Look, look. See Teacher smile. See Mommy and Daddy sweat.
See summer vacation about to begin.
Parents, if the threat of three months of nonstop Nintendo gives you the willies, consider turning to your neighborhood arts organization for fast relief. With classes, workshops and day camps focusing on everything from puppetry to modern dance, there's plenty of stimulation--much at prices that won't break the family piggy bank--to beguile your little ones all summer long.
Here's a sampling:
* Finger painting? Calligraphy? Architecture? Whatever your child's interest, chances are the Newport Harbor Art Museum (850 San Clemente Drive, Newport Beach) will cover it in its series of visual art workshops for children ages 2 1/2 to 13. Most classes meet twice weekly, and activities include work with paints and clay for preschoolers, a hands-on workshop with a local architect for 8- to 12-year-olds, and a chance for 9- to 12-year-olds to re-create favorite works from the museum's permanent collection and curate their own exhibit. In addition, the city of Newport Beach will sponsor workshops in functional art and calligraphy. Sessions begin July 9. Hours vary. Fees: $25 to $50. (714) 759-1122 (for city-sponsored classes, (714) 644-3151).
* In Santa Ana, 5- to 12-year-olds can dabble in the world of puppetry in a new weeklong workshop at the Discovery Museum of Orange County (3101 W. Harvard Ave.; dates to be announced), creating handmade puppets for use in their own original shows. The museum, housed in a turn-of-the-century house, also will present one-day workshops on Victorian arts and crafts, as well as a planetary camp in late June (those dates will be announced, too, along with all fees). (714) 540-0404.
* The Fullerton Museum Center (301 N. Pomona Ave.) will roll up all its summer fun into one day--Aug. 9-- with "Celebrate Creativity," a five-hour arts free-for-all for children ages 5 to 14. Activities will include demonstrations and hands-on workshops in such fields as ice carving, chalk drawing, puppetry and dance. Sponsored by the FMC, the Muckenthaler Cultural Center and the city of Fullerton. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is free; register by July 26. (714) 738-6586.
* Plans also are in the works for two one-week art workshops for children and a family-oriented art workshop inspired by the upcoming exhibit "The Cutting Edge: Contemporary American Folk Art from the Rosenak Collection," at the Laguna Art Museum (307 Cliff Drive, Laguna Beach). For dates and fees, call (714) 494-8971. Visual art workshops for children also are on the drawing board at Bowers Museum (2002 N. Main St., Santa Ana, (714) 972-1900).
* This summer, the Laguna Playhouse Youth Theater (at the Moulton Theatre, 606 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach) raises the curtain on its new Summer Production Workshop, coordinated by Youth Theater director Joe Lauderdale. Sessions will cover everything from theater history to choreography, with the focus being not on final performance but on "the process of creating." July 8 through Aug. 2 for 7- to 10-year-olds, through Aug. 16 for 11- to- 17-year olds. Half-day sessions are available. Fees: $150 to $360. (714) 494-8021.
* Yorba Linda's city-sponsored Summer Theatre for Young People ages 9 to 17 (at Hurless Barton Park, Casa Loma Avenue between Yorba Linda Boulevard and Imperial Highway) will culminate in three fully staged outdoor performances at the park in mid-August. Under the direction of instructor Robin Naylor, youngsters will take part in dramatic workshops and rehearsals to prepare for their roles. Auditions will be held June 1. For those who'd like to remain behind the scenes, the program includes a stage crew workshop where they can learn the finer points of technical theater to help them mount and run the three shows. This workshop starts July 2. Hours vary. Fees: $35 to $100. (714) 961-7160.
* At South Coast Repertory's Summer Theatre Workshop (655 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa), openings remain only for 12- to 14-year-olds. Professionals from SCR's corps of resident actors, directors and designers will share tricks of the trade from Aug. 5 through 17. Youngsters will explore a different facet of theater each day from 1 to 4 p.m. through a series of informal classes and workshops culminating in a recital for family and friends. Fee: $160. (714) 957-2602.
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