This weekend’s highlights include a documentary film festival, a winter festival at the National Portrait Gallery and free ice cream at the Canberra Centre.
1. Wildlife art exhibition at the National Zoo and Aquarium
Yes, that’s a photo of meerkats making art (I hope that paint is non-toxic, buddy!). Head to the National Zoo and Aquarium this weekend to see art made by meerkats, otters and human artists. The exhibition launches this Friday evening (tickets cost $25), but entry to the exhibition is free for zoo visitors all day on Saturday and Sunday. More info.
2. Stronger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival
The Stronger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival presents the latest award-winning documentary films from around the globe. If you fancy yourself a bit of a documentary buff, the films this year look really good (I’m heading to Sherpa tonight, and also hope to see others, like How to change the world, over the weekend). The festival runs from Thursday 30 July to Sunday 2 August at Palace Electric. More info.
3. Winter festival at the National Portrait Gallery
Some would say there’s not much to celebrate about a dreary Canberra winter, but the National Portrait Gallery claims otherwise. Its annual winter festival is on Saturday from 10am to 4pm. There will be live ice sculpture carvings, performances, an epic participatory artwork, a world record attempt at the longest pom pom garland and a Frozen sing-a-long. More info.
4. Free ice cream to celebrate Swedish National Day
Head to the Canberra Centre this Saturday from 11am to 4pm to sample Movenpick ice cream for free. Movenpick is located in front of Michael Hill and Big W in the centre. More info.
5. Canberräng 2015 Dance Festival
Canberräng is Canberra’s annual festival of swing dancing. Over four nights from Thursday 30 July to Sunday 2 August, Canberräng attracts dancers from across Australia and abroad. Along with social swing dancing, Canberräng features local and interstate musicians, performances, balls and more, all held in some of Canberra’s best venues. More info.
6. Night at the Museum: Mystery
At the National Museum of Australia, things aren’t always what they seem after dark. This Friday night from 6pm, come and experience a night of mystery, art, DJs, bars, talks and the unexpected. Wear a mask. Be intrigued. Find the truth. More info.
7. Fundraising dinner for Everest guides in Nepal at The Hungry Buddha
Curtin’s Nepalese restaurant, The Hungry Buddha, celebrates its fourth birthday this July. To mark the occasion, owners Lachhu Thapa and Ben Richardson are hosting a fundraising dinner on Friday 31 July. All revenue collected on this night will go towards supporting porters and guides doing it tough as a result of the recent Nepal earthquakes. More info.
8. Free film screening: Earthlings
Join Films for Change for a free screening of the multi-award winning documentary film, Earthlings, this Saturday from 7.30pm (includes a free supper). Using hidden cameras and never-before-seen footage, Earthlings chronicles the day-to-day practices of the largest industries in the world, all of which rely on animals for profit. More info.
9. The Fabulous Adventure of Cubism – Lecture by Terence Maloon
Between 1908 and 1914, Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque forged a style in common – to the extent that their works became virtually indistinguishable. In the fourth of his six-part lecture series, Terence Maloon will examine the achievements of Picasso and Braque, raising funds for the refurbishment of the Drill Hall Gallery in early 2016. It’s on Sunday 2 August from 3pm at ANU’s Manning Clark Centre. More info.
10. International Blues Music Day at the Harmonie German Club
Canberra Blues Society will be celebrating International Blues Music Day this Saturday 1 August with its first ever mini-festival. There will be non-stop music on two stages at the Harmonie German Club from 2pm to 11.30pm. More info.
11. Space Party, The Feldons and The Kingstons at the Polish Club
After a self-imposed hiatus The Feldons will be returning to the stage in the company of surf punk kings Space Party and ska/reggae aficionados The Kingstons for a night of original music guaranteed to blow away your winter blues. See them on Friday 31 July at the Polish Club. More info.
12. Champagne masterclass at Blackfire
Join champagne expert and presenter Kyla Kirkpatrick this Sunday afternoon for a winter-themed masterclass that explores the richer champagne styles with matched tasters. Kyla will be joined by chef Paolo Milanesi, who will create delicious dishes to accompany the champagne. This two-hour presentation includes five champagnes matched with unique dishes.
13. Fiction writing and history class with Gillian Polack
This one-day class at the ACT Writers Centre is an introduction to history research for the fiction writer. It looks at the difference between the questions fiction writers ask and the questions historians answer and discusses strategies for finding the information you need for your writing. 10am to 4pm on Saturday 1 August. More info.
What are your plans for this weekend? Let us know in the comments below.