Kids’ Almanac (Feb. 6-13)

Local authors:

Mary Gianetto reads at Inquiring Mind in Saugerties

Giving children the chance to meet a published author is an opportunity to lift the words off the page and into their world. The child can not only relate to the characters, but also connect with the real person who created the work.

On Saturday, February 8 at 3 p.m., Mary Gianetto reads from her book Baggy’s Valentine Story at the Inquiring Mind bookstore, located at 200 Main Street in Saugerties. For more information, call (845) 246-5775 or visit To learn more about the author, visit



Winter Walk at Nyquist-Harcourt Wildlife Sanctuary in New Paltz

I truly value the natural features that make up our landscape and the critters that dwell here alongside us. Getting outside on the river or in the woods is a chance for kids and adults to have a relationship with the land that can be so grounding.


The John Burroughs Natural History Society hosts the Nyquist-Harcourt Wildlife Sanctuary Winter Walk in New Paltz this Sunday, February 9 at 8 a.m.: “We will walk or snowshoe (depending on snow depth) through Harcourt Sanctuary, along the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail and possibly other areas in and around New Paltz. We will look for winter birds and animal tracks and sign. The walk will not be focused on particular target species, but rather general study and enjoyment of nature in winter. Meet at the municipal parking lot on Huguenot Street just east of the Wallkill River at 8 a.m.”

For more information, contact or visit


Hudson River EagleFest along Hudson River

Seen any eagles yet? This might be your weekend. On Saturday, February 8 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Teatown Reservation hosts the tenth annual Hudson River EagleFest at multiple eagle-watching locations along the Hudson River. The day includes presentations, children’s activities and more. Pre-sale tickets are available at a discounted rate of $10 for adults, $8 for children ages 5 to 13 and free for children age 4 and under. Day-of tickets cost $15 for adults and $10 for children. Bus tours are available for $25.

For more information, visit


Cultural events:

Rural & Migrant Ministry’s Youth Art Group exhibit in Newburgh

While we may all have ties here in the Hudson Valley, we may not be aware of all of the issues and concerns experienced by others within our community. I like to highlight events that celebrate aspects of who we are, as well as to shine a light on parts that we may not know about. For example, the Youth Art Group of Rural and Migrant Ministry presents its art exhibit reception on Friday, February 7 from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. The event takes place at the Newburgh Free Library, located at 124 Grand Street in Newburgh.

The Youth Arts Groups from Rural and Migrant Ministry are exhibiting four art pieces with the themes of: Dream Act and separation of families due to immigration. These are two important themes for the Youth Arts Group, because some of our artists are facing these challenges themselves. For more information, call (845) 563-3600 or visit


Youth enrichment:

Babysitting course at Northern Dutchess Hospital in Rhinebeck

I always appreciate seeing classes offered to youth to help develop valuable life skills, and try to include them when I can. This Saturday, February 9, Northern Dutchess Hospital offers a babysitting course for individuals ages 13 through adult, including parents and grandparents. “The course covers how to diaper properly, prevent choking, perform CPR, reduce the risk of SIDS, properly bandage a wound, handle emergencies in the home and ensure a child’s surroundings are safe.”

The cost of the course is $45 and results in a two-year certification card from the American Safety and Health Institute. Northern Dutchess Hospital is located at 6511 Springbrook Avenue in Rhinebeck. For more information or to register, call (845) 475-9742.



Breastmilk documentary screening in Rosendale

When I find something of interest to parents that might be informative, entertaining or helpful to family life in some way, I like to include it. This week, I’d like to draw your attention to a fundraising screening of the groundbreaking documentary Breastmilk, co-produced by filmmaker and actress Ricki Lake. The film will be shown on Saturday, February 8 at 3 p.m. at the Rosendale Theatre on Main Street. Proceeds from this event benefit the Mid-Hudson Lactation Consortium and the Breastfeeding Initiative of Ulster County. Tickets cost $15 per person, preregistered (or 2 for $25); $20 at the door. Here is the link to the trailer:

In addition to the screening of the movie, photographer Kristine Palmer will be available to take a professional photo of you and your loved ones, just in time for Valentine’s Day, beginning at 1 p.m. A $25 donation will provide you with a ten-minute photo shoot, and the opportunity to choose the three best pictures. To schedule your photo shoot appointment, you must call (518) 742-9638 or send an e-mail to

Lively discussion will immediately follow the film with invited panelists Connie Kieltyka, LM, CNM, CLC, Olivebridge Midwifery, vice president, Breastfeeding Initiative of Ulster County; Stephanie Sosnowski, IBCLC, deputy director at Maternal-Infant Services Network, coordinator, Mid-Hudson Lactation Consortium Donna Bruschi, IBCLC, LLLL, owner, New Baby, New Paltz, president, Breastfeeding Initiative of Ulster County; and Liz Fernandez, CBC (CBI), CD (DONA), LMSW, Empowered Mother Counseling.

Register online at


Charitable giving:

Kids’ Canstruction at Poughkeepsie Galleria

At different times in our lives, we may find ourselves on the giving or receiving end of community support. I believe that if we all give a little, it can add up to a lot and make a real difference to area families – especially when we involve our kids, such as this weekend’s Kids’ Canstruction 2014. Head over to the Poughkeepsie Galleria by Friday, February 7 to get a glimpse of area school groups’ art sculptures made entirely from canned goods. After the event, the food will be donated to Food Bank of the Hudson Valley. Last year 5,975 pounds of food were collected.

The Poughkeepsie Galleria is located at 2001 South Road in Poughkeepsie. For more information, visit

Erica Chase-Salerno thanks Pete and Toshi Seeger for making this world a better place. Erica lives in New Paltz with her husband Mike and their two children: the inspirations behind She can be reached at

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  1. Flowers of the States

    […] Kids' Almanac (Feb. 6-13) A Valentine Craft Workshop with cards, paper flowers, heart crafts, cookie-decorating plus more, free for youngsters of all ages, is available about Friday, February 7 at 4 p.m. at the Elting Memorial Library at 93 Main Street inside New Paltz. For more … Read more about Almanac Weekly […]

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