Free Shakespeare for Kids

We are deeply grateful for the generous underwriters, sustaining sponsors, and media partners who make Free Shakespeare for Kids possible. Thank you so much!

Learn more about general sponsorship opportunities here. Interested in sponsoring our Free Shakespeare for Kids program? Read the details here. Or contact Laura Malkus at 410-244-8571, ext. 107.



Chesapeake Shakespeare Company In-The-Ruins is a family-friendly theater experience in Howard County’s Patapsco Female Institute Historic Park.  We believe in instilling the love of Shakespeare and live theatre early in life. It’s our mission to make it fun.

Children’s tickets are FREE:  Two children (ages 18 and under) may accompany each paying adult. Advance reservations are recommended to ensure seats for everybody, as these events often sell out.  Click here to purchase tickets, call the box office at 410-244-8570 or send an email to 


Our next production here will be Love’s Labour’s Lost (June 28-July 28 2019). Performances are scheduled Thursday through Saturday nights; gates will open 90 minutes before the start of each performance for picnicking! SUNDAY is always Family Fun Day, with pre-show activities for the children; gates open 4:30pm, performance starts at 6pm.  Location: Patapsco Female Institute Historic Park, 3691 Sarah’s Lane, Ellicott City, MD 21043.  For directions, parking details, etc., click here to read FAQs. 


Bring a picnic. Also recommended: Casual attire and sturdy shoes for park playtime. Optional: blanket, sunhat, bottled water, sunscreen, bug spray.  We provide folding chairs. No pets, please.

How much fun can your kids have?

Crafts – costume dress-up – lawn games – face-painting – storytelling –  maypole

  • Pre-show entertainment includes live music.
  • The center section of your show program, The Kids’ Pages, has  coloring pages, word games and puzzles related to Shakespeare.
  • Check out the costume rack by the entrance gate:  It’s a total selfie zone.
  • Face-painting and crafts take place at the picnic tables.MaypoleWeb1
  • On Sundays, an actor will tell the story of the play before the performance,  to help children understand what they’ll be seeing. 
  • Explore the ruins of the Patapsco Female Institute, a 19th Century girls’ school and historic landmark.
  • During the play, children like to congregate in the Blanket Zone by the stage. It’s down front, where you can see them.