Category Archives: School Breaks

What’s Happening at the Y

National Police Week May 12th – 18th
In honor of National Police Week,  all area police officers are invited to try the Y for free during the week. Sign a waiver at the Welcome Center and show your badge or other proof you are law enforcement and try out the facilities free of charge. Please spread the word to your family and friends in law enforcement!

Family Fun Night May 14th,  6:00 – 7:00 pm
Bring the whole family to the Y for some family fun time. Featuring arts & crafts, bouncy house, gym games and more! Free and open to all. Family Fun Nights occur on the second Tuesday of every month.

Summer Camp Open Houses
Learn about the Y’s summer camps, meet the staff, take a tour, and discover which camp is right for your child.
YMCA Camp Pikati -Day camp at the West Suburban YMCA in Newton, MA for ages 3-15
May 11th, 2:00 – 4:00 pm and June 10th, 6:00 – 8:00pm
YMCA Camp Chickami – Day camp in Wayland, MA for grades 1-10
May 11th, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm and June 6th, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
YMCA Camp Frank A. Day – Overnight camp in East Brookfield, MA for ages 7-16
May 19th, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm and June 2nd, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Annual Meeting and Awards Dinner – May 16th,  6:00 – 8:00 pm
The West Suburban YMCA’s Annual Meeting & Awards Dinner celebrates the people who help fulfill the promise to strengthen the community – the members, staff, and volunteers! Join as they introduce new board members, take a look back at highlights from 2018, recognize generous donors and the people who make a difference at the Y. Please RSVP if you plan on attending the event:

Safety Around Water Open House – May 19th, 12:00 – 2:30 pm
Join the Y for a free water safety open house, which includes a swim lesson and parent resources. All ages are welcome and encouraged to attend! Water safety and learning to swim are vital life skills that should be taught just as readily as looking both ways before crossing the street. With summer right around the corner, this is a great time for parents to remember the importance of equipping children (and themselves!) with essential water safety skills. Please RSVP to this event here:

Fitness Competition Fundraiser -May 22nd, 6:00 am – 8:00 pm
Lace up your sneakers and get ready to compete in the Y’s first ever Fitness Competition Fundraiser to benefit the West Suburban YMCA’s Annual Fund! You’ll be tested on three events: Maximum number of burpees in one minute, maximum number of wall balls in one minute, and maximum number of sled pushes in one minute. Participates can check in with a member of the fitness staff to complete the challenges! Entry fee is $25 and all proceeds go to the West Suburban YMCA’s Annual Fund, which allows the Health and Wellness Department to provide access to many life-changing programs such as Y Empower for young girls and Livestrong at the YMCA for cancer survivors. More information:

Intro to Women’s Self Defense Class – May 29th,  6:00 – 9:00 pm
The West Suburban YMCA is proud to collaborate with the Newton Police Department to host an Intro to Women’s Self Defense class. In this three-hour class, participants will learn risk reduction strategies, physical techniques and basic combative moves. During the final part of the class, the Newton Police Instructors will put on protective suits and allow participants to practice what they just learned on a moving person. This event is free to attend, but pre-registration is required as space in the class is limited.

Family Bingo Night – May 30th, 6:00pm
Bring the whole family for a fun night of pizza, BINGO, and prizes! Cost is $20 per family if you pre-register, or $25 per family at the door. All proceeds go directly toward the West Suburban YMCA’s Annual Fund, which provides opportunities for children to grow socially and emotionally among their peers, have a safe space during after school hours, and gain access to healthier habits through swim and sports classes. More Information:

Annual Golf Tournament – June 3rd at the Charles River Country Club
Since its inception, this charity golf tournament has raised over $1.25 million for the Y and those they serve. There is still time to sign up as a player or sponsor the event. To learn more, contact Andrea Newman at 617-244-6050 x3097 or

Volunteers Needed: Can you read and write in Spanish, Chinese or Russian?
The Y is seeking volunteers to help with a one-time translation project that will help them better serve our community. If you are interested in helping or would like more details, please contact Kristen Hydinger at

New Summer Creative Arts Programs
Fill this summer with singing, dancing, painting, and more! With Creative Arts, youth can explore their creative side through group lessons, unique projects, and exploring what it means to be an artist. Explore exciting art mediums in the new Explorations! program for ages 6-10, learn to collaborate in the Summer Rock Band program for ages 8-17, or try the new Vocal Intensive Workshop for ages 12+.

2019-2020 After School Enrollment Open Now
The West Suburban YMCA Out-of-School Time program is committed to making a difference in the lives of every child and family who choose the Y for after school care. Their program is open to children in grades K-8, and transportation to the Y is available from most elementary schools in Newton. Enrollment is open for the 2019-2020 school year!

Work at the Y: The West Suburban YMCA is hiring for a variety of full-time and part-time positions in child care and youth development, aquatics, fitness and more. Great benefits, free membership and professional development opportunities. Please contact Laura Snow at or visit

Financial Assistance is always available for Y Memberships and Programs
The West Suburban YMCA is a non-profit charitable organization and it is their mission to never turn anyone away due to their inability to pay. Please contact our Membership Department at 617-244-6050 x3653 for financial assistance with membership or program participation.

Want something to do during April school vacation?

Stories! Movement! Art! will provide students in Grades 3 – 6 the opportunity to tell stories through their art! By using low-tech materials, they’ll create art that physically moves or uses optical illusion to showcase movement! This program runs April 15th – 19th, 1:00 – 3:30 pm in the Carriage House at Gore Place in Waltham . Fees are $20.00 for the whole week, or $5.00/day. Tickets available at

What’s Happening at the Y in April

Try the Y – Sundays in April are free! Present a valid ID at the welcome desk and the daily guest fee will be waived.

Go Lisa and Phil, West Suburban YMCA Boston Marathon Team! – Newton residents Lisa D’Agostino and Phil Stern are running the Boston Marathon for the West Suburban YMCA. Lisa and Phil have spent months training for the race while also raising funds for the West Suburban YMCA. Together they have raised over $27,500 for the Y’s Annual Fund! This will be Lisa’s first marathon and Phil’s 21st. The West Suburban YMCA was provided one official bib number from the City of Newton and one from an anonymous B.A.A. member and YMCA supporter, allowing the Y to have two runners for this year’s event. Go Lisa and Phil!

Kids Night Out –  April 5th, 6:00 – 10:00 pm – Parents, drop off your kids for a fun Friday night with the Y’s staff. They’ll order pizza for dinner and keep the children entertained with games, swimming, movies and sports. $25.00 per child for Y members and $30.00 for the community. A 20% discount is offered per child for those with two or more children. Go out for the night and take advantage of this low-cost alternative to hiring a babysitter.

Poetry Night – April 5th, 7:00 – 9:00 pm – celebrate National Poetry Month at the Y! Organized by Barbara Helfogtt-Hyett of Poemworks, the event features readings by two local poets, then guests are invited to participate in the open mic portion of evening to share their own written work. This event is free and open to the public.

April Vacation Programs for Grades K-8, April 16th – 19th – Spend a fun and engaging April Vacation week at the Y! Y vacation programs offer an active environment for students in grades K-8. Featuring a mix of activities to keep kids happy and healthy all day, including free swim periods throughout the day. April Vacation programs will run April 16th –  April 19th. Full and half day options and daily rates to accommodate your needs!

April Vacation Songwriting & Recording Workshop – April 16th – 19th –  a 4-day collaborative workshop where young musicians (ages 10+) write and record original music. Learn all the tips and tricks that go into recording, mixing, and mastering an album!

Financial Assistance is always available for Y Memberships and Programs – The West Suburban YMCA is a non-profit charitable organization and whose mission is to never turn anyone away due to an inability to pay. Please contact the Membership Department at 617-244-6050 x3653 for financial assistance with membership or program participation.

April Vacation at Newton Free Library

Chocolate Make & Take, April 13th, 11:00 am – 4:00 pm, Teen Area
Interested in learning how to make chocolate creations? Alongside Sadina Shawver, a former chocolatier, you’ll learn to make chocolate as well as take that chocolate home! Online registration (required) starts March 18th. There are four separate 1-hour sessions until 4:00 pm.

Teen MTG, April 16th, 3:00 – 4:00 pm, Teen Area
Meet up to play Magic: The Gathering after school. Moderated by a local Newton South student. Bring your decks or use the ones there!

Official Book Launch for Danielle: The Chronicles of a Superheroine by Ray Kurzweil, April 16th, 7:00 – 8:30 pm, Druker Auditorium
Join inventor, futurist Ray Kurzweil as we explore his vision of an extraordinary future where our brains are connected to the cloud, we have hybrid biological/nonbiological thinking, our human intelligence is enhanced a millionfold and everyone has the power of ideas to solve the world’s grandest challenges. Meet Danielle, the protagonist of Kurzweil’s new book, Danielle: Chronicles of a Superheroine – a precocious girl with super-intelligence who has the courage to question the assumptions that limit our imagination to solve world problems. Imagine if we were all Danielles! A book signing will follow.

Escape Room, April 17th, 12:00 – 7:00 pm, Special Collections/Teen Area
You’ve trapped yourself and your friends in a room. Well done! You and your team must now solve the unsolvable, unlocked the locked, and escape the inescapable within 45 minutes. Think you can do it? Test the Haunted Newton Escape Room, and while you wait, enjoy some snacks. This escape room was made and tested by the Teen/Tween Advisory Board. Online registration (required) will allow teams to sign up for 45-minute time slots. Grades 5-12.

Project Cosplay: Make You Up,  April 17th, 7:00 – 8:30 pm, Teen Area
Looking to dive into cosplay? Step up your game with special effects makeup! Makeup and cosplay enthusiasts, Erica Yuen and Julia Carlaw, will show you tips and tricks on how to make up your face. Grades 5-12.

Teen Movie: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, 2:00 – 4:30 pm, Teen Area
Join to watch the Academy Award-winning Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018). Spider-Man themed snacks and refreshments will be provided. Rated PG. Runtime 117 minutes.

NNHS Science Team Trivia, April 18th, 6:30 – 8:30 pm, Teen Area
Are you a science mastermind? Join the fun and test your mastery of science! The Newton North High School Science Team will challenge players to a night of science trivia from a variety of categories from chemistry to computer science. Stretch your brain and win exciting science prizes! Come alone or with friends! Teams can be up to 6 people, and we can match you with fellow devotees. Pizza and drinks will be provided. Teens and families welcome.

For more information contact Megan Coffey at

Bidding for the NECP Online Auction begins March 28th

The Newton Early Childhood Program (NECP), Newton’s only public preschool, hosts its largest school fundraiser of the year starting March 28th.

Get ready to bid for great deals on restaurants, summer camps, birthday parties, gym memberships, and more! Over 100 amazing items from across Newton and the Boston area. Auction proceeds will fund education enrichment programs, community-building events, and classroom materials for our city’s youngest learners.

Visit NECPPTO.ORG/AUCTION. Bidding ends April 6th at 9:00 pm. Good luck!

Plugged In’s April Vacation Camp

Plugged In’s April Vacation Camp is open to ages 11-18 of all skill levels. Students will get placed in a band with band members their age and skill level. Each band will write and record a song and make a music video. On the last day, bands will perform in a livestream performance from Plugged In for friends and family to watch online.

The Plugged In Band Program is a unique non-profit rock band program in Needham teaching kids of all skill levels and needs about using music to help others. In addition to ensemble band classes, private lessons, songwriting workshops, summer camp and community performances, five times a year students perform in benefit concerts that raise money for causes and organizations chosen by the students themselves. Plugged In provides a nurturing and supportive community to which young musicians of all levels and needs feel a sense of belonging, have an opportunity to express and be acknowledged for their musical interests and a chance to use their music to help others around the world.

Registration is also open for Plugged In’s 2-day Songwriting Workshop on May 25th  & 26th and Summer Day Camps in July and August. Registration for private lessons is ongoing. Registration and more info about all Plugged In programming is at

Founded in 2002, Plugged In now has over 150 students from all over Massachusetts. Some of our students experience emotional and learning difficulties, such as ADD, depression, and low-self-esteem and/or have special needs such as autism and Asperger’s Syndrome. In the loving and non-competitive atmosphere at Plugged In, all differences are transcended through a shared passion for music, the teamwork involved with using music to help others and an atmosphere of compassion and fun.

April break = Stories! Movement! Art!

Want something to do during April school vacation? Stories! Movement! Art! will provide students in grades 3-6 the opportunity to tell stories through their art! By using low-tech materials, they’ll create art that physically moves or uses optical illusion to showcase movement!

The program will take place inside the Carriage House at Gore Place in Waltham (the large building next to the parking lot). This program is $20.00 for the whole week, or $5.00/day. Tickets:

April 15th – April 19th, 1:00 – 3:30 pm

April Vacation Public Speaking Workshop

Public Speaking and Critical Thinking Skills For Your Child!

Lumos is offering 2-day Public Speaking workshops during April break. Your child will love Lumos’s friendly instructors and fun activities as they learn about:

  • Speaking Confidence
  • Impromptu Speaking
  • Debate Fundamentals
  • Argumentation and Reasoning

Right now you can use the code COMMUNITY to get $20.00 off. To register, go to Email or call 781-474-3359 with any questions.

April 15th-16th, April 17th-18th, or April 19th-20th

New April Break Program for 8th and 9th Graders

Are you looking for a fun, affordable, hands-on, and valuable learning experience for your 8th or 9th grader during April break?

Has your 8th or 9th grader expressed an interest in looking for a summer or after school job but isn’t sure where to start or has been turned down because of their age or lack of experience? This program might be for them!

The City of Newton’s Youth Services department is offering a four day half-day workshop at Newton North High School for 8th and 9th graders – When I Grow Up: Discovering Strengths, Passions, and Career Pathways. This week- long, half day workshop will:

– Help students discover personality strengths and build skills in fun, hands-on, team focused games and activities

– Teach 14 and 15-year-olds about where to look for first jobs and what they need to apply

– Discuss and practice how to prepare for first time interviews

– Introduce students to different career pathways during daily visits from local entrepreneurs, business owners, city officials, and even the mayor!

– Give students the opportunity to learn and practice real-life workplace skills with new friends to prepare for first time jobs

Register online at

For more informatoin, please contact Quinn Etchie at or 617-796-1436.

Vacation Week fun with HIstory

February vacation week programs at Historic Newton. Bring your family to Historic Newton for a full day of historic fun. With Historic Newton educators, try out colonial-era games, explore the museum exhibits, make a diorama, roll your own candles, and more.

Activities run from 11:30 to 1:30 and from 2:00 to 4:00 with a break for lunch. Come for one activity or stay all day! Recommended for elementary-age children; siblings welcome.
Information: 617-641-9142 .

February 20th and February 22nd, 11:30 am – 4:00 pm

February 20th and February 22nd, 11:30 am – 4:00 pm

Durant-Kenrick House and Grounds, 286 Waverley Avenue, Newton