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Don't Miss September 2011

Family-friendly movies and games everyone's talking about.

Donald McDermott

Unstoppable and Uncrustable
This back to school season, the makers of the ultimate on-the-go PB&J are teaming up with Olympic gold medal figure skater and mom Kristi Yamaguchi in the Smucker’s® Uncrustables® Unstoppable Family Photo Contest. From now through October 5, 2011, consumers can log on to www.uncrustables.com and submit photos of their unstoppable families, along with a caption of 140 characters or less explaining what makes their family so unstoppable. One lucky winner will be awarded the ultimate prize, an action-packed trip for four to Yosemite National Park worth $10,000! Beginning in January 2012, ten finalists will be posted on the site for a nationwide online vote. Visit www.uncrustables.com for official rules and complete details.

Create a Few Flix
Discover a fast, fun and free way to share your family’s adventures with Flixlab. The new iPhone app allows people to turn raw videos and photos from iPhones, including from the phones of others, into mini movies with just the press of a few buttons. From September 12-15, readers can enter to win an iPhone with the preloaded Flixlab application by visiting www.facebook.com/parentguidenews and answering the current contest question. For details, visit www.flixlab.com.

Academic Excellence
Just in time for the 2011-2012 school year, www.academicsuperstore.com is offering discounts of up to 85 percent on textbooks, software, supplies and other school-related items for teachers and families that home school children. To qualify for reduced prices, send in a faculty ID or other accepted document to the Academic Superstore site. Go online for great savings if you qualify.

One Fishy Tale
The touching true story of a dolphin named Winter makes its way to the big screen in Dolphin’s Tale. Alcon Entertainment presents this full-length feature about a young dolphin caught in a crab trap that is severely damaging her tail. It takes a dedicated marine biologist, a brilliant prosthetics doctor and a devoted young boy to bring about a ground-breaking miracle. Opening on September 23, the flick stars Morgan Freeman, Harry Connick Jr. and Ashley Judd.

What’s Cooking?
This fall, Hungry Jack teams up with Kelsey Nixon from The Cooking Channel show Kelsey’s Essentials to launch the third annual Use Up The Box Recipe Contest. At-home chefs are challenged to put down their shopping lists and think outside the box while creating their next family meal using a Hungry Jack product. Submit an original recipe in one of four categories, including Brunch, Comfort Foods, Appetizers and Sweet Treats, for a chance to win a year’s worth of groceries. Entries are accepted through November 2 at www.useupthebox.com.

Why Ask Why?
Super WHY!, the award-winning PBS Kids series that helps young viewers learn the fundamentals of reading through interactive stories, is back with five unique episodes. Highlighting the upcoming season is a new super reader named Woofster, who packs plenty of Dictionary Power. The first of the new episodes, “Woofster Finds a Home,” debuts on September 13. To learn more and find out when the show airs in your area, see www.pbskids.org.

What a Spell
Godspell, one of the most popular shows of all time, returns to Broadway by popular demand. The musical includes captivating performances, eye-catching costumes and sets, and a Tony-nominated score. Preview performances begin on October 13, and opening night is November 7 at the Circle in the Square Theatre, 1633 Broadway at 50th St., New York City. For tickets and further details, call (212)239-6200 or visit www.godspell.com.

Home Run Promotion
Baseball legend, author and honorary chair of Library Card Sign-up Month, Cal Ripken, Jr., partners with the American Library Association in September. Throughout the month, the Hall of Famer is getting featured in print public service announcements to remind families that a library card is an important school supply. Kids are encouraged to start the school year by signing up for a library card of their own. Learn more by logging onto www.ala.org/labrarycardsignup.

Dora’s Magical Trilogy
Introduce your kids to magical unicorns, gnomes and fairies when Nickelodeon Home Entertainment unleashes a trio of new episodes on one unforgettable DVD. Dora’s Enchanted Forest Adventures follows Dora and Boots on a number of journeys that take the cherished characters to an enchanted forest, Atlantis and the land of unicorns. The title hits stores on September 13.

Ain’t No Stopping Us Now
Think your unstoppable, on-the-go family has what it takes to win an action-packed trip to Yosemite National Park that’s worth $10,000? Smuckers is the judge of that for the Smucker’s Uncrustables Unstoppable Family Photo Contest. From now through October 5, families can log onto www.uncrustables.com and submit photos along with captions explaining why their families are unstoppable. Finalist entries are posted on the site for online voting, and the winning family receives the fabulous vacation for four people.

Big Red Special
Kohl’s makes back-to-school season extra exciting this year by offering exclusive Clifford the Big Red Dog books and plush toys. Presented as part of the Kohl’s Cares merchandise program, the variety of hardcover books and coordinating plush toys are available for a mere $5 each. Profits from the promotion benefit children’s health and education programs in communities nationwide. Clifford books and toys for the promotion are sold in Kohl’s stores and at www.kohls.com through the end of September.

This column appeared in the September 2011 issue.