Random act of amusement for all ages

Jul 30, 2014
Last month’s “ZenFest” proved Bridget Matros’ theory that Affordable All Ages Art Happenings are an idea whose time has come.

Belfast — Waterfall Arts will host “Funny Ha Ha!”, the second in a series of weird and wondrous events creator Bridget Matros calls AAAAH — for Affordable All Ages Art Happenings — Friday, Aug. 8, from 7 to 10 p.m. These multi-sensory, immersive party/events are designed to have something for everyone so parents can genuinely enjoy themselves, as grown-ups, while younger ones are engaged in activities that hold their attention — thus avoiding meltdowns and tantrums by either end of the age spectrum.

A follow-up to last month’s well-attended and much-loved “ZenFest,” “Funny Ha Ha!” promises to be a gigglefest for all ages. Planned so far are a Comedy Open Mic for kids to try out their most hilarious jokes; ridiculous face-offs a la “The Late Show” (for adults); goopy, gross, and strange sensory phenomena; artwork made to inspire big dopey smiles; an epic Don’t Laugh challenge; old school hijinks and funny business; a Dad dance-off, pin the tail on your Mom; and consensual kid-on-adult face painting.

Tickets, sold at the door, are $5, $3 for kids younger than 13 and free for crawlers. For the sake of chaos control, a ration of one adult per three kids in required.

Since arriving in Waldo County two years ago, Matros has brought creative experiences to kids through camps, classes and family workshops at Waterfall Arts, as well as teaching art at Cornerspring Montessori School. A producer of memorable amusements for the masses while in Boston for 10 years, Matros said that AAAAH has two aims: to bring artsy events to people who otherwise wouldn’t go because it’s too expensive, too awkward, too boring or too late; and to help parents stay sane.

“There are too many cool people who can’t participate in all of these interesting cultural goings-on because they have kids. Meanwhile, their kids are doing all of these fun, creative things adults wish they could get in on,” she said.

The third event, a communal potluck involving a first-course of play dough food, is slated for Friday, Aug. 22. Matros said one of the best parts is getting the community involved; donations of all kinds are welcome, as is participation by local businesses and creative individuals. Brambles, The Green Store and Heavenly Bean Bag Chairs and Earthwalk Wellness helped make “ZenFest” the blissed-out comfort zone it was meant to be.

For more information, contact Matros at bmatros@gmail.com. To RSVP and learn more, visit the event’s Facebook page.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.

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