Gallops – and they’re off and racing!

https://christchurch.bibliocommons.com/item/show/758060037_harrySaturday 11th November marked the beginning of the NZ Cup and Show Week 2017 in Canterbury. Every year during the middle of November, Canterbury celebrates the province’s anniversary holiday.

Will you be going to the A & P Show or having a flutter on the horses? I love the gallops events at Riccarton Park Racecourse. The thrill of their speed pumps my adrenaline.

Find out more

Ah, the serenity of the West Coast

This Labour Weekend I’m off to the West Coast of our South Island again. I get an itch to escape to there fairly often and this time it felt like it had been too long since last visit. There is something wholly relaxing about leaving your busy city life for the wilds of ‘the Coast’.

Here are some West Coast reads:

97808647389509780473291273978047315546909087086450790009757187713583618772281179780957955981

Be safe on our roads this holidays.

Wednesday 19 July – Leighs Construction CSO Presents: Lemony Snicket’s The Composer is Dead

The Christchurch Symphony Orchestra brings together music and mystery these school holidays with Leighs Construction CSO Presents: Lemony Snicket’s The Composer is Dead, in association with Eliot Sinclair.

https://www.eventfinda.co.nz/2017/leighs-construction-cso-presents-the-composer-is-dead/christchurch

Kids (and adults) love the Lemony Snicket books A Series of Unfortunate Events, and the new TV series starring Neil Patrick Harris as Count Olaf is getting even more people hooked. The musical murder mystery The Composer is Dead full of that distinctive Snicket wit and black comedy, and it also introduces kids to the instruments in an orchestra:

The composer is dead? Who killed him? The clever Inspector interviews and interrogates each section of the orchestra. What were the violins doing? Where were the woodwinds? And why does the brass section sound particularly brassy tonight?

Christchurch thespian Michael Bayly narrates the tale, and David Kay conducts the orchestra.

David Kay conducting the orchestra

Music featured includes John Williams’ Suite from Harry Potter, Ravel’s Bolero and Ginastera’s Malambo, and a brand new work Schismata by Christchurch composer Hamish Oliver.

Thanks to the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra for information on this event. They also bring wonderful classical music into libraries for kids, with the free monthly Music Trails through the library. The next session is a woodwind ensemble at Shirley Library, Wednesday 2 August, 10.30am.

More Lemony Snicket

Find Lemony Snicket books in our collection, including the book of The composer is dead.

coverCoverCoverCoverCover

School Holiday Survival

The school holidays are fast approaching and I have to keep my children entertained for two weeks, oh please help me!! I have actually come up with a plan, so I thought I would share it in case you need help too.

  1. KidsFest – thank goodness someone thought of the parents! I will book children into lots of fun activities and sweet talk their Grandparents into taking them.
  2. Send them outside to play in the freezing cold so I will have heaps of washing to do because it is so muddy (You should see them after football – the mud club).
  3. Put them in front of screens. I know it sounds bad, but hear me out on this one. No playing pointless games with some random character wandering around eating pizza (I think that is what my children were playing). I will set them up with educational activities from the library eResources for kids, they may even enjoy it too!
  4. Give them something to read or listen to – but with a difference. eBook or eAudiobook, or even eMagazine. My kids have just discovered eAudiobooks and love them. It is brilliant – they are so quiet, especially in the back of the car where they would usually fight. OverDrive and Borrowbox have a great selection and it was super easy to download to an iPod shuffe.

School holidays – 24 September to 9 October 2016

Here’s what is on this school holidays for Christchurch children – we list holiday programmes and activities at our libraries and learning centres, and shows and performances for kids.

School holidays

Library and Learning Centre holiday programmes and activities

Our libraries and learning centres offer a variety of accessible, safe and affordable activities for children during their school holidays. Programmes and activities are aimed at children between the ages of five and 15 years:

Activities include spinning tops, Minecraft, paper doll making, hacky sacks, storytimes for kids and grandparents,  and board games.

Fun Palaces at Central Library Peterborough

Celebrate art, science and creativity at this year’s Fun Palaces festival! All activities are fun, free and suitable for all ages. Central Library Peterborough will be a Fun Palace from 10am to 2pm on the weekend of Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 October (it’s the middle weekend of the school holidays).

Nao Robots - Fun Palaces at Central Library Peterborough

Children’s book sale

There’s a book sale on Thursday 29 and Friday 30 September at Fendalton Library. Stop in for some school hol bargain book buys – all books are $1!

kidsbooksale

Christchurch holiday programmes

The following organisations are running holiday programmes for kids in the September and October 2016 school holidays:

Search CINCH, our Community Information Christchurch database, for more Canterbury holiday programmes.

Find an OSCAR programme (Out of School Care and Recreation) and view this map of OSCAR programmes in Christchurch.

Shows, movies, and performances

Kid friendly movies on in the holidays include: The secret life of pets, Pete’s Dragon, Storks, The Railway Children, and Miss Peregrine’s home for peculiar children.

Margaret Mahy Playground - new slide and towers

Things to do, and places to go in Christchurch

Margaret Mahy playground

For more events and activities, search Be There and Eventfinder.

If you have any holiday tips or activities to recommend, share away!

Queen’s Birthday 2016

Cover of The Royal Visit, Christchurch 1963Monday 6 June is a public holiday on which New Zealand celebrates the birthday of Queen Elizabeth II. 21 April was her actual birthday and she turned 90 (she was born in 1926).

Queen Elizabeth II has visited Christchurch numerous times during her reign, including visits in 1954, 1963, and for the 1974 Commonwealth Games held at her namesake sporting venue, Queen Elizabeth II Park, often referred to as QEII.

Queen Elizabeth II in Christchurch
Mr H. S. Feast, Town Clerk, being presented to the Queen in Cathedral Square, 1954. Entry in the 2014 Christchurch City Libraries Photo Hunt. Kete Christchurch. CC BY-NC-SA 3.0

Read more –

All our libraries are closed on Monday 6 June 2016.

Animals at the library

The eagle-eyed among you might have spotted a theme in our school holiday events – toy animal sleepover, making owls, snakes on a plain – yes, we will be busy with animal-themed programmes and activities.

School holiday programmes

If your kids enjoy watching the wildlife, there are plenty of books and DVDs in our collection as well as the following resources:

Animal names

Find out the words for male, female, child and groups of different types of animal.

New Zealand birds and animals

New Zealand has an amazing amount of wildlife, we’ve collected some facts and resources in New Zealand birds and animals.

Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover

National Geographic Kids

Learn about the natural world us with National Geographic Kids magazine online.

Booklists

Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover

There’s a collection of Children’s animals eAudiobooks and eBooks on OverDrive for Kids.

Want more animal stuff?

Reading to dogs

Things to do in the school holidays – April 2016

School holidays start on Monday 18 April – or after school on Friday 15 April. Our libraries and learning centres will be busy with animal-themed programmes and activities as well as origami, scavenger hunts, and games.

School holiday programmes

Here’s some picks – some require booking, so check them out and book in:

At libraries and learning centres

  • Toy animal sleepover – leave a toy at the library, then pick it up in the morning. There will be pics taken on the shenanigans it gets up to … (free)
  • Minecraft game zone (aimed at 8 to 12 year olds) 3D gaming experience that involves creating your virtual world and interacting with others ($7 per kid)
  • BeeBots (for 4 to 7 year olds) Kids can explore a story with a BeeBot and learn basic robotic skills. ($7 per kid)

Schoolhols

In Christchurch

  • Make Where the wild things are masks and Pet Monsters at the Christchurch Art Gallery. ($8 per child)
  • The movie is going to be played in the auditorium on Wednesday 27 April at 7pm. (gold coin entry)
  • If – like us – you are bit obsessed with that sugary delight of Pip & Pop at the Christchurch Art Gallery, Sweet Dreams (are made of these) is for you. Your kids will help create a colourful mosaic using stickers created by Tanya Schultz, the artist who made it. This event is on 10, 17 April, 8 May, and 5 June. (free, but book in)
The newest new world by Pip & Pop
The newest new world by Pip & Pop. Flickr 2015-12-20-IMG_1690
  • If it’s a nice autumn day, explore the Kids Discovery Trail at the Christchurch Botanic Gardens. (free)
  • Cultural Constellations by Science Alive! is a neat experience for the whole family. You sit in the StarDome and feel like you are exploring space. ($5 per person; $20 for families of 4 or more)
  • Go for a swim at one of our local pools. (see prices)
  • Visit Christchurch’s superpopular Margaret Mahy Playground, or one of the other many cool parks. Playgrounds are listed in Find:Chch. (free)
Margaret Mahy Playground
Margaret Mahy Playground. Flickr 2015-12-23-IMG_1728

Moata’s post has great suggestions on reading and stuff to help make travelling with kids more fun and less stress. And of course your local library has plenty of CDs, DVDs, eBooks, eAudiobooks, books, mags, and stuff for kids.

We’d love to hear your ideas of things to do in the school holidays too.

Easter 2016

Friday 25 March is Good Friday (note: not Easter Friday, I’m a stickler about that one). In New Zealand both the Friday (Good Friday) and the Monday of Easter are statutory public holidays, so libraries will be closed. But Saturday and Sunday aren’t public hols – libraries will be open their normal hours, except Linwood Library at Eastgate which will be closed on Easter Sunday.

Friday 25 March Closed
Saturday 26 March Open normal hours
Sunday 27 March Open normal hours (except Linwood Library at Eastgate – closed)
Monday 28 March Closed
Ballantynes Easter
Ballantynes Easter, Friday 1 March 2013. Flickr CCL-2013 -03-13-IMG_4517-1

Jesus Christ Superstar the movie will be shown at the Christchurch Art Gallery on Saturday 26 March.

Easter reading

CoverCover Cover Cover

Easter Parade
Easter Parade heading down Oxford Terrace toward the Catholic Cathedral in Barbadoes Street. Forester’s Hotel is on the left. c. 1950 Flickr HW08-img-fe111

Want to see some photos of Easters gone by? Have a look at this DigitalNZ set Easter Parade.

Wellington singer Anna Leah donating Easter eggs to Radio Station 2ZM. Further negatives of the Evening Post newspaper. Ref: EP/1974/1619/19-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23144134
Wellington singer Anna Leah donating Easter eggs to Radio Station 2ZM. Further negatives of the Evening Post newspaper. Ref: EP/1974/1619/19-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23144134

 

Waitangi Day and weekend hours 2016

6 February is Waitangi Day, a public holiday which commemorates the signing in 1840 of the Treaty of Waitangi between Māori and representatives of the British Crown. All Christchurch City Libraries branches will be closed on Saturday 6 February. Some libraries will be open on Monday 8 February.

Saturday 6 February – closed

Sunday 7 February – open normal hours

Monday 8 February – Waitangi Day observed. Fendalton, Te Hāpua: Halswell, Shirley, South, and library phone service open from 10am to 4pm.

Waka, Okain’s Bay, 1977
Waka, Okain’s Bay, February 1977 Flickr: HWC08-SO102