Archives for March 3, 2017

Campaign Defines the Universal Theme Park Experience

Your kids are growing up and it’s suddenly time for a different kind of family vacation. Your family is ready for more excitement, exhilaration and adventure.  It’s time to just let loose and have fun – together.

 

Universal’s theme parks in Orlando and Hollywood offer exactly the kind of vacation your family craves – bringing together popular culture’s most compelling stories, characters and adventures to create some of the world’s most innovative and entertaining attraction experiences.  These are immersive, next-level, adventures such as The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, outrageously fun attractions such as Despicable Me Minion Mayhem and highly themed, authentic experiences based on cutting-edge television, such as The Walking Dead Attraction and Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon.

 

Universal Parks & Resorts is showcasing these experiences as part of a national brand campaign set to launch today.  It will be the first time Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood speak to consumers with one voice.

 

Called, “I’m Ready,” the campaign will show how Universal theme parks take family vacations to an entirely new level.  It comes after years of transformational growth at both Universal theme park destinations – growth that has reinvented theme park entertainment itself.  The campaign includes a national television advertisement, digital advertising placements, a joint Universal Orlando and Universal Studios Hollywood web landing page where guests can go to get more information – and more.

 

“Universal Parks & Resorts provides world-class entertainment destinations with signature theme parks in both Orlando and Hollywood that create unparalleled entertainment for the whole family,” said Alice Norsworthy, Executive Vice President of Marketing for Universal Parks and Resorts. “This new campaign speaks to the needs of families as the evolve – and it invites them to vacation on a whole new level.”

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About Universal Parks & Resorts
Universal Parks & Resorts, a unit of Comcast NBCUniversal, offers guests around the globe today’s most relevant and popular entertainment experiences. With three-time Academy Award winner Steven Spielberg as creative consultant, its theme parks are known for immersive experiences that feature some of the world’s most thrilling and technologically advanced film- and television-based attractions.

Comcast NBCUniversal wholly owns Universal Studios Hollywood, which includes Universal CityWalk Hollywood. It also owns Universal Orlando Resort, a destination resort with two theme parks (Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure), five resort hotels, and Universal CityWalk Orlando. In addition, Comcast NBCUniversal owns a 51 percent majority interest in Universal Studios Japan, in Osaka and has a license agreement with Universal Studios Singapore at Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore.  The company has also announced plans for a theme park in Beijing.

Kids Play Safe Announces Partnership with Chuck E. Cheese’s® Family dining and entertainment leader receives Kids Play Safe Certification; Awarded to Businesses that Ensure Safety and Health of Children

Today, Kids Play Safe, a research organization committed to protecting the health, safety and well-being of children, and Chuck E. Cheese’s® announced their partnership. Kids Play Safe, and its founder Dr. Erin Carr-Jordan, approached Chuck E. Cheese’s in 2015 to discuss ways to collaborate on common goals to provide a safe, healthy play environment for kids. Working together, Kids Play Safe and Chuck E. Cheese’s identified ways to implement more effective, environmentally-conscious cleaning practices in its restaurants nationwide. This earned Chuck E. Cheese’s the Kids Play Safe Certification, making it the first major brand to be recognized for its commitment to providing a safe, clean and eco-friendly place for its guests.

 

“We’ve always strived to provide a fun and clean environment for kids and where parents can feel confident that their children will be safe to play and eat,” said Tom Leverton, CEO of CEC Entertainment, Inc. “That’s why the Kids Play Safe partnership and certification was a natural fit for us, and we are excited to be implementing these environmentally-safe practices in our stores nationwide.”

 

The Kids Play Safe Certification will help organizations across a broad spectrum of industries make truly green changes to positively impact the health and wellness of their consumers, employees, and the environment. Chuck E. Cheese’s has been converting all of its cleaning products to an all new eco-friendly cleaner. The new cleaning solution is non-toxic, environmentally safe and just as effective as standard cleaning products.

 

“It is absolutely possible to adopt a green mindset without compromises, and Chuck E. Cheese’s is a great example. They have shown a deep commitment to their employees, customers and the planet. Their focus on health and safety is to be commended,” said Dr. Annissa Furr, chief operating officer of Kids Play Safe.

 

The Kids Play Safe Certification is awarded to business locations that are cleaned without the use of harsh chemicals that can negatively impact the health of consumers and have equipment regularly checked for safety. With this certification, parents can trust that their children will play and eat in a safe environment that will not present future health risks. As a visible reminder of Chuck E. Cheese’s commitment to health of its patrons and cleanliness of its stores, the Kids Play Safe initiative is highlighted through in-store signage.

 

The partnership furthers the brands commitment to making Chuck E. Cheese’s a fun and safe place and Where a Kid Can Be a Kid.

 

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About Kids Play Safe

Kids Play Safe is a research organization committed to protecting the health, safety, and well-being of children. Originally formed in 2010, their national study spanned across the United States and is the largest of its kind in existence. Since inception the KPS team has maintained strong connections with consumers, legislators, educators, health departments, and the media. In 2015, Kids Play Safe followed up their original study with a national survey intended to help understand perceptions, spending patterns, and gaps that needed to be filled to continue to keep kids safe. The results of that survey led to the development of KPS Eco-Consulting Group. The KPS Group is a full-service team of corporate social responsibility experts who help businesses identify green options that positively impact the planet and their bottom line. www.kpsecogroup.com

 

About CEC Entertainment, Inc.

For nearly 40 years, CEC Entertainment has served as the nationally recognized leader in family dining and entertainment and the place Where A Kid Can Be A Kid®. Chuck E. Cheese’s goal is to create positive, lifelong memories for families through fun, food, and play. It is also the place where more than a million happy birthdays are celebrated every year. Each Chuck E. Cheese’s features musical entertainment, games, rides, and play areas for kids of all ages, as well as a variety of freshly prepared dining options. Committed to providing a fun, safe environment, Chuck E. Cheese’s helps protect families through industry-leading programs such as Kid Check®. As a strong advocate for its local communities and childhood education, Chuck E. Cheese’s has donated more than $14 million to schools through its fundraising programs. Additionally, Chuck E. Cheese’s supports its national charity partner, Big Brothers Big Sisters, through nationwide fundraisers and donation drives. The Company and its franchisees operate a system of 603 Chuck E. Cheese’s and 144 Peter Piper Pizza stores, with locations in 47 states and 11 foreign countries and territories. For more information, visit chuckecheese.com and peterpiperpizza.com or connect with us on social media.

 

Facebook: Chuck E. Cheese’s + Peter Piper Pizza

Twitter: Chuck E. Cheese’s + Peter Piper Pizza

YouTube: Chuck E. Cheese’s + Peter Piper Pizza

Instagram: Chuck E. Cheese’s + Peter Piper Pizza

Pinterest: Chuck E. Cheese’s

Foursquare: Chuck E. Cheese’s

 

Happy 20th Birthday Charlie! SENIOR SEA OTTER CELEBRATES BIRTHDAY AT THE AQUARIUM OF THE PACIFIC

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Photo Credit:  Hugh Ryono.

Happy 20th Birthday to Charlie! 

Birthday celebration was March 2nd at The Aquarium of the Pacific!

 

Credit: Aquarium of the Pacific. Photo Credit: Hugh Ryono.

Cat In The Hat Knows A Lot About Space – Filled With Rhyming Lyrics, Stealth Learning And A Fun Storyline

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The Cat in the Hat joins Nick and Sally who are exploring the backyard when something extraordinary finds them – a flying robotic dog! The robot lands and does some exploring of his own, gulping up rock samples and photographing the Cat, Nick, Sally and Fish before blasting off back into space!  What was that thing? Where did it come from? Where is it going? The Cat in the Hat fires up his Space-ama-racer and whisks Nick, Sally and Fish off on a cosmic adventure in search of the robot. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Tristan T. comments, “Young children will appreciate the rhyming lyrics and easy to follow story line.  Parents can be assured their children are learning within a fun environment.”  Abigail Zoe L. adds, “I really enjoyed this DVD. The animation is colorful, the storyline is engaging and the characters are fun to watch. I like how the Cat rhymes and sings. I also like learning about space and the solar system. My favorite character is Rover the Dog who explores different planets and takes pictures of them.”

See their full reviews below.

 

Cat in the Hat knows a lot about Space

 

By Tristan T. , KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, 14 years old

 

 

 

The Cat in the Hat knows a lot about Space is a delightful animated film that incorporates learning with fun. Young imaginations soar as Cat in the Hat leads Nick and Sally through space on this easy to follow, yet engaging film.

 

It is just another day playing in the backyard for Nick and Sally, until they are once again joined by the always lovable Cat in the Hat and his trusty pal, Fish.  They soon have a visitor from outer-space – a flying robotic dog.  The Cat in the Hat prepares his Space-ama-racer and takes Nick and Sally on an adventure to follow this space dog on a cosmic mission.  The team encounters many obstacles along the way and must work together to help their new space dog friend and find their way back to planet Earth.

 

My favorite character is Space Rover because he has fun while learning and exploring his environment. Much like a real dog, Rover uses his senses to guide him and sometimes this gets him into some sticky situations. Thankfully the Cat in the Hat, Nick, Sally and Fish are there to help him out. This teaches the value of teamwork and problem-solving skills.

 

While Cat in the Hat knows a lot about Space is not considered a musical, the characters do break into an occasional song. I find these songs enjoyable and they actually add another level of fun to the experience. The Cat in the Hat (Martin Short) has a goofy voice that kids feel comfortable with and he uses words and phrases that are age appropriate, making the story easy for young audiences to follow. In line with other Dr. Seuss videos, this also speaks in rhyme throughout, but never to the point where I felt it was annoying. The animation is simple and plain, but still visually appealing.  It is consistent with other Cat in the Hat videos.

 

I recommend this film for ages 2 to 8.  Young children will appreciate the rhyming lyrics and easy to follow story line.  Parents can be assured their children are learning within a fun environment.  The Cat in the Hat knows a lot about Space does not disappoint, as it is right in-line with the other Dr. Seuss stories. I rate this DVD 4 out of 5 stars.  It is available now on DVD.

 

The Cat And The Hat Knows A Lot About Space

By Abigail Zoe L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

 

I really enjoyed this DVD. The animation is colorful, the storyline is engaging and the characters are fun to watch. I like how the Cat rhymes and sings. I also like learning about space and the solar system. My favorite character is Rover the Dog who explores different planets and takes pictures of them. His tail squirts out fire when he flies, which I think is hysterical.

 

The story is about the adventures of Cat in the Hat with Sally, Nick and Fish as they follow a robot dog into space. They meet up with Rover’s owner, Astronaut Audrey who guides them to different planets, through Asteroid fields and space junk. We learn that when Rover is on different planets he brings back rock samples to the space station so Astronaut Audrey can study them. The cool thing is that not only do the characters learn facts about space but so do we!

 

My favorite part of the DVD is when Rover the Dog goes to Nick and Sally’s house and spends time digging in the yard, taking photos of flowers and everyone. I laughed my head off when Rover takes a picture of Fish which causes him to freak out! Fish freaks out because he thinks he’s going to be eaten. Oh do I love Martin Short as the voice of The Cat in the Hat. He’s super animated and super funny. I can’t think of a better voice.

The message of this collection is that space is fun and, as The Cat in The Hat says,“Space is planet Earth’s biggest backyard.” This means that space has a lot for us to explore and learn about such as: Venus is the hottest planet in the solar system. Mars is half the size of earth and has no gravity. Dust storms can cover the entire planet of Mars and last for days. Jupiter is the biggest planet, has no surface to land on and has a red spot that is a storm which has lasted for years. Also, the sun is so large that you can fit all the planets in the solar system into it. Wow! My head is spinning with all this exciting new information!

 

There are a lot of great songs and rhymes by the Cat in the Hat. Fish is really funny, has lots of personality and attitude, but at the same time is always worried.  This DVD is extremely enjoyable. Not only does it teach kids about space but it has a dog. Who doesn’t like a cute robot dog? I recommend it for ages 4 to 7 and give it 4 out of 5 stars (or should I say) cat hats for its humor, colorful animation and educational lessons. The DVD is available now wherever DVDs are sold so, be sure to check it out for your budding scientists!

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Credit: KIDS FIRST!

 

Green Chef Dinners make Cooking Fun and Easy!

I received this product for free from Moms Meet (momsmeet.com), May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacture. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my honest opinion on my blog. The opinions posted are my own.

Sometimes after a busy day the last thing you want to do is fix dinner! But, there is a way to make it easier! Green Chef is the answer! There is a Family Plan and also a 2-Person plan. There’s no need to go out and buy the ingredients. It is much more than a recipe plan. Green Chef is a USDA-certified meal kit delivery service. It comes with pre-measured ingredients and the recipes. I was impressed that it even included sauces and marinades.

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I received recipes and ingredients for Veggie Quesadillas and for Chicken Cassoulet. The Veggie Quesadillas were super easy to make and I loved the Cilantro-scallion sauce! The Chicken Cassoulet was also quite easy to make and was a hit with my husband!

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What is really great about Green Chef is that you have choices between Omnivore, Carnivore, Gluten-Free, Vegetarian, Paleo and Vegan. You can even select your delivery dates! I like that the ingredients are fresh, the recipes are simple and it’s just so easy! The prices vary so check out the info for more information. You can go to Greenchef.com.

Our readers have a discount offer:

Discount Offer: New customers get $50 off their first box.

Simply go here. 

 

 

 

A Must-Read Book! Dream Big by Kat Kronenberg Guest Post: Helping Kids Develop an Attitude of Gratitude By Kat Kronenberg

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This is such a delightful book that I highly recommend for young children!~ SoCal City Kids.

Helping Kids Develop an Attitude of Gratitude

By Kat Kronenberg

“No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars or sailed an uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit.” —Helen Keller

 

Life can be hard. Life can be scary and filled with crazy twists and turns we don’t see coming. How do we navigate these crazy roads with our kids? How can we help them process their pain, disappointment, and perceived failures? BY DEVELOPING AN ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE!

 

Viktor Frankl, who was the only survivor of his family along with his sister from the Nazi concentration camps, came out of this grueling experience to write a book he titled “Saying Yes to Life in Spite of Everything.” Our English translates this title to “Man’s Search for Meaning.” No matter how treacherous and scary the roads we travel, if we choice to say “Yes!” to find ways to use what we go through for the good of ourselves and others, then we too can give our hardship meaning and purpose. We get to rise above the dark clouds to where the sun is always shining. Gratitude always lifts a fallen spirit.

 

Over the years, with a lot of research and trial and error, I found “three parts of the road” that can help lead and show our kids how to rise above, where to travel, and what direction to go in so that they too can find meaning no matter how scary, dark, or undefined the turns that come racing into their reality might be. These three parts are your smile, hope, and connection.

 

A Smile: Your U-Shaped Bridge leads to an attitude of gratitude                                                                             

 

A smile speaks every language, transcends any hardship, changes the energy in a room, and the depth of a mood. A smile has power to create or change any reality. A smile allows us to give thanks no matter what, and develop an attitude of gratitude that can allow us to hold and withstand any load. If we can find a way by ourselves or with the help of another to put a smile on our face, we can prevail with a “YES”! We can cross any crevice. We have a U-Shaped bridge to anywhere.

 

Hope:  Your “Pillar, Whoopy, Lovey, favorite blanket or stuffed animal” that is by your side no matter what happens

 

Hope is the pillar on one side of your U-Shaped bridge. I like to call this deeply-rooted, stable pillar a belief in yourself, your dreams, and the strength of “Something Bigger” that is out there always watching over you. When we believe in all three, we can endure almost anything. We have the warmest, safest, best blanket that can cover any pot hole we encounter. We can and will get to the other side. We are not alone.

 

Connection: A pillar of strength created by your ability to look into the eyes of someone you love dearly and see their adoration, inspiration, and motivation

 

As Frankl wrote in his book, “Love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which Man can aspire…In a position of utter desolation, when Man cannot express himself in positive action, when his only achievement may consist in enduring his sufferings in the right way – an honorable way – in such a position Man can, through loving contemplation of the image he carries of his beloved, achieve fulfillment.” A truly firm, enduring pillar on the other side of our U-Shaped bridge that can weather any storm. The gift, beauty and strength of love.

 

To make your kid’s U-Shaped Bridge the road they choose when they are lost and confused, every morning and night together name three things you are grateful for, and start sharing smiles every day. Help each other. Train one another to travel down the most beautiful landscaped roads. Allow each other to radiate smiles through tears, pain, and heartache; to share smiles of complete, abandoned, and silly fun with no care for how others will judge you; to give genuine smiles to people who have hurt or disappointed you; and to smile just because.

 

Remember when we choose to say “YES” we are celebrating this great adventure we call life no matter what road we are on. We can always rise above, bridge any void with a smile, and find at least three things we are thankful for. No matter what kind of day we have had we can always find, share, and smile about a best part.

 

Kat Kronenberg is a debut children’s book author living in Austin, Texas. As a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, her hope and dream is that through reading we can encourage one another other to “follow our bliss,” stay in the arena fighting for our dreams, and allow joy and fulfillment to be our internal GPS. In addition to spreading her message through her children’s book Dream Big, she also provides interactive games that promote positive thinking, Common Core aligned discussion and project guides, and free downloadable activity sheets at www.katkronenberg.com.

 

Dream Big (Greenleaf Book Group, January 2017) will be available from Amazon as of January 10, 2017 and other booksellers nationwide.

Credit: Guest post by Kat Kronenberg.