LakeFest: Family & Interactive Events

Visit the Emotional Support Human Sculpture

Sponsored by the Horizon Foundation, this dynamic sculpture encourages individuals to reflect on their emotional well-being through communal sharing and witnessing. Participants choose color coded plaques with words or images, or write personal phrases that express how they are feeling and place them on the “emotional support human” figures. Artist initial creative concept rendering:

These colorful dancing figures and whimsical fabric forest create a welcoming place for guests to pause and embrace the importance of personal and collective mental wellness.

Family Activities

KidzArt – FREE Arts and Crafts

Presented in Partnership with KidzArt.

Saturday, June 11: 12:30– 5:30 p.m.
Sunday, June 12: 12:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Children are invited to explore the visual arts with “artrageously” fun projects led by KidzArt, Howard County’s celebrated advocates of child creativity. This is a good family day option for kids who love to draw, paint, or enjoy using their hands. Parents must remain with children during each activity. Permanent, non-washable materials may be used. Crayons and paper will be available for younger children. On-site registration is required as space is limited

Color the New LakeFest Monster Mural

New to LakeFest this year is the 16’ x 5 ‘life-sized coloring wall for attendees to color with washable markers all weekend long. It brings a little childhood to adults, and gives kids coloring on a scale they've never seen before! And it's a great way to start your summer while interacting with neighbors in a wholesome, warm way. The Monster Mural will be available each day of LakeFest.

Pinot's Palette Lakefront Memory Boards

Paint your LakeFest Memories! People of all-ages can share their thoughts and images of the festival by painting them on a large canvas board. Pinot's Palette will provide all the supplies for this activity.

The collaborative works of art will be on display at the Pinot's Palette Studio following LakeFest weekend. Images of this artwork will also be made available online on the Columbia Festival of the Arts social media channels. Pinot’s Palette will be on-hand each day LakeFest.

DISCOVER THE Wonder of ManneqART

Meet the characters wearing ManneqART costumes and learn more about these living artworks. Discover Hendrik the Dragon (30 feet long and 20 feet high) and Leonora the Dragon (6 feet tall and about 10 feet long - crochet and knitted – she lets little children inside by mutual agreement and can move her head and hands.

Also, on hand will be Gurt – the Galactic Visitor (5 feet tall – fabric). He can move his head and walks about a bit and has lots of wrapped candy in his huge gullet style mouth for the kids. For information about ManneqART, visit

Umbrellas Abound at LakeFest

Check out the decorated golf umbrellas outlining Lake Kittamaqundi near the boat dock! Using golf umbrellas as canvases, community members, including children, teens, families, organizations, and professional artists created 50 colorful works of art inspired by the theme HEALING HEARTS THROUGH MUSIC, DANCE, and WORDS.

The outdoor display will be showcased through the three-day festival. Vote for your favorites! Winners will be announced on the Columbia Festival of the Arts FaceBook page the week following the LakeFest.

Black Cherry Puppet Theater

Friday, June 10: 7:15 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, June 11: 1:45 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. & 4:15 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Sunday, June 12: 12:45 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. & 3:45 p.m. – 4:00 p.m

Throughout the weekend families will have the opportunity to witness the wonder and joy of traditional puppet theater. Since 1980, Baltimore's Black Cherry Puppet Theater, a non-profit association of artists and performers, has presented thousands of performances and workshops for adults and children throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Their theater is housed in Southwest Baltimore right next to the historic Hollins Market. This show is a must for a family day!

What is The Columbia Festival of the Arts?

The Columbia Festival of the Arts is a multi-weekend event that celebrates music, art, and entertainment. Each Festival kicks off in June with Lakefest, a free, three-day outdoor celebration at the Downtown Columbia Lakefront. Lakefest includes live performances, children's creative activities, a juried fine arts and crafts show, a variety of hands-on workshops for all ages and outdoor festival food fare.

The days following LakeFest are comprised of a variety of free and ticketed events, including performances in multiple disciplines, master classes, workshops, fine art exhibitions, literary offerings, film and frequent opportunities to interact directly with artists.