The July school holidays are almost here, which means that parents and carers around the Capital are looking or fun (and warm!) things to do for two whole weeks. There is a lot going on in the city centre with Skating At outdoor ice-skating rink at Garema Place (between 30th June and 22nd July) and Snow Play is already open at Corin Forest Mountain Retreat (between June and September). If you want to celebrate Christmas all over again, there are Christmas in July events all across the region and a whole host of exciting school holiday programs to book into. Don't forget to check out your local shopping centre, movie cinema or family attractions in the north and south of the city, for more ideas close to home.
The following events have advertised early, however ensure you check back with Canberra Weekendnotes for more events to be listed all month long. Rug up, stay warm and explore the Capital this July - there is no shortage of things to do!
Outdoor ice skating and circus acts in the city centre! Image: Original photos from Skating At website
1/ La Petite Grand Theatre Tent will be set up in Petrie Plaza with two family shows, as part of the Wintervention series of events to get people into the city this winter. There will be Circus Winter Wonderland and Dr Hubble's Bubble Show these school holidays. See here for details.
2/ Wordplay is a free activity space at the National Library that will be open for the whole school holidays, for craft and games with words. It is designed for kids aged 4 and over. See here for details.
3/ Family Space - Finely Worked at the National Portrait Gallery is a free, drop-in kids activity space between 7th and 22nd July, 1:15pm - 4pm daily. See here for details.
4/ School Holiday Activities: Mid-Winter Mash-Up at CMAG (Canberra Museum and Gallery) is a drop-in craft area in the main foyer, where kids can make a yarn stick doll, pom-pom tassel and garland. Drop in between 7th - 22nd July. See here for details.
5/ Warm Trees Drop-in Knitting will he held at the National Arboretum, for kids to knit scarves to brighten up the forests for the Warm Trees installation! The knitting circle will be held in the Village Centre every day in the holidays, between 10am - 2pm. See here for details. The official launch of Warm Trees will be held on 10th July.
Knit scarves for the trees at the National Arboretum. Image: Original photos from the National Arboretum Facebook
Sunday, 8th July
6/ Create Space: Weaving is a drop-in weaving activity at the National Gallery of Australia, to celebrate NAIDOC Week. See here for details.
7/ NAIDOC Week Family Day is a celebration at the University of Canberra, on Sunday, 8th July between 11am - 4pm. There will be live music, dance performances, free rides, food stalls, face painting, indigenous arts and crafts outlets and more. See here for details.
Monday, 9th July
8/ Hand-On History is a free activity for kids at the Australian War Memorial, between Monday and Thursday in the school holidays. See here for details.
9/ The Art of Caricature is a free drawing workshop for 10 - 12 year olds at Kippax Library. See here for details.
10/ Super Hero Masterclass will be held at Old Parliament House between 9th - 13th July, for $10 per child and $2 per adult. See here for details.
11/ The National Museum of Australia will be holding Marvellous Motifs – The Wonders of Islamic Art and Culture each day between 9th - 20th July, at a cost of $10 per child. There will also be a free afternoon play space between 2pm - 3:30pm. See here for details.
12/ Portrait Play - Because of Her, We Can! will be held at the National Portrait Gallery Monday to Friday during the school holidays, for children aged 4 - 8 years old. Explore portraits through drawing and creative activity in the galleries, inspired by NAIDOC week. The cost is $7, bookings essential. See here for details.
13/ The National Film and Sound Archive will be showing school holiday classics including BMX Bandits, Frozen Sing-Along and Crocodile Hunter: Collision. Tickets cost $5 each. See here for details.
Introduce your kids to BMX Bandits with Nicole Kidman. Image: National Film and Sound Archive website
14/ RAP Music Workshop is a free event at Gungahlin Library for 12 - 16 year olds. See here for details.
15/ Mkids Movie – The Greatest Showman will be held at the National Museum of Australia, so kids can be swept away in the magic of musicals! The cost is $5, bookings essential. See here for details.
16/ Parliament House will be showing free school holiday screenings of Storm Boy at 10am and Bran Nu Dae at 2pm in their theatre, presented by the National Film and Sound Archives. See here for details. 17/ A.S.I Art Scene Investigation: Glorious Adornment is a school holiday activity at the National Gallery, where kids uncover the secret stories of priceless gems in The Cartier exhibition. There are two session times to choose from at a cost of $12 per child. See here for details.
18/ Mister Maker Returns! will be held at the Canberra Theatre Centre for all his young fans. There will be three shows, with tickets starting from $41. See here for details.
Wednesday, 11th July
19/ Canberra Glassworks will be having a wide range of school holiday glass-making workshops, with Make Your Own sessions kicking off today. See here for the full listing.
20/ Sketchy Wednesday will be held at the National Gallery, with a free supported drawing session inspired by indigenous works on display to celebrate NAIDOC week. See here for details.
21/ Stories in the Forest – School Holiday Program will be held at the National Arboretum, with kids enjoying a story quest through their Cork Oak Forest. This program will be held on 11th,12th and 13th July and is designed for kids aged between 4 - 8. The cost is $15, bookings essential. See here for details. Whilst there, also have a play at the most popular playground in Canberra - Pod Playground!
22/ Junior Robotics is a free workshop at Civic Library, for 9 - 12 year olds. See here for details.
23/ James and the Giant Peach is a theatre production by Child Players ACT, that will be held at the Belconnen Theatre between 12th and 21st July. Tickets cost $18. See here for details.
24/ Winter Storytime at the National Library will be held between 11:30am - 12pm, with some funny and charming tales from the expert storytellers at the ACT Storytellers Guild. The cost is $2. See here for details. 25/ Doctor Dolittle Family Film Screening will also be held at the National Library, at 1pm. This event is free, however bookings are essential. See here for details.
26/ Indigenous Plant Use Walks will be held at the Australian National Botanical Gardens, to celebrate NAIDOC Week. Kids and adults will learn how indigenous people from across Australia used plants for food, medicine, tools, weapons and for ceremonial practice. This event will be held on both the 12th and 14th July, at a cost of $5 each. See here for details.
Friday, 13th July
27/ Storytime will be held at the Australian War Memorial at 10:30am. See here for details.
28/ World Curry Festival will be held in the city centre between 13th - 15th July, with colourful entertainment, a range of foods to try and a festival atmosphere in the city. See here for details.
29/ Art Explorer: Woven Adornment will be held at the National Gallery for children aged 8 years and over. The cost is $60. See here for details. 30/ Lifeline Bookfair will be held between 13th and 15th July at the Tuggeranong Southern Cross Stadium, with thousands of second hand books for sale. You will be surprised by the scale of this huge market, with a whole area dedicated to children's books - both fiction and non-fiction. See here for details.
Hundreds of kids books at the Lifeline Bookfair. Image: Original photos from Lifeline Facebook
31/ Mkids Movie – Coco will be showing at the National Museum of Australia. The cost is $5, bookings essential. See here for details. 32/ NAIDOC in the North is a celebration of NAIDOC Week, that will be held at Kingsford Smith School in Holt. It is organised by the Belconnen Arts Centre and there will be family activities, drop-in crafts, food, dance, music and more. See here for details.
33/ EPIC Day Out featuring the Indulge Coffee and Chocolate Expo will have a lot of decadent treats for the adults, however there will also be a kids area with Dart Ball, Paint Ball, Tim the Bubble Man, a Nerf Arena, a roving magician and more. This event will be held on both 14th and 15th July. See here for entry prices and details.
Sunday, 15th July 34/ Macenmist Family Truffle Hunt is an event for families to follow truffle dogs and watch them unearth the prized black truffle, as part of the Canberra Truffle Festival. Macenmist Black Truffles and Wines is located in the Snowy Monaro region, just outside of Bredbo - an hour south of the city centre. See here for details. Whilst in the area, also check out the highly popular Bredbo Christmas Barn!
Monday, 16th July
35/ Make and Create will be held at the Australian War Memorial, with free crafts for the kids. See here for details.
36/ Walking with the Wollemi school holiday program will be held at the National Arboretum on 16th, 17th and 18th July. Rug up for a guided walk through the ancient trees and then make your very own botanical fossil to take home. This activity is suited for kids 7 - 12 years old. The cost is $15, bookings essential. See here for details.
Explore the forests of the National Arboretum. Image: National Arboretum Facebook
37/ Parliament House will be showing a free school holiday screenings of Bran Nu Dae at 10am and Storm Boy at 2pm and in their theatre, presented by the National Film and Sound Archives. See here for details.
38/ Mkids Movie – The Nut Job 2 will be showing at the National Museum of Australia. The cost is $5, bookings are essential. See here for details.
39/ Creative Meditation will be held at the National Gallery for children to relax with a guided meditation. There are two session times to choose from, at a cost of $5 per person. See here for details.
40/ Little Engineers will be held at the Civic Library, for 5 - 8 year olds. See here for details.
Wednesday, 18th July
41/ Favourite Authors: Bob Graham is a free story time program at Gungahlin Library for children aged 2 - 5. See here for details.
42/ Little Look at ART is at the National Gallery of Australia, for carers and parents of babies to enjoy a casual guided tour and then have coffee and muffins afterwards. The cost is $12. See here for details.
43/ Sketchy Wednesday: NAIDOC Week will also be held at the National Gallery, for kids of all ages who love to draw. The cost is $12. See here for details.
Thursday, 19th July
44/ Yo Funky Dance Festival at the Hellenic Club in Woden is a family friendly night out for older kids and teenagers, between 6pm - 10pm. There will be performances of hip hop acts, DJ Vonex, VS5 and Yo Funky Crew will entertain the kids and teens. There will be dance battles, freestyle dance, prize giveaways and more. The Yo Funky Dance Festival is a free event, sponsored by the Hellenic Club Canberra and hosted by child entrepreneurs, Ethan and Donnie Hart. See here for details.
45/ The Play School Show is touring around the country and will be in Canberra between 20th and 22nd July. This is the perfect indoor activity for toddlers and pre-schoolers, with songs, dancing and stories! The cost is $19.80 per person. See here for details.
46/ Art Explorer: Diamonds are a Kid's Best Friend is at the National Gallery and gives kids a chance to make a glittery wearable art, inspired by the Cartier exhibition. The cost is $60. See here for details.
47/ School Holiday Workshop: Curley-Style Construction will be held at Mugga Mugga historical property in Symonston, at a cost of $15 per child. See here for details.
Saturday, 21st July
48/ Mona Farm is a historical estate in Braidwood (1 hour east of Canberra) and this year they will be celebrating Christmas in July with an Open Day on Saturday, 21st July between 10am - 5pm. Walk around the property and enjoy horse and carriage rides, falling snow, delicious foods, miniature train rides, santa selfies and much more! The entry price for adults is $10 plus booking fee and children 10 and under are free. See here for details.
49/ Mkids Movie – Ferdinand will be held at the National Museum of Australia. The cost is $5, bookings are essential. See here for details.
Sunday, 22nd July
50/ Drawing Birds with Peter Marsack will be held at the Jerrabomberra Wetlands, for kids aged 12 and over. See here for details.
What a huge list! Hopefully you have found something to do for one, or every day of these school holidays! Have fun kids!
Celebrate Christmas in July on your last Saturday before school! Image: Mona Farm Facebook