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Win Circus Tickets

March 4, 2009

Yesterday, I talked about how you can get discounted tickets to see the Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus production of ZING ZANG ZOOM.  Today, I’m going to do you one better.

I have a 4 pack of tickets  to ZING ZANG ZOOM’s opening night at NY’s Madison Square Garden (aka the most famous and greatest arena ever in the history of the world),  courtesy of Feld Entertainment, to give away to one lucky reader of this blog.  These are for March 26th at 7:30 pm.  Please only enter if you are able to attend on that night at that time.  You will have to present a picture ID at the box office that corresponds with the name on your entry. 

To enter, comment on this post and tell me about  your favorite family outing.  Sure, our economy is in trouble, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t make time for special occasions with our families.  Some of my favorite memories are of going on trips with my mom to museums in the city.   I love making new family memories with my kids, moments that they will remember for years to come.  Maybe you went for a picnic in the park, or your dad too you  to a ball game, or you went to the circus with your siblings – whatever it is, share it here and you will be entered to win. 

A winner will be drawn at random on March 9th, which happens to be my grandmother’s 101st birthday.  Her birthday could mean a gift for you!  If you do not comment with a valid email address, or you do not respond within 48 hours, I will contact another person at random, and so on and so on till I get a winner.  My decision will be final, for this and what to have for dinner tonight, as always.   Good luck!

8 Comments leave one →
  1. Kathryn Bourgoine permalink
    March 4, 2009 10:21 am

    Ironically, one of my favorite family outtings as a child and memories of my father was our visit to the circus. I still remember when you could go “back stage” and see the animals before the show. I don’t know how they afforded it, but my parents would bundle us up and take the three of us on the LIRR to MSG to see Ringling Bros and Barnum & Baily Circus. My poor father–every time the elephants marched around the rings he’d sneeze uncontrollably. He has to be the only person I know who was allergic to elephants!

  2. March 4, 2009 12:07 pm


    When I’m home in Colorado (I’m commuting back and forth to NY right now), we love heading as a family into the National Forest behind our house. We take the 4Runner and go up into the hills to this huge rock (its so big that the kids like to call the overhang it creates a cave). We’ll start a fire, roast marshmallows and cook hotdogs. Occasionally, I’ll take the older kids up and we’ll camp in the “cave” overnight.

    I love living somewhere that we can get out as a family and explore.


  3. March 4, 2009 1:12 pm

    My favorite family memory is of my sister and I playing in the back (and I mean way back) of our aqua station wagon, with a laundry basket full of toys, traveling around the country. I can’t wait to hit the road with my husband and kids!

    As a side note to the circus: who remembers the lights you would buy and swing around in the dark? Do they still sell them?

  4. Kathryn Bourgoine permalink
    March 4, 2009 3:57 pm

    Got me thinking, Ellen…here’s another fond memory. For a period of 8 yrs straight, we’d drive from NY to Orlando to go to Disney. Stayed in an econo lodge type hotel, brought our lunch into the park in Mom’s “Florida Purse”. One year, driving down, I will never forget. On the way down, the radiator in the car broke, and we had no AC. Dad was driving with a towel on his balding head, and frozen drink boxes on his neck to keep cool. We stopped mid-way in South Carolina (could have been Georgia) and stayed at a hotel where Dad’s travel agent got us a “deal”. We were all getting ready for bed, and Dad was sitting at the edge of his. He took his glasses off, put them on the nightstand, and then bent down to take off his shoes. Next we heard was “bang, bang, bang!” and he chased a HUGE waterbug with his shoe (it had to be big if Dad could see it without his glasses!). We packed up and went to Howard Johnson’s across the street.

  5. Chris Kerr permalink
    March 4, 2009 7:58 pm

    We are the family who can do nothing together. All known laws of physics seem aligned against us. If god ordained that there be four more different personalities thrust into each others lives, she broke the mold with ours. Twenty three years have passed since Honorable #1, a.k.a the “career criminal” arrived to make us a generic, standard “issue” family. We should have known that we were fated to be slotted into the “non-traditional” column when, upon discharge from the hospital, we were still unable to agree to his name. The birth certificate summed it up succinctly as “baby boy” Kerr. It wasn’t that we didn’t have a name list’ it was more that my wife “She Who Endures” had “known” he was a girl, and not even the gentle chiding of the delivering doctor, an army of helpful interns, several Phillipino nursing students, or her husband could dissuade her of this conviction. Even the anatomical lesson, admittedly administered under anesthesia, was insufficient proof. We had a list of baby names and they were all girls names. That was that. I’ll spare you the resolution except to assure you that Honorable #1 was gifted with one of those “fits any sex” names before entering school, by which time most memories of the horrors of his first five years, The Terrible Ones, Terrible Twos, Terrible Threes, Terrible Fours and, yes, Terrible Fives, had dissipated enough to permit the arrival of Number Two, a.k.a. The Perfect Child. Yes, another son. Out gunned, outwitted, and betrayed by god, my wife retreated into a two decade act of passive resistance. No male assault on her Ivy-educated sensibilities could not be repelled by the example of M. L. King, Jr, Gandhi and other victims of the patrimony. If King could pen “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” my wife could offer the “Gospel of the the Years in Desert.” Key to her success has been the complete, intentional, conscious and unconscious thwarting of any perceived assault by the male majority. Each was given his own TV and, more important, his own channel changer. Meals were ala carte and available at any hour…if you could figure out how to drop the sack into boiling water, and there were never, ever to be anything that could pass as a “family-unit” function. Oh, you’re thinking that there must have been Christmas dinner, or a Thanksgiving or two, but no, not really. When forced to confront the possibility of three males against the lone female, “She Who Endures” mustered all manner of “extras:” nursing home residents who could be rolled in for a meal, forgotten cousins summoned from another time zone, work colleagues whom we could not leave alone for the day–even over their protests that this was a great day to go to the movies. You might think that in her version of Chairman Mao’s LONG MARCH there might have been some dissent or discord. And indeed there was. The nadir, or apogee, depending on who does the re-telling occurred during one of our spasms of “let’s all go into therapy.” One shrink, soon to be disappeared, dared suggest that we set aside a day of the week in which to do things “together, as a family” like. OK, she agreed, let’s dedicate Sunday to this cause. Nods all around; murmurs of “good luck” and snickering under several non-voting members’ breath. The first Sunday began well enough. “Let’s go to Central Park.” “We’ll bring the boys bikes”–load the bike rack–load four bikes. “Where are the helmets”–massive excavation of all sports equipment lockers. “We’ll need lunches”–sprint to the store, over elaborate sandwich preparation, perfect wraps and baggies, and thermoses–one for each because we all drink different beverages. On and on and on. We left at 4PM. “It’s too dark to bike.” ‘We’ll never find parking near the park.” “It’s too cold; the boys didn’t bring hats.” “Isn’t this a favorite mugger site?” Why aren’t there any other kids on bikes? It’s just adults. How could this be safe?” Home by six pm. Total time on bikes, minus toilet breaks, lunch/dinner, and chain and brake adjustment: 15 minutes. Approximately 15 minutes less than the year’s previous “let’s bring the bikes to Mom’s on the Cape” initiative. (Two cars, detour to Hartford to pick up ailing Mom, “we always stopped here for lunch” break etc etc.
    End of Family Sunday initiative.
    Now I know you are going to give me these circus tickets. My wife has “group” that evening, the Perfect Child has an AP Chem mid-term the next day, so he’s out, and my oldest, now graduated and fled, works at a restaurant. So I’m emailing my real family, my three business partners. They’ll be there because I write the checks, and we make partners payments on, yes, you guessed it, the 26th.
    Thank you.

  6. Liz permalink
    March 5, 2009 10:01 pm


    We had a really great family outing about a week ago. My daughter and I slept over at the aquarium. There were lots of activities for us:a craft, a ride on the submarine simulator, the Critter Cart (no adult seamed interested in holding a ball python, hissing cockroach or a millipede, but every kid in my group loved it), and a Critter Bingo (deemed by my darling daughter as No Fun). The lights were turned out and we explored with our flashlights. One of the moms brought glow in the dark bracelets for each kid which was a big hit.

    Having a “midnight snack” in her pajamas was very exciting, though she wasn’t so impressed with the screening of A Bug’s Life. We set up our sleeping bags in front of her favorite tank. As I started losing my battle to stay awake at midnight, she was examining the tank with some of the other kids.

    It was all worth the sore back from sleeping on the floor. A memorable experience for both of us.

  7. Doris St. permalink
    March 6, 2009 4:41 pm

    One of my favourite memories is when we went to our cabin high up in the Alps over the summer. (I know; this story does not involve snow for a change. Neither is there a main character who was a goat- even though there have been occasions where goats have eaten our socks or parts of our back bags, but that’s a different story).
    Anyway, it took us about two hours from where we parked the car to hike up between trees and flowers and cows and over rocks and rivers.
    The cabin wasn’t big and fancy, but still to this day is one of my very favourite places to visit. We had everything we needed when we were there.
    That cabin represents everything that I cherish:
    Some of the sweetest memories of spending time with my family and relatives, the powerful nature and magnificent wildlife around us, the clear and crisp air when you step outside in the morning, the little stream rushing by and the bells of the cows and goats in the distance.
    We would stay there for about a week at a time and take it easy. There was no set schedule, we just hiked in the area, went on treasure hunts, build traps and forts at the river, collected rocks and crystals, carved wood, went fishing, cooked together and enjoyed the sun. Sometimes other people would come by and visit, but for most of the time it was just me and my family.
    My most favourite part of the day was when my dad would build a fire outside and then we lit it after dark. We would just sit there until late at night and enjoy the smells and sounds around us. I felt so happy sitting with my family. Sometimes my mom would make stick bread and my dad would tell stories about the animals and plants. The sky was so dark- there was not trace of any other light besides the one from our fire. But I would not feel scared at all; in fact I would feel so happy and safe and in peace with the world. The longer I looked up into the sky the more stars I saw and the closer they seemed to get. My dad would tell me all about the different constellations of the stars. I was convinced that if I sat there long enough and stared at them hard enough, the stars would eventually come so close that I could touch them. Even though he knew that wasn’t possible, he told me I could reach for the stars if I really wanted to.
    Only much later I found out what that really meant.
    My dad was always there for me when I needed him and he not only showed me the stars, he also taught me how to reach them.

  8. Sam permalink
    March 9, 2009 8:05 pm

    Every year, on Columbus Day weekend, we go camping with my Uncle Rick and my family. We wake up early in the morning the day we leave and Andy & I start to load the car. Once me & Andy finish loading the car we run inside and say, “OK everyone, we’re ready!” and we start the ride up to camping. It’s a 2 hour long ride and with all the stuff in the car it’s really claustrophobic (that means ‘afraid of Santa Claus’)! Finally we arrive and start unpacking. We carry all our stuff up to the campsite. This year, once we brought everything up I told my Mom & Dad that I was going to go try to set up a rope swing. The rope swing is not easy to set up. I had to throw the rope up over a branch and then climb up the rope to move it to the right spot on the branch. After I put the rope up I found a log so I could make a seat, like a playground swing. After I got the log and put it on, my parents said, “Sam come and help us sest up camp — you can do that later”. On our hike the next day, which was a mile long (the hike, not the day)we brought cameras to take really nice pictures of the leaves changing colors and we hiked all the way up to a waterfall for a picnic lunch. After lunch we hiked another quarter of a mile to a lean-to and at the lean-to me, my brother and my cousins Georgia and Casey, and my brothers friend Wachsy all took a hike up a really steep hill — without my parents! My cousin Greg taught me how to make a really good fire and we all sit around the fire for meals, and at night to keep warm — -and to roast marshmallows for s’mores! My cousin Greg also showed me a really cool trick with a paper cup filled with water. If you put the paper cup in the fire with the water in it, all of the paper cup that is not touching the water will burn, but the part with the water won’t and the water will boil. The next day when we woke up for breakfast we had pancakes and bacon. It was really good, because everything tastes great when it’s cooked outside. After that we poured the bacon grease in the fire and the flame got to be ten feet tall.

    The camping trip was great. I can’t wait to go again this year. The only way our camping trip could be improved is if our most fun, favorite, wonderful friends — the Gersteins — would join us :)!!!!

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