For the very first time, this year’s WhizzFizzFest took to the road with a range of family friendly activities and events taking place across the county which celebrated the theme of friendship.
Thousands of people turned out to festival events in Aylesbury, High Wycombe and Chesham, over three consecutive weekends throughout July. Working in partnership with Aylesbury Town Council, High Wycombe BIDco and Chesham Connect, Buckinghamshire Council brought the fun of WhizzFizzFest to three events, providing free creative workshops, performances, street entertainment and activities to enjoy.
Activities kicked off in Aylesbury at the start of the month as WhizzFizzFest joined Aylesbury-on-Sea in Vale Park. Alongside the beach-based fun, WhizzFizzFest treated visitors to interactive performances of Alice in Wonderland by Unbound Theatre and Madagascar-themed dance workshops by Aylesbury Waterside Theatre. Local groups and organisations hosted craft activities on the theme of friendship and there were opportunities to fashion musical instruments out of junk materials, listen to storytelling and watch performances.
The following weekend, WhizzFizzFest moved to High Wycombe where the Desborough Carnival saw a celebration of music and culture arrive in town. Despite the stormy weather, local residents enjoyed stage music performances by local groups, walk about street performers including Afro Leana, arts, crafts and lots more family fun.
The final WhizzFizzFest event took place at Hats Off Chesham! It featured music, dance, entertainment, stalls and of course, funky headwear. The strong winds and rain didn’t stop hundreds of people turning out to join in. Storytelling performers from the Roald Dahl Museum entertained the crowd and local community groups performed on the Friendship Stage. Elsewhere free activities included friendship medal crafts, straw-plaiting and hat decorating.
Alongside the festival events more than 780 children took part in artists workshops in local schools. Artists Harsha Basu and Olivia Davies worked with the children to create paper dolls and patchwork quilt patches. The artwork was used to form the backdrop to an immersive, interactive installation by local theatre company, Cue 34, which was showcased at the three festival events.
Additionally, WhizzFizzFest presented nine performances of a children’s theatre show in libraries across the county. Children enjoyed a performance of By the Light of the Moon by Full House Theatre, a heart-warming tale of difference and friendship, followed by a puppet craft workshop.
One of the families attending the event said: “This was so wonderful! Thank you for the excellent performance, my 3-year-old was enchanted and so were we. It was very creative and imaginative. I can’t wait to see more productions in the future.”
Clive Harriss, Buckinghamshire Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture and Leisure said: “For those who thought our annual WhizzFizzFest couldn’t get any better, this year’s events have shown that by working in partnership with local organisations and groups, we can bring the fun and enjoyment of WhizzFizz to even more families across Bucks.
“I would like to thank organisers in Aylesbury, High Wycombe and Chesham for helping us to share the joy and wonder of the WhizzFizzFest with so many people this month. I would also like to say thank you to all those who took part as performers and entertainers and to the families who came along to enjoy the whizz-tastic fun of WhizzFizzFest!”
Don’t forget local libraries are hosting a range of free, fun activities for children throughout the school holidays. From the Summer Reading Challenge to arts and crafts, music and storytelling, there are activities to suit all ages. For more information visit: www.buckinghamshire.gov.uk/libraries