Children's Activities and Events
My grandson and I are frequent visitors and big fans of the Gathering Place
By now the news is out, the Gathering Place is THE place to be in Tulsa! It was recently voted as the best new attraction in the United States, that’s correct--in the entire country! It’s a well-deserved award and one more reason to love living in Tulsa! I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve gone, but I know it’s in excess of twenty. Usually we take our grandson, but on New Year’s Eve my husband and I stopped by on a whim and had a great time playing on the towers and swings in an almost empty park. I may be old enough to be a grandmother but I don’t think I’ll ever be too old to enjoy this amazing park.
I couldn’t imagine how the Gathering Place could get any better, but they’ve managed to continue adding incentives to keep me coming back for more. This past Saturday we took our nineteen-month-old grandson to the inaugural Saturday morning storytime in the Boathouse. What a great way to start the weekend! Two books were read, the perfect amount of time for young children to be able to stay relatively quiet and attentive. My grandson made it about halfway through the second book before he felt the need to get up and explore and that was fine, the atmosphere was informal enough to allow for the inevitable toddler wandering. After storytime, families were invited to stay and play. Toys were placed around the room and the children naturally spread out to what attracted their attention. My grandson was particularly attracted to these little rubber squishy toys that connected. I had never seen them before, but they seemed perfect to get the wheels of the mind turning and activate fine motor skills at the same time. It was a great time for kids to play and for parents and, in several cases, grandparents, to interact.
Callister and his granddad having fun during the stay and play after story time. Hmmm...who had more fun?
In addition to the new 9:30 Saturday morning storytime there are also two other storytimes. There is a storytime on Tuesday mornings at 10 a.m. and also one on Thursday afternoons at 4 p.m. Saturday storytime is held in the ONEOK Boathouse. The Tuesday and Thursday storytimes are held in the Williams Lodge Parlor, which is located on the north side of the park.
This was a big hit with my grandson during stay and play time!
There are also drop-in play activities held Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. until noon in the Boathouse. In February the activities are based on the theme of animals. The schedule for February is torn paper owls starting February 4th, heart shaped zebras and Valentine’s cards starting on the 11th, model magical animal sculpting starting the 18th and giant cardboard feathers starting February the 25th. My grandson and I haven’t been yet, but it sounds like a fun, creative way to spend a cold winter morning!
TulsaKids is sponsoring a free children’s concert in the park on February 16th at 11 a.m. in the Boathouse. Hot Toast Music Co. will be performing children’s songs that appeal to adults also. Hot Toast is actually Symon Hajjar, a local musician, educator and father of two young children. His music is engaging, fun and light hearted but also with a purpose. Mr. Symon’s stated mission is to help kids discover, play and create. For more information about Hot Toast and the upcoming concert, read the interview TulsaKids recently did with Symon Hajjar or check out the Facebook page, Hot Toast Music Co.
There is no excuse to be bored in Tulsa anymore, not when there are fun, free activities in abundance offered at the Gathering Place. Check out the events section on their website to see what’s going on before you go or just show up and see what’s happening. Gathering Place is the gift that keeps on giving, a place for all ages and a legacy for many generations to come!
No visit is complete for us until we visit Callister’s favorite area, the Cabinet of Wonder in the Boathouse. It’s a fascinating display of a huge collection!