Kids’ Almanac (October 10-17)

Casting call for Ellenville-area youth performers

I heard about these auditions and wanted to pass along the information. The Vanaver Caravan Dance Group and the Arm-of-the-Sea Puppet Theater are teaming up for the show Into the Light taking place on December 8 at the Shadowland Theater. If you know any children from the towns of Rochester and Wawarsing between the ages of 9 and 16, interested candidates can participate in open auditions at the Ellenville Library and Museum on Saturday, October 12 at 1 p.m. Four follow-up workshops with a dance instructor will be provided for the performers on Wednesdays from October 30 to November 20 for a $10 charge, and families will receive two free tickets to attend Into the Light.

For more information or to register, call (845) 647-5530. To learn more about the Vanaver Caravan, visit


Wild West Weekend in Phoenicia

Yeehaw! You’re going to want to rustle up your cowpokes for some fun up in Phoenicia, because it’s Wild West Weekend for the whole family! And it’s all for a good cause: supporting the Phoenicia Library and the STS Playhouse. Dress in Western wear, take pictures in the photo booth, play horseshoes, watch old Western movies, roast marshmallows, listen to the cowboy/cowgirl poetry slam emceed by organizer Holly George Warren, kick up yer heels at the barn dance, tap your toes to Robert Burke Warren’s music and more!


Wild West Weekend takes place on Saturday and Sunday, October 12 and 13 in Phoenicia. For more information and a complete schedule of events, visit


Million Women Drummers at Ulster County Fairgrounds

Each one of these words holds tremendous power to me: Million. Women. Drummers. Global. Gathering. Put them all together, and you’ve got an incredible force of energy for peace and sustainability. On Sunday, October 13 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., bring the kids and stop by the Ulster County Fairgrounds for the Million Women Drummers and receive the emotional gifts of spending time in that soul cleansing and fortifying space.

The Ulster County Fairgrounds are located at 249 Libertyville Road in New Paltz. For more information, visit


Pumpkin Festival at Riverfront Park in Beacon

October means that it’s time for the Beacon Sloop Club’s annual Pumpkin Festival! On Sunday, October 13 from 12 noon to 5 p.m., rain or shine, head over to Riverfront Park on the river side of the Beacon Train Station for lots of fall fun! Pumpkins, pumpkin pie, cider and more are available for purchase, and the free activities include sail rides on the Hudson on the Woody Guthrie and entertainment on both the solar stage and the children’s stage. Bindlestick Bill will perform his juggling and magic show, and the legendary Pete Seeger will do some storytelling.

Admission to the event is free. For more information, call (845) 463-4660 or (845) 242-7822 or visit


Fall Festival at Forsyth Nature Center in Kingston

I love the Forsyth Nature Center’s annual Fall Festival because it is so community-minded, a terrific place to gather and is just a great time. In addition to visiting your favorite animals, there will be free face-painting and free crafting; activities include a corn maze, hayrides and more. A terrific lineup of entertainment including music and nature presentations fills two stages, and the bake sale and local vendors tables have a lot to offer. And have you gotten your raffle tickets yet? Try your luck at winning baskets of prizes with gift certificates and merchandise, including a new kayak!

There is free admission to the Fall Festival, and the hours are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Forsyth Park is located at 157 Lucas Avenue in Kingston. For more information or to donate baked goods or other merchandise, call (845) 339-3053 or visit See you there!


Info sessions on college prep for homeschooled kids at SUNY-Ulster

For homeschoolers with teens ready to explore college options, or parents of younger children looking to learn how best to prepare for these upcoming transitions during the early years, SUNY-Ulster has info sessions organized for homeschooled students: “SUNY-Ulster recognizes that each year there are many students who pursue a homeschool route who either participate in an Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP) with their school district or look to complete a GED. This information session will address important items and steps to help you enroll in college.”

The information sessions take place on: Wednesday, October 16 from 10 to 11 a.m.; Monday, November 4 from 1 to 2 p.m.; Thursday, January 30 from 10 to 11 a.m.; and Tuesday, March 4 from 3 to 4 p.m. To reserve your spot, choose your date and contact Dyana Warnock, coordinator of Admissions Services at SUNY-Ulster: (845) 688-1567 or To learn more about the college, visit