Family Fun Without a Cellphone . . . How Can That Be?
If you have friends or family with children, pick up the phone and tell them that the Empress Historical Society has organized an old fashioned Fun Family Weekend of camping, movies in the park, games, races, rides in the fire truck, Man Tracker adventures, a wheel of MISfortune, a barbecue, an evening Magic Show and even a Cow Pie Bingo. None of the activities involve cell phones, I-pads, TVs or other digital gadgets. Wow.
Most of the events are free to campers and town residents but there’s a small $10 per family charge for the barbecue and Magic Show. What a deal!
Campers can register and settle in on Friday, July 19th and get the kids ready for Movie Night in the Park which will start at dusk. Everyone is encouraged to bring their own camp chairs, snacks, blankets and bug spray.
Saturday events start in the morning at the Splash Park. A couple of local artists have added face painting to their list of skills and while kids wait their turn to morph into a fairy princess, a butterfly, Spiderman, a pirate or a frisky puppy they can decorate their bikes, trikes or scooters with the supplies provided.
Why bikes? Empress is a tiny village…fewer than 150 people even when everyone’s home in bed! That means that with a little bit of common sense even young children can ride their bikes around town just like Grandma and Grandpa did in the good old days. Moms and Dads are encouraged to bring their own bikes to the campgrounds so they can keep up with the kids.
There’ll be races and games and a local business is going to provide a free picnic lunch at the park. Then the Fire Department is going to roll out their snappy new fire truck and show off all the working parts to the kids . . . maybe even take them for a spin.
In the afternoon the little tots can play in the Splash Park while the older kids (and any willing Moms and Dads) are going to be divided into teams and compete in a Man Tracker Mystery Adventure.
Rumour has it that waaaaay back in distant memory a band of desperados rode into town and robbed the local bank. Fortunately, the Mounties rode into town from the other direction and foiled their escape . . . but the bad guys somehow hid the money.
Participants in the Man Tracker Mystery game are going to try to find the cache while avoiding the local Sheriff who patrols the streets in a golf cart and tracks them down.
This is the part of the day when a bicycle might really come in handy. There will be prizes for all participants, of course!
Late in the afternoon folks can choose to head over to the old CPR Station Museum and participate or watch a few rounds of Wheel of MISfortune before signing up for the barbecue and the evening Magic Show.
The organizers expect that by then everyone will be more than ready for a good night’s sleep.
Before heading home you can gather the kids together and have a quick game of pick-up baseball at noon on Sunday. That’s when Rosie the cow will be led into the Cow Pie Bingo enclosure next to the ball diamonds and determine who will take home the $1000 grand prize.
The Family Fun Weekend is what entertainment was like before the dawn of the digital age.
Empress Historical Society suggests you gather a group together and give it a try. For information or to register for camping phone Pat at 403-565-0009.