Kids’ Almanac (Mar. 6-13)

The action at Bounce in Poughkeepsie

The action at Bounce in Poughkeepsie

“I decided that the most subversive, revolutionary thing I could do was to show up for my life and not be ashamed”
– Anne Lamott


Bounce in Poughkeepsie

From now on, whenever you need an idea about what to do with your kids, think Bounce, the new all-ages trampoline center in Poughkeepsie. The activity area is covered in trampolines, including inclined trampolines against the walls; two with basketball nets; and the section that got me hooked: the two different-age-level dodgeball courts. Buy a ticket for yourself in addition to your kids, so you can play dodgeball too; it’s that much fun.

The facility is spacious, clean, well-staffed and welcoming. Nature Station vending machines offer healthier snack and drink options, and the cash-only snack bar has concession-style fare, such as candy and frozen confections. There are a couple of foam block pits, one in a dedicated 6-and-under trampoline area; a handful of arcade games line the wall, and flat-screen televisions hang in the lounge area, including a monitor of the trampoline floor.


Guests jump barefoot or in non-slip socks for safety, and there are easy-access cubbies available for socks and shoes. Sessions end on the hour, regardless of when you start, so I suggest completing the waiver on the website ahead of time to avoid delays.

My daughter recommends that guests not slide down the ramps on bare knees (ouch). My son’s favorite part was playing dodgeball, “because it’s all on trampolines!” One young friend of ours loved building towers in the foam block pit and hurling himself into it for total destruction.

Check the website and Facebook page for updates on hours and special events, such as the Friday night Jump ‘n’ Glow. Bounce is located at 2 Neptune Road in Poughkeepsie. For rates and hours, call (845) 206-4555 or visit Our family had an absolute blast at Bounce and we can’t wait to go back. See you there!


Mummies in Albany

Did you know that you can see real mummies right in Albany? The Albany Institute of History and Art owns two of them, and they are currently featured in the museum’s “Mystery of the Albany Mummies” exhibit on display until June 8. I strongly recommend getting a guided tour if you can, because the history and connections among the pieces are fascinating. Check out the two interactive children’s areas in the mummy exhibit, which include making hieroglyphic rubbings, playing a traditional Egyptian game of Senet and wrapping a mock mummy, complete with special amulets. We spent all of our time in the mummy exhibit that day, but the museum houses an extensive art collection as well.

The Institute offers free admission on Thursday nights from 5 to 8 p.m., or head up to its free family program, “Night at the Museum,” on Friday, March 7 from 5 to 8 p.m. Activities include art, a mummy movie, storytelling, a scavenger hunt and refreshments. Regular admission to the Institute costs $10 for adults; $8 for seniors and students; $6 for children 6 or 12 years; and is free for members and children under 6.

The Albany Institute is located at 125 Washington Avenue in Albany. For more information, call (518) 463-4478 or visit


Agricultural scholarship

Could $8,000 make a difference in your high school senior’s life? The Dutchess County Agricultural Society (DCAS Inc.) is offering a scholarship to a New York State high school senior – preferably one who has participated in the Fairgrounds’ programs. For more information about this and other scholarships for high school seniors and college students, visit before May 7.


Saturday, March 8

Insider tours of Hyde Park mansions

I love behind-the-scenes tours of historic sites, giving you little nuggets about these special places that make them feel more alive and relatable. On Saturdays, March 8, April 12 and May 10, the Vanderbilt Mansion and the Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt are doing just that. The “Downstairs/Upstairs at the Vanderbilt Mansion” event is a 90-minute tour with servant roles assigned to the attendees, along with a glimpse of the fancy “Upstairs” life. Tours take place at 10 a.m., 12 noon and 2 p.m. at a cost of $10 per person. The Vanderbilt Mansion is located at 119 Vanderbilt Park Road in Hyde Park. For more information, call (845) 229-7770 or visit

“History Speaks” at the FDR Home gives participants an inside look at the way that the Roosevelt household operated, through the first-person costumed perspective of the butler, cook, maid and an FDR Secret Service agent. FDR tours take place at 10 and 11:30 a.m., 2:30 and 4 p.m. The $18 fee is good for entry into the Home and the Presidential Library for two days; ages 15 and under get in free. The FDR Home is located at 4097 Albany Post Road in Hyde Park. For more information, call (845) 229-6214 or visit


Free improv classes in Catskill

If you think Whose Line Is It Anyway? is the best show ever, or if Tina Fey’s “Yes, and…” passage in her book Bossypants changed your life, you might be an improv fan – and perhaps your teen is one, too. If so, check out Walt Batycki’s free comedy improv class offered for six weeks on Wednesdays from 4 to 6 p.m., or beginning this Saturday, March 8 from 2 to 4 p.m. Classes are open to youth ages 13 to 19 years and take place at the Catskill Community Center, located at 344 Main Street in Catskill. For more information or to register, call (518) 719-8244 or visit


Magic show in Rhinebeck

I think that magic shows are a perfect example of the promise of spring. Like spring, magic shows astound, amaze and delight me. Why not brighten up your wintry weekend with a visit to see Berger’s & Frank’s Magic Show at the Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck? This performance takes place on Saturday, March 8 at 11 a.m. Tickets cost $7 for children; $9 for adults and seniors.

The Center is located at 661 Route 308 in Rhinebeck. For tickets or more information, call (845) 876-3080 or visit