"Animal Crackers": Shemer Art Center, located at 5005 East Camelback, presents this "please touch" exhibit, curated by Sam Mindrum-Logan and featuring "tactile art experiences for blind children" and "altered-vision experiments for sighted kids." It continues through Friday, October 18. Admission is free. Call 262-4727.
"I-CAN" Art Show: Mixed-media works by children ages 12 to 17 from the Oakland and University Park neighborhoods, products of the YMCA-sponsored "I-CAN" Summer Youth Job Program, continue through Tuesday, October 15, in the front windows at Stop n' Look, 1025 Grand Avenue; the pieces are viewable 24 hours per day. Call 256-2859.
"I Can Fly": South Phoenix photographer Tarah Rider Berry snapped neighborhood children in various states of wide-eyed, rubber-boned informality--in pools, in parks, at play--for this exhibit, whose ultimate mission was "capturing the innocence, creativity and freshness of youth." It continues through Sunday, November 24, in the New Directions Gallery at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Viewing is free. For details about "In My Room: Teenagers in Their Bedrooms," the center's new, more candid take on the private world of kids, see Thursday in Pic Hits. For general information, call 994-2787.
"Strengthening Families Through the Arts": This exhibit features masks, portraiture, sculpture and other works by kids affiliated with the Save the Family Foundation of Arizona program, which provides transitional housing for homeless families. Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona sponsors the installation, which continues through Saturday, September 28, at Mesa Arts Center, 155 North Center. Admission is free. Call 234-1707 or 644-2056.
the good word
"All Aboard!!!! The Rhythm and Reading Express": Music therapist Jamie Showers hosts this pro-literacy program of sing-along songs and play-along games for kids ages 5 to 9. It's scheduled for 1 to 2 p.m. Saturday, September 14; and 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Monday, September 16, at Glendale Public Library, 5959 West Brown. The sessions continue each Saturday and Monday, through November 25. Registration is required. Call 930-3537; the TDD number for the hearing-impaired is 842-3760.
Multicultural Children's Book Festival and Sale: Storytelling sessions and readings and signings by locally and nationally recognized wordsmiths highlight this inaugural literary bonanza, scheduled for 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, September 12; 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, September 13; and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, September 14, in the atrium lobby at Phoenix City Hall, 200 West Washington. Admission is free; proceeds from sales benefit the Phoenix Birthing Project. Call 276-4440.
John Pierce: The storyteller presents a program titled "Multicultural Animal Folktales" and targeted at kids ages 3 to 9. Showtime is 11 a.m. Sunday, September 15, at Tempe's Changing Hands Bookstore, 414 South Mill, Suite 109. Admission is free. Call 966-0203.
at the museum
Mesa Southwest Museum: The museum's curator of paleontology, Brian McClelland, lectures about "Monsters Before Dinosaurs: The Mammal-like Reptiles" at 11 a.m. and 1 and 3 p.m. Saturday, September 14, kicking off a five-week series about the mighty dinos and their forebears. The center is located at 53 North Macdonald. Call 644-2230.
show and tale
"Kids R Kool": Razzel, Dazzel, Mazzel and Louie are the special guests at this event, centered on the theme of self-worth and featuring music, dance, storytelling and puppetry. Shows are scheduled at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Saturday, September 14, in the auditorium at Scottsdale Civic Center Library, 3839 North Civic Center Boulevard. Tickets are $6 in advance, $8 at the door. Call 921-9737.
on the stage
Charlotte's Web: Childsplay kicks off its 20th season with Joseph Robinette's adaptation of the E.B. White classic about a couple of unlikely, but true, friends: the magical title spider and the naive pig named Wilbur. Opening performances are at 2 and 4:30 p.m. Sunday, September 15, in Stage West at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe. The production continues through Sunday, October 6. Tickets are $12.25, $9.25 for students and seniors. Call 252-8497 or 350-8101.
Great Arizona Puppet Theater: The troupe presents Hotel Saguaro at 10 a.m. Thursday, September 12; 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Friday, September 13; 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, September 14; and 2 p.m. Sunday, September 15, at its theatre, 3302 North Seventh Street. Admission includes a "two-for-one" coupon to Desert Botanical Garden for each youngster. Call 277-1275.