What's On in Summer in Canberra/Gungahlin
If you’re spending summer in Canberra or Gungahlin, you’ll be pleased to know Canberra has a full program of events to keep you entertained and occupied. Whether you’re visiting or staying local over the holiday period, check out these events – which run the gamut from cultural to athletic – and be sure to bookmark them in your calendar.
DESIGN Canberra is a major design festival offering more than 100 events, talks, tours, markets, and exhibitions. Visitors will get a chance to see artist studios and open homes, and be able to experience close up the beauty of architectural styles ranging from the modernist to the contemporary and sustainable. Now in its fourth year, DESIGN Canberra will run from early to late November.
When: 7-26 Nov 2017
For more: http://designcanberrafestival.com.au/
The Radical Reels Film Festival
Whether you’re a film buff or an adrenaline junkie, you’re sure to enjoy the Radical Reels Film Festival. Held over a few days from 24 to 26 November, the line-up films will feature heart-stopping action with incredible stunts, wild rides, and steep jumps. You’ll have a chance to catch the best of the action-packed shorts selected from more than 300 entries from this year’s prestigious Banff Mountain Festival.
When: 24-26 Nov 2017
For more: www.radicalreels.com.au
Sri Lanka Festival
Experience the beauty of Sri Lankan culture this summer at the annual Sri Lanka Festival. Held at the Sri Lanka High Commission in November, the festival offers cultural performances, kids activities, art, and cuisine of this South Asian island nation. This year, the National Dance Troupe of Sri Lanka will be attending, and the festival’s inaugural event last year saw 3,000 attendees.
When: 25 Nov 2017
For more: http://www.slhcaust.org/
Jackie Fairweather Memorial Triathlon
The Jackie Fairweather Memorial Triathlon will be held in honour of the world champion triathlete in recognition of her contribution to sport. Competitors will join in a 750 metre swim, 20 kilometre cycle, followed by a 5 kilometre run. The triathlon will be held on 26 November in Parkes, and you can find out more details about watching or competing on the official website.
When: 26 Nov 2017
A Very Canberra Comedy Festival Christmas 2018
This year’s Canberra Comedy Festival will feature well-known comedy superstars for a festive period filled with laughs. The two-hour show includes some of the top acts from the 2018 festival line-up, so comedy fans won’t need to wait until March 2018 to see some top comedy acts. The festival will be held on 2 December at Llewellyn Hall in William Herbert Place.
When: 2 Dec 2017
For more: www.canberracomedyfestival.com.au
Handmade Christmas Market December 2017
The Handmade Market is an award-winning event bringing together more than 260 artists, designers, stylists, gourmets, and craftspeople from across Australia. Showcasing beautiful handmade works, the event gives visitors the opportunity to discover well-priced unique designs by Australian craftspeople. You can chat to the original maker about their furniture, sculptures, ceramics, toys, clothing, jewelry, and gourmet goodies. This quarterly event is due to run in December 2017, so it’s the perfect time to drop by and discover some art and craft gems.
When: 8-10 Dec 2017
For more: www.handmadecanberra.com.au
New Year’s Eve
It seems like just yesterday we were bringing in 2017, but right around the corner is New Year’s Eve. New Year’s Eve in the city delivers a fantastic line-up of entertainment including live concerts and fireworks. There are two main areas for the evening – Civic Square which hosts an all-ages concert, and Garema Place which is where the high-energy dancing happens all night long. Both are alcohol-free and glass-free venues so it’s safe for the whole family.
When: 31 December 2017
For more: http://www.events.act.gov.au/
Welcome to Australia’s biggest horsepower party. In 2017, just under 120,000 people descended on Canberra for the four-day festival dedicated purely to the automotive industry. 2018 will be Summernats’ 30th year so it’s bound to be a good one.
Throughout the festival you’ll enjoy Australia’s top street machine judging competition, the world’s biggest burnout battle, horsepower heroics plus two nights of awesome concerts. More than just a festival about cars, Summernats is “a celebration of the street machine lifestyle and the people who live it”.
And the great thing is, it’s not just for car-lovers. Whether you know absolutely zilch about cars and the automotive industry or you’re a car-fanatic, you’ll love everything the festival has to offer.
When: 4-7 January 2018
For more: http://www.summernats.com.au/
There are events all day next Australia Day in the nation’s capital from an Aussie Day BBQ Breakfast in the morning to fabulous fireworks over Lake Burley Griffin at night.
To start, head to Stage 88, Commonwealth Park and enjoy your brekkie. While you’re guzzling your coffee, hear from the Sing Australia choir. But don’t go away right after you’ve eaten; there’s a Nerf Zone, jumping castle, and face painting for the kids to enjoy.
You can then welcome the newest Australians at the Rond Terrace National Citizenship and Flag Raising Ceremony. If you have sensitive ears, perhaps pack some noise-cancelling headphones because there’ll definitely be an impressive flyover and a 21-gun salute.
In the afternoon, settle down for a family-friendly concert at Regatta Point or head to Patrick White Lawns for a picnic. There’ll be loads of entertainment for the kids including a giant slide and glitter tattoos. And then, the piece-de-resistance, the spectacular fireworks display over Lake Burly Griffin.
When: 26 January 2018
For more: http://www.events.act.gov.au/australia-day
Waving the Red Flag: Chinese Posters 1949 – 1976
Escape the heat with a day at the National Library of Australia. For a cultural-history experience, don’t miss Waving the Red Flag, a mini exhibition of Chinese propaganda posters used from 1949 to 1976 by the PRC government. The colourful posters demonstrate how the government communicated its sanctioned ideals to its people, and they’re a testimony to the power of visual art in propaganda. Waving the Red Flag is running until 2 February 2018.
When: 18 Jul 2017 – 2 Feb 2018
For more: www.nla.gov.au
Canberra Triathlon Festival
For all the athletes out there, this one’s for you. The Canberra Triathlon Festival consists of four races – the Standard, the Sprint, the Super Sprint and Try a Tri. The best thing is, by competing in the Festival, you’re essentially trialling for the Commonwealth Games in the Gold Coast in 2018 – your finishing position will determine the number of points you receive towards your qualification.
It’s a huge day of racing and, if you’re a tri novice, it’s the perfect chance to try a triathlon for the first time.
When: 3 February 2018
For more: https://www.eliteenergy.com.au/event/canberra-triathlon-festival/
National Multicultural Festival 2018
Head to the centre of town next February to enjoy the fun-filled, family-friendly event; it’s the 22nd National Multicultural Festival. In 2017, more than 280,000 people flocked to the city to enjoy all the cultures on show. What’s so beautiful about the Festival is that it’s all about promoting “equality of opportunity, maintaining social cohesion, building social capital and minimising social exclusion for culturally and linguistically diverse Canberrans,” and those visiting, of course.
The festival includes shows, food stalls and loads of other fun things.
It starts on 16 February with a free concert before the weekend kicks off with varied and exciting showcases. On Saturday, travel around the world in a day and experience the Food and Dance Spectacular, Chinese New Year, an African Village, India in the City and an Indigenous Showcase. Saturday is the biggest day of the festival so it’s definitely not to be missed.
On Sunday, give your taste buds a global holiday, as you move through the Latin Quarter and into the Greek Quarter.
When: 16-18 February 2018
For more: https://www.multiculturalfestival.com.au/home
Summer’s End Yoga Festival
Not just for the Yoggies, the Summer’s End Yoga Festival is all about meditation, wellbeing and more. It’s a weekend for the community to come together and share all that is good about health including yoga. During the festival, participants will discover all the variety of styles of yoga that are available, both on and off the mat. There are generally more than 20 sessions to choose from including dance, music, martial arts, meditation and more. What’s great is that the sessions are also divided in practical sessions, demonstrations, lectures or workshops so you get a broad understanding. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a yoga practitioner to attend the festival, it’s for anyone who is interested in yoga or other complementary practices – from beginners right through to experts.
When: date to be announced
For more: http://seyf.com.au/
Discover the best of Canberra this summer
This summer, Canberra has a range of events of interest from spectacular automotive shows to arts and crafts exhibitions and triathlon competitions. As this list shows, visitors and locals alike will have plenty of activities to choose from, but remember to check if events are ticketed and book in advance.
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