June 30, 2010

Fire Up The Fireworks

Note: This is the guide for 2010. Click here for 2013!

For years, Sanford hosted its own community fireworks display. However, due to downturns in the economy and lacking financial support, people in Sanford have had to turn to other towns and cities for their pyrotechnic desires.

However, there are a few ways to get your fireworks fix without leaving town. For instance, a quick drive around town on Sunday night will expose you to many booming displays. And many private communities, such as Carolina Trace, often host some satisfying displays for their community members.

A great home-grown treat that has quietly gathered momentum and crowds is the firework display put on by Jimmy and Christine Ammons in the field beside Sanford Health and Rehabilitation. The display starts at 9 pm on Sunday night at 2702 Farrell Road (click to view map), will be preceded by the Outhouse Band, and is free to the public. The display boasts "larger fireworks that can be seen from a distance," according to the Ammonses.

Family tip: The field starts filling up around 7 pm, so plan to get there early and stake out your spot. Bring sparklers and pack a picnic dinner or fun snacks to keep the kids entertained until the 9 pm start time. And if you aren't partial to fighting the crowd, you can park right on Farrell Road and watch the display from your car.

Local update: An annual favorite of many Sanfordians, Lillington's Festival in the Park has been canceled this year due to lack of funds, town manager Tommy Burns told NBC-17 last month. The festival may return next year if organizers can raise enough funds, which exceed $15,000.

Want to share your community's fireworks with others in the area? Email us the details and we'll post them on our Facebook page. And if you'd like to bring official fireworks back to Sanford, share your thoughts on the Family 4th Festival Facebook page.

Other Fireworks Venues

If you're looking for a more carnival-type atmosphere for your fireworks viewing, check out these events happening in our region:

City of Raleigh and NC State Fair's July 4th Celebration
Where: NC State Fairgrounds (click here for a map)
When: Sunday, July 4, from 5 pm to 10 pm
What: Activities include sports, Independence Day Hat-Making activity, arts, dance instruction, Nature Program, Adventure Program, Taiko Japanese drumming performance, Holiday Express expo, Raleigh Police & Fire displays, Dorton Arena’s giant obstacle course, Design a Park activity, Wii games, contests, scavenger hunt and bingo. "Got to be NC Watermelon Cutting" provided by NC Watermelon Association will begin at 5 pm and continue while supplies last. Fireworks will begin at 9:15 pm.
Price: Admission and parking is free for spectators.

Town of Aberdeen's Fun Family Fourth of July
Where: Aberdeen Lake Park (click here for a map)
When: Saturday, July 3, from 5:30 to 10 pm
What: Activities and games -- including face painting, cornhole, and bouncy castles -- for all age groups will start at 5:30 pm. The Entertainers will perform at 6 pm. Fireworks will begin at 9:15 pm. For a complete list of games and vendors, click here.
Price: Admission to the park is free. A wristband for participating in games and activities is $3 per person.

Town Of Cary's Independence Day Celetration
Where: Koka Booth Ampitheatre (click here for complete details or here for a map)
When: Sunday, July 4, from 3 pm to 10 pm
What: Family Fun Zone featuring food along with children's activities from 3 pm to 7 pm. Admission of $2 per person for unlimited rides. Indy Model Boat Regatta at 4 pm on Symphony Lake. Ice cream eating contest at 5:30 pm in Cobblestone Courtyard. Performances by the Cary Town Band and NC Symphony. Fireworks begin at 9:15 pm.
Price: Concerts and display are free and open to the public.

Fort Bragg's July 4th Celebration (click here for flyer)
Where: Main Post Parade Field (look for signs)
When: Sunday, July 4, from 3 pm to 10 pm
What: Kiddie Land activity area opens at 3 pm. "Wife Carrying Contest" from 3 pm - 5 pm. Golden Knights freefall parachute demonstration at 6 pm. Flag ceremony at 8 pm. Fireworks begin at 8:40 pm. Musical performances by 82nd Division All American Chorus, Colt Ford, and Chevelle throughout the day.
Price: $5 for kids activities for the entire day. The rest is free and open to the public.

Local Celebrations Without Fireworks

Sanford's Family 4th Festival
Where: Depot Park
When: Saturday, July 3, from 4 pm to 9 pm
What: This local festival will kick off with the Pets & Peddles Parade at 4 pm. Local artists (including children) can come at 2 pm to participate in a sidewalk chalk contest. There will be a kids zone, crafts, and food provided by downtown vendors. Performances by Sevryn Schaller and Heart of Carolina Jazz featuring the Martin Luther King Community Choir ... and more. Click here for details and a flyer.
Bonus: Bring your lawn chairs and blankets so you can stay late for a movie on the green!
Price: Admission is free.

Pittsboro's Independence Day Celebration
Where: Downtown Pittsboro
When: Sunday, July 4, from noon to 4 pm
What: More than 30 local artists and craftspeople will sell their wares as Johnny Wilson of "The Big Time Party Band" provides beach music, along with other surprise guests. Chatham Area Shag Association will offer free shag lessons. This celebration will coincide with Pittsboro's First Sunday event. Click here for more information.
Price: Admission is free.

June 28, 2010

Can One, Can All!

The average lifestyle in the United States revolves around high-tech conveniences and supermarket shopping, but there's a growing movement that's leading back to the farm -- and people right here in Sanford are helping to guide the way.

With BPA scares, salmonella and botulism all over the news, and skyrocketing food prices, Sanford's citizens -- including young people who have no childhood memories of "the farm" -- are turning to community gardens, backyard chickens, and local farms to grow and preserve their own food.

And now you can get in on the act. Grab your garden-fresh vegetables, hit up your favorite farmer's market, or sign up for a CSA like Carolina Grown (which delivers fresh, local foods right to your door), and then head out to the McSwain Center for one of these canning sessions to learn how to "put up"  food for enjoying long after the summer growing season has passed:

Session: Learn How To Can Green Beans!
When: June 29 or July 13 from 6:30 pm-9:00 pm.
Description: Bring 2 pounds of green beans, washed and snapped, to class with you. Jars, lids, seals and the Ball Blue Book will be provided. (This is the process you'll use for all non-acidic foods.)
Fee: You must pre-register and pay $8 in advance.
Session: Learn How To Can Tomatoes!
When: July 22 or August 12 from 6:30 pm-9:00 pm
Description: Bring 4 pounds of tomatoes, washed, to class with you. Jars, lids, seals and the Ball Blue Book will be provided. (This is the process you'll use for all acidic foods.)
Fee: You must pre-register and pay $8 in advance.

Contact Kay Morton at (919) 775-5624 or via email to register.

June 25, 2010

Build Monster Memories at Lowe's

Ask any parent and they'll agree -- Saturday mornings are usually over before they start thanks to a flurry of errands and to-do lists.

But Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic is offering two sessions guaranteed to help you slow down while you build fantastic memories (and toys) with your children. All sessions start at 10 am and are held in the training room.

Session 1: June 26 - Monster Trucks (Camion Mostruo)

Session 2: July 10 - Ball & Cup Game (Juegos de Bolas y Vasos)

To ensure your child has a spot in the clinic, click here to register.

Lowe's Home Improvement is located 3015 S. Horner Blvd. Call 776-5644 for more information. These sessions are free and open to everyone in the community.

June 20, 2010

Where's the WiFi?

If you're like most people, you spend more time driving around town than you do sitting at home.

Next time you have to hit the road, grab your laptop and plan to catch some web time at one of these free wireless Internet (wifi) hotspots:
  • Central Carolina Hospital, 1135 Carthage Street, Sanford NC.
  • China Garden, 1123 Spring Lane in the Riverbirch Shopping Center.
  • Cross Roads Grill, 715 East Main Street, Sanford NC.
  • J.C. Penney, Riverbirch Shopping Center, Sanford NC.
  • Lee County Public Library on Hawkins Avenue, Sanford NC.
  • McDonalds on Horner Blvd or Spring Lane, Sanford NC.
  • Pizza Hut at 1923 S. Horner Blvd, Sanford NC.
  • Sarkus Express Japanese Restaurant, 1129 Spring Lane in the Riverbirch Shopping Center.
  • Smithfield's Chicken & Barbecue on Horner Blvd, Sanford NC.
  • Taco Bell on Horner Blvd, Sanford NC.
  • Tramway Road Park at 2303 Tramway Road, Sanford NC thanks to Lee County Schools (limited access)
Are we missing your favorite free wifi hotspot? Let us know and we'll add it to the list!

June 17, 2010

Here's How To Sync With Our Calendar

If you'd rather know what's on our radar before we post it on the SocialSanford Facebook page, your best option is to sync up with our Google calendar. Here's how to do it:

1. Select "View news & events" from the "Calendar" option in our menu bar above.

2. Scroll down to the bottom of the calendar and find the Google button.

3. Log into Gmail. If you don't have a Gmail account, you can create a free one using a Hotmail, Yahoo, AOL, or other account.

4. Click "Add" next to the SocialSanford calendar information. We are synced with Downtown Sanford's calendar, which you may want to do as well.

5. Now that you're synced to the calendar, you can choose how you want to see it. You can choose to see a day at a time, the week, a full month, four days, or an agenda. Play around with the settings to determine which one works best for you.

6. To the left of the calendar block are options that allow you to select a particular day in the future or choose whether to display calendars other than your own by default. We suggest displaying all calendars so you don't miss out on any fun!

Have a question about our calendar or syncing it up? Contact us and we'll do our best to help!

June 14, 2010

Amy's Confection Company -- A Review & Giveaway!

Ten years ago, Sanford resident Amy Burns took a cake making class. The rest, as they say, is history. She now runs her own local business, making custom wedding cakes, cake truffles, gourmet chocolates, almond English toffee, and more. Each item I've tried (and oh, there have been many!) has been irresistibly delicious.

After seeing the gallery of wedding cakes on her site, I admit to being jealous of her brides! All of her wedding cakes are custom designed for the bride and wedding, and she limits herself to 1 or 2 each weekend so that each bride receives the attention she deserves.

When asked her favorite experience as an entrepreneur, she says that the friendships she's made in the community top them all. "I love walking through the grocery store and having people ask if I'm the cake lady or the candy lady! And leaving Yarborough's Ice Cream one night, a mom told her son 'That's the truffle lady.' He looked up, smiled and with excitement said 'Oh wow, I love you!'"

So what's next for the business? Amy tells me that she has four new helpers: hens named Julia, Suzanne, Mary Jo, and Charlene. In an effort to provide her customers with the highest quality and freshest possible ingredients and to be as green as possible, she will be using fresh eggs raised on her own farm starting this summer and fall.

You can purchase Amy's confections at Added Accents in downtown Sanford, or online at www.caketruffle.com. And to prove that she's just as sweet as her confections, Amy is donating a sampler of deliciousness to one lucky SocialSanford reader.

How to enter: You must comment on this blog post and let us know your favorite Amy's creation. We will choose one winner on Thursday, June 17 at noon. Make sure you provide an email address so that we have a way to contact you!

This contest has ended. Feel free to continue commenting, but a winner has already been chosen. Thanks again to Amy for donating the prize!

Review written by Melissa Worley.

Listen to These Sounds of Summer

One of the best parts of summer is free music in the park. This year, Lee County has some great options for getting out and hearing great live music.

Function at the Junction: Downtown Sanford never fails to provide great live music during this long-running weeknight concert series held in Depot Park. The concerts are on Thursday nights and start at 7 pm. Bring a blanket or chairs and a picnic dinner to make the most of these free, family shows. Musical acts include:
  • Tim Hair, June 17 (country)
  • Kudzu Ramblers, June 24 (bluegrass)
  • Tuesday Night Supper Club, July 1 (beach/classic rock)
  • Heart of Carolina, July 8, Aug. 12, Sep. 9 (jazz)
  • Swift Creek Revival, July 15 (bluegrass)
  • FOG Band, July 22 (blues/classic rock)
  • Kenny Huffman & Workforce, July 29 (folk rock)
  • RN5P, Aug. 5 (beach/classic rock)
  • Tommy Edwards & Carolina Lightning, Aug. 19 (bluegrass)
  • Roger Hester & The High Country Men, Aug. 26 (bluegrass)
  • The Vision Band, Sep. 2 (beach/classic rock)
Contact Downtown Sanford for more information.

Rhythm at the Pavilion: Those in Broadway or just looking for music on the weekends should check out this summer concert series, which will be held at the North Carolina Veterans Memorial on Main Street. The free concerts will be on the third Saturday of each month and music starts at 7 pm. Patrons are encouraged to bring chairs and blankets; no alcohol or pets allowed. Musical acts include:
  • Blender with Chad & Kristi Gaines, June 19
  • Blue Grass Reunion, July 17
  • Four Heart Harmony, August 21
Contact the Town of Broadway for more information.

We hope everyone enjoys these awesome opportunities to get out and have fun in our local community!

Thank you!

Thank you for registering for our free Social Media Toolkit seminars, sponsored by the Lee County Small Business Center!

Want more free workshops? Here's the list of upcoming offerings:
Also stay tuned for more additions to the Toolkit series coming this fall!

Where do you want to go from here?

June 12, 2010

Top 5 Tips for Fountain Fun

You don't have to have children to know how much the little ones in our community love playing in the splash fountain in Depot Park.

The fountain runs from May 1 to October 31. During that period, it will operate for an hour at a time at 10a, 12p, 2p, and 4p each day.

To make the most of this free, local, super-wet activity, parents should follow this advice:

1. Go heavy on the sunscreen. There is zero shade around the fountain, so both you and your children will be exposed to the summer sun for as long as you're there. You might consider hitting the park closer to 10 am or after 4 pm to avoid the harshest summer rays.

2. Bring a towel and a change of clothes. Your child doesn't have to wear a bathing suit in the fountain (and mine have spent many a morning getting their clothes drenched in it), but it makes for a miserable ride home if they don't have dry clothes to wear. If you might be stopping by the fountain, grab a towel and some spare clothes just in case either their clothes accidentally get wet or there's a bathing suit malfunction that would otherwise keep them out of the water.

3. Wear water shoes or sandals with traction. Again, there are no rules about what to wear in the fountain, but the base and ground around it are extremely slick when wet. With children running in and out, and water splashing everywhere, the chances your child will slip or stub his/her toe are high. Water shoes or sandals with good tread that can get wet (like crocs) are ideal.

4. Pack water and good snack. The sun is beating down and your child is running and jumping and laughing like a crazy person. These are perfect conditions for dehydration (because they're having too much fun to stop for drinks). Make sure to offer some ice, cold water and your child's favorite snack (best options are cold fruit like chilled grapes or watermelon) throughout your time at the park.

5. Bring a chair or blanket. The park offers a few benches, but on hot summer days, you'll likely discover other parents already camped out on them. Make sure you're comfortable and can enjoy your time at the park, too, by bringing a chair or picnic blanket to chill out on.

If you follow this advice, you're guaranteed to have a great time without any regrets. And after you're done, head over to one of downtown's many shops or restaurants for treats and refreshments!

June 11, 2010

Get Some Screen Time This Summer

The heat of summer is here to stay for at least another few months. Here are two options for getting out of the heat while entertaining your children in Hollywood style:

1. Free movies at the Lee County Library: Bring the kids to the library on Monday evenings to enjoy a free movie. No registration required, but you'll need to pack them a snack. Children under age 11 must be accompanied by an adult. Each movie will begin at 7 pm and the lineup is:
  • Finding Nemo, June 14
  • Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, June 21
  • The Princess and the Frog, June 28
  • Pirates of the Caribbean, July 12
  • Disney Oceans, July 19
For more information, call the library at (919) 718-4665 x 5483 or 5484.

2. $1 movies at Spring Lane Cinemas: Enjoy the crisp, cool movie theatre air conditioning (and the $5 popcorn packs) with these heavily discounted movies geared toward our community's youngest citizens. Each movie will begin at 10 am and the lineup is:
  • Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, June 22 and 24
  • Monsters vs Aliens, June 29 and July 1
  • Aliens in the Attic, July 7 and 8
  • Night at the Museum 2, July 13 and 15
  • Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, July 20 and 22
  • Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, July 27 and 29
  • Planet 51, August 3 and 5
  • The Tooth Fairy, August 10 and 17
For more information, call the theatre at (919) 708-5600.

3. $1 movies at the Omni Cinemas. If you don't mind traveling a bit, there are some really great movie opportunities at this Fayetteville theatre. Not only are the movies cheap, but they play two movies each morning on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays through August. The 10 am movies are:
  • Astro Boy, June 15-17
  • Journey to the Center of the Earth, June 22-24
  • Shorts, June 29-July 1
  • The Spy Next Door, July 6-8
  • Where the Wild Things Are, July 13-15
  • Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, July 20-22
  • Hotel for Dogs, July 27-29
  • Aliens in the Attic, August 3-5
  • Alvin & the Chipmunks: the Squeakquel, August 10-12
  • Night at the Museum 2, August 17-19
The 10:30 am movies are:
  • Charlotte's Web, June 15-17
  • The Wizard of Oz, June 22-24
  • Curious George, June 29-July 1
  • Monsters vs Aliens, July 6-8
  • Planet 51, July 13-15
  • Kit Kittredge, July 20-22
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything, July 27-29
  • The Tale of Despereaux, August 3-5
  • Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, August 10-12
  • The Tooth Fairy, August 17-19
If there are other movie opportunities this summer, please shoot us an email letting us know!

Giveaway #5: Fresh Choice Cafe

Over the past week, we've given away nearly $130 in prizes and gift certificates ... but the 500th Like Giveaway extravaganza isn't over yet!

To bring the party to a close, today we're proud to give away $25 to one of Sanford's busiest lunch spots: Fresh Choice Cafe! This is the one place in town you can always turn to for dishes made with fresh ingredients that come with an affordable price tag. And if you stroll in during lunch, you're guaranteed to see a mix of diners that perfectly represents our town: professionals, leaders, young folks, old folks, families, and friends.

Without further ado, the lucky SocialSanford "liker" who gets to splurge on some of the best food in town is:

Cara Graham

Congratulations! We hope you have a great meal ... and, just so you know, there's no rule against inviting one of us to come eat with you. ;) Please shoot us an email to arrange for pick-up/drop-off of your prize.

Thanks to everyone who donated prizes or liked us on Facebook for making this week so special. We have some other giveaways in the works, so we hope you'll stick around!

June 10, 2010

Giveaway #4: Star Community Theatre

Most people are aware that some of the most well-known and highly respected professional thespians got their start and honed their chops by performing in community theatre.

But did you know that Sanford has its own thriving community theatre dedicated to providing opportunities for educational and entertaining amateur summer theatre while involving people of all ages and levels of experiences? That's Star Community Theatre's mission, and the company is accomplishing their goals in a big way -- including upcoming auditions for the children's play Pirates! The Musical.

But later this summer, Sanford's adult amateur actors will be getting in on the act -- and one of our SocialSanford connections will be there to enjoy it!

Charlotte Tilley Beck

Congratulations, you are the lucky winner of two tickets to see Trial and Error, a broad court-room farce ripe that's for improvisation! Please email us for showtimes and to arrange for picking up your tickets.

We have just one more giveaway coming tomorrow to wrap-up our 500th Like Giveaway extravaganza. It's gonna be a great one!

June 8, 2010

Giveaway #3: The Temple Theater

Children young and old delight in a wonderful story brought to life -- especially when the story is acted out with the innocence and enthusiasm of youth. This is exactly what The Temple Summer Theatre Conservatory brings to Sanford each summer -- and this season is no different.

The Conservatory offers training sessions led by professional staff for children ages 8 - 18. During the sessions, children take acting, dancing, and vocal lessons; audition for parts; rehearse; and perform four shows on the main stage. This year, the Conservatory is presenting Disney's The Jungle Book for two separate runs: July 9th-11th and August 6th-8th.

Because there are two runs, The Temple Theatre has been gracious enough to provide free tickets for these two lucky SocialSanford fans:

Kirk Pedley
Jodee Utt Kain

Congratulations, you'll both be heading out to see Disney's The Jungle Book this summer! Please email us for the exact date and times of your shows, and to arrange pick-up of your tickets.

We have two more giveaways coming this week -- we hope you're having as much fun as we are!

Giveaway #2: The Java Express

There's nothing better on a scorching hot day than ducking into a cool, friendly coffee shop for an iced something, heavy on the whip. For years, Sanfordians had to travel to other cities to indulge in caffeinated treats -- until The Java Express set up shop several years ago and became our go-to establishment for all things percolated.

The shop boasts delicious coffees, teas, and other beverages, along with tasty deli meals. You can also take advantage of free wifi to hang out with us on SocialSanford while you sip something sweet and frothy. And today we are extremely pleased to offer 500th Like Giveaway #2: A $10 gift certificate to The Java Express!

Danita Cobble Russell

You are our lucky winner! Congratulations, and promise us you'll order something decadent! Please email us to arrange for pick-up/drop-off of your prize.

We have three more giveaways coming this week -- so check back often!

Vacation Bible School

It's a summertime staple in the South. As the temperatures warm up, the signs sprout up in front of every church in town. I have fond memories of going to VBS as a kid and though it's changed a lot since then, the fun remains. If you're looking for a VBS in Sanford, here's a rundown of offerings:

Cool Springs Baptist Church, 1313 Cool Springs Road
Dates: June 13 - 17
Times: 6:30pm - 9:00pm, kick-off carnival is June 13 starting at 5:00pm
The theme is SonQuest Rainforest. Register at www.coolspringsbaptist.com

Tramway Baptist Church, 2401 Jefferson Davis Highway
Dates: June 13 - 17
Times: 6:00pm - 8:30pm Sunday night and 6:30pm - 8:30pm Monday through Thursday.
The theme is Saddle Ridge Ranch. It is free, but open only to ages 3 years to 6th grade. Call the church office at (919) 776-5911 for more information.

First Baptist Church, 202 Summit Drive
Dates: June 13 - 17
Times: 6:30 pm for ages 3-5th grade. 8 pm for 6th grade and up.
The theme is Saddle Ridge Ranch and it is free. To sign up, show up on Sunday or call the church at (919) 774-4220. Volunteers are needed as well!

St. Luke United Methodist Church, 2916 Wicker Street
Dates: June 14 - 18
Times: 9:00am - noon
The theme is High Seas Expedition. It is free, but attendees must be five by Aug. 31, 2010. Call the church office at (919) 776-2012 for more info.

St. Stephen, The First Martyr, Catholic Church, 901 N. Franklin Drive
Dates: June 20 - 24
Times: 5:30 pm - 8:30 pm
The theme is Voyage on the Seas. There is a $20 registration fee, though $10 will be returned if the child attends every session or can be applied to the purchase of a music CD. Parents must request either the refund or the CD at the end of the closing program. Registration is open to rising K-5th graders. Space is limited. Click here for application.

Flat Springs Baptist Church, 4148 Deep River Road
Dates: June 21 - 25
Times: 8:30am - 11:30am
The theme is Hero Headquarters. Classes open to children 3 years old through 6th grade. It is free and no pre-enrollment is required. For more information, contact the church office at 775-5922.

Central Baptist Temple, 1411 Fire Tower Road
Dates: June 23 - 27
Times: Wednesday through Friday, starting at 6:30pm. Saturday, starting at 11:00am. It will continue Sunday morning with Sunday school at 10:00am and service at 11:00am.
The theme is Danger Island. All childen, ages preschool through 6th grade, are invited to attend. Nursery will be provided for all services and they will also be running buses for all services. To be picked up on a bus, call church office at 776-0021.

Crossroads Ministries, 107 Milton Avenue, Broadway
Dates: July 12 - 15
Times: 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
The theme is High Seas. There is no charge. You can sign up in the church office or by showing up on the first day.

Jonesboro UMC, 407 W Main Street
Dates: July 12 - 15, with a special ending July 18.
Times: 5:30 pm - 8 pm (Special ending is at 11 am service on July 18)
The theme is Galactic Blast. There is no charge except for the meal if you choose to eat there. You can sign up in the church office (there will be forms there), you can call Shannon Atkins at 919 258 3222, or the last 3 Sundays in June during church there will be signups.

Jones Chapel UMC, Deep River Road
Dates: August 2 - 6
Times: 6:30 pm - 8:45 pm
The theme is Heroes. There is no charge and children ages 4-17 are welcome.

There's a little something for everyone...June, July, mornings, evenings, and themes to excite any kid! All of these events have been added to our Google calendar, which you can view at the right or by clicking here. If you know of another church holding VBS this summer, please email us with the information - dates, times, theme, how to sign up, and any other details.

June 7, 2010

Giveaway #1: Graham's Cafe

Tucked back in one of Downtown Sanford's many nooks and crannies is a hidden gem: Graham's Cafe. Located in the Steele Street mall spot that used to house Sanford-legacy Rick's, Graham's Cafe offers lunch and dinner specials guaranteed to please your palate.

Graham's is open from 11:30 am to 4:30 pm Tuesdays-Thursdays and 11:30 am to 9 pm on Saturday and Sunday. You know who really needs to take note of these hours?

Harriet Harris Norris

The winner of our 500th Like Giveaway #1: A $10 gift certificate to Graham's Cafe!!! Congratulations, Harriet! Please email us to arrange for pick-up/drop-off of your prize.

We have four more giveaways coming this week -- so check back often!

500 "Likes" Giveaway Starts ... Now!

In a few short months, our little "give-it-a-try" has grown into an informative resource that we're happy to say many of our fellow Sanfordians (Sanfordites?) rely on for news about what's happening in our town.

And to thank you (and you! and you! and you!) for supporting us both here and on Facebook, we're offering some really cool giveaways this week to randomly selected winners from our pool of Facebook "likes."

To kick off the week, we'd like to recognize two people who made it happen: Luke VanDonsel and Robert Fox, who tied each other for the 500th like.

Robert (ehem, more accurately, Robert's wife/sister/mother/daughter) is the lucky new owner of this fabulous Mariah Carey bag and matching Liz Claiborne scarf, courtesy of Belk!

Don't feel left out, Luke! You are the lucky new owner of Lego Indiana Jones and Kung Fu Panda for the Xbox, donated by FYE!
Please shoot us an email to arrange for a pick up/drop off of your prizes.

Thanks again to everyone who's joined our network. We have five more giveaways to share this week, so stay tuned!

June 1, 2010

Survive Summer With This Camp Guide

Even the most well-prepared parents can feel overwhelmed when Memorial Day passes and suddenly we're rushing ever faster toward the long, blistery hot days of summer vacation. But those months don't have to be filled with an endless barrage of "I'm bored!" or "Can't we do something?" Take a look at these local summer camps guaranteed to excite and engage your youngster:

Juniors Golf Camp: The Sanford Municipal Golf Course offers this week-long instructional camp for children ages 9-14 at all levels of experience and ability. The camp runs from 8:30 am to 12:30 pm on Monday, July 12 through Friday, July 16. On Friday, children will compete in a tournament. The cost is $75 per week and includes snack and lunch. There are only 75 slots. Call 775-8320 to register.

Basic Fundamentals Basketball Camp: This two-day basketball clinic is hosted by First Baptist Church and targets rising first-sixth graders. Participants will practice shooting, dribbling, rebounding, offense, and defense. The clinic will run July 14-15. Rising first-third graders will attend from 9 am to noon; rising fourth-sixth graders will attend from 6 pm to 9 pm. The cost is $15 per participant, which includes snacks and a tee shirt. Click here to register.

Basketball Fundamentals: This skill building clinic is for children ages 6-16 who are interested in improving techniques in dribbling, passing, shooting, and lay ups. The clinic will be coached by Larry Goins and will run Monday, July 26 through Thursday, July 29 from 6 pm to 8 pm. The cost is $20. Click here for details.

British Soccer Camp: Soccer enthusiasts of all ability levels can learn foot skills and techniques from international soccer experts at this camp hosted by Lee Christian School and the Sanford Area Soccer League. Participants who register at least 45 days in advance will receive a ball, shirt, and British Soccer jersey. The camp will run August 2-6 and the cost ranges from $75 to $120 depending on age. Click here for details.

Sanford Academy Gymnastics Camps: Children 3 and older can learn tumbling and beginner- or preschool-level gymnastics Mondays through Thursdays at 4 pm. Summer session classes are $50 for the summer with a $30 annual registration fee for all new members. Toddler camps are available on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays at 6 pm and 10 am and cost $25 per month. Click here for details.
Acting Out: from play to Play: Teenagers aged 12-17 are encouraged to try this 8-day workshop, which will explore problem solving and conflict resolution using Theatre of the Oppressed techniques ( games, open dialogue, improvisation, and scene work). The course is hosted by the Temple Theatre and led by trained actress and educator Ashley Quinones. There are two sessions: June 9-11 from 4 pm to 7 pm or June 14-18 from 10 am to 1 pm. The cost is $125 per student. Click here to register.

Party, Paints & Playtime: Preschoolers aged 3-4 years old will participate in arts, crafts, music, motion and more at day camp hosted by the Stevens Center. The camp is on Wednesdays in June or July from 9 am to 11 am and costs $15 per session. Click here for details.

Art Camp: Preschoolers up to teenagers can develop their painting, sculpting, and/or drawing skills in a wide range of art camps offered by Lisa Mathis at the artstudio. The camps start in late June and are usually broken into one-hour sessions for one week. The cost is $100. Learn more here.

Make a Splash @ Your Library: This year, the Lee County Library's summer reading program is offering themed weeks rather than various camps. The programs are for rising first graders through rising sixth graders and there will be stories, games, and crafts based on each theme. Children can attend the program on Tuesdays at 10 am or Thursdays at 2 pm. Registration is required and opens June 14. Find more information here.

Learn to Play Guitar: People of all ages, including younger children, can learn to play the guitar through private lessons hosted at Buchanan's Music. Lessons are led by student teachers such as Keith Davis. Contact Keith directly at 499-8587 or contact Buchanan's Music at 775-2422 to sign up with other instructors.
Girl Scout Science Camp: Rising first through sixth graders can join the Girl Scouts at San-Lee Park on Monday, June 14 through Friday, June 18 for "The Marvelous Mysterious World of Scientific Investigations." Campers will mix, measure, investigate, and create concoctions, including their own cosmetics. The camp runs from 9 am to 3:30 pm and costs $60 for scouts, $72 for non-scouts, and only $30 for children whose parents volunteer. Click here for details or call Sandie at 776-3264 to register.
Laser Camp: Rising 10th-12th graders who are at least 15 years old will learn how math and science are linked to engineering through lectures and hands-on lab work at CCCC's Harnett County campus. The course will run from Monday, June 21 through Thursday, June 24 from 8 am to 11 am. The cost is $50 per participant. Click here for details.

Robotics Camp: Also for 10th-12th graders who are at least 15 years old, participants in this camp will build a working robot while learning about electronic components and high-tech industries. There are two sessions of this course: the first is June 14-June 17 (8 am - 11:30 am) on the Harnett County campus and the second is June 21-June 24 (8 am - 11:30 am) on CCCC's main campus. Click here for details.

Science Camp for Boys: Boys ages 12-15 will spend two days exploring chemical changes and eruptions in a variety of experiments, as well as learn how to extract DNA. The course runs July 12-13 from 9 am to noon at the McSwain Center. The cost is $10 per participant. Click here to register.

Science Camp for Girls: Girls ages 12-15 will spend two days exploring how to make lip gloss, lotions, and bath fizzes as well as learn how to tie dye and make sweet treats. The course runs July 12-13 from 1 pm to 4 pm at the McSwain Center. The cost is $10 per participant. Click here to register.

CAD Camp: High schoolers (age 15+) can spend four days learning how to use CAD software to draw cars, houses, cartoon characters, or a project of their choice at this camp housed on the CCCC main campus.The camp will run from Monday, July 12 through Thursday, July 15 from 1 pm to 3 pm. This camp costs $65 per participant. Click here for details.
Cake Decorating 101: Bakers of all ages will enjoy this 2-day course centered around learning decorating techniques. Those under age 8 will learn how to make sugar molds, pipe designs, and more. Those over age 8 will master more intricate techniques and compete in a judged cupcake decorating contest. The camp runs July 6-7 from 9 am to noon for ages 5-8 and from 1 pm - 4 pm for ages 9-18 at the McSwain Center. The cost is $15 for 8 and under, $12 for 8+. Click here to register.

Kids' Cooking Camp: Children ages 6-10 will learn the basics of food preparation and kitchen safety from Chef Hamm at Cafe 121 in Sanford. There are two sessions of this camp and both run 8 am - 10:30 am. First session will be Monday, June 21 through Thursday, June 24; second session will be Monday, July 12 through Thursday, July 15. The cost is $125 per participant. Click here for details

Kids' Cooking Camp: The same camp as above is also offered for children ages 11-14. The two sessions for this camp will be Monday, June 28 through Thursday, July 1 and Monday, July 19 through Thursday, July 22. Both will run from 8 am - 10:30 am. The cost is the same. Click here for details.

Quilt Camp: This course, targeted toward children ages 9-16 who are experienced in sewing, will teach participants quilting techniques, including how to make a rag quilt using flannel fabrics. There are two courses that both run on July 26-29, one from 9 am to noon (ages 9-16) and the other from 1 pm to 4 pm (ages 11-16) at the McSwain Center. The cost is $15 per participant. Click here to register.

Crafting for Kids: This camp will show children ages 5-8 how to use recycled items to create fun, educational crafts. The class is July 30 from 9 am to noon at the McSwain Center. The cost is $10 per participant. Click here to register.
Free to Be Me Day Camp: Children ages 9-12 will enjoy participating in basketball, dance, art, games, music, and more at this camp that runs Monday, June 21 through Friday, June 25 at the Stevens Center. The camp runs 10 am to 2 pm and costs $25. Children must bring their own lunch. Click here for details.

Happy Day Camp: Week-long day camp for individuals with special needs held at San Lee Park on Pumping Station Road. Campers will interact with their peers through activities like arts and crafts, boating, swimming, and special field trips. The camp is offered the week of June 21 for participants ages 5-10, the week of June 28 for ages 11-14, and the week of July 12 for those over age 15. There is no cost for qualified participants. Click here to register.

Kids Can Connect: Every Thursday in July children ages 5-8 can participate in art, music, motion, drama, and basketball at this camp hosted by the Stevens Center. The camp runs from 9 am to 11 am and costs $15. Click here for details.

Camp Voyager: The YMCA runs this camp and breaks each week of summer into a different theme. Children in kindergarten through fifth grade will swim, play, attend assemblies, and more. Camps run June 14 though August 20 at B.T. Bullock. The cost is $88 per week for members or $108 per week for non-members. Click here for details.

Camp 3: This YMCA camp for sixth through ninth graders offers ping pong and water balloon tournaments, special awards, field days, and the chance to build leadership skills. The camp runs June 14 through August 20 at B.T. Bullock. The cost is $88 per week for members or $108 per week for non-members. Click here for details.

San-Lee Park Nature Camps: Full- and half-day campers can experience nature through hands-on activities and crafts, as well as go on field trips and hit the pool. Each week of camp has a different theme. Camps run from June 21 through August 13 at San-Lee Park Nature Center. The cost is $50 for half-day campers and $90 for full-day campers. Register by June 14 by calling (919) 776-6221.
Babysitting 101: Children ages 11 through 18 can take this American Red Cross class to earn babysitter certification. Participants will also earn infant/child CPR certification. The course runs Tuesday, June 15 through Thursday, June 17 from 9 am to noon at the McSwain Center. The cost is $40 per participant. Click here to register.

CPR Initial Certification: Participants (ages 11-18) in this American Red Cross course will learn to recognize emergency situations, care for choking victims, and administer CPR to adults, children, and infants. After completing the course, participants will be certified in CPR. The course runs Tuesday, June 15 through Wednesday, June 16 from 1 pm to 4 pm at the McSwain Center. The cost is $15 per participant. Click here to register.

Centsability: Middle schoolers (ages 11-14) will learn how to create and manage a budget in this 4-day 4H course, which runs from Monday, June 28 through Thursday, July 1 from 1 pm - 4 pm at the McSwain Center. The cost is $10 per participant. Click here to register.

Self Defense: Instructors from Blackbelt Leadership Academy will teach children of all ages simple and effective self-defense techniques. Participants will also learn respect for others and self-discipline. The course is July 14-15 from 9 am to noon at the McSwain Center. The cost is $15 per participant. Click here to register.

Have we missed a camp? Does your child have an interest that isn't covered? Let us know and we'll see what we can find!