Monday, August 17, 2015

Free Festivals and Free Fails

This time of year there are free festivals galore, and not just ones with free admission. This summer, we have enjoyed free snacks, face painting, giveaways like cups/pens/books/frisbees, performances (we just saw a fun live action Scooby Doo skit), bounce houses, crafts (my daughter and her friend made tambourines last night) and games. Sometimes, like pictured here, they worth braving the heat for. Maybe worth traveling for if you live in a small town that doesn't do much. 


Nickelodeon's Day of Play: Not everything turns out as well as organizations hope, but bless them for trying. Our town tried to pull together an event for Nickelodeon's World Wide Day of Play. They just made 4 little game stations in a park, including a slime making station.They even had a few prizes to give away. What they didn't expect was every daycare and camp and family in town to show up. The lines to the stations took hours to process. My husband took our daughter, and they stood in line at the slime making booth for an hour, and then the organizers said, "too bad, we're shutting down." Hey, it happens. You run out of stuff. You run out of time! A lot of kids didn't get to do anything or take home anything. Standing in a line for hours is the opposite of play, and enough to make your run back to your digital entertainment. My husband had the wits to take our kid to see "Pixels" and eat popcorn straight from the fail, which they both loved. 

Musher Seminar:This isn't a festival, but it was a freebie fail. I saw one of our local libraries was having a dog musher to speak so I signed up Super D and her friend. (They are both around 8.) I thought they would both like to see the dogs if nothing else. We get into the library's performance room and other than a couple of  librarians

 and one old man, there are no other attendees. I looked around for the musher, but she wasn't present. The girls looked eager to leave from the get go. But before we could sneak out, the librarian faced a camera on us, the musher appeared on a big screen via Skype, and we were trapped for hours. We were the only audience so I felt we couldn't leave. The musher was just talking directly to us, answering our questions and asking some. The girls kept begging to go, saying "This is boring," and "I'm hungry" a little too loudly. I hushed them, pleaded with them out the side of my mouth and after 2 and a half hours of  them squirming and stifling tears, I had to let them go. I didn't know if I should treat the seminar like a phone call, and say, "Sorry, I have to go now" to the musher. I opted to inch out of the screen, and then break into  run when I got close to the door. Because I'm cool like that.

They can't all be winners, but it's good for us to get out there and try. Even feeling real boredom and disappointment is better than being in a digital coma!

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