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Summer Holidays

Looking for summer holiday activities in York to keep your kids occupied? Look no further - we've got it covered!


Review: The Secret Garden at York Theatre Royal

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At the end of the holidays, ask your children what they enjoyed doing most during the long, hot summer. I’d bet a bunch of white roses that their fondest memories are being outside somewhere, surrounded by nature: in the park, in a wood or just in the back garden. It’s the timeless appeal of gardens, and their ability to heal and bring joy, that’s central to Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden, showing at York Theatre Royal this summer. If you’re familiar with the story, you’ll know that it’s not all peonies and petunias. Mary Lennox – an entitled and…

Review: Stockeld Park’s Summer Adventure 2018

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One of the best places to get some relief in a heatwave is in the shade of the trees, so we headed over to Stockeld Park for some fun in the Enchanted Forest. It had been a while since we’d visited, so we were interested to discover what was new at this family-friendly outdoor attraction just outside Wetherby. Getting there: It’s just 25 minutes from our house in York to Stockeld Park by car on easy, relatively quiet roads. We arrived just after 10am and there was plenty of room to park in the free car park. Admission: During the…

Review: Five reasons to visit the Heart of Yorkshire Festival at York Minster

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Dean’s Park is one of the hidden jewels in York’s crown, but this year it has a starring role in York’s summer thanks to the new Heart of Yorkshire Festival. There are free children’s activities, craft days (small fee applies) and a programme of workshops (paid; sign up online) as well as the Stone Carving Festival (18th & 19th August). We went along with our little Vikings this week and had a lovely time. Here are our five top reasons to head along this summer. The setting is stunning In the shadow of York Minster, Dean’s Park is a very…

Review: West End Magic at the Great Yorkshire Fringe

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Over the last year or so, our eight-year-old has turned into something of a Paul Daniels, never without a deck of cards or fake thumb (it’s a thing) to hand. So there was no way that we could let West End Magic come to town without taking him along. West End Magic has been part of the Great Yorkshire Fringe’s family programme since it launched three years ago, and we’ve been to see it every year (thinking about it, perhaps that explains the magic obsession). It’s an hour-long variety show, compered by magician and illusionist Oliver Tabor, and aimed squarely…

Review: Monstersaurus at the Great Yorkshire Fringe

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What do smelly socks, sausages from the school canteen and rabbit poo have in common? They’re all ingredients that you need to make a monster. They’re also some of the ingredients you need to make a hit live show for young children: just add an enthusiastic cast, catchy songs and a handful of funny monster puppets. In a break with (Julia Donaldson) tradition, this year’s flagship children’s show at the Great Yorkshire Fringe is an adaptation of the book Monstersaurus. It’s a story about Monty, an enthusiastic schoolboy with inventing on his mind. When he discovers an ‘Inventions Very Rare’…

Review: My Bottom Did a Burp in Class at the Great Yorkshire Fringe

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It’s not always easy to find a show that will entertain all of our three children equally, but the words ‘bottom’ and ‘burp’ have universal appeal to all kids, so we had high expectations of our first show at this year’s Great Yorkshire Fringe, My Bottom Did a Burp In Class. The brainchild of poet Paul Jennings, this 50-minute one-man show is an energetic canter through his hilarious children’s verse, touching on knights on unicorns, enthusiastic dogs, learning to juggle and everything in between. There was just the right amount of audience interaction – culminating, by the end of the…

The Heart of Yorkshire Festival at York Minster

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This summer, Dean’s Park – the beautiful green space behind York Minster – will become a hive of activity and a hub for families, friends and visitors. Enjoy workshops, crafts and performances and even outdoor screenings of blockbuster films (including The Greatest Showman and Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone) from early July right through to September. Pre-bookable family workshops include toddler music with Music at Heart, movement with the Bare Toed Dance Company, children’s storytelling and improv with Mud Pie Arts and percussion fun with TrashBang! The popular York Minster children’s craft activities will run as usual, but from…

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