Friday, September 28, 2007

Study: Alcohol Can Increase A Woman's Risk for Breast Cancer

A new study found that all types of alcohol --wine, beer, and hard liquor — add equally to the risk of developing breast cancer in women.
Previous studies have shown a link between alcohol consumption and breast cancer, but there have been conflicting messages about whether different kinds of alcohol were more dangerous than others. The researchers, led by Dr. Arthur Klatsky of the Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program in Oakland, Calif., revealed their findings at a meeting of the European Cancer Organization, according to an Associated Report article. (To read the full article click here, http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5iKaLptXF3J4J3GgWwY2ogYfUdbzA)

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Bay State Parent magazine produced Think Pink: A Guide Devoted to Breast Cancer Awareness in the October issue, which came back from the printers yesterday and should be at our favorite locations as early as this weekend.

The Bay State Parent magazine is also a sponsor of the American Cancer Society's 15th Annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk on Sunday, Oct 14. For more information, visit http://main.acsevents.org/site/TR?JServSessionIdr005=wunev07mg2.app26b&pg=entry&fr_id=3496&JServSessionIdr005=wunev07mg2.app26b

Infants & Toddlers at Risk of Drowning in Pools, Spas, & Bathtubs

80 percent of deaths involve children younger than two

When pool season ends, many parents believe the risk of drowning also ends, but data from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission released today indicates 311 reported non-pool drownings from 2002 through 2004 of children younger than five years of age. More than 80 percent of these deaths involved children younger than 2 years old. The pattern is much different than that observed in pool-related incidents where children younger than two accounted for 38 percent of deaths (involving children younger than 5).
Bathtubs were involved in most (71 percent) of the non-pool drowning deaths from 2002-2004. Many of these incidents involved caregivers leaving the room to answer the phone/door or to retrieve an item. In some incidents, an older sibling was left to watch a younger sibling.
"Infants and toddlers need particularly close supervision," said Commission Acting Chairman Nancy Nord. "Drowning can occur within seconds in only inches of water, so parents need think of, not just the pool, but any water anywhere as dangerous."
Commission recommends parents and caregivers follow these safety tips when children are around bathtubs, spas, buckets, or decorative ponds or fountains:
* Never leave young children alone near any water.
* Young children can drown in even small amounts of water.
* Always keep a young child within arm's reach in a bathtub.
* Never leave to answer the phone, answer the door, get a towel or for any other reason.
* If you must leave, take the child with you.
* Don't leave a baby or toddler in a bathtub under the care of another young child.
* Never leave a bucket containing even a small amount of liquid unattended.
* Toddlers can fall head first into buckets and drown. After using a bucket, always empty and store it where young children cannot reach it.
* Buckets left outside can collect rain water and are a hazard.
* Prevent children from gaining access to spas or hot tubs when not in use; always secure with safety covers and barriers.
* Learn CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation). It can be a lifesaver when seconds count.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

5 Things to Love About the 15th Annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk on Sunday, Oct. 14

1. It is the oldest and largest Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk in the nation
2. Since 1993, more than 340,000 Massachusetts walkers have raised $33.2 million
3. In 2006, 88 cents of every dollar raised in Boston directly supported the American Cancer Society's fight against breast cancer. Net funds are devoted to research (40 percent), early detection (45 percent), and patient support (15 percent).
4. More than 50,000 breast cancer survivors are estimated to have walked in Boston.
5. The goal of this year's walk is to raise $3 million.

How You Can Help
1. Donate
to the American Cancer Society. Mailing address is: Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, 9 Riverside Road,Weston,02493-2281
2. Support a walker or team of walkers.
3. Walk yourself on Sunday, Oct 14. Rolling registration starts at 8 a.m. and continues until 10 at the Hatch memorial Shell at the Charles River Esplanade in Boston. There are two routes a 5.7 mile of a 3 mile For more information, visit http://makingstrides.acsevents.org/site/TR?pg=entry&frid=3496

RECALL:Kolcraft Recalls 425,000 Play Yards After Death of 10-month-old Child

In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Kolcraft Enterprises Inc., of Chicago, Ill., is voluntarily recalling about 425,000 infant play yards following the death of a child.
The Commission received a report of a 10-month old boy who strangled on the changing table’s restraint strap that was hanging down into Kolcraft’s “Sesame Beginnings” Travel Play Yard where the child was located.
Twelve different Kolcraft play yards are included in this recall. All of the play yards have raised changing tables with a restraint strap that forms a loop beneath the changing table, posing a strangulation hazard to a child in the play yard.
In addition to the strangulation hazard with the changing table restraint strap, one play yard also has a raised cradle that rocks back and forth. A child can roll and get trapped against the side of the cradle in the Contours 3-in-1 Play Yard. If that happens, a child can suffocate. Kolcraft has received 45 reports of children rolling to the side of the rocking cradle attachment.
The recalled play yards were sold in a variety of colors and patterns. Play yards and model numbers included in this recall are listed in the chart below. The model number is printed on a white sticker located on one of the feet of the play yard. They were manufactured in China.
The play yards were sold at retail stores nationwide from January 2001 through September 2007 for between $50 and $130.
Consumers should immediately stop using the changing tables and rocking cradle and contact the firm for instructions on receiving a free non-looped replacement strap for the changing table and a free repair kit to secure the base of the cradle. Consumers should immediately cut off and remove the existing changing table restraint strap. Consumers should always remove the raised changing table and cradle or bassinet before placing a child in a play yard.
A free repair kit for the rocking cradle will be sent to consumers separate from the replacement strap.
For additional information, call Kolcraft at 888-655-8484 anytime, or visit http://www.kolcraft.com/safety-notifications.aspx

WEEKEND PICK: 2007 AltWheels Festival in Boston

2007 AltWheels Festival Aims to Attract Thousands With Latest in Transportation and Energy Alternatives. This one-stop shopping for transportation and energy solutions to unclog our roads, reduce our dependence on oil, cut our greenhouse-gas emissions and generally inspire people to protect and preserve our environment.
It will take place at Boston City Hall Plaza tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., and continues Saturday & Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The event is FREE.
This year’s booths and displays include information on sustainable transportation, green building, alternative energy, as well as the innovative Energy “Freedom Trail” ® with more than 30 stops on how to create a more sustainable world. In 2006, more than 20,000 people attended the AltWheels Festival, the East Coast’s largest alternative transportation festival. The theme for this year’s festival will be celebrating Green Pioneers and Regional Heroes.
Displays of the latest alternative-fueled and high-efficiency vehicles This year, AltWheels, is featuring a display of more than 70 different technology vehicles that beat the high costs and pollution associated with traditional gasoline and diesel-powered vehicles from grassroots vehicles to million-dollar, fuel-cell prototypes.Featured exhibits include:
* Explore the latest technology, including million-dollar, one-of-a-kind prototype vehicles such as the fuel-cell hybrid electric Ford Edge HySeries Drive™ as well as grassroot exhibits.
* Talk to owners of “grease cars,” vehicles that have been converted to run on used vegetable oil.
* Watch biodiesel being made before your eyes.
* Learn how ordinary hybrid cars can get 70 miles per gallon.
* Calculate your environmental footprint, and learn about 30 steps you can take to reduce it on the Energy “Freedom Trail”®.
* Visit the REI free bike repair tent and bike exhibits.
* Free compact fluorescent bulbs for the first 500 people who come each day.
* Listen to live bands: Cocabanana and Kevin Connelly.
* Meet Regional Heroes and Green Pioneers leading their organizations, communities and beyond.
* Learn about alternative-energy displays, including wind turbines and solar panels.
There were be many activities for kids, including onsite interactive exhibits from the New England Aquarium and The Museum of Science, face painting and Segway demonstrations.
“We’re thrilled the City of Boston and Mayor Tom Menino have invited AltWheels back to City Hall Plaza,” said Alison Sander, founder of AltWheels. “The good news is that many inventors, companies and community organizations are creating real-world alternative-transportation solutions that are available now, and consumers are responding. High energy costs and the growing will to head off global climate change are driving more companies and consumers to look for cleaner, healthier technologies. We thank everyone who came last year to make history and explore the Energy ‘Freedom Trail’® at AltWheels!”
For more information on the 2007 AltWheels Alternative Transportation & Energy Festival visit www.AltWheels.org

WEEKEND PICK: Spirit of Shrewbury Festival

This weekend is the Spirit of Shrewsbury Fall Festival. It starts tomorrow and ends on Sunday.
Cruisin' car show, family Funfest, scarecrow contest and display, Harvest Fest, 5K road race/fun walk, craft fair, Dessert Night, dancing fountains at Dean Park, gala parade. Idol contest, and much more. For a complete schedule, visit www.spiritofshrewsbury.com

RECALL: Children's Puppet Theatres Due to Lead Paint

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation Guidecraft Inc. of New Jersey, yesterday announced a voluntary recall of about 10,000 Floor Puppet Theaters. Surface paints on the puppet theater’s wooden panels contain excessive levels of lead, violating the federal lead paint standard. There have been no reported injuries or incidents. The recalled puppet theater has a chalkboard surface on the front and colored side panels. The puppet theater measures about 35 inches in length, 14 inches in width and about 52 inches in height. They were sold at toy stores, gift shops, catalogs and Web sites nationwide from June 2006 through August 2007 for about $90 and manufactured in China.
Consumers should immediately take the recalled puppet theaters away from children and contact Guidecraft to receive a replacement theater or another product of equal value.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Guidecraft toll-free at 888-824-1308 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Central Time Monday through Friday, or visit http://www.guidecraft.com/

RECALL: Target Recalls 350,000 Children's Toy Gardening Tools & Chairs Due to Lead Paint

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Target yesterday announced a voluntary recall about 350,000 Happy Giddy Gardening Tools and Children’s Sunny Patch Chairs manufacturered by Starite International Ltd., of Taiwan. The surface paint on the recalled gardening tools and chairs contains excessive levels of lead, violating the federal lead paint standard. There were no reported injuries or incidents. The recall includes the Happy Giddy Gardening Tools and the Sunny Patch Children’s Chairs.
Gardening tools: caterpillar trowel with an orange and multi-colored handle; kitty cat broom with pink flowers and green handle; pink and green cultivator with a solid green tool portion and pink flowers on the handle; orange and green wood handle hoe and rake with orange flowers; pink and green shovel and trowel with pink flowers; green, orange and light blue snail push broom; multi-colored trowel, hoe, rake with orange on the tool body; multi-colored shovel with solid red on the shovel and eyes on the top of the handle; red and blue owl shaped broom with bristles painted blue, with yellow and black large eyes on the face.
Children’s Chairs: multi-colored children’s Sunny Patch chairs with a giraffe, monkey, and elephant on the back. The cloth seat and back are striped in orange, yellow, green and blue. The chameleon, butterfly and lady bug chair are not included in the recall.
All were sold at arget stores nationwide from August 2006 through August 2007 for between $3 and $10.
Consumers should immediately take the products away from children and return the item to the nearest Target store for a full refund. For additional information, contact Target at 800- 440-0680 between 7 a.m. and 6 pm. Central Time Monday through Friday, or visit http://www.target.com/gp/browse.html/ref=br_bx_0/602-1173985-0634202?ie=UTF8&node=1041388

RECALL: Knights of the Sword Toys Due to Lead Paint

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with RC2 Corp of Illinois, yesterday announced a voluntary recall of Britain’s “Knights of the Sword” Series Toys
which are distributed by RC2 Corp. Surface paints on the toy knights contain excessive levels of lead, violating the federal lead paint standard. There were no injuries or incidents. The three recalled silver knight toys are mounted on red horses sold individually in see-through blister cards. “Britains” and “Knights of the Sword” are printed on the top of the card in the packaging. The recalled toys include a mounted silver knight on a red horse with an axe; a mounted silver knight on a red horse with two hands on a raised weapon; and a mounted silver knight on a red horse with a lance. They were sold at specialty toy stores nationwide from April 2004 through March 2006 for about $8 and manufactured in China.
Consumers should take these recalled toys away from young children immediately and contact RC2 to receive a full refund. For additional information, contact RC2 toll-free at 866-725-4407 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday or visit http://recalls.rc2.com/

RECALL: Now 1.5 Million Thomas and Friends Wooden Railway Toys Due to Lead Paint

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Distributor RC2 of Illinois yesterday announced a voluntary recall of various Thomas and Friends™ Wooden Railway Toys
This recall involved about 200,000 (1.5 million other Thomas & Friends railway toys were recalled on June 13, 2007). Surface paints on the toys can contain excessive levels of lead, violating the federal lead paint standard. There were no reported injuries or incidents. The recall involves five toys from the Thomas and Friends Wooden Railway product line: the all-black cargo car, toad vehicle, olive green sodor cargo box and all-green maple tree top and signal base accessories. The front of the packaging has the logo “Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway” in the upper left-hand corner. A tracking code may be located on the bottom of some of the products. Toys marked with codes containing “WJ” and “AZ” are not included in the recall.
Recalled Product Name & Tracking Codes All-Black Cargo Car – Included only in the Brendam Fishing Dock Set. The car is labeled “CARGO CAR” and has either no tracking code or one of the following codes on its undersides:
26833i
28233i
23243i00
24643i00
25343i00
27443i00
32043i00
34743i00
01553i00
04553i00
13353i00
14753i00
15453i00
18353i00
Cargo cars sold in other sets are not included.
Toad vehicle with brake lever – The vehicle is labeled “TOAD” and has the tracking code 16560W000 on its underside.
Olive Green Sodor Cargo Box – The side of the cargo box says “SODOR”, the box was included only in the DeluxeCranky the Crane Set.
All-Green Maple Tree Top and Green Signal Base Accessories – Included only in Conductor’s Figure 8 Sets.
All recalled products were sold at toy stores and various retailers nationwide from March 2003 through September 2007 for between $10 and $40 and manufactured in China.

Consumers should take the recalled toys away from young children immediately and contact RC2 Corp. for a replacement toy. For additional information, contact RC2 toll-free at 866-725-4407 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday or visit http://recalls.rc2.com/

RECALL: TOBY N.Y.C Expands Children's Jewelry Recall Due to Lead Exposure

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with TOBY & ME Jewelry Sets, today announced a voluntary recall About 23,500 (about 14,000 jewelry sets were recalled on August 22, 2007) imported by TOBY N.Y.C., of New York, N.Y. The recalled metal jewelry sets contain high levels of lead. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health effects. This recall involves jewelry sets sold in different styles: a pink and clear crystal bead necklace and bracelet set with a painted metallic crown pendant; a pink and white pearl necklace and bracelet set with a painted metallic poodle pendant; and a pink pearl necklace, earrings and ring set. This recall is expanded to include two additional styles: a pink crystal and wood bead necklace and bracelet set with a monkey pendant; and a pink and clear crystal bead necklace and bracelet set with a heart pendant. All sets are sold in a pink gift box with “TOBY & ME” printed on the front and “TOBY & ME” hangtags attached to the packaging.
They were sold at T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, A.J. Wright, Cracker Barrel, and Shopko stores nationwide from August 2006 through August 2007 for between $8 and $15 and manufactured in China.
Consumers should immediately take the recalled jewelry away from children and contact TOBY N.Y.C. for information on receiving a full refund or replacement item.
For additional information, contact TOBY N.Y.C. toll-free at 866- 235-0588 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, or e-mail the firm at info@tobynyc.com

RECALL: Children's Toy Rakes Sold Exclusively at Jo-Ann Fabric & Craft Stores Due to Lead Paint

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Jo-Ann Stores of Ohio, yesterday announced a voluntary recall about 16,000 Children’s Toy Rakes. Surface paint on the handle of the rake can contain excessive levels of lead paint, violating the federal lead paint standard. There were no reported injuries or incidents. The recalled children’s rake has a green handle with a yellow duck head attached to the handle. The rake has seven purple tines, also known as teeth. The rake is about 24 inches long. “Robbie Ducky™ Garden Collection Rake” is printed on a tag attached to the handle. They were sold exclusively at Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores nationwide from January 2007 through September 2007 for about $7 and manufactured in China.
Consumers should immediately take the recalled toy rake away from children and return it to any Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store for a full refund. For additional information, contact Jo-Ann Stores Inc. toll-free at 888-739-4120, option 7, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, e-mail the firm at guest.services@jo-annstores.com, or visit http://www.joann.com/

Friday & Saturday: St. Boniface Italian Festival in Lunenburg

Tomorrow night from 5 to 9 the St. Boniface Italian Festival & Fair will be held at 817 Massachusetts Ave. on Route 2A in Lunenburg. The events features free balloon animals, clown, potluck game, chance auction theme baskets, raffles, homemade crafts, Italian food, and more. The event continues on Saturday from noon to 9 p.m.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

RECALL: About 1 Million Simplicity-made (& Graco-labeled) Cribs After Multiple Infant Deaths

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is announcing today a voluntary recall with Simplicity Inc., of Reading, Pa., of about 1 million cribs.
The drop-side can detach from the crib, which can create a dangerous gap and lead to the entrapment and suffocation of infants.
The Commission is aware of two deaths in Simplicity manufactured cribs with older style hardware, including a 9-month-old child and a 6-month-old child, where the drop-side was installed upside down. Commission is also aware of seven infant entrapments and 55 incidents in these cribs.
Commission is also investigating the death of a 1-year-old child in a Simplicity crib with newer style hardware, in which the drop-side was installed upside down.
The Commission is warning parents and caregivers to check all Simplicity cribs to make sure the drop-side is installed right side up.
The drop-side failures result from both the hardware and crib design, which allow consumers to unintentionally install the drop-side upside down. This, in turn, can weaken the hardware and cause the drop-side to detach from the crib. When the drop-side detaches, it creates a gap in which infants can become entrapped.
Commission is also aware of two incidents that occurred when the drop-side was correctly installed with older style hardware, though the upside down installation greatly increases the risk of failure.
The recalled Simplicity crib models include:
Aspen 3 in 1
Aspen 4 in 1
Nursery-in-a-Box
Crib N Changer Combo
Chelsea and Pooh 4 in 1.
The recall also involves the following Simplicity cribs that used the Graco logo:
Aspen 3 in 1
Ultra 3 in 1
Ultra 4 in1
Ultra 5 in 1
Whitney
Trio.
The recalled cribs have one of the following model numbers, which can be found on the envelope attached to the mattress support and on the label attached to the headboard: 4600, 4605, 4705, 5000, 8000, 8324, 8800, 8740, 8910, 8994, 8050, 8750, 8760, and 8996.
The cribs, which were made in China, were sold in department stores, children’s stores and mass merchandisers nationwide from January 1998 through May 2007 for between $100 and $300.
As an immediate precaution, consumers should check to see if the drop-side is installed right side up. To do this, check to see that the slightly rounded rail with the decorative groove is installed at the top and the plain rail is on the bottom. Next, consumers should make sure the drop-side is securely attached to the tracks in all four corners.
If the drop-side is installed upside down or not securely attached, consumers should stop using the crib immediately. Incorrect installation can cause permanent damage to the hardware and re-installing the drop-side using the same hardware is unsafe.
Consumers should check to see if their crib contains the recalled hardware. Recalled hardware has a flexible tab at the bottom of the lower tracks and the top of the lower tracks are open. Newer hardware, which is not subject to the recall, has the flexible tab located at the top of the lower track, and a permanent stop at the bottom.
Consumers who have a crib with older style hardware can receive a free repair by immediately contacting Simplicity toll-free at 888-593-9274 between 8:30 a.m. and 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET on Friday, and between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Saturday, or by visiting www.simplicityforchildren.com
Consumers who have a crib with newer style hardware and have installed the drop-side upside down or have broken hardware, should also contact Simplicity immediately.

ADOPTION SEMINAR: International Options

International Adoption Options: How to do it, Where to go seminar presented by Dale Eldridge, LICSW and Raquel Woodard, LICSW of Adoption Choices, Framingham and Kate Ingalls Maloney of Children’s Home Society and Family Services of Minnesota on Monday, Oct. 1 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Adoption Choices, 75 Franklin Street, Suite 101, in Framingham.
Contact Woodard at 1-800-872-5232 or e-mail deldridge@jfsmw.org to register.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

October Issue, Featuring a Special Think Pink Guide, at the Printers


Yesterday, the October issue of Bay State Parent magazine went to the printers. For the first time in the magazine's 11-year history, we have produced a guide devoted to Breast Cancer Awareness.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Webster Teen to Sing With Girl Authority Saturday at 4 p.m. at KidsFest at Wachusett Mountain

Sky is the Limit Girl

Gianna Sposato of Webster is one of the two grand prize winners in Bay State Parent magazine's "Sing & Dance With Girl Authority Contest."
The 13 year old (pictured) said she would want to be "The Sky is The Limit Girl" if she was the 10th member of Girl Authority (www.girlauthority.com)
As one of the two grand prize winners, she will perform with the teen pop singing group Saturday at 4 p.m. at the 17th Annual KidsFest at Wachusett Mountain in Princeton.
Her submitted essay is below.
"I believe that the sky is the limit for today's girl if she follows a few key pointers:
Work Hard: I work hard at getting a good education because I know that that is the key to opening all of the doors in your future and making your dreams come true.
Do For Others: I do volunteer work because helping helping others makes me feel good and because it is important to be grateful for the blessings in your own life by sharing your time and energy with others.
Be Responsible: I strive to be responsible, because having this quality sets the stage for success for the rest of your life.
Be Yourself: I take pride in who I am- (red hair and all) because you need to love yourself in order to be happy in life.
Have Fun: I know how to have fun, because isn't that point of it all?!
By following these few simple steps, I am creating my own destiny and for me... The Sky's the Limit!"

Make a date to attend Kidsfest Saturday and watch Gianna perform.
For more information on Kidsfest, visit www.wachusett.,com
For more information onGirl Authority, visit www.girlauthority.com or check out the feature story on the Princesses of Pop inside the September issue of Bay State Parent magazine.

Monson Girl to Sing With Girl Authority Saturday at 2 p.m. at KidsFest at Wachusett Mountain

DANCER GIRL
Congrats to Bailey Medeiros, 10, of Monson. She is one of the two grand prize winners in Bay State Parent magazine's "Sing & Dance with Girl Authority Contest." Bailey will sing and dance with the pop group of nine girls Saturday at 2 p.m. at KidsFest at Wachusett Mountain in Princeton. If she could be the 10th member of Girl Authority, Bailey said she would be "Dancer Girl."
In her essay, she wrote," Though I am a lot of things, being a dancer describes me best. I dance at my studio, Dance Attack, in Monson. I am on the team so I dance hard and so much. I dance on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. I study many different styles like jazz, tap, lyrical, acro, and modern. I do so many dances and I have to perform them at competitions throughout my dance year When at a competition I get judged by judges who are professional teachers, dancers and choreographers. Normally, I get awarded either a gold, high gold, or platinum, which is Awesome! Dancing is what I do best and because being on the dance team costs so much money, I have to continue to get good grades or my parents will not pay for it. I love to dance so much and I know I am right for this contest because I am a great performer and would really enjoy dancing with Girl Authority. I would remember it as I dance throughout my life. I will dance forever and when I grow up and go to college I plan to go to a dance academy to become a dance teacher and Broadway performer. I know that I will pursue my dream."



Bailey, submitted a photo of her modelling dancewear in a dance catalog.
Congrats Bailey!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Mind Your eManners

Don’t put anything in writing that you wouldn’t want to see on the front page of the Boston Globe, a former colleague of mine once advised. The lesson of “think before you send” is even more important for tweens and teens, now that a large portion of their social communication happens over the Internet.

My 13-year-old daughter and her friends learned that lesson the hard way. Instant messaging, or IM’ing as it's called, was the vehicle by which one girl’s feelings were badly hurt by another who sent an unintentionally harsh message. While the words in the message may have been honest, it was removed from the context, tone of voice and body language that are vital to meaningful communication. How we interact is more than just the facts, ma’am.

Back in the day, it was the occasional typewritten memo unintended for general distribution that got people in hot water. Or the recorded voice mail message that was inadvertently sent to the whole company instead of just the intended recipient.

Now, people can type (or text) and send their message to a recipient – or the world – faster than their better judgment can catch up with them. And once words are on the Internet, they take on a life of their own, which may be permanent. Corporate recruiters and admissions officers routinely peruse an applicant’s cyber life; and those party scenes and banter with friends might be a lot less hilarious to potential employers than to other students.

As parents, we worry about keeping our kids safe from online predators. But we need to emphasize an equally important fact of living in a wired world: Don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t say in person – or that you wouldn’t want to see on the front page of the Boston Globe.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Upton Boy & Medford Girl Part of CBS' Kid Nation

Tomorrow (Wednesday) night, CBS (WBZ-TV 4, 8 p.m.) will premiere its kid-centered reality show, Kid Nation. The show's premise, if you haven't read any of the hype (or negativity) is that 40 kids, between the ages of 8-15, are put into the abandoned town of Bonanza City, New Mexico for 40 days. There, without adult supervision (I guess the cameramen and production crew don't officially count) have to build their own society by electing leaders, passing laws, and establishing an economy. According to CBS, the kids confront grown-up issues, while coping with the classic childhood emotions of homesickness, peer pressure, and the urge to break every rule. Episodes end with a town meeting in which the kids award one child a gold star worth $20,000, all leading to the grand finale, with an unimaginable test, the biggest awards and a special surprise for every child.
While the kids had no contact with their parents for about 6 weeks, all 40 kids needed parental approval to try out for the show ( CBS is already expecting the show to do well, despite some advocacy groups calling the show "child abuse," as they are already accepting applications for Kid Nation 2.)

Two of the 40 contestants in the premiere season have ties to Massachusetts, a boy from Upton and a girl from Medford.
Guylan, 11, from Upton writes on his CBS blog that most people would be surprised that "after being raised by two elephant trainers that I'm afraid of little spiders. Tarantulas don't bother me but little wolf spiders and daddy long-legs creep me out. "
Also on his blog, he wrote that if he had the power to change one or two things about the country right now, he would "like to change the president to one who actually cares about global warming and will do something about it instead of just putting it aside until later... I would also increase funds to save the few remaining wild places and wild life parks and reserves in the hopes of being an example for other countries."
Medford's Laurel, age 12, on her blog wrote that if she could put into place one law that pertains to kids in our country, "I'm really a strong supporter of no bullying. I don't think some kids know how much that can damage someone. I just wish there would be a law that kids have to be nice. It would be against the law to be mean to another child. Middle school kids can be so so so mean to each other. Everyone is trying to be accepted and nobody wants to be different for fear of being made fun of. I just wish being different wasn't such a bad thing, it would be nice for everyone to get along."
She also wrote if she could go anywhere in the world she would "GO BACK TO BONANZA CITY, NEW MEXICO AND DO IT ALL AGAIN. I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT THERE, EVEN THOUGH THERE WAS NO TV, NO VIDEO GAMES, NO IPOD, NO PHONE, NO HAIR DRYERS, NO LIP GLOSS, NO MODERN DAY COMFORTS, I HAD MORE FUN THERE THAN I COULD HAVE ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD."

Some critics have called the show a reality version of William Golding's novel Lord of the Flies.
Some TV critics have called it one of the best new fall shows. Yet others, have heralded the show as "child abuse." In fact, a parent of one of the kids filed a complaint (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/18/arts/television/18kid.html?ex=1345089600&en=085d627866c74958&ei=5088&partner=rssny) with New Mexico officials saying the kids on the show were neglected. She says one girl had her face burned by hot grease (she was cooking) and that other kids needed medical help after accidentally drinking bleach.
But several of the child participants of the show, who have been doing pre-show publicity, have said they enjoyed their experience, just like Laurel wrote in her CBS blog.
Tune in tomorrow night - consider watching with your own children -- and form your own opinion of the show.
Post your thoughts here.








Attack of the B Movies!

NATIONAL AMUSEMENTS LAUNCHES CAMPY DOUBLE FEATURE MOVIE PROGRAM

National Amusements, Inc., announced today the launch of Attack of the B Movies, a campy new movie program designed to take you back to the days of drive-in horror movies. The program offers a double feature of the “best” B movies ever made. The series runs every Thursday at 7 p.m. from September 20 – October 25, 2007 at Showcase Cinemas Worcester North. Tickets are $5 each for the double feature and may be purchased at the theatre, by phone at 860-646-9800, or online at www.nationalamusements.com
B movies are recognized as an important stage in Hollywood film history. Actors and filmmakers learned their crafts and the talents of many respected stars, directors, and even a U.S. president, were cultivated while making these campy films. B movie fans will also enjoy a specially designed Halloween Night grand finale, Screecher Feature Quadruple Bypass Marathon. The frightening four film “scarathon” begins on Wednesday, Oct. 31 at 6 p.m. with White Zombie, followed by Chamber of Horrors: Door with Seven Locks, The Satanic Rites of Dracula, and concludes with Night of the Living Dead.

Following is the Attack of the B Movies film schedule:
Sept. 20 - The Wasp Woman/Monster from Green Hell
Sept. 27 - The Giant Gila Monster/Gammera the Invincible
Oct. 4 - The Brain That Wouldn’t Die/Screaming Skull
Oct. 11 - Attack of the Giant Leeches/Monster from a Prehistoric Planet
Oct. 18 - The Terror/House on Haunted Hill
Oct. 25 - The Last Man on Earth/Devil Girl from Mars

Friday, September 14, 2007

Saturday, is Last Day to Enter Girl Authority Contest

Metro West-based Girl Authority had their national television debut on CBS The Early Show earlier this month. The pop princesses, who are featured inside Bay State Parent magazine's 12th Annual Arts Guide in the September issue, were presented as a signing group that parents could be proud to have their children listen to and look up to as role models. Girl Authority is a group of nine girls (ages 10-15), each with an individual identity that ties into their own personality....
Party Girl Kate
Urban Girl Gina
Fashion Girl Alex
Glamour Girl Carly
Preppy Girl Zoe
Boho Girl Jess
All-Star Girl Jacqueline
Rock and Roll Girl Tarr
Country Girl Crystal
Bay State Parent magazine is holding an exclusive contest in which two lucky girls can perform with Girl Authority at one of its shows at the 17th Annual Kidsfest at Wachusett Mountain in Princeton on Saturday, Sept 22.
* 10 lucky runner-ups each will receive a copy of the group's latest CD Road Trip.
* Each of the two grand prize winners will also receive a copy of the CD, plus a Girl Authority t-shirt, poster, and two admission tickets to KidsFest.

To enter: Massachusetts girls, between the ages of 6-16, need to create their own identity in 250 words or less AND submit a digital photograph image of themselves as that image.
(Complete rules: www.baystateparent.com/news/2007/0901/Front_Page/GirlAuthority.jpg)
The deadline for Snail mail entries has past but e-mail entries are being accepted through 11:59 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 15 at editor@baystateparent.com

Parents: please send e-mail with your child's description of her identity and a jpeg image of her dressed as that identify, no later than Saturday, Sept. 15 at 11:59 p.m.
Winners will be notified on Monday, Sept. 17

To read Bay State Parent magazine's profile on the "Princesses of Pop" click here:http://www.baystateparent.com/news/2007/0901/Articles/019.html
For individual profiles on each of the nine members of Girl Authority, click here:http://www.baystateparent.com/news/2007/0901/Articles/020.html

Due to Weather: Northborough's Applefest (Street Fair, Parade & Fireworks) Moves to Sunday

Due to the rainy weather predicted for Saturday morning and afternoon, several Applefest events in Northborough are being moved to Sunday, Sept. 16, while others will run as scheduled.
The Street Fair, Parade, and Fireworks, originally scheduled for Saturday, will now be held on Sunday.
The Street Fair will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and the Parade will start at noon from the Lincoln Street School.
The Fireworks will be moved to Sunday evening. They will be held at Algonquin Regional High School and will begin at approximately 8:00pm.
Don't forget the performance by the Charles River Sinfonietta and the Charles River Sinfonietta Youth Orchestra which will begin at 6:30pm. Refreshments and glow sticks will be available to purchase. A suggested $10 donation will be collected at the gates, and it’s recommended that people arrive early to get a great location.
Children’s recording artist Wayne from Maine will perform his free concert Saturday, 1:15-2:15 in the Town Hall Gym at 63 Main Street instead of at Assabet Park.
All other events will run as scheduled, please visit www.northboroughapplefest.com to view the schedule of events. For additional information on thsi annual Northborough event call the town's Recreation Department at 393-5034 or visit 2007 Schedule of Events

WEEKEND PICK: Salem Pirate Faire - Sept. 15-16

If swashbuckling adventure on the high seas, romance, treachery, and treasure sound like your idea of a good time, then the Salem Pirate Faire is for you! Winter Island Park is the perfect setting for this day of family-friendly entertainment, a seaside location that helps the cast of Pastimes recreate the exciting and terrifying days when pirates ruled the seas! The event takes place Saturday, Sept 15 and Sunday, Sept. 16 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The Salem Pirate Faire features an ongoing storyline each day, and plenty of opportunities for patrons to meet some of the most famed and feared pirate captains in history! The faire also features music, unique variety acts, vendors dealing in clothes, jewelry, gifts, and accessories, and abundant grub and grog (that's food and drink for you landlubbers). Get your sea legs ready, put on your best eye patch, and join us for a day of thrills!

Admission is $10 adults, $8 for students, seniors and those with military ID, and $5 for children ages 4-12. Premium Parking at Winter Island is $5 a carload. There is a free parking at Salem Willows Park, a seaside park within walking distance to Winter Island.

For more information and directions visit http://www.pastimesentertainment.com/pirate.html

Thursday, September 13, 2007

WEEKEND PICK: Curious George Day At Boston Public Library

Saturday, Sept 15 from 1 to 3 p.m. the Boston Public Library, Copley Square branch, will host its Third Annual Curious George Day. The events is co-sponsored by Houghton Mifflin & WGBH.
Bring your camera to have your child's photo taken with Curious George, take part in an arts-and-crafts activities, listen to Curious George stories, and watch an episode of the #1 PBS show, Curious George. This is a FREE event.

Sunday, Sept. 16: 27th Annual Victorian Fair in Melrose

The Melrose Chamber of Commerce will present the 27th Annual Melrose Victorian Fair in Downtown Melrose Sunday, Sept. 16, from 11:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
The rain date is Sunday, Sept. 23.
Melrose Victorian Fair, sponsored by the Melrose Chamber of Commerce, has been a major hometown event for the past 26 years. It is a day-long celebration. When the Fair began in 1981, it was intended to bring community attention to the city's renovated downtown area. Newly installed Victorian lampposts highlight the prominent architecture and rich heritage of Melrose. From the first year's launch to its subsequent successes year after year, the Victorian Fair has become a beloved community tradition. It continues to bring local businesses, organizations and Melrose residents together.
Beginning at dawn on the morning of the Fair, volunteers transform downtown Melrose into a festive corridor. A two-block section of the quaint Main Street retail hub is closed to make way for the booths that will line the street on both sides. A stage area is created in the middle of the fair where MMTV, the Melrose local access television station, films the entertainment and Fair happenings throughout the day.
Canopied booths delight fairgoers with crafts, give-aways, mini-golf, caricature drawings, face painting, games of chance, a dunk-tank and information about different civic, health and non-profit organizations.
Scrumptious aromas fill the air while local restaurants prepare tasty samplings for the over 15,000 people who will roam the downtown area.
The day's gala celebration is brought to a grand climax with the drawing of the Chamber's "Big Ticket" Raffle prizes. For more information, visit http://www.melrosechamber.org/

WEEKENDPICK: Sept. 15: Acton Day at NARA Park

Acton Day 2007 will be celebrated at NARA Park on Saturday, Sept. 15 from 5 to 9 p.m.
The event will feature a free concert by "Draw the Line", an Aerosmith tribute band endorsed by Aerosmith. There will be fireworks at dusk, a Tanglewood Marionettes show "An Arabian Adventure," a traveling Rainforest Reptiles, moon bounces and more.
NARA Park is located at 23 Ledge Rock Way off Route 27 in Acton. For more information, visit http://doc.acton-ma.gov/dsweb/Get/Document-16685/Acton%20Day%20September%2015.pdf
Some activities, like the Ice Cream Sundae Station at $2 per sundae, have a cost associated with it. In general, the event is free.

Sept. 15: 6th Annual Sudbury Festival: Gateway to the Islands

Sudbury Center will become a “Gateway to the Islands” with the 6th Annual Sudbury Festival Saturday, Sept. 15, from noon to 5 p.m.
The event features children’s activities and cultural performances from islands around the world including such places as the Galapagos, Japan, the Philippines, Iceland, the Seychelles, the Caribbean, and more, as well as international food vendors, and an international marketplace. The festival will also focus on the changes in the global climate and their impact on the island communities as well as our own. While enjoying entertainment ranging from Madagascar jazz to Philippine steel drums, festival visitors will be able to enjoy a variety of ethnic food.
The Children’s Pavilion offers a keepsake passport for $10 which allows children to visit seven islands through activities such as mining for gems in an Outback Adventure and fishing for prizes on the Baffin Islands. Throughout The Marketplace, exhibitors will offer all kinds of activities and information including ways to protect the environment. Some are as easy as using reusable corn-based water bottles while others are as intricate as a tri-hybrid car utilizing three different forms of energy.
The free festival is held at Sudbury Town Center, at the intersection of Route 27 and Concord Road. More than 3,000 people attended last year's event. In the event of rain, Sudbury Day will move indoors to Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High School (380 Lincoln Road, Sudbury).
For information on parking and free shuttle service, visit www.sudbury.ma.us
For more information about Sudbury Day or to volunteer for the event, e-mail sudburyday@town.sudbury.ma.us or call 978-443-8221 or 978-443-7723

Sunday, Sept. 16: Lexington's Applefest

Join the Lexington Chapter of Stand for Children for the community's annual Applefest. This family event will be held Sunday, Sept. 6, at The Depot in Lexington Center from 2-4 p.m. The popular event will include an apple dessert contest and feature Parent’s Choice award-winning performer, Ben Rudnik. Learn more about the local and national efforts of Stand for Children while enjoying an afternoon of fun, food, and music.

Life is good to Present $824,855 Check to Red Sox Foundation Friday Night

Life is good® founders Bert and John Jacobs will present a check for $824,855 to representatives from The Red Sox Foundation and Project Joy at the Red Sox game tomorrow night, Sept. 14 at Fenway Park. The Red Sox will play the New York Yankees tomorrow night.
The donation represents funds raised at the 2007 Life is good® at Fenway Festival and nationally through the sale of specially designed Life is good® festival t-shirts. Bay State Parent magazine was a sponsor of the Life is good Fenway Festival on July 7.
More than 10,000 people joined Life is good, a Boston-based lifestyle and apparel company, and The Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park on July 7 for a celebration of summer fund and good old-fashioned Americana. From colorful games, a spirited athletic competition, live music, and a contest to crown the World’s Greatest Backyard Athlete, people came together in a benefit for the Red Sox Foundation and Project Joy, a grassroots non-profit organization that utilizes the healing power of play to foster the social and emotional development of Boston’s poorest children. For a complete wrap-up of the festival, visit www.lifeisgood.com
What: Presentation of $824,855 to The Red Sox Foundation and Project Joy
Where: Fenway Park, Boston – 4 Yawkey Way. Check presentation will take place on the field prior to the start of the game
When: 6:45 p.m.

About Life is good, Inc.®: Based in Boston, MA, the company spreads good vibes through its colorful collection of apparel and accessories, and the contagious grin of Jake, its optimistic cultural hero.

125th Bolton Fair - Sept. 21-23

New Attractions & Old Fashioned Fun at the 125th Bolton Fair in Lancaster.

Visit the beautiful new fairgrounds in Lancaster beginning Friday night, Sept 21 at 5 for live music, entertainment, & Fireworks.
Bolton Fair 2007 continues Saturday Sept. 22nd from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. (with new extended hours), and Sunday Sept. from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
This year, the fair will feature an exciting attraction Winns’ Galaxy of Thrills in addition to all the old favorites and animal exhibits such as sheep, goat, poultry, and cattle. Turn back time and view the talents of the sheep shearers and blacksmith and listen to the tales of Chuck Wagon Mac. Also this year see the amazing magic of Lance Gifford. Fairgoers can test their skills in Kids Country at the Veggie Races, the hay bale maze, and the chicken "chucking" contest. Visitors to the fair can browse through the wares of many vendors at the juried Craft Show or sample the fresh-grown produce, homemade jellies and jams and baked goods in the Farmer's Market. The Exhibit Hall will showcase hundreds of home grown and handmade crafts and goodies. As always, there will be rousing entertainment, the fabulous country fair food court, and the popular Fiesta shows midway.

New & Returning Adventures
Extreme Adrenaline Rush! Place two daredevil motorcycle stunt riders on modified Honda dirt bikes inside a giant 5,000 pound iron globe, and what do you get? The ultimate heart pounding adrenaline rush thrills show called Galaxy Globe, presented by Winns’Galaxy of Thrills on both days. The motorcycle engines roar as the stunt rider’s race inside the giant globe. With G-forces pulling on the riders they ride choreographed patterns, riding sideways and performing complete gravity–defying loops, completely upside down!
On Saturday & Sunday be sure and see the New England Disc Dog Club. The canines will perform gymnastics and acrobatics set to music. Visit the horse show arena both days. Saturday’s entertainment will include a traditional horse show, while Sunday will feature Mr. Dale Perkins riding three horses a breast at one time! Sunday also features those clever sheep herding dogs masterfully controlling their flocks! Don’t miss the beautiful Perkins’ Hitch Display and those magnificent horses.
Don’t miss the entertaining and educating displays at The American Textile Museum, The spinning & weaving at the Fiber tent, and the amazing wood carving exhibition by Ross MacVicar.

Popular Entertainment
Come and enjoy a variety of talented musicians/singers on our main stage. This year’s stage entertainment will include The Rafters, Duncan Walters and the ever popular Northern Lights. They will provide a variety of music and songs to delight all ages and tastes in music.
On Saturday and Sunday The TGC CLoggers and Country Kickers dance teams will perform for your enjoyment and the ever popular Rhythm Room returns! Sunday will also feature 24th annual Fiddler Contest -- one of the best in the northeast -- and will round out the day with a “jam” session of all participants. A full entertainment schedule is available on-line at www.boltonfair.org and at the gate.

Promoting Agriculture
Since its inception in 1874, the Bolton Fair has been held to promote awareness of agriculture, horticulture and animal husbandry. The fair, which is run by volunteers, remains true to those 19th century roots and features cattle and sheep shows, goat and poultry exhibits, horse show, and the Exhibit Hall, where hundreds of home grown fruits, vegetable, flowers and handmade crafts will be on display. Proceeds are used to benefit local organizations, scholarships, prizes to exhibitors, and to cover fair expenses including the mortgage on the new fairgrounds as well as improvements.

Admission: Bolton Fair is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, rain or shine. Midway rides are also open Thursday & Friday from 5 p.m.-10 p.m. Ride Thursday & Friday all evening all for one price, Saturday from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Fair admission is $8 for adults and $6 for senior citizens. Children 6 and under are free; children 7-12 pay only $5. The admission fee covers all animal shows, contests, events and entertainment except for the Midway & pony rides. Tickets for the amusements will be sold at the Midway.

Premium Book Deadline Sept 20: Copies of the Bolton Fair Exhibitor's Guide, listing livestock and other items that may be entered for judging and exhibition, are available in Bolton at the Town Clerk's office, Town Hall, Bolton Public Library, Bolton Orchards, Bolton Spring Farm, Salt Box, Great Brook Farms , Country Cupboard and Clinton Savings Bank. In Lancaster pick up a book at Oak Ridge Farm Market or Lancaster Agway. In Clinton at Hudson Savings Bank. You may also view and print the book at our web site: www.boltonfair.org. Entries must be delivered to the Exhibit Tent BY Thursday Sept. 20 from 3 to 9 p.m. on the fairgrounds in Lancaster. Note: All exhibits will be housed in a large tent with sides. Please call with any questions 978-779-6253.
For more information about the Bolton Fair, visit the fair's web site at www.boltonfair.org

Saturday, Sept 22: YAK festival in Berlin

What brings a Tibetan Yak Fest to the quiet country town of Berlin? Beezy Bentzen of Berlin and Ada Woolston of Bolton, both of whom are teachers, have been volunteering in the educational program at Manjushree Vidyapith Orphanage and school in the ethnically Tibetan Mon Region of Northeast India for the past three years. Some of the Manjushree children come from families who herd yaks, an integral part of Tibetan culture.
The Yak Fest in Berlin’s 1870 Town Hall on Saturday, Sept 22., will begin with a buffet dinner including Tibetan, Indian and American dishes at 6:30 p.m.
Penpa Tsering, a world-class musician singer and dancer from Tibet, will perform at 8 p.m. Penpa Tsering fled from Tibet, trekking for 27 days across the Himalaya to Nepal. He now lives in Somerville. His presentation includes performances on 16 different traditional instruments, including strings, pipes and horns, and singing, and dancing.
Throughout the evening there will be an opportunity to view exhibits of life in this remote ethnically Tibetan region, as well as to purchase Tibetan handcrafts. A brief slide show will convey the essence of life at Manjushree as well as the needs of its 100-plus children.

Manjushree was founded in 1998 by Lama Thupten Phuntsok, at a site near his home village in the state of Arunachal Pradesh in the Southern Himalaya. The orphanage now provides a secure, loving, nurturing home and school for destitute children. Those with disabilities are especially welcome. Currently there are four boys who have lost their hands as a result of electrical accidents, and approximately six more children with disabilities, including blindness.
The atmosphere at Manjushree is pervaded with kindness and compassion, as well as a peacefulness that stems from the Buddhist heritage of the region.

Manjushree Vidyapith Orphanage in Tawang, India, the recipient of contributions from the Yak Fest, is supported entirely by contributions. Residents in MetroWest and Central Massachusetts communities including Acton, Berlin, Bolton, Clinton, Framingham, Groton, Harvard, Hudson, Marlborough, Northborough, Shrewsbury, Southborough, Westborough and Worcester support the work of Manjushree by sponsoring children at the orphanage.

There is no charge for this event. Those who enjoy the evening will be invited to contribute to the support of Manjushree The orphanage is an outreach project of First Parish Church in Berlin.

For more information contact Beezy Bentzen at bbentzen@verizon.net or Ada Woolston
at awoolston1@yahoo.com

China Agrees to Stop Using Lead Paint in Toys Exported to America

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has announced an agreement with its product safety counterparts in the Chinese government to stop using lead paint in its manufacture of all toys exported to the United States, effective immediately.
At a Consumer Product Safety Summit held Tuesday, the Commission announced that China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine also agreed to increase its inspections of consumer products destined for the U.S., and to assist the Commission in tracing hazardous products to the manufacturer, distributor and exporter in China.
In addition, the agencies agreed on plans for future cooperation in the toy category, including a road map for bilateral efforts to improve their safety. The two agencies expect to review the plans’ effectiveness within one year to identify possible areas for improvement, according to the Commission
"This is an important signal from the Chinese government that it is serious about working with CPSC to keep dangerous products out of American homes," Commission acting chairwoman Nancy Nord said. "We will be looking for meaningful cooperation on the ground—that means not just with the Chinese government, but also with industry at both ends of the supply chain." Nord also said that the plans show "significant forward progress" in the agency’s efforts to bring Chinese-made consumer products into line with U.S. safety rules.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Chocolate Idol Contest

Does your chocolate creation compare with those of the Langham Hotel Boston's Chocolate Bar? Season 19 of Boston's famous chocolate bar will feature a Chocolate Idol contest, where anyone may submit an original recipe to be added to the Chocolate Bar Season! The winner will receive a Chocolate Bar VIP pass offering unlimited access to the entire Chocolate Bar Season 19.
Entries will be accepted through Saturday, September 22, and the winner will be announced on Chocolate Idol Day, October 6. E-mail your recipe or questions to chocolateidol@langhamhotels.com.
Spend a Saturday afternoon feasting on chocolate - more than 125 items, including chocolate mousses, specialty cakes, made-to-order chocolate crêpes, homemade ice cream, fresh baked cookies, milk chocolate passion fruit tarts, miniature s’more cups, truffles, donuts, homemade waffles with chocolate fondue and more.
Perfect for birthday parties, baby & bridal showers, special events, a mom's day out, – or simply a great indulgence for yourself.
Through May 2008, Saturdays noon to 3 p.m.
Adults: $35. Children 5-12 years old: $17.50. Children 4 years and under: Free.
For more information or reservations, which are recommended, call 617-956-8751.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Bay State Parent night at Dream Dinners

Thanks to everyone turned out for our special night at Dream Dinners in Shrewsbury Friday night. Below are a few photos:

Saturday, September 8, 2007

SUNDAY PICK:Pet Rock Festival in Worcester

Sunday, Sept. 9 is the Annual Pet Rock Festival at Quinsigamond Community College in Worcester. This annual family-friendly festival promotes kindness to animals and is full of fun such as an adoptable dog parade, contests, live music, a doggie water park, cat photo contest, celebrity guests, vendors, shows, speakers, and food. Of course, bring your leashed pet. Admission is $12 (with $2 off coupons online) and $5 for kids 3-12.

Visit http://www.petrockfest.com/ for more information.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Weekend Pick: 5th Annual Boston Arts Festival

The 5th annual Boston Arts Festival takes place this weekend (Saturday & Sunday, Sept. 8-9) from noon to 6 p.m. at Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park. Affectionately dubbed (ähts), The Boston Arts Festival is designed to launch Boston’s arts season and showcase more than 70-juried artists and Boston’s contemporary arts scene. Visual artists will exhibit and sell one-of-a-kind and limited edition works of art, covering a broad spectrum of creativity, in a specially constructed artists’ village. The festival also features a performance program on two separate stages: the Waterfront Stage and the Garden Stage. This year’s performing artists include the Boston Ballet, Boston gay Men’s Chorus, Opera Boston, Riverside Theatre Works, members of the Boston Pops ensemble, Mango Blue, and children’s favorites Steve’s Song and Ben Rudnick.
There will also be a program of family-friendly activities including interactive painting led by the Mayor’s Mural Crew, a special children’s area, glass blowing demonstration, and a commissioned piece of artwork to be sculpted on site.
The full schedule is as follows:

WATERFRONT STAGE
Saturday

noon-12:45pm, OrigiNation
1:15- 2pm, Riverside Theatre Works
2:30- 3:15pm, Dance Asia
3:45- 4:30pm, Boston Ballet II
5:15- 6pm, Boston Gay Men's Chorus

Sunday
12:30- 1:15pm, Steve Songs
1:45- 2:30pm, Boston Pops Ensemble
2:30- 3:15pm, Boston Ballet II
3:45- 4:30pm, Opera Boston
5:15- 6pm, Mango Blue

GARDEN STAGE
Saturday
12:45- 1:15pm, City Stage Company
2-2:30pm, Maeve Gilchrist
3:15- 3:45pm, Peter Row
4:30- 5:15pm, New England Conservatory Jazz Ensemble II

Sunday
noon-12:30pm, Community Music Center of Boston
1:15- 1:45pm, Ben Rundnik & Friends
2:30- 3pm, Bamidele Drums
4:30- 5pm, Masayo Ishigure

The Boston Arts Festival presented by TARGET and co-sponsored by Metro Boston, Boston magazine, and WBUR, takes place at Christopher Columbus Park, conveniently located on Boston’s waterfront between Faneuil Hall Marketplace and Boston’s historic North End. The Park is easily accessed via public transportation: Blue Line to Aquarium stop, Green Line to the Haymarket stop, or the Orange Line also to Haymarket stop. For detailed information visit www.cityofboston.gov/arts, or call 617-635-3911 The Boston Arts Festival is produced by the Mayor’s Office of Arts, Tourism & Special Events

WEEKEND PICK: Massachusetts Day at Southwick's ZOO

Saturday, Sept. 8 is Massachusetts Day at Southwick's Zoo in Mendon. Massachusetts residents, who buy one admission, get one free, with a MA ID. Admission prices are $16.75 for adults, $12.75 for children ages 3-12, and children age 2 and under are free. For more information visit, http://www.southwickszoo.com/







WEEKEND PICK: Uxbridge Fire Benefit

Tomorrow, Saturday, Sept. 8 the Phoenix Arts and Music Festival will be held at the Uxbridge Farm & Fairgrounds from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.. The event will aid families affected by this summer's devasting mill fire in Uxbridge. The musicians and artists of the Bernat Mill will headline this premiere Phoenix Festival. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Friends of the Bernat Mill Fund. Sponsors of the event include Blackstone Valley arts community, other businesses affected by the fire, Southwick's Zoo, and Bay State Parent magazine.
For additional information visit, www.helpuxbridge.com

Sept. 8: Celebrate Boston's 377th Birthday

It's Boston's Charter Day today. The city's charter was signed on Sept. 7 in 1630. The historical city is celebrating its founding with events today through Sunday; but tomorrow, come celebrate Boston's 377th birthday with The Bostonian Society and The Partnership of the Historic Bostons at a special birthday event at the Old State House Museum.
Enjoy free admission to the Old State House Museum all day, along with special activities for children and their families, and a special birthday cake served at noon.
For other Charter Day activities around Boston, please visit the official Charter Day Web site at http://bostoncharterday.org/charterday2007.html

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Sept. 16: Noodle Noggin 'N Bean Party

Noodle Noggin 'N Bean in Northboro is hosting an end of the summer blast on Sunday, Sept. 16. The event will feature characters Dora, Cinderella, and Prince Charming along with other entertainment, including live music, moonwalk, and magic. Cost is $5 per person.
For more information visit http://www.noodlenogginnbean.com/

AUDITIONS: Sept 16 for Treble Chorus of New England

The Treble Chorus of New England will hold auditions for children ages 6 - 13 for training choir and concert choir; and youth ages 13 -17 and young adults ages 18-21 for Schola will be held at West Parish Church, 129 Reservation Road, in Andover on Sunday, Sept. 16.
While prior musical training is not necessary to participate in Treble Chorus of New England, an audition is required.
Singers will be placed in the appropriate program based on their skills, maturity and readiness.
You do not need to bring a prepared audition piece. The audition process is quick and simple. A conductor will listen for the singer's ability to match pitches, to learn a simple tune, and to hold one's voice part against others.
The chorus' mission is to training young singers, ages 7-21, in developing an understanding for and a love of choral music, to provide exceptional musical formation and to offer choral concerts that benefit diverse audiences in Massachusetts and communities throughout the world.
In recent years, Treble Chorus has performed under the baton of Keith Lockhart and Sir David Willcocks. Classes are designed to teach children to sing in tune, perform great classic and contemporary music, to build confidence and stage presence, and teach music theory and skills.
To request a scheduled audition, please call 978-837-5461.

Sept. 16: Milford Performing Arts Center Open House

The Milford Performing Arts Center will host its 17th annual OPEN HOUSE on Sunday, Sept. 16th from 4 to 8 p.m. at the 150 Main St. center location.
Sign up for classes and private instruction in drama, music, dance and visual art.
Enjoy entertainment by students from the center, great refreshments, unique face painting and meet the staff.
For more information, phone 508-473-1684.

AUDITIONS: Sept 12 for Full Circle Theatre Production in Milford

Full Circle Theatre will hold Little Shop Of Horrors on Tuesday Sept. 11 and Wednesday Sept. 12 from 7 – 9 pm at the Milford Performing Arts Center, 150 Main St.
Needed are 12 - 18 actors, singers, & dancers who can play characters in their late teens through late 60’s.
Please prepare an up tune and a ballad, bring photo and resume, and please be prepared to dance.
Performances are tentatively set for the 2nd and 3rd weekends of November.
For more information call the Center at 508-473-1684.

Full Circle Theatre Company is the adult acting company of the Milford Performing Arts Center.

Sunday, Sept 9: 6th Annual Block Party at Hudson Church

First United Methodist Church of Hudson is hosting its 6th Annual Block Party Celebration on Sunday, Sept 9 from 10:45 a.m. to 6 p.m. under the big tent on the church grounds at 34 Felton St..
The event features activities for all ages, food, music, tractor train rides, Moonwalk, etc. Highlight of the day's events will be music throughout the afternoon by "The Regulars" from Grace Baptist Church. This free event is open to the public.
For more info, call 978-562-2932 or visit http://www.hudsonfumc.com/

Sunday, Sept. 9: Dedication of Children's Room at Leominster Library

The dedication of the Dr. Martin T. Feldman Children's Room will take place Sunday, Sept. 9 from 2 to 5 p.m. in the Leominster Public Library, 30 West St.
Geraldine Feldman said it will be a kid-oriented party.
"It's going to be a party Marty would have liked for children," she said. "There will be all kinds of activities and fun for them."
Following a brief dedication ceremony at 2 p.m., the afternoon will be filled with fun activities for children and their families including an organ grinder and monkey, incredible balloon art, magic, face painting, music, and refreshments!

Sept 15: Family Day at Clearview Farm in Sterling

Clearview Farm is hosting its Annual Family Day on Saturday, Sept. 15. Enjoy hay rides to the orchard, apple, blueberry, raspberry, and peach picking, plus live entertainment on the lawn. The farm is located at 4 Kendall Hill Road in Sterling.
For more information e-mail clearviewfarm@comcast.net

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

SPECIAL BREAST CANCER ISSUE: Readers May Purchase a Testimonial or Memoriam Ad with Photo for $75

Bay State Parent magazine is publishing a special guide in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month inside the October issue. You, our loyal readers, have the opportunity to place a testimonial or in memoriam ad inside that THINK PINK breast cancer guide.
For example:
* "Aunt Sarah. We support you as you battle breast cancer. Love Tracy, Jimmy & Drew"
* "Mom. We Miss You!!! Love, Vicki, Terry, Bob, Mary and Tim."
* "Happy 12th Year Cancer Free Grandma Joan! Love Annmarie, Pattie, & Barbie"

Ads are $75 each and are about the size of a business card. Digital photos may also be submitted as part of the ad for no extra charge.

Deadline to place an ad is Friday, Sept 14 at 6 p.m.

E-mail ad copy (A few sentences maximum) and a jpeg image of your loved one to: sales@baystateparent.com.
Include in the e-mail your name and a daytime phone number, so we call you for credit card payment.

15% of the cost of the $75 ad will be included in the magazine's donation to the UMASS Memorial Comprehensive Breast Center in Worcester.

RECALL: More han 675,000 Barbie Accesory Toys Due to Lead Paint Violation

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Mattel of California, yesterday announced a voluntary recall of about 675,000 Barbie Accessory Toys. Surface paints on the toys contain excessive levels of lead which is prohibited under federal law. There were no reported incidents or injuries. The recall involves various Barbie accessory toys that were manufactured between September 30, 2006 and August 20, 2007. The model names, product numbers and affected date code numbers are listed in a chart on CPSC's Web site. The product and date code numbers are printed on the largest component of the toy sets. They were sold at retail stores nationwide from October 2006 through August 2007for about $10 and manufactured in China.
Consumers should immediately take the recalled toys away from children and contact Mattel for instructions on how to receive a free replacement toy of equal value. For additional information, contact Mattel's/Fisher-Price hotline at 888496-8330 anytime, or visit www.mattel.com/safety

RECALL: Fisher-Price Geo Trax Locomotive Toys for Lead Paint Violations

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Fisher-Price of New York, yesterday announced a voluntary recall of about 90,000 Geo Trax Locomotive Toys. Surface paints on the toys contain excessive levels of lead. There were no reported injuries or incidents. The recall involves the Geo Trax Freightway Transport and Geo Trax Special Track Pack locomotive toys. These toys are red with yellow paint on the ladder and horn details. The recalled models were manufactured between July 31, 2006 and August 20, 2007 and have a date code between 212-6CK through 325-6CK or 001-7CK through 232-7CK marked on the bottom of the product. The packaging on the Freightway Transport model is marked H5705 and the packaging on the Special Track Pack model is marked K3013.
They were sold at retail stores nationwide from September 2006 through August 2007 for between $3 and $16 and manufactured in China.
Consumers should immediately take the recalled toys away from children and contact Fisher-Price. Consumers will need to return the product in order to receive a free replacement toy.
For additional information, contact Fisher-Price toll-free at 888-496-8330 anytime or visit http://www.service.mattel.com/

RECALL: Fisher-Price Bongo Band Toys Due to Lead paint Violation

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the Fisher-Price Inc of New York, yesterday announced a voluntary recall about 8,900 Big Big World 6-in-1 Bongo Band toys. Surface paints on the toys contain excessive levels of lead, which violates the federal law prohibiting lead paint on children's toys. There were no reported injuriesor incidents. The recalled toys have two bongos, including one with a yellow and green plastic drum base with a blue drum surface. The other bongo is yellow and green plastic drum base with an orange drum surface with “It’s a Big, Big World” printed on it. The toys were sold with animal shaped accessories including a monkey, bird, tambourine and drum stick. The toys have product number K9343 inside the orange drum. A date code between 139-7SH and 232-7SH is printed on the drum’s orange ring surface. Bongo Band toys included in this recall must have both the product number and date code. They were sold at retail stores nationwide from July 2007 through August 2007 for about $20 and manufactured in China.
Consumers should immediately take the recalled toys away from children and contact Fisher-Price for instructions on returning the product in order to receive a free replacement toy.
For additional information, contact Fisher-Price at 888-496-8330 anytime or visit www.mattel.com/safety

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Sept 13: Summit Academy Open House

Summit Academy at 365 Lindell Ave. in Leominster is hosting a free open house on Thursday, Sept. 13 from 7 to 9 p.m. Parents are welcome to meet with our staff and learn how our therapeutic approach creates a dynamic learning environment for students 6 to 15 years of age with high functioning Autism (PDD-NOS), Asperger’s Syndrome, ADHD and Non-Verbal Learning Disability.
A tour of this new facility will include the school's innovative classroom model and martial arts program facilities.
The school’s core curriculum meets the Massachusetts Department of Education standards, and includes Therapeutic Martial Arts and Therapeutic Tennis, Scouting and hands-on, experiential education with a ratio of one teacher for each group of 6 students. Summit Academy, a 766 Special Education School (pending), is a resource for local school districts.
For more information, contact Summit Academy Director Mike Bishop at 978-466-8002 or michael.bishop@summitacademies.org. Or visit www.summitacademies.com and click on the Massachusetts link for complete information.

Saturday, Sept. 8: Community Safety Event at Canal Park in Cambridge

CambridgeSide Galleria and the City of Cambridge Police and Fire Departments, in conjunction with several other state and local agencies, welcome you to Community Safety Day on Saturday, Sept. 8 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Canal Park, adjacent to CambridgeSide Galleria.
This event is the City’s first multi-agency Community Safety Day of this magnitude. Exciting live demonstrations are planned along with family safety activities like child-identification services (fingerprinting, DNA and videotaping), car seat installation and blood pressure screenings.
* Cambridge Police Department’s Special Response Team (SWAT) will be performing a vehicle takedown/hostage rescue and a Bomb Squad Robot demonstration.
* Cambridge Fire Department will perform a search and rescue mission in the canal utilizing their Fire Boat, an automobile extrication using the jaws-of-life and a high angle rescue at 70’above ground.
* MBTA Transit Police will do a live K-9 demonstration and have an explosive detection unit and Incident Command Vehicle on hand.
All are invited to take part in activities, meet public safety officials and learn how first responders do their jobs. The event is designed to educate and entertain by offering a unique opportunity for all to interact with and explore the various boats, trucks and more.
CambridgeSide Galleria Director of Operations Peter DeVito says, “We have wanted to create a family-oriented community safety day like this for some time. The cooperation we have received from the City of Cambridge and the individual departments show the level of commitment everyone has to make the City and Mall a safe and enjoyable place to meet and gather. The live demonstrations are expected to be spectacular and it should be a truly dynamic event.”


CambridgeSide Galleria is a hip urban shopping center with over 120 stores and restaurants. Located at the end of Memorial Drive on Edwin Land Boulevard in Cambridge, CambridgeSide Galleria is handicapped and MBTA accessible and offers attached parking.

For public transportation - Please take the Green Line T to Lechmere Station or take the Red Line T to Kendall Square and catch our FREE Shuttle Bus to CambridgeSide Galleria. For directions and mall information, call 617-621-8666 or visit www.shopcambridgeside.com. Mall hours are Monday-Saturday 10 a.m. - 9:30 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Saturday, Sept 15: MOMS Club Yard sale

The MOMS® Club of Dudley will hold a multi-family yard sale on Saturday, September 15 from 8 a.m. to noon at 45 Cudworth Road in Webster.
Items for sale will include kids toys, kids clothes, housewares, furniture, home décor items, appliances and more.
Proceeds from the yard sale go to benefit the MOMS® Club of Dudley.
MOMS, or Moms Offering Moms Support, is an international, non-denominational, nonprofit group for stay-at-home mothers.
Membership is open to all at-home mothers residing in Dudley or Webster, even those who work part-time or work from home.
For more information contact Theo, VP Membership at 508-943-9398 or visit the club's Web site at www.momsclubofdudley.googlepages.com

RECALL:Netto Collection Cribs Due to Entrapment & Stangulation Hazard

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Netto Collection of New York, today announced a voluntary recall about 400 "Moderne" and "Loft" Cribs. The crib slats can separate from the side rails, posing an entrapment and strangulation hazard to young children. Netto Collection has received three reports of the side rail spindles separating from the top rail. No injuries have been reported. The crib side rails are made of wood and sold with a brown finish. Only cribs with model numbers NC-137 and NC-140 and date codes 9/03 and 02/04 are included in the recall. The model numbers, date codes and "Made in Poland" are printed on a label on the crib end panels.
They were sold at juvenile furniture stores nationwide from October 2003 through June 2005 for about $1,350 and manufactured in Poland.
Consumers should stop using the crib immediately and contact Netto Collection to receive two replacement side rails. For additional information, contact Netto Collection toll-free at 866-996-3886 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday or visit http://nettocollection.com/railrecall.asp

Saturday, Sept. 8: Acton Family Network

Acton Family Network's is holding its "Kid's Stuff Fall Sale" Saturday, Sept. 8, behind Acton Town Hall, across from Acton's town green and tall monument. (If you are familiar with Acton Memorial Library, it is in the adjacent parking lot.) The sale runs from 8 a.m. to noon. Come support this family-friendly event.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Sing With Girl Authority - EXCLUSIVE CONTEST!!!

This morning, Metro West-based Girl Authority had their national television debut on CBS The Early Show.
The pop princesses, who are featured inside Bay State Parent magazine's 12th Annual Arts Guide in the September issue, were presented as a signing group that parents could be proud to have their children listen to and look up to as role models.
Girl Authority is a group of nine girls (ages 10-15), each with an individual identity that ties into their own personality....
Party Girl Kate
Urban Girl Gina
Fashion Girl Alex
Glamour Girl Carly
Preppy Girl Zoe
Boho Girl Jess
All-Star Girl Jacqueline
Rock and Roll Girl Tarr
Country Girl Crystal

Bay State Parent magazine is holding an exclusive contest in which two lucky girls can perform with Girl Authority at one of its shows at the 17th Annual Kidsfest at Wachusett Mountain in Princeton on Saturday, Sept 22.
* 10 lucky runner-ups each will receive a copy of the group's latest CD Road Trip.
* Each of the two grand prize winners will also receive a copy of the CD, plus a Girl Authority t-shirt, poster, and two admission tickets to KidsFest.

To enter: Massachusetts girls, between the ages of 6-16, need to create their own identity in 250 words or less AND submit a digital photograph image of themselves as that image.
(Complete rules: www.baystateparent.com/news/2007/0901/Front_Page/GirlAuthority.jpg)

Submit entries online to: editor@baystateparent.com
Parents: please send e-mail with your child's description of her identity and a jpeg image of her dressed as that identify, no later than Saturday, Sept. 15 at 11:59 p.m.

Mail entries to: Girl Authority Contest c/o Bay State Parent magazine, 800 Main Street, Holden, 01520.
DEADLINE EXTENDED!!!!
Entries must be postmarked by Tuesday, Sept .11 to be considered.
Please include a phone number or e-mail address for notification of winners.

Winners will be notified on Monday, Sept. 17

To read Bay State Parent magazine's profile on the "Princesses of Pop" click here:
http://www.baystateparent.com/news/2007/0901/Articles/019.html
For individual profiles on each of the nine members of Girl Authority, click here:
http://www.baystateparent.com/news/2007/0901/Articles/020.html