Monday, August 11, 2014

Just So Festival... ten top tips

It’s festival season, and once again we’re off as a family to the amazing Just So festival – a creative family arts festival based at Rode Hall in Cheshire. We went for the first time last year, and enjoyed ourselves so much that we’re back for more this year!
In case you’re not sure what to expect, I wanted to share our top ten tips, so here goes:
  1.  Dress up – the Just So festival is the one place where if you’re *not* dressed up you’re the odd one out. Last year my favourite outfit was my cowboy one (I should dress up as a cowboy more often), and I was amazed by some of the other amazing outfits around. Preferably have multiple costumes!
  2. Pick a tribe before you go, then accessorise accordingly. Last year our whole family was lions, so we made sure we had some lion outfits or accessories for the Tribal Tournament. This year, which tribe to be has been a discussion point with our kids for months and we’ve ended up deciding to be frogs instead. Our frog outfits have gradually taken shape – mine thanks to some excellent car boot purchases – and we can’t wait to transform into frogs when we get there (you never know, it might be an appropriate tribe to be in if it rains, heaven forbid!).
  3. Plan the big things – this year and last year we got our programme in advance and picked out the big things we wanted to do as a family, and then worked out our schedule accordingly.. there’s so much to do.. but at the same time..
  4.  .. enjoy the unplanned things – as much as it’s great to plan lots of stuff in advance, we also found that it was some of the unplanned, unexpected activities that we did which became some of the strongest memories – making knot dolls for instance..
  5. Do the lantern parade through the woods – it’s magical. Last year you could make lanterns there, but just in case you don’t manage to, it might be worth bringing your own lanterns and poles to join in..
  6. Wear your kids. Our kids are still small enough to need carrying.. and although there are great paths around the place, we found it was much more versatile and convenient to wear our kids in carriers.. so perhaps plan without your pushchair.
  7. Let your kids stay up – there’s loads to do in the evenings, and the site gets even more magical after dark. Perhaps enjoy the stories around the fire in the woods..
  8. Dance – there’s loads of great music to enjoy as a family, and we had great times dancing to pirate bands, vegetable-related bands, ukulele bands.. let your hair down and spin your kids..
  9. Eat the lovely food – there’s loads of great food available, so grab something yummy to eat as you go round..
  10.  And finally.. book early for next year!


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Kevin Aires said...

Sounds great! I must look it up!

Luke Strickland said...

It's well worth it Kevin - think it might be fully booked now though, but something to think about for next year maybe, am sure your girls would love it (and you might too!).

Anonymous said...

Great tips. Looking forward to our first year at Just So. Here's my tips for taking kids to festivals

Luke Strickland said...

Thanks for sharing - see you there! We'll be dressed as frogs.. and fairies.. and cowboys.. and pirates.. and..