5 things to know this week
There’s so much news happening that we gathered it into a fat bundle. Here are 5 things to know and share this week:
Get thee to a funnery
The Reduced Shakespeare Company slapsticks its way into town with another trademark silly show – and a new book for kids. “Pop-Up Shakespeare: The Complete Works,” illustrated by Jennie Maizels and written by the Bard’s bards, Reed Martin and Austin Tichenor, is recommended for ages 7-10. But this is a book that will carry on literary knowledge through high school and college classes. Pick up a copy in the O’Reilly Theater lobby at every Reduced Shakespeare appearance through July 1.
“We’re kind of a gateway drug to Shakespeare,” jokes Martin, who is one of the three actors racing through the craziness of “William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play (Abridged),” presented by Pittsburgh Public Theater.
The show, he suggests is likely rated PG-13. “That’s probably being cautious,” Martin says. “It’s like Shakespeare itself. It’s a little bawdy and there’s a little innuendo, so it would depend on the kids and the parents.”
Any age could get a kick out of the vaudeville sensibilities, a high-seas water gun fight and Disney movie references among the Shakespeare jokes.
“It plays at two levels,” Martin says. “It’s almost like those classic Bugs Bunny Looney Tunes where, when you’re younger, it’s fast, it’s funny, it’s wacky, and it’s funny at that level. And then the more you know, the more deeply funny it gets. We’ve been doing the show now for a couple of years, mostly in the US and the UK, and kids who don’t know anything about Shakespeare come and see it and they love it.”
Get a bird’s-eye view of Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium from the vantage point of the new Zipline at Jungle Odyssey. Kids climb 25 feet to be let loose along a 170-foot flight over the pygmy hippos and giant anteaters. Keep your eyes open to spot giraffes and elephants in the African Savanna and catch a glimpse of gorillas in the Tropical Forest. The adrenaline rush runs daily from 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Summer bargain at the Children’s Museum
This season pass offers bargain-basement pricing. The 2018 Summer Family Membership gains entry for two adults and up to three kids from the same household at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. The $99 summer membership lasts through Aug. 31, offering unlimited visits to the museum. Members save on parking and receive discounts at the Little Orange Store, summer camps and birthday parties. Traveling this summer? You get reciprocal membership to the ASTC Travel Passport Program.
Raptors vs. Butterflies
Due to popular demand, the Butterfly Garden returns to the National Aviary in Pittsburgh after a year’s hiatus. The butterflies are housed in a specially designed, screened-in space in the Rose Garden. You can hand-feed a butterfly by dipping a fingertip into “nectar,” and allowing the butterfly to sit on your finger. Learn about butterfly migration routes, their roles in the ecosystem and how to transform your backyard into a butterfly haven.
Raptors take to the rooftop theater in SOAR! free-flight bird Show. Birds of prey – including falcons, hawks and Black Kites – sweep just over your head and circle West Park. Learn why vultures are referred to as the clean-up crew and their vital role within the ecosystem. These amazing birds show off their hunting skills, plucking food from their trainer’s gloved fist. Kids need to be at least 6 to gain access to the SkyDeck show.
Baseball STEM play
The Pittsburgh Pirates is the first MLB team to offer a stationary Chevron STEM Zone in its ballpark. A partnership between Chevron, the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and the Pirates worked to launch the STEM area at PNC Park.
Located just inside the right-field gate, the STEM Zone is a fun, hands-on exhibit that teaches the science of baseball along with burning a bit of energy. For little kids, see-saws include baseballs in a tube that roll back and forth with gravity. A mini-baseball diamond is equipped with wiffle balls and bats for a quick game.
For older kids, the multimedia area incorporates Chevron’s “Game On” baseball experience to demonstrate the science of the game. Kids can find the sweet spot on a bat by tapping one with a mallet until the vibrations are just right. They can get a look at the makings of a baseball from the inside out. Or they can measure their vertical leaps.
The Chevron STEM Zone display will be open before and during all Pirates home games.