Kids’ Almanac (8/30-9/6)


Last free entry day this season at Storm King Art Center

Outdoors. Large-scale art. Free. This is exactly the field trip you want to share with your family because it’s such a great spot, and there are always new works to explore. I’m talking about the Storm King Art Center, which is hosting its last free admission day of the season this Thursday, August 30 (happens annually the last Thursdays of June, July and August). Can’t make it on Thursday? Then pay the admission for this very worthy experience and reserve Sunday, September 2 at 1 p.m. for its Children and Families program: “Kids on Climate Change.” All ages are welcome to meet in the south fields to create art as inspired by “Indicators: Artists on Climate Change.”

Regular entry to Storm King costs $18 for adults, $15 for seniors, $8 for children aged 5 to 18 years and students with ID, and is free for children aged 4 and under and members. Hours those two days are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The Storm King Art Center is located at 1 Museum Road in New Windsor. For more information, call (845) 534-3115 or visit



Mohonk Preserve Butterfly Walk

“My bedside light turned into a butterfly this morning. Last time I buy a cheap larva lamp.”

Butterflies are soon on the move, but before these winged wonders fly away, enjoy some together time with them. This Friday, August 31 from 1:30 to 3 p.m., meet up for a Butterfly Walk at Spring Farm. You’ll wander through fields, meadows and woodlands, where the guide will point out butterfly and plant identification, as well as share about butterfly conservation needs and survival strategies. And it’s free! (You may have a $12 entry fee if you’re not a member.)

Spring Farm is located along Upper 27 Knolls Road in High Falls. For more information, call (845) 255-0919 or visit

No Theme Performance Festival at Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center

Dance! Theater! Comedy! Visual art! Live music! It’s like a Donald Glover gala! Check out the fifth annual No Theme Performance Festival taking place all weekend long. Beginning at 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, August 31 and September 1, and 3 p.m. on Sunday, September 2, see more than 20 artists show new work, all at the Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center. Pay $20 per evening or $40 for the entire weekend; students and seniors pay $15 per evening or $35 for the weekend. 

The Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center is located at 9 Vassar Street in Poughkeepsie. For more information, call (845) 452-7870 or visit


Family Day at Catskill Interpretive Center

If we love something, we take care of it, right? So it makes sense to encourage children to spend time in nature (adults, too!), and the Maurice D. Hinchey Catskill Interpretive Center is doing just that. Head over for Family Day this Saturday, September 1 between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. and get to know our Catskills through a Story Laurie performance, crafts like maskmaking with Jonathan Schork, a hands-on science show, guided walks, creation stations and even a Yum Yum Noodle Bar food truck so you can stay for lunch (or bring your own). Family Day is free and open to the public of all ages.

The Catskill Interpretive Center is located at 5096 Route 28 in Mount Tremper. For more information, call (845) 688-3369 or visit

Community Day Picnic at Poughkeepsie’s Mansion Square

We can’t spell “community” without “U” – or “I,” for that matter. So make plans to enjoy time together with area folks at the annual Community Day Picnic this Saturday, September 1 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Earline Patrice Park (Mansion Square). Highlights include food and activities, plus a distribution of clothing and school supplies, and it’s free! Earline Patrice Park is located on North Clinton Street in Poughkeepsie.

For more information, to volunteer or to donate, contact Yvonne Flowers at (845) 521-1569, Frankie Flowers at or Facebook, Ralphynne Vance at (845) 471-7565 or Alyssa Bowers at or Facebook (clothing or school supply donations); or visit

Catskill Mountain Railroad presents Great Train Robbery

Move over, Jesse James and Butch Cassidy: There’s a new gang in town, and I hear they’re pretty tough! Give your cowgirls and cowboys the thrill of a live encounter with robbers while riding an actual old-timey train, inspired by the movie! This Saturday, September 1 at noon, 2 and 4 p.m., join the Great Train Robbery at the Catskill Mountain Railroad, including live music and games while awaiting the sheriff. All monies “robbed” support the SPCA. Tickets cost $18 for adults, $16 for seniors/military, $12 for children aged 2 to 12 years and are free for children under 2 seated in your lap.

The Catskill Mountain Railroad Westbrook Lane Station is located at 149 Aaron Court in Kingston. For tickets or more information, call (845) 332-4854 or visit

Storytelling and family tours at Olana

Back in the day, it used to be customary for children to be seen, not heard. But artist Frederic Church loved having his kids around, and I think he would be delighted to know about Olana’s terrific access to kids. On Saturday, September 1 from 10 to 11 a.m., the Olana State Historic Site offers storytelling and family tours. Offered periodically (the next one is Saturday, September 29), these experiences provide even the youngest participants a glimpse at gorgeous local history, both indoors and out. Online sales sell out quickly, so if you are making plans for the weekend and your kids are ages 5 and up, I suggest making your reservations ASAP. Family tours cost $2 for children, $5 for adults.

The Olana State Historic Site is located at 5720 State Route 9G in Hudson. For tickets or more information, call (518) 828-1872, extension 105, or visit

Iroquois Festival in Howes Cave

What’s so special about the Iroquois Indian Museum? Not just the fact that it is entirely about the Iroquois, but that it was created by Iroquois (Haudenosaunee) tribes themselves. This place embodies the Iroquois past and present, which I have to believe helps preserve their future.

Whether you’re new to the Iroquois Indian Museum or you have been before, all ages will have a terrific time at the annual Iroquois Festival taking place this Saturday and Sunday, September 1 and 2 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn about the rich culture from music, drumming, dancing and storytelling. See authentic Iroquois art; get a good look at a variety of native animals; all ages will enjoy the crafts; and enjoy sampling Native American cuisine from the Haudenosaunee food vendors. There are also 45 acres of surrounding land loaded with walking trails. Admission costs $5 to $10.

The Iroquois Indian Museum is located at 324 Caverns Road in Howes Cave. (Howe Caverns and Secret Caverns are right nearby, if you want to combine visits!) For more information, call (518) 296-8949 or visit


Greenport Town Park hosts Community United Soccer Day

Watching Mo Salah score an incredible 30 soccer goals for Liverpool, England this season is like seeing a Sonya Tayeh dance piece: a mastery of strength, precision and ease. As a Muslim, fans have even highlighted that aspect in their chants: “Mo Sa-lah lah lah lah, If he’s good enough for you, he’s good enough for me. If he scores another few, then I’ll be Muslim too…” This weekend, why not channel some of that uniting spirit that Magic Mo brings to the game, and to the world? He’s an international sensation, but sounds pretty grounded to me: “I spend my spare time with my family. And practicing my favorite sport – PlayStation.”

On Sunday, September 2 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., head over to Community United Soccer Day at Greenport Town Park. Enjoy soccer matches for all ages, pick-up futsal games (similar to 5×5 soccer), international foods and sack races. Greenport Town Park is located at 405 Joslen Boulevard in Hudson. To register a soccer team or for more information, contact or call (518) 821-8780. This event is hosted by the Columbia County Sanctuary Movement and Hudson Muslim Youth.

Erica Chase-Salerno is in a convergence of homegrown tomatoes, early HoneyCrisp apples and grieving Papa Bakum and Hilary Swann. She can be reached at