Whew! The biggest event of the summer for the Education department here is over. Amanda (my co-intern) and I were in charge of planning and executing the Millennium Park Family Fun Festival. It was a week-long event, filled with crafts, history, and Chicago-themed everything. Most of the summer was spent preparing for this, and now we are recovering!
The event itself was a success–we had about 400 people visit the tent every day throughout the week. The visitors were from all over Chicago (and the world). Many people happened to be visiting the park and just stopped by our tent.
We had three different crafts for the children to make–one for each day, and all of them on the final day. Amanda is far more crafty than I am, so she did most of the designing. I worked hard to make sure that there were connections to the city, the museum, and history so that the crafts had substance. We chose a transportation theme for the week. Our crafts were Union Station Train Engines, Lake Shore Drive Puppets, and Lake Michigan Sailboats. We also had small activities to accompany each craft as well.
We also did a collaborative project–a huge paper chain, made out of strips that said “Chicago Is_______.” Adults and children wrote words and phrases about what the city meant to them, and it was a good way to have some discussions about the city’s history and reputation. Many of the strips were in wobbly children’s handwriting, others were inspiring and touching, and some were even in foreign languages. This collaborative craft was one of the biggest successes of the week!