Pancakes

1. March 1 is Primary Day in Alabama. Use this opportunity to explain to your children the importance of participating in the electoral process. Tell them why you feel the way you feel about certain issues. Take your children with you when you vote. Children would enjoy getting to vote on what to have for dinner or what movie to watch.

2. The Public Library of Anniston-Calhoun County hosts a "Fancy Nancy" Tea Party for children ages 6 and under on March 1 from 4-5 p.m. Another "Fancy Nancy" Tea Party" for children ages 7 and up will be held March 3 from 4-5 p.m. Light refreshments will be served, and stories will be told. To reserve your spot, contact the Children’s Department at 256-237-8501.

3. "You do not like them, so you say. Read them! Read them! And you may!" March 2 is National Read Across America Day, aka Dr. Seuss Day. Pick your favorite Dr. Seuss book and let your children pick theirs, then take turns reading aloud to each other. Pretend the Cat in the Hat comes to visit your house; what mischief would you get into?

4. Learn about frogs and other pond critters with a guided tour of the Frog Pond Wildlife Preserve with Dr. Frog, aka Dr. George Cline of the Jacksonville State University biology department. "Frog Pond Adventures" will be held March 5 (6-8 p.m.), April 9 (6-8 p.m.) and May 14 (7-9 p.m.). Cost is $5 per person. The Frog Pond Preserve is near White Plains Elementary School. For directions and to reserve a spot, contact the JSU Environmental Policy and Information Center at 256-782-5681, or visit jsu.edu/epic.

5. March 8 is Free Pancake Day at IHOP. Between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., all guests receive a free short stack of buttermilk pancakes and are asked to make a donation to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

6. Railroad Park in Birmingham holds its first Family Camp Out March 12-13. Activities are designed for families with children ages 6-12, and include an owl exhibit from Birmingham Zoo, s’mores and an astronomy lesson. One adult is required to attend for every two children. Deadline to apply is March 7. Cost is $100 for a family of four. Registration and more informatio at railroadpark.org.

7. The Atlanta Science Festival is March 19-26. There are dozens of events for families, including a scavenger hunt at an organic farm, a workshop on binary coding and demos on how colors are formed. Some events are not appropriate for all ages. The Exploration Expo on March 26 will host more than 100 exhibits, including flying a drone, assisting in a Lego build and discovering the science of an Oreo. atlantasciencefestival.org.

8. "The park is open." The Dino Discovery exhibit returns to the Birmingham Zoo on March 19. The exhibit features 12 life-sized, animatronic dinosaurs, each of them native to North America. birminghamzoo.com

9. There will be several Easter egg hunts in our area including ones at Oxford Lake (March 26, 9 a.m.) and Bald Rock Lodge at Cheaha State Park (March 26, 1 p.m.).

10. "Gentlemen (and gentlewomen), start your engines!" The Touch-A-Truck Extravaganza is March 31, 2-4 p.m., at the Public Library of Anniston-Calhoun County. Construction vehicles, fire trucks, police cars and more will be on hand. After looking at the vehicles up-close, children may choose to check out a book about their favorite vehicles and the people who use them.

Faith Dorn is a freelance writer in Anniston. Contact her at faith.h.dorn@gmail.com.

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