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Kamloops Children's Art Festival set for Sept.16

Riverside Park downtown is the place to be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
A previous year's Children’s Arts Festival in Riverside Park.

Riverside Park will be filled with artists, live performers of all kinds, activities for kids, vendors and food trucks as part of the upcoming Children’s Art Festival, which will take place on Saturday, Sept. 16, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The free annual event is hosted by the Kamloops Arts Council, which is inviting families to take part in two workshops on Friday, Sept. 15, the day before the festival.

On Friday, families can make paper kites with the arts council at Heritage House from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., or register for a free sculpting and face-painting workshop at Kamloops Art Party (8-177 Tranquille Rd. in North Kamloops) at 4 p.m.

The theme of this year’s Children’s Art Festival is Ranches to Rodeos, showcasing the importance of local agriculture activities.

Kamloops Arts Council executive director Tanya Nielsen said it’s a good opportunity for kids to learn about how farmers impact the community.

“We just wanted to take a look at the agriculture our community thrives on,” she said. “We have some stuff going on in terms of taking a look at the plants and animals that provide for this area.”

The festival itself will begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday, with an opening by Stk’emlupsemc te Secwépemc Nation elder Hank Gott.

At 11 a.m., catch the return of street show performer Gustavo the Impossibilist, who will “attempt feats of unrealized stupidity for your pleasure and amazement.”

The festival will also feature roaming performers, live country music, performances by magician Clinton W. Gray, a children’s choir, an aerial arts performance and a show from the Big Little Science Centre, which Nielsen said is “always a big showstopper.”

Food trucks will also be on site.

Those attending can take advantage of a bus pass, provided through the Kamloops Arts Council website at, to access free transit for the event.

Nielsen said the organization is still looking for more volunteers to help with setup and takedown, as well as book readers.

The festival, which has been held for the past 24 years, is presented with the support of the federal government through funding from the Department of Canadian Heritage, the provincial government through the British Columbia Arts Council, the City of Kamloops and dozens of others.