Wow, didn’t the new school year just start? I can’t believe we’re already facing the Mid-Autumn Festival holiday, which is just over three weeks away. Everything will grind to a halt from September 19-21, so signups for activities are beginning in earnest now. From fitness and sport activities to Mandarin classes, parenting courses, and activities you can do with your kids, there’s something for everyone. Don’t delay!
Books, Books, Books
This is a one-off event but bears mentioning because it is one of the biggest Beijing fairs and takes place right here in our ‘hood. The 2013 Beijing International Book Fair (BIBF), now in its 19th year, brings together over 2,000 publishers and vendors in a 53,000sqm exhibition space. (No, the Chinese are not big on modesty.)
BIBF aims to “introduce excellent books from around the world into China and leading Chinese books to the world.” Despite the number of printed books on display, this year’s edition of BIBF will highlight its Digital Publishing Zone. Other areas to look out for are the Children’s Book, Cartoons and Animation Zones, Periodicals Zone, Publishing on Demand Zone, the Rights Center, and the Library Acquisition Zone.
We love books, but we don’t love the heavy traffic that will inevitably descend on the China International Exhibition Center. Both Pinnacle Plaza and Europlaza attempt to deter vendors and fair attendees from hogging their parking lots (and rightly so). In the past, parking fees at both malls cost as much as RMB 200 per day – and this for normally free parking zones. This tends to keep away not only potential long-term users, but also regular customers. Shunyi residents can usually plan around this by going to both places in the evening whenever possible.
The 2013 Beijing International Book Fair will take place at the China International Exhibition Center from August 28 to September 1. Admission is free; you just need to fill in a registration form at the gate to get a ticket. I recommend walking over!
China International Exhibition Center
88 Yuxiang Lu, Tianzhu Airport Industrial Zone, Shunyi District (6586 6995) 顺义区天竺开发区榆祥路88号
Ladies’ Golf Program
This five-week golf program combines fitness, professional coaching, and socializing in a relaxed environment. Each group is limited to six ladies and offers two make-up lessons (30 minutes each) if you miss a regular class sometime within the five weeks.
Programs run from 10 to 11am. There are two groups; the Wednesday group begins on August 28, while the Thursday group begins on August 29. All equipment is provided. The cost is RMB 2,200 for five weeks.
Direct Link Golf
89 Capital Airport Highway, Shunyi District (136 9150 5009, email@example.com) 顺义区机场高速路89号
Junior Golf Coaching Camp
PGS Professional coaching is in full swing (no pun intended). Pitching, chipping, putting, golf rules, golf etiquette and life skills will be covered in the five-week clinic. The sessions will be held over five Saturdays, with courses divided between different age groups:
- 9-9.45am (age 6)
- 11am-noon (ages 7-10, beginner)
- 1-2pm (ages 7-10, advanced)
- 2-3pm (ages 11-18)
Register and pay the course fee of RMB 1,400 before August 31 to secure your child’s place. For address and contact, see above.
Tai Tai Tennis
The fall 2013 Tai Tai Tennis season will soon begin. Signups will take place from 10 am to noon on August 29 at Jamaica Blue in the Yosemite Clubhouse. Look for Mary Kate and Johanna at the coffee shop and they’ll help you register for the club’s 14th season.
Tai Tai is a player-led doubles league with players of all levels. It’s fun, social tennis and a wonderful way to make new friends while keeping fit. Even if you don’t have a partner, Mary Kate and Johanna will find you someone of your level to play with.
RMB 200 per person to register
Includes cost of the end-of season lunch and prize-giving
Season runs from mid-September to mid-November
Call 136 5134 6314 or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions
A little knowledge of the local language is essential for getting around and getting things done. But beyond giving simple instructions or buying fruit at the local market, speaking Mandarin can also give you a richer experience in China.
Sign up for group or one-on-one lessons at HLCC within Capital Paradise. Class sizes are small (maximum six students per class). The teachers are qualified to teach Chinese as a foreign language, friendly, and make good culture coaches for your day-to-day questions.
A variety of Chinese classes with a strong grammar base are available for adults, with or without Chinese characters. Beginner and intermediate classes are open for enrollment and take place twice a week from September to January for a total of 70 hours (excluding Mid-Autumn Festival, the National Day holiday, and Christmas break in accordance with international school calendars). Prices start from RMB 4,900.
Private lessons can be arranged for RMB 150/hour at the school or RMB 160/hour at your home or workplace. Other courses include daily conversational Chinese, Chinese characters, business Chinese, training for the HSK (a standardized Chinese proficiency exam), and after-school tutoring for kids.
Call Halida at 135 0115 3524 or send an email at email@example.com for more information on schedules.
Enrolment for the First Beijing British Scout Group is now open for girls and boys aged 8-10 (Cubs) and 11-14 (Scouts). They may restart a Beavers section (ages 6-8) if there are enough children interested in joining and volunteers interested in running it. UK Scouting is co-educational, which is different from the US scouting model. The group meets at Dulwich College’s Legend Garden campus on Sunday mornings. Children of all schools and nationalities are welcome to join. For more information, check out their website.
Cub Scout Pack 3944 welcomes boys aged 6-11 and their families for a US scouting experience. They meet weekly at ISB and all kids regardless of school are eligible. Check out their info at the following sites: pack3944beijing or their Facebook page (VPN required).
The Open House for Girl Scouts USA Beijing will be held at 10am on August 31 at the Western Academy of Beijing’s Elementary School Lotus Lounge. You’ll be able to learn more about the program, as well as how you and your daughters can get involved. Girl Scouts is a volunteer organization that relies on adult volunteers to lead the program. That means parents can join their daughters for activities like hiking, camping, completing badges, earning awards and doing service projects. There are also travel opportunities for older girls. For any questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Parent Effectiveness Training
Parent Effectiveness Training (P.E.T.) is a popular course that educates parents in effective communication. It has been around for some 50 years and is now taught in over 40 countries. The approach is based on looking at the needs of each individual and learning the appropriate skills to reduce and resolve conflict, which in turn creates warmer relationships. P.E.T. has been shown to be effective for children of all ages, and in turn, parents are able to model invaluable skills that can be passed on.
The 24-hour course is broken down into eight sessions of three hours each. There are weekday early afternoon and weekend late afternoon classes to choose from. This module begins in early September and runs through to November (with breaks for the Mid-Autumn Festival and National Day holidays). Courses will be hosted by The British School of Beijing, Shunyi campus.
12.45-3.45pm, Wed, Sep 4, running 8 sessions until mid-Nov
4-7pm, Sat, Sep 7, running 8 sessions until mid-Nov
Read more about Naomi Taylor’s P.E.T. courses on her website.
Email email@example.com to reserve a slot.
Dragon Bay Fitness Activities
Antje’s fun fitness classes at Dragon Bay are back! In addition to Step Aerobics and Body Balance, fall is the perfect season for an outdoor circuit boot camp. The workouts offer a variety of movements to rev up your metabolism. Each session begins with a warm-up followed by dynamic stretching. Props such as balance board, resistance bands, dumbbells, kettle bells, and TRX bands are combined with movements that use your own body weight to your advantage. Whew!
Boot Camp – Outdoor Circuit – Functional Training – Athletic Training
9-10.30am, Mon and Wed
Call Antje at 150 1100 4538, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details
Photo by flickr user vbecker
Dana is the beijingkids Shunyi Correspondent. Originally from the Philippines, she moved to Beijing in 2011 (via Europe) with her husband, two sons and Rusty the dog. She enjoys writing, photography, theater, visual arts, and trying new food. In her free time, she can be found exploring the city and driving along the mountain roads of Huairou, Miyun and Pinggu.