This past weekend, we were given four tickets to see the performance of “Junie B. Jones Is Not a Crook” at the Theatre Of Youth. Our excited kindergartener practically skipped her way into the theatre, excited to see the characters she’s been reading about in school come to life on the stage. Our son (age 3.5), was equally as excited – although we were admittedly a bit anxious to see how he would sit for an hour+ long performance.
When we got to the theatre, we grabbed our tickets from Will Call, purchased four new books from the merchandise stand, and met the helpful ushers who showed us to our seats. We had a few minutes to settle in and admire the venue, then the show started with the director giving a quick rundown on what to expect (an hour long performance and no intermission, followed by a Q&A session with the actors and a chance to take photos with the performers on the stage at the end).
The entire play was entertaining, colorful, and comical from beginning to end. It captured the attention of even the chattiest and most impatient audience members (AKA our little guy) the entire time, which is no easy feat! The characters were great actors/actresses and Marleigh was pleased to report that Junie B. Jones acted in real life just like she has been imagining her to be from the books!
5 things to know before you go to the theatre:
- Don’t be afraid to bring your kids! This is a youth theatre, after all. We were nervous that Huck would be too young to enjoy the show or sit through the entire performance, but the fact that the entire audience is made up of mainly children made it a much more relaxed experience than I was expecting. Just remember you know your child(ren) best. If you think they might get squirmy, try to grab seats on the aisle!
- Get to the theatre plenty early. There are a few metered parking spots outside the theatre, but most of the parking is at least a short walk away. Plan accordingly!
- There is no food or drink allowed in the theatre. I wasn’t sure about this, since it’s geared toward children (and if your kids are anything like mine, they require snacks every .5 seconds). The theatre doesn’t allow any food or drink inside, so if you use snacks as a last resort to keep your kiddos occupied, you’ll have to find a different option!
- Encourage your kids to ask questions! This was one of the coolest parts of the show, in my opinion. Kids are curious by nature but don’t always get the opportunity to hear the answers from the source. Hearing the little ones’ questions for the cast and crew of the play was a unique experience.
- Be prepared to go back for the next show. Marleigh especially was so thrilled with our day at the theater, I’m already anticipating her asking us when we can head back for another performance. The Theatre of Youth’s next play is Stellaluna, one of my very favorite childhood books, so we just might have to treat the kids to another afternoon outing!
We stuck around for the photo opp at the very end (highly recommend) and both kids were starstruck and excited to sit on the stage with the cast! All in all, it was a great afternoon creating lasting memories with lots of laughs!
Junie B. Jones Is Not a Crook is playing at the Theatre of Youth through this weekend, with showtimes Saturday March 24th and Sunday, March 25th at 1:00 and 4:00 PM. Tickets are available online at www.theatreofyouth.org.
Special thanks to the Theatre of Youth for providing us with tickets to experience a day at the theatre with our kiddos!
WRITTEN BY SAMANTHA JO
Samantha is the founder and owner of BuffaloMoms.com. Her friends call her Sam, Sammi, or Sammi Jo. Her two favorite people call her “Mommy.” Follow along with her ramblings on Twitter and Instagram, or on her personal blog, Kin + Kindling.