Music Festivals for Children

Written by nancy karas
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Music Festivals for Children
Music festivals give kids the opportunity to listen, dance, and sing along. (boy with family image by Marzanna Syncerz from Fotolia.com)

Children's music festivals are a fun way to introduce kids to different kinds of music. Parents and kids can go from one stage to the next to sample the sounds, and most festivals also offer crafts activities, vendors and food concessions. Most festivals support kid-related charities, so attendees are doing good while they have fun.

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Greater Good Music, Art & Children's Festival

The Greater Good Festival brings children's music, art activities, workshops and a costume parade to Milton, Fla., just outside of Pensacola in the Florida Panhandle. Held in the spring, the Greater Good Festival's website says it is "dedicated to supporting our community's visual and performing arts and furthering opportunities for children." The three-day event also offers attractions for moms and dads, such as vendor booths, an art market and a wide range of musical acts. Each year's festival benefits a children-focused organisation, such as Camp Fire USA.

Kansas City Jiggle Jam

Founded in 2008, the Kansas City Jiggle Jam bills itself as "the Midwest's largest family music festival." Indeed, in 2010 the three-day event attracted more than 30,000 people. Jiggle Jam features two music stages (named, appropriately, "Jiggle" and "Jam") and a workshop stage offering activities such as storytelling and drumming. Kids and parents can also enjoy a "jam tent" for playing music, face painting, and food vendors. The event is the Crown Center Square downtown.

Houston Children's Festival

Running every year since 1988, the Houston Children's Festival calls itself the "largest children's festival in the U.S.," and it regularly draws about 50,000 attendees. Frommer's, the travel-guide publisher, named it "one of the world's 300 unmissable events." Children and families can enjoy music performed on six stages, as well as eight "family adventure zones" offering rides, inflatables and food concessions. The annual event is held in downtown Houston in April.

Giant Magnet's International Children's Festival

Seattle's annual International Children's Festival has drawn families and kids to Seattle Center since 1986. In 2009 the non-profit Giant Magnet expanded the annual event to Tacoma (at the Pantages Theater) as well; both events are held in May each year. The festival brings music and performance acts from countries around the world, including China, Tasmania, Scotland and many points in between. Kids and families can also enjoy craft projects and food vendors.

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