Friday, 6 March 2015

What's On In (And Around) Melbourne This Weekend

It's a long weekend for me, with a public holiday for Labour Day on Monday.  Is it kind of ironic that we celebrate work by taking a day off? Not that I'm complaining!

Anyway, that means there are heaps of cool things going on around Victoria this weekend, so I've broadened my horizons and had a look at some of the events being held beyond the Melbourne city limits. Enjoy!

Moomba Festival

Moomba is one of those iconic events that you can immediate associate with Melbourne.  It has been going for 60 years - I grew up watching Moomba on tv!  I always like watching the water skiing on the Yarra, the Birdman Rally, and the Moomba Parade.  Moomba is on again this long weekend, and if you head to the CBD and drift anywhere towards the river, you're sure to find yourself in the midst of Moomba festivities.  There are all kinds of free family friendly activities and events - something for everyone!

Ballarat Begonia Festival

The Ballarat Begonia Festival is close to my heart, being in my home town. We're pretty proud of it!  It is based around Lake Wendouree, with the Botanical Gardens (and Begonia hothouses) being right over the road, but you'll also find lots of other places around the town taking part in their own way in the festival.  There are lots of activities for the kids, and there is plenty of entertainment, and food, arts and crafts, and gardeners' markets to stroll through.  Take the opportunity to check out my hood!

Baw Baw Trail Run Festival

Think you're ready to hit the trails?  Well, Mount Baw Baw might be the challenge for you!  At the Baw Baw Trail Run Festival this weekend, you can run almost any distance, with differing technical difficulties.  Not to mention it's a beautiful part of the world!  There are also plenty of inspirational presentations, technique & nutrition workshops and films, if you just want to find out a bit more about the art of trail running.

Brunch By the Bay

If you are thinking about staying a bit closer to home for your long weekend, but you still want to experience something a bit different, you could head to Port Melbourne on Sunday morning for Brunch by the Bay.  Apart from being about to check out some of the fabulous brunch spots in the area, there will be lots of activities you can participate in, like beach cricket, but also try a variety of classes, from Yoga to Latin Dance to Boot Camp, run by the South Pacific Health Club.  You know how much I love the sound of great food and great exercise at the one place!

Japanese Summer Festival

I'm a huge fan of Japanese food (mmmm ramen!), but I don't know heaps about the Japanese culture.  Here is a great chance to learn more - at the Japanese Summer Festival on Sunday afternoon at Federation Square.  Traditionally held to honour one's ancestors, the annual festival features the 'bon odori', a dance performed in a circle whilst wearing cotton kimono known as 'yukata' - you can learn and join in, or watch some of the other performances.  And of course, the festival will also be packed with a wide range of stalls with traditional Japanese games, activities and food - including  sushi, okonomiyaki and bento.  If you go, can you bring me back a bento?

What to you like to do on a long weekend, that is a bit different from your norm?  What have you got planned for your next long weekend?

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