Playdates. Playtime. Playgroups. Whatever is your phrasing of choice, we’ve been hearing a lot of it lately here at Indy’s Child HQ. Playdates – meaning “a structured, supervised social setting for children” – might not necessarily have existed in our growing years. And some modern parents have gone so far as to declare how much they dislike playdates. But the idea of playing and cheerfully having fun, either structured or unstructured, is a pillar of youth, yes?
Well: Indy’s Child has been secretly working behind-the-scenes for months now on a new program. And it’s finally time to spill:
We’re launching a year-long series of POP-UP PLAY!
That’s OUR way of saying we have a huge series of exciting playdates planned.
At spots around town that you may know or are dying to know.
For parents plus kiddos.
Some during the week, some in the evenings, some on weekends.
All for FREE.
Indianapolis is a unique metro area – lets resolve to explore it together!
Where did this idea come from? Well our Community Outreach Director Jeanine Bobenmoyer connected with Indy’s Child publisher Mary Cox to get the scoop.
Jeanine: Hi Mary. I swear I can hear your tan over the phone right now. I’m so jealous that you’re calling me from Florida. It’s 8 degrees here in Indy.
Mary: Yea, it’s 67 here. Don’t tell anyone.
J: Well we’re almost ready to announce the first POP-UP Play event to our readers, and all of us at the office have been buzzing about how excited we are for the new program this year.
M: This is going to be a great year! You know, we attended a great publishing conference in Chicago this past fall and learned there that our friends at Chicago Parent were doing a similar program. It sounded like a lot of fun, so we wanted to put our own unique spin on it.
J: How much planning has gone into the POP-UP Play program?
M: Well, we’ve talked about it since October, and we reached out to some of our community partners not long after. With winter right around the corner when families like to stay inside, it seemed like the right time to kick off. Our sister publications in Dayton and Cincinnati have already held their first events and they were a smashing success.
M: I know! The Arts Council of Indianapolis has this incredible show opening in early February that’s all curated for kids called the Young Collectors Show. They were searching for unique ways to get the word out to the Indianapolis market, and it just came together with us. There will be storytime with artist Phil O’Malley, an art making activity inspired by the work of artist Anna Lee Chalose-McAleese, a scavenger hunt, take-home coloring books, and of course, beautiful art to look at. There are more than 32 different artists involved in this show. We’re going to provide magnifying glasses so kids can really get an up-close-and-personal view of the art.
J: Love that. How much will these POP-UP events cost visitors?
M: Um, it’s free. Zero dollars. Just RSVP to our Facebook Events page, bring your family and enjoy.
J: Even better! What are some of the other ones headed our way this year?
M: We’re still working out a lot of details, but Goldfish Swim School has partnered with us as well for some water safety fun, free swim time and food. Lots more surprises to come though!
J: Love Goldfish – it’s where my son learned to swim when we lived in Michigan. Fantastic spot and staff! Okay last question, what’s the final thing you’d like our readers to know about POP-UP Play events?
M: We invite everyone to come out, enjoy them, and know we are ALWAYS open to suggestions! We just love the chance to meet our readers and friends in person, and this is the perfect way to do that. Oh and to stay tuned to our newsletter and social media channels where we’ll announce them.
J: Thanks so much for taking time out of your winter vacation Mary. I’ll see you soon back in Indianapolis!
M: If you can pry me away from this warm weather that is.
So now that you have the background, we’re thrilled to announce our first POP-UP Play event: Art Fun For Little Ones with the Arts Council of Indianapolis! Read below for more details then RSVP on our Indy’s Child Facebook page. We look forward to seeing YOU out soon!