Meals, movies and music: our weekend Family Picks

Meals, movies and music: our weekend Family Picks

It’s a big weekend in Champaign-Urbana, with Roger Ebert’s Film Festival, the Relay for Life, March of Dimes walk and the Million Meals for Haiti event.

If you and your kids would like to help package a million or more meals for earthquake victims in Haiti on Saturday and Sunday, there’s still time to sign up. Volunteers will be working from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday at the former Hobby Lobby store on Glenn Park Drive in Champaign.

Pre-registration is required. Go to, or call the Millions Meals Telephone Hotline at 398-0428.

Here are some other weekend highlights:


— Kids @ Krannert: Hands-on fun for the entire family from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Krannert Art Museum,  500 E. Peabody Drive, C, with demonstrations, art projects, dance, music, storytelling and more.

For information: Call 333-1861 or visit

— BabyFest: The Champaign Public Library, 200 W. Green St., C, will wrap up its weeklong BabyFest with a free “Baby Boogie Woogie!” concert from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday by local guitarist and vocalist David Howie. He will play selections from the library’s “Baby Boogie!” CD.

For information: Call 403-2030 or visit

— Earth Day: Celebrate Earth Day (belatedly) at the Urbana Free Library, 210 W. Green St., U, from 11 -11:45 a.m. Saturday, with stories and songs about the environment and lots of fun crafts. No registration required. For ages 3 and up.

For information: Call 367-4069 or visit

— Kids Cook: Kids can learn how to make healthy “pizza stuffed pockets” at the Mettler Center’s “Kids Cook - Snack Attack” program from 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday at the center, 2906 Crossing Court, C. The program teaches children how to make healthy choices and enjoy wholesome foods. The cost is $10 for members and $15 for nonmembers.

For information: Call 356-6543 or visit

— Children’s Concert: The Central Illinois Children’s Chorus will hold its annual spring concert at 4 p.m. Saturday at McKinley Presbyterian Church, 809 S Fifth St., C. Admission is $5, with youth ages 16 and under free.

For information: Call 359-3268 or visit


— The Amazing Brain: Learn all about brains from the UI’s Neuroscience Program at “The Brain: An Amazing Machine!” from 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday at Lincoln Square Village. The free program will feature games, demonstrations, interactive exhibits and videos aimed at children from grades K-6.

For information: Call 333-4971 or visit the event's web site.

— “The Soloist”: At the conclusion of Ebertfest, the Champaign County Anti-Stigma Alliance will present a free showing of “The Soloist” at 4:30 p.m. Sunday at the Virginia Theatre, 203 W. Park St., C. In the PG-13 movie, a Los Angeles journalist (Robert Downey Jr.) befriends a homeless Julliard-trained musician (Jamie Foxx) while looking for a new article for the paper. After the film, a guest panel will discuss issues raised by the film.

— Secret Garden: Friday’s and Saturday’s shows are sold out, but seats remain for the 2 p.m. Sunday performance of “The Secret Garden” by the Danville Light Opera at Danville Area Community College’s Bremer Center Auditorium. Reservations are no longer being taken, but tickets will be sold at the door starting at 1 p.m. Sunday, $17 for adults and $12 for students with an ID.

For information: call 431-1660


Check the Are We There Yet? blog every Thursday afternoon for upcoming family friendly events, pulled from our News-Gazette online calendar, e3 magazine 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,


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