Wolves exhibit, Dutchess County Fair top kids' events

The Wolf Conservation Center in South Salem hosts

The Wolf Conservation Center in South Salem hosts a number of kid-friendly events. (Credit: Maggie Howell)

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Looking for fun children's activities this weekend? A county fair provides entertainment especially for pint-size guests. For creative tykes, two local stores offer a break from back-to-school shopping with free games and arts and crafts. And for fun with nature, a guided hike lets youngsters explore the great outdoors, and a wildlife conservation center gives kids the opportunity to learn about wolves. Find all the details here.

Now through Sunday: Dutchess County Fair

There's free admission for kids under 12 and attractions geared specifically to the younger set at this all-ages event. Little ones will have the opportunity to encounter critters both common and rare at the free petting zoo, take a ride at the Magical Midway Kids Fun Zone, and enjoy kid-friendly live performances such as Bixby's Rainforest Rescue.

When: 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday, Aug. 21-26

Info: Dutchess County Fairgrounds, 6550 Springbrook Ave., Rhinebeck; 845-876-4000; www.dutchessfair.com; $15 admission, free for children under 12; ride tickets are $20 for 12 rides; free parking

Friday: Game Day at Little Joe's Books

Kids of all ages are invited to come in, unplug and challenge a friend to a face-to-face game at Little Joe's Books, a Katonah shop devoted exclusively to young readers. Favorite board games such as Sorry!, Connect Four and more will be available for free play all day, and shoppers will find thousands of titles for children and teens, as well as puzzles and games.

When: 10 a.m. Friday, Aug. 24

Info: Little Joe's Books, 25 Katonah Ave., Katonah; 914-232-7278; littlejoesbooks.com; free

Saturday: Free arts and crafts at Straight A's

From tots through tweens, you bring the creativity and Straight A's will provide the rest for a free arts and crafts session. This week, kids will find all the materials they need to make their own "All About Me" book. No reservations are required for this drop-in program.

When: 1-3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 25

Info: Straight A's, 180 East Post Rd., White Plains; 914-437-8922; www.straightaseducational.com; free

Saturday: Kids' hike in Mount Kisco

Westmoreland Sanctuary invites curious kids of all ages a chance to look, listen and explore the forest ecosystem on a guided nature walk. Learn to spot seasonal signs of animal life in the woods. Bring a bottle of water and dress appropriately for the outdoors. The approximately ¾-mile hike will take about one hour, and kids must be accompanied by an adult. RSVP by Aug. 23.

When: 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 25

Info: Westmoreland Sanctuary, 260 Chestnut Ridge Rd., Mount Kisco; 914-666-8448; www.westmorelandsanctuary.org; suggested donation of $5 per person for nonmembers

Sunday: Pack Chat for Kids

Animal lovers age 4 through 8 and their parents can learn fascinating facts and myths about wolves in an age-appropriate presentation. Then take a short walk up the trail to make the acquaintance of some of the four-legged residents on exhibit, including two critically endangered species. Advance registration is required for the 90-minute program.

When: 11 a.m., Sunday, Aug. 26

Info: Wolf Conservation Center, South Salem; 914-763-2373; nywolf.org; $13 for adults, $11 for children under 12

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