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Families are flocking to this weekend’s “Oh Baby! Family Expo” at the Blaisdell Center exhibition hall. The event is billed as catering to “Hawaii’s prenatal to preschool families,” and with more than 150 vendors offering children’s clothing, toys and unique made-in-Hawaii items there’s plenty of shopping to be had. Most vendors are offering 10 to 40 percent off show purchases, and remember to ask about show specials.
Made-in-Hawaii items will be for sale. Today is the last day of the expo.
You’ll also have a chance to meet and question service providers including photographers and artists, healthcare professionals, nannies and sitters. You may investigate educational opportunities as well. Keep an eye out for drawings and giveaways, both show-wide and per inpidual vendor. Some require you be present to win, and others will notify you via phone or e-mail after the show.
The show’s demonstration area has hourly speakers and events designed to educate and to entertain. Saturday’s featured speaker and author Maya Soetoro-Ng held an interpretive reading of her new book, Ladder to the Moon, inspired by her daughter’s questions about her grandmother – Maya and President Barack Obama’s mother.
Sunday’s highlights will include a performance by local comedian Frank De Lima at 11 a.m.; the Baby Crawling Contest will be at 1 p.m.
Wear comfortable walking shoes; the hall is nearly 80,000 square feet, and there’s plenty to see. The hall can be noisy and crowded, and keep a watch out for errant strollers. To attend to your children’s needs, a private area for feeding and diaper changes has been set up. And if you prefer to explore the show sans children, a special infant and toddler play area and children’s area with games, activities and inflatables are available for your kids to play under the observation of a parent or grandparent.
Bouncing houses and toys areas keep kids busy at the expo.
The snack bar has a lot of choices. However, prices are on the higher side, so you may want to time your visit before or after lunch. Instead, go to the nearby Ward area for more options and better prices.
Admission is $4.50 for adults, with a $1 off coupon available for download from the “Oh Baby!” web site. Children 10 and under are admitted free of charge. Catch the last day of the expo, tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
How to get there (from the city bus web site):
Bus to Board:
On Kuhio Avenue heading away from Diamond Head, board 2 School Street-Middle Street, 13 Liliha-Puunui Avenue or Route B – CityExpress! School-Middle to Beretania Street and Ward Avenue. Walk toward the ocean on Ward Avenue to King Street.
Bus to Return:
To return, stand in front of the concert hall and board 2 Waikiki-Kapiolani Park, 13-Waikiki Campbell Avenue or Route B-CityExpress! Waikiki. Buses run about 10 minutes apart. After 8 p.m., buses run 15 to 20 minutes apart.