Who are the VYFWBP?

We are a friendly community group, run by parents, who meet every Thursday morning in West Bank Park, York. Whatever the weather, school hols included, we spend a couple of hours in the woods and meadows of the Park, doing nature games and crafts, building or making things with materials we find, telling stories and singing songs.

We are open to all - with a contribution of £1 a family (to cover basic equipment) - so if you want to join us, see you on Thursday at 10am at the statue of Queen Victoria, at the top of the Rose Walk. (Bring something simple to share at snack time.)

For more information contact Elly at: westbankparkkids@gmail.com

Thursday, 7 January 2016

How to have fun in the wet and cold - A Young Friends Guide

Happy New Year! 2016 has got off to a wet and cold start but the young friends are still out and about and having fun. How???? Well at today's session I think we nailed it.

Our den in the woods

How to have FUN in the Wet and Cold
  • Top to toe waterproofs plus wellies for children and parents
  • Lots of layers of warm clothes
  • Thermos flasks - hot tea and coffee for parents, warm juice for little 'uns 
  • Keep 'em warm - Thermos can even be used for hot water for a small hot water bottle to warm up cold little hands
  • Jump about! Song time is for warming up.
  • Make the most of the weather - today we had such fun washing socks in the rain and pegging them out. We also made a super cool den to keep us dry and had our snack in there
  • Keep it short - if it is really wet and cold we will keep the sessions short so we can all get home and warm up before anyone gets fed up

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Wintery Days

The cold days are here and it seems to have done nothing but rain the last few weeks. That hasn't put off our Young Friends who have been out in the park every week and keeping dry under the story tree.

On the 5th of November we had our fire bowl out and loved watching popcorn pop in the pan while we all waved sparklers. 

Last week we began the festive season by making slippers to leave out for St Nick. And guess what? He filled them with goodies while we sang songs!

Join us next week for a magical Christmas Tree hunt and snowflake pancakes.

If you are still looking for presents for your little explorer the Young Friends highly recommend Collins Gem nature books.

Thursday, 29 October 2015

Fungus Humongous

Today our brave Young Friends came out in the pouring rain for a speical mushroom hunt in the woods. As well as a trail of paper mushrooms we found some amazing real ones growing. Armed with pocket guides the little guys worked hard to identify the fungus.

The most humongous find was a mushroom growning out of the story tree. There was a fairy door in the stalk and inside were presents for Vicki and Albie! Vicki has done such a craking job of running this group and the young friends are very grateful for all the fun Thursdays we've had with Vicki.

Thursday, 8 October 2015

Appletastic times and Yoga in the woods

It's all go for the young friends this autumn as we embrace the changing of the seasons. Today we had our own Apple Day to celebrate this years apple harvest.  Who knew how much fun we could have rolling apples down the story tree? We also made beautiful apple stars, dunked them in birdseed and hung them in the trees for our feathered friends. Our apple snack time went down a treat with apple pie, apple cakes, apple sauce and, well, apples.

Last week we had a special treat when Laura Potts, a York Iyengar Yoga teacher, lead a yoga session for the children. We all joined in moving our limbs and roaring like lions.

We have lots more excitement in store for you over the coming months. Our fire pit will be coming out for bonfire night (day) and christmas, there will be mushroom hunts, bird feeding, bug hotel building and lots and lots more!

Sunday, 30 August 2015

The sun shone, the eggs stayed on the spoons and everyone had a lovely time in our beautiful park at the Young Friends annual Summer Party! Huge thanks - again - to Alex from Parties of Distinction and to all the people who helped put up our newly decorated tent, ran the crafts, brought tasty treats and helped pack everything away afterwards!
This will be my last blog post as Jen is taking over - along with Elly Ross who will be organising the group from now on. Contact Elly westbankparkkids@gmail.com if you would like to get involved with the group, help run a session or even if you simply have some lovely pics you would like to share on this page.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Super furry animals took over the park this week with the wonderful Alex and her huge pile of costumes. Despite near tropical temperatures, no one wanted to disrobe at the end, with one small teddy bear (sorry, Grizzly Bear) last seen padding off to the swings still in full bear garb....

The summer fair was also a roaring success with around £700 in donations and profit - some of which will go towards the Big Pond Pot. For those who don't know, we're putting the last of our Young Friends kitty towards renovating this at the end of the year - making it bigger, waterproof at last and more child-friendly (no more slippery sides!). If you happen to know any mini digger drivers, suppliers of pond liner or would like to help us out when we start work - please get in touch!

Friday, 29 May 2015

Sunshine and showers, butterflies and flowers: a lovely morning knee deep (and shoulder deep for some) in the meadows and on the Rose Walk with Jen's mask making session, glitter and of course, our weekly check on the tadpoles.
Please put Sunday June 14th - 12pm onwards - in your diaries. Meet by the Rose Walk for picnic, play and gentle knitting and crochet in preparation for the big Yarn Bomb at the Fair on June 28th. No skill needed as we can teach you the basics, the more experienced can help us cover the trees in wool art! We are also looking for teddies and soft toys who may need new homes for our Fair tombola in aid of the Friends of West Bank Park please contact Lucy King: lucyking.king1@googlemail.com if you have any you can donate. Lastly, we REALLY need some volunteers for the Young Friends craft tent on June 28th from 1pm to 4pm. Even half an hour will be fantastic and you will have great fun - promise! Please contact Jen a s a p on the e mail above (top right).

Our beloved Queen Victoria

Our beloved Queen Victoria
We sometimes bow to her before we set off into the woods!