Studies have demonstrated the positive effects music can have on a person’s life, and kids who learn to play music tend to perform better academically than their peers. Music-loving parents often look for new and creative ways to share their love of music with their kids. After all, what better way to spend time together than introducing your kids to the music you grew up with and love?
This year, instead of remembering the pre-kid music festival fun you used to enjoy, pack your kids and take them with you. Make your plans now to attend one of the following festivals. Who knows? It might be the beginning of a lifetime of music appreciation for your child.
Joshua Tree Music Festival (California)
With bands and musicians from all over the world, the Joshua Tree Music Festival is a global experience. Located in Southern California, the festival is a three-day celebration of family, friends, and good music. Kidsville, the specially designed area built just for children, offers magic shows, craft activities, roaming performers, and classes your kids will love. Accommodations at nearby hotels and camping at Joshua Tree National Park provide easy access to all the activities of the weekend, so you can get back to the action quickly. Look for this festival twice a year, in May and October.
Love the feeling of sand on your feet and the sound of music in the air? Head to West Palm Beach, Florida, at the end of April for SunFest, a weekend of classic and new sounds, showcased along the Intracoastal Waterway. Fireworks, arts and crafts, a KidZone, and a special early morning concert are all geared toward the youngest music fans, so don’t leave your kids at home. Music from a wide range of genres is represented, with previous years bringing in acts such as Meghan Trainor, Duran Duran, and The Roots.
Austin Kiddie Limits (Texas)
One of the most well-known music festivals in the country, Austin City Limits (ACL), has created a weekend experience for music lovers to enjoy with their kids. Austin Kiddie Limits takes place the same weekends as ACL, and is completely free for children ages 10 and under. The kid-friendly fun includes rock star hairdo stylists, fake tattoo parlors, karaoke contests, a hip hop festival, and more. Past acts at ACL include musical stars like Willie Nelson, Mumford & Sons, Radiohead, and other big names. With thousands of attendees each year, it’s easy to see that even music festivals are bigger in Texas.
Described as part family reunion, part summer camp, and part music festival, Pickathon is a music festival like no other. With a full lineup of activities to keep kids engaged and entertained, the whole family can enjoy this festival from start to finish. There are separate activity tents for kids, complete with a circus, wilderness training, crafts, and other fun things to do. Past performers include 10 String Symphony, Yo La Tengo, Jeff Tweedy, and others. If alternative or indie music is your jam, this is the perfect festival for you and your family.
This free, 10-day event brings musicians of all genres together for a show-stopping annual festival. Local performers, games, food, and craft vendors are plentiful during the festival, along with headliner acts such as Aretha Franklin, Lady Antebellum, and more. Headliner shows require a ticket, but there are plenty of free entertainment options to make this the perfect family outing.
Lake Eden Arts Festival (North Carolina)
Twice a year, families and music lovers converge near Asheville, North Carolina, for an epic weekend of music, nature, and family fun. Families can enjoy outdoor activities such as zip-lining or canoeing, browse through rows of artisan displays, take in a concert at one of several stages, or enjoy a parade. And that’s just the beginning. This festival offers something for kids of all ages, and showcases quality music that everyone can dance and sing along to.
Taste of Country (New York)
Scheduled during the early weeks of summer, the Taste of Country music festival brings some of country’s hottest new stars together for incredible performances in the Catskills. Featuring a petting zoo, a mechanical bull, a children’s playground, and more, this two-day fest is pure fun. Stay near the stage in your tent or RV, or find accommodations in a nearby hotel.
Wondering if a music festival is right for your family? Consider trying out a festival with your kids if they enjoy being outdoors, don’t mind crowds and a bit of walking, and appreciate new sounds and music. There are festivals taking place all over the country; find one nearby and check it out. No matter your budget, you can find one that will let you share the excitement and fun of discovering new music with your kids, giving you both a weekend to remember.