I always think that summer is all about making memories and embracing the opportunity to get outside and celebrate the warmer temperatures and longer days. Yes, I know it’s not all sunshine and heatwaves, but you won’t remember the endless cloudy days or the evenings spent on the sofa. You’ll remember the one garden party you went to, the awesome barbecue you threw and the one week you had out your paddling pool.
There are also so many fantastic family events held – nationally, regionally and locally – that we can all take advantage of. If you’re thinking it’s too late and summer is nearly over, think again. The lovely folk from Loose Ends App have the lowdown on four of the best family festivals across the west midlands and beyond throughout August and September. Because summer’s not over yet…
Family festivals throughout July and August
Blyth Farm Feast, Blyth Hall Farm, Shustoke: 7 August 2016
If one-day food festivals are your thing, pack up the kids on Sunday 7th August and head over to Shustoke for the Blyth Farm Feast. Once there you’ll be able to kick back and sample some of the best international street food in the midlands, such as Masterchef 2015 finalist Pete Hewitt’s Japanese fried chicken.
Young foodies will also find lots to love, and with a petting zoo, face painting and plenty more attractions to sample, they won’t be short of post-prandial entertainment. This of course leaves you free to enjoy local ales, cocktails and Prosecco in the fabulous Deckerdence Bus Bar. Any more fares?
Just So Festival, Rode Hall, Cheshire: 19-21 August 2016
Granted it may not exactly be on your doorstep, but the Just So Festival warrants an honourable mention for being just about the ultimate in family-oriented events. In fact, the festival was invented specially to provide a safe, creative environment where families can relax and enjoy theatre, books, music and dance together in a magical setting.
The festival’s organisers, Wild Rumpus, encourage you to arrive in costume (as foxes, owls, stags, frogs, lions or fish), and remind you not to forget your pillow. You’ll need it to sleep on, they counsel, but more importantly you’ll want it in order to take part in the grand pillow fight on the village green.
2016 is the year of codes and ciphers, too, so if your inner secret agent needs nourishing, the Just So Festival is where you ought to be heading.
Moseley Folk Festival, Birmingham: 2-4 September 2016
Held a mere two miles from the centre of Birmingham, Moseley Folk Festival is where you and your family can leave the urban environment behind while still not completely kissing goodbye to all of its amenities. The venue, Moseley Park, is an idyllic woodland glade, which forms a gentle slope down towards a beautiful lake. Performances take place here in a natural amphitheatre.
This year you can catch sets from Levellers, Billy Bragg, The Proclaimers, Cecil Sharp House Choir and many more. The best part? Moseley Folk Festival is truly family-friendly, and under 12s get in for free.
Worcester Music Festival: 16-18 September 2016
2016 year is the ninth year in a row for this completely free celebration of original music. It’s a three-day event held in different venues around the city of Worcester, and a great chance for you to discover (or take a deeper dive) into your local music scene.
The line-up is impressive, boasting pretty much every genre from Hip Hop and Jazz to the likes of Country and Ska. It’s not all about sitting in the audience, either. There are plenty of hands-on workshops for adults and children to take part in.
We especially like the sound of Little Monsters That Rock, a pre-lunch session designed to introduce your tiny rock stars to the much-loved classics of your youth. Fancy a chorus of We Built This City, anyone?
And if you do find yourself at a loose end…
Of course, summer’s not all about the big events. Sharing a picnic in the park with friends while your kids feed the ducks can be every bit as memorable as rocking out to your favourite band.
It’s a lot easier to organise, too. Just download the Loose Ends app to your smartphone, connect it to your Facebook account, and you’re ready to make the most of your precious free time.
Have you been to any family festivals this year or do you have any planned?
Disclosure: Post written in collaboration