Unbelieva-Bill's FunPlex Coming to Montclair

Thursday, March 5, 2009

unbelieva-bills.jpgI just read in the Paramus Post that we are getting lucky.

Montclair will be home to an Baristanet first covered this story in December, reporting that Unbelieva-Bill's will move into one of the empty storefronts near Urban Outfitters on Park Street. If we're really, really lucky, American Apparel will move into one of those spots, too.

Unbelieve-Bills looks to be a funplex. Think Funtime Junction mixed with just a tad of Chuck E. Cheese.

The only other Unbelieva-Bills is in Waldwick, NJ. I just took a virtual tour of the 21,000 square foot facility on their website, and I see indoor playgrounds in primary colors, a climbing wall, bumper cars, a children's theater, and tidy gray tables where I can picture my kids slurping on French fries and Sprite.

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Posted by Kristen Kemp on Thursday, March 5, 2009 7:56 PM
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Would You Do It? Copy the School Email List to Promote Business?

Thursday, March 5, 2009

A tipster--a dad with kids in a Baristaville school--is not happy buy phentermine 37.5 online He received a business solicitation to an email address he only uses for his kids' school activities.

Apparently, one parent is using the private school email list to promote his personal business.

Is this a spamming technique only acceptable in the fiery pits of hell? Or is copying the school email list okay if it's done by a well-meaning parent trying to survive these tough economic times? See an example, below.

mortgage comeon.jpg

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Posted by Kristen Kemp on Thursday, March 5, 2009 12:00 PM
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Clearing Up Rumors About Local Thrift Stores

Thursday, March 5, 2009

kids trying clothe.jpgI was happy to read about over at the main Baristanet page this week. But what one of the commentors said threw a kink in my day:

"You won't be buying or selling used kids clothing anymore. It will all go to the landfills because of the CPSIA. Along with children's books printed before 1985 and all the great handmade items for kids, just to name a few things. This is a terrible ridiculous law and will have far reaching unintended consequences."


I did some quick research and found out this info is false. Even more alarming, someone commented on the Baristanet post on that the has stopped accepting children's clothing and items because of the new law. This rumor is also false.

But their comments were understandable mistakes. Here's the real deal on the new rules for second-hand toys and clothes. Thrifts and handmades will all stay open for now, thank goodness. You already know how much I love Milk Money.

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Posted by Georgette Gilmore on Thursday, March 5, 2009 7:30 AM
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Warm & Fuzzy: Little Shoebox Recycling Old Crocs

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

crocs.jpgMy house is crawling with old, stinky, mismatched Crocs. Last summer, we lost a few at the Glen Ridge Community Pool and surely at Edgemont Park, too.

But now there's something warm & fuzzy I can do with the old ones I still have. I can take a used pair--or put two mismatched Crocs together--to The Little Shoebox. Then owner Elaine Sinisi will recycle them as part of SolesUnited. Plus, she'll give me 10 percent off on my next pair. (And hopefully we won't lose those, too.)

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Posted by Kristen Kemp on Wednesday, March 4, 2009 10:29 AM
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This Week's Highlights: March 4 - 10

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

There are a bunch of events for Baristaville families this week. Check out Upcoming Events for everything that's going on. Note: We are working out a few bugs and hope to have it corrected soon Here are this week's highlights:

Learn to Knit
Bring your kids, ages 8 and up, to the Montclair Public Library after school today for a Knitting 101 class. It will run every Wednesday, through the month of March.
Celebrate Women's History Month
Listen to stories of strong girls and women from storyteller Julie Pasqual at the Montclair Public Library.
Party at Nutley's St. Patrick's Day Parade
Start your St. Patty's Day celebration early at Nutley's parade starting at 1:00 p.m. in front of Holy Family Church.  
Play with LEGOs
Help build a model of Montclair in LEGOs at the Montclair Historical Society.
Celebrate the Joyous Holiday of Purim
Celebrate with crafts, games, music and storytelling with the Jewish Cultural School adderallonline.org and Society at the Montclair Co-op from 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m and then head on over to see Montclair's own, Mama Doni perform a Rockin' Purim Concert at Shomrei Enumah.

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Posted on March 4, 2009 7:00 AM
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We Love Local Basketball Games: St. Thomas Girls Take Championship

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

stthomas1.jpgI love my baby-sitter, Sarah Elsby. I found her the way I find most of my critical survival information. I asked my hairdresser.

It turns out that Sarah, along with being a grad student at Columbia, is the basketball coach for 7th & 8th grade girls at St. Thomas the Apostle School in Bloomfield. So I've been taking my twin 3-year-olds to their Sunday games.

Attending local basketball games is a cheap, fun way to entertain and spend time with my kids. If they act up on the bleachers, no one cares. In fact, the other parents understand and chip in to help me and vice versa. Plus, I can solve all of my kids' problems with a quick trip to the concession stand.

So we've been following the awesome St. Thomas girls' basketball team all season. The games were nail-biters as the girls surprised everyone and just kept winning. So last Sunday, we were psyched to watch the team at the championships.

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Posted by Kristen Kemp on Tuesday, March 3, 2009 2:32 PM
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Fun Indoor Activities for Yucky Weather

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

ick snowday.jpgThe weather outside might be sunny and bright, but when the hairs in my nose freeze, I am reminded that it's just 22 degrees outside. I bow to my awesome friends who will take their kids for a sled ride today. Or maybe some parents are cooler than me and go out and make snowmen. I'll just apologize to my kids, Annabelle, Estelle and Soren, right now. Outdoors aren't my speed unless it's a sunny 70 degrees. (See me, left, hating the snow alongside my next door neighbor.)

The only thing I like about cold is the excuse to drink hot chocolate, and I definitely drink hot chocolate when it rains, too. Actually, I like to drink it on days that end with y.

For people like me who need indoor family activities, here's a list of my family's favorites when it rains or snows.

[Note to Spring: Please hurry. Despite the Mommy Drama involving my baby, a red toy and antibacterial wipes, we miss Verona Park.

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Posted by Kristen Kemp on Tuesday, March 3, 2009 1:12 PM
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Grrrr. Snow Day.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Of course the public schools aren’t your personal babysitters. Why should you expect them to occupy your children Monday through Friday, just because you pay [fill in absurdly high number] in property taxes? Still, a snow day might just leave you in the lurch.

My Ballot Box
Crisis Plan for Snow Days

Scramble for last-minute babysitter.
Fight with spouse over whose turn it is to stay home with the kids.
Tell your benevolent and saintly employer you’ll be working from home.
Boot and snowsuit everyone up and drag them to work with you.

View Results

Posted by Debbie Galant on Monday, March 2, 2009 10:23 AM
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Dr. Seuss' Birthday Celebration Canceled at the Library

Monday, March 2, 2009


Since the Montclair Public Library has declared a snow day too, you can't attend their celebration for Dr. Seuss' birthday at 4:00 p.m.  You can however, let your kids play on the Seussville website.  It may give you a full 30 minutes of time to yourself, which is like a lifetime when your stuck home on a snow day with your kids.  

Theodor Seuss Geisel was born on this day in 1904 and became one of America's most-loved children's books authors. At the time of his death in 1991, Dr. Seuss had written and illustrated 44 children's books, including The Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs and Ham, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and my favorite, Oh, The Places You'll Go.


What are you doing to occupy your kids today?  I'm about to go whip up a batch of green eggs and ham.

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Posted by Georgette Gilmore on Monday, March 2, 2009 10:07 AM
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We Met Dan Zanes & Pre-K Made Money

Monday, March 2, 2009

dzpostpic.jpgUPDATE: An estimated $15K was raised.
There was excitement in the air, and not because of the predicted snowstorm. It was because of the Dan Zanes and friends benefit concert at the Wellmont Theatre. Doors opened at 2:00 p.m. and the lobby was filled with raffle prizes to bid on, vendors promoting goods, and a bunch of kids ready to rock.
Pre-show, kids warmed up by running around in the big, open area in front of the stage. Dan Zanes and friends made their entrance at 3:00 p.m and Dan asked, "Are we here for a concert? Or are we here to have a wild party?" and Montclair was ready for a party. 
The band played some old favorites and songs from their latest album The Welcome Table  - Songs of Inspiration, Mystery and Times. Special guests: Derick K. Grant, La Bruja and Rebecca Naomi Jones came out and performed with the band. The area in front of the stage was filled with kids and their parents dancing and singing. Dan even inspired Eve Robinson, the Executive Director of the Montclair Community Pre-K to get up on stage and dance too.

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Posted by Georgette Gilmore on Monday, March 2, 2009 9:47 AM
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Dear Snow: I Missed You

Sunday, March 1, 2009

snow day.jpgThe massive snow storm that's blowing this way must be psychic.

It knows how much we missed it.

It knows how much we like to bundle up our little ones in five layers of sweaters covered by a winter coat that makes their car seats impossible to buckle.

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Posted by Kristen Kemp on Sunday, March 1, 2009 8:00 PM
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More Concerts Rock Montclair: Grandparents Who Rock & The Bloomingfields

Saturday, February 28, 2009

PWRconcert.jpgAs you probably know, Parents Who Rock threw a kids' concert last weekend at Montclair High School to raise money for the nationwide, locally based Little Kids Rock organization. Even though there were three concerts on that day, PWR's concert was packed. PWR diva Alma Schneider says, "Turnout was huge--around 300 people. Kids were running and dancing around the entire auditorium. We had a healthy kid's cafe, and Mama Doni was like the Pied Piper with a long line of kids following her around yelling, 'Oy vey!'

She reports they raised $5,000.

To help them reach their donation goals, PWR is throwing another adults-only concert tonight at Diva Lounge. This one is called Grandparents Who Rock.

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Posted on February 28, 2009 9:47 AM
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Woot: Our Interview with Dan Zanes

Friday, February 27, 2009

DanZanes.png  I'm not embarrassed. I am a huge Dan Zanes fan. I don't need to pretend that I have Alison Krauss on my iPod. Dan Zanes does it for me. Oh, and my kids dig him, too. We're groupies who have seen him 8 times. It will be 9 this Sunday at the Wellmont for his Montclair Pre-K benefit show.
Call me a soggy graham cracker. But Dan Zanes' music is real music. He covers American folk, rock, gospel and gets all multi-cultural. His music makes me--and my kids--happy.

And unlike Alison Krauss or Coldplay, Dan Zanes talked to me on the phone for MontclairKids.

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Posted by Georgette Gilmore on Friday, February 27, 2009 6:30 AM
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Crime In Baristaville Gives Me the Creeps

Thursday, February 26, 2009

133px-BloomfieldAve.JPGI shivered last night when I took my dog out. I looked over my shoulder, and I surveyed the sidewalks of Bloomfield Avenue where I live. I had a feeling a monster--maybe that scary lady at Mountain Auto Body--was right behind me with a car jack in her hand.

I had the creeps.

I used to get the creeps when I lived on 27th Street and 6th Avenue in Manhattan. The neighborhood was great, but my building was right across from a park where hookers and druggies camped out at night. I got used to them--but if a new druggie hooker showed up, I'd get the creeps.

This is why I moved to Montclair. I wanted to feel just a little safer while walking my dog. Oh, yeah, and I wanted a safer community for my kids.

After four serious crimes around town just in February, I don't feel that safe.

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Posted on February 26, 2009 12:00 PM
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This Week's Highlights: February 25 - March 3

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Our Upcoming Events calendar has plenty to keep you entertained this week. Check it often for all local happenings. Here are this week's highlights:
Get in Touch With Nature
Feb. 25
Head over to Van Vleck House & Gardens today with your preschooler and learn about Sugar Maple Trees. Take a walk, hear a story and do an activity.
Let the Little Gym Babysit
Drop off your kids (ages 3 1/2 and up) at the Little Gym from 6:00 p.m. -  8:30 p.m. and enjoy a kids-free night out.
Cut loose, footloose
Head over to Montclair Kimberley's Upper School to see their production of Footloose.
Attend a cool concert and help the Pre-K
Check out Dan Zanes & Friends over at the Wellmont. Proceeds benefit the Montclair Community Pre-K

Continue reading "This Week's Highlights: February 25 - March 3" »

Posted by Georgette Gilmore on Wednesday, February 25, 2009 8:00 AM
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Diary of Free Pancake Day at IHOP

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

pancake day1.jpgHey, these are lean economic times. So we headed right over to Free Pancake Day at IHOP on Broad Street in Bloomfield to get fat for free and Or almost free--we had to buy drinks to get the goods. Because we needed chocolate milk to go with our buttermilk short stacks.

It was a tough dinner in the trenches, but we survived. The only problem was, after such a butter-laden, carb-filled, sugary feast, our butts were the size of Belgium waffles. If you want a Belgium waffle butt, too, you can still make it to IHOP by 10 p.m. tonight. Or just be sure to get there early this time next year.

Here is my advice if you go:

  1. Be prepared to wait at least 20 minutes.
  2. Bring toys or iPhones or patience--service is understandably slow.
  3. The place is filled with college kids and big families with babies.
  4. Watch out for the blond homeless woman in the ladies' restroom who reeks
Keep reading to see photos from our pancake adventure.

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Posted on February 24, 2009 8:45 PM
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Free Pancakes at IHOP for National Pancake Day

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Picture 7.png

Today is Fat Tuesday, also known as Mardi Gras. Traditionally, the Tuesday before Lent was also called Pancake Tuesday, because all the fats, eggs and dairy needed to be eaten before the forty days of fasting.

But here's what you really need to know: IHOP has named today, National Pancake Day and they are giving away a free short-stack of buttermilk pancakes to everyone. All they ask in return is for you to make a donation to the Children's Miracle Network

National Pancake Day will run from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. tonight. 

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Posted by Georgette Gilmore on Tuesday, February 24, 2009 10:46 AM
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Very Important Breaking News Henry Winkler Coming to Short Hills

Monday, February 23, 2009

180px-HenryWinklerAug08.jpgI thought the only thing interesting in Short Hills was the Spa buy hydrocodone online without membership Or maybe that little mall out there.

But now there's another reason to schlep to the softer side of Essex County: Arthur 'Fonzie' Fonzarelli will be speaking on March 25. You know, Henry Winkler.

I don't understand what he's going to say, but the event is free, Henry Winkler always smiles a lot, and everyone in middle school and up is invited.

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Posted on February 23, 2009 12:04 PM
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Oscar Awards 2009: Are There Any Local Parties?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Picture 3.pngI stay up way too late for the Oscar Awards every year, even though I need to know who wins Best Film Editing about as badly as I need to know how much it costs to join The Short Hill Spa.

I'll be home rooting for Slumdog Millionaire. The Clairidge sold out yesterday when I saw it for the early bird matinee. I just hope M.I.A. performs Paper Planes, so I can swagga like her.

I will swagga at home. Alone. My kids will be sleeping. This actually sounds fun to me--watching the Oscars at home in the quiet of my Bloomfield Avenue house. I guess that means I'm mature (i.e. boring) and a parent (i.e. my social life is over).

But I'd still like to know: Are there any local parties? Or do you prefer to stay home--and awake way past your bedtime--too?
Posted on February 22, 2009 9:00 AM
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Get Greener This Weekend

Saturday, February 21, 2009

#5 recycling binGreen is a religion in these here parts. So I am not sure I should admit that I have put the milk carton in the garbage can once or twice in my life. A few of my friends might condemn me to fiery pits in hell.

But I can redeem myself with the Green Expo this weekend, and I can take those previously not recyclable yogurt cups to the local Whole Foods.

Montclair's first Green Expo begins Sunday, February 22, 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Learn about recycling, environmentally-friendly cleaning products, and how to make your home more energy efficient. Check out product demonstrations, presentations and info about Fair Trade. Montclair's First Green Expo is free, as we learned on Baristanet.
Green Expo
Bnai Keshet Synagogue
99 South Fullerton Ave.
Montclair, NJ 07042

Continue reading "Get Greener This Weekend" »

Posted by Georgette Gilmore on Saturday, February 21, 2009 9:31 AM
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Party With Your Kids at Kid Kat Kabaret

Friday, February 20, 2009

kid kat3.jpgTo me, there's nothing better than taking my kids to an event where I can also drink hard liquor. So tonight, we're heading to Kid Kat Kabaret at Piano's Bar & Grill in Bloomfield.

It's a win-win. We support local kids who come to perform, my little ones shut up to watch, and I get to drink gin and tonic.

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Posted on February 20, 2009 9:14 AM
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