Top 5 Things To Do With Your Kids This Week: July 11-17, 2011

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Summertime may seem like a non-stop funfest, but many parents know the cold, hard truth: ’Tis the season of bored children. And bored children are whiny children. Check out this week’s-worth of activities that will help your kids get the most out of their summer vacation—and keep them busy at the same time.


1. Parky’s Farm

This 100-acre demonstration farm comes complete with barns, gardens, orchards, crops, real-live barnyard animals, and even a bee-keeping station. Kids are free to explore, run around, and just generally dork out on farm equipment. Plus, the whole family gets in free (with the purchase of a $5 Hamilton County Parks car sticker that lasts the entire year—totally worth it). Open daily, dawn to dusk. Parky’s Farm, 10073 Daly Rd., (513) 521-7275, greatparks.org/parks/parkysfarm.shtm 

2. Mosaic Stepping Stone class at Brazee Street Studios
A vacation from school seems ready-made for easy-going art projects, and the garden is a perfect place to start. At Brazee Street Studios School of Glass, students create their own mosaic stepping stone for outdoor display at home. They’ll learn how to lay out their design using the studio’s glass pieces, add reinforcements, and actually help to pour the cement for their stone. July 13, 10-11:30 am or 1-2:30 pm. $20 per stepping stone. Registration required; please indicate morning or afternoon. Brazee Street Studios, 4426 Brazee St., Oakley, (513) 321-0206, brazeestreetstudios.com/home/classes.html

3. Chuck Wagon Dinner Ride
Nothing says wholesome family fun like a group wagon ride, and Bonnybrook Farms ups the ante by adding BBQ. Located about 40 miles northeast from Cincinnati, Bonnybrook has a petting barn, fish feeding, farm trails, and an 80-foot underground slide—plus a relaxing back porch for spectating. Once the family has its fill of barnyard fun, the all-you-can-eat BBQ dinner starts (Nathan’s hot dogs are available for picky kids). The wagon ride (Cookies! Hot chocolate!) to Todd Fork Creek and a waiting campfire finishes out the night. Saturdays in June, July, and August. Starts at 5 pm; dinner at 6:30 pm; wagon ride at 7:30 pm. Adults: $26; children ages 4 – 12: $15; ages 3 and younger: no charge. Reservations required. Bonnybrook Farms, 3779 St. Rt. 132, Clarksville, (937) 289-2500, bonnybrookfarms.com/?page_id=893 

4. Kids Sewing 101: Making a Pillowcase at Sewn Studios
Bedtime will be a lot easier if your kids have their very own creation to look forward to. This introduction to sewing course is the perfect way to get your child interested in the craft. July 16, 10 am-12:30 pm; $35 plus materials; kids ages 8-12. Sewn Studio, 3212 Madison Rd., Oakley, (513) 321-0600, sewnstudio.com

5. Totter’s Otterville
Keeping your kids learning through the summer can be a challenge, but this little-known play center—located inside the Covington Johnny’s Toy Store and geared toward children up to age 10—is a perfect spot for “educational fun.” For about the price of a movie ticket, kids can occupy themselves for hours, choosing from tons of activities, including face painting, art projects, a water table, a ball pit, and an outdoor maze, sand pit, and fishing hole. Children ages 9 months and up: $7.95; adults: free. Totter’s Otterville, 4314 Boron Dr., Covington, (859) 491-1441 johnnystoys.com/tottermain.html

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