Summer Movies 2017

Whether you’re looking for outdoor movies to enjoy those warm summer evenings, or indoor movies for those hot summer mornings when you really just need some A/C, or a drive-in movie, here are some options in the Seattle area for summer 2017.

Kids’ Summer Movie Clubs

As you may remember from your own childhood, these are probably the cheapest, easiest way to entertain your kids for two hours on a summer morning…

Outdoor Movies

Note: all outdoor movies start around “dusk”. This being the Pacific Northwest, that usually means around 9 – 9:30 pm in July and 8:30 – 9 in August, so outdoor movies aren’t compatible with early bedtimes. Get some handy tips / etiquette advice for outdoor movies here and here.

If you want one page that has all the movie listings all in one place, go to https://www.seattlemet.com/articles/2017/6/9/seattle-summer-outdoor-movie-guide-2017

Tuesdays

Downtown Movies in the Park at Bellevue’s Downtown Park (by the mall). Free entertainment, popcorn and movies – each week has a non-profit partner, and you’re encouraged to donate to support these valuable programs. All movies are kid friendly. https://parks.bellevuewa.gov/special-events/outdoor-movies

Wednesdays:

Movies at Marymoor in Redmond. Wednesdays, 7/5 – 8/23. Some weeks are kid movies, some are teen/adult movies – check schedule. $5 per person, $5 to park. Live entertainment, trivia, food trucks, vendors. www.epiceap.com/movies-at-marymoor/

Thursdays:

Fridays:

Saturdays:

More options: Fridays at Auburn’s Summer Sounds; Fridays at Shilshole Bay Marina; Saturday teen movies at Three Dollar Bill, Cal Anderson Park, Capital Hill.

Drive-Ins

Movies start at dusk… see note above. There aren’t many classic drive-ins left… and when you search for them online, you’re likely to find out of date listings. For example, http://www.driveintheater.com/drivlist.htm lists Samish in Bellingham, which was demolished in 2004, and http://www.driveinmovie.com/WA.htm lists Valley in Auburn which has been closed for several years and Puget Park in Everett, which closed in 2010. Here’s what’s still open within a two hour drive from Seattle:

The only other one in the state is Auto-vue Drive-in – Colville, WA. 6 hours from Seattle. www.facebook.com/Auto-Vue-Drive-In-Theatre-120740527937813/

Summer Movie Guide and Parental Guides to Media

If you’re looking for a list of first-run movies for the summer, and advice on whether they’re kid appropriate, check out the Summer Movie Guide from Common Sense Media. Common Sense also provides reviews of movies, books, TV shows, games, apps and websites. In their movie reviews, they look at educational value, positive role models, positive messages, violence and scariness level, sexy stuff, language, consumerism and substances, providing information so parents can make their own informed decisions about what’s right for their child.

Kids in Mind also offers film reviews which rate, on a scale of 1 – 10, the level of sex/nudity, violence/gore, profanity and substance use in a movie. They also give detailed descriptions of each incident they counted, for parents to consider (and sometimes, at least for me, to laugh at…). For example, for the Captain Underpants movie, under violence and gore, these situations are described: “Children run around in a frenzy after a man pours sugar on their heads. Toilet paper rolls are launched and one roll hits a man… Flashbacks to pranks pulled on teachers include water fountains spraying in their faces, paint splattered on them, among others. A man falls into a dunk tank and is sprayed with water guns at a carnival. Thunder claps sound and lightning flashes when children go into school on a Saturday.”

Read more: http://www.kidsinmind.com/c/captainunderpantsthefirstepicmovie.htm#ixzz4jpOR1j1t
TERMS OF USE: Our reviews are copyrighted. Copy, save, print, email and share content, but publishing our reviews on other websites is both illegal and immoral.
Under Creative Commons License: Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives

Other Activities: If you’re looking for other fun ideas for the summer, check out my series on “Cheap Dates with Toddlers and Young Kids”, or read about hands-on STEM enrichment activities for kids age 3 – 7 at www.InventorsOfTomorrow.com.

If you have kids age birth to 7, check out info about fabulous classes for them that include parent education for you, available at all local community colleges during the school year – register now before they fill up!!

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Summer Movies

Whether you’re looking for outdoor movies to enjoy those warm summer evenings, or indoor movies for those hot summer mornings when you really just need some A/C, or a drive-in movie, here are some options in the Seattle area for summer 2016.

Kids’ Summer Movie Clubs

As you may remember from your own childhood, these are probably the cheapest, easiest way to entertain your kids for two hours on a summer morning…

Outdoor Movies

Note: all outdoor movies start around “dusk”. This being the Pacific Northwest, that usually means around 9 – 9:30 pm in July and 8:30 – 9 in August, so outdoor movies aren’t compatible with early bedtimes. Get some handy tips / etiquette advice for outdoor movies here and here.

Wednesdays:

Movies at Marymoor in Redmond. Wednesdays, 7/26 – 8/4. Mostly kid-friendly, but use discretion for Jurassic World and Star Wars Force Awakens. $5 per person, $5 to park. Live entertainment, trivia, food trucks, vendors. www.epiceap.com/movies-at-marymoor/

Thursdays:

Fridays:

Saturdays:

More options: Lemay’s Car Museum; Auburn’s Summer Sounds; Shilshole Bay Marina; Three Dollar Bill, Cal Anderson Park, Capital Hill. And Skyway. And Bellingham. More details about all of these at: www.seattlemet.com/articles/2016/5/26/seattle-summer-outdoor-movie-guide-2016

Drive-Ins

Movies start at dusk… see note above. There aren’t many drive-ins left… and when you search for them online, you’re likely to find out of date listings. For example, http://www.driveintheater.com/drivlist.htm lists Samish in Bellingham, which was demolished in 2004, and http://www.driveinmovie.com/WA.htm lists Valley in Auburn which has been closed for several years and Puget Park in Everett, which closed in 2010. Here’s what’s still open within a two hour drive from Seattle:

The only other one in the state is Auto-vue Drive-in – Colville, WA. 6 hours from Seattle. www.facebook.com/Auto-Vue-Drive-In-Theatre-120740527937813/

Summer Movie Guide

If you’re looking for a list of first-run movies for the summer, and advice on whether they’re kid appropriate, check out the Summer Movie Guide from Common Sense Media.

Other Activities: If you’re looking for other fun ideas for the summer, check out my series on “Cheap Dates with Toddlers and Young Kids”, or read about hands-on STEM enrichment activities for kids age 3 – 7 at www.InventorsOfTomorrow.com. If you have kids age birth to 7, check out info about fabulous classes for them that include parent education for you, available at all local community colleges during the school year – register now before they fill up!!

Summer Outdoor Movies in King County

movieEach summer, I go through and make a list of all the options for outdoor movies… this year someone did it for me!

www.seattlemet.com/articles/2015/6/9/seattle-summer-outdoor-movie-guide-2015

I loved taking my older girls to outdoor movies every summer – the kids can run around near you and play, you can relax on your picnic blanket. They’re free or cheap. Lots of fun kid-appropriate summer movies. It’s all good!!

Sadly, our boy has been an early-to-bed child so far, and in Seattle summertime it doesn’t get dark enough to start an outdoor movie until after his bedtime. (I think in July, movies start at 9ish. In August, they start at 8:30 or so)  But, if you’ve got a child who stays up later, or a child who will curl up on a picnic blanket and fall asleep, they’re great!

If you’re interested in lots more fun (and inexpensive) things to do with your kids in King County, check out my Cheap Dates with Toddlers series. If you want to learn more about fun outdoor activities, and why they’re good for kids, I write a lot about nature play.

 

photo credit: watching the movie via photopin (license)

Image

The Hungry Tree

hungrytreeThis is a picture of the Hungry Tree. It’s a tree at Farrell-McWhirter park in Redmond. On pretty much every Friday morning from October through May, we visited the Hungry Tree and “fed” pine-cones to it. Teacher Ann from Tiny Treks provided the voice effects (“I’m the hungry tree. And boy am I hungry! I want some pine-cones! Oooh – thank you!”)

It’s really simple. And it makes all the kids really happy. Every week. Week after week. Especially my boy who loves repetition.

This week I’m reading a lot about Nature Deficit Disorder, and all the benefits for kids of spending time outside. One expert  said “It’s not about taking your kid to Yosemite once a year. It’s about taking them down to that little scrap of grass in the neighborhood every day. It’s about helping them develop a relationship with nature.” My boy has certainly developed a relationship with nature through this weekly ritual of visiting the Hungry Tree.

After we visit Hungry Tree, we balance on the logs, then go wade in the creek (thank goodness for good boots!), then hike through the woods, then return for a snack and story outside on the tarp. My son loves this routine. I love this routine!

But connecting to nature doesn’t need to mean a weekly 90 minute hike in the woods. You could have a “hungry tree” or similar nature buddy in your yard! My son has a “nature job” – every time we walk to the library or store, there’s an apartment garden we pass where the rocks are always getting kicked out of the garden bed onto the sidewalk. My son really likes rocks, and originally he wanted to take these rocks and carry them away. Instead, he now knows it’s his “job” to return any rock that he finds on the sidewalk back to the garden with its friends.

Does your child have a nature ritual?

Cheap Dates with Toddlers: Farm Parks

Spring is coming, and the baby animals are appearing at local farms.

Check out this 2 week old calf (born on Valentines’ Day) at Farrell-McWhirter. He was shorter than my 3 year old! (Sorry that it’s not a great picture… my son was really ready to go have snack, so we only got a really quick look at the calf… but wow he was cute!)

calf

At any time of year, toddlers love outings to meet farm animals. Lots of children’s books, games, and videos feature farm animals, so kids tend to be familiar with them, and get very excited when they can recognize and name the “real thing.” Seeing and hearing (and smelling) the animals in person make the idea much more real. At farm parks, you can check out chickens, sheep, bunnies, cows, pigs, and goats. Some times you’ll get an opportunity to see fresh eggs in the coop, or see a cow or goat being milked.  This is a great outing for a child who has just learned to answer all those vital questions like “What does a cow say?”

Free outings:

Farrell McWhirter Park in Redmond. They’ve got a small pot-bellied pig and a really big pig, bunnies, chickens, 2 goats, a calf and horses. (You generally can’t pet or feed the animals.) They do offer farm classes and pony rides. Farrell McWhirter is also home to Tiny Treks and the Outdoor Preschool, both are great nature-based programs for children. Check out the Redmond Parks guide for more information.  There are great hiking trails, streams, swings, and tire swings too.

Kelsey Creek Park in Bellevue. They’ve got sheep, pigs, goats, horses, bunnies, chickens, ducks, and geese. (Again, they’re on view, but this is not a petting zoo.) They also offer horseback riding and farm classes, including a great program for toddlers called Little Farmers. Their playground is great for little ones, as long as they’re past the stage where they’ll try to eat the bark on the ground.

Farms with a Fee:

Fox Hollow Farm in Issaquah.  $10 per person. I have not been there, but hear that it’s lovely… They have bunnies, chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, peacocks, macaws, sheep, cows, goats, pigs, llamas, mini-horses, and horses. They also have rope swings, pony rides, tractors to drive, inflatables, play cottages, and you-pick fruits and vegetables. (Some activities have additional fees.) Opens for spring / summer in early April. Closed in fall and winter, except for Halloween and Christmas themed events.

Remlinger Farms in Carnation. Not yet open for the season. Approximately $14 per person. I believe they have pigs, goats, and rabbits. They also have some amusement park style rides.

Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle. Adults $18.75 in summer, May to September; $12.75 in the off-season. Kids are $11.75 / 8.75. Under two years is free. By the south entrance, there’s the Family Farm area, which includes a petting zoo where kids can meet goats up close. There’s pigs, goats, sheep, cows, bunnies, chickens, and a donkey. Plus, of course, lots of more exotic animals.

When visiting  farm parks: remember bring a change of clothes and shoes for your child! They can get pretty muddy in any of these places.