We ventured out to the Way Out West Festival for Kids in Sydney’s west yesterday and had a great time getting our arts and crafts on.
The festival has been running since 2011 at the Casula Powerhouse Art Centre (just past Liverpool) but I had never actually heard of it before.
It was great to get the kids out and about and I found it refreshing that the fun wasn’t served up on a platter for the kids to consume. It was up to the kids to get their creative juices flowing and put something in to get something out.
The Way Out West Festival crew had (literally!) laid out the tools for them and left it to the kids to immerse themselves in the experience and create their own fun…
A number of creative stations were laid out in and around the impressive building that is the Casula Powerhouse. Tyres full of bubble mix. Sandpits. Dirt and cooking utensils. A morning yoga session. All ready for the kids to discover.
It was simple and wholesome with a rustic, charming feel to it all.
Our first stop was Cubbyopolis, a cosy art installation of sheets and nooks you could hide in with pillows and cushions. Then it was on to Lostalgia to make handmade Pokémon cards and paper cup monsters, before kicking back and watching The Greg Show, a live theatre performance by Shopfront’s Junior Ensemble (the kids loved watching the older kids on stage).
We spend a good five hours wandering around, exploring and creating. The kids had fun so it was a nice and relaxing day for me… Win!
There was a nice mix of older and younger-skewed activities, but on the whole I think the event skewed younger with most kids being about 4-6 years old.
I would have liked to have seen Trash Test Dummies – a circus and acrobatic show, but it wasn’t on the day we were there. I think my boys would have loved The world according to farts and other extraordinary sounds of the human body. It’s worth checking the festival program as performances change day by day.
Way out West Festival for Children – The Lowdown:
- Where? Casula Powerhouse, Western Sydney
- When? The Festival runs during July school holidays. In 2017 it runS 12-15 July. The Festival opens 9:30am each day and runs until about 4pm.
- How much? Entry to the Way out Festival is free, with enough free activities to entertain younger kids. You do need to buy tickets from some of the performances (about $10 per child). Booking online is recommended as I discovered that many sessions had sold out.
- What to take? You are welcome to bring your own food and drink, or you can buy lunch there. The Festival has a relaxed vibe, so dress casual. Maybe pack some wipes and a change of clothes for the little ones in case they get carried away with bubbles or mud pies!
- Hot tip: The festival was super busy from 10am with queues to get into all of the experiences. Experiences were capped in terms of numbers, but it was much more relaxed from mid afternoon when crowds disperseD. My tip would be to go later in the day to beat the crowds.
Disclosure: I was given an ‘Access all Areas’ pass to explore the Festival and wearing it made me feel very special 🙂