Thursday, April 2, 2020

Comcast Launches Xfinity Education Destination for Kids K-12 with Thousands of Free Resources #xfinitydads #partner

Comcast announced that it has made nearly 2,000 hours of programming and thousands of free titles available to Xfinity video customers to give children and parents quick and easy access to educational programming by grade level as part of the company’s comprehensive response to the COVID-19 crisis.

The collection is a joint effort with Common Sense Media, the leading source of entertainment and technology recommendations for families whose trusted age-based ratings and reviews are integrated into Xfinity on Demand. A subset of the education collection is also available on Xfinity Flex and across devices via the Xfinity Stream app and website.

“Today Xfinity is making thousands of hours of educational programming and resources available to our customers through Xfinity on Demand as we know how challenging it is for families right now who are suddenly homeschooling young children – many with both parents working, as well,” said Rebecca Heap, SVP of Video & Entertainment at Comcast. “The programming selected in partnership with Common Sense Media is available in one comprehensive destination organized by grade level to make it as easy as possible for parents to find what is most relevant to their family.”

Xfinity customers with X1 or Flex can say “Education” or, if their voice search language is set to Spanish, “EducaciĆ³n,” into the Xfinity Voice Remote to access content available to them by grades “K-2,” “3-5,” “6-8,” and “9-12” and also “for all ages” currently including:

  • Free programs from subscription video on demand services (SVODS) Bluprint, CuriosityStream, The Great Courses Signature Collection, Grokker Yoga Fitness, HISTORY® Vault, Kids Room and The Reading Corner.
  • Additional free adult continuing education programming from these SVODS focused on the “Mind,” “Body,” and “Soul” spanning biographies; podcasts on a range of topics including technology and business; yoga; dance; food and cooking; fitness; wellness; ballets and operas; and gardening.
  • Educational series from networks and streaming services including Animal Planet, HISTORY®, Nick Jr., PBS KIDS, Smithsonian Channel and more.
  • Spanish language programming available from networks including CBeebies, Discovery Familia and Kids Central.
  • Firsthand interviews and historical narratives from Voices of the Civil Rights Movement, Comcast’s signature commemorative programming initiative honoring the impact and legacy of the movement.

Additionally, Comcast has enlisted the guidance of Natascha Crandall, Ph.D., a psychologist and educator to program the content across English Language Arts, Math, Science, and Social Studies based on grade appropriate guidelines aligned with the current U.S. school curriculum.

“When schools close and other community places people congregate are off limits, it can feel overwhelming for families with kids, so we’ve partnered with Xfinity to curate a list of educational recommendations to help kids learn and keep them engaged during their time indoors,” said Ellen Pack, President of Common Sense.

Year round, Xfinity makes a safe and enjoyable kids and family entertainment experience a priority through a variety of features, including:

  • Kids Zone, which offers a safe environment for children to browse, shuffle and watch live TV, Xfinity On Demand content and DVR recordings that are appropriate for kids ages 12 and under.
  • Common Sense Media ratings and reviews, which help customers find recommendations that are right for their family.
  • Xfinity xFi, the Company’s simple, digital dashboard for Xfinity customers to personalize, troubleshoot, monitor, and control their home WiFi network, offers parental control features such as pausing WiFi and bedtime mode, as well as the ability to set up 30 different screen time schedules per profile, to help families manage screen and viewing time.

Beyond free education content and resources, Comcast has undertaken a comprehensive COVID-19 response inclusive of making its low-income Internet Essentials program free for new families for the first 60 days of enrollment, opening Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the country to anyone who needs them for free (including non-Xfinity Internet subscribers), pausing data plans, creating a COVID-19 news destination on X1 and Flex (in Spanish and English), and offering rolling free entertainment previews to Xfinity X1 and Flex subscribers.

NOTE: This release was provided by Comcast and I am posting it as I thought it would be beneficial for you, my readers! No compensation was provided.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

How interconnected we are with technology - so great!

I am just amazed at the amount of live content being shared during this time from people taking the time to have mini-concerts live streamed.

I love technology is now available to keep us interconnected in ways we have never been before and are able to feel like we are literally having a concert performed on the other side of the screen.

Two nights ago was the Dropkick Murphys, then earlier tonight was a dance and movement class with the family (and seeing our friends and neighbors also online!) following Tracie from Fab-YOU-Us, The Indigo Girls performing live, and now I stumbled across a recording of Andrew Lloyd Webber playing "All I Ask of You".

Wow.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Navigating an uncertain time together, as a community

We are currently going through a time that I can only think of describing as a defining time for us. It is one that we will remember for a while. The coronavirus pandemic is sweeping the world, and our country, affecting everyone in many different ways. During these times, as we are going through events with our loved ones, I have many thoughts racing through my head and think of how fortunate I am in so many different ways that it is important to always think of those who are less fortunate and think of how we can all spread the goodness.

Yesterday, a friend of mine posted on social media that he and another friend (both small business owners in the foodservice industry) had many cartons of milk and juice to distribute to anyone who needs or wants them, in our small community. Word spread and people came out to gather items for their families, friends and strangers, and it was a true act of kindness and generosity amidst all of this uncertainty.

I am so thankful and blessed to live in a community where we think to help one another and work together. I'm noticing friends offering tips and guidance of education while schools are closed and parents are left to figure out how to balance work and family in a new setting that we are all adjusting to on a daily and sometimes hourly basis.



Sunday, February 23, 2020

Apex Entertainment is a great place for family fun for everyone offering bowling, karting, arcade games, and more

Apex Entertainment in Marlborough, MA is a great place for family fun for everyone in the family with karting, bowling, arcade games, a ropes course suspended above the games, bumper cars, laser tag and more!

We had the opportunity to check it out and were quite impressed with all of the activities they had. You can easily spend a few hours in the arcade area alone, so be sure to plan ahead with how you want to spend your time otherwise your entire day will go by before you know it!

We went to try all of the activities and had an amazing time. My daughter absolutely loved the ropes course and the arcade. For the ropes course you’re harnessed in and then walk high above the arcade along with a guide to help you get from point A to point B.

While you’re there you can go bowling, visit the arcade, and have a great meal. We tried the largest pretzel in the entire state of Massachusetts and it did not disappoint!  There is truly something for everyone here.

I had a blast going on the karts with my brother in law and thank goodness they gave us the track to ourselves. He was a pro at driving the kart, but it was my first time and I didn’t know what to expect, so I bumped into the side walls a few times. They have a rule, if you hit the side wall three times you’re out. Thankfully, I didn’t do that and let’s just say I drive a car waaaaaaaay better than how I drive a kart.












NOTE: We were provided with passes for bowling, arcades and activities at Apex Entertainment in order to facilitate this review. No other compensation was provided. There was no promise made of a positive review and all opinions, as always, are our own.

Monday, February 10, 2020

New England Boat Show has a boat for every price point. Visit in Boston through Feb 16

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to check out the Progressive Insurance New England Boat Show. It is the largest and best boat show in the area with over 700 of the latest boats for you to check out. Every year, over 50,000 people go to the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center to see the latest in boating and marine accessories.

Insider Tip: If you go, be sure to bring shoes that can be easily removed and wear socks, as most boat dealers will want you to remove your shoes before walking on the boat.

I enjoyed going on a few of the boats and found it quite interesting how they conserve space in each and every corner. When we toured the queen of the show, the Azimut 45, a glamorous yacht from exhibitor MarineMax, the bathroom combined the toilet with the shower area in a genius layout!

They have a bunch of family-friendly features include Salt, the inflatable humpback whale, kids paddle pool, and even an interactive casting tank. For boating enthusiasts of all ages, there are hundreds of seminars on topics and the latest tech and accessories from exhibitors like Goose Hummock.

They have many booths with vendors and you can get some great apparel, as well as accessories for your next boating adventure. We visited a few of them and recommend checking out Wears Woody for some really comfortable clothing, AirChair for a super relaxing chair that’s perfect for the deck, patio or even beach. Lastly there was a neat company called PaddleNorth who makes inflatable paddle boards and kayaks which are quite rugged and perfect for an adventure on the water!

The Progressive® Insurance New England Boat Show will feature a brand-new entertainment hub, the Discover Boating Experience (DBX). DBX offers guests a place to relax and have a drink while enjoying a variety of topics, seminars and inspirational stories from exhibitors and industry experts.

Boating truly offers something for every lifestyle and budget. Many boats can be financed for $200 or less a month. You can try the Sea-Doo or Yamaha’s new personal watercraft for under $99 a month if you finance, or an entry-level wake sport, fishing or pontoon boat.

I have a deal for my readers to get $5 off one ticket or $10 off two tickets using promo code BOATG03. Kids admitted free.

You can enter to win two tickets to the through Wednesday… enter now!

a Rafflecopter giveaway














NOTE: We were provided with an experience to check out the New England Boat Show in exchange for this review.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Blue Man Group Boston celebrates 25th anniversary during February School Vacation Week

Photo courtesy of Blue Man Group
Week includes FREE pre-show activities, added matinees & special restaurant offers

BOSTON-   Blue Man Group Boston will celebrate their 25th anniversary in 2020 and to kick off the festivities, they’ll be bringing their brand of zany creativity to February School Vacation Week.

From Feb. 17-23, Blue Man Group at the Charles Playhouse will host 18 shows, including added weekday matinees at 1:00 pm and 4:00 pm. During each performance, guests will get in the anniversary spirit with commemorative 25th anniversary temporary tattoos.

In addition, pre-show activities will let guests get creative with two options offered during the week. From Monday, Feb. 17-Wed. Feb. 19, audience members can join the Blue Man tribe by choosing or creating their own design with glow-in-the-dark face painting. From Thursday, Feb. 20- Sunday, Feb. 23, guests can use various materials like feathers, gems and paint to create their very own mask to wear during the show.

“As we enter our 25th anniversary this year, engaging with the audience in creative ways is something we’ve always done in Boston and want to continue to do,” said Jonathan Screnci, Blue Man Group Boston Resident General Manager. “These added activities during school vacation week are definitely in that spirit and allows the audience to be a special part of our interactive show experience.”

After all performances, guests are invited to stay and meet the Blue Men and take the ultimate selfie to add to their collection. Doors open one hour before each performance, and, in addition to the special school vacation week activities, there is also a full bar and intactive music and light installation created by Blue Man Group called the “Lounge-U-Lum.” 

Blue Man Group Boston has also partnered with local Theater District restaurants to offer food specials and discounts during the week.

Fans can also save 25% off a family four pack of tickets for select shows Feb. 17-23.  More information about school vacation week activities, tickets and a list of special discounts offered by participating restaurants can be found at: https://www.blueman.com/boston/buy-tickets/school-vacation-weekAll activities are free for ticketholders. 

For more information about Blue Man Group Boston and the show experience, check out www.blueman.com. Children under the age of 3 are not permitted in the theatre.

The Globetrotters are coming to New England in February and March

We absolutely love going to see the Harlem Globetrotters. I remember going to see them as a kid and loved their zany antics, fun show and amazing basketball skills. It is fun to be able to take my kids to see the show that brings together families, friends and basketball fans. They are coming to New England and you have chances to see them in three cities in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island this winter.

The world-famous Harlem Globetrotters will bring their new “Pushing the Limits” World Tour to over 200 North American markets and 30 countries in 2020 including New England stops at the Tsongas Center in Lowell, MA on Feb. 19th at 7:00 pm, Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence, RI on March 20th at 7:00 pm, SNHU Arena in Manchester, NH on March 21st for two games at 2:00 pm & 7:00 pm and DCU Center in Worcester, MA on March 22nd 2:00 pm.

New to this year’s tour, and never been done before, include:
  • Holders of 21 current world records, the Globetrotters will attempt a new world record live at each game on tour this year, hoping to add to their list of impressive accolades and innovations.
  • In many markets, the Globetrotters will also perform their legendary pre-game “Magic Circle” ball handling warmups in the dark, using a glow in the dark Baden basketball to provide the illumination.
  • The Globetrotters will celebrate their fans by introducing “The Fifth Quarter,” a free interactive post-game autograph session where fans will have the opportunity to meet the Globetrotters stars up close and personal.
As part of the tour, the Globetrotters will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the four-point shot, a shot 30-feet from the basket which they introduced to the sport in 2010. The team will also bring back its popular “Magic Pass” pre-game event, which enables fans to come onto the court, meet their favorite Globetrotters for pictures and autographs, and even learn how to spin a ball on their finger just like the stars.

Tickets are available at harlemglobetrotters.com and the venues’ websites and phone numbers below:

Feb. 19: Lowell, MA at Tsongas Center
Phone: 866-722-8780
Website: www.tsongascenter.com

March 20: Providence, RI at Dunkin Donuts Center
Phone: 401-331-6700
Website: www.dunkindonutscenter.com

March 21: Manchester, NH at SNHU Arena
Phone: 1-800-745-3000
Website: www.snhuarena.com

March 22: Worcester, MA at DCU Center
Phone: 1-800-745-3000
Website:  www.dcucenter.com

NOTE: We are providing this information since we know our readers are Globetrotter fans. No other compensation was provided and all opinions are our own.