Everything from Dinosaurs to Discos at Reading Children’s Festival 2018

A BIG celebration event to kick off three weeks of Reading Children’s Festival 2018 will be held in Forbury Gardens next week.

Forbury Fiesta will include a host of fabulous entertainment and fun activities including games, music, dancing and a chance to meet a 125 million year old dinosaur. Youngsters will also be able to join in workshops throughout the day to make masks for a special procession at the big reopening of the Abbey Ruins in June. There are stacks of events to look forward to across the borough throughout the Children’s Festival, including the exciting debut of Baby Loves Disco at Rivermead Leisure Complex. Forbury Fiesta launches the 29th Reading Children’s Festival on Saturday 12th May. Tiny the dinosaur is being brought to life thanks to the wonders of modern science and youngsters will be able to pet her, feed her and talk to her in dinosaur language. Anyone who wants to get moving can join diddi dance on the main stage and Theatretrain who will be running workshops through the day and will then be performing on the main stage and inviting everyone to join in. Other performers on the day include Martin’s Glee Club, Razzamatazz Reading and the John Madejski Performing Arts. Waterstones book store will be presenting Storytime sessions in the bandstand featuring author and illustrator Duncan Beedie. The Jelly crew will be running workshops for all ages throughout the day where they will be making animal masks in preparation for a procession on the launch day of Reading Abbey and Water Fest on 16th June. Reading Museum and their Abbey on Wheels will be running children’s activities and there will be a BBQ, children’s funfair rides and free face painting and balloon modelling all day long. The Reading Abbey theme will be running throughout the Children’s Festival with Jelly also running a Deer Mask Workshop at Broad Street Mall on 29th – 30th May and a Summer Wonderland workshop on 1st June. The Abbey Gateway will host Medieval Monk School on 29th May, Georgian mask making on 30th May and Medieval Gingerbread making on 31st May. One of the most anticipated events of the festival is Baby Loves Disco at Rivermead Leisure Complex on 3rd June. After over a decade of family dayclubbing, including nine consecutive sell-out seasons at Edinburgh Fringe, the original dance party is making its debut at Reading Children’s Festival. Baby Loves Disco resident DJs spin feel-good chart floorfillers and nostalgic pop classics for parents and babies, toddlers and young children to enjoy together. There will also be face-painting, crafts, a dress-up corner and a toddler chill out zone. Other highlights include the Waterstones Reading’s Short Story Competition; Spring Chickens family fun day at the Museum of English Rural Life; Children’s Concert with the Reading Symphony Orchestra at Reading Minster; Ugly Duckling ballet for children at The Hexagon; Canoe beginner taster sessions at The Warren and Green Park Challenge #2 in south Reading. There are also a huge range of activities planned at Reading Libraries across the borough and at Reading Sport & Leisure venues.

Reading Mayor Cllr Rose Williams said:

“Reading Children’s Festival 2018 is providing an amazing range of activities for children of all ages across the borough. “The action packed Forbury Fiesta kicks off weeks of exciting events for young people and it promise plenty of dancing, singing, playing and partying. “Parents and youngsters can pick up the Children’s Festival brochure now and start planning their three weeks of fun.” Full details of all the events can be found in the Reading Children’s Festival 2018 brochure which is now available online at: www.reading.gov.uk/childrensfest or copies can be found at libraries, leisure centres and the Civic Offices in Bridge Street.