Top 10 Reasons to Grab the Kids for Family Fun at COAST

October 4, 2018
by Miranda Iglesias

Top 10 Reasons to Grab the Kids for Family Fun at COAST

Santa Monica attracts families of all ages to its vibrant, picturesque beachfront - making it the ultimate family-friendly destination. Parents seeking an original, “edu-taining” Sunday activity for their kids should attend COAST – Santa Monica’s free open streets event on Sunday, Oct. 7. The event features high energy performances, large-scale art installations and interactive experiences along a two-mile, car-free route.  The event is a surefire way to stimulate curiosity and encourage imagination.

Here are 10 reasons to grab your kids and head to Downtown Santa Monica for your next family outing at COAST.

  1. Introduce mobility, sustainability and art to your kids in a unique, visual and memorable way.
    Kids will never forget Jana Cruder and Matthew LaPenta’s oversized plastic water bottle installation, Natural Plasticity, on Main Street or traveling through Santa Monica streets without seeing a car on the road. These engaging activities can initiate discussions about mobility, sustainability and art, and how they impact the neighborhood around them.

  2. Encourage your children to show off their tricycles or ride their bicycles on safe, car-free streets.
    Don’t worry about cars! COAST is the only event that enables the general public to ride outside the bike lane on two miles of Santa Monica’s iconic roads. Accompany your children as they ride their favorite tricycle or bicycle along the scenic Santa Monica Beach and Pier. They can also participate in Santa Monica Spoke’s Kids Bike Rodeo and decorate their helmets. You can also Primp Your Ride at a workshop with Nicole White.

  3. Or, they can simply walk, skate, or jump rope along the route.
    It doesn’t matter what the physical activity is as long as your family is moving and your hearts are pumping. Walking offers great health benefits, as well as skating and jump roping. Your family can learn how to skateboard with an instructor, skate the course or participate in the best trick contest led by The SKATESIDE, or learn how to double-dutch with JumpLA and other fun interactive activities. 

  4. Experience art with a message with your kids.
    Be a part of something larger than yourself alongside your kids and thousands of other community members at one of the interactive art installations. Contribute your thumbprint at the communal thumbprint mural Changing Patterns led by artist Peter Tigler, or join hundreds of people in real time at aerial artist John Quigley’s live human installation, Come Clean. To participate in this installation, be sure to arrive between 11:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Ocean Avenue.

  5. Help kids showcase their inner artist or inventor through arts and crafts activities.
    Inside Camera Obscura Art Lab, your family will be inspired to create art while listening to the music of Desert Magic during artist-in-residence, Lisa Diane Wedgeworth’s Music to Draw To workshop. Have you or your children ever wondered how you would get around town if there were no cars? You can create your own fantastical forms of transportation with recycled materials just outside the Camera Obscura Art Lab with the Creatures on the Move! kinetic installation with artist, Molly Allis. Additionally, there are many arts and crafts activities that your children can participate in throughout the route and art installations to inspire them, including Aphidoidea’s Pinwheel Oasis and SkyArtSainz’s Protected Bike Lane.

  6. Show your family how to utilize their critical thinking and observation skills during one of the scavenger hunts.
    Whether your family partakes in the scavenger hunts hosted by Santa Monica Conservancy, Santa Monica Farmers Market, or the Where’s #ArtSamo?, your children will utilize their critical thinking and observational skills to complete every challenge.

  7. Dance, sing, and listen to artist’s music.
    The Ocean Avenue Stage is jampacked with multi-genre performances by talented musicians, including DJ Venice Beats, Moonsville Collective, and Blue Breeze Band. A variety of performers will enliven the streets throughout the route, such as The Cat and Longstreet with Roberto Catalano, post-klezmer indie band Mostly Kosher, piano player John Steven Morgan, and award-winning acapella quartet The Alley Cats. Additionally, Active Santa Monica has planned some groovy workout classes, which are designed to get your family dancing.

  8. Expose your kids to the cultural diversity that makes up our city.
    Art, music, and dance powerfully educate and showcase the cultures of our global community, and COAST has a diverse line-up of global artists scheduled to perform. The all-female mariachi Las Colibrí, the Afro-Brazilian dancers and drummers of Vivir Brasil, Koshin Taiko’s Japanese drumming, El Santo Golpe’s Afro-Latin fusion music, and Aparna Sindhoor’s Bollywood dance party will inspire and expose your kids to the beautiful cultures living in Santa Monica and beyond.

  9. Educate your kids about where their food comes from.
    Santa Monica Community Garden on Main Street has a variety of activities planned to educate children about the importance of local food as well as several fun arts and crafts activities. This is the perfect opportunity to speak to your children about supporting local businesses and farmers, and inspire interest in growing your own fruits and vegetables at home!

  10. Empower your children to reflect on how they can incorporate mobility, sustainability, and art into your family’s everyday life.
    After your family enjoys the immersive art, music, food offerings, and games at COAST’s “After Party” at Santa Monica Pier, take time to ask your children questions about their experience at COAST. Find out how they would like your family to incorporate mobility, sustainability, and art into your family’s everyday life and their ideas on how to accomplish those goals.

Metro Presents COAST: The City of Santa Monica’s Open Streets Event takes place on Sunday, Oct. 7 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Don’t forget to share your photos on Instagram with #COASTSaMo during and after the event. For more information about this free event, visit

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