Archives for August 2018
Nathan Chapman Memorial Trail (The NCT Trail) and South Hill Community Park
Contributing writer, Amy, has a report on a park and trail great for hunting painted rocks, taking a stroll, or having an adventure with new bike riders near Puyallup’s South Hill. If you’ve heard references to the, “NCT trail, ” and wondered where on Earth it is, we’re here to help!
Nathan Chapman Memorial Trail (simply known as “NCT” to locals) and South Hill Community Park are a sweet little two-fer that includes both a nature trail and playground. Nestled discreetly on South Hill on the corner of 144th St E and 86th St E, just down the road from Rogers High School, you would never know that this calm and beautiful landscape is mere blocks from the hustle and bustle of Meridian.
Trail at Nathan Chapman Park
The 1.6 miles of paved trail is actually split into two separate walks, both accessible from the trailhead access point at the north end of the parking lot, or the playground trail at the south end of the parking lot. All of the trails are paved with almost no incline, making it perfect for strollers, wheelchairs, and little ones learning to ride. Trails are pet-friendly and offer waste bag stations at both ends of the trail.
The South Hill Loop is a short loop that encircles the soccer fields and wetlands, perfect for those looking for a short walk. The Nathan Chapman Memorial Trail is a longer path that meanders through the woods and back toward the surrounding neighborhood. Both trails are mostly forested, offering ample shade on a warm day and beautiful colors in the fall.
This trail system gets a lot of use, seeing increased usage over the past year or so as it has become a popular spot for the rock painting movement. It’s not uncommon to come across people hiding or finding painted rocks along the path, so keep your eyes peeled and you may find a treasure for yourself!
Playground at South Hill Community Park
The playground boasts three separate structures. One for older kids that includes a climbing wall and tube slide, one for toddlers that includes a short tunnel and small slide, and a set of two swings. Both are “big kid” swings, and there are no baby swings or special needs swings at this park.
The modest restroom facility includes two bathrooms and a water fountain that are only open seasonally and typically close during the winter. There are no baby changing tables, so plan to head back to the car if you’ve got littles in diapers. There are also two picnic tables near the playground as well as a few benches.
One draw of this play space is the huge field area, consisting of two full-size soccer fields. They can get a little muddy during the rainy season, but offer ample space for all park goers to find an area to play the sport of their choice.
**Be aware that there have been reports of car prowls in the parking lot. Be certain that you secure your vehicle and do not leave any valuables in sight in your car!
** Also, several readers on our Fb page warn that there is a big problem with dog poop here-even right on the trail. Ewwww. Also, Ewwww. Anyway, look out for that, and those of you with dogg-os, please do scoop the poop!
Who needs something great to do with the kids this weekend? We’ve found awesome free and cheap things to do (plus a few worthwhile splurges) in Tacoma, Puyallup, Olympia, Gig Harbor, Auburn, and just about everywhere else around the South Sound! Read on for all of them!
Are you looking for things to do with the kids indoors around Tacoma and the rest of the South Sound today?
We don’t usually do round ups of indoor activities in August, but as I’m sure you’ve noticed, the air quality is very bad today. In fact, the health department is now encouraging everyone to stay indoors. Unfortunately, if your house doesn’t have some kind of filtering you’re probably breathing a lot of yucky air anyway. I know my throat is really bugging me right now.
Anyway, here are a few ideas if you’d like to get out of the house and indoor some better air. Do double check details before you head out and do let us know if you have other fun suggestions.
Take your water play indoors today at one of these fun spots!
Hit the library
Most libraries have wound down their summer reading programs, but they’re still fun places to play with all that lovely air conditioned air!
Get your play on indoors! Double check these as not all are open in the summer. WiggleWorks is, and it’s great!
One tricky thing is that many are closed on Mondays, but keep this idea in your back pocket if you want to go to one of those. This post has great tips on how to head to one for free!
Need more inspiration? Our Facebook readers had some great ideas!
Need a Deal?
(My affiliate link) > There are also quite a lot of great Groupon offers to kid friendly destinations right now. The one to the Hands-On Children’s Museum in Olympia is especially worth checking out. The link above takes you to all current kid friendly things to do offers. Let us know if you spot a great one.
Looking for fun things to do with the kids this weekend? You’ve come to the right place.
Read on for everything going on around the South Sound this weekend from Auburn/Renton/Covington to Tacoma/Puyallup/Gig Harbor/Olympia and your South Sound home!
Where to get or donate free school supplies around Tacoma, South King County, Puyallup, and Lacey and Olympia
Do you need a hand getting your kids school supplies this year? Did you score extra glue sticks or pencils that you’d like to donate? Here’s a round up of places you can donate or receive school supplies around the South Puget Sound, roughly organized from north to south (at least it seems north to south on the map in my head).
I have tried hard to confirm details, but please do use the links to confirm them before you show up. Keep in mind that the vast majority of these events are run by volunteers, so if you’re attending one, go with a spirit of adventur,e and be sure you’ve read up on the time and any eligibility requirements. If you’re in a position to help or volunteer, most events will also welcome you!
South King County/Federal Way Red Canoe locations in Federal Way, Covington and Puyallup Red Canoe Credit Union hosts an annual, “Fill the Canoe,” drive and donates supplies through Communities in Schools and other charity partners. Donation event only. Link has lists of drop off locations.
Covington/Maple Valley Maple Valley Food Bank is collecting donations.
Federal Way Christian Faith Center Federal Way Currently collecting donations of backpacks and school supplies for a giveaway event on the 18th in Federal Way.
Enumclaw I don’t see current information, but Youth and Family Services has collected supplies in the past.
Auburn/Seattle Area TreeHouse works with foster kids in the Seattle area and has information on how you can host a school supply drive.
Edgewood/Milton/ Puyallup Mountain View Community Center Edgewood Free back to school barbecue and school supply giveaway August 25th. Donations are being accepted now.
Bonney Lake Lions 4 Kids Bonney Lake hosts an annual Back To School Event. Students who qualify for Free or Reduced Lunch in any of the 5 school districts served by the organization are welcome to attend pick up school supplies, including backpacks. Hair cuts are also available, and food will be served. 3-5:30
Parking on site is limited – it is best to park at Grocery Outlet and walk over. Adult volunteers are needed – must be able to pass Washington State Background Check. Donations of school supplies and backpacks are also being accepted now. Call the House and leave a message with questions. 253-447-3844
Puyallup St.Francis House accepts donations of new and gently used household and clothing items year round, and would love your donations of school supplies and backpacks. Link has info. on how you can host a drive or donate directly via Amazon. Contact them if you are in need. There is a screening process for new clients.
Puyallup Red Canoe locations in Federal Way and Puyallup Red Canoe Credit Union hosts an annual, “Fill the Canoe,” drive and donates supplies through Communities in Schools and other charity partners. Donation event only.
FourSquare church already held their great event.
Tacoma Back to School Jam event at three locations August 25th
Little Red Schoolhouse Distribution Day is August 16th.
FREE Distribution of supplies and clothing will take place Thursday, August 16th, 2018 from 8am to 6pm at Komachin Middle School, 3650 College St. SE, Lacey, WA 98503. Open to all Thurston County families in need. Link also has info. on how you can donate.
City Gates Ministries already held an event on August 9th.
All Over Food Banks-Nearly all food banks accept school supply donations and provide supplies to clients. If you are not a current client contact them about eligibility before you go.
Other Ideas If you don’t see an event near you, contact your school district. I promise they will be able to tell you whom to talk to whether you are looking to donate supplies or are in need of a hand getting some.
Many schools are also glad to accept donations directly. Please do ask what items they can use. Backpacks, calculators, good pencils, and glue sticks are always welcome! The fifty tons of slightly musty old graph paper you found in the closet last week? Not so much.
If you know of a donation drive or event I missed, PLEASE don’t be shy about sharing it. You can just leave a comment on this post, or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also post in the fb thread we have here.
If you found this post looking for this information, I hope Sounds Fun Mom will become a regular stop for you. We are dedicated to providing information on area events and activities just for South Sound families!
PS If you’re a teacher or homeschool parent, don’t forget to read about how you can get up to 50 FREE books from Goodwill!
Tacoma and South Puget Sound Area Museums Participating in Smithsonian Free Museum Day
Wondering when Smithsonian Free Museum Day will be?
Good news for you and your junior culture vulture. This annual event is coming right up Saturday the 22nd, and there are many Tacoma and South Sound area museums participating, which means you can get in Free!
Not familiar with this annual event? Here is the scoop:
This is an annual event that gets you two FREE admissions to a participating museum of your choice. This year’s Smithsonian Free Museum Day is on Saturday the 22nd.
Now, lots of area museums offer FREE entry all year round (Do take a minute to read up on that if that’s news to you! I’ll wait.) We suggest you use this day to visit a spot that doesn’t normally participate in a free admission program. In the Tacoma area, Fort Nisqually would be my pick. You can see all the Tacoma area options by inputing your zip code or using your location, here.
I also see the Museum of Flight and many other excellent choices just out of our normal, “Territory.” You are limited to two per household. I know this means most of you will have to pay for a couple of extra tickets-if there are four of you, look at it as a Bogo for everyone!
You can read more about Smithsonian Free Museum Day, download your vouchers, and see a list of participating museums for 2018, right here. Have you had a great museum trip with your kids lately? We’d love to hear about it!
Did the rain keep you from having fun yesterday? No fear! We’ve got a round up of fun things you can do around Tacoma, Auburn, Olympia, and your neck of the South Sound today!
South King County
Beach naturalists from the Seattle Aquarium will be on hand at South King County area beaches for low tide. Free but you will need a Discover WA Pass for state park locations.
Visit the Mary Olson Farm in Auburn Tour the farm house, meet the animals! Nice, low-key, unplugged outing
Free and open to the public on summer Saturdays and Sundays (donations are suggested). June 23 – August 26, Noon – 5pm.
Pierce County Fair, Graham – Thursday-Sunday, August 9-12 This small fair has lots of animals on display and is an annual celebration of rural life.
Meet at their downtown store for a walk over to Anthem
Travel back to 1855 during one of the largest museum events of the year as living historians set up dozens of tents at Fort Nisqually Living History Museum. Also Sunday 10.00-15.00; free for kids 3 and under
Tiptoe through the tide pools at Titlow Beach 11AM-2 Explore low tide with volunteer naturalists. Free event
Renaissance Faire, Bonney Lake – Saturdays/Sundays, 11-12, 18-19. Take a trip back to Medieval times at the Faire! Experience pirates, faeries, and a royal masquerade, all with live entertainment! Look on their fb page for a ticket discount.
Join us every weekend for free drop-in walking tours. Explore areas of the park and get a new perspective on Tacoma’s crown jewel. No registration necessary. Tours held every weekend through September 3
- 11-11:30 am – Urban Wildlife Walk; Meet at the Point Defiance Visitors Center
- 1-2 pm – Ranger-led Nature Walk; Meet at the Rhododendron Garden Pavilion
- 2:30-3 pm – Garden Tour; Meet at the Point Defiance Visitors Center
Historic Fort Steilacoom is now open for Sunday tours 1-4PM I believe this is a free; donations welcome type thing. Summer Sundays until Labor Day
Low tide walk at JoEmma Beach 12-1:30
Get to know the unique animals that inhabit the intertidal zone with biologists and volunteer naturalists! You will need a Discover WA Pass
There is also a Low tide beach walk at Penrose Point State Park
Noon Explore one of the last low tides of the summer with volunteer naturalists from Harbor WildWatch
The Fisherman and His Wife at Olympia Family Theater. Shorter, Let’s Play show perfect for young audiences. 5.00 cash or check at the door; no late seating, so plan to arrive at least 15 minutes before the showtime.
Riveropolis is at the HOCM 30 ft. waterway with lots of room for water play and tinkering. Included with admission.
Need still more ideas?
Check out our complete summer guide! There is still plenty of time to do something great this summer.
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PS Thank you for mentioning Sounds Fun Mom to the places and businesses you visit!
Looking for fun things to do with the kids this weekend? You’ve come to the right place, especially if you like Free things to do in Tacoma! No matter what part of the South Sound you call home, we’ve got something great you can do with the kids!
Sue’s Tech Kitchen: A Great STEM Event for Kids and the Whole Family
Do your kids love all things tech and STEM? What about sweet treats and science experiments?
If you said, “Yes!” to even one of the above, you will not want to miss Sue’s Tech Kitchen, a national touring event coming up from our sponsors at the Broadway Center right in Tacoma.
What is it, exactly?
Think of it as a pop up science exhibit at a super cool museum where you get to be hands on with the experiments.
It’s a ticketed event, and your ticket gets you a timed entry on the hour. You and the kids will get to go from one station or exhibit to another, and it all sounds unbelievably cool!
Imagine your kids coding with robots, printing 3D versions of s’mores, eating treats made with liquid nitrogen, and much more.
Envisioned by bestselling author and serial entrepreneur Randi Zuckerberg, it’s a STEM-inspired adventure and, ” tech-fueled wonderland for the mouth and the mind.”
And, it’s coming right to Tacoma with a super reasonable price point thanks to generous corporate and community support of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber and the Broadway Center.
This is definitely one of the, “Don’t Miss,” family events of the summer! Here’s all the details you need to know:
Sue’s Tech Kitchen in Tacoma
Dates and Times
Friday, August 24, 2018 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, August 25, 2018 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Sunday, August 26, 2018 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m
Timed sessions hourly on the hour.
1001 S Yakima Ave
Adults: $15 buy tickets