Over The Top Mommy

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{Giveaway} The America’s Family Pet Expo at OC Fair & Event Center April 28-30

This is not a sponsored post. Images and logo are property of The America’s Family Pet Expo. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

The America’s Family Pet Expo will return to the OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa Friday, April 28 – Sunday, April 30, 2017. All creatures great and small, from four legged to flying, will all be on display at this annual family-friendly event.americas-family-pet-expo-logoThe Pet Expo offers visitors education on responsible pet care, entertainment, and pet adoptions and is the ultimate destination for all pet lovers. Each year the show progresses to include the best in pet ownership and care and offers a variety of educational presentations, product launches, amazing pet acts and our popular animal adoptions, as well as showcasing the latest trends in the pet care industry.americas-family-pet-expo-birdAt the 2016 Pet Expo, there were more than 500 animal adoptions including dogs, cats, and even a few guinea pigs, that were adopted from the Pet Expo’s Southern California animal rescue partner organizations. Pet Adoptions will be handled onsite at the Expo for those looking for that perfect animal addition to the family. There will be hundreds of animals hoping to find their “furever home” from local community partner organizations at the Pet Expo.americas-family-pet-expo-hogsThe Pet Expo is excited to announce the return of the crowd pleasing “Cook’s Racing Hogs & Dogs,” a race that consists of four pigs, which run from one end of a 90-foot U-shaped track to the other. Four dogs then compete in a similar race. Waiting at the end of the track is a treat – vanilla ice cream and a golden Oreo cookie.americas-family-pet-expo-pettingThe 2017 Expo will be the “Cat’s Meow” as the The Catit Playground Debuts. The interactive activity brings a close up view for guests to watch adorable adoptable cats and kittens and see how they interact with different toys and people. This is a great atmosphere for guests to learn all about cats and toys they like.americas-family-pet-expo-cat-areaLucy’s Wave Maker will return and also feature a cat surfer. The world’s one and only mobile wave machine makes an encore appearance America’s Family Pet Expo showcasing the best surfing dogs and cats too! The wave maker made international headlines from its appearance in the 2017 Rose Parade. America’s Family Pet Expo is the first stop on the 2017 National Tour that kicks off in Costa Mesa.americas-family-pet-expo-reptilesReturning favorites to the Pet Expo include Repticon, reptile show and sale, offering hundreds of common and rare species of reptiles in all shapes and sizes, such as lizards, snakes, and spiders. Plus, the ever-popular Splash Dogs will also be on hand offering a “splashing” good time as these dogs compete at dock jumping.americas-family-pet-expo-splash-dogsAdded to the Expo line-up is the America’s Family Pet Expo Hobbyist Aquascaping contest. This new feature will consist of intermediate to advanced “aquarists” in a competition to create the most appealing natural aquarium. The participants will use a variety of live plants and other natural decorations in order to create a miniature underwater jungle. Pet Expo attendees are encouraged to come watch the process of setting up a fully functional planted aquarium from 10am on Friday, April 28th to 12pm on Saturday, April 29th. Ribbons and cash prizes will be awarded to the top 3 aquascapers on Saturday, April 29th at 5:00pm.

Pricing for The Pet Expo is as follows: 

  • General Admission, $15.00
  • Seniors 60 and over, $13.00
  • Children 6-12, $10.00.
  • 5 yrs and under, free.
  • Active and retired military free with ID.

Event parking is $8.00. 

Show hours are:

  • Friday 10am-6pm
  • Saturday 10am-7pm
  • Sunday 10am-6pm

giveaway-enter-to-win

I’m also having a giveaway where one of my lucky readers can win a family 4-pack to this year’s event. To enter, just leave a comment on this post sharing your favorite pet with me. I will close the comments on Sunday, April 23 at 11:59 p.m. and pick one winner via Random Number Generator. Winner will be notified by email and will be mailed the tickets. Tickets have no cash value. Giveaway open to U.S. residents only, 18 and older. Good luck everyone! 

OC Fair & Event Center is located at 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa 92626.  Kindly leave all pets at home. For more information and to purchase tickets online visit http://www.PetExpoOC.org .

 

Must Haves at Knott’s Boysenberry Festival

I was invited as a guest of Knott’s Berry Farm to a day in the Park in order to write this review. All opinions are 100% my own.

 

If you’ve been following along on my Instagram lately, you may have notice a few of the delicious pictures I posted from Knott’s Boysenberry Festival.knotts-boysenberry-festival knotts-boysenberry-festival-usI had the opportunity to spend a day in the Park, enjoying many of their boysenberry-inspired foods and drinks. I got so excited to see Ghost Town all decked out for the occasion!
ghost-town-decorknotts-boysenberry-festival-decorDid you know that the boysenberry originated at Knott’s? Yep! The roots of Knott’s Berry Farm stretch back to the early 1930s when Walter Knott nurtured the only surviving boysenberry vines back to health and began selling the berries from his fruit stand on Beach Blvd. in Buena Park, California. knotts-boysenberry-festival-1920The popular purple little boysenberry put Knott’s Berry Farm on the road to being America’s first theme park. The rest, as they say, is history. As the birthplace of the delectable boysenberry Knott’s Berry Farm.knotts-boysenberry-festival-fry-breadKnott’s Boysenberry Festival runs from April 1-23 this year. During the festival, guests have the opportunity to enjoy boysenberry foods, both sweet and savory, and boysenberry-inspired craft beer and wine. Trust me when I say that you need to try all of the special boysenberry offerings during Knott;s Boysenberry Festival. One of the best ways to get a tasting of a variety of these foods is by purchasing a Festival Tasting Card. For just $25, you’ll get to sample 6 different items. As you can see, I started with one of the desserts, Boysenberry Panna Cotta! knotts-boysenberry-festival-tasting-cardThe Festival Tasting Card gives you quite a bit of food as you get samples of Boysenberry BBQ Meatballs, Boysenberry Fry Bread, Boysenberry Buffalo Wings, Boysenberry Ravioli, Boysenberry Panna Cotta, and Boysenberry Pizza!knotts-boysenberry-festival-chefsknotts-boysenberry-festival-wings

knotts-boysenberry-festival-boysenberry-pizzaI loved all of the items I got to try but I couldn’t stop there because there was still so much more boysenberry goodness to try! Some of the other boysenberry items you can find during the festival include:

  • Ribs and grilled chicken smothered in Knott’s farm-made Berry Market Boysenberry BBQ sauce
  • Corn on the Cob with Boysenberry Butter and Boysenberry Mayo
  • Boysenberry Short Ribs over riceknotts-boysenberry-festival-short-rib
  • Deep Fried Alligator & Fries with Boysenberry Aioli
  • Chocolate covered Boysenberry cheesecake on a stickknotts-boysenberry-festival-cheesecake-on-a-stick
  • Boysenberry Corn Dog
  • Boysenberry & Apricot Pulled Pork  Sandwich in a Boysenberry Bun Combo
  • Boysenberry Nutella crepesknotts-boysenberry-festival-boysenberry-crepe
  • Boysenberry Cookiewich Sandwich & Boysenberry Ice Cream Cone
  • Boysenberry Flautas
  • Boysenberry Cotton Candy
  • Boysenberry ICEE floats, Boysenberry Cream Soda, and Boysenberry Lattes & Frappuccinos
  • Fun Bun – Fried Cinnamon Roll with Boysenberry Cream Cheese Toppingknotts-boysenberry-festival-fun-bun

Many of the special Knott’s brand jams, jellies, sauces, candies, and other boysenberry products are available year-round inside the park in General Store (located in Ghost Town)  and outside the park at Berry Market (located in the California MarketPlace), as well as online. This is such great news for someone like me who is obsessed with all things boysenberry.knotts-boysenberry-festival-productsAside from all of the boysenberry goodness at Knott’s Boysenberry Festival, there’s also a great lineup of entertainment for the whole family, you won’t want to miss including Snoopy’s Boysenberry Jamboree (on the Calico Mine Stage), Old Time Melodrama (Bird Cage Theater), The History of Boysenberry & Knott’s Berry Farm (in Town Hall), Cloud 9 Ballroom/Studio K Classic Dance Party (in the Boardwalk Ballroom), Wild West Stunt Show: Frontier Feats of Wonder! (in Wagon Camp Theater), and the fun Camptivities (in Camp Snoopy). Also stop by Calico Park for some fun, music & games and visit the animals Old MacDonald’s Farm (in Ghost Town).

knotts-boysenberry-festival-merchKnott’s Boysenberry Festival is a must-do. Be sure to stop by before April 23rd! For more information, visit Knott’s Berry Farm’s site here.knotts-boysenberry-festival-chocolate-bar

Some images and logo are property of Knott’s. 

 

 

Imaginology goes full STEAM ahead at the OC Fair & Event Center April 21-23

Students, families and classes are invited to explore the fun of S.T.E.A.M. (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) activities during Imaginology, a free event at OC Fair & Event Center April 21-23, 2017. This exciting, three-day exploration of STEAM is the perfect environment for curious people of all ages to discover the opportunities available in the STEAM fields. Students are encouraged to explore the possibilities as they learn through hands-on workshops and exhibits.imaginologyFamily-friendly activities and competitions for Imaginology include:
Workshops and makeshops: Students can participate in activities including woodworking, sewing, creative crafting, tech play, ceramics, cardboard building projects, crocheting and more. Local professionals and Imaginology staff lead the demonstrations and all necessary equipment and supplies are provided. Participants can take home the crafts and artwork they create.
Youth competitions: Budding scientists and artists will showcase their talents in photography, videography, fiber arts, fine art, poetry, science and engineering divisions. Competitions include 3-D printing, computer-generated art, fashion design, drawing, kinetic art, clay crafting, wood and metal art and more. All competitions are free to enter and open to Orange County students. The entry registration deadline is March 24. Project delivery day is April 13.
Free family & group contests: Family members and friends can team up at Imaginology to compete in onsite contests to decorate the best sawhorse or scarecrow on Saturday, April 22. There are awards and prize money. It’s free to enter and basic materials (sawhorse, scarecrow, clothing and some decorations) will be provided but teams are encouraged to bring their own decorations to make their entry unique. Visit ocfair.com/steam for details.
MIND Research Institute: Enjoy interactive and innovative activities that make learning math exciting, interesting and fun. Families and students can try cool games and get involved in activities such as Blockopolis, Ice Caves, Conic Connections, Code Breaker and Math & Golf.
Centennial Farm: Guests can check out animals and crops on the three-acre working farm and enjoy free tractor rides, an oxen exhibit, blacksmithing, sheep-shearing demonstrations, radish-seed planting, terrarium-making and the OC Beekeepers exhibit.
4-H competitions: Local youth are judged on their abilities to raise small livestock, their understanding of animal and veterinary sciences and their projects on community service, aerospace, electricity and more.
Vital Link STEM + the Arts Career Showcase: Vital Link provides resources to help students discover and consider professional careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) with exciting competitive displays, workshops and competitions.
More free activities: Exhibitors will offer things to do and see including Wild Science Activity Area, Agventureland kids’ area and family-friendly entertainment.

Imaginology will be open Friday 9 a.m.-3 p.m.and Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission is free. Parking is free on Friday and will be $8 on Saturday and Sunday. Friday is field trip day and is open to the public. Schools and large groups of 10 or more are encouraged to register, but it is not required. For more information about Imaginology, please visit here.

This is not a sponsored post. Image is property of OC Fair. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

 

 

Help Support Southern California Ronald McDonald Houses®and the Annual ‘Walk for Kids’

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern California is rallying thousands of supporters across Southern California to join together in support of critically ill children and their families at the annual Walk for Kids, a fun, family-friendly 5k (3.1 miles) event that raises funds for the life-changing services provided by RMHCSC..walk-for-kids-logo

With a fundraising goal of $2.1 million, RMHCSC dedicates 100 percent of the money raised directly to serving local families right here in our community, continuing its mission to provide a “home away from home” when it’s needed most – enabling families to stay near their hospitalized child at little to no cost. No eligible family is ever turned away due to inability to pay.ronald-mcdonald-at-the-walk

There are seven walks taking place throughout SoCal between March 25 – April 23 (details provided below). Supporters can sign up for $25, donate directly or learn more about WFK by visiting http://www.walkforkids.org; 100% of funds raised will directly support critically ill children and their families right here in the local community.

Sunday, April 2

  • Los Angeles — Exposition Park, 700 Exposition Park Dr., Los Angeles, CA, 90037
  • Ontario — Citizens Business Bank Arena , 4000 E. Ontario Center Pkwy, Ontario, CA, 91764
  • Pasadena — Central Park, 275 S. Raymond Ave, Pasadena, CA, 91105

Sunday, April 9

  • Anaheim — Honda Center, 2695 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, CA, 92806
    Sunday, April 23
  • Long Beach — Shoreline Park, Aquarium Way, Long Beach, Calif., 90802

Sunday, April 23

  • Long Beach — Shoreline Park, Aquarium Way, Long Beach, Calif., 90802

This year, LA sports icons, the Clippers, Kings, and Galaxy, will join brands like McDonald’s and Chobani in providing on-site experiences with family-friendly games, activities, Kids Zones, food, music and more. Each walk will also feature an ambassador family who will share their inspiring story.spread-the-joy-ronald-mcdonald-house-oc-1Here’s how YOU can help support this great cause
From March 20 to April 7, Southern California McDonald’s customers can also support Walk for Kids by visiting a participating McDonald’s restaurant and purchasing a “Shoe” for $1. The shoes will then be displayed with the donor’s name in a designated area of the restaurant. In 2016, area McDonald’s restaurants generated more than $418,000 from shoe sales alone. 100 percent of the proceeds from the shoe sales will directly benefit RMHCSC programs.

Additionally, Southern California McDonald’s will donate $.25 from each McCafé Shamrock Chocolate beverage purchased to RMHC during the week of March 11-17. The iconic Shamrock Shake has been a key part of fundraising for RMHC since 1974 when the first Ronald McDonald House was opened.ronald-mcdonald-house-orange-county-signBuilt on the simple idea that nothing else should matter when a family is focused on healing their child – not where they can afford to stay, where they will get their next meal, or where they will lay their head at night to rest – RMHCSC helps families with critically-ill children stay together, connecting them with others facing similar challenges through its six Ronald McDonald Houses in Bakersfield, Inland Empire (Loma Linda), Long Beach, Los Angeles, Orange and Pasadena, and two Ronald McDonald Family Rooms. The Chapter also operates the cost-free, medically supervised Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times, helping ill children and their siblings rediscover childhood and develop the self-esteem and self-efficacy often lost as a result of the disease.

To learn more about Walk for Kids, donate directly or register by starting or joining a team for $25, visit http://www.walkforkids.org or follow the conversation on social media using #WalkforKids.
About Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern California
Now celebrating 40 years of service, RMHCSC has been dedicated to improving the health
and well-being of children and families across Inyo, Kern, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside,
San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Through its six
Ronald McDonald Houses® in Bakersfield, Loma Linda, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Orange
and Pasadena and two Ronald McDonald Family Rooms®, the Chapter helps families with
critically-ill children stay together while connecting them with others facing similar
challenges. The Chapter also operates the cost-free, medically supervised Camp Ronald
McDonald For Good Times®, helping ill children and their siblings rediscover childhood and
develop the self-esteem and self-efficacy often lost as a result of the disease.

This is not a sponsored post. Some images and logos are property of RMHCSC. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

Take a Farm Tour and Go Strawberry Picking at Tanaka Farms

I was invited to take a tour of Tanaka Farms in order to facilitate this post. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

Have you been to Tanaka Farms yet? It’s a real, working farm in the heart of Orange County They offer a variety of seasonal farm tours throughout the year, for your family to experience together.tanaka-farms-signWe recently had the opportunity to take a farm tour with some friends, to kick off Strawberry Season. The strawberry tour is a one-hour long, wagon ride around the 30 acre farm. As we sat in a wagon pulled by a tractor, our tour guide discussed the different farming methods used at Tanaka Farms, as well the history behind it.tanaka-farms-tractorfarms-friends-in-a-wagonThroughout the tour, we stopped to see where different fruits and vegetables were being grown and even got to sample many of the ones in season. It’s a great way to get your kid to eat their vegetables!tanaka-farms-carrotsThe last stop on our tour was the most exciting one for us. It was in the strawberry patch! Before getting out of our wagon, our guide gave us a mini lesson on how to properly pick the strawberries.tanaka-farms-picking-strawberriestanaka-farms-strawberriesNext, we got to walk through the strawberry patch to pick our own strawberries and fill up our own one pound basket of strawberries to take home! If you take this tour, you’re also allowed to eat strawberries as you’re picking. They are so sweet and delicious this year! It was so much fun!tanaka-farms-mommy-and-meTanaka Farms offers Strawberry Tours on Saturday and Sunday, every half hour, from 9:30-2:30. No reservations are required but a 20-30 minute arrival beforehand is recommended. They also offer tours Monday through Friday but reservations are required and can be made by calling (949) 653-2100 ext. 204 or email reservations@tanakafarms.comtanaka-farms-our-groupSchool and group tours are also offered and require a reservation. The cost for the farm tour is $18 for adults and children, with children 2 years of age and younger free.tanaka-farms-wagon-signStrawberry season at Tanaka Farms is such a fun time of year to visit. For more information about dates and times for the tours, go here.  Be sure to make it out this season for the strawberries! I promise they are delicious!tanaka-farms-strawberry-basketWhile you’re at Tanaka Farms, you’ll also want to stop in at their fresh produce stand to purchase the freshest, most beautiful fruits and vegetables around. They also offer a variety of other delicious products for purchase.tanaka-farms-fresh-producetanaka-farms-reusable-bagConnect with Tanaka Farms on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 

 

Celebrate Spring-a-Palooza at Great Wolf Lodge Through April 16

I was invited to attend an event at Great Wolf Lodge Southern California in order to write this post. All opinions are 100% my own.#GWLSoCalTurns1 #GWLSpring

 

I can’t believe it’s already been a year since Great Wolf Lodge Southern California opened! I was so honored to be invited to a special celebration for their 1st anniversary, complete with special birthday hat wolf ears, character photos, and delicious cupcakes. great-wolf-lodge-southern-california-wiley-and-IGuests staying at the resort and media were in attendance and got to hear from Great Wolf Lodge General Manager Phil Cunningham. great-wolf-lodge-southern-california-birthday-cupcakesTo celebrate their 1 year anniversary/birthday, Great Wolf Lodge Southern California collaborated with artist Linda Mihara and had her create the world’s largest origami cake, which was unveiled at the ceremony. The details of the artwork were incredible and my favorite piece of the “cake” were the origami animals on top.spring-a-palooza-artist-lindaDuring my visit to Great Wolf Lodge Southern California that afternoon, I was also treated to a very special lunch, prepared by Great Wolf Lodge Executive Chef Hany and his team. They put together a menu for lunch that was absolutely amazing! Chef Hany prides himself on using only the freshest and finest ingredients to resort guests.great-wolf-lodge-lunch great-wolf-lodge-tomato-and-avocadoA majority of the produce is locally grown and I appreciated how sensitive they were to special dietary needs and allergies of guests when preparing the dishes.great-wolf-lodge-salmon great-wolf-lodge-potatoesGreat Wolf Lodge does an amazing job at catering to guests of all needs and sensitivities. We feasted on a variety of foods which are included on the resort’s menu during Spring-a-Palooza.great-wolf-lodge-carrotsgreat-wolf-lodge-zuccini-and-squashSpring-a-Palooza will take place at Great Wolf Lodge locations, March 10 through April 16, 2017 this year, the Spring-a-Palooza event is offered at all of the Great Wolf Lodge resorts to families visiting, as a way to commemorate the turn of the season.spring-a-palooza-logo

The Grand Lobby at the resort is Spring-a-Palooza central. Guests will find colorful spring decorations throughout, including a special Great Wolf Lodge character-themed garden for children to explore.great-wolf-lodge-spring-a-palooza-lobbyDuring Spring-a-Palooza, Great Wolf Lodge will offer additional entertainment options for guests to enjoy, with special spring-inspired activities and events taking place daily. Some of the scheduled events include:

  • Spring Picnic: A time-honored spring tradition gets a Great Wolf twist, as guests can grab a blanket, spread it out on the floor and enjoy an afternoon picnic in the Grand Lobby. Guests can sip complimentary Minute Maid beverage available from the Great Wolf Lodge character-themed Lemonade Stand and play a few rounds of DzTake A Wiley Guessdz card game.spring-a-palooza-violets-lemonde-stand
  • Bubble Dance Party: This special Spring-a-Palooza event fills the Grand Lobby with cascading bubbles while Great Wolf Lodge’s Ambassadors of Fun keep energy-levels high with a family-friendly dance party.
  • Spring-a-Palooza Story Time: Great Wolf Lodge’s nightly Story Time takes on a spring theme with a new tale featuring the Great Wolf Lodge characters called DzNatural Wonders.dzKids are encouraged to wear their favorite jammies to the Grand Lobby for this event and will have the opportunity to meet one of the Great Wolf Lodge characters in person.spring-a-palooza-fun
  • Spring Scavenger Hunts: Great Wolf Lodge will introduce two self-guided scavenger hunts as part of Spring-a-Palooza. The “I Spy Spring” scavenger hunt will have guests looking high and low in the Grand Lobby to find a dozen hidden objects and claim a prize. The “Spring Sprint” scavenger hunt has guests solving clues that will take them on a journey throughout the lodge. When all 10 clues are solved, guests are rewarded with a prize.
  • Character Themed Flower Gardens: A highlight of the Spring-a-Palooza celebration is the colorful springtime gardens found in the Grand Lobby. The gardens are designed and hand-crafted by Pack Members from the resort. Surrounded by a fence, the collection of flower pots are inspired by the Great Wolf Lodge characters. Guests are encourage to stroll around the garden and vote for their favorite display.spring-a-palooza-violets-basketspring-a-palooza-vote-for-your-favorite-flower-pot
  • Jelly Bean Guessing Game: A gigantic jar filled to the brim with jelly bean candies sits in the Grand Lobby and guests are invited to enter a contest guessing how many delicious treats are within the jar. The guests closest to the correct number without going over will be entered for a chance to win a Great Wolf Lodge Gift Card.spring-a-palooza-jelly-beans-guessing
  • Spring Themed Crafts: During Spring-a-Palooza, the resort’s Ambassadors of Fun will host several spring-inspired craft making events for kids of all ages. Character-themed crafting projects include Oliver’s Crazy About Bugs Jar, Violet’s Springtime Noodle Doodle, Brinley’s Don’t Blow Away Kite and Wiley’s Can You Spot It Binoculars.spring-a-palooza-spring-craftspring-a-palooza-spring-photo-backdrop

In addition to admission into the indoor water park, all of the Spring-a-Palooza events are also complimentary to guests staying at Great Wolf Lodge through April 16. A complete listing of daily activities and times can be found in the Lodge Life event schedule, which is provided to guests upon check-in. As you can see, there’s so much Spring fun going on at Great Wolf Lodge during Spring-a-Palooza that you won’t want to miss out!

great-wolf-lodge-southern-california-facadeFor more information about Great Wolf Lodge, please visit greatwolf.com.

Some images and logo are property of Great Wolf Lodge. 

 

Celebrate Pirates of the Caribbean’s 50th Anniversary at Disneyland with Limited-Time Entertainment and Special Offerings

Did you know that nearly 400 million guests have embarked on the swashbuckling adventure, Pirates of the Caribbean, at Disneyland Park? The lyrics to its theme song–“Yo Ho (A Pirate’s Life for Me)”– are something that’s recognized around the world and guests on the attraction can often be heard singing them in unison as they venture through the attraction.On March 18, 2017, this popular attraction celebrates its 50th anniversary and guests at Disneyland Park are invited to celebrate this special occasion with pirate-themed entertainment, exclusive merchandise and special food and beverage offerings, all beginning March 16.
Guests may feast upon special, pirate-themed food at French Market Restaurant, Mint Julep Bar, Harbour Galley, Royal Street Veranda, Cafe Orleans and Blue Bayou Restaurant. (Blue Bayou also celebrates its 50th anniversary on March 18).Food items vary by location and will include:

  • Buccaneer Pulled Pork Sandwich: Jerk-spiced Pork, Sweet and Tangy Barbecue Sauce, Pineapple Caribbean-style Slaw and Fried Yucca
  • Lost Treasure Beignets: Lemon-flavored Beignets with gold shimmer dust
  • Jolly Roger Punch: Spiced Tropical Juices with hints of Pineapple, Orange and
    Mango
  • Calypso’s Caribbean Chicken Stew: Caribbean-seasoned Chicken stewed with
    Onions, Carrots, Celery, Tomatoes, Potatoes and Yucca
  • Golden Churro: Gold-dusted Churro

Friday, March 17: Pirate-themed entertainment comes alive throughout New Orleans Square, including performances by the Bootstrappers and Lucky the Pirate.
Saturday, March 18: Even more entertainment will be added on the attraction’s official
anniversary, including appearances by the legendary pirate himself, Captain Jack
Sparrow.Limited-edition, anniversary merchandise will be available for purchase in New Orleans Square, while supplies last. Pirate Speak! collectible cards will be available for guests who wish to talk like a pirate. Guests may discover additional special surprises on March 18.

The original Pirates of the Caribbean attraction set the bar for future theme park attractions with masterful storytelling and technology that introduced approximately 120 Audio-Animatronics characters. The popular attraction has inspired five films and the fifth, “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales,” is set to open in theaters May 26, 2017.

This is not a sponsored post. Images are property of Disney. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

Discovery Cube Orange County Presents The Very Eric Carle Exhibit Through 5/24

This is not a sponsored post. I was invited to attend a media event, as a guest of Discovery Cube, in order to write this post. Some images are property of Discovery Cube. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

Discovery Cube Orange County invites families to step into the pages of Eric Carle’s colorful picture books by visiting The Very Eric Carle Exhibit.  Eric Carle’s classic “Very” series, all illustrated in his hand-painted tissue paper collage technique, introduces five special insects who take journeys of discovery. Each story is a testament to Eric Carle’s’ love of nature, his respect for the emotional lives of children, and his recurring themes of friendship creativity, and the power of imagination.the-very-busy-spiderEric Carle stories included in the exhibit are:

  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar – a story about hope. You, like the little caterpillar, will grow up, unfold your wings, and fly off into the future.
  • The Very Busy Spider -a story about work and how we need to work and finish our tasks despite our many distractions.
  • The Very Quiet Cricket – a story about love. Crickets and people alike go in search of a suitable mate.
  • The Very Lonely Firefly – a story about belonging. We all want to belong to a group, a family, and our own fellow creatures.
  • The Very Clumsy Click Beetle – a story about persistence. Each of us faces some obstacles in life, but we need to try and try again until we overcome the challenges.

the-very-clumsy-beetleInteractive exhibit activities include:

  • Create your own butterfly using light and color through shadow play
  • Test your dexterity, strength and flexibility as you step through a giant, web-like structure
  • Compose a night symphony
  • Spin your own web on a large weaving wall
  • Test your balance as you rummage across a pile of pebbles
  • Crawl through tall blades of grass 

you-are-a-beautiful-butterflyThe Very Eric Carle exhibit is designed for children 2 to 8 years of age, their families, and pre-school and school groups ages 2 to 8 years. Very Eric Carle: A Very Hungry, Quiet, Lonely, Clumsy, Busy Exhibit was co-organized by Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. The exhibit is included in the price of regular admission.be-youFor more information about the Very Eric Carle exhibit or to purchase tickets, go here.

About Discovery Cube
Discovery Cube inspires and educates young minds through engaging science-based programs and exhibits to create a meaningful impact on the communities they serve. Their mission is brought to life through the cornerstones of their four core initiatives, including: STEM Proficiency, Early Learning, Healthy Living and Environmental Stewardship. This exhibit represents their evolving commitment to expand STEM proficiency by keeping up with the trends, events and news that are capturing kids’ attention – and creating an entertaining way to approach education through a day of family bonding.

{Giveaway} Hop On Over to Irvine Park Railroad’s Easter Eggstravaganza Starting 3/25

I’m so excited for Irvine Park Railroad’s Annual Easter Eggstravaganza, which will open this year on Saturday, March 25th and go through Saturday, April 15th!  irvine-park-railroad-easter-eggstravaganza-hay-rideThis event has become one of our family’s favorite outings every year. We love to visit Irvine Park Railroad which is located inside of the beautiful Irvine Regional Park. Irvine-park-railroad-easter-eggstravaganza-bunny-photoChildren can meet the Easter Bunny and have their photo taken with him for $10.00. This fee includes a complimentary photo that will be taken by Irvine Park Railroad staff. Each additional print of the same photo is $6.00. Photos will be printed in a few, short minutes at the Easter Bunny booth.

Other activities at this year’s Easter Eggstravaganza include:

  • train rides
  • hay rides
  • a moon bounce
  • Easter cookie decorating
  • carnival games
  • face painting
  • picture stands and more.

There are also Easter egg hunts available at the Easter Eggstravaganza. They begin daily at 10:00 AM and tickets may be purchased and exchanged for a wristband to participate in an egg hunt at a specific time.

I recommend getting your wristbands for the Easter egg hunt first when you arrive.Tickets must be purchased on the day of the event in order to receive a wristband for the Easter egg hunt. I also recommend bringing an Easter basket for each child that will be participating in the Easter egg hunt. Irvine Park Railroad will also offer Easter baskets for sale. For complete details about the Easter egg hunts, including times and costs, go here

While you’re at Irvine Regional Park, be sure and visit the park’s other activities including Wheel Fun Rentals® at Irvine Park bike and paddle boat rentals, pony rides and the OC Zoo.irvine-park-easter-eggstravaganzaIrvine Park Railroad opens daily at 10:00 AM. The cost for train tickets is $5.00 per person; children 12 months and younger ride free.

Irvine Park Railroad is located at:

1 Irvine Park Road

Orange, CA 92869.

The park entrance fee – charged by the County of Orange – is $3.00 per vehicle on weekdays and $5.00 per vehicle on weekends.

Irvine Park Railroad’s other annual events include the Anniversary Celebration, Fourth Grade California History Education Program, Pumpkin Patch, and Christmas Train. irvine-park-railroad-easter-eggstravaganza-signsConnect with Irvine Park Railroad on Social Media!Giveaway-time

I’m also having a giveaway and one lucky reader is going to win a package that’s worth approximately $80! The prize package includes:

  • 8 Activity Tickets 
  • 1 Wheel Fun Rentals at Irvine Park surrey rental (excludes the double surrey)
  • 1 Wheel Fun Rentals at Irvine Park paddle boat rental

All you have to do is enter on the Rafflecopter below! Be sure to follow the directions carefully! Hope to see you all at Irvine Park Railroad’s Easter Eggstravaganza in a couple of weeks! Good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

Red Rose Taverne Now Open at Disneyland With a Beauty & the Beast-Inspired Menu

Exciting news! Red Rose Taverne, a Beauty & the Beast-inspired eatery is now open at Disneyland! Located in Fantasyland, inside the space that’s normally Village Haus, this quick-service restaurant offers a variety of delicious dishes that make you feel like you’re a guest in Beauty & the Beast.gaston-wall-decorAs you enter the restaurant, you’ll find subtle,decorative changes inside that vibe with the movie’s theme. I was there before it was fully finished so I only saw a few of the touches. (I can’t wait to visit again now that it’s all done.)mrs-pottsOn my visit, I didn’t have the chance to eat a full meal, although I did try the desserts. (see below)  I cannot wait to go back and sample some of these other menu offerings:

The Beast’s BurgerA 1/3 pound Angus beef patty, slow-cooked beef, Gruyere cheese, caramelized onions, lettuce, tomato and horseradish aioli on a toasted roll.
Class Angus 1/3 lb CheeseburgerAn Angus beef patty with cheese, lettuce, tomato and signature sauce on a toasted roll.
Enchanted Cauli-Flower SandwichA grilled cauliflower steak, spicy lime aioli, tempura-battered green beans, lettuce and tomato on a toasted roll.
Slow-Cooked Beef Poutine Slow-cooked beef and gravy over seasoned waffle-cut fries, pickled onions and cheese curds.
Chicken Sandwich à la LumièreGrilled chicken breast, apple slaw, onion-bacon jam and fried cherry peppers on a toasted roll.
Chef’s Chopped SaladCabbage, Romaine and iceberg lettuce, smoked bacon, apple, hard-cooked eggs, blue cheese crumbles, garlic croutons and apple vinaigrette.
Poutine FlatbreadTopped with slow-cooked beef, pomme frites, roasted garlic aioli, cheese curds, gravy and herb oil.
Garden Mozzarella FlatbreadTopped with marinated tomatoes, fresh Mozzarella, basil and tomato sauce.
Pulled Pork FlatbreadTopped with pulled pork, roasted corn, sweet and spicy barbecue sauce, pickled onions and cilantro

Red Rose Taverne also offers Kids’ Meals, referred to as “Chip’s Dishes”, and a Toddler Meal.

In addition to regular beverages, you can also order Gaston’s Famous Brew at Red Rose Taverne, which is an apple-mango punch topped with passion fruit foam. Guests have the option to order it in a souvenir mug for an additional $8.00. keepsake-mug-red-rose-taverneNow let’s talk about the desserts because that seems to be the most important part. I promise that you’ll want to stop by and enjoy one of each for yourself on your next visit to the Park!

I started off by trying some of “the Grey Stuff” They named it Grey Stuff Gateau. It’s a white chocolate mousse and red velvet cake with a sweet raspberry center and was delicious! the-grey-stuffNext, I tried the Lemon Rose Cake, which is a lemon mousse cake with strawberry-rose filling. This one was bright, colorful and oh-so-tasty.lemon-rose-cakeI also took home one of the Mrs. Potts Krispy treats so I could enjoy it the next day.mrs-potts-krispy-treatI’m really excited about everything going on right now at Disneyland Resort surrounding the upcoming release of Disney’s “Beauty & the Beast” in theaters on March 17th! Did you know that you can catch a special 8-minute sneak peek of the film right now in Disney’s California Adventure Park through March 26th?new-beauty-and-the-beast-posterStop by the Sunset Showcase Theater in Hollywood Land to get an advance look of a scene from the movie, presented in 3D with special in-theater effects, presented continuously throughout the day. While you’re there, be sure to check out the special lobby display featuring a few costumes and props used in the production, too!

This is not a sponsored post. Artwork property of Disney. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

 

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