Family Friendly: Chicago Botanic Garden celebrates Japanese Summer Festival

Taiko drumming is one of the many Japanese traditions highlighted during the Malott Japanese Garden Summer Festival at the Chicago Botanic Garden Aug. 16-17.
Taiko drumming is one of the many Japanese traditions highlighted during the Malott Japanese Garden Summer Festival at the Chicago Botanic Garden Aug. 16-17.

Experience the arts of the Orient at the annual Malott Japanese Garden Summer Festival, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 16 and Sunday, Aug. 17 at the Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe.

Such popular activities as raking sand and making kites will be back this year, but there’s an exciting new addition.

“We’re going to be doing gyotaku, which are fish prints,” said Eileen Prendergast, Youth and Family Programs director. “The story behind the gyotaku is that a fisherman caught a really big fish. He wanted to be able to tell the story of the giant fish but he also wanted to eat it. So he made a print of it. It has become a traditional art in Japan.”

Prendergast laughingly added, “We won’t use real fish. We’ll use rubber molds that are made from real fish.”

Performances include a tea ceremony (10:30 a.m. ), traditional storytelling (11:30 a.m.), Taiko drumming (12:30 p.m.) and koto harp (1:30 p.m.).

For details, call (847) 835-6801 or go to chicagobotanic.org/forfamilies.

NIGHT RIDERS

Your kids will decorate their own cardboard cars and then climb in for Pajama Stories—Drive in Edition!, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 21 at Northbrook Public Library, 1201 Cedar Lane. You and your children will hear stories about going places.

For details, call (847) 272-6224 or go to www.northbrook.info.

OFF TO SEE THE WIZARD

Dorothy and her buddies will travel the Yellow Brick Road when “The Wizard of Oz” is screened at Elks Park, Mulford St. and Callan Ave., Evanston, after sunset Saturday, Aug. 16. It’s part of the city’s Starlight Movies in the Park series.

For details, call (847) 448-4311 or go to cityofevanston.org.

YOU WANT A PET WHAT?

A young boy dreams of getting a pet that doesn’t meow or bark in “My Pet Book” by Bob Staake. Your kids will learn about that unusual request at the My Pet Book Special Storytime, 11 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 19 at Barnes and Noble, 1630 Sherman Ave., Evanston. There will be a variety of related activities.

For details, call (847) 424-0848 or go to www.barnesandnoble.com.

IT’S A CRIME

…when those loveable, fluffy creatures become “Muppets Most Wanted,” after they inadvertently get involved in an international crime caper while touring in Europe. The family film will be shown at 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 16 and Sunday, Aug. 17 at Evanston Public Library, 1703 Orrington Ave.

For details, call (847) 448-8610 or go to www.epl.org.

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