Thursday 20 June 2019

A Raving Good Time! Happyface Family Rave Review

On Sunday 9th June, my family and I went out for an afternoon with a difference! Imagine the scene - club classics from the 90s being played by a nightclub DJ, colourful flashing lights and glowsticks shining brightly, a dancefloor filled with revelers wearing UV facepaints and neon clubwear, everyone with their hands up in the air...

No, we didn't accidentally step back in time to our raving days, although it certainly felt like it! In fact, we introduced our two young children (almost 6 and 3 1/2) to the nostalgia of a family rave - Happyface Family Rave to be exact! This was a rave with a difference - a Sunday afternoon dance party for adults and children to enjoy together!

The event was imagined and brought to life by local man Nick Madeley and his team of dedicated organisers. You can read our preview post to find out about the background to this launch event, but don't forget to pop back here to find out how it went on the day!

In preparation for the family rave, we bought some themed T-Shirts to wear! My hubby is not one for dressing up so we kept them quite tame! The kids chose a skeleton and a unicorn doing the "Dab" - a popoular dance move bought to my son's attention by the game Fortnight! Hubby twinned with our son and I picked a slightly more nostalgic design (think, "big fish, little fish, cardboard box!")... but forgot to get a photo of me in it! (As is often the way for us mums/chief photo-takers, hey?!)

Ready to rave in the queue!
The children were beyond excited on the morning of the rave, although they weren't really sure what to expect! So when we rocked up to be greeted in the queue by the North Staffs Stormtroopers, the kids were totally won over and raring to go!

Before we knew it, we were transported into the retro world of old skool music, lights, bubbles and smoke machines! Face painting was first on the agenda, and both children picked designs with UV paint which glowed brilliantly on the dance floor!

We loved how the designs glowed under the UV lights!
It took a while for the kids to work out what a rave actually was when we took them to make some shapes on the dance floor! And if I'm totally honest, they were a little overwhelmed with the whole nightclub kind of scene! Balloons and bubbles helped them to relax, and seeing all the other little children with their glowsticks and face paints made them feel like they belonged! It was lovely to be able to have a dance together!

When the kids needed a dance break, we took them to the well-stocked craft tables to the side of the dance floor. There were colouring sheets, hats to decorate and crafts to make which entertained them for quite a while, while we danced behind them!

Fully stocked craft tables were a fab idea!
Hubby was happy to find the bar and just as happy to find the sweets and candyfloss stall! There was such a variety to choose from! We chose candyfloss for the littlies, but almost lost my daughter behind it! It was huge! Nothing like a full on sugar rush to propel them through to the end!

The candyfloss was huge!
We bumped into the Stormtroopers inside the venue too, where they were happy to pose for photos as they collected money for the Happyface Rave's chosen local charity, The Peter Pan Centre. A proportion of the ticket sales and other money made at the event will be donated to this wonderful charity, which provides high quality care, support and education to children with special needs, aged from birth to 5 years old.

The Stormtroopers helped raise money for charity.
The Happyface Family Rave ran for 2 hours during the early afternoon. This was the perfect amount of time for our tiny ravers' initiation! Unfortunately, the only dampener on the day was a slightly whingey 5 year old who had a little meltdown over not being allowed to buy glowstick bunny ears! But such is life as a parent, and the great thing about the family rave is just that - it was full of families and their children, many of whom were facing their own sugar induced, overwhelmed mini tantrums! All part and parcel of the afternoon and certainly not a reason not to take them to a family rave again!

We really did have great fun, "getting down with the kids" and educating them in 90's rave culture! I would recommend taking your children to one, and reliving your youth. It was a bright, smiley, nostalgic trip down memory lane, with something for every member of the family to enjoy. And yes, maybe the parents did enjoy it more than the kids - but hey, there's time to change this! When's the next one?!

I asked Nick how he thought the event went, and whether there were any plans in the pipeline for more Happyface Family Raves -

"The event was everything we wanted and more. It was a true festival atmosphere with so much going on! It was so great to see everyone having such a good time; with parents being able to relive those dance floor memories and make some new ones with their children at the same time.

Although, I’m not sure who had more fun, the adults or the kids?! There are so many highlights to take away from the event but watching the children react to the confetti, balloons and bubbles really stands out!

The positive reaction we’ve had from everyone has been overwhelming and in true rave style, it’s been so good to see on social media how friends, bloggers and people who hadn’t met before got a chance to catch up and meet at the event itself. Much like how raves used to bring people together back in the day.

With immense pride we can also reveal that with donations from the event, all of the stall holders and of course money given from the attendees, the total amount raised for our charity the Peter Pan Centre is £380.51! So thank you to every single one of you!!

All that leaves us to say is thank you once again for your support and yes, we are currently discussing options for another event toward the end of the year. So please keep following us on Facebook @HappyfaceFamilyRave for more info and updates on future events. Thanks. Stay happy!

Nick Madeley
Happyface Family Rave"

Have you ever been to an event like this? Did your children enjoy it as much as you did? Why not leave me a comment below, I'd love to hear your experiences! If you enjoyed our post, why not follow us on:
Finding joy in the little things: Regular visitors to our blog will know that I like to end my posts with something that made me smile, a little thing that brought me joy or happiness. Life is made up of lots of magical moments and sometimes in the chaos of the day, we need a reminder to be grateful for them.

I'm grateful for these two every day...even with the strops! 
For my eldest, it really was the little things he appreciated the most. Finding and "saving" a red balloon from a little lad who managed to single-handedly pop almost every balloon on the dance floor before it was full of ravers was one! He wouldn't let this balloon go and it's still at home, wilting away slowly... but "safe"in his possession! He also really loved having his face painted and seeing it glow in the videos I took on my phone for him!

My youngest was just happy to have a candyfloss as big as her head! She loved the colouring and making table and enjoyed popping the bubbles on the dance floor. The little things in life really are the best when you're 5 and 3!

Click me to pin!
*** We were gifted two children's tickets to this event, and we purchased our own adult tickets. All thoughts and opinions are my own, unless otherwise stated. ***


  1. This looks like great fun. My kids would love it!

  2. I’ve seen these raves advertised and they look so fun! I can’t wait until my 11 month old is old enough to attend because I think we’ll both love it! I love your t-shirts!

  3. Fab post! We had a great time raving and it was lovely to see you there too!! xxx

  4. Sounds like great fun. Great experience for the kids


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