Last summer, we took the Festival Kidz stall to Nibley Music Festival, a small ultra-family-friendly festival in a stunning Cotswolds location. One of the festival highlights is undoubtedly the huge craft tent run by Liz and her dedicated bunch of volunteers. The tent has been so popular that she’s decided to turn her skills into a small business and ‘Junkfish‘ was born. We invited Liz to tell us more about her new venture.
“Junkfish run fabulous children’s craft tents and kid’s areas at festivals and events. We believe that the secret to a great event is to make it truly family friendly and providing exciting free activities for kids is a great way to do that.
Having spent much of my working life as a secondary school teacher, I first got involved in festival organisation as a volunteer. I offered to run the children’s craft tent at the first ever Nibley Music Festival in 2007, and have done so every year since as the festival has grown in size and reputation.
Nibley really is the most family friendly of festivals and the big free craft tent is the focus of the children’s area. It’s always packed with kids of all ages making everything from juggling balls to butterfly wings. It’s proved incredibly popular and the response from the kids and their parents has been amazing – one mum said she would pay the ticket price for the activities in the craft tent alone!
My loyal army of volunteers come back each year eager to see what activities I’ve come up with this time. I love the challenge of coming up with new ideas every year and making sure there is something for everyone. A ridiculous number of hours are spent preparing all the activities and making sure the whole area looks fabulous, creating a really welcoming, colourful and exciting area for kids and families.
Junkfish was born when I started to get asked to do other events and decided to spread my butterfly wings a little wider. As well as craft activities we also provide circus skills equipment and bigger scale ‘junkbuilding’ (using natural and recycled materials to make dens, tunnels, ball runs, etc.).
At the moment we are busy getting ready for the 2012 season and buzzing with plans and new ideas. I’ve developed a serious addiction to the Bristol Scrapstore (a great source of inspiration as well as recycled materials). Last weekend my garden was filled with a giant ball run made from various pipes and bendy tubes – my kids and their friends loved it! I’ve been making gorgeous hula hoops and ribbon sticks to add to the circus skills equipment and creating large junk mosaics and flags for extra colour. My collection of ‘creative junk’ is expanding rapidly!
Our aim for next year is to run a few great events to showcase what we can do and build the business by reputation. So, if you know a festival in need of a fabulous craft tent, please get in touch!”