My personal TOP PICKS for this year’s Open House Festival…
Island Picnic – £20- 14th August
This will sell out so get booked fast. I absolutely loved this event last year. From Donaghadee pier you’ll take a boat over to the Copelands for the warmest of welcomes and an afternoon of live music whilst taking in the stunning vista from the island. Bring your own picnic and rug.
Midsummer Nights Dream – £14/£7 – 27th & 28th August
I’m being rather self indulgent with this one. I’ve always thought this Shakespeare classic would be perfect acted out in the Walled Garden of Bangor Castle. And the festival have made it happen. The Merely Theatre Company from London will bring this much loved comedy to life in the enchanting surroundings.
Ian Rankin – £14.50 – 4th August
If you love immersing yourself in a thrilling crime novel then get to the Space Theatre for a discussion and Q&A with the creator of Inspector Rebus. Talking about his most recent book with local author, Colin Bateman, this will make for a great bookclub day out!
Bottle Shock – £25 – 4th August
Visit the lovely old auctions rooms for a screening of Bottle Shock, a comedy-drama starring Alan Rickman as a maverick English wine merchant taking on the French wine aristocracy. Have I seen this movie…No! But… if this event is anything like last year’s screening of Sideways it’s gonna be a goody! The price includes glass of fizz on arrival, wine tasting and cheese and crackers. You can bring your own vintage and nibbles to enjoy over the movie. I can’t guarantee your cheese will be expertly cut or your wine dribbled onto your table as I expertly did at last years event however.
Sundown Market – Free – 19th August
Peruse the stalls of the local food and drink traders from the Comber Farmer’s Market, Bangor Food Assembly and St George’s Market at the Marina. Th seaside view will provide the perfect backdrop to supping on craft beers and feasting on tasty street food whilst enjoying some live music.
The Threshold of the Unseen – £5 – 25th August
Join author of Weird Belfast, Reggie Chamberlain-King for this dark and mysterious tale of the death of Queen’s professor Dr WJ Crawford in 1920. In an illustrated lecture Reggie Chamberlain-King will explore how his body was found on the rocks of the Girls Home, Bangor with way too much cyanide in his system. Ooooooh….This is right up my street, throw in a graveyard tour and I’d be all over this one!
Boom! Studios presents: MAD Summer – Free – 1st to 5th August
One for the kids… Boom! is inviting children of all ages into the Boom! workshop space to participate in a variety of creative activities. The week-long camp will cover art, craft, music, drama, dance and song and will be hosted by experienced, local facilitators.
As always there’s so many more events worth getting to and with most, if not all, events scheduled to fit in with the trains back to Belfast it’s all the more convenient to head out of the city for a great night out!
Full programme here.