22 February 2018

Eight things to do around Canberra this weekend (23–25 Feb)

| Zoe Pleasants
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The Portrait Gallery is celebrating its 20th birthday this weekend. Self portrait by Oliver Levi-Malouf.

With the cooler mornings and apples replacing grapes, the in-season fruit summer is coming to an end; so make the most of it this weekend. It’s the last chance to catch a movie at the Openair Cinema—take a blanket to keep warm—head to Ginninderry’s summerfest, or to Lanyon Estate to enjoy a sunset picnic and chamber music. Of course the big event this weekend is the Royal Canberra Show, but not to be outdone, the Portrait Gallery is turning 20 and celebrating with an over 18s event on Friday night and a family festival on Sunday.

All weekend

Royal Canberra Show

Where: Exhibition Park
When: Friday & Saturday 9:30 am – 10 pm & Sunday 10 am – 4 pm
It’s showtime this weekend. There will be the usual rides, show bags, farm animals and side-show alley; and the more spectacular Holden vs Ford V8 Utes races, freestyle motor-cross demonstrations, motorbike stunt shows and Monster Trucks. Both Friday and Saturday nights will finish with fireworks, Peppa Pig is dropping by, and for the traditionalists, there will be sheep shearing and cow milking demonstrations, and agricultural competitions.

Openair Cinema

Where: Patrick White Lawns
When: Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 6 pm
It is the last weekend to catch a movie at the Openair Cinema. All the Money in the World is playing on Friday night, the Darkest Hour on Saturday night, and the season finishes with Molly’s Game on Sunday night.

Dancing Deities

Where: James O Fairfax Theatre, National Gallery of Australia
When: 6:30 – 7:30 pm
Dancer and choreographer, Padma Menon will perform a mixture of Indian and contemporary western dance to connect with archetypes or deities found in the Gallery’s Asian art collection. In partnership with Moving Archetypes. Tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for members/concession and kids under 16 are free. Book here.

Frock Up Canberra

Where: Griffith Community Hall
When: Friday 6 – 9 pm & Saturday 10 am – 4 pm
Frock Up Canberra is back in the Griffith Community Hall this weekend, filling it with vintage and retro fashion, accessories, jewellery and other collectables. There will be four or five sellers who between them will cover over 150 years of fashion history! Entry is $2, with money raised going to support bringing the Women of Empire: The Homecoming exhibition to the National Film and Sound Archive next year after the success earlier this year of the Women of Empire 1914-1919 exhibition.


After Dark Portrait Party

Where: National Portrait Gallery
When: 8 pm – 1 am
The Portrait Gallery has asked Dionysus and Chenoeh Miller to curate a late night birthday party. It will feature:

  • Party portraits on arrival;
  • A house band playing hits from the classic Australian films The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Muriel’s Wedding and The Sapphires; and Doppel and Dead DJ Joke playing house music and mash-ups;
  • Dance competitions;
  • Free access to the Gallery’s exhibition Starstruck: Australian Movie Portraits between 8 and 9 pm;
  • Screenings of the films Strictly Ballroom and The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert; and
  • Drinks and snacks from the bar all night.

Tickets are $15, this is an over 18s event, book here.

Strings at Sunset

Where: Lanyon Homestead
When: 6 – 8 pm
Lanyon Homestead is offering fine food and music in a beautiful setting this Friday night. Members of the Lanyon Tri—Andrew Lorenz on violin, Robert Harris on viola and Wendy Lorenz on piano, will be joined by Janis Laurs on cello to perform a concert of chamber music in duo, trio and quartet combinations. Tickets include a sparkling beverage and access to the Lanyon Homestead grounds. Gourmet picnic hampers are available to pre-purchase and drinks will be available throughout the evening. Book here.


Ginninderry Summerfest

Where: The Link, 90 Stockdill Drive, Holt
When: 5:30 – 9:15 pm
Ginninderry is hosting another of its seasonal family-friendly festivals this Saturday. This one will celebrate the last vestiges of summer with live music, dance and theatre performances. This festival will feature performances by:

  • Singer, guitarist and songwriter Simone Penkethman;
  • Contemporary folk musician Ben Drysdale;
  • A fan dance troupe from Jazida Productions which dance with fans and silk fan veils and include influences from belly dancing, burlesque, jazz and circus in its performance;
  • Dancers from Play the Dance Agency in Mitchell;
  • The Collective Theatre company which will perform Ordinary Days, a short musical by American composer Adam Gwon;
  • The With One Voice Ginninderry Choir;
  • Ambient musician Matthew Arnaudon; and
  • Band Twice the Spice with its repertoire of songs from the 40s through to today.

Bring a picnic rug and food, or purchase food and drink at the event. Tickets are $5, or $15 for families, kids under 5 are free. All proceeds will go to supporting cancer patients in the ACT. Book here.


Festival of the Face

Where: National Portrait Gallery
When: 11 am – 3 pm
To celebrate its 20th birthday the Portrait Gallery is throwing a party that everyone can attend. Make a birthday card for the Gallery and a party-hat for yourself; help decorate a five-tier cardboard birthday cake; paint water portraits on the courtyard tiles with buckets, mops, brushes and sponges; listen to indie pop band Betty Alto; watch Nomad the Magician; get your face painted; and join in party games such as musical statues, pass the portrait, and the memory game.

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