What can I do with the kids in Kent this weekend?

by Ellis Stephenson

The weekends go by so quickly, don't they?

We've got a list of seven things you can do this coming weekend.

And you can take the kids as well!

Children can learn about the Egyptians at Maidstone Museum
Children can learn about the Egyptians at Maidstone Museum

1. Family Arts Award Day, Maidstone Museum

Saturday, November 18

The Egyptian-themed Discover Arts Award is suitable for ages five and over, and draws on the museum’s newly opened Ancient Lives gallery, looking at different art forms and learning about the museum’s Egyptian collection, before creating their own artwork. At the end of the day, they get a certificate and their work will be moderated by the team for Arts Award certificates. Some of the children’s work will also be put on display in the gallery. Places are limited to 15 children, accompanied by an adult and runs from 10am to 4pm. Tickets are £20. To book go to maidstonemuseum.org

2. Meet the Dragon, Beaney Museum, Canterbury

Any day except Mondays

There’s an actual dragon lurking at the Beaney – but don’t worry, he’s very small! The draca (or dragon) was found in the Kentish soil, and weighs in at just 1.15g. Made from gold and reduced to miniature, It takes the form of a three dimensional decorated pendant, with a small suspension loop set at the back of its head and is a minute 18.35mm wide. It dates from around the 9th Century AD and is Treasure under the Treasure Act 1996. It was recently acquired by the museum with support from Arts Council England, the Victoria and Albert Museum and The Headley Trust. Visit Tuesday to Sunday between 10am and 5pm and Sundays from noon to 5pm. Entry is free. For more, go to canterburymuseums.co.uk

The miniscule dragon at the Beaney
The miniscule dragon at the Beaney

3. Almost Always Muddy, Turner Contemporary, Margate

All weekend

An immersive storytelling experience for children aged five and over, join the Likely Story Theatre and Kirsty Harris in their junk yard playground of treasures to build them a place to tell their story, a Hero’s Quest. The Foyle Room will be filled with materials from tubes and fabric to pallets to create a space for stories, with music. Showings will be at 10.30am, 1.30pm and 4.30pm on Saturday and 10.30am and 1.30pm on Sunday and cost £10 for an adult and one child. To book, visit turnercontemporary.org

Get creative at the Turner Contemporary
Get creative at the Turner Contemporary

4. Design your own party clothes, Herne Bay Seaside Museum

Launching on Saturday, November 18

As part of its regular weekend activity days for children on Saturdays and Sundays, the museum in William Street launches its children’s competition this weekend to design party clothes inspired by the 1920s. Pop along for the free activity. For more details call 01227 367368 or go to theseasidemuseumhernebay.org

Christmas at Hempstead Valley shopping centre
Christmas at Hempstead Valley shopping centre

5. Grotto event, Hempstead Valley, Gillingham

Saturday, November 18

Father Christmas will take up residence in his grotto on Saturday, November 18 at 1.30pm, when he will be joined by kmfm’s Garry Wilson and Dame Nellie Night Nurse, one of the stars of the Central Theatre’s pantomime, Sleeping Beauty. The grotto features characters including penguins and will be open daily from Saturday, November 18 until Christmas Eve, with entrance costing £5 per child, iwhich will include a wrapped gift. There is no entry charge for any accompanying adults. For more details go to hempsteadvalley.com

Tunbridge Wells ice rink
Tunbridge Wells ice rink

6. Ice rink opening, Tunbridge Wells

Friday, November 17

Have you started your Christmas countdown yet? Organisers of ice skating in Tunbridge Wells have, with tickets going on sale for sessions at Calverley Gardens this festive season. Running from Friday, November 17 to New Year's Day, the amphitheatre will be transformed into a winter wonderland, with stylish skating, festive food and drink, music and shopping inspiration. For tickets visit thelittleboxoffice.com/darrylcurcherevents

West Malling Christmas lights Picture: Karolina Szczerba
West Malling Christmas lights Picture: Karolina Szczerba

7. Christmas lights switch-on, West Malling

Sunday, November 19

The switch-on event is on Sunday, November 19 this year from noon through to 5.30pm, with the switch being flicked around 5pm by members of the cast of this year’s Maidstone pantomime, Peter Pan. There will be real reindeer, an ice rink for the children and Santa’s Grotto plus the high street will be crammed with street food, mulled wine and stalls.

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