Welcome to Parenting Sweet!

Parenting Sweet is a resource for parents and caregivers, featuring all the great opportunities in our region that make parenting sweet!

This issue features Easter basket inspiration, Earth Day, Kid Power!, grandparenting support, planning your parenting, camps, sports, ballet, theatre, community events, help for difficult conversations after tragedies, parenting classes, free activities, swimming, dancing, reading, and more!

Bristol’s Promise Making Parenting Sweet

We have tips, information, practices, and parenting classes, sessions, workshops, support groups, seasoned educators, and friendships that can help lighten some of your load and make parenting easier.

Wish you had an extra hand? A little help? A hack that makes things a little easier? Wondering if doing something different would help?

Check out the Parenting Educator Network opportunities below in the April 2023 Highlights.

Monthly Fun Poll:
Do you prefer watching the sun set or the sun rise?

Parenting Sweet helps us keep our five promises of caring adults, safe places, a healthy start, effective education, and opportunities to serve.

PLAYtime in the ARTspace is for ages zero to five years old or so, and those who love them!

Saturdays at 10:00 am (NEW TIME!)
506 State Street, Bristol, TN

PLAYtime in the ARTspace entertains and educates with favorite songs, skits, rhymes and more.

Parents have the chance to connect with each other, eat  coffee and bagels, and discover great parenting resources from around the region.

$5 per family, free coffee and bagels, and great parenting resources.

Doors open at 10:00 AM, program begins at 10:15 AM. Be sure to check the PLAYtime calendar for PLAYtime dates and follow our social media accounts.

Sponsored by Theatre Bristol, Bristol Bagel and Bakery, & Appalachian Promise Alliance, and the Tennessee Arts Commission.


Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Tennessee (BBBS-ETN) is launching the annual recruitment campaign, “60 BIGS IN 60 DAYS” from February 28th through April 28th. The goal of the campaign is to raise awareness about Big Brothers Big Sisters, the oldest and largest professionally supported one-to-one-mentoring program across the nation.

“The campaign goal is to have a minimum of 60 volunteers (Bigs), ages 15 and up, complete the application and begin the match process to mentor our “Littles” on the waiting list,” says Tammy Alls, Recruitment and Partnerships Manager. “All are encouraged to apply, but our biggest need is male mentors”.

Coming Soon: 
Grandparent Workshop Series

Bristol’s Promise will be offering a workshop series just for grandparents of children ages birth to five! Why? We love our grandparents! Whether you are “sharing the care” or a custodial grandparent, we recognize the vital importance of grandparents.

Did you know? In the U.S., one out of four children under age 5 is cared for by a grandparent while parents work or go to school and 1.6 million children are being raised by grandparents (US Census Bureau, Zero to Three).

We want to offer you the opportunity to build a strong social support network, sharing joys and challenges, as well as gaining and sharing knowledge. You can look forward to topics such as: challenging behavior, mealtimes and picky eating, early learning, sleep, generational relationships, and more!

Stay tuned! If you or someone you know may be interested in learning more about this program, please submit your information here. Questions? Email Lily Royston ( Thank you!

Click to learn more!

Still not sure what to fill your kids’ Easter baskets with this year? Maybe this list can help.

Bloomingdale Ruritan Annual Community Easter Egg Hunt at Ketron Elementary School with over 20,000 eggs. Ages 0-12 with a SPECIAL NEEDS FIELD!

On Parenting

What Do Parents Want?

Samantha Gray, Parenting Education Coordinator

“What do parents want?

Anyone reading this may have just muttered, “Sleep.” Parents definitely want sleep. They want time. Probably time to sleep, but also time to keep up, to think, to relax.

Parents want assurance they are on the right track. They want peace and no conflict.

Parents want to play, even have friends. ”

Read on

Below is a list of local summer sports camps, clinics, and tryouts!

Keep up with more camp opportunities on Parenting Sweet’s Facebook

Game Builder : Creating with Construct
Students in grades K-8 are invited to join iCode for a 3-day Spring Break STEM Camp called “Game Builder” at St. Dominic School in Kingsport! Each day will run from 8am-3pm.
In this introductory camp, campers will go beyond playing games, and get a behind-the-scenes experience, learning the art and science of game development. With hands-on projects, campers will be exposed to many digital tools used today for game creation such as Construct 3. Each game created throughout the week will start small and grow exponentially along with skills learned! By the end of the week, campers will really see that making games are more fun than playing them!

Children, adults and families nationwide are suffering after the recent school shooting in Nashville. We send our thoughts to those harmed, and hope to share relief through the resources below.

School Shooting Resources
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network has developed resources on school shootings.

How Parents Can Help Kids Cope With School Shootings
Many children have seen video of the school shooting in Nashville. Psychology Today shares how you can support your child during this difficult time.

Get A Family Pass For Less Today!

After you’ve created your account, upgrade to our Kids Bowl Free family pass, which allows adults in your family to enjoy the same great FREE Bowling offer as your kids.

You pay it one time, and you can bowl with your kids all summer long!

It’s great for parents, grandparents, older siblings and babysitters.

Use Coupon Code: NoJoke5
You’ll save $5 on your Family Pass Today! Just go to the website at:

The Wellness Center of Kingsport still has spots available in their swim classes! Anyone can learn to swim at The Wellness Center – no matter the age or skill level.

🤿 Group Swim Lessons
Children ages 3-12 | Mondays and Wednesdays, 4:30-5:30 p.m.

🤿 Parent & Child Safety Swim Sessions
For ages 6 months to 36 months and a guardian | Saturdays, 9-9:45 a.m.

🤿 Preschool Group Swim Lessons
Ages 3-5 | Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1-2 p.m.

🤿 Private Swim Lessons
All ages, adults included | upon availability

Fill out this form to sign up or request more information: 

Governor’s Early Literacy Foundation is partnering with the Tennessee Department of Education to provide at-home reading resources for free to all Tennessee families of K–2 children to help young learners become stronger readers. Based on your child’s grade level, they will receive the At-Home Decodable Book Series, a collection of seven booklets containing 20+ exciting stories full of sounds and words to practice, and age-appropriate, high-quality Scholastic books. Click here to order your kit.

Looking for information or support?
Visit to learn more about:

The Parenting Education Network, Bristol Family Resource Center, YWCA MOMS R US, Mom Power, Hope House, Frontier Health, Highlands Community Services, Breastfeeding Essentials, La Leche League Breastfeeding Support, Cherished Mom, Attached at the Heart Classes, Twin City Reads, Buckle Up for Life, Doula by Donation, Sullivan County Family Services, High Country Doulas, ETSU Family Physicians, Bethany Services, TriCities Babywearing TN, Sullivan County Health Department, STRONG Pregnancies, STRONG Starts, and more.

Bristol’s Promise
Parenting Education Network Programs

Find a program that fits your needs! Click to search for free or low cost, morning or evening, online or in-person, first-time or veteran parent/caregiver, and more!

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Parenting Sweet works to help make parenting sweet! Parents get connected to support and information because learning about parenting and getting support does make a difference.

If you would you like to continue receiving Parenting Sweet, you’ll need to be sure to sign up on the website.

If you know a parent, caregiver, grandparent, or anyone who cares about children, share the sign-up link with them and help them find all that’s great for children and families in our community.

Past issues and all the events are available anytime on the Blog.

Support for this program is provided by Ballad Population Health Community Health Initiative and Bristol Public Housing.

Parenting Sweet Team: Samantha Gray, Lily Royston, Susan Turner, Emily Macbeth, Katherine Wilson-Thompson, Melissa Roberts, and Margaret Feierabend.

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