Star Wars Celebration for Families Who Feel the Force

Moms, dads, grandparents, and godparents: Are you looking for a special occasion to dedicate to some one-on-one bonding time with your kid? Check out our series of hip happenings that will give the two of you secrets to share and a ritual to return to year after year.

It started in the late 1970’s as a summer popcorn flick. It snowballed into a cultural phenomenon when the sequel emerged in 1980. But wait! The unresolved sequel was only the middle act of a trilogy that would change the face of movies and the film business forever. And that was the birth of Star Wars.

As intergalactic geeks grew into the parents of franchise-obsessive super-nerds, the Star Wars galaxy expanded at an exponential rate not seen since the Big Bang, creating a climate that spawned sequels, spin-offs, and a universe of fan fiction.

Which brings us to today: there probably isn’t a story in entertainment upon which you and your child could find more mutual enjoyment. The Star Wars empire crosses cultures, lifestyles, and generations. Book it into hyperdrive to the next Star Wars Celebration (April 13-16, 2017), in a hallowed galaxy far, far away from your average convention. Because George Lucas and Disney don’t mess around.

Preparing for Hyperdrive

Need to save up for some space travel? You’ll have plenty of opportunities to make repairs on the Millennium Falcon before you have to travel in her. Planning a trip to the Star Wars Celebration, an event so epic that it relocates across the globe each year, is an undertaking that requires a long, long time to plan. Events in the United States happen in odd years, with international celebrations taking place in even years.

The universe of Star Wars, contained on, provides links to events like Star Wars Celebration, for which you’ll have to acquire tickets 10-12 months in advance. (Kids five and under don’t require a ticket, and discount prices apply for 6-12 year olds.) This will give you plenty of time to book a hotel, flights, and time off from work. The four-day Celebration usually happens in the summer, so kids can easily attend.

Use all of your lead time to design a bespoke creation for the costume contest (ages 12 to adult). If your child is under 12 they can participate in costume parades, but not the judged contest. At the show, you’ll parade your home-made character costume onto a stage for a thorough judging by the Celebration panel. No store-bought costumes allowed!

Besides for costumes, fans find plenty of other ways to get involved in the Celebration and make it their own. Enter the art show, sponsor a fan table or suggest ideas for panels and events. Get hands-on by creating a prop or a miniature model of an intergalactic item. Remember – you will need to register for all these categories far in advance, so check deadlines when you book your ticket.

In the Cantina

After many months of planning and waiting, Star Wars Celebration is finally here! Once you’re decked out in your costume, it’s time to explore. The exhibition hall features vendors with all types of Star Wars collectables and merchandise.

Head over to the Autograph Hall to get the signatures of your favorite Star Wars celebs. And these aren’t just no-name Ewoks and storm troopers – Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill are frequent attendees.

And of course, the fan tables, art show, and panel discussions will lead you deeper and deeper into the world behind the galaxy. Check out the interactive shows and film screenings of the movies and fan-made homages, too. If you’ve got Star Wars action figures and toys from your own childhood, bring them along for a fun show-and-tell with your child.

If you have the tech skills, you and your child can spend your time pre-convention making a fan film or piece of artwork. But be sure to read up on prior fan materials: you don’t want to accidentally create a knock-off of some other super-fan’s work!

One more tip: bring enough astronaut food to last throughout a day of the convention so that you don’t miss a thing. The place will be packed and taking a pit-stop for lunch could waste precious time. You’ll want to make sure you’re getting the most out of the entire Star Wars experience!

Changing the Galaxy, One Rebel at a Time

After the release of the newest installment in the Star Wars franchise, Star Wars Celebrations will be better than ever. More characters, costumes, technology, and (of course) nostalgia! This is a fan convention to outdo all other fan conventions because Star Wars is a universe with fans that far outnumber those in the normal, geeky “cult convention” world.

Use the ubiquity of Star Wars and its multi-generational appeal to build a deeper connection with your kid this year. Combine the best of the old and the new to show your kid that yes, you’re both from the same universe.

Will you be attending the Star Wars Celebration this year? What are some special events your city has to offer? Share with us!

Tags : celebrations   hip happenings   outings   star wars   bonding