Wild West Visits Veterans

Lewis Events recently had the honor of providing entertainment for the residents and guests at the Veterans Home of California in West Los Angeles.

Guests had the chance to strike it rich in the gold panning activity, cheer for the trick roping stunt show and learn how to lasso a wild virtual calf.

Some of the cowboys and cowgirls even got a chance to make friends with the four-legged, furry, special guest.

Gold Rush and Colonial Era Virtual Assemblies

Lewis Events has showcased on-campus school assemblies and special events for a wagon-load of years.  Students and staff have benefitted from the convenience and security on-campus educational programs offer.  Lewis Events now presents Virtual Assembly options for these programs, considering the health guidelines we are now experiencing.  Following is a brief list of options that will enable schools to choose an exciting program that will enhance the history curriculum.  Both the 4th grade Gold Rush and the 5th grade Colonial programs are included as part of the options.

The 4th grade Gold Rush is an exciting, interactive showcase where the rugged and exciting life of the Wild West Cowboy, and the thrill of the Gold Rush are brought to life. Two performers, dressed in period wardrobe along with unique sets or green-screen backdrops are utilized to establish the colorful historic theme. Presenters will utilize tall tales, audience participation, music, interesting props, and visual examples during the showcase. The presentation will include a world champion trick roping performance, game show, student participation, and a variety of other exciting show features.  Performers will lead guests through the great plains cattle drive era, into the 1849 Gold Rush, one of the most fascinating periods in United States history.

Gold Rush Virtual Assembly
Gold Panning 4th Grade History

The 5th grade Colonial Experience will take students back in time for a visit to the early American colonies.  The colonists’ mindset will be portrayed, daily life in the colonies, the westward expansion, patriot hero showcases, student participation, and Bessie the virtual cow are a few of the show highlights.

Colonial History Virtual Assembly
5th Grade Virtual Assembly

The following lists the presentation options:

-In-person presentation at the school site.  Two costumed, historical characters present an educational and entertaining assembly.  The assembly is followed by a variety of hands-on activities through which students rotate such as gold panning, virtual cow milking, and exciting frontier games.  Lewis Events will work with the school to ensure that necessary health safety guidelines are followed.

-Online presentation to school with “History Delivery” activity package.  Two costumed, historical characters present an educational and entertaining assembly online from the Lewis Events studio located on a 5-acre ranch.  The assembly is followed by a variety of hands-on activities through which students rotate.  Prior to the day of the presentation, a package is delivered to the school containing materials necessary for the student activity rotations.

-Online presentation to students at their homes through school administrators.  Two costumed, historical characters present an assembly online from the studio.  The presentation is monitored and initiated through the school staff.

These entertaining and educational presentations are ideal for a 4th or 5th-grade end of year celebration, as a beginning of the year kick-off or any other time during the year to complement the in-classroom curriculum.

Contact Lewis Events to chat about how an exciting trip back in time will create a memorable entertaining experience for your students! Email info@lewisevents.com or call 626-536-8091.

California History 4th Grade Field Trips-Exciting New Activities

Lewis Events has made some exciting additions to the California history 4th grade “On-Campus Experience”.  In addition to the current popular activities offered such as gold panning, rope making, frontier games and virtual calf roping, this year we will be adding:

What’s Your Brand? Students design and make their own faux brand.

Green Screen Photos – placing students in a rustic frontier  and gold rush scenes.

We will be also including additional interactive elements to the California Gold Rush presentation.

Be sure to get your booking in to Lewis Events for your on-campus field trips soon, as the demand has increased this year and the dates are filling fast. We offer 4th grade California History, 5th grade Colonial America and 6th grade Ancient Civilizations.  Schools seem to be trending towards hosting “On Campus Experiences” for their students as a way to offer students a day filled with exciting hands-on activities without leaving the school grounds.

Along with numerous Southern California locations, we are taking the On-Campus Experience to the Susanville, San Jose and other areas outside of the southland. Lewis Events continues to expand and now offers western entertainment and educational programs in the greater Salt Lake City and Utah Valley areas as well.

5th Grade Colonial School Assembly and Activities– Virtual and On-Site

As we approach the end of winter, the close of another school year is not far ahead.  California’s 5th grade students have studied the United State’s early years and the colonization of America.  Any ideas for an assembly or activities to tie it all together?Lewis Events, based in Southern California, offers on- site school field trips and assemblies that bring the colonial era to life for students.  Assemblies can be provided throughout California and beyond.  Delivering the excitement to the campus saves money, eliminates transportation time, provides a safer activity and allows the school more flexibilty in the experience. The  program is designed to meet the needs of specific schools, depending on the amount of students, time frame and budget.  Most schools choose to host both the presentation as well as the student hands-on activities, where students rotate as small groups from one project station to another.

The assembly is presented by talent dressed in period wardrobe and touches on points such as the mindset of the colonists, daily life on the frontier, noteable individuals, westward expansion, Lewis and Clark expedition and includes students in the presentation.The student’s hands-on experiences include activities such as:  virtual cow milking, butter churning, candle dipping, frontier survival skills, weaving, ink quill writing, colonial games and toys, Johnny cakes, relay races and a host of others.Usually by the end of the rotations, the students have had a great time with the activities and are ready for a good rest.  Some schools choose to finish the experience by serving a colonial style lunch for all the hungry colonists.  Menu suggestions might include, chicken, biscuits, baked beans and corn served in a pie tin.What better way to finish off the 5th grade year than by allowing the students the exciting and unique opportunity to live as a colonist even if it’s just for a day.

You can contact Lewis Events by phone at 626-536-8091 or by email at info@LewisEvents.com to see how the program can work for you on your campus.  Contact can also be made through this website.  We look forward to assisting you in creating the most exciting and memorable Colonial history day ever!  Contact us today, even if it’s just to gather ideas for you to put on your own exciting event.

4th Grade California Gold Rush Ideas. . .

The school year is flying past.  And if it hasn’t already been done, it’s time to decide what to do this year for the 4th grade’s grand finale.  A year of California history and the gold rush deserve  a big finish.

Questions . . .

So, do we load the students on buses and take them off campus for a few hours of activities?  Is it worth the cost for the location and the transportation?    Is the travel time worth the hours spent on the bus?  Are we locked into a location’s program? Will be be sharing the space with other schools?

or . . . .

Do we host an on-campus event?  Is it economical, safer and more productive from a time saving standpoint?  Does it gives the students more time for activities and learning? 

Bringing the experience to the campus as an on-campus field trip is becoming the popular choice for many districts and schools.  The activity can be planned, organized and carried out by the staff and parents, but it takes a fair amount of effort.  Or it can be brought to the school by an outside source.  This option is more economical than taking the students off-campus, and easier than doing it yourself.  On-campus programs are designed to be flexible to meet the specific needs of the particular school and offer a host of other advantages.

Lewis Events, offers a 4th grade California History program that focuses on the Gold Rush era.  The program generally begins with an assembly that covers topics such as: Merchants versus prospector’s success, types of mining and tools, western trick roping performance, brief historical overview, student participation, props and all presenters in historical wardrobe.  Assemblies can be held indoors or outdoors.

In addition to the assembly, students also have the opportunity to rotate among a variety of exciting hands-on activities. These experiences may include:  Gold panning, virtual calf roping, ink quill writing, rope making, frontier photo scene,  trick roping, old time games, square and social dancing and leather crafting, all in a setting accented with unique western decor.  Lewis Events works with educators to determine the  rotation choices, schedule and appropriate number of activities for the amount of students.

Occasionally, schools choose to add to the program utilizing their own resources. Schools have put on frontier style lunches serving fried chicken, biscuits, baked beans, corn on the cob and cobbler all served on a tin plate.  One school awarded points based on how many rotations each student visited.  The points were cashed in for prizes of varying value at a general store.  

Give us a call or email us at Lewis Events and we’d be happy to talk to you about your assembly and activity ideas.  Whether you bring us to campus for a program or just need some ideas to do it yourself we’d love to hear from you.  Call us at 626-536-8091 or email us at “info@LewisEvents.com”.  You can also contact us through this website.

Happy trails!

 

 

Trick Roping at the LA Zoo

“Roaring Nights goes Country” was one of the after hours themed events held last summer at the LA Zoo.  Lewis Events was invited to assist the zoo in making the tranformation to the wild west.  We brought in a variety of theme decorations, a western show and a unique collection of guest activities.

A quick set up had to take place while the daytime crowd transitioned to the Roaring Nights crowd.

Colorful vignettes were set up at key locations within the zoo.

The western roping and variety show was staged directly in front of the elephant exhibit.  Before the show, we did a run through to make sure that the elephants were ok with the cracking of the bullwhip and the acts in general.  Then some pre-show filming. . . . Finally the crowds gathered and the show began. Definitely a first for Lewis Events.  Between shows we were able to have a behind the scenes tour of the zoo.

The elephants went on grass munching and wandering during the show and stunts . . . didn’t seem to mind all the lively western action and sounds one bit.

The crowd gathered as the show began and progressed. 

One of the event’s focal points was an activity area we created where Roaring Nights guests had the opportunity to try a selection of hands-on old west activities. Prospectors tried their hand at the gold panning station.  Fancy roping was taught in the trick roping area.  Cowhands had the chance to throw a lariat around one of the virtual longhorn steers.  A fun night in a truly unique venue.

Winning Field Trips . . . on a Budget

Winning Field Trips on a Budget

By Jay Lewis of Lewis Events

Journal Entry:

We finally got all the permission slips turned in after repeated reminders and begging of the students and the parents.  The big yellow bus arrived late to pick up the students, which was frustrating, considering the immense portion of the budget, the bus transportation consumed.  On the  freeway, there was an accident which tied us up in a major traffic jam for another half an hour.  We attempted songs and guessing games which brought a moment of calm to the group.  But not for long.  With the extended time on the bus and the anticipation of the field trip, the students were unusually energetic and had a difficult time staying in their assigned bus seats.  Only three students got car sick which is better than the five on the last trip.  By the time we arrived to our destination, none of us could have lasted another minute on the bus. The location was nice, but quite crowded because they had double booked.  Some of the students were not able to participate in all the activities because of sharing with the other school’s students.  Standing in line for the rest room was a new concept.  The paper bag  lunch was cut short, along with a few activities so that we could get back to school in time.  Students were allowed to finish their lunched on the bus and a few apples tuned into bus aisle bowling balls.  I returned back to school with the few parent volunteers and all the students intact. Wow, what a day!  I’m glad this is a once a year “adventure”.  I’ll get a good night’s sleep after that experience.  (A fictional commentary, from a fictional teacher, at a fictional school, with a little drama thrown in to make for a more interesting read).

Traditional off-campus school field trips are lots of fun for the students and can provide great out-of-the classroom educational and recreational experiences.  At the same time, they can have their share of downsides:

  • They can be expensive
  • Require permission slips
  • Bag lunches
  • Bus costs and arrangements
  • The risk of taking students off campus
  • Travel time on the bus away from valuable learning time
  • Limited control over the program at the location.

So, how do we provide students with meaningful, educational, hands-on experiences that will be long remembered, fulfill California Standards and not sign away the entire budget in the process?

Is there another way you ask.  Of course!

Consider an “On-Campus” field trip.  The program can be coordinated by the school staff and volunteers.  Or they can also be coordinated as a team effort by the school and an outside organization.  Or finally, they can be coordinated entirely by an outside source.

By hosting the field trip at the school site, more control can be exercised over what is offered and the amount of activities that the students may experience.  Time that would have otherwise been spent traveling back and forth on a bus can be utilized at school, allowing students to participate in more activities.  Additional parent volunteers can participate, thereby reducing costs even more substantially.

Trick Roping

How does it work?  We’ll use the California History Experience as an example.  A successful program that they offer at Living History Shows.com (a division of Lewis Events) includes,  offering a variety of hands-on experiences and rotating the students through each activity station.

Experiences might include:

Rope Making

  • gold panning
  • trick roping
  • butter churning
  • rope making
  • leather tooling
  • corn husk dolls
  • old west games
  • candle making
  • feather quill writing
  • and a variety of other options from which to add or substitute
Western Decor
The activity area can be enhanced with a variety of colorful and creative props and décor pieces to help create an old west atmosphere, and help
make it a more interesting learning experience.  Amplified western music adds to the ambiance. Students spend a certain time period at each station and then move on to the next area.  Once the students have completed the rotations, they can be brought together for a full group assembly and activity.  This may include square dancing, and as an added bonus, a professional trick roping performance.

Line Dancing

As a great finale, some schools have chosen to provide a western lunch for all the students as a fun way to finish the activity.  A great menu includes fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, pork and beans, and a mouth watering slice of apple pie topped with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream, all served from a tin pie plate.

If your school is considering field trip options and would like a little help, or someone to share a few ideas, give Lewis Events a call (626-536-8091) or email them through this website.  They have a variety of educational and entertainment based programs from which to choose, or they can customize a program to meet your needs.

Lewis Events was established in 1996.  They offer exciting, educational and entertaining programs throughout California and beyond.  These include on-campus field trips, assemblies, family fun nights, fund raisers, proms, homecoming dances, reunions, special events and more.  Jay Lewis is co-owner of Lewis Events.