Outdoor music festival time is around the corner. Remember those chilled out weekends of non-stop music, hopping from stage to stage, discovering new bands, dancing under the stars, staying up late and even camping? It doesn’t have to end when you have Kids in TOw.

Take Hillside Festival, a three-day five-stage event at Guelph Lake Conservation Area July 24-26th. It been around for over 30 years and for regulars with tots, it’s the serious family-friendly vibe keeps them coming back.

Of course, your ability to ‘enjoy’ these types of music fests differs from parent to parent and child to child. But so many music-lovers are finding ways that fit for their family – whether it’s an over-night or one-day adventure.

Here are some tips from veteran moms on how to make Hillside a successful family experience:

Mom-and-Dad Swap: Some parents choose to park it at the Children’s Area where there are tons of kids activities, crafts and the Rainbow Stage. Partners can spell each other off depending on what the Adults in TOw really want to see.

What to pack: Big picnic blanket, sunscreen, hats, umbrellas, water bottles, cash for food, containers of food (so you’re not always running back and forth between the food area) and hand sanitizer or wet cloths. Keep Hillside’s Green Initiatives in mind when packing. For the littlest ones in TOw, a carrier or stroller for wandering and napping and noise buffer earphones are always a good idea. And of course, patience.

Kid-Friendly Music: The music line up is still firming up but little festival-goers can expect Will Stroet and hist Backyard Band and Fred Penner.

For the over-nighters: For those going for the full weekend experience, there are hotel accommodations in town and camping options. (If camping, consider bringing bike and carrier or wagon to get to and from the campgrounds and festival site.)

Tickets: Second round of weekend passes are up for grabs at 10am on Saturday, May 2nd. Kids 12 & under are free. You can buy single day passes now. (Weekend passes are $139 + HST/SC. Individual day passes are Friday $55; Saturday & Sunday, $83 each + HST/SC.) Your ticket gets you admission into the park. So be sure to pack bathing suits for swimming and beach. The second beach on the island has a view of the main stage.

Photo above by Dan Hauser.


Guelph Lake Conservation Area
info@hillsidefestival.ca / 519.763.6396