The Big Apple Circus – who loves it more, your kids or you?


What I thought was a tradition for our kids has evolved into my excitement as I see the big top being set up each year in Lincoln Center!  Surely you’ve seen the tent too – or the ads all over the UWS!  I want to shine a spotlight on this year’s circus. If you want to read my posts from past years, please click through about their community programs beyond what I wanted to share this year… First of all, my kids can not stop talking about how this performer folded herself backwards into a box! You have to see it to believe it!


In addition to having what sounds like a society-changing idea, showing a live circus show in theaters around the country, the Big Apple Circus is offering two autism-friendly shows this year in NYC.  The Big Apple Circus met with a leading neurologist at Boston Children’s Hospital to talk about what sort of adaptations would be needed for this audience.  The Circus also has formal partnerships with Autism Speaks, the leading national advocacy and research organization dedicated to autism spectrum disorders, and the TDF Autism Theatre Initiative.  Both organizations have provided advice and guidance on what is needed for this population, which includes, but is not limited to adjusted lighting and sound (moderated in both cases to prevent extremes, house lights half up, no strobes or loud noises), calming centers away from the ring where children can have quiet time if needed, which will be populated with fidgets and manipulatives, beanbag chairs, etc.  Autism Speaks is helping in many ways including a training session for ushers on how to work most effectively with this population.

logo-largeAny tickets sold through the Autism Speaks website will provide a percentage back to Autism Speaks.

The second autism-friendly show of the Lincoln Center season will be held on Tuesday, November 18th at 6:30 PM. To read more about the show and purchase tickets, you may go to

The more I learn about the Big Apple Circus organization, the more I respect them for their art and beyond.  If you are as moved as I am and want to support them beyond attending the shows, you can see below about their upcoming benefit. I’m sure that’s one special day!

Saturday, November 22nd, 2014

3:00 PM   Pre Show Entertainment & Refreshments
4:30 PM   Performance of METAMORPHOSIS and Dinner
6:30 PM   Dessert with the Artists in the Ring

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Birthday Party Idea… Dancing!

Whether your children went to Camp Ramah or not Yoni would bring so much RUACH – SPIRIT to your birthday party or family celebration. What a memorable Bar/Bat Mitzvah celebration this would be!!!

Israeli dancingforchildren’sevents/parties!

Do your children miss dancing at camp?

Are they sad summer is over?

Don’t worry!

“Israeli ‘Migrash’ Dancing” with Yoni Brenner

continues all year round, just like at camp!

Yoni, the Ramah Day Camp in Nyack 2014 Dance Counselor, is staying in the New York area for the coming year, and is offering to make your child’s event an unforgettable one- with Israeli line dancing and music, just like at camp. All your children’s favorite dances from camp in one incredible event.

A great chance for your children to remember the dances they love so much from the summer, dance to Hebrew songs, enjoy the moment and have a great party. And of course, stay fit J

Great atmosphere and high energy guaranteed!

For more information please contact Yoni at:


Tel: 347-449-8978

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BJ Kids events


Our kids have grown up going to these events. I highly recommend them:

Tot Shabbat

Friday, November 7 | 5:15PM | 88th Street Sanctuary
Families will enjoy a kid-friendly Kabbalat Shabbat service filled with singing and dancing, followed by a dinner at 5:45PM downstairs in Frankel Hall complete with Shabbat blessings and songs. Dinner will include delicious choices for adults as well as children, and vegetarian options will be available; dietary laws observed. While adults are finishing their meal, play curator, Linda White, will engage children in open play and exploration. Register here by Wednesday, November 5 and contact Allison Kapusta with any questions or specific dietary requests. Cost is $25/members, and $32/non-members; thanks to a generous donation, all children eat free.

PJs and Havdalah 

Saturday, November 15 |4:15-5:30PM | 89th Street Community House
Families with children ages 5 and under are invited to explore Havdalah, the ceremony that marks the end of Shabbat, through art, song, and story. Kids are encouraged to come in pajamas to help create a warm and cozy atmosphere as we say goodbye to Shabbat and look forward to the week ahead. Register here and contact Allison with any questions.

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School’s Out on Election Day – Vital Theatre show at 11:00

There is no school next Tuesday – Election Day.  Would you like to go to a great children’s musical?  The Vital Theatre has many wonderful shows and the theatre is comfortable for young children to enjoy.
I’ve been talking with them about a special performance for our kids on Election Day and they said they will do it!!!  Butterfly Girl is perfect for our kids (I’ve heard from families with boys and they love it too!)  I think siblings will also love it.  After the Vital Theatre’s shows, children have the opportunity to meet the performers and have them autograph their playbills. We can go to lunch together afterwards in the neighborhood.
Vital Theatre (Broadway between 76th & 77th)
11:00 – 12:00
$20 tickets – a special rate for us!!!
Click here to buy your tickets:
Pinkalicious The Musical

About The Show

Velma Gratch is excited to start first grade, but when she does she finds herself overshadowed by her older sisters! While searching for a way to stand out, Velma discovers she has a passion for butterflies! When one lands on her finger, she’s in heaven! But what is she to do when it doesn’t fly away? A charming story of a girl and a butterfly, and Velma’s metamorphosis into something unique and special.

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SMART SCHOOLS – Money for independent and religious schools will be available if we vote on Election Day

I am a member of the UJA-Federation Day School Advocacy Committee and I just learned that there is an opportunity to vote on the upcoming Election Day for a bond act which will give more money to “Smart Schools” to upgrade and enhance technology, broadband etc.  I wanted to be sure you know about it for all independent and religious school children.  Many families would benefit from this but may be uninformed about the issue – I know I was before our committee meeting this week!
I plan to pass this along widely and wanted you to see it ASAP. 

20141023 smart schools awareness ltr

Smart Schools Bond Act of 2014 

5775 is lining up to be a landmark year for day schools in the UJA-Federation of New York catchment area. As you know, we have expanded our institutional commitment to day schools through the launch of the Day School Challenge Fund, a $50 million effort which will help Jewish schools throughout the regions grow their institutional endowments through a 1 to 3 match.

Tel: 1.212.980.1000

Fax: 1.212.888.7538


We continue as well to represent the needs of day schools to elected officials and to work to help secure government investment in vital education resources. As we have discussed with many of you, the Smart Schools Bond Act, if approved by voters, promises to help generate a significant portion of up to $125 million in new technology and broadband upgrades for the religious and independent school community in New York State. Therefore we are asking you to help raise awareness in your communities about this initiative.

Please consider sending the following informational message (or a variation thereof) to your community and networks before election day, November 4th:

Jewish Day Schools and Yeshivot will be eligible to receive classroom technology and high-speed broadband connectivity upgrades as part of the “Smart Schools Bond Act of 2014” that will appear on the 2014 ballot on November 4. If passed, the Act authorizes the sale of up to $2 billion in state bonds, of which all religious and independent schools can equitably benefit, with the potential to receive a significant portion of $125 million dollars in new educational technology. 

Funding from the Smart Schools Program will be provided only if the Bond Act is approved by the voters. 

As always, thank you for the work you do in helping us advocate for Jewish education. Please share the news that this bond is on the ballot with your friends, networks and synagogues!

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Vital Theatre Halloween Fest link

Friday, October 31 at 7:00pm

Calling All Witches, Ghosts & Goblins
on Halloween Night,
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students needed for free 2-hour workshop! :-)

If you have considered trying out the socialsklz class, now is a great chance, for free… and with the founder!


calling all kids!
54.jpg On Sunday 10/26, we are hosting a FUN, FREE socialsklz:-) workshop from 11-1pm taught by founder, Faye de Muyshondt. Participants in our Oct ’14 instructor certification training will be observing the program, which will cover topics such as first impressions and dining. If you are interested in having your 5-12 year old participate, please email monique.
Space is limited and we will accept 4-6 children on a first come first serve basis.
election day!
Tues, Nov. 4, 9am-1pm

This new full-day workshop features 4 hours of dining instruction– everything from dining behavior to utensil management, culminating in a formal dinner (lunch) party! With all new FUN programming, this workshop is perfect for both new and returning students. From proper host-guest interactions, to making conversation with anyone, to eating tricky foods, this workshop covers it all.
This course culminates in a 3 course meal (with kid friendly food!) where children will put to use what they have learned.

details available here

veteran’s day!
Tues, Nov. 11, 10am- 3pm

Full-day program featuring communicationsklz:-) for ages 4-7 and 8-12, lunch, and a dining intensive workshop!

details available here

bring socialsklz:-) to your community!
During this 3-day intimate workshop, trainees (parents, teachers, after-school coordinators, and etiquette instructors) will learn how to teach the nationally acclaimed socialsklz:-)program with founder, author, and Today Show contributor, Faye de Muyshondt. socialsklz:-) has been dubbed, "not your mother’s manners classes," by Mommy Poppins.

Trainees will be certified to teach essentialkidz, tweenz, and teenz in their own communities at the end of the training!

details and dates available here

special programs! (NYC)
dining intensive workshop
create your own workshop!
One of our most popular options is to create a group workshop specifically tailored to the needs of a group or individual child. Choose 1-2 topics from our website, figure out a date and time, and we either come to you, or you come to us!

*for more information, email

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter
socialsklz:-) | 250 West 85th Street, Suite 1B | New York | NY | 10024
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Thursday Night is Simchat Torah – what a night to live on the UWS!!!

Did you live in the City when West End used to be blocked off so people could dance with thTorah – and each other??? What a time that was!

You can get close to that experience now as a parent by attending one of the celebrations at UWS synagogues.  This was sent in to me and I’m happy to share. Contact your other local synagogues to find out what they have planned.  I know B’nai Jeshurun’s kids’ service starts at 6:00 and we usually bring our stuffed Torahs… always fun!  Chabad always has a great kids’ party… and read more about West End Synagogue here. If you ever want to post about your synagogue, please reach out to me…



THURSDAY, OCT. 16,  6-8 PM

Come join families for a joyful Simchat Torah celebration with food, crafts, music and more!

For families and kids of all ages.

Food and Family activities 6-7 PM followed by music and dancing from 7-8 PM.

West End Synagogue, 190 Amsterdam Avenue at 69th Street.

$10 per adult and free for kids.  Pay at the door.

Please RSVP to or call 212-579-0777, EXT. 222.

Nadia Gold

Director of Family Engagement

West End Synagogue

190 Amsterdam Avenue

New York, NY  10023     

212-579-0777, ext. 220

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Symphony Space – Just Kidding Series


We fell in love with Symphony Space when we saw Joanie Leeds perform there.  Now, I want to be sure we all have the Just Kidding schedule on our radar.  Look what I saw on their website:

Planning Saturdays with the kids is easy with Just Kidding! Featuring the very best in family-friendly music, theatre, dance and a whole lot more – all the cultural riches and inspiring experiences that affirm why you raise your kids in New York City.  Find us on Facebook andTwitter, and browse our fun, new season brochure!

Just Kidding Season Brochure


Today, they have a concert at 11:00 and since it’s raining, it’s the perfect place to go:

11:00 – The Boogers – The Ramones for kids!

Book your kid’s next birthday party with a Just Kidding Theatre Package.


















You can click through their site but I’ll also include a quick overview of their upcoming performances. The 4-family special looks great!

In November, Symphony Space’s Just Kidding continues its weekly boredom-busting performances from the superheroes of all-ages entertainment. Leading off this cool month of shows is “The Crown Prince of Contemporary Kids’ Music” (People Magazine) Dan Zanes. He presents his über-interactive Song Gusto Hour concert for all ages on Saturday, November 1st.

The 2014-15 Just Kidding season is designed to guard NYC families against the diabolical quandary of “What To Do?”each Saturday (and some Sundays). A high-powered lineup bursts upon the Just Kidding stages, offering something for everyone: classic animation, interactive puppet theatre, hip hop, percussive dance, and sing-alongs with the most boredom-busting family musicians on the planet. Tickets to all Just Kidding performances (including a special family 4-pack deal) are available now at

Don’t Miss These November Just Kidding Performances:

Saturday, November 1, 11 am: Dan Zanes Song Gusto Hour
Peter Jay Sharp Theatre — Tickets: $14 to $26. Ages 3 and up.
Here’s a chance for families and people of all ages to gather and sing at the top of their lungs with GRAMMY Award-winning musician Dan Zanes and his band. The song gusto atmosphere is loose, communal, and festive, and the audience is invited to bring an instrument or simply their voices. This is a rare Symphony Space appearance from Dan, and he’ll be sing songs from his new greatest hits album,  Get Loose and Get Together! Dan is like a 21st century ringmaster, introducing new songs and reconnecting people to songs that have always been there, and still are—it’s just that people forgot about them. For more information about Dan, visit  Ages 3 and up.

A Special Halloween Seasonal Treat!

November 2, 4 pm: PhilharMONSTER!

Sharp Theatre, All Tickets are $15! Ages 5 and up.

Celebrate the spookiness of the season with the young goblins and ghouls of the InterSchool Orchestras of New York’s Carnegie Hill Orchestra (ages 8 to 12) and ISO Symphonic Band (ages 12 to 19). They perform their 3rd annual concert of spine-tingling orchestral classics for the whole family.  A ghostly conductor will lead performances of classical music by composers such as Berlioz and Mozart plus music from films including Harry Potter, Star Wars and Pirates of the Caribbean.


A Mystery Theater Experience with Puppets and Song!

Saturday and Sunday, November 8 and 9, 11 am: Squirrel Stole My Underpants
Leonard Nimoy Thalia. Tickets: $12 to $21
In this poignantly silly puppet/human adventure tale for families, Sylvie is sent to the backyard to hang up the laundry. The moment her back is turned, a mischievous squirrel steals her favorite piece of clothing and runs off. When Sylvie gives chase, an entire world emerges from her laundry basket, and curious characters show her the way through mysterious lands. Will our lonely heroine rescue her underpants and discover the magic within herself? Join us on this adventure to find out.


Saturday, November 15, 11 am and 2 pm: Justin Roberts and the Not Ready for Naptime Players
Sharp Theatre, Tickets: $14 to $25. Ages 3 and up
Twice GRAMMY-nominated artist Justin Roberts dishes out intelligent and whimsically rocking music for kids and their parents.  Bodies spring to their feet and rush the stage; jumping, dancing and bouncing off each other like bumper cars, all participating in the kiddie mosh pit found at nearly every Justin Roberts concert. With a style compared to Elvis Costello and Green Day, Justin and his band have become an audience favorite year after year.  People magazine calls Justin Roberts’ music “laugh out loud funny,” and the Chicago Tribune says he is “in a league of his own.” Justin is also the author of a new picture book for children, based on one of his hit songs: Smallest Girl in the Smallest Grade (Putnam). Visit to learn more.


Saturday, November 22, 11 am: Cathy Fink and Marcy  Marxer
Thalia. Tickets: $12 to $21. Ages 3 and up.
These legendary, multi-GRAMMY winning artists have legions of fans for their reinventions of folk music. Playing dozens of instruments including banjo, mandolin, guitar, steel drum and ukulele, Cathy and Marcy are also trailblazers in children’s and family music. Their relationship with family audiences spans over 25 years of live performances and 20 award-winning recordings. The duo will invite singing and playing along, and they’ll debut songs from their next album, including “Dancin’ in the Kitchen.” . Visit  to learn more.

The Just Kidding 2014-15 Season

  • September 27: Spike and Mike’s Classic Festival of Animation (Peter Jay Sharp Theatre)
  • October 4: Vanessa Trien and the Jumping Monkeys (Leonard Nimoy Thalia)
  • October 11: The Boogers (Thalia)
  • October 18: National Dance Institute: The Celebration Team (Sharp)
  • October 25 and October 26: Alastair Moock (Thalia)
  • November 1: Dan Zanes Song Gusto Hour (Sharp)
  • November 2 : PhilharMONSTER! (Sharp)
  • November 8 and November 9: Squirrel Stole My Underpants (puppet theatre event with live music) (Thalia)
  • November 15: Justin Roberts and The Not Ready for Naptime Players (Sharp)
  • November 22: Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer (Thalia)
  • December 13: Push Physical Theatre (Sharp)
  • December 20:  Father Goose (Thalia)
  • December 27 – 28: Catskill Puppet Theater (Thalia)
  • January 3: Elska (Thalia)
  • January 10:  Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia: Stella, Queen of the Snow (Sharp)
  • January 11: Mike Super: Magic and Illusions (Thalia) –  and Stam-Pede (Sharp)
  • January 17 and January 18: Tim Kubart and the Space Cadets (Thalia)
  • January 24: Moona Luna (Thalia)
  • January 31:  Ben Rudnick and Friends (Thalia)
  • February 7 and February 8: The Pop-Ups (with their new show) (Thalia)
  • February 14: The Gustafer Yellowgold Show (Sharp)
  • February 21:  The Okee Dokee Brothers (Sharp)
  • February 28: Walter Martin (of the band The Walkmen) (Thalia)
  • March 7 and March 8: Beats, Rhymes and Breaking (Thalia)
  • March 14: Danny Weinkauf and band (Thalia)
  • March 21: Elizabeth Mitchell and You Are My Flower (Sharp)
  • March 28: Frances England (Thalia)



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3D printing workshops & camp days

971 Columbus Avenue

near 108th St


Sunday Oct 5 workshop 3D printing & arcade games

Print Your Own Pumpkin

We are holding three Octob

Dazzling Discoveries Logo Color

971 Columbus Avenue

near 108th St


Sunday Oct 5 workshop 3D printing & arcade games

Print Your Own Pumpkin

photo 1

We are holding three October workshops:
Sunday, October 5th, 2:00pm – 4:30pm
Sunday, October 19th, 2:00pm – 4:30pm
Saturday, October 25th 2:00pm – 4:30pm

Think it, build it, take it home. We’ve all heard of picking your own pumpkin, but here is your chance to print your own! In these special Halloween theme workshops, you will design and print your own light up 3D jack-o-lantern. You will also be making Autumn craft projects, costume accessories and cardboard arcade games.

Bring your creativity (and old CDs and DVDS, and empty toilet paper and paper towel rolls if you have them).

You are welcome to come without a reservation, but if you can let us know even an hour in advance, it will help us plan the supplies. Contact us at Dazzlingdiscoveries

All ages. $40 per project. That covers one child and one adult, or one adult without a child. Payment accepted at the workshop.


School closed? We’re open.

Our camp program happens all year. You tell us the days you need, and we’ll provide engaging hands-on activities that include using our 3D printers, engineering your own cardboard creations, making your own games, conducting exciting science experiments and a lot more. With so many different school holidays, we are offering a "camp by the day" program. Need coverage during the religious holidays? We have options for you . Don’t forget, school holiday Columbus Day is Monday, October 13th!

Details: $140 per day. 8:45-3:00 with earlier and later hours available.

To register, please use this link:


After school & home school

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Exciting after school options at our STEM Center. Science and Engineering on Monday afternoons and Thursday mornings. More to come, including a Friday coding class!


Contact us:


(917) 288-9975

©2014 Dazzling Discoveries | 971 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10025
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