Fairy tales and edible books: weekend Family Picks

Fairy tales and edible books: weekend Family Picks


Lots of family friendly events this weekend — from fairy tales to poisonous frogs to edible books — so let’s get right to it:

— First, a mea culpa. I blogged Tuesday about the upcoming “Ready. Set. Grow!” event at Lincoln Square Village on April 17. The date in the blog was correct but in the print version in Wednesday’s News-Gazette the date said it was this Saturday, April 10.

The folks at the United Way of Champaign County were nice about it, but they want you to know they won’t be there if you go to Lincoln Square this weekend. So hold that thought for a week!

The family event, from 9 a.m. to noon April 17, will showcase information and services available in Champaign County for parents and caregivers of children from birth to age 6.

— Fairy Tale Ball, 6 to 9 p.m. Friday (tonight). Urbana Free Library, 210 W. Green St., U.

Wear your fanciest ballgown or finest suit of armor, or dress as your favorite fairy tale character. Kids (and adults) can enjoy crafts, ballroom dancing, a puppet show, storyteller, jugglers and games.

For information, call 367-4069 or visit www.urbanafreelibrary.org

— Children’s Spanish Storytime (bilingual), 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Urbana Free Library, 210 W. Green St., U.

Organized by the library and the University of Illinois Center for Latin America and Caribbean Studies, this monthly event is for children and their parents. You can enjoy story telling, live music and art, presented in Spanish and English.

For information: www.library.illinois.edu/bigread

—  The UI Veterinary Medicine Open House, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, 2001 S. Lincoln Ave., U.

Animal enthusiasts of all ages can experience wildlife up close and learn about animals and veterinary medicine. We were surprised to see so many large animals the first time we went, and my kids were fascinated by the tiny, bright-blue poisonous frogs (safely inside a terrarium).

For information: vetmed.illinois.edu/openhouse

— Babies & More Expo, noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Illinois Conference Center at the I-Hotel, 1900 S. First St., C.

Parents and parents-to-be can find information, demonstrations and advice on child care, health and fitness, activities, lessons and more at this first-time event, geared toward parents of children ages 5 and under.

For information: 351-5341

— The Big Read: Kids Edible Book Contest/Festival, 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Urbana Free Library, 210 W. Green St., U.

If you missed the adult Edible Book Festival on campus this week, you and your child can enter the kids' version co-sponsored by the UI Library and Urbana Free Library.

Create an “edible book,” inspired by a favorite story or picture book, and drop it off between 1 and 2 p.m. Sunday at the Urbana Free Library. Entries will be judged and placed on display in Lewis Auditorium from 2 to 4 p.m. -- and then eaten.

For a special prize, contestants can enter the “Taste of Mexico” category, in honor of this year's Champaign-Urbana Big Read title, Sun, Stone, and Shadows,.

For information: www.library.illinois.edu/bigread/ or 367-4069

Check the Are We There Yet? blog every Thursday afternoon for upcoming family friendly events, pulled from our News-Gazette online calendar and other sources. I’ll also do a quick radio update of our “Family Picks” at 4:50 p.m. every Thursday on WDWS-AM 1400.

The N-G calendar is easy to use. Look for it on the upper right-hand side of the News-Gazette home page, www.news-gazette.com.

Photo: An "edible book" from the 2009 festival at the University YMCA. News-Gazette file photo by Vanda Bidwell

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