The Book You'll Help Write

amy krouse rosenthal imagine nation!

Your little dreamer slays dragons with spatulas and fights crime in a cushion fortress.

Spin his fantasy world into a real-life adventure with Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s Imagine Nation. The local children’s book author (Little Hoot, Duck! Rabbit!) has teamed with WBEZ Chicago Public Radio to write the forthcoming story using ideas from you (yes, you).

Rosenthal has a basic plot (there’s a magical place called Imagine Nation where goodness reigns and bridges are made of rainbows). From there, anything’s game, so encourage creative minds to invent wacky concepts and characters. Just go online to submit ideas and read those of others (we love the Leaning Tower of Pizza).

Every contributor — whether his or her offerings make the cut — will be credited in the book once it’s published. Proceeds will likely be funneled into a scholarship, making playtime that much brighter.

For more information and to contribute ideas, go to missionamykr.com.

this week in chicago!

Meet the Bees
Learn about yellow and black buddies by crafting a nectar cup, designing bee goggles, and going on a flower scavenger hunt.
Why: Swarm the honey samples.
When: Sat., 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Where: Garfield Park Conservatory, 300 N. Central Park Ave., at Fulton Blvd. (312-746-5100). Adults and children 4 and up, $3; 3 and under, free.

Family Adventure Days
Take a bus to Hyde Park, where kiddos dig for artifacts at The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, make a mini oeuvre at Hyde Park Art Center, and check out Frank Lloyd Wright’s Robie House.
Why: Show them President Obama’s stomping grounds.
When: Aug. 20, 9:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Where: Tour departs from the Chicago Cultural Center’s Visitor Information Center, 77 E. Randolph St., at Michigan Ave. Register at 312-742-8497 or online at explorechicago.org. Tickets, $12.

Paciugo Gelato
Munchkins (12 and under) get a free two-scoop cup of a frozen treat (flavors include bubble gum, chocolate chip, and wild berries) with an adult purchase.
Why: The activity table with crayons and stickers (Forest Park location) and fake mustaches (Broadway location) won’t leave you cold.
When: Tues., 4-9 p.m. (Also July 27.)
Where: 3241 N. Broadway St., at Melrose St. (773-248-8433); 7510 Madison St., b/t Ferdinand & Beloit Aves., Forest Park (708-366-6080).

Photo: Jim Darling / Courtesy of Amy Krouse Rosenthal

3241 N Broadway St
@ Melrose Ave
Chicago, IL 60657
7510 Madison St
bt Ferdinand & Beloit Aves
Forest Park, IL 60130
300 N Central Park Ave
@ Fulton Blvd
Chicago, IL 60624
78 E Washington St
@ Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60602