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Indoor Swimming, Outdoor Ice Sculptures, Going to the Dogs and More …


With 6,500 square feet of watery thrills, Livonia’s Parks and Rec Leisure Pool is perfect for an after-school or weekend treat (it’s open until 9:30 p.m. on weeknights, 7:30 p.m. on Saturdays and 4:30 p.m. on Sundays). Plunge down a 250-foot water slide (the third largest in Michigan), meander around the lazy river in an inner tube and delight the little kinders in the zero-depth entrance water playground with sprays and geysers. Call before heading out since times are subject to change. Non-Residents’ Day Pass: $8 for children under age 12; $11 for ages 13-18; $14 for ages 19 and up.

15100 Hubbard, Livonia. (734) 466-2900;


Pony rides, a petting farm, a scavenger hunt, yummy winter treats (think hot chocolate, elephant ears and caramel cider), a warming tent and, of course, world-class live ice carving — all for free! The Plymouth Ice Festival, the oldest and largest ice-carving event in North America, is celebrating 28 years of frozen, family-friendly fun Friday, Jan. 21-Sunday, Jan. 23. Stroll through downtown Plymouth to view more than 100 breathtaking ice sculptures scattered throughout Kellogg Park.

Kellogg Park, across from the Penn Theatre, 760 Penniman Avenue. (248) 960-0700;


More than 6,000 dogs and 160 breeds of man’s best friend will be strutting their doggy stuff 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday-Sunday, Jan. 20-23, for “Best in Show” at the Michigan Winter Dog Classic at the Rock Financial Showplace in Novi. Must-sees include the Rock-n-Roll Dog Shows, Police K9 Demonstrations, the Border Collie Duck Herding Demos and an all-new puppy competition. Tickets prices: family plan, $35 (includes 2 adults and 3 kids); adults, $10; kids (7-12)/seniors, $8; 6 and under, free.

Rock Financial Showplace, 46100 Grand River, Novi.


Since the premiere of its 1994 Purim Shpiel at the Oak Park JCC, PuppetART has not only changed its name from American Russian Theater to Detroit Puppet Theater (which we think was a good choice) but has received accolades and awards aplenty. Now appropriately located in Detroit’s Theater District, this group of puppeteers and artists feature hand, rod, shadow, floor, tabletop and string or marionette puppets, as well as studio workshops.

This month, the puppeteers present Firebird, a Russian folktale of love, heroism, dragons and Baba Yaga, the Russian witch. The lush, elaborate production, set to Stravinksy’s Firebird, is sure to enchant. 2 p.m. Saturdays: Jan. 8, 15, 22 and 29. Performances are $5 for children; $10 for adults. Workshops are $8 per project.

25 East Grand River, one-half block east of Woodward. (313) 961-7777;


She’s crafty! So get her to the BBAC, where she (and, of course, her brothers) can create a special age-appropriate work of art — plus view exhibits, demonstrations and entertainment — on Sunday, Jan. 9, at the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center’s Sundays @ the Center. All workshops are “drop-in” to accommodate busy schedules; just show up any time between 1 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. for plenty of time to fi nish before the BBAC closes at 4 p.m. $5 per person; free for children under 4.

1516 S. Cranbrook Road, Birmingham. (248) 644-0866;



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