5 Things for Families: St. Patrick’s Day, African dance, a carnival, and a shadow play

This weekend is going to make your family so smart and cultured, you’re going to have to invest in some new hats. What with your embiggened brains and all.

1. The Secret of Kells

There aren’t a ton of St. Patrick’s Day-ish films out there, turns out, but this one is very, very Irish. It’ll do! And it’s delightful! Because it’s a bit of a hidden gem, here’s the Letterboxd description in case you’re not familiar with this animated feature from 2009:

“Adventure awaits 12 year old Brendan who must fight Vikings and a serpent god to find a crystal and complete the legendary Book of Kells. In order to finish Brother Aiden’s book, Brendan must overcome his deepest fears on a secret quest that will take him beyond the abbey walls and into the enchanted forest where dangerous mythical creatures hide. Will Brendan succeed in his quest?”

Annnnd here’s the trailer:

See? Good stuff.

  • Wednesday, March 16th • 6:30 PM
  • Westover Hills Library, 1408 Westover Hill Boulevard
  • Free!

2. Ngoma African Dance Company

Ngoma African Dance Company (founded by 1995 University of Richmond graduate Markita Boney) will take the stage at Camp Concert Hall for a performance that stays true to the meaning behind the company’s name: “drum and dance.” In addition to dancing and drumming, you can also expect lots of chanting, singing, and even acrobatics.

  • Friday, March 18th • 7:30 PM
  • Camp Concert Hall, University of Richmond
  • $8 ($7 for UR students)

3. Church Hill Irish Festival

Bands! Bounce houses! Beneficiaries up to yer bum! It’s the Church Hill Irish Festival Way! Top ‘o the hill to ya!

  • Saturday, March 19th • 10:00 AM – 7:00 PM and Sunday, March 20th • 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • 25th and E. Broad Streets, Church Hill
  • $5 suggested donation for admission

4. Union Bank & Trust Lollipops: Carnival of Animals

Richmond Symphony and the School of Richmond Ballet team up to bring you and your little ones Saint-Saëns’s beloved Carnival of the Animals. Each movement promises to capture the essence of a particular animal. I really hope the essence of a baby hippo is involved.

Wait, what am I saying? A baby hippo’s cuteness is beyond expression; it’s not fair to set your expectations so high. I apologize.

  • Saturday, March 19th • 11:00 AM (pre-concert festival begins at 10:00 AM)
  • Carpenter Theatre at Dominion Arts Center, 600 E. Grace Street
  • $12-$17

5. Balinese Shadow Play

Gusti Sudarta and members of Gamelan Raga Kusuma present an afternoon of traditional and innovative Balinese Shadow Puppetry1! And since kids can’t not love shadow puppets, later that day your children will present and afternoon of traditional and innovative (and probably less good but super adorable) Balinese Shadow Puppetry, too!

  • Sunday, March 20th • 3:00 PM
  • Carole Weinstein International Center, University of Richmond
  • Free!

  1. Or wayang
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Valerie Catrow

Valerie Catrow is editor of RVAFamily, mother to a mop-topped first grader, and always really excited to go to bed.

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