Being a mum to two little girls, it has been so lovely watching them form a close bond with their grandparents. It fills me with such warmth to see my parents and in-laws enjoying activities with the girls, and the kids excitement every time they see them (even if it’s 5 days in a row!). Most grandparents I know are absolutely incredible. They have masses of energy, endless cupboards of Yoyo biscuits, and brilliant story-telling voices to keep the kids calm in the “grot” hour before dinner and bed. BUT, we all know that there are situations (re: The Adelaide Fringe) where some good tips can help a lot!
So here are some handy hints to help any grandparents out there who would like to check out the Adelaide Fringe with Grandkids, see a show or just get out and about during the Fringe.

  1. Visit Glenelg. This is so that even if they decide halfway through a show that they are no longer interested whatsoever (eg. meltdown moment), then the huge new playground on the Glenelg Foreshore is bound to keep them busy, happy and burning energy so you can still enjoy a quick nap when they do later on in the day!
  2. Book a show that is less than one hour long. Concentration with little kids can be tricky so an hour is probably long enough- particularly if it’s not an interactive show. Read on for some shows we suggest.
  3. If you’re taking the grandkids for more than an hour or two, then fill the pram or your handbag with goodies. These could be cruskits, sultanas, sandwiches, strawberries or cheese sticks. Whatever you decide to pack, make sure it’s fairly sugar free to avoid an afternoon agro! Take plenty of water for the kids and, of course, their hats, but don’t leave home without wipes! These are vital for not only cleaning faces, but also for wiping hands when kids have been touching who-knows-what before lunch time.
  4. It’s okay if you don’t book to see anything. Just walk and talk. One of the reasons kids ADORE their grandparents is because they get attention. There’s no homework to be done, no chores to be completed and no new baby to compete with! So just walking around the Garden of Unearthly Delights or through the city streets looking at the free entertainment is a great way to spend a morning. Top it off with a playground visit and a train/bus/tram ride home and the kids will be in HEAVEN.
  5. Cushion your Fringe activities with quieter moments. Some kids (and adults!) can find the busy crowds and activities of the Fringe quite overwhelming and exhausting. It’s worth ensuring you have some quiet time after a show so the kids can let their little brains wind down. Take a book and find a shady spot to read together over a milkshake, or head to the cool air conditioning of the South Australian Museum and wander the halls together.

Many of the shows aimed at children involve circus tricks, clowns, music and comedy. But there are some others that also have themes behind them, aimed at older school-aged kids. Although we haven’t seen all of these shows ourselves, some of the shows we suggest seeing are: