Premiering DesignPhiladelphia’s KidsFest

By David Bender on Sep 13, 2018

The first weekend of this year’s DesignPhiladelphia festival is dedicated to our young audience of creative thinkers and makers (and their guardians), inviting them to dive into the processes behind and skills needed to create architecture and design. Our education team and dedicated volunteers will be facilitating several fun, hands-on experiences at a different location each day of the weekend.

On Saturday, October 6th, KidsFest will be headquartered at Smith Memorial Playground in east Fairmount Park. Smith’s beautiful, 16,000 square foot Playhouse was designed solely as a play space for children by one of Philadelphia’s most prominent late 19th century architects, James H. Windrim.  The Playground is situated on its original historic landscape – 6 1/2 acres of open fields, wooded terrain, and sloped hill.

Smith Playground will soon be launching a capital campaign to fund major renovations in upcoming years and they need your help to reimagine one of their most popular and long-loved attractions, Smithville, a kid-sized city on the lower level of the playhouse. To help with the redesign, they need creative ideas to make it possible. All kids and adults are welcome to share drawings and feedback on features that may be incorporated into the iconic playhouse. Additional KidsFest activities at Smith include exploring the structures that hold up buildings and bridges through body movement and recycled material design challenges.

On Sunday, October 7th, KidsFest is coming to The Barnes Foundation along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The Barnes, famous for its world-renowned collection of impressionist artworks and housed in an award-winning building designed by architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, now also hosts a monthly Family Day on the first Sunday of every month. In October, this coincides with DesignPhiladelphia!

At the Barnes, KidsFest will activate both inside and outside with hands-on experiences to compliment Barnes’ Family Day. Enjoy the chance to build a cardboard city, design and make masks, and assemble festive sound instruments. Inside, the Barnes will feature drumming and dancing performances as well as art workshops.

Join DesignPhiladelphia on one, or both, days to make something amazing and have a blast!