It’s Christmas Break in the valley.
Snow covers the ground and is likely to either remain or return, and Christmas with its flurry of gifts is drawing nigh, but when youngsters get tired of the snow or new toys or games, what to do?
Here is Hood River News’ compendium of local activities for children during the winter break ending Jan. 4. The slopes (Meadows, Little John and Teacup, for example) are an option and Hood River Library branches and Hood River Aquatic Center are great places to pass the time — openings subject to weather, however.
(And in case snow activities are still an option around the home, please see page A8 for a timely safety reminder from the city — about making sure kids don’t built snow forts in city rights of way.)
Wednesdays through December — Pokemon Club, 4-5 p.m. at Hood River Hobbies. Ages 7-13; $5. Registration and parent check-in required. Bring a deck. Learn to play, battle with friends. More at info@ hoodriverhobbies.com.
Sundays through December — Magic the Gathering, 1-2:30 p.m. at Hood River Hobbies. Ages: 9-14. Supervised kids only. Bring a deck. Learn to play, battle with friends.
Through Dec. 28 – The Polar Express train ride, Mt. Hood Railroad. Check mthoodrr.com for availability. (Fare is $47 adult, $37 children aged 2-12.) Many excursions are sold out; no trains Dec. 25-27.
Dec. 17 — Solstice Dance, 4-10 p.m. at the Rockford Grange. Family friendly fundraiser for Cultivate Oregon. $15-$20 sliding scale; dinner at 5:30 p.m. Cultivate Oregon presentation, dancing.
Dec. 17 — “Ho Ho Open House” at History Museum of Hood River County; free admission from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Refreshments and kids activities will be provided, and gifts for the first 50 children. At 3 p.m., Harmony of the Gorge Chorus will perform holiday music. Director Lynn Orr has personally acquired about 50 little “stuffies” to give away to children, along with a pile of sweet ‘lightly used’ children’s holiday books to give away.
Dec. 19-22 — Holiday MakerSpace Camp at Gorge MakerSpace, 453 E. Jewett, White Salmon. For ages 8-10 and 11-14. More at gorgemakerspace.com.
Dec. 20 — HRV Nordic Team Kids Ski Clinic, 1-3:30 p.m. at Teacup Lake Sno-Park. For elementary and middle school students; $30, sign up thru Community Ed. Fundraiser for HRV Nordic Team. More at joe.dolan@ hoodriver.k12.or.us or email@example.com.
Dec. 21 — Winter Solstice Party, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Cascade Locks Library and 7 p.m. at the Hood River Library. Come celebrate the longest night of the year with shadow puppet performance, hot chocolate and refreshments, snowflake craft, small gift for everyone.
Dec. 27-30 — Winter Matinees at the Hood River Library. Come watch a popular family movie in the newly upgraded theater. Shows start at 2 p.m. and include “Muppets Most Wanted,” “Jungle Book 2016,” “Secret Life of Pets,” and “Kubo and the Two Strings.”
Dec. 28 — A Very Whovian Holiday, 6 to 8 p.m. at the Hood River Library. Dr. Who Christmas special in the Storybook Theater; for teens 12 and up. Holiday treats and time traveling fun. Free; more at 541-386-2535, firstname.lastname@example.org, or hoodriverlibrary.org.
Dec. 28-30 – Holiday Hoops Camp, with instructor Cody Kunigel and friends, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Westside Elementary, $55; learn fundamentals and hear guest speakers. For grades 3-8, sign up with Community Education, call 541-386-2055.
Dec. 30 — Lego Club, noon at Parkdale Library. Bring the imagination and they’ll provide the Legos! Free mini figure.
Dec. 31 — Gorge Rocket Club Building Class, 10:30 a.m. at Hood River Hobbies. Launch will take place at Westside at 1 p.m. For more info or to enroll, contact info @hoodriverhobbies.com, Community Ed or Gorgerocketclub.com.
From City of Hood River:
Do not let your children build snow caves or snow forts near the roadway snow banks.
Snow forts can seem like a lot of fun, but they are extremely dangerous when built in the city right of way next to the road. With the build-up of recent snow, crews will be pushing the banks back to help with visibility at intersections. Workers cannot see children playing in the caves.
Parents should direct children to play away from roadways and supervise outdoor recreation.