January is getting busier. There are many fun things listed below to do with your families and kids. In addition, National Dress Up Your Pet Day is on Jan. 14, which provides you with another day, aside from Halloween, to dress up your pet. And, we want to see your best-dressed pets. Send photos to jackie.eventscolumn@gmail.com and your photo will be featured in next week’s column.

If you are looking to participate in fun activities and more this week, please enjoy this list of “Things to Do with Kids” in and around town, brought to you by The Goddard School in West Orange. #ThingstodowithKidsGoddardSchoolWONJ

Note: If you attend any of these events, partake in any of the ideas shared below, or just have a great picture of your kid(s) that you’d like featured, please send photos to jackie.eventscolumn@gmail.com. In addition, please send any events you’d like added to this column to the same email address.

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FUN FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY

 

Coffee & Canvas at The Twisted Tulip w/ Express Yourself Studios on Jan. 10 at 6 pm (277 Eisenhower Parkway, Livingston)

The public is invited to paint a colorful painting, enjoy a warm beverage and explore their creative side. No experience is necessary. The main objective is to unwind and have fun and be guided through the process. All materials and coffee will be provided, The cost is $30 per person. Seating is limited and registration is required.​

 

Crocheting with Carlotta on Jan. 11 at 11 am at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Let Carlotta show you how to enjoy the art of crocheting in this cozy program that’s open to people of all ages. Yarn and needles will be provided in limited quantities.

 

Hot Chocolate Hike on Jan. 11 from 11 Am to 12:30 pm at the Essex County Environmental Center (621B Eagle Rock Ave, Roseland) 

Families are invited for a hike around the Environmental Center forest, where they will build a winter campfire, sip hot cocoa and make s’mores. Participants should dress warmly. Call 973.228.8776 to register. The fee is $30, per family (up to two adults and two children) or $10 per child; and $12 per adult.

 

World Wednesdays on Jan. 15 at 4:30 pm at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

People of all ages are invited to this weekly event featuring folktales, stories, and activities from around the globe. Each week will highlight a different country, region and/or culture.

 

Behind the Scenes Giraffe Tours, on Jan. 11-12 at 2 pm, at The Turtle Back Zoo (560 Northfield Avenue West Orange NJ (Tours will take place on Saturdays and Sundays in November 2019)

The Behind the Scenes ticket provides guests with a 30 - 45 minute Behind the Scenes Tour in the Giraffe Barn; a meet and greet the Giraffe Keeper; and admission to the Zoo for the day (for non-Zoological Society members). The tours are for people ages 6 and above. Register here. The fee is $50 a person.

 

CAMP OPEN HOUSES

 

Open House at Spring and Summer Performing Arts at NJPAC on Jan. 11 from 11 am to 1 pm (24 Rector St., Newark, NJ)

Prospective families are invited to NJPAC for an Open House where they will meet the arts training faculty and staff, participate in trial classes, see the facility, register for classes on-site, and be able to enjoy a day at NJPAC. There is a 15% discount available for all families who register for a program on-site at the Open House. Click here for list of classes and details.

 

Open House Event to be Held at Meadowbrook Country Day Camp on Jan. 12 from 11 am to 3 pm at Camp (73 East Valley Brook Road, in Long Valley)

Meadowbrook Country Day Camp is inviting all prospective camp families to attend an Open House. All prospective families will be welcomed via an information session with the camp’s directors and Leadership Team and will take an energetic heated bus tour of the campus. Tons of games and crafts will be offered for the children. Read more here.

 

FUN FOR PEOPLE WITH SPECIAL NEEDS

 

NEW: Sensory Storytime on Jan. 9 at 1:30 pm at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Children ages 2-10, with autism, developmental challenges or sensory sensitivities and a caregiver are invited for some interactive storytime at the library.

 

FUN FOR LITTLE KIDS

 

Storytime at Barnes and Noble on Jan. 9 and 14 at 10 am at the Livingston Mall (112 Eisenhower Parkway, Livingston)

Children will embark on an exciting adventure as they are introduced to some of your childhood favorites, as well as some you may not have heard before. 

 

Books n' Babies Storytime on Jan. 9 at 10:30 am at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Infants up to 24 months and caregivers will enjoy stories, songs and rhymes introducing babies to language skills.

 

Saturday Storytimes and Crafts on Jan. 11 at 10 am at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Children ages 0-5 are invited for stories and crafts on Saturday mornings.

 

Storytime and Activities Featuring, “The Return of Thelma the Unicorn,” on Jan. 11 at 11 am at Barnes and Noble at the Livingston Mall (112 Eisenhower Parkway, Livingston)

Children ages 3-5 will enjoy learning about Thelma the Unicorn, from “The Return of Thelma the Unicorn,” by Aaron Blabey, who is reluctant to share her horn and sparkles again, but with the help of her best friend Otis, she realizes the importance of spreading love and joy no matter what people think. Activities to follow.

 

Kid's Zumbini Class on Jan. 12 at 10 am at IndigoKids at the Short Hills Mall (1200 Morris Turnpike, Short Hills)

Kids ages 0-5 are invited to do Zumbini with Allie in a fun, energy-filled class. Created by Zumba® and BabyFirst for children (starting from Infants), the Zumbini® program combines music, dance and educational tools for 45 minutes of can't-stop, won't-stop bonding, learning, and fun for caregivers and kids. By registering for this exclusive class, guests will gain access to Indigo before store opening where you can be the first to shop the store enjoy the café, along with a complimentary cup of coffee per adult. The ticket price of $25 + tax and service fees includes a 45-minute children’s Zumbini class for one child and a small cup of coffee per adult. Parking will be available on the ground level of the Teal parking deck near the Indigo entrance.

 

Toddler Time on Jan. 14 at 10:30 am at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Toddlers ages 2 – 3 1/2 and their caregivers will be entertained by puppets, stories, songs, and fingerplay.

 

Raising Readers on Jan. 14 at 11:30 pm at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Children ages 3 1/2 – 5 and their caregivers will enjoy stories, songs and games.

 

Little Explorers Winter Nature Program for Kids ages 2 to 5 (See schedule below) at the Essex County Environmental Center (621B Eagle Rock Ave, Roseland) 

Children love to explore nature and observe all the natural wonders around them. Participants will take magnifiers and their imaginations into the wooded wetland to investigate what winter means to the forest plants and animals around the Environmental Center. Participants should come dressed for the weather since they will be spending time outside. Advance registration is required. Please call 973.228.8776. The fee is $12 per child/session. See schedule below:

  • Toddlers (age 2): on Tuesdays, January 14, 21; February 4, 11, 18, 25 (10 to 11 am)
  • Tots (age 3) on Thursdays, January 16, 23; February 6, 13, 20, 27 (1 to 2 pm)
  • Pre-K (ages 4-5) on Tuesdays, January 14, 21; February 4, 11, 18, 25 (1 to 2 pm) OR Thursdays, Dec. 5, 12, 19; January 16, 23; February 6, 13, 20, 27 (10 to 11 am)

 

Tiny Toddlers Ages 12-23 Months on Jan. 15 at 10:15 am at the Livingston Library (10 Robert H Harp Dr, Livingston)

Toddlers ages 12-23 months will enjoy stories, songs.

 

FUN FOR KINDERGARTEN TO ELEMENTARY SCHOOL-AGED KIDS

 

Williams Sonoma Jr. Chef: Dumplings from Scratch on Jan. 11 at 10 am at the Short Hills Mall (1200 Morris Turnpike, Short Hills)

This class is perfect for kids who love dumplings. Kids ages 8-13 will learn how to make dumplings from scratch. The cost of $30 per child includes a Bamboo Steamer Basket. Call (973) 467-3641 to reserve a spot.

 

Escape This Bookstore! Event on Jan. 11 at 2 pm at Barnes and Noble at the Livingston Mall (112 Eisenhower Parkway, Livingston)

Kids ages 8-12 are invited to come and explore the newest addition to the exciting, “Escape This Bookstore!” series, by Bill Doyle. They will decide their destiny by solving puzzles and riddles to pass each challenge and get to the next adventure!

 

Turning Teen: Body Basics for Girls on Jan. 12 from 2-4 pm at Livingston Senior/Community Center (204 Hillside Ave., Livingston)

This Turning Teen program for girls ages 8 and over, with a trusted adult, that is being taught by pediatrician, Dr. Abby Silverman, will provide age-appropriate, medically accurate information about puberty, in an engaging and relaxed manner. Topics to include an introduction to a body and its parts, the difference between boys and girls, physical and emotional changes that happen during puberty, introduction to menstruation, rules for body respect, body safety, and more. For more information and to register, click here. The fee is $60.00.

 

Speaking of Stories (Grades 4-6) on Jan. 14 at 4:30 pm at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Children in grades 4-6, ages 10 and up, will enjoy a book discussion on, “It's Trevor Noah,” by Trevor Noah.

 

FUN FOR TEENS

 

Dungeons and Dragons: A Teen Club on Jan. 10 from 3:15-5:15 pm at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Teens ages 13+ are invited to join a Dungeons and Dragons (DnD) adventure! Epic quests await teens who join the DnD club at the library! DnD features role-playing, storytelling, on-the-spot strategic thinking, math skills, problem-solving, and teamwork all rolled into one! 

 

YA Book Club Featuring, “Reverie” on Jan. 10 at 7 pm at Barnes and Noble at the Livingston Mall (112 Eisenhower Parkway, Livingston)

YA’s are invited to explore compelling stories and characters. The January selection is “Reverie,” a bold, alternate-reality adventure story where characters are forced to examine the secret worlds they hide within themselves.

 

Williams Sonoma Jr. Chef: Dumplings from Scratch on Jan. 11 at 10 am at the Short Hills Mall (1200 Morris Turnpike, Short Hills)

This class is perfect for kids love who love dumplings. Kids ages 8-13 will learn how to make dumplings from scratch. The cost of $30 per child includes a Bamboo Steamer Basket. Call (973) 467-3641 to reserve a spot.

 

Turning Teen: Body Basics for Girls on Jan. 12 from 2-4 pm at Livingston Senior/Community Center (204 Hillside Ave., Livingston)

This Turning Teen program for girls ages 8 and over, with a trusted adult, that is being taught by pediatrician, Dr. Abby Silverman, will provide age-appropriate, medically accurate information about puberty, in an engaging and relaxed manner. Topics to include an introduction to a body and its parts, the difference between boys and girls, physical and emotional changes that happen during puberty, introduction to menstruation, rules for body respect, body safety, and more. For more information and to register, click here. The fee: is $60.00.

 

Teen Crafters on Jan. 13 at 4 pm at the Livingston Library (10 Robert Harp Dr., Livingston)

Teens that want to learn to knit or crochet are invited to come and learn how to knit or crochet a scarf.  Materials will be provided. No experience is necessary. Registration is required and class is open to Livingston residents only. When prompted in registration, the username is the Livingston Library card number and the password is the PIN.

 

Express Math Tutoring (Pilot Program) on Jan. 14 at 4-5 pm at the Livingston Library (10 Robert Harp Dr., Livingston)

Is Math tricky? Kids in grades 7-12 are invited to sign up for a 20-minute express math tutoring session where students will work one-on-one with teen tutors from the Livingston High School Math Honors Society. Students must bring an assignment or math problem to work on, which can be math homework or a previous test to go over. Registration is required. Call 973-992-4600 x270 to reserve a spot.

 

Teen Game Bight on Jan. 15 at 7 pm at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

Teens are invited to bring friends to enjoy a fun evening of video games, board games, and more.

 

FUN FOR ADULTS

 

Cope Center Presents: Successful Launching Starts Today! On Jan. 12 at 1 – 2:30 pm at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

For parents with children of all ages. The dynamic of the parent/child relationship shifts dramatically as your child matures. This workshop explores the developmental and emotional aspects of this process.

 

Learn About Bitcoin on Jan. 12 from 3-5 pm at the West Orange Library (46 Mt Pleasant Ave, West Orange)

This is an introduction class to the world of Bitcoin.

 

Williams Sonoma's “Bod Love Every Day” Book Tour with Kelly Leveque on Jan. 14 from 6:30 – 8 pm at the Short Hills Mall (1200 Morris Turnpike, Short Hills)

Williams Sonoma presents the “Body Love Every Day” Book Tour with Celebrity Health Coach Kelly LeVeque, In her new book, LeVeque will help you say goodbye to cravings and food drama and experience more balance and joy every day with her flexible 21-day plan based on her bestselling book. In the book, LeVeque shared her popular science-based “it’s-not-a-diet” approach to clean eating, weight loss, and wellness, centered on the Fab Four—protein, fat, fiber, and greens. As LeVeque (and modern science) has shown, eating the Fab Four balances blood sugar, helps you eat and feel full, and naturally turns off your hunger hormones. Now, LeVeque is back with exactly what her fans want – an action plan for adopting the Fab Four lifestyle. Guests will learn more about the new book, enjoy a Fab Four Smoothie Demonstration, and take home a signed copy of the book. The ticket cost is $30.

 

HAVE FUN CELEBRATING THIS NATIONAL HOLIDAY!

 

National Dress Up Your Pet Day is on Jan. 14.

Who doesn’t love seeing a pet in costume? They look so cute! This day provides another chance, aside from Halloween, to dress up your pet. Whether you make your own costume with your kids or buy one in the store, you are sure to have some fun and great photo opportunities.

We want to see your best-dressed pets. Send pictures to jackie.eventscolumn@gmail.com and your photo will be featured in next week’s column.

 

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…

The next time you sit down for a family dinner, toss out some of these facts to spark a lively and informative family conversation. After dinner, look up some of these dates and facts and explore the historical moments as a family.

  • On Jan. 10, 1863 – The world's first underground passenger railway system opened in London, England.
  • On Jan. 11, 1838 – Samuel Morse and Alford Vail demonstrated the magnetic electric telegraph using Morse Code.
  • On Jan. 11, 1973 – American League baseball adopted the "Designated Hitter" rule.
  • On Jan. 12, 1966 – Batman debuted on television.
  • On Jan. 14, 1784 – The US ratified a treaty with England ending the Revolutionary War.
  • On Jan. 14, 1973 – The Miami Dolphins defeated the Washington Redskins in Superbowl VII and became the first undefeated team in NFL history.
  • On Jan. 14, 1990 – The Simpsons debuted on television.
  • On Jan. 15, 1943 – The Pentagon opened.
  • On Jan. 15, 1974 – Happy Days premiered on television.