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Events for Kids and Families

ArtStarts is delighted to offer free community programming in the arts for kids and families to enjoy together.

Our popular ArtStarts on Saturdays and ArtStarts at River Market events take place once a month, and we also love to host special events for exhibition openings, Family Day, National Aboriginal Day and more.

To be notified about upcoming events, sign up for our Gallery Newsletter.

  • Coming to ArtStarts in my community is always the highlight of the weekend. Thank you for all the opportunities you offer our families—we are tremendously grateful! Parent
  • It was a great show. This is the first time my son sat through any event. Thank you! Parent
  • Our kids always learn new things coming to your workshops. Parent
  • We can now do this art at home, for the rest of our lives. Fantastic! Parent
  • Such good information for creative learning! Parent
ArtStarts on Saturdays and ArtStarts at River Market

ArtStarts on Saturdays and ArtStarts at River Market

Looking for fun, free things to do with kids in the Lower Mainland? ArtStarts is pleased to offer free arts-based weekend workshops for kids and families each month—in both Vancouver and New Westminster. Join some of the best artists working with young people for performances and workshops that explore a wide range of cultures and artistic disciplines.




Admission is free! Each 45-minute workshop takes place twice, at 11am and 1pm. Please arrive a little early as this is a popular program. ArtStarts on Saturdays and ArtStarts at River Market events are ideal for ages 5 and up, but all are welcome!
Magical Stories and Enchanted Eggs with Kallie George

Magical Stories and Enchanted Eggs with Kallie George

It would be so much fun to own a magical pet—or would it? Author Kallie George's Magical Animal Adoption Agency books feature a host of magical animals—dragons, unicorns and more! Join Kallie for an enchanting storytelling session in a fairy tale fort, then make your very own magical egg. What might hatch from it? Anything is possible! This event is part of our Family Literacy Week celebrations.

  • VANCOUVER: Saturday, January 28, 2017 at 11am & 1pm at the ArtStarts Gallery, 808 Richards St, Vancouver (map)
  • NEW WESTMINSTER: Sunday, January 29, 2017 at 11am & 1pm at River Market at Westminster Quay, 810 Quayside Drive, New Westminster (map)
Special Event for Family Literacy Week: Grow a Wish Tree

Special Event for Family Literacy Week: Grow a Wish Tree

Do wish trees exist? Charles thinks so, and is determined to find one and hang his wish in The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear and illustrated by Chris Turnham. Wishes come true as the gentle story unfolds, and once it’s done, families will create a wish tree to write and hang their own wishes on.

  • VANCOUVER: Sunday, January 29, 2017 at 11am & 1pm at the ArtStarts Gallery, 808 Richards St, Vancouver (map)
Family Day Weekend with ArtStarts and MOA

Family Day Weekend with ArtStarts and MOA

We are thrilled to partner with the Museum of Anthropology to co-present engaging programming for the Family Day Weekend!

  • SATURDAY at ARTSTARTS: Saturday, February 11, 2017 at the ArtStarts Gallery, 808 Richards St, Vancouver (map)
The Magic of Making Cloth
Workshop with Rebecca Graham

Ongoing 10am to 1pm. Admission is free.

Participants in this workshop will receive free admission to MOA for one adult per group!

Families are invited to join artist Rebecca Graham to play with spinning loose fibres into long, strong yarns, and weaving on a simple loom. Discover a variety of different tools and materials—you’ll be amazed at the skill and ingenuity of our ancestors from all over the world!

While at the ArtStarts Gallery, explore a special MOA pop-up exhibition featuring imagery from the brand new textile exhibition Layers of Influence: Unfolding Cloth Across Cultures. Families will also have the opportunity to engage with Chilkat weavings and materials from the Tsimshian culture.








  • SUNDAY at MOA: Sunday, February 12, 2017 at MOA, 6393 NW Marine Drive, Vancouver (map)
Capoeira Workshop at 11am.
Free event for MOA Members.

Learn about the art of Capoeira with Axé Capoeira! An Afro-Brazilian art form, capoeira will give families an appreciation for multiculturalism through traditional song, live music and elements of Brazilian dance.

Axé Capoeira’s Viva Brazil at 1pm.
Free with MOA admission.

This educational tapestry of Brazilian culture and history will inspire the whole family. Your pulse will be stimulated by live music, your eyes amazed by gravity-defying acrobats and your body moved by dance. Learn more.
Sand Northrup, One Woman Circus

Sand Northrup, One Woman Circus

Combine fabulous foolishness with an enduring enthusiasm for circus arts and what do you get? Sand Northrup, One Woman Circus! Well known for her interactive performances and hands-on workshops that are accessible to all ages (with parent help required for toddlers), Sand offers a zany mix of physical comedy and circus skills, with lots of audience participation.

  • VANCOUVER: Saturday, February 25, 2017 at 11am & 1pm at the ArtStarts Gallery, 808 Richards St, Vancouver (map)
  • NEW WESTMINSTER: Sunday, February 26, 2017 at 11am & 1pm at River Market at Westminster Quay, 810 Quayside Drive, New Westminster (map)
More Fun Down the Block

More Fun Down the Block

If you're joining us at the ArtStarts Gallery in Vancouver on the last Saturday of every month, also be sure to also stop by the Contemporary Art Gallery, located just two blocks away (at the corner of Richards and Nelson). The CAG invites all ages to drop-in for short exhibition tours and free art making activities that respond to our current exhibitions. CAG Family Art Day events are planned on the last Saturday of the month from Noon to 3pm. Learn more.
Venue Rentals

Venue Rentals

Interested in hosting your own event? ArtStarts offers three distinct spaces for meetings, staff retreats, brainstorming, fundraising events, board meetings and more. Learn more.

Video: Learn More About ArtStarts on Saturdays

Want to get a sneak peek at what to expect? Watch this video of City Lights' visit to one of our ArtStarts on Saturdays events.

Video: Learn More About ArtStarts at River Market

ArtStarts at River Market is proudly supported by Westminster Savings, as part of their Project Better Balance program to provide access to arts and active living opportunities in the communities they serve. In this short video, discover what families have to say about playing, exploring and learning together in and through the arts.


Supporters

The Government of British Columbia's Community Gaming Grants support the delivery of community organization programs that benefit the citizens of BC.
Westminster Savings supports ArtStarts at River Market.

Westminster Savings is committed to increasing access to active living and the arts in our communities through their Project Better Balance.