What’s On: London’s Best Baby, Toddler and Family Events
This Weekend for Family, Bigger kids and Little Ones:
Family – big kids, little kids, mums, dads and nans:
The Great River Race: Head down to the Thames and watch over 300 boats, of all different distinctions, compete in a river marathon. Dragon boats, Viking boats, cutters, skerries and more, come and watch genuine competitors right alongside fancy dress and charity stunts. It’s a fun day out on the Thames. Approximate times: Tower Bridge 1:10, Westminster Bridge 1:25, Lambeth Bridge 1:30.
Japan Matsuri, Trafalgar Square: Join a festival celebrating Japanese culture. Take the kids to the activity tents to have a go at making origami, Magna art, have a go at some traditional Japanese fete games. Lots of music and performers lined up including traditional drummers and judo from The Budokwai.
Museum of Childhood, Big Draw Party – come and take part in numerous arts and crafts activities with leading children’s artists. Lots of literary activities to jump start The Big Draw events taking place across the UK this month. Sunday 11:30 – 4:30.
LMA Mini-Maestros: Head over to St. Martin-in-the-Fields after attending the Japan Matsuri festival in Trafalgar Square, for a lovely concert, Eine Klein, Nachtumusik. All ages, children participate, great family concert. Saturday 4:30, tickets £8.50 adults, £6.50 children.
Fulham Palace, Country Life Fair: head over to Fulham palace for a day of eating, browsing, sampling and learning – for adults and children. Kids can make corn cob dollies, edible window box plantings or head over to the mini farm, the dog show or falconry display. Tickets are £23 per adult and children under 12 go free. There is an Ofsted registered crèche on site for children ages 3+. Saturday 10-6pm and Sunday 10-5pm.
Mostly for bigger kids:
Whitechappel Gallery, Family Workshop: ottoGraphic. Head over to Whitechappel Gallery on Saturday to make your very own book using screen-printed black templates and cutting and pasting white sticky plastic. This is sure to be a well-attended workshop, booking is advised. Free, ages 5-11 (children must be accompanied by an adult)
Le Institute Francais, Piatti Quartet: Bring children who are able to sit quietly (or children who you are willing to remove from the hall if they do not) to Le Institute Francais Sunday, 2pm for a traditional string quartet concert. Adults £5, children free. Booking suggested
The Musical Adventurists: “Best children’s party entertainment ever” – I had The Musical Adventurists to my own home for a party earlier in the summer; I cannot recommend them more highly – everyone was thrilled. My son’s class has taken the characters with them over the summer, they are still playing Captian Boon! Cross the dark lagoon. The Musical Adventurists provided hours of quality fun and magic, the kids can’t wait for them to come back… London’s Children Entertainers The Musical Adventurists. Check out some footage here – so. much. fun.
Little kids (and their older siblings):
Garden Museum: Head over to the gorgeous Garden Museum for an enchanting storytelling session, followed by a charming craft-making activity where you can make your very own gnome. Craft 11:00, storytelling 11:30.
JW3: head over to Finchley Rd for AMAZING activities and theatre for kids. Yogabugs, crafternoon, a production of Me and My Cat, The Imagination Station (great music classes for kids) and a screening of The Aristicats … check it out, this is a fabulous place to spend a Saturday.
Curzon Cinema, Victoria: Do head over and check out Victoria’s swish, new cinema, right off Victoria Street. This week’s Kids Club programme: Tangled. Saturday and Sunday, 10:00. £3.50 per person.
Gate Picturehouse, Kids Club: This week’s programme: London International Animation Festival. Tickets £1 with £4 membership, popcorn and juice £2. (best £3 you will ever spend on a rainy Saturday)
Barbican Family Film Club: This week’s feature: Robots. Tickets are £2, bring the kids and escape the cold while you chill and watch a movie. Great price. 11am, all ages.
Electric Cinema, Kid’s Club: This week’s feature, Moomin and the Midsummer Madness, 9:30am. Check out the Electric Cinema in Notting Hill with its plush, red velvet beds, sofas and armchairs. Looks like a great way for Dad to occupy the kids on a Saturday morning. Tickets £8 per person. All ages
For Babies and Toddlers:
Chelsea’s award-winning mum and baby activity, Monkey Music, is now three weeks into the term and as there are only a few places remaining, Monkey Music Chelsea is offering a fabulous promotion for London-baby readers: when 3 or more mums join together, the membership fee is £1 (normally £18). Spaces are filling up quickly and the offer will not last for long, avoid disappointment and book your place soon. Call Monkey Music on 020 8767 9827 (don’t forget to mention London-baby) or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Aquababies Swimming Classes: New classes Tuesdays 11:30 – 1pm, few spaces remaining. Aquababies, a specialist swim school for infants and toddlers up to 3 years old, has a few openings remaining in their Marble Arch venue at exceptional value – £75 for 5 week course. Bring a friend and mention London-baby and you will receive a 20% discount. Bring two friends and get a 40% discount (don’t forget to mention London-baby!!). Ring Sam on 01273 833101 and he will happily give you more information about the course, the instructor and the pool.
Ritzy, Brixton, Toddler Time:Thursdays 11am, £3 per child, adults free. This week’s programme: Olly the Little White Van
Electric Cinema, Electric Scream: This week’s feature: Maps to the Stars– bring babies under 12 months to this amazingly plush cinema, relax with some coffee and catch a flick.
Ritzy, Brixton, Big Scream: Fridays, 11am. £7.50. This week’s feature: Maps to the Stars