Having all of my kids birthdays in the same month makes it so much easier to give them all the gift of an experience by planning a fun family weekend away. So we chose Christchurch, which for Miss almost-11 meant the chance to turn her Sunday morning TV into reality by being in the What Now studio audience.
What we did
We travelled to Christchurch on Airpoints, booked a cheap motel and signed the kids up to be part of the What Now studio audience. To do this, simply fill in their online form with the date you want, and they’ll get back to you to confirm your place. And better still, it doesn’t cost a thing!
How it went
Having to be at the studio at 7am makes for a pretty early start, even though we were staying very close by. And if you don’t know your way around town, the studio can be a bit hard to find, especially in the dark. But we arrived early enough to follow other people to our destination.
Once there the fun begins. The crew give the kids a briefing and choose a few to take part in various games and activities (you can tick the box on the form to improve your chances of being chosen). Don’t worry if your child isn’t one of the chosen ones, there’s plenty of fun to be had inside and they most certainly won’t feel bored or left out.
At least that’s what they told me. The studio is a kids only zone, but adults are allowed to stay out in reception and watch the show on TV, or leave the kids to it and head away for a nice, quiet brunch (so long as you promise to be back by 9.45 to pick them up again…..)
The kids told me they had a ball – there were toys to play with, activities to do and food to eat. There was dancing. There was yelling. And of course, there was gunging and foaming.
Once the show had ended the kids are encouraged to hang around to meet the show’s hosts, who are amazingly patient, encouraging the kids to tell them jokes (and laughing at them) and happy to have their photos taken with each and every child (and parent!).
What I’d recommend
If you are travelling to Christchurch, make sure you get confirmation of the studio audience date you want before you book any travel or accommodation. Sometimes they have large group bookings which make some dates unavailable.
Make sure you record the show. The kids will want to watch it back later to see if they can see themselves on TV!
What to take
A good book if you are planning on staying on site. The kids will be there until the live show ends at 10am.
A change of clothes for each kid, especially if the weather is a bit colder. They’ll get gunged and foamed – which they’ll love – but they’ll end up wet and a bit chilly once all the fun is over.
What the kids thought
They had a ball, and loved reliving the experience by watching the show on TV. Even though they couldn’t see themselves very much, they had great memories of things that were happening behind the scenes. Three thumbs up!
This experience was chosen and paid for by my family and I without any input from the experience organisers.