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culture

An 12 Year Olds Take On YouthWrite

Hi! My name is Hayden Reeve!

You might recognize my last name as I am the daughter of one of the Mamas! I am going to tell you about my experience at YouthWrite®. For a little introduction, it is a non-profit organization with camps for children who love to write. There is also a separate camp for adults who also enjoy writing! Today though, we are going to be discussing the camp for, well, youth! 

Something that I think is quite important and an absolutely excellent characteristic about YouthWrite is the fact that they have a figuratively speaking, bubble type of deal around them.

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In Uncategorized on
February 21, 2022

Skirt Design Challenge Coordinator, Kim Neeser, Shares!

I can still picture the place perfectly. My very own grown-up studio loft. It’s at least 1500 square feet of wide-open space. Long, narrow, two-story, stained-glass windows with arches, frame the room on either side.  My bed is centered on the far-back brick wall with soft linen sheets tossed perfectly imperfect. Thin hardwood floors in a herringbone pattern, with markings of time gone by, connect my bed to my art studio which occupies at least 2/3 of the wide-open space. I have come to realize this place I picture is unusually grand for a single room in New York City, but that was my vision.

I think it was about grade 11 that I placed my vision in NYC, but I was about 5 when I decided I wanted to be an artist when I grew up. I spent hours sketching Betty and Veronica fashion spreads while I started to picture details of this space in my mind. It’s no wonder I ended up in the interior design industry specializing in textiles.

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In Edmonton, Events, Health, Style on
January 15, 2022

SkirtsAfire #YEG – SAVE THE DATE

 SkirtsAfire Festival in Edmonton is self-described as “diverse, inclusive and daring”, guaranteeing there’s something for everyone at their 10th anniversary festival, running March 3-13 in Old Strathcona. With the ever-changing pandemic climate we’re all navigating, there is one thing for certain – SkirtsAfire will offer 10 days of engaging and entertaining performances and experiences!

We have taken in their MainStage Productions since 2017 as well as Opening Night Parties, and of course, the fantastic SkirtsAfire Skirt Design Competition. Featuring the work of women and non-binary folks in the arts in Edmonton – MARCH 3-13, 2022.  Check out SkirtsAfire, experiencing theatre, visual art, design, music, comedy, and more.

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In Christmas, Parenting, Random Thoughts on
November 23, 2021

Telling My Kids We Don’t Celebrate Christmas

I don’t celebrate Christmas, I never have. I grew up in beautiful Jasper National Park. Although now it is a lovely diverse community, when I was growing up in the 90’s it wasn’t so diverse. There were not even a handful of Muslim families and basically 2 Arab families. Finding a sense of community based on my faith and heritage was impossible. Luckily for me, although predominantly Caucasian, the community of Jasper National Park is made up of some of the most amazing, supportive and accepting people I have ever met. We weren’t the only minorities, but for me it sure seemed so!

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Give Your Kids A “Wordplayful” Summer with YouthWrite®

2021 YouthWrite® Camp Theme – Voyage to the Great Unknown

Who is this camp for?

  • Youth in Alberta
  • YouthWrite®, a camp for kids who love to write…just about anything!©
  • Youth 8yrs all the way through 20!
  • Youth can choose in-person or online!

What is YouthWrite?

  • At the camps, young creators can explore new pursuits such as yoga and writing, drumming and words, songwriting, illustrating, cartooning, scriptwriting, improvisation and writing, body percussion and words, and more.
  • They also focus on traditional poetry and fiction – so there really is something for everyone!
  • YouthWrite Society Canada is celebrating its 25th anniversary as a non-profit, charitable arts organization.

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Growing a baby (and a Festival) in a pandemic

In June 2020, I found myself pregnant with my second child. I rolled my eyes at becoming a part of the now famous “Covid-baby club.” It’s a popular club for a reason and I was now a happy member. We had just recently and successfully hosted our 8th annual SkirtsAfire Festival in March, about a week before the lockdowns began. I remember enjoying the spring and the start of summer, feeling optimistic that in a month or two, things would return to normal and we would all get back to our festival city as planned. Then slowly but surely, things started getting postponed, then canceled, and our case numbers took a sharp turn for the worse. Through it all, as I grew this baby mostly isolated to my home, we planned for SkirtsAfire 2021: a return to indoor in-person performances in a safe way.

Having a baby in a pandemic is different. This baby will be welcomed into the world with masks and the strong scent of hand sanitizer and the rough touch of overly-washed chapped hands. No gatherings of friends and family to hold and kiss the fresh being that just entered the world. Instead, there will be more screen time than I’d like to admit my newborn will have, more time spent with me on my phone texting and emailing pictures and updates, more time spent alone, just our small family. I think of my friends who have had babies in 2020 who have no family in the city, most out of the country even, who have had no relatives allowed to visit and have no known date in the future they’ll get to meet the new addition. My sisters live in Hong Kong and I don’t know when they will get to meet their new nephew. Things I never thought I’d need to feel sad about before.

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Celebrating National Indigenous Peoples Day in Alberta

June 21st is National Indigenous Peoples Day in Canada. It’s a time to celebrate, honour and learn more about our history and culture! Events take place throughout the month of June, but here’s what’s happening around Alberta in the next week or so…

National Indigenous Peoples Day Events in Alberta:

  • Edmonton & Area

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In Edmonton, Events, Explore, Random Thoughts on
February 22, 2019

Alberta Mamas SkirtsAFire Artist Spotlight – Writer Michelle Todd {+Giveaway}

As I prepare to perform Deep Fried Curried Perogies at SkirtsAfire Festival this March, I think of the person who made me a mother.

My first born. This beautiful, tall, lean, long physique, gorgeous smile, thoughtful, patient, gooby sense of humour, mini-man. And promptly burst into tears. It has been such a surprisingly long road, it’s not over, but man!

Suddenly he’s 16 and adulthood is around the corner. For him! I can barely believe that I’m no longer the “young adult”. I still can’t exhale. I’m still scared. When he was first born, to the oft asked “How is he? How is motherhood?” I would reply, “Still alive,” not because he had any history of disease, but because it was my new mantra and let’s be honest, many an African violet and bamboo plant have expired in my care. And now I had a human?!?!

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The One-of-a-Kind International Children’s Festival of the Arts is Coming + {Giveaway}

The International Children’s Festival of the Arts: Stories Alive is a one-of-a-kind kids experience that happens right here in Alberta. St. Albert, Alberta to be exact! This annual cultural extravaganza is happening Tuesday, May 29 through Sunday, June 3, 2018.

There’s no shortage of fun at this festival!

Photo Russell Bingham

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In Calgary, Central Alberta on
November 4, 2017

14 Places for Indoor Fun in Red Deer & Area

The snow is here and maybe here to stay. There’s always fun to be had outside – snowman making, tobogganing, and fort making. Sometimes having someplace to go and play inside can prevent full-on hibernation mode and expend some energy in a warm and cozy environment.

Here’s our list of places to take your kids for some indoor fun in and around Red Deer.

Red Deer Museum offers great programming for kids and the chance to have fantastic art & cultural experiences.

Red Deer Public Library. Have you looked at their calendar? With 3 branches there is something going on all the time. And if not, there’s always the books to take your kid away on a ride through their imagination!

Check out the Red Deer Recreation and Culture activity guide! The Collicutt Centre offers registered programs, drop-ins, a climbing wall and of course – the water park!

Jump 360 Red Deer offers lots of trampoline fun!

Treehouse Indoor Playground Red Deer has events, daily specials and lots of indoor fun – 11,000 square feet of it to be precise.

If you’ve got an artist on your hands, Color Me Mine has creative outlet options for your kids. They could even make some Christmas gifts for grandma and grandpa. Two birds, one stone there!

Lazerforce offers indoor laser tag for all ages.

Outside the City

You can find all kinds of fun inside Alberta Sports Hall of Fame Museum including interactive mulit-sport games.

In Blackfalds, the Red Deer Kinsmen Indoor Playspace, located in the Abbey Centre,  has 6 levels and over 2600 square feet of fun for your child 12 years and under.

The Sylvan Lake NexSource Centre features a children’s playspace & programming for the whole family.

Also in Sylvan Lake, much like the RDPL, Sylvan Library has programming for kids and of course – books!

In Penhold, the Multiplex Area offers drop in programming and special events.

There’s also the Penhold Library!

Central Parkland Parentlink runs programs and playgroups in the smaller towns and rural areas too!

Did we miss anything? Where do you take your little one to play in and around Red Deer?