|Our sweet Heaven Fluff --Spring 2013|
* "Hands-on / Minds-on" experiential learning
* Held indoors or outdoors
* Scaled to suit any group size
* Screened adult volunteers
* 45-60 minutes of glee and photo opportunities
Contact us to share details about your upcoming special event to get the conversation going. We'll partner with you to co-create amazing memories and the photo keepsakes all families will cherish. Your bunny-themed experience will be the talk of the spring or summer!
Our playful rabbits are owned and raised by children and because of this daily interaction, the STEM Bunnies LOVE to spend time with other people! Over the past year we have been fine-tuning the format that is guaranteed to transform an hour into something almost magical as your guests are playing and learning. Bunny parties are perfect for scout troops, classrooms, corporate picnics, birthday parties, senior centers, community events and even receptions...
Birthday Girl Anna (7) said: "My heart was flittering so fast to see all those bunnies hopping EVERYWHERE around at my Princess party!! SO MANY BUNNIES!!! My heart almost popped out of my ears! Then one baby bunny hopped up on my lap and said 'I love you' to me. Just to me. She was SO sweet. Then this huge wave of love splashed all over me and I was instantly calm. Then a few minutes later she went and gave her Momma kisses just like I do. Awww!!!!"
Our rabbit handlers & educators are able to bring a "Basket of Bunnies" to most sites in the Twin Cities metro area including private homes. We can easily transform your yard, your porch, your living room or community room into a bunny party.And if need a site other than your home, we can suggest locations that have hosted us before. We bring portable fences, bunnies, supplies and decorations that are ready to go within minutes. we can set up and get started within minutes of arriving and clean up just as quickly.
For larger events and "THE BEST PARTY EVER" , we will bring at least six different breeds, a variety of ages (from days old, weeks old, months old and a Momma Bunny), decorations and a whole lot more! Priceless! We are experts on throwing a Bunny Party and we're happy to share details for how to make your special day off the charts with learning and fun!
Our young bunnies are safest with children who have completed at least first grade, but we have many junior age weaned bunnies (up to six months), teen bunnies and adults that are better suited for younger children
Contact us to invite us to find an available date
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
1) WHEN CAN THE BUNNIES COME?
Spring: On a weekday, an ideal event starts at 10 AM or after 3:30 PM bunny nap time. Classroom settings are great too! Early Saturday evening or Sunday afternoon could work. Because of the amount of time we need to spend at the farm and with so many Easter event already on the books, we limit the amount of events to keep our rabbits healthy.
Summer: The rabbits need us to help them stay cool which means an indoor air conditioned party. We can place a tarp down on your shaded deck or family room but yards with trees are nice. An ideal event will start at 9:30 or 10 AM if it is outdoors. We host many STEM classes so schedule your event as soon as possible to reserve a date.
Autumn: We can host events during or after the school day or Saturdays.
2) DESCRIBE A TYPICAL EVENT:
Packing: It takes us approximately an 60 to 90 minutes to get the bunnies and supplies loaded. This means a last minute health check, final nail trim, check out sheets etc. To be more humane, we also wait for the rabbits to enter the travel crates rather than forcing them even though that adds some preparation time.
Most events are hosted in a private home, school, community center, preschools and adult day programs. Usually parks are not well-suited for our bunnies. (Note: If you don't want to host at your home, Woodlake Nature Center in Richfield MN has a private field area that works well.
Contact them about the possibility of having your event there).
"I had no idea what they meant by 'multiply like rabbits' until I learned that rabbits can have babies EVERY month! Are you kidding me? Pregnant on the left AND the right side?? Babies in only 28 days?? That's just CRAZY! "
Set Up: In about ten minutes, we can set up our wire enclosures, cover the ground with a tarp and place some of our cute decorations at your home or event location for a scavenger hunt. We have animal tracks that we set out for the kids to find and a take home sheet with a key to identifying tracks at the park or your backyard.
Welcome: As you welcome party guests, they are sent to wash their hands and begin greeting our rabbits through the wire fence. Once the majority of your guest arrive, they will receive 5 to 10 minutes of general rabbit handling instruction while we start bringing out rabbits one at a time. Guests will enter the wire fence and sit on the ground in a circle, and their laps are covered with fleece blankets.
The kids sit on the ground and wait for the rabbits to come up to them; During the first few minutes children sit on their hands or put their hands behind their backs, allowing the rabbits to choose how long they stay in one spot and who they visit. Then in a few minutes we show your guests how to pick up and hold the rabbits. Some of our bunnies love to be held like a baby, others will just hop up on laps and others dart around looking for grass and can't stay still. We usually pass one of the "snuggely" rabbits around the circle to those children who are sitting cross-legged. Parents and other adults are fully engaged and ready to help with extra hands. Depending on the time of year, we can also bring new born "pinkies" (eyes closes), two weeks (eyes open with fur), two months and a Momma Bunny to nurse. This lets your guests see the rabbit life cycle and opens up a lot more GREAT questions.
Program: While your young guests play with, feed, weigh/measure our rabbits, our instructors share about the breed, fun science facts. We love to answer questions and see your guests eyes light up!
We usually have one of the rabbit owners who is also a child come and help teach their peers. It is awesome to see kids interacting with other kids who get to share what they have learned. Adults are encouraged to join in and share this fun experience with their child.
We usually bring one rabbit per two guests to events so there is lots of hands-on time. We love teaching about and sharing our bunnies. It's fun to see the kids so engaged -- sweetness everywhere whether it's for boys, girls or coed party. Our curriculum topics reinforce the Minnesota Department of Education science standards.
Younger children are ready for a game around the 30 minute mark while older elementary age are engaged another 15 minutes. There is always a natural break when you guide the guests to the next activity. We can be cleaned up/packed up in about ten minutes after everyone says goodbye and has one last picture. Then everyone goes and washes their hands before moving onto the next activity. (For guests who are allergic to rabbits or who have had a fever in the past 72 hours, or who have a stuffed up/runny nose are invited to come to the party 30 minutes late to still enjoy the party but skip the rabbit portion).
Bunny Theme: We have plenty of bunny-themed ideas for snacks, treats, age appropriate crafts and games to complement your ideas if you're interested in any of our resources. We bring copies of our bunny coloring sheet that has our contact information on it in case they are planning an event that might be a good fit for our bunnies, if they'd like to go to Bunny Camp, or even foster a rabbit. We have bunny ears for your Birthday Girl or Birthday Boy to wear and a 6 foot blue inflatable rabbit with a carrot we can put in your front yard if you'd like to make your event easy to find. We also have a fun stash of bunny decorations for your food table...put some treats in the containers or have a scavenger hunt for these figures that range from a few inches to about a foot tall.
Presents: For a new spin on your party, if you'd like to ask guests to bring presents for the bunnies, we would be pleased to accept the following: Pet water bottles, bag of carrots, pineapple (fresh or canned), apples, cilantro, parsley, (no lettuce please), strawberries and stems, and raspberry leaves.
|Birthday Party!! Summer 2013|
Post-Event: For the safety of all of our rabbits, after an event, we keep the rabbits that came to an event away from other farm rabbits for several days. This is to help prevent the passing of any of the potential human germs to the other bunnies (called Bio-security). This also limits the number of events we can attend and which bunnies are available. So if you have a special request for certain a rabbit that you've met before, please let us know as soon as possible and we will try to accommodate your request.
3) HOW MUCH DOES A BUNNY PARTY COST?
After we hear what you are envisioning, we will let you know what the current rate is for a party like that. Currently we operate on a donation basis rather than a set fee. The bunnies are giving you a gift of their time and so are our volunteers. And our kids are simply asking for you to give our bunnies a gift back which goes to pay for our rabbit's expenses including feed, vet bills, cages and supplies. This system, designed by a nine year old, encourages you to "pay it forward" so that other kids can enjoy a bunny party too. In essence, if we have volunteer staff available to come to your event, we will book your event regardless of ability to pay and without a bill. We accept your gift and somehow it all works out. Someone else has paid for your event and now you get to pay for someone else!
This whole enterprise was started and is led by kids to be educational for them and for other kids. They love doing this and they don't want money to limit who gets to enjoy learning. (When you call/email, we will let you know what a fair rate would be for what you're dreaming up if you were contracting with equivalent businesses). If you need us to bill your company or school, tell us how much you want to donate, and we will submit a bill to you for that amount. Our kids are very trusting and firmly believe that everyone will treat them fairly. ;-
5) HOW DO YOU OPERATE?
STEM Bunnies is an educational nonprofit that partners with children who own rabbits. The animals themselves are privately owned by children and their families who are gracious to let us share the bunnies with you during our events. Each of the owners are listed as additional insured on the policy. We have a relatively small budget because there are no paid administrative staff to run this program. It is volunteer driven and so if you would like to help us provide more classes/events please get in touch and start that conversation.
STEM Bunnies is about education and fostering. But in full transparency, some of our rabbit families raise rabbits for different reasons. Some simply love raising pet rabbits. Some raise "house rabbits." Some like to show them in competitions like 4H or FFA or ARBA. Some raise rabbits to sell for pets or shows. Some raise angora rabbits and humanely harvest the angora fiber every few months. Some raise the traditional meat rabbits, like other farmers. STEM Bunnies classes are not going to teach how to raise rabbits for profit. STEM Bunnies volunteers are united around the idea of teaching others how to take care of rabbits and sharing their rabbits with other, regardless of how they view rabbits.
6) DO YOU HAVE OTHER ANIMALS? No. We do not operate like a petting zoo. We are a networking group of rabbit breeders that work with educators to host STEM events that can be tailored to different kinds of events. We bring a variety of rabbits (variety of ages and breeds) but we do not bring any other animals. Our rabbits are privately owned by several families and rabbit breeders.
7) WHAT ABOUT SAFETY?
Our adult volunteers are all screened.
We will provide you with a sheet that describes our policies when you contact us and set up your event. These polices help to keep our rabbits and your guests safe, so although you may ask for exceptions, we won't be able to accommodate your request. We aim to set the standard for "best practices" to ensure that our rabbits stay healthy and happy. (For instance: when possible, guests should be instructed to wear long sleeves and long pants to prevent scratches. While the bunnies are playing, guests must be seated. If a child/guests who has had a fever in the last 72 hours or currently has a stuffed up/runny nose should not touch a rabbit because these germs can be deadly to a rabbit. About allergies: On your invitation let your guests know that you will have live rabbits at the party. If anyone is sensitive/allergic to rabbits or dogs, it is likely that one of our breeds will be an irritant and it would be best for them to come to the party 30 minutes late and join the group after hand washing.
8) WHAT KINDS OF RABBITS WILL YOU BRING?
Depending on the time of year and the audience of your event, we will select which rabbits are a good fit. We can bring 2 week old rabbits (viewing only) that we bring in a nest box, a mix of young rabbits up to 8 weeks old weaning that are from the same family and one adult to showcase the rabbit life cycle. We often bring at least one English or French Angora rabbit and one Mini Rex/Hotot/Lop so the guests can feel the difference in fur and see the amazing variety within the extended rabbit family.
9) WHO TEACHES?
At each event there will be at least one rabbit breeder/farmer. This project was started by elementary and middle school kids who own rabbits and who want to share firsthand about their personal experience. Usually they come as a family unit with their children who may be the same age as the party guests. Together they demonstrate the proper way to play with their rabbits and help answer questions.
10) WHAT AGES WORK BEST? 6+ years old
We recognize that children mature at different rates -- and so do our rabbits. That being said, we can adjust our program to different ages by shifting content, length of time, number of adult helpers and ages of the rabbits.
In the past we have hosted events for younger children and we have visited preschools, citywide events and senior centers. We found that although everyone loves bunnies and has a great time, our curriculum is best suited to children who are eight years and older. Young children are invited to look but not touch except when our instructors are holding a rabbit.
At your event, younger siblings and a few younger guests than eight years old are fine, but they must have an adult sitting immediately next to them at all times that the rabbits are out. When the guest are 8+ years old, plan for a 1 adult per 2 children ratio; please invite parents to stay for at least the beginning of the event to take pictures and to be extra sets of hands. Our younger rabbits are squirmy and fun just like children, so we need actively engaged adults to help the event run more smoothly.
11) CAN KIDS BUY A BUNNY? This event is about YOU and your guests, not about rabbit sales or pushing a product. We feel it is very important for people to make informed decisions about pet ownership. We will NOT be offering rabbits for sale at your event or any time that could lead to impulse pet ownership or an awkward push to buy a rabbit from us during your event. We will pass out our coloring sheet that includes our website address so that people can explore more about fostering a rabbit and upcoming camps but honestly, we discourage rabbit ownership unless you're ready for a ten year commitment.
12) HOW DO I BOOK AN EVENT?
Contact us by email and we'll start the conversation. Our calendar fills quickly so book early. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org