ETA: I originally published this post last week, the day before my blog was felled by a malware infection. That experience deserves a post all of it’s own.
We’ve attended most Ottawa family-friendly events over the course of the last six years and I have to say that even though it was our first visit the CHEO Teddy Bear Picnic is by far one of the best events we’ve ever been to.
The boys loved taking the OC Transpo Shuttle to the event site (Rideau Hall) and our only disappointment of the day was the ridiculous line-up for the pancake breakfast. I love pancakes but not enough to stand in line for 45+ minutes.
The boys and their stuffies (Super Teddy, aged 37 years and Pluto – Scooby Do’s cousin – aged one week) were seen by the Teddy Bear Picnic’s Medical admissions department and then sent to the surgery tent. Super Teddy, after many years of love, needed stitches. The boys watched with great interest as the volunteer doctors filled out their stuffies medical forms and checked them over for general health and wellness. I was surprised that the monkey offered up Pluto for needles after his own visit to the doctor last week ended in a vaccine and declarations that ‘needles are poopy’. And apparently visiting the dentist is fun only when it’s in the back of an army vehicle and the dentist is dressed in military fatigues.
There were midway rides, musical entertainment, paw-reading, face-painting, and games but we spent most of our time visiting the police and military vehicles. The boys wanted their turn behind the steering wheel of every vehicle in sight. After lunching in the shade with friends (umm fresh cut french fries) we headed over to the midway games, most which cost 10 cents and were simple versions of what you’d find at a fair (basketball hoop, choosing a duck, spin the wheel). The hands down favourite was the pie-toss: the boys and their friends all lined up to throw pie plates of shaving cream into the faces of amazing volunteers.
The prizes were fantastic: the firefighter came away with three passes to Saunders Farm and my stuffie-obsessed monkey walked away with a big pink stuffed bunny he named Rick. Stay tuned because Rick deserves his own blog post.
There’s nothing more fun after an exciting last day of school (involving restaurant and toy-related celebrations) then packing up three kids, on your own, and taking them to the RCMP Musical Ride Sunset Ceremonies. All I have to say is hooray for meeting friends there! Those extra hands (and eyes) proved invaluable when trying to wrangle all three boys on my own for 4 hours.
We got there really early (an hour and a half before the show started) and even though it made for long night it was worth it because I managed to get one of the few spots near the front row in the shade. I had snacks and water but next time I’d bring toys for distraction.
The ceremonial show is a little slow to start (for the younger kids) but the boys were riveted by the equestrian games once things got underway. Who could resist horseback riders with balloons and guns? The parachuters were the biggest hit of the evening (even more so than the horses) and our only disappointment is that the SWAT team no longer does a demonstration with the canine unit. The boys enjoyed the music, especially the Police Band, but nothing beat the members of the Canadian Forces jumping out of the sky.