Keeping kids occupied can be a big challenge. Here are some ideas for activities to keep young ones engaged — body and mind — in Billings this week:
With Halloween on Wednesday, there's still time for kids to create fun and hardy bags for trick or treating.
Take an old white or pastel pillow case and let the child use fabric markers to draw on a fun design.
It can be lots of Halloween-themed items, such as candy corn. Or turn the case into a jack-'o-lantern's or ghost's face by drawing in just the mouth and eyes, along with a nose, if it's a pumpkin.
Use the markers to color in the designs.
If desired, add colored stones, rick-rack, ribbons, glitter or other decorative items with waterproof glue. Or a parent may help sew on the decorations.
Also add some reflective tape so that the bag will make kids more visible to traffic on Halloween night.
The bags are much sturdier than plastic or paper bags, have a wider opening and hold more candy than most trick-or-treat bags. And they are more likely to survive being dragged along the ground by a smaller child.
What: Trick-or-treating downtown.
When: Noon-5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 31.
Where: Downtown Billings merchants.
Why: Kids and their parents have a great time going from business to business in a safe environment.
Pick up a shuttle that stops at the YMCA, the Downtown Billings office and CTA.
And stop by the High Plains Women’s Museum in Suite 120 of the Valley Building at 207 N. Broadway. There, kids and adults can try on a variety of Halloween hats for fun and laughs.
Cost and information: Free. A map of participating merchants is at www.downtownbillings.com/halloween.
What: Trick-or-treat through the dorms.
When: 5-7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 31.
Where: Rocky Mountain College residence halls.
Why: Kids can get treats and keep warm in a well-lighted setting in two of the halls, which are enclosed, while the other two are more exposed to the elements.
Participating RMC residents will have signs posted on their doors if they are home to greet Halloween guests.
What: Haunted House — School of Misfits.
When: 6-10 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 31.
Where: Boys & Girls Clubs of Yellowstone County, 505 Orchard Lane.
Why: The family can enjoy activities for all ages while supporting programs and services that Boys & Girls Clubs provide to more than area 600 youths daily.
Bonus events: For other haunting events, visit billingsgazette.com/calendar.
What: Lockwood K-8 Talent Show.
When: 6:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 2.
Where: Lockwood Schools' Sturdevant Gym in Lockwood.
Why: It's a great way to celebrate the skills of area youngsters and be entertained at the same time.
Cost: $4, adults; $2, students.
Some reminders: Monday, Oct. 29, is a PIR Day for Lockwood Schools, and students will not have classes that day.
On Wednesday, Oct. 31, and Thursday-Friday, Nov. 1 and 2, Billings Public Schools will have parent-teacher conferences in the elementary schools.
For more things for kids and families to do on the weekend and throughout the week, see billingsgazette.com/calendar, where you can also submit your own family-friendly public events.
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