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Once Upon a Mattress VIDEO PICK: Kid Oscars Kites in Sugar Land About GISH PICKS About Gish Creative Family Space Day Market Your Camps
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Greetings and welcome to GISH PICKS: A GUIDE TO CULTURAL ACTIVITIES FOR FAMILIES, a free weekly e-newsletter/blog I created as a service to the Houston community in 2003 in which I cull from the loads of activities in our city and pick three weekend events (“PICKS”) to recommend to parents, caregivers, and educators all over Houston. I’m a mom and am always looking for cultural – yet FUN! – Events for my family and I am so happy to share them with YOU.

My business grows by word of mouth so please enjoy the events and please share this blog. And be sure to tell the organizations you visit that you heard about them from me. And if you’re in Facebooklandia, please sidle over there and like our GISH PICKS Facebook page and share it with your friends and family and elsewhere on social media, too. Don’t want to miss any posts? Click on the drop-down LIKE button and then check “See First.” Thanks!

This week I want to challenge you to take your kids to see trees in Houston! I recently finished a “7 Days of Nature Photos” challenge on Facebook and ended with this image of the beautiful tree at Beck’s Prime on Augusta and it got me curious about other trees, which was the oldest tree, etc. I found this Harris County Tree Registry, and I also found information on “The Old Hanging Oak” here – purportedly Houston’s oldest tree – at Bagby and Capitol Streets. If you’re curious about the oldest tree in the state, click here to see more about the Goose Island Tree.

So what’s going on here and there? I’ve got three fun PICKS below and I’ll have lots of information for families at the Mommy Mingle next week, Wednesday, March 2, 10am-noon at the Children’s Museum of Houston. February 23-March 6 is the 180th anniversary of Battle of the Alamo so they are celebrating it in a big way in San Antonio this weekend and next. See all the happenings here. Maybe the Alamo would be a great spring break destination?

Speaking of spring break, it’s just around the corner and I’ll be sending out my spring break camp guide this Friday so relax and don’t worry about what to do with the kiddos. Here’s something your kids 16-21 years old can do over the break -- there’s a fab online job fair (perfect for couch potato teens!) through March 15. See all the details here.

If you’re one of those organized moms and dads that is already looking for summer camps, look no further than THE SUMMER BOOK® ONLINE: A GUIDE TO HOUSTON DAY CAMPS AND CLASSES FOR KIDS AND TEENS. It’s the largest and most accurate and only searchable database of its kind. I’ve been researching camps since 2003 and I promise that I’ve got the best information around. Use it for free and make your summer a blast!

The Oscars® are this Sunday night so I thought it would be fun to share with you this HILARIOUS clip of kids reenacting the 2015 nominees for “Best Picture.” It’ll get you in the mood for “The Super Bowl of Movies”!

Click to view video
Click to view video

Have a great weekend, love one another, please share this, and GO.FIND.FUN.

Picks for the Weekend of February 26, 2016

Once Upon a Mattress


Lamar High School’s Fine Arts Department presents “Once Upon a Mattress in the Ned S. Holmes performance hall starting tonight, February 25 and running through Saturday, March 5.

If you thought you knew the story of "The Princess and The Pea," you may be in for a walloping surprise! Did you know, for instance, that Princess Winifred actually swam the moat to reach Prince Dauntless the Drab? Or that Lady Larkin’s love for Sir Harry provided a rather compelling reason that she reach the bridal altar post haste? Or that, in fact, it wasn't the pea at all that caused the princess a sleepless night? Carried on a wave of wonderful songs, by turns hilarious and raucous, romantic and melodic, this rollicking spin on the familiar classic of royal courtship and comeuppance provides for some side-splitting shenanigans. Chances are you'll never look at fairy tales quite the same way again. Showtimes are Thursday, February 25, 6pm; Friday, February 26, 7pm; Saturday, February 27, 2pm and 7pm; Friday, March 4, 7pm; and Saturday, March 5, 2pm and 7pm.

Tickets are $13/each and you can purchase them here.

Sugar Land Cultural Kite Festival


I find kites to be magical and especially fun if the weather is nice so I was excited to find that vibrant kites will accent the big Texas sky this Saturday, February 27, 10am-3pm during the 8th Annual Sugar Land Cultural Kite Festival at Sugar Land Memorial Park, 15300 University Boulevard. Activities and entertainment will include kite competitions for all ages, kite flying lessons, cultural performances, and more. Throughout the event, children will be able to create their own kites at the kite-making workshop. There is no cost to enter the kite competition. Registration can be done online here or onsite at the times listed below. First- , second- and third-place trophies will be awarded for each category.

Public parking will be available at University of Houston Sugar Land, 14000 University Boulevard. Shuttle services will be provided for the general public and will run between the university parking lot and Sugar Land Memorial Park from 10am-3pm. Limited handicap parking will be available at the park. All activities and entertainment are free and open to the public. Refreshments will be sold onsite.

Family Space Day


This Saturday, February 27, the Houston Museum of Natural Science presents “Family Space Day” at the George Observatory. Astronauts of all ages — kids 7 and up and adults — can fly to the Moon with NASA volunteers in the Challenger Learning Center. It’s great fun for the family and no danger is involved! Astronauts are assigned jobs aboard the Space Station Observer and work together as they solve problems and have fun. Volunteers who work at NASA will run the missions and visit with the participants and give them an opportunity to do some real astronaut training! Mission Times are 3pm, 4pm, and 5:30pm. This event is available for people 7 years of age and older. Kids 7-9 must have a paid adult chaperone participate.

Tickets are $10/each and a minimum of 10 participants is required for each mission. Refunds will be issued if the minimum is not met. The next Family Space Day is April 16.



Do you have a day camp program – winter, spring, or summer? Then let me help you market it without breaking your bank account! I’m a mom who was desperately looking for interesting day camps for my kids and when I couldn’t find any resources, I created my own. I began promoting camps here in GISH PICKS after I had created what is now the LARGEST and MOST ACCURATE database of summer camps, THE SUMMER BOOK® ONLINE. You can advertise your programs in either GISH PICKS or THE SUMMER BOOK® ONLINE (we even offer free listings!). Contact me for more information about how I can help you spread the word on your amazing camp programs. We are booking spring break and summer camp ads right now, so get in touch and watch your program grow!

GISH PICKS is a free weekly email in which I highlight family-oriented cultural events, products or services.
Please note that I "highlight" events, but I don't know if they are appropriate for your particular children, so choose wisely based on age, maturity and interests. I know many of you go to events based on GISH PICKS recommendations; PLEASE remember to tell the organization that you are there because of us. Word-of-mouth like yours helps our business to grow. In the same spirit, please also feel free to share GISH PICKS with friends and families.

Do you have something you would like to promote on Gish Picks? You can promote family-friendly events, products or services to Houstonians all over the city and the surrounding area who are active parents, involved citizens and great shoppers. We love doing this community service and want to keep it free for our readers but in order to justify the hours spent researching, writing and designing this newsletter, we need advertising support. If you'd like to learn more, please click below.

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The purpose of GISH PICKS is to help parents become aware of all the fun things they can do with their children in Houston and the surrounding area, so GO FIND FUN! Please do give me feedback and ideas, as you are out there in the trenches also looking for interesting things for your family and I want to hear what you find.

If you are having trouble getting to a website listed here, try hitting the "Ctrl" button and left-clicking on the web address, which should make it "live".

For more about my personal, family, and business enrichment company, Gish Creative, and the services we offer, please click here. You are on this list because I thought this e-newsletter would be helpful to you or because you signed up for it. Please feel free to tell your friends to subscribe by clicking here. My goal is to serve as an information resource for Houston parents through my various endeavors, including:

  • GISH PICKS: A GUIDE TO CULTURAL ACTIVITIES FOR FAMILIES, which is online and emailed out to thousands of parents and caregivers;

  • SPIRIT PICKS: A GUIDE TO INSPIRING ACTIVITIES IN HOUSTON, which is online and emailed out to seekers all over Houston;

  • THE SUMMER BOOK® ONLINE, a searchable database of over 200 Houston day camps and classes for kids and teens;

  • IGNITE YOUR LIFE!, an art project and community campaign whose goal is to inspire people around the world to light a match to their own passion;

  • INTUITIVE GUIDANCE SESSIONS, which are one-on-one consultations with me at Body Mind & Soul on personal and/or work questions. Sessions are one hour or thirty minutes;

  • Bi-monthly “WHAT’S YOUR PURPOSE?” workshops at Body Mind & Soul, check the store’s online calendar for dates and more information; and

  • OTHER SERVICES including SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS, INTERACTIVE WORKSHOPS, MARKETING, PRIVATE CONSULTATIONS, GUIDANCE SESSIONS FOR FINDING YOUR PURPOSE, and ART PROGRAMS. Talks and workshops cover topics such as summertime fun, passion-finding (for adults, children and families), marketing, historic preservation, art classes, activism, and more. All of these services can be tailored for any audience and budget.

Sarah Gish
Sarah Gish
(Photo: Two Birds Photography)

Sarah Gish
1940-A Fountainview, PMB 116
Houston, Texas 77057
phone: 713.492.1173

© 2016 Sarah Gish

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