Nelson proudly showing his colourful ‘pig’ made from papier mache

Nelson proudly showing his colourful ‘pig’ made from papier mache

kidZArtBeat: an art festival for children

KidZArtBeat, a children’s festival of the arts, is here to bring out that creative attitude in every child.

Children draw. They always have, whether it is with sticks in the mud, charcoal lumps on a rock or smelly markers on computer paper. Even the dad who grumbles “I can’t even do stick figures” was once a child who explored with crayons… at least a little bit. Scribbles are a child’s first form of the written word – ask a preschooler to tell you about their drawing and you might hear a complex story involving bears, the wind, a house – something imaginative.

KidZArtBeat, a children’s festival of the arts, is here to bring out that creative attitude in every child. The Chemainus Crofton Community Schools Association has long had a focus on the fine arts as one of its programs, and this summer it teamed up with the Chemainus Valley Society for Cultural Arts, and with the Polka Dot Trail Artists, to morph the previous Art Beat into something new, colourful, and creative for kids.

Over twenty-five artists, teachers, volunteers, and creative people will gather from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 15, for the artsiest children’s festival imaginable. Multiple interactive art stations will be available in and around Water Wheel Park in Chemainus.

There is something for everyone from toddlers to teens – even a very beginning Colourful Crawlers section for babies. Chemainus Theatre Festival is running an hour long workshop for children aged 8-11 years. The first five participants to register will receive free tickets for James and the Giant Peach, showing at the Chemainus Theatre. Call the CCSA at 250-246-3588 to register or ask for information.

Stops on the KitZArtBeat circuit include: Inspiration Station, Paintercise, Craft-A-Costume, Instrument Making, Pottery, Face Painting, Balloon Twisting, Tap with Tim, Mural Painting, Puppetry, Land Art, Jewellery… and there will be more to discover at the festival. Sign in at the welcome table when you arrive and your child will be eligible in the draw for a Miss Purrsia the Piñata made by Middle Ground Studios.

At 5 p.m. the ‘Pied Piper’ will lead the children in a parade finale, showing off all the glorious items made or painted throughout the day. Families are invited from 6 to 7 p.m. to gather at the bandshell in Waterwheel Park to enjoy the hilarious antics of Major Conrad Flapps.

The festival is free, but people will be invited to donate at the stations.  Pack a picnic or buy your own food from local businesses.

KidZArtBeat needs volunteers and materials, including: Latex paint, buttons with shanks, one wall paper hook, and 12 old cookie sheets. Organizers are also calling for adults to set up tables, help the artists with bucket brigades, man the welcome table and more. Artists, if you’d like to participate, call or email the CCSA at 250-246-3588 or ccsa@sd79.bc.ca.