It can be tough to find ways to keep the entire family busy and having fun, especially when you have young children. Luckily, the greater South Barrington, Illinois, area hosts a full calendar of family-friendly exciting events and unique festivals. Families return again and again to annual events that have something for everyone, from the young to the young at heart. Next time you’re searching for an adventure close to home, consult our list of favorite festivals and events around South Barrington.

Barrington KidFest

Incredible kites being flown in the South Barrington, IL. sky.

Image via Flickr by michael freethy

For a full weekend of family fun, look no further than Barrington KidFest. This annual community event is hosted by the Barrington Park District, Barrington Breakfast Rotary Club, and over 20 different organizations. Each May, dedicated volunteers come together to provide this free outdoor event at beautiful Citizens Park. The organizers hope to encourage kids to get outdoors, adopt healthy habits, and get closer to nature. If your children love to learn and play, they’ll enjoy KidFest.

This event combines the best of two annual activities — the Kite Fly and the Family Nature fest. After registering at KidFest, participants can pick up a free kite to fly in the field. Families are also encouraged to explore the numerous activity stations, which include everything from birdhouse building and tree climbing to obstacle courses and pond exploration. This engaging event is a must-do for kids of all ages.

Barrington Art Festival

Each year, Memorial Day weekend marks the return of the famous Barrington Art Festival. Head to downtown Barrington to browse original artworks from over 100 juried artists. This free event highlights artists from a wide variety of mediums, including painting, photography, fiber, glass, sculpture, and even jewelry.

The festival itself is set among the boutiques, restaurants, and cafes of downtown Barrington. Bring the whole family and enjoy live music, food vendors, and activities for kids. Participants of all ages will enjoy perusing art in the great outdoors. You may even be inspired to create your own art to exhibit at a future festival!

Barrington Mother’s Day 5k

Lace up your shoes and pile the kids into the car. It’s time for the annual Mother’s Day 5k! This annual event in May is popular with runners and walkers of all ages. Participants may sign up for a chip-timed 5k or a non-timed race. Strollers are allowed for walkers and joggers, so feel free to bring your littlest “runners.”

The course winds for 3.1 miles through downtown Barrington, but kids can enjoy a free 100-meter Fun Run of their own. This race is an exhilarating way to celebrate Mother’s Day and a great way to support local charities through your race registration.

Fourth of July Parade

Celebrate summer and kick off your Independence Day celebrations right here at home with the Barrington Fourth of July Parade. This annual event begins on the morning of the Fourth. Each year, organizers choose an exciting theme. Families line the parade route to see dancers, clubs, teams, businesses, neighbors, and musicians celebrate as they make their way down Main Street. After the parade, stick around to watch fireworks light up the night sky over Barrington.

Family Campout

Ready to experience the great outdoors? If you’re an outdoors enthusiast or even a camping novice, you won’t want to miss Barrington’s signature family camping event. This annual event usually takes place in Citizens Park on a weekend evening in June or July. Families from across the community come together to enjoy campfires, games, and sleeping under the stars.

This event is ideal for families with young children since it includes all the fun of camping without the challenges of the wilderness. Participants must provide their own tents and sleeping bags, but the Barrington Park District provides grilled goodies, s’mores, and breakfast.

Children’s Dog Show

If your family includes some cuddly canines, you’ll want to participate in the Barrington Children’s Dog Show. This event has been organized by the Barrington Park District for over 14 years. Each year, on a warm July evening, children from across the area participate in a just-for-fun dog show. Kids and their dogs can vie for prizes in a number of categories, but all kids and dogs receive a “doggie bag” gift to take home. After the show, stick around for an evening of snacks, awards, and other fun.

Barrington’s White House Open House

Have you visited Barrington’s White House yet? This center for cultural and community events is located in the heart of downtown Barrington. Built in the 1890s, the historic venue often serves as a dreamy locale for weddings, concerts, and speakers, but come holiday time, it becomes the perfect place for family fun. Ride the Holiday Trolley to the house to take festive family photos, listen to music, and explore the rich history of the building.

For even more fun, return to Barrington’s White House in January for the Wedding and Bridal Open House. This event offers engaged couples, families, and friends a chance to browse vendors, check out the latest trends, and brainstorm ideas for your best day ever.

Holiday Festival and Tree Lighting Ceremony

Ornaments hanging on a beautifully lit Christmas tree.

Image via Flickr by nick.amoscato

If you live in or near South Barrington, you know that the winter holidays are a very merry time for the community. Each December marks the return of the Annual Holiday Festival, which contains multiple family-friendly events for all ages.

The day-long festival is filled with fun activities, including free Holiday Trolley rides. Past activities have included face painting, a petting zoo, carriage rides, crafts, treats, and magical performances. At night, community members gather for the lighting of the tree, followed by a meet-and-greet with Santa Claus. This unforgettable event is a mainstay on the winter calendar. You needn’t travel far to find high-quality family fun. The South Barrington area is home to dozens of annual festivals and events that attract people of all ages and stages. Whether you’re searching for holiday fun or just want to have a weekend stay-cation, consider enjoying all that our local area has to offer. Be sure to share your experiences with Crème de la Crème! We can’t wait to hear about all the adventures our students, parents, and team members have been having around