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Coping with Kids: Area native plans book-signing, card game

| Monday, Feb. 4, 2013, 9:39 p.m.
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The Babee Covee is a multipurpose baby blanket and cover. http://babeecovee.com
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Triple Talk focuses on building vocabulary, comprehension and reasoning skills with words that have multiple meanings. www.superduperinc.com
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Safe-2-Go is a child friendly harness disguised as a kiddie-character backpack. Baby Sherpa
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Area native plans book-signing in Sewickly

When Tim Federle was a kid growing up in Upper St. Clair he used to visit the Penguin Bookshop in Sewickley.

Now a Broadway dancer-turned-author, Federle returns to the bookshop Wednesday with his first book, which he wrote for children in middle school.

In “Better Nate Than Ever,” 13-year-old Nate escapes his small Southwestern Pennsylvania town for a 24-hour trip to New York City to audition for “E.T. the Musical.” He has to be back in Yankberg before his parents return from their overnight anniversary getaway. Nate navigates the challenges and thrills of his adventure with lots of humor while gaining a new perspective on his self-image and his Broadway dreams.

Federle will be at Penguin Bookshop, 420 Beaver St. in Sewickley, from 3 to 4 p.m. Wednesday to chat with customers and sign copies of his book. Details: 412-741-3838

Essay contest asks kids to help end hunger

How can kids help end hunger in their community? They can answer that question in the 17th Annual Pasta Tales national essay-writing contest, and maybe win a prize.

Olive Garden, which is sponsoring the contest, is asking kids in grades 1 to 12 to write essays of 50 to 250 words with their ideas for ending hunger in their local communities. The winners in each of the 12 grade categories will win a $500 savings bond and a family dinner at Olive Garden.

The winner of the grand prize will win a three-day family trip to New York City, dinner at the Olive Garden in Times Square, and a $2,500 savings bond. The restaurant will provide a $5,000 grant to support hunger initiatives in the winner's community. Entries will be accepted through March 22. Details: www.olivegarden.co

Award-winning author to present at family lit series

Christopher Paul Curtis — Newbery Award-winning author of “The Watsons Go to Birmingham” and the 2012 book “The Mighty Miss Malone” — will be the presenter Sunday at the season finale of the “Black, White & Read All Over” Family Literature Series, presented by the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and Pittsburgh Arts & Lectures. Curtis will give a presentation, and do a question-and-answer session and a book-signing.

The event will begin at 2:30 p.m. at the Elsie H. Hillman Auditorium in the Hill House Kaufmann Center, 1835 Centre Ave., Hill District. At 2 p.m., a student singing group from East Liberty Presbyterian Church's Hope Academy will provide family entertainment. Tickets are $5 to $10.

Details: www.pittsburghlectures.org

Blanket useful for more than play

The Babee Covee — a multipurpose baby blanket and cover — was invented by two moms during a playdate.

The 6-in-1 Babee Covee, which has been featured on “Good Morning America,” can be used as a cover for a car seat, nursing, shopping cart, highchair and stroller, in addition to being a playtime blanket. The blanket has won five awards, and cost $39.99 to $49.99.

Details: babeecovee.com

— Staff and wire reports

Send parenting news to Coping With Kids in care of Rebecca Killian, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, D.L. Clark Building, 503 Martindale St., Pittsburgh, PA 15212, or e-mail rkillian@tribweb.com.

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