This is Part Two of my “School’s Out for the Summer” blog trio; highlighting family friendly MUST-DO’s for our Montgomery County community families. I definitely recommend bringing the entire family to this place! And here’s a “Liz Tip” – Have at least 2 adults with you so that you can split up as needed to meet everyone’s excitement needs!
One of my absolute favorite places to take the family on a local "mini splurge" is King's Dominion! It's also the only good reason to brave the traffic of 95! Ha! However, good things come to all those who wait, which makes the 2-3 hour drive pale in comparison to the endless and heavily curated fun awaiting us at King's Dominion! Like a fine wine, King's Dominion continues to improve with age; continuously considering the "next" phase of excitement and technology at this beautifully designed park.
It feels like just yesterday when my family, friends and I attended their kickoff for the Spring 2017 season and I already can't wait to get back! Before I share more of our fun experience and some of our photos documenting the excitement, you all have to know about the updated and new attractions and offerings at King's Dominion, Doswell, VA:
*PRE-K PASSES - Your children ages 3-5 can get a FREE season pass!
*EXPANDED PLANET SNOOPY!
*FUN PIX photo pass to document your fun!
OUR KING'S DOMINION EXPERIENCE:
Our "smallish" group consisted of children ranging in ages from 3 to 16, not to mention the adults who are also children at heart! There was literally something for everybody. It was a beautiful and bright sunny day; perfect for strolls through the park from one attraction to another.
The new and improved Planet Snoopy was perfect for the young ones. They loved the Peanuts shows and character sightings in addition to the new rides. The stroller rental was the perfect way to keep the youngest two contained in between their activities. After all, we stayed until close, so we didn't want to tucker them out too much! The elder boys explored the park on their own, seeking the adrenaline rush of rides like the Berserker, the Rebel Yell, Delirium and the Crypt (just the thought of these make hairs on the neck of this afraid-of-heights mom stand straight up!). The rest of the adults enjoyed a variety of thrill rides as well.
We enjoyed endless concessions (who goes to an amusement park and turns down funnel cake and cotton candy????) and the kids even tried their hand at some of the carnival style games. The littles won a few game prizes and we did make sure to take home plush Snoopy dolls with us as a momento of our fun, day-trip!
My favorite part of the trip was spending time with family (& close friends) in a beautiful setting and watching them enjoy themselves. The littles had a ball.... their eyes widening with amazement at the sighting of Charlie and the gang, the looks on their faces when they finally found Snoopy, the squeals of happiness as they enjoyed the new PEANUTS 500 ride together, the determination in my son's face as he independently drove around at the Joe Cool's Driving School, the sticky faces and hands from concessions and the way they clutched onto their new Snoopy dolls. I won't forget the excitement from the elder kiddos when they returned back from their independent excursion; boasting about the scariest and highest rides and telling stories of how they motivated each other to meet their fears head on!
This trip to King's Dominion was by far the most memorable trip of the year for my family! If you haven't been there lately, I urge you to go check it out. If you haven't been there ever, you don't know what you're missing! Either way, SCHOOL IS OUT FOR SUMMER! So, what are you going to do to have some family fun and excitement!?! King's Dominion VA is just one car ride away!
This is Part One of my “School’s Out for the Summer” blog trio; highlighting family friendly MUST-DO’s for our Montgomery County community families. Whether you would like to partake in these activities as a family, or leave the kids with grandma, each of these exciting summer activities are definitely family-friendly!
The Quicken Loans National - A Big Deal for Me
My First Visit - It’s hard to believe that the Quicken Loans National starts Monday, June 26! I can remember back to last year; my first year of attending this golf tournament. The bright sun showed off the beauty of the green course which was perfectly lined with trees. Masses of people soaked in the sun as the enjoyed the golf course; engaged in the tournament and all of the activities that were offered during the one-week event. The best part was that there were tickets to fit all price points and a variety of activities for families, children and children at heart. I recall barely winning in checkers against a teen on a ‘gianormous’, life-size checker board! It was quite the match! I can’t wait to return again for a second time this year for more fun and excitement (i.e. “giant checkers” and more!).
The Quicken Loans National – It’s a GREAT deal of FUN for the kiddos
How many events claim to be “family friendly”, but leave the kids high and dry? The Quicken Loans National is not one of these events. Check out all of the excitement in store for kiddos and #DECLAREYOURDAY just for them!
“NEW in 2017, Kids Village is a destination for young fans and families to share a memorable experience while taking a break throughout the day. Located between The Yard and 16 green, Kids Village will feature mini golf, interactive games and activities tailored for the younger crowd. Face painters, caricature artists and mascot appearances will provide a nice break in the action.”
TGR LEARNING LAB YOUTH ACTIVITY ZONE
“A cornerstone activity within Kids Village, the TGR Learning Lab Youth Activity Zone will feature six stations highlighting the Tiger Woods Foundation's core curriculum… The TGR Learning Lab Youth Activity Zone is the perfect break from the action on-course for the entire family. The TGR Learning Lab will be open Wednesday from 12-3 p.m., and Thursday through Sunday from 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.”
“All kids are invited to attend the Junior Clinic on Wednesday, June 28, from 2-3 p.m. A perfect experience for the junior golfer looking to sharpen their skills or those just getting introduced to the basics, this free interactive clinic and exhibition will take place on the driving range and feature a PGA TOUR professional.”
“Seeing over the crowd can be difficult, so be sure to visit each of the youth viewing zones. Watching the rising stars on the PGA TOUR in action is now much easier for young fans. Open to kids 12 and younger, youth viewing zones are located at the driving range, 3 green, 17 green and The Yard viewing platform on 18 fairway.”
Also, there will be concessions on-site via several options including local food trucks; perfect for the kiddos! Check the map for more details!
See you at the Quicken Loans National 2017!
It is with sadness in my heart that I share about the closing of one of my favorite Montgomery County, MD restaurants. I was informed yesterday that our beloved Carluccio's US is now closed. Both the Alexandria, VA and the North Bethesda, MD locations remained closed as of Tuesday morning of this week. The unexpected US closure of this up-scale, UK-based, Italian restaurant was addressed with the following message from a Carluccio's spokesperson:
“After a careful review of our U.S. performance we have decided to close our two restaurants in the area" citing higher competition in the US market resulting in lower margins during their few years in the US. - Washington Business Journal
As the Coordinator for MOCO Housewives, I've had the pleasure of hosting two events at the Carluccio's in the Pike & Rose community within the past year; working closely with the fabulous management to introduce their impeccable menu and vibrant atmosphere to the MOCO Housewives network. At each event (the last taking place just two weeks ago) our guests had such an amazing time, loved the restaurant and looked forward to the opportunity to return as new patrons.
As a big fan for this brand and the Carluccio’s US team, I feel like I need to be pinched and awakened from a bad dream. The food was always delicious; as were their creative cocktails! The ambiance was amazing. The staff was attentive. The management was accommodating and authentically hospitable. I was truly hoping that Carluccio's would turn into something big here in the US; as it ought to have been! I will forever savor their delicious food and their big-hearted service in my heart forever!
Special thanks to the amazing management, Sebastiano and Logan, and staff for always making their guests feel at home!
Photos courtesy of naviimpressions; who I coincidentally first met at our first Carluccio’s Ladies’ Night Out on September 14, 2016.
Do you have a favorite Carluccio’s US memory, cocktail or signature dish? Comment on this blog post to share it below!
The Quicken Loans National is “the tournament [that’s] a centerpiece of the D.C. community and an eagerly anticipated summertime event for the last 11 years”. This year it will take place at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm in Potomac, MD; from Monday, June 26-Sunday, July 2.
#DeclareYourDay – What I really want to share is the array of ticket options available for this year’s event. Similar to last year, there is quite a selection of affordable and discounted tickets; not to mention FREE entry for children and active military!
*COMPLIMENTARY ENTRY: The men and women of our armed forces
*COMPLIMENTARY ENTRY: Children 12 years and under. Look out for more details on this family-friendly event! In the meantime, click here to see how the Quicken Loan National caters to your kiddos.
*DISCOUNTED RATES: There are also discounted ticket options for college students, for kiddos between the ages of 13 and 17, as well as Veterans Ticket Specials!
While Grounds Tickets are the most economical approach, there are a variety of “special memory” ticket options including epicenter action (ie. Rocket Mortgage MadHouse, Stadium Seats at 17 Green), your own private cabana, a private executive suite or the Deltek Capital Club.
BUY TICKETS | WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | INSTAGRAM
Declare your day today with the Quicken Loans National!
CARS 3 “Road to the Races” tour
Downtown Silver Spring; one of many stops on the national tour happening in anticipation of the new CARS 3 movie. Road to the Races, a nationwide tour invited fans of #95 to gear up for the upcoming big-screen release of Disney Pixar’s “Cars 3”; which took place yesterday, June 16! If you haven’t seen this movie, I recommend that you bring your family to this fantastic flick.
Title sponsors, namely Title Sponsors Include Alamo Rent A Car, Coppertone®, Crest®/Oral-B®, DOLE® and Mattel, provided fun activities that little guests participated in throughout the day.
Fans took part in a host of activities and had the opportunity to partake in a photo shoot with life-size, character look-alikes of five-time Piston-Cup champion Lightning McQueen, tech-savvy Cruz Ramirez and the sleek next-gen racer Jackson Storm! The kiddos contributed to a CARS 3 wall mural courtesy of Alamo Rent A Car, got the insight of being part of a pit crew courtesy of Coppertone®, created digital postcards and spun the “wheel of fortune” courtesy of Crest®/Oral-B, refueled on fruit and veggie smoothies courtesy of DOLE® and played in an interactive display of CARS 3 characters courtesy of Mattel.
Photos below show some of the excitement shared by my son, his friend and hundreds of kiddos that came out to this spectacular free event.
For details on the movie, please scroll below the photos. Let’s just say that Cars 3 the Movie turned out to be another brilliant movie by Disney Pixar. It’s definitely a great start to the summer for your family. Lightening McQueen is not packing up his bags just yet. And I loved the introduction of Cruz Ramirez! Great movie received
CARS 3 THE MOVIE:
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Presents CARS 3
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U.S. Release Date: June 16, 2017
Rating: G | Run time: 100 minutes
Voice Cast: Owen Wilson, Cristela Alonzo, Armie Hammer
Director: Brian Fee Producer: Kevin Reher
Blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers, the legendary Lightning McQueen (voice of Owen Wilson) is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician, Cruz Ramirez (voice of Cristela Alonzo), with her own plan to win, plus inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn’t through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage!
Directed by Brian Fee (storyboard artist “Cars,” “Cars 2“) and produced by Kevin Reher (“A Bug’s Life,” “La Luna” short), “Cars 3” cruises into theaters on June 16, 2017.
Thank you to all of the guests who were able to join us for our last event on June 7, 2017 at Carluccio’s, Pike & Rose. We had the best night considering their amazing, attentive service, delicious food and cocktails and a wonderful ambiance. They also surprised us with a delicious spread of their amazing, Deluxe Sharing Boards!
At this point we have a FULL calendar of fun networking events and you might just see some surprises pop up here and there (like giveaways and exclusive events), so be sure you are tuning in! All you have to do is LIKE and follow our page to “JOIN” our network! You can even follow us on Twitter and Instagram. Finally, please help our network to grow by inviting your friends to LIKE & follow along with our page for local events, outings and giveaways.
DOOR PRIZE: One lucky lady walked away with a $100 Carluccio’s gift card, a Microdermabrasion service courtesy of Ronald Shore Cosmetic Dermatology ($200 value) and a 1 Month membership to Sport & Health, Pike & Rose.
SWAG BAGS: Nestled in the Mom’s Organic Market (MOMs) reusable swag bags (so kindly packaged by the Carluccio’s staff) was fresh produce (apples, oranges and bananas) in honor of National Fresh Fruit & Produce month and “milk”weed seed with soil starter as a play on words to honor Dairy Month. All of this was courtesy of MOMs. Spring Mill Bread Company (located n Randolph Road, Rockville: Call today!) contributed decadent, moist brownies with 50% off coupons. Carluccio’s sweetened the pot with some chocolate covered coffee beans and even topped off the night by gifting cones of their delicious chocolate gelato; perfectly timed for National Chocolate Ice Cream Day! There were also several other items included: a Montgomery Magazine, a bag full of goodies from Ronald N Shore Cosmetic Dermatology, a healthy discount off of an Accupuncture session and quite a few items from our spot light businesses (listed below).
Make sure to check out our featured businesses below, connect with them on social media and keep them in mind for your shopping/service needs:
VENUE: Carluccio’s US, N. Bethesda. LIKE | Website
Carluccio’s is a beautifully designed Italian restaurant in the Pike & Rose community of N. Bethesda. With over 100 Carluccio’s across Europe, we should be thrilled that MOCO is home to one of their only two US locations! Make sure to read about their impeccably planned menu, both food and drinks, on our blog HERE!
Our Photographer: naviimpressions LIKE | Website
Reach out and ask about her current Montgomery County Housewives promotion!
Navjeet Saggu, of naviimpressions, has once again provided her beautiful photographs from our event. Navjeet takes amazing photos for any occasion, but specializes in family photography, professional headshots, boudoir photo shoots… and anything else a client might need!
Non-Profit Partner: Stepping Stones Shelter LIKE | Website
*You can always donate items from their Amazon wish list.
“Stepping Stones Shelter provides emergency shelter for families, housing six families at a time. Our emergency shelter program addresses the many barriers that prevent families from being stably housed. To do this, we offer comprehensive services such as case management to connect families to needed resources, employment counseling and assistance with housing searches and applications. The financial literacy and parenting classes, tutoring for children, and family-centered activities that Stepping Stones provides help move families forward. We also offer post-shelter support once our families are able to find housing for three years. With the help of our community and wonderful donors we are able to Move Families Forward."
Dr. Ronald Shore Medical & Cosmetic Dermatology, Janine Shore Facebook | Website
Dr. Ronald N. Shore is Montgomery County's top dermatologist and leader in medical and cosmetic skin care. As one of the DC areas most sought after practices, Dr. Shore Dermatology provides clients seeking a healthier and more youthful appearance with the safest, most technologically advanced non-invasive treatments and proven techniques for superior aesthetic and medical results with the least amount of discomfort and recovery time. Dr. Shore Cosmetic Dermatology of Rockville, MD blends the professional services of a physician’s office with the relaxing environment of a MedSpa.
Juice Plus, Cindy Chien Website | Email
Did you know that your body NEEDS whole foods (fruits and vegetables) to perform at it's best? It's like filling your premium car's gas tank (i.e. YOU) with premium gasoline....Cynthia Chien is a Certified Health Coach, representing Juice Plus and Tower Garden, and is well versed about providing individuals and their families with whole food nutrition. Contact her to improve your health conditions and to ask her about her next SHRED 10 JUMPSTART PROGRAM that takes place monthly.
LipSense by SeneGence Join the Group!| Product Questions?
Crystal Payton of Black Dress Red Lips offers the sexy, waterproof, smudge-proof, vibrant lip colors called LipSense! Want more sexy? Check out their skincare line. There’s nothing sexier than sassy, smudge-free lips and feeling beautiful in your own skin! Ask Crystal about her portfolio of vibrant lip colors!
Long & Foster, Trupti Mistri CALL TRUPTI TODAY! | Email
Trupti is a hard working, dedicated realtor serving the Montgomery County. It's not a coincidence that she is a top producing agent and has earned honorable mention in 2017 for her dedication to her practice and the service provided to her customers.Trupti will be able to answer all of those questions that you have been too busy to ask about listing your home or what to consider when purchasing your new place. Check out this stunning home in Boyds that Trupti is currently featuring! Beautiful, quiet neighborhood, gorgeous home, great school system and more!
LulaRoe of Mountainside LIKE | Join the Group!
The ladies of Mountainside LulaRoe (Donna & Kirsten) offer flattering, comfortable dresses and t’s as well as soft, buttery leggings with all aesthetics in mind. Join their group for free styling and take a trip to their boutique to be totally pampered in clothing heaven!
Pure Romance with Ms. Kacee Shop & Host a Party
Ms. Kacee represents a leading bedroom and body product line that we all know and love: Pure Romance. Kacee is available for parties for you and your girlfriends that demonstrate the "softer side" of Pure Romance, as well as products that can help you get your Fifty Shades Darker on! ;)
Rodan & Fields with Dani & Team Shop | Email
Dani & team are super dedicated to the Rodan & Fields' brand that has made such an impact on the confidence of so many women; from beautiful skin to now luscious, thick lashes; courtesy of Lash Boost.
Touchstone by Swarovski , Laura Granger LIKE | Shop
Laura and Robin displayed their gorgeous line of Swarovski gems and with half of the Touchstone by Swarovski, high quality product line costing less than $50, you can too! Every woman deserves a little sparkle in her life. Book a party and save even more (trust me!)!
Sport & Health, Pike & Rose LIKE | Call Today!
We also welcomed Pike&Rose Sport&Health team members to our happy hour. They showcased their vast calendar of activities that are included in the Pike & Rose offering. You want it, they have it for you. Reach out to Pike & Rose’s Sport & Health today and ask for your complimentary appointment and a day pass to experience their comprehensive fitness programs and gym firsthand.
Thank you to all (guests, local businesses, our venue) who participated in our last event on June 7, 2017 at Carluccio’s, Pike & Rose. Photos are now available, courtesy of Navjeet Saggu of naviimpressions. You can view any of our Event Albums HERE; including the full album from June 7. Enjoy!
At this point we have a FULL calendar of fun networking events and you might just see some surprises pop up here and there (like giveaways and exclusive events), so be sure you are tuning in! All you have to do is LIKE and follow our page to “JOIN” our network! You can even follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @mocohousewives. Finally, please help our network to grow by inviting your friends to LIKE & follow along with our page for local events, outings and giveaways.
RSVP to our next FREE Networking Event: Tommy Joe's, Gaithersburg (Kentlands) on July 13!
I’m Laura – wife, mommy and coffee lover! Im so excited to be the new face of MoCo Housewives and connect with you.
Im a Southern California transplant living life in the greater DC area and love meeting and connecting with new people like you.