

 photo wbn6_zps35b3268c.jpg photo wbn7_zps9f8415ff.jpg photo IMG_4931_zps22aec0cf.jpgMy experience: I knew that I wanted to give my book, This Boy's Life by Tobias Wolff, to kids. Preferably middle or high school students, at-risk and not "east-end" kids. The book is a memoir of a young adult who has to come to terms with conflicts in his life, namely his mother who is escaping an abusive boyfriend and takes her son (Toby) along from Florida to Utah to find a new life for them out west. I remembered a connection I had to Newburg Boys and Girls Club from when I worked downtown at the Main Library (LFPL). We used to go to Newburg on the bookmobile and do outreach with kids there and at the Newburg Community Center in the Newburg area. So, I tried emailing them but did not receive a response. I chose to just stop in on Wed, April 23, which is the official World Book Night USA, and hand out my box of books to random kids I saw at the center. It was so cool! The kids are there from 2pm-8pm each day, and I think I really surprised them and caught them off guard. They were grateful and many of them were responsive, saying "I'll take a free book!" I truly hope they read the book and that they benefit from the joy of reading. I hope that my small act of kindness runs on for the rest of their lives somehow and that it continues to impact them in some small way. That is truly what I hoped to gain from this experience.

You can find out more about the World Book Night program and being a giver here. Follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and use the hashtag #WBN2014. If you sign up for their newsletter, you will receive information about interest in becoming a World Book Night Giver for 2015. It's an experience you will not soon forget! Here is a list of ways to get in contact with the organizers:
Email: April23@worldbooknight.org
On Facebook: WorldBookNightUSA
On Twitter: @WBNAmerica

By guest contributor: Erin

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Things to do this weekend around Louisville: April 25,26,27

This post is sponsored by:    
 photo LMQ_zpsb9e8f632.jpg Don't forget Derby Festival fun!

Save the date for May 17th. It's our next Louisville Family Fun Experience Series Event. TICKETS ON SALE NOW!
Limited number!


 photo SweetFrogimageforFacebook4_25_zps1d0b482f.png Friday- Come on out to Sweet Frog (Prospect).  I'll be there with activities for the kids and prizes to help raise money for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kentuckiana. Click here for the Facebook event page.
 

Saturday- Spend the day in Oldham County for a Children's Earth Day Celebration with the Oldham County Historical Society. Details here.

Or, perhaps you want to take a hike?  Check out The Parklands of Floyds Fork (9-11am, free for members/$5 for others) and Jefferson Memorial Forest (9am)- they have hiking events on Saturday.

Indoor fun your thing?  Hwang's Martial Arts hosts the Health Kick Festival from 11-4pm benefiting Kosair Children's Hospital. Details here.

Sunday - It's YMCA Healthy Kids Day at Slugger Field from 1-5pm rain or shine. It's free and will feature activities for kids 5-14.  The first 500 kids get free t-shirts!

Have a fabuLOUs weekend,
Stephanie

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Top 10 Tips for the Kentucky Derby Festival in Louisville, KY

 photo derby_zps3b011044.jpg1) Download the KDF App: You can find out all kinds of information on this app such as maps, start times, event dates, and you can buy tickets to events. I have used this app several time already this year. You can click the links below to download.
 Apple
 Android

2) Have a plan: Phones might not work. With some events having 100,000+ people cell towers get overloaded. You might not be able to call or text out or receive calls or texts. Have a meeting spot picked out and have a lost child plan. Many of the bigger events will have a “lost child” area where kids can go, be safe, and wait for mom and/or dad to come get them.

3) Label your child:  Have some sort of identification on your child with your contact information on it as well as someone's info (whom you trust) who is not attending the event (remember: your phone might not be working). If you are looking for a good option that is great for kids and can be reused I would go with a slim band from Road I.D. They are affordable, colorful and kids like them.

4) Pick the events you want to do: With over 30 free (with Pegasus pin for adults and 6 and over, kid under 6 are free, no pin needed) it can get overwhelming. Look at the app and see what is offered each day of the week. Ask your kids what they think sounds fun and go from there. For a list of events you can go to click here.

5) Pegasus Pins are a must: Make sure you have your Pegasus Pin on and visible, or $5 cash per person 6 and over to get one at the event. All the “free” event require that you have a pin. The good news is that your pin is good for all the free events, you do not need a new one each time. You can also register each pin for a prize by going to http://pegasuspins.com. They are giving away prizes each week of the Derby Festival and they are all pretty nice.
The  2014 Pin

6) Do something NEW:  Pick an event that your family has not done before. A few years ago I went the Bed Races and had a blast. It was an event that I would have never gone to before but a friend wanted to check it out. It turned out to be so much fun.

7) Plan for all kinds of weather:  We are talking spring in Kentucky where it can be 85 and sunny at noon and 40 and raining by 8pm. Dress in layers, take a few rain ponchos and have jackets. Remember if you are going to an event on the river it might be a few degrees different than home and it is almost always windy.

8) Take cash:  Unless you want to pay high ATM fees. At most events it is cash only. Taking cash will also help you stay on a budget. Decide on how much you want to spend and only take that much cash. It is easy to get caught up buying trinkets, souvenirs and other stuff when you don’t have a budget in mind.

9) Splurge on an event:  I know I just talked budgets BUT it is worth picking one event that you can buy tickets to and get good seats. You can get Pegasus Parade bleacher seat tickets, go to The Great Boat Race party at the Water Tower, and a whole lot of other things. I would not do this for all events, but pick one or two that you can afford and really enjoy a Derby Festival event.

10) Enjoy it! Put your phone away and have fun. Enjoy being with your family, taking in the most wonderful time of the year in Louisville, see the kids’ faces as a balloon lights up, a bed flies by, or a Derby Princess waves to them. I promise it will all be worth the smile on their face to miss that email.

By guest contributor: Christine

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Review of Mellow Mushroom - Middletown location in Louisville, KY

 photo IMG_4689_zpse9aae1e5.jpgMy family and I frequent the Mellow Mushroom location in Middletown quite often. We have probably dined there about 4-5 times now since it opened. We really enjoy the atmosphere, the dining experience, and the pizza!

Every time we have dined here, we have had our kids with us (ages 10 and 2). A lot of people think of Mellow Mushroom as a spot to hit up during football or basketball season and have a beer or glass of wine. And although there are plenty of opportunities for doing that, there are also just as many opportunities to dine here and have a family-friendly experience. I love the decor on the walls, the bizarre lighting fixtures hanging from the ceiling, and the open window/air feeling of the kitchen where the pizzas are baked. You can grab a great seat right in front and watch the cooks/pizza bakers throw the dough in the air to make the pizza pies! It's really entertaining.

We have always been to eat there in the evening. It does get pretty crowded on weekend nights, so expect a bit of a wait. We just absolutely love their pizza. It is to die for! They do offer other items on the menu, including salads, appetizers, calzones, and hoagies. Read over the menu here. We usually order a large build-your-own pizza (topped with a combo of andouille sausage, ground beef, mushrooms, or meatballs) for the adults in our party and a small plain cheese pizza for our two children. They also offer specialty pizzas, and one of these days I'll order the Gourmet White. We've been to eat there with just us four and the grandparents have also tagged along before. They do have a kids menu. Usually, our bill comes to about $40.00 with tax, and then tip added on. So, it's a not a cheap pizza place but it's delicious! - with very good, quality ingredients. They also have offerings like gluten-free and vegan, and for those with food allergies, they have an allergens tool on their menu bar where you can click on ingredients you want to avoid, etc.

My husband and I got a gift card for Christmas that we are going to use exclusively on ourselves for a date night coming soon! There is also a Mellow Mushroom location in St. Matthews. Follow them on Facebook; they are always announcing special deals. If you haven't eaten at Mellow Mushroom, try it, go be mellow and enjoy!

By guest contributor: Erin

Monday, April 21, 2014

Top 10 Unconventional Dining Options with Families in and around Louisville, KY

10. The Old Spaghetti Factory is always a favorite among kids, especially if you get to sit inside the trolley car in the middle of the restaurant. (See LFF’s review here)

 photo IMG_2733_zpsf3ndvkme.jpg9. Derby Dinner Playhouse is a great place to catch dinner and a show.  They also offer children’s shows earlier in the day. (See LFF’s review here)

8. Ollie’s Trolley is a great place to stop by and grab a quick burger in the summertime when you’re hanging out downtown.  My kids love the trolley building and they don’t seem to mind eating in the car since the food is so good.

7. Belle of Louisville offers sightseeing cruises in the summer time, and you can either choose the southern-style buffet with fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, and other Southern staples, or you can buy hot dogs and chips from the snack bar and sit in the open air on the top deck.  (Read more about the Belle here)

6. Kingfish on River Road is a great place for a casual Sunday lunch with family or a low-key summertime dinner on the river with the kids.  They have a playground, so you can take your time savoring those hush puppies while the kids wear themselves out.

5. Louisville Food Trucks are always there when you need them, and you can even book them for your own event.  There’s something novel about buying your lunch from the window of a food truck, and my kids can’t seem to get enough.

4. My Old Kentucky Dinner Train is a fun option for kids who are really into trains, because you actually get to go on a train ride while you’re dining.  I wouldn’t recommend this for kids who are too fidgety or young to sit still that long.  (See LFF’s reviews here and here.)

3. W.W. Cousins is a Louisville institution.  My grandfather has been taking me there since I was a little girl, and we still have lunch there at least once a year.  My kids love it because they get to choose as many toppings as they want, which usually ends up being all the different types of pickles and some ketchup.  It’s a great way to give them choices in a controlled environment.  And now they have a new location in the south end, as well. (See more info from LFF here)

 photo 1e5b05f8-b978-40f0-a9da-f235d44727d7_zps35c6027a.jpg2. Japanese Steakhouses are something we only recently discovered.  Our kids were so impressed by all the activity going on around them; it was no problem at all to keep them entertained.  Once our chef started cooking, my kids kept exclaiming, “More fire!”  Here’s a list of Japanese Steak Houses in Louisville:
                -Mikato
                -Shogun 
                -Sapporo (Not all locations have a hibachi table)
                -Kansai
                - Fuji 
                -SakuraBlue 
                -Mr.Lee’s Ichiban


1. Pizza King in New Albany is a place you need to check out if you haven’t already been there.  A train brings your drinks to your table.  How cool is that?  (Check out LFF’s review here)

 By guest contributor: Maggie

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Family Book Review - Zoe's Sidewalk

I've been a little bit behind on sharing great books with you! This post is about a book written by a Louisville local author. It is Zoe's Sidewalk written by Tiffany Robinson, illustrated by Yoko Matsuoka.

Young Zoe's grandmother has had to be hospitalized for a little while, and of course as all children would be, Zoe is worried about her. Her parents assure her she will be fine, but when she comes home she will need help and therapy to continue to improve. After she arrives home, Zoe finds that Gram's spirits are just as they always were, and she is relieved to have her back home safe and close to her. She wants to help with Gram's therapy, and wants to start taking evening walks with her grandmother to help keep her company while she exercises. Her mother warns her that the streets are not safe for children and for her recovering grandmother to be out walking, as they have no sidewalks in their neighborhood.

Zoe's school asks for students to participate in a project to help their neighborhoods, and Zoe sees this as a great opportunity to help her Gram and fix the problem they have in their community. The story is a chapter book set to teach a lesson about determination toward achieving what you set yourself to do. It's a great story as well as a teaching tool for children reading the book.

The story is simply written but with a powerful message pushing the reader through each chapter. It's a great intermediate reader chapter book, probably suited best for reading levels 3rd grade+. I recommend this book to elementary students and because it is a local author, that makes it all the better. I also appreciate the African American characters, the family-oriented togetherness, and the kindness, love, and respect the characters have for one another throughout the story.

In the next few weeks, we hope to have a contest to give away two of our recent locally authored books, so be on the look out for that announcement!

You can follow the author of Zoe's Sidewalk on Facebook, Twitter @zoessidewalk, or Instagram: clickzoe; check out her website at www.zoessidewalk.com. She loves to chat with other aspiring authors, especially kids!

By guest contributor: Erin

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Things to do this weekend around Louisville: April 18,19,20

This post is sponsored by:    
 photo LMQ_zpsb9e8f632.jpgIs it REALLY spring???  Maybe.....finally?

Check out our posts about the Kentucky Derby Festival and Easter!

Save the date for May 17th. It's our next Louisville Family Fun Experience Series Event. Tickets will go on sale SOON. Limited quantity!

Would you like to win a prize worth over $400 that's PACKED with BIG family fun?  Click HERE and see how.

Friday
It's not always about heading out to an event. How about finding a new restaurant to try and dining outside? We have a great post for family friendly outdoor dining, of course we do.  Click HERE.

If you really want some hoopla, head to the Kentucky Derby Festival Basketball Classic. Hoopla, get it.  Ha!

Saturday
 photo wildflower_zps4679b8e9.pngSpring Wildflower Walks with Tavia Saturday, April 19, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. At Creasey Mahan Nature Preserve FREE, Donations encouraged
Join Executive Director, Tavia Cathcart Brown, co-author of Wildflowers of Tennessee, the Ohio Valley and Southern Appalachians and the award-winning Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest book, as she reveals the fascinating stories of wildflowers. She will share stories about their medicinal uses, folklore, edibility, and how they get their names. There will be free crafts for kids.
Indoor Wildflower Presentation - 10:00 a.m. Woodland Garden Walk (easy) - 11:00 a.m. Wildflower Trail Walk (moderate) - 12:15 p.m.

Also, the Easter Parade along Frankfort Ave is on Saturday! The parade begins at 11:45am in front of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 2822 Frankfort Avenue, and will travel to Haldeman Avenue. Bring Easter baskets to be filled with free candy.

Sunday
Happy Easter! Enjoy an Easter brunch with your family or hang out and enjoy time together!  Here's our Easter post.

Check out our latest Louisville.am podcast sponsored by Learning Rx (use code PODCAST to save $100 - it's about the WaterWorks Museum

Have a fabuLOUs weekend!
Stephanie

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Donate for a chance to WIN BIG! Help Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kentuckiana

Did you know it takes $1,200 to secure a mentoring match for a year through 

 photo bbbs_infographic_horizontal_zps3551c104.jpg

And, according to a recent study, 90% reported their “Big” helped them make better choices.

Let's MAKE A MATCH together!

Louisville Family Fun is a proud supporter of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kentuckiana through fundraisers like these and the Louisville Family Fun Experience Series.

Donate by the end of the day April 22nd for a chance to win BIG

 photo DonatetowinKKBats_zpsf585a53e.png


Family Fun Packs: Five (5) will be given away in a random drawing. The Prize Pack includes four (4) general admission single day passes to the new Kentucky Kingdom and four (4) Louisville Bats reserved any day seat vouchers. The Prize Pack is valued over $200!

The GRAND Prize Pack!!!  One (1) will be given away in a random drawing. The GRAND Prize Pack includes all of the above, plus two (2) Louisville Zoo one day passes, five (5) Lazer Blaze attraction passes, four (4) Frazier History Museum admission passes, four (4) SweetFrog Premium Yogurt 4oz. free vouchers and one (1) year-long family membership to Bernheim Forest. The GRAND Prize Pack is valued at $400!

Here's how the giveaway works: The more you give, the better your chances are of winning! For every $10 you donate you’ll receive 1 entry into the Family Fun Prize Pack Giveaway. For every $25 you donate you’ll receive 1 entry into the GRAND Prize Pack Giveaway.

So for example: donate $100 and receive 10 chances for the Prize Pack Giveaway and 4 chances for the GRAND Prize Pack Giveaway.

Winners will be randomly drawn on Wednesday, April 23, 2014 so donations must be made by 11:59pm on April 22nd.


Good luck and thanks for helping local children through this fantastic organization!

Mighty Momz Training with Mighty Titan Adventures in Louisville, KY

Do you find yourself running around all the time, but yet cannot count it as getting your workout in? As moms, it is difficult to find time for everything that we would like to do. Fortunately, Coach Nicole (also a mom!) of the Mighty Titans, can help! She has developed an express fitness program for moms.

I recently had a chance to chat with Nicole about her Mighty Momz class and go through a Success session. This session is the first thing you need to do to get started in the Mighty Momz class. This 30 minute assessment will go over things like your health - (including past injuries), calculate your percent body fat, posture evaluation, and work together to come up with attainable health and fitness goals. She is very thorough and takes her time explaining everything of what she is doing and why. This assessment will help her develop an exercise prescription for you. For example, for me she noticed my left side was slightly higher than the other and my upper body caved in a little - all this was news to me. With these in mind and having my percent body fat in an acceptable range, she recommended (aka prescribed) I gain more muscle mass to help improve my core which in turn would help my posture. Also, she encouraged using a foam roller for recovery training.

The next step would be to meet with her in one of the group session 1-3x/week. This is a 45 minute workout that includes warm-up, workout, cool-down, and a question and answer session - including some nutritional tips. During the week, you will do the exercises as prescribed from your success session on your own. This program is setup to continue to boost your metabolism for 36 hours post workout and build muscle tissues. Nicole is constantly evolving your workouts to keep you getting stronger and fitter.

 photo untitled_zpsaf939bf5.pngWhat makes this unique is that Coach Nicole is offering personal training in a group setting. She has over 20 years of personal training experience, certified in pre- and post-natal, and a master's degree in exercise physiologist. She holds you accountability - if she does not see you at the workout, she will contact you. If you have questions when you are home - she is available via e-mail or phone. The personal training is with the group price of $20-25/session. The only equipment you would need is a foam roller and some resistance bands which means her training you can do anywhere and anytime!

Another good thing about the Mighty Moms class is that you can enroll anytime and the success session and the first week is FREE! If you are unhappy, you can stop anytime, risk-free. The classes are being offered at 10am at Mockingbird and 8:30am in Crestwood. Mockingbird offers soccer classes for 18months up to 3 years at 10am with open enrollment for those kids whose moms is enrolled in the Mighty Momz class. 

Nicole posts little fitness nuggets on her Mighty Titans Facebook page too. She posts exercises, nutritional tips and more to keep you going on your fitness journey. She also provided nutritional coaching apart from these classes if you need more help.

If you want some accountability, need one-on-one to start working out, you definitely should send Nicole an e-mail! As a coach, she wants you to be successful. She meets you right where your fitness level is at today and will work alongside with you, encouraging you to attain your goals.

By guest contributor: Jeanette

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Paintn' Party Upcoming Derby Parties!

This is a sponsored post


 photo paintnparty_zps517f0bee.jpgPaintn' Party has some unique parties planned for you this week and next! I met owner Tiffany Whelan a couple of months ago and I really love her spirit for what she is doing, she love bringing art into people's lives. She's a working art teacher by day and party artist by night. Check out these awesome upcoming classes.




 photo jockey_zpsa29a867a.jpgSweet Sprinkles Bakery - Derby Painting Party
Sweet Sprinkles Bakery
435 N. Bardstown Road - Mt. Washington KY
Thursday, April 17th - 7pm
$35 for painting, beverages and treats!
RSVP required - Click here



 photo spires_zpse8c147fb.jpgMartinis and Masterpieces
The Chocolate Bar at Wesport Village
Twin Spires!
Thursday, April 24th - 6:30 pm
$35 for painting and any one choice of Martinis!
RSVP is required - Click here

Monday, April 14, 2014

Birthday Freebies in and around Louisville, KY

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The only thing better than celebrating your kiddo’s birthday in a big way, is doing it as inexpensively as possible! As a mom businesses really earn brownie points with me for treating my children well, and giving them free or highly discounted stuff makes me happier and honestly more likely to return. Here is a list of some area businesses that offer special treats for your little ones:

1. The Disney Store: Gives buttons to kids that have a space for writing their name and they sang happy birthday while we were there. 426-7922

2. Toys R Us: Has Geoffrey’s birthday club, if you sign up online they will send your child a card in the mail and an invitation to come into the store for a special birthday experience. 896-1243

3. Burger King: If you enroll your child in Club BK, they will receive a coupon for a free kids meal on their birthday as well as one when you sign up.

4. Baskin Robbins: If you sign your child up for the Baskin Robbins Birthday Club they will receive a coupon for a free scoop of ice cream on their birthday. (PS. There isn’t an age limit on this one)

5. Cold Stone Creamery: Free Ice Cream Creation

6. Moe’s Southwest Grill: Free Birthday Burrito

7. California Pizza Kitchen: Free Kids Meal for kids 10 and under. 425-5125

8. IHOP: Free Meal on your birthday and a Free Meal for Signing up. (Also a Free Meal 1 year after signing up)

9. Red Robin: Free Burger on your Birthday, this can be used with in a 2 week span. 899-9001

10. Chuck E Cheese: Kids get a coupon for 20 Free Tokens

11. Old Spaghetti Factory: Free kid’s meal on their birthday. 581-1070

12. Hometown Pizza: Free personal size pizza on your kid’s birthday. (12 and under)

13. Zaxby’s: Join their text club and get a free nibbler on your birthday.

14. Applebees: Free Entrée on your birthday

15. Bob Evans: Free Kids Meal

16. Buca di Beppo: Free Birthday Brownie Sundae 493-2426

17. Culvers: Free One Scoop Sundae

18. Denny’s: Free Build your own Grand Slam Breakfast.

19. Firehouse Subs: A Free Medium Birthday Sub

20. Krispy Kreme: Free Donut and small coffee or soda.

By guest contributor: Allison

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Winners! Honeybaked Ham

 photo honeybaked_zpsaec3d520.jpgHoneyBaked is getting ready to serve up your Easter ham! They have even opened up kiosks in retail stores nationwide. Famous for the leanest selection of moist, tender hams and turkeys, HoneyBaked is offering convenient pop-up locations at Kroger stores in the Louisville area.




Last week, we had a contest for 2 $25 gift certificates to give to 2 lucky readers. These certificates can be redeemed at the retail stores (not the pop-up locations).

The winners are: Tammy Thaler and Kristine Kauflin
To claim, please email info@louisvillefamilyfun.net with your mailing address using the email address with which you entered the contest!

Louisville Health Kick Festival Offers Fun for the Whole Family

This is a sponsored post

Saturday Apr. 26 Kentucky Exposition Center West Hall A/B, 937 Phillips Ln

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Learn about family health and safety at the Louisville Health Kick Festival, presented by Hwang’s Martial Arts. More than 50 vendors will offer free information and interactive activities. Children of all ages will enjoy playing on an obstacle course, inflatable bounce house and basketball goal, and learning about bike safety at the bike rodeo. Healthy lifestyle tips will be provided by Norton Healthcare and other local health organizations. Entertaining yoga, Zumba and martial arts demonstrations will be featured throughout the day and massages will be available for adults. Open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets are $5 each or $15 for a family four pack. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit healthkick.eventbrite.com.

The headlining event at the festival is the Kick-a-Thon: a fun, active fundraiser. Proceeds from Louisville Health Kick Festival and the Kick-a-Thon benefit Kosair Children’s Hospital. Participants in the Kick-A-Thon raise money by collecting donations, pledging to perform a kick for every dollar raised. Experienced Taekwondo instructors will guide the fun. Participants can enter as either individuals or teams. Teams work together to raise funds and compete against the other teams to perform the most kicks in five minutes. The Kick-a-Thon is open to the public and registration is going on now. Registration fees are $35 for an individual or $30 per person on a team of 3-20. Sign up at tinyurl.com/healthkickfestival.

Hwang’s Martial Arts offers Taekwondo and martial arts classes at multiple locations statewide in addition to programs at Jefferson County Public Schools, after school programs and summer camps. Not only is Hwang’s Martial Arts committed to the physical health and mental of children in Kentuckiana, they have a mission to give back to local charities and incorporate philanthropy into student curriculum. Hwang’s Martial Arts celebrates three years partnering with the Children’s Hospital Foundation, which raises money exclusively to support Kosair Children’s Hospital.

Children's Hospital Foundation raises funds each year to support programs, equipment and facilities, research, advocacy and education at Kosair Children's Hospital. For more information or ways to help visit HelpKosairChildrensHospital.com.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Things to do this weekend around Louisville - April 11,12,13

This post is sponsored by:    
 photo LMQ_zpsb9e8f632.jpg April is such an awesome time in Louisville - Baseball, Derby Festival, Easter and outdoor fun.

Save the date for May 17th. It's our next Louisville Family Fun Experience Series Event.  Tickets will go on sale in late April.

Check out our recent podcast with Derby Dinner Playhouse!
Podcasts are sponsored by LearningRx Springhurst & St. Matthews. Use the code PODCAST to save $100!

Here are my picks for the weekend:

Friday: Farmer Jason Show from 10am – 11am and Noon-1pm (2 shows, also 2 on Thursday 4/10) at the Paul W. Ogle Cultural & Community Center Indiana University Southeast (4201 Grant Line Rd. New Albany, IN 47150) This is a FREE concert, BUT RESERVATIONS REQUIRED! Farmer Jason is the brainchild of rock music legend Jason Ringenberg of Jason and the Scorchers. In 2002 he created Farmer Jason to educate and entertain children about farm life and the wonders of nature.  We saw Farmer Jason a while back - super fun show! You can make your reservations online. 


Saturday:  Gorgeous weather for the weekend, get outside! Thunder Fun stuff!  Did you know that the Meijer Family Fun Zone is open to anyone with a Pegasus Pin this year?  See details by clicking here.

Or, how about 18th Century Thunder at Locust Grove.  Educational, fun, affordable - love it!
Free admission to the grounds and the encampment program. To tour the historic house: $6 adults, $3 kids 6-12, free for kids 5 and under. You are welcome to bring a picnic lunch.


 photo 5BatsTickets_zps5f2b9fc1.pngSunday: LOUFAMFUN DAY AT THE LOUISVILLE BATS.  2:05pm start, lots of fun promotions for Sunday and a LouFamFun reader will be throwing out the first pitch with Stephanie.  $5 tickets and the beautiful sunshine..........what more could you ask for?

Tickets: BatsBaseball.com

Stephanie

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Review of MegaQuest at Louisville Mega Caverns in Louisville, KY

Some of the Louisville Family Fun writers took their kids to try out the Mega Quest experience at Louisville Mega Caverns. Here's what each writer had to say about their fun day!

Karen: Mega Quest is a unique experience, capable of entertaining just about anyone!  The staff were kind, and very helpful, *especially when my equipment was malfunctioning in the middle of the course - possible due to operator error :-)  My son is a small 7-yr old, and while some areas were impossible for him to cross (due to arm reach and leg span), he had a blast everywhere else. I think the prime child age would be about 8 and up, unless of course the child is quite tall for his/her age. The best part, for me, was watching my son face his fears and us working together to accomplish certain areas. It was a great, FUN bonding experience for he and I. Per my son, after 2+ hours in the course, "Mom, that was AWWWWESOME!!!"

Jeanette: My 6 year old and I had a great time at the ropes course. He said his favorite was the big zipline into the cargo net. I enjoyed doing something active and different with my son amidst all the crazy weather. My son led on the course and headed straight to the upper level. Next time, we will stay on the lower level before going up to the harder level. By the end, he was getting tired and had trouble with his clamps, but it didn't dampen his spirits from enjoying wearing all the safety gear and climbing around.

Caryn: My 7 1/2 year old son and I really enjoyed the obstacle course! I love that there is no one way to go through the obstacle course. It felt like you could go through it 100 times and never do it the same way twice, or just stay on it the whole 3 hours without ever using the big zip line exit till the end. On the other hand, I appreciated all the available seating within view of the ropes course for when we needed to take a break. I love that you can take your own drinks and snacks there, and that they sell drinks and snacks in case you came unprepared. It was nice to have a little gift shop that wasn't a ridiculous distraction for the kids. Everything felt very safe, and all of the workers were very helpful and nice. We can't wait to go again!

Maggie: This course was physically demanding, but even though I have a minor physical disability I was able to do it for two hours.  But what’s more impressive to me is that my six year old was able to take off on his own shortly after we started.  He was scared when we first arrived, but I nearly had to drag him out after three hours.  He talked about it the whole rest of the night and he’s already begging to go back again.  I really wish I would have known about this place sooner.  It was great!  A few tips-use the restroom before you get your harness on; you have to take it all the way off to go.  Also, once you’re in the course you aren’t getting out any time soon.  And bring water for when you’re done.  They do have a water fountain but it’s just not enough.


Stephanie: My son will not stop talking about the Mega Quest, we loved it.  It was a full body workout, I woke up the next day with muscles aching - in a good way.  Things that I think are important to point out are that you can stay at Mega Quest for 3 hours, it's not just a course you go through once, and it is definitely exercise so don't overdress or you will be really hot!  Also, there are lockers you can use for just $1 to secure valuables while you climb.  My favorite part was the one on one connection I had with my son when he got a little scared when approaching a few obstacles - we talked through it and celebrated together when he overcame his fears.
Heather: My daughter and I loved MegaQuest including a request for affordable birthday held there.I suggest dressing in layers. Its a bit cool going in but you definitely get in a good workout! So make sure you bring your fave sports bottle full of water.  Other than that, grab the fam and spend the day underground. We had a blast and the staff was amazing!




Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Review of Portland Museum in Louisville, KY

 photo 24a7075d-89e8-4cbc-9a8d-d2988859f0a6_zps01529eaa.jpg photo f51e4bd9-80d2-4bc7-a354-fcc644d65f66_zpsdf3533b4.jpgI learned about the Portland Museum last summer while I was researching all the museums in the area for Louisville Family Fun.  I was surprised I hadn’t heard of it since it had been around so long.  I asked a friend who grew up in Portland if she knew about it, and she said she had gone there several times for school field trips.  I added it to my summer agenda.

When I tried to go over the summer, I discovered it was only open Tuesday-Friday from 10-4:30.  The hours made it difficult to get there, but I finally made it this winter.

 photo af0d398c-1be9-4094-8821-7e43989f1fda_zps9ce3f77b.jpgIn the main lobby is an animatronic version of Captain Mary Millicent Miller, native Portlander and the first licensed woman steamboat captain in the United States.  She tells her story of working with her husband and then eventually captaining her own vessel.

Then we went into another room filled with animatronics and dioramas that tell the history of the Portland area.  Each area is accompanied by an audio presentation, and you are prompted to move through the exhibit by the stories and lights.  It was really a unique experience.  I had my four year old with me that day, and once he got over his fear of the dark he seemed interested in the animatronics if nothing else.
 photo 2a0b4843-8f77-45d0-b941-12466dc81a28_zps951a20fd.jpgThere were many displays of historic artifacts and documents relating to the Portland neighborhood.  I don’t recommend this for very small children, as it is a hands-off museum.  This would be a great place for older kids (6+) and anyone who wants to learn more about the unique history of the Portland area.

 photo f8b6b6d8-2929-4ba2-b11f-a177c0be7973_zps2a443fdc.jpgPerhaps my favorite thing there was newsreel footage from the 1937 flood in Louisville, but my son wasn’t interested in sitting still for it so I wasn’t able to watch the entire collection.  I will return for this.


 photo 3963b879-509c-4b52-a07c-7005f49cb1d3_zps55e67687.jpgThere isn’t much off-street parking, but there seems to be plenty of on-street parking.  This would be a nice place to visit in the summer time, because they have a really great playground in the back.  I would recommend this in conjunction with a trip to the Falls of the Ohio and/or the Howard Steamboat Museum since they all deal with the same area and histories.

By guest contributor: Maggie