Kroc Center Family Arts & Literacy night

May 17, 2023 | by Joanna Foley, RD

The Kroc Center is truly a one-stop shop for family-friendly activities. Amongst its dozens of services and offerings is the family arts and literacy night, an event that many people may not yet know about. This program was formed not long after the Kroc Center was founded, with the goal of creating a fun and safe event for families to gather, laugh together, learn and grow.  It takes place once a month at the Kroc Center, and is completely free to the public.


Being a new member of the Kroc Center, I was pleased to learn about this event and immediately registered online, with plans to bring my toddler to join in on the fun. I learned that each monthly event was unique and had its own theme, and the theme of that month’s event was about “exploring stories”. After checking in, we were given a fun book to flip through and take home with us, which was a welcome souvenir.


We headed inside the meeting room where the event was taking place and sat amongst many other families and individuals, including kids and adults of all ages. Shortly after, the show began. Little did we know that this comedy performance was going to be an impromptu audience-participation event! We laughed along as the main performer told a story, starting by introducing characters and then asking for audience members to come on stage and act out the storyline.


To my daughters' delight, this story involved a silly dog that was trying to steal a cut of meat from a butcher in a grocery store. We both laughed out loud as various people from the audience came on stage and acted out the role of the grocery store clerk, the butcher, and of course the dogs. We even got chosen to come on stage for a short scene, complete with wearing a dog nose and pretending like we were sad puppies. It was hilarious. As a reward and thank you, the leader of the show gave all audience participants a fun doggy-themed treat bag full of stickers, a dog figurine, and our own dog nose to take home and have even more fun with. 


When the performance was over, the event transitioned into a time of arts and crafts. In line with the theme of storytelling, the craft involved making a picture frame collage and drawing a picture inside. The picture was to represent the details of a memory each child wanted to highlight, thus giving them a creative opportunity to tell a story of their own. Families gathered around tables full of arts and craft materials and got to work creating their own masterpieces, which we then got to bring home to share and enjoy.


Attending this free and fun event was such a welcome change to our otherwise ordinary weekly routine. It gave my daughter and I a special opportunity to have quality and intentional one-on-one time, which has been hard to come by since adding another baby to our family just a few months prior. This event allowed us to laugh, use our imagination, and spark our creative spirit, which are all key components to healthy wellbeing for all. We will definitely be taking note of future months events, and hope to attend many more.

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