|19 February 1999|
KidsFest, New Zealand's biggest childrenís festival, doubles in fun this year. 1999 sees KidsFest extend from eight days to two weeks, in order to meet the huge demand from children eager to participate in the festivalís activities.
Since it began in 1992, KidsFest has been enthusiastically embraced by Christchurch children and attracted many families from other parts of the country. In 1998 KidsFest featured over 100 events (a total of 530 including sessions) and involved 34,500 participants.
Over 90 local community organisations and businesses take part in the festival by co-ordinating events for children to attend. The huge range of activities on offer include art and craft classes, sports, plays, cultural activities, concerts and "behind the scenes" tours at places such as the Meadow Fresh milk factory and the Christchurch Cathedral.
The festivalís increasing popularity, particularly over the past three years, has seen many events sell out in mere hours. In an effort to cater for more children, the organisers have extended the festival into the second week of the mid-winter holidays and encouraged event organisers to increase the number of sessions they hold.
Highlights of KidsFest 1999 will include an opening extravaganza and the very popular Kidsmarket- an event which sees children become stall holders for the day, selling all sorts of books, toys, games and home made goodies.
Many families from outside of the Christchurch area combine KidsFest activities with a holiday to the city. Programmes will be distributed to schools, playcentres and libraries throughout Christchurch, but those in other areas can obtain a programme in early June by contacting the Christchurch City Councilís events team. Phone bookings will also be possible throughout New Zealand when bookings open on Saturday 12 June.
Any business or organisation keen to become involved in the festival by creating an event should contact the Councils events team for more information.
KidsFest, Saturday 26 June to Friday 9 July 1999, Christchurch
For further information contact the KidsFest Publicity Co-ordinator,
Katie Macbeth, on (03) 941 8495, (025) 227 2916 or email@example.com