As always, Rotorua is making sure there is no need for parents and guardians to fear these April school holidays, with a myriad of events and activities on offer to keep the kids entertained.
There is once again plenty going on in the Rotorua Library School Holiday programme.
Just some of the activities from April 19 to 30 are Lego sessions, scratch art, coding sessions, paint a pot, making movie magic, busy board games and autumn bunting.
Kylie Holmes, Rotorua Library youth and early learning team lead, said there was a mix of interesting events and something to appeal to everyone.
"There are technology events, music and movement for pre-schoolers, and fun crafts and games for school-aged children."
Some events may have a cost and require booking. Go to the library's website for more information.
"We are again running a reading programme with $500 in Whitcoulls vouchers to be given to 10 participants.
"If your children read for a total of six hours they will go into the draw. If whānau have money owing on their accounts, we will take $2 off for every 15 minutes they read."
These holidays the library will again have busy bags available for families to take away and complete.
"There are five activities that people can collect from the library and complete at home."
She encouraged children and their families to come along as Te Aka Mauri was a safe and comfortable space for families to meet and enjoy time together.
"We all enjoy seeing families in the library. It's great to see that they enjoy the space, activities and events together."
There will also be the chance to celebrate some of our local talent as young singers put into practise what they've learnt at a singers programme.
The Rotorua Accelerando Programme is being held at Shambles Theatre for a week, with 30 Rotorua high school students enrolled to take part.
Each day the students will receive singing tuition with both individual and masterclasses, lessons in stagecraft and performance and at the end of the week celebrate with concerts to showcase their work.
One of the masterclasses will be with Pene Pati from Sol3 Mio.
The ticketed concerts will be open to the public on Saturday, April 24, with one at 5pm and the other at 7pm. Tickets are available at eventbrite.co.nz.
Co-ordinator Liz Carrington said there was great value in bringing young people to do similar interests together.
She said we were fortunate to be able to have programmes during these Covid times, and that it provided the opportunity for young people to pursue further education in music and their own pathway.
"It's great for us to be able to use the Shambles Theatre in a really community-focused way and give children the experience of performing on a stage in an auditorium.
"I'm looking forward to seeing the concert and the development of the young people over the week."
Children can also get their creative juices flowing at The Arts Village.
Arts Village director Mary-Beth Acres said there would be free All-Ages Art-Making which would run from 10am to 2pm on Saturday, April 24 and Saturday, May 1.
Children of all ages are invited to come together on these dates to make art in activities led by local artist Jane Rotherham.
The activities will include painting and drawing, collage, movie poster, Photo-StandIn, and rock painting.
This is a drop-in session in Studio Two where children can attend without booking. Parents/guardians must accompany children.
"All instruction and materials are supplied at tables each focused on a different activity, so there is lots for everyone."
She said the Holiday Arts Academy was also running, which was two four-day blocks for ages 8 to 12 years.
It was booking up fast, and parents must book at The Arts Village website. It costs $120 per block, per child.
Mary-Beth said one of the best things about creativity was being messy, going off-plan, and allowing children space to discover, innovate, play, and learn.
"Children are growing up in a very complex time at the moment and being creative also encourages them to express themselves, which I think is really important for us all right now."
She said at home during the holidays, you didn't need fancy gear or supplies to enjoy being creative together.
"You can make a scavenger hunt in your house by coming up with simple clues, or gather together your recycling and some tape and make funky robots to paint/decorate.
"There are so many simple ways to enjoy getting artistic at home that are low-pressure and make really fun memories together."
There will also be an abundance of creativity at the Lakes Performing Arts Centre these school holidays.
On April 26, families can enjoy a free concert by the talented youth performers that make up the Virtuoso Strings Orchestra.
Virtuoso Strings Orchestra is a youth and community orchestra based in Porirua, Wellington. About 20 kids are travelling to Rotorua to perform one show only.
The concert will offer a mix of music from classical to modern to suit all ages.
Founder and programme director Dr Liz Sneyd said the performers loved entertaining audiences and that the orchestra was all about making music inclusive.
"We are a bit different from anything you've ever seen before. People who don't normally go to classical concerts will still enjoy it and have fun, and classical lovers will love it too.
"Come and listen to some amazing, talented individuals playing some of the most beautiful music, along with some Māori and Pacific tunes."
Studio manager Helene Nicholson said there would be a dance holiday programme on Wednesday and Thursday both weeks.
On the first day young people go along to experience different dance genres, and on the second day were grouped together to create their own choreography with costumes, hair and makeup design. It is for ages 5 to 12 and there are limited spaces.
On Thursday, April 22 there will also be a music workshop and jamming session for ages 9 and up to help students develop their creative expression and understand music composition.
Register by calling or emailing the centre.
In the school holidays lead-up, Sport Bay of Plenty's regional play systems lead Steph Reichardt, was encouraging parents, grandparents and caregivers to allow their children to play and to get involved.
"There is definitely no age restriction on play. In fact, intergenerational play can be the most memorable, having grandad play in the sandpit, or nan teach knucklebones would be a great experience for all kids.
"As we age, play tends to get more structured and more rule-bound, let's let the kids make the rules and be open to having fun.
She said play provided a great opportunity for kids to take risks and to learn to communicate how they were feeling.
"It is a wonderful way to distract from the pressures of work and school and it's something we can do individually or with others.
"It is important in building children's resilience and fundamental movement skills."
Motion Entertainment is also holding The Juggernaut these school holidays.
Children have all of the school holidays to work away at defeating the Juggernaut by completing the fab five entertainments and then go in to win a prize.
- Saturday, April 17 - Sunday, May 2: Rotorua Library School Holiday Programme. Some events may have a cost and require booking.
- Thursday, April 22: Multicultural Shared Lunch. 12pm to 1.30pm. Rotorua Library. Free.
- Friday, April 23: ACE (Auckland Chamber Ensemble) Brass. 7.30pm to 9.30pm. Rotorua Baptist Church, 100 Malfroy Rd. Tickets: adults $35, students 18-25 years $15, school-age children free if accompanied by ticket holder. Tickets available from 7pm at the venue.
- Friday, April 23 - Saturday, April 24: The Howard Morrison Quartet. Friday 2pm to 3.20pm and 7pm to 9.15pm. Saturday 7pm to 9.15pm. Energy Events Centre. Range of ticket options at www.ticketmaster.co.nz.
- Saturday, April 24: Art By Bike. 10am to 11am. Te Manawa. Free.
- Saturday, April 24: Rotorua Accelerando Programme concerts. 5pm and 7pm. Shambles Theatre. Tickets available at eventbrite.co.nz.
- Saturday, April 24: All-Ages Art-Making. 10am to 2pm. The Arts Village. Free.
- Saturday, April 24: Pete's Dragon Outdoor Movie Night. 5.45pm to 7.30pm. Waimangu Volcanic Valley, Waimanu Rd. Book at www.waimangu.co.nz.
- Saturday, April 24: Hunt for the Wilderpeople Outdoor Movie Night. 8pm to 10pm. Waimangu Volcanic Valley, Waimanu Rd. Book at www.waimangu.co.nz.
- Sunday, April 25: Anzac Dawn Service. 5.45am to 6.30am. Ohinemutu. Free.
- Sunday, April 25: Anzac Civic Memorial Service. 9am to 10.30am. Energy Events Centre. Free.
- Monday, April 26: Virtuoso Strings Orchestra. 3pm to 4.30pm. Energy Events Centre. Free.
- Saturday, May 1: All-Ages Art-Making. 10am to 2pm. The Arts Village. Free.