Local family event guide – Friday 30th – Thursday 6th December 2018

Local family event guide – Friday 30th – Thursday 6th December 2018

Take a look at all the family friendly events happening in and around Dublin over the next week for you to enjoy.
Please check that they are still running before setting out, as sometimes even the best events have to be postponed.


Christmas is coming 🤶🎄TĂĄ an Nollaig at teacht. 

Join Fingal County Council for the switching of the Christmas Lights

Blanchardstown: Thursday 29th Nov 6pm (outside Bank of Ireland, Main Street) 

Swords: Friday 30th Nov 6pm (Swords Castle)


Family workshop days

Do you love the rhythm of trad, or the smooth sounds of jazz? Or perhaps you’d like to introduce your toddler to music, or learn a new instrument with your child. Our family workshops offer a chance to learn about music together in a fun and interactive environment.


Baby Bop and Toddler Twist

Have fun with your little one in these engaging workshops and learn a range of tunes and techniques to continue their musical journey at home. This session uses folk songs and lullabies from around the world, together with easy and accessible musical activities for you to share together.

Gamelan Introduction (age 6+)

Experience the magical sound of the Javanese Gamelan. This unique set of tuned percussion instruments was gifted to the National Concert Hall by the Sultan of Yogyakarta, and is a great way of getting to play music in an ensemble, even with little or no previous experience.

Percussion (age 6+)

Discover the world of rhythm with a group percussion workshop. Our skilled facilitators will take your group through a rhythmic journey exploring the drumming traditions of West Africa, Brazil, and the Caribbean. No previous experience is required. All instruments are supplied.

Tin Whistle Workshop (age 6+)

This hands-on family music workshop introduces the tunes and techniques of the tin whistle for newcomers to the instrument. Participants are welcome to bring their own D whistle, or purchase them on the day or through our box office for €5.

BodhrĂĄn Workshop (age 6+)

Explore rhythm in this interactive workshop with the traditional Irish drum, and learn how to accompany jigs and reels.

When Saturday December 1st
Where National Concert Hall
How much? €6.50-€8
Ages suitable for families
Come and build with us! Open-ended free play sessions with Magformers. Wooden blocks are available for younger children.
When Saturday, 1st December 11-12.30 (also on Dec 15th)
Where Cabinteely Library
How much? Free, no booking required
Ages suitable for 4-8 yrs (and their grown ups!).

Sunday Sketching

During these free sketching workshops for families we invite you to explore and respond to or collection and temporary exhibitions through discussion and drawing. Bring your own sketchbook or avail of the drawing materials provided.

When Sunday between 3-4pm
Where Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane
How much? Free, no booking required although spaces may be limited
Ages suitable for children 6+ and their adults


Christmas Open Day

Take a break from the hustle and bustle and drop in to Collins Barracks for a special day of seasonal events, including a talk on the traditions of Christmas, festive family trails and sparkly winter workshops! Check out www.museum.ie/Events for a full programme.

When Sunday 2nd December, 2pm-5pm
Where National museum of Ireland, Collins Barracks (Decorative Arts & History)
How much? Free
Ages suitable for all ages

Gulliver’s fair and market

Special family fun day featuring a cornucopia of international food and craft stalls, circus workshops, live music and unique attractions for both young and old!
Free admission, no booking required


Nature Sounds

A relaxing morning discovering the sounds of the park and what is behind them. Then see if your own hearing can compare to the techniques used by animals to catch their prey using their sense of hearing. A fun morning of discovery and games.

When Sunday, December 2nd
Where Bushy Park at 10am. Supported by Dublin City Council. Griffeen Valley Park at 12.30. Supported by South Dublin County Council. Fee is €2
How much? €2 – Booking is essential. Please contact Turtle at education@owls.ie to book or for more info!
Ages suitable for ages 6 to 12

Zero Waste Christmas Festival

Zero Waste Festival Ireland will bring you talks, workshops, info-stands, swap-shops and a market, all dedicated to helping you reduce your waste this Christmas.

Christmas can be a difficult time to keep your bins empty and your recycling pile small, but during this day-long event you will get tips on cutting down on waste from food and packaging, gifts and wrapping, decorations and festive dressing and even pre-Christmas cleaning!

From making better choices of materials, to reusing and upcycling what is already out there, there will be something to be learned for everyone, no matter where you are on your journey. For your first foray into Zero Waste stop by our info stand for a quick primer, or sign up for a talks and workshops pass for more insight.

Zero Waste Festival Ireland is a volunteer run event and this time there is free entry to the info-stands, swap-shops, market and drop-in workshops. A talks and workshop pass (€10/€8 concession) is needed to access the talks and workshops on the mezzanine level. Tickets (€3) are also required for the ‘Tree-planting with Santa’ children’s event.

When Sunday from 10-5
Where The Green Door MarketA1 Bluebell Business Centre, Old Naas Rd, Dublin
How much? Admission is free and you can register here and see whether any of their talks would interest you.
Ages suitable for the whole family

Family-friendly tour

Join us for a special tour designed for children and their guardians, parents and carers.

Our aim is to make the artworks fun and engaging for kids, and to welcome families and visitors of all ages and encourage them to feel comfortable in the Gallery.

All welcome; no booking necessary.

When Sunday 12.30 – 13.15
Where National Gallery of Ireland, Merrion Square West, Dublin 2
How much? Free no booking required
Ages suitable for everyone welcome

Christmas winter wonderland 

Welcome to the opening of the Special Christmas Winter Wonderland 2018 in South Dublin – with Lights Switch on Event!

• Enjoy our Christmas Village Walk-through experience
• Inflatable Snow Man Bouncy Castle
• Christmas activities for toddlers
• ‘Whack-a-mole’, ‘Hook-a-candy-cane’ and a whole lot more fun games!
• Elves Arts & Crafts
• Photo Opportunity with your favourite Mascots
• Face painting
• Pancakes, kids meals and Christmas treats available in our on-site café
• 5:30pm – LIGHT SWITCH ON SHOW with special guest performers and complimentary hot chocolate.

Events Team – Scientology Community Centre

When Sunday from 2.30 – 6pm
Where Scientology Community Centre, Firhouse Road, Dublin, Ireland Dublin 24
How much? Free, register for tickets here
Ages suitable for the whole family

Come along and enjoy Storytime with a difference; musical accompaniment to illustrate our weekly storytime. Dance, sing and enjoy our wonderful stories and their musical accompaniment!

When Tuesday 4 December 3.30-4.15pm
Where dlr Lexicon, Haigh Terrace, Moran Park, Dun Laoghaire
How much? Free
Ages suitable for 3-6 year olds (all welcome)

Autism Friendly Play Evenings

We are holding our first Autism friendly play evening here at ShipShape.

Ship Shape Kids Play has over 10,000 sq. ft. of soft play activities for kids from 1 year to 11 years of age

When Tuesday the 4th of December from 5pm to 7pm and then on the first Tuesday of every month
Where Ship Shape Kids Play, Junction 6, Castleknock D15
How much? Regular entry fee which online says Monday– Friday All Ages : €6
Ages suitable for 1-11 year olds

Nothing says ‘Christmas’ like a visit to the atmospheric Powerscourt Estate in County Wicklow with its tree-lined avenue, fir trees and majestic stately home! Make the most of your family time and bring the children along to see Santa’s animals at Powerscourt Garden Pavilion. Kids will love the chance to meet some farm animals’ right up close including Santa’s deer, pygmy goats, miniature donkeys, rabbits and guinea pigs. Children of all ages and adults alike will enjoy a visit to the stables, which is free of charge.

While your here, pick up your locally grown tree from our lovely selection of Christmas trees.

The stables and tree farm are located adjacent to the Garden Pavilion.

When daily until December 23rd from 10am – 5pm
Where Powerscourt Garden Pavilion
How much? Free
Ages suitable for everyone

Creative mindfulness and yoga for children

Join us for a fun and interactive class where we explore yoga movement through storytelling and adventures. We will discover our belly breath and learn all about feelings and emotions.

When Thursday’s at 10am – drop in no need to book
Where Dublin City Farm, 67 All Saints Road, Clontarf
How much? €10 per child which includes accompanying adult
Ages suitable for 0-5 year olds and their adults

Yet again, one of Dublin’s oldest treasures, The Moving Crib at 42 Parnell Square West, Dublin 1 will be opening its doors this Christmas Season from the 27th of November. This is its 62nd year captivating generations of families. Children and adults alike and best of all it’s FREE!

It’s history and old world charm is unchanged and has led to many describing it as a wonderful hidden gem in Dublin City and “a real Dublin Institution” that will give you “a warm glow for the true meaning of Christmas”.

Winding your way down to the basement of this stunning Georgian building, you are greeted with a montage of many historical / fun stories, including Noah’s Ark, The Wise Men and many more, its scenes, competitions, an illusion wall and a little touch of magic are all sure to guarantee a fun day out for all the family!
Children are encouraged to draw and colour a Leaf, cut out the shape and bring it with them so that they can be placed in the Garden of Eden forever.

The Moving Crib, the mention of which always evokes a smile and fond memories of Dublin in the ‘rare auld times’ is the only one of its kind built in Ireland (if not the world); it is a historical and entertaining experience. This Dublin landmark is as captivating today as it was when it first opened its doors in 1956 and admission is still FREE.

Be sure to visit this year and don’t miss the wonderful Bray Gospel Choir whose passion for Gospel and Soul music is renowned and who will be performing here on Sunday 9th December.

When Tuesday 27th November – Sunday 6th January 2019
Where  St Martin Apostolate, 42 Parnell Square West, Rotunda, Dublin 1, Ireland
How much? donations are appreciated
Ages suitable for everyone

 Pre book the events below for future family fun.

Homemade Lava Lamps

Ever wonder how a lava lamp works? All that light and slow motion liquid is so mesmerising you may think it’s magic, but really, it’s just science! In this workshop, you will learn how to make a DIY lava lamp using everyday items that you can find in your kitchen.

When 7th December, 3.30-4.30PM
Where Cabinteely Library
How much? Free – booking required – cabinteelylib@dlrcoco.ie / (01) 2855363
Ages suitable for 8-12 year olds

Christmas decorations workshop

Make colourful and sparkly Christmas decorations in this art workshop

When Saturday 15 December, 2–3pm
Where Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane
How much? €7, booking through eventbrite.ie required here.
Ages suitable for 3-6 year olds

Christmas Kids Workshop

Get into the Christmas spirit with some festive crafts at Rua Red. Create your own painted ceramic Christmas mug with artist Karen McArdle. All materials for this fun and interactive workshop will be supplied.

When 15 Dec, 1:30pm – 3:30pm
Where Rua Red, South Dublin Arts Centre, Tallaght, Dublin 24
How much? €5, bookable here
Ages suitable for 8-13 years

Especially for kids this Christmas! Help spread beauty and prevent waste this Christmas by making your own plantable eco-friendly cards with recycled and natural materials. Using biodegradable seed infused paper, these cards will keep giving long after Christmas, as they can then be planted in your own garden, or in pots on your balcony or windowsill.

When Saturday December 15th. 11am-12pm workshop suitable for 6-8 year olds, 2pm-3pm workshop suitable for 8-12 year olds
Where  National Botanical Gardens, Glasnevin
How much? Booking essential. €5 per child
Ages suitable 6-8 and 8-12 year olds

Winter workshop for 3-6 year olds

Be inspired by the snowy landscape of Courbet’s painting Diligence in the Snow during this wintery workshop

When Saturday 19 January, 2–3pm
Where Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane
How much? €7 bookable through this link
Ages suitable for 3-6 year olds

We hope that you have a great week.

ClapHandies PlayLabs  happen around the Dublin area during term time

If you have a baby, wobbler or toddler, why don’t you book and join one of our PlayLabs?

ClapHandies also run baby massage courses and First Aid courses 

If you are looking to organise a party, we offer PlayParty for 1-2-year-olds.

For 3, 4 & 5-year-olds we offer Classic Parties and children 6+ there are 4 great themed parties that school children seem to LOVE!

Take a look at RealPartyKids .

If you have an event you would like us to promote, please email marie@claphandies.com or message us through our Facebook page.


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