NYC Around Town March




Monday, March 1st

Rockers on Broadway - Rocks to Rebuild! For Haiti's Children - 8:00pm B.B. King Blues Club & Grill; 237 W. 42 St. (7-8 Aves.)
Starring from Broadway--Tony award winner Alice Ripley, Tony nominees Constantine Maroulis and Bobby Spencer, plus members of the casts of Jersey Boys, Billy Elliot, Rock of Ages and West Side Story. Rockers include Grammy winner Larry Gatlin, Rock Hall member Gene Cornish (The Rascals), The Guitar Club for Men and singer/songwriter Kate Taylor. Special guest - Sopranos star Vinny Pastore, plus some surprises. Proceeds go to Save The Children + Unicef. $40 Adv/$45 Day of show. (212)997-4144

Wednesday, March 3rd

*Shot On This Spot Launch Event - 6:00pm On Location Tours, (212)683-2027
Join On Location Tours for a city-wide event that spotlights local businesses that have been featured in film and television. The “Shot On This Spot” kick-off event will include discounts and special happenings at all participating locations, including an assortment of restaurants and retail businesses that have been used in filming. Transportation between locations will be provided. RSVP to paulineg@onlocationtours.com

*Earth Celebrations Costume Workshops - 6:00-9:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969

Friday, March 5th

*Cosmic Cabaret Cinema: It Came From Outer Space - 9:30pm Rubin Museum of Art;
150 West 17th Street
Based on an original screen treatment by Ray Bradbury, this was one of the first films to not ascribe evil intentions to alien visitors. It was also part of the golden era of 3-D filmmaking. 1953, Jack Arnold, U.S., 81 minutes. Introduced by S.C. Butler. “Cosmic Cabaret Cinema” series feature films that explore a new frontier in humankind’s understanding of the universe. Free with $7 bar minimum. (212) 620-5000 ext. 344

Classic Cocktails, Classic Film - 6:30-8:30pm Astor Center; 399 Lafayette St. (at East 4th St.)
With Nora Maynard. Sip on a series of delicious drinks while a collection of clips from some of American cinema’s best-loved classics-as well as from a few lesser-known celluloid gems, roll. Learn the colorful stories behind the cocktails, and get practical tips on how to mix up a perfect batch for yourself at home. The evening will leave you thoroughly stirred, gently shaken, and always entertained. $45 (212)674-7501

*Free Jazz Night - 7:00pm Downtown Community Center; 120 Warren Street
Take the winter blues away with the Alex Levin Trio. (212)766-1104

Saturday, March 6th

*Knights! - 1:00pm The Cloisters Museum and Gardens; 99 Margaret Corbin Drive
Fort Tryon Park
Discover medieval knights in the artworks at The Cloisters. Learn about the lives and training of these valiant warriors and hear about their adventures. Children ages four through twelve and their families are invited for an hour-long program at The Cloisters Museum and Gardens, the branch of the Metropolitan Museum devoted to the art and architecture of medieval Europe, located in northern Manhattan. (212)650–2280.

Wild Food and Ecology Tour and Talk with "Wildman" Steve Brill - 11:45am-3:45pm Central Park
If you ever get stranded in Central Park, a tour with Wildman Steve Brill might help you survive. You'll know him by his raggedy beard, shorts, hiking boots, and pith helmet, leading groups of eager-eyed followers while instructing them on what flora and fauna they can forage -- breaking off a stick of some edible tree and gnawing on it as an example. Brill's Central Park tours are not only hilarious, they are educational. If you're lucky, maybe he'll regale you with his tale of his arrest by a park ranger for eating a dandelion. Suggested donation $15. Reserve/confirm at (914) 835-2153 at least 24 hours in advance.


*Earth Celebrations Puppet Workshops - 12:00-4:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969

*Jam Music Workshop - 10:30am-12:00pm Apple Store; Upper West Side
Using GarageBand, we’ll teach families to compose a song with loops, beats, and even their own vocals. At the end of the workshop, they’ll have a finished song on a CD and ideas for future music projects. Must preregister here.

*Action Movie Workshop - 2:30pm-4:00pm Apple Store; Upper West Side
This workshop will teach families how to import footage, crop video clips, and add special effects to produce their own movie with iMovie. When they’ve finished, these budding filmmakers can take home their masterpiece on a DVD. Must preregister here.

Sunday, March 7th

Mary Pope Osborne's Magic Tree House series - 1:00pm Symphony Space; 2537 Broadway, 95th Street
The bestselling creator of the wildly popular award-winning series that travels back in time and to distant lands talks about her books with kids ages 6 and up. The event includes a discussion with the audience, a creative writing project, and a book signing. $8 - $20.


*Snap Photo Workshop - 10:30am–12:00pm Apple Store; Upper West Side
Using iPhoto, we’ll show families how to edit, print, and share photos and how to make photo albums and slideshows. At the end of the workshop they’ll have a DVD of their photos and ideas for future projects. Must preregister here.

*Show Presentation Workshop - 2:30pm-4:00pm Apple Store, Upper West Side
Learn how to create stunning presentations using Keynote, amazing graphs and charts using Numbers and stylish documents using Pages. Kids will go home with lots of great ideas on becoming a presenter. Must preregister here.

Wednesday, March 10th

*"First Light" Soiree - 8:30pm-10:30pm The Inwood Astronomy Project Cloisters Lawn in Fort Tryon Park on the west side of the Park Drive, overlooking the Hudson River
In celebration of the debut of the Obsession 15 UC telescope. The Obsession will be the largest amateur scope available for free use by the public. All astronomy programs are clear-sky dependent. Please call the Astronomy Hotline at (917) 529-2359 to confirm favorable weather conditions.

*Earth Celebrations Costume Workshops - 6:00-9:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969

Thursday, March 11th

*Irish Heritage Concert - 7:00pm St. Patrick's Cathedral; 460 Madison Ave.
What better way is there to celebrate the festivity of St. Patrick’s Day than with a concert of traditional and contemporary music at St. Patrick’s Cathedral? Celebrate Irish Heritage at a time and place where everyone is Irish. (212)753-2261

*St. Patrick's Day Crafts - 2:00pm-4:00pm Chess & Checkers House, Central Park; mid-park at 64th Street
A festive afternoon filled with seasonally-themed arts and crafts. All ages welcome!(212)794-4064

Friday, March 12th

*Cosmic Cabaret Cinema: Zeffirelli's Romeo and Juliet - 9:30 PM Rubin Museum of Art; 150 West 17th Street
1968, Franco Zeffirelli, UK/Italy, 138 minutes. Introduced by Ellen Kushner. “Cosmic Cabaret Cinema” series feature films that explore a new frontier in humankind’s understanding of the universe. Free with $7 bar minimum. (212) 620-5000 ext. 344

*Community Sing with Take 6 - 7:00pm The Apollo Theater; 253 West 125th Street between 7th & 8th Avenue
The audience is encouraged to continue the tradition of “getting in on the act” by singing along with Take 6 as the Grammy Award-winning a cappella group teaches vocal exercises and techniques, along with some music history. Free event, but tickets required from Box Office (available beginning March 5 at 10AM). Maximum of three tickets per person or 10 tickets per organization (signed letter from organization required).

The New York Pops "Celtic Music: A St. Patrick's Day Celebration" - 8:00pm Carnegie Hall; 57th Street and Seventh Avenue
For St. Patrick’s Day, it’s a gala Celtic evening, featuring some of the biggest stars of Irish music. These include Ronan Tynan, the surging Irish tenor; Celtic Woman’s Méav, with her pure soprano; Liz Knowles and her rollicking fiddle, from Riverdance; and Kieran O’Hare’s tin whistle and pipes. The music’s greener on this side. $33 - $104

*Free Jazz Night - 7:00pm Downtown Community Center; 120 Warren Street
Take the winter blues away with the Alex Levin Trio. (212)766-1104

Saturday, March 13th

Little Ireland and Little Italy History and Tasting Tour - 1:00pm & 3:45pm NYC Discovery Walking Tours
Commemorate not one, but TWO ethnic celebrations ...and satisfy your appetite as well. Celebrate the upcoming St Patty's Day (March 17) and St. Joseph's Day (March 19) with a stroll through the former Little Ireland, with its Irish heritage sites, and a history and tasting tour of Little Italy, which ONLY once a year prepares pastries in devotion to St. Joseph. $23 includes food. For reservations and meeting place; (212)465-3331 or nycdiscovery@hotmail.com

Wild Food and Ecology Tour and Talk with "Wildman" Steve Brill - 11:45am-3:45pm Central Park
If you ever get stranded in Central Park, a tour with Wildman Steve Brill might help you survive. You'll know him by his raggedy beard, shorts, hiking boots, and pith helmet, leading groups of eager-eyed followers while instructing them on what flora and fauna they can forage -- breaking off a stick of some edible tree and gnawing on it as an example. Brill's Central Park tours are not only hilarious, they are educational. If you're lucky, maybe he'll regale you with his tale of his arrest by a park ranger for eating a dandelion. Suggested donation $15. Reserve/confirm at (914) 835-2153 at least 24 hours in advance.

*Earth Celebrations Puppet Workshops - 12:00-4:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969

*Jam Music Workshop - 9:00am-10:30am Apple Store; 5th Avenue
Using GarageBand, we’ll teach families to compose a song with loops, beats, and even their own vocals. At the end of the workshop, they’ll have a finished song on a CD and ideas for future music projects.

Sunday, March 14th Daylight Savings Begins

Percy Jackson at The Met - 1:00pm The Metropolitan Museum of Art; 1000 Fifth Avenue at 82nd Street
Calling all demigods and mortals! Rick Riordan, author of the award-winning book series, Percy Jackson & the Olympians; talks about gods and heroes, his love of Greek mythology, and why he chose to feature the Met in The Lightning Thief. $15 (212)535-7710

The Paper Bag Players Great Mummy Adventure - 3:00pm Symphony Space; 2537 Broadway at 95th Street
From a thrilling journey to the land of the pharaohs in search of a mysterious Mummy to the lyrical story of a postman who dream he's a butterfly; from a picnic that turns into a dance-a-thon and the whole audience joins in to the paint-flying musical finale. A merry mix of stories, music, painting, audience participation, paper bag costumes and scenery - and adventure! $15 - $30 (212)864-5400

Little Ireland and Little Italy History and Tasting Tour - 12:00pm & 2:45pm NYC Discovery Walking Tours
Commemorate not one, but TWO ethnic celebrations ...and satisfy your appetite as well. Celebrate the upcoming St Patty's Day (March 17) and St. Joseph's Day (March 19) with a stroll through the former Little Ireland, with its Irish heritage sites, and a history and tasting tour of Little Italy, which ONLY once a year prepares pastries in devotion to St. Joseph. $23 includes food. (212)465-3331

Tuesday, March 16th

The Addams Family: An Evilution -
6:30pm Museum of the City of New York; 1220 Fifth Avenue
Presenting more than 200 cartoons created by Charles Addams (1912–1988), many of them never before published. Join author Kevin Miserocchi, for an illustrated lecture as well as a discussion of the “evilution” of the Addams Family as they developed as mainstays of Addams’s cartoons. Reservations required. $8 - $12. (212)534-1672

Wednesday, March 17th St. Patrick's Day

*249th NYC St. Patrick's Day Parade - 11:00am 5th Avenue
The Parade starts at 44th Street and marches up Fifth Avenue past St. Patrick's Cathedral at 50th Street all the way up past the American Irish Historical Society at 83rd and the Metropolitan Museum of Art at 83rd Street to 86th Street, where the parade finishes around 4:30-5:00pm. For the best views: To avoid the crowds that pack the sidewalks below 59th Street, go anywhere North of 66th Street and Fifth Avenue. The upper steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art provide a great view. You can get a close-up view of the marchers at 86th Street where the Parade route ends and the marchers disband and embark to go home or to celebrate.

*Earth Celebrations Costume Workshops - 6:00 - 9:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969

Friday, March 19th

*Cosmic Cabaret Cinema: Contact - 9:30pm Rubin Museum of Art;
150 West 17th Street
Jodie Foster plays the lead in this cinematic envisioning of Carl Sagan's novel. 1997, Robert Zemeckis, U.S., 150 minutes. Introduced by Brett Helquist. “Cosmic Cabaret Cinema” series feature films that explore a new frontier in humankind’s understanding of the universe. Free with $7 bar minimum. (212) 620-5000 ext. 344

The Benefit for Haiti Comedy Show - 8:30pm Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway at 95th Street
All the proceeds will be donated to the relief efforts in Haiti. The performers are Nikki Carr, Jay the Comedian, Kenny Williams, and Mike Britt. $20 (212)864-5400

*Free Jazz Night - 7:00pm Downtown Community Center; 120 Warren Street
Take the winter blues away with the Alex Levin Trio. (212)766-1104

Saturday, March 20th First Day of Spring

*Weaving Tales - 1:00pm The Cloisters Museum and Gardens; 99 Margaret Corbin Drive
Fort Tryon Park
Explore the artistry of medieval tapestries. Investigate how stories of mythical beasts, noble heroes, and exciting events were told through this special art form. Children ages four through twelve and their families are invited for an hour-long program at The Cloisters Museum and Gardens, the branch of the Metropolitan Museum devoted to the art and architecture of medieval Europe, located in northern Manhattan. (212)650–2280. Free with Museum admission.

Girl Scout Day - Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum;
Pier 86, 12th Ave. & 46th Street
Celebrate Women’s History Month and learn all about female space pioneers. With hands-on activities, lectures and more! Reservations are required and booked by troop. (646) 381-5010

The Paper Bag Players Great Mummy Adventure - 11:00am and 2:00pm Symphony Space; 2537 Broadway at 95th Street
From a thrilling journey to the land of the pharaohs in search of a mysterious Mummy to the lyrical story of a postman who dream he's a butterfly; from a picnic that turns into a dance-a-thon and the whole audience joins in to the paint-flying musical finale. A merry mix of stories, music, painting, audience participation, paper bag costumes and scenery - and adventure! $15 - $30 (212)864-5400

Little Ireland and Little Italy History and Tasting Tour - 2:30pm NYC Discovery Walking Tours
Commemorate not one, but TWO ethnic celebrations ...and satisfy your appetite as well. Celebrate the upcoming St Patty's Day (March 17) and St. Joseph's Day (March 19) with a stroll through the former Little Ireland, with its Irish heritage sites, and a history and tasting tour of Little Italy, which ONLY once a year prepares pastries in devotion to St. Joseph. $23 includes food. (212)465-3331

*Earth Celebrations Puppet Workshops - 12:00-4:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969

Sunday, March 21st

NYRR Half-Marathon - tbd New York Road Runners Central Park
The course of the NYC Half-Marathon will take runners through the heart of the city, into Times Square, and finish in the Battery Park area of lower Manhattan.

Little Ireland and Little Italy History and Tasting Tour - 12:00pm & 2:45pm NYC Discovery Walking Tours
Commemorate not one, but TWO ethnic celebrations ...and satisfy your appetite as well. Celebrate the upcoming St Patty's Day (March 17) and St. Joseph's Day (March 19) with a stroll through the former Little Ireland, with its Irish heritage sites, and a history and tasting tour of Little Italy, which ONLY once a year prepares pastries in devotion to St. Joseph. $23 includes food. (212)465-3331

Wednesday, March 24th

*Earth Celebrations Costume Workshops - 6:00-9:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969

Friday, March 26th

*Cosmic Cabaret Cinema: A Matter of Life and Death (Stairway to Heaven) - 9:30pm Rubin Museum of Art; 150 West 17th Street
Fallen aviator David Niven argues for his life before a celestial court. With Kim Hunter. Introduced by multiple Academy Award winner Thelma Schoonmaker. 1946, Powell & Pressburger, UK, 104 minutes.“Cosmic Cabaret Cinema” series feature films that explore a new frontier in humankind’s understanding of the universe. Free with $7 bar minimum. (212) 620-5000 ext. 344

*Free Jazz Night - 7:00pm Downtown Community Center; 120 Warren Street
Take the winter blues away with the Alex Levin Trio. (212)766-1104

Saturday, March 27th

*Ladies Singing the Blues: A Tribute to Blues in New York City - 3:00pm
Museum of the City of New York; 1220 Fifth Avenue
In the tradition of Billie Holiday, Dinah Washington, Bessie Smith, and Alberta Hunter, come celebrate and learn about the leading ladies who sang the Blues, featuring New York City standards. Continuing this legacy is Harlem’s own Ghanniyyah Greene. Free with Museum admission.

Carnegie Hall Family Concert: Time for Three - 1:00pm Carnegie Hall;
57th Street and Seventh Avenue
Time for Three is a young, dynamic trio of string musicians who transcend traditional performance genres, offering its own arrangements of both shorter classical works and popular hits from Brahms to the Beatles. Come listen to this classically trained garage band perform their unique mix of classical, jazz, gypsy, bluegrass, country, pop and hip hop! Pre-concert activities will take place one hour before each performance and are free to all ticket holders. $9

*Earth Celebrations Puppet Workshops - 12:00-4:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969

Sunday, March 28th Palm Sunday

Wild Food and Ecology Tour and Talk with "Wildman" Steve Brill - 11:45am-3:45pm Central Park
If you ever get stranded in Central Park, a tour with Wildman Steve Brill might help you survive. You'll know him by his raggedy beard, shorts, hiking boots, and pith helmet, leading groups of eager-eyed followers while instructing them on what flora and fauna they can forage -- breaking off a stick of some edible tree and gnawing on it as an example. Brill's Central Park tours are not only hilarious, they are educational. If you're lucky, maybe he'll regale you with his tale of his arrest by a park ranger for eating a dandelion. Suggested donation $15. Reserve/confirm at (914) 835-2153 at least 24 hours in advance.

Monday, March 29th

The Lady and the Sharks: An Evening with Legendary Ichthyologist Eugenie Clark - 6:30pm-8:00pm The New York Academy of Sciences; 7 World Trade Center 250 Greenwich Street, 40th floor
The world-renowned ichthyologist, known as "the Shark Lady," describes her fantastic and distinguished 60-year career studying deep sea sharks and tropical fish. (212)298-8600

Wednesday, March 31st

*Earth Celebrations Costume Workshops - 6:00-9:00pm The Courtyard Gallery; World Financial Center, 200 Vesey Street
teens & adults create the spectacular costumes, masks, and giant puppets for the Hudson River Pageant, inspired by the diverse marine species of the Hudson River. Workshops culminate in Earth Celebrations' Hudson River Pageant, on Saturday, May 22nd, 2010. (212) 777-7969


*as always, starred entries are free or free-with-admission!
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Staten Island's Around Town March


Monday, March 1st

3 on 3 League/Tournament - The Staten Island Skating Pavilion, 3080 Arthur Kill Road
Form your own team! 6 player Teams + Goalie, 1 game session, 3 Games per week. Championship at each level: Mites/Squirt/PW/Bantam/Midget. In addition to the games, there will also be a weekday skills session. This session will incorporate multi-coach, station-based, passing, edgework, transition and shooting drills. 10 weeks/20 sessions: $325. 9-16 years old.(718) 948-4800

*Benjamin Hochman, Pianist - 7:30pm Center for the Arts College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Blvd
A recital of piano literature treasures, complete with majestic Partita No. 6 by Bach, Beethoven’s late Sonata Op. 109 along with a few short selections from Hungarian composer Gyorgy Kurtag, and Maurice Ravel’s poetic Gaspard de la nuit. In celebration of the 200th anniversary of Chopin’s birth, Hochman will conclude with Chopin’s beloved Barcarolle. At the Springer Concert Hall. Reservations required. 718-982-ARTS

Thursday, March 4th

*Flipping Pages - 3:30pm Alice Austen House & Park; 2 Hylan Blvd
A story telling event for ages 4-7 years old; offering a calm and relaxing time. Children will enjoy an illustrated story sitting on the front lawn. If weather is not permitting, event will take place in the museum. A short tour/art discussion to introduce your child to the museum and art making activity is included.

Saturday, March 6th

*Forest Fairytales - 1:00pm Blood Root Valley; 700 Rockland Avenue
Hear stories of the wonders of the forest as we prepare to “spring ahead.” Weather permitting, we will take a short exploration of the forest in search of tree buds and other signs of spring. This program is suitable for kids ages 2-6, and older siblings are welcome. Registration required. (718)351-3450

Teen Photography Workshop - 1:30pm–4:30pm Alice Austen House & Park; 2 Hylan Blvd
Make art and new friends! Teens will work on independent projects for a variety of photo contests. $135, includes cameras and materials. (718)816-4506

Tavern Concert: Risky Business Bluegrass Band - 7:30 & 9:00pm Historic Richmond Town; 441 Clarke Avenue
Tavern veteran Rich Rainey heads up a talented combo that serves up great bluegrass music featuring 5-string banjo, string bass, mandolin, rhythm and lead guitar. $15 Reservations are required (718)351-1611 ext. 281.

Sunday, March 7th

*2010 Staten Island Saint Patrick's Day Parade - 12:30pm-4:30 Hart Blvd & Forest Ave
Preceded by Mass at 9:00AM at Blessed Sacrament Church, Forest Ave & Manor Rd

*FrogWatch USA: Citizen Science - 2:00pm High Rock Park Environmental Education Center; 200 Nevada Avenue
FrogWatch USA is a frog and toad monitoring program that gives you the opportunity to help scientists conserve amphibians. Learn to recognize distinct voices among the chorus of frog and toad calls. Registration required. (718)351-3450

*To Kill a Mockingbird - 3:00pm Historic Richmond Town; 441 Clarke Ave
Come join OutLOUD's reading and conversation on this classic American novel by Harper Lee.

Darwin the Dinosaur - 2:00 pm Snug Harbor Cultural Center; 1000 Richmond Terrace
A show of puppetry, music, and dancing, this family event tells the great story of Darwin the Dinosaur. Darwin is much more than a pet: he is a dinosaur - a wild and primitive creature. Though Darwin learns to take his first steps from his creator, he is, after all, a dinosaur. His animal instincts eventually take over and he has no choice but to succumb. In Darwin's explorations, he encounters many different types of living creatures, learning the value of both good and bad, love and hate, friends and enemies. What Darwin takes from these life lessons are up to him, and only he can decide his fate. Ages 5+ $20 (718)425-3517

Wednesday, March 10th

*Observatory Event - 7:00pm Astrophysical Observatory College of Staten Island, 2800 Victory Boulevard
View Mars and, later in evening, Saturn - famous for its rings. You may also see a few of it's moons especially Titan the largest one in the solar system which has an atmosphere and shows signs of rivers and oceans of liquid methane.

Thursday, March 11th

*The Irish on Staten Island Celebration - 1:30pm College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Blvd.
Join the festivities with author and Curator of History, Patricia M. Salmon for a celebration of the Irish on Staten Island

A Midsummer Night's Dream - 8:00pm College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Boulevard Lab Theatre, Bldg 1P
With a live punk band playing original songs, mohawk hairdos, aerial acrobatics, and more, William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream has never rocked harder.(Warning: Contains adult themes and may not be suitable for children.) $10/$5 student and seniors781)982-ARTS

Friday, March 12th

Tavern Concert: Irish Stout - 7:30pm & 9:00 Historic Richmond Town; 441 Clarke Avenue
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a lively band of seasoned performers playing traditional Irish songs, ballads, and upbeat melodies. $15 Reservations required; 718)351-1611 ext .281.

Black 47 - 8:00pm Center for the Arts, College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Blvd.
Formed in the Bronx, New York, these Irish American rockers espouse an unblinkingly political and thoroughly Irish form of rock 'n' roll, with songs covering topics from the Northern Ireland conflict to civil rights and urban unrest in contemporary New York. Their latest album, Iraq, includes new songs covering the course of the war and consists of stories that the band’s fans shared while serving in the military overseas. Celebrate America and your Irish heritage together. At the Williamson Theatre. $35 - $40 black47.com

Saturday, March 13th

*Bunny Hop - 11:00am Blue Heron Nature Center, Blue Heron Park; 222 Poillon Avenue btwn Amboy Rd & Hylan Blvd
Spring is upon us and our furry friends are hop, hop, hoppy to come out and meet some visitors. (718)967-3542

4 Celtic Women - 8:00pm St. George Theater; 35 Hyatt Street
Enjoy an all live mix of Celtic traditionals such as Danny Boy and Molly Malone, Celtic original instrumental dances and the Enya-like Angels, with vocal harmonies, harp, psaltery, harmonium, flute, bass, and drums. The lore of the stories and history of the instruments and the composers are enthusiastically conveyed by founding member, Celeste Ray. $28 - $35.

*Shenanigans with Pat & Mike - 2:00pm Staten Island Children's Museum; 1000 Richmond Terrace
Irish Drumming & guitar playing

Sunday, March 14th

*Local History Club: Women's History Month - 11:00am Blue Heron Nature Center, Blue Heron Park; 222 Poillon Avenue btwn Amboy Rd & Hylan Blvd
In honor of Women's History Month, we'll discuss Staten Island's most prominent women, from Alice Austen to Joan Baez. Find out what ties they had to Staten Island. Perhaps they lived in your neighborhood.(718)967-3542

*Leprechaun Hike - 1:00pm–2:30pm Blood Root Valley; 700 Rockland Avenue at Brielle Avenue
Join the Greenbelt educators as we search for elusive leprechauns and their pots of gold on this pre-St. Patrick’s Day hike. Dress appropriately for hiking. This hike is approximately one mile and is suitable for children age 7 and up. Registration required.(718)351-3450

Family workshop: Photographing Others - 2:30-4:30pm Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art, 338 Lighthouse Ave.
Photographer Phil Borges' portraits document people in a very intimate way. After learning about his portraits of the Tibetan people, participants will gain knowledge of specific techniques for capturing their own portraits that tell a story and reveal something about the subject. Participants should bring their own digital camera as well as an object that has meaning to them. Open to all ages. $10 adults, $8 members and students.

The Hobbit - 3:00pm Center for the Arts, College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Blvd.
Theatre Sans Fil (theater without strings) brings Tolkien’s award-winning story of Bilbo Baggins, the wizard Gandalf, and their dwarf friends to life by using over 50 life-sized puppets—which is a pretty good trick for a story that included a 25-foot-long dragon and ten-foot-tall trolls and goblins! Complete with modern set design, spectacular lighting, and original music. Recommended for all ages. Williamson Theatre. $20

Thursday, March 18th

A Midsummer Night's Dream - 8:00pm College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Boulevard Lab Theatre, Bldg 1P
With a live punk band playing original songs, mohawk hairdos, aerial acrobatics, and more, William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream has never rocked harder.(Warning: Contains adult themes and may not be suitable for children.) $10/$5 student and seniors781)982-ARTS

Friday, March 19th

A Midsummer Night's Dream - 8:00pm College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Boulevard Lab Theatre, Bldg 1P
With a live punk band playing original songs, mohawk hairdos, aerial acrobatics, and more, William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream has never rocked harder.(Warning: Contains adult themes and may not be suitable for children.) $10/$5 student and seniors781)982-ARTS

Saturday, March 20th

Tavern Concert: Triboro - 7:30 & 9:00pm Historic Richmond Town 441 Clarke Avenue
They hail from the boroughs of NYC but look beyond the Hudson to other places and times for songs and inspiration. This acoustic vocal trio applies fine three-part harmony to an eclectic mix of genres.$15 Reservations are required;(718)351-1611 ext. 281.

Musical Chairs Chamber Ensemble - 8:00pm Staten Island Museum; 75 Stuyvesant Place
Elizabeth McCullough, soprano & Anthony Turner, baritone. $15, $5 students.(718)907-3488

A Midsummer Night's Dream - 8:00pm College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Boulevard Lab Theatre, Bldg 1P
With a live punk band playing original songs, mohawk hairdos, aerial acrobatics, and more, William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream has never rocked harder.(Warning: Contains adult themes and may not be suitable for children.) $10/$5 student and seniors781)982-ARTS

Sunday, March 21st

*Nature Photography - 11:00am Blue Heron Nature Center, Blue Heron Park; 222 Poillon Avenue btwn Amboy Rd & Hylan Blvd
We'll look for secret corners of the park to photograph, so bring your camera. (718)967-3542

Savor the Flavors - 2:00pm-5:00pm College of Staten Island; 2800 Victory Boulevard Bldg 1P Atrium
A unique scholarship fundraiser with all proceeds to benefit CSI students. Popular Island restaurants will showcase their signature dishes and describe how they are prepared. Sample the bountiful cuisine and enjoy wine tasting, beverages, desserts and music by PartyHostsDJ's.com. Festivities include celebrity chef judges Rob Burmeister and John Sierp, featured on Food Network's "Chopped," as well as raffles and People's Choice awards. $35-$50. (718)982-2290

Saturday, March 27th

Tavern Concert: Point Cross - 7:30 & 9:00pm Historic Richmond Town; 441 Clarke Avenue
Named for a village on Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton Island, these Tavern veterans specialize in Scottish and Irish fiddle tunes and lively Appalachian and Cajun material. $15 Reservations are required;(718)351-1611 ext. 281.

*Eggstravaganza - 12:00pm–4:00pm Staten Island Children's Museum; 1000 Richmond Terrace
Welcome Spring at the Annual Spring Festival. It's a great way to welcome spring with egg hunts, egg decorating, crafts and other fun activities on the East Meadow. Families can take pictures (bring your camera) with that large, furry animal with big ears.

*EGGSTRAVAGANZA - 12:00pm-3:00pm Staten Island Zoo, 614 Broadway
Explore the world of eggs from the Easter variety to those made by frogs, turtles, bugs and many others. Make a craft egg to take home. There will be age appropriate egg hunts scheduled throughout the afternoon for an additional fee with one grand prize egg for each age category. Egg Hunt Fee $5.00/child. Registration for all Egg Hunts 10:00-12:30 ONLY, Registration not accepted before the day of the event.

Monday, March 29th

*Kids' Week in the Forest! Forest Ecology - 10:00am Blue Heron Nature Center, Blue Heron Park; 222 Poillon Avenue, btwn Amboy Rd and Hylan Blvd
Spend your break with the Rangers exploring the forest of Blue Heron Park. There will be nature walks, crafts, team-building activities, performances and more. (718) 967-3542

*Spring Break Northfield Bank Foundation Cool School Holiday - 10:00am-5:00pm Staten Island Children's Museum; 1000 Richmond Terrace
Free admission! 718-273-2060

Tuesday, March 30th

*Kids' Week in the Forest! A-Z Nature Hike - 10:00am Blue Heron Nature Center, Blue Heron Park.; 222 Poillon Avenue, btwn Amboy Rd and Hylan Blvd)
Spend your break with the Rangers exploring the forest of Blue Heron Park. There will be nature walks, crafts, team-building activities, performances and more. (718) 967-3542

Wednesday, March 31st

*Kids' Week in the Forest! Geology Rocks - 10:00am Blue Heron Nature Center, Blue Heron Park.; 222 Poillon Avenue, btwn Amboy Rd and Hylan Blvd
Spend your break with the Rangers exploring the forest of Blue Heron Park. There will be nature walks, crafts, team-building activities, performances and more. (718) 967-3542

*Young Writers OutLOUD - 2:00-4:00pm Richmondtown Library; 200 Clarke Ave
Free creative writing workshops for Islanders ages 10-15. SI OutLOUD will enhance appreciation of American classics, and encourage young Islanders to develop their own creative writing styles. A portion of every workshop will focus on spoken-word performance. Microphones and music are included to help young artists create their own individual performance styles. RSVP(718)907-0709


*as always, starred entries are free or free with admission.
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My new favorite band

I am crazy about OK Go. Have you heard of these guys? The treadmill video? (Okay, maybe you have. Maybe I'm just that out of touch. Maybe they're huge and I'm the only one who never knew. Whatever. I liked them when they did that video and I love them now. So there.)

Their songs are fun and funny. And the videos are next to genius.

OK Go - Do What You Want (Wallpaper Version) from OK Go on Vimeo.



Seriously awesome.

OK Go - A Million Ways from OK Go on Vimeo.



And if you go to the OK Go site right now you can get a free mp3 of the song from this video (which was filmed live and features the Notre Dame Marching Band):


OK Go - This Too Shall Pass from OK Go on Vimeo.




Or you can join in on their Video remix project. Go here to download the raw green-screen footage of their video for WTF, and add your own background. Watch the actual video first, though. It's pretty dang cool.
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Rainbow Brite is back!


Rainbrow Brite. Remember her? Blond chick with kickin' astro-boots? Oh, about 25 years ago?

Playmate Toys & Hallmark have decided that it's time for a come-back. Along with a make-over and some cooler friends, too. That's right. The Color Kids are out. No more Red Butler, LaLa Orange, Patty O'Green, Shy Violet, Canary Yellow, Indigo or Buddy Blue. (Oh, yes.. I still remember!)

Rainbow has moved on to the cool crowd. Now she's friends with Moonglow and Tickled Pink, who are in charge of nighttime and sunrise/sunset, respectively. They're taller, thinner and come with proportionally-sized heads. At least Twink is still around!

MomSelect & Hallmark were kind enough to provide me with several cd-roms featuring the "Colorful One" and her new best pals. There are brief intros to each character, some printable fun, games, and of course, the new theme song. I passed these along to neighborhood girls, and then did an informal survey.

My daughter, who isn't hampered by fond memories of Rainbow Brite's past, really seems to dig this 2.0 version. She thinks the song is fun, and and the games are awesome.

In fact, that's pretty much exactly what I heard from the neighborhood moms to whom I passed out the cd-roms. The jigsaw puzzles were overwhelmingly faved. (I learned that the moms in my own age group were also disappointed by the loss of the Color Kids, but felt the same rush of nostalgia when I brought up Rainbow Brite in the first place.)

If you'd like to see what I'm talking about, you can find all of the same applications that my daughter and her friends got to preview over at RainbowBrite.com You can also check out the Barbie-like doll collection which is currently available for purchase at Target.

I think the brand is mostly appropriate for my daughter's 4 - 6 year old peer group. I don't see the older girls getting into it, and, to be honest, it seems a shame to bring Rainbow Brite back into an already over-saturated market. However, I'm sure that moms who are valiantly fighting off the Hannah Montana/Camp Rock/Wizards of Waverly Place influence (like myself) might just welcome the wholesomeness of Rainbow and her new gal-pals.
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Double Trouble by Susan May Warren Book Review


I was super-duper excited when I found out that I was going to be part of the LitFuse blog-tour for Susan May Warren's second PJ Sugar novel, Double Trouble.

PJ Sugar is an amateur private investigator, a newbie christian, a former trouble-maker and seems to see crime everywhere she goes. Funnily enough, she's right about half the time. It's when she's wrong that Ms. Warren's writing really shines. In Double Trouble, there are multiple suspects, multiple love interests, flying donuts, car wrecks, unusual in-laws, kidnappings, jewelry heists, clever critters, tattoos and to round it out, a little of God's grace.

I'm a serious fan of Susan May Warren's work. She's got a great sense of the ridiculous, and an easy, unpreachy way of looking at the divine. Each character is very real, and PJ's quest for spiritual truth is written in a totally accessible way. No one is perfect, and some of us struggle with our imperfections more than others. You've got to read the book (which works just fine as a stand-alone) to find out how (or if) PJ reconciles her troubled past with her present; and maybe even her future.

You might remember that I raved about another of Susan May Warren's books, The Christmas Bowl, for very similar reasons. I love it when a story can make me laugh out-loud. I love it even more when it's in such a clever context. Thank you, Susan, for continuing to provide this reader with hope and guffaws. I can't wait for the next one.


In the interest of full disclosure, I was given a copy of Double Trouble by Susan May Warren to read by LitFuse Group and Tyndale Fiction in exchange for a fair and objective review. I did not take payment from the publisher or author of this book beyond a copy of the book in question. Disclosure Policy
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You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes by Lisa McKay Book Review

*************************Please scroll to end for my review****************************


It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!


Today's Wild Card author is:


and the book:


You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes

David C. Cook; New edition (February 1, 2010)

***Special thanks to Audra Jennings of The B&B Media Group for sending me a review copy.***

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Lisa McKay and her husband, Luke, serve at a thriving church in Alabama. Together they are happily – if not always properly—raising three rowdy boys and one dramatic girl. In addition to being a wife and mom, Lisa is also a popular conference speaker.



Visit the author's website.

You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes, by Lisa McKay from David C. Cook on Vimeo.



Product Details:

List Price: $12.99
Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook; New edition (February 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1434767264
ISBN-13: 978-1434767264

AND NOW...THE FIRST CHAPTER:


My Husband’s Calling is My Calling Too

Many are the plans of a man’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.—Proverbs 19:21 (NASB)


I once had an interesting conversation with a woman whose husband had enrolled in seminary to prepare for ministry. “He can take classes all he wants, but I didn’t sign up for the preacher’s wife thing,” she said. Since she didn’t believe her husband would actually follow through, she went on to tell me she planned on humoring him until the day his calling affected her. And if that day ever came? Well, she’d just cross that bridge when she came to it.


He is still in school. She is still in denial.


Around that same time I attended a pastor’s wife conference that included a panel discussion at the end. Lined across the stage, five women in different seasons of ministry shared the thing they found most difficult about being married to a minister.


I’ll never forget the response of the youngest woman. She was the mom of toddlers and was obviously distressed. “The hardest thing for me is everyone wanting a piece of my husband and not acknowledging me in the least,” she said. “I feel like the person in the background who is only here to take care of the kids so he can be free to take care of everyone else.”


I was grieved by her raw response. All I wanted to do was wrap my arms around that girl and assure her she had it all wrong. That she was an integral part of her husband’s ministry. That her calling in that season was her children. That no amount of public success possibly mattered if her heart and home were in shambles. The sad thing is that I’ve met many more like her in the past fifteen years during my own life as a minister’s wife. If anything, this has intensified my desire to embrace and encourage women whom God has charged with supporting the men He has ordained to proclaim His Word.


The fact that I just typed that last sentence still baffles me. You have no idea how surreal it is for me to be writing this book. There are many of you reading who have been Christians as long as you can remember and always knew you would marry a preacher. Many more of you grew up as the child of a minister and swore you would never marry one yourself, only to find yourself eating your words. Some of you have pursued callings to various vocational ministries and met your mate in college, seminary, etc. Some of you married men who were already serving in the church. However, based on my blog surveys, a lot of your serene lives were turned inside out when your husband experienced God’s call to ministry some point after you were married.


And then on the lunatic fringe are girls like me whose life and marital background weren’t exactly résumé worthy.

A Match Made In Heaven?


My husband, Luke, and I married young. I was a mere eighteen and he a strapping twenty-one. Can I just be honest and tell you there were never two individuals any more needy or any less likely to be serving behind a pulpit?


I always cringe when we run into old high school friends. The question of what we’re doing now always comes up, and there is one response that we can count on when we share that Luke is a pastor—after the laughter dies down, that is.


“Luke, you are a preacher? And Lisa? You are a preacher’s wife?! Okay, joke’s over. Now what are you really doing?”


We would be offended if we weren’t just as baffled.


I forgive our flabbergasted friends because I can’t hold their excellent recall against them. They remember the dangerous combination of the wild boy and the bitter girl whose marriage was tumultuous at best. Surely, the future they envisioned for us was set in a divorce court rather than a sanctuary. They were within days of being absolutely correct.


There is no human reason why Luke and I should still be wed today, much less serving the body of Christ. Even though we were not yet believers, our union started off well enough. But we soon faced the heartbreaking yet all too common reality of many young couples: The stress of working different shifts, having more month than money, and living the separate lives that developed in the midst of it resulted in our parting ways and filing for divorce two short years after the ceremony.


I despised the not-yet-preacher, and the truth is I loathed myself as much as him. We had hurt each other in a million ways, and all I could think of was getting away and starting over. We were within a week of our divorce being final when one night I received a bizarre phone call from him. He told me he had started going to church and wanted us to rethink what we were doing.


I went off the deep end! I spewed, “So you are turning into a religious fanatic—and you think that is going to fix everything?” I was so full of hate and bitterness, and it still makes me blush to think of all the horrible things I said to him about his newfound religion. He continued, very patiently, to call and tell me he was asking God for a miracle as the clock ticked toward the day our marriage would be legally over.


One night during the critical week before the divorce was final, I had gone to bed, still convinced divorce was the only answer. For some reason, I woke up around two a.m. and the tears began to flow. I missed my husband so badly I could barely lay there. I remember thinking, “What is wrong with you? You cannot stand him! It’s almost over, just hang in there.” I realize now that voice was Satan’s, bent on thwarting God’s plan for us. If you ask me how I know prayer works, or how I know God can turn a cold, black heart into one that can feel love, laughter, and joy (Ezek. 11:19), I will point you to that night because it is the one that changed everything.


I called Luke the next day. One conversation led to another, and we called the lawyer to stop the divorce proceedings. I tentatively moved back home with him, and we began visiting churches. I was still not very thrilled about the “God thing,” but I knew for some reason I wanted my husband back and this would play a part. Would it ever!


One night soon afterward, my hubby came to me in our living room and told me he had just prayed for salvation. He’d gone to church his whole life, but it was only at that time he truly accepted Christ as his Savior. I grew up in a totally different denomination, so this Baptist way of doing things was a little traumatic for me. I was glad for him, but I still wasn’t so sure what that meant for me. For personal reasons, organized religion held no real appeal, so I was very afraid of how having my husband become so radically different was going to affect me and our life together. Seemingly out of the blue, I began having feelings of not being good enough for this new man, and shame over my own sin slowly entered my heart.


For me, salvation was not a lightning-bolt experience but rather an intellectual process at first. I needed to understand it. 1 Corinthians 1:18 says, “For the message of the Cross is foolishness for those who are perishing but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God.” I know the Spirit of God enabled me to believe what I was hearing because obviously I could have still walked away a scoffer. We were attending my husband’s childhood church, and the pastor became a dear friend and mentor to us both. He started a small group in his home, and I was able to ask all my questions in a very nonthreatening environment. That man was very patient with me as I asked everything from “What does ‘once saved, always saved’ mean?” to “When do you think the rapture will happen?” Sometime in the midst of those sessions, I realized I had already made a decision. That decision was for life—both for Jesus Christ and until-death-do-us-part with my husband. I asked the Lord to “officially” save me and soon afterward made that public in the body of people who had prayed so faithfully for us both.


If this had been the end of the story I would have been happily-ever-after indeed. Little did I know our tale was only beginning.

The Call


Over the next weeks, I watched Luke transform in front of my eyes. Where once stood a rough-around-the-edges construction worker, I now found a softened gentleman. Where turmoil had churned, peace now reigned. A thirst for the world was replaced by an unquenchable longing to drink up every bit of the Word that he’d neglected for the past years.


I’m in no way suggesting that a called minister is on a plane above any other Christian, but what I will say is that even in my own spiritually immature state, what I saw happening in Luke seemed to be so much more fervent than what I saw in other men. And as for my own walk, Luke’s desire made me long for more. If I can be so biased, Luke was special—an opinion I still hold.


I tell you this because I want you to understand that after Luke finally told me he believed God was calling him to minister, my head was shocked, but my heart wasn’t. Something in me perceived our life had taken a twist that surpassed simply returning to our old lives a renewed version of our previous selves. We both were experiencing intense restlessness in our jobs. I had just left an entire career on a lark. And Luke, who had always loved his trade and coworkers, began dreading the alarm clock every morning.


Have you ever read the book The Return of the King in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy? In the end Frodo the hobbit leaves his home, the Shire, after risking his life to save it. When explaining to his best friend, Sam, why he has to go, he says, “There is no real going back. Though I may come to the Shire, it will not seem the same; for I shall not be the same.” In much the same way, the dailiness of our lives had taken on a sense of not-quite-belonging in the place that had always been familiar. Accepting the fact that God was calling us to serve Him in some capacity was like turning a dial to the last number on a combination lock. The “rightness” of it clicked, and suddenly the future was wide open.

Sign, Sign, Everywhere a Sign


Luke and I began to pray and seek God for what He wanted us to do—definitely a first in our married lives. I have no biblical basis for what I am going to say next, but I believe God answers the prayers of baby Christians with a shout instead of a whisper. God has taught us how to discern Him more through prayer and His Word now, but in those early days He had to throw out the flashing neon signs before our own lightbulbs lit up.


The first two of those signs were named Al and Doyle. Both of these men mentioned the name of Clear Creek Baptist Bible College within two days of one another. Al had just returned from a Constructors for Christ project, during which they had built new one-bedroom duplexes for married students without children. Doyle was a longtime supporter of the school. These days I call that type of communication from God a double affirmation, but then we were still thinking, “Hmmm.… That’s odd. I wonder if we are supposed to look into this?”


And God was saying, “Ya think?” while restraining Himself from knocking our foolish heads together.


Luke hesitated contacting the school to request information because he had no hopes of getting in. What I’ve not yet told you is that he didn’t graduate high school. What dropout had any kind of chance to go to college? He finally mustered the nerve to call, and we scheduled a visit. We still didn’t know for what. Both of us realized we wouldn’t be able to go right away but thought maybe the school could give some pointers on what Luke could do to become a student someday.


We traveled to the college and were in love at first sight. The campus was set in the mountains and was absolute lush, peaceful perfection. Arriving there felt like coming home, which at the time was heartbreaking because we knew this place couldn’t possibly be in our near future.


The following day we met the director of admissions, Jay. He was and remains one of the most boisterous, joyful, encouraging people we have ever known. Luke explained his full situation—particularly the part about not having a diploma. Luke expected to hear, “Sorry, son, but you don’t belong here. Come back in a year or two when you are good enough.” Instead Jay chuckled and said, “No problem!!”


No problem? How is not having a high school diploma not a problem?!


Brother Jay enthusiastically went on to explain there was a special program in this college for men who did not have a high-school degree. They would take regular college courses and also be tutored for high school in the freshman year. Students had two semesters to pass the GED, at which point they would have official student status and all classes would count toward a fully accredited degree.


And just like that, there was Neon Sign Three, and it blinked wildly, “Road Open!”


One patient, gracious God gave us three signs in an overwhelming answer to our many prayers—and they all pointed toward our new home. (One of the homes Al built, no less!)

Absolutely Certain (I Think)


Well, enough about us—for now anyway! Since I’ve shared a little backstory with you, I’d like to talk about what I believe is one of the foundational principles of our lives as ministry wives: the nature of our own call.


I realize each of our inductions into a life of ministry was met with different levels of enthusiasm. It’s not every woman who looks forward to low salaries and high expectations. Of frequent moves and misunderstood children. Of criticism and conflict. These are just a few stereotypical pitfalls that can understandably cause a woman to put the skids on any plans her man has for serving in vocational ministry.


As Luke was processing the call God placed on his life, I was blessedly ignorant of all the things I just listed. My church experience was limited to a few years of attendance as a child, so I really had no comprehension of the chew-’em-up-and-spit-’em-out reputation of churches where ministers are concerned. Naïveté is not always a bad thing—especially when knowing all the details could result in being too fearful to take the leap into God’s plan for your future.


But what part do you play in what God is asking your husband to do? Has God called you in the same manner as him? My short answer is to state plainly that every wife has the God-given role of being a faithful helpmeet no matter if her husband is a banker, a mechanic, or a schoolteacher. However, there are unique challenges and more assured uncertainties for the wife who has the high charge of supporting a man directed to leave the familiar behind and follow God’s call into the unknown. What are some of those challenges, and how should we who find ourselves in this situation react? Let’s learn from someone who has gone before us—Abraham’s wife, Sarah.

A Woman Out of Control


We meet Sarah in Genesis 11:30 and are told simply, “[She] was barren; she had no children.” In the Middle Eastern culture, Sarah’s dignity was directly tied to her being married and having babies. Since she was childless, she would not have risked staying behind without her husband, no matter how unsure she may have been about Abraham asking her to leave Ur. There was nothing but shame for Sarah in Ur without Abraham.


And conversely, there was nothing in Canaan for Abraham without Sarah. It was out of Sarah’s infertility that God would perform one of His most awesome works—the miraculous birth of a nation consecrated to Himself. Abraham could have found any number of women who weren’t suffering from the heartbreak of barrenness to be his wife. However, the supernatural birth of Isaac was the requirement for properly illustrating God’s glory through human hopelessness.


Long before Abraham met Sarah, God purposed for the two of them to be the human agents through whom He would bless the nations. Neither of them could have participated in God’s plan alone—each needed the other. That concept is no different for those God continues to call today to spread the good news throughout the world.


When I think of all the quirks and hang-ups that Luke and I both have, it is amazing to realize that for the most part we do not have the same ones. Luke is painfully shy; I’m the social extrovert. Luke is compassionate to a fault where I am more critical. Luke doesn’t understand drama, and I am a master of it; therefore, I am able to help him comprehend the underlying issues women have when he has no clue how to proceed. God placed us together as a team to complement one another’s weaknesses and to nurture the spiritual children He has entrusted to our care. I have total and complete faith in Luke’s ability and he in mine, and yet neither of us believes for a second we could have any measure of ministry success without the support of the other.


To the reluctant ministry wife, I understand your fear. I know your need to have some input on how and where you are going to raise your family. Even the wondrous event of God entering into covenant with Abraham on the assurance of an heir was not enough to keep Sarah from trying to control the way in which the promised child would come into the world. And thirteen years later, Sarah laughed when they were told once again she would have a son. Abraham’s seed could only be reckoned through Sarah, and that required a separate faith on her part—a willing participation in what God purposed to accomplish through their son, Isaac. Sarah wasn’t perfect. She could be harsh and unbelieving and manipulative. However, Hebrews 11:11 tells us God gave her strength to participate in the creation and blessing of nations because “she considered Him faithful who had promised” (NASB).


My personal feeling is that we can make the idea of serving in ministry way more complex than God ever intended. In the case of Abraham, God promised children more numerous than the stars in the sky and the sands on the seashore, but He didn’t ask him to birth them all! He gave Abraham charge over one piece of that promise—beloved Isaac. Sometimes we can get so caught up in the enormity of what God is asking us to do that we forget the Big Picture is composed of individual frames of obedience. I’m guilty of shutting down physically and mentally when the job seems way too big—and all God has asked of me is to trust Him one day at a time. It’s much easier to walk into the unknown if we can focus on being faithful with what is required of us today, trusting God for His faithfulness in all our tomorrows.

It’s Simple, Really


Are we called alongside our husbands? Absolutely. Is the life we are called to complex? You bet. But, based on my personal experience and the example of Sarah, I believe we are asked to do three things that will simplify our thinking and therefore help us to not only accept but look forward to a certain future.

We are called to trust.


1 Peter 3:6 says, “Just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, … you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear” (NASB).


This verse is found in a passage describing how a woman’s beauty is to be found internally instead of externally (verses 1–5). Among other things, Peter describes how a woman should be in willing subjection to her husband, even if he is not a believer. Dread shouldn’t motivate her in yielding to him, but rather a healthy fear of God’s mandate to honor her husband. Sarah’s singular obedience was dually blessed. She wanted to obey God by following Abraham. God’s laws are not arbitrary and are not given without benefit attached. Sarah’s reward was the gift of inclusion into the blessing of the nations that God had intended through Abraham. If we seek to surrender our lives to God’s will through His call on our husbands, we will be given the blessed distinction of being a daughter of Sarah.


So what does this type of obedience look like in a minister’s wife? Certainly the amount of reluctance you are feeling towards this role will dictate the type of faith it will take to accompany your husband into the unknown. Hear me well when I say that no matter how much initial trepidation I feel when God asks something of our family, He has yet to call Luke to a task without also piercing my own heart. It is always heartbreaking for me to talk to ministry wives who do not express any sense of calling toward their husband’s work. The reasons are endless, but most often the wife incorrectly believes that his ministry is just another vocation and has nothing to do with her, or she absolutely wants nothing to do with a life with trappings holding no obvious appeal.


You may ask, “Is it wrong if I don’t want my husband to be a preacher? Can anyone blame me if I don’t want to leave what is comfortable and predictable? What if I don’t want to move away from my extended family?” And bigger still, “What if I don’t trust my husband to discern God’s voice?”


If you find yourself feeling this way, then it is time to look past your wants and even those of your husband and straight to the face of God. Ask Him what He requires of you. Are you willing to trust Him with your unknown? Are you willing to obey even if you believe your man has some static in his radio? I wish I had an easy answer here, but in reality these questions can only be hashed out in some sincere facedown time with the Father. Because I continually remember the comfort and reassurance He has offered me with these same fears, I can promise you He’ll invade your heart with a much-needed peace in the midst of the pain that often goes along with hard-fought obedience.


Luke and I had no idea in the beginning what our exact ministry would look like. Would we be missionaries? Would he be behind a pulpit? Would we work in a parachurch organization? We had no clue. In the same way, be assured you won’t always know every detail of what God is asking of you. However, though the what may be unclear, we can always trust the motivation of the Who. Our faith in His promises and the assurance of His continual blessing upon the nations through our obedience in spreading His Word is enough to follow our man wherever God leads.

We are called to participate.


Hebrews 11:11–12 says, “By faith even Sarah herself received ability to conceive, even beyond the proper time of life, since she considered Him faithful who had promised. Therefore there was born even of one man, and him as good as dead at that, as many descendants as the stars of heaven in number, and innumerable as the sand which is by the seashore” (NASB).


I can identify with Sarah on so many levels. Though she is heralded as a model of faithfulness, we know she behaved badly in her doubt. Just think about her side for a bit. God made these covenant promises to Abraham but never mentioned Sarah’s name once until she was ninety years old—some twenty-five years after God first appeared to her husband. She knew God promised Abraham an heir, and when the plan she hatched to speed that along resulted in Hagar’s pregnancy, Sarah may have felt left out by God entirely.


Are you like the girl in the beginning of this chapter who felt no one needed her? Do you ever feel left behind to cook, clean, and take care of babies while your husband spends the better part of his days ministering to everyone but you? Are you convinced he is having a blast crusading for the kingdom while you are stuck at home in the castle—as Cinderella no less?


Obviously the season of life you are in dictates to what degree you are able to participate in the work of the church. Listen closely, young mothers! Your ministry in this stage of life is to those precious babies in your care. If you have your own desires to serve in things such as women’s ministry, Bible study, administration, etc., your day will come. Some of you are able to soldier on and do these things in addition to caring for your toddlers, but many are just not able to do it all. And you know what? You aren’t supposed to. If you find your home is suffering and your kids are begging for your attention, then they—not church ministry—take absolute precedence. Never, ever apologize for making your family first!


My children are no longer babies, but I am just as busy with them in other ways. Diaper changing and bottle feeding have given way to homework and taxi service to whatever sport they are playing at the moment. Though I consider myself active in ministry, there are many things I don’t do. For example, I don’t always make it to the funeral home every time someone passes, due to the simple fact that I would have to bring my kids and I don’t particularly think they enjoy going any more than I enjoy having to get them dressed and wrangling them once there. I do have a tradeoff, however—I help with the meal if we are hosting one for the grieving family. The kids can hang out in a back room, and the stress is greatly relieved for them and for me. Not to mention our darling church ladies always fix the kids a plate from the leftovers. This is my way of letting the family know I love them, I care, and I am taking part to the best of my current ability without making myself crazy.


No matter if you are a seasoned ministry wife or a relative newbie, there is always one thing your congregation will pick up on loud and clear—your willingness to serve despite your inability. Do you work outside the home but do your best to participate in the body when possible? The church knows this and for the most part will understand. (Oh, there will always be exceptions!)


However, what they will not easily forgive is when you take a seat in the back and refuse to play a part—able or not. There are many women who are embittered by the demands the church has placed on their family’s life and time, therefore they refuse to support their husband’s ministry or the church body in any way, shape, or form. We’ll discuss in a later chapter the delicate balance between home and church life, but let’s just say for now that this attitude is extremely unhealthy and can be a huge detriment to your husband’s relationship with the church. The support the congregation perceives your husband receiving from you and your willingness to care for them even if you aren’t able to do all that you’d like is a bridge between their hearts and your man’s. Just like Sarah, your participation in his call is not only nice but necessary for him to effectively live out what God will do through him, whether you realize it now or not.

We are called to hope.


A life in ministry ultimately calls us to one thing: a hope for a greater glory than current circumstances reveal. I can’t think of a higher charge than the invitation to participate in God’s good intentions toward His creation. Sarah considered God faithful in His promises towards her, and because of that, she was able to look past the difficult years of childlessness and hold the manifestation of God’s blessing in her own arms.


Many years ago I watched a mafia movie (I don’t have any idea what it is called) where a gangster was teaching his young son about trust. The boy was on a ladder, and the father repeatedly told him to fall backward into his arms: “Don’t worry! I’m your father. Do you really think I’d let you be hurt?” The boy was more frightened of his dad than the fall, so he let go of the ladder. As he fell the dad stepped to the side and let him crash to the ground. His son stared up in surprised pain as the father said, “Never trust anyone.”


I think many of us have the mindset that God is the father who is setting us up for a huge fall and that we can’t trust Him to keep something painful from happening to us. The difference is He is standing in your unknown saying, “You can ALWAYS trust me!”


He never promises our lives won’t hurt, but you know what? He will always cushion us. Certainly there are hard days but in the midst of them you will find laughter, just like Abraham and Sarah. Sometimes those giggles you share will be born out of pure joy and at other times from incredulous unbelief. The thing to always remember is that you and your husband are in this thing together. There is no part of what God intends to do through either of you that isn’t intimately intertwined with the love and support of the other. God has appointed your husband according to his gifts, and your first priority as his wife is to affirm him in this role. However, many of you have desires for ministry that will involve taking off in your own direction. That doesn’t mean you supplant your hubby, but in the appropriate season, there will be many ways in which your own talents will broaden the scope of what he is able to do alongside you versus going it alone.

If You Say So


One of the coolest things about this book is the fact that these are not just my own observations! I mentioned in the introduction that I have a blog called The Preacher’s Wife (www.apreacherswife.com). Blogs are explained in greater detail in Appendix A of this book.


As part of the research for this project I asked a series of survey questions to the ministry wives who hang out with me online. (I’m excited to tell you there are a lot of them!) These Round Table discussions provide advice and encouragement from women who are serving in the trenches just like you. More than anything, I pray this book confirms the fact you are not alone in your circumstances, your joys, your struggles, or your opinions. I am so thrilled to introduce you to an online community of women who absolutely understand where you are coming from. I’ve also gathered comments from laypeople. I think it is imperative that we hear from both perspectives in order to understand one another’s hearts and hopefully build stronger relationships.


Now let me be clear: I am in no way saying that “virtual” friends should replace your flesh and blood ones. What I can tell you is that I have met many women in person that I’ve first made contact with online through my blog and they’ve become my dearest confidants. Blogs are but one fresh and relevant way to establish connections with women who will support you in your role as a ministry wife. We’ll discuss those various avenues in a later chapter centered on friendships.


For ease of identification (and to show off my excessive-texting-abbreviation skills), my blog friends will be known as the M2M Girls (as in, Married to Ministry Girls). Make sense? Let’s see what they had to share about their perspectives on calling.

Round Table

“I never wanted to be a pastor’s wife. When my husband felt called (before we got engaged) I had doubts. But, what God wanted and had planned was far greater than I knew at the time. He eventually convinced my heart to follow Him.”—Sarah @ Life in the Parsonage
“I feel like my highest calling is to be my husband’s supporter, his encourager, his helpmate. I believe that my service in the home, especially at this season in our lives with small children, is the biggest call in that ministry. He could not focus on doing the greatest part of his calling—preaching the gospel—if I didn’t do mine.”—Crystal @ Life Is Nothing Without Him
“As a layperson, I think it is obvious when a wife doesn’t share her husband’s passion for ministry. I don’t believe a pastor’s wife has to be everyone’s friend or attend every church event. But I do think you can tell by her general demeanor if she is ministry-minded. And, rightly or wrongly, the vibe I get from her reflects on her husband.”—Lori (layperson)
“I felt a call to ministry years before I met my husband, and deep down I hoped that call meant I would marry a minister. My challenge came several years later when he started thinking about leaving the ministry and I thought, ‘Wait a minute. I married you as a minister, so you have to stay one!’ I came to realize that I was married to him—a person, not his title—and I would love him no matter what.”—Kecia @ Kecia’s Journey
“I don’t know of any other occupation that my husband could have that would require me to be a part of the ‘package deal’ (for free) except the ministry. That took some getting used to!”—Sherry @ Life at the Parsonage
“It’s easy to spot a woman who’s happy for and proud of her husband’s life/accomplishments/calling. It may not be easy for her to ‘follow’ when she is in the background with young children (early on), but she is proud of her man’s walk and character. That is a beautiful thing to see.”—Darnelle (layperson) @ All Things Work Together


Now That You Know:


How are you responding to God’s call on your husband? Seek out a seasoned pastor’s wife and ask her to share her experience with you for reassurance.
Take the power away from the vague fears Satan will give you about the uncertainties you face by writing down what scares you. Search out the truth of God’s Word to apply to each. Afraid of moving away from family? Claim Matthew 19:29. Worried your family will not be provided for? Pray Psalm 37:25.
Laypeople: Has a man in your congregation announced a call to ministry? He is often congratulated and much is made over his decision, but his wife may be struggling in his shadow. Take the time to encourage her by pointing out the gifts she has that will be an asset to him. If there isn’t a new minister in your midst, consider writing a note of encouragement to your existing pastor’s wife to let her know what a vital part she plays in her husband’s work.


****************************************************************************************
I requested this slim book because DH has finally given in to "the call". Those of you already involved in ministry know exactly what I mean. It would appear that Lisa McKay and her M2M girls, do as well.

In You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes: And Other Great Advice from an Unlikely Preacher's Wife, I discovered that I was not alone in feeling some "dismay" when dear old hubby came home with the announcement that everything you thought you knew about the life you were going to have together is completely wrong. That at first I merely humored him is also fairly common, according to Mrs. McKay.

My concerns about "proper" dress and demeanor, depth and breadth of responsibility, even my fears about being seconded to the church... it's all here. I like that Lisa McKay doesn't try to gloss over these things. There is an expectation of a minister's wife. I will sometimes feel like DH is choosing his "flock" over me.

You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes is meant to be a reassurance. Many women feel exactly the same way! (Whoa. Silly of me, but I had no idea.) At her website, The Preacher's Wife, Lisa put this volume together with the help of her blogging friends (we can certainly appreciate that, can't we?) who are all in a similar boat.

What's interesting is that at the end of each chapter, she includes candid reactions from these women. To read both about the blessings and burdens of the unique position occupied by ministry spouses is in fact, incredibly helpful. I was reassured.

I also love how heavily Lisa McKay relies on scripture as a guide. It's all too easy to move forward with what you think you know about God. It's much better too keep checking in with His Word. The Preacher's Wife knows this, and it shines through in her very helpful guide to navigating the world of "two-for-the-price-of-one."

So does her refreshing sense of humor. Thank you, Lisa for making it clear that being sober doesn't mean one should be dull and humorless. According to Lisa:
"The true definition of sober was a huge comfort because it helped me understand that God called not only us but our personalities as well as an aid to our husbands ministries."
She goes on to state that going against your true nature, being inauthentic, is absolutely not God's will. He made us after all. Hmmm. Just this moment I had to laugh, and thank Him. I have a pretty quirky sense of humor, and it's good to be reminded of just where it really came from.

If you are a preacher's wife of twenty years or just one, if your spouse is a seminary student, or a worship leader of any kind.. or if you're a layperson with a heart for compassion! you might want to join the You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes Online Discussion Group. The first discussion is scheduled for March 2nd. (It's a Tuesday.) Get the book. Join the group. Wear your cutest shoes, (unless they hurt, and you're in jammies - hey, I'm not judging!)



In the interest of full disclosure, I was given a copy of You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes by Lisa McKay to read by FIRST Wild Card and David C. Cook Publishing in exchange for a fair and objective review. I did not take payment from the publisher or author of this book beyond a copy of the book in question. Disclosure Policy
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