It’s a fabulous Friday, isn’t it? I would have slept in but for the howling southerly wind hammering at the AK Hacienda this morning and making my wind chimes sound obnoxiously loud, hence my 6 a.m. posting.
Summer vacation has arrived, so let’s cut right to the party, shall we? Fun Friday, as always, is brought to you by Alaska Center for Pediatrics, caring for kids since 1982. They are ready for all the summertime ills and spills, and have super information on their website about keeping kids healthy as we move into the warmer months.
On tap for this weekend:
FRIDAY: Bike to Work Day! Rustle up the kids, strap on the helmets and go biking to celebrate our 200+ miles of paved trail in Anchorage, and support the fabulous work of Bicycle Commuters of Anchorage. Prizes, snacks, and goody stations are scattered all around this fair city. Check out the Muni’s website for locations and details. Be sure to follow all the rules of the road, please. This is a great opportunity to polish up those skills of your seasoned riders and prep younger kids for what might be their first summer on two wheels.
Alaska Museum of Transportation and Industry: AK Kid has been asking to go to the “Transportation Museum” already, and once you visit this 6-acre mechanized mecca of everything that moves on wheels, rails, or via propellors, you’ll see why. Indoors and out, the museum focuses on machinery that built Alaska. Fire trucks, tractors, buses, helicopters, and an entire Alaska Railroad train are just some items ready for your kids’ hands-on inspection. Find the museum in Wasilla, up the Parks highway around MP 47. Look for the signs pointing you left.
SATURDAY: Wahooo! Farmers’ Markets are open for business, and one of our favs is the newish Spenard Farmers’ Market, operating from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. each and every Saturday, all summer long. Find Alaska-grown crops, live music, garden items, and fresh snacks for the whole fam. Last year the Spenard Roadhouse sold bacon-bourbon-carmel corn that just about knocked me off my feet, it was so yummy, so make tracks to the windmill parking lot in Spenard. You’ll be glad you did.
Eagle River Nature Center naturalist Beth Baker will lead your family on a tree-rific nature walk to show off the lovely forest environment of Alaska Saturday at 2 p.m. Great for scouts and other groups wanting to earn badges for environmental support, Trees 101 will also provide a chance to take home a wee seedling to plant. FREE class, $5 parking for non-members. How many tree varieties can you spot from your own yard? Get out there and tell me.
Homer’s own Nature Rocks! group is hosting a Mud Wallow afternoon at Cottonwood Horse Park from 1-3 p.m. in the cosmic community. Really, this is a very fun event for residents and visitors, and all are certainly made to feel welcome. Bring a change of clothes and a towel, and jump on in! Find the Cottonwood Horse Park and other Homer information HERE.
SUNDAY: Bored? Head out to Eagle River Nature Center and learn about Bore Tides! These naturally-occuring phenoms are just one unique aspect of Alaska, and our own Turnagain Arm provides such entertainment on a regular basis. Naturalist Liza Sanden will explain their origin, how to spot a bore tide, and when they are likely to be highest this year. FREE, $5 parking for non-members.
I’ve been hearing news from the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center in Portage that they have a bunch o’ babies for visitors to visit. Now that the landscape is a bit greener, AWCC is getting all spiffed up for a summer full of animal antics, and now is a super time to introduce kids to this year’s crop of critters. All animals at AWCC have been rescued from adverse situations, and staff will nurture their charges with as much care as a mother. They do a wonderful job, and a membership is worth considering. Remember to get out of your car and hike the property! These bears, moose, elk, and wood bison are best observed close-up.
Speaking of animals….Don’t forget to attend “Bear Safety for Families” at the Campbell Creek Science Center Wednesday, June 1 at 7 p.m. Sponsored by AKontheGO, CCSC, Bureau of Land Management, and Alaska Department of Fish and Game, this class will be an evening of education and experience. Learn intricacies of bear behavior, how we humans fit into the mix while recreating or living in bear country, why kids need to pay extra attention, and what to do should your family encounter a bear (near or far) while enjoying Alaska. Everyone with children should plan to attend, even if you’ve taken a bear aware class before. This class is suitable for parents, coaches, camp counselors, teachers, babysitters; anyone who works with kids and loves spending time outdoors. FREE class, groups should sign up by calling 267-1247.
Another Alaska summer has begun, enjoy it, and be sure to post your event on our calendar by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We want to hear from you!