Download FREE Movies, TV, Magazines, Music, Books, and More From the Pierce County Library!

Did you know you can get tons of new, FREE entertainment for your family from the library?

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Yes, your library is still a great place for books, story time, and family programming, but today’s library also offers an amazing collection of magazines, television shows, and books to download. Money saving entertainment is just one click away! If you’re looking to save this year (and who isn’t?) quit paying to  rent movies from Netflix,  download books from Amazon, or get songs from Itunes, and get your entertainment FREE from your library instead. Here’s a little breakdown of what’s available: [Read more…]

Free Screening of Finding Kind For Tween Girls And Moms Tonight!

A quick reminder to my Puyallup area friends about this important, FREE event for moms and tween and teen daughters to share tonight.

It’s a FREE screening of the film, Finding Kind at Kalles Junior High.

Finding Kind

It’s a documentary produced by two young women who traveled the country interviewing other young women to shine a light on the lasting impact of, “Mean girl,” style behavior. It’s a movie and a movement and a fabulous way to start this important conversation with the girls in your life. You can learn more about it here.

It’s FREE, but seats are limited, and you do need to register to get a ticket. You can do that here! 

Btw, this event is brought to you by some fabulous local Girl Scouts, who fundraised the screening fee. Reader Tami’s daughter is one of them and she tipped us off to this great opportunity on our Facebook page. Love it! Put me down for some Samoas, girls.

Great Wolf Lodge on Groupon

Good news if you could use a winter warm-up!

Great Wolf Lodge is back on Groupon!

 

great wolf

I think it’s a good one if you have a bigger family, or if you’ve been wanting to try one of the fancier rooms. This is about the cheapest I’ve seen for these, and you get a 25.00 a night resort credit and wristbands for six or eight.

I do only see weekday dates available. If you can make that work, I had several readers last time who teamed up with friends or cousins on one of the bigger, fancier suites, and thought it was a great deal.

It is NOT the very cheapest you can get. The cheapest rooms are the regular family suites. They’re included in this deal, but only as part of a two night option. Personally, I don’t recommend doing two nights at Great Wolf because you’re allowed two days in the water park with just a one night stay, and that’s usually plenty for most folks.  If you’re needing a major deal,  I think you’re better off waiting for a sale (sign up for their emails) when you can do a one day, family suite stay.

You should also know that first responders and members of the military can usually do better than any published rate with code HEROES, and I’ve seen better deals than this through their emails for returning guests.

Bottom line? If you’ve been wanting to try a Wolf Den or Kid Kamp suite, I’d take a look at this.

If it isn’t quite right for you, last year we ended up seeing deals on Living Social shortly after the Groupon. I have no idea whether that will happen again, but I’ll keep my eye out for you.

Or, go to one of the area’s fun indoor pools for a teensy, beensy fraction of the price! Here’s a round-up of the best of them! 

If you decide to pick it up, be sure to read my tips on saving on your stay (it’s a realllly old one, but it’s still got some good scoop)!

If you’d like to check out this offer, just

head here to Groupon!

 

Disclosure: The Groupon link is my affiliate. When you use affiliate links, the site gets a small part of any purchase that starts here. However, please don’t ever buy any deal that isn’t a great one for your family!

South Sound Martin Luther King Day Events And Activities For Kids

Need something to do with the kids today? I’ve got information on Martin Luther King day events in Tacoma, plus fun things to go and do around today around Puyallup, Kent, Tacoma, and beyond! Just click the graphic, or head here for the complete list.
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South Sound Weekend Kids’ Calendar: Family Fun And Things To Do January 16th-19th!

Looking for things to do with the family in Tacoma, Olympia, or Gig Harbor this weekend?

Wondering about kid friendly Martin Luther King Jr. Day events? You’re in the right place!

Welcome to our guide to free and affordable family fun in the South Puget Sound!  We have one just like it up every Friday! Headed elsewhere? There is always lots more to explore  at ThriftyNWmom  thanks to frugal fun finder, Annaliese, of Grays Harbor Deals!

Friday

Indoor Park at Pen-Met Indoor Soccer Center in Gig Harbor  Every Friday from 11:15-12:30; toys usually left up longer  2.00/child Thanks, Gig Harbor Macaroni Kid

Play all day with our friends at WiggleWorks at the South Hill Mall 7.00 come and go admission every weekday!

Parent’s Night Out at Pump It Up in Tacoma  Mention SFM when you call to sign up!  It’s a pajama party tonight!

Keep Reading for complete listings for Saturday and Sunday by area  

[Read more…]

Save The Date For Mini Maestros Concerts For Children

Hey, Tacoma, grab your calendars! I’m so excited to tell you about Mini Maestros, a concert series from the Tacoma Symphony, just for kids 2-8 and their favorite grown-ups.

This year’s series kicks off January 25th with Peter and the Wolf, a musical folktale where each character is, “Voiced,” by a different instrument.  It’s a perfect way to introduce your kids to classical music.

Each of the shows in the series has been designed by early childhood education experts. They’re lively and interactive and a just-right length for younger listeners.

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Shows are at the Rialto in downtown Tacoma, and tickets are a super reasonable 7.00 for kiddos and 10.00 for grown-ups. Oh, and I love that they’re on Sunday afternoons, which is typically a really slow time if you’re looking for family fun (trust me).

You can get more information and purchase tickets right here!  I heard nothing but good things about these from readers last year. If you went to one, I’d love to hear what you thought, too!

Edit: This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own. If you have a chance to mention SFM when you go to a Mini Maestros concert, I’d really appreciate it!

Win Tickets To Cinderella From StoryBook Theater!

I love to tell you about children’s theater in our area, and I just know you and your favorite fans of princesses and fairy tales  will love this one.

It’s Cinderella from our friends at StoryBook Theater!

If you haven’t tried StoryBook Theater before, you really should. Their performances feature colorful costumes, lively acting, and positive messages-all in a, “Just right,” length for young audiences. This production is the story you know with a few special StoryBook twists. This Cinderella is no wilting wallflower!

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Performances begin January 24th. The two South Sound productions are in Renton January 24th and 25th, followed by other Seattle area performances.

All tickets are a very reasonable 11.00.

You can get more information and tickets right here! 

I also have a set you can win. Woot!  [Read more…]

Great Contest For Young Artists And Poets From Citizens For A Healthy Bay!

Here’s a local contest that will be just perfect for those of you who are teachers and homeschoolers or just know some clever kids (Hey, I think that’s all of you)!

It’s an art and poetry contest on the theme of Connected Waters, and it’s sponsored by the folks at Citizens for a Healthy Bay.

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The contest is open to all students 4-18 who live in the Puyallup River or Key Peninsula-Gig Harbor-Islands Watersheds. If that isn’t quite all of you, it’s pretty close! Hint: The Puyallup River is Big!

The rules are simple: Explore your watershed and create a piece of art or poetry inspired by it. The grand prize winner gets a pizza party on the CHB patrol boat. How cool is that???

You have until May 1st to enter, but I wanted to tell you now so you could include this fun opportunity in your lesson and field trip planning and share it with others. [Read more…]

South Sound Weekend Kids’ Calendar: Family Fun And Things To Do January 9th-11th

Looking for things to do with the family in Tacoma, Olympia, or Gig Harbor this weekend?

Welcome to our guide to free and affordable family fun in the South Puget Sound for December 26th-28th! We have one just like it up every Friday! Headed elsewhere? There is always lots more to explore  at ThriftyNWmom  thanks to frugal fun finder, Annaliese, of Grays Harbor Deals!

All Weekend

Monster Jam at the Tacoma Dome   Kids’ tickets are as little as  10.00 when you buy in advance (Ticketmaster will add about 9.00 in fees-you might be able to avoid these by going to the box office at the Tacoma Dome. Anybody know?)  Catch Grave Digger and other big rigs as they, “Rock the Dome!” Note: Parking in dome lots is 20.00, cash only. We’ve been able to find free street parking on the street that runs parallel to the Best Western. Just don’t leave any valuables in the car. More info. about the show here at the Tacoma Dome site  and here at the Monster Jam site. Ticketmaster here.

Friday

Seahawks rally in Renton  It’s a Blue Friday! Join former Seahawks, Sea Gals, and friends for a flag raising and rally at city hall 11:30

Indoor Park at Pen-Met Indoor Soccer Center in Gig Harbor  Every Friday from 11:15-12:30; toys usually left up longer  2.00/child Thanks, Gig Harbor Macaroni Kid

Play all day with our friends at WiggleWorks at the South Hill Mall 7.00 come and go admission every weekday!

Parent’s Night Out at Pump It Up in Tacoma  Mention SFM when you call to sign up!  It’s a pajama party tonight!

Princess Party with Pierce County Parks and Rec  CALL to see if you can still get in.

Ongoing

The Fransiscan Polar Plaza is open for skating. Free skate rental for, “Customer appreciation,” through the 11th.

Keep Reading for complete listings for Saturday and Sunday by area  
[Read more…]

Mom Reviewed: Monster Jam at the Tacoma Dome!

Anyone headed to the Monster Jam, monster truck show at the Tacoma Dome today or tomorrow?

My family and I went last night, so I could bring you a little review along with some tips and tricks!  Yes, I can tell you where to park!

Monster truck logo

Both my boys are big monster truck fans, but this was the first time we’d been to a show, and we definitely weren’t disappointed.

If you’ve never been before, the monster truck part of the action involves the trucks with their giant wheels going over bumps and other obstacles. They compete to see who can navigate a lap the fastest and with the most style-think jumps with big air! It’s not complicated-just super fun for kids and kids at heart!

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Trucks and drivers include locals  as well as fan favorites Grave Digger and Son of Grave Digger.

In addition to the monster trucks there are quad races and motorcross. The acrobatic motorcycle jumping was one of the boys’ favorite parts of the show. It was truly mesmerizing (and a little scary to watch)!

The announcer keeps things moving with some good natured trash talking between competitors and plenty of invitations for the audience to cheer, boo, and stomp their feet.

It runs about two hours with a short intermission in the middle. It honestly seemed much shorter to me, which is a sign of how fun it is for the audience.

There are a few things you should know before you go!

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  • Bring ear protection. I seriously cannot emphasize this enough. These trucks are LOUD. If you don’t own any you can pick up a pack of disposable earplugs at Lowe’s for about 3.00. That’s Henry sporting his above-we helped him put them in correctly, and he was good to go!  There were also some vendors selling earplugs outside of the Dome for 1.00, but bringing your own is a better idea. Do NOT try to watch this show without protecting your hearing and that of your children. You’ve got that, right?
  • In addition to the noise, there are vibrations and some dust in the air in the lower levels. This is all part of the fun, but probably means it’s not an outing for anyone sensitive to such.
  • Parking in the Dome lots is 20.00, cash only. I strongly suggest parking in the transit center instead and walking up the hill. It’s free, and you’ll avoid the mess getting into and out of the Dome lots. You may also be able to find some free street parking, although these shows are close to sold out, so there will be lots of competition. There are some other parking ideas here.
  • Go early. You will need to allow time to park, get through the brief security check, and find your seats. If you want to eat beforehand, there are lots of inexpensive choices in the food court at Freighthouse Square  or the Harmon or The Old Spaghetti Factory are both nearby for sit down meals.
  • There are souvenirs and snack items for sale. The cotton candy that came with a truck holder thingamajig seemed popular. As is typical, all of these are on the pricey side. At intermission, you’ll be encouraged to purchase a flag or program you can wave to help judge the freestyle contest. My boys found waving their coat sleeves worked fine (I know-I’m super cheap).
  • You can see all the available tickets here. I thought all the seats were good ones. Our friends at Feld tell me the least expensive tickets are the child’s tickets, which start at 10.00 (up to two with each paying adult). Unfortunately, Ticketmaster fees kick in another 9.00. Your local Ford store may still have 5.00 off coupons for adults’ tickets, though I don’t think they can be sued with the discounted children’s seats.  If this won’t bust your budget, it’s definitely worth taking your little fan. I didn’t see one kid (big or little) who wasn’t having a blast.  Honestly, this momma loved it almost as much! It’s old-fashioned fun run by an organization that truly appreciates its fans and aims to entertain them.  You might also enjoy the official Monster Jam site. It has a fun section for kids.

If you go to Monster Jam, or if you’ve been before, I’d love to hear your reviews and tips, too!

 

Disclosure: I was provided with tickets to facilitate this review. I was not otherwise compensated.