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Don't Miss September 2012

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

Donald McDermott

Hotel Hijinks

Families live it up at the virtual five-stake resort in Hotel Transylvania (3D). The new animated release from Sony Pictures follows Dracula as he tries to maintain his hotel, deals with human gate crashers and gathers some of the world’s most famous monsters for his daughter Mavis’s 118th birthday. The film opens in theaters on September 28.

It’s Time

Aardman Studios, the Academy Award-winning creators of Wallace & Gromit and Shaun the Sheep presents Timmy Time. Aimed at preschool-aged kids as part of the Disney Channel’s popular Disney Junior block of programming, the stop-motion series focuses on the title character, an adorable baby lamb. Learn more at us.timmytime.tv.

Laugh Out Loud

Teen sensation Miley Cyrus and Golden Globe-nominee Demi Moore star in the coming-of-age story LOL. Cyrus portrays a teen girl navigating her way through the daily challenges of high school, friendship, social networking, romance and an overprotective mother. LOL is available on DVD, Blu-ray and On Demand.

Maximum Competition

Summer may be behind us, but the spirit of the season lives on in Summer Stars 2012 from Maximum Sports. Choose from 18 thrilling arcade-style sporting events, play career mode to achieve national victory, create an athletic journey and pick from seven spectacular venues. The title is available for the Playstation 3 and Nintendo Wii game systems.

Re-Finding Nemo

The unforgettable tale of a little fish lost in a big ocean returns to the silver screen on September 14. In honor of the flick’s 10-year anniversary, Pixar re-releases Finding Nemo in theaters nationwide for a limited time. Relive the endearing story with Dory, Marlin, Nemo and an sea full of characters.

More Carly

America’s favorite teen webshow stars are back for another round of hilarious antics as iCarly: The Complete 4th Season (Nickelodeon Home Entertainment) comes to DVD. The outrageous season includes Sam and Freddie as a couple, the return of crazed fan Nora and a visit from First Lady, Michelle Obama.

Shoot for the Stars

A young gymnast turns trials into triumphs in the uplifting film An American Girl: McKenna Shoots for the Stars. Offered in a special Blu-ray combo pack, the heartwarming original release encourages girls to believe in their family, friends and, most of all, themselves. Pick up a copy exclusively at Wal-Mart, American Girl Stores and www.americangirl.com.

Hot New Release

NYC-based children’s performers Hot Peas ‘N Butter invite families to listen to their latest CD, Catchin’ Some Peazzz. As the band’s first lullaby compilation, the album is a feel-good collection of soft songs, some of which are in Spanish. Find a copy in stores or at www.hotpeasnbutter.com.

Color in the Sky

Win a trip to the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, which runs form October 6-14. Enter at www.itsatrip.org/balloonfiesta2012 through September 16. One lucky grand-prize winner receives a $3,000 getaway to the awe-inspiring affair. Each year, the gathering draws an amazing number of pilots, visitors, volunteers and colorful hot air balloons.

Create a Chocolate Wonderland

Envision yourself as a shop owner with franchise opportunities from Chocolate Works. Locations delight shoppers as they choose from countless candy choices to fill their bags and chocolate molded items. The company’s unique three-tier chocolate experience includes retail environment, corporate sales, and parties and other special events. If you think you have what it takes to run a Chocolate Works location, head to www.chocolateworksnyc.com or www.scarsdalechocolate.com or call (516)561-1570 for Franchise Disclosure Documents.

This column appeared in the September 2012 issue.