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Recipe: Darling Veg-Hog Party Snacks

Greetings future creative chefs! Today, we have some fun and exciting new recipes for the perfect kids Foodie Friday, brought to you by Lost My Name

Lost My Name is an innovative startup that creates personalized children’s books, home décor, games and more that spark imagination, creativity and interactive play for the whole family. Lost My Name creates unique products and activities that give every grown up creative superpowers to make magical, meaningful connections with children. From recipes to crafts, they are your go-to resource for fun, kid and family-friendly activities.  I’m sharing a few inventive recipes from the Lost My Name Clever Ideas blog that make snack time fun and adventurous for little ones and parents alike. 

 Enjoy their fun recipe for Veg-Hog Party Snacks. This adorable and tasty treat will delight children and parents alike.fries1

Veg-Hog Party Snacks 

  • 3 medium zucchinis (1 lb.)
  • 2/3 cup of all-purpose flour
  • ⅛ tsp of salt (+ a pinch before serving)
  • 1 cup of bread crumbs
  • 1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tbsp of Italian seasoning blend
  • 2 large eggs

Step 1: Rinse the zucchinis. Trim the ends, then cut each zucchini into ⅓ inch thick strips.

Step 2: Pour the flour and salt into a large bowl and pop the zucchini strips in there. Now mix with your hands to coat them thoroughly with flour.

Step 3: Now pop the bread crumbs, Parmesan and Italian seasoning in a wide bowl. Stir to combine. In a second bowl, quickly whisk the eggs with the water until fairly smooth.

Step 4: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Take the flour coated zucchini strips and dip them in the egg first, followed by the bread crumb mix.

Step 5: Time to cook your fries. Scatter them on a cooling rack (to prevent soggy fries) and pop them in the oven for 15 minutes.

Step 6: Now for the hardest bit. You have to wait for them to cool down. Then, arrange the fries in the cone.

Facts about fries

Despite its name, French fries are not French, they’re Belgian.

In the late-1600s, poor villagers often ate small fried fish they caught in the river. During the winter months the river would freeze over — making fishing impossible and forcing the villagers to find other sources of food. Enter the potato.

American soldiers stationed in Belgium were first introduced to French fries during World War I. As the official language of the Belgian army was French, soldiers nicknamed the delicious fried potatoes “French fries.” The name stuck, and decades later we’re still giving credit to the wrong country.

18 fun things to do in Denver this weekend

It’s the most wonderful month of the year (October, if there was any doubt). Denver is in full swing for fall activities and be sure to check-out our extensive guide to Denver’s pumpkin patches, corn mazes and fall festivals. This weekend, we have Ringling Bros., a giant pumpkin festival, kids clothing swaps, Cider Days and more. Go to our events calendar for additional details.

The Treasures of Toothless Jack: A hiking play at Chautauqua Picnic Shelter 
Oct. 1 and 2,  3:00 pm
Remember those books where you got to choose your own adventure? In “The Treasures of Toothless Jack” by Joaquin Aviña, audience members get a chance to choose the path of the play’s two friends as they are pulled into a mystery, challenge bad guys and possibly end the debate of whether a tomato is a fruit or a vegetable. All this while on a gorgeous hike!

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey at the Denver Coliseum 
Sep 30 – Oct 9 
Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey®, the circus that started it all, invites fans to blast off on an intergalactic adventure with the launch of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Presents Out Of This WorldTM.

MOMIX, Newman Center for the Arts 
Sep 29, 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
MOMIX, the whimsical hybrid of contemporary dance, circus and multimedia visual spectacle, returns to the Newman Center with Opus Cactus. Artistic Director Moses Pendleton brings the American Southwest to life through his signature illusionistic style to create scenes and images that explode with a sense of magic, danger, sensuality, humor, and grace.

Fall Fest at Snow Mountain Ranch 
Sep 30 – Oct 2 
Fall Fest weekends in September and October are back and filled with fall themed fun. Activities include a hay ride at Sombrero Stables, campfire and s’mores with mini golf, scarecrow building, carnival with doughnut bobbing, a fortune teller, pumpkin seed spitting contest and more, Human Hungry Hungry Hippos, cookie decorating and a movie night featuring the classic “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.”

Tales of Wonder at WOW! Children’s Museum 
Sep 30, 11:30 am – 1:00 pm
Educational Theater will present classic tales of elf and fairy magic for children and families. Children will help stories from Asia and Europe unfold through simple drama and creative movement activities. This program is part of the “WOW! Goes Around the World” series sponsored by the Lafayette Cultural Arts Commission and is included with Museum admission.

Evergreen Kids Clothes Swap at The Place Evergreen 
Oct 1, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Golden Kids Clothes Swap at Hillside Community Church 
Oct 1, 9:00 am – 11:00 am

A kids clothes swap in Golden and Evergreen! Come Friday and drop of clothes and baby equipment (or bring on the day of the swap). Then take what you need for your kids on Saturday.  The swap goes fast, so come right at 9 a.m.

Cider Days at the Lakewood Heritage Center 
Oct 1 – 2 
Two days packed full of cider pressing, historic demonstrations, exhibitors, vendors and entertainment. Fun for the whole family. Live music, apple pie eating contests, trick pigs, a magic show and more. 

FarmFest Celebration at The Urban Farm 
Oct 1, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
FarmFest gives families an opportunity to explore the farm and meet with kids and families already active in our projects. It gives everyone a chance to step into the future of agriculture. FarmFest features equestrian demonstrations, sheep shearing, chicken agility, feed a goat, egg-hunt and more!

Free Day at Denver Art Museum

Oct 1, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
The museum offers free general admission on the first Saturday of the month, made possible by Your 6 Hometown Toyota Stores and the citizens who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD).

Homesteaders’ Day at Clear Creek History Park
Oct 1, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Experience 19th century homesteading, explore the historic cabins, try woodstove cooking, learn about blacksmithing, and take a lesson at the schoolhouse.

Pumpkin Harvest Festival @ Four Mile Historic Park 
Oct 1 – 2 
Families will love this old-time fall festival! Build your own scarecrow, select the perfect pumpkin from the patch, dance to live music, play pioneer games, and more. Historic demonstrations and tours of the Four Mile House Museum will highlight how families lived and prepared for the season during the late 1800s.

Great Pumpkin and Veggie Festival at Nick’s Garden Center 
Oct 1. 11:00 am – 3:00 pm
Don’t miss Nick’s Annual Great Pumpkin and Veggie Weigh-off. Other fun fall fest activities include a pedal cart track, bounce houses, Nick’s Garden Express Train, tractor ride through the Tunnel of Terror and more.

Survive the Zombie Apocalypse at CU South Denver 
Oct 1. 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Do you have the skills it will take to survive when the zombie rise and begin their takeover of the world? Come and get a taste of some of the things you’ll need to survive. Archery skills, survival basics including first aid, zombie evasion, self-defense and more! Ages 8 and up

1st Annual TOWNIE FEST! at The Post Brewing Co 
Oct 1, 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Townie Fest is a day of fun with the friends and family and all Townies are welcome. We have TONS of prizes to win and games and activities to earn yourself more beer, merch or other prizes at Townie Fest! All ages are welcome, we’ll have face painting, a bouncy house and other activities for the kiddos, so bring the whole neighborhood!!

Kidical Mass Denver Family Bicycle Ride at SloHi Bike and Coffee 
Oct 2, 9:30 am – 12:30 pm
A legal, safe and FUN Broncos-themed, family-friendly bike ride through the community.

ALAS: Explorando Oportunidades en STEM at Wings Over the Rockies 
Oct 2, 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Wings will be hosting ALAS—a special event celebrating opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) for Latino families! This free event is designed for Latina and Latino students and their families to explore STEM careers in space and aviation.

Not-So-Haunted House at Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls & Toys 
Oct 2, 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Don’t miss this annual Not-So-Haunted House on Community Day, Sunday October 2nd. This event is a classic fall celebration, perfect for young children (and easily frightened adults). There will be slightly spooky decorations, bobbing for apples, mask decorating, and donuts on a string. Don your favorite character’s costume, get your face painted, explore the Museum bedecked in fall colors, and have a truly terrifyingly tame time.

[Funny] reasons why women should never breastfeed in public

Energetic, funny, and obsessed with creativity, Kristina Kuzmic has an in-your-face perspective on issues of parenting and life in general.

As for breasts? Turns out, they’re not just for gawking.

McDonald’s: The Next Generation with this Denver Mom

Meet Lauren Boselli-Addy. Lauren’s father is an owner/operator of 14 Denver Metro area McDonald’s and she began working for her dad when she was just 8-years-old. With hard work and dedication, she worked her way up in the organization and eventually became and approved owner/operator herself in June 2015. 

Archways to Opportunity

Since the beginning, McDonald’s has provided many opportunities to employees including training that inspires confidence and builds skills that will last a lifetime. Employees learn marketable skills that are applicable whether they choose to stay a year or stay for a career at McDonald’s. Did you know McDonald’s offers tuition assistance to managers and crew? McDonald’s also provides employees who have reached mid-management levels the opportunity to receive a year-and-a-half’s worth of transferable college credit.

Lauren and her family run their organization of 14 restaurants together. Her husband, Kyle works as their company controller and her twin sister Elizabeth works in the front office doing marketing and administration. Lauren loves coming to work everyday knowing she has her family by her side and enjoys seeing the many families impacted by Archways to Opportunity. 

Tell us about your family history with McDonald’s. At what age did you start helping there?

My dad, Tony Boselli, began his career with McDonald’s in July of 1974 in Thornton, CO. He began as a manager and worked his way up through the system and was awarded his first store in 1988. He was business partners with his brother, Bud Boselli, and their business grew to ownership of 21 McDonald’s restaurants. Currently, my father owns 14 restaurants.mcdonalds2

I began working for my dad when I was 8-years-old. I would go to work with him on Saturdays and would clean the lobby, take orders at the front counter and hand out food in the drive-thru window. I worked every summer at the restaurants during high school and when I went to college I would work during school breaks, giving me spending money and helping with college expenses. I worked my way from crew to director of operations before I was awarded my first store in June 2015.

 What are some of your fun earliest memories?

I loved helping my dad out on Saturdays at the restaurant and knowing that I would get to play in the play place after working and enjoy an ice cream cone. I also had every birthday party at McDonald’s. It was great having all my friends come to the restaurant for my party and have Ronald McDonald there to entertain everyone. 

 You are now an owner/operator of a McDonald’s. Tell us what was involved in working your way up in the company?

After graduating college I began working full time as an assistant manager while I completed my course work to go to Hamburger University in Oakbrook, IL where McDonald’s corporate offices are located. I was on the Dean’s List for my Hamburger University class and when I came back I was appointed to Store Manager. I was then put into training for Area Supervisor. I continued my classes and then was promoted to Area Supervisor of five restaurants. I entered the Owner/Operator Next Generation program in 2012 and began taking roles in leadership among other owners in the Denver Metro area.

I became an approved owner/operator in June 2015. I own one restaurant in Thornton, CO and I still work with my dad who is the best business partner I could have ever asked for. 

How is McDonald’s considered a family business?

McDonald’s is built on next-generation ownership. It is growing up in the business with your parents and being part of the community. McDonald’s employees are part of the family, as we have employed generations of family members. McDonald’s has provided my whole family an excellent career. As my dad always says, “we have ketchup in our blood.”

 How many employees does your organization currently have enrolled in the Archways To Opportunity Program?

We have six employees currently enrolled in the Archways to Opportunity program at my location including Mayra Gutierrez who is receiving tuition assistance and Ivon Hernandez, who is enrolled in our management program and receiving credits for college.archways

 How does the program work?

There are four components to the Archways to Opportunity education program at McDonald’s in Denver area and Colorado restaurants: 1) English Under the Arches: FREE English-language skills classes for employees wanting to learn or understand English better. 2) A FREE program to obtain a high school diploma. 3) Tuition assistance to attend a college to receive a Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree. 4) Resources and support to help remove the many barriers to pursuing educational goals.

For more information about Archways to Opportunity, go to archwaystoopportunity.com. In partnership with Mile High Mamas.

My breast cancer diagnosis, new boobs and a healed body

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Denver mom Kelly shares her story.

In November 2015 I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was a pretty shocking diagnosis, especially since I ticked all of those “healthy” boxes. Young (only 39), a non-smoker, active, well-balanced diet, etc., etc., etc. As with everything, I was stubbornly convinced I could handle the emotional and physical challenges of having cancer, be present with my family, run a business and keep up with all my volunteer commitments. I was actually kinda doing OK, even after my mastectomy in January. It wasn’t until the chemotherapy started that I realized I wasn’t strong enough to do it all. I had to focus on myself and my family.

It was such an emotional blow to let my business, Vela Adventures, go for awhile. We have grown so much over the past three years. We had successful Women in Adventure speaker nights, raising thousands of dollars for local charities. We were selling out our adventures and having a great time meeting new Vela customers. We expanded our team with two Vela Concierges leading adventures – it was a very exciting time for Vela and a really hard decision to pull back.

However, I was completely knocked off my feet with the debilitating effects of the chemo treatments. It was a really, really long four months of physical, mental and emotional stress that I would never, ever, in a million years wish on anyone. And, anyone reading this who has either gone through this hell or watched a family member deal with it, my heart goes out to you. I know watching me battle these treatments was just as hard on my family as it was on me.

With all that said – let’s get to the good part! I’ve got some hair on my head, some new boobs and a healed body. Now more than ever, I passionately believe adventure is the magic ingredient to a strong and powerful mind and body. Exactly one month after my last chemo treatment my sister-in-law and I climbed two 14ers. It was really, really, REALLY hard but when I reached that first summit I was so very thankful. I was thankful to my body for being strong enough to take me to the top of the mountain.

Being outdoors and active during these past 10 months has been one of the key ingredients to staying positive. While hiking in the woods I would take a few minutes to be still and breathe in the pine, memorize the views, feel the air on my skin. Being outdoors is rejuvenating and energizing and peaceful. So, I am beyond excited to get more women to try something new, to build their confidence, feel empowered and strengthen their bodies and minds.

I can’t wait to see you on an adventure soon!

Kudos to Vela Co-Founder, Kelly Kocher, for putting up the good fight! Be sure to check-out their upcoming women’s only adventures that include Outdoor Archery and Nature Hike, Rocky Mountain Horseback and also a free hike.

Deals: Liftopia, National Coffee Day Freebies, Festivals and More

I love that my kids are getting older. I don’t mean to get political here (and I won’t divulge who I’m voting for) but, I love that my kids and I can have discussions about candidates about why they might lean one way or another. I had lunch with a friend a couple of weeks ago and she said she was sort of sad for the young kids as neither candidate is exciting but what I have learned from talking to my kids is that they really have to hear both sides. They have to decide what things are most important to them. I think kids in the future will be more informed voters. They are watching. They are reading. They are discussing.
 
Liftopia.com. A couple weeks ago we did a round-up of all the great deals that can be had for skiing this year. But now…it’s CHRISTMAS!!! Just kidding. But it will feel like Christmas when you can score ab $50  gift card at Liftopia.com for just $40. Stocking stuffers already?
 
Arc Thrift Store Halloween. There isn’t a ghost of a chance you’d walk away without the perfect Halloween costume if you’re shopping at Arc Thrift Stores!! Arc Thrift Stores has the state’s largest selection of build-your-own costumes. The stores are full of Halloween must-haves: makeup, masks, gowns, hats, capes, and more. Costumes for kids, grown-ups, even pets. While you’re there also get spooky and fun decorations to make your home festive. Plus, all items are 50 percent off on Saturdays (excluding current color tags and green tags).
 
Dunkin’ Donuts Coffee. National Coffee Day is Thursday, September 29, and Dunkin’ Donuts will hail the holiday by raising a cup to its loyal guests with a coffee offer in celebration of the brand’s 66-year history of keeping people running with great coffee each and every day. On National Coffee Day, Dunkin’ Donuts guests can enjoy any medium-sized cup of the brand’s signature hot coffee for the special price of 66 cents.
 
Boyer’s Coffee. Boyer’s Coffee is celebrating more than 50 years of serving the community by hosting a FREE COFFEE BASH on Thursday, September 29, which is also National Coffee Day. The open house-style party, held from 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the Boyer’s Coffee Café at 73rd & Washington in Denver, will feature free coffee stations, 50% off specialty beverages, lunchtime food trucks, contests, music and more.
 
Guide to Fall Festivals, Pumpkin Patches, Corn Mazes and more. Hopefully you trekked out to one of Denver’s farms, corn mazes or fall festivals last year, if not, maybe this is our year to convince you or guilt trip you with some ideas and photos. Here’s Mile High Mamas’ guide to the classics, the trendy and even the bizarre pumpkin patches, corn mazes and festivals in Colorado. And, as always, remember to check the website before you go in case of any weather closures, prices, hours and dates. 

Minecraft Madness League. Calling all Denver moms and dads! Is your child a fan of MINECRAFT? If so, we have awesome news for you: starting on Tuesday, September 27, your kid can play MINECRAFT in the movie theater! Your gamer can play on their laptop in a comfy chair at the movies while they team up with other gamers to socialize and view the game on the big screen! They are the stars of the game as they will have fun competing for top scores to win great prizes. Events start at 4:30 pm with 90-minutes of interactive gameplay. Plus, parents can watch them play for FREE. Tickets are available now at SuperLeague.com. Enter code “DENVER”, to receive $5 off one-day events and $20 off league play. Participating Denver theaters include: Century 16 Belmar and Century Boulder. 

Raise a Reader. It’s fun! It’s free! And it’s at your library. Learn to Raise a Reader through engaging and playful activities. Create simple projects to take home and enjoy a snack while visiting local community organizations and businesses sharing helpful information.  Special gift for the first 300 kids each day at each location. 12 – 4 p.m. Oct. 1 | Belmar; Oct. 1 | Standley Lake; Oct. 1 | Arvada; Oct. 8 | Columbine; Oct. 15 | Lakewood; Suitable for: Babies through elementary and their families
 
Healthy Indulgences – Women’s Symposium. Join the one day free women’s symposium on October 1 with special Guest MC Denise Plante from KOSI and Colorado & Company at the Marriott Denver South (10345 Park Meadows Dr, in Lone Tree) from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with a spa lunch included. Grab your bestie, mom, sister or daughter and register today.
 
Ski Deal. Only two weeks left to pick up the FREE Epic School Kids at Vail Resorts (available in person at Colorado Ski and Golf locations). This ski pass allows kindergartners through 5th graders 16 FREE days of skiing – 4 at each: Keystone, Breckenridge, Vail and Beaver Creek; One free beginner level lesson and equipment rental on the day of that lesson. 
 
FREE Museums.
·         Bank of America’s Museums on Us is offering cardholders a way to enjoy the start of fall at some of the most exciting venues in the U.S. This weekend, October 1-2, Bank of America and Merrill Lynch cardholders can get free access to over 150 participating museums in 33 states and 101 cities. In Denver, participating museums include the Denver Art Museum, Denver Botanic Gardens, and Denver Zoo. Bank of America has also recently rolled out its Museums on Us site for mobile. You can check it out here on your mobile phone: http://museums.bankofamerica.com
·         Clyfford Still Museum. Free Fridays 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
·         Denver Art Museum. Free Saturday October 1.
·         Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls and Toys. $1 donation suggested Sunday, October 2.
 
Consignments. MileHighMamas rounded up the best of the best of consignment sales.  The highlights this week include:
·         October 1. Evergreen Kids Clothes Swap at The Place Evergreen. 9:00 am – 12:00 pm (Come Friday and drop of clothes and baby equipment (or bring on the day of the swap). Then take what you need for your kids on Saturday.  The swap goes fast, so come right at 9 a.m.)
·         October 1. Golden Kids Clothes Swap at Hillside Community Church 
Oct 1, 9:00 am – 11:00 am (drop clothes on Friday take what you need on Saturday).
·         October 7-8. St. Philip Early Learning Center
Friday 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m.; Saturday 8 a.m.-1 p.m. (white ticketed items are half-price)
at St. Philip Lutheran Church in Littleton 
 
Outlets of Castle Rock. Are you or someone you know looking for a new job? Outlets of Castle Rock are trying to fill 1000s of jobs. Friday, Sept 30 from 4 p.m .to 7 p.m and again on Saturday, October 1 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Applicants will be eligible to enter to win gift cards from the center.
 
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Email me if you know of any great Denver deals!
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If you’re on Twitter follow me on Twitter (GeeWhy93).  If I find a great deal during the week, I’ll tweet it out.

Guide to Denver’s Pumpkin Patches, Festivals and Corn Mazes

Hopefully you trekked out to one of these farms, corn mazes or fall festivals last year, if not, maybe this is our year to convince you or guilt trip you with some ideas and photos. I’ve added a few more locations from last year per feedback and deleted a couple I kind not find information on anymore. We love hearing from you. Here’s our guide to the classics, the trendy and even the bizarre pumpkin patches, corn mazes and festivals in Colorado. And, as always, remember to check the website before you go in case of any weather closures, prices, hours and dates. We put in Alphabetical order per town.

Mile High Farms, Bennett

Opening on October 1st for Saturdays and Sundays only throughout the month, this maze and pumpkin patch themes out their corn maze each year and is usually covered by media it’s so cool. Their fall into fun activities include the pumpkin patch, massive corn maze, hayrides, Grover’s garden (petting zoo), barrel carts and face painting. (Milehighfarms.com)

Rock Creek Farms, Broomfield

Opening day is Sept 24 for the 100+ acre farm and the U-pick-em pumpkin station, corn mazes, farm animals, family fun area treats and eats, and for Halloween, pumpkin carving with free pumpkin stencils. Per the website, this is one of the largest and most entertaining Halloween attractions in northern Colorado, admission is always free, and you must try the hay bale maze or get lost in the winding paths of over six miles of Corn Mazes. Visit with pigs, goats, ponies, donkeys, chickens and other farm animals. Enjoy a selection of fall festive treats and decorations such as gourds, indian corn, caramel apples, baked goods, straw bales and more. (Rockcreekfarm.com)

May Farms, Byers

Any weekend in October, between 10 am – 5 pm, pop in for October Harvest Fest at May Farms, where you will find all the delights of Autumn and fun for the entire family. This event is open to the public for $25 Admission and incluces Unlimited , Hay Rides, Barrel Train Rides, Barnyard Petting Zoo, Pumpkin Patch (1 Pumpkin Included), Pumpkin Cannon (4 Pumpkins included), Corn Hole Games and Activity Acres amongst other activities. Food, beverage, it’s all here. (mayfarms.com)

Cottonwood Farms, Boulder

Open daily Sept 24 through Halloween, this fall festival offers free admission. There is a corn maze, straw bail maze, pumpkin patch, animals to see, steam engines ($3) and opportunities to find fall harvest décor for your home. Open 10 – 6 everyday. (Cottonwoodfarms.com)

Wishing Star Farm, Calhan

Fall Fest is September 22 – October 31 and just 22 minutes from Colorado Springs!!! The whole family to see the many animals, jump with the family on the jumping pillow, see duck races, go on a hay ride to the Pumpkin Patch and pick your favorite pumpkin. Pony rides are offered all day long as well as a petting zoo, tire swings, corn bins, roping dummies, tractor tires to climb on and culvert tunnels to crawl through. And for the foodies in your group, stop by the Harvest Store for fresh pies, farm fresh eggs, homemade jellies and breads and fall decorations. (wishingstarfarm.com)

Anderson Farms, Erie

Colorado‛s Longest Running Corn Maze: Entering 20th season. Activities include hayrides to the pumpkin patch, 30-acre corn maze, spider web, tire mountain, barrel train, pedal karts, gem mining, gourd launching and more. Hours vary but the farm is open from September 21 through Halloween. The standout attractions include the corn maze, harvest festivals, Terror in the Corn, haunted hayride and ghost town, and Zombie Paintball Hunt for the older kids in your crew. (andersonfarms.com)

Bartels Land and Livestock Inc. & Corn Maze/Pumpkin Patch, Fort Collins

Open through October 31, the event offers a corn maze, pumpkin patch, and endless products to pick from in the field. Other attractions include hayrides, petting zoo, mini maze for the kids, acres and acres of pumpkins of all sizes, gourds, Indian corn, straw bales and late season vegetables. There are also pumpkin cannons to send them flying. U-pick CSA farm.(thebartelsfarm.com)

Northern Colorado Corn Maze, Fort Collins

Certainly the most popular options up north, these guys have it all—corn maze, scavenger hunt, pumpkin patch, bounce houses, farm animals, corn shuckers, pedal car race, trick or treat, and more. Their haunted maze at dusk is creepy and quite graphic, perfect for high school kids. Open October 1st, 2016 – October 30th, 2016. Open Thursday – Sunday only.  (northerncoloradocornmaze.com)

Studt’s Pumpkin Patch, Grand Junction

Open the entire month of October, The Original Studt’s Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze is the biggest and best in the Grand Valley. Studt’s is excited to once again offer fun for the whole family with a Pumpkin Jump, Hay Mountain with Kids Slide, Horse Drawn Hayrides, Animal Train, Pony Rides, Photo Area, Dark Acres Haunted Corn Maze and more. On Sunday, Oct 30, there is a Pumpkin Demolition Derby, Pumpkin Carving and Smashing, Kids Candy Trail / Prizes. (http://studtspumpkinpatchandcornmaze.com)

Pumpkins and More A-Maiz-ing Farm, Holyoke

This year’s patch will include a five acre corn maze and many other family and kid-friendly activities such as hayrides, a corn box, duck races, slides, horse swings, a giant spider web for climbing, a cow train, straw bale mountain, and a children’s maze. Other attractions such as a haunted corn maze (which opens in October) and a nightly campfire will also be offered. (amaizingpumpkinsandmore.com)

Fritzler Corn Maze

This corn maze has over 20 attractions, 1.6 miles of trail and two phases of the maze to conquer… and as of Sept 22, 2016, 350,000 people have visited since inception. There are also farm activities to choose from and an ATV mini roll coaster barrel train. Favorite activity such the Super Pumpkin canyon and the opportunity for children to burry themselves in corn has made this a very population options since its start in 2000. Second of the corn mazes, Scream Acres, is worth waiting for night fall to really get a good spook. There is a ghost haunt, zombie paint ball slayer, and creep attractions. (fritzlermaze.com)

Isebelle Farms, Lafayette

Open this weekend through Halloween. This is a no frills get-your-pumpkin on deal. Get your orange ornament of choice and explore. There is a straw bail for kids and a narrated tractor pulled hayride. Lots of local food and goodies to choose from and a great afternoon romp for the kids. This is actually a farm stand open year-round, so if you fall in love, you can easily go back for more.  (isabellefarm.com)

Denver Botanic Gardens, Littleton

The DBG’s corn maze might be one the most famous in the state. Located at their Chatfield Farms are the corn maze, hayride, barrel train and unlimited jumping on the giant pillow. Pony rides and the jumping pillow are available for an extra fee. With ample space and room to roam, my family rarely misses this one. And, the black out maze during weekends in October are only illuminated with glow sticks, so maybe bring an extra flashlight? Sept 16 –Oct 30. (botanicgardens.org/corn–maze/)

Rocky Mountain Pumpkin Ranch, Longmont

Fall Festival begins October 1 and runs through Halloween. The ranch offers carnival rides and activities every weekend including a petting zoo, pony rides, straw maze, inflatable obstacle course and much more. No entry fee and self guided tours available on weekdays. (rockymtnpumpkinranch.com)

Flat Acres Farm, Parker

Bring the entire family to join in the fun of the corn maze, snake tunnel, corn kernel boxes, petting zoo, kids hay bale maze, giant swing set and many other activities. Before leaving, be sure to stop by the Pumpkin Patch and pick that perfect carving pumpkin. Reapers Hallow and Dead End Motel, The Last Night . . . Haunted Maze. This place will give you the scare of your life, woods incorporated into the maze make for that extra haunt. (flatacresfarm.com)

Miller Farms Corn Maze & Fall Festival, Platteville

Begin your day with a visit to our petting zoo, followed by navigating your way through their corn maze. Visit ‘Antique Alley’ and enjoy your lunch in our picnic area, where they’ve got dozens of covered tables set up for your convenience. Take a hayride through 180 acres of fields where you can pick your own vegetables—potatoes, carrots, onions, beets, Indian corn, squash, peppers, and obviously, pumpkins. The Fall Fest runs from Labor Day to mid November and is open from 9 – 7. (millerfarms.net)

Niemann‛s Pumpkin Patch, New Castle

Open 7 days a week September 30th through November 2th 10 am – 4:30 pm and available for group appointments during the week. Choose the perfect pick from their large assortment of Goliath Big Stem, Carving, Cinderella, Pie, Wee-B-Little Pumpkins in beautiful “Peach Valley”, goose gourds, straw bales and corn stalks. More than a dozen fall festival events, including hayrides, straw bale maze and straw mountain. (niemannsgardens.com)

Crazed Maze, Thornton

Offering a 20-acre corn maze that can tale up to 40 minutes to complete, pumpkin field, pony rides, petting zoo, jumping castle, air slide, obstacle course, playground, corn kennel box, sand art and smart phone game, this is geared for the wee ones and it’s jam-packed with entertainment. It’s close to the city and a great first time experience for the virgin corn maze family. (maizeinthecity.com)

Haunted Field of Screams, Thornton

This is the largest haunted attraction in Colorado with the scariest thrills—Haunted Field of Screams, Dead Man’s Night Maze, and Zombie Paintball massacre. This might be a better option for older kids or a teenage outing as it is strictly for screams. Get your fright on until 10pm or midnight on the weekends. Opens this Friday, Sept 23! (Hauntedfieldofscreams.com)

Harvest Farm Festival & Corn Maze, Wellington

There are so many wonderful harvest festivals in the Denver area so why not attend one that is also for a great cause? The Harvest Farm’s 209 acres in Wellington, Colo. may look like regular farmland, but is run by the Denver Rescue Mission where men can find the first steps toward a new life. Their Harvest Farm Festival & Corn Maze from October 1-30, 2016 boasts a full lineup of attractions, including a 10-acre corn maze, hay-wagon rides, an obstacle course suspension bridge, pig races, evening campfires, a pumpkin patch, and snacks. Contest: WIN TICKETS!

 (https://www.harvestfarm.net/fall-festival.html)

Pope Farms, Wiggins

This western corn maze and pumpkin patch opens October 3rd for the entire month. Attractions include a 10-acre corn maze, camp fires, corn canyons, corn hole, corn box, cow train, face painting, hay mountain, hay ride, pumpkin pillow, hay bail maze, pumpkin patch, and the pumpkin pulverize. Open Weekends October 1st- October 30th, Friday 4-9, Saturday 10-9, Sunday 10-66. (popefarmscornmaize.wix.com/cornmaize-wigginsco)

Weathers Family Farm, Yuma

Explore a real working farm and ranch in the heart of the eastern plains. The 2016 Weathers Family Farms Corn Maze opens October 1st! This year they have also planted several unique pumpkin varieties. Plan now to visit Saturdays and Sundays in October. Although small, this family operation has wonderful education opportunities to learn about life on the farm. (weathersfarms.net)

Festivals, U-pick-its and even more frights and fun!

Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest lives on in The Mile High City! Modeled after Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany, this family-friendly fest, will be running weekends, and the next weekend (Oct 1) is it! The festical commemorates this world-famous and time-honored tradition of German heritage. Enjoy German attractions including music from national touring groups, performances by international dancers, children’s activities, and heritage booths selling German goods, splendid decor, an accordion concert and authentic drinks and cuisine. Ballpark Neighborhood (between 20th and 22nd Sts. on Larimer St.) (thedenveroktoberfest.com)

Fright Fest

Weekends Throughout October, things gets spooky  — especially during Fright Fest at Denver’s famed downtown theme park, Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park. This enormous fun zone transforms from theme park to “scream” park all month long during Fright Fest. From haunted houses to a free Trick-or-Treat Trail, there’s something for the whole family to enjoy. (www.elitchgardens.com)

 Mountain Fall Festival

For the month of October, visitors to Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, can enjoy a Mountain Fall Festival, daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with a pumpkin patch, family-friendly games, fall-themed photos and Oktoberfest food and drink specials. There’s even more fun on Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m. with hayrides, face painting and pumpkin decorating. On October 22 there will be a special performance by Oktoberfest band, Alpine Echo from noon to 5 p.m.  Admission to this event will be free with at least one can of food for donation to the Lift-Up food bank.  Please check website for times and prices. (GlenwoodCaverns.com)

Pumpkin Harvest Festival

At Four Mile Historic Park, enjoy an old-time fall celebration Oct 1&2 without even having to leave the city! Join them for some nostalgic autumn fun, including a scarecrow-building station and pumpkin patch, pie-eating contests, live music, crafts, seasonal treats, and county fair amusements. Historic demonstrations and tours of the Four Mile House Museum will highlight how families in the region lived and prepared for the season during the late 1800s. Horse-drawn wagon rides will be offered each day so that you may take a turn about the grounds in 19th-century style. Admission is free, but there is a charge for food and some activities. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; (fourmilepark.org)

Boo at the Zoo

It’s the 32nd annual Boo at the Zoo for Denver! Discover “spooktacular” Halloween fun Oct. 22-23 & Oct. 29-30 at the Denver Zoo during Boo at the Zoo. Enjoy 25 trick-or-treating stations while supporting Denver Zoo’s mission to provided exceptional care to our resident animals. Space is limited so buy tickets early! It’s always packed and a great time, some of the best costumes in the State. (www.denverzoo.org)

Trick or Treat Street

October 28 – 30 is the sweetest time of year at the Children’s Museum of Denver, so round up your fairies, super heroes and tiny goblins for a trick-or-treating adventure bursting with fun. This is a safe, friendly event for small children. Please, no scary costumes. Activities included with Museum admission. 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.  2121 Children’s Museum Drive, Denver. (mychildsmuseum.org)

Littleton Harvest Festival

Come one, come all, to the annual Harvest Festival on October 8, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. On our 1860s farm pick out your Halloween pumpkin and then enjoy hayrides, and other fun activities.  There is no cost to get into the museum; however, some activities and refreshments require tickets which can be purchased the day of the event. Cash or check only. (littletongov.org)

Festival of Scarecrows

Fall would not be complete without the fun and free Festival of Scarecrows. On Oct 6, buy pumpkins, stroll through Olde Town Arvada, vote for your favorite scarecrow or enter in a variety of contests and fun competitions, or bring your biggest home-grown pumpkin for weighing to claim the biggest pumpkin prize. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Raindate is Oct 17 this year just in case.(arvada.org)

Tigges Farm, Greeley

The Pumpkin patch is free to the public and open through October 31 Daily, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Take a wagon to the patch, find your pumpkins. Buy a pink pumpkin and part of the price will be donated to the Pink Pumpkin Patch Foundation for breast cancer research. Don’t’ forget to stop by the gift shop for homemade crafts and gifts and even roasted chilies. There are over a dozen chile varieties to choose from and are roasted “on the spot.” (TiggesFarm.com)

Happy Apple Farm, Penrose

Open all season. Wednesday – Sunday, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. with a great pumpkin patch. L Happy Apple Farm is one of Colorado’s most vibrant pick your own fruit farms with Gooseberries ,Blackberries, Raspberries, Apples and in the fall Pumpkins. They offer free hayrides and there is no admission! On the weekends they serve apple wood smoked brisket or pulled pork along with Turkey legs and hot dogs for the kids, Apple pie, Apple Cider Donuts and blackberry cobbler along with other goodies in the Italian deli. They also roast Pueblo Chili’s! (happyapplefarm.com)

 Arapahoe County Fall Fest

On October 15 join Arapahoe County for Fall Fest. There’s fun for the whole family. Pick out and purchase your favorite pumpkin and take a scenic hayride. Take a turn milking Bessie the Cow and visit her barnyard friends in the petting farm. Enjoy breakfast or lunch from some of Denver’s hottest food trucks. Try your hand at gold panning, learn more about the fine art of blacksmithing, tour the farmhouse, meet a local beekeeper and more, all while listening to live music by local bands. (http://www.arapahoegov.com/index.aspx?nid=1160)

Good Shepherd Episcopal Church, Centennial

Check for dates on the home page, but I believe the first date to purchase pumpkins is Oct 8th and then on from from 10 a.m. – dusk. This patch offers more than a dozen varieties of pumpkins, gourds and Indian corn while all of the money goes to projects serving the homeless and hungry. (http://gshep.org)

Munson Farms, Boulder

Open daily, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. from July to October, Munson Farms is a family run farm of 35 years that is a staple to the Boulder communities and beyond. They grow and sell 30 varieties of heirloom pumpkins and winter squash as well as apples, gourds, corn shocks, straw, and a variety of summer vegetables. Hayrides (weekends only) to the U-Pick Pumpkin patch and a 5-acre corn maze are great for kids of all ages. (munsonfarms.com)

Mazzotti Farms & Pumpkin Patch, Hudson

Find seasonal gourds and varies pumpkins at the farms U-Pick patch. Following, explore the 10-ace corn maze and immerse yourself in the best autumn has to offer. (mazzottifarms.com)

Delicious Orchards, Hotchkiss

MY PERSONAL FAVORITE!!! Open May through November, this place was made for moms. Chose your perfect pumpkin and try some farm-pressed organic fresh apple cider or delicious Hard Apple Cider. Taste some amazing Colorado wines and munch on local foods while wandering around the orchard. It’s great any time during autumn and the sandwiches are heavenly. Heck, Big B’s juices are made here, from the bounty in front of you. (bigbs.com)

Hanagan Farms, Swink

Pumpkin patch, corn maze, corn pyramid and corn box are just part of the draw at Hanagan Farms. It’s the produce that is truly the highlight. For over a century, the farm has been growing great melons, onions, zuchini, cucumbers and green chili peppers. Open daily from 7 a.m until 7 p.m. from September 14 through Halloween. Visit their website, they have a few locations and varying hours. It’s over a century-old operation. (hanaganfarms.com)

Berry Patch Farms, Brighton

For those more interested in the harvest and food experience, may we recommend this farm? They have barn Farm Market Hours: T, TH, Sat 8-4 p.m; Wed 3-6 p.m., Light Red Raspberry Picking: 8-1 p.m.: Tues/Thurs/Sat and Flowers/pickling cucumbers/basil picking: 8-1 p.m. Tues/Thurs/Sat. They have classes available for kids and really focus on the produce at this outlet. It’s something different than a corn maze or haunted house for October and kids want to go back year after year. (berrypatchfarms.com)

Hop on board the Peanuts™ Great Pumpkin Patch Express Depart Durango with the little ones upon the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad that takes families to meet Charlie Brown and Snoopy. Wind through breathtaking canyons as you travel through fresh fall foliage in the remote wilderness of the San Juan National Forest. At the pumpkin patch, children will be greeted by a maze/fun house, face painting, trick or treating and more. Adults can enjoy a glass of Durango’s own Four Leaves Winery as they help their children pick the perfect pumpkin.

Hang high at Boo at the Bridge Take in the natural beauty of the Royal Gorge atop one of the world’s highest suspension bridges.  The park will offer several activities including Night Flights on the Gondolas, Salida Circus, Northern Wind Dancers, Halloween-themed movies at the Plaza Theater and much more.  Night flights are offered on the Royal Rush Skycoaster and the Cloudscraper Zip Line across the gorge will be open until dusk.

Contest: Harvest Farm Festival & Corn Maze for a Great Cause

There are so many wonderful harvest festivals in the Denver area so why not attend one that is also for a great cause? 

Harvest Farm’s 209 acres in Wellington, Colo. may look like regular farmland, but for many it’s far more. Within the fields, stables, and barns, more than 70 men at a time can find the first steps toward a new life because this working farm doubles as a rehabilitation program for those hoping to break the cycles of addiction and homelessness. As an outreach of the Denver Rescue Mission, Harvest Farm hosts a five-part New Life Program to help impart the skills, stability and self-esteem necessary [for participants] to become productive, self-sufficient members of society.

Harvest Farm Festival & Corn Maze 

cornmazeAlthough it serves more purposes than many other farms, Harvest Farm features all the things you’d expect: crops, animals, tons of space, and an annual fall festival. From October 1-30, 2016, families flock to this event every year to celebrate the season and enjoy a full lineup of attractions, including: 

·         10-acre corn maze: This fright-free, kid-friendly labyrinth boasts three separate trails ranging from easy to expert

·         Hay-wagon rides: Hitched to a tractor, these guided rides are packed with facts about the farm’s operations and program participants.

·         Petting zoo: Farm critters interact with guests and sign autographs in a safe environment.

·         Obstacle course: A suspension bridge, tires, balance beams, and tunnels stand in the way of anyone who’s up to the challenge.

·         Extras: pig races, evening campfires, a pumpkin patch, and snacks, including fresh, hand-popped kettle corn

Featured Activities:

Special this year, Harvest Farm is also hosting featured events throughout the month of October, including: 

·         10/1 – Live Music & FREE Kettle Corn to the first 100 guests  harvestfestival1

·         10/8 – Broncos Day featuring Miles the Mascot & Special Dance Performances

·         10/15 – Farmer’s Market & Birds of Prey Show  

·         10/16 – Birds of Prey Show

·         10/22 – Just For Kix Dance Group Performance

 The Facts       

The Harvest Farm Festival and Corn Maze hours are Fridays & Saturdays: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Sundays: 12- 6 p.m.  The Harvest Farm, 4240 E. County Road 66, Wellington, CO 80549

Contest

Mile High Mamas is giving away four tickets to the Harvest Farm Festival and Corn Maze. You may enter as many as five times.

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What to do when kids won’t clean their rooms

Fall is upon us, which means busy schedules and rooms that look like a nuclear explosion has hit.

Parenting expert and author Vicki Hoefle shares tips on what to do when kids won’t clean their room.


For more information on elementary education visit KidsInTheHouse.com

“Storks” movie is a Bundle of Joy

Once upon a time, all babies were delivered by enterprising, hard-working storks. It was a good system, but not the only system of acquiring adorably leaky bundles of joy. Apparently, there are other ways to get babies? Some of the more clever storks decided to abandon the baby factory in favor of creating a mega-store in the sky supplying every last delivery whim to the people of Earth.

Storks is the latest animated offering from the Warner Animation Group, which created the cheeky, frantic, weird, hilarious The Lego Movie. If you liked it, you will fall in love with Storks. It never takes itself too seriously but manages to weave two solidly warm, embraceable stories together.

Junior Stork (Andy Samburg) is up for a big promotion, but first he has to carry out the difficult job of firing quirky Tulip (Katie Crown), an orphan human who works at the Cornerstore headquarters. Big boss Hunter (Kelsey Grammer) makes it clear Junior must comply or else. Tulip is lonely and wishes to find her real family, which is her main motivation. She has an irrepressible spirit—and amazing grasp of aviation. Perhaps it’s because she was raised by birds? Of course, the firing doesn’t go as planned. Mistakes are made.

The secondary story involves a busy catch-phrase dropping couple, Sarah and Henry Gardner (Jennifer Aniston, Ty Burrell). They are in real estate and have no time for their lonely son, Nate (Anton Starkman). Nate decides a little brother will eliminate his loneliness. How do you get baby brothers? First, you mention it to your parents, who choke for reasons you don’t understand. Second, you write to the Stork factory and ask for a brother not knowing it is shuttered. Or is it?

Suddenly, everyone is on a collision course. It smells like baby powder. It has pink hair. Will Junior and Tulip make this special delivery or will they be foiled? Will Nate get his baby brother? The road to family bliss is paved with peril, including a crazy talented, baby hungry wolfpack led by Alpha and Beta (Key and Peele).

Storks is loaded with zany, Saturday morning cartoon style fun. Warner Brothers is famous for the Looney Toons universe, so they know wacky, winking animated humor. You won’t expose your family to any grand lessons but it is a colorful, big-hearted celebration of family. People are more important than things, in the end. It’s as simple as that.

If you meet a minivan composed entirely of wolves on the road today, honk. They are searching for someone who tastes like flowers.

Storks is rated PG and opens everywhere on September 23, 2016.