B.C.’s first Family Day is on its way, and it’s time for people of all ages to dip themselves into a pool of creativity and art as the 5th Annual Children’s Arts Festival returns on Monday, Feb. 11.
In a bid to make this year even more special, Eric Litwin, performance artist and New York Times bestselling author of the Pete the Cat series, will share his book, Pete the Cat, I Love My White Shoes and other musical stories at the Richmond Cultural Centre.
Litwin will have three exclusive performances at 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. Tickets to see Litwin are $10 per person and children’s (ages two and up) tickets include an Imagination Station wristband, which gives them access to other activities.
Fans are encouraged to bring their books or stuffed animals for signing.
In addition, the Children’s Art Festival let’s children’s diverse artistic voices be heard, whether they are dreaming of following in their favourite actor’s footsteps or filling concert arenas with enthusiastic fans.
Organized with the support of the News, young Richmondites will be able to join in creative and interactive classes hosted by accomplished artists.
Participants will work side-by-side with professional artist instructors as they immerse themselves in artistic disciplines such as hip hop, musical theatre, circus skills and cartooning.
Most classes are $10 per participant, and include a wristband to access Imagination Stations. Registration is encouraged as classes are selling out quickly. To register, visit www.richmond.ca/register or call 604-276-4300.
If children do not register for creative classes, they can instead purchase a $5 wristband, which will give them drop-in access to all of the performances and Imagination Stations, such as balloon twisting, face painting and origami. Swimsuits and skates might come in handy as well, as the wristband includes admission to Minoru Aquatic Centre and Minoru Arenas.
Designed to inspire the artist in each child, the annual event aims to “encourage our younger generation to try new things and take risks,” said Mayor Malcolm Brodie.
He said engaging in conversations with artists and broadening their artistic horizons pushes children to grow into “well-rounded members of our community.”
The festival will kick off with an opening ceremony at Richmond Cultural Centre Feb. 11 at 9:45 a.m.
Afterwards children are welcome to partake in their preferred artistic activities from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
While the festival actually runs until Feb. 15, the four remaining days are reserved for school groups. Last year, more than 1,200 young participants attended 81 events and activities over three sold out school days and two public days.
The upcoming edition promises to be even bigger and better due to it falling on the same day as B.C.’s first Family Day.
The Cultural Centre’s outdoor plaza will provide family-friendly food trucks, such as Mom’s Grilled Cheese, DougieDog and a waffles vendor.
For more information, reading material on author Eric Litwin or a preview of the list of artist instructors, check out www.childrensartsfestival.ca
To sign up for creativity classes or to purchase tickets to meet Litwin in person, visit www.richmond.ca/register or call 604-276-4300.
z Imagination Stations are hands-on drop-in activities such as balloon twisting, face painting, origami and skating. To participate, wristbands are available on site for $5, and include admission to the day’s performances, as well as skating at Minoru Arenas and swimming at Minoru Aquatic Centre for the whole family.
Families are asked to bring non-perishable food items to fill the Arts Truck parked in the plaza, with proceeds to the Richmond Food Bank.
z The 5th Annual Children’s Arts Festival is on Monday, Feb. 11 at the Richmond Cultural Centre (7700 Minoru Gate), from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., with an opening ceremony at 9:45 a.m.
This year’s festival is presented by the City of Richmond and BC Children’s Art and Literacy Centre, along with the support of Port Metro Vancouver, Richmond Centre, Richmond News, CTV, Par-T-Perfect, Richmond Community Foundation and Richmond Public Library.