Blissfields is nearly upon us! As usual we look forward to some excellent music and one of the best and definitely most friendly kids’ fields around.
We talked to Angel Sam, of Angel Gardens who run the special kids’ area, about what she has in store this year.
Are you offering any new activities at Blissfields this year?
Oh my word it is SOOOO exciting this year! It’s our tenth birthday so doing something extra special – we are hosting the first ever festival pantomime!
It’s not any normal pants through. All the children will be invited to be part of it and become snow whites dwarves. The whole weekend is based around it and every activity leads upto the finale each day.
Every morning we are holding the Dwarf school where kids all train in the ancient art of becoming a dwarf. They make things that they will need throughout the weekend and learn how to march together for when we search for Snow White. Every time you hear the Dwarf siren you have to drop everything and run to HQ in Angel Gardens and get in line ready for instructions
What are your favourite workshop(s) and why?
It’s so hard to choose because they are all so different; we allow the crew to design the workshops rather than just one or two of us coming up with all the ideas. It means that crew are able to deliver their own ideas in their way and every activity then is totally unique.
I love the arty stuff and the dance stuff oh and the parades and music. Oh stop asking tough questions I love it all!!!
Which workshop was the hardest to set up, and was it worth it?
I fully believe that nothing is impossible, anyone that says ‘it can’t be done’ just won’t fit in with us.
The panto theme has been a lot of hard work as crew are in character all weekend and the whole weekend becomes a theatre production. So I guess it’s been more work that anything we have ever done. But it’s so gonna be worth it!
Do you have an activity you haven’t managed to put together yet and what is it?
I have a huge list of things I want to do. I want a climbing wall. And I have been trying for years to get a cookery school together. I guess creating the weekend long drama was a wish of ours too.
To have something kids can become totally engaged with is exciting. I want them to believe in the story and go home thinking it actually happened!
Last year we had the amazing experience of Grand Master Flash meeting the junior DJs – how did that happen?
We have a brilliant lady who runs The Hip Hop academy. Sadie gets the kids DJing, mixing, beat boxing and graffiti making. She arranged Mr Flash to present the graduates from the academy with their certificates. It was very cool!
It really was! Are there any more surprises in store for Blissfield punters?
Yes! Of course! We are Angel Gardens remember!!!
I can’t tell you what or I might spoil it for everyone. You have to get your tickets and join us there!
What gave you the idea for the school absence letter, and how did you go about setting it up?
I am a dedicated campaigner for parents who want to educate children outside the classroom and have campaigned for many years for more freedom for parents to travel with their children.
I firmly believe there is more to learning than English, Maths and Science! I have seen my own children evolve into amazing young people due to the diverse learning environments of festivals.
I wanted to make it accessible to everyone and Angel Gardens has always made sure every single activity has an underlying message or learning outcome. We are blessed to work with like minded people at Blissfields and turn our ideas into a reality by providing the letter this year.
We don’t want to be a school we want to be something different altogether but still somewhere learning takes place!
This is the first year we have authorised absence for our children, so thank you! Do you know how many applications have been successful?
100% as far as we know 🙂 but why wouldn’t they be?
As a family ticket holder you can download an activity sheet so learning can start in the car on the way to site! The kids get a learning passport too so they can record everything they do!
What advice would you give to someone who is unsure about taking their children to a festival?
Well firstly festivals have changed! It’s not all about hedonistic adults, families are more than catered for! The trick is to relax.
Kids, tents, outdoors, sun, rain and lots of exciting activities, it’s is every kidlets dream! Be prepared with lots of spare socks, layers of clothes and easy snacks.
I give mine a bag each with a torch, spare socks (again), a purse, a water bottle, mini sun cream and anti-bacterial gel. They love being independent and it’s a safe place to let them spread their wings.
Talk to them about what to do if they get lost and make sure they don’t get over tired. It’s the most wonderful place to rediscover your family, have lots of fun and learn how to be an individual!
For more on the fun you’ll find in Angel Gardens this year in Blissfields (and many other festivals) – see the Angel Gardens website!