All aspects of the outdoor world are represented at this annual and much-anticipated festival. A series of specialist events, fronted by experts in the field provide audiences, young and old(er) with an intimate view into a diverse range of sports and outdoor pursuits. From top cave-diving explorers including Jason Mallinson who supported the rescue of a group of Thai schoolboys stuck in a flooded cave earlier this year, through to the ever-growing community of wild swimmers seeking out the coldest of waters, Kendal Mountain Festival is THE place for go for any budding young adventurer.
There is entertainment for the whole family, with dedicated sessions including films, workshops and storytelling.
Kendal Mountain Festival, Chief Executive Jacqui Scott says: “Kendal Mountain Festival’s vision is to inspire more people to explore and enjoy the outdoors; something we feel strongly starts with the youngest members of our community.”
The celebrations begin on Thursday 15th November with a grand welcome from festival patron and esteemed mountaineer Sir Chris Bonington, who will lead an Alpine Descent parade of into the town centre accompanied by a live band, cowbells and lots of flag waving. The opening will be finished by 7pm, meaning it is accessible for younger families.
New for 2018 - Kendal Mountain Festival Children’s Literature Programme
Following its inception last year, Kendal Mountain Literature Festival this year extends to include a dedicated programme of events for younger audiences, welcoming authors of some of today’s most popular adventure stories for children to Kendal.
When the Mountain Roared - Author Jess Butterworth reads aloud her book about a young girl determined to protect the wild leopards of the Himalayan mountains from poachers.
The Beetle Boy - Thirteen-year-old Darkus Cuttle’s search for his kidnapped father leads him to discover a mountain of extraordinary beetles, where his obsession begins.
The Stories of Courageous Animals - For as long as there have been wars, animals have been out there saving lives and author David Long reminds us that not all heroes are human.
Great Adventures - Alastair Humphreys, well know for his micro-adventures, proving that adventure comes in all shapes and sizes, shares 20 of the most incredible stories of expeditions undertaken by the most heroic and inspiring adventurers.
Armistice Runners - Lily has lots of worries. She’s struggling to compete in her fell-running races and, worse, she’s losing her gran to Alzheimer’s. But then she discovers her great-great-grandfather’s diaries from the First World War. Could his incredible story of bravery help her reconnect with her gran and even give her the inspiration she needs to push through and win?
The Everest Files - A tale of the greatest adventure, an expedition on Everest.
Each of these titles will be read aloud by the respective authors in interactive sessions.
Adventure on Film
From books to the big screen, at the heart of Kendal Mountain Festival is a carefully curated film programme showcasing the latest outdoor adventures from around the world. The free Family Adventure Film Sessions return with a selection of short films that are sure to inspire the kids to get outside. Expect two hours of wild adventure, with some of the stars of the films and special guests on stage to answer your questions.
For those new to family life, there is a special film screening for parents and babies! Cherry-picking the most exciting and visual films the festival has to offer, this 90-minute session will run on Friday morning, meaning the little ones can enjoy the action too.
Alfred Wainwright’s Mountain Guides session will share how he wrote his guidebooks, this free hour-long session is highly interactive and you will also have the opportunity to create illustrations in his style.
Climbing is quickly gathering momentum and exposure in the mainstream sporting world due to its inclusion in the 2020 Olympic Games. Britain’s most decorated competition climber Shauna Coxsey will share what life is like on the World Cup circuit and her climbing philosophy. She will also reveal how she is preparing to qualify for the combined medal format, which requires climbers to compete across three disciplines of the sport; speed, bouldering, and lead. An inspiring listen for the whole family.
Look out also for six-time Mountain Biking Downhill Champion Rachel Atherton, freestyle kayaker Dane Jackson and whitewater Kayaker Nouria Newman at this year's festival!
Tickets are now on sale. Find out more about what the festival has to offer for families here.