RGV Pumpkin Patches 2019

It’s that time of the year again! Fall is here which means it’s time for those memorable pumpkin patch photos and  FALL FUN with the kiddos!  Time to get those fall photos.

Here is a list of the 2019  pumpkin patches open to the public Valley Wide and some are already OPEN!

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1) St. Mark United Methodist Church

301 W Pecan and 2nd St.
McAllen, TX
Opens Sept 29- October 31st  
Monday-Saturday: 12:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Sunday: 1:00 PM – 8:00 PM

 

2) First United Methodist  Church

 3707 W. University Dr. and Mon Mack
Edinburg, TX
Now Open–


Trunk-or-Treat will be on October 31st!!!

 

3) First United Methodist Church

 321 E. Harrison Ave.
Harlingen, TX
Opens October 10th- 31st
Hours are: Monday- Friday 8:00AM-12:00 PM  and  4:00PM-8:00PM
  Saturdays 8:00 AM-8:00PM and Sunday 12:00PM-8:00PM
 

4) First United Methodist Church

1225 Boca Chica Blvd.
Brownsville, TX
Opens October 13th- 31st
Hours: Everyday from 12:00pm-8:00pm
 
 
 
5)  Pumpkin Patch At Dean Porter
       501 E. RinggoldSt
      Brownsville, TX

Dates of Operation: October 25-29
October 25: 6:00 to 10:00 p.m.

October 26-29: 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

 

6) The Pond at T-Ranch

 25492 N FM 2556
  La Feria, TX

Dates of Operation: October 4- November 3
Friday: 3:00 PM – 7:00 PM 
Saturday-Sunday: 12:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Sunday: 12:00-8:00 PM

 

7) Maddies’ Pumpkin Patch Mcallen

    6712 N. Bentsen Rd.,McAllen, TX

Dates of Operation: September 14 – December 1
Monday-Friday: 3:00 PM  – Sunset
Saturday-Sunday: 10:00 AM – Sunset

 

8). Grace Heritage Ranch

27539 Old Alice Rd., Lyford, TX 

Dates of Operation: Saturdays, September 28 – October 26

Saturdays from 10am to 8pm

 

9). Maddies Pumpkin Patch and Mini Farmhouse Weslaco

1107 E. 12 1/2 Mile, Weslaco, TX

Dates of Operation: September 14 – December 1
Monday-Friday: 3:00 PM  – Sunset
Saturday-Sunday: 10:00 AM – Sunse
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10) Maddies Pumpkin Patch and Little Red Barn,  Mission, TX

10310 N. Conway Ave., Mission, TX

Dates of Operation: September 14 – December 1
Monday-Friday: 3:00 PM  – Sunset
Saturday-Sunday: 10:00 AM – Sunset

 

Know of any other pumpkin patches email us rgv@tots-tweens to add to the list !

 

 

happy-pumpkin-92313-488

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Kids Eat Free or Cheap..

Kids Eat Free ( or Cheap) in the Valley..

Kids Eat Free or Cheap Everyday:

Texadelphia Mcallen : Kids eat for $1. One $1 kids meal per adult meal purchased .

IHop: EveryDay 4pm-10pm: Dine in Only. Drinks not included. Some restrictions apply

Golden Corral: Children 3 and under eat FREE from the buffet with the purchase of an adult meal.

Kid Eat Free on Mondays:

Cowboy Chicken: Kids Eat Free with a purchase on an adult entree.

Buffalo Wings & Rings: Kids Eat FREE with a purchase of an adult meal.

Kids Eat Free on Tuesdays:

Main Event: Kids Eat Free

Kids Eat Free on Wednesdays:

Luby’s: One Free Kids meal with a purchase of an adult meal. Only at participating locations. Call your local Luby’s for more information. Dine in Only

Kids Eat Free on Saturdays:

Luby’s: One Free Kids meal with a purchase of an adult meal. Only at participating locations. Call your local Luby’s for more information. Dine in Only

Know of any other Kid Friendly restaurants that offer Kids Eat Free specials of for Cheap? Email us to rgv@tots-tweens.com to add them to our list.

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Pogo Pass San Antonio is HERE!

Pogo Pass San Antonio: 21 Fun & Family Friendly Activities for Kids = $39.98 per yr

If you’re looking for fun & cheap kids activities in San Antonio , the POGO Pass is exactly what your family needs.

What’s a POGO pass…?

Imagine an activity pass that gave your family the ability to explore 15  family-friendly places in San Antonio , TX .

Go to The San Antonio  Zoo, Rampage games , Wonder World  Park, UTSA home games, AND visit Splashtown (among other things) …all for less than $40 per person…for ALL  21 activities at  15 destinations.

Fun & Cheap Kids Activities…Pogo Pass.

Activities for kids include:

The San Antonio Zoo, Urban Air, University UTSA home games, Rampage hockey games. You even get 2 admissions at some locations with the activity pass !

The Pogo Pass gives you access to many family friendly activities in San Antonio for one price – $39.98 per pass.

Pogo Pass Promo Code: RGVTOTS

With each activities pass, you get admission to 15  family-friendly venues and things to do in San Antonio . If you bought each thing to do separately – it would cost hundreds more.

This is a steal – cheap family fun!

Use our promo code to get the special, discounted price. The kids activities pass is usually $99.98.

15 Family-Friendly Destinations in San Antonio = $39.98

The Pogo Pass activity pass get you at least 1 FREE admission to each of these fun events or activities for kid

One Pass. One Price. One Year of Family Fun

Find a full list of  San Antonio participants & Purchase a Pogo Pass with code: RGVTOTS to get the pass for only $39.98.

This Pogo Pass code can be used in San Antonio , Austin, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Kansas City,  Dalla ro Chicago s to purchase their respective activities passes.

Watch to learn why the Pogo Pass is so awesome!

 

Pogo Pass Makes Family Fun Possible at a LOW cost!

Purchasing each fun kids activity separately would be costly. With the one-time cost of the Pogo Pass, you are saving a TON of money…hundreds of dollars!

Some even include more than one visit, so you can come back more than once.

Each person needs their own Pogo Pass to get into the activity with the card. Additional admissions can also be purchased separately for individual activities.

You can even use your mobile phone to show the Pogo Pass – it is that easy!

  • Pass is valid for 365 days.
  • Each pass is for 1 person – it includes their name & is non-transferable.
  • You can print the pass or show membership using your mobile phone.
  • Some activities include 2 admissions – check the website for updated details on activities.

Pogo Pass San Antonio Participants:

Each kids activities pass includes at least one visit the the below San Antonio locations.

  1.  UTSA Athletics: One (1) general admission ticket to the 2018-19 UTSA home games: Listed UTSA events can be attended by presenting your Pogo Pass at ticketing for a general admission ticket
    1. Men’s Basketball
    2. Women’s Basketball
    3. Baseball
    4. Softball
  2. San Antonio Zoo: (1) One visit to the San Antonio Zoo.
  3. Splashtown San Antonio:  One (1) general admission ticket to Splashtown San Antonio.
  4. Wonder World Park: One (1) visit to Wonder World Park
  5. San Antonio Rampage: Two (2) San Antonio Rampage games during the 2018-19 AHL hockey season.  Each Pogo Pass member receives One (1) ticket per game.
  6. Two (2) visits to the San Antonio Urban Air Trampoline Park NE for a One (1) hour Bronze package jump session. Re-usable Urban Air socks are required at select locations and can be purchased for $2.50
  7. Monster Golf & Laser Tag  (2) Visits to Monster Golf & Laser Tag. Members can choose from a round of Mini Golf, or a game of Laser Tag each visit.
  8. San Antonio Aquarium: (1) One visit to the San Antonio Aquarium.
  9. Two (2) visits to Incredible Pizza for a free buffet: Each visit is good for One (1) free buffet
  10. University Bowl: One (1) game of bowling per visit. Subject to available space/lane availability. Shoe rental not included
  11. Pump It Up San Antonio: Two (2) visits to Pump It Up. Visits can be used during open jump times at the Pump It Up Northwest, or Pump It Up Northeast locations.  Ages 2 yrs (34″) and up. Each pass holder receives $50.00 OFF any birthday party booking Monday thru Thursday with their Pogo Pass.
  12. Battle For Texas: One (1) visit to the Battle For Texas Museum.
  13. The Witte Museum: One (1) visit to The Witte Museum.
  14. The Buckhorn Saloon & Museum: One (1) visit to The Buckhorn and Texas Ranger Museum.
  15.  UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures: One (1) visit to the UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures.

 

Don’t Miss Out on Fun Things to Do for Cheap

If your family does even a few of these activities, the Pogo Pass pays for itself! Less than $40 is a steal for some family fun in San Antonio.

Pogo Passes are also available in

Phoenix , AZ

Las Vegas, NV

Kansas City, MO

Dallas/Ft. Worth TX

Austin/Waco, TX

Chicago, IL

When you purchase the activity pass, to any  locations be sure to use Pogo Pass code: RGVTOTS  to get the 60% OFF discount.

 

 

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Talk to Your Parents About Stress

How to Talk to Your Parents About Stress

If you’re feeling a bit stressed out, your parents can help. Although they did not grow up with the same pressures as you, such as social media and insane testing schedules, the adults in your life are a great source of support. Also keep in mind that although stress and anxiety can stick with you for a long time, there are techniques that can help you manage both (your parents can help you here, too!).

Talking to adults

Having to approach a parent or teacher about uncomfortable subjects can be scary. Don’t be afraid to let your mom or dad know that you need to talk. If you feel tired all the time, like everyday activities are just too hard to get through, or sick without reason, it might be time to talk.

KidsHealth.org is a good website to look at if you think you might need some advice on talking to your parents about stress or other difficult topics. It is not rude to start a conversation by explaining that something is weighing on your mind and that you just need them to listen. It’s also okay to ask for advice. Remember, even your parents need guidance sometimes, so no one is going to judge you for asking for a listening ear.

What do you need?

There is no single thing that all people need to keep stress away. When your stress causes you constant anxiety, it can kill your confidence and make you feel scared of failure, especially when it comes to how you’re doing in school.

A few things that may help (and things you should consider talking to your parents about) include:

  • Changing the way you eat. French fries might be tasty, but anything you get from a drive-through isn’t going to be good for your body. When you eat, your food goes into your gut, which has the task of separating the vitamins and minerals from the stuff that doesn’t contribute to your health. And believe it or not, there is a little world just behind your belly button that affects everything from weight to the chemicals in your brain that make you feel happy or sad. Ask your parents about helping you eat more foods that promote gut health or taking a supplement that contains probiotics.
  • Exercising. When you were in elementary school, you went outside for recess every day, but the older you get, the more you probably just want to chill out on the couch with your video games. Fortnite and Minecraft are fun, but they don’t help your body and brain work the way they should. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic note that exercise can boost your brain’s production of feel-good endorphins (hormones that make you happy) and can ease stress.
  • Having too much to do. Sometimes, adults think that the best thing for their kids is to stay busy. There’s nothing wrong with taking martial arts or playing soccer after school, but sometimes, all of this extra activity is just too much. Not getting done with baseball practice until 10 o’clock at night and then still having to do homework and eat dinner isn’t good for anyone.
  • Spending more time with your family. There are a lot of scientific reasons that you should spend more time with the people you love, and if you’ve been feeling like time around the dinner table makes you happy, you’re probably right. Activities like eating dinner together, playing games, and doing crafts with your family help you bond. These activities also give you a great chance to talk to them about everything that’s going on during the day while you are at school.

There are a lot of things you can do to make stress go away, but there are also things that you’re going to need help with. Talk to your parents or a trusted teacher about things you can do, like eating different foods and taking some activities off your plate. You may find that simple changes to your day can make you feel a whole lot better.

Image via Pixabay

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New Year’s Goals: How to Involve your Child with Special Needs in Making and Achieving Goals

By Diane M. McCullom

It’s January—the holidays have come to an end. It’s back to school, back to work and back to routines. With the end of one year, comes the beginning of a new one—and a new opportunity to make goals for the upcoming months.

But this New Year’s tradition doesn’t have to be limited to adults. Children of all ages and aptitudes should also be encouraged to set goals for learning, personal growth and their futures. When children learn to set goals and reach them, they can visualize their futures, make good choices and make their dreams come true.

Unfortunately, it’s easier for children with special needs to get distracted or discouraged from setting and achieving goals. The Frostig Center, a program dedicated to improving the lives of children with disabilities through research, development and education, did 20 years of research on what makes people with disabilities successful as adults: Goal-setting was one of six success attributes.

Here are a few ways you can cultivate successful goal-setting in your children, students or friends with special needs:

  1. Ask children about their dreams and desires, and encourage them to set goals related to those dreams and desires. In this case, their own desires will fuel their motivation. Listen to their dreams, and don’t squelch them, but help to shape them. For instance, maybe the child lacks social skills necessary in working with others, but he tells you he wants to play basketball as a goal this year. In that case, perhaps you could start by taking him to the library and learn by reading books or watching movies related to the sport. You could also practice social situations in public with the end goal of playing basketball later in the year. With the desire in mind, the child will have a higher chance of being more motivated to achieve his goals.

 

  1. Make goals achievable, measurable and time-sensitive. Big goals are positive, but make sure that the goals are realistic for the individual child. Breaking a big goal down into several smaller ones can make the task of achieving them seem less daunting. For example, getting an A in math for a semester is a great goal, but does the child normally get D’s? It may be overwhelming for the child to suddenly feel the pressure to make all A’s. Smaller, more achievable goals could be getting an A on an assignment or a B on a test.

 

  1. Model perseverance. Teach children that it’s ok to fail as long as they get back up and keep trying. Lead the way this new year by making a family vision board—something in plain view that you and your child see regularly. Seeing how you handle your goals, in success and failure, could be the greatest example of perseverance that your child experiences. Regularly check in with your child about his feelings, encourage the areas where he’s experiencing failure and praise his successes.

These few steps can help your child with special needs make giant leaps in feeling purpose and making dreams come true. Happy new year!

 

Diane M. McCullom is the senior vice president of clinical operations at Dallas-based Epic Health Services, a leading provider of pediatric skilled nursing, therapy, developmental, enteral and respiratory services, as well as adult home health services, with operations in 21 states.

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5 Tips for Hosting a Child with Special Needs This Holiday Season

By Diane M. McCullom

For most people, the holidays are a joyful time spent with family and friends, though they can be quite stressful and demanding with party-attending, gift-buying and schedule-juggling. Families with children who have special needs face these same demands and more—wondering how their children will feel at social gatherings is just one of the many questions asked. If you have the privilege of hosting a child with special needs this holiday season, chances are you are wondering about some ways that you can help ease the process for these families and for yourself. We have a few ideas:

Check in with parents – Before your holiday gathering, check in with the child’s parents for a list of do’s and don’ts, traditions, food sensitivities and recommendations. This step can go quite the distance in ensuring that the child feels comfortable and at home in a new environment.

Be prepared – Organize your home in a way that provides few distractions: remove clutter, keep overstimulating items out of the central focus points of your home, have backup food that the child likes, and have fun, skill-appropriate activities and games available for the child in those moments when uneasiness or restlessness sets in.

Be flexible – You might have to throw all of that preparation out the window on a whim. And guess what? It’s OK! Be flexible enough to change your plans to meet the needs of your guests.

Teach your family – Use your experience hosting a special needs child as a teaching time for your own children or relatives to learn about awareness, difference, respect and acceptance.

Relax and have fun – A kid with special needs wants to be independent too, so let them attempt things on their own instead of immediately jumping in to help. Things might get spilled or kids might jump on your couch. As long as a safe and fun environment is maintained, don’t sweat the small stuff!

With a little preparation and an accommodating mindset for those special kids in your life, the holidays are sure to be a success for everyone this year!

Diane M. McCullom is the senior vice president of clinical operations at Dallas-based Epic Health Services, a leading provider of pediatric skilled nursing, therapy, developmental, enteral and respiratory services, as well as adult home health services, with operations in 21 states.

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Guidelines for Choosing a Gift for a Child with Special Needs

By Diane M. McCullom

Walk into a gift store this holiday season, and chances are, you’ll be overcome with more items than you could possibly imagine—the hottest toy trends of the season and all things merry and bright. This same overwhelming sensation can be quite stressful for parents and those shopping for children with special needs. So what are some guidelines for finding that perfect, yet appropriate, gift for the child with special needs in your life? Here are a few questions to ask yourself when shopping:

Is the gift multisensory? If it’s a toy, does it respond with lights, sounds or movement to engage the child? Does it have scent, texture and contrasting colors? Sometimes these things can be overwhelming to children with sensory disorders, so depending on the specific needs of the child, these may or may not be positive things.

Does it provide open-ended play? This means the gift has no definite right or wrong way to use it. Will the toy provide a challenge without frustration? Is it adaptable to the child’s individual style, ability and pace?

Does it meet the child’s individualistic needs and abilities? Does the gift allow for personal creativity and making choices? Is it developmentally appropriate?

Is it practical in terms of safety, durability and adjustability? Does it fit the child’s size and strength? Does it have adjustable sound, height, speed and level of difficulty? Is it easy to keep clean and store? Could it fit on a wheelchair tray?

For specific gift ideas, check out Toys”R”Us’ toy guide for “differently-abled” kids that categorizes items by different skill sets. For more than 20 years, they have offered this one-of-a-kind resource that provides parents and caregivers with gift recommendations that aid in the development of children with disabilities. With thousands of pins popping up under the search phrase “gifts for kids with special needs,” Pinterest is also a fantastic resource for finding gifts specific to the needs of each child.

Get creative with your gift buying and don’t forget to have fun with the process! With a little research and preparation, you can find the perfect gift and make Christmas special for these uniquely special kids.

Diane M. McCullom is the senior vice president of clinical operations at Dallas-based Epic Health Services, a leading provider of pediatric skilled nursing, therapy, developmental, enteral and respiratory services, as well as adult home health services, with operations in 21 states.

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Monster Jam Liners 2016

Monster Jam Liners

State Farm Arena

January 15-17, 2016

 MJ343571-Hidalgo-728x90A-MJ16-KidsTix-NA-BuyTix-011516

What: Monster Jam

When: January 15-17, 2016- 5 HUGE shows

            Friday- 7:30pm

            Saturday- 2:00pm   Pit Party (11:30am-1:00pm)

Saturday- 7:30 pm

Sunday- 2:00pm / 7:30pm

Where: State Farm Arena

How to get tickets: State Farm Arena box office, www.ticketmaster.com or charge by phone at 800-745-3000.

TICKET PURCHASE LINK: http://www.ticketmaster.com/venueartist/475863/1542376

2016 Monster Jam logo

  Liners:

  • Kids seats start at just $10! Tickets increase $2 on day of show- so buy your tickets early.
  • Opening night supervalue adults are just $15!       Opening night discount valid for the Friday night show only.
  • Pit party is 11:30am-1:00pm on Saturday, February 6! Pit passes are available at participating Metro PCS locations starting December 28th or for purchase through the State Farm Arena box office.
  • Want more value? Pick up your discount coupon at participating Pueblo Tires locations starting December 28th!
  • Trucks scheduled to appear include: Grave Digger, Team Hot Wheels, El Toro Loco, Monster Mutt Dalmatian, Zombie Hunter, Captain’s Curse, Doom’s Day and Mad Scientist.

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Event Description:

 

Welcome to Monster Jam, an incredible family-friendly experience starring the biggest performers on four wheels: Monster Jam monster trucks.  These twelve-feet-tall, ten-thousand-pound machines will bring you to your feet, racing and ripping up a custom-designed track full of obstacles to soar over – OR smash through.  Monster Jam provides a massive night’s entertainment tailored perfectly for your family’s budget, and these colorful, larger-than-life beasts are sure to capture the hearts of both young and old.

 MJ343571-Hidalgo-300x250S-MJ16-KidsTix-NA-BuyTix-011516

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McAllen Public Library

The McAllen Public Library is located at 4001 N. 23rd St.

The McAllen Public Library is located at 4001 N. 23rd St.

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Small tables and chairs adorn part of the children’s section.

McAllen, Texas, has the reputation of being the most modern and progressive city in the Rio Grande Valley.  Now, it also boasts the title of having the largest single-floor public library in the United States.

Originally a Wal-Mart, the library has many features that make it unique.  Outside of the popular adult and children’s sections, it also has an area specifically for teens.  “We have a teen department that caters to kids between 13 and 18, and there is all kinds of stuff that draws them in, [like our] Teen Theater,” said Bobby Guevara, Reference Assistant.

The McAllen Public Library is the perfect place for any book lover to visit.  It features an expansive collection of literature.

This library is the perfect place for any book lover to visit. It features an expansive collection of literature.

The children’s section is colorful and has a computer lab and story room designed with little ones in mind.  The library also hosts a regular story time for toddlers.

Guevara continued, “We have [members] from all over the US.  Our Winter Texans have their library cards when they come here.”  Interested residents can start the process online and then come in with a valid ID and proof of address.  When they become members, they also have access to an online catalog and eBooks.

The non-fiction section of the library.

The non-fiction section of the library.

The McAllen Library also has a cafe, a bookstore run by volunteers, meeting rooms that can be rented out, a state of the art computer lab, and an auditorium that seats over 100 people.  Visitors are allowed to enjoy drinks in the library as long as they are covered.  In addition to the main location, there are also two branch libraries.  Interested parties can schedule tours.

With areas that cater specifically to children, teens and adults, the library is a popular family destination.  To find out more about the McAllen Public Library, please visit their website or their Facebook page.

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Holiday Village Brownsville

The Holiday Village is sure to get visitors in the Christmas spirit.

The Holiday Village is sure to get visitors in the Christmas spirit.

With a crisp, wet breeze in the air, and Josh Groban singing, “O Holy Night,” on the loudspeaker, the Holiday Village in Brownsville is excitedly ushering in the Christmas season.

The, "Find Fritter the Elf," Challenge.

The, “Find Fritter the Elf,” Challenge.

Nestled in between the Camille Playhouse and The Children’s Museum of Brownsville, the village is lined with cottages sporting various themes and adorned with lights.

New cottages are added each year, and the events schedule is full of local elementary school, dance studio and middle school choir performances.  Admission is free.  Every Friday and Saturday evening, children are invited to visit with and take pictures with Santa Claus in the photo booth at no cost.

The Home Sweet Home Cottage, sponsored by Parra Furniture (2014).

The Home Sweet Home Cottage, sponsored by Parra Furniture (2014).

Most recently, the village added a “Find Fritter the Elf,” adventure, with Fritter hiding in a different house each evening. Participants are encouraged to find Fritter, take a picture in front of the host cottage, and post the photo on the Holiday Village Facebook page.  They are then entered into a drawing to win prizes from Krispy Kreme.

“I like taking my grandchildren because they add a new display every year.  It’s like a parade of lights, and the miniature homes spark their imaginations,” says Brownsville native Rosie Hatley.  “It’s nice to take a stroll with your family and enjoy the scenery and entertainment,” added Hatley.

The village is also a fun place to visit during the day, as it sits in Dean Porter Park and in close proximity to the Gladys Porter Zoo.  Holiday Village Hours are Sunday –Thursday, from 8:00 am–10:00 pm, and Friday and Saturday, from 8:00 am–11:00 pm.  For more information, please visit their website or their Facebook page.

A schedule of December's musical performances is on display at the Holiday Village.

A schedule of December’s musical performances is on display at the Holiday Village.

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