Summer fetes and carnivals are always great for outings with the kids, but for something a little different, why not celebrate a little of the nation’s famous eccentricity? We present ten top picks with the whacky factor, for some family fun days out with the kids this summer.
Whacky family fun days: North
Visit the Soapbox Extreme at the Cairngorms National Park on 13 and 14 July. It’s the most prestigious soapbox race in the country and will see teams in gravity-propelled cars, some with sidecars attached, racing at crazy speeds along a two mile course (07805 766 654).
For a spot of good clean fun, head over to the Middle Harbour at Castletown, Isle of Man on 7 July for the World Tin Bath Championship. The heats are alternated with snake races, six people all sitting backwards while paddling in inflated tubes (01624 686 766).
Bird scaring has never been more inventive than at the annual Scarecrow Festival in Kettlewell, in the Yorkshire Dales. From 11-19 August this year, village funds will be raised by charging adults (£1) and children (50p) to follow a trail past a procession of creative scarecrows (01756 761307).
The Oxenhope Straw Race in the Pennines near Keighley on 1 July, sees contestants in a fundraising run along a two mile course, often in fancy dress, carrying a bale of straw. Luckily you don’t need to do the hard work to join in with the fun!
Whacky family fun days: Central
Participants travel from all over the world to participate in the annual World Bogsnorkelling Championship at Llanwrtyd Wells in Powys. Catch this year’s contestants at the competition on 26 and 27 August (01591 610666).
Enjoy the eggs-citing world of racing chooks, with the 2012 World Championship Hen Racing event at Bonsall in Derbyshire. This ‘fast and furious’ competition sees hens racing in heats along a 20m track. The 2012 event will be held on 4 Aug at the village’s Barley Mow inn.
For the past 25 years the World Snail Racing Championships has been held in Congham, Kings Lynn. Will ‘Zoomer’ be back to defend his title? This year’s contestants will be sliming off their starting positions on 21 July at the Village Centre.
Whacky family fun days: South
Along with all the weird and wonderful entries in the annual Portishead Raft Race, on 8 July in North Somerset, there are boats you can eat! Race your own bite-sized creation in the Edible Boats section of the competition.
23 June sees the annual Sumo Run in London’s Battersea Park, when contestants will be sweating it out in sumo suits to run a 5k route, raising funds for a UK-based education charity (020 7702 9627). MyFamilyClub’s Gemma Johnson is an old hand at sumo running…
Don’t try this at home! But on 18 and 19 August do watch mad, winged competitors launch themselves off the end of the platforms over the sea in an attempt to win the Worthing International Birdman competition in West Sussex (01903 203252).
Do check all details ahead of your visit. And please share details of any forthcoming events with the whacky factor in your area! Just add your comments below.
Plus, make sure you check out these other great ideas for family days out with the kids and gain access all the latest special offers and discounts on UK theme parks, free family events at National Parks, cheap zoo tickets, days out in London and loads of great vouchers.