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Early learning fun in NKY

Discover many ways for young kids to learn while having fun out and about in Northern Kentucky. Take a story walk, find an alphabet, play a "ground game" and go exploring in nature.

Story Walks

Whether you call it a Story Walk, Picture Path or just a walk in the park, this is a fun alternative reading on the couch.

To make a story walk, a picture book is taken apart and the pages are turned into signs that are spread out along a path. To read the story, you walk from sign to sign. 

Here are the story walk locations currently up in NKY: 

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Story walk locations in NKY

Boone County

Hebron

Hebron Public Library

Dates: Always up

1863 N. Bend Rd., Hebron, KY 41048

The story starts near the front door, the walk is about 1 mile long.

Union

Central Park

Dates: Always up

9190 Camp Ernst Rd., Union, KY 41091

The story starts at the kiosk between baseball fields 5 and 6.

Campbell County

Alexandria

AJ Jolly Park

Dates: Always up when the park is open (during daylight hours from March 1-Oct. 30)

1501 Race Track Rd., Alexandria, KY 41001

This park hosts a "picture path" with a story and fun activities. It starts near Shelter 1. 

Kenton County

Covington

Goebel Pool

Dates: Through July 15

737 Dalton St., Covington, KY 41011

Randolph Pool

Dates: Through July 15

226 E. 8th St., Covington,KY 41011

Cappel Water Park

Dates: Through July 15

4305 Decoursey Ave., Covington,KY 41015

The Carnegie

Dates: July 27-August 2, 2021

1028 Scott Blvd., Covington, KY 41011

Middleton-Mills Park

Dates: From August 3 through August 13, 2021

3415 Mills Rd., Covington, KY 41015

The story ("Big Dance") starts near Shelter 2.

Erlanger

Flagship Park

Dates: From July 2 through July 9, 2021

1 Flagship Dr., Erlanger, KY 41018

The story ("Big Dance") starts at the flag near the parking lot and runs along the path by the playground.

Erlanger Railroad Depot Park

Dates: From July 2 through July 26, 2021

3313 Crescent Ave., Erlanger, KY 41018

The story ("Cat's Colors") starts along the sidewalk at the edge of Crescent Ave. and will be up through July 11. Then a new story ("Big Dance") will be set up in the same place from July 12 through July 26.

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Alphabet Hunts

The city of Covington has 5 alphabets tucked into the streets and shop windows of its neighborhoods. Each of the distinctive pink and yellow signs has a word, an image and an encouragement: You found a word. Go find more!

Some of the signs have Spanish words, as well. Families can stop by the city building to get a map and a passport-style checklist to track their letter sightings. When they turn in the completed passport, the child receives a free Tshirt. The Alphabet Walks are an initiative of Read Ready Covington.

Ground Games

"Hop to the star and count how many points it has." Activities like this and many others are part of Read Ready Covington's ground games.

The games are printed on large stickers located at playgrounds, parks and even in a laundromat. Kids will have fun spotting the animals, fruits, shapes and numbers on the games and even making up their own ways to play.

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Nature Encounters

Nature is a great teacher and endlessly fascinating to children.  NKY has many outstanding parks to explore. Two of the top resources for families with small children are NaturePlay@BCM and AJ Jolly Park's Environmental Education Center.

NaturePlay is adjacent to Behringer-Crawford Museum in Covington's Devou Park. It is a contained, accessible area offering kid-size log cabins and caves, a climbable wooden flatboat, a fossil digging spot and much more.

AJ Jolly Park in Alexandria's Environmental Education Center is an all-season family favorite. Kids can learn about leaves, turtles, birds and other wildlife (there's even a giggle-provoking exhibit on animal poop) and then walk the nature trails to see it all in the wild.

Library Programs

The three counties of Northern Kentucky have incredible public libraries that offer dozens of programs and resources for young children. Find out more using the links below.

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Calendar of arts-related events

NKY ArtQuest is an ongoing calendar of arts-related events in NKY, including ones for families with children. You can explore the entire calendar here. You can also sign up to receive a weekly email highlighting upcoming events for all ages.