Dublin local family event guide

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Friday 8th – Thursday 14th March 2019

Take a look at 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.

Return of Spring

Every year in Whistleberry Forest, the creatures of the forest look forward to the end of the frosty Winter, and to the beginning of Spring.  This year was a little different however, as Springtime had arrived much earlier than usual.  All the hibernating animals, except for Huggy the hedgehog, were still curled up fast asleep.  Huggy must go on an adventurous musical quest in search of evidence of Spring if he is to convince his friends that it is time to wake up!

When Friday 8th March at 10.15am and 12.15pm
Where Draíocht, The Blanchardstown Centre, Dublin 15
How much? €7 adults and €5 children – bookable here
Ages suitable for? 3-5 year olds and their adults

Superhero Adventure 

Join the SUPER ADVENTURE and come along on the Rathwood Express and defeat the Villains that have been causing HAVOC in Rathwood.

Jump on the Rathwood Express and Let’s go on an adventure with The Radical Wonders.

There are free Super Cupcake’s and a Superhero mask for each child on the day to enjoy and take home on the day. 

When Running each weekend until the end of March at 12 and 1pm
Where Rathwood, Rath, Tullow, Carlow,
How much? €4 adults, €12 children and free for babies under 1. Book here.
Ages suitable for? Superheroes and their adults


Sunday Sketching

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

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

Drop in family workshop

At our drop-in workshops, children and their parents/guardians/carers are encouraged to work together on creative projects. Drop-in and stay for as long (or as little!) as you wish.

When Sunday drop in between 11.30-1.30
Where National Gallery of Ireland
How much? Free and no booking required
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.

When Sunday 12.30-1.15
Where National Gallery of Ireland
How much? Free, no booking required
Ages suitable for? everyone most welcome


New parents’ tour

These tours are for parents, guardians, and carers of young children and will focus on a selection of highlights in the permanent collection. Our aim is to welcome families and visitors of all ages and encourage them to feel comfortable in the Gallery rooms. The route is suitable for prams and strollers, and all are welcome.

When Monday 11th from 2-3pm
Where National Gallery of Ireland, Merrion Square West, D2
How much? Free, no booking necessary!
Ages suitable for? everyone welcome, no need to book

Monkstown ‘Music for Babies’- Fabulous Flutes

Our fabulous flautists Mairéad English and Ríona Ó Duinnín will dazzle you with their programme of virtuosic and popular favourites.

Classical music concerts for grandparents, parents and babies in a relaxed, local setting.
Come and enjoy the finest chamber music as your baby feeds, sleeps, plays and absorbs all the benefits of this wonderful music.

When Wednesday 13th March, join for coffee from 10.30. Concert starts at 11am
Where Knox Hall, Dublin
How much? Adults pay €13 babies and toddlers are free
Ages suitable for? Babies, wobblers, toddlers and their adults

Digital Treasure Hunt for Families

This St. Patrick’s Festival, come along to the Irish Family History Centre for a fun, digital treasure hunt for families! Learn how to be a research detective on our computers, follow clues through our interactive touch screens, check out historical documents and work together to travel back in time and uncover the past.

When Thu, 14 March from 10-12
Where Irish Family History Centre, 1 Custom House Quay, Dublin
How much? Free – get tickets here
Ages suitable for? the whole family

Pre book or put these in your calendar for future family fun

A Sailor Went to Sea, Sea, Sea – A Family Story & Craft Workshop with Sarah Webb

Join award-winning writer Sarah Webb for this interactive, sea-themed event for the whole family. Revisit favourite childhood rhymes and songs such as A Sailor Went to Sea, Sea, Sea and The Owl and the Pussycat. Discover new ones from Ireland and beyond and create your own colourful sailing ship. Sea-filled fun for everyone!

Adults do not require a ticket for this event. Children must not be left unattended.

When 10:00 AM, Sat, 16 Mar
Where EPIC – The Irish Emigration Museum, CHQ building, Custom House Quay, Dublin 1 
How much? Children €12 (Adults do not require a ticket) 
Ages suitable for? Families

Under the Sea – Family Story Generator with Writer, Sarah Webb

Are your family story fit? Can you create crazy characters and plot fiendishly difficult plots? You’re about to find out in this interactive story workshop. There will be mapping, drawing and lots of fun.

Create your own salty sea yarn in this interactive story workshop. Conjure up a character: a crab, dolphin or clownfish, give them a trusty sidekick and place the daring duo in their very own underwater adventure.

Will they outwit the evil hammerhead shark, save a merboy, or help a lost baby humpback whale? You decide! Come with ideas and enthusiasm and leave with your very own family story.

When 12:00 PM, Sat, 16 Mar
Where EPIC – The Irish Emigration Museum, CHQ building, Custom House Quay, Dublin 1 
How much? Children €8, Adults €16 (Tickets include entry to EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum) 
Ages suitable for? Children 8+ and their adults

Tumble Circus

Tumble Circus provide a unique experience of innovative and contemporary Irish circus, specialising in high skill circus – theatre – comedy (indoors and outdoors). The shows are an absurd jaunt into the soul of man, alive with the endless possibility of the human body, the joy of performing, and the humanity of success and failure. Ordinary people, doing extraordinary things!  At the core of Tumble Circus is a dedication to training, learning and constantly pushing the boundaries of their own work. Tumble Circus strive to create new and exciting circus that entertains and amazes!

When 4pm on Sat, 16 Mar and also at 5pm on Sunday 17th.
Where Festival Village Big Top, Merrion Square, Dublin 2
How much? Free Ticketed – book here
Ages suitable for? All ages

Children’s Art Workshops – 16th March

Budding Artists
Join our ‘budding’ artists, a creative workshop especially for younger children taking place once a month, under the attentive eye of artist Niamh Synnott. Children are encouraged to take a closer look at the natural world all around them to inspire fun art-making activities.

Suitable for 4 to 7 year olds.
Time: 11.00am-12.30pm. Meet at the Education and Visitor Centre
Cost: €10. Booking Essential

Hardy Annuals 
Why not join us for a guided discovery of the natural world where you can observe, engage, and be inspired by your surroundings. Participants in this art programme will be encouraged to use materials in fun and interesting ways while taking inspiration from the world of plants on show at Glasnevin.

Suitable for 8 to 12 year olds.
Time: 2.00pm – 4.00pm. Meet at the Education and Visitor Centre
Cost: €10. Booking Essential

Swords St. Patrick’s Day Parade

St. Patrick’s Festival are delighted to collaborate with community groups from across Fingal County on a new pageant, as part of the Swords St. Patrick’s Day Parade.  The pageant will be inspired by local mythology and traditions such as the Legend of St. Patrick,  Ériu the Goddess of Ireland, and St.  Patrick’s Island, the island off the coast of Skerries where St. Patrick is reputed to have first landed on Irish shores.

Local groups will be involved in a series of artist led workshops exploring these themes alongside contemporary stories, before a live performance at the 2019 Swords Parade.

When 11:00 AM, Sun, 17 Mar
Where Swords Town Centre
How much? Free
Ages suitable for? Everyone

Make a boat

Design and build your own raft using materials we find around the park. Then enter your brand new boat in the OWLS boat race down the river.

When Sunday March 17th at 10am
Where Waterside Park
How much? €2 as kindly sponsored by South Dublin County Council
Ages suitable for? the whole family -Email Clare (aka Turtle) at education@owls.ie to book a place or for more information.

Slime Labs with Catherine McGuinness

There is a slime and a place for getting messy and it’s here with us at EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum this St. Patrick’s Festival! Catherine McGuinness will be returning to the museum for a seriously slimy science lab. Come along, get creative, get a little green and learn something new in this fantastically disgusting workshop. St. Patrick may have kicked out the snakes but we can definitely bring back some of the slime!

When 12pm and 2pm Monday 18th March
Where EPIC – The Irish Emigration Museum, CHQ building, Custom House Quay, Dublin 1 
How much? €8 bookable here
Ages suitable for? ages 6 – 12. Children must not be left unattended.

Family Day: Meet, Make & Draw

MEET artist Bridget Flannery, featured in our MAKing ART: PAINTing exhibition.
See how she paints and why she paints. Inspired by her process MAKE a small artist notebook. Work collaboratively to DRAW on a large scale. Come along, Meet, Make & Draw.

Sessions Are Free, But Space Is Limited. Max 50 per workshop.
Session 1: Sat 23rd March 12-12.50pm
Session 2: Sat 23 March 1-1.50pm
Session 3: Sat 23 March 2-2.50pm

Dress for Mess. Unless otherwise stated workshops are designed for children from 5-10 years, though younger and older siblings are welcome to take part. Please be aware that Draíocht’s Family Days are not designed for groups. All children must be accompanied by an adult and all adults must be accompanied by a child!

Bring Along A Baby *

Bring Along a Baby is an informal, relaxed, accessible chamber music recital of the highest standard, aimed primarily at parents, while babies or very young children sleep, feed and play. 

There is no pressure to keep still or quiet, leaving parents free to sit back and enjoy the music. In fact, we encourage the babies to interact naturally with the music, and we have play mats and soft toys to this end.

Of course, the babies benefit from the music as well, so it’s a win-win.

*This event always sells out in advance, so book sooner than later to save being disappointed.

When Monday March 25th **ALMOST SOLD OUT**  and Thursday April 25th at 10.30am and 12.30
Where National Concert Hall
How much? Adults are €13 and babies go free!
Ages suitable for? babies and their adults

Hatch – A Story Of Transformation And New Beginnings **ALMOST SOLD OUT**

Meet Bláithín. She loves caterpillars, moths and butterflies. Follow her on her adventurous journey with Uncle Rusty to find Pearl, the most extraordinary butterfly with the most exquisite colourful wings. Learn all about two little caterpillars and their journey to fly as butterflies and moths. Hatch is full of Fidget Feet’s unique blend of live music, comedy, theatre, contemporary dance and aerial dance.  Hatch also weaves craft workshops, Irish language and dancing into this wonderful story. If you enjoyed their other work for children, ‘Elves and the Shoemaker’ and ‘Strange Feathers’, then you will thoroughly enjoy Hatch, an immersive aerial dance children’s show, perfect for young audiences and their families.

When Saturday 30th March at 12, 2 and 4.30pm – 80 min performance with crafts beforehand
Where Draíocht, The Blanchardstown Centre, Dublin 15
How much? €7 adults and €5 children bookable here
Ages suitable for? Perfect for 4-8 year olds and their families.

Meet The Orchestra – part of Musictown junior

Conductor, James Cavanagh and the exuberant members of the RIAM Intermediate Orchestra invite young and old alike to help them put the oom into oom pah pah during the Academy’s perennially popular Meet the Orchestra event. For anyone who has ever wanted to blow their own trumpet, try out a tuba or toot a flute, this engaging morning event offers a rare opportunity to meet and mingle with the colourful families of the Orchestra. During the event, teachers and students of the Academy will demo’ a wide range of wind instruments and even offer some of the aspiring musicians present an opportunity to try out their own personal favourites!

When Saturday 6th April from 11-12
How much? €8 / €5 – bookable here
Ages suitable for? Families. 


Tales From The Shadows


Presented in association with the Dublin-based theatre group, Tales from the Shadows, this special two-performance event at the RIAM sees the oral tradition of storytelling combine with the visuals of shadow puppetry in an anthology style production based on folklore and urban legends originating in Dublin. Tales to look forward to, with a special blend of music include: ‘The Pig Faced Lady of Steeven’s Hospital’, ‘The Ghost of Marsh’s Library’ and many more. The show will appeal to “mature children and childish adults” alike, as well as those with a taste for gothic stories.

When  Sunday 7th April at 11am and again at 1pm
Where Royal Irish Academy of Music, 36 Westland Row
How much? Free, tickets available here
Ages suitable for? Mature children and childish adults!

My first concert

Join a host of very young musicians as they take their first steps onto the concert platform for their début concert performance. A perfect opportunity for MusicTown audiences to bring their little ones to see our little ones and share this special first concert experience both on- and off-stage.

When Sunday 7th April from 12-12.45
Where Royal Irish Academy of Music, 36 Westland Row
How much? Free, tickets available here
Ages suitable for? everyone welcome



The Big Free Family Gig: Stomptown Brass


Stomptown Brass is one of the most unique acts in Ireland in recent times. Blending the sounds of funk and blues with powerful driving rhythms, the band make the most of their impressive line-up: two Drummers, two Trombones, two Trumpets, one Saxophone and a Tuba! Their music is bursting with bluesy vocals, infectious grooves, disco beat breakdowns, and funky rhythms all delivered with their signature enthusiasm and showmanship.

When Sun 7 April 2019 @ 2.30pm-4pm
Where The Ark, Temple Bar
How much? Free, tickets available here
Ages suitable for? 5 years +


This workshop encourages creativity and self-expression through the creation of a word or shape, by the participating children, using letterpress and full colour printing.

When Tuesday 16th April 10.30-11.30
Where National Print Museum
How much? €12.50 – book through this link please
Ages suitable for? 4-7 year olds

Printlab workshop for families

During this workshop, families will learn about and explore the basic principles of letterpress printing. They will discover how, through working together as a family and combining letterpress and new technologies with tinkering and making, they can collectively express themselves in a fun and creative way.

When Tuesday 16th April from 2.30-3.30
Where National Print Museum
How much? €25 for 2 adults, 2 children (max 3 families on course)
Ages suitable for? Families of all ages – book through this link.

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 suitable for babies 6 weeks – 9 months.

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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