Kickin' It Very Old-School
Batteries not required
If your kids are whining about not having PlayStation 2, maybe it's time to show them what passed for fun 200 years ago. The Cahokia Courthouse State Historic Site (107 Elm Street in Cahokia, Illinois, off Highway 57 and Route 3, 618-332-1782) is holding a Colonial Kids Day with old-fashioned games, craft activities and period puppet shows. Parents are sure to love the looks on their kids' little faces when they find out the old hoop-and-stick game didn't come with a dual-shock controller or a pause button. Admission is free, because who can put a price on time spent with kids who aren't in front of a TV? -- Paul Friswold
Meet the Beetles
Beetles are the hardcore punk-rockers of the insect world. With their shiny black carapaces and fantastic spiky mandibles, they look kinda like the dudes in Rancid. They even have tough-guy names such as "dogbane" and "yellow stag," which are punker than some legitimate punk names (such as Travis, for example). Beetles finally get the recognition they deserve this month at the Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House in Faust Park (15193 Olive Boulevard, 636-530-0076; $4-$5). Taking center stage in the Butterfly House's Spectacular Spineless Series, beetles and their role in the ecosystem are examined through games and hands-on activities. Of course there will be live appearances by many varieties of beetles, all of whom will be too surly to answer questions or sign autographs: How punk is that? Don't worry, the entomologist/handlers will field all queries. No one in the venue may look Dogbane in the eye. -- Paul Friswold
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