5 Things for Families: Gardens, Pooh-bear, Jewish food, a famous horse, and a day of service

It took Valerie approximately 5 million hours to curate this list for you this week. Yes, that works out to 1 million hours for every thing. So please, for the love of Pete, go out and do some of them.

Photo by: spektrograf

1. Free Admission to Lewis Ginter

Even though the switch has been flipped on Dominion GardenFest of Lights for the year, Lewis Botanical Gardens are still quite a sight to see–and all this week you can see that sight for free! It’s going to be chilly BUT sunny this week, so bundle those kids up and let them run out those wintertime wiggles as you all soak up some vitamin D.

  • Through Sunday, January 17th • 9:00 AM — 5:00 PM
  • Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, 1800 Lakeside Avenue
  • Free!

2. Happy Birthday, Winnie the Pooh!

Actually it’s a celebration of Winnie the Pooh’s creator’s birthday, and his birthday is actually this coming Monday. But a) Monday is MLK Day, so libraries are closed and b) how many kids are going to squeal when you say “Let’s go celebrate A.A. Milne‘s birthday!” None. So let’s focus on the “bear of very little brain” and enjoy some special activities, shall we?

  • Friday, January 15th • 4:00 PM
  • North Avenue Library, 2901 North Avenue
  • Free (recommended for ages 4 and up)

3. Richmond Jewish Food Festival

When I hear about food festivals I always think, “Oh, this would be so fun for our family!” Then I remember my child would probably spend the entire day shrieking any time we try to feed him something other than applesauce, plain chicken, and bread. Friends, please take your families to this–and pour out some matzoh ball soup for me. Wait, don’t pour it out. Bring it to me. Bring it to my face.

  • Sunday, January 17th and Monday, January 18th • 11:30 AM – 7:30 PM
  • Weinstein Jewish Community Center, 5403 Monument Avenue
  • Free admission; food is in the $5-$15 range

4. Real to Reel: Secretariat — America’s Super Horse

Learn about hometown horse and U.S. Triple Crown winner Secretariat! Leeanne Meadows Ladin, Secretariat Tourism Manager at Meadow Event Park (where Secretariat was born) will give an overview of the history and career of “America’s Super Horse,” setting the stage for a screening of the 2010 film, Secretariat.

  • Sunday, January 17th • 2:00 – 5:00 PM
  • Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen, 2880 Mountain Road
  • Free and no registration is required

5. Martin Luther King, Jr. National Day of Service

Since 1994, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day has been federally recognized as a national day of service. So rather than treating it as a day off, let’s consider it a day on. Spend some time on Monday honoring Dr. King by serving the community as a family. Not sure what kid-friendly service opportunities are out there? HandsOn Greater Richmond has plenty of (searchable) options for you to choose from, including a few DIY projects you and yours can tackle at home.

  • Monday, January 18th • all day
  • All over town
  • As much time as you want to give
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Valerie Catrow

Valerie Catrow is editor of RVAFamily, mother to a mop-topped first grader, and always really excited to go to bed.

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