Arts and Crafts
When it comes to summer camp, there are two kinds of kids in this overrated adventure called parenthood. One kind begins whining around Easter that Jason, Jared, Jeremy and every other J-named boy he knows is going to camp and he wants to go, too. The other kind cries at the mere mention of leaving home for environs and experiences unknown. They act the same, however, on the first day of camp. Death-gripping the back door, they pee in their new shorts, smack the nearest human with a carefully packed sack lunch and scream with blood-curdling intensity, "I DON'T WANNA GO!" Skip the refresher course in child psychology this year. Turn instead to the Irving Arts Center, an unlikely ally with an innovative family event that offers a hands-on preview to its summer arts camps for kids. The Arts Spring Fling on Saturday is a free afternoon of mural painting, clay molding, painting, drawing, sidewalk art, music and theater that can turn even the most unwilling child into a committed camper. Parents can meet the camp instructors and even pre-register for IAC's one- and two-week KidsArts camps that run June 9 through August 1. Irving Arts Center, 3333 N. MacArthur Blvd., Irving. Call 972-252-7558. --Annabelle Massey Helber
Live & Local
Reading is more than fundamental
Gimme an L-I-B-R-A-R-Y! What's that spell? Better than T-V! Move the kids out of the hypnotic blue glow of the television and into the realm of interaction with real-live people. As unusual as it may sound, there is such a thing as active learning, and it's at Dallas Public Library branches. Kids can sing, dance, hear stories, perhaps even yodel, as they are surreptitiously educated through the Library Live! series. And it's free. Warning: Children may actually enjoy learning and come home with knowledge of Africa, Greece, poetry, Texas history and how they fit into the world around them. Caution: They may become cultured. Attention: Little ones may develop a love for reading, making future readers for us and an honor student bumper sticker for you. For a list of activities, call 214-670-1400. --Merritt Martin
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