We love this time of year. It’s not too hot, not too cold, and you can dress however the hell you want and just call it a Halloween costume (...I say to myself on my third consecutive day wearing yoga pants). Plus, foliage! Cider! Pumpkins! This weekend’s activities present an opportunity for embracing the great outdoors, getting active and crafty, and drinking adult beverages while dressed up as a pirate. The kind of balance we should all strive for, really. Enjoy!
By Stephanie Eckelkamp
Need some last-minute weekend plans? We've got you covered. Whether you're the artsy type, a beer or wine enthusiast, an adventure seeker, or just straight-up obsessed with goats, there's something here for you. (Hint: There are four opportunities to do goat yoga, so you better freakin' read this!)
First Friday at the Banana Factory (6-9pm/ Free)
On the first Friday of every month, South Bethlehem comes alive for a community celebration. And The Banana Factory Arts Center has a particularly awesome lineup of events for adults and kids, including: hot glass demos, a free mini leather bound journal workshop, jewelry demo, kids' scavenger hunt, and more.
Night Time Zip and Climb at Blue Mountain (7:15-9:15pm/ $25)
Awesome date night opportunity! The first and third Friday of every month (through October), you can climb, zip, and swing your way through the Summit Aerial Park High Ropes Course at Blue Mountain, while experiencing the trippy glow of laser lights.
Goat Yoga at Hellerick's Family Farm (8am AND 9:30 am/ $30)
We have been waiting for goat yoga for TOO LONG! Just a short drive away to Doylestown, you can experience the fun of goat yoga on a Historic Bucks county farm. Certified Yoga Instructors will guide you through the class amidst the goats (and chickens!). [Note: Two classes are available today and two on Sunday.]
Brew at the Zoo (1 - 4 p.m./ $35)
Cute animals and booze? Yes please. Brew at the Zoo Country Beer Festival features 40 craft beers for sampling, live music by Tim Harakal, lawn games, plus plenty of time to check out your favorite animals, including giraffes Murphy and Tatu, and Bean the sloth! Get your tickets at: lvzoo.org/event/brew-at-the-zoo
Ramen Night at Cafe Frais (6-9pm/ $12-$15 per bowl)
Don't know about you, but we sure can't get enough ramen. So if you find yourself in Allentown's West End Saturday night, be sure to stop by. Bonus: Gluten-free and vegetarian options are available!
More Goat Yoga! (8am AND 9:30am/ $30)
In case you missed it on Saturday, there are two more opportunities to do yoga with your fave farm animal today!
Bikes ’N Brunch in Hellertown (11am -8pm, last bike rental leaves at 4pm/ $35)
1774 Grille & Tap is teaming up with Saucon Valley Bikes to provide you with a picnic lunch and a trail-ready bicycle for $35. Enjoy a 4-hour excursion on on the scenic Saucon Valley Rail Trail, along with a delicious assortment of croissant or baguette sandwiches, wraps, and dessert.
Harvest Weekend on the LV Wine Trail (12-5pm)
The grape harvest is bumpin' this time of year, and the folks at Clover Hill Winery in Breinigsville want to celebrate that with you. Join them this Saturday and Sunday as they team up with The Nesting Box to bring you wine, along with locally produced foods such as cheese, baked goods, and some of the most delicious cage-free eggs you've ever tasted.
By Stephanie Eckelkamp
Every time I toss out a banana peel or apple core in the trash, I feel a pang of guilt knowing that it's never really going to decompose and become part of the earth again. After all, it's wrapped up in a plastic garbage bag that's going to take hundreds, if not thousands of years to decompose. So I was absolutely thrilled when I read about Easton's new *composting initiative, which aims to make composting accessible and sustainable for anyone who hits up the Easton Farmers' Market on a regular basis.
The Details: Today (July 7th), Easton Farmer's Market is launching the Easton Compost Program, which is the city's first residential composting initiative. If you want to participate, simply sign up (for free!) at the Compost Tent at the market on Saturday and pick up a 5-gallon bucket. If you can't make it this Saturday, don't worry -- you can sign up at any time throughout the year at the market.
Once you take your composting bucket home, you can fill it with all sorts of food waste that you'd normally just toss. And unlike a backyard compost set-up that typically handles only fruit, veggie, and bread scraps, American Biosoils & Compost (the company that handles the compost) will take any kitchen scraps, including meat, dairy, and bones.
“We can literally compost anything that you could eat,” says Andrew Curtis, an environmental
scientist with American Biosoils. He says their active aerating system uses industrial blowers,
enabling the system to circulate air and break down more organic matter quickly. In addition to kitchen scraps, residents can also bring yard and garden waste, but no grass clippings.
Once your bucket is filled, you can bring it to the parking lot behind Easton Public Market (on Church St) on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., where a truck will be on site to weigh and
collect the materials.
Bonus: The person who brings in the most compost by the end of September will earn $100 in Easton Farmers’ Market tokens. And after a participant brings in four buckets of compost through the Easton Compost Program, they’ll earn nutrient-rich soil to use in their own gardens.
We're super pumped that Easton's taking charge to make our little corner of the world a healthier, more eco-friendly place.
*Composting food scraps turns what would otherwise be garbage into a rich soil that can be used
to grow more food. Compost also diverts food waste from landfills, extending the life of those
Last Weekend for the Kutztown Folk Festival ($14 adults, free for kids under 12)
Don’t miss the last weekend of the Kutztown Folk Festival, which runs through July 8. While new attractions are featured each year, essential elements of artisan crafts, music, folk-life demonstrations, family-friendly activities, and food aplenty—all delivered with an authentic Dutch accent—remain firmly intact.
First Friday Southside Bethlehem (6-9pm/ various locations)
Don't have any plans tonight? Now you do! As the kids say, this is event is LIT (wait, do they still say that?). Head over to Bethlehem’s Southside Arts District and choose from literally dozens of awesome events and performances to check out. We’re pretty excited about the free wine, beer, nibbles, and live music at Domaci Home.
Streamside Walk and Talk (10am/ Free, but registration requested)
Nature's good for the body and soul. So put on those walking shoes for Nurture Nature Center's series along the Karl Stirner Arts Trail. Learn about what lives in and along the Bushkill Creek and what makes this stream so special. Meet at 13th Street entrance of Karl Stirner Arts Trail.
Paint Your Pet at Black River Farms (11am - 2pm/ $35)
You haven't REALLY proven your love to your dog until you've painted his portrait. Simply bring along a photo (on your phone is fine), and you’ll be guided through the step by step process. Don't worry, additional creative inspiration provided by the glass of wine you’ll be sipping as you paint. Purchase tickets here.
Terrarium Workshop at Weyerbacher (12:30-2:30pm/ $45)
Terrarium workshop, beer, and and a food truck. Yes please! This lovely little workshop includes a complementary 12-oz brew of your choice, instruction, 3 healthy succulents, moss, soil, stone, decorative wood, and everything you need to make your own mini ecosystem. Bonus: Couchpota-doh food truck will be there serving delicious bites (EMPANADAS!). Sign up here.
Sunday Morning Kayak Trip at Lake Nockamixon (8:30am-12pm)
Lake Nockamixon provides a beautiful place to spend a morning paddling. This largest body of water in Bucks County is a rest stop for migrating waterfowl and home to a wide variety of water-loving animals. Natural Lands staff member Tim Burris, preserve manager of Mariton Wildlife Sanctuary, will guide the trip and highlight interesting finds along the way. *If this sells out, keep in mind that you can still rent kayaks and paddle boards at Lake Nockamixon to go on an adventure of your own!
Easton Heritage Day (All day/ free)
Heritage Day is a free, full-day family festival that showcases local history, offers activities for kids and live music performances, and concludes with an amazing fireworks display over the Forks of the Delaware. It celebrates Easton’s historic significance in the founding of the United States. At noon on July 8, 1776, Easton was one of three places where the Declaration of Independence had its first public reading. For a full list of events, visit heritageday.org.
Go Canoeing, Paddling, or Biking! (11:30am - 4:30pm/ prices vary)
Want to get on the water? You can cruise down the Lehigh Canal in a paddleboat for only $12 per hour, or a canoe for just $10 per hour. Land activities more your speed? Then rent a bike and pedal down the canal path for $15 per hour. Life jackets and helmets are provided. (Rentals available Wednesday - Sunday at the National Canal Museum)
*Got an event we should list in upcoming weeks? Shoot us an email here or leave a comment to be considered. We have final approval for all listings, but we love suggestions!
BY SIOBHAN DEREMER
Well, the weather in the Valley hasn't exactly gotten the spring memo yet, but our events list keeps growing! Here's a list of 17 places you can check out this week for a bit of mindfulness, movement, and even 2 events you can bring your pet to (dog-friendly movie anyone??). You'll be so busy during the earlier part of the week so you can enjoy the 70s we are supposed to get on Friday and Saturday—finally!
5 Buck Breakfast Bites (9-10am / $5)
Start your week on the right foot by meeting nutritionist Laura Scarpino for a healthy breakfast at the Restoration Space in Bethlehem. She'll guide you through the basics of clean eating and answer any questions you may have about your nutrition journey.
Isle of Dogs Dog-Friendly Screening (7:30-9:15pm / human prices vary; dogs $5)
This new Wes Anderson movie tells the story of an entire island of dogs...and your pup can join in the viewing! Lights will be dimmed and sound quieter to let your dog enjoy the show so you can hug your best friend at the cute parts!
Yin-Yang Yoga (5:30-6:45pm / $5 for yoga; $7 for meditation)
This yoga combo class at the Beleno Center merges 20 minutes of vinyasa yoga with a more chill 50 minutes of yin yoga, which uses mostly seated postures. Great for beginners and veterans and followed by an optional mediation class for those that wish to stay and clear their minds a bit more.
Functional Movement Screening & Resistance Stretching (6-8pm / Free)
At Comprehensive Chiropractic in Allentown, trainers from Body Elite will be doing a short demo to highlight the importance of stretching followed by examples of a stretching routing that can be done daily to hit the typical problems (upper back, shoulders and hips).
Women's Self Defense Workshop (7:45-9:15pm / Free)
As beautiful and safe as it is here in our Lehigh Valley bubble, it's never a bad idea to know what to do in an unsafe situation. Check out this free class at either the Bethlehem or Allentown branch of Leading Edge Martial Arts so you can prepare and feel the safest you can be. Register here.
Joe's Dinner at Trout Creek Healing Collective (6:30-8:30pm / $8-12)
This week's dinner program is centered around blood sugar and mood stabilization through whole foods. Even if you don't have a blood sugar condition, you can learn about the benefits of whole foods and cook and eat all together. Register here.
Champagne & Cupcakes with Girls on the Run (7-9pm / $50)
Join Girls on the Run Lehigh Valley's 2nd annual Champagne & Cupcakes event at Historic Hotel Bethlehem. Sip on champagne while tasting and voting on several Lehigh Valley bakers' cupcake creations. Learn more and support this great local organization. Grab your tickets here.
Live Music & Yoga (6:30-7:45pm)
Yoga instructor Brooke Kohler will lead an all levels class set to live guitar music. Head to Easton Yoga and start your weekend with an energetic flow and a bit of free dancing. Price varies for classes.
Comedy Night at Blue Mountain Vineyards (6:30-9:30pm / $20)
Start your weekend with a wine tasting and some adult humor at Blue Mountain in New Tripoli. Three to four local comedians will be there to get you laughing (21 and older only). Bring your own food; wine will be available for purchase. Grab tickets and make a reservation here.
Spring Inner Peace Holistic & Metaphysical Expo (10am-6pm / $7 per day; $10 both days)
Running Saturday and Sunday, this expo is a quick trip out 78 to Hamburg. Featuring speakers, mini sessions, and local vendors, find some inner peace this spring. Grab tickets here.
Tomato Grafting Workshop (10am-12pm / $60)
Experts at the Rodale Institute will will show experienced and inexperienced growers and farmers the ancient art of grafting. You'll leave with two grated tomato plants and the confidence to get them off to a good fruitful start. Register here.
Make Your Own Kombucha (12-2pm / $20)
Love the fizzy love from a bottle of kombucha (you're not alone; we're all 'booch lovers here at Live Well!)? Save some cash and find out how to make your own SCOBY and why this magic drink is so good for your health. Register here.
National Pet Day at the Shelby (3-6pm / Free)
Join other LVers on the patio at the Shelby with their pets to celebrate National Pet Day! Treats and special vendors will be there to help enjoy the day.
Yoga at Lost Tavern Brewery (10:30-11:30am / $20)
Enjoy an hour of yoga at Lost Tavern, a pint of their beer (try Bramble On, their IPA with fresh raspberries and blackberries), and some time to chill before your week starts. Sign up in the taproom and bring your own mat!
Allentown Fiber Festival (10am-5pm / Free)
Calling all fiber artists! Browse 74 (!) vendors at this festival that brings local fiber crafters together for classes, shopping, and creativity. Learn more about vendors and details here.
Make the Most of Your Urban Garden (1:30-3pm / Free)
Get a ton of bounty out of your small gardening plot with the tips from this workshop at the Easton Public Market Community Room. Learn how to start your own spot and how to navigate seed packets and what to plant when.
*Got an event we should list in upcoming weeks? Shoot us an email here or leave a comment to be considered. We have final approval for all listings, but we love suggestions! And be sure to keep an eye on any events we share through our Facebook page.
We know, we know: It’s the week before Christmas and you’re probably crazy busy buying last minute gifts, wrapping them, and trying not to freak out about how you have no idea what to get your boyfriend’s dad. (Or is that just me?? Also, suggestions welcome.) But if you do happen to find yourself with some downtime, we highly recommend spending it doing one of the following kick-ass Lehigh Valley activities.
By The Editors of Live Well (Nina, Steph, and Siobhan)
Newsflash: You don't need to buy all of your holiday gifts on Amazon this year! The Lehigh Valley has some killer shopping, especially if your friends and fam (or even you!) are into fitness, health, sustainable living, and self care.
Here, we've curated a list of unique gifts for foodies, yogis, health nuts, athletes, and wellness junkies. And the best part? You can feel good about supporting the little guy and spend zero time waiting for packages to arrive. Now go do some shopping!
1. Barre3 10-Class Packs at 20% off
The three of us at Live Well are totally sold on how well barre3 can train your body, your brain, and your well-being, but if you (or someone you know) need a little more convincing, now’s the perfect time to grab a pack of 10 classes for a super low price (through 12/22)! These sales aren’t often, so if you’re in the mood for a fitness makeover or just need that extra motivation to get back into class, now’s your chance. -SD
2. Keep Cup from Tucker Silk Mill
Kill two birds with one stone: Hit up Tucker Silk Mill, Easton’s new Aussie cafe, and while you’re there, buy your favorite coffee-loving pal one of these expertly designed 8- or 12-ounce Keep Cups ($15 and $18, respectively). Not only are they cute AF with their colorful lids and cork sleeve, but they’re made of glass, so they won’t leach funky toxins into your brew, and so you won’t fill up landfills with disposable paper cups. Bonus: After you buy one, you’ll enjoy a discount on your to-go coffee from Tucker whenever you use it. -SE
3. Coffee from Homestead Coffee Roasters
Give someone some socks, they’ll thank you for a day. Gift someone a bag of incredible, locally-roasted coffee that will give them LIFE every morning, they’ll be thanking you for weeks to come! I’ll be putting bags of Homestead Coffee Roasters coffee (just $12.95 and up) in all my stockings this year. Their Black Eddy’s Darkness is the easiest way to turn your favorite Folger’s drinker into a full-on coffee snob. The Bourbon Barrel Aged is an organic Colombian that tastes like warm vanilla happiness in the morning, and their 2018 Winter Roast is an approachable medium body in a festive tin. Pick up a bag at The Joint or Roasted, both in Bethlehem, or at one of these locations for the best smelling stocking around! -NE
4. Miss Melanie Yoga Classes, Retreats, And Workshops
Melanie Smith is a local fitness and yoga gem. If you haven’t experienced one of her SUP or studio yoga classes, now is the perfect time to gift one to yourself (hey, we won’t judge!) or someone you love. While SUP isn’t happening during the winter, you can always buy a class card now to plan for a fun future outing, or check out one of the upcoming retreats (she's hosting one in the gorgeous mountains of North Carolina this May!) or workshops . Be sure to check out her local yoga studio schedule, too, and grab some gift certificates from those spots while you’re at it. Your mind and body will thank you! -SD
5. “Run” Necklace From House of Metalworks
We’re big fans of House of Metalworks in general for their unique custom jewelry, but we’re especially partial to this simple but beautiful necklace--perfect for your running-obsessed friend who has just completed her first half or full marathon. It’s a double-sided charm and you can pick a distance to engrave on the back. Find it at House of Metalworks in Emmaus or shop online at their Etsy store. -SE
6. Sustainable Holiday-Scented Candles from Hilltop Candle Company
How about a locally-poured candle that won’t give you a headache? That sounds like a doubly good gift to me! Hellertown’s Hilltop Candle Company is pours all-natural soy candles in truly heavenly scents for just $8 to $14—this year’s holiday selections are Mulberry + Mistletoe, Peppermint + Cypress, Pinecones + Amber, and Hot Cocoa. Why buy soy? It burns cleaner, 50% longer, and is a renewable resource compared to paraffin, a petroleum byproduct that produces more soot. Find them in their Etsy shop or at the following locations: Tangent Crafts in Emmaus, Adorned Boutique in Hellertown, Charming Grace Boutique in Hellertown, and Wehrung’s Lumber and Home Center in Ottsville, and the pop up shop at LIT on Sunday 12/17! -NE
7. ND Wheelhouse Class Pack Or Membership
If you’ve been itching to find your new favorite cardio activity (or if you’re already a devoted cycling enthusiast), bring or gift a friend to ND Wheelhouse in Allentown. You can purchase class pack punch cards or spring for a membership if you know of someone who would love to sweat through one of Natalie’s Rip 60 classes on the regular. (Also, if you’re looking to give class packs for a discount, check out the sweet Groupon deal they’ve got going right now!) -SD
8. Khineder Creations Toxin-Free Skincare Products
Umm, first of all, did you even know there was a shop in Emmaus that sells locally made, chemical-free, absolutely amazing skincare products? We just discovered Khineder Creations, and we couldn’t be more pumped about it. Hit up their Emmaus store, or shop online (and get 10% off all orders throughout December), for unique and totally natural goodies that make perfect stocking stuffers like Organic Deodorant ($12) containing anti-microbial tea tree oil, Instant Repair Face Oil ($30) made with grapeseed and rosehip oils, and lavender and frankincense essential oils, and Body Sculpting Scrub ($18) featuring detoxifying activated charcoal, and lip balms ($6). -SE
9. Lavender Keychains from The Lavender Farmette
Have you heard of The Lavender Farmette? This mother & son owned and operated micro-farm is just outside of Emmaus, but its beautiful, lavender-scented (Naturally! Of course!) treats will transport your lucky gift recipients to a lush lavender field in France. So many gift giving options, including lavender goat’s milk soap, floral water, pillow sachets, hand salves, and candles. But if I have to pick one thing to give from The Lavender Farmette, it would be the lavender keychains. The tiny little pillows are filled with farm-grown lavender that soothe you wherever you go! -NE
10. Healing Hands Massage and Spa Treatments
When the stress of the holidays has finally subsided, that’s when self-care can really start. (Though, if you need a quick stress-busting meditation, check ours out right here.) Healing Hands Massage and Wellness Center in Bethlehem has plenty of services to help cure tight muscles and much more. They allow you to choose your gift certificates (which you can buy online) by amount or services, too, so you can gift toward that 90-minute massage or go all in on a 30-minute organic facial. -SD
11. Pottery, Jewelry, and Wooden Creations from Artists at Heart
Artists at Heart is a cooperative venture of artists and fine crafts people in the Lehigh Valley area, and they’ll be setting up shop at Bethlehem’s Christmas City Village Open-Air Christmas Market through December 23. We’re particularly excited about their stoneware pottery, which you can also buy on their Etsy shop! -SE
12. Healthy Homemade Dog Treats from The Dining Dog
If you don’t have a separate stocking for your pet, are you really a pet owner? Okay, of COURSE you are, and this is the easiest way to win over the dog lover in your life! The Dining Dog is truly a Lehigh Valley gem. They do fresh, daily yogurts and meal packs for pets on any diet imaginable, and their homemade cookies and pup-friendly cakes make for an adorable and Instagram-worthy celebration. Snag their holiday selections--iced so beautifully it’s hard to tell they’re for pets--before they’re gone! -NE
13. Banana Factory Arts Classes
The holidays can bring out the inner craft god/goddess in all of us, so keep that crafty momentum going with a gift of classes from the Banana Factory Arts Center. Even for the art impaired among us (*raises hand*), classes there serve all levels with subjects like photography, glasswork, jewelry, ceramics, drawing, and so much more. Many classes are geared toward kids, teens, and families, and include a variety of price ranges. Give the gift of creative inspiration this year! -SD
14. Aardvark Sports Shop Gift Certificate
I know what you’re thinking--gift certificate on a gift guide?! Hear me out: good running shoes are really, really important for preventing injury. They’re a big ticket item, but when you gift the walker or runner in your life some money toward their next pair of sneakers at Aardvark in Bethlehem, you’re also gifting them the opportunity to get professionally fitted. I can tell you firsthand, it’s an experience like no other. Plus: receive one Aardvark dollar for every $10 you spend--even on gift certificates! -NE
15. Himalayan Salt Lamp from The Loving Piece
How freakin gorgeous are Himalayan salt lamps? They’re perfect for adding a calming pink glow (and a little dose of magic) to any room, and your friend who’s just a little woo woo will certainly appreciate their charm. You could buy one from Amazon, but we suggest hitting up The Loving Piece in Easton instead so you can check them out in person and peruse their collection of other charming goodies, including this Starter Kit Crystal Bag ($22), which makes a great stocking stuffer. -SE
16. Locally Brewed Gifts
If you’ve got a beer-loving friend, the craft beer options in the Valley will have them jollier than Old Saint Nick. Grab a growler and your favorite trusted tap selection from one of the many local options like Funk, Hijinx, Two Rivers, Weyerbacher, Hop Hill, Bonn, Lost Tavern, or Sole. (If Sole is your go-to, snag some of their merch, including their gorgeous glassware, right here.)
If a growler is a little much to commit to (or you need a little more shelf life from your beer), create a custom mixed six pack from some of the best bottled beer distributors in the Valley: Cork & Cage in Allentown (check out their current selection here), Shangy’s in Emmaus, or Tanczos in Bethlehem (selection here). Their selections are bound to please beer newbies and experienced drinkers alike. -SD