If you are the architect of your child’s future, and developmental toys are the building blocks, we suggest hiring Manzanita Kids as the contractor.
The Seattle-based venture, launched by David and Adrienne Minnery, turns walnut, cherry, and maple woods into modular building sets, stackers, puzzles, and blocks. The husband-and-wife duo draws upon their backgrounds (his in woodworking, hers in education) to create age-appropriate, ecofriendly, and safe toys for kids.
Our favorite pieces include the building walls and extender kits that let littles construct forts, castles, and underwater seascapes big enough for tushies to plop down in the middle and play. The modular stacking puzzle is designed to teach spatial relations to toddlers, but we think it’s intriguing enough to place on the living room coffee table.
After all, the family that plays together stays together.
Available online at etsy.com, $14-$148.
Photo: Courtesy of Manzanita Kids
Saint Patrick’s Day Irish Festival
What: Follow the rainbow to free dance and music performances.
Why: Face painting and rock climbing await little leprechauns.
When: Sat., noon-6 p.m.
Where: Fred B. Hartnett Ponce Circle Park, 2800 Ponce de Leon Blvd. Info at 305-445-7550.
Miami Art Museum’s Second Saturday
What: Watch Young Patronesses of the Opera’s take on Little Red Riding Hood and scribble a fairy tale-inspired drawing.
Why: Free admission adds to the magic.
When: Sat., 1-4 p.m.
Where: 101 W. Flagler St. (305-375-3000).
Family Fun Fest
What: Make the rounds of free interactive stations, learning about Biscayne Bay’s shipwrecks as you go.
Why: Complete all five and get a button (almost as cool as sunken treasure).
When: Sun., 1-4 p.m.
Where: Biscayne National Park, 9700 SW 328th St., Homestead (305-230-7275).