Unique Summer Day Camps

camp

Summer vacation is in full swing. If you’re scavenging for things to keep your kids busy and considering enrolling them in a day camp, you’re in luck! We have a few unique and awesome camps that you may not have heard of yet.

LEGO CAMP 2015

Running from July 27 to July 31 at the London Waldorf School (7 Beaufort Street), this week-long, full-day block party is organized by the London Chess Promotions. Registration is $226 per child, which includes a Lego camp t-shirt. Students in grades 1-7 as of June 2015 are welcome.

STEM CAMP

Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, this is the place for the future! With daily activities, inspirational guests, and scientists from leading Canadian colleges and universities, your child will learn, grow and create. Sessions run weekly throughout the summer, but many weeks and locations are already sold out. Registration is $200 per week per child, open to children 5 to 13 years old.

MOKSHIES-IN-THE-MAKING

Moksha Yoga London is hosting two weeks of half-day summer camps for your little yogini at Moksha Yoga West. Afternoons from July 13-17 and August 17-21, your 6-12 year olds can enjoy non-heated yoga practice, meditation, art, and fresh fruit breaks. Registration is $89 + tax per child.

INNOVATION CAMP LONDON

For one week, July 20-24 at the Richard Ivey Building, Western University, kids in grades six to eight will have an opportunity to become the next great inventor. Ivey will be collaborating with Future Design School, a Toronto agency, and Tech Alliance to help bring ideas to life through critical thinking, planning, and action. The full day camp is $375 per child.

@ THE BARRE

At The Barre is offering a one-week Healthy Me Summer Camp for kids ages 9-13, mornings from August 24-28.  Children will learn and participate in fitness and fitness fundamentals, nutrition and healthy food choices, and self-care. Registration is limited, $225 per child.

 

 

Summer Reading Club

summerreading

The TD Summer Reading Club is up and running at all London Public Libraries. This program is open to all school-aged children in London. Whether you have an avid reader at home or one that struggles to read, this program is perfect to prevent that summer slump and keep kids turning the pages in the sunshine.

SUMMER READING CLUB

The program runs at each public library from now until August 22, 2015. Kids must visit a library to register. Upon registration, they will receive a small package with stickers, a passport, and all of the things they’ll need to participate.

Once registered, start reading! Every book your kid reads can be recorded in their Read to Play notebook. Everything counts! Books, novels, short stories, magazines, comics, just start reading. Visit any library during regular library hours and tell a librarian about what you read to earn stamps. Once your card has five stamps, drop it in the ballot box for a chance to win some cool prizes! You may only collect five stamps per day, per kid. Spending too much time by the pool? Submit your book report online HERE to earn ballots as well.

Want to earn more stamps? Do a few of the activities presented: Draw a map of where you live, Visit a grocery store and make a list, Play a game or Do a puzzle.

BOOK SUGGESTIONS

Not sure where to get started? The library website is full of great ideas for books and reading material that kids love. Have a look HERE.

If you have younger kids, grab one of the bags-to-go at either the front of the library or the kids section. A selection of books have been put together by the librarians for when you don’t have time to search and are open to reading something new.

Most libraries also have a number of books on display for all ages, there are reviews online of things that other kids have read, and you can always spend some time at the library browsing the shelves. Set a goal with your kids or for yourself and get reading!

This Weekend in London

June

Welcome to Father’s Day weekend! We hope you didn’t forget or accidentally celebrate it a week early (why does it feel like it should’ve been last weekend?)! If you are looking for some last minute ways to celebrate, the city is here to deliver. So much going on, so much fun to be had. Get out and enjoy some of it!

BEER AND BBQ SHOW

Beer. BBQ. A match made in summer heaven. If you’re in agreement, head on over to the Western Fair District, Canada Building. There will be beer, wine, spirits, BBQ, food trucks, live entertainment, demonstrations, seminars, and so much more! This is a 19+ event – no babies, toddlers, children or underage teenagers will be allowed in the show.

SHANIA TWAIN

A new block of tickets has just been released! This is Shania’s big Rock This Country tour with all of her biggest hits and new music. She’s just finished her two year gig in Las Vegas and is now bringing the music across North America. She will be at the Budweiser Gardens for two shows – Friday, June 19 and Saturday, June 20 at 7:30m.

NORTH BY NORTHWEST WAREHOUSE SALE

North by Northwest is having a huge sale at the Western Fair District Progress Building this weekend. All swimwear, clothing, footwear, outerwear, and accessories will be 30-70% off. For all of the dates and times, see the link above.

LONDON’S KIDS EXPO

The London’s Kids Expo is this weekend in Victoria Park. This event has free admission! There will be food vendors, exhibits, crafts, live performances, and so much fun! There will also be carnival rides – a ride all day pass is only $20 for kids and adults ride with them for free!

LONDON MAJORS BASEBALL

What better way to celebrate Father’s Day than by spending it on the ball field with your favourite men. The London Majors are playing two games this weekend: Saturday at 7:35pm against Hamilton and Sunday at 1:05pm against Brantford. Play ball!

 

 

 

 

City Outdoor Pools

aquaticsA

June brings sunshine and with sunshine comes heat and with heat comes the desire to jump in a big pool! If you don’t have your own in your backyard or you just don’t feel like cleaning it, we have some good news! The City of London Aquatics department begins opening their outdoor pools this week for weekends.

BYRON POOL

1330 Brock Lane

Opening June 27

EAST LIONS POOL

1731 Churchill Ave

Opening June 6

Saturdays 11:30 to 2:30

Sundays 2:30 to 5:30pm

GIBBONS POOL

2B Grosvenor Street

Opening June 27

GLEN CAIRN POOL

370 Chippendale Cres

Opening June 27

NORTHEAST POOL

1050 Victoria Ave

Opening June 27

NORTHRIDGE POOL

15 McLean Drive

Opening June 27

OAKRIDGE POOL

825 Valetta Street

Opening June 13 

SOUTHCREST POOL

15 Hazelwood Ave

Opening June 27

SILVERWOOD POOL

36 Sycamore Street

Opening June 27

STRONACH POOL

1221 Sandford Street

Opening June 6

Saturdays 12:00 to 3:00pm

Sundays 3:00 to 6:00pm

THAMES POOL

15 Ridout Street

Opening June 6

Saturdays 1:30 to 4:30pm

Sundays 1:30 to 4:30pm

WESTMINSTER POOL

650 Osgoode Drive

Opening June 6

Saturdays 1:30 to 4:30pm

Sundays 1:30 to 4:30pm

This Weekend in London

June

The first weekend in June is loaded with excitement isn’t it? It’s the last month of school and the weather is out of excuses – it has to be warm! To celebrate, London has some incredible things going on.

ED SHEERAN

If you were one of the lucky ones to get tickets, tomorrow night, Friday, June 5 at the Bud Gardens is going to be amazing! The concert begins at 7:30pm with Foy Vance opening.

GATHERING ON THE GREEN

For 33 years, London’s oldest community festival has been taking place in Old South. Join the party on Saturday, June 6 on The Green (the field beside the old LDCSB building at 165 Elmwood Ave) for live entertainment, food, so many kids activities, and over 90 local craft and plant vendors. The event runs from 10:00am to 5:00pm. A full itinerary can be found HERE.

CITY OF LONDON OUTDOOR POOLS

Can you believe it’s time for the City of London’s outdoor pools to open? The spray pads have been open for a few weeks now, but as of this Saturday Thames Pool, Stronach Pool, East Lions Pool, and Westminster Pool are open for weekends only. For more information, see HERE.

LONDON MAJORS BASEBALL

The Majors are playing this Friday, June 5 at Labatt Park against Kitchener at 7:35pm. They are playing again this Sunday, June 7 at 1:05pm against Barrie. Tickets for both games are $8 for adults, $6 for kids and seniors.

LONDON FRINGE FESTIVAL

The London Fringe Festival is on now until June 13. Forty-five theatre companies will be performing 350 times along with 35 visual artists at nine venues over twelve days. See HERE for all of the shows on stage, HERE for the visual artists, and HERE for all of the ticket information.

 

London Cares Curbside Food Drive

curbside

The London Cares Curbside Food Drive begins this Friday, June 5th and runs until June 13. This is our chance as a community to pitch in and restock the London Food Bank with enough perishable food to get Londoners through the summer months. Though many are eager to give at the holiday times throughout the year, the warmer months when people get busy with vacations and having fun are a time when the shelves need to stay filled.

WAYS TO HELP

Make a donation at the curb: put a bag of non-perishable items beside your blue bins on your regularly scheduled recycling pick up date.

Place donations in the bins at the front of your neighbourhood grocery store.

Bring your donations to any Tim Horton’s locations during the donation period.

WHAT TO DONATE

Please check the expiration dates on all products before donating. Expired items cannot be used by the Food Bank. All donations are welcome, however these are the Food Banks most needed items:

  • Canned fruit
  • Canned vegetables
  • Canned meat & fish
  • Peanut butter
  • Baby food & formula
  • Pasta & pasta sauces
  • Rice
  • Special diet foods (gluten free, lactose free, etc.)

PERISHABLE ITEMS

Perishable items (fresh fruits, vegetables, and commercially baked goods) cannot be collected at any of the above locations, but can be brought directly to the London Food Bank at 926 Leathorne Street.

 

Water Restrictions

water

Beginning tomorrow, Monday, June 1, the water restriction for outdoor water use comes into effect and will last until the end of August. It is time to turn off the hoses and start paying attention to the calendar.

WATER RESTRICTION

To conserve water in London during the warmer months, Londoners are expected to only use their hoses on the dates that correspond to their house number.

  • on even calendar dates, only those with municipal addresses ending with 0, 2, 4, 6, and 8 may use external water
  • on odd calendar dates, only those with municipal addresses ending with 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9 may use external water

NEW:

There is currently a by-law awaiting approval that will remove water restrictions on weekends and statutory holidays this summer.

CONSERVING WATER

  • Your lawn only requires one inch of water per week to survive and thrive through the warmer months. Instead of turning on the sprinkler every other day, buy yourself a rain gauge which will measure the total amount of rain that your lawn gets every week, and then adjust your watering schedule accordingly.
  • The best time to water your lawn is early in the morning. Watering during the day will result in most of the water being evaporated.
  • Using mulch on your gardens will reduce the need for watering by keeping soil moist and preventing evaporation, as well as help with weeds.
  • Set your lawn mower to trim a little bit longer and allow the grass clippings to stay on your lawn. This will add nutrients back to the soil and act as a mulch for your grass which will prevent evaporation and keep the soil moist.
  • For more water conservation tips, see HERE.

 

This Weekend in London

may

Can you believe it’s already the last weekend in May? This month has flown by! Get out and enjoy the beautiful weekend in our gorgeous city!

GRICKLE GRASS FESTIVAL

The Grickle Grass Festival is this weekend! Saturday, May 30 during the day is for the family, but at night the London Children’s Museum becomes an adult-only night of entertainment and fun. Join Growing Chefs! Ontario, the London Children’s Museum and celebrate sustainable living.

LONDON MAJORS

The London Majors are on a winning streak! See if it can continue this Friday, May 29 at 7:35pm against Brantford at the historic Labatt Park.

HOBBY AND TOY CENTRAL GRAND OPENING

London’s newest toy store is opening beside Costco north and they’re having their grand opening event this Saturday, May 30. There will be over $1200 worth of raffle prizes! The store is open from 9:30-6:00pm with festivities beginning at 10:00am.

WORTLEY VILLAGE DOG WALK

Have a dog? Love dog people? Head on down to The Friendly Groomer for a beautiful walk through historic Wortley Village. This event is FREE, but donations in support of Montego Bay Animal Haven will happily be accepted. This takes place Sunday, May 31 at 11:00am.

ARTHUR FORD PUBLIC SCHOOL FIREBIRD SPRING FESTIVAL

Arthur Ford Public School is raising funds for new playground equipment and are hosting a day of food, fun and entertainment this Saturday, May 30! It begins at 2:00pm and goes until 8:00pm. Come for the live entertainment, the bike rodeo, decorated bike parade, and the family baseball game! The event is free, but donations are welcome!

NOR’WEST OPTIMIST GARAGE SALE & COMMUNITY SHOWCASE

This Saturday, May 30 from 8:00am to 1:00pm at the West Park Baptist Church, the Nor’West Optimists are holding a garage sale and community showcase. There will be a BBQ, face painting, raffle, and door prizes!

 

 

End of Year Gifts

endofyear

‘Tis the season, Mama’s! School is ending soon and often that means the end of other year-long programs as well. So, whether you have only a childcare provider or your list includes a teacher, ECE, EA, LST, bus driver, piano teacher, dance teacher, before/after school daycare provider(s), and more, we have some ideas for ways to thank them for all of their hard work. For simplicity’s sake, we’re going to just call them ‘teacher’, but substitute that for whomever you want to thank.

NOTHING

Remember that a gift is not expected. Not all children give their teachers gifts, no matter what Pinterest tells you. If this is going to cause you stress, step back and relax. Your child isn’t going to fail the grade if you don’t send a gift to school on the last day. It’s appreciated, for sure, but not required.

A CARD

Teachers unanimously say that a personalized card is always a treasured gift. Have your child make the card if they enjoy that sort of thing. Spend a few minutes to write a few lines about how much you appreciate the teacher and the work they do with your child and you are all set.

A DONATION IN LIEU OF A GIFT

As an alternative to giving them something tangible, you can chosen to give a donation somewhere in their name. For some ideas, see our Gift Guide on donations from Christmas. This is also a great option for group gifts – daycare, preschool or kindergarten classrooms with multiple teachers/ECE’s, school staff that you want to recognize (that secretarial team that makes the school amazing, for example). Note that at this late date, many places may not be able to mail you a card before school is out, so opt for a print out or email version.

BOOKS

Many teachers stock their classroom with their own books. Donate a book or two to your child’s classroom or teacher’s book shelf. Have your child pick their favourite story from home or something new by their favourite author.

GIFT CARDS

A common default is going to be the Tim’s card, but find out if they prefer Starbuck’s instead or if they are that rare breed that doesn’t like coffee or tea at all. Show your child a cup from either place and ask them if they’ve seen it in their teacher’s hand. Chances are they can identify which their teacher prefers. Indigo cards are also a great idea for restocking/updating the classrooms book shelves or letting them pick a holiday read. LCBO is also a popular choice, though you might want to make sure that this will be a welcome gift. A favourite lunch place, somewhere they can buy school supplies or any other place you’ve heard them mention are some other ideas.

GROUP GIFTS

You’ll have to act now, but all it takes is one parent slipping a letter into each child’s backpack. Invite interested parents to send $5 or $10 per teacher to school in an envelope addressed to your child. Collect the cash, buy a larger gift, sign the card from all the kids whose parents donated money. I guarantee a lot of the parents who receive that letter will happily let you do the shopping on their behalf. Get a gift card for a spa, a nice restaurant or anywhere else where your teacher might want to spend a bit more money over the summer holidays.

SCHOOL SUPPLIES

Does your child constantly run out of pencil crayons and glue? Odds are good that his/her teacher does as well. Stock them up with markers, erasers, pencils, glue sticks, and whatever else they might need for next year. For bonus points – buy them a pack of personalized labels (just check the shipping dates to make sure they’ll get here on time!). Make sure they aren’t retiring next year though! ;)   Just to reiterate – gifts are appreciated, but not mandatory. Really. And while teachers will be appreciative of whatever you do give them, first ask yourself whether they would want 20 of whatever you plan on giving them. Twenty notes of appreciation? Yes. Twenty beach-scented candles? A bit overpowering. Twenty bedazzled photo frames? Eek.

Boler Mountain

boler

All Londoners know that Boler Mountain is the place to be when the snow falls, but did you know that becomes even cooler once the snow melts? Boler Mountain has year-round fun with their Mountain Biking & Fitness Trails and Treetop Adventure Park.

MOUNTAIN BIKE AND FITNESS TRAILS

Boler Mountain has 120 acres of property that is open through the spring and summer for mountain biking and fitness walking. The bike trails have a beginner and an advanced loop and these loops have been used for many local, provincial, and national races! Your family can either purchase day passes or season passes for biking or walking trails, rent bikes and/or helmets, and take lessons. They even offer a weekly summer camp for eight weeks of the summer.

Trails are currently open Monday and Tuesday from 10:00am to 4:00pm, Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00am to dusk. For July and August their hours will be 9:00am to dusk daily.

TREETOP ADVENTURE PARK

Behind Boler Mountain’s ski trails are Carolinian forests which are home to Boler’s latest adventure in the treetops! For those who seek a little thrill and love the outdoors, the Treetop Adventure Park has a lot to offer! Zipline through the forest, cross the rope courses and swinging bridges, do the Tarzan swing and play on the pirate net! This place has something for everyone with Junior, Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced and a 1100ft Big Zip!

This is for kids roughly 8 years and older, up to adults. There are height and weight restrictions for both children and adults.

Open from now until November, you must make a reservation in advance for all individual and group visits. They are open Monday through Thursday for group bookings, Friday noon to dusk, Saturday, Sunday, and holidays from 9:00am to dusk. They also have birthday parties on their Junior Course!