Moreau Lake State Park
Located just minutes off of Northway exit 17S is Moreau Lake State Park.  I remember coming here as a kid, but hadn't been back in years until last week.  Our main attraction for going was the beach and unforunately that's about all we did in the park, although there are wonderful picnic areas, a playground, hiking trails, camp sites, boating, fishing and so on.  Admission to the park is by car and costs $8 per car.  Best bet is to carpool with friends if you can.  I know that can be tricky with kids in carseats though.  You can also purchase an Empire Passport which gets you into just about any NYS park including Saratoga Spa State Park for free.  The pass costs $65 but is good until March 2010.  Now back to the beach!   

We arrived at about 10am on a weekday and found parking in the front row closest to the beach.  There were a handful of people there at that time, but it really started filling up closer to 11am.  The beach is definitely big enough to accommodate a crowd but certainly it's best to go on a weekday if you can.  I imagine a weekend could be quite busy.  The water was surprisingly warm and the beach was sandy and as as relaxing as any.  There are lifeguards who are no-joke when it comes to their job.  We witnessed a lifeguard checking the 'squishy-ness' of a football to make sure no one got hurt!  No floaties or swimmies are allowed, but the water is shallow and very gradually gets deeper.  We brought tons of food and snacks for the kids, but there's also a snack bar that sells food.  The french fries were quite good for just $2!  I will definitely be going back to Moreau Lake.  Maybe next time we'll try out some of the other ammenities like the playground or hiking trails.  I recently complained on Facebook that we have three lakes, Ballston Lake, Round Lake, and Saratoga Lake surrounding us but NO BEACH!  Moreau Lake is beautiful and has a beach.  It's a bit further away, but really only takes 25-30 minutes from Malta.  Take Exit 17S on the Northway and the park entrance will be immediately on your right.     

 
 
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Christine Rudnick!  Christine won the awesome 4th of July hair accessories shown in the picture.  Thanks to all who entered.  There will be more exciting giveaways on MaltaMama coming very soon!

 
 
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If you haven't already been to Virgil's House in Saratoga, todays rain may be just the excuse!  Robby and I went after a trip to the Saratoga Children's Museum and it was a great place to unwind and have a snack.  It's located on 86 Henry Street, across from Parting Glass.  Easily walkable from the Children's Museum or the Saratoga Library.  I like VH because there are no cell phones or laptops allowed.  It is extremely kid-friendly with a back room that has board books, puzzles, cars, and other miscellaneous toys for kids to play with.  My usually hard to keep in one place child was well entertained while I enjoyed a delicious cup of chai tea.  We split a yogurt & granola parfait which was also quite good.  The vibe is beatnik and homey with an eclectic mix of furniture and seating arrangements.  Saratoga natives, remember Madeline's coffee shop on Broadway back in the day?  Virgil's House reminds me of that.  I love places that make it easy (and even fun) to bring children.  I will definitely go back to relax.  We went mid-week and practically had the place to ourselves though it's probably much busier on weekends/evenings.  

BTW... Today is the LAST DAY to enter the Foxy Baby Designs Giveaway!  What the heck are you waiting for?  Leave a comment on the giveaway blog post by 8pm EST!

 
 
Register online!
Where can you send your kids (ages 5 and up) for a couple hours each night for one week during the summer where they'll have fun and a safe and positive environment?  If you're thinking grandma's house, you're wrong!  I'm talking about Vacation Bible School at First Baptist Church in Ballston Spa.  This year FBC of Ballston Spa (my church) is hosting an evening VBS program called High Seas Expedition that starts on Monday, July 26th and goes to Friday, July 30th.  Time is 6:00-8:30pm and the suggested donation is $5 per child.  I'm on the planning committee and will also be leading the music portion of VBS.  If I were you, I would pay the $5 just to see and laugh at me in my 9th month of pregnancy teaching 80 kids songs and dance moves, yes, I said dance. 

In any case, I am posting this information because I think VBS is a great and fun learning experience for children, regardless of your faith or religious association.  At the very least, you can enjoy a week of evenings free to grocery shop, eat out, catch a movie, etc.  Register here online or email me for more info: colleen@maltamama.com.  Have a great weekend and don't forget to enter the giveaway!     

 
 
The Saratoga County Fair doesn't start until July 20th this year, but you can enjoy a 'fair' atmosphere this weekend at the Ballston Spa Family Fun Day.  It's on Sunday, June 27th from 3pm-9pm.  The event has fun for the entire family with games, food, music, contests and prizes.  The day will end with a fireworks display.  Admission is free, but I would imagine the games and food will cost money.  It still sounds like a fun way to spend a Sunday afternoon.  Get directions to the fairgrounds here if you need them.  

This event is sponsored by the Village of Ballston Spa, Town of Milton, Town of Ballston. For more information, contact the Village of Ballston Spa office at 885-5711.
 
 
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To me, nothing says summer more than free concerts in the park, and just about any park will do!  There are lots of free concerts all around Saratoga County and I will definitely keep you in the loop on as many as I can. 

This Thursday the 24th is the first free concert in Wiswall Park in Ballston Spa.  The band is called The Lustre Kings and they are very popular and quite good.  The best part is that the free concert immediately follows the Farmer's Market (which is from 3-6pm on Thursdays).  You can come early, shop the Farmer's Market for snacks, and then rock out with The Lustre Kings!  The concert goes from 6-8pm. 

 
 
East Side Rec
In my circle of friends, this park is known as the Lake Ave Fountain Park, but it is really just East Side Rec on the corner of Lake Ave (aka Route 29) and Granger Ave in Saratoga.  It's a nice park for a hot summer day because of the fountain of course!  Other than that however, this park does not offer much for the little ones.  Tennis courts, baseball fields, and a very small playground located too far from the fountain to enjoy are the general amenities.  It does have bathrooms (great for a pregnant woman at a fountain) but they are quite a walk away underneath the baseball field grandstand.  Despite these few shortcomings, a picnic lunch and bathing suit for the kids are really all that's needed for this to be a very fun summer activity. 

I personally enjoy the Beekman Street Playground/Fountain more than East Side Rec but if a fountain is all your child needs to keep entertained, East Side Rec is great!  Parking is best and less busy on Granger Ave.  The entrance to the fenced-in park is also on Granger.     


 
 
Foxy Baby Designs
I'm excited to announce the first giveaway on MaltaMama just in time for 4th of July!  Foxy Baby Designs offers affordable and trendy hair accessories for newborns up to adults. Best part is they are designed by local mama Kyla Scherer! 

Kyla is giving away a 4th of July Hair Accessory package (shown in pic) that includes a red, white and blue headband 1/2" woven with high quality grosgrain ribbon.  The "bow" is called a korker bow and is attached to a no slip alligator clip.  It can be clipped to the headband as shown, or worn alone.  The three little clips are also no slip alligator clips, each measures 1.75" long.

You have until 8pm EST on Monday, June 28th to enter. 
Winner will be randomly selected and announced on Tuesday, June 29th 
You can have up to THREE entries!  Here's how to enter...

1.  Visit
Foxy Baby Designs  Etsy Store and leave a comment on this MaltaMama blog post with what your favorite 'Foxy' item is = One Entry 

2.  'Like' Foxy Baby Designs AND MaltaMama on Facebook and leave a comment here = One Entry

3.  'Follow' @
FoxyBabyDesigns AND me @ColleenPierre on Twitter and leave a comment here = One Entry

 
 
Father's Day is on Sunday and hopefully you already know that!  Here's a great Sunday activity for dads and the family.  It's the 15th annual 'Sunday on the Farm' at Arnoldhaven Farm in West Charlton. 
What does that mean?  Well, ice cream sundaes for one (event is sponsored by Stewarts!), tours of the dairy farm, wagon rides, live music, food demos, a farmers market, a spelling bee and an ice cream eating contest! 

The event starts at noon and goes until 4pm.  The address is 1298 Sacandaga Road, West Charlton.  I'm not sure where that is either, but GPS should get us all there!  Get more info at SaratoagFarms.   

Have a great weekend everyone and Happy Father's Day to the dads out there!  Come back and visit next week because I'll have an exciting giveaway announcement.  You won't want to miss it!   
 
 
Whipple City Festival
This weekend offers two great Saturday options, and a fantastic Sunday event I will post about tomorrow.  At noon on Saturday in Saratoga is the annual Flag Day Parade.  It starts at North Broadway by the currently-being-renovated City Center.  Saratoga parades are great fun because it's rare that Broadway is closed off to traffic.  There will be lots of groups marching, bands, and a military aircraft flying overhead.  if you're interested, the Elks Lodge in Saratoga (north of Route 50) is hosting a picnic after the parade with food and refreshments for everyone.     

Also this weekend, Greenwich (East of Saratoga, out Route 29) is having their 19th annual Whipple City Festival.  Not sure where the name came from, but it's a big shindig in the VILLAGE of Greenwich.  Click on the Whipple City link for a schedule of all the festivities.  Saturday looks great with live bands, street activities and animal exhibits.  It's all free and good family fun.  If you've never been to Greenwich, it's worth the drive.  A very cute village with unique shops and restaurants and some of the best homemade ice cream around at the Ice Cream Man.  As I said, i've got a great Sunday event too, but you'll have to wait for tomorrow.