7 March 2024

Things to do in Canberra this week (1 - 7 March)

| Claire Sams
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front of a Ferrari

The two-day Festival of Speed brings a different kind of prancing horse to Thoroughbred Park. Photos: James Coleman.

From stunning light shows on our national institutions to a weekend of unbridled horsepower, there’s plenty to keep you busy this week. Let’s get into it!

Multiple days

Old Parliament House, Enlighten Festival

The Enlighten Festival is set to light up Canberra’s buildings (and Canberran’s hearts) for another year. Photo: Thomas Lucraft.

Enlighten Festival

When: 1 to 11 March, events at various times
Where:Various locations across Canberra; see the program for the full list
Most events have free entry, though some have a cost or require a booking; see program.

This year’s Enlighten Festival will see events held at the National Library and other institutions across the National Triangle, Canberra’s city centre and many other locations – and no shortage of colour and creativity! Illuminations, interactive activities, live music performances, film and family-friendly fun will keep everyone entertained from 1 to 11 March.

Sports cars I can't afford

Vroom vroom! Project Supercars and the Canberra Racing Club have joined forces for the Canberra Festival of Speed. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

Festival of Speed Canberra

When: 2 March, 4 pm to 10 pm and 3 March, 9 am to 4 pm
Where: Thoroughbred Park, 1 Randwick Road, Lyneham
Cost: Tickets between $18.40 and $362.10 are available via Oztix.

More than 200 cars will be on display at this festival dedicated to all things cars! The Ferrari F40 and Formula 1 Renault will appear alongside high-end luxury, supercar, exotic and motorsport vehicles entered by the public. There will also be food vendors, live music performances and displays from various companies, and some demonstrations on a show circuit.

READ MORE A different kind of horsepower is on track at Thoroughbred Park

A banner for a film festival

Be transported with French films as the annual festival comes to Canberra. Photo: Alliance Française de Canberra/Facebook.

Alliance Française French Film Festival 2024

When: 7 March to 2 April, specific films at set times
Where: Palace Electric Cinema, 2 Phillip Law Street, Canberra
Cost: Tickets for each film are available via the cinema’s website when you select the desired film.

Grab the popcorn and be transported to France as this annual film festival begins its stay in Canberra. In 2024, the 35th edition of the festival includes 41 movies – four world premieres, two debut movies, seven selected at the Cannes Film Festival and 10 nominated in the César Awards. The line-up includes The Three Musketeers: D’Artagnan and other historical dramas and stories from modern-day France.

READ MORE C’est incroyable! Stellar lineup marks 35 years of Alliance Française French Film Festival

A poster for the event

Take a seat and listen to the story of Sister Angelica in this opera from Italian composer Giacomo Puccini. Image: National Opera.

Suor Angelica

When: 7 March and 10 March, various times
Where: Albert Hall, 100 Commonwealth Avenue, Yarralumla
Cost: Tickets cost between $10 and $55 and are available via Trybooking.

Suor Angelica is a one-act opera from Italian composer Giacomo Puccini. It tells the story of Sister Angelica, a noblewoman who became a nun after giving birth to an illegitimate son. When she hears her son has died, she is desperate to reunite with him – no matter the cost. Canberra locals Emma Mauch and Sonia Anfiloff will be taking to the stage under the guidance of director Rachel Hogan, musical director Ella Luhtasaari and a cast of local opera singers accompanied by Canberra Sinfonia under the baton of Leonard Weiss. The performance will be in Italian and English scene notes will be provided.

READ MORE National Opera’s first 2024 production delivers a heart-wrenching, tragically timeless tale


WCS community hub open day event poster

Woden Community Service’s Woden Community Hub is opening its doors on Friday (1 March). Image: Woden Community Service.

Woden Community Hub Open Day

When: 1 March, 12 pm to 4 pm
Where: Woden Community Hub, Office Suite 003 (near Commonwealth Bank), Westfield Woden, Keltie Street, Phillip
Cost: Free entry.

Woden Community Hub is opening the doors and inviting the public to come and explore all their services at the inaugural Woden Community Service open day! A year ago, Woden Community Service began a partnership with Westfield, opening a community space called the Woden Community Hub in the Westfield Woden shopping centre – and you can see what they have been working on since then.


a man holding a ukulele against their face

The Ukulele Man is coming to Tuggeranong! Photo: The Ukulele Man.

The Ukulele Man: The story of George Formby!

When: 2 March, 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Where: Tuggeranong Arts Centre, 137 Reed Street, Greenway
Cost: Tickets cost between $32 and $38 and are available via the Arts Centre’s website.

This award-winning show from the 2023 Sydney Fringe Festival is the story of the English wartime entertainer and ukulele legend George Formby. He worked as a stable boy and jockey before moving into a decades-long musical, variety and pantomime career after the Second World War. Drawing from George’s life, this show brings his career to Canberra.

A poster for the event

Lanyon Homestead will be transformed in this full-day event dedicated to sustainability. Image: ACT Historic Places/Facebook.

Harvest Day Out 2024

When: 2 March, 10 am to 4 pm
Where: Lanyon Homestead, Tharwa Drive, Tharwa
Cost: Entry to the overall event by donation; some events require bookings via Humanitix.

The Harvest Day Out is a celebration of Lanyon Homestead’s autumn kitchen garden and sustainable food and growing practices. The day will feature a range of workshops, demonstrations, talks and tours, as well as market stalls and live music performances. There will also be face painting, food trucks and ice cream, among other family-friendly activities. Entry is by donation, although some workshops and demonstrations need registration.

Still from The Proposition showing two men outside

The Proposition (2005; directed by John Hillcoat) will be screened at the NFSA. Photo: Supplied.

Telling National Stories panel and film showings

When: 2 March, events from 1 pm until late
Where: Arc Cinema, National Film and Sound Archive of Australia, McCoy Circuit, Acton
Cost: Tickets for the films cost between $16 and $20, and entry to the panel is free, though bookings are necessary; bookings and tickets are available on the Film and Sound Archive’s website.

Part of the National Film and Sound Archive’s Unreliable Histories series, these panel and film showings are looking at how Australian movies create an understanding of our national history – and what that means when modern audiences look back at the past. The panel discussion will start at 1 pm and feature National Museum of Australia curator Margo Neale, Australian National University Professor Frank Bongiorno and filmmaker Lawrence Johnston. The discussion will then be followed by a double feature screening of Botany Bay (1952) and Wills and Burke (1985) before a screening of John Hillcoat’s The Proposition (2005).


Tennis ACT is excited to host the Canberra Girls Get Active Day this year on 3 March. Photo: Tennis ACT.

Canberra Girls Get Active Day

When: Sunday, 3 March 2024 from 10 am to 12 pm
Where: 1 Riggall Place, Lyneham
Cost: Free, various activities available.

Canberra’s largest community sports event returns this Sunday, with Tennis ACT teaming up with sports across the capital to host a free community event aimed at inspiring, energising and empowering young women to be more active. Women and girls will have the opportunity to try out a number of sports onsite along with various other activities. No experience is needed, simply turn up and get ready to have some fun. The first 200 children aged 12 or under through the gates will receive a free tennis racquet (these go super quick, so be sure to arrive early if you are interested in this). The event is open to everyone and in the event of wet weather, this event will be moved indoors at the Canberra Tennis Centre.

market shoppers at nursery stall

Browse through the wide range of stallholders and get yourself something nice – all while supporting a good cause! Photo: Hartley Hall Markets.

Hartley Hall Markets

When: 3 March, 10 am to 3 pm
Where: Hall Showground, Victoria Street, Hall
Cost: Gold coin donation on entry.

The Hartley Hall Markets, organised by Hartley Lifecare, is one of Australia’s largest home-made and home-grown goods markets, with proceeds supporting Hartley Lifecare’s disability programs and services.


Women listening to an all-female panel talk

Celebrate women and girls this International Women’s Day. Photo: Region.

International Women’s Day 2024

When: 7 March, 12 pm to 4 pm
Where: Poachers Pantry, 431 Nanima Rd, Springrange, Yass Valley Shire
Cost: Tickets start at $90 (plus booking fee) and are available via Humanitix.

International Women’s Day celebrates the work and value of women and girls across the world. To mark it in 2024, Regional Development Australia-Southern Inland will host an event focused on women in the construction and trades industry. This year’s theme – #InspireInclusion – aims to highlight the contributions of women working in traditionally male-dominated industries, with a panel discussion led by keynote speaker Gillian Geraghty, who is Chief Projects Officer, Major Projects with the ACT Government.

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