Who loved the 90s? Or even better who loved a good rave back in the day? All that partying stopped since the kids came along? Well problem solved – the company Big fish Little Fish gives you the opportunity to get that rave feeling but in a family orientated environment. I mean obviously you cant sink numerous pints and leave for a cheeky takeaway at an ungodly hour. But its a safe rave that allows adults to dance along with their kids to some top Djs and have a really good time, with decent food and drinks for sale.
I was invited along with my little people to the newest venue right here in Sunderlands newest place to eat and party “The Bonded Warehouse“. The rave itself was located in the function room upstairs and offered a vast space with the outside space in use too. Previous raves have been held at other locations in the city that were on two levels, which made it difficult to keep the vibe the same across all levels. But being at the Bonded Warehouse has solved this problem. Access for buggies and wheelchairs is good thanks to the lift, but buggies needed to stay outside of the main room. Not always ideal if you have teeny tiny ones (slinging perhaps?) but otherwise there was a member of staff out on the door to keep an eye on your abandoned buggys.
As part of the Big Fish Little Fish events it offers the kids various things to do other than to just dance. For the youngest ravers there is a low key soft play area with a couple of ball pools, activity gym, cushioned matting and age appropriate toys to play with. For the older kids, other than the dancefloor, there were tents and tunnels to one area but the thing Zach was more interested in was the craft table. Where plenty of things were set up so the kids could draw, cut, stick, squish playdough into someone elses flooring and also make glow stick glasses!
They also had a lovely face painter – Flutter shine faces – who were creating some fab ultra violet/glow in the dark designs. Zach demanded a shark design and then a flower tattoo to his leg….what can I say? Gender neutral in this house! It was £3.50 for facepainting.
At the front of the function room the stage is set with the DJ stood playing some decent tuneage and a gathering of both big and little people dancing. Some busting all kinds of shapes and others merely toe tapping – both acceptable here. Zach went for the run round like a crazy kiddo type dance move and Mammy took to swaying with Eli when one of her favourite tunes came on! There were balloons aplenty for the kids to play with, the occasional confetti canon and every so often the bubble machine would come on which gave the kids further ammunition to run round like crazies.
Right at the end of the event the staff gather at dancefloor with a parachute so the kids can have a boogie underneath that too. Nice touch.
We did have a couple of thoughts about the event. One was the light, I personally would have liked the room to have been just that little bit darker so it felt more like a rave, and with the use of more lighting effects – im thinking disco ball!! but understand this may not be to every families cup of tea.
The missus also thought that they should of been more seating. I dont mind standing but my missus likes to sit, especially when you have a baby. Standing with with a baby in your arms can get tiring pretty quickly. There was a couple of benches to one side which were full most of the time and the seating around the craft table. It appeared that a few people took to sitting at the craft table for seating which made it difficult to get little ones in at times. We also didnt eat at the event even though there was Fat Hippo Burgers on offering (my favourite too) as there was no tables to sit at?
But overall we all had a good time and enjoyed a few hours together in a different environment to our usual. I would definitely book to go to the next one and would recommend anyone to give it a try!
You can buy your tickets HERE and see all the events happening this year, both in the UK and abroad, BFLF is a world wide family rave
Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.