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Saturday, June 26, 2010


Great Summer Events in the Fox Valley: Celebrate Summer 2010 with Science, Art, History & Nature

There are so many ways to have a great summer in the Fox Cities while experiencing art, science, history, and nature. Thanks to good friends supporting the Fox Cities Community Learning Connections project, I'm able to share some exciting info below. The Fox Cities Community Learning Connections is the result of collaboration among many non-profit educational venues and the Appleton Area School District. The result was an excellent teacher resource for planning field trips. Much more is in the works - I hope the community will get behind this effort and help make more rich experiences available for families and children. You can learn more about the project on the Paper Discovery Center website and you can view field trip opportunities on the Appleton Area School District website. Nice work!

Here are some of the fun events waiting for you and your family this summer:

Appleton Art Center

Description: The Art Center promotes, teaches and nourishes the creation and appreciation of the visual arts through exhibitions, educational programs and information resources.
Summer plans: Art classes scheduled for ages 2 through adult. Please check website or call for more. (Remodeling has been completed.)

Barlow Planetarium

Description: Sharing the wonders of the universe with Northeast Wisconsin since 1998. Explore the starry nighttime sky, visit the planets, travel to galaxies and beyond in Wisconsin’s first major planetarium. Family shows for the young and young-at-heart; feature shows for a more in-depth astronomy experience.
Summer plans: Wisconsin Space Academy and Wisconsin Astronomy Academy, week-long rocketry and astronomy classes for 3rd-8th graders featuring hands-on science, math and engineering activities. Educating & entertaining summer fieldtrips for youth and daycare groups that are both. Monthly family astronomy nights featuring telescope viewing on 5/22, 6/19, 7/ 24 & 8/ 21.

Bergstrom-Mahler Museum

Description: Be inspired at Wisconsin’s Glass Museum on Lake Winnebago. The museum preserves four glass collections: a world-renowned paperweight collection, a Germanic drinking vessel collection, Victorian glass baskets, and contemporary glass sculpture. See temporary exhibitions in a variety of media throughout the year.
Summer plans: The Wizards of Pop: Sabuda & Reinhart exhibit (through 6/19), Art Camp: The Art of Illustration (6/8-10 and 6/14- 18), Art Activity Days (5/1, 6/5, 8/7), Arts Festival at Riverside Park and Art Activity Tent on the museum’s front lawn (7/18). Art on-the-go totes available for check out from Neenah and Menasha Public Libraries with art activities for you to do at home. Check our website for additional information and programming.

The Building for Kids

Description: 30,000 sq. feet of family fun. 2-story tree with five tree forts, water play area, art and science studio, kids town, airplane, fire truck and much more!
Summer plans: Pizza Any Way You Slice It opens 6/5. This exhibit uses kids’ favorite food to teach math concepts. Sponsored by Aramark and Affinity, we will have many programs on healthy pizzas throughout the summer featuring fresh farm market produce. The Building for Kids Children’s Parade on 7/28 encourages children to use their creativity to build non-motorized parade floats. Free, but registration required. See our website for information.

Gardens of the Fox Cities

Description: The Gardens promote an understanding and appreciation of plants and gardens in a beautiful inspiring environment. Summer plans: Summer Safari field trips offered to Pre-K and daycares Marvin's Garden's summer-long gardening program Garden Adventure Series offered every Wed. afternoon throughout summer. Weekly Summer Gardening Camps on various topics are offered in summer. Listing of Adult and Child classes can be found on our website.
*Fox Cities Passport to Nature participant

Gordon Bubolz Nature Preserve

Description: Enjoy walking or jogging on our rustic woodland and meadow trails, or spot a wide variety of wildlife in the cedar swamp, pond, meadow or forest habitats of our 776-acre preserve. Visit the earth sheltered Nature Awareness Center to see educational exhibits.
Summer plans: Numerous summer programs including Frogging after Dark (5/21), Whittle a Walking Stick (6/19), Teen Geocache Bash (7/8), HerbFest (7/31). Check our website for all programs.
*Fox Cities Passport to Nature participant.

Hearthstone Historic House

Description: Tour a home on the National Register of Historic Place. Built in 1882, the beautifully restored home was the first in the world to have electric lights powered by a centrally located hydroelectric station using the Edison system. Summer plans: “From Headlines to History” exhibit looks at the history of newspapers in the Appleton area and some of the major news headlines over the last 125 years (through June 19). Visit our website for other upcoming events & programs.

Heckrodt Wetland Reserve

Description: Get outside and enjoy nature! This 76-acre nature reserve has a over 3 miles of stroller-friendly trails, Nature Center with live animals, and outdoor children's play area. Explore wetlands, forest, and prairie.
Summer plans: Summer general public programs, summer day camps, fieldtrip programs for daycare and youth groups.
*Fox Cities Passport to Nature participant

The History Museum at the Castle

Description: Perform magic for your friends and family and escape from jail like Houdini! Explore history through hands-on activities at The History Museum where children of all ages are welcome.
Summer plans: Make paper crafts in our 1850s paper workshop on select Thursday evenings. Visit FREE on International Museum Day (5/18), Moms FREE on Mom’s Day (5/9), Dads FREE on Dad’s Day (6/20). See website for dates and details about these and other events!

Mosquito Hill Nature Center

Description: Owned and operated by Outagamie County, Mosquito Hill Nature Center features an 11,000 square foot interpretive building; 430 acres of preserve with more than 5 miles of hiking trails, a 12-acre prairie planting and 300 acres of Wolf River bottomland hardwoods.
Summer plans: The center operates a 1,500 square foot enclosed structure landscaped for native butterfly species during the months of July and August. Butterfly House is open Wed., Sat. & Sun. 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Organized group tours of the butterfly house available upon request.

Paper Discovery Center

Description: Explore the world of paper through the study of science, technology, art & history. Make paper, climb through a paper machine, move a boat through the locks, and much more.
Summer plans: Summer Science Series sponsored by SCA Tissue. Extra hands-on science activities, starting the 3rd & 4th Wed of June, July and Aug and running through Saturday. Each week focused on a new science concept. Included in regular admission price.

1000 Islands Environmental Center

Description: Located on 350 acres of conservancy zone along the Fox River, 1000 Islands is home to numerous wildlife species including bald eagles. There are 7.2 miles of trails and a unique nature center that houses live animals, interactive displays and animal mounts from all over the world. Summer plans: Many free public programs are offered to visitors of all ages throughout the summer including Bird House Building and Crayfish & Critter Hunts. See website for a full program schedule.
*Fox Cities Passport to Nature participant

Weis Earth Science Museum

Description: Where science rocks! Explore the geology of our planet and our state. Make an earthquake, walk through a lead mine, detonate a quarry blast, touch a dinosaur bone, and much, much more!
Summer plans: Wisconsin Earth Adventure summer geology camp has week-long, hands-on, interactive geology programs in 4 levels for 3rd to 6th graders. Fun fieldtrips for daycare and youth groups. Year of the Niagara Escarpment exhibit opens 5/31.

There's so much going on this summer in Appleton! One of my personal favorites, of course, is Art in the Park, scheduled for July 25 at City Park.
where is the fox valley?
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