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Expert Matters VIDEO PICK: Racism Experiment Treasure Island About GISH PICKS About Gish Creative Maritime Museum Fun St. Stephen's Da Vinci Lab
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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” under “In Your Newsfeed.” Thanks!

Are you still needing summer camp help? Doncha worry -- many camps still have openings as you can see in our latest curated guide to camps, here. If you want a list of over 200 camps to choose from, click here to access THE SUMMER BOOK® ONLINE: A GUIDE TO HOUSTON DAY CAMPS AND CLASSES FOR KIDS AND TEENS, a guide I’ve been producing since 2003. Or you can remember my new web page: – pass it on and tell your friends. I’ll also be highlighting CAMP PICKS on my Facebook page so be sure to check in there for ideas. My guide is the largest and most accurate online searchable database in Houston and you’re gonna love it when looking for camps! And, best of all, you can surf it from anywhere.

My heart is heavy this week as our country struggles to recover from the violence that, YET AGAIN, is happening. There is racial tension and political tension. And our melting pot of people, a beautiful thing at its best, is trying to figure out how to live together. I think it starts with talking to our kids about racism. This excellent article in the Huffington Post addressed it perfectly, as the author states so succinctly: “Every child who grows up to become a man or woman who refuses to judge others based on color, age, gender, sexual orientation, race, or creed helps make our world one in which love can prevail.” (I would add “economic status” to that list) As I write this, I am in Detroit, a city that is economically challenged and whose black community is struggling the most. There are pockets of extremely poor neighborhoods alongside super wealthy ones and it is an interesting microcosm of the world. I cannot turn a blind eye to what’s going on in Houston after seeing it so clearly in Detroit. I’ve been talking to a LOT of people about their lives here and about what’s going on. And I’m realizing I have a lot to learn. So I’ve made it a priority to #justlisten. I think that’s where we can start to resolve tension in our country.

This week’s VIDEO PICK features educator and activist Jane Elliot showing her brown eye/blue eye experiment to an Oprah audience. Dividing people by their eye color was how Hitler chose people for the gas chambers and it’s how racism works. My hope is that this video will cause you to look within yourself and see where you can improve your thoughts and judgments. I’ve had to do that while here in Detroit and it’s been a good thing.

Click to view video
Click to view video

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

Picks for the Weekend of July 15-17, 2016


This sounds fun! “Expert Matters (Kids Edition!)” will be onstage this Friday, July 15 at 6pm and promises to be funny yet informational – and isn’t that what we want at this point in the summer?! “Expert Matters” is an improv show put on by Beta Theater in which they feature a new expert each month in any given field who will answer audience questions pertaining to their field of expertise. A group of improvisers then perform scenes based on the information shared. It's like a Ted talk and an Improv Show got together and had one informative/hilarious show baby. This month’s show has been adapted for kids and the brainy guest is Chef Brandi Key who will share her culinary expertise (and maybe some tastings!) with the kiddos. Chef Key drafts new menus for Punk's Simple Southern, Coppa Ristorante Italiano, and Coppa Osteria and her focus is on fresh, local, seasonal ingredients. The show is recommended for children ages 4-13 years old.

Beta Theater is located at 2420 Pierce Street. Tickets to the show are $10/each and it’s BYO snacks and drinks. You can purchase tickets here.

Expert Matters: An Improv Show for Kids!

Treasure Island


Last week I told you about “Treasure Island” playing at the Fort Bend Theatre (through July 31, see that write-up here) and this week it closes out at the Company Onstage with two remaining performances: this Friday, July 15 at 7:30pm and Saturday, July 16 at 2pm. In this version of the swashbuckling tale, a girl named Emily dreams of being a pirate, despite being told she can't. Her dream comes to life in this version of Stevenson’s classic tale, where she is Jim Hawkins! Kids can come dressed in their best piratical gear, become part of the action, whoop it up, and be entered to win tickets to next season (*drawing to be held at the end of the run*).

Tickets are $10/each and you can purchase them here. For this season, The Company OnStage has been performing in McPhail Hall at St. John's Presbyterian Church at 5020 W. Bellfort.

Family Days Summer Saturdays @ Houston Maritime Museum


The Houston Maritime Museum is hosting “Family Days Summer Saturdays” every Saturday through the end of July from noon-5pm. Kids will get to discover the wonders of maritime exploration and life on the water this summer at these Family Days which will have crafting, board games, and activities designed to put you in the role of maritime history’s most famous figures. Each Saturday has a different theme – this Saturday, July 16, the focus is World War II. Kids can play a game of Battleship HMM-style by choosing to be a part of the British or the German Navy and learning how to strategize their way to victory.

This event is for kids 5-12 years old and is free and open to the public. The Houston Maritime Museum is located at 2204 Dorrington Street.

Da Vinci Lab for the Creative Arts & Sciences


St. Stephens Church and School have partnered to bring a unique and progressive after school program: the Da Vinci Lab for the Creative Arts & Sciences. The Lab is open to students throughout the Houston area.

Through this joint venture program, students will learn problem solving, abstract thinking, and creative expression and will get to engage with computer programming, 3-D printing, wood working, sewing and laser cutting techniques. Students will have the opportunity to experience intelligent failure and success as they work through their own creative process gently guided by a staff member. Each semester the students will have the opportunity to get to know a local scholar and how they contribute to our community through STEAM. Lastly, as a mission between the joint venture of church and school, students will be able to explore the inherent spiritual element of creativity and collaboration. Thus…STEAMS! Every day, students take what they’ve learned in the classroom and use it to imagine, design, and create amazing works of art. Group and individualized instruction will be utilized throughout curriculum.

Open Monday through Friday, the hours of operation are 3:30-6pm. With flexible attendance option, students have the option of participating every day or as little as one day a week. On site they offer a snack and then kids go into the lab for hands-on creative learning and skill development. Come make with them after school!

For more information, call or email Ryan Hawthorne, 713-528-6665 or Space is limited so early enrollment is encouraged. To register, please click here.

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.

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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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