• Family Fest Zone

Family Fest Zone

Think it, create it, craft it in our all-new interactive family zone! Spanning two city blocks surrounding M.L.K. Jr. Civic Center Park, the FFZ will be bursting with fun, enriching activities for families and children of all ages.

Tons of hands-on activities, 25 authors presenting books written for younger readers, a new storytelling and performance stage, and a festive carnival are the featured components of our expanded, interactive Family Fest Zone!

New to the Festival – The Showtime Stage

Bring the entire family for nonstop fun at our first-ever Showtime Stage! The exciting, something-for-everyone lineup features authors, illustrators, magicians, jugglers, and other rousing live performances certain to delight all ages, especially younger audiences. To view the full list of events, simply visit our Showtime Schedule page.

  • Astro Botanicals
    Immerse yourself in these giant inflatable sculptures shaped like magical plants by local artist Stan Clark. The sculptures create a fairy tale garden that promotes curiosity and creativity.
  • DIY Book Making
    Join Illustoria, the Oakland-based “DIY Magazine for Creative Kids + Their Grown-ups” for coloring, stamping, and DIY book-making.
  • Martial Arts Demos
    Join the East Bay’s Soja Mind Body, touted for its thoughtful and holistic approach to martial arts for youth and adults. Experienced instructors and their students will demo a host of martial arts games and instruction – and offer youth self-defense workshops.
  • Pirate Art!
    826 Valencia is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting under-resourced students with their writing skills and helping teachers inspire their students to write. Younger festival-goers can enjoy making pirate masks and artifacts or pen their thoughts in a fun writing activity.
  • Habitot Children’s Museum
    A Berkeley treasure since 1992, Habitot Children’s Museum has become the most popular and award-winning children’s hands on discovery museum in the East Bay. Bring the little ones to the festival for Gak and spinner art activities.
  • Sticky Art Lab
    Berkeley’s Sticky Art Lab is an innovative space where children and adults can experiment together with exciting scrap materials and bring home a unique handmade project. Join them at the festival and have fun diverting some treasures from the waste stream to design & decorate your own journal!
  • East Bay Depot for Creative Reuse
    The East Bay Depot for Creative Reuse is an Oakland non-profit whose mission is to divert waste materials from landfills by collecting and redistributing discarded goods as low-or-no-cost supplies for art, education, and social services. Join them for arts & crafts with recycled materials and found objects.
  • Fun with LEGOJeep
    Get inspired and create with LEGOJeep, an ever-changing and fun artwork shaped by all who touch it. Always a huge hit with children and families!

New this Year – Fun & Games Carnival

No family fest would be complete without a little midway-inspired whimsy. Youngsters will giggle with delight in playing arcade games and partaking in carnival rides, inflatables, bouncy houses and more! (nominal fee for most activities)