Almost 6 million people watched a YouTube video of a 9-year-old boy who built an arcade out of cardboard boxes in his father’s auto parts store in East Los Angeles. One of them was playwright José Casas, who was from Los Angeles but spent two years in Austin working on a master’s of fine art at the University of Texas before getting a job at the University of Michigan.
Cases began creating a bilingual play for family theater called “JJ’s Arcade,” and elicited the help of Zach Theatre’s director of education Nat Miller to bring the play to the stage.
The play was one of six chosen for the 2016 Kennedy Center’s New Visions/New Voices workshop and festival. Last May, Miller and Casas spent a week in Washington, D.C., working with provided equity actors on refining the script and staging the play.
Now in a bicycle shop-turned rehearsal space next to Zach’s theaters, an Austin cast and crew is getting “JJ’s Arcade” ready for its world premiere three-week run at the the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center April 14-May 7.
In the New Visions/New Voices workshop, “JJ’s Arcade” was the only bilingual play. And, says Miller, there just aren’t enough bilingual plays for families available to theaters who are interested in staging them. “I have all the scripts I can possibly find,” Miller says. The list isn’t long, filling only a page. “Our purpose is to be able to add to that canon.”
Zach has made it a priority to stage at least one bilingual play a year and has been working with producing partner Teatro Vivo on that mission. Together they have staged “Mariachi Girl,” “Salt & Pepper,” “Tomás and the Library Lady” and “Cenicienta” Cinderella story. “JJ’s Arcade” is the third new work Zach and Teatro Vivo have created. They developed “Mariachi Girl” for the stage and helped it get published so it could be presented by other children’s theaters. Two years ago they created “Cenicienta” with Glass Half Full Theatre. They also made “Salt & Pepper” bilingual for the first time.
While the bilingual theater shows often don’t make money, Miller says, it’s important to have plays reflect the audience that Zach serves, especially the 55,000 school children who visit a Zach show every year.
“JJ’s Arcade” actors are all bilingual and have helped add more Spanish to the play as they reflect how their families would say things. They add it where it will make sense for English-only speakers as well.
While teachers love bringing their kids to bilingual shows, Miller says, sometimes it’s harder to convince the public audience to come. More known stories like “Elephant and Piggie,” which is currently on stage, and “Good Night Moon,” which is coming next year, is an easier sell. English-speaking audiences might might think they wouldn’t understand what is happening or that they wouldn’t be able to identify with the characters. That just isn’t true.
“Bilingual theater is more interesting,” says Teatro Vivo’s Executive Artistic Director Mario Ramirez, who also plays the father in “JJ’s Arcade.” “Even more people feel welcome.”
In the play, J.J. — short for Jose Joaquin — has lost his mother and is having trouble in school. A meeting between his teacher and his father and J.J.’s fantasy conversation with his late mother reveals that J.J. should probably be tested for dyslexia. J.J. gets suspended from school for fighting, and while he’s home, he hangs out in his father’s auto parts store, turning boxes into arcade games.
“The play deals with a lot of real issues,” Miller says — death, trouble connecting with his father, learn disabilities. And while struggle is part of it, “There’s a lot to celebrate in the play.”
JJ’s father’s employee Oscar sets up a surprise. He gets the story of J.J.’s arcade posted on Facebook and suddenly there’s a line out the door waiting to play J.J.’s arcade.
“It’s really about celebrating imagination and intelligence,” Miller says. J.J. is the kind of kid who might not excel in school, but he’s got a different kind of intelligence. He needs to be encouraged and supported to help him find what he’s good at. “It’s a metaphor for the arts in general.”
It’s also a testimony to how important fathers and father-figures are. It reflects the Mexican-American culture of men being taught to be strong and to take care of themselves, but it also teaches a lesson of needing to ask for help and rely on one another.
“He has really positive male characters in his life,” says Martinique Duchene-Phillips of Teatro Vivo, who plays the mother and teacher. “It doesn’t have a lot of stereotypes of the deadbeat dad.”
Just like people lined up to play Caine’s Arcade, people will line up to play “JJ’s Arcade.” All of the cardboard games created for the show work. If you come to one of the public shows, you can play JJ’s Plinko, labrynth or another game. At a rehearsal for press and donors, the cast and crew had trouble getting the adults to stop playing.
For ages 7 and up.
When: 7 p.m. April 14, 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays except April 30, April 14-May 7. 2 p.m. April 29 sign-language-interpreted and sensory-friendly performance.
Where: Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center, 600 River St.
It’s so easy to lose your cool with your kids. We know that, right? We all have regrets about the time we yelled too much or we grabbed an arm just a little bit harder than we intended to get a child to move where we needed her to go.
April is child abuse prevention month, but really every month should be child abuse prevention month, every day child abuse prevention day.
The Children’s Hospital Association of Texas offers this advice when you get angry or frustrated with your kids:
Take a deep breath and count to 20 slowly.
Put your child in a safe place and WALK AWAY. The crib is usually a good choice for children who have not yet learned to climb out. For older children, walk out of the room but remain within hearing range to make sure that the child is safe.
Now that your child is safe, take the time you need to calm down. This could just be a couple of minutes. If you need more time, reach out to a family member or friend to babysit for a while. Let them know how upset you are and that you need some help.
Call for help! Never be afraid to call for help. Reach out to family, friends, your church, or a trusted adult. If you can’t get help and feel like you might hurt your child, call 911. They will help make sure you and your child are safe.
Get rest. We are NOT at our best when we are over-tired and over-stressed. Just like airlines tell us, we must put on our oxygen first and then care for our child. Take care of yourself.
But what if it’s not about you and your children. What if it’s about that child down the street, your child’s classmate, the child you saw at the grocery store?
Here are 10 things the hospital association recommends you do:
Know what child abuse is. In addition to physical and sexual abuse, neglect can also be an issue. Neglect includes the failure of parents or other caregivers to provide a child with needed food, clothing, and care. Children can also be emotionally abused when they are rejected, berated, or continuously isolated.
Know how to recognize it. Unexplained injuries are just one sign of abuse. Habitual absence from school, depression, fear of a certain adult, difficulty trusting others or making friends, sudden changes in eating or sleeping patterns, inappropriate sexual behavior, poor hygiene, secrecy, and hostility can be signs that indicate a child is being neglected or abused.
Educate yourself and others. After-school activities, parent education classes, mentoring programs, and respite care are all great ways to keep kids safe. Be a supportive voice for these efforts in your community.
Volunteer your time. Get involved with community groups or other parents near you. Help vulnerable children and their families by starting a playgroup.
Discipline your children thoughtfully. It’s never good to discipline a child in anger. Give yourself time to calm down, and remember that discipline is a way to teach your child. Use privileges to encourage good behavior and time-outs to help your child regain control. There is a substantial amount of literature that spanking, hitting, and other forms of physical punishment are not effective. Children disciplined in this way are more likely to be aggressive and have low self-esteem.
Examine your behavior. Abuse can reach far beyond the physical. Words as well as actions can inflict deep, lasting wounds. Be a nurturer. Actions show children and other adults that conflicts can be settled in a healthy way, without hitting or yelling.
Teach children their rights. When kids understand that they are special and have the right to be safe, they are less likely to think abuse is their fault. Then they become more likely to talk about potential abuse.
Support prevention programs. Research options in your community that have been proven to stop abuse before it occurs—such as family counseling and home visits by nurses who provide assistance for newborns and their parents.
Report abuse. If you see a child being harmed or witness evidence of abuse, call the local police or make a report to Texas Child Protective Services. If you’re talking to a child about suspected abuse, be sure to listen carefully, assuring the child that he or she did the right thing by telling an adult. Always affirm that he or she is not responsible for what happened.
Invest in kids. Be an advocate by encouraging community leaders to support children and families. Ask employers to provide family-friendly work environments. Ask your local and national lawmakers to support legislation to protect our children and to improve their lives.
How do you know when you need to call the Texas Abuse Hotline at 1-800-252-5400?
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services recommends calling that number for these things:
Any injury to a child 5 years or younger.
Immediate need for medical treatment including suicidal thoughts.
Sexual abuse where the abuser has or will have access to the victim within the next 24 hours.
Children age 5 and under are alone or are likely to be left alone within the next 24 hours.
Anytime you believe your situation requires action in less than 24 hours.
A new study that of 8,000 children that were part of the Growing up in Ireland data collection survey looked at behavior and cognitive abilities of children who were breastfed exclusively for the first six months of life compared to children who were not. It specifically looked at the children at age 3 and at age 5. Would breastfed babies be the “smarter,” “better behaved” children as other studies have seemed to indicate?
What it found was not what it expected.
The only factor that was scientifically different was that the breastfed children at age 3 had less hyperactivity than those who weren’t breastfed. By the time all the children were 5, there wasn’t a statistical difference.
Also unclear was whether it was the breast milk itself or the close skin-to-skin contact that breastfeeding affords.
She wants women to stop beating themselves up about not breast-feeding. In “Push Back,” she offers chart after chart of research that shows little difference between breast-fed and formula-fed babies with access to clean water. “The benefits are a few less colds over the first year,” she says. “That’s it.” All the other stuff — obesity rates, diabetes, IQ — “That’s not true,” she says. “That’s been debunked.”
She worries about women feeling like bad mothers when their milk doesn’t come in or babies have trouble latching. She’d rather they switch to formula and feed their babies rather than stick to breast-feeding with a hungry baby as a result.
I have to say, I nursed both kids exclusively until they turned 1 and am a big fan of breastfeeding. Both have IQs, but so does my husband who was a bottle baby and so do I who was breastfed. One kid has ADHD and one doesn’t.
What I do know is that they were hardly ever sick as babies, and I have to think nursing probably helped.
Oh, it is going to be a thunderstorm-filled Saturday and Sunday. Brace yourself if you’re planning on going outside, especially at the Wildflower Center’s events. Dodge the raindrops and enjoy these fun events:
“All Aboard.” Pollyanna Theater presents this story for children 18 months to 4 years old about everything on wheels. 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. Thursday-Saturday, plus April 4-8. $6.50. The Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Drive. thelongcenter.org
Wildflower Center. Sprouts. Hands-on preschool program. 10 a.m. Friday. Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse Ave. wildflower.org
Thinkery. Parents’ Night Out. Ages 4 and up. The kids get to play while the parents go to the new Alamo Drafthouse next door. 6-10:30 p.m. Friday. $40 first child, $25 for sibling. (Alamo Drafthouse tickets separate). Thinkery, 1830 Simond Ave. thinkeryaustin.org
Texas Museum of Science & Technology. Star Party. Look at the stars. 8 p.m. Friday. Texas Museum of Science & Technology, 1220 Toro Grande Drive, Cedar Park. txmost.org
“Junie B’s Essential Survival Guide to School.” Barbara Park’s character comes to life. $15-$12. Noon Saturday. One World Theatre, 7701 Bee Cave Road. oneworldtheatre.org.
Baby Bloomers for kids infant to 3. Study the the sky. 9 a.m. Saturday. Special guests throughout the month. $5. Thinkery, 1830 Simond Ave. thinkeryaustin.org
Nature Play Hour. Play in the Family Garden. 11 a.m. Saturday. wildflower.org
BookPeople events. Cynthia Leonor Garza reads “Lucía the Luchadora,” 11:30 a.m. Saturday; BookPeople, 603 N. Lamar Blvd. bookpeople.com
Barnes & Noble Saturday story times at all locations: Celebration of “Beauty and the Beast,” Saturday.
“Elephant and Piggie: We Are in a Play!” The Mo Willems story comes to the stage. 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through April 30. 11 a.m. Saturdays. $16-$21. Zach Theatre’s Kleberg Theatre, 1421 W. Riverside Drive. zachtheatre.org
Thinkers Workshop. Get Pumped! For ages 4 and up. Learn about the circulatory system. 11:15 a.m., 1:15 p.m., 3:15 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, April 14-16, April 29-30. $8. Thinkery, 1830 Simond Ave. thinkeryaustin.org
Neill-Cochran House Museum. Sunday Funday: Simple Machines. Learn about simple machines and make some. 1-4 p.m. Sunday. Free. Neill-Cochran House, 2310 San Gabriel St. nchmuseum.org
Birds that Boogie. Learn more about birds. 1 p.m.-3 p.m. Sunday. Free. Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse Ave. wildflower.org
Autism Ride/Run. Bike 9, 24, 42 or 68 miles or run/walk a 5k. Plus educational books and activities after. 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday. Georgetown High School, 2211 N. Austin Ave., Georgetown. Race entrance fees vary. texasautismsociety.org
If you take a pledge to plant a garden that offers a food source for butterflies and pollinators at your house, your school or in your neighborhood, the National Wildlife Federation will give you a Butterfly Heroes Garden Starter kit, if you’re one of the first 45,000 people to take the pledge.
The kits include native seed packets provided by Botanical Interests Inc. that are right for your area and and a step-by-step guide to building a butterfly garden.
Take the pledge at nwf.org. You also have to upload a photo of yourself making the American Sign Language sign for butterfly.
April showers us with many outside activities, smart science opportunities and an Easter basket full of themed events. Check out what’s coming to museums, movie theaters, stages, libraries and more near you. Did we miss something? Let us know at email@example.com.
Autism Ride/Run. Bike 9, 24, 42 or 68 miles or run/walk a 5k. Plus educational books and activities after. 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 2. Georgetown High School, 2211 N. Austin Ave., Georgetown. Race entrance fees vary. texasautismsociety.org
Zilker Park Free Day. The Austin Nature and Science Center, Barton Springs Pool, the Zilker Zephry, the Zilker Botanical Garden and the Umlauf Sculpture Garden will all be freein celebration of the 100th Anniversary of Zilker Park. April 9.
“Never Grow Up: A Disney Art Show.” Mondo Gallery presents this show April 28 through May 13. Opening reception, 3-10 p.m. April 28. “Mondo Clubhouse” Kids Party, 10 a.m. to noon April 29. Mondo Gallery, 4115 Guadalupe St. MondoTees.com.
“Love that Dog.” A play about a boy who hates poetry, but with the help of his teacher and his dog, he learns to love it. $16. 3 p.m. April 9. Paramount Theatre, 713 Congress Ave. austintheatre.org.
“The Imaginators.” Austin Playhouse presents a story of a make-believe adventure, monster included. Free, but make reservations. 2 p.m. April 15 and 22, Noon April 21. Austin Playhouse at Austin Community College’s Highland Campus., 6001 Airport Blvd. austinplayhouse.com.
“JJ’s Arcade.”Zach Theater and TeatroVivo present this play about a boy who builds an arcade out of leftover cardboard. For ages 7 and up. 7 p.m. Fridays, 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays except April 30, April 14 through May 7. 2 p.m. April 29 sign-language-interpreted and sensory-friendly performance. $13-$15. Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center, 600 River St. zachtheatre.org
“All Aboard.” Pollyanna Theater presents this story for children 18 months to 4 years old about everything on wheels. 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. March 30-April 1, April 4-8. $6.50. The Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Drive. thelongcenter.org
Thinkery.Little Thinkers Club: Art Start: Upcycle! 9:45 a.m. Wednesdays for 1-year-olds, 10:45 a.m. Wednesdays for 2-year-olds through May 24. $20 per class. Tinkering Tots: Mini Music Makers! 9:45 a.m. Fridays for 2-year-olds; 10:45 a.m. Fridays for 3-year-olds through May 26. $20 a class. Baby Bloomers for kids infant to 3. Study the the sky. 9 a.m. Mondays and Saturdays. Special guests throughout the month. $5. Get Pumped! For ages 4 and up. Learn about the circulatory system. 11:15 a.m., 1:15 p.m., 3:15 p.m. April 1-2, April 14-16, April 29-30. $8. Seed Surprises. Ages 4 and up. Make your own seed-spreading devices. 11:15 a.m. and 1:15 a.m. April 8-9, April 22-23. $8. Biomes in a Bottle. Ages 8 and up. Engineer a seed. 3:15 a.m. April 8-9, April 22-23, $8. Thinkery, 1830 Simond Ave. thinkeryaustin.org
Hill Country Science Mill. Homeschool Day. See special demonstrations. April 12. Hill Country Science Mill, 101 S. Lady Bird Lane, Johnson City. sciencemill.org
Texas Museum of Science & Technology. Wee-Searchers for children 5 and younger. Learn about science through song, play and stories. 9 a.m. April 12 and April 26. Science Saturday: Earth Day. Learn more about ecology. Noon-4 p.m. April 22. Star Party. Look at the stars. 8 p.m. April 7, 14, 21, 28. Texas Museum of Science & Technology, 1220 ToroGrande Drive, Cedar Park. txmost.org
Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum. Family Day. Celebrate Zilker Park at 100. 10-4 p.m. April 9. Free. Kids Kraft Eco Arts. 9 a.m. April 22 kindergarten through second grade; 11 a.m. April 22 third through fifth grade. $15. Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum, 605 Robert E. Lee Road. umlaufsculpture.org
Wildflower Center. Sprouts. Hands-on preschool program. 10 a.m. Wednesdays and Fridays. Nature Play Hour. Play in the Family Garden. 11 a.m. Saturdays. Birds that Boogie. Learn more about birds. 1 p.m.-3 p.m. April 2. Free. Botanical Art Drawing. For budding artists ages 10 and up. 9 a.m. to noon. April 14. $40. Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse Ave. wildflower.org
BookPeople events. Cynthia Leonor Garza reads “Lucía the Luchadora,” 11:30 a.m. April 1; Drew Daywalt reads “The Legend of Rock Paper Scissors,” 6 p.m. April 7; Cinda Williams Chima reads “Shadowcaster,” 2 p.m. April 8; Dan Hanna reads “Pout Pout Fish Far from Home,” 11:30 a.m. April 9; Kelly Jensen reads “Here We Are,” 5 p.m. April 9; Andy Griffiths reads “The 65-Story Treehouse,” 6 p.m. April 12; Margaret Petersen Haddix reads “In Over Their Heads,” 7 p.m. April 19; Chelsea Clinton reads “It’s Your World,” 6:30 p.m. April 22. Amy Jackson reads “Cassandra and the Night Sky,” 3 p.m. April 23; Liz GartonScanlon and Audrey Vernick read “Bob, Not Bob!” noon April 22; Adam Bray and Tricia Barr “Star Wars The Visual Encyclopedia,” 6 p.m. April 26. Story times: “Not Quite Narwal“ giveaway story time, 10:30 a.m. April 4; Baby Signs, 10:30 a.m. April 5; Mary Sullivan, 11:30 a.m. April 8; Poets Who Know It, 10:30 a.m. April 11; Ms. Staci Gray, 10:30 a.m. April 12; “Happy Birthday Larry” giveaway story time, 11:30 a.m. April 15; Armstrong Community Music School, 10:30 a.m. April 18; Tiny Tails Petting Zoo, 10:30 a.m. April 19; Pets are the Best, 11:30 a.m. April 22; Preposterous Puppet Show Players, 10:30 a.m. April 25;Chakra Kids story time yoga, 10:30 a.m. April 26; Feminist Baby giveaway story time, 11:30 a.m. April 29. BookPeople, 603 N. Lamar Blvd. bookpeople.com
Barnes & Noble Events: Cathy Nickell reads “Arthur Zarr‘s Amazing Art Car,” 1 p.m. April 9, Arboretum. Saturday story times at all locations: Celebration of “Beauty and the Beast,” April 1; “The Legend of Rock Paper Scissors,” April 8; “Too Many Carrots,” April 15; “We are Dinosaurs,” April 22; “The Wonderful Things You will Be,” April 29.
Bow Wow Reading with Bonnie the Dog. 11:30 a.m. April 1, April 8, April 15, April 22, April 29, Yarborough Branch. Read to Aussie! 3:30 p.m. April 13, North Village Branch.
Saturday Family Movie “Moana.” 2 p.m. April 1, Windsor Park Branch. “The Magnificent Seven.” 2 p.m. April 8, University Hills Branch. “Sully.” 2 p.m. April 15, University Hills Branch. “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.” 2 p.m. April 22, University Hills Branch. “Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.” 2 p.m. April 29, University Hills Branch.
2 O’Clock Tunes: The Southsiders featuring Marcus Tharpe. 2 p.m. April 1. Twin Oaks Branch.
Crafternoon.3:30 p.m. April 3, Manchaca Road Branch; 3 p.m. April 6, Carver Branch; 4 p.m. April 13, Twin Oaks Branch; 3:30 p.m. April 18, Howson Branch; 4 p.m. April 18, Cepeda Branch; 3 p.m. April 25, Terrazas Branch; 4 p.m. April 25, Windsor Park Branch.
Literature Live! Presents “Little Peep.” 4 p.m. April 3, Howson Branch; 10:30 a.m. April 6, Willie Mae Kirk Branch; 11 a.m. April 8, Ruiz Branch; 6 p.m. April 10, Carver Branch; 3:30 p.m. April 13, Pleasant Hill Branch, 1 p.m. April 15, Recycled Reads Bookstore.
The Contemporary Austin Presents: Preschool Art Hour. 11 a.m. April 4, Cepeda Branch.
Sew Happy. 5 p.m. April 4, Manchaca Road Branch.
Learn Computer Coding. 6 p.m. April 4, April 11, April 18, Carver Branch.
Art Smart: Rain Art. 6:30 p.m. April 4, Willie Mae Kirk Branch. Drawing Dragons. April 11. Green Man Leaf Art. April 18. Celtic Sun. April 25.
Music & Movement. 3:30 p.m. April 5, Hampton Branch; 11 a.m. April 6, Howson Branch; 11 a.m. April 7, Milwood Branch; 11:30 a.m. April 12, Manchaca Road Branch; 11 a.m. April 27, Howson Branch.
Million Mile Month 2017. 3:30 p.m. April 6, Southeast Branch; 3:30 p.m. April 12, Windsor Park Branch; 3:30 p.m. April 20, North Village Branch; 3:30 p.m. April 25, Milwood Branch.
Hogwarts Spring Training Camps: Magic Maker Fair. For ages 7 and up. 5 p.m. April 6, Yarborough Branch. Advanced Potions. 5 p.m. April 13, Yarborough Branch. Hogwarts Sports. 5 p.m. April 20, Yarborough Branch. Magical Creatures. 5 p.m. April 27, Yarborough Branch.
Made with Code. 1 p.m. April 8, Manchaca Road Branch. 1 p.m. April 29, Terrazas Branch.
Storybook Dance Making. 2 p.m. April 9, Recycled Reads Bookstore.
Free Play Gaming. 3 p.m. Terrazas Branch.
Family Movie Night: Pete’s Dragon. 6:30 p.m. Twin Oaks Branch. “Field of Dreams.” 2 p.m. April 14, Old Quarry Branch. “The Lorax.” 3 p.m. April 18, Terrazas Branch. TBD. 5:30 p.m. April 26, Carver Branch.
NBTween Book Club: “Lockwood & Co.: The Screaming Staircase. 4 p.m. April 12, Howson Branch; “Finding Winnie,” 6 p.m. April 19, Yarborough Branch. “When the Sea Turned Silver.” 6 p.m. April 20, Twin Oaks Branch. “Goodbye Stranger.” 6 p.m. April 26, Spicewood Springs Branch.
Teen Manga Book Club 5:30 p.m. April 13, Little Walnut Creek Branch.
Teen Book Club. “Code Name Verity.” 6:30 p.m. April 13, Spicewood Springs Branch. “Island of the Blue Dolphins.” 7 p.m. April 13, Yarborough Branch. “Snow White.” 6:30 p.m. Howson Branch.
T(w)een STEAM Lab. For ages 7 and up. 3 p.m. April 19, Carver Branch.
Mother Daughter Book Club. “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon.” 6 p.m. April 19, Hampton Branch.
My daughter’s assistant principal gave some great advice to parents and students in the weekly school email. In addition to the key elements everyone will tell you:
Get a good night’s sleep the night before.
Have a nice, healthy breakfast.
Brink a healthy snack for during testing.
She also offered this:
“Remember, there’s no point in cramming since we have been covering what we will be tested on since August.”
and this strategy:
“As for the test, it’s imperative you take your time. Multiple choice tests are the easiest tests we can take because the answer is on the page. You just have to figure out which one it is. Make sure to read the question first, then try to come up with your own answer before you see the choices. After you read through all the choices, eliminate the ones you know aren’t right. Then, make your best educated guess with the remaining choices.”
So, when your kids are stressing out tomorrow morning … or not seeming to care, give them that advice.
One of the exciting things about the new Alamo Drafthouse in the Mueller neighborhood is that it is next door to the Thinkery children’s museum.
When we toured the new Alamo before it opened earlier this month, we talked with Amy Averett, director of family and community engagement nationwide for Alamo Drafthouse, who was excited about the possibility of partnering with the Thinkery for Parents’ Night Out events and was in the process of firming up the details.
Now the first one is happening March 31 — that’s next Friday from 6-10:30 p.m. Your kids have to be 4 and up and be potty trained.
Here’s what you need to do:
Go to the Thinkery website, thinkeryaustin.org, and buy tickets for your children to attend Parents’ Night Out. You’ll pay $40 for the first kid, $25 for siblings.
Once you buy your Thinkery tickets, you’ll be sent a notification about when you can buy your Alamo Drafthouse tickets, which won’t be available until 5 p.m. Monday.
If you’re a Thinkery member, you’ll get a free popcorn or cookies at the theater.
Do this by Wednesday, and really do this ASAP, before it sells out.
Hopefully, this will be such a success that more Parents’ Night Out events will be scheduled.
Austin family theater group Pollyanna Theatre Company will be presenting its newest play “All Aboard” beginning next week at the Long Center. “All Aboard” explores different modes of transportation. Your kids who love things on wheels — trains, cars and the like — will especially love it.
This production is geared toward children ages 18 months to four years and is part of its “Play and Play” program.
I’ve got a pack of four tickets to give away. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org by Tuesday, March 28 at noon with your name, phone number and which performances you can attend to enter to win.