School Holidays

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York Mumbler Activity Sheet for Summer 2017

It’s 6 weeks until the Summer Holidays but with such a long break, we know you’ll be looking for things to do with your Mini Mumblers – we’ve already started pulling together the list of all the fabulous Summer Holiday Events and Activities in York  and by the time your children break up this list will be really comprehensive so you can have a look and refer back to it as the summer holidays go on (Save it to your favourites if you want a short cut!)

To help you plan and also manage your budget for the summer, I’ve put together an activity sheet with tonnes of ideas for you to do – most of these are free and a mixture of things at home as well as getting out and about. There are also some activities which are paid for (if you’re not a member of the place already) so you can choose the ones that you like the sounds of the most (or if you’re lucky enough to have the budget and energy – go for them all!) I’ve gone all geeky on my colour coding so hopefully it should be easy for you to select a free, paid, at home or out and about activity depending on what you fancy.

This is by no means an exhaustive list – we’re really spoiled for choice in York so do check the listings for more ideas… and I’ve also done a blank sheet if you’d rather pick and choose ideas to suit your family. If you’re going away somewhere then you could use this as a holiday activity planner too. I’d love to hear how you use it so do e-mail me if you have anything to say about it!

If you want to get the children to colour in each time you do something on here then it’s even an activity in itself!

I hope you find this useful and hope you enjoy a fantastic Summer with your family in York!

Download here: Summer Activities Ideas in York 2017 – Free Downloadable PDF

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Helmsley Castle – Helmsley under Siege!

Sat 12th & Sun 13 Aug – Helmsley under Siege – 11am-5pm

Muskets and cannon roar, swords clash and drums beat, as the forces of Parliament attempt to wrest control of mighty Helmsley Castle from the determined Royalist Garrison. Experience the action as it unfolds during the day, and visit the troops of both sides as they prepare for the coming assaults.

Castlegate, Helmsley, North Yorkshire, YO62 5AB
01439 770442

Buy tickets for this event online today and receive 10% off:

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IMPs (Inclusive Music Project) Holiday Club

Sing and Sign a Story with IMPs as Part of the Summer Reading Challenge
Inspired by this year’s Summer Reading Challenge theme of Animal Agents, the team from York’s Inclusive Music Project (IMPs) will lead these sessions of singing, signing, craft and story making at York Explore. We’ll have loads of fun as we mess about with songs, words and ideas, make our own puppets, dance and create a story to perform at the end of the session.
You don’t need any previous experience of singing or signing to take part and the sessions are fully inclusive, welcoming disabled and non-disabled children. We’ll support everyone to get involved and express themselves in the way that works best for them.

The workshops are part of Accessible Arts and Media’s IMPs project. As well as running holiday sessions, IMPs runs every Monday evening in term time at Burton Stone Community Centre. For more information please email [email protected] or visit

Events suitable for 5 to 10 year olds. Under 8s should be accompanied by a parent/carer.

When: Four Sessions, Tuesday 8th August 10.00am-12.00pm and 1.00pm-3.00pm & Tuesday 22nd August 10.00am-12.00pm and 1.00pm-3.00pm.
Where: York Explore, Library Square, Museum Street, York YO1 7DS
Cost: £5 per session – subsidised places and sibling discount available (please ask).
To book or ask any questions, please email [email protected] or call 01904 626965.

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Piglets Adventure Farm – Summer Fun

With new attractions, exciting magic shows and incredible circus acrobatics, summer at Piglets Adventure Farm is full of unmissable family fun.
On your marks, get set, Oink! All included in entry and every day from 22nd July to 3rd September, you can watch hilarious Pig Racing in the Pork-shire Hurdle, soak friends in water wars, boogie on down with daily foam parties and take up the Maize Maze challenge with two new quests. Will you make it on to the leader board?
Hold on there’s more! Follow the brand new Fairy Tale Trail through the woodland to find out which fairy or wood elf you are. Will you be more like Hesta Honeysuckle or Gethin Goldfinch? Such a magical enchanting experience.
Plus, the Magic Hatter will be conjuring up colourful comedy magic, amazing tricks and summertime silliness! Circus at the Farm is back too with crazy upside down juggling, death defying stunts and amazing acrobatics.

There is all the usual adventure farm fun, including Tractor & Trailer rides to the Bale Play Baaarn, Truffles Farmhouse & Barn, giant sandpit, bouncing pillows, crazy golf, barrel rides and go karts. And that’s all before you see the cute animals! You’ll find lots out in the paddocks and in the animal barn. Get up close to little piglets in the Piglet Maternity Ward and if you are lucky you might see one being born!

Open daily from 10am – 5:30pm. For each event date, take a look at the website.

Unmissable family fun.

Piglets Adventure Farm is located 15 minutes from the centre of York, on Towthorpe Moor Lane, between Strensall Road and the A64, North of York. For full information please go to or call 01904499700

Piglets Adventure Farm Park, Towthorpe Grange, York, YO32 9ST

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Richmond Castle – Medieval Mayhem

Sat 19th & Sun 20th Aug – 1am – 5pm

Cheer on performers Dressed to Kill Knights, fighting knights and duelling warriors, as they perform in a combat display. Join us for medieval mayhem, experience living history, duelling displays, test your skills at have-a-go-archery and get involved in interactive plays.

Tower Street, Richmond DL10 4QW
01748 822493

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Rievaulx Abbey – Stories and Sword School

Sat 29th & Sun 30th Jul, Sat 5th & Sun 6th Aug, Sat 12th & Sun 13th Aug, Sat 19th & Sun 20th Aug, Sat 26th – Mon 28th (bank holiday) Aug, Sat 2nd – Sun 3rd Sep – 11am – 5pm – Stories & Sword School

Join us this summer as our performer runs fun activities for children. The monk in residence will share stories from life at the Abbey and encourage young visitors to get test their skills in Sword School.

Rievaulx, Nr Helmsley, North Yorkshire, YO62 5LB
01439 798228

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Scarborough Castle

Sat 22nd – Fri 28th Jul, Sat 29th Jul – Fri 4th Aug, Mon 7th – Fri 11th Aug, Sat 12th – Fri 18th Aug, Sat 12th – Fri 18th Aug, Mon 21st – Fri 25th Aug, Sat 26th Aug – Sun 3rd SepHands on History – Medieval
Join us during the school holidays at Scarborough Castle, where the Hands on History crew have a range of medieval activities for you to try. From dressing up and craft activities, to dancing and sword fights – there’s something for everyone!

Sat 5th & Sun 6th AugRoman Scarborough (Online tickets)
March up to Scarborough Castle this weekend and prepare your charges to experience the most popular sport in roman times – chariot racing. Your little Roman soldiers can have a go at becoming a mighty horse in our chariot racing, who will win the race and rule the Castle? Experience Roman life, witness cavalry demonstrations and fascinating displays of falconry.

Sat 19th & Sun 20th AugScarborough at War (Online tickets)
Remember Scarborough! Discover history from both World Wars at Scarborough Castle this weekend. Learn about the 1914 bombardment of the castle and experience living history in our WWI and WWII zone. Children will be able to take part in interactive activities.

Castle Road, Scarborough, North Yorkshire, YO11 1HY
01723 372451

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The Balloon Tree this Summer

The Pick Your Own Trail is now open with lots of juicy fruit and vegetables to pick. The multi-award winning Balloon Tree Farmshop and Cafe have been growing soft fruit and vegetables for over 20 years so they know how to get the best fruit possible! Come and PYO or buy ready picked strawberries fresh that morning from the farm.

All the varieties we grow have been chosen for their taste – we can do this because everything is picked and sold within minutes or hours, not days. We have PYO strawberries, raspberries, gooseberries, red currants, black currants, white currants, blackberries, blueberries, plums, rhubarb and have some vegetables such as pulling peas, broad beans and runner beans. (All subject to availability – you can always phone to check if you are coming from a distance.)

We have introduced the new Summer menu which has a host of tasty home cooked meals, including paninis, summer time salads, daily specials with seasonal variations.

The farmshop and newly extended cafe are open 7 days a week. A great day out for all the family – entertain the children in the play area while you relax in the cafe garden but still able to keep an eye on them. Sample the other superfresh homegrown produce, local meats, homemade award winning cakes and chutneys, and lots more.

Visit or call 01759 373023 for more information

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The Poppleton Centre

Various Family Friendly Events running throughout the school holidays, or just pop in and enjoy some freshly baked goodies in the café.

31st July 10am-12noon Abbie Loves Science, Mini Mosaics 11am-12.30pm
7th Aug 10am-2pm Cricket, Mini Mosaics 11-12.30pm
8th Aug Love Science 10am-12noon
14th Aug Mini Mosaics 11-12.30pm
21st Aug Mini Mosaics 11-12.30pm
24th Aug Cricket 10am-2pm

Main St, Upper Poppleton, York YO26 6JT
Phone: 01904 797478

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Tool Box Drama – Play in a Week

Tool Box Drama invites you to join our play in a week project – Dive In Beach Party!

Thirsk Play in a Week:
7th – 11th of August 2017 – Rural Arts, 4 Westgate, Thirsk YO7 1QS

York Play in a Week:
21st – 25th of August 2017 – Clements Hall, Nunthorpe Rd, York YO23 1BW

Session times: 10:00am – 4:00pm daily, with a performance at 4:00pm on the Friday
Come along and enjoy a jam packed week of performing arts activities and games. Children will take part in prop making workshops, creative drama exercises, party games with prizes and character making activities. At the end of the project, the group will share their final performance for parents and receive a certificate and a beach themed party bag! This project is recommended for drama kings and drama queens aged between 6 and 10.

Please visit – for more information.

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Whitby Abbey

Sat 22nd & Sun 23rd Jul, Sat 29th & Sun 30th Jul, Sat 5th & Sun 6th Aug, Sat 12th & Sun 13th Aug, Sat 19th & Sun 20th Aug, Sat 26th – Mon 28th Aug, Sat 2nd & Sun 3rd Sep Dracula
Think you know the story of Dracula? Think again. To truly understand Bram Stoker’s gothic icon, you need to watch his tale performed live in the setting of the writer’s inspiration, Whitby Abbey.
Mon 24th – Fri 28th Jul, Mon 31st Jul – Fri 4th Aug, Mon 7th – Fri 11th Aug, Mon 14th – Fri 18th Aug, Mon 21st – Fri 25th Aug, Tue 29th Aug – Fri 1st SepHands on History: Seafarers
Hear tales from life at sea, including Whitby’s most famous seafaring captain James Cook. Have a go at sea themed crafts and learn navigational skills to help you get home after a great day at the abbey.

Thu 17th – Sun 20th Aug Magical Travelling Circus (Online tickets)
Roll up, Roll up, the circus is in town! This summer we’re pitching a Big Top at the Abbey. Step inside and enjoy the curiosities of a travelling show and marvel at the skills of circus performers, in this amazing setting.

Abbey Lane, Whitby, North Yorkshire, YO22 4JT
01947 603568

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York Army Museum – August Arts & Crafts

August Arts & Crafts

Follow the Arts Trail!
Drop in between 10.30am & 3pm. Mondays & Fridays in August.

Creative & Crafty sessions for ages 5+. Drop in between 12.30pm & 3pm on Wednesdays.

2nd August – Design an Exhibition
9th August – Discover Heraldry & Make a Shield
16th August – Make Bead Jewellery & Keyrings
23rd August – Meet Exotic Reptiles & Create Camouflage
30th August – Have a go at Lino Printing

01904 461010

Acomb Family Triathlon – Energise

July 29th – 9:00 am – 12:00 pm

Triathlon consists of: 400m (16 lengths) swim, 1200m cycle & 1k run
This is a family event and not to be taken seriously, the ethos is about trying something new and healthy while having some fun as a family. There will be an activity village with various events including a climbing wall and inflatables. The Entry cost is £10 per family (minimum of 1 adult and 1 child). Entry form available via Energise Leisure Centre.

Energise Sports Centre, Cornlands Road, York , YO24 3DX
01904 552424

Archaeology in Coppergate

27th, 28th, 29th, 30th & 31st July

Join us in Coppergate. Dress up as an archaeologist, dig up replica objects and sieve your soil so that you can uncover more finds to help build a bigger of picture of the stories that archaeology can tell us. Please note: this event will run every day from 10am to 4pm. £2

JORVIK Viking Centre, Coppergate, YO1 9WT
01904 615505

Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens: Summer holidays

Beningbrough has a fun filled summer holiday programme throughout August. Scheduled activities include Artrageous workshops on Mondays and Wednesdays and 50 things Fridays hunting for the rare Tansy beetle.

This is in addition to all the other adventures to be enjoyed with the family in the house and around the gardens.

Tel: 01904 472027

Burnby Hall

26th July 2017 – Gardens Sports Day – Join us for our Edwardian-themed children’s sports day.
2nd August – Pirates of Burnby – Back by popular demand… All aboard for a day of swashbuckling fun with Rusticus Theatre Arts Group.
9th August – All the fun of the fair – Entertainment for all the family. Punch and Judy, children’s activities, trail and crafts.
16th August – The Great Fairy and Pixie Gathering – A magical day for all those who believe in fairies with Rusticus Theatre Arts Group.
23 Aug 2017 – Percy’s Adventures – Become a young Percy Stewart for the day. Come and explore the Gardens with Rusticus Theatre Arts Group.
30th August – Teddy Bears Picnic – Don’t forget to bring your favourite bear and a picnic along to this fun-packed day for children and teddies!

Burnby Hall & Gardens & Museum, Pocklington, East Yorkshire, YO42 2QF
01759 307125

Burton Agnes Hall Big Annual Children’s Party! Superhero and Princess Party

Sunday 23rd July
Enjoy a fun packed day with magic shows, balloon modelling, face painting, bouncy castles, fancy dress and much more.

Driffield, East Yorkshire, YO25 4NB
01262 490324

Butterfly Walk – Clifton Backies

July 30th – 10:00 am – 11:30 am

A great chance to see many of the 23 species of butterfly found here and lots of other bugs and insects too!
Sweep nets and identification charts will be provided.
Free for members (£5 household membership – join at the event)
For non-members – £2 adults, £1 children

Clifton Backies, Woodland Chase, York, YO30 6RE

Door 84 Family Fun Day – Playday

Saturday 5th August – 12pm – 4pm

30ft Inflatable Slide * York City Football Foundation * Fire Engine * Camper Van Photo Booth * Tombola * Raffle * Hook a Duck * Lucky Dip * BBQ * Arts & Crafts * Live Entertainment * Sports * DJ Workshop * Café * Water Play * Stocks * Face Painting * Glitter Tattoos * York Breakdance * Police Van * Balloon Modelling * Candy Floss Machine *

84 Lowther Street, YO31 7LX York
01904 623177

Dunnington Fayre & Dunnington Live

Dunnington Fayre Saturday 2nd September
Rides, games, stalls, crafts, local produce, competitions and displays all at one fun-packed event! Come along and join the fun!

Dunnington Live Sunday 3rd September
A 1 day mini music festival with established up and coming bands/artists over 2 stages interlinked with entertainment, fun fair, food and bar aimed at families

See Dunnington Fayre website for details.
Eastfield Showfield, Dunnington, York, YO19 5ND
07703 518290

Food & Craft Festival in Sherburn in Elmet

26th 27th & 28th August, 10am -5pm

Over 100 food and craft stalls, live entertainment, children’s cookery school, a fun fair, vintage cars and bikes and plenty more family entertainment.
Tickets £5 per person, per day in advance or £10 per person for all three days! (Advance only) Kids go FREE. See website for details.

Eversley Park Centre, Sherburn in Elmet, LS25 6BA

Food & Drink Fesitval 2017 – Selby

July 29th – 9:30 am – 5:00 pm

Over 40 stalls, a professional Chef demonstrating throughout the day, entertainment provided by Selby Arts Festival on the Market Place and along Finkle Street and lots of food and drink to sample and purchase. Selby Abbey also has its Summer Fair.

Selby Market Place, Selby, YO8 4PB

Forever Young Festival 2017

Saturday 2nd September at 12 PM

Its a music festival to bring generations together to enjoy music. Last year we had about 1300 over the day.

Grimston Court Residential Care Home, Grimston Lodge, Grimston Bar, York YO19 5LE
01904 489343

Holgate Windmill

Open days: August 5th, 6th, 19th, 20th, 28th & September 2nd & 3rd – 11am – 4pm
Come and visit to see inside this fascinating piece of our nation’s heritage. Entry to the mill is £3 for adults, £1 for Children (aged 5-18). Entry is free to members of the Holgate Windmill Preservation Society.

Mini Millers: August 19th – 10am – 11am
Monthly activity sessions in the windmill for children (4-7yrs). This month : Flour milling in practice Pre-booking essential. £3 per child (must be accompanied) email: [email protected] Payment will be required in advance.

Windmill Rise, Holgate, York, YO26 4TX.

Lightwater Valley Events

Andy’s Prehistoric Raps – August 12th & 13th – 10:00 am – 4:30 pm
Join popular children’s TV dinosaur adventurer Andy Day as he raps and rhymes about his favourite prehistoric creatures. Get ready to swish your woolly mammoth trunks from side to side and roar like never before in a 30 minute music extravaganza!

Mister Maker Live – August 26th & 27th – 10:00 am – 4:30 pm
Come and join your ultimate arts and crafts hero Mister Maker, as he appears live on stage at Lightwater Valley! With art at its heart, this fantastic show encourages Mini Makers and their grown-ups to sing, dance and make some noise!

Tickets available online for both events.
Lightwater Valley, North Stainley, Ripon, HG4 3HT
01765 635321

Little Diggers: Archaeology of the Future

What will Archaeologists discover when they look back at us in 100 years?
Explore some of the objects we use every day and think about what they might say about our lives and what stories they might come up with!

Saturday August 12, 2017
Time: 10:00-11:00
Price: £3.50
Location: DIG

01904 615505

Little Diggers:

Garden Explorers
Saturday August 26, 10:00-11:00
Explore our sensory garden and discover what we can find out about archaeology from what we know about bugs and animals!
Learn about the soil and what might have happened to the objects archaeologists find after hundreds of years underground…
Price: £3.50
Location: DIG

Norse Myths and Stories
Saturday July 29, 10:00-11:00
The myths and legends of the Vikings come alive with a visit from our very own skald (storyteller).
Have a go at mythical crafts and activities while we explore the characters, gods and monsters of Viking sagas.
Price: £3.50
Location: DIG

Nunnington Hall

Friday 11 August – Peter Pan – Garden Theatre – 6pm
Booking essential, please call 01439 748283, Adult £15, Child £10, Family £44
We advise packing a delicious picnic, something comfy to sit on and plenty of layers if you’re coming to an evening performance – even if it’s a lovely sunny day, it can get chilly in the garden.

Nunnington Hall, Nunnington, near York, North Yorkshire, YO62 5UY

RHS Harlow Carr (Harrogate) – Enid Blyton’s ‘Famous Five’ Summer Holiday Adventures

22 July – 3 September:
Visit Harlow Carr throughout the summer for events and activities celebrating the 75th anniversary of Enid Blyton’s very first Famous Five book, ‘Five on a Treasure Island’. Take part in outdoor ‘have a go’ workshops, see birds-of-prey demonstrations, listen to tall tales and make your own Famous Five explorer kit. Don’t forget to visit the willow wigwam camp and take a nostalgic look at the Enid exhibition in the Bath House. Activities vary daily. See website for details. Normal garden admission applies.
RHS Garden Harlow Carr, Crag Lane, Beckwithshaw, Harrogate, HG3 1QB

Teddy bears picnic (for 4 – 9 yr olds)

Make two recipes for a picnic and enjoy outside (weather permitting) with your cuddly friends.

Wednesday 16th August (11am – 12.30pm)
Wednesday 23rd August (11am – 12.30pm)
£9 per child or £14 for siblings
Derwenthorpe, York

Book your place via the Little Bites Cookery website or contact m: 07768207839

The Great Birstwith Show

Saturday 29th July

More details to follow…….

Located between Kerry Ingredients and Birstwith Primary School, Birstwith, Harrogate, HG3 3AG

The Great Yorkshire Fringe Festival 2017

21st July – 6th August 2017

The Great Yorkshire Fringe returns in Summer 2017! The festival has wowed York with two years of festivities on Parliament Street, and for 2016 took comedy, variety and family entertainment to even more locations in the heart of the city. Its 2017 program looks incredible. See the website for more details.

Various venues including York Barbican & Parliament Street, York, YO1 8SE

Tockwith Show 2017

Sunday 6th August

The greatest small show in Yorkshire. More info to follow……

Tockwith Show Ground, Cattal Moor Lane, Tockwith, YO26 7QH
07976 268012

Wanted! The book burglar- a promenade performance with Mud Pie Arts.

Acomb Explore Library 8 August 10.30 – 11.30am 01904 552651
Clifton Explore Library 8 August 2.30 – 3.30pm 01904 552662
Tang Hall Explore Library 10th August 2 performances : 11- 12 noon and 1 – 2 pm

Calling all budding detectives! Explore libraries need your help! Books are going missing and strange vegetables are appearing! Who? How? Why?
Follow the clues to track down the book thief and claim your reward!
Tickets costing £2 per child are available from any Explore York Library.
Suitable for children aged 4 – 11 years

York Minster – Fun Summer Craft Activities

Each Wednesday during the summer holidays (27th July- 3rd September) families can enjoy hands-on animal craft activities that celebrate the theme of Noah’s Ark. £2.50 for materials. All York residents can visit the Minster for free.
01904 557200

York Nurturing Community Summer Events

3 August 10.30-2.30 Teddy Bear’s picnic in aid of Breast Cancer Care. Bring your teddy along for some delicious allergy-friendly food and fun activities.
11 August 11am-2.30 Disgusting Day. Join us for a yukky fun packed day. Make slime, taste insects, be an owl puke detective and learn about poo!
Loads more events every week, whole family welcome. Super Sustainable Centre, Derwenthorpe.
07747 723350

York Unleashed Comic Con

Sunday 13th August 2017 from 10am – 5pm (advance ticket), General Entry from 11am £6 (under 12s £4, under 5s free)

Special guests (Star wars, Batman, Game of Thrones, Dr Who), new attractions, awesome traders and costuming groups.

York Racecourse, Tadcaster Road, York, YO23 1EX
More info via Facebook.