Wow. Winter is really giving us a run for our money this year. Not only have my kids missed several days of school due to these major snowstorms, but the blog is now starting to feel the strain!
Each week I schedule my outing and then turn on the news and watch the weather reports to see if the outing will be a go. Oh the stress! Just kidding — I don’t REALLY stress about kids outings, but I would like my schedule to become a wee bit more consistent (Did you know they are talking about another storm for Monday? Ahhhhh!)
But fortunately for me, I scheduled last week’s outing on a Thursday. So even though almost 15 inches of snow fell in the town of Vernon following the blizzard, everyone was shoveled out and ready to go by Thursday morning and I could make the trip to Story-Plus at Jack & Allie’s Bookstore.
One of our wonderful OAAM readers suggested we check out this destination and their weekly kid-friendly events so I was so happy that the weather cooperated!
Jack & Allie’s is a children’s bookstore but it also holds many wonderful events for its young patrons each week. On Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11:15 am they offer a fun drop-in program they call Story-Plus.
Story-Plus consists of a story time followed by a song, craft or other fun activity.
So following school drop-off for my older kids, Sweetheart and I scooted up I-84 to Vernon where right off of the interstate we found the bookstore nestled in a shopping center on Hartford Turnpike. Parking was easy with a large parking lot right out front and the adorable sign right above the store’s entrance made me want to get inside and check it out. I know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover (pun intended), but doesn’t that sign make you think something absolutely adorable must be inside? . . .
And look at that. Pretty cute, right? In the center of the store was a little reading nook filled with comfy bean bag chairs and surrounded with books to explore. This spot was also where the story time and other store events were held.
Surrounding the store were shelves filled with all types of books, gifts, crafts, and more. Plus they offered a variety of areas where visitors could sit, relax, and check out some of the books for sale.
One thing I loved was that the store offers free gift wrapping. Purchase a present here and they will wrap it up and make it look perfect for your next gift-giving event.
There was also a section in the store set up for selling local products. I saw quite a few adorable items there!
Ooooh – Arts and Crafts supplies. I need to stock up on those before the next storm hits. Forget the milk and eggs, we always need more craft supplies!
Sweetheart fell in love with this baby doll during our visit and tried her best to convince me we needed to bring it home. “I’m not falling for your adorable sales approach, Sweetheart!”
In the back of the store was the crafting and party room area along with the restroom (with a baby changing table) and a Keurig coffee maker (help yourself!)
After snapping a million pictures and ooohing and ahhhing over all of the amazing toys, crafts, and books in the store, it was time for Story-Plus to begin.
The kids gathered around on the comfy seating area in the store’s center and the owner, Barbara, got started with one of my kids favorite collections, “Pete the Cat”.
As is the case with many activities these days, Sweetheart wasn’t interested in participating in story time when we first started (oh to be two years old!)
But soon she was engaged (and finally sitting up).
After story time there was a little dance party (a few Frozen songs may have been requested).
Then we headed into the back room for the craft project. I will give you one guess as to what the kids would be making . . .
Sweetheart is serious about her crafting skills.
The arts and crafts area is also where birthday parties are held. Yes, they have themed birthday parties right in the store! You can find some of the details below or go here for even more information.
Oh and this is in the running for the cutest thing at Jack & Allie’s. Kids can write a letter to their favorite story book character and they will write back. Just be sure that the child’s name and address are include with their letter.
Our return letter hasn’t arrived quite yet, but I’m sure Sweetheart will be ecstatic when she finds out there is something in the mail just for her.
Thanks again to OAAM reader, Naomi, for suggesting we try out this adorable destination! What a fun, easy way to spend the morning.
Mark your calendars now for Story-Plus or another fun event available at this sweet bookstore!
Story Time at Jack & Allie’s Bookstore
- Story-Plus: Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11:15
- General Store Hours:
- Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday: 10:00 am – 5:30 pm
- Thursday: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
- Saturday: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
- Sunday: Closed
- Check here for more information on store events.
- Stroller Friendly: YES.
- Coffee Mug Friendly: YES. Bring your own coffee or grab a cub from the Keurig machine in the arts and crafts area.
- Restroom: YES.
- Baby Changing Station: Yes.
- Parking: YES. Free parking is available in front of the building.
- Food for Sale: NO.
- Outside Food Allowed: YES. Snacks can be enjoyed in the arts & craft area.
- Cash Required: NO. The program is free so you do not need money to participate. (But don’t forget there is shopping available!)
- Dress Code: NO.
- Evening/Weekend Hours: YES.
- Discounts: NOT APPLICABLE
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