30 January 2020

Nine things to do around Canberra this weekend (31 Jan–2 Feb)

| Zoe Pleasants
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Growing Up Optional

Growing Up Optional on display at CMAG. Photo: RLDI Photography.

International women’s cricket is being played all weekend at Manuka Oval, Dami Im is headlining the National Museum’s By the Water concert on Saturday Night, the 11th annual SoundOut Festival is on, and the Canberra Museum and Gallery’s Growing Up Optional pop culture exhibition is continuing to delight. It is also a weekend of endings and beginnings. It is the last weekend to catch the NMA’s Dreamworks Animation: The Exhibition, which is closing this Sunday. It is the final round of the Women’s Basketball League regular season and the UC Capitals are playing Adelaide Lightning on Saturday. And on Sunday the National Library is celebrating the last day of the school holidays with its Little Day Out festival. Meanwhile, this weekend will see the opening round of the Super Rugby season with the Brumbies playing the Queensland Reds on Friday night.

All weekend

CommBank T20 INTL Tri-Series Women’s Cricket

Where: Manuka Oval
When: Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 1 pm
Australia, England and India will be fighting it out in this international cricket tri-series. But there is much more than a trophy at stake, with all three teams among the favourites to take out the World Cup title in March, this tournament is an opportunity for them to refine their teams and tactics. The first round of the tournament will be played at Manuka Oval and features the following matches:

  • Friday—India v England
  • Saturday—Australia v England
  • Sunday—Australia v India

All matches start at 2:10 pm with the gates opening at 1:00 pm. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for concession and kids under 15 are free for each match, or a weekend pass is $37.50 for adults and $25 for concessions. Combine great cricket and a great day out with your family. Book here.

American Express Openair Cinema

Where: Patrick White Lawns
When: Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 6 pm
This weekend at the American Express Openair Cinema see the whodunnit with the star-studded cast, Knives Out, on Friday night; sing along to Frozen II on Saturday night and see Jojo Rabbit on Sunday night. Gates open at 6 pm and the films start at around 8:30 pm. Bring your own picnic and picnic rug, or buy food and drinks from the on-site vendors. If you’re after a more luxurious experience try the American Express or Prime Video Lounges where you’ll get a lounger, blanket, glass of wine and additional food and drink delivered to your spot! General admission tickets are $20 or $17 for concessions (discounted if tickets are bought with an AMEX card). Entry to the Prime Video Lounge is $42 (less if bought with an AMEX card) and entry to the American Express Lounge is $35 (but can only be purchased with an AMEX card). Check out the cinema’s Facebook page for updates about cancellations due to smoke and other weather events.

Growing Up Optional

Where: Canberra Museum and Gallery
When: Friday & Saturday 10 am–5 pm
The Canberra Museum and Gallery is currently showing an exhibition of things that Canberra pop culture collector Anneka Losik loves, appropriately called Growing Up Optional. From LEGO to board games, figurines to soft toys, pop vinyl and brickheadz, Anneka’s collection features new and vintage curiosities that define the decades. Amassed over 20 years, Anneka has brought together items from the world of books, movies, TV shows, comics and games. She scours comic shops, game stores, toy shops and the internet to find new bits and pieces that urge us to nerd out and reminisce.

SoundOut Festival

Where: Drill Hall Gallery, ANU
When: Saturday & Sunday 1–5 pm & 7–11:30 pm
SoundOut is an annual international festival of free improvisation, free jazz and experimental music. In its 11th year, this festival will feature artists from Austria, Canada, Germany and the UK, along with local artists. Check out the program here. Tickets for each 4-hour session are $40 for adults and $30 for concession. Tickets for the whole festival are $120 for adults and $80 for concession. Book here or buy on the door.


Brumbies vs Reds

Where: GIO Stadium
When: From 5:15 pm, the game starts at 7:15 pm
The Brumbies are playing the Queensland Reds this Friday in the Super Rugby season opener at the GIO Stadium. Tickets from $12, book here.


By the Water Concert with Dami Im

Where: National Museum of Australia, Amphitheatre
When: 7–9 pm
Dami Im is headlining the National Museum’s By The Water concert this year. Dami is Eurovision royalty with her performance of Sound of Silence achieving Australia’s highest score at the contest so far. She first rose to fame winning The X Factor and has since released four studio albums. Country singer Caitlyn Shadbolt will be supporting Dami. Enjoy great music with lakeside views, pack a picnic or pre-order one – check out available picnic packs here. Tickets are $55 for adults, $45 for concession, $40 for Museum Friends, $130 for a family (2 adults & 2 kids), free for Rural Fire Service members. Book here. For $100 you can purchase a VIP experience that includes early entry, refreshments including drinks from Lerida Wines and an opportunity to meet Dami!

UC Capitals vs Adelaide Lightning

Where: National Convention Centre
When: From 5 pm
It is the last round of the Women’s Basketball League regular season this weekend and the UC Capitals take on Adelaide Lightning. Both teams are in the top four and will go through to the finals but the Caps would have a home-ground advantage in the semi-final against the Boomers if they beat Adelaide Lightning. So there is plenty to play for. Tickets from $10, book here.


Wendy Sharpe – In Conversation

Where: National Portrait Gallery
When: 1:30–2:30 pm
Artist Wendy Sharpe will be discussing her interest in painting people at the Portrait Gallery on Sunday afternoon. She currently has an evocative portrait of Australian pianist and composer Elana Kats-Chernin in the Gallery’s Eye to Eye exhibition, which closes in two weeks.

Little Day Out

Where: National Library of Australia
When: 10:00 am–2:00 pm
The National Library is celebrating the last day of the school holidays with a Little Day Out. Learn how to draw Old Tom or create your own characters with artist and author Leigh Hobbs. Meet Australian authors, illustrators and storytellers, including Dub Leffler, Jack Heath, Shelly Unwin, Cate Whittle, Stephanie Owen Reeder, Tania McCartney and Harry Laing. Snuggle up and listen to a story in the library’s story nook, attend a writing or drawing workshop and write your own story or create your own illustrations. And if you haven’t been already, explore the library’s exhibition Story Time: Australian Children’s Literature, which closes in two weeks. Check out the program of activities here.

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