Christmas Eve is two weeks away and as ever the London Kids Weekend Scoop is packed with festive fun for all the family, as well as a few non-Christmassy things to do with London kids. Get stuck in!
Hot Ticket for 2016!
Big Fish Little Fish and Mini Works present: Out of this World at Mini Vault Festival (top pic), the Vaults, Leake St, SE1 7NN (Waterloo rail/tube)
The family friendly rave posse are back with the Mini Vault Festival for this one-off special event. The Out of this World party at the Vaults in Waterloo features spectacular activities on an intergalactic theme. Pop into the Villa Pia photo booth, experiment with Korg synth and gadget workshops, craft alien accessories with Happy Monkey, dig deep with Museum of London archeology workshop. DJ Food and more special guests will be spinning the decks, and look out for surreal entertainers, Cariad Interactives light projections, storytelling, OKIDO play space and all the usual favourites: glow sticks, bubbles, giant balloons and legendary parachute dance. This promises to be their most brilliant, possibly most bonkers event yet! For ages 0-8, but all ages welcome (must include a child). 11am-2pm; adult £16.75/child £13.75 + £1.75 booking fees/pre-walking infants FREE but require ticket (Feb 6)
What’s Hot for London Kids this Weekend!
Thu-Fri: Babyccino Kids ShopUp Christmas Market at Chelsea Old Town Hall, King’s Rd, SW3 5EE (Sloane Square tube)
For another year, the lovely ladies at Babyccino Kids host their ShopUp Christmas market with a treasure trove of 50 stalls to choose from. The perfect place to hunt for last minute gifts, or treats for yourself, you can shop loads of cool, indie boutiques including Belle Enfant, Scandi Mini and Hedgehog. There’s also a Santa’s grotto, Braid Bar hair styling for adults and kids, extra crafting with the Mamahood (their workshops have sold out), gift wrapping station with donations to mothers2mothers charity, Starting for Art interactive activity zone. Plus free bubbly and Primrose Bakery cupcakes for late night shoppers on Thursday (tonight)! All ages welcome. 12pm-9pm (Thu) and 10am-6pm (Fri); FREE entry (Dec 10-11)
Thu-Sun: Go Ape Battersea ParkThu-Sun:Dr Seuss’s The Lorax at the Old Vic, The Cut, SE1 8NB (Waterloo tube/rail)
Dr Seuss’s classic tale comes to the stage in an inventive new show, bursting with zany humour, original songs and puppetry. Follow the tale of giant moustached creature The Lorax, whose mission is to protect the earth from The Once-ler, a greedy tree-chopping businessman. A powerful message in a show created by David Greig and director Max Webster (James and the Giant Peach, To Kill a Mockingbird, Twelfth Night). For ages 6+. Kids ages 3 and under only admitted at special Relaxed Performances for younger ones (check web site for details). Show times 3pm & 7pm: £12-£60/child under 18 months FREE, but please let Box Office know if you intend to bring a baby (Dec 4-Jan 16)
Thu-Sun: Peter Pan Goes Wrong at Apollo Theatre, 31 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, W1D 7EZ (Piccadilly Circus tube)
From the accident-prone team that brought you The Play that Goes Wrong comes this madcap remake of the Peter Pan fable brought to stage. See the cast of the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society struggle through flying mishaps, casting disputes and other hitches, and wonder if they’ll ever make it to Neverland! For ages 8+. 2.30pm & 7.30pm (Tue-Sat), 3pm & 7pm (Sun) (times vary, check website for confirmation); £20-£69.50 (Dec 4-Jan 31)
Thu-Sun: Battersea Arts Centre: Town Hall Cherubs and Mr Mountford’s Kaleidoscopic Christmas, Battersea Arts Centre, Lavender Hill, SW11 5TN (Clapham Junction rail/overground)
Town Hall Cherubs (Dec 2-Jan 3) is an enchanting adventure for younger viewers (ages 2-5) to go on a secret journey through the beautiful old rooms of the BAC. They will be on a quest to help a sleepy cherub find his way home to the sky again. Shows at 9:30am, 11am, 1:30pm and 3pm, £10-£14. For bigger kids (ages 6-9), Mr Mountford’s Kaleidoscopic Christmas (Dec 19-Jan 3) is a fully supervised interactive storytelling workshop, where children can explore the old Town Hall as an enormous kaleidoscope, and then make a kaleidoscopic creation to take home. Shows at 9:15am, 10:45am, 1:15pm, 2:45pm, £3-£7 (until Jan 3)
Thu-Sun:BUMP Rollerdisco at Southbank Centre, under Hungerford Bridge, Belvedere Rd, SE1 8XX (Embankment/Waterloo tube)
When it’s just too cold for the ice rinks, head inside for this pop-up rollerdisco where skates are available from child size 9 to adult size Expect flashy lights, disco balls, pumping tunes and lots of spandex. 11am-11pm daily (closed from 6pm Thu Dec 24 and all day Dec 25 & Dec 31); adult £10/child £7/Fri & Sat club nights £12-£16 (until Jan 17)
Thu-Sun:A Quackmas Carol London Duck Tour, booking office 55 York Rd, SE1 7NJ/departure point DUCK STOP, Belvedere Rd, SE1 8XX (Embankment/Waterloo tube)
Quack quack! All aboard for an exciting ride from bus to river via the London Duck Tour. This Christmas themed journey passes London’s top landmarks including Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament, with the best views all lit up for the season. There’s a festive treasure hunt, inspired by Charles Dickens, and a free gift for kids ages 3 to 17 (tour and gift not suitable for kids under 3). Various times, £27.50 (Dec 5, 6, 12, 13, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23)
Fri-Sun:Brick 2015 LEGO Show at ExCel London, E16 1DR (Custom House DLR)
Master builders converge for the second year running at ExCel London for the weekend, where millions of LEGO bricks are available for building. Make and play, see amazing LEGO sculptures, enter the construction zones, meet the team behind LEGO and LEGOland Windsor, and much, much more. Once again, everything is awesome! VIP entry 2pm-8pm, general entry 3pm-8pm (Fri); VIP entry 9am-6pm (Sat/Sun until 5pm), general entry 10am-6pm (Sat/Sun 5pm). Tickets £20 (Fri), £22 (Sat-Sun), premium tickets £35, VIP tickets £65; under 3s admitted FREE (Dec 11-13)
Sat: Disney in Concert: Alice in Wonderland featuring Danny Elfman at Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, SW7 2AP (South Kensington tube)
As part of their Disney in Concert series that has seen Frozen and Ratatouille performed with live orchestra, Royal Albert Hall showcases the modern remake of the Lewis Caroll classic. Alice in Wonderland starring Johnny Depp is a weird and wonderful take on the story, and this performance features Danny Elfman’s score played out by an orchestra and a live choir. All ages, tickets required for ages 2+. Doors 1.45pm, show 2pm; doors 6.15pm, show 7pm; £28-£73.90/babies under 2 FREE on carer’s lap (Dec 12)
Sun: Winter Warmers Christmas Fair: The Snowman + It’s a Wonderful Life Screening at Union Chapel Offices, 19b Compton Terrace, N1 2UN (Highbury & Islington/Angel tube)
This sounds like a lovely local event, a Christmas fair with stalls, mulled wine, mince pie and a festive atmosphere. There’s a screening of the ever charming The Snowman (3.45pm) on the big screen, and you can also stick around later for the Christmas classic It’s a Wonderful Life (6pm). Don’t miss out on treasure hunts, sing-songs around the Christmas tree and a Santa’s grotto with… um, Mother Christmas? Fair from 2pm-5pm, FREE entry (Dec 13)
We also like
Snap up a bargain at the London Illustration Fair at Oxo Tower Wharf (Fri-Sun); find treasures at Illustrator’s Christmas Fair by House of Illustration, N1C (Sat); enjoy the gingerbread house, magical snow scenes and personalised snapshots on the Floating Festive Photo Booth on Regent’s Canal and on tour across London canals (Thu-Sun, and throughout Christmas)!
King’s Cross Real Food Christmas Market, Kings Cross Square,N1 (Dec 17-23)
Told By an Idiot: Get Happy at Barbican Centre (Dec 17-30)
The Little Bird Who Stayed for Winter at The Roundhouse in Camden (Dec 17-Jan 4)
Shoreditch Christmas Market and Winter Gathering with Children’s Storytelling and more at Red Gallery, E1 (Dec 18-19)
Meet Santa on his Floating Grotto with Hidden Depths Canal Cruises, King’s Cross (Dec 20-21)
Disney on Ice: Worlds of Enchantment at O2 Arena (Dec 22-Jan 3)
Big Fish Little Fish and Mini Works present: Out of this World at Mini Vault Festival (Feb 6)
Don’t forget to check out our guide to Christmas in London 2015: 30 COOLEST Things To Do with Kids. London Kids Christmas Theatre guide out soon!