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10 Best Family Friendly Music Festivals

Jun 23, 2015

Music is the universal language that people of ALL ages can understand. It connects us. Pop, Electronic, Rock, Country, Jazz, Indie, Alternative, Rap, Rhythm and Blues.. whatever the music - it will get you and your family into the groove. 

These day's festivals are recognizing the opportunity to create an environment that is safe and fun for everyone. With festivals such as Lightning in a Bottle,  Austin City Limits & Lollapolooza there are even entire kid friendly sections with-in the festival grounds geared 100% towards providing a magical and creative music forward experience. Are you interested in a hands on experience? The Kidz Adventure Zone & Teen Scene at Lightning in a bottle might be just the ticket, or do you want to Rock -Out with School Of Rock? Austin Kiddie Limits at Austin City Limits has you covered. How about  Kidzapalooza? Of course you will find that experience at Lollapolooza. 

Below we have found Kidzworld's Ten Best Family Friendly Music Festivals, so while you are making plans for your next summer vacation be sure to check out these festivals that have alot more going on than just great music. 

1. Austin City Limits

  • Where/When: Zilker Park, Austin Texas | October (Two Weekends) 
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: Foo Fighters, Of Monsters and Men, the Weeknd, Florence and the Machine
  • Great for the Family because: In addition to all the great music, and we mean ALL - There are 8 Stages, 130 bands an art market & a mini festival for the kids. You can find interactive art, an opportunity to jam with School of Rock, Hip-Hop lessons and so much more. PLUS Under 10's get in for free. 
  • Accommodation: There is no camping within Zilker Part, so be sure to check out the surrounding area hotels. 
  • Do: Pack a lawn chairs, your blanket, a small back pack and your camera. 
  • Don't: Pack your Selfie Stick! 

Kimberly and BrooklynKimberly and BrooklynCourtesy of Austin City Limits

2. Lightning in a Bottle

  • Where/When: Bradley, Cal. | Memorial Day Weekend
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: Flume, SBTRKT, Odesa, RL Grimes, Griz. 
  • Great for the Family because: Not only all that great music but be sure to check out DR. SOLAR’S TRAVELING MEDICINE SHOW: Dr Solar offers unique family friendly entertainment from the stage of his solar powered thespian’s gypsy wagon. Featuring magic, mentalism, ventriloquism, animal productions, old-fashioned comedy, a little bit of flim-flam and a whole lot of pizzazz. DRAWING BIG: For the second year running, Drawing Big features DJ sets for the kids played by top artists while the kids & teens live paint. EAAK! 2 Go: An eco-interactive environment for kids & teens where they can discover and learn the value of creating fun and educational art projects from recycled materials.
  • Accommodation: Camping on site. 
  • Do: Bring in your refillable water bottles 
  • Don't: Bring in your cat. 

Even the smallest of the small love LIBEven the smallest of the small love LIBCourtesy of Lightning in a Bottle

Hands on at Lightning in a BottleHands on at Lightning in a BottleCourtesy of Lightning in a Bottle

3. Joshua Tree Music & Art Festival

  • Where/When: Joshua Tree National Park, Cal. | October 
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: The Polish Ambassador, Benyoro, Black Pistol Fire, Con Brio
  • Great for the Family because: The Desert is Freedom, Music is Power, & Community is Crucial. JT Boasts Kidzville, which has a Family Camp, Yoga & Healing, Positive Vibrations Stations, Live Painting, Random Acts of Mindfulness, Astronomy Theater &  Music lovers of all ages enjoy this phenomenal live music in an intimate setting and magical surroundings of the park. 
  • Accommodation: Multi-day camp-out 
  • Do: Bring your refillable water bottle
  • Don't: Bring your Pets or any Glass

Chill setting a place to relax and enjoy the music. Chill setting a place to relax and enjoy the music. Courtesy of Joshua Tree Music

4. Bonnaroo Music & Art Festival

  • Where/When: Manchester, Tenn. |  June 
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: Billy Joel, Mumford & Sons, 
Deadmau5, Kendrick Lamar, Florence + The Machine
  • Great for the Family because: Despite the rumors of this being a rowdy festival focused on drinking and partying, Bonnaroo actually has made quite a splash in the Family Festival Scene. They have made another kind of splash too with Splash - a - Roo watersides. In addition to the great music; there are interactive games, a kidz jam section, and recycled art projects to take part in. 
  • Accommodation: Camping, Old-School Festival Style. Large open areas, multiple tents. This is a great opportunity to get to know some new people! 
  • Do: Be mindful of your footprint 
  • Don't: Bring any glass though, there is a strict no glass policy. 

Not your run of the mill family friendly farmNot your run of the mill family friendly farmCourtesy of Bonnaroo Music

5.  Lollapalooza

  • Where/When: Grant Park, Chicago | August 
  • Line Up Sneak Peek:  Paul McCartney, Metallica, Florence + the Machine, Sam Smith, Bassnectar, The Weeknd, alt-J, Alabama Shakes, Of Monsters and Men.
  • Great for the Family because: Lollapalooza is for music fans of all ages! Kidzapalooza, presented by Lifeway Kefir, is a festival within a festival for parents who want to teach their kids what it’s like to experience one of the most special events in the world. Located in its own enclosed area of Grant Park, Kidzapalooza opens at 11AM and closes at 5PM each day of the Fest, and offers parents and kids the opportunity to catch family-friendly music on its own stage plus various activities including creating their own music, arts & crafts and much more.
  • Accommodation: Hotels, there are a few affiliate hotels so you can buy packages, wristband, accommodation and transportation. BUT you might have to sell a kidney to get one. 
  • Do: Bring all the usual festival things, blankets, chairs, camera's SEALED water bottles
  • Don't: Leave anything glass or breakable, as well this is another NO Selfie Stick weekend


Welcome to LollapoloozaWelcome to LollapoloozaCourtesy of Lollapolooza

Dad's of KiddiepolloozaDad's of KiddiepolloozaCourtesy of Welcome to Lollapolooza

6. Kaaboo Music Festival 

  • Where/When: Del Mar, Cal. | June 
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: No Doubt, The Killers, Zac Brown Band, Foster the People
  • Great for the Family because: This is the ultimate "mix - perience" for all ages and is held just outside of San Diego. There is a ton of great live music, comedians', art and as this is green festival it's CLEAN. There are Zipline passes to make line minimal. Love all that but still want more? How about massages for the whole family, henna tattoo's, haircut's (okay?) and golfing and surfing simulators. 
  • Accommodation: Hotels or RV
  • Do: Bring beach towels or blankets, your back pack & empty water bottles
  • Don't: Bring your pet, umbrellas or any outside food. 

First time for Kaaboo Music Festival First time for Kaaboo Music Festival Courtesy of FilmMagic/Getty Images

7. SunFest

  • Where/When:  West Palm Beach, Fla. | April / May
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: Fall Out Boy, Lenny Kravitz, Paramore, Hozier and many more
  • Great for the Family because: Enjoy the wind in your hair and the smell of saltwater while dancing to your favorite music at SunFest along the Inter coastal Waterway in West Palm Beach, Florida. SunFest also features a fine arts and crafts show, contests and fireworks. Kids & Teens can play and enjoy their own music festival at the Youth Park during SunFest. Plus, younger kids get special treatment -- the festival opens early for little ones on Fridays!  
  • Accommodation: Hotels
  • Do: Collapsible lawn chairs and blankets are allowed into the festival.
  • Don't: Pets, Tents, Glass

Beat the Heat at SunFestBeat the Heat at SunFestCourtesy of SunFest

8. Outside Lands

  • Where/When: San Francisco, Golden Gate Park
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: Mumford & Sons, The Black Keys, Elton John, G-Eazy, Milky Chance, Billy Idol. 
  • Great for the Family because: The Outside Lands Music and Art's Festival is all about FUN. With Live painting and performances by Dr. Flotsams Hellbrew Review, it's fun for the whole family. PLUS there is an element of education too, Outside Lands is proud to present Eco Lands the green festival experience. 
  • Accommodation: Hotels
  • Do: Bring your sense of adventure. 
  • Don't: Bring your Pets, Glass Bottles or Tents. 

Join in for this small gathering of friendsJoin in for this small gathering of friendsCourtesy of Outside Lands

9. Squamish Music Festival

  • Where/When: Squamish BC, Canada. | Auguest
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: Sam Smith, Drake, Of Monsters and Men, Mumford and Sons
  • Great for the Family because: As this is the only non USA event on the list it makes for a particularly great family vacation. Only 2 hours across the Washington State boarder, you are in one of the most beautiful destinations. Mountains, Rivers, Lakes. This is a great camping destination or you can stay in near by, Whistler Village or the city of Vancouver. This is one of the most pure music festivals with lots of room for your blankets & friends. 
  • Accommodation: On site campgrounds. 
  • Do: Bring your blankets, camera, and a light sweater as the nights can get chilly
  • Don't: Bring a tent, a selfie stick or any outside food or beverages. 

#GrowingUPGoals#GrowingUPGoalsCourtesy of Squamish Music Festival

Stop and Rest Stop and Rest Courtesy of Squamish Music Festival

10. New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival 

  • Where/When: - New Orleans | April/May (Two Weekends) 
  • Line Up Sneak Peek: Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga, Keith Urban, The Who, John Legend, Ed Sheeran, No Doubt, Pit Bull, Alison Krauss
  • Great for the Family because: Not only a massive assortment, 12 stages in-fact of music playing, there is also a food festival, the Congo Square African Market, There are also parades, a Native American Pow-wow, and the opportunity to hear Mr. Okra; the last of the great New Orleans Singing Street Vendors. 
  • Accommodation: Hotels w/ Shuttles to the venue grounds
  • Do: Blankets, Chairs, Water bottles (un-opened) 
  • Don't: Bring in any glass, your pet or anything inflatable. 

How about adding a little soul to your summer? How about adding a little soul to your summer? Courtesy of New Orleans Jazz

Have Your Say

Have you been to a festival before? Have you ever wanted to go? What do you think the best part would be? Tell us what you think in the comments below.