Friday, February 18, 2011

Lollipop Series at Carrboro Century Center

Carrboro is such a great little town. And the Century Center makes it that much better. The Century Center is the tall building across the street from Tyler's on one side and Weaver Street Market on the other. Inside the Carrboro Parks & Rec Department runs all kinds of programs for all ages. We have reviewed (and recommend) the Toddler and Preschool Playtime here. I have also taken adult classes here and loved them. They were very affordable and high quality.

And once a month, on a Wednesday morning, the Century Center holds a new installment in their Lollipop Series. This past Wednesday was a visit by the NC Museum of Life + Science. They were bringing animals. So Sarah C. and I were there with our boys in a NY Minute.

But, alas, I think we are confused as to the target audience for this. Given that it was 10:30 on a Wednesday morning we thought our toddlers would be a great fit for this, and it seems geared towards younger children. But while the animals were fascinating and the woman presenting was great, the room was lined with rows of seats for the kids to sit in for the whole hour.

Which in and of itself would not be a problem except that: 1. the presenter spent considerable amounts of time walking up and down each row (and there were a lot of kids here) so that each child could touch the animal (cool!), which meant a lot of "down" time for the audience.

And even that would not be a problem except that: 2. one of the Century Center workers was distraught that the children were getting loud and rowdy and kept interrupting to ask that the kids be quiet, even when there wasn't an active presentation as the animals were being walked around the room.

Each installment in the Lollipop Series is a different presentation. So this could have just been the dynamic of the day we went. But asking 2, 3, and even some 4 year olds to sit quietly in a seat without active entertainment in front of them is a little unfair. They try, but it's tough to sit still! A lot of the children were getting rowdy as the audience was predominantly in the 2, 3, and 4 year old range. And it occurs to me that one of the things that works so well about the shows like Kazoom and ArtsCenter SuperFun Shows is that they do not demand or expect the children to be silent and still the entire time. Us parents try to get our children to be respectful, but sitting quietly through an entire show is a learned process, too, and kids need learning opportunities. Ok, so, enough soapboxing....

Back to information you really want.

I want to reiterate that each presentation is different. So depending on the month it could be music, puppets, dancing, or so on.

Given that this is is so affordable ($3 per person, regardless of age) and such a community gem, we really do encourage you to try one out. If you have kids that do well sitting still or kids on the older side (homeschoolers: this is a particularly great resource for you, I believe), then you will be very happy here and have a blast.

And I will go back, but will be a little more wary (maybe even call ahead) as to how the performance is set up. Because the frustrations aside, this particular presentation was good given how close the kids could get to the animals and the presenter was fun.

Plus I want to give C learning opportunities for how to behave in an audience. I think this Lollipop Series could afford that opportunity so we'll give it another go in the future. For example, some gems later this spring are Rags to Riches Theatre and Trish Miller with her guitar.

Lollipop Series
Town of Carrboro, Recreation & Parks Department
select Wednesdays
10:30 - 11:30 am

Carrboro Century Center

100 North Greensboro Street


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