The Weekenders: Family Friendly Events in Austin, March 4-6, 2011
Nature NIghts- Look to the Stars: Astronomy. Join us for family fun Friday evenings this Spring. Nature Nights are fun explorations of plants, animals, and the ecology of Central Texas. Each evening features interactive presentations, hikes with experts in their fields, and nature crafting for kids of all ages. Nature Nights are supported through volunteer efforts by Capital Area Master Naturalist volunteers and programs. Admission: $1 or free to members/ Ecoexplorers. Friday, 6:00- 9:00pm. Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse Ave.
Friday Night Storytime- Enjoy two stories this evening: The Sandwich Swap by Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, Kelly DiPucchio and Tricia Tusa and Enemy Pie by Derek Munson and Tara Calahan King. FREE!! Friday, 7:30pm. Barnes and Noble, La Frontera Village, 2701 Parker Road Bldg A Suite 700, Round Rock.
Family Storytime- Family Storytime is open to all ages. Come enjoy books, music and crafts with Miss Kit. FREE!! Saturday, 10:00am. Cedar Park Public Library, 600 N. Bell Blvd., Cedar Park.
Simon Kidgits Club Book Blast Adventure is just a turn of a page away…..Families and children of all ages are invited to share in the joy of reading with the Simon Kidgits. Interactive activities and “Bow Wow Reading Dogs,” will bring the stories to life! Don’t forget to bring a new or gently used book to donate to BookSpring in order to receive your giveaway – while supplies last. $5 annual membership dues. Saturday, reading Times: 12:30, 1:00, 1:30PM. Lakeline Mall, 11200 Lakeline Mall Drive.
It’s My Park Day- It’s My Park! Day is an annual community service day focused on improvements to Austin’s park. Individuals and community groups lead projects ranging from simple cleaning and repair to trail building and playground installation. This year 3,000 volunteers are needed for 60+ projects citywide! FREE!! Check the website to find out available volunteer opportunities and locations.
Rattletree Marimba First Saturday- Rattletree Marimba performs family-friendly shows at Ruta Maya every first Saturday from 5:00-7:00pm. $7 kids under 5 are free! Ruta Maya Coffee Shop, 3601 S. Congress Ave.
Texas Independence Day Parade- FREE!! Parade begins at on Saturday 9:30am on the Congress Avenue Bridge.
BookKids Storytime- This morning we’re having a very mellifluous storytime for all of you young songbirds out there. We’ll be reading the gorgeous picture book There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly by Simms Taback along with other lyrical tales that will leave you on a high note! So your whistle your way down to the store this morning for a marvelous storytime full of songs and stories and surprises! FREE!! Saturday, 11:30am. BookPeople, 603 N. Lamar Blvd.
Celebration of Urban Birds- Come learn all about the amazing birds you see right around you everyday and why we want to celebrate their presence in our city! Activities for the entire family including beginner bird walk starting at 9:30am, live bird demonstrations, citizen science bird counts, kids bird drawing and art contest, bird reading time, expert lectures, hands-on kids activities, bird scavenger hunt and more. FREE!! Saturday, 10:00am- 2:00pm. Austin Nature and Science Center, 301 Nature Center Drive.
TEXplorations Family Storytime: Spring Has Sprung- This month, Story Time will feature favorites all about the changing season. Come to our monthly Story Time programs to learn more about what’s happening in the world around you! FREE!! The Museum offers FREE admission to the exhibits from 2:00 – 6:00 p.m. on the first Saturday of each month with First Saturdays. Saturday, 2:00pm.The Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, 1800 N. Congress Ave.
Family Nature Quest- Come to the park for a fun family hike as a naturalist guides you along one of our many beautiful trails. We’ll bring together a unique blend of natural history to describe how water conservation and land stewardship is vital to the animal, plant and human life along its banks. After your hike, visit McKinney Roughs’ interactive exhibits and enjoy a nature craft or borrow a trail pack and take the kids outside to enjoy one of our self-guided nature scavenger hunts together. Bring a picnic lunch, and make it a nature day! Hike is limited to the first 20 participants and is designed to include families with children of all ages. Clubs or groups should schedule a private hike. Guided hike leaves at 10:00 am from the Visitor’s Center and returns at 11 am. Nature crafts and self-guided scavenger hunts available until 1:00 pm. FREE, all ages. Pre-registration is required for hike. McKinney Roughs Nature Park.
Home Depot’s Kids Workshop- A FREE how-to workshop designed for children 5-12 years old. This month kids will be making the Home Depot Race Car #20. Saturday, 9:00am- Noon. All participating Home Depot locations.
Austin Cave Festival- Celebrate Groundwater Awareness Week and learn about local groundwater resources, visit 2 caves and see how water gets to Austin-area aquifers, learn about animals that call Austin’s caves home, enjoy a cave-themed storytime, try on vertical caving gear and see if you have what it takes to ascend and descend caves, learn about your local creeks and what steps you can to take to protect them, visit with a rainwater harvesting expert and learn about conservation incentives in your area. FREE!! Saturday, 9:00am- 3:00pm. Village of Western Oaks Karst Preserve at La Cresada and Davis Lane.
Pflugerville Parks and Recreation Expo and Earth Pfair- Bring the family out and celebrate everything that is spring, green and all about outdoors, parks and recreation. There will be a host of family and eco-friendly activities (including a petting zoo, Home Depot crafts, bounce house, face painting, performance by the Hey Lollies and more!), educational opportunities and information about the programs and pfun and the city’s parks and recreation department throughout the year. FREE!! Saturday, 10:00am- 4:00pm. The Red Barn, 901 Old Austin Hutto Road, Pflugerville.
Crafts for Kids- Bring the kids, ages 3 and up, to make a Mardi Gras Mask. FREE!! Saturday between 11:00am- 3:00pm. Lakeshore Learning Store, 9828 Great Hills Trail.
Whole Foods Grand Reopening- The flagship has a fresh new look and some amazing new additions to the store. Join us as we celebrate Whole Foods Market with music, food and fun! Local vendors with product samples from 9:00am – 2:00pm, Kid’s Club will be making kites just in time for spring from Noon- 2:00pm. There will also be giveaways throughout the store so stop in for a chance to win! FREE!! Sunday, 9:00am- 2:00pm. Whole Foods, 525 N. Lamar Blvd.
Round Rock Express 2011 Open House- There will be a baseball skills showcase and fans will be able to take batting practice and shag flies. Fans also will be able to take tours of The Dell Diamond, which has undergone many changes during the offseason. FREE!! Open to the public. Saturday, 9:00am- 4:00pm. For activiteis and times, check website. Dell Diamond and the United Heritage Center, 3400 E. Palm Valley Blvd., Round Rock.
Family Movie: Peter Pan- Join us for a screening of Peter Pan (G). The Darling family children receive a visit from Peter Pan, who takes them to Never Never Land where an ongoing war with the evil pirate Captain Hook is taking place. Light refreshments will be served. FREE!! Saturday, 2:00pm. Windsor Park Branch Library, 5833 Westminster Drive.
TEXplorations Puppet Show- Austin Public Library is back at the Museum for more puppet fun! Literature Live! presents Wiley and the Hairy Man. In this adaptation of a traditional southern folktale, a young bayou boy, Wiley, is challenged to outwit a conjure man. As legend tells it, if you can outwit the Hairy Man three times he will no longer bother you. Find out if Wiley is triumphant in his quest to free the swamp of this bothersome character. This event is recommended for ages 5 and over. FREE!! Saturday, 1:00pm. The Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, 1800 N. Congress Ave.
Little Lounge Lizards- A dance club party, where cool kids ages 10 and under along with the groovy “grown-ups”, can boogie down to dance hits from the 70’s on up. Spun by Austin’s popular live DJ Syko at a hip night club. Wear yellow to celebrate Livestrong. Tickets, $9. The first Saturday of every month from 1:00- 4:00pm. Qua, 213 W. 4th Street.
Storytime at Mitchie’s- Enjoy a FREE storytime and language featuring African-American folktales from 1:00-2:00pm every Saturday. Kids receive free refreshments, a free book and a 30% discount! Mitchie’s Gallery, 7801 N. Lamar Blvd., Bldg. B, Suite 148.
Hey Lollies First Saturdays- Enjoy family-friendly music by the Hey Lollies for FREE!! Saturday, 10:30am. Flipnotics, 1601 Barton Springs Road.
Explore UT- Explore UT, the biggest open house in Texas, provides an opportunity for visitors to examine the rich and varied programs that are a part of everyday life on this campus. Explorers will discover in the schedule of activities something to thrill the kid in all of us. Activities include: The Children’s International Festival, Tower Tours, Campus Scavenger Hunt and more! FREE!! Open to the public. Saturday, 11:00am- 5:00pm. University of Texas Campus.
Storytime at Wells Branch Library- Enjoy a storytime for families with kids of all ages. FREE!! Saturday, 11:00am. Wells Branch Community Library, 15001 Wells Port Dr.
Texas Outdoor Adventure Day- Like the first explorers of Texas, we will travel down the Colorado River, navigate through the woods, and climb to great heights. Meet at McKinney Roughs for a day of excitement, adventure and good food. The day begins at the challenge course where we will get vertical on the rock-climbing wall and zip line. Next, everyone becomes an explorer as we use Global Positioning System (GPS) units to navigate the McKinney Roughs hiking trails back to enjoy our campfire lunch. We top it off with a splash – a raft trip down the Colorado River where getting wet is guaranteed. Saturday, 9:00am- 3:00pm. $45 per person ages 7 and up. Children 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult. McKinney Roughs Nature Park.
Zilker Park Kite Festival- Bring a kite to fly or just sit back and marvel at the kites flying in the sky. You can bring a picnic or buy food from vendors. There are also kite making workshops, flying demonstrations, and competitions. FREE!! Sunday, 10:00am- 5:00pm. Zilker Park, Barton Springs Road.
Sunday Morning Kids Show: The Strollers- Rock n’Roll for kids, parents too! The Strollers’ Rockabilly/Americana style will have you jumping out of your seat! FREE!! Sunday, 10:30am. Ruta Maya Coffee Shop, 3601 S. Congress Ave.
Guitar Lessons by Luis Banuelos- FREE Guitar Lessons by Luis Banuelos, for anyone in the Austin community. Ages 12 and up. People are encouraged to donate their old or new guitars for underprivileged students. Sunday, 5:30- 7:00pm. Ruta Maya Coffee Shop, 3601 S. Congress.
Flying Theatre Machine: Snowball Fight- Winter is the perfect time for a Snowball Fight! We’ll tell stories and play games, and you throw snowballs at us. Or maybe you’d want to come join us on stage and get snowballs thrown at you. Anyway it happens, this is the best show you’ll see this winter! (No actual snowballs used.) Perfect for ages 4-10, pretty fun for everyone else. Sunday at 2:00pm. Tickets, $8.00. The Hideout Theatre, 617 Congress Avenue.
Fine Art Make-It Take-It- FREE with purchase of fine art canvas. Paint your own personal masterpiece. While supplies last. Ages 12 and up welcome. Sunday, 1:00- 3:00pm. All participating Michael’s locations.
Storytime- Enjoy a FREE storytime on Sunday at 1:00pm. Faulk Central Library, 800 Guadalupe Ave.
Just For Mama:
Building Reflection into Your Family Volunteer Experiences- Join Little Helping Hands on Sunday from 4:00- 5:00pm to hear special guest Dr. Jenny Friedman. Communicating with your children before, during, and after you volunteer together is an essential component of creating meaningful volunteer experiences. But sometimes doing this is easier said than done. Join us for an informal, interactive discussion with Dr. Jenny Friedman as she shares her thoughts, advice, and own experiences for effectively communicating with your children so that serving others become a deeply embedded and lifelong value. Tickets: $10 or $20 which includes the book. Book signing and light refreshments will be served following the discussion. Eaton Hall at Covenant Presbyterian Church, 3003 Northland Drive.