Bowling is a really fun activity to do with kids! It can get REALLY costly, though. Fortunately, there are a couple of ways that you can let your kids experience the thrill of the lanes without melting your wallet.
Milan Lanes, Milan offers regular bowling for .99/person/game Sunday, Tues-Thurs 11 AM-10 PM and Fri/Sat 11 AM-7 PM. Shoe rental is just $2/person.
There's also a national program called "Kids Bowl Free". With this program you sign up your child(ren) at an alley *Note-your coupons are only good at the alley you choose at signup. They aren't transferable to any other alley.* and get 2 games of bowling per day FREE. You do still have to pay if you need to rent shoes, though many alleys are offering a season pass for shoe rentals. There's also an option to add a family pass. For $26.95 you can add up to 4 adults and they'll get the same 2 games/day free. Many of our local alleys participate in this national program. Miller Time, Davenport allows you to use your Kids Bowl Free coupons Tuesday-Sunday from 12-6 PM, and offers a $25/person or $50/family shoe pass good from now through August 16. At BowlMor in Davenport, kids can bowl from now through August 15 Monday-Friday 11-8 PM. Quad City Family Entertainment Center, Moline participates in Kids Bowl Free. You can bowl there now-September 1 from open-5 PM. Both BowlMor and QCFEC also offer shoe passes.
Think your kids are too little to carry a heavy ball? Most alleys have these great ramps that you can set up for them. You carry the ball to the top and they get to push it down the lane. Even 2 year olds can have fun with that! Grab some friends and give bowling a try this summer.
Coding is all the rage these days! A skill set that used to belong to computer geeks and programmers is now being encouraged for people of all ages. Many schools and organizations are offering pricey courses, but did you know that there are FREE (and low-cost) options that will allow your child to learn about coding? Google offers a free site called madewithcode that allows your child to complete projects, learning how to code along the way. Their Resources page is filled with additional projects for your kiddos.
In addition to Google's site, there's an excellent FREE online "school" called Codecademy. There your child can set up an account and learn 7 different computer languages and how to build a website. Codecademy has them learn languages one step at a time, creating projects along the way.
Do you have a child that would like to start a website or a blog? Check out weebly.com or blogspot for easy, inexpensive ways to get them started. *Please be sure to remind them how public these forums are, and spend time monitoring those accounts. The internet can be a very, VERY dangerous place for our kids!*
Spend some time checking out these sites and you can introduce your children to some great summer fun!
Once again this summer our friends at the Family Credit Union are sponsoring Family Dollar Day Mondays! From June 15-August 10 you can visit 5 local family-fun hot spots for only $1! No coupons are necessary, guests who come in groups of 6 or more will be subject to standard group admission rates at the participating venue. This offer applies only to General Admission, not special events or programs which could incur additional charges. Groups bookings, theater admission, blockbuster exhibits, and services where added staff/volunteers are necessary will incur applicable charges.
The participating venues are:
Putnam Museum, 1717 West 12th Street; Davenport, (563) 324-1933
$1 admission to the Putnam Museum each Monday between the hours of 10 AM – 5 PM
Quad City Botanical Center, 2525 4th Avenue, Rock Island, (309) 794-0991
$1 admission to the Botanical Center each Monday between the hours of 10 AM – 5 PM
The Family Museum, 2900 Learning Campus Drive, Bettendorf, (563) 344-4106
$1 admission to the Family Museum each Monday between the hours of 5-8 PM
Riverside Aquatic Center, 3300 5th Avenue, Moline, (309) 797-0788
$1 admission to the Aquatic Center each Monday between the hours of 5-8 PM
Red Hawk Golf Course/Learning Center, 6364 Northwest Blvd Davenport, (563)386-0348
One Dollar admission to play the par 3 course or for a bucket of balls each Monday, all day.
Minimum age for play on 18-hole and 9-hole courses is 8 years old. 9-hole rates are available for play for anyone at any time.
Thank you, Family Credit Union, for once again sponsoring this terrific event!
Are you worried that your kiddos will be bored this summer? Are you a parent that feels like keeping them busy is your best idea for summer peace? Then you need to check out some of the MANY camps offered in the Quad Cities this summer! Visit our "Camps" page to see a listing of the organizations that offer summer fun.
If you have a child aged 7-14 who loves baseball, then River Bandits Baseball Camp is for you! June 10-11 or August 5-6 from 9-1 you can send your child to Modern Woodmen Park for two days of professional instruction, lunch both days, a ticket to a River Bandits game, and a camp t-shirt. cost is $80/session or $145/both sessions. How cool would it be to learn to play baseball from the semi-pros? For more information, click here for the registration form or contact Alexandria Sheffler at email@example.com
Being a young child with diabetes really alters your life. In addition to the daily testing/shots/worry, frequently the children don't want their friends to know because they don't want to be different. The parents are concerned about having other caregivers because of the potential consequences if the care isn't managed properly. It's so hard for the parents to give their child the freedoms that they crave.
This summer there is a way to solve these problems. There's a camp being held in Boone, IA for two weeks this summer just for children who have diabetes. They can go away from home for a week and no one has to worry about whether or not they'll be okay. Best of all, it's a place where kids with diabetes get to be like everybody else!
The camp is being held at the YMCA camp in Boone and will offer swimming, canoeing, horseback riding, rappelling, archery and more. The staff will be made up of experienced counselors and expert medical staff. Financial aid is available.
Camp weeks are held from June 21-July4 for 5-17 year olds.
If you, or someone you know, has a child with diabetes, please check out this site for more information: www.camphertkohollow.com or call 888-437-8652
This summer is set to be one of the longest our kids have ever had, due to the Governor upholding the Iowa code. While this is overall a very positive thing, many moms and teachers are concerned about the "Summer Slide"--the loss of educational skills over the long break. While many of our local organizations offer terrific summer camps, there are so many ways that you can continue or support your children's learning over the summer break. Here are just a few...
*Taking a trip? Involve your child in planning by visiting the local library. Have them check out and read books about your destination. Grab the atlas and have them chart different routes, comparing the time and mileage. Have them make a project that relates to the area you'll be visiting. Visit a free online site like spellingcity.com and create word lists for them that encompass travel or destination words. Make them puzzles they can complete while traveling at a site like puzzle-maker.com. Don't allow them to spend the entire travel time watching movies or playing apps. Put together a travel "busy book". Get a hard three-ring binder in their favorite colors and fill it full of blank paper for coloring and drawing, a state map so they can mark off the license plates they find, lined paper for writing to friends and family, coloring pages, workbook pages (mathopolis, mathisfun, phonics worksheets, spelling worksheets, edhelper), and a binder pencil pouch with crayons, mechanical pencils, and pens (if your kids are old enough not to write on their seats). Encourage each child to pack a bag with fun road activities. Hit your local Target dollar section for some fun new travel books and toys (we just picked up Travel Bingo and magnetic games for $1 each) Revisit "old school" travel games like "My Father Owns a Grocery Store" "20 Questions", and "I'm Thinking of an Animal..."
*Staying closer to home? As you're running errands or driving around town, challenge your kids to sign or license plate races. Everyone has to add up (or multiply, subtract, divide--wherever they are in their skills) the numbers they see and gets a point for each correct answer. Have them help plan and shop for meals. Teach them about researching new recipes, budgeting for food, using math to cook...It's quality time, educational time, and a time to build up life skills. Visit your library and plan a dream vacation. Better yet, request travel guides online and let them cut them up to make postcards and posters about places they'd like to visit someday. Search for some printable activities like this Zoo Animal Report and make your everyday activities educational. Start summer off right with a planning party. Get your favorite treat and visit a site like iMom.com to download a cute calendar JUST for your summer fun. Then, hit our activity pages and fill it with fun, inexpensive things to do.
*Set up a "Super Summer Challenge" for your children. Choose some areas in which your child needs more help and offer the largest point values for those. Struggling reader? They get high points for reading new books. Math-a-phobe? Higher points for online math lessons. Brainstorm fun activities that your child wouldn't normally think of trying and add them to the challenge. Visit the website and some blogs for even more ideas on how to create your own SSC.
*Start free accounts with some educational websites like Khan Academy, Codecademy, Seterra, Cool Math, Teach Your Monster to Read, Spelling City, and turn their computer/video time into worthwhile learning time. Visit your local library's computer games section and grab some of the hundreds of educational games they offer. (Bettendorf has an outstanding selection!) They can learn map skills, reading, typing, geography, math...you name it. Try replacing some video game apps with some from this list and let them enhance their school skills.
*Challenge your family to stretch their normal reading time to include biographies, autobiographies, historical novels, science fiction...the genres that aren't the "normal" choices. Need some suggestions? Check out Common Sense Media or Reading Rockets for some ideas and reviews. Think back to your favorite books when you were a kid. Chances are, your kids haven't ever read them and would enjoy them just as much.
*Look into summer tutoring from places like Mathnasium (563) 424-1469 or Tutor|Doctor (563) 468-3763 if your child has additional educational needs.
Don't despair about this long summer, moms. ENJOY it! Take a little time now to plan some summer fun, and those weeks will fly by. Remember, you don't have to SPEND a lot to have a LOT of fun with your kiddos!
"American Girl Benefit Sale
Every summer, the Madison Children’s Museum holds its largest fundraiser, the American Girl Benefit Sale. Dolls and books are featured at deeply discounted prices. Proceeds benefit the museum and the American Girl’s Fund for Children. Close to 300 volunteers donate their time throughout the year. Over $21 million has been raised over the past 27 years, benefiting children in Dane County.
The 2015 sale takes place July 18-19 at 8830 N. Greenview Drive, Middleton, WI
Sale times are Saturday 7 a.m.-3 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m.-noon.
NOTE: American Girl dolls and merchandise are only sold on site at the sale. There are no online sales.
Tickets to Saturday’s sale are $8 each with a limit of four (4) and are available by mail only. Tickets go on sale in late May. Download the order and procedure forms to get started. Saturday tickets will have an entry time. Tickets for the Sunday markdown sale are free and distributed on site starting at 8 a.m. Final markdown prices are posted Saturday evening."
Visit their webpage for even more information.
This Labor Day marks the 20th anniversary (and final running) of the Run With Carl memorial race for Carl D. Schillig. Carl was only 15 years old when he was hit by a vehicle and killed while participating in a Civil War re-enactment. His parents, along with the Jaycees and now Rotary, hold this race each year as a fundraiser for the Carl Schillig Memorial Scholarship Fund. This is a really fun event for a great cause! There is a 5K run/walk, and 5 mile run for those 13 and over and a 1 mile run, and 1/2 mile fun run for those 12 and younger. Immediately after the race, runners can join the post-race party and awards ceremony. You can register now-race day, but you can only get prizes and awards if you pre-register. Visit their site for more information on how to be part of this special final event.
The employment process has certainly changed since I was a teen looking for work. Though there are many opportunities available to today's teens, sometimes FINDING those opportunities is challenging. Here are some local tools that might help...
Blackhawk College has a Career Services Center that's open to the public (you don't need to be a BHC student)! Their staff will help your teen with guided job searches and printed resumes--for free--and no appointment is necessary. The office is located at Blackhawk College Quad City Campus in Building One.
QCSTEP.com is a local website with job hunting podcasts and videos. They also provide a link for job leads (updated weekly during the school year). Their current start post is all about the importance of volunteering and how to find volunteer work. It's a great site for teens to bookmark as they start their search.
Goodwill also sponsors a center to help people create and print their resumes and search for jobs online, as well as occasional career fairs. The Helms Career Center is located at 4805 22nd Avenue, Moline and is open from 9:30-6 Monday-Friday.
Another resource available to many QC teens is called Career Cruising Quad Cities (CCQC). This is an online program to help teens find out what kind different careers entail, as well as their aptitude for certain types of work. Many Illinois and a few Iowa (Davenport and Pleasant Valley Jr/Sr highs) schools participate in this program through Junior Achievement. To find out if your child's school participates, click here. If they do, your child can request a login from their school and can use the program from any computer.
Give your teens their best start with career planning by utilizing the above mentioned resources. I'd love to hear any "real-life" feedback about these services. Email me at FYIQuadCities@gmail.com if you've had experience with these, or any other, local job training
Although I'm not promoting the "summer's over" camp, there are a FEW back-to-school things that need to be scheduled a little in advance. One of these is sports/back-to-school physicals. Many of us automatically assume that needs to be done at our doctors' offices. That's one option. Here are a few more for you....
*Palmer Chiropractic Clinic offers $20 physicals from 8/1-9/20. To make an appointment, call 563-884-5801. Visit www.palmerclinics.com/qc for more information.
*Plaza Physical Therapy is offering a Student Sports or Camp Physical for $30. To schedule an appointment, call 563-344-6645
What are some other places where you can take your kiddos to get their physicals done?
"Come on over to Adventureland. You're gonna have a fun-filled day!" At least, that's what the song always promised. We had always chosen Great America/Six Flags for our Amusement Park trips. It seemed less hokey and much bigger.
This year, a family obligation brought us to Adventureland in Altoona, IA. Despite the convincing jingle, we had pretty low expectations. ;) When we arrived at the park, we were able to get a front row parking space right near the gate. I was impressed, but thought maybe it was just because most people didn't go there. We were greeted warmly at the front gate, by young-ish people who were smiley, friendly, and helpful. (So far, so good) As we walked through the tunnel leading into the park, all my Adventureland cynicism began to fade. What we saw was a very pretty, clean, cute, old-fashioned town. The train station up on the hill had a few riders ready to go. Our gang started out on the carousel. There weren't many people there yet, so they went about 6 times before we called it quits. We wandered into a couple of the shops where I was once again taken aback. Instead of ridiculously priced hunks of junk, we found some very cute, REASONABLE souvenirs. Then we started on the rides. Everyone wanted to go in different directions, so we found some mid-ground and let the kids wander a bit from there. It felt like a safe, local park. The grounds were clean and very well-maintained. The only ride we passed that had had, er...an incident on it, had 4 men cleaning it up with different types of cleaning implements. We spent 7 hours there and still weren't able to see and do everything. I'd wager we missed half the park. We got a brief stop at the water park but unfortunately a storm drove us out. (You could spend an entire day right there!!)
Here are some reasons we were REALLY impressed by Adventureland...
*Tickets are reasonable. If you do any scouting around, or if you bring 15 or more people, you'll get discounts off the $40 gate price.
*You can bring in your own water bottles! That is a huge money saver right there! You can't bring in food, but you can eat outside the grounds in a shaded area.
*You can leave and re-enter the park without any rigamarole. They stamp you, check you and you're back to having fun.
*The entire park is smoke-free! No walking through smoke clouds or finding cigarette butts on the ground.
*Their maps are really helpful. One section is set up with two columns "If you are looking for..." and "You'll find it at..."
*Souvenirs and many snacks are very reasonable. We got sno-cones for $2/each.
*The employees are all really professional and were all very nice.
*The amazing waterpark, Adventure Bay was included in our admission price. There are cabanas and lockers around you can rent and the area is huge and REALLY good for older kids. (I wouldn't recommend a full day there with an under 5 or so. Many of the rides are REALLY big and the lazy river is pretty fast)
*Even though we aren't huge amusement park people, we had a GREAT time!
Adventureland, my apologies to you! My snobbery and disdain for you all these years was COMPLETELY unwarranted! I would go back in a heartbeat. We really DID have a fun-filled day!
I've been doing the summer activities thing for a LOT of years, and every once in awhile I'm STILL surprised by what there is to do in our area! Today I discovered that Michael's (craft store in Davenport) offers a program called Passport to Adventure. This class costs $2/day and takes place Monday/Wednesday/Friday from June 16-August 1. Each week the kids take an imaginary trip to a museum and make crafts based on what types of exhibits are found there. Each day they make different crafts, so kids can go all summer long and always do new things. The first couple of weeks they'll "visit" the Field Museum and the Georgia Aquarium. These are the crafts that they're scheduled to do on the first day. Cost includes all materials and supplies. Pretty cool, huh?
Summer is in full swing. School is out and moms are looking for fun things to do that won't break the bank. Here's something that you can do with your kiddos for 8 weeks!
One excellent feature that our movie theaters offer during the summertime is a weekly cheap movie. These vary by theater, but all are in the mornings and all are very reasonably priced. They are first-come, first-served so don't wait until 5 minutes before starting time and figure you'll always get in. We have actually hit a couple of times where they were full (daycare groups love these!). Most of the time they'll play the movie in multiple theaters, so if you're meeting people there, have a plan in place (we've frequently missed our friends and run into them out in the parking lot afterwards) The concession stands are always open for drink/popcorn/snack sales, and since you are getting such a great deal on your tickets, consider supporting them (believe me, we don't EVER do this except in the summer).
We've attended these for several summers and you can bet we'll hit a few this year as well. These are a great rainy or too-hot day activity, and a nice way to have a playdate with your kids' friends. Here's this year's run down....
Cinemark Theater (Davenport)- Wednesdays. movies begin at 10 AM, Doors open at 9:30. Movies are $1/person OR $5/person for all 10 if you buy your pass in advance at the theater or www.cinemark.com
6/11--Ice Age The Meltdown
7/16--Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2
7/23--Walking With Dinosaurs
7/30--The Lego Movie
8/6-- Rio 2
Regal Theater (Moline)- Tues & Wed. movies begin at 10 AM, doors open at 9:30. Movies are $1/person. Choose either movie or see one each day. Tuesdays are a bonus concession day for club members. Get a small popcorn for only $2, or upgrade for a couple dollars more.
6/10-6/11-- The Pirates: Band of Misfits or Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2
6/17-6/18--Despicable Me 2 or Arthur Christmas
6/24-6/25-- The Lego Movie or Free Birds
7/1-7/2--Adventures of TinTin or Rise of the Guardians
7/8-7/9-Kung Fu Panda 2 or Madagascar 3
7/15-7/16--The Croods or Epic
7/22-7/23--Turbo or Walking with Dinosaurs
7/29-7/30-- Mr. Peabody & Sherman or Rio 2
Nova 6 Theater (Moline) has closed as of 5/27/14
Eastern Iowa Community Colleges is offering some cool camps this summer. To register, visit eicc.edu/summercamp or call 888-336-3907.
Health Careers Camp (Class #141953) 9-3 PM, for 8th/9th graders. Held at Scott Community College. Cost $160
Wilderness Camp (Class #141951) 9-3 PM, for kids 7-10 years old. Held at Nahant Marsh Ed Center. Cost $160
College Connection Camp (Class #141956) 9-noon, for 7th/8th graders. Held at Clinton Community College. FREE
College Connection Camp (Class #141955) at Muscatine Community College (all info same as above)
Zombie STEM Camp (Class #141950) 9-3 PM, for kids 11-14 years old. Held at Midwest Public Safety Training Center. Cost $160
Wilderness Camp (Class #141951) 9-3 PM, for kids 7-10 years old. Held at Nahant Marsh Ed Center. Cost $160
July 30-August 1: Culinary Skills Camp (Class #142051) 9-3 PM, for 11th/12th graders. Held at Scott. Cost $160
Moms love to see their kids reading and kids love to get new books--the Summer Reading Programs are great for both! In addition to encouraging our kiddos (and us!) to read, the local libraries have a ton of fun activities planned for the summer. Here's the rundown of what to expect this summer from our local libraries....
Once again the BPL will have a summer program! Stop by the library to sign up you and your children. Their prizes are a secret, so you'll have to get reading to find out what you'll win. To see the entire list of activities, visit bettendorflibrary.com/youth-services
All three libraries are working together on this program. Stop into any one of the Davenport libraries (Fairmount, Main, Eastern Avenue) and get signed up. You'll receive a coupon for a FREE book from the Friends' Book Stores, a cloth library bag at the half-way mark, and a new FREE book when you finish. Once you're done, you get entered into the grand prize drawings for prizes like a Wii, iPod Shuffle, Color Nook, Fuhu Tablet, $50 iTunes gift card, or a Kindle Paperwhite. Visit www.davenportlibrary.com for more information.
The Moline library allows you to sign up for their reading program online. Kids in 1-6th grade can sign up at www.molinelibrary.com. You'll record your minutes online and the library will notify you when it's time to come pick up your prize. How easy is that?
The RI library is kicking off their program this Saturday with a carnival. To kick off summer in a big way, the Rock Island Library will host the Paws to Read Summer Reading Carnival from noon to 3:00 pm on Saturday, June 7. Activities include summer reading registration and prizes, hourly prize drawings, a children's bounce house, games, mascot visits, free face painting, magic, chalk art, and special presentations, including a K-9 police demo, and a costumed pet parade. For more information, visit rockislandlibrary.org
If you have child with special needs or disabilities, you should be familiar with Camp Hand-in-Hand. Your special needs children can spend a week at Camp Abe Lincoln with caregivers who understand their needs. They will get the opportunity to swim, ride horses, play games, do arts and crafts...and most of all have a terrific week of "typical kid" camp fun.
If you have an 8-18 year old who likes Legos, Robots, or both, the Bettendorf Library has a program for you! Build-A-Bot! Lego Robotics Club will meet June 16th from 2-4, and July 7 and 21st from 2-4. Registration IS required for this program. You can register online HERE
Here's a list of Quad City and surrounding community county fairs with their dates and links to their websites, courtesy of our friends at KWQC.
Cedar July 9, July 10, July 11, July 12, July 13
Clinton July 16, July 17, July 18, July 19, July 20
Des Moines July 21, July 22, July 23, July 24, July 25, July 26, July 27, July 28, July 29
Henry July 15, July 16, July 17, July 18, July 19, July 20, July 21
Jackson July 23, July 24, July 25, July 26, July 27
Lee July 9, July 10, July 11, July 12, July 13
Louisa July 20, July 21, July 22, July 23, July 24, July 25, July 26
Muscatine July 16, July 17, July 18, July 19, July 20
Scott (Mississippi Valley) July 29, July 30, July 31, Aug 1, Aug 2, Aug 3
Bureau August 20, August 21, August 22, August 23, August 24
Carroll August 5, August 6, August 7, August 8, August 9
Henderson July 13, July 14, July 15, July 16, July 17, July 18, July 19
Henry June 24, June 25, June 26, June 27, June 28, June 29
Jo Daviess July 31, August 1, August 2, August 3
Knox July 16, July 17, July 18, July 19
Lee July 24, July 25, July 26, July 27
Mercer July 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Rock Island June 17, June 18, June 19, June 20, June 21
Stark August 26, August 27, August 28, August 29, August 30, August 31, September 1
Warren July 23, July 24, July 25, July 26
Whiteside August 12, August 13, August 14, August 15, August 16
Welcome to the NEW home of the FYIQuad Cities blog! Now it's all in one convenient location.
Same great site, all new look!