- Hello from the LexFUN! Executive Board
- Special LexFUN! events in September
- Ongoing LexFUN! Programs and Events
- Community Service
- Events in the Community
- Many Thanks!
“Labor Day is a glorious holiday because your child will be going back to school the next day. It would have been called Independence Day, but that name was already taken.” ~ Bill Dodds, acclaimed children’s poet and novelist
After weeks of hitting the pool, picking up wet swim suits, driving to camps (Summer Fenn-loved it!!), cleaning up popsicle stains and swatting mosquitoes, some of us might see the beginning of school as a much needed break from the summer. Especially those parents, like me, who straddle two worlds – the elementary school world and the toddler world. The start of school is a time for us to catch our breath.
And it’s a time for everyone in my family to look forward to Fall fun with LexFUN! As my 9 year old heads off to fourth grade at the Fenn School, my 3 year old is looking forward to spending her days with all the fun things LexFUN! has to offer in the Fall – WinterFUN! On Tuesdays (new day this year), Drop-In Center on Fridays, fire station visits, playgroups, and monthly crafts with seniors at Youville. Even though he’s technically aged out of LexFUN!, my 9 year old still loves coming to LexFUN! events and is looking forward to our annual Membership Open House and Kick Off Party on Sept. 10th, especially the dance party with DJ Mike. Both of my children are looking forward to riding on the LexFUN! Flyers’ team in the first every Lexington PMC Ride for Kids on Sept. 20th and meeting up with all their LexFUN! friends at the Family Playground Meet Up on Sept. 26th.
Me? I’m looking forward to a grown-up evening at Moms’ Night Out and snagging my Swag Bag with goodies at the Membership Open House (Swag bags are giant sized this year and both snowpants and snow boots will fit in them – perfect for preschool. They are in limited supply so stop by the Open House early!) My husband? Well, he looks forward to the Halloween Parade every year. (Don’t tell anyone, but for the past 6 years he has secretly slipped into an Elmo costume and emerged at the center of town to lead all the children in the Halloween parade. Then, with the patience of a saint, he poses for photos with all the little tykes, until the very last one leaves….This year he will also be making an appearance at the PMC Ride…)
There are just so many things to love about LexFUN! in the Fall. We hope you’ll take advantage of all of them. We’re looking forward to another amazing year!!! We hope to see you at our Open House and Kick Off Party on Thurs. Sept. 10th at St. Brigid’s from 9am – 6 pm!
– Leigh-Ann Durant for the LexFUN! Executive Board
Welcome to our 2015-16 Executive Board
We have a great group of ladies on our LexFUN! Executive Board this year:
- Leigh-Ann Durant and Joyce Dvorak — Co-Presidents
- Gretchen Mather – Vice President, Advertising
- Autumn Cohen – Vice President, Community Service
- Christina Finegold – Vice President, Membership
- Christine Manavian — Vice President, Social
- Val Machinist and Tara Greiner – Co-Treasurers
- Kim Ryan – Secretary
We also have the very first ever DAD on our Board – welcome Steven Wang, our new Web Editor!!!
Last month our Consignment Sale Team learned that LexFUN!’s Consignment Sale had been selected by Boston Parents Paper as one of the Top 5 best consignment events in the state. Congratulations! This was a nice surprise and recognition of all the hard work that goes into our Sale every year.
Thank You to Church of Our Redeemer for its Generous Donation
LexFUN! received another wonderful surprise this summer – Lexington’s Church of our Redeemer gave LexFUN! a sizeable donation to use for its Preschool Scholarship Fund.
Each year this vibrant, mission-focused, family-friendly Episcopal Church holds a Pancake Breakfast on Patriots Day and donates the proceeds to a local charity. This year, LexFUN! was selected as the recipient of the funds. This was a very welcomed surprise because the number of applicants to LexFUN!’s Preschool Scholarship has been rapidly growing year and after. With the Church’s donation and the proceeds of our very successful Consignment Sale, last month, LexFUN! was able to award over $28,000 in scholarships to Lexington families to enable their children to attend preschool this September. These scholarships provide opportunities for Lexington children to get quality early education to support the child’s lifelong learning.
LexFUN! warmly thanks the Church for its generous donation!
Get Your Back to School Labels
Again this year, LexFUN! has teamed up with Label Daddy to help you keep track of your little ones’ belongings and LexFUN! receive a 10% discount!!!
Label your kids things with their own personalized peel-n-stick washable (yes, washable!) labels and get a 10% discount! Labels can be placed on clothing, lunch boxes, water bottles, backpacks, mittens, hats, and they are reasonable priced. So you can order name labels for each of your children. Labels are also great for allergy labels on lunchboxes, cups, etc. Use code “lexfun” for 10% off, plus LexFUN! will receive 10% of each order. Great for YOU and great for LexFUN! Visit www.lexfun.labeldaddy.com.
Renew Your Membership and Come to our All-Day Membership Open House and Kick Off Party!
Date:Thursday, September 10th
Time: 9:00am – 6:00pm
Location: St. Brigid’s Parish – Keilty Hall, ample parking in church lot
Thursday, September 10th is the day! That’s when we kick off our new LexFUN! year with our all-day Membership Open House and Kick Off Party! The Open House will run from 9 am to 6pm at St. Brigid’s, 2001 Mass. Ave. with non-stop programming throughout the day. No matter what time you stop by, something fun will be going on! Since the event is on a Thursday, there’s early dismissal so you can bring your elementary school kids too. Older school-aged siblings will also enjoy the entertainment.
Make sure you renew your LexFUN! Membership BEFORE the Open House.
Schedule of Events
10:00 am Big Joe the Storyteller
11:00 am Stories & Songs with Cary Library
12:00 pm Family & Me Zumba Class with Happy Healthy Kids Fitness Studio **first time appearance
1:00pm New England Movement Arts — hip hop class and karate demo **first time appearance**
2:00 pm Karen K and the Jitterbugs musical performance
3:00- 5:00 pm DJ Mike’s Dance Party!
Plus, there will be face paintings, crafts, balloons, snacks and surprises throughout the day.
Swag Bag: We will have our annual Swag Bag stuffed full of giveaways (like high-end eye crème from LeDerm, a water bottle, a T-shirt, beachball, and much more) and discount coupons from businesses in Town to give to the first 200 parents who come. This year our Swag Bag is an oversized bag that is large enough to carry both boots and snowpants – great for back-to-preschool!
Annual Guide: Hard copies of the 2015-2016 edition of our Annual Guide For Young Families will be handed out at the Open House. This go-to book is an invaluable resource for all types of activities happening in and around Lexington and provides LexFUN! Family Favorites, a detailed list of child-care centers and preschools in Town, as well as a full listing of over 40+ summer camps. The Guide will also be posted on the “Members Only” section of our website after the Open House (password for this Members Only section is “fiveandunder”).
Membership Card: You will get your 2015-2016 Membership Card at the Open House. It’s in the form of a laminated card and a convenient key tag, and is your ticket to shopping, dining and entertainment discounts at local businesses in and around Town. This year’s LexFUN!’s discount list has been expanded to include even more businesses and discounts than ever! The Membership Card is also your FREE pass to our Member Appreciation Party in November.
So bring your children to the Open House, re-connect with old friends, make new friends and see first-hand why everyone says “LexFUN! is your connection to EVERYTHING for young families in Lexington.” Sign up for a playgroup, a book group, or an evening seminar. Find out more about our upcoming family and parent-only programs, and stay for the fabulous FREE entertainment. There is ample free parking in St. Brigid’s parking lot so you can stay for as long as you want.
Can you Volunteer for an hour or two?
In order to make this event a success we need YOU! So please consider volunteering for one or more shifts by clicking on the attached link and signing up for an hour or two http://lexingtonfiveandundernetwork.bringit.bz/public/b04177 (you may have to copy and paste it into your browser).
If you have any questions feel free to contact our Chair of the Membership Kick Off Party, Kristin Simon at email@example.com.
Interested in connecting with other parents of children around the same age? Then consider signing up for an age-based Playgroup through LexFUN!
Aged-based playgroups (based on your child’s kindergarten year) begin in the fall and continue throughout the academic year and into the summer when members are available. In most cases, there are multiple sections in one playgroup cohort. The exception is for our youngest LexFUN! Members, since there is usually only a handful of moms with babies that sign up.
We will do our best to match you with other LexFUN! Members based on your children’s ages, your availability and your neighborhood/elementary school district. For an automatic sign up form, please visit the LexFUN! playgroup web page at: http://www.lexfun.org/programs/playgroups/.
You will be contacted in the next few weeks with information or follow up questions about your playgroup placement.
|Birthdate||Year Entering Kindergarten||Playgroup Sections|
|Sept 2010 – August 2011||2016||Pine|
|Sept 2011 – August 2012||2017||Birch|
|Sept 2012 – August 2013||2018||Hemlock|
|Sept 2013 – August 2014||2019||Redwood|
|Sept 2014 – August 2015||2020||Oak|
|Sept 2015 – August 2016||2021||Willow|
If you were a Maple playgroup member last year – congratulations on graduating to Kindergarten!
For more information about playgroups, please email the LexFUN! Playgroup Chair, Jessica Paul at JessicaBPaul@gmail.com.
Family Playground Meeting with Cider and Donuts
Date: Saturday, September 26th
Time: 10:00am – 11:30am
Location: Center Playground, next to the Tennis Courts
Stroll down to Center Playground (right next to the town tennis courts and high school track) on Saturday, September 26th at 10 am where we will play and enjoy some fall treats until 11:30am. Come with your kids and enjoy the beautiful late summer/early fall weather! No need to RSVP, just stop on by and join the crowd! Cider donuts and kids’ drinks will be provided. We hope to see you there!
Date: Sunday, September 20th
Time: 8:30 – 11:30 am (the actual ride is only one hour)
Location: Bowman School
LexFUN is excited to be an integral part of the first PMC Kids Ride in Lexington. The LexFUN! Community Service Committee has been working throughout the summer to help publicize the event, plan the post-race activities for riders and their families, and support the race by volunteering and being a part of the LexFUN team!
They have also formed the LexFUN! Flyers team and riders are practicing for the big day. We need more riders on our team and any child between 3 and 13 can join us. So visit this link to register: http://www.kids.pmc.org/lexington/register-to-ride.aspx. The registration fee is $10 until September 10th and $20 thereafter. The fundraising minimum is $25. Come be a part of this inaugural year! Stay tuned for a “bike decorating” event for our team members prior to the day of the ride.
LexFUN members are distributing flyers, hanging posters and sharing the event details with school and community friends. Please share this link with friends and family to help get the word out: http://www.kids.pmc.org/lexington. Board members are working tirelessly to arrange post-race activities for the participants. You can join the post-race planning committee by contacting Emily Sayre at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It is likely that most of us have been affected by cancer in some capacity at some point in our lives. Participating in the ride provides an outlet for even the youngest of our children to send strength, encouragement, support and a bit of team spirit to those struggling with cancer. LexFUN! Community Service Committee member, Emily Sayer, tells us that this past June, her 3 year old son participated in the Bedford PMC Kids Ride (in it’s 11th year and going strong!) and he felt a special connection with his grandpa, who is currently undergoing treatments. Her son was telling everyone who asked, “I’m helping my grandpa feel better!”
Volunteers are needed (ages 14+). Parents (that’s you!) can lend a hand in a variety of ways including assisting with minor bike repairs, registering riders, directing them along the route, setting up, decorating, cleaning up, supervising the post-race activities, providing first aid, and helping with parking and traffic. Please check out this link to register as a volunteer: https://kids.pmc.org/lexington/volunteer/register.asp
What is the PMC?
The Pan-Mass Challenge (PMC) is a two-day, 190-mile bike-a-thon held the first weekend of every August. The PMC is the most successful athletic based charity in the country and has set a goal to surpass $500 million raised since its 1980 inception this year. 100% of the funds raised from the PMC go directly to life-saving research at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute through the Jimmy Fund.
What is the PMC Kids Ride?
The Lexington PMC Kids Ride will be one of thirty-five PMC Kids Rides throughout New England and beyond. The PMC Kids Rides are the spokes in the PMC wheel, offering a way for children to become part of the PMC mission, involving young people in volunteerism and fundraising in a safe and athletic way. Since the first ride in 1998, The PMC Kids Rides program has raised more than $6 million.
To provide the young cyclists with an additional push, the PMC recognizes cyclists in the Kids Rides program who go above and beyond their fundraising. Riders who raise $250 or more will be honored as a PMC Kids Heavy Hitter, and riders who raise over $750 will be honored a PMC Kids Breakaway Fundraiser. Both PMC Kids Heavy Hitters and Breakaway Fundraisers will be recognized with a special PMC item and a certificate to distinguish their achievement.
Pedal strong, friends! See you on ride day!
Research has consistently shown that the early years are crucial in developing children’s socio-emotional skills. What activities can you do with children ages 0- to 5- years to develop these important skills? When should you worry about delays in socio-emotional functioning? What are the red flags for an autism spectrum disorder? When should you seek a neuropsychological evaluation?
As part of our LexFUN! Seminar Series, on September 17th from 7:30-9:30pm at Community Nursery School, 2325 Mass. Ave., LexFUN will be hosting Dr. Renee Folsom from the Child Development Network. The Child Development Network (CDN) is a multi-disciplinary team of pediatric health professionals working to help children, adolescents, and their families with concerns related to learning, behavior, and social-emotional development. The Child Development Network (CDN) is a team of pediatric neuropsychologists working to help children, adolescents, and their families with concerns related to learning, behavior, and social-emotional development. Dr. Folsom will be speaking on current research about developing children’s socio-emotional skills, red flags for autism, and when to seek a neuropsychological evaluation. The seminar is free of charge for members.
RSVP on BigTent http://www.bigtent.com/group/calendar/event/93876589?trackback
When it comes to indoor play spaces in Lexington, LexFUN!’s weekly Drop-in Center can’t be beat!
Every Friday, preschoolers, toddlers, babies and their parents and caregivers drop in to play, explore and learn in a huge indoor play area filled with age appropriate toys and activities. Children develop social, physical, and sensory skills through hands on free play activities, books and crafts.
Drop-In-Center opens for the season on Friday, September 18th from 9:30 – 11:30 am and runs every Friday during the Fall, Winter and Spring (from September 18th through April 15th) at St. Brigid’s Parish Hall, 2001 Mass. Ave. The cost is $1 per child. No RSVP necessary, just show up.
Looking for a fun activity for a cold winter day? WinterFUN! is our bi-weekly drop-in arts and crafts program for toddlers and preschoolers that offers make-and-take crafts for your little Picasso. When they’re done with their craft, children can engage in relaxing and imaginative free play with all the popular riding, building and imagination toys.
WinterFUN! runs every other Tuesday morning during the winter from 9:30 – 11:00 am at Brigid’s Parish Center, 2001 Mass. Ave. There is a different fun craft every time. Cost is $2 per child to cover crafts and snacks.
LexFUN! believes it’s never too early to start teaching our kids the value of community service. Getting involved in volunteering at a young age can set a life-long pattern of advancing the common good.
LexFUN! provides many great opportunities for community service for kids that will expand their social circle, teach them empathy and compassion, and increase their chances of success in life. Activities include a Cradles to Crayons clothing donation event, a Meals-On-Wheels route, holiday gift-giving, food pantry donations, visits with local seniors and donations to families in-need.
Once a month, LexFUN! children visit Youville Assisted Living Place in Lexington to bring a little cheer and interact with the Seniors.
Most of the time, the children do crafts with the Seniors. Other times, they sing or celebrate holidays, like Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day.
Developing connections between these older adults and their community can have tremendous benefits for both young and old.
Our Community Service Team is excited to continue the tradition of enjoying monthly activities with the residents of Youville. Especially in this mobile age when many extended family members are separated by hundreds of miles, this is a special opportunity for the littlest citizens of Lexington to connect with senior residents. Emily Sayre of the LexFUN! Community Service Committee, explains “When I attended in the spring, the children and residents had such a wonderful time together; it was clear that they sincerely enjoyed each other’s company. When I spoke with my Community Service co-leader, Laura Lewis, she reminded me of a poem by Shel Silverstein that may bring a tear to your eye but captures the special relationship children can have with seniors.
Emily tells us she has been inspired recently by intergenerational programs around the country specifically the preschool housed in a nursing home in Seattle — http://abcnews.go.com/beta/Lifestyle/seattle-preschool-nursing-home-transforms-elderly-residents/story?id=31803817 — and in Dedham, MA., an elder care facility – Hebrew SeniorLife – that has built a K-8 school in the middle of its community. She hopes this is the beginning of a national trend and she is so pleased to be a part of this continued relationship between LexFUN and Youville. What a tremendous gift to our community it would be to explore other ways in which we can connect the youngest and the eldest generations.
We hope you’ll join us at our first Youville Crafts of the season.
It is a great time to get out and help the seniors in our community. Many of our drivers find this a rewarding activity for themselves and their children. The seniors really look forward to the weekly interaction. To sign up or find out more about delivering meals, please email Anne Boulter at email@example.com.
LexFUN! families deliver hot, nutritious lunches to homebound elders in Lexington every Friday. The deliveries take about an hour, starting at 10:30 am. Please consider delivering Meals on Wheels. You can do the deliveries with (or without!) your children, and you may sign up for as little as one delivery at a time, which means you can participate when your schedule allows. The seniors love to see the smiling faces of LexFUN! children greet them at the door with a nice hot lunch and a hand-drawn picture or art project to share.
This is a fun and rewarding family-friendly activity that your kids will enjoy doing with you. Give it a try!
If you want to drive on a regular basis, or just occasionally or as a back-up driver, you only need to complete a CORI form and provide a copy of your license. Just contact Anne Boulter at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Upcoming Fall/Winter Clothing Drive
LexFUN! will hold its annual Fall/Winter Clothing Drive to benefit Cradles to Crayons at the end of October. As you begin to organize your family’s fall clothes, please set aside whatever no longer fits to donate to this wonderful cause! More details next month.
Date: Saturday, September 12th
Time: Doors open at 4pm, concert starts at 4:30pm
Location: CNS, 2325 Mass Ave
Cost: $10 per person/$30 max. per family – cash, credit card or check at the door
Don’t pack up your picnic blankets yet! Bring the entire family for a celebration of the new school year at Community nursery School with an outdoor concert with music, dancing and more!
- Snacks and water for purchase will be available. BYOB for parents
- Pre-purchase a large cheese or pepperoni pizza $15 — to be picked up at CNS
- Concert is open to all members of the community
- All proceeds go directly to support Community Nursery School.
With Many Thanks to…
- A BIG Thank you to Gretchen Mather, Tiffany Crooker, & Jennie Perkins for their AMAZING effort to expand our sponsorships and advertisers. LexFUN! has 9 community sponsors this year!!
- A HUGE thank you to Susannah Hoch for all her work on the 2015 Annual Guide for Young Families. This is an important resource for all the young families in Lexington
- A GIANT thank you to Laura Wilkas for all the beautiful graphic design work she did on our Swag Bag and membership cards
- We are very thankful to Jennie Perkins and all the Board Members who came to our Swag Bag Stuffing Party to stuff all our bags and get ready for the Open House
- Thank you to Liz Zevallos for hosting a very successful “Getting Ready for Kindergarten” Seminar in June
- Thanks to Lauren Alberta-Wszolek for organizing our June Playground Meetup and to Michelle Andronaco for our July Playground Meetup
- Kudos to Jill Canes for organizing our pot luck at the bandstand
- Thanks to Danna Steinberg & Priya Krishnan for hosting a fantastic SummerFUN! – We had a record breaking number of children attend and tons of fun.
- Thank you to Taylor Singh and the scholarship committee who were hard at work this summer making decisions for LexFUN!. We were able to send more children to preschool and we thank them for their hard work and dedication.