FARMINGTON -- Families strolled around Farmington's Station Park on Monday night and enjoyed a slew of pirate activities, dancing contests and slime-making, as part of the first of many family nights planned by the shopping area in hopes of bringing families together.
"Families and being a part of the community is a huge part of our company culture, so when we (CenterCal Properties) build our properties, including Station Park, we want to make sure there are events focused on good family entertainment and provide a gathering place for the community," said JP Swain, marketing manager for Station Park.
They plan to host family nights the first Monday of every month until October, with a plethora of themes for families to enjoy. In upcoming months Station Park will host a monster night, a beach party and several themed nights related to popular Disney Junior programs, hosted by Radio Disney and Macaroni Kid.
Tim Woodruff, of South Ogden, attended the family night with his two daughters, ages 5 and 3, who spend a lot of time playing with their friends. He was hoping the activity would help them learn to enjoy playing with one another.
"Sometimes life can be hectic, with everyone doing other things, and it's hard to find the time to spend together, but it's important, because these are the development years for your kids, and you want to build memories together," Woodruff said.
Jess Hyde, 13, from Kaysville, wasn't terribly excited when he found out his family would be going to the family night; however, he changed his mind after he participated.
"It ended up being fun because I got to play with my brothers, and it's been fun to be with my family," Jess said.
His mom, Lisa Hyde, said they have tried hard to make a habit of spending time together as a family.
"As kids get older, it gets more challenging, with sports, school and activities, but it's important to create the family bond and give them a strong foundation as they grow up," she said.
During the event, kids got to make special artwork with ketchup, hosted by Johnny Rockets, one of the restaurants nearby. They got to make slime with Mad Science, listen to a storyteller from the Utah Storytellers Guild, have their faces painted, watch a caricature artist at work and even participate in a dance party with Radio Disney Junior.
Kids jumped, kicked and got their groove on with several of the Radio Disney road crew members, while the DJ cranked up the music.
"We are so lucky, because our job is to come out and put smiles on kids' faces," said Valerie Walker, promotions manager for Salt Lake City Radio Disney. "It is fully interactive with them dancing and singing with us, and the kids are the star of our show."
Rachel Dummer, 9, from Fruit Heights, was part of a group of kids dancing to the song "Call Me Maybe."
"It was fun, because they came up with moves I hadn't thought of before," Rachel said. "I also liked dancing with all of the other kids, because I sometimes get stage fright."
For more information about upcoming events, visit www.shopatstationpark.com/play.