Utica to host first KidFest

By: Kara Szymanski | Shelby - Utica News | Published August 6, 2018

 A child feeds an Upland Hills Farm rooster. Upland Hills Farm will be bringing a petting zoo to the KidFest in Utica Aug. 12.

A child feeds an Upland Hills Farm rooster. Upland Hills Farm will be bringing a petting zoo to the KidFest in Utica Aug. 12.

Photo provided by Upland Hills Farm


UTICA — The city of Utica will host its first KidFest this weekend for children to enjoy.

The KidFest is a new event with free admission that will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. Aug. 12 in Grant Park, 8243 Hahn St. in Utica.

The festival will feature four bounce houses, two water obstacles, a petting zoo, food trucks, face painting, Home Depot youth kits, Dave & Buster’s and more.

Upland Hills Farm will be bringing a petting zoo for children to meet, feed and pet animals. There will be cows, calves, lambs, goats, chickens, ducks and a rabbit at the petting zoo.

Upland Hills Farm is a family farm from Oxford that provides recreational and educational activities for children to interact with animals and nature.

Kristi Brady, the office business manager from Upland Hills Farm, recommends that festivalgoers visit with the farmers, chat about their farm and enjoy their farm animals. The farm animals will be at the event for all four hours.

Brady said the farmers look forward to watching others enjoy their animals and answering questions.

“The Upland Hills Farm farmers look forward to attending the Utica kids festival this year,” said Brady.

The Macomb County Sherriff’s Office will bring trained horses from the police horse unit to meet the children. The Sheriff’s Office will also bring a K-9 unit for a demonstration.

“Our office will have three of our Mounted Division deputies in attendance at this event, and one of our K-9s will do a short demonstration for the kids, stated Capt. David Kennedy, of the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office, in an email.

The Utica police will also be coming for a visit, and a fire truck will be there as well.

The city of Utica plans to have a variety of food trucks that will focus on kid-friendly foods, but the trucks were not set as of last week.

Home Depot will be providing 300 Home Depot youth kits for children who attend.

The city of Utica organized KidFest in consideration of having a special event just for children to enjoy. Mayor Thom Dionne reached out to each attraction and invited them to the event.

“We wanted to have something that is at no cost to the residents and that was kid-friendly and focus on kids’ safety,” said Dionne in a phone call.

The kids festival will take place the day after the annual Utica Gasoline Alley car show Aug. 11, which will take place in downtown Utica.

“It’s (the KidFest) a great family fun time that is easy on the pocketbook,” stated Utica Deputy Clerk Nancy Carter in an email. “The KidFest food is going to be geared towards youngsters and families.”

Carter said attendees should check out the military and first responder equipment that will be at the event.

For more information on the festival, call the city of Utica at (586) 739-1600.