Peace on State Street
One of the Madison Children's Museum's signature events, Kids for Peace Day, turns 10 on Sept. 9. Held outside the museum from 9 am to 2 pm, this year's event ' a celebration coinciding with the United Nations' International Day of Peace and the Peace Alliance Foundation's International Culture of Peace Month ' will introduce children to new cultures and ideas via performances by the Call for Peace Dance & Drum Company, the Suzuki Strings of Madison, the Kids for Peace Community Choir and singer-songwriters Clare Norelle, Stuart Stotts and Rich Baumann. Hartland artist Joel Pfeiffer will also be on hand to help kids and their families create a "clay stomp peace mural," using their bare feet to mix the clay with water and prepare it for carving peace-inspired designs. The finished work will be fired, glazed and permanently displayed inside the museum. Kids for Peace Day was founded by a community volunteer back in 1997, and it has grown from a small, half-day event into a large, multicultural and educationally diverse community celebration. 256-6445 or madisonchildrensmuseum.org for more information.
The Food for Thought Festival celebrates sustainable food systems with a theme of "Just Cooking: Fresh Thinking for the Kitchen." Approximately 60 organizations and businesses that promote sustainable food systems will be on hand to share with children and their parents the importance of producing fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry and fish close to the places where they are sold. And yes, eats will be available. Sept. 16, 8 am-1 pm on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., just down the street from the Dane County Farmers' Market on the Capitol Square. More info: reapfoodgroup.org.
Let freedom ring
Last year, Wisconsin's first Festival Independencia de Mexico at Fireman's Park in Middleton marked the anniversary of the beginning of the independence movement in Mexico ' an 11-year struggle that ended with Mexico's liberation in 1821 after almost three centuries of Spanish control. This year, the fledgling event, slated for Sept. 16, steps up to Warner Park. The schedule begins at 10 am and includes authentic food, dancing and traditional dress contests, and live entertainment ' including a performance by the world-renowned Ballet Folklorico de Mexico. More info: festivalmexicano.com.
So long, summer
Bid farewell to another season of outdoor water parks, miniature golf, Wisconsin Ducks and all-around fun in the sun at a new Wisconsin Dells charity event that organizers hope will become an annual American Cancer Society fundraiser. The Dells Area Summer Send-Off, Sept. 30, 1-7 pm at Marley's, 1470 Wisconsin Dells Parkway, replaces the city's Relay for Life event, which struggled to find success, says Jennifer Kerl, community relations coordinator for the American Cancer Society's Madison office. A suggested donation of $10 per person will gain admission to the Hawaiian-luau-themed party featuring a pig roast, games, a $1,000 raffle and mini-golf. Kids under 5 will be admitted free, and alcohol will be served. For more details, call the Madison office of the American Cancer Society at 662-7573; for tickets, call Marley's at 608-254-1800.
' Compiled by Michael Popke