Summer at the Shedd

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Summer at the Shedd

Summer at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago just got a little more splashy.  The Shedd has been one of my favorite spots in the city since I was a little girl.  I remember when the Oceanarium opened and I dreamed of being in the water with the dolphins.  Then the Wild Reef opened and the experience was enhanced even more.

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This past week we were invited to attend the world premier of the Splash and Bubbles: 4-D Undersea Adventure.

Splash and Bubbles is a popular show on PBS about two fishie friends and their adventures together.  The 4-D experience adds a whole new level with blowing breezes, bubbles in the air and really getting splashed with water!

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All three of our kids ranging in ages 3-10 absolutely loved it!  But if you have young children who scare easily, or maybe aren't a fan of surprises, you might want to wait until they are a little older to enjoy this experience.  The 4-D experiences have a small additional charge and tickets must be purchased.

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After enjoying our 12 minute movie, we went off to explore the Shedd.  This was Will's first time as a 3 year old and not an infant or toddler confined to a stroller.  He loved being able to touch everything like the cool submarine in the Polar Play Zone.

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We also made it in time to see the last aquatic show of the day.  Not only did the Pacific Whitesided Dolphins impress us with their jumps but we learned how the Shedd has rescued so many different types of animals - even dogs!

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We had time to pop over to see the Beluga Whales - my FAVORITE! - before Jazzin' at the Shedd started.

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Jazzin' at the Shedd

Jazzin' at the Shedd is a late night event with food and drinks that happens from 5pm-10pm on Wednesdays over the summer.  While there are tons of couples and groups of friends, it is family friendly and the night caps off with fireworks over the lake.  You can even arrange to go out on a boat to see the fireworks on the lake.  

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The sunset over the skyline doesn't get better than this!  Jazz musicians are set up outside and inside providing a great backdrop for enjoying all of the different species at the Shedd or just taking in the view from the terrace.

photo credit:  sheddaquarium.org

photo credit:  sheddaquarium.org

Members get in to the event for free and there is a "Members Only" lounge with complimentary food and drinks.  Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door. There are food stations and bars set up throughout the aquarium.  We had shrimp po' boys and they were AMAZING!

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The kids loved the extra time soaking in all of the aquarium exhibits. 

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Madeline was proud to be the only kid in our family to touch a sturgeon, even if she had a little help from a staff member.  

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Our family just had the best afternoon and evening.  And we even made it to the fireworks that started at 9:30 pm!

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It really was the perfect family night in the city.

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Thanks to the Shedd Aquarium for inviting us to the premier of their new 4-D movie and to Jazzin' at the Shedd.  We are definitely coming back again before summer is over!  To plan your trip, visit SheddAquarium.org!

 

While the Shedd provided us complimentary passes to the movie and Jazzin' at the Shedd, all opinions are honest and our own.

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P. King Duckling Review + Giveaway!

This post is in partnership with P. King Duckling.

P. King Duckling is a fun show for preschoolers on the Disney Junior channel.  The show follows the adventures of a P. King Duckling, Wombat and Chumpkins that all live in a very quirky town called Hilly Hole.  Tucked away in a valley completely cut off from civilization, Hilly Hole is home to a wonderful collection of characters – who also just happen to be animals.

PKing Duckling

 

P. King Duckling! is a comedy that follows the adventures of a friendly but slightly hapless duck named P. King and his two best friends, Wombat and Chumpkins. They encounter many challenges on their adventures but they always find creative (and hilarious) ways to overcome them!  The series inspires positive thinking, curiosity and most importantly is about being yourself.  P. King Duckling was developed by Dr. Christine Ricci (Dora the Explorer) and consists of two very important lessons for young children: Overcoming Challenges and Creative Thinking.

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P. King, is a duck with a dream. Actually, he’s got a lot of dreams - one day he might see himself as a scientist, an architect, a pizzeria owner or even a mountain climber!  P. King thinks he’s the absolute smartest and handsomest duckling around.  It is with great self-confidence and an unstoppable spirit that he enthusiastically embarks on wild adventures, and invariably experiences challenges along the way. Even when facing challenges, P. King models creative ways to overcome them while also helping children to change the way they think about life’s problems and obstacles. He encourages children to see setbacks in a positive light and to keep dreaming, imagining and doing.

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P. King Duckling is about the only thing that can get Will happy after a pool day rain out or on my phone on the Disney Junior app while on a road trip.  

Will says, "I like this show.  It's so funny and it has ducks and stuff."  While the show is fun to watch, it also encourages overcoming challenges and creative thinking.

P. King Duckling

P. King Duckling always demonstrates four core values.

  1.  Challenge Yourself - Encouraging children to try new things, don’t give up and “Seize the Day!”

2.  Express Yourself - Empowering children to think and express themselves creatively through music, dance, role play… but most importantly to have fun and be yourself.

3.  Do-it-Yourself - Inspiring children to build, create and play using their imagination.

4.  See for Yourself - Motivating children to journey near and far… “Next stop, the moon!”

 

disney junior shows

 

We have a super fun giveaway for all of the P. King Duckling fans! The Giveaway Gift Pack includes a tote bag, water bottle, beach ball, t-shirt and flying disk.  Enter below in Rafflecopter.  Good luck!

You can catch P. King Duckling on Disney Junior weekdays at 8:05 am or on demand.  Keep up with P. King Duckling on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pkingduckling  Twitter:  https://twitter.com/PKingDucklingUS Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/pkingducklingus/ and Instagram:   https://www.instagram.com/pkingduckling/ 

 

This is a sponsored post.  All opinions are honest and my own.

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Kids in the City: Maggie Daley Park

Whenever we ask our kids what they want to do in the city, the first thing they yell is Maggie Daley Park!

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This park is for the big kids. For the kids who have long been able to touch the ground on the monkey bars at their local playgrounds. Most structures are for ages 5-12 and they mean it.  

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The big kids love the challenge of climbing high and then shooting down the metal slides. But this proves quite the challenge as a mom of a three year old. He wants to do everything the big kids do but he got stuck in that high tower. It was beyond stressful!

While the big structures as very attractive, there are smaller places for the little kids to find fun.  

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Will declared the ship a pirate ship and wanted to spend hours playing inside and on the deck.  

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There are also sweet little paths and trails to do as a family. 

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When planning your trip to Maggie Daley Park, pack scooters or rollerblades to do the Ribbon. If you forget, they are available for rent along with equipment to do the rock walls.  

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Things to know:  once all of the schools are out, this place is packed!  Put your kids in bright colors and make a meeting spot. It also isn't a bad idea to stick your contact info in younger kids' pockets in case you get separated.  

Parking is available at a discounted rate HERE.  

Lastly, bring your camera. You can get amazing shots of the Chicago skyline! 

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For park hours and more information, visit the Maggie Daley Park website

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Eataly with Kids

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Eataly with Kids

Eataly has been the dining destination in Chicago since it opened a couple of years ago.  Now that the kids are out for summer break, we are on the hunt for fun places to eat in the city the entire family can enjoy.

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