Kids’ Almanac: April 13-21

Native American Wigwam

Can you believe it’s almost time? Wait, you haven’t heard? Well, clear your calendar and head over to the DuBois Fort lawn in New Paltz to view, or event help to build, a replica Native American wigwam! This exciting project honors the 340th anniversary of the 1677 land agreement between the Munsee Esopus sachems and the Huguenot Refugees, part of the region now called New Paltz, New York. Using locally sourced materials, the construction takes place through April 14, and activities related to the build are scheduled throughout the season, such as creating arrows, axes, buckskin, fire-making tools, and pottery. Viewing of the developing longhouse is free and open to the public of all ages. DuBois Fort is located on Huguenot Street in New Paltz. For more information, call (845) 255-1889 or visit


National Park Week

You have heard the expression, It’s a walk in the park!, right? So, really though, when was the last time you took your crew for a walk in the park? I’m talking national park! And I’m talking free! Because over the next two weekends, April 15 and 16, and April 22 and 23, National Park Week means free admission to national parks, including the parks closest to our area: Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site,; Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt,; Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site,; and Martin Van Buren National Historic Site, What might you and your crew do during National Park Week? Planning to check out the only National Historic Site dedicated to a First Lady? Jazzed to do some Vanderbilt geocaching? For more information, including a complete list of national parks, visit



Have you gotten your tickets for Annie, yet? Of course the sun will come out tomorrow, it’s Annie, after all! Come to a performance of our country’s favorite redhead and her shaggy sidekick at West Point’s Eisenhower Hall Theatre on Sunday, April 30 at 5 p.m. Tickets cost $44 and $42, depending on the section. Remember to supply everyone with identification and to allow extra time to pass through security. For directions to Eisenhower Hall Theatre, visit For tickets or more information, call (845) 938-4159 or visit To learn more about the production, visit



Writing for Teachers

I have leaned on this quote by Anne Lamott countless times over the decades: “E.L. Doctorow said once said that ‘Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can see only as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.’ You don’t have to see where you’re going, you don’t have to see your destination or everything you will pass along the way. You just have to see two or three feet ahead of you. This is right up there with the best advice on writing, or life, I have ever heard.” The next step is to write! But if you’re not there yet, how about just register? Registration is now open to your favorite adults for Teacher as Writer, Advocate, and Activist: A Spring Conference for Preschool, Elementary and Secondary Teachers on Saturday, April 22 from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Coykendall Science Building Auditorium at SUNY New Paltz. I am salivating over these terrific titles! The day begins with a keynote by Christine Dawson, Being Teacher-Writers: Creating, Growing, and Connecting, followed by her book signing at 10:30 a.m. of The Teacher-Writer: Creating Writing Groups for Personal and Professional Growth. The remaining time is dedicated to one of four breakout workshops: Composing Advocacy: Cultivating Our Strengths as Teachers and Writers, for teachers of grades K through 12; Teaching Revision as an Act of Violence & Agency, grades 6 through 12; (News)Letters Home: Building Relationships with Families, preschool through grade 3; and Got Something to Say? Exploring Authorship, Agency, and Activism through Zine-Making, grades 6 through 12. How much would you be willing to pay for a great program like this? Well, don’t worry about dipping into your spring break fund, because Teacher as Writer, Advocate, and Activist is totally free! All you have to do is simply register. Coykendall Science Building is located on the SUNY New Paltz campus at 1 Hawk Drive. For more information or to register, call (845) 257-2811 or visit


Friday, April 14

Red Sand Project at Vassar

Four ounces of red sand: check.
Info card: check.
Brochure: check.
Cotton bag: check.

What in the world could this list of supplies be? Introducing the Red Sand Project, happening  now throughout the globe, as well as right here in our area at the Collaboratory at Vassar College from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, April 14 and Saturday, April 15, thanks to the brilliant artist Molly Gochman. Using red sand as a symbol of human trafficking, each of us is challenged to witness the parallels between these granules, and loss experienced by individuals being trafficked: loss of stability; loss of emotional and financial freedom; loss of individuality; psychological duress; invisibility; and more. Not only can interested families be a part of this project at Vassar College this weekend, but free kits are available via mail so you can help spread awareness about human trafficking. The Collaboratory is located behind Rockefeller Hall at Vassar College, 124 Raymond Avenue in Poughkeepsie. For more information, call (845) 437-5370 or visit To learn more about the work or to order a free Red Sand Toolkit, visit


Natural Easter Egg Coloring

Didn’t you promise yourself to try natural egg dyeing this year? Don’t get caught with egg on your face! Just head over to Natural Easter Egg Coloring happening this Friday, April 14 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. at New Baby New Paltz. Led by Kimberlee Mule of Three Sisters Herbals, each child can decorate and keep 3 to 6 eggs with dyes created from food! Feel free to use the provided eggs or to bring your own, and remember to wear dye-friendly clothing. Natural Easter Egg Coloring costs $10 per child or $20 per family. New Baby New Paltz is located at 264 Main Street, ShopRite Plaza in New Paltz. For more information, call (845) 255-0624 or visit To learn more about the organizers, visit


Saturday, April 15

Spring Wildflowers at Joppenbergh Mountain

Here’s one way to get your spring wildflower fix AND a decent workout, all at the same time! I’m talking, of course, about Spring Wildflowers at Joppenbergh Mountain taking place this Saturday, April 15 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Will you discover some Red Trillium, Wild Columbine, Rue Anemone, or Violets? This path is a modest ascent but is steep and rocky in some places. The meeting spot is the parking area by Widow Kiln Park behind Rosendale Theatre located at 408 Main Street in Rosendale. This program is free and open to the public. For more information or to register, call (845) 255-6690, email, or visit


Free Community Seder/Celebration

Since the word seder means “order,” maybe you want to have your rituals and life in order this week! On Saturday, April 15 from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Adat Chaim Messianic Synagogue, you are invited to a free Community Seder/Celebration! All you have to do is make a reservation by April 12, arrive at the synagogue, and take part in a tradition that spans centuries. Adat Chaim Messianic Synagogue is located at 71 Old Kings Highway in Lake Katrine. For reservations or more information, call (845) 340-4344 or visit or


Opening Day at Museum Village

If your family considers history to be dull, lifeless, and boring, then you need a visit to Museum Village, forthwith! It’s opening day of the season for Museum Village, which means all of the buildings are staffed, open, and ready for you and your crew to make hands-on history, like dipping candles, using a printing press, viewing gemology, and much more! My kids love Museum Village, and do you know the best part? They adore the free-ranging chickens. We raised chickens for years, yet poultry suddenly   become irresistible if you have to actually pay to see them. Admission costs $12 for adults, $10 for seniors, $8 for children 4 through 12 years, and free for children 3 and under. Museum Village is located at 1010 State Route 17M in Monroe. For more information, call (845) 782-8248 or visit


Wednesday, April 19

Spanish conversation about land and food

Next week’s event may be called Comida y tierra, but I’m thinking along the lines of Amar y felicidad because I just love this idea so much! On Wednesday, April 19 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Pupuseria Mi Ranchito, interested participants are invited to join in a Spanish conversation about land and food issues. I will say that one way I navigate challenging issues is by drinking horchata. Native speakers or new language learners, all are welcome to build community and explore issues related to Kingston. Pupuseria Mi Ranchito is located at 614 Broadway in Kingston. For reservations or more information, call (845) 877-5263, email, or visit


Thursday, April 20

Healthy Ulster Spring at Mohonk Preserve

Are you looking for a way to catch up on your S-Town podcast? Easy, just hit the trails! Save time and money this week by registering for Healthy Ulster Spring at Mohonk Preserve. From Thursday, April 20 through Sunday, April 23, Ulster County Residents simply show proof of residency, and they can hike and explore Mohonk Preserve for free for an entire month! And you just might be able to catch up on your podcasts while you exercise and take in all that glorious nature. Healthy Ulster Spring passes are valid through May 21. Passes are available at the Preserve Visitor Center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, April 20 through Sunday, April 23, and at the Spring Farm Trailhead on Saturday, April 22 and Sunday, April 23. Mohonk Preserve Visitor Center is located at 3197 State Route 55 in Gardiner; Spring Farm is located along Upper 27 Knolls Road in High Falls. For more information, call (845) 255-0919 or visit


Friday, April 21

Playback’s Soup for the Activist Soul

How does Hudson River Playback Theatre keep coming up with such fascinating themes? I cannot wait to see what’s in store for Soup for the Activist Soul: Sustenance and Stories for Activists and Allies taking place next Friday, April 21 at 8 p.m. at Mountain Laurel Waldorf School. I imagine this special evening might be a place for folks to rest, release, enrage, laugh, cry, or maybe a mix of everything. Playback is live, improvised, and performed through stories from the audience, which the troupe retells in some sort of magical way because I am super hooked on it, and it always always always feels healing to me. Admission is by donation. Mountain Laurel Waldorf School is located at 16 South Chestnut Street in New Paltz. For more information, email or visit