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The Journal Gazette

  • Cathie Rowand | The Journal Gazette The Huston family feeds the goats while visiting the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo.

  • File Jake the Diamond Dog will be on hand at Sunday’s TinCaps game, which is Bark in the Park.

  • Courtesy C.J. Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band will perform zydeco music tonight during the Roots at the Conservatory music series.

  • Paramount Pictures “Wayne’s World” will be shown in the Sweets So Geek parking lot Saturday.

  •  File Take a run through one of the city’s splash pads this weekend.

  • Corey McMaken | The Journal Gazette Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory's "Blumengarten: A German Story" offers details of German culture.

Friday, August 11, 2017 1:00 am

Family Fun: Beating the back-to-school blues

Beat the back-to-school blues this weekend

COREY MCMAKEN | The Journal Gazette

With school starting back up next week for Fort Wayne students, this is the last weekend for family fun without also having to worry about homework, extra laundry for uniforms and gym clothes, studying for tests and all the other stresses that the school year brings.

Here are some things your family can do together this weekend:

Fort Wayne Children's Zoo

Have your kids gotten up-close-and-personal with the new male lion, Bahati, yet this summer? There are giraffes to feed, goats to pet and Australian adventures to be had as you check out the zoo. There should be plenty of Instagram-ready smiles that you can sigh and revisit later in the school year when little Timmy is having a full-scale meltdown about showing his work on a math problem.

If you go: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily; 3411 Sherman Blvd.; $14 ages 19 to 61, $10 ages 2 to 18, $12 ages 62 and older, free ages 1 and younger; 427-6800 or

Free music

Take your blanket or lawn chairs with you to enjoy some free tunes in the area. Here are a few performances you can catch this weekend.

Oferle: Friday Nites Live; 6:30 p.m. today next to the fountain at Jefferson Pointe

Choice Band: 7:30 p.m. today, DeKalb Outdoor Theater, 301 Center St., Auburn

Air Force Band of Mid-America Shades of Blue Jazz Ensemble: 7:30 p.m. today; Foellinger Theatre, 3411 Sherman Blvd.

C.J. Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band: Roots and the Conservatory; 8:30 p.m. today; Terrace Garden, Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S. Calhoun St.; $6 ages 13 and older, free ages 12 and younger; 427-6440 or

Classic Parts, the Djypsters, Rock University and Fuzzbox Voodoo: Rock the Plaza; 6 p.m. Saturday on the plaza at the Allen County Public Library downtown


The TinCaps are in town this weekend, facing the Bowling Green Hot Rods. Tonight is Country Night, BirdZerk will be on hand Saturday, and Sunday you are welcome to bring your dogs to the lawn seats for Bark in the Park. Stick around after the game tonight and Saturday for fireworks.

If you go: 7:05 p.m. today and Saturday, 1:05 p.m. Sunday; Parkview Field, 1301 Ewing St.; $10, $8, $5; 482-6400. A special Pooch Pass is required in advance to bring a pet for Bark in the Park; call for details.

Catch a movie

The Sweets So Geek and Ivy Tech Community College free summer movie series continues this weekend with “Wayne's World” on Saturday. The movie starts shortly after sundown at the sweets shop's parking lot, 3410 N. Anthony Blvd. Bring chairs or blankets to sit on. The movie is rated PG-13.

If you are looking for something for a younger audience, consider “The Nut Job 2: Nutty By Nature,” which opens in theaters this weekend.

Make a splash

The city's free splash pads are open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Put on your suits and let the kids tire themselves out so you can get a jump on their school-year bedtime routines.

Learn something

Yeah, we know – who wants to learn something before school starts? We must be some kind of monsters for even suggesting it! But these suggestions might just make the learning fun.

• Science Central has the RiverWorks Discovery exhibit, which gives kids a lesson on America's rivers, conservation and related careers. Sunday is a “special abilities day” with modifications such as light and sound reduction in some areas of the museum for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Also on Sunday, learn how to safely experience the upcoming solar eclipse and get free viewing glasses while supplies last.

If you go: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday; Science Central, 1950 N. Clinton St.; $9 ages 3 to 64, $8 ages 65 and older, free for members and 2 and younger; 424-2400 or

• Learn a little more about Gera, Germany, with Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory's “Blumengarten: A German Story” exhibit. The conservatory offers flowers and artifacts representing the culture of Fort Wayne's German sister city in the exhibit.

If you go: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and Saturday, noon to 4 p.m. Sunday; Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S. Calhoun St.; $5 adults, $3 ages 3 to 17, free ages 2 and younger; 427-6440 or