Kids’ Almanac (July 4-11)

“Stories in Stone” at Storm King Art Center

Our daughter asked the other day if the Earth is still making rocks. That feels so poetic to me. Sure, we hear about erosion all the time; but creating rocks? After some fascinating conversations with local Earth Science and Geology experts, I’m actually excited about the stories of rock formation – this way of measuring history in terms of millions of years instead of tiny old centuries.

This Sunday, July 7 at 1 p.m., you’ll have the chance to corner some experts on this topic yourself, at Storm King Art Center’s Children and Families event: “Stories in Stone.” Hudson Highland Nature Museum educators and Storm King staff will explore the geological and sculptural wonders of stone. Families with small children are asked to plan on 30 minutes of walking time to Museum Hill.

This event is included in the price of admission to Storm King, which is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors 65 years and older, $8 for students and free for children under 5 and members. Storm King is located at 1 Museum Road in New Windsor. For more information, call (845) 534-3115 or visit



July Jamboree at Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary

Whether you’ve seen or heard the buzz about Forks over Knives and are moved to try a plant-based diet, or your son became a vegetarian out of the blue like ours, or you dig festivals with awesome live music, or you simply adore animals, or you need some cheering up after learning about the end of the Metropolitan Museum’s colorful metal buttons – whatever your reasons, head over to the July Jamboree at the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary (WFAS) this weekend. This event holds appeal for all ages: live performances by musicians Tracy Bonham, Uncle Rock and Seth Davis; bouncy tent, crafts, storytelling, hula-hooping and face painting; a chance to see some of the 200 resident animals; mouthwatering vegan fare and more.

The festival takes place on Saturday, July 6 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission costs $10 for adults, $5 for children, free for WFAS members and children under 3. Despite the fact that Bonny’s lists Saturday, July 6 as International Kissing Day, you are reminded that the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary is not a petting zoo where animals are considered entertainment – but you might get some pig belly-rubs in, or some sheep-snuggling.

The Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary is located at 35 Van Wagner Road in Willow. For more information, call (845) 679-5955 or visit


Wildlife Show at Unison in New Paltz

Want to see more animals? Head over to the Unison Arts Center on Sunday, July 7 at 3 p.m. for the Wildlife Show with Andrew Simmons. See Simmons’ live bear cub and birds of prey while learning all about their habits and ways to support the environments in which they live. Tickets cost $14 for adults, $10 for members and $7 for children, but you can get a $2 discount by ordering in advance.

Unison is located at 68 Mountain Rest Road in New Paltz. For tickets or more information, call (845) 255-1559 or visit To learn more about the show, visit


“Animals around the World” talk in Gardiner

What’s that? More animals, you say? You got it! Stop over at the Gardiner Library on Wednesday, July 10 at 4 p.m. for “Here, There & Everywhere: Animals around the World,” presented by Jan Berlin of the Everything Animals Resource Center. Berlin’s talks are always interesting, engaging, fun and interactive. I always learn something from her! Intended for audiences ages 6 and up, this program is free and open to the public.

The Gardiner Library is located at 133 Farmers’ Turnpike in Gardiner. For more information, call (845) 255-1255 or visit To learn more about the presenter, visit


Intro to Geocaching in Tivoli

Homer Simpson, who thinks Gorilla Pant Suit when he hears GPS, is the most downloaded character voice for GPS navigation. Global Positioning Systems, or GPS, can be very handy for finding your destination, but have you gotten the chance to use it for geocaching yet? Are you interested in this fun modern-day treasure hunt, but haven’t got the first idea as to where to start? Was your curiosity piqued when you heard that some of those plastic doodads under the couch and random trinkets in the junk drawer are like geocache gold during trade-in time?

Our family enjoys geocaching locally, as well as on long trips or while visiting new places. Searching for these secret boxes helps break up monotonous car rides, and after you acquire your means of GPS, costs practically nothing to do.

On Thursday, June 11 from 4 to 5 p.m., join the Tivoli Library for its free “Intro to Geocaching” workshop. Participants will learn how GPS works and how it’s used in geocaching; then participants will help hide the Library’s geocache. Dress for outdoor weather during this all-ages activity, and bring a small item to place in the cache.

The Tivoli Library is located at 86 Broadway in Tivoli. For more information, call (845) 757-3771 or visit To learn more about geocaching, visit


Dutchess County Balloon Festival

The Dutchess County Balloon Festival is a dramatic, colorful event that takes place this year from Friday, July 5 to Sunday, July 7 at various launch points in Dutchess County. The Festival kicks off at 5 p.m. at Waryas Park in Poughkeepsie. It’s fun to watch the balloons launch, and it’s a great time to get dramatic, colorful photographs. Some lucky ducks can even take a ride through Blue Sky Balloons.

Check the launch and festivities schedule, including the new Freedom 5K, at this link that I’ve included here, and enjoy! For more information, call the balloon hotline at (845) 505-HOTT (4688) or visit


Erica Chase-Salerno sings “Yankee Doodle” in New Paltz with her husband Mike and their two children: the inspirations behind She can be reached at