Young fans watching an Oregon Bach Festival performance. Photo by Athena Delene.

Animals, Planets And The ‘King Of Instruments’ 

OBF offers free and family-friendly events throughout the festival

Classical music can be an intimidating maze for kids. Just watch their eyes glaze when you name famous and long-dead composers like Johann Sebastian Bach, Georg Telemann, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart or Gustav Holst. Why are they important? Fortunately, the Oregon Bach Festival annually throws a lifeline for kids, and this year OBF has three relaxing and family-friendly events on successive Saturdays. Carnival of the Animals, with the OBF Modern Orchestra, gets things rolling June 29. The concert is a humorous musical story about 14 fun animals, including an elegant swan serenading to playful kangaroo capers. Before the concert, the Hult Center lobby will be busy with face painting, a photo booth and snacks with arts and crafts from Adventure! Children’s Museum and the Museum of Natural and Cultural History. Kids can explore space July 6 with Planets, Myths and Music at the Eugene Science Center and embark on a self-guided scavenger hunt as well as experience a planetarium show. The “King of Instruments” — the pipe organ — gets its turn to shine July 13 with Pipes and Pedals. OrgelKids USA, a nonprofit based in Corvallis and whose goal is to make the organ accessible to children, will be at Eugene Saturday Market with its organ-building kits, and kids can learn about the history and structure of the pipe organ.

Carnival of the Animals is 10 am Saturday, June 29, at the Hult Center. Planets, Myths and Music is 10 am Saturday, July 6, at the Eugene Science Center, 2300 Leo Harris Parkway. Pipes and Pedals is 10 am to 4 pm Saturday, July 13, at the Eugene Saturday Market, East 8th Avenue and Willamette Street. All events are FREE.