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Vancouver Children’s Festival on Granville Island in 2022

Vancouver Children's Festival

The Vancouver International Children’s Festival is a festival for young children. It takes place on Granville Island in late May or early June each year.

This year’s festival runs from May 31st until June 5th.

 

Vancouver International Childrens Festival

In 2020 the Vancouver International Children’s Festival didn’t happen due to concerns about the COVID-19 virus. The festival did take place in 2021, but in an online format from May 31st until June 13th.

The 2022 festival is scheduled to take place in-person and online. It runs from Tuesday, May 31st, to Sunday, June 5th. The festival features theatre, music, dance, circus, puppetry and storytelling performances. It’s not a giant festival, but it’s a really good one and fun for young children.

 

Ladner May Days

 


LADNER MAY DAYS

Looking for another really fun place to take your kids? Then check out Ladner May Days! It’s a free community event that features a parade, pancake breakfast and other fun activities on the weekend of May 27th to 29th. There are also amusement rides (for which you have to buy tickets).


 

2022 Festival Schedule

In 2022, there are both online and in-person events. The online events are mostly videos to watch from home. As of late February, there are about four different films, theatre and dance performances to enjoy online. Since the shows are not live-streamed, they are all available to watch any time between May 31st and June 12th.

There are a variety of in-person events happening during the 2022 Vancouver International Children’s Festival too. The schedule of in-person events is listed below.

 

Tuesday, May 31st, 2022

  • Tricoter – stimulating dance and yarn performances for toddlers at the Carousel Theatre for Young People. Shows run from 10:00 to 10:35 am and from 12:00 to 12:35 pm.
  • Crisis on Planet Z! – a funny play about saving Planet Z at the Waterfront Theatre from 10:30 to 11:15 am and 12:30 to 1:15 pm.
  • Won’Ma Africa – an acrobatic performance with African dance and music at the Granville Island Stage. It runs from 10:30 to 11:20 am.
  • Spirit and Tradition – at Performance Works on Granville Island from 10:30 to 11:20 am and from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • The Cat Came Back – a sing-along musical performance by Fred Penner at the Granville Island Stage from 12:30 to 1:30 pm.

 

Wednesday, June 1st, 2022

  • Tricoter – stimulating dance and yarn performances for toddlers at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 10:00 to 10:35 am and from 12:00 to 12:35 pm.
  • Africa Oyé – traditional African music and dance at the Waterfront Theatre from 10:30 to 11:20 am.
  • Crisis on Planet Z! – a funny play about saving Planet Z at the Waterfront Theatre from 12:30 to 1:15 pm.
  • Won’Ma Africa – an acrobatic performance with African dance and music at the Granville Island Stage from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • Spirit and Tradition – at Performance Works on Granville Island from 10:30 to 11:20 am and from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • The Cat Came Back – a sing-along musical performance by Fred Penner at the Granville Island Stage from 10:30 to 11:20 am.

 

Royal Canadian Circus

 


THE CIRCUS IS COMING!

The Royal Canadian International Circus comes to the Lower Mainland from June 23rd until July 3rd in 2022. TIP: Use the promo code VANSBESTPLACES and you can get 2-for-1 pricing on general admission tickets.


 

Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

  • Tricoter – stimulating dance and yarn performances for toddlers at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 10:00 to 10:35 am.
  • A Story of a House That Turned into a Dot – a creative shadow puppet performance with masks and more at the NEST from 10:30 to 11:10 am and from 12:30 to 1:10 pm.
  • Won’Ma Africa – an acrobatic performance with African dance and music at the Granville Island Stage from 10:30 to 11:20 am and from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • Africa Oyé – traditional African music and dance at the Waterfront Theatre from 10:30 to 11:20 am and from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • Spirit and Tradition – at Performance Works on Granville Island from 10:30 to 11:20 am.
  • Living With – an inspirational storytelling, dancing and drumming show at Performance Works on Granville Island from 12:30 to 1:15 pm.
  • One of a Kind – an expressive series of storytelling at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • The Cat Came Back – a sing-along musical performance by Fred Penner at the Granville Island Stage from 6:30 to 7:20 pm.

 

Families at Children's Festival

 

Friday, June 3rd, 2022

  • Tricoter – stimulating dance and yarn performances for toddlers at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 10:00 to 10:35 am.
  • A Story of a House That Turned into a Dot – a creative shadow puppet performance with masks and more at the NEST from 10:30 to 11:10 am and from 12:30 to 1:10 pm.
  • Africa Oyé – traditional African music and dance at the Waterfront Theatre from 10:30 to 11:20 am.
  • Living With – an inspirational storytelling, dancing and drumming show at Performance Works on Granville Island from 10:30 to 11:15 am.
  • Crisis on Planet Z! – a funny play about saving Planet Z at the Waterfront Theatre from 12:30 to 1:15 pm.
  • Won’Ma Africa – an acrobatic performance with African dance and music at the Granville Island Stage from 10:30 to 11:20 am.
  • Spirit and Tradition – at Performance Works on Granville Island from 10:30 to 11:20 am and from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • One of a Kind – an expressive series of storytelling at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • The Cat Came Back – a sing-along musical performance by Fred Penner at the Granville Island Stage from 12:30 to 1:20 pm.
  • Parents Are Still a Drag – a celebration of diversity and inclusion at Performance Works on Granville Island from 6:30 to 7:15 pm.

 

Saturday, June 4th, 2022

  • Tricoter – stimulating dance and yarn performances for toddlers at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 10:00 to 10:35 am and from 12:00 to 12:35 pm.
  • The Cat Came Back – a sing-along musical performance by Fred Penner at the Granville Island Stage from 10:30 to 11:20 am.
  • Crisis on Planet Z! – a funny play about saving Planet Z at the Waterfront Theatre from 11:30 am to 12:15 pm.
  • A Story of a House That Turned into a Dot – a creative shadow puppet performance with masks and more at the NEST from 12:30 to 1:10 pm and from 3:00 to 3:40 pm.
  • Parents Are Still a Drag – a celebration of diversity and inclusion at Performance Works on Granville Island from 12:30 to 1:15 pm.
  • Won’Ma Africa – an acrobatic performance with African dance and music at the Granville Island Stage from 1:00 to 1:50 pm.
  • Africa Oyé – traditional African music and dance at the Waterfront Theatre from 2:30 to 3:20 pm.
  • One of a Kind – an expressive series of storytelling at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 3:30 to 4:20 pm.
  • Living With – an inspirational storytelling, dancing and drumming show at Performance Works on Granville Island from 4:00 to 4:45 pm.
  • Variety Show – a combination of various 2022 performers at the Granville Island Stage from 6:30 to 8:00 pm.

 

Sunday, June 5th, 2022

  • Tricoter – stimulating dance and yarn performances for toddlers at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 10:00 to 10:35 am and from 12:00 to 12:35 pm.
  • Ginalina – a funny play about saving Planet Z at the Waterfront Theatre from 10:30 to 11:15 am.
  • Living With – an inspirational storytelling, dancing and drumming show at Performance Works on Granville Island from 12:00 to 12:45 pm.
  • Crisis on Planet Z! – family folk music by Ginalina at the Waterfront Theatre from 1:00 to 1:45 pm.
  • A Story of a House That Turned into a Dot – a creative shadow puppet performance with masks and more. It takes place at the NEST from 12:30 to 1:10 pm and from 3:00 to 3:40 pm.
  • Won’Ma Africa – an acrobatic performance with African dance and music at the Granville Island Stage from 12:00 to 12:50 and from 2:30 to 3:20 pm.
  • Parents Are Still a Drag – a celebration of diversity and inclusion at Performance Works on Granville Island. The event goes from 3:00 to 3:45 pm.
  • One of a Kind – an expressive series of storytelling at the Carousel Theatre for Young People from 3:30 to 4:20 pm.

 

For the full schedule of events, including things to do online, visit the Vancouver International Children’s Festival website.

 

What to Expect

In years when there isn’t a pandemic, thousands of children and their families participate in a wide variety of fun activities.

There are indoor theatre shows, various forms of outdoor entertainment, and activity tents with everything from paper hat making to splatter painting. There are also venues where you can try out circus tricks or get your face painted. The main shows cost extra, but the activities are free with the price of admission.

In a typical year, with good weather, as many as 30,000 people attend the festival over the course of the week, including school groups on weekdays.

 

Admission to the Children’s Festival

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, 2021 prices were pay-what-you-can. In other words, online attendance was basically by donation.

In 2022, each online event costs $24 per household.

Ticket prices for in-person events in 2022 are as follows:

  • 1 Show Day Pass: $12.50 for children and $22 for adults (includes activity wristband).
  • 4 Pack Family Pass: $58 (includes 1 show and activity wristbands for 4 family members).
  • Activity Wristband only: $6 per person (purchased on site for cash only).
  • Tricoter Baby Show: $5 for children and $22 for adults.
  • Variety Show (1.5 hours): $19 for children and $22 for adults.

Note: Festival prices above are subject to change.

 

Life Size Games at VICF

 

Tips and Advice

Below is a list of tips and advice to help you make the most out of your experience at the Vancouver International Children’s Festival.

TIP # 1: Don’t wait until the last minute to buy tickets for the best shows as they’ll likely fill up. Some shows sell out over a month in advance!

TIP #2: If the weather is good consider combining the festival with a family cycling excursion along the False Creek Seawall. Parking can be a challenge during the event, so it doesn’t hurt to park elsewhere and enjoy a scenic bike ride. Other options include using public transit, and/or catching one of the False Creek Ferries or Aquabus to Granville Island. Demand for ferry rides that day, however, might be pretty crazy.

TIP #3: While at Granville Island be sure to also check out the Public Market and explore the island with its gardens, toy stores and play areas. On the day we went a couple of years ago there were dozens of adult Canada Geese and their goslings wandering around and checking out the sights. This made for some extra fun photos of our own – so don’t forget your camera!

 

Goose Family at Granville Children's Festival

 

Other Information

For more information see the Vancouver International Children’s Festival website. And for information about a similar event in Surrey, check out the Surrey International Children’s Festival.

Check out Vancouver’s Best Places for Children for other ideas on what to do with your kids.

Other articles that might be of interest include the following:

To learn about a similar event a couple of hours north of Vancouver, click Whistler Children’s Festival.