Kids’ Almanac: Write a novel in a month, groom & ride a horse, build the Millennium Falcon out of LEGOs

(Photo by Adam Purves)

(Photo by Adam Purves)

“November comes and November goes, with the last red berries and the first white snows.”
– Clyde Watson


NaNoWriMo Tuesday gatherings in Tivoli

Do you know any teens who have a novel inside of them that’s waiting to be written? November is the month of NaNoWriMo, a challenge to writers to produce a book. It’s easy and free to register: Just visit and choose your word count.

To support young writers on this journey, the Tivoli Free Library invites middle-schoolers from the sixth to eighth grades to the weekly Write-In at the Enchanted Café every Tuesday during November from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. for company while you write. No registration is needed; just drop in.


The Enchanted Café is located at 7484 South Broadway in Red Hook. For more information, call the Tivoli Free Library at (845) 757-3771 or visit



Bond: A Soldier and His Dog at Bridge Street Theatre in Catskill

Just in time for Veterans’ Day, the Bridge Street Theatre presents Bond: A Soldier and His Dog from November 6 to 15. The show is based on Logan Black’s experiences as a specialized search dog handler and the year that he spent with canine Diego. Logan and Diego perform the show themselves at this East Coast premiere. Tickets cost $15 general admission and $10 for seniors age 65 and up, students and veterans.

The Bridge Street Theatre is located at 44 West Bridge Street in Catskill. For tickets or more information, call (518) 943-3818 or visit


Portfolio Day for young artists at Wallace Center in Hyde Park

Are your high school artists planning to attend art school for college and looking for feedback on their work? Then clear your calendar for Portfolio Day this Friday, November 6 from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Henry A. Wallace Center at the FDR Presidential Library and Home. High school students, teachers and parents are welcome to attend this event, which is free and open to the public. Students are requested to bring 15 to 20 pieces of original, recent work, about which they’ll receive immediate feedback, while also determining which art schools might be the best fit.

The FDR Presidential Library and Home are located at 4097 Albany Post Road (Route 9) in Hyde Park. For more information, call the Mill Street Loft at (845) 471-7477 or visit


TMI Project celebrates fifth anniversary in Kingston

Looking for a date night or an outing with your college-aged kids? The TMI Project’s fifth-anniversary event takes place on Friday, November 6 at 8 p.m.; the doors open at 7:30 p.m. TMI features true storytelling by the actual people who experienced it, and I always find it to be an emotionally fulfilling evening packed with universal truths, tears and laughter. The evening includes words from Carla Goldstein, CEO of the Omega Institute and co-founder of the Women’s Leadership Center, as well as Joanne Sandler, former deputy executive director of UNIFEM, and wraps with a dance party with deejay Ali Gruber.

This fifth-anniversary event is located at the new offices of TMI: 721 Broadway in Kingston. Tickets cost $20 in advance, $25 at the door. For tickets or more information, visit



Airborne Jugglers at Museum of Firefighting in Hudson

You haven’t seen fire safety presentations quite like this before! On Saturday, November 7 at 10:30 a.m., the FASNY (Firemen’s Association of the State of New York) Museum of Firefighting presents the Airborne Jugglers. Duo Joe Murray and Susan Kirby engage audiences of all ages while educating them about fire safety, with plenty of audience interaction and skills to wow you. Admission is free on this Super Saturday for residents of Columbia County and Museum members; regular admission costs $7 for adults, $5 for children ages 3 and up, $20 family rate for two adults and two children and free for children under 3 years.

The FASNY Museum of Firefighting is located at 117 Harry Howard Avenue in Hudson. For more information, call (518) 822-1875 or visit


Guided stargazing at Woodstock’s Thorn Preserve

One perq of accepting the post-Daylight Saving Time hastened darkness is a chance to gaze at the night sky earlier than before. How about a guided tour of the heavens? On Saturday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the Thorn Preserve, join professor Steven Schimmrich to learn more about stars, constellations, bright planets, shooting stars and meteor showers, along with a chance to use telescopes. This program is free and open to the public of all ages, and attendees are requested to bring a flashlight. Hot cider will be served.

The Thorn Preserve is located at 55 John Joy Road in Woodstock. For more information or updates in case of cloudy skies, call (845) 679-6481 or visit


4-H Horse Fun Day at Wallkill’s Northwind Horse Farm

Round up your favorite 5-to-9-year-old cowpokes, because 4-H Horse Fun Day is gearing up at the Northwind Horse Farm for this Saturday, November 7 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The $10 admission fee includes a drink and snack, horse grooming, lead-line riding and a variety of hands-on activity stations.

The Northwind Horse Farm is located at 2496 Bruynswick Road in Wallkill. For more information or to register, call (845) 344-1234 or visit


Gardiner Library hosts LEGO Star Wars Workshop

If your 5-to-12-year-old spends hours on LEGO creations, how about getting together with like-minded builders? On Saturday, November 7 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Snapology hosts a LEGO Star Wars/Architectural Workshop at the Gardiner Library. Participants can build their own Star Wars spaceship or build a LEGO city that can withstand an earthquake. The cost is $20 and up per person, and attendees should bring a snack.

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


Runaway Bunny & Goodnight Moon at the Bardavon

“If you run away, I will run after you. For you are my little bunny.” Recognize that line from The Runaway Bunny? Some of us have read these words countless times during storytime before bed. Now you can give your family the chance to see powerful visuals as part of the storytelling of The Runaway Bunny and Goodnight Moon, with a performance by the Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia at the Bardavon Opera House. This one-hour event takes place on Saturday, November 7 from 11 a.m. to 12 noon, at a cost of $10 per person.

The Bardavon is located at 35 Market Street in Poughkeepsie. For tickets or more information, call (845) 473-2072 or visit


19th-Century Thanksgiving Tasting at Museum Village

Whether your kids are history buffs or they have no interest, Museum Village has an enticing, historic Thanksgiving event that’s sure to engage kids of all ages and interests: the annual traditional 19th-Century Thanksgiving Tasting! On Saturday and Sunday, November 7 and 8 from 12 noon to 4 p.m., visitors can taste some delicious Civil War-era trimmings while watching the foods get prepared in an open-hearth flame. Games and crafts will be available, and at 2 p.m., the third annual Spare the Turkey ceremony takes place.

Museum Village is located at 1010 Route 17M in Monroe. For more information, call (845) 782-8248 or visit


Songs for Children with Tom Hanford

Singing, mouth harp, puppets…they can only mean one thing: Songs for Children with Tom Hanford! On Saturday, November 7 from 1 to 2 p.m. at the NorthEast-Millerton Library, Tom Hanford presents an interactive show with songs for young people, group singing and a chance to roleplay with puppets made by puppeteer Grian MacGregor and colorful masks created by Hanford.

The NorthEast-Millerton Library is located at 75 Main Street in Millerton. For more information, call (518) 789-3340 or visit To learn more about the musician, visit



Owen King reads from Intro to Alien Invasion in New Paltz

Wondering about a gift for your college-aged son or daughter, or looking for a fast and fun read for yourself? Check out Intro to Alien Invasion by local author Owen King and Mark Jude Poirier, illustrated by Nancy Ahn. This new novel will make you laugh throughout the story’s adventures, drawing from a mix of genres, including science fiction, indie comics, B-movies and campus culture. Come see for yourself and pick up a copy at the Intro to Alien Invasion reading taking place this Sunday, November 8 at 4 p.m. at the Elting Memorial Library in downtown New Paltz.

The Elting Memorial is located at 93 Main Street in New Paltz. For more information, call (845) 255-8300 or visit To learn more about the graphic novel, visit


Learning disabilities workshop at Rhinebeck’s Starr Library

Have a child with learning disabilities? Tired of getting negative phone calls about your child’s schoolday? Then maybe it’s time for new strategies and understanding. On Sunday, November 8 at 3 p.m. at the Starr Library, join learning specialist Helen Levine for “No Easy Answers: The Challenges of Adolescents with Learning Disabilities.” Levine will share from her 45 years in the field with experiences, knowledge and advice for those who work and/or live with adolescents with learning challenges.

The Starr Library is located at 68 West Market Street in Rhinebeck. For more information or to register for the discussion, call (845) 876-4030 or visit


Railroad Exposition at Mid-Hudson Civic Center

Got a kid who can’t get enough of engines or locomotives? Then you’ll want to head over to this weekend’s 44th annual Railroad Exposition! On Sunday, November 8 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center, local historic site Hyde Park Station presents over 20,000 feet of model trains, exhibits and more at this family-friendly event. Admission costs only $5, and kids under age 12 get in for $2.

The Mid-Hudson Civic Center is located at 14 Civic Center Plaza in Poughkeepsie. For more information, call (845) 297-0901 or visit



Lecture at Vassar on mental disabilities in college

How might mental disabilities affect academic culture in colleges? What are the benefits of a more accessible academic world in higher education? These are some of the topics covered in disability studies expert Margaret Price’s lecture at Vassar College this Thursday, November 12 at 5:30 p.m. in Taylor Hall, Room 203: “Cripping College: Mental Disabilities and Inclusivity in the 21st Century.” This lecture is free and open to the public.

Vassar College is located at 124 Raymond Avenue in Poughkeepsie. For more information, call (845) 437-5370 or visit


Erica Chase-Salerno is appreciating her many new handmade hats this season, thank you! She lives in New Paltz with her husband, Mike, and their two children: the inspirations behind She can be reached at