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(Special Event Page Graphics) AmgenBeachBike.jpgBiking for Everyone!            


The upcoming Bike Parade next Monday is made for kids!  Why? It combines action, art and noise!   Riding around with streamers flying and cards making a loud slapping sound is fun. Decorating bikes would make a great project for this weekend, whether you intend to ride in the parade or around town with the family. Imagine what you can do with streamers, ribbons, flowers, a little cardboard, wire coat hangars, playing cards and/or colored straws on wheel spokes, tin cans on a rope, a few balloons, cloth and paint! Make a "head" (Special Event Page Graphics) AmgenDragonBike.jpgto go on the handle bars and you could become a dinosaur, panda, dolphin, zebra, or family of cats.  Get creative with red, white, pink streamers, foil, Valentine signs made from paper plates, red and black markers and balloons. Wear an outfit to go with your bike. Please send us a photo!


     On Monday, Feb 16, the Amgen Tour of California racers is expected to arrive in Santa Cruz between noon and 2 pm.  Before then there is all sorts of action in downtown Santa Cruz.  Plan to park and walk downtown as most streets will be closed off.


Kids' Art Bike Parade Details

for Kids 12 & Under

Check in starts 8:30am.  Parade starts 10am. "Frazier Lewis Alley" next to Soquel/Front Street Garage

Soquel Avenue > Front Street >Amgen Tour of CA Finish line at Cooper Street

     Bring bicycles already decorated or dress them up at our on-the-spot decorating booth. We'll have ribbons, refreshments, a photo booth and free bike checks for all parade participants.

Helmets required. Parents or guardians must be present and sign a waiver.



(Icons/Graphics) LadyDetectives.jpgEvents

See full Calendar for Events Details


Wednesdays 2/4-25, 7-9pm, World of the Young Child Parenting Classes, Santa Cruz Waldorf School, $75 per person, or $100 per couple. We'll look at developmental stages of the physical and self-consciousness of the young child, leading to discussion on ways to truly connect with the child and support his or her individual development.


Sat, 2/14, 8am-12pm, Monterey Bay Certified Farmers Market, Aptos, Do your weekly shopping while enjoying live Bluegrass by the Farmers Market String Band or lively accordion music by one of Santa Cruz's favorite performing artists, The Great Morgani.

See full Calendar for Events Details!

Wed, 2/4 1-6pm Downtown & Sat, 1/31, 9-1 West Side , Santa Cruz Farmers Markets, The Santa Cruz Farmers Markets offer a moveable feast of fresh, locally grown produce, free-range eggs, grass-fed meats and poultry, as well as baked goods, ready-to-eat treats and espresso drinks.
Downtown: Lincoln & Cedar  ~  West Side: 2801 Mission


Weds, 2/11 6-8pm, Free Workshop: How to Interpret Educational & Academic Testing, Chartwell School, Free, We will review the bell curve and learn about the types of assessments and what they measure. The presenter will relate this information to specific learning styles and discuss how this data is used to determine how students learn best. John Aulenta, licensed educational psychologist.

See full Calendar for Events Details!


2nd & 4th Thurs 7-10:30pm English Country Dance Class, First Congregational Church of Santa Cruz, Lively dancing, stirring tempos, a welcoming atmosphere for beginners, assorted comic antics, occasional laughter, and musicians that will play 'till the cows come home.  All musicians are welcome in the open band.


Sat, 2/14 10am-12pm, Family Art Saturday, MAH, $5/person
Red is the color of the day during this Museum of Art & History workshop dedicated to the legend of St. Valentine. The entire family will create lovable cards using stencils, collage, stamps, recycled materials and much more.

Sat, 2/14 Migration Festival Seacliff, New Brighton, Henry Cowell, and Natural Bridges
Santa Cruz State Parks celebrates the migration of our region's diverse wildlife with events, educational booths, speakers and activities for kids of all ages.

See full Calendar for Events Details!

(Special Event Page Graphics) AmgenRace.jpgThe Amgen Tour of California racers is expected to arrive in Santa Cruz between noon and 2 pm.


Kids' Art Bike Parade for kids 12 & under,  10:00 am Check in starts at 8:30 am,"Frazier Lewis Alley" next to Soquel/Front Street Garage


By 9:00 am most streets and parking will be closed downtown in preparation for the Tour's arrival. Please be prepared to park outside of the downtown area and walk or ride to the parade check-in.


FREE KIDS' ZONE as part of the AMGEN LIFESTYLE FESTIVAL, 10:30am - 2:30pm
75 River Street

Bring the family to the fun and free Parks and Recreation Kids' Zone presented as part of the Amgen Lifestyle Festival. Hop on our inflatable obstacle course, ride the giant slide, or challenge yourself on our rock climbing mountain! Hula hoops, clowns, and face painters will add to the fun. Plus, Ecology Action and Community Traffic Safety Coalition will offer entertaining and informative bike safety games and interactive exhibits.  The free Lifestyle Festival will include food, drink, an entertainment stage and booths from a wide variety of vendors.

Handmade in Santa Cruz -a display of custom bikes from 5 Santa Cruz builders! Plaza Lane Optometry, 1537 Pacific Ave.

Innovations in Bicycle Design: Past, Present and Future Exhibit, The Museum of Art and History, 705 Front Street,Technology and design in Santa Cruz is spotlighted through the bicycle. Displays and interactive kiosks showing innovations in bicycle design and technology in Santa Cruz over the last 25 years. This retrospective of bicycle innovation celebrates the city's history as a bike mecca and the Tour's arrival in town.


Sat, 2/11. 10:30-11:30am, Meet the Authors of The Jewel Box, The Porter Memorial Library's free "Meet the Author(s)" Program continues with the four local writers who constitute "The Jewels," aka Mysty W. Moonfree, author of two Capitola mysteries, The Jewel Box and A Killer Festival (a fifth member, Marybeth Varcados, passed away last month). The women write as a group and share a love of the Santa Cruz area, particularly Capitola, as well as a love of writing. Books by the authors will be available for purchase and for autographs.

Sat 2/14, 1-4pm, Three Cups of Tea Fundraiser, Gault Elementary School will hold a fundraising auction to benefit the Central Asia Institute. Inspired by the bestselling book Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson, which chronicles his near death while mountain climbing and rescue by a remote people in Pakistan, this auction is in support of CAI's mission to support community-based education and literacy programs, especially for girls, in remote regions of Central Asia. Nearly 50 Santa Cruz clay artists have come together, creating their own unique sets of three teacups which will be auctioned both online and at the event. The book will also be available at the event.


Sun, 2/15, 7-9pm, Mid-Winter Night Hike, Quail Hollow Ranch, Join us for a hike in the darkness of the winter night as we explore the nocturnal world along the Sunset Trail using only the light of the moon. This is a difficult trail over a mile round trip and not recommended for children under 10. Be sure to bring warm clothing and wear sturdy walking shoes. Flashlights optional. Rain does NOT cancel this event.


Thurs, 2/19 4-7pm, "It's Easy Being Green" Business Showcase, Aptos and Capitola/Soquel Chambers of Commerce, Capitola Mall

See full Calendar for Events Details!

Suki Wessling's Blog: Whole Child Eduction

(Site Photos) SukiWessling.jpg


     "Every one" says they teach the whole child.  I've observed that it's a frequently used term and think that it has different meanings depending on different schools of education.  Suki's blog is the  best explanation I've ever encountered of the term "whole child education." Thanks Suki!  Parmalee


     "...we had to do dance movements while singing. I could feel my brain stretching...I swear it was creaking and groaning with the effort! Focusing on three different things at once makes your brain develop the capability of not focusing -- being able to feel what comes next rather than...">>>>>>>  

(Site Photos) LorrainePhotoforWeb.jpgThis Three Year Old Needs Boundaries

Dear Lorraine,

     My 3 year old won't sit at the table no matter what. He fusses, picks at his food and leaves and we can't keep him there. He rarely eats what I make; he's not really hungry because he raids my cupboards any time he wants. I've tried sending him to his room, but he even gets on top of the counters to get snacks I hide in the highest shelves and I worry about him falling off. We're frustrated and mad. He's a very sweet boy, but ... >>>>>>

(BUILT IN) (Icons/Graphics) RSS_Image.jpgGet The Latest Post from Your Favorite Section

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(Holidays) ValentineCouple.jpgParents Need Love Too
by Leon Scott Baxter, America's Romance Guru


     Don't let Valentine's Day be a scapegoat this year. Too many busy parents use it as a "Get out of Romance the Rest of the Year" card. And, yes, I'm talking about dads more than moms (but, some of you ladies also abuse the day... you know who you are).


     Seeing that I dedicate a big portion of my life to love, romance and relationships, people often ask me if Valentine's Day is my favorite day of the year. And, I tell them, absolutely and unequivocally, "No". The day has special meaning to me personally (first day my future wife allowed me to get close enough to lay a kiss on her), but I think it's been too commercialized. The media tells us what's romantic: flowers, jewelry, perfume, chocolates, a dinner at a fancy restaurant. And, they set up the holiday as if it were invented exclusively for women, and a man's duty to romance her this one day out of the year. Wrong!


     First, romance is about making your partner feel loved and cared for. If that happens to be red roses and a heart-shaped box of chocolates, jump right in with both feet, by all means. But, odds are you can make your partner feel loved by being creative and personal and traveling the path least taken (a concert, picnic lunch, day at the spa, tickets to "the game").


     Second, Valentine's Day is not just for women. Allow me to explain why. If we listen to the media (the flowers, jewelry and perfume) we might get the feeling that it's her day. But, remember, February 14th is the day when you show your partner they are loved. Believe it or not, men want to be loved too, only thing is that might look different for a dad versus a mom. So, ladies, since the media doesn't tell you what to do for your man, you need to be creative. What does he do for fun? What are his hobbies? What does he do for entertainment? What could you do to completely floor him? Surprise him with tickets to Vegas? Buy him the boxed set of the first three seasons of Lost? Get him that surfboard he's been eying? Make him a coupon book good for intimate moments?


     Finally, Valentine's Day is not the end! Look at it as the beginning. For so many, especially us dads, Valentine's Day is perceived as an obligation rather than an opportunity. We see it as a day we pull ourselves away from the kids, work, the gym, and our computers to make our partners satisfied romantically at least once a calendar year. We have to make dinner reservations, dress well, pay an arm and a leg for a dozen roses, shave, smell half-way decent, and God forbid, shower.


     The reason why this is perceived as an obligation is because we feel what the media tells us isn't "us", but we are obligated to do it nonetheless, or we will be labeled a bad partner or an uncaring spouse (not to mention, a romantically challenged Neanderthal). Once we claim Valentine's Day for ourselves again, making it a personal celebration for our partners, it becomes something enjoyable to celebrate. Consider avoiding the crowds and hitting the beach. Forget the $80 bouquet of roses and buy novels for one another at Borders and read them together at Starbucks as you sip iced mochas.


     Also, look at Valentine's Day as a reminder, a reminder to add love into your relationship and to sprinkle in romance often. Don't look at it as the one day you must feign romance because you are "supposed to". As our passion starts to dwindle, use February 14th as that boost back into romance that will keep you going until February, 2010.

     Oh, and by the the Valentine's goodies on February 15th (everything's half-price), hold on to them for a few months, and bust them out when you're the kids are at Grandma's and your partner is least suspecting to be romanced. Knock their socks off!


Leon Scott Baxter (America's Romance Guru) is a father of two girls and has been married to his college sweetheart for sixteen years. If you are interested in receiving a free monthly newsletter for couples who want to keep the flames of romance ignited, just visit his website: Couples Committed to Love and register.


(Icons/Graphics) SchoolHouseRed.jpgSchool Corner



Preview 90 Preschools here.

Is your K-12 school Here?

Public School API Scores


Open Houses


2/12, 9-11am


2/11, 9-11

Gateway Kindergarten Info Night

2/12 6:30pm

Kirby Science Fair

2/12, 6-8pm

Aptos Academy

2/22 2-5


School Events

Santa Cruz Montessori

World of the Young Child Class

2/11, 7pm

Chartwell Workshop

2/11 6pm, How to Interpret Educational & Academic Testing

Ed Resource Center

Choosing A School

Questions to Ask

2/21, 10-11am

Details in Calendar

Win a copy 

Keep Your Skirt On,

Kicky Columns with Legs

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 97 Parks A-Z


Aptos Academy

PreK - 8
Sun, Feb 22
2-5 pm

(Site Photos) AptosAcademy2.jpg

Meet inspired teachers
& friendly students!


arts-enriched programs

WASC Accredited

Aptos Academy
1940 Bonita Dr, Aptos



Enter to Win

A Family 4 Pack

of Tickets to


(Special Event Page Graphics) HSMusicalAd.jpg

Enter to Win!


Feel the fun and excitement of Disney's High School Musical: The Ice Tour as world-class skaters take to the ice with music and dance inspired by Disney's High School Musical!

HP Pavilion, San Jose


Oracle Arena, Oakland


Buy Tickets

Fresh Prep


Pick up

an oven ready dinner!

Molasses Spiced

Pork Tenderloin
marinated in a blend of
fresh garlic
lime juice
a hint of molasses
& brown sugar...
Great with
Mashed Potatoes

View entire menu

504 B Front St, SC


(Holidays) Valentine_KissMouse.jpg

Last Minute

Valentine Tips

Glen Arbor Preschool


First 5 Kits

for New Parents!

Stop in or call.

9393 Glen Arbor Rd
Ben Lomond

Glen Arbor Preschool

Save the date!

Open Gym

Parents Night Out
Santa Cruz

Sports Central
(near Costco)

(Site Photos) GymnastCentralUpsidedowngirl.jpg

Reserve Space Now!

Feb. 21, 6-10pm
Ages 3-13
Safe gymnastics, games, trampoline, snacks & fun.

Call to reserve your spot as space is limited.



Cooking 101
Ages 8-12
2/9, 16 & 24, 3:30-5pm

3/2, 9 & 17

(Site Photos) FreshPrepTeens1.jpg

Basic cooking skills
and FUN!

Class 1: Surf City Macaroni and Cheese
Class 2: Everybody Loves Lasagna
Class 3: Chilled and Chunky Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad

Culinary Center

of Santa Cruz

Scotts Valley

Tae Kwon Do

Kicking Good Fun

for Moms, Dads, Kids




(Site Photos) SVTKDMiniDragons.jpg


5004 SV Dr, SV



(Business Logos) SantaCruzSpanishWorld.jpg

We love teaching Spanish in our community!



Trinity Preschool

A Safe, Caring, High-Quality Preschool

420 Melrose Avenue
Santa Cruz

(Holidays) ValentineWhiteDogValentine.jpg


(Holidays) Valentinestickfigure.jpg

Happy Valentines Day to You

Dear Parents on the Front Lines!

Have a lovely long weekend with your families.

Last Minute Valentine Tips for You!.


Please enter our contest for prizes!!

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